The Color of Night

Tales from the Night: The Waters of Bimini

Episode 35

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Max and Tony’s friend and comrade-in-arms Frank Pleyel has seen better days. In fact, the stalwart old antique dealer has acquired several serious injuries over the course of this last year that severely reduce his chances of survival should he continue the good fight. But our two heroes have a plan – you see, there’s this odd little town in southern Florida…


Cast: Maximilian Calibur, Tony Akira, Walter Gibson, Winter Ravenscroft, Frank Pleyel, Kolin Donnarsen, Dr. Ichiko Binder, and Sean Flynn, P.I.
Also Appearing: Jacob Deumount, and Ginger Pimenter
Special Guest Stars: Ophelia Laurens, Maurine Bree, and Linas G. Gárdonyi
And Introducing: Perry Tiller and Mr. Mimsy
In-Game Date: Monday, June 11th, thru Tuesday, June 19th, 2012
Body Count: 2


Summary:

TBA

Comments

The Waters of Bimini; Part 1

As I pulled into the parking lot outside Frank’s shop to meet the crew, Sean called from Las Vegas. He was visiting Toni, but was at loose ends that evening while she took care of some business for her family.

“I’m looking at the Mercedes Benz AMG G65.”

“Oh that’s a nice one. Do you want the military version or the diplomatic version?” he asked.

“I haven’t decided yet. I want to hear Kolin’s opinion before I buy it.”

Walter and Max were inside. Frank was with a customer, so I went on into the back. Walter was examining the wares, and Max was already sitting in Frank’s office.

“I’m at Frank’s. I’ll talk to you later.” I hung up the call as I walked through the door.

“Hey, Max.”

“Yo.”

“Can you get me some equipment? Ultraviolet stuff? Special stakes?” I dropped into the chair next to Max, propping my feet against Frank’s desk.

“Sure. Let me call my people.” Then Max leaned closer and whispered, “Check out this guy. He’s crazy, AND he used to shop at Cain Enochian’s.” He gestured towards the counter, where Frank stood with his latest customer.

That peaked my interest, so I went back out into the shop to listen to Frank’s conversation. As I meandered near the two men, I looked directly at the new client. He was a heavyset older man with a receding hairline, a gold shirt and khakis. He wore an ostentatious wedding ring, and was rattling on about various items in his collection. He didn’t mention anything about Cain’s shop in my hearing, but suddenly I felt a sharp pain in my head, almost like a rubber band snapped inside my brain. My vision clouded over with images, as though watching all seven seasons of Fringe on fast forward, in less than five seconds.
When my vision cleared, I was leaning against an antique George II period walnut veneered tallboy, and the stranger in the gold shirt was leaning in my face, saying “Are you alright miss?”

I muttered some excuse and fled to the back room, and Max.
“Max, I just had a vision.”

“You were drawing?”

“No. I just walked past him and the vision hit me.”

“Has this ever happened before?”

“If it had, I would have mentioned it.”

Max shrugged nonchalantly. “We need to keep an eye on him then.” He moved his chair so he could watch the man through the cracked door. When that didn’t work well, he wandered out onto the gallery floor. I sat down, but couldn’t settle myself. I decided to text Sean, and tell him what happened. His response was immediate.

Were you drawing?

No.

Then your powers are growing, young padawan.

Joy. I get to have seizures in public now.

Have you drawn him yet?

I don’t want to.

You should.

I don’t want to.

If you don’t want to have seizures in public, you need to learn to control this. You need to practice. Draw him.

Fine.

I sighed and walked back out into the shop. Max was already out there, chatting with Frank’s customer. I leaned against the counter and pulled out my sketchbook. Casually, I begin sketching the man, who immediately notices. Fortunately, Max keeps him engaged in the conversation, so he doesn’t come over to bother me while I draw. I let myself zone out, not really looking at the page, but letting my impressions flow through my hand into the ink.

When I finished, I took a careful look at the page. In the drawing, the man is dressed as The Fool, sitting on an altar. There are tarot cards floating around his head. The only one visible from the front is The Magician card, with the same altar, but the Magician has fallen to the ground. Frankly, it looks like the poor man was mugged. Above the man’s right shoulder is an eye, whose pupil is filled with TV static. It looked really familiar, but I couldn’t place it. Under his foot is a dead raven.

Immediately, I texted a photo to Sean.

