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Summary: Raven finds herself in a mysterious book shop and occultism store where she meets a bizarre man named Jake.


Location: Unnamed Shop, New York


Participants: Moon Knight & Raven

Rating: PG-13(Some Language)


The small corner shop and library was dust laden, the symbol outside held meaning to any who knew what it meant. A store dedicated to 'oculists' and supernatural minded people; within books, scrolls, tapestries, garish figurines, enlarged pictures of tarot cards all hung suspended reaching up into the high ceiling. Dust was thicker in some places, the shop keep was a bent over old man whose eyes seemed to be so weathered and wrinkled they were sealed shut, he sat with a book open and wouldn't so much as look up towards those who enter; giant bifocals stayed glued to his tiny face as it remains buried in his book. Rows of shelves line the walls, it looks like some prehistoric Barnes and Noble with artifacts crammed into every nook or available patch of space. Candles and low lights lit the room, majority of them barely shedding any light at all. A bell will chime on entry, signifying someones presence yet no notice was given beyond that *ding* of a noise.


The night was free for her. The weekend held no classes at the college and any studies were shoved aside for the mind that roamed a mile a minute though it did not show on apathetic features. Nothing ever did. Something else was on her mind and in its place, and it was a weighty decision. To join old friends or to remain on the path to 'normalcy.' As if it would help any decision she shrugged up the robe of what she once was, and still was beneath the facade of a darkly clad college student. The gold belt was clipped around her waist, finalizing the robed attire of deep purple strips of fabric that covered and revealed all at once. Before the door of the occult shop there was a flicker of a large raven, the wings dipped in their spread and folding upward to assist in a landing, though when it touched down that glimpse of reality shifted, wavered, and before the door stood the cloaked form of Raven, a pale hand extending to let the bell toll the chime of a visitor that fit well within the scenario, silence wrought her within and indigo eyes swept over the place.


The old man for once would look up, one eye levels on Raven and he stare sfor what seems an eternity before he releases a chuckle then resumes reading. It seems deserted in here, empty except for the old man and one another who was moving around in the back, a book opening only to clamp shut could be heard along side the mumbling that was sometimes audible, obviously a male from the sounds. This silence was tangible, the atmosphere itself one could say. Those sounds that came from the back of the store seemed foreign and out of place.



The hand that had yet to fall back into the concealment of dark robe rose to pull back the cloaks hood from her face, spilling out darker hair against the fabric. The old man was given a friendly nod in greeting though no smile came to follow it up, just that placidity that did not wane even as she scanned the walls of books. The store was one she had yet to come to, but perhaps even here she could find a minds ease in something new that she had yet to obtain or know. Her fingers curled and released while silent steps took her along the easternmost wall, following the clockwork one would in a ritual, but this was just habit without reason for Raven as fingers traveled over the dusty and broken spine of an old book and paused when the voice from the back was heard, looking in that direction and taking a few curious steps forward.


Around the corner of the bookshelf she would find a stack of discarded books, a table piled high with trinkets, objects and relics but also a man with dark hair and a tight sweater on that was rolled up at the forearms, jeans adorned his legs that were torn and tattered at the knees to thighs; he looked to be talking to himself while he thumbed quickly through a book. The scar over his right eye seems out of place alongside his build, in his hand was a book regarding hidden and ancient races of supernatural lore. "No, seeking that out would be a waste of time and do nothing Khonsh... I am sure it would please you, tell you what how about fuck off." Another book was clamped shut, the man pauses as he looks up spying Raven, "Hello." He offers in his deep voice.


The blink was slow, her head tilting ever so slightly in a near bird like motion to take her gaze from the man to the books and trinkets that littered the table. Raven was searching for any pattern amongst them, anything tell-tale of what he may be seeking, if there was any pattern to it. Though his speaking had her pausing in even that inspection and drew indigo eyes back up in a slow drag as if she could see something else, or was trying to. She was looking off to the mans right and away from him by the time he actually acknowledged her. The mostly spoken name was familiar and she was eying the books as if they held the answer to the //who// since she could not immediately place it. The greeting snapped her from it though and she looked back towards him. "Hello, did not mean to disturb."


