1965-01-04 - Calling Up Hell
Summary: It's time for a chat?
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lucian constantine 

To say John Constantine overworked himself was really putting it mildly. For a guy that 'doesn't give a damn' there was a swathe of condemnation he was heeding in an effort to protect both the many and the few from the many horrors and acts of fuck-uppery that were rampant. He was not a man that would ever receive a thank you for helping people, though a group of nuns sent him a spice cake from the Vatican, for the turn of the new year. They don't talk much, but they kept tabs on the things people don't speak of and sent the Pontiff's Pitbull their own edible gratitude. In return in the last few days he's re-visited the graves of several persons of interest to them to ward their doors from ill intent.

Still, even with the remote gesture of thoughtfulness sent to him John Constantine, the condemned and Knight of Humanity, couldn't feel more alone. His peerage was being hunted and picked off by someone with too much power and too little sleep. He knew he was originally on that hunt list and almost regretted his foes not hunting him down as, frankly, it made them far easier to find and saves on cab fare. There were whispers fro the dark things that should not be that owed him a favour or two that only told him 'something was on the horizon', and presently he felt aware enough to feel futile.

Tea was still hot in the kettle which sat well with the whiskey in the glass that the Hellblazer poured over and though he shouldn't take things in vain he kept cursing in hopes that the higher powers did show so he could put his condemned boot up their unhelpful and self-righteous arses. Amber liquid swirled in his glass before another drink was taken. He still had blood in his hair from ritual earlier that night, not his, but in a fit of frustration a hand wiped the table clear of all of Lindon's ghost-writing maps and sent them fluttering in a cloud off the end of the desk. "Curse all you cagey wankers. I'll burn the hair off your bollocks and send you to the feet of the First of the Fallen" His teeth tightened ans he let glass and palm his the aged table that's seen more impressions than even Jerry Lewis could conjure. "And when I find you, there, Hargrove, so help me I'll haunt you an eternity." John was too tired to hang onto the illusion of his own salvation anymore. he was just so tired of the decent paying the price for the ambition of overreaching twats.

Plans for the new year, not much different from the old year. Send death a friendly message and find out how she is doing; give eternity and destiny a ring. He rolls up his sleeves and eyes the rather unfortunate list of souls to report on, later. Most of those are beings, not souls, and it merely drives home for Lucian the need to walk out a bit more often. Maybe talk to the living mortals a bit more often. Perhaps he ought to socialize. An outdated notion, all said and done.

He no sooner dons a cashmere scarf in wild peacock shades, woven gorgeously into an inspired Persian pattern, and steps outside than the universe answers. He is keenly aware of how the machinery operates, even being confined to a Project Zero location and forced to bug report by the founder. Hmph.

There he is, hovering on his heel, grumbling. The exploits of his landing are silent. Nonetheless, he scales his surroundings, arms crossed over his chest. "My club does not deserve those nuisances. Why would you scuff my floors with them?"

Constantine was not expecting a voice to suddenly aparate in his workshop. That said this was far from the first time, to the point he wasn't surprised. That it was Lucian Less so. Strange was startled by the fact he knew him, and too well, but even John didn't know the half of it. Thus his greeting was, "Whiskey's over there." He took a deep breath and didn't know if the Angel of Angels, Once Most Beloved, was curious, bored, pissed, or to come as his jailed once more. Hell, it could even be to call in a debt for all he knew.

The Englishman arched an eyebrow and stood up from the table to lean against the edge of it with the back of his hips, one angle crossing over the other. The glass lifted a bit and he followed with, "Happy Gregorian New Year." To immortals time was a sloppy irrelevant thing and he wasn't going to get into a semantic argument of the perception of the Hebrew calendar vs. the Chinese, Mayans, and the rest… and just be told they're all off by eons anyways. This he knew, and thus, the greeting actually sparked a tired humor in him. "If you'd rather you can bring them here and I'll drop his arse into oblivion. I think there's still a tear of it in the back room." He hoped not. Closing that portal almost swallowed he and Strange and they both had a schedule that was full up.

"And do your work for you? What would be the fun of that?" The unruffled tone adopted by Lucian is nearly drawling, save that no Englishman worth his posh Himalayan sea salt would ever dare to elongate those vowels. Centuries of public school head boys would have beaten such out, and when it come to their ilk, well… He's the granddaddy of them all in archetype, isn't he? Poster child for the Mod look, his brushed wool coat in pure teal is a shock to the senses, and how he can maintain any sort of stealth is proof he is highest of the archangels, first of the frstborn, and still unfathomable.

All he needs is a cigarette. No whiskey, the glass not so much as looked at. "Thank you, but no." See, he has manners, cultivated in a gracious feline air, as the tiger to the antelope it's about to disembowel. Hands sit in his pockets, the very image of louche ease. Those impossible shards of summer sky define some vague air of perked boredom, a mask no doubt to the terrible, atrocious sense of potency in the arcane around him. He knows every symbol ever thus made, and in terms of sheer lore, probably laughs every time Agamotto claims he's the finest sorcerer ever, but hey. Long life, right?

