Faelan's Interview

Kathryn interviews Faelan.


The pleasant sounds of a restaurant and bar are not unusual in Las Vegas; no more than the balmy, lingering warmth of early evening, before the chill of true night sets in from the desert. It may be that the young reporter was surprised at the choice of location for tonight's interview, though she managed to disguise it well over the phone, if so. Already seated at a small table out in the gardens of Lombardi's, with an as yet untouched glass of chocolatey merlot set before her, Kathryn Emerson looks generally relaxed and at ease in her surroundings, flipping through a well-organised file of various papers, clippings and pictures. A glance over the pretty redhead's shoulder might reveal some of these to be oddly macabre. But, for the time being, she is left to her solitude, awaiting her guest.

A classically cut, pale grey suit jacket with dark blue pinstripes has settled on Faelan's shoulders, and it is the most striking thing about his silhouette as he exits the establishment and moves into the garden. The auburn-haired man's stalk is a casual thing, not quite inherently menacing by itself, and he shuts the door behind him with his left hand. Dark jeans and a pale vanilla shirt complete the man's attire, standing out against the sporadic but sufficient illumination of the area. The garden is quiet this evening, and a member of the restaurant's staff cleans up plates with a soft clink of dining ware that covers the subtle whisper of the approaching man's footsteps. He comes to a pause behind the back of an unoccupied chair at a right angle to the already seated reporter, placing one of his hands on the back and allowing a corner of his mouth to turn upwards. His keen eyes had seen the file as he approached, but he doesn't comment on it, instead opening the interview with a quiet "Good evening, Miss Kathryn." The chair tugs out and he seats himself, settling straightbacked. "How does it find you?"

"Oh." The response is not one of being startled. She had been expecting him, after all. But the young woman had obviously become lost in her reading, if only for a few moments, and she blinks up at the auburn-haired man before offering a dazzling smile and a polite hand. "Good evening… you must be Faelan." Her accent is pure English-rose, and seems to suit her well, despite the marked contrast to the majority who inhabit the city. "Pleased to meet you. And it finds me most well, thank you." It's a standard response. Beneath her light, careful make-up, she looks tired. Bright-eyed, though. Caffeine is probably a permanent fixture in her lifestyle.

Closing the file for now and setting it down on the creamy tablecloth, she eyes the newcomer speculatively. "And yourself? I must admit, I hadn't expected any of my interviewees to choose a garden to meet in.."

"I find myself missing the ocean and wished for something a touch more isolated from the bustle of glitz, games, and hungry hearts. A pleasant table at a small restaurant on a pier, fragrant with a breeze off the water and lively, sounded like the best place to conduct an interview. But failing that.." The man gestures towards the garden with an open palm, before resting the hand on the tablecloth, his pale green eyes taking in the surroundings as he lets his words slow to a pause. "Failing that, this seemed a sufficient substitute." He pauses in his rumination on the nuances of the garden's decoration, instead returning his attention to the conversation at hand. His fingertips lightly curl inwards to touch the base digit against the tablecloth.

"I enjoy its calming influence as a place to order my thoughts. Now, tell me. What is it I can help you with?" Curiosity momentarily sparks in the abyssal depths of the man's eyes, and if Kathryn should meet his gaze, she finds an undertow that threatens to carry her away into a bottomless tunnel where dreams and nightmares buried deep in the mind reside.

"Peace and quiet. Yes, I suppose I can understand a need for that, in a place like this." Kathryn's eyes wander, obligingly, over the fragrant landscaping as she agrees. Judging by the energy that seems to literally emanate from her in an aura, though, it seems unlikely that she really grasps it. Understand, maybe. Empathise? Not so much.

"Well." she begins, clasping her hands loosely together atop the table and returning that disarming smile to the man seated with her, "As you know, I have an interest in establishing a more unbiased and… well, accurate basis, when it comes to the preternatural community. What better way than to allow members of it their chance to have a say, and put to rest some of these urban legends that continue to be problematic, in this day and age?" It -was- a genuine question. But it's rendered rhetorical as the young woman becomes briefly ensnared by Faelan's gaze. "I, umm… there are things I would like to ask you about.." One hand falls, in slow motion, downward toward the purse by her foot, the posture canting her body to one side gradually. Her vivid green eyes continue to hold his pale, empty ones, until she produces a sleek little piece of technology from a side-pocket. Digital dictaphone.

