RP: Singed Bridges

Reserved for: Jacob and Malicia

"This is ridiculous." A table went flying and shattered into splinters upon impact with a nearby wall. The table smasher in question was leaning forward, chest heaving with frustration. 

After one incredibly humiliating visit to Duckburg that saw her defeat at the hands of Gizmoduck, followed by an unwelcome Nega-house call that forfeited her filthy footage, Malicia was growing incredibly frustrated with her losing streak. 

When the demonness had first arrived in St. Canard, she had been convinced that everything would be easy. After all, how could any mere Normal manage to overpower a top-notch sorceress? Combined with the general populace's ignorance of all things magical, St. Canard was, presumably, the perfect place to set up shop for black market black magic. 

But she was not turning a significant profit, namely due to some unexpected (psychopathic) complications that kept bleeding her expenses dry. Combined with a few uninhibited trips to several St. Canard shoe stores, Malicia realized that if she wanted to live her comfortable, luxurious life, she was going to have to play hardball.

The 'incident' with a certain ancient Obsidian artifact had been the missing puzzle piece that wedged itself firmly between the metaphorical buttox of a grand epiphany. Why even bother with the business aspect when she could simply take what she wanted? 

...Which had been a good idea, up until Gizmoduck had proven her violent pursuit would require far more ingenuity. She would get what she wanted... but she had to be smart about it. Calculated. 

And that was why she was in the middle of compiling notes and information on her most likely obstacles: Gizmoduck, Darkwing, Negaduck, and Quiverwing. Coincidentally the same majority had stopped her plug-possessed rampage. All Normals. All magnetically attractive. 

Now, if only she could figure how exactly to sweep them out of her way... 

    • DarkwingPsycho
      DarkwingPsycho

      There was a tap at the front door, then someone let themselves inside.  The gait was confident, if a tad uneven, and there was a third addition to the footfalls that approached.  It wasn't long before Jacob Mallard graced Malicia's presence, cane in hand, and his black eyes wandered over the space curiously.

      "Ah," he remarked when his gaze fell on the smashed table.  "Redecorating, I see.  I've been wondering what you've been up to lately."

      • Queen Malicia of St. Canard
        Queen Malicia of St. Canard

        "You know." She spun around to regard the visitor with an air of annoyance. "There isn't a whole lot of purpose to knocking if you're simply going to enter anyway." 

        Waving her hand dismissively, a small portal 'zooped' open and swallowed the smashed furniture whole before blinking out of existence again. 

        "I've been 'up to' plenty of things lately." She continued airily. "No rest for the wicked, after all. Especially in a city that has apparently never heard of sleep." 

        • DarkwingPsycho
          DarkwingPsycho

          Her snarl and then her irreverent display of magic did little to faze his placid demeanor.  He leaned his weight on his good leg and put both hands over the top of his cane.  "Yes, I do believe there was that business of an ancient artifact and then a brief attempt at crime in Duckburg...unless there is another she-duck out there who can manipulate fire...among many other talents, to be sure.  Although it sounds as though the underground operation SHUSH was investigating has ceased operation...thank goodness for the city."

          His voice was conversational, but his expression was calm and calculating.  "So I thought I might drop in to check on you.  See where things stood."

          • Queen Malicia of St. Canard
            Queen Malicia of St. Canard

            Judging by the glower on her face it was clear Mal was in no mood for subtlety. 

            "I'll tell you where they stand." She snapped. "Six feet in the ground, which is where I'll be putting Darkwing and the rest of those colossal morons. I'll make this city and everyone in it my bitch when I'm through with them!" 

            She paced back to her hit-by-a-tornado work space where several spellbooks were strewn about, amidst frantic notes and crude drawings depicting the many ways in which Mal would make do on her threats. The pile of loose leaf paper was secured neatly to the table beneath a horrifically inelegant paper weight. A bedazzled gold paperweight in the shape of Beeyonce, to be more precise. She plucked it from the table and passed it back and forth between her hands absentmindedly as she turned to face Jacob again.

            "If you're looking for weapons or intel, I have neither for you. I have higher priorities now. So unless you've something useful for me, I'd rather not waste my time making small talk."

            • DarkwingPsycho
              DarkwingPsycho

              He tilted his head slightly, studying her, then he wandered over to the table she had hunched herself back over.  Curiously he glanced over the notes and books, then seemed to come to a silent conclusion that was confirmed by her follow-up statement.  He held up a hand with a reassuring expression.

              "Neither, my lady.  The pursuit of my hated enemy is on the backburner for now...although I am rather curious as to what occurred to set off this turn of events."  He motioned to her liquor selection.  "Perhaps a drink?  I might be of use, having experience with the - ah - 'morons' in question."

              • Queen Malicia of St. Canard
                Queen Malicia of St. Canard

                "What else is there to explain? These fools keep getting in my way and now I must dispose of them all. Simple as that." So that was a 'no' on the happy hostess hospitality.

                 The closer in proximity Jacob was to her desk, the closer she hovered, evidently on edge about him -or anyone for that matter, getting too close to her 'research'. The Agent had proven trustworthy so far, but who's to say he might have a change of heart? 

                "Unless you were brought back to their secret hideout for a night of raw passion, I've collected plenty 'experience' of my own." It was the first time that evening she cracked a smile, and it was a wicked one. 

                Granted, she hadn't been paying much attention at the time and kind of forgot the location of the aforementioned hideout. But that was just a minor detail. 

                • DarkwingPsycho
                  DarkwingPsycho

                  He shrugged.  "I assumed since they continued to be a thorn in your side that you may be glad of assistance, but have it your way."

