It is nearing Halloween, and the costumes are getting ever more entertaining. The Castle range has been hopping all day, with players coming in and out as they die and someone else gets to take their place.
At the moment, the range is awaiting a new set of occupants, with a Dark Spooky Witch and her Ice Monster companion loitering near the entrance. They have green arm bands to mark their castle's colour.
November, dressed all in metallic silver, is A) either wearing a really convincing wig or B) used something to colour her hair a stark silvery white, and C) has a pair of sparkly silver star-shaped deely boppers as her 'alien' creature's antennae. Not really making an effort to hide, there, but then, she's also carrying a bunch of arm bands and awaiting guests. She doesn't WANT to be hidden. She's standing near the Witch and the Ice Monster, chatting idly.
For those new to the range, employees guide them into the toasty warm rental building to get their weapons ready and rent face masks/any gear they require. There is gear no matter what size you are; the place is owned by a Changeling. There is a practice range right outside the building for those who would like to get a feel for their weaponry first, though it's only for the ranged weapons, like guns. They offer pistols and rifles. Melee weapons are more or less paint-impregnated gloves or foam variations on other weaponry, also with paint in them.
Raymond is dressed up for the affair as best as he can on such short notice. An intentionally dusty cloak with a collar just a bit too high, an older looking suit, and a red scarf to tie it all together. The pale grey of his mien suits his now vampiric visage, and the fangs he's chosen may be a bit too large as he can hardly close his mouth with them. "Did I ever mention that I hated Halloween," he complains. He adjusts the weak grip he has on his foam broadsword, and surveys the battlefield as best he can.
"News to me." Charlie murmurs, limping slightly. Her costume isn't exactly fancy, either. Some fake blood (might be real blood there somewhere), red glitter, fake fangs and some spray on black hair stuff and a black grease pencil to make her widow's peak comically sharp. A black, long sleeved shirt is paired up with some faded black jeans and whatever footwear could be found - tacky sneakers. Everyone loves tacky sneakers. Long hair is quite short now, and her canine teeth are subtly enlarged and pointy under those fake fangs. Right alongside some faintly claw-like fingernails. "You have kids. You get free candy." she murmurs, sticking close to Ray and watching the shadows with an overly alert posture.
November greets the duo with a smile and a light, "You'll be in the nearer castle, then. Red flag. The goal is simple. You want to go steal their flag, and bring it back to your castle, without getting killed. If you get hit, raise your arm and _walk_, not run, back to your castle. If you had the opposing team's flag, drop it where you were hit. Your teammates may pick it up, if they are quicker than your foes."
Being November, while she does give Charlie a somewhat longer look than she perhaps deserves, by human standards, she says nothing. Yet!
"So, stealth." This somehow causes Raymond's frown to worsen. "Understood, Waylady." He then hefts up the faux weapon to his shoulder, and looks down to the other vampire. "I think I'll go to the high point, and watch you," because clearly he trusts the fledgling Changeling. Truly. "You think you can get the flag?"
"We'll have to see. I've never used a paintball gun." Charlie says, running a hand through her short, unusual hair before putting the face mask on. The fangs get dropped in a pocket, since no one can see them with the mask on. No comments to November are made about her recent misadventures. Just a slight nod as she starts for the door that leads to the field.
The Witch and the Monster grin when they hear that Charlie has never used a paintball gun. One of them has a pistol, and the other has a rifle. They high-five each other and start trotting off toward the far end of the field.
November gives Raymond and Charlie their own armbands, red to match their flag, then points off to the left. The way the field is set up, the entrance is an open doorway, and when you walk through it, there is a free-standing wall in front of you. It keeps paintballs from getting where they shouldn't go, without the prospect of anyone getting locked into the place if they want to leave. The castles are fairly simple affairs, but they each have multiple windows and places to hide, and two levels: the bottom, a sheltered place with the aforesaid windows, and the top, where the flag is. They are painted to look like stone, but they are actually made of wood. The flags are heavy canvas affixed to sturdy wooden dowels, and small enough to be tucked into a belt to keep hands free.