Grasping it firmly, it seems to serve as some manner of anchor against that threat of current. "..about.. misconceptions, myths, that sort of thing. Some for you to, presumably, dispell. Others, to explain. If you're willing?" She sets the recorder down, equidistant between them, with one fingertip hovering questioningly over the power button.

Raising up a finger momentarily to halt her from activating the recorder, the vampire smiles. His amusement is a less subtle thing, more voracious than his subdued and polite demeanor. "There is one thing to understand. Given the nature of what we are, the truth of what we are differs for each of us." The finger lowers with gradual intent, and his hand returns to its rest on the table. His awareness of the serving staff that finishes collecting plates is reflected momentarily by a brief shift of his eyes to the door as the man and cart departs the garden, returning to Kathryn. "With that said.. by all means." His haunted gaze drops to the tape recorder, and when Kathryn demonstrates wandering absent-mindedness after meeting his gaze, a wall is slammed abruptly between the hollow, ghost-ridden reflections of his eyes and the depths that had betrayed themselves a moment before. He meets her gaze anew, this time without the quicksand hidden behind his irises. "Please, begin.

Waiting until he has spoken, and her assent has been given in the simple form of a nod, Kathryn smiles once again and presses the button, bringing the small screen to glowing life. Settling back, she flips open her file to the first spread of pages, and opens the small notepad that had been wedged inside, a pen stuck unceremoniously through it's coiled spine.

Seeming refreshed without the oddly dizzying effects of those eyes upon her any longer, the striking redhead offers what is presumably intended as an encouraging smile, a slow curve of her lips, before she begins, as he asked. "I'll try to start at a logical beginning, so I don't lose track." she promises, a flicker of wry amusement in her gaze. Is she really so fascinated by he and his kind? "..how are vampires 'made'? Popular theory, obviously suggests a bite."

"How is the most simple part, yes. Three bites over the course of three consecutive evenings, all from the same set of fangs. Intent, obviously, is required by all but the most ignorant in order to create another." Turning his lips upwards in a brief smirk, the auburn-haired man shifts his attention down towards the tape recorder thoughtfully, penting his fingers in a loose weave. He regards their tops for a moment before raising his gaze to Kathryn. "And of course, that intent is interpreted by society as murder by the law. A strange twist of reproductive practice, as it suggests that all newly created fledgelings are legally victims of murder. It's only a matter of time before this strange twist is called into question, no doubt." His eyebrows raise momentarily in unspoken comment on the ridiculousness of acknowledgement tempered only by a victim status confered on the freshly undead.

"So everyone who is a Vampire, wanted to be one? Of their own free will?" Kathryn's looking down at her notepad for the moment, jotting down some shorthand as the man speaks. But eventually her eyes meet his again. There's no judgement in gaze or tone; it appears that she genuinely wants to understand. With her free hand, she reaches for her glass of wine, bringing it unhurriedly to her lips and taking a tentative taste. The red stains her mouth a little. "..another common belief is that vampires are capable of brainwashing people. And, as you said yourself, the truth varies from one individual to the next. How can society honestly trust, when it comes to the ending of lives?" Drumming the blunt end of her pen lightly on the paper, Kathryn cuts a glance across some of the clippings, pinned at the upper edge of her folder. Then it's back to Faelan, with expectant curiosity.

"Of course not," Faelan responds, and a certain resigned amusement turns the corners of his mouth. While resembling a smirk, it's not quite - just an appreciation for some level of macabre humor present in the world's truths and their inevitable implications. "I meant intent on the part of the vampire doing the turning. The chosen candidate may or may not have control, depending on circumstances and the preference of the individual vampire. So much depends on circumstance, as it does in other things."

A brief blink of green follows, the amusement fading into a more neutral poise. "But these things are the flaws of individuals. One does not need vampirism to find the untrustworthy, the violent, or the damned. A simple look in society's prisons and courthouses will suffice for these pursuits. To magnify this untrustworthiness and place it on the shoulders of our racial image is a thing of Hollywood, a role we play in society's grand drama. I believe we haven't yet surpassed playing the part of Count Dracula, and that immaturity is a reason for the 'us versus them' image that is commonly presented. Society versus vampires, for example."

