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Cooling down
Melissa was caught off guard when Aislyn responded to her comment with a proposal that they go together if they didn't get dates. The small smile on her face grew and she ducked her head down, a little embarrassed. She wasn't exactly sure how to reply to that. She hadn't expected anyone to care, let alone offer her an alternative to going alone. And from a person she had gotten to know today! It was touching.

Roy spoke up next, encouraging her to go to prom. He seemed to ramble on a bit, but it was kind of funny and heartwarming at the same time. She was really glad to have come along with them. She would be in so much trouble when she got home, but every minute spent with these guys was worth it.

She was about to reply when someone new took a seat next to Aislyn, introducing herself as Stephanie Henderson as well as bringing along her younger brother Richard. Melissa gave them a weak smile and a wave. She wasn't sure what to think about her confident and self-assured manner, suddenly appearing out of nowhere and inviting herself into the group. She couldn't help wish she had that amount of initiative to go out and make friends with...well, the more popular kids. It was easier with the, for a lack of a better term, losers since there was just something so accessible about them. Maybe the way they had been beaten around reminded her of herself.

Aaron mentioned that he was going to go to Prom with Jeanie...whoever that was. It was then that Erik said that he had to leave because he had to drive his little brother home. Melissa smiled and waved farewell at him, saying a quick "Goodbye."

She returned to her meal, taking another bite and swallowing before beginning to speak. "Thanks guys...it means a lot. To be honest, I wasn't really looking forward to it but after this, it's beginning to sound a lot more exciting." She laughed a bit. "And Aislyn, I'd be glad to take you up on your offer. It'd be fun."

She neglected to mention her parents. It'd just be a downer and that was the last thing she wanted.

Debate Exposes Doubt
Markham leaned back in his chair, waiting as the other discussed what they should actually debate about. Abigail brought up the subject of cultural identity as a debate topic and Markham mentally registered it and thought through various arguments and counter-arguments he could use. While he was thinking about it, he absently noticed two other late arrivals to the clubroom.

One was Ilario Filametta III. Markham kept it to himself, but he thought Ilario was a stuck-up overconfident man imagined himself the pinnacle of humanity. Even his name reeked of pomposity and arrogance. It was hard to believe he was related to Rosa Filametta, who put out more than Costco gave out free samples. He immediately gave an excuse for his lateness, one not much different than the rest of them, and agreed with Abigail's choice of topic.

And following him was...ugh, Vincent Murdoch. All flash, no substance. And he came strolling in with pizza of all things. It was disgusting, really, and clearly showed a lack of respect. Not that Markham cared what that jerk thought of him. The only thing that mattered was wasting his fancy ass in the arena of words. He privately hoped he'd be on opposing sides with him. Rub his pizza eating face on the table.

He grinned a little when he heard Harold scold Vincent for eating pizza, although he didn't add his opinion to the mix. When Harold offered to take the 'Pro' side of things, Markham decided he might as well make his decision known.

"I'll be on 'Con' then. Keep things even."

Cooling down
Melissa listened with a smile as Aislyn answered her question, giving a small nod to the other people sitting around the table. She recognized the newcomer as someone from Bayview she had seen in the halls a couple of times, but beyond that she had nothing. Not a surprise. Besides her attempts to become friends with the more ostracized members of high school society, she didn't actively try to make friends. Still, the environment was friendly and she was beginning to feel more and more at ease with the group.

She was about halfway through her pizza and was about to take another bite when Aaron asked about senior prom. She paused and put the slice back on her plate, frowning a little. The senior prom was, without a doubt, one of the most important (if not the most) events in the life of a high schooler and she had completely forgotten about it. She would be going, of course, but whether or not she would go with anyone...probably not.

It wasn't that she didn't want to go with someone, it was just...she wasn't too concerned about it. As her parents were wont to tell her, high school was just a stepping stone to college. She didn't need to get involved with anyone at such a young age, let alone one of the white kids (her parents loved their racial superiority complex).

She looked up when Erik answered in the negative, a faint smile on her lips. "I don't think I'll be going with anyone either. Not all that interested, unfortunately..."

Cooling down
Melissa laughed when Aislyn replied to her question, this time with a lot more feeling and less awkwardness. It had only been a little while, but she was beginning to loosen up. Aislyn seemed to be making a genuine attempt to get to know her and there really was no point in remaining silent and nervous the whole time. Wasn't the reason she came along with them because she wanted to have fun instead of worry about the consequences of being late?

