Description: Johnny Cage, catching some rays at his million dollar mansion, is visited by his comrade in the Society, Nightwolf, who isn't pleased with Johnny's procrastination. Someone else isn't too pleased with the way Johnny's been treating her, either...
A pleasant afternoon in sunny California. Johnny Cage's home is naturally in the esteemed neighborhood of West Hollywood, with a choice mansion atop a hill overlooking the Sunset Strip. The mansion is the pinnacle of modern architecture with lots of glass, steel and fine masonry. There's a large elevated patio with a swimming pool and jacuzzi, and the living room has a giant row of window panes to give him a great view of the city of Los Angeles every morning. A small cobblestone path from the front door and garage section goes to the front gates, where he has the latest in security.
Ever since the island tournament, it's been business as usual for the movie star. Promotional stunts, commercials, meeting fans, and shooting his latest film, currently under wraps - never a dull moment when you are an A-List. He's even been in talks with renovating his new summer home on Zack Island. He was specific to mention that no meerkats were allowed on the premises...except a certain group of them. You'll know them when you see them, he told his agent cryptically. His agent, Harry, could only stumble over his words in bafflement at what THAT could mean.
He's also been shirking meetings with the Society; a regular no-show since he first signed on with Nightwolf and Raiden, in fact. He can presently be found on his patio, sunbathing shirtless with one of those aluminum things people use to get tans. Some Top 40 pop music is playing from his sound system in the living room, the music drifting lazily out into the sun.
Things have similarly been busy for Nightwolf, though in an extremely different way.
While Johnny has been sun bathing and fighting scantly clad women in some tropical island, all kinds of chaos has broken loose back inland. The psychopathic serial killer in Southtown had yet to be dealt with, that scythe wielding Gear still runs loose, having barely prevented a massacre of people by throwing himself head long against such a monster. Then there's fact that Nightwolf suspects one of the members of the Society is purposely antagonizing Hunters and putting them all in danger. With Kiyomi a suspected traitor, his mistrust for Miki, Azumi's inexperience and the fact that Raiden has retreated to his temple for a long meditation, Nightwolf has been doing a lot of the heavy lifting by himself lately. Having to defend his Champion title belt on top of it all just pushes it all to the ridiculous levels.
"Where in blazes is everyone?" Nightwolf wonders to himself out loud as he sits by the bonefire alone again, accompanied only by huddled Darkstalker refugees. Are these the mighty forces of Earthrealm that are destined to defend this world against the forces of Outworld? Just a bunch of misfit children of the night and one lonesome and fatigued shaman?
It's time to go check where everyone is.
Nightwolf starts with the boastful Johnny Cage, if only because he's the easier one to find of the lot. Cage's address is known to the public and it takes only a few shamanistic tricks for Nightwolf to by pass the security of Cage's villa and sneak into the actor's patio.
Cage might suddenly find that his sun is being blocked by an imposing shadow and a throat clearing sound meant to get his attention. It's Nightwolf, who's looking beat up as hell, a very visible black eye on his face. The Apache is also standing a bit away from Cage knowing perfectly well that some of the actor's knee jerk reactions is to punch people in the groin. Johnny has that kind of reputation after all.
Cage shifts, furrowing his brows as he feels his sun getting blocked. He opens his eyes, and sees a frowning Apache staring down at him. "AH!" He jerks up from his chair and almost falls out of it, the aluminum tanning accessory falling to the ground. "What the Christ, guy?!" he exclaims.
He remembers something about feathers and teleporting. He doesn't get up, instead reaching to a little side table to grab his mimosa and takes a deep drink. Then he gives Nightwolf one of his 'winning smiles'. "Yo, if it isn't my man Nightwish. You could have called beforehand, you know. What brings you to Casa Cage?"
Nightwolf doesn't even bother correcting people when they say his name wrong anymore. He's a bitter, jaded, numb Apache that will just be happy if he can get things done for a change, suffering through insufferable annoyances like dealing with Movie Stars is but a small prize to save Earthrealm. Heroes come from all paths of life after all, and.. Nightwolf does have experience dealing with actors, like it or not.
The shaman continues to stare down at the downed actor whilst keeping his muscled arms crossed. The disarming smile seems to do very little to affect Nightwolf's stoic, white eyed glare, and he does nothing more than arch an eyebrow, from the one eye that isn't swollen.