The young woman gives his response consideration, scribbling more notes and nodding along as he speaks, only to lapse into quiet, thoughtfully watching Faelan's expressions subtly changing. "It's easy to 'magnify untrustworthiness' when it comes to a subset of society we don't truly understand. And one who exist only through death. I do see your point, however. In a way."

Pausing, she marks down another few words, before venturing further, brazenly holding Faelan's empty gaze with her own, such a contrast in sheer vivacity. "Our society has prisons and courthouses. How does yours deal with those who step outside the laws? And just what -are- those laws? How far is too far, in your opinion?" A slight smile suggests an apology for the sudden barrage. But another is added, after a beat. "…and just how punishable can those crimes be, when you depend on them to survive?"

Vaguely, the corners of Faelan's mouth turn upwards again. The questions asked seem to evoke memories in the man, turning his pale green eyes distant as vivid scenes from the past play out in his thoughts. "The culture of our kind evolved from the understanding of predator and prey. Our recent.. discovery has placed us in a stage of dramatic evolution, but its roots are simply explained. The strongest survive, and take what they are able and what they desire. Feudal and meritocratic in nature, the powerful subordinate the weaker in order to establish lawful rule. That rule is largely subject to the whims of a particular area, however there are certain tenants you should probably understand. They are relevant to you." His eyes return to the reporter more immediately as he halts his reminiscing, wearing, strangely, a friendly smile.

"The first thing is the sanctity of secrets. Truth is a very powerful thing, because of its rarity. To share uncertain truths is a coin and a gift among our kind, and to share them inappropriately is punished violently. Sometimes fatally, if the matter at hand is grave." He leans back in his chair, amusement briefly resurfacing. "Another is the rule of self. The only creature you can depend on is yourself. Your superiors will try to take you for all you're worth, your peers want to remove the competition, and those below you will lash out from envy. Much like the corporate world, but all the time."

If Kathryn's upset by this candid manner of thinking, when it comes to her race, she admirably hides it in her response. A soft chuckle, along with a demure downward cast of her gaze. It's as if she's not only aware of humanity's place on the evolutionary scale.. she's amused by and accepting of it, too. How unusual. Still, she clears her throat and returns to the matter at hand, after a moment. Sweeping back her silky hair wih the back of her pen wielding hand, she takes another sip of her wine, green eyes observing Faelan over the fragile rim of her glass. "So, there's an established hieracrhy, then, however tremulous and short-lived one's position may be? Interesting." It must be. She makes a note of it, with a flourish of dark blue ink. "Are you governed by a body, or by an individual?"

"It varies. Most commonly it's chalked up to be an individual, but in practice, a body. Certain strong-willed vampires may be able to run things like a god-king or tyrant, but in practicality no one can keep charge of a given city by themselves. So it comes down to being an amalgam created of a given leader, usually dubbed Baron or Duke or similar feudal title to represent status, and his lieutenants and their servants, and then the vampiric society itself." Faelan's pale eyes study the reactions that the reporter displays with interest, though the interest is defined in negatives. What he doesn't comment on, when he doesn't watch her (except from the corner of his supernally sharp eyes), how the snags of her personality linger as he absorbs the nuances of her personality by interaction.. all of these things are apparent to the familiar eye when observed. The vampire himself is subdued and almost meek, at least in facade. There is no wasted motion, no glance unladen with meaning. He does little, but when he does act it is with a particular intent. "It's nowhere near democratic, of course." ..a joke?

"Hmm.." The redhead's glossed lips quirk into a half-smile as she looks over her swift handwriting, then turns for a fresh page, glancing up at Faelan contemplatively. "I'm not sure that human politics are either, half the time. But moving on… much as I would love to press for more, I'll have to resort to what the readers want to know, if I want to keep my job. So." Picking up her notepad, she leafs a few pages through her file, then sets the little book back down. "Apotropaics. Things supposed to ward off vampires, or other supernaturals. The standard superstitions, or the most popular, seem to be.." She lists them off, lightly tapping her pen to punctuate each. "Crucifixes, garlic, silver. Sometimes mirrors. And most people still believe a vampire can't enter a residence without being invited first." Leaning back in her chair, she regards Faelan with an arching brow and a lingering smile.

