Green eyes opened in the night, pupils wide as saucers in the inky twilight inside the room. The artist sat up and crossed legs on the bed, drawing the heavy boots over. Unhindered by the dark, the silver buckles came undone, and the boots were slipped on over the double-layered, shin-height socks, still clean and white, despite obvious use, thanks to the marvels of modern technology. Pants legs were pulled down and tucked into the boots as they were tightened and buckled. Only then did the artist's feet touch the floor.

A few minutes after entering a side room, the artist came back out, slid on the metal crested sweatshirt, and shouldered the back pack, drawing the two longer of the blades as it walked to the door. Dilated eyes narrowed back to their accustomed slits as light flooded into the room from the hallway. Far from day light, the glow-panels were set on an "Early Morning" setting, which, while dim by normal standards, was very bright when taken straight from inky darkness. But the moment's near-blinding served to be nothing serious. The hallway was empty. The artist headed down to the kitchen, still a safe place, thanks to automated defense systems designed to prevent riots.

The halls, however, were still dangerous, as the sounds of a distant fight between Plague Dogs attested, echoing hauntingly though the corridors. Plague Dogs were far from the creatures of before the Dusk, in fact, there was almost no resemblance. Patchy fur over pseudo-scaled, mottled grey and brown skin (though there was the occasional red, black, gold and white), powerful muscles, and way too many teeth. They were big too, coming up to large man's waist at the shoulder. The worst thing about them however, was their intelligence. The beasts were entirely too canny. Most of them could understand speech, though whether they could understand the words, or were picking up on some psychic impulses was anyone's guess. (The few times a psychic had attempted to mind-speak with one… well, they never survived very long). They weren't, however, good in groups. Pack was a loosely used term, mob, or riot, in point of fact, better describe them. They are incredibly jealous creatures. More than one person, intended as prey, had turned the pack on itself, escaping unnoticed as the pack tore itself to pieces.

The artist had never tried. The few scars across arms and chest, and the three long marked lines running from forehead to cheek, cuts from a Plague Dog's claw, running just around the eye, were testament to this person's fighting skills.

Green-eyes remembered having one as a companion, a very long time ago. It had been an abandoned pup, barely a few days old when the artist took it in. When he grew up, he never strayed far from the artist's side, though whether to keep away other seekers of attention, or out of a real love for the artist, no one was really sure. He was a great companion though, so long as he was the only one allowed to be near the artist. He was killed when a street kid shot him, thinking it was roaming, somehow not noticing the artists hand on its side.

The artist sighed at the memory, making a note to try and find another pup. It was only then that the figure noticed the footsteps. It was possible that this was just another person wandering the halls, but in a place like this, you only took chances if you wanted to wind up dead. In all possibility, there was a trap up ahead as well, so the artist decided to take an alternate route, taking the stairs down to the next level – elevators were deathtraps – and continuing on from there. The footsteps sounded a lot closer now, which did not bode well. Suddenly a thick muscled arm wrapped itself around the artist's chest, squeezing as another arm made a grab for the figures chin. It stopped short, as with a wet gurgle, the arm dropped away, as well as the body it was attached to, sliding off the two blades which were sticking out of freshly made holes in the sleeves. Pausing only long enough to wipe the blades clean on the large man's pants, ignoring the frightened and clouding eyes, the artist continued on its way. Best not to stay at the site of a fresh kill with Plague Dogs nearby…