"You know why I am here, Cage."
"You have been neglecting your duties as a Defender of this Realm. The Society has been in dire need of warriors and I have been disheartened to see that you are no where to be found when battle is joined."
"I did not think you were the type to shrink from kombat."
That is the loud drawl from the nearby window of Johnny's West Hollywood mansion. And from the window, climbing through it, is the red-vested cowgirl herself, Lightning Spangles. Stretching a blue-jeaned leg, Jezebel crawls in... and falls onto the patio. The patio that is outside the house, not inside.
How long was Jezebel was inside Johnny's house?
"Hey! H-hey Johnny!" She continues to pipe up, staggering back up into a stand. Putting her hands on her hips, she casts a glance towards Nightwolf, and pumps a fist as she approaches. "And Injun Joe! Boy howdy! All my pardners are here!" Turning back to Johnny, she continues that smile. "J-j-johnny, you-"
She smiles even harder, head tilting to the side.
"Johnny, you forgot your Hoedown Dillo outfit."
Cage sighs. He knew Nightwolf would start on this. He pours more mimosa from a big glass pitcher into his glass and knocks some more back - while he does, he holds up a finger at Nightwolf until he is finished. "Dude, look, I know I haven't been the most active warrior for Earth. This whole Zack Island tournament came up and I /had/ to be there. Hey, plus, I actually stopped a giant Tiki God from destroying the island so, I consider THAT a victory for the side of mortals."
He pauses. "Since then, well, you know, I have a /career/ to think of. I mean, you guys seem to have things handled..." he finally gets a good look at Nightwolf's wounds. Eesh. "...uh, well. Hey, I'm here NOW, aren't I? I promise you, I'm going to find some evil demons or whatever, and banish them back to Outworld. Scout's honor." Johnny has never been a Boy Scout.
Then Jezebel appears and greets them. Johnny spits out a ton of mimosa.
He leaps to his feet and stares at Jezebel. "What...WHY ARE YOU PEOPLE JUST COMING IN? What do I even pay my security team for?" He glares at Nightwolf, then suddenly smiles at Jezebel. "Wow, uh..." Oh god what's her name. "Jez!" Still have it. He spreads his arms wide. "Wow...you!" He puts his hands on his hips. He looks back at Nightwolf again, then at her as he steps closer. "Ah, aheh, why are you in my house, Jez? If you wanted to party with the Cage, you only had to ask." He pauses. "Uh, you know I'm not the Hoedown Dillo anymore, right?"
Nightwolf's ever impassive gaze continues, looking as severe as ever even with the recent addition of a swollen eye. "A great victory, yes." Nightwolf did apparently hear about that debacle, being en tuned with all things spiritual after all. "But only one victory of many battles to come. The perils that await humanity are many and we cannot sit idly by for them to attack us. It is time that we take the initiative."
The Apache shakes his head when Johnny begins to make promises, as he knew he would. "Your talents are wasted in this decadent lifestyle, Johnny Cage." He mutters and then frowns a little more. "No, I am the one that is here. Reminding you of what dangers await. Your career will be meaningless if there are no people left to watch your movies." The shaman twitches whilst he's trying to convince Johnny that the EARTH IS IN PERIL. Impeding apocalyptic doom just doesn't seem to sway people as it used to. But that might be understandable when presented with a familiar, misguided presence that the shaman senses approach.
Nightwolf all but reels back as if in pain when none other than Jezebel appears in the scenes. He glances back at the fretting Johnny, figuring that the two would know each other being actors and all, but its still incredibly puzzling why Jezebel decided to drop in now, apparently without Cage's knowledge.
"What is the meaning of this?" Nightwolf sounds just as exasperated. "What are you doing here, Jezebel?" He guesses that hiding now isn't an option.
He remembered her name!
Jezebel tries very hard not to break out into girlish giggles. But like before, so long before, she fails. The true Jezebel breaks out again, not in fear, not in self-loathing, but in playful, girlish giggling. Pure infatuation, pure adoration. She couldn't hate Johnny. Not for long.
He was just too awesome.