Astrology, Egyptian God's and mythical monsters seemed to be the link amongst them if that was to be called one. Perhaps he was just doing some chaotic reading, "No interruption, didn't realize anyone was in here but me and the geezer up front. Names Jake, don't think I ever seen you in here before." Slowly he gave her a once over, not having seen her before was an understatement she had quite the outfit on, or was it perhaps a costume. "Am I in your way?" He motions around himself then steps more towards the wall hitting some of the clutter knocking an end piece off that looks like a globe surrounded by smaller floating ones, the alchemical table of elements written graphs and grids across it. "Shit" Was all he could manage.


The Egyptian reference books are what had her suddenly recalling the name she *thought* she heard mutter, but who was she to confirm it, or pry and ask. Eavesdropping was not polite despite the fact he was muttering like a mad man in the middle of a public place. "No. You are fine." The voice bore no inflection, nor signs of her meaning opposite or even so much as what she said. The only quick reaction came when the globe was knocked off, the corner of her eyes jumping at the corner of pale lid, one hand coming out and somehow managing to catch it before it hit. If he was watching closely though something ensured she caught it and it stopped its course. Carefully she placed it back on the shelf and took a slow step forward, one hand reaching for one of the Egyptian books, summing two categories up at once in it. Astrology read by the Egyptians. "May I?" But she was already, automatic movements without too much thought. "This is one of the many stores I have not been to yet - Just recently recommended. I am Raven." Her eyes left the book in a momentary glance from it to Jake and back, opening it slowly. "I take it this place is routine for you?"


"On and off when I want to find something I can't... it more often then not shows up in here." Jake waves one hand off, shrugging, "Nice reflexes." Then when she asked, "May I" he motions her on,"All means... help yourself." There was something off about her and he couldn't place it, the hunched over form of Khonshu with Bushman's face was on the shelf above her sniffing heavily at the air, <<Quiet the stench on her, she smells of something so much more than human. Almost edible don't you think.>> His eyes dropped from the illusory deity towards the girl again. "You from around New York, Raven?"


"Perhaps it will find something that I do not already possess then - If it holds such luck for you." When her mind raged the 'occult' research culled the sound of crashing waves down to low static on a forgotten television. Raven passed off the comment on her reflexes, because if it was all simply her she would have missed and the piece would have been shattered. The hand that held the book bore a gold ring with a red inset stone while the hand that skimmed over some writing within the book bore a green inset stone. Lowering the book she lifted her eyes from the pages back to Jake and then to the trinkets. Picking one up she smoothed a finger over it, the lined side of the beetle. "Scarab, represented transformation or the god Khepri. What is it you are seeking?" She was curious but also did not fully skirt his inquiry to her. "I am currently residing here, yes."


"Information on a few... cults that have shown up around New York, one of them that was supposed to have been forgotten, have you heard of the Kalumai? Another too... the Knights of the Moon. Had several er... encounters with them in the past and there is evry little to go off of, I've already searched through anything dealing with Khepri it didn't seem to give me any leads." Jake moves off the stool he was on offering it towards her while he began pushing some of the clutter out of the way, taking in her attire once more, vestments? "Are you an occultist or a priest? Bold question but it's an area of personal interest and your clothes just sort of... stand out."



Raven looked from the beetle she held in her hand towards the offered stool, shaking her head lightly, the catch of dim light also falling on the small gen that dangled at widows peak of ebony hair. "I am fine right now, though, thank you Jake." Setting the scarab down lightly she drew fingertips over the other trinkets and stopped when he mentioned names of cults. "Khepri is a representation of the Sun, you will find nothing of the moon looking in him. The moon is Khonsh.." She looked to him then and tilted her head lightly. "I think you know that." Considering he said the name on her approach. "Though.." She tapped over a few of the books and moved back towards the shelf. "Knights is a renaissance era, perhaps even further, have you tried Celtic?" Glancing back at him though she did seem to hold some more genuine curiosity. "Kalumai is one I have not heard of. New I take it?" His questions towards her were getting to be a bit more direct, one hand taking up the edge of her cloak and tugging it a bit tighter around her, though it did not hide as much as she would like. //What harm could it do?// "I am a follower of my Goddess, yes. Though I do not think I am worthy of priest in title from her."