She quickly ordered a pepperoni and sausage pizza and water before waiting for Aislyn to complete her own order. She felt it would be rude to just walk off to the table without offering anything about herself in return, so when the two of them got their respective meals, she talked about herself as they headed back to the table.

"I'm really nothing special." She said with a slightly self-depreciating smile. "Study hard, make my parents proud...stuff like that. I play the piano at home and I play the clarinet in the school band. I like writing random snippets of things when I'm bored...you know, nothing that exciting."

She arrived at the table and set her tray down. "So what's it like to be on the swim team?"

Debate Exposes Doubt
(I find it hilarious that in the math thread Mr. Kwong was like an asshole and here he's all awesome.)

It was kind of amazing how everyone seemed to file in one after another. It was like synchronized lateness. Undoubtedly Mr. Kwong would show up late as well and then they could actually start the show. He didn't mind. It was kind of funny seeing everyone run in late only to realize that their very own TA was absent. The first entrant (after him, of course) in this line of tardiness was Samya Franklin, a cheerful girl that immediately found a seat and offered them all candy. She was nice, energetic, and always had a smile ready for newcomers. It was good for the club to have someone like her around since her attitude was good for soothing irritated tempers during some of the more...heated debates that had occurred in the past. He knew he didn't have the patience or ability to reconcile differences that easily. He declined her offer of candy with a small wave and a shake of his head, though.

Next up on the list was Irina Burlachenko, a senior that Markham found very attractive and he probably would have tried to ask her out on a date if he had any confidence or drive to make something like that happen. He still didn't know much about her besides what he knew from random debates and if things continued in the same track as they did now, he wouldn't even try. It was a shame, but he was more concerned with his research and his future prospects than getting a girlfriend that most likely wouldn't last to college (and thus be completely useless since he was a senior). He gave a nod towards her as she entered and replied to her question with a noncommittal "Nah, we were all pretty much late."

It was then that Harold proposed that they just start up a debate. He didn't mind starting immediately, but they didn't have sides or even a short list of pros and cons they could use to word their arguments around. Hell, they didn't even have a topic yet. They could have discussed abortion like they had done a couple of weeks ago, but he didn't want to touch that subject again with a ten foot pole. Who knew, maybe Harold had some great idea to get them started on. Maybe they'd just continue with last meeting's topic. He still had his notes in his backpack.

He leaned back on his chair and shrugged. "I don't care. Either way is fine with me."

No point in choosing sides now. He'd just sit back and observe. You only needed to choose a side when you were forced to.

v4 Team/Club Captains
Melissa Li for Math Club Captain please.

I would say Nichol for Anime Club Pres but he isn't finished yet.

Simple Question List for my Writing Class
Okay for my Advanced Writing class we have to write a term paper about human nature and luckily for me, my teacher is letting me write about Battle Royale (actually my thesis is about how isolation from society will strip down and wear away at the masks that people were to reveal their true nature underneath). She's also letting me ask you guys a couple of questions and use your replies in my essay. So if you don't mind helping me out with my term paper, here are a couple of questions I'd like answers to. They don't have to be in-depth or anything; a few sentences is nice.


1. Why do you think Battle Royale (and by extension Survival of the Fittest) takes place on an island? Do you think it has a psychological effect on the players or is it just there to make sure the characters can't escape (and thus has no other purpose)?

2. If you think the island setting as an effect on the human psyche, how big of an effect do you think it is and what kind of effect do you think it is?

3. Let's say that Battle Royal (and SotF) took place in an abandoned town instead of on an island. Do you think the actions of any of the characters would be different?

4. Now imagine if the game took place in a populated city and there were actually civilian along with the contestants of the game. How do you think the game would change, if it would change at all?

Bonus Question: Do you think my thesis is bollocks or do I actually have something going with it? And if you think I have something, mind referring me to sources on the subject? :V

PS: If you have any other comments you would like to add, feel free to add them.


Thanks for reading and help (I hope).

Debate Exposes Doubt
((Markham Connor continued from A Blank Paper and a Blank Mind))

His classes were done, his notes were taken, and his little black book was open as he read down the list of people he had analyzed. He didn't find anything too damning or interesting today and it was mostly just random actions that the people had done in the middle of class. There was that girl who kept picking at a mole at the side of her neck. That had been something to note down, at least.