Regaining her composure, she adjusts her vest. "I'm sorry, Injun J- Joseph." She corrects herself. "I was here to talk to Johnny about our partnership! I heard both of you talking about some kind of society; so I figure it was a good time to come on out. You have been out on the patio a long time Johnny! Anyways, obviously we are all part of the Showup Hoedown Posse!" She nods her head, giving Joseph a wink. "It is amazing how all the best people are becoming my pardners." Jezebel states brightly.
"And don't worry Johnny! I got your letter in my hotel room! And the costume too! It was the greatest time ever, being my Hoedown Dillo! You were an amazing Dillo Johnny! There will never been a Dillo to replace you! Which is why I wanted to drop off your Hoedown Dillo costume in your mansion! I just explained to your security that I was just a 'lady friend' of yours! And for some reason, they let me in! Isn't that funny Johnny?" Her tooth-filled smile was not faded, as she locks her eyes at actor.
"It was like they were used to you having lady friends at your place, Johnny."
"It was completely like that, Johnny."
"Hahah, yeah, I bang SO many chicks here it's crazy," Johnny laughs.
His pride makes him forget this isn't exactly something you want to tell someone who is obsessed with you. "If you had blacklights around here this place would look like a Jackson Pollock. Uh, just set the costume down anywhere, I'll be sure to put it up so guests can see it."
With that, essentially tuning out basically everything else Jezebel said, he turns to face Nightwolf again. "What, you know her? Hahah, small world. Anyway, fine, just give me an assignment and I'll go do it. You're like the co-leader, so lead."
Nightwolf's features turn into deep concern when he realizes exactly what is happening. Sometimes having good perception can be a curse, as a girlish giggling Jezebel in front of none other than Johnny Cage can only mean one thing.
She's obsessed with him and whether Johnny realizes it or not is completely irrelevant, since he's still the Cage that everyone knows and loves. Which means he's not going to be too keen on reciprocating those feelings any time soon, particularly someone like Jezebel.
The shaman says nothing, even when Jezebel finally seems to get his name right and explains herself. Fortunately she didn't hear /too/ much about the Society, but her being here can be nothing but bad news.
Honestly, for seemingly the first time in his life, Nightwolf really doesn't know what to do or say. He sort of gets a deer in headlights look when Jezebel asks Johnny if he sees a lot of lady friends and the actor confesses in just.. the worst of ways..
"Um.." Nightwolf stutters for just a moment, being truly at a loss when Johnny asks for assignment, apparently not realizing the danger he's just put himself in just now. "I think you better sort this out first."
And speaking of, Nightwolf just grasps the actor's bottle of champagne and starts downing it. He's feeling a mite too freaking sober for this right now.
There is a popping sound.
Jezebel just stares for a moment, expression blank. As Nightwolf takes the bottle of champange, she twitches a bit in her eye. She... she was tensing up now. What would happen next would but unknown. Lightning Spangles was predictable. But Jezebel? She was a wild card. But she doesn't lash out at the wine. She doesn't go violent.
Instead, she just speaks.
"Hahahaha! Wow Johnny! You sure are popular with ladies! I hope that isn't why you felt so nervous about being a Hoedown Dillo!" She laughs now. When she was saying hahahaha, she was not laughing. She was just saying it. But that smile was not gone. "Because we could just keep your secret love life a secret!
"They wouldn't even have to know that the Hoedown Dillo would do thing with Lightning Spangles!~"
"Don't worry about the costume though! I don't need everyone to see it. I put it in your closet Johnny. I put all the costumes in your closet! You don't need any other clothing anymore. That other clothing has been contaminated. Hahahaha." She laughs again. And then, she turns back over to Nightwolf.
"Joseph, you shouldn't drink."
"You really shouldn't drink."
"Native Americans are sensitive to alcohol, remember!"
Johnny whirls around and grabs Jezebel by the shoulders. He takes off his shades with one hand before gripping her again, eyes boring into her.
"Jezebel. What did you say you did with my clothes?" he asks, smile gone, voice deathly serious.
Huh, yeah. That's one way of dealing with it, supposes Nightwolf.
This just keeps getting worse and worse, and that is why Nightwolf promptly turns around and gives Jezebel his back when she tries to tell him to stop drinking. Nope, not getting involved on this one, send him to fight Outworld monstrosities any time, but dealing with Jezebel's emotional issues is simply too much for the Apache brave to handle.