While waiting, Max popped back into the room. “I’m taking this guy for wings and a beer.” He looks at the drawing. “Freaky. Later.” He walked out the door.

I shrug and decided to text the photo to Kolin as well.

I heard Frank locking up and he and Walter opened the door. I showed them the drawing, and then told them about the vision. Walter was being Walter, so he didn’t really seem too worried. Frank looked intrigued.

“You weren’t drawing?” Frank queried me, as we got in his car to go to dinner.

“No. I did the drawing later.”

“Interesting. By the way, I think his name is Perry Tiller.”

“Why do you think that?”

“The blocks spelled it out.”

“Blocks? What blocks?”

“The blocks out in the shop. Then I called him Mr. Tiller and he didn’t seem surprised.”

As we were being seated at the restaurant, I got a return text from Kolin.

WTF?

Customer at Frank’s shop. Bought stuff from the pawn shop. Max took him to dinner. I had a vision when I walked past him.

Where the fuck is this person?

He’s with Max. Getting wings. And beer.

Oh joy.

I’ll be landing in 2.5 to 3 hours. Treat all requests from Max until I get back with skepticism.

I always do. Heading to dinner @ Lindey’s with Frank and Walter. I’ll be at Frank’s after.

We got back to the shop around eight-thirty, after a delicious meal. Kolin met us there, and we played rummy until Max showed back up with Perry Tiller in tow, shortly after nine.

“Frank, would you take a look at this decanter?” Max asked, handing
Frank a large ornate Russian decanter. Frank immediately checked for psychic resonances, but shook his head after just a moment, looking disappointed.

Max paused a moment and then pulled out a mirror and said, “There’s another item I’d like you to look at. I offered six thousand reasons why he should sell it to me. However, I noticed a look of concern on your face when you were looking at the decanter.”

Frank sighed, “I hate to the bearer of bad news, but the decanter is a fake.”

“That lying little…” snarled Perry.

“Well, it is old, but isn’t what is was purported to be,” said Frank sorrowfully. Then he looked up at Perry, “How about the pair of snuff boxes for the mirror and the bottle?”

Perry Tiller was clearly not happy with that deal. “Well, you’re certain this one’s fake?” Frank nodded in response.

“I think we could do a deal. We do the trade now. My wife comes in here. Do you remember her?” he asked.

“I do,” replied Frank after a moment of thought.

“You convince her to fall in love with an item that is marked up, outside her range. Then I get to sweep in and be the hero by purchasing it for her, at the normal price, of course.”

“You should, for the sake of the sanctity of their marriage!” cried Max.

Frank smiled and replied, “Why not?”

“I think we have a deal!” says Perry expansively. As the two men shook hands on the deal, the door rang as Kolin entered the shop.

“How did you get in?” Frank asked in surprise.

“It was open,” replied Kolin.

Frank started to excuse himself to lock the door, but got drawn back into discussion with Max and Perry regarding various items. A few moments later, the door opened again, causing Frank to jump in surprise.

“Crap, I forgot to close the shop,” Frank snapped, as Tony Akira sauntered in, predator helmet on, and casually hugged Max with one arm in greeting.

“Who’s this?” asked the predator, not removing his helmet.
Max pointed at Perry, saying, “Him? He buys from Cain’s…the pawn shop,” Max said significantly.

“Not the chicken place,” clarified Walter.

“We’re acquiring from him,” continued Max, ignoring Walter’s sidebar comment.

“Oh, that’s okay then,” said Tony, relaxing visibly.

Tony continued making the rounds, greeting all of us with a hug. When he got to me, I introduced him to Frank, who was still fussing about people entering his shop after hours. I explained to Frank that Tony was a friend of Max’s, and was meeting us here, which calmed Frank down considerably.

I immediately struck up a conversation with Tony about ultraviolet grenades and rounds. He told me a story about a time he threw a UV grenade under a hovercraft, blowing the legs off six or seven vampires. Max jumped into the tale, reminding us that he was only able to stun the serial killer. Perry muttered something under his breath about computer games and LARPers.

In the middle of all this excitement, my phone buzzed, with a text from Sean.

Where are you?

Frank’s.

Just landed, I’ll meet you there.

“Guys, Sean is back in town. He’s on his way.”

The door opened again.

“Oh, for Pete’s sake!” exclaimed Frank and he turned towards the door. “I’m sorry, we’re closed.”