Now it was time for his debate club and Markham headed towards the math building with some annoyance. It wasn't that he hated debate or anything, but the impulse to turn your opponents into idiotic strongmen were way too difficult to try to control. He tried his best to restrain his urge to call the other side full of moronic idiots who couldn't even tie their shoes if they were given a detailed list of instructions, but he was certain he came off smug and condescending at times.

It was something he was trying to correct since he couldn't afford to sound like that later on when he would be presenting his research findings. So he had joined the club to try to fix himself. It wasn't the best solution and didn't even seem to work that well but it was something. He turned into the classroom and nearly bumped straight into someone else. Some Asian kid he didn't know.

He muttered a quick sorry before sliding into the room and looking to see who else was there. Abigail and Harold. He slid into a seat and snapped his book shut, smirking a little. "A little empty today, huh? I wonder where the others are."

Cooling down
Melissa could help but give a start when she felt a poke on her shoulder. She had been so involved in trying to calculate just how much she needed for food and how she'd use the rest of her money that she didn't realize that someone had come up to her. She turned at the voice and smiled slightly when she saw it was just Aislyn. For a moment she thought it was going to be someone telling her to hurry up or something.

"Ahaha..." She gave out a shaky laugh, feeling a little awkward. She quickly pocketed her wallet, holding tightly to a couple of bills. "Ah sorry...I know, but I couldn't think of anything to say. You guys seemed like you were having fun and I didn't want to butt in."

The line shifted and she moved upwards. 'Almost there...'

"So uh...what do you want to talk about? I'm sorry but I don't really keep up on things. I'm usually too busy with schoolwork and studying." Melissa offered lamely. "Um, do you play an instrument or something?"

Cooling down
((Melissa Li continued from Autodidact.))

'What am I doing here? I should be at home, practicing my piano and doing my homework. But no, I agreed to go out to eat dinner with people I barely knew...why did I do this again? Right, my cell phone was out of batteries. ...That's really not a good reason, now that I think about it.' Melissa absently thought to herself as she followed Aaron inside the Promenade's food court. The trip to the mall itself had been rather soothing in a way. The chatter from Aaron and those other two (she remembered that their names were Roy and Aislyn...or something of the sort) helped drown out her insecurities even if she didn't pay much attention to what they were saying. It wasn't that she didn't care (she did care even if she couldn't remember what they had said), she just couldn't get into it. Her life didn't really offer opportunities to converse about things besides school.

Her life revolved around school, extracurricular activities "that were beneficial to her future education", and every Sunday going to a Buddhist church and offering her prayers to her deceased ancestors. Time was not wasted watching the popular TV shows since television would rot her brains and her body, spending time at the mall was just wasting time that could be better put into making a better future for herself, and a young, intelligent girl like herself didn't need to bother with sports. It sucked. So she didn't bother speaking in the car. She was certain they didn't mind.

Coming up to the table that Aaron had chosen, she dropped her backpack onto an empty chair and looked around the food court for something she wanted to eat. Hamburgers? No, they were great but they were supposed to be a rare treat. Chinese food? She ate Chinese every day at home why would she want to eat it now? Pizza? ...Sure, why not? Give her tastebuds a little taste of Americanized Italy.

She walked into the line, pulling out her wallet to withdraw the appropriate amount of bills. It was a good thing she had been saving her lunch money. It gave her enough for times like this. Things went right for her once in a while...gave her a spark in the inky blackness.

'Chiiiiina Womaaaaan~'

You Abbreviate Survival of the Fittest As...
I mostly use SotF but when I"m lazy I'll just capitalize all of the letters. When I actually say it, I just use the whole name cause uh...referring to it with the acronym is awkward.

Nichol Lee Shi
Name: Nichol Lee Shi
Gender: Male
Age: 19
Grade: 12th
School: Bayview Secondary School
Hobbies and Interests: Anime, manga, video games, music, skating

Appearance: Nichol is a tall for an Asian person, standing at five feet and eleven inches. He has scruffy and oily black hair and has to wash it almost every day or else it will clump together and his mom will nag him about it. He has several pimples and freckles on his skin and a pair of thick glasses lie perched on his nose. His face is rounded and you can see little dimple lines beginning to form. His skin is just slightly pale due to the amount of time he spends inside.

Nichol has no sense of fashion and doesn't bother trying to figure out what's in and what's not. All he knows is that Hot Topic is full of emo people so he should never step in there. He's usually found wearing a logoless plain T-shirt and a pair of jeans or pleated pants. During his free time on campus, you