Looks like Cage is all on his own for this one.
Fortunately he seems to be handling that well! And besides, they are both adults.. err.. grown.. people.. well.. they are definitely not kids.. physically..
Let's just say that Nightwolf isn't a glorified baby sitter. He's just going to be standing over here until he has no choice but to get involved.
Oh, so now he was paying attention to her?
As Johnny grabs Jezebel, she gives a little squeak. This was... this was just like 50 Shades of Grey. The strong, assertive Mr. Cage wanted to dominate the submissive Jezebel? It was like a fantasy that was overtaking her. And what was even better was that Johnny was paying attention to her. A revelation overtakes Jezebel, as she finally realizes that... that there is a way to get the attention she wanted from Johnny. To make him less aloof, to make him pay attention to her.
By making him mad.
"Your clothing, Johnny?" She responds cutely, as Nightwolf turns to ignore them both. "Oh, I don't know. There were so many of them. Like the white suits, and the leather pants that were all stand alone. I was thinking of throwing them away, mon chou~" For a brief, bizarre moment, Jezebel drifts into a rough french accent. "But I couldn't find a garbage can, Johnny. So I just... tossed them on the floor!" She throws her arms in the air, miming herself throwing them. And she puts a finger in her mouth, toying it sweetly.
"Does that make you hate me, Johnny?"
Johnny lets go of Jezebel and lets out a breath. "Okay, on the floor..." he says. He stares at her. "Actually to be honest, I don't really care about you one way or the other, Jez. Like I said, the teamup's over, it's time for you to move on. You go back to...wherever it is you perform in and do your thing, I'll keep doing my thing."
This chick was crazy, no doubt about that. Johnny knew the perfect thing to appease her, though.
He takes out a card and pen from the sidetable near his mimosa pitcher, writes his autograph, and tucks it in her cleavage. "There you go, you can keep that as a memento on your way out."
One way or another, Nightwolf has keep an out for what is happening here. The sad reality of it all is that he /is/ a glorified babysitter, it just so happens that his actual job title is Sin Eater; Defender of Earthrealm. What he does is still essentially just baby sit, make sure that people won't go on and blow themselves up.
Kind of like what is inevitably going to happen here at any moment now. Nightwolf takes a long swig of champagne and looks over his shoulder. Not out of curiosity, spirits know he'd be as far away from here if he could afford to do so, he's just prepping himself up to dive in between the two in case a fight starts or something.
This was going to end badly one way or another.
On the floor.
How much Jezebel wanted to be just like that. And... and he stares at her. And she revisits all those painful emotions from the island as he speaks. The smile doesn't crack as he... as he makes her feel so small. The rejection. The heartbreak. And then, THE TIA. She was probably in here. She thought should could smell the slut on the clothing. She could smell the slut everywhere. The vile woman just scraping herself on everything here. On Johnny. Because-
The obsession breaks as Jezebel snaps her hand right for Johnny's face.
The slap comes with a crack, as Jezebel's smile is gone. Her lips curled in a snarl, her pupils are pinpricks, her arm trembling in rage as she keeps it drawn back in a backhand, recovering. "You... -bastard-" She cries out, tears welling in her eyes. Curling her fingers, she rips at her chest, tearing out the autograph. "You just take, and take, and take from me, don't you! DON'T YOU!" She begins to rip apart the autograph. "You don't care about how happy you make me. You don't care about me at all, do you!? You don't care about anything that isn't =yourself= or your stupid movies!?" She drops the pieces of paper to the ground, letting them fall from her fingers, as she stares bloodshot at Johnny. "You have no idea how good I would be for you, Johnny. How much chemistry we had!" And then, she glances at Nightwolf, the paranoid jealousy overtaking her as she suddenly sputters out.
"And you're gay, aren't you!?"
Johnny is still grinning at her when the slap comes, but it sure isn't there anymore afterwards. His head is slapped to the side, with a big red palm mark on his cheek. He's rubbing it even as she starts to rant at him. "Gay? You think /I'm/ gay?" he asks, incredulous.
