PM to join [Third Tier] On breaking and entering

(Part 1: 13th Fall 517AV) Fallon is called in to investigate a break in.

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Built into the cliffs overlooking the Suvan Sea, Riverfall resides on the edge of grasslands of Cyphrus where the Bluevein River plunges off the plain and cascades down to the inland sea below. Home of the Akalak, Riverfall is a self-supporting city populated by devoted warriors. [Riverfall Codex]

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[Third Tier] On breaking and entering

Postby Fallon on September 18th, 2017, 11:50 am

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13th Fall 517AV
Morning

”So, explain to me what happened.”

The inspector was in the cosy abode of a client, awkwardly perched upon one of the stools. Notebook open on the table, ink and quill poised for writing. The autumn sunlight was coming through the open window, the air less stifling than the summer time and allowing her mind some clarity to focus. Her kukri was strapped to her side, obvious and on show – she was a Kuvan, she made that no secret in the city. Tugging at the collar of her tunic, she neatly dated the corner of the page; scribbling down a few observational notes of the client and the room, before focusing intently.

Human. Dark hair. Blue eyes. Benshira extract perhaps? Female. Lacking the symbols of Akalak ownership. What was the word? the inspector gave a small tilt of the head, lips curling up into a small smile. It was an act of reassurance, if anything else, Ah, yes Nakivak.

A collection of cups had been placed down on the table, steaming tea filling them and tickling at the inspector’s senses. It allowed her time to sit and think, while allowing the client something to fiddle with. The thick, Riverian accent came out shortly after, ”My home was broken into two nights ago while I was upstairs asleep. The commotion downstairs woke me up, so I came to investigate. By the time I came down I was gone.”
“So a break in, a burglary?”
“Of a sort. They did not steal anything, but…”
she saw the narrowing of eyes, the chew upon her lip as she seemed to feel her way through the situation, ”They made a mess. Tipped out the pantry and ripped open the cupboards. They were far from subtle.”
“Did you manage to get a look at the trespasser?”
“No, it was too dark and they were… well. Gone.”


Fallon’s lip gave a small curl, So that would be why this has been passed onto me by the guard. No leads, nothing taken, and little to go from. Let’s them focus on the bigger problems while I tidy up the little. Sounds about right for the foreigner in town.

Her quill dipped into the vial, and she began scratching down more notes, ”How did they get in?”
“Through the back door. They managed to cut through the lock. Well. The lock bolt.”

The inspector frowned, brow creasing and the quill scratching upon the page. The word Tools? was underlined for emphasis. She paused and looked past the woman in to the back of the house, eyes narrowing through the door way to the small kitchen space beyond and the back door. The mess left in the wake of the break in had yet to be cleaned away; but beyond that even from here she could see how a chair had been propped up beneath the handle, with several heavy looking boxes sitting along the base. Obviously a lock smith had yet to replace the damaged article, ”You mean to say, some how, the tools managed to get through the gap in the door?”
“It seems that way. You’re welcome to look yourself.”
“I intend to. But to matters at hand.”


The inspector gave a small jab of the quill in the direction of the kitchen, ”So you found them going through the pantry? Nothing seemed a miss?”
“No, mainly seemed to be just tipping things out. Rice. Grain. So forth.”
“And they ran when they heard you?”
“Exactly. Out the door like a rat up a drain pipe.”


Fallon’s lips pulled into a small, amused curl then, ”Tell me, do you keep any valuables in the house? Anything of personal value even?”
“Well. I do have some savings, but I keep that under lock and key, and hidden. I have some paper work there too, you know, settling in the city, lodgings, work details, so forth.”

Fallon released a hum, and took a sip of her tea, ”Well. I am willing to investigate. Glean things. Do you mind if I?”

She did not wait for an answer, not really. In a single swift move she was up on her feet and beginning the process of sauntering over to the scene. Her nose itched, gaze spying the various over turned goods, the thick prints that were embedded into the flour. She licked her lips, letting the bitter after taste rest upon them as she hummed. The first question that came to mind was how did they break the lock? The second was how without making so much noise? She released a snort, before awkwardly stepping over to the offending door.