Tapping fingers lightly against the pale tablecloth, the auburn-haired vampire watches the movements of his own pale digits thoughtfully. First he taps down his index finger and a wince touches the corners of his eyes. "Silver's unpleasant. Have a silver weapon driven through you and you'll be feeling it for a long time. Garlic.. well. I still enjoy eating cooked food. Crucifixes? Sadly, no. I've only seen one or two strange instances of religion working its odd brand of magic, but… no, as a general rule, a crucifix does nothing by itself." His mouth turns upwards, fingers tapping off in succession as he runs through the aspects of the question both spoken and culturally implied. "Running water, of course, is absurd. And mirrors? I groom myself, thank you. As far as uninvited entry goes, that does seem to be a flaw within certain members of my kind, but I believe it primarily to be a psychological impediment."

The reporter nods intermittently as Faelan offers his answers, her gaze for the moment upon her notepad as she scribbles notes of his words. Lest she forget, of course. Though, the recorder set between them is a safe bet. "I see… so, it's basically a lot of superstition, that's come to be considered fact, through the ages. That appears to be an issue with many aspects of your existence, doesn't it?" Casting the vampire a sympathetic - sort of - glance through her dark lashes, Kathryn reaches for her wine glass once again. But she doesn't take a sip quite yet, seeming content to gently swirl the Merlot as she ponders her next line of questioning.

"The Church, everyone knows, considers vampires to be soulless entities at best, or demons at worst. They're also openly funding activist groups who seek to persecute your kind. What would you say, to those people? And what are your own views on religion, nowadays?" Quirking a slender brow expectantly, she at last deigns to a taste of her wine. The young woman seems more at ease now, settled into her task, despite the late hour and lack of company out in the gardens.

Folding his arms loosely, the red-haired vampire raises a brow slightly at the most recent set of questions. His lips turn slowly upwards into a smirk, one of his fingers rising to tap his lips. It's obvious that he's moving through and discarding responses as his index finger drums against his tawny lower lip, keeping him quiet. His eyes remain on the reporter, however, and his chin rises as he leans back in the chair. The hand falls away after maybe twenty seconds of contemplative silence, falling back to his lap.

"I've dealt with men and women funded by the Catholic Church who wished to kill me, in my time. Even before we entered society's sight. Their continued existence is no great surprise: vampires are familiar with the vendetta, being creatures of age and passion. Their vendetta will go on against vampires by their own terms: until either we or they are destroyed. That seems to be the disposition of uncivilized radicals and terrorists, does it not?" His shoulders shrug momentarily, and he exhales. One hand rises to touch the back of his neck as he renders his response to the second portion of the question. "I was raised Irish Catholic, myself. Dying is.. well. A spiritual epiphany. One that I do not understand fully. But then, I have a long time to contemplate it."

Smiling a little in return, once she has lowered the rim of the glass from her lips and set the vessel aside carefully, Kathryn jots a swift note. Then she simply toys with her pen, twirling it absently and elegantly between her fingers as she regards her companion. "How do you come to terms with, or reconcile, the beliefs you had before and the situation you now face? Do -you- believe you have a soul?" Canting her head a little to one side, she studies Faelan with open curiosity, silhouetted by the dim lighting of the restaurant proper at her back. They appear to be winding down for the evening, only a few parties still lingering at their tables over coffee and tipsy conversation. The waitstaff wearily busy themselves with stripping cloths and clearing glasses, no doubt looking forward to ending their shift.

Raising his gaze to meet the curious look of the reporter, the auburn-haired man retains his solemn expression for several moments before laughing openly. It's not a loud sound, just a quiet chuckle that curves the corners of his mouth into a smirk. He closes his eyes briefly, not needing his augmented eyesight to comport himself once the amusement has faded. His hands come to a fold on top of the vanilla tablecloth as he leans forward. "I think the soul is the pattern a person leaves behind when they interact with others." His eyes open slowly, half-lidded against a ray of light from inside Lombardi's, though he doesn't turn his head away. "The thing that clings to our gravestone after our physical self has passed away. The thing you'll take away from me when you leave this meeting, the thing that you use as fuel for the story you mold the chaotic, random happenings of your life into." His shoulders roll in a shrug and he leans back. "I think dying, it's a lot easier to see that because you're no longer in the perspective of someone who is.. living for the daylight realms of temporal success and happiness as a means to a contented and satisfied lifestyle. Being immortal has a different set of responsibilities and desires."