"Okay, you fucking drunk psycho, I've had it up to HERE with you!" he declares, pointing at her. "I don't need you clinging to me like some...tick, sure as hell not from a has-been nobody like you. Is that what you wanna hear, huh? Wanna piss me off so I feel something towards you? Give me a break. You need to get your head checked and straight into detox. I KNOW people like you, Jezebel, burn outs and hangers on who need people like me to feel like they're somebody."
At this point, Johnny doesn't care. He spreads his arms wide and steps back, giving a laugh without mirth. "Well let me tell you something: I'm a star. I'm a bright, shining star. A star that can read you like a BOOK." Johnny was never good at metaphors. "Now get out of my mansion before I call the cops."
Well, this just went to hell in a handbasket. But honestly, Nightwolf saw no other resolution for it. The Apache had tried it all to fix Jezebel's spirit and the actress simply refused to cooperate. Nightwolf winces as he hears the resounding sound of a slap and then slaps his own forehead when Jezebel goes for the cheapest shot of all and calls into question Cage's sexuality.
It'd be less annoying if this wasn't the first time it happens. First it was Benimaru and now this? Was it the way Nightwolf dressed maybe? He should start wearing the wolf hood more often...
The shaman senses Jezebel's inner darkness increase, but he knows its too late for her, its been too late for her a long time ago. Some people just don't want to be rescued, he guesses.
Because Johnny is right, as surprising as that may sound to everyone, he hit the nail square in the head and now Jezebel had to pay the consequences for her inability to face her problems.
The Sin Eater downs the rest of the bottle and finally turns around to see how things are going to unfold.
Jezebel cared about everything Johnny said.
His words sunk so deep into her. She wanted those words. She craved them. But as she lashes out at Johnny... she goes for a cheap shot. It wasn't rational. It was born out of hate, out of the darkness. She was alone now. And she was making herself more and more alone. She had drawn blood.
And now, it was Johnny's turn to give back in kind.
%Every word comes like a hammer, smashing into the soul of the actress. Rage fades away into fear. "I'm =not= that person Johnny." She sputters, her eyes growing puffy. "I'm not... I'm not being... I'm not being a tick..." She stumbles to the side a moment, trying to crawl back into her head. "I..." There is a heaving sob.
"... I was such a fool to fall in love with you."
And Jezebel turns, tears streaming down her face. Back the way she came, whatever hole she crawled out of. Johnny was right. She... she was being that vile insect clinging to his skin. She was vermin. She was scum. She was... she was pathetic. She picks up speed. She jumps from the patio, and for now, out of Johnny's life.
She needed a drink now too.
Johnny watches her go, stone faced. Once she vaults over the patio, he waits a minute before sitting back down in his reclining deck chair. "Ever so often I get one of those types. The last one tried setting a fire in my bedroom," he says to Nightwolf.
His smiles comes back, as if none of that ever happened. "Chicks, right?" He reaches over and punches Nightwolf lightly in the arm as if the shaman even had an inkling of what the actor meant.
"Anyway, so...if I'm gonna defend Earthrealm, I need you to give me an assignment."
The worst part of this whole thing is that..
Nightwolf does actually understand.
After Felicia and Kiyomi he thinks he understands Johnny a little bit better than before.
The shaman takes the punch to his muscled bicep and simply looks at the actor with his one good unswollen eye. "I know what you mean." One of these days, Johnny. One of these days you and Nightwolf will have to share stories about the women you've dated.
But for now he simply exhales, letting out the tension he'd be storing since Jezebel came into view. He fears he will have to run into her again at some point, when the darkness has utterly consumed her, but that's a bridge he'll have to burn when he gets there.
Oh and of course /now/ Johnny is all itching for an assignment. "Honestly?" Nightwolf raises his eyebrows. "After dealing with that I would say you've earned a vacation."
"I will call you when I have something." Says the shaman as he takes a few tipsy backsteps, almost tripping over a tanning chair. "Hm.. and I owe you a bottle of champagne too. Sorry about that." Yes, he really did down the whole bottle too.
"Enjoy the rest of your day."
And in a flash of moonlight, Nightwolf once again gone. For now, he's just glad to know that Cage is still in the business of saving Earthrealm.. and that he can apparently hold his liquor long enough to still use some shaman magic before passing out.
Log created on 21:29:19 03/30/2015 by Johnny Cage, and last modified on 00:35:18 03/31/2015.