No time like the present.
FALLON
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Fallon is a Master of Intimidation, "At this level, a Master intimidator often unconsciously intimidates their target unless the intimidator monitors their stance, tone, and actions to prevent this. Master intimidators will nearly always have a reputation that precedes them unless they have taken special care to prevent it."
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[Third Tier] On breaking and entering

Postby Salara Kel'Halavath on September 20th, 2017, 4:04 am

Having managed to scootch into an edge of sunlight that finally felt comfortable with the seasons’ changing, ‘Whiskers’ watched the inspector through half lidded eyes lazily scanning the room, seeing more than her indifferent look indicated. She knew Fallon might quiz her against the very notes being written now so she tried to see everything and consider their hostess who seemed slightly discomfited at having a large predatory cat shedding hair on her braided rug. It wasn’t as if the place was clean and orderly. A little hair shouldn’t make difference with all the rice that had been strewn past the crime scene from kitchen into den.

It was curious, of all places to begin a search what would a culprit find so important in a kitchen? Listening in on the questions and answers, at first she scoffed in the back of her throat at the culprit being compared with a rat. Well, maybe so… rats could very likely make such a mess in a relatively short amount of time, but not as rapidly as the woman described…very large rats…maybe children? Hungry children? FOCUS. Redirecting attention to the grain strewn into the den it was apparent that the woman had made several trips through the kitchen before they’d arrived so Whiskers hoped the footprints clearly seen in the kitchen weren't a match to the homeowner, otherwise a fine clue.

Fallon's sudden move to action preceded the cougar's casual fluidity in following along to the kitchen where the woman clung and hovered closely against the inspector’s shoulder in the cramped room. Annoyed at being forced aside and cautious of her distracted mentor’s exposed back, the great cat tried a slick maneuver more familiar with smaller housecats. A well-placed paw and sinuous twist squeezed the cougar through the Nakivak woman’s legs effectively tottering her aside to avoid being tripped. Toothy grin and golden stare daring any complaint led to a stuttered, “Well, Inspector, if…if you don’t mind I have some… eh… chores to finish upstairs. I’ll leave you to your, um, inspecting.” Whiskers watched the woman hesitate as if to say something more, then watched all the way up the stairs, even meeting the woman’s look back before reaching the top and disappearing beyond. Once out of sight, Salara shifts among sparkling light.

Taking the victim’s place, not quite hovering but near enough, Salara peers over Fallon’s shoulder to get her own peek at the lock. “Back in the day I worked my share of cheap locks like this in Ravok, brass rather than iron. There are several types of picks that would trip the bolt tumbler. I've got one or two in my kit. But to literally cut through the bolt? And how? It just doesn't make any sense."

Dexterously twisting her blonde mane into a knotted tail at the back of her neck she guesses, “Heat?” A sharp nailed finger circles about the snapped bolt, “I don’t know how they’d do it but that warding plate placed to avoid tampering would be a benefit to a thief here if it were heat. If you open the door there might be charred wood along the inside edge if the entire implement were hot. It would be quiet.” Feeling it unlikely her conjecture continues, “Could it have been magic? A lot of effort expended to what end?”

"Or maybe,” finally thinking more realistically, “thieves picks weren't available so instead they used a thin sawing blade, more noisy but better than breaking the door in. It would take all night. Why be so quite breaking in only to make such a clatter trashing the place?” Expecting it her duty, she begins clearing the makeshift blockade away from the door. “It could have taken a longer time than expected to cut the bolt; was maybe a clutz to knock something over and took a chance on a quick find? Regardless, this is not an inexperienced effort and not a typical burglar.” It was her two coppers of experience lent – as usual - the improbable and obvious.

Lifting the tilted chair away Salara steps back to allow Fallon an opportunity to scrutinize the door more closely or direct her to. “Do we know what job her Akalack mate holds? Who would be stupid enough to B&E with her home?” Salara hadn’t learned much yet about the society as a whole, but even she knew the Navikak were valuable and closely guarded. "Might this be misdirection to steer attention away from something else?"
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[Third Tier] On breaking and entering

Postby Fallon on September 26th, 2017, 11:12 am

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A gloved finger scratched at the work surface, a thin layer of grease collecting on the tips before she smeared it away. It was well used, the sense of wear was apparent even at the smallest of glances. The sense of cleanliness however was lacking; oil splashes against the wall, the small husks of fried onion stuck in the corners. The stale smell was the second thing she noticed, lingering in the air with the attempts of it being smothered. It did not work.