As he spoke, Ichiko burst in saying, “Frank, you need to make up your mind, fix your sign, and either lock the door or open up, and I made some cookies and…”

Finally, disengaging from Ichiko, who had been buzzing around him for quite some time, Frank closed the door, locked it, and flipped the sign to closed. As he moved away, someone knocked on the door. Frank closed his eyes, gritted his teeth and looked out the window. A moment later he called out, “It’s Sean.”

Kolin snarked, “Don’t invite him in, let’s see if he can come in on his own.” Frank grinned at Kolin as he opened the door.

“Ha. Ha. Ha.” Sean replied snidely as he entered, giving Kolin the finger.

Tony pulled Frank and me aside to show us his katana, which appeared to be unique and valuable. I sat down to draw the blade, while Frank searched for resonances from the past. While I drew, I listened to Sean’s conversation with Perry.

“I get what you are,” said Sean. “You’re an alchemist.”

“What do you mean by that?” asked Perry.

“Well, I’m a sorcerer,” replied Sean. “Our approach to magic is different.”

“There’s no such thing as a sorcerer,” snapped Perry, clearly annoyed by the conversation.

“Really…” insisted Sean. After several long minutes of debate, Sean turned into a tiger to prove his point, forcing Perry to concede the argument.

Perry started showing Sean some items in his briefcase. I ignored the chest thumping and got back to art.

I looked at my drawing and saw, not a katana, but swirling faces. As I started to ask Tony about it, I was startled out of my reverie.

“Whoa!” Sean nearly shouted, “Guys, look at this! Perry has some of those oracle eyedrops in his briefcase!” We all jumped up to look and
Perry did, in fact, have eyedrops labeled A2930-O. Sean started questioning Perry passionately about the origins of the eyedrops, and I wandered off to talk with Kolin about the drawings I had done that evening.

While Sean interrogated Perry, Frank and Max began their investigation of the mirror Perry had traded to Frank earlier that day. Frank studied the mirror for a time, and then rummaged in his desk for tools. He pried the back off the mirror, finding sand, dirt and a flower hidden inside.

Ichiko offered to take these curious items to a friend of hers at OSU who specialized in plants and flowers. We adjourn for the night, realizing there is nothing more to be learned until the results are available.

A few days later, we gathered at Frank’s again to discuss the results.

“My friend called me today,” said Ichiko excitedly. “She said the dirt and sand I gave her are both from an island in the Bahamas called Biminy.”
At that, Max’s head snapped up.

“Biminy? You don’t say…” he commented.

“You know it?” asked Winter.

“I’m…familiar.” Max replied. “It’s off the coast of Florida.”

“That’s not all,” continued Ichiko. “She is so thrilled! The flower is nothing anyone has ever seen before! A completely new discovery! She wants me to get her a live sample if I can. It would be the making of her career!”

“I can book us a flight to Biminy,” said Max casually.

“Which firm?” asked Kolin.

After some discussion, Max made a few phone calls. We left the next morning, on a flight directly to the South Biminy Airport. Upon our arrival, we were met by a tall attractive woman with caramel skin, green eyes and thick curly hair. She greeted Max warmly, but with increasing annoyance as she realized we were all traveling together.

“Max, who are all these people? Is that Tony Akira!?” she said,
managing to sound both outraged and resigned at the same time.

“Who? My friends? Didn’t I mention they were coming too? You remember Tony don’t you?” said Max expansively.

“Hi Ophelia,” said Tony cheerfully, kissing her gently on the cheek. She accepted the accolade while glaring at the rest of the team. She gave Ichiko and Winter each a long, considering look before allowing Max to regain her attention.

“Well, come on then,” she snapped grudgingly, and we all followed her out of the airport. Almost immediately, we realized that we needed to rent additional transportation. Kolin stepped over to the Hertz desk, and arranged for two large SUVs. We piled into the rental vehicles and drove to the Bimini Big Game Club Resort & Marina, where we had rooms reserved.

Max wandered over to a harried clerk, and began the check-in process.
“I’m sorry, sir. We only have five rooms reserved under your name, and we’re overbooked.”

“Well, I asked for seven rooms when I made the reservation. We need seven rooms!” Max exclaimed, gesturing at the group.

“Eight, actually,” interjected Ophelia pointedly. Max looked over at her and smiled winningly. “Eight,” she repeated. After some wrangling over the room arrangements, Max transferred us into a cottage large enough to hold everyone.

End of Part 1

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