"I'm not particularly spiritually inclined, myself." admits the redhead, seeming unperturbed by the man's laughter and grinning a little toward him, with a glimpse of straight white teeth. "And that's a perfectly reasonable perspective. But it leads to another question, inevitably." The woman glances to the dictaphone, ensuring it's still on and running. It is. Good. Tugging her notepad a fraction closer, she rests with her pen poised just above the cheap paper. "What are the responsibilities you mention? And, rather more fittingly for my article perhaps, the desires? Put bluntly, Faelan, is it all about blood? Or do you have needs beyond sustenance. Relationships, for example." She holds his gaze contemplatively, obviously thinking out loud. "Do vampires take lovers, or marry? surely living forever is a rather lonely ordeal, otherwise."

Following Kate's gaze down towards the dictaphone, Faelan retains his smile. The man's fingers lightly drum on the top of the table and he shifts back up to meet her eyes, tonguing the inside of his cheek thoughtfully before responding. "Marry? Not openly. Being a predator by nature is a dangerous existence, and.. wedding vows only mean something to those of us old-fashioned enough to believe they'll work. Or.. naive. Take your pick. A spouse is a potential target for those looking to undercut you. You can figure the rest out." One of his hands raises momentarily, touching his thumb to the corner of his mouth. The pad of his flesh brushes lightly against one of his fangs, a habit obviously born of contemplative ritual.

"Lovers are much more common. Vampires are creatures of passion, I would go so far as to say that passion is what holds us together. We are each divided by the kind of passion we find most.. compelling. Creating strong bonds with others is common, indeed. It is a rare individual that is capable of withstanding the intensity of another vampire for long spans of time, so we do not often take extended lovers among our own kind. Politics inevitably destroys such passionate alliances." His shoulders roll in a shrug.

"Our responsibility is politics. We must navigate the moonlit world of our kind with careful steps and eternal vigil, or else another will take what we have. It is the same way as among the living, except the stakes are much higher and the fall is much steeper." He exhales slowly, lowering his hand from his mouth and pressing the palm against the table. "To take a lover is one means of relieving the stress of heightened responsibility, yes. What's life without its pleasures? Survival for its own sake is boring."

Pausing in her note-taking, the reporter simply listens quietly. One hand idly traces a fingertip around the rim of her wineglass, though the motion halts, just for a splitsecond, as Faelan briefly reveals his pointed canine. Of course she knew he had fangs - that's a given. But seeing them is altogether different. Her gaze strays to his mouth with his absent-minded motion, then is averted discreetly once again. "I see.." she murmurs, lightly tapping the blunt end of her pen on the tablecloth now.

"And what of the relationship between a vampire, and the one who made him? Is that a lasting bond, one of affection, or is it inconsequential too, in the grander scheme of things?" Sitting back a little, reclining in her chair, Kathryn sweeps a hand back across her ruby locks, returning her focus to the man beside her. Even this subtle change of posture, to his keener senses, might convey a breath of sweet perfume; nigh indetectable to most upon her skin. She doesn't seem to think of it, herself.

The idle motions that the woman makes are noted with a languid smile by the man, leaning a hand on the table and shifting forward momentarily. "That bond is entirely between the two involved, and cannot be easily summarized. The one who created me did so with the intent of using me for his own ends. But I cannot apply that same reason to any other bond, because each one is unique and the product of the two individuals involved." His head cants momentarily aside, lips turning upwards. He inhales slowly, closing his eyes again as he responds to her. "No matter what character it takes, however.. it is an experience." 'Experience' is granted a certain, exalted emphasis, the amusement of his mouth becoming more subdued after the utterance.

"What is it like?" That question seems borne of personal curiosity, rather than for the sake of the interview, Kathryn's green eyes taking in the subtle changes in the demeanour of her companion and following the course of their conversation, unable to help herself. Her wine, what's left of it, is taken up and brought to her lips once more, perhaps to silence any further question that may be brimming on the tip of her tongue. Save one. She clarifies, after a sip. "..for -you-, what was it like?" Her gaze flits away from him, momentarily, wandering in the direction of the restaurant as the lights grow dimmer. Have they been forgotten, out here? No, activity remains, evidenced in the shifting silhouettes. But their time appears to be drawing to a close.