There was a pause as the weighed up the door in her mind, a firm testing rap of knuckles upon its surface. Heavy, solid wood and clearly made with the Akalak in mind. The lock itself was affixed into the door, though hanging closed only through the weights at the base. She imagined that it would simply swing if it was not for those. There was a bend a small testing pull before she heard the voice of Salara too close. There was the briefest moment of tension, skin prickling in discomfort before she exhaled. She knew what it meant, the moment of awkwardness came and passed with the inspector sidestepping and averting her gaze to the ground. Humming, she straightened and took position at the entrance and surveyed the scene the best she could without focusing too intently on the other.

“It would have to be a very intense and focused flame, and somehow not be too bright,” the inspector frowned, ”Hot enough to melt metal? That would have to be the same level of heat as a forge. I am not quite sure how such levels could be reached with mundane means, so if it is heat then magic would be the option.” She paused, eyes briefly skirting around the Kelvic’s feet, ”But, that’s based on ignorant speculation on something not my forte.”

Her gaze returned to the kitchen and the scattered contents. One of the cupboards had been left ajar with its contents spilling out. It was strange to see the woman had yet to even consider the notion of cleaning – perhaps the ordeal was still processing in her mind. Trauma and fear. The idea of a saw was an interesting one, no doubt it would leave some trace of dust and filings. But as Salara said, the noise would attract and alert.

Of course, projection can produce thin cuts and blades if focused. Though, such seems like a waste of energy when the lock could simply be turned instead… her gaze flickered to the door handle, lips twisting, ”I would say pliers. The sharp edged ones. But I don’t think that would have fit through the gap. Chisel, brute force? But again too much noise.”

Taking the cue, Fallon shuffled over and pulled the door over. The loose bolt in the frame slid and clattered to the floor, and a few twists of the handle showed the expose broken edge of the bolt. Taking up the fallen piece, she turned it a few times, eyes narrowed as she saw the small bumps and ridges in the break. It was barely the same thickness as her ring finger, greyed, she noted the thin layer of residue that came from around the break, sharp and acidic. Holding it up to the light she spied a small hole within the core of the bolt itself, something that would be akin to a bubble trapped beneath the surface.

She offered the piece to Salara, before she crouched down to study the lock proper. A few more twists, a screwing up of her features as she tried to think through it. Perhaps it was melted, she saw where part of the bolt seemed to have formed a lip of melted iron. But that did not seem logical.

”Unless… it wasn’t fire…” she mumbled, ”I think, we may need to ask for the lock. You know. Evidence stuff. May pay to speak with a few smiths to get their opinion.” The posed question gave her pause, ”The Akalak, I don’t know yet. His lack of appearance however suggests… well. He’s not about presently. I would like to think that he would have otherwise made an appearance if he was. Away from Riverfall perhaps? Or, maybe he simply does not care. Who knows.” She leaned back on her haunches, inspecting the mess once more, ”What were they trying to find? That’s the bit that bugs me. Why go through so much effort to make a mess? Check the insides.”
FALLON
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Fallon is a Master of Intimidation, "At this level, a Master intimidator often unconsciously intimidates their target unless the intimidator monitors their stance, tone, and actions to prevent this. Master intimidators will nearly always have a reputation that precedes them unless they have taken special care to prevent it."
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[Third Tier] On breaking and entering

Postby Salara Kel'Halavath on October 3rd, 2017, 4:03 am

Salara was more than happy to have Fallon’s experienced eye examining the broken lock and would receive the piece handed to her to duplicate the examination also noticing the appearance of melt upon the bolt and the hole within the core. She paused a moment to consider that Fallon, having handed it to her, was finished with that bit of examination so wouldn’t be concerned if the evidence of it was disturbed. Bringing the broken lock to meet the tip of her tongue she tasted of the acrid residue. Making a bitter face as she scrapes her tongue clean across her teeth she claims “Oily burn kind of like creosote.” For a moment it would seem she would spit, likely making a cleaner spot; but alas she was too well mannered so swallowed the bitter taste instead.

