It's the year 1215, humanity has been slowly degrading and new experiments have begun to arise. Scientists have recently been doing research to combine human genetics along with animals in hopes to upgrade their military. These experiments have been kept from the general population in order to keep the idea from their enemies. As months pass, their test subjects have begun to finally accept the transferred DNA and began taking on traits and characteristics of the DNA they've been infused with, just as the original plan had wanted. But after months of further testing, cruel punishments, and horrible training, the subjects have had enough. A band of 4 had devised a plan to escape the facility they've been trapped in, using their new 'gifts' to help them. They escaped...but their happiness was soon distupted. Now that the experiments have escaped, the government needs to get them back. The subjects were placed on the news everywhere, being called monsters who would kill anyone that got in their way. The reports would tell civilians to contact the police or other government facilities if they should ever find or see one of the four that escaped. So now the hybrids have to run for their lives, or risk being captured. Axel did his level best not to shiver. He had accepted being cold blooded after being made that way for so long, however he wanted -- craved heat. He would give his left nut for a cigarette or a few bottles of liquor, in any case. As it stands, he would have to break into one of the convenience stores whenever they got into town at night. Axel blew a bubble and popped it quietly, ruthlessly but silently emaciated the roll of chewing gum in his mouth. He had managed to pilfer twenty five packs out of a store before, and even managed three bottles of good brandy along with nine packs of cigarettes. That had been three months ago. And dammit, he needed a smoke. The only thing that even lasted was the gum -- which lost its flavor after three consecutive minutes of chewing. God, people were cheap. For warmth, he had to remain close to one of the warm blooded hybrids, like Ferith or Rhiannon to keep some of his sanity intact. He couldn't wait for sunrise, really. Midday, at that. He'd soak up all the warmth and try to store as much of it as possible, so long as they don't run into any enemies. He'd lose his heat for the remainder of the day. It takes a while to build it up in the first place and fighting would deplete it without mercy. The dark haired half octopus yawned, his mostly human self resisting the urge to shift positions and lose the warm spot he managed to create for himself against Rhiannon; he was pretty much miserable, but he wasn't about to talk about it. Everyone else was feeling the same, so why bother? With a sigh, he settled in to rest, although he couldn't sleep. It was going to be a long night... And dammit all, he wanted a smoke placed a cigarette in his mouth and lit it with his cheap lighter. It took him several flicks of his thumb before the flame appeared, and he grunted in frustration. After taking one long inhale, he placed his left hand behind his back. He had just left the outpost inside the town. He despised his orders. He hated it all, but he had no choice in the matter. His sister's life was dependent upon his paychecks. He pulled his trenchcoat over his uniform and fixed his Captain's cap before walking down the metal stairs onto the dirt ground. He glanced about, seeing the life around him, and then shook his scarred head. 'Humanity brought this upon themselves', he thought. 'Wars and experiments and pathetic ideologies led to this. Now I am sent to hunt down teenagers and young adults because of this nonsense. He stood in front of his company, a solemn look upon his face. "So it appears we are now hunters of those barely past the age of childhood," Vasili began begrudgingly. "As you well know, four Hybrids have escaped. It is plastered all over the news. Our duty is to hunt them down and to bring them back. Alive. And I do mean alive. When we do find these four souls, you will treat them kindly.You will not by any means harm them unless you have no other choice, and you will not under any circumstance kill them. They have suffered enough. If I catch any of you bastards disobeying these orders, I will make your lives a living Hell. Alright. You have your orders. Officers, separate into groups. Each group will contain five. In each group is one tracker, one medic, two infantry, and a support. Find them. Dismissed." Vasili walked to the outskirts of the town, smoking his cigarette and in deep thought. He was off duty now, and he needed time to think, away from the hustle and bustle of the city. He decided a walk in nature would suit him well, and thus he began a casual walk within the forest outside of town. He knew this forest well, for he had played there often as a child and constantly went to enjoy the serenity of the area. Dousing his cigarette with his fingers, he stuck it in his trench coat pocket, not willing to litter on the forest grounds. The Captain gazed up at the stars as he walked, his rough, dry hands placed behind his back. Rhiannon leaned back against the wall staring out into the night. Silently and slowly she wrapped an arm around Axel. She knew that he was freezing, and she had extra heat to spare. Her eyes scanned the distance, watching for any sign of movement. It was cold, dark, they were all hungry, tired and thirtsty, and Rhiannon was going to take it upon herself to find something. Movement caught her out of the corner of her eye, it was the convience store a block down, the night shift was turning off the outdoor lights and starting their cleaning. A small place like that wouldnt have cameras, and would make the perfect opportunity. She took off her coat and put it around Axel's shoulders. 