Devoted

Cordova 
#1
Were-cheetah.

Lying on the couch, she went over the word in her head. She itched to write, to solidify this surreal experience by wringing those jumbled thoughts and memories out like a soaked rag into her notebook, but such hard evidence was criminal now, and Cordelia wasn’t interested in articulating her experiences just to burn the words.

Needing something to do, Cordelia ventured into the kitchen. She wasn’t alone -- Yana was there, purposefully sequestered in her office. She could feel her now, in more ways that one. Pulling the refrigerator open, the younger woman reached for two packages of cubed steak.

She used to be a vegetarian.

She used to see how long she could go between meals.

Not anymore.

It wouldn’t let her, and the human found herself too meek too fight. Mixing together a simple marinade, Cordelia sliced a medley of vegetables to go with the dish. Despite Yana’s disinterest, she’d continued on with her cooking classes and found that she enjoyed it. It felt good to create, to nourish.

Pouring her sister a glass of wine and preparing their plates, she carried everything into the office, waitress style. Opening the door with a bit of difficulty, she managed to place everything down beside her sister in a rare display of grace.

I thought you might be hungry.”

@Yana Novik
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#2
Rome wasn't built in a day.

If she had a nickel for every time that she had that thought, she would finally have enough to hire someone to get her into this god damn account. It had been nearly an hour in her home office now, staring at the screen of the laptop and poised on the edge of her seat as she tried a variety of different numbers to formulate the pin that would get her into the dead man's bank account.

Was it legal to clean out his finances and call it a day? Of course not - then again, eating him probably didn't make her much in the way of a model citizen to begin with. And there were better uses for the money than fishing boats and novelty t-shirts, more interesting and powerful things if she had anything to say or do about it.

Tensing somewhat when her sister stepped into the space, clearing her throat and shutting the screen of the laptop over as she looked from the food and drink set down alongside her and back to Cordelia. Quiet for a moment - fixing her with an icy stare until finally she picked up the glass and begrudgingly motioned to the futon. "Sit." Clipped as she pulled her plate over closer and pushed around the medley. The occasional breeze that fluttered the lightweight curtains, a pleasing and welcomed thing in the oppressive heat.

Of course she could have left the windows shut and cranked the AC, but then there would be no end to that smell. The odor of him that pervaded her space still, the god damn telltale heart of her home - though admittedly her conscience continued to weigh lighter than a feather even then. A part of her wondering if Delia could pick it up as well, though she did not dare to ask it. As far as she was concerned - when the bones were buried so was the name. They were done now.

"How are you?" Her meaning implied by the quirk of her brow and the fact that she actually bothered to look up from her plate when she asked. Less concerned it seemed about the state of the girl in front of her specifically, more so about the state of mind of one of her kind,
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#3
The chill that Cordelia was greeted with was hardly novel. The younger sibling suppressed a tired sigh. If a change in the innate nature of her being wasn’t enough to shake her sister’s disdain, there was little hope that could be done at all. Despite this attitude turned fact, Delia’s devotion to Yana remained unchanged. If anything, the commonality of their beasts joined them in a unique and thrilling way. Being around her sister was a comfort to the predator inside her. Regardless of what Yana said or did to her human form, the cheetah yearned to be by her side.

Voice clipped, her sister commanded and Cordelia obeyed. Sitting down on the office futon, Cordelia busied herself by eating -- actually eating, not just pushing her food around on her plate and pretending to eat. Looking up only when her sister spoke again, Delia waited until she’d finished chewing to answer. “Alright, I t-think. It’s all so n-new. But...while d-different it’s…” She paused, searching for the word. “Empowering.”
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#4
Empowering.

Now that was a funny word to hear from the stuttering train wreck in front of her, but she supposed it came down again to the fact that things did not happen overnight. So much of life was a waiting game that she found herself frustrated with the slow going process- with the realization that Cordelia was still Cordelia and she was still wiping noses and patting people on the head.

"Don't get ahead of yourself, you're still an infant in the realm of Were." Glancing back down to her plate and taking another bite thoughtfully. Hesitating a moment as she pushed the food around a bit and tapped her form against the edge of the plate. Do I want this headache of explanation right now? No, she didn't - but there was ultimately no time like the present. "Back in San Francisco, we had a coalition. That is, a group of Cheetah's. That's where I met Isolde."