Reaching a hand out slowly towards the dictaphone, Faelan rests his index finger on top of the power button. He meets her gaze slowly, eyes rising from the device to regard her with a thoughtful, slowly emerging smile. "If I answer.. it will be for your sake, not for that of your audience." Assuming she doesn't stop him, and he gives her ample time to do so, his finger depresses the power button and he lightly turns the recorder onto its side. His hand remains on the table next to it as he slightly leans forward for a moment. His palm slides back as he composes himself more upright. Regardless of whether the dictaphone is on or off, however, he inhales slowly, gathering himself for the dive into the depths of his memories. "First, you have to understand being dead. In dying, we're bound to our bodies entirely by the strength of our passions and the tenacity of our willpower. We are truly parasites clinging to life, but not by breath or cuisine or money. We cling by the subtle violence of emotional need, which becomes physical need for blood. The essence of animation."

His voice grows softer, though it still carries in the empty gardens, and his eyes lose their focus and are partially veiled by their lids as he begins to speak. Whatever explanation he renders is one woven while he speaks it, no mere rote speech or reheased explanation. "But we're all parasites. Ours is just the more blatant, to you. What is alien is socially unacceptable. So… for me, I understood those things. I had a violent life already, and I quickly grasped the implications of what I had become. Even so, even understanding.. the ancient creature that turned me wanted to use me, and I willingly obeyed. I desired the power it wielded. Envy choked me til my lips were blue. I /needed/ more, I needed to become something stronger than this weak child I found myself, in the face of matured power. But most of all.. I hated it with all of my heart. It made me do terrible things, Kathryn." A vague smile tugs at his lips, humor found in the depths of the Grim Reaper's skeletal grin. "I had been a horrid person when I was alive, I had thought. But after the change.. no. I was the pawn of a centuries-old vendetta incarnated in a corpse. It was like staring at a monster driven by a sole, hideous idea. It wasn't a person, as we understand them. It was the avatar of Vengeance, and other unwholesome concepts."

His eyes open more fully and he looks down towards his hand, tapping his fingers lightly to the tabletop. He begins with the thumb, shifting fingers until he reaches the pinky, and then back. The exercise seems to calm him. "

It took me a very long time before I slipped the leash of its mental control. I conspired to see it slain. I found its enemies, and I betrayed it to them. I turned it over to something even more old and terrible than it was. And.. it worked. I was free." The reaper's smile departs his lips, softening his expression to something resembling fatigue.. and desire? as he looks up towards the reporter. "It is difficult to summarize. Perhaps, with practice, I could show you instead."

She doesn't stop him, holding his gaze calmly when he reaches for the device, remaining just as she is, wine cupped in the palm of one hand, fingertips pressed lightly to fragile glass. The other, after a splitsecond hesitation, reaches for her file and notepad. Both are gently closed, nudged aside across the stark white tablecloth. The interview appears to be over, for all intents and purposes. The shared understanding that goes unspoken insists that, if he is to share his past with her, alone, then the least she can do is accept it without any intent beyond hearing him. Kathryn obliges.

As Faelan begins, she finishes the last of her wine and sets the empty vessel aside, leaning forward to fold her slender arms on the tabletop. Her focus isn't demanded by the fathomless depth his eyes are capable of, nor a lulling melody to his voice. It's demanded by her own nature. She -wants- to know, to understand. If there was ever any doubt of that, it can easily be swept aside, now. She doesn't seek to placate him with murmurings of sympathy or dismissal. After all, his past is something he himself has hade enough time to mull over… any offering she might have regarding it would seem trite. If he claims to have done horrible things, then he's done horrible things. Duly noted, apparently. But it doesn't seem to incline the reporter to recoil from the creature she's seated with.

The light drumming of his fingertips draws her gaze in the wake of his own, and she finds herself regarding the steady motion meditatively as she listens. The redhead only looks up again when Faelan does, something in the nuance of his tone garnering her attention. And her confusion. "Show me..?" she echoes, for the first time her own manner betraying uncertainty. It's emphasised by a sudden quickening of her heart's beat, to his senses. "..what do you mean? With practice of what?"

"I'm not entirely sure, but I /think/ that especially skilled members of my kind can alter memory. I.. think that it's possible that I could introduce an entirely foreign memory, fabricated.. but based on my own recollections. In that way I could show you what I've experienced, seperate from your precious self, but still within your mind. I could most likely remove it afterwards and leave just the echo, as well." The auburn-haired man bites his lower lip for a moment, gently, with one fang briefly revealed. The gesture is almost frustrated, though it fades after a moment. The conflict stays in his eyes, the betrayal of a secret almost seeming to envigorate the ennui clinging like frost to his expression. It melts slowly into calm comport, leaving him seeming more like a person and less a creature of calculated actions. He sighs, shallow and unnecessary for anything but psychological relief.