'Stay, here, they are closing that shop down the street. Im going to go get us some stuff. Whaddya want from there?" Axel nearly sobbed at the loss of live heat, but sighed, relieved at the coat that was draped over him. "Stay here, they are closing that shop down the street. I'm going to get us some stuff. Whaddya want from there?" Axel looked at her quizzically. "I can help. We need a lot of supplies and twelve arms are better than two, don't you think?" Axel moved to rise. "And if anything, I doubt you'd come back with twenty three packs of cigs and a case of booze along with everything else like food and such." Rhiannon laughed a deep throaty laugh. It actually almost sounded like the tiger she was. It actally made her warm inside when he looked like that. "Alright, you can come too. Maybe they'll have extra coats in the back." She snuck down the street along the darkened walls of the half dessicated downtown district they were in. the guy working had his back to the door and even had on a walkman. lucky for them, he seemed younger and forgetful, and sure enough, he had placed the keys intothe door, and didnt lock it. Rhiannon pushed the door open silently and creped up behind the clerk. There was the butt of a shotgun sticking out from behind the counter. Slowly she grabbed it and smacked the butt against the clerks head. "and he's down for the count." she mocked as he hit the floor. There were some small hand-held shopping baskets, she grabbed one and handed a few to Axel. "Alright, get what you're getting.." Axel looked back at the young lad who had left the keys. Poor soul. So forgetful and naive. It may get the child killed one day. The half octopus followed Rhiannon into the store. "And he's down for the count," he heard her say when the clerk crumpled to the floor. He snorted at the tiger and accepted the basket, weaving through the aisles and gathering the things he needed. His braid unwound itself into individual clumps and wrapped themselves around items he thought they'd all need. Three of them were busy raking in packs of cigarettes, one sweeping spare lighters into the basket as well. Axel held the basket with one of the extra appendages while his hands worked on getting assorted snacks and the like for the others. Soon after he made a beeline for the coolers. He took a spare moment to swoon just a bit at the sight of the bottles of liquor they kept. The bottles clinked, the sounds like knives in the thick silence of the darkness. He winced at the sound, but moved quickly nonetheless. How they were going to travel with these things, he had no idea, but he was going to make it work. Being part octopus had its benefits, after all. With the basket and five 'arms' full, he looked around to see if Rhiannon was done. Rihannon was busy grabbing food items, frozen, not frozen, she didnt care at the moment, all of it was edible one way or the other. She wound her way through the isles grabbing some waters and other beverages of the non alchololic variety. She stood there in the store for a minute and twitched her nose, it was something she did when she was thinking, just this small twitch of back and forth. she spied some bandages and such and grabbed a few, nodding to Axel that they were done here. on the way out she saw a small rack holding hats, gloves, and scarves for winter. As she walked out behind Axel she grabbed a few, you never knew, and she knew Axel could use some of it. Axel unconsciously swept the area for any signs of human life, careful not to draw any attention. There was the occasional person here or there but they weren't paying any attention. At least not that he knew. All he knew was that they needed to get to the others and get the hell out of Dodge. Axel drew his hair close, careful not to let the bottles touch or let them scrape against the ground without having them come up like real octopus legs. Even at night, some people had uncanny eyesight and saw things like that. He led the way back to where Ferith stood watch, quietly setting the items down. Rihannon pulled up the rear, watching Axel to make sure he didnt lose anything and also turning her head from side to side scanning the area. Her nostrils were flared to pick up even the slightest scent. The only unfamiliar one was that of the cashier she had knocked unconscious. They made their way back up the block and around a corner just out of the wind. Rhiannon set her pickings down with Axels and grabbed a bottle of mountain dew and a pack of smokes out of the collected items. She packed the cigarettes, pulled out two, lit them, and handed one off to Axel. He had carried most of the pickings the least she could do was get out a smoke for him Axel looked at the object thrust under his nose. He raised an eyebrow but when he saw what it was, accepted it with an emphatic 'thank you' before taking a long, love-sick drag from the cancer stick. Who needed sex when there was nicotine to ingest? Sure, it sounded stupid, but it was like coming home, this smoke. His muscles relaxed and his hair wove itself back into the braid it was often kept in. He leaned back with his eyes closed in nicotine-induced bliss, lopsided grin formed around the cigarette. Axel felt a tiny sense of guilt at the back of his mind about the smoke, but dammit he needed it like he needed air itself. To an extent. "We picked up some personal stuff, of course," he said around the cancer stick, a puff of smoke escaping as he spoke. "We got food, too. Or close to it as possible. It's more like junk food, really. But it's something to toss inside an empty belly." He wasn't too thrilled about that kind of food. He couldn't wait until he was able to enjoy a hot meal again. He shifted, snagging a bottle of liquor and opening it. He removed the cigarette with one hand and took a well deserved swig from the bottle, feeling the pleasant burn in his throat before it went down, the warmth spreading throughout his body gradually. Sweet reprieve.