Shrugging aside the inconclusive opinion and laying the broken part to the side to be taken with them later she listens to the conjecture on the Akalak with some small humor as Fallon’s eyes avoid her state of undress but for the red bandana still tied about her throat. “If you’d like I could fetch a cover from the den?” she teases, but does not act upon it. The woman should be used to hanging with a Kelvic by now and perhaps would agree to carry a robe with them in the future. No matter to her.

‘Check the insides,’ she was directed and gladly accepted. Snooping was her pleasure although typically not invited. Careful to avoid the floured imprint upon the floor Salara proceeds first to each open cabinet and drawer. Quietly tapping and scratching into disturbed corners her lip curls distastefully as kitchen crud and uncleanliness catches under her nails. A fastidious creature, she mumbles commentary, “How can anyone live so slovenly? No wonder her Akalak might not care or come around often. I wouldn’t be surprised if she were as scuzzy as this.”

Rummaging past the kitchenware and food stocks, she checks the width and depth of each shelf while listening for a more hollow resonance without discovering false backs or bottoms. Moving to the closed shelves she discovers mismatched dishes more cracked and chipped than whole, a slightly fragrant spice drawer, and a sparse shelf of dry goods. The ice chest, used to keep foods cooler, contained half eaten leftovers and a pervasive smell of mold. “Gah, I think I’ll be skipping lunch today.” Wrinkling her nose she sorts through to the back figuring any thief not fully committed to their effort would refuse to look past the malignantly colorful foods. Nothing and it was too heavy to move ruling out anything being hidden behind.

As she moves to the cluttered table, obviously more of a catch all than a likely place to eat, she turns hearing footsteps descending the stairwell. Growling under her breath at the interruption she shifts back to her feline form just before the Navikak woman comes into view to address Fallon, “Have you found anything yet?” Taking advantage of her lower perspective in the cramped kitchen, Salara moves out of the way by slipping under the table in company of a family of greasy dust bunnies to the squeak of a loose floorboard.
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[Third Tier] On breaking and entering

Postby Fallon on October 26th, 2017, 8:52 am

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”Oily?” Fallon questioned the word, her brow creasing into a line. Her gaze moved around the kitchen – noting the mess and splashes of what she previously thought was used for cooking. She released a hum, expression easing as she contemplated what was before her, ”I mean… it is a possibility. Perhaps. Oil burns but…” the gaze shifted, moving around checking for burning splash damage, ”I’m not minded in the ways of sciences, but…”

The thoughts were stumbling, falling as it was trying to piece together the situation. With a firm shake of the head she pushed it aside and turned her attention to the room as a whole. Her gaze skirted around Salara once more, with a bemused raise of an eyebrow, ”If you knew my mind Salara and the manner in which it worked, I am very sure you would understand. I appreciate your… confidence in such form,” her hand gestured in the direction of the Kelvic before returning to the matter at hand.

”I have a counter question. Why live so slovenly?” Fallon returned her attention to the lock, touching and tapping the door with interest, ”Riverfall does not exactly encourage such behaviour, in fact they are keen on the manners of good health, wellbeing, cleanliness… it is out of character. As for the Benshira…” There was another pause, a pinch of the brow as she focused, ”I know not enough about them. I imagine they hold the same values however.” She released a snort, ”Now, if this was Sunberth, it’s something I would expect. It is, however, mildly alarming.”

Fallon’s own face screwed up when the scent of rot reached her. A firm swallow; she did not hesitate in letting the door open to let in a flow of fresher air. A few, deep huffs of the crisper autumn air and she let the mind linger, Why. I don’t understand the why…”

The voice of the owner was cutting. Head turning she gave a mere shrug, ”Still looking. We have a piece of evidence I’d like to take away with me to look at. Further study and what not.” Her eyes slid to Salara, noticing the return of the big cat, ”I do have a question or two, if you don’t mind. You’re a Navikak. Correct?”
“Yes. That would be…”
“So… where is your partner?”