"That.. is something you won't want to let on that you know. But if you're going to be interacting with us.. you need to. I feel it a proper trade, for the attentiveness and fairness that you've shown me. It's very straightforward, with the proper understandings. The initial fuzziness that you felt at the beginning of our interview, the distraction.." He lets his words trail off, focusing on the potence of his gaze as he regards her. For a brief, stomach-wrenching moment the compulsion is accelerated enough that it is visible, though it disappears and leaves no sensation in its wake a moment afterwards. "It's something we do. And I want you to be well aware of those dangers. For some strange reason.. I'm concerned for your well-being." His lips turn upwards, sincerely seeming to find this altogether strange affliction amusing.

"I hope I've satisfied you enough for your professional purposes, Kate. If this is the task you set before yourself.. be aware of the treacherous ground you cross." He leans back in the chair for a moment, still holding her gaze, but without the supernal compulsion. Instead he simply watches, that uncertain amusement still on his lips.

Astoundingly, the young woman seems not only to -grasp- what Faelan's trying to explain.. but to accept it. Beginning to nod her understanding, slowly, she permits a faint smile to tug at her lips. "I see. That would.." she trails off, seeming to consider how best to phrase her initial response. Something icy clutches in her gut, something which she pushes aside with forceful, practiced habit. The quaver of fear, though, it must be said, mingles with that natural, feline curiosity which so threatens her fragile, tenuously held existence. The very thing likely inspiring concern in a so-called soulless being. "..that would be an insight." is the answer she eventually settles on. Understatement, she finds, tends to be her ally, in precarious situations.

A swift breath is drawn, catching in her throat as it constricts. His gaze, when he chooses, all at once rouses instinctive desires to flee… and yet freezes one in place. It's a kindness that he doesn't hold it for longer than a passing moment, but she still looses a shaky exhale thereafter. "..and if I don't look at you? Can you still do.. whatever that was?" Her green eyes hurriedly wander the roses and greenery, as if to reassure herself that her will is her own again, before returning to Faelan, awaiting his answer. She gives her own, first. Fair's fair. "Someone has to be the first to venture across the battlefield, don't they? We'll never understand one another, otherwise. As you said… vampire or human, it makes no difference. The responsibility for defining 'good' and 'evil' rests in the hands of the individual and their desires."

Rising up to his feet, the auburn-haired vampire lightly tucks his chair in beneath the table. He stands behind it, his motions coming at a pace 'normal' to observers. "Without eye contact.. it's harder, but some of the ability does seem to rest in the voice. I've managed it against the weak-willed without." His fingers fold lightly on the back of the chair, attention briefly dropping towards the recording device on the table. His expression fades to solemnity. One of his hands touches the edge of the table and he begins to pace around its circumference towards where the reporter sits, offering her a hand for support. The unsteadiness of her demeanor is not lost on him, and only briefly do his green eyes shift towards the darkening interior of the restaurant. "As opposing and integrally linked beings, I doubt we'll ever understand one another. The only understanding we can have.. is going to be between people. The rest will be splintered by violence and well-meaning hatred."

He waits in this poise until she is ready to rise, one corner of his mouth tugging upwards. "I can help you understand," he offers quietly.

"Well… harder is something." As Faelan takes to his feet and circles the table toward her, the young woman swiftly gathers her belongings, sweeping the dictaphone into her purse, having settled it in her lap, followed by her file and notepad. The pen is clicked closed and tossed inside, also. And then she simply offers her own hand in acceptance of his silent offer, rising gracefully to a stand with a quiet, grateful smile.

Inside, the restaurant has grown sedate. Only a few employees still linger, awaiting their last customers with impressive restraint. A chill breeze wafts across the gardens onto the terrace, roused from the desert wasteland that surrounds the city. Kathryn shivers slightly, but makes no complaint, her thoughts still upon the vampire and the things he has chosen to share. "…if you want to be understood, Faelan, I am more than willing to learn. Even if I can only still the tongues of 'people', for a time. Perhaps it will offer you some semblance of peace, perhaps not. I hope it does."