"I'll call out on the PA system when the timer's up. You've got two minutes to get yourselves hidden wherever you intend to hide. Starting..." she lifts a phone. "Now! Feast upon their blood, my undead friends!"
The red armband is slipped on his arm, and seems to be just that bit more uncomfortable thanks to the costume. "I don't hide from anything," says the all too literal knight. "I'll stay and guard our flag. I don't have any tricks to go finding it aside from just lightng it all on fire, and I don't think Waylady would appreciate me setting her business on fire." His mantle does flare for a few moments, and Raymond grunts. "Try not to have too much fun because we still got a long, long talk ahead of us."
"Not much to talk about." Charlie murmurs, glancing over at Raymond before starting to jog over to the castle to give it a looking over. Windows, doors. It's far too vulnerable. She may not have used a gun before, but the sly Chimera knows how to hide a den from predators. Dipping inside, she rakes her claw-like nails lightly on the plywood on the inside, pushing glamour and intent into the building, hiding the entrances from sight.
The paintball gun is emptied of rounds and she tears one of the sleeves off of her shirt, tying one end, dumping the paintballs into it, and twisting the other end shut. Ta-da! Guns are over-rated anyway. This gives her a sack of paintballs.
At the promised two minute mark, the PA system kicks in with a crackle, then November's voice. "ALRIGHTY THEN," it blares, "TEAM GREEN VERSUS TEAM RED, CAPTURE THE CASTLE RANGE: 3, 2, 1," *BYAAAAAAAAAAAP!* And with that annoyingly loud and noticeable horn, the game is on.
Ball sack in her left hand, Charlie bolts to the right, back the way they came in and slides up along the wall at a sprint. The opening gambit isn't wholly about stealth so much as covering as much ground into the enemy territory as possible and taking the best option for cover and concealment she can get.Behind the big rocks, she slips into the water, holding her paintballs out of the water as she hunkers down to a low crouch and sinks into the water, just the black sleeve-sack out of the water on the far side. Submerged to her nose and shivering.
The Witch, after conferring with the Monster, swaps out her rifle for his pistol, leaving him with the longer-range weapon, then slinks off toward the trees on the side of the range.
The Monster kneels to make himself less of a target (Substantially Concealed: -3 to hit with ranged weapon), hiding behind one of the upright merlons of the castle's top, near the flag. He rests the rifle's length along the wood, sighting along it.
"I heard that," Raymond shouts like the father he is. He grumbles, and the nstarts getting up to his position. "I still should've burned that place down." When he's at the top he stands there, and then turns his sword upside down. Waiting. Watching. "This feels like fighting in that ant mound again."
Nose deep in the water, Charlie starts to creep along, one hand tracing the bottom of the thigh-deep stream, her toes and/or knees keeping her moving forward. The main give aways would be her hair, now wet and darker, and that dang parcel of paintballs in the makeshift pouch from the torn off sleeve as she carefully drags them along the northern shore of the creek.
And then, there's a mouse. She's a small one, that's for sure -- a great advantage. And her choice of costume? Not exactly creative: a black catsuit with a pair of goggles. Think Anne Hathaway's Catwoman. That's irony, yeah?
The Witch tries to sneak forward, slinking behind the trees with her pistol at the ready.
The Monster, more perceptive than his Witchy friend, yells out, "'Ware! Someone in the creek!" from his hidey-spot on the crenellations of his castle.
Catwoman senses the Witch approaching. Unlike the prototypical catwoman, this one wields a paintball pistol, one that she lifts up to aim as she remains crouched in concealment by a tree. Yes, come closer, you poor heathen. A little closer. So that Selina Kyle can plant a ball between your eyes, yes ...
Raymond drowses off.
There's a reason some animals freeze when they're spotted-movement draws the eye. Holding still when called out, Charlie waits in the frigid water, keeping as still as a stone, despite the iciness in the creek.