Jake caught her own pause like he had done when referring to Khonshu before, studying her eyes as if he was seeking something beyond the surface the scar he bore seeming to look deeper in the lighting - or lack of. "No, I am not sure they're celtic in origins, they're an off-shot, a bastardization off the main faction but information on them is relatively non-existent... " How could he explain to her the Lunar Deity himself was sitting just above her, taunting and mocking the whole way through while holding out on any information, playing off as a smug condescending annoyance. "No, not new... a demon actually, worshiped in some locations as a god." Raven then spoke of being a follower of a Goddess herself and his interest piqued further, "Whom is your Goddess?" So they were vestments of a sort.


Indigo eyes watched him with the same study he had her, though she seemed to shrink back a bit when she turned to fully face him. He was seeking something, or he knew something - with age came wisdom and even if he didn't know, he //knew//, and it unnerved her. What more could she expect though striking up a conversation in an occult store? Though most that came in here were ignorants doing this for the momentary glitz and glamour, not sincere study. When he mentioned demon the word alone finally make placid features ripple, like a stone had been dropped into the still waters and eyes closed. Drawing in a deep breath she tried to speak on like nothing had come of it. "It is hard to find anything now that is not a bastardization, but they still have roots somewhere. A demon worshiped as a god is reltively...commonplace." One further step forward and as if she thought the better of it she stopped. "What do you know?" So many meanings in one seemingly meaningless question. Asking of her goddess and speaking of a demon all rolled into one small conversation was so close to home she was taking measured breaths to keep that mask in place and the emotion tucked far away. The problem with living near beings who knew how to feel so easily...It rubbed off and was a taint to her, one she wished she could feel unabashedly. "Azar is my goddess. Is any of what you are seeking something that interests you personally, or is there more?"


"Vaguely familiar name. Can't say I know much of an Azar... you would be the first follower of her I have met." Abruptly Jake turns away from her and ran his scar laden long fingered hands along several book spines until he was pulling one out. "I know plenty in regards to Demonology, General Occultism, Astrology and Egyptian Myth." And how to kill most anything supernatural. "I'm not a magical practitioner or anything like that, if you believe in that sort of thing but I know my way around places like this and would like to think I have a keen eye for bullshit and well, people." He said calmly, another of those studying glances being settled on her. One could say, this sort of thing was actually in his area of expertise come to think of it, a fact he never really anticipated in his lifetime. Funny how fate and one deathly encounter with a forgotten Deity could change your fate around. "Especially since both seem to go hand in hand."


//And likely I will be the only one.// "Perhaps a story for later." Though that was a story she was not going to tell a stranger at a book store, in fact it took many times and trials before she even told her past friends such a thing, out of dire necessity. "I do believe in it all really. You are only limited by yourself." Though she was preaching to her own choir in that aspect. "Do the Knights of the Moon have anything to do with Kalumai? They seem to come from different origins though in name alone, perhaps a stupid question." She watched him skim hands over the books even as he turned back to watch her. "Even if they do or do not, how do they include you?" Now it was her turn to pry somewhat, she had answered his questions and it was only fair in her mind.


The book opened and without her taking the seat Jake resumed place upon it balancing the large tomb upon his knees as he looks over it at her, "That is one hopeful and optimistic sounding look on limitation."Maybe his vibes were off about this girl, maybe she hadn't come face first into that ugly maw that says -guess what, I'm a bigger fish- a rough metaphor that meant several things. "No, there is no relation between the two in the least. Not even sure they have even crossed paths in history or mythology, whichever you choose to believe. As for my interests... an obligation keeps me interested and studying."


Raven's hand finally released the cloaks edge and any motion that told of discomfort finally dissipated. Walking a few paces down a long the bookshelf her eyes left him in a slow draw to begin a slow search over some of the tomes, despite the fact he had her curiosity and looking at the books was just a way to stop watching him incredulously, like he was her. "It is true though, most peoples setbacks now a days are them saying they cannot when indigenous tribes and past people did not have such a thing. They believed and they went into it whole heartedly, and succeeded or failed. But if they failed, they did so on their own willing accord. They still knew and held reign on their fate." She stopped eventually and turned to the side, finding it pointless to look interested elsewhere when it was false. A good conversation perhaps is simply what she needed. Gee Raven socialize more, maybe? Not only no, but hell no. "Obligation. So either you owe someone or you owe it to yourself." Again her eyes returned to him, watching and waiting.