                  He returned her smile with a smirk.  "Is that so?  I hear that Negaduck drained you quite dry...a shame, really, treating a woman of your status that way.  But it's to be expected, I suppose, from a ne'er-do-well such as him.  If you truly want him out of the way...I believe our paths might still align.  You haven't been able to rid yourself of him on your own before, but perhaps with both of our resources combined..."

                  He glanced down once more at her notes, then raised a brow curiously.  "Soul reclamation?  I wasn't aware Negaduck had one after all..."

                  • Queen Malicia of St. Canard
                    Queen Malicia of St. Canard

                    "I wasn't talking about Negaduck, I was talking about Darkwing Drip." She slammed the paperweight down on the table, which sent papers flying in all directions. "Although both have lost my patience." 

                    Her full attention was on Jacob now. "I don't need your help to deal with any of them, I am more than competent on my own. I will dispose of them all in due time." Mal was growing visibly irritated now, evidently not in the mood to cooperate or play nice. She was about ready to send Jacob out the door, until he brought up her favourite 'S' word.

                    "Every mortal being has a soul, even a lesser creature like him." She explained. "But soul extraction... and reclamation, are a mythical phenomenon. Even forbidden magic is bound by certain rules and regulations, which is why a soul cannot be stolen. They must be surrendered, either through writing or a verbal contract." She sat back on the desk, causing it to creak with uncertainty beneath her... gracefulness.

                    "This is all probably beyond your Normal-minded comprehension, but the point is I've been researching various potential loopholes that would allow me to harvest souls sans contract. It is a work in progress."

                    • DarkwingPsycho
                      DarkwingPsycho

                      Her temper gave him pause, if only to consider just how far she had fallen from the cunning businesswoman he had known not too long ago.  Interesting how a few run-ins with masked mallards could change a person.  It was almost a disappointment.

                      As she explained about souls, he nodded politely though he had heard this all before, and he let her condescension roll off of his back like water.  He looked over the scattered pages again with interest, noting that most of the references to souls were also on pages that mentioned Negaduck, or had a crude drawing of him.

                      He made a soft sort of grunting sound as if thinking something over, then said, "I may have a solution for you in that regard...but I would need something in return.

                      "There is a little-known campus beneath Paris, among the catacombs and ruins of the old cities that came before.  You might have heard of it, although even by monster standards, it's a bit abstruse.  I've heard rumors that they've created a device mixing magic and science.  One that can extract souls from willing or unwilling parties and contain them in trinkets.  These souls could even be divided, whether to preserve them or obliterate them."

                      • Queen Malicia of St. Canard
                        Queen Malicia of St. Canard

                        "You have my attention." She folded her arms across her chest and regarded him coolly. He hadn't completely hooked her, but she knew better than to dismiss a reliable lead. Jacob may be a Normal, but he spent most of his time in a hotbed of valuable intel. She was no stranger to the fact SHUSH boasted a well-funded Supernatural department. 

                        "You're saying this device is obtainable, then." Or at the very least was worth investigating.

                        "And what, pray tell, are you looking for in return?"

                        • DarkwingPsycho
                          DarkwingPsycho

                          He regarded her just as coolly and replied, "Why, Negaduck of course.  Or at least his brain.  I've no vested interest in what happens to the rest of him."  He assumed she was after his soul, as they had both been a while ago.

                          "I can give you whatever information you need to obtain the device, but I'll need some assurances first that you'll be able to uphold your end of the bargain."  He could glean that when it came to Negaduck, at least in the past, she had had certain...weaknesses.

                          • Queen Malicia of St. Canard
                            Queen Malicia of St. Canard

                            "How the hell am I supposed to 'assure' the contents of his brain? Which, by the way, may be disappointingly absent when you do slice open his thick skull. Just saying." 

                            On the bright side, she was evidently willing to play tradesies.

                            "You can have whatever parts of Negaduck you wish to play with, I don't care."

                            • DarkwingPsycho
                              DarkwingPsycho

                              "So your past...'run-ins' with Negaduck will not be an issue?" he clarified.  "I'm glad to hear it...I assume you'll be sending someone in your stead rather than muss that lustrous mane or damage that manicure.  In which case, whom shall I be working with?"  As if he didn't already know.

                              • Queen Malicia of St. Canard
                                Queen Malicia of St. Canard

                                Blank stare.

                                Okay, he had a point. About her hair being lustrous, that is. The logistics of this entire venture hadn't sunken in until he mentioned it. As much as she would love to drop everything for a trip to the city where fashion earned its name, Mal had certain... obligations, currently tethering her to St. Canard.

                                She waved her hand dismissively. "I don't care who you bring with you, but I'm not paying them jack. My arrangement is with you, and if the payment is Negaduck's flesh, then that is what you'll get.  But I expect you to keep my personal business under wraps. Nobody needs to know my intentions for this device."

                                • DarkwingPsycho
                                  DarkwingPsycho

                                  He shrugged.  "Done.  I would also amend, my dear, that if soul reaping is your intent that you leave me out of the target zone...  I would hope our history together would already preclude that, but one can never be too careful."

                                  Knowing she was in no mood for drinking or idle banter (which was a pity because he so loved both), he bowed his head to her in farewell.  "Until we next meet."

                                  • Queen Malicia of St. Canard
                                    Queen Malicia of St. Canard

                                    "You stay out of my way and we'll be just peachy, Agent Mallard." Her smile was venomous. "My fight is with any fool who interferes with my plans." Both a promise, and a warning. 

                                    With his exit, she turned her attention back to her notes. Should Jacob return with this mythical soul-reaping device, she needed to devise a new plan...