The Witch continues to sneak carefully forward, though the trees are thinning here, too short to really provide thick cover for proper stealth.
The Monster continues to guard the castle and keep an eye out.
A little closer. Yes. Just one more.
Not that Clarice smiles, yo. She never smiles.
Not while it's killin' time.
She moves on ...
Hearing the soft splat of a paintball popping, Charlie slides out of the water and races along the stream in a bee-line for the northern castle. Splitting to the right, she uses the large rocks on that side to help conceal her quick movements as she goes. That makeshift bag of balls held tight in her left hand.
The Witch starts to move again, then bites off a curse when she feels herself get shot, though she still can't see from -where-. "I'm hit!" she yells, back toward her castle and her teammate, then raises her pistol in the air, arm high, and turns to retreat at a slow walk back to her castle.
The Monster, too, curses under his breath, but yells, "Can't see 'em yet." Yelling out toward the range, next, and Clarice/Charlie, he baits, "I think they're just hiding like little girly cowards." Little girly cowards who apparently have squelchy shoes, because he curses under his breath and tries to get a shot off just as Charlie reaches the wall below him. Unfortunately for him, his aim is off, and all he hits is dirt.
"Only little girl I see can't hit a target that's right under his fucking nose!" The taunt comes, loud and clear from just below the shooter in the castle. "Come play with me..." Following the ribbing with an unfriendly tease. "If you've got the balls to!" Loosening the sleeve-sock, she grabs a couple of paintballs and crushes them in her right hand, keeping as much of the paint on her hand as she can.
The Witch continues her slow, boring plod back to the castle. She doesn't notice a thing when the mighty mouse--pardon, Catwoman moves up pretty much on top of her space.
The Monster, too, fails to notice Clarice, but he certainly knows Charlie is there! Unfortunately for him, the back of the castle really doesn't have any good defenses. If she can get behind him, he's toast. With that in mind, he slinks off to the side to try and hide around the bend of the textured ramp which square-spirals its way up toward the second level -- and halts, when the voice comes from so close. That taunting, taunting voice. Growling, he rushes out, but it takes a bit of time to do it. He's more or less a sitting duck if Charlie looks in through the front opening of the castle.
Catwoman slinks through the darkness to the nearest bush.
Sort of predictably. Clarice is about as straight as a zigzag, by all appearances, but ... you know, maybe not so much? Maybe?
Nah. In da bush. Ready to pop some foo' if Charlie misses.
So close. There's a little quiver of excitement, that base response to prey. In cats, it makes the butt wiggle, or those funny chirping meows. In Charlie, it brings out an unpleasant smile. Hand dripping with popped paintballs, she waits, waits, then jinks around the corner, slapping the shit out of the guy right on the back of the head with all the affection of an obnoxious, redneck uncle. *SPLAP*
The Witch continues her trek toward the castle, arm raised.
The Monster, well, he gets SPLAPPED on the back of the head, and lets out a startled grunt of surprise. Then curses, and groans. "Fiiiine. We lose, unless you break a leg or something."
And then, the last one is down. Catwoman bursts out and runs to go get a flag. And maaaaaaan, she can fly. And climb: she doesn't really bother with the traditional way of getting into the castle, choosing instead to leap up and pull herself into it.
That might make November a little upset.
But with one flag, the Mouse leaps off the castle's tower, hitting the ground and rolling like a damn parkour expert. Run, run, run she goes until she gets back into home territory and -- VICTORY. Or something like that.
Charlie follows after Clarice, loping with her wet clothes and missing sleeve and painty hand. Finding Raymond sleeping on the job, she chuffs an annoyed sound, but scoops the taller Fairest up like a baby with some effort. No victory lap for her, she has to go to the exit with some care,lest she wake the sleeping prince.
November, upon seeing Charlie with Raymond over her shoulder on her way out of the range, murmurs a smooth, "I am glad you have returned. You know where to find me when you need me, lovely," but doesn't stop the other woman from leaving.