Silent for another bite she took in a deep breath as she tried to gauge the woman in front of her. "You could benefit from a coalition. Peers who all come with their own experiences and advice. People who have been in your shoes and might be able to relate in ways I can't." Marshal had the god damn patience of a saint, maybe he could walk her through this. Stella was more reserved, probably wouldn't ask Cordelia to spit it out when she got too flustered ... yes, perhaps there was something to be said for shucking some of the weight of Cordelia off on other's.
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#5
Cordelia listened, her beast forcing her to stay intent on her food, but the human perked her ears and looked up in between bites to show Yana that she still had her attention. What she said sounded wonderful, the mere thought sending a wave of warmth through her as her beast made its approval known. Finishing her food, a rare occurance up till now, Cordelia let the plate sit on her lap while she collected her thoughts.

I would l-love to be a part of s-something like that. Is there a c-coalition in Cordova? A-are you member? I-is Isolde?” There was something to be said for the kind of camaraderie that formed over a shared secret. “H-how many Cheetahs are there in the city?”
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#6
She grit her teeth and finished her meal while Cordelia stumbled through a few sentences as though she was the one handling a statement from the president himself on national television. Pushing her plate to the side and refocusing her attention on the screen of her laptop with a slight grimace.

"For God sake, take your time and breathe. I'm going to start to take notes to try to decipher what you're getting out." She stayed quiet for a moment, typing something and then finally looking back to her sister with a hard stare. "No, Cordelia" A forced effort to be patient and accommodating, something that proved difficult in the face of present company.

Slowly shutting the screen of her laptop with one finger and pulling herself up and onto her feet. "There are enough. Don't concern yourself with details. I'm making one - least, that's the plan. I take it you'll join?" Less than surprised all things considered. A Were that was more akin to a loyal Golden Retriever than any cheetah.
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#7
It wasn’t a surprise that her enthusiasm was met with scorn. Nevertheless, Yana’s sharpness scissored through her feeble confidence. It didn’t matter how often it happened -- her sister’s disdain for her hurt. Folding in on herself, she quieted. Delia picked a spot on the floor and stared at it, eyes tracing the dark lines in the wood.

Still, she couldn’t help but look up at her sister’s unceremonious announcement. The gravity of what she’d said was lost on the young woman, as she was still ignorant of most were customs and affairs, but Yana’s tone suggested a certain sort of seriousness.

Standing up, Cordelia nodded. “Of course I will. I’d d-do anything for you.”
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#8
It was always difficult to navigate her emotions when Cordelia got like this, a henchmen more than sister from time to time - a loyal dog. A cocktail of emotions that ended up making her sneer in the face of such ignorant and blind loyalty. It would be valuable to have around in other circumstances, perhaps. Someone so thoughtlessly loyal and passionate about her whim. But from her own blood, from her own name ... it felt like a slap in the face to their shared genetics.

Silently, she collected the plates and moved out of the office and towards the kitchen back down the hall. Confident that Cordelia followed as always, a flimsy and distorted shadow - a weakened and diluted variation of herself to some degree, "Good. In time you'll need to meet the others. ..." She hesitated a moment as she set the dirty dishes in the sink and turned the water as hot as she could stand it so they might soak. "Once we're up and running, you will receive no preferential treatment from me. You'll be expected to respect and follow our code and laws the same as everyone else. I feel it only fair that I warn you."
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#9
Even when she was giving herself to her sister completely, she couldn’t say anything right. Frowning at Yana’s subdued reception, Cordelia replayed the last few minutes of their conversation in her head -- something she found herself doing often when she was with her, constantly searching for where she’d gone wrong.

Rising, Delia followed her out of the office and into the kitchen, hanging back on the other side of the counter as Yana put their dishes in the sink. “I understand. I-is there something I c-can do to h-help?”
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#10
She was quiet for a time as she dissected the offer to assist in anyway possible, keeping the towel in hand as she watched Cordelia now. Stuttering, timid little Cordelia with her tissue paper skin and porcelain spine. Setting down the towel beside the sink after she had folded it in half and shaking her head as she moved to excuse herself back down the hall and to the security and solitude of her office.

"Just ... don't touch anything, Cordelia. That would be a wonderful help." Cringing at the mere thought of her rally pitch being delivered by Cordelia Novik. Heading back down the hall with a nod and making a point to shut the office door behind herself this time around.
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