It was the noted pause that caught Fallon’s attention, the small lift and turn of the chin. The shoulders curling in slightly; defensive, wary and cautious. She watched the eyes shift and move, before focusing not upon Fallon’s face but onto the open door behind, ”He is away. Merchant of the Sea. Conducts Spice and Oil trade mainly northwards to Kenash, sometimes up to Syliras.”
“Merchant? I always find such a practice fascinating. One must understand numbers and figures, when to cut a deal and when not to. Very fine balancing act. I never quite got the knack of it though. Shame.”
“Well, it does keep him busy…”
“And away a lot?”
“Yes.”
“I take it he is away on trade now?”
“Well. Yes.”


The inspector offered a smile, a brief flash of teeth as the cogs went round. There hovering at the edge she could see the creeping look of sadness, soft but held in, lingering yet being pushed down, ”Thank you. I understand it must be hard and demanding on such a relationship. If you don’t mind… well, I would like to get back to my work. Much to go through.”

The woman excused herself, awkward as she moved away; retreating back towards the safety of the upstairs. Listening to the creaking above, Fallon gave a nod of the head to Salara, ”Remind me to find out what kind of oil. Until then…”

Fallon begun to remove her gloves.
FALLON
Fallon | Coffee Codes | Skill Images

Fallon is a Master of Intimidation, "At this level, a Master intimidator often unconsciously intimidates their target unless the intimidator monitors their stance, tone, and actions to prevent this. Master intimidators will nearly always have a reputation that precedes them unless they have taken special care to prevent it."
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Fallon
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[Third Tier] On breaking and entering

Postby Salara Kel'Halavath on October 29th, 2017, 7:16 pm

The cougar watched the interaction from a pair of mirrored glows reflecting from beneath the dimness of the table. Quickly emerging from cover as the creak of the woman’s retreating steps were accompanied by the creak of the floorboard beneath the weighted pressure of her own paws, twice, fore and aft. Her ears twitched at the sound but did not fully register any thought towards it in light of her effort to escape from clinging dust bunnies. Disgusted she emerges with a great shudder of her hide showering a light layer of creamy fur to join the dust family as the breeze through the open door wafts them back to hiding.

Seeing Fallon’s ungloving and understanding that it would be a bit of time before the Inspector was finished with her reading, the Kelvic settled upon haunches to consider the questions posed and responses given. ‘Why live so slovenly?’ could be a natural response easily explained but she didn’t understand the reference to ‘Benshira’ at all. They were apparently another people from another land but not of Riverfall or Sunberth. Familiar frustration at the Inspector’s habit of half spoken and rarely explained thoughts groaned from her furry throat.

While her companion settled into what Salara considered a trance, her ears swiveled at each trodden creak upon the ceiling above as she considered the oily residue further as common to doors or a product of the break in. To keep her thoughts moving the great cat began a slow circular pacing careful to not come too close but stay near enough to offer a solid support for Fallon’s usual recovery from the Lycata. Each step fell soundlessly while a thought skirted the edges of her consciousness but she was unable to pin it down.

Eventually motion returned to the still form as Salara sidled closer if needed. Patiently she waited until clarity returned to those dark orbs. Surely Fallon would be processing what she had learned and it took several chimes before Salara felt she could return to her woman’s form and interrupt. “Perhaps the woman is having fits of depression? Maybe she suspects he has found companionship elsewhere and really isn’t giving attention to his business? If she is lonely or displeased she may not feel inclined toward keeping the place up.”

“She said his business was with oil and spice. Surely that kind of oil has nothing to do with this, but perhaps another oil may be common for doors? It could have been used to increase heat for the break-in or maybe a lubricant to keep the lock from squeaking. Was the door oiled by the thief or was it always kept oiled? What would be the point of the owner going to the effort of making the door quiet when the floors are so….” Salara’s head tilted one way then tilted again the other as an idea tumbled into place.

Stepping around Fallon toward the cluttered table she grabs the edge to work it out of place, consequentially sending a small avalanche of odds and ends clattering to the floor while she explains, “While upstairs each step is obvious, the floor in the den and kitchen have not squeaked except for…,” Dropping to her knees her long nails curl beneath the wobbly floor board, “…here.” A gentle tug lifts the wooden board clear as she looks beneath then up to Fallon with an AHA! expression.

Nestled between narrow floor joists is a faded cloth pouch that crackles with the sound of paper and jingles pleasantly as she lifts it. Humming softly she offers the discovery up to Fallon for revelation.
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Salara Kel'Halavath
What would She do?
 
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