<<He owes me,his life, praise, worship, glory and recognition... don't you Marc?>> A large shadow looms high stepping from the top of one book shelf to the other crouching above the two who were speaking. "Something like that," Jake replies to Raven, the book stopping in it's flip of pages before him as he held his finger down on a spot, staring for some time. "Your name an outright intentional thing on your parents part? They intend you to be some... 'flew from the dark womb' into the even darker and bloodstained hands of faith? Or were they just hippies. If your last name is something like Moonsong we're going to cease talking now." A joke, on his part one that she would catch if she seen the vague hint of a smile that appears.


For a moment her eyes left Jake and looked up towards where the shadows shifted, kohl lined lids narrowing, but more-so in a deeper study if it even could be hand. It was like the brief flicker at periphery and she was wondering if it was real or her mind playing tricks. Unseen, her own power pushed out to poke a proverbial hand at nearby darkness, tugging and then releasing like a rubber band to make her own ripple. If she //knew// Jake could see something like that she never would have made such a move, and she was hoping he could not, her eyes snapping back down to him. "It's my name. Raven, that's it, nothing following and what my mother meant by it is beyind me but she was anything but a hippy, somewhat an occultist herself." His smile seemed to be the focus, she watched it tug at his lips and in near mimicy her own stoic composure seemed to break and she did the same.

Did she see you? Jake almost said it outloud, his teeth clenched. There was no way Khonshu allowed himself to be seen, only he could see him right? Only Khonshu showed himself to Marc Spector, the chosen, his warrior-priest. His jaw made a popping sound as he stood up abruptly and followed her gaze up only to set hard dark eyes on hers again. "Something wrong?" He forces out, feigning ignorance. "You seem...perplexed all of a sudden." Not fear, perhaps a hint of it, paranoia maybe or was that all just him. Perhaps he was being toyed with. Unable to contain himself he pushes himself forward quickly a practiced precision until his face is directly before hers, "Did you see it?" He hisses out. That darkness lurking beyond in his eyes was even more intense now, something else lurked in there and was bubbling to the top insanity and perhaps some form of desperation. Lashes of something else as well, rage. A contained festering rage that was close to breaking the surface.


The shift of Jake's emotions was thick, malleable, and something she could likely clutch in her mystical grip if she so chose. But surprise made her forget to even do such a thing, as well as curiosity. For a moment there when his rage began to fester and he stood with his question, she didn't hear the question nor answer it, but looked directly at him as if he had said nothing. No emotion showed on Raven's face to even give the hint that she feared the very real danger he could pose to her.


When he stepped closer she did not waver and left them face to face, then finally a reaction came - she blinked and locked her eyes on his. "Likely the light in here playing tricks on the shadows is all. See what? There's nothing there...Right?" Now it was her turn to give a studious look once again, his reaction told her all she needed to know despite the fact that her own unseen poking got no reaction from the area, but her look sure did him.


"Right..." Jake releases, his hand drawing aside and up raking through his hair not having realized it was uplifting like he was about to clutch her throat. He was drawn to tight, his mind was a mess, perhaps it was time to head back to his estate. "Sorry about that, Raven. You're right though, was nothing, just shadows on the walls and lack of sleep."Such composure, he was impressed considering her age; almost attacked by some strange man in a dark library. Only horror stories, stalker movies and bad porn start out that way; stepping away from her he picked up that large book and gave a brief forced smile, "It was nice meeting you, perhaps we'll run into eachother again." A small bird like figure stood atop the shelves still, a smile lit up under it's 'mask' or face, one could not tell with the constant casting of darkness. One look from the Moon Knight was cast at it before he made his way from the shop. Away from the eerie young woman and his plagued thoughts. Had he almost attacked her just now? A test, a trial? Was she an enemy or simply what she appeared, an enlightened follower of a forgotten being; like himself. The chime of the bell was heard and the avatar of Khonshu was gone.


Raven swallowed, his hand didn't have to wrap around the bare column of her throat for her to touch on the thoughts of what he possibly wanted to do in such a rage stricken mindset. No other reaction, nor movement came even as he spoke and walked out, casting his own glance upward to where she had looked. //He was lying.// Even then her eyes remained up there, but this time she knew she didn't just see things, tricks of light. He was protecting something in a covetous manner. If Raven was anyone else she would push, press, and likely pursue to know more. But she didn't. "...Perhaps." His secrets were his own to bury and entomb, just like hers were and out of respect for that she let her eyes fall from the space atop the bookshelf and she headed past the desk and the old man, once again offering him a nod before she pulled the hood up, stepped out the door and vanished.

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