"You might start about twenty miles back down the road, chap. What trouble have you possibly mired yourself in now that you speak of?" His fingers brush the lining, feeling a key. Good to know that car is still around, good good. "You carry volumes."

Constantine was always absolutely reliable to have cigarettes on him. He knew Lucian knew that as he who tore the impurities from his lungs to keep him as an 'active agent in the great game'. It still fell past Constantine to understand why Lucian/Lucifer ever did that when he'd caused more problems wholesale for his legions back when he was still 'full time'. Everyone has whims of change though and none more curious and precocious than the Hosts. The guarded curiosity fell into casual words, "This a social call then?" It wasn't. He never expected those. Still the man asked and he took a deep breath. "Something's coming. And someone else is looking to overreach their grasp. I'm just not used to being hunted. And I'm less used to finding out the man that tried to sacrifice me," good times, "took me off the list of the hunted. Just can't reason why." He took a drink and reached over for a very nice, and very new silver cigarette case with the words engraved on it "'scimus actibus nostris' ~KA" inscribed on it. He took one out and offered the others open as a courtesy to his guest. "I'll admit I'm curious as to your invested interest, but I might assume it's Earth is dull as shit because no one ever learns and all the same mistakes are coming around again? How we doin?"

Lucian is a master at listening, surprisingly. One does not rule hell or torment souls without some highly refined capacity. The process of actively hearing things and then consciously processing after the silence comes as a top skill required to be the Devil. What can he say? He'd hate to disappoint his appointed kingdom. Shoulders shrug, subject regarded evenly.

"Consider it a new year's gift. Someone wants you to have an interesting life." That old Irish blessing that isn't any at all. His golden hair flames in the dark and light naturally seeks out its origin, the first source meeting the current incarnation of his making. His fingers withdrawn from his pocket, he toys with a few motes across his knuckles. "Never complain because the task demands something, is that not what they love to say? Bit daft, naturally." A grin follows. "Levy a chase on the pedantic fool off to cause you misery. Cheaper than bargaining the bardic way. Suggest the fools who captured you be the sacrifice instead."

Constantine pulled the cigarette to his lips and snapped his fingers alighting a flame off his thumb that danced of menace, but vaguely smelled of brimstone. He knew the habit wouldn't be what killed him. There was a certain sort of comfort that came with knowing one was still 'too useful to die'. He took a drag off the cig as the flame in his hand diminished. "Would could I but you got em downstairs already, or… maybe you don't. Someone's been harvesting could for themselves. Because they never really learn do they?" At the idea though of a backhanded 'New Year's gift' his swarthy face cracked into a half grin. "They can stop tryin t'do me any favours. How's that bird you have over at Lux doing anyways? I've been looking into hunters but so far the street's been quiet. Tracks don't stay buried too long. Not even in snow though, so…" Well well he's not given up after all, lookie there.

"You do know that kills you, surely." By this point, the argument over cigarettes is about as effective as fighting with a preschooler, and Constantine doesn't even rank as that compared to the ancient. Being the second being in existence, ever, before the whole issue of recreated realities and multiverses does give one sense of perspective. Lucian waves his hand idly, and he leans back against the wall with no regard for whatever wards might be there. Even so, he idly smirks. "Harvesting is an unfortunate term. Does unfortunately tend to rile up the natives, doesn't it? They are so offended when you snap up what they think is theirs. Why such a be in the bonnet?"

He doesn't answer the direct question there, but the slow flare of his gaze to a point that makes gas blue flames look dim suggests this is a terrible conversation point. Mazikeen and Ana also fall into the same boat, and Michael gets an even hotter reaction, so there's that. "Mortal or monster, whatever you consider your target. It surely has a name, something you can react to?"

Constantine technically also fell under that boat like a keel hauling and thus, likely, may have less than altruistic concerns and at least a healthy amount of self-interest in this. He shook his head, "I doubt it will. Would it it'd have happened before Nurgal took quite… an exception to it." Said he on the cigarettes. "I suspect he's… particular about now part of him being part and parcel to Saminga the Glutenous. Maybe I do it because I know it gets em both right pissed?" 'fleck of a mortal' or not John was, still somehow, on a first name basis with all these fuckheads enough to know just how to punch their buttons and stay a step ahead. At least enough to know their mutual rivalries were keeping him alive and thus, indulged away waiting for the things outside of the petty game to come after him for meddling in the affairs of things. Chiefly, because he was of unfortunate success in this, operating these days nearly alone. At least the Morningstar had some bloody fekking decorum.

His eyes settles on Lucian one might think patiently but he was just exhausted. "Had I a bloody name, I wouldn't be asking ye for one. I just- I'm tired mate." He squint at the ceiling and sighed. "You enjoy the thriving hypocrisy that is the Month of December?" That thought did amuse him, highly.

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