Close to the red-headed reporter, Faelan can feel her heartbeat through the warm touch of her hand and scent her perfume. He exhales slowly, dismissing instinctive pangs of need that clamor for his attention by inspiring a dull ache in his canines and a shiver of adrenaline-like hunger through his veins. Raw desire for this attractive and dignified woman is momentarily manifest in his pale green eyes, but a blink and it's gone. Instead he smiles. Some things, you learn to live with. "This thing you want to understand.. it's larger than both of us," he begins quietly, eye contact the subtle indicator of his sincerity and a lowered voice adding hush to his words. Their proximity relieves the strain of listening, however. "There will be a gathering of us, soon. A celebration, as there are often. It will be my first, in Las Vegas. Will you come with me? As a person, not a reporter intent on a story," he adds, a wry humor lacing itself in his words.

Slinging her purse onto her shoulder, one thumb hooking beneath the strap for a moment, the young woman arches a slender brow at the impromptu invitation. Then she smiles, with genuine warmth. And no small amount of intrigue in her expression. "I won't be part of some macabre buffet, will I?" she enquires, with a note of gentle teasing in her equally soft voice. It's apparently rhetoric, anyway. "I would be honored. Truly. If you're certain it would be alright. You wouldn't get in trouble?" How amusing, that -that- should be her concern, when she's accepting to walk into a veritable haven of vampires. Willingly. "I can't promise I wouldn't be fascinated.. but I'd leave the notepad at home, if that's your preference." Stepping lightly away from her chair atop her perilously high heels, she keeps her gaze upon Faelan. "What's the occasion?"

"Survival. Existence. Because we can. Because someone's looking to get ahead, or knock someone else behind. Any of those things, and a dozen more." Tucking one of his hands lightly into the pocket of his jeans, the vampire smirks momentarily and raises a brow. His other hand places itself lightly against his ribcage, palm first.

He regards her thoughtfully. "If you're not functioning in your capacity as a reporter, you'll draw less attention. I'm sure that mind of yours can function adequately without the visible trappings of your profession." One corner of his mouth quirks upwards. "I won't get into any trouble, no. You might, if you don't stay close to me. But.. new though I am to Las Vegas proper, I'm an old hat at this sort of thing. You won't be in any danger unless you leave my proximity." He doesn't seem to have any problems discussing the potential danger of the event: anyone involving themselves with undead predators probably already has a keen understanding of what they're getting themselves into. "I'd like to get to know you better," he offers, finally coming to the occasion for his invitation with a momentarily arched brow.

"I never go -looking- for trouble.. yet it always seems to find me." muses the redhead, before she nods gently. "Alright. Yes. I would be pleased to accompany you, and I'll do my best to blend in. At least I'm not tanned." A woeful glance is cast down over one arm. It is, indeed, a practically flawless alabaster. Sigh. Looking up at the vampire again, Kathryn smiles, surprised by his admission but not unpleasantly so. "Mmm. Well, that should kill a good half hour for you. There really isn't much to know. Shall we…?" A subtle gesture of her hand indicates the darkened restaurant, leaving further words unnecessary to convey her meaning. Turning, she starts toward the patio doors, a sedate pace demanded by her choice of footwear, if not her demeanour. "Tonight has been, honestly, quite a pleasure. I never expected anyone to be so.. forthcoming. Shifters certainly aren't." A brief pause. "Perhaps society favors them, in sympathy for their 'condition', whereas vampires continue to be depicted as the villains and monsters Hollywood cashes in on."

"For the most part, we are, of course. Villains and monsters." This seems to cause Faelan some measure of amusement, and he accompanies her with slow steps towards the entryway to the garden. "The archetype of villainy is entirely based upon the rules of society, and our society's acceptable norms are.. very different from the ones you are used to. The actions we take could easily be construed as heartless by someone used to a different, less lethal set of rules." A soft laugh follows, his lips making a quiet 'tch' of dismissive annoyance after. "But in daylit society, you can get away with cussing out your elders without being torn limb from limb."

Making it to the doors of the restaurant before Kathryn, the man opens one for her. His pale green eyes turn upon her, raising a brow momentarily. "You've far too many good qualities to be consigned to an early grave for inexpertly poking around the business of monsters. I hadn't intended to say as much as I did, quite honestly.. but none of those things were truly secret. I was careful not to reveal anything that would not cause a backlash against you."

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