8:04 am – Red Rabbit exits through the front door. Roughly the same time as the previous mornings.

After years of honing the craft, Reed was well-acquainted with all the most important components required to make a convincing disguise. Even with the target being completely unfamiliar with his identity, he knew it would be foolish to perform his monitoring without absolute certainty of his anonymity.

For this particular case, he’d decided to go with the guise of a humble ice cream vendor, trying to take advantage of the warm Ebonhawke weather by positioning himself at one end of the popular shopping street that his mark lived on. His mark was a powerful Mesmer, one who would easily be able to tell if any similar magic was being used around her. His traditional methods of misdirection and disguise would be the best approach possible for duping such a target.

RR locks the door and turns around to double-check that it’s secure two times before feeling satisfied enough to leave.

Of course, there was the physical aspect. The outfit, the hair, the face, the props, all were important, and required sufficient levels of care in their preparation. Not just the clothing choices, but also their fit and state of cleanliness were important factors to consider. If they were immaculate and neatly pressed, he risked looking out of place for someone who worked outside all day on a modest income. If they were too dirty or creased, he might draw second glances for it, which could be just as damaging for the illusion he tried to cultivate. Just the right amount of imperfections to look convincing would be ideal.

He already owned the white shirt and pants he chose for the costume, as well as the black bow-tie and shoes that went with it. The hat he wore was borrowed from a ship-captain costume he’d used a few weeks ago, large enough to hide his long hair inside of it with a bun. He chose to wear a pair of sunglasses with a horned rim across the top (relatively discrete, but specifically chosen for their ability to cover up the shape of his eyebrows while in a resting expression.) The cart full of ice cream was rented from a wholesale supplier that often did business with his sister’s bakery (a little bit of extra bribery was required to secure the anonymous rental, but nothing too unreasonable.) Lastly, for the week of monitoring, he decided to shave off his beard, save for a thin moustache. Blair absolutely hated it, but she would only have to endure its presence for a week.

RR is dressed in modest business attire. Wears sunglasses and is picked up by a drawn carriage. Can’t tell if there’s any other passengers inside. Will follow it another day.

Aside from the costume and equipment, the most crucial way to make or break a false persona is in the voice. A skilled wordsmith with the right accent could talk his way out of even the most embarrassing attempts at costuming. Reed loved the challenge associated with being about to dance his way around detection with his words. It was a practiced skill that was, in many ways, heavily dependent on natural talent as well. For this persona, he’d ‘borrowed’ the voice and accent of an ascalonian barber he’d visited a few months ago there in Ebonhawke. He observed his mannerisms while he worked, paid special attention to the intricacies of his pronunciations, and memorized his choices for various slang words. The accent was one of many that he kept in his repertoire, practiced regularly and cycled to fit the range of purposes he had for his different disguises.

He went with the name Nigel Livingston, if anyone were to ask, with the backstory that he’d been forced to make a career change in recent months. Nigel was apprehensive about the initial investment, and unsure what he’d do once the colder months arrive, but he was cautiously optimistic for the future. He was a single, simple man, with few needs and a happy-enough existence.

RR’s mood appears to be cheerful, at least outwardly. Her footsteps are assured and brisk.

The last important component to keep in mind was perhaps the most difficult one to secure. The acting. He had to observe the target’s house without making it obvious that he was doing so (far easier said than done.) In moments of tension, being able to avoid glancing around can be an extremely trying exercise in self control. Luckily Reed had enough experience with such matters that it was relatively easy for him to remain calm and inconspicuous in his disguise. The props provided by the vendor premise were a big help too, making sure he remained natural and busy looking there all throughout the day.

Thanks to his careful preparation and experience, all of the assembled pieces of his operation came together nicely. Standing under the rainbow umbrella of the little ice cream cart, he was able to take occasional notes and hide the pad on a discrete shelf hidden inside the ice box. As an added bonus, he could even enjoy as much ice cream as he wanted to pass the time throughout the day.

5:43 – RR visited my cart after returning from work. Wanted two scoops and sprinkles. She gave me a smile. I raised her a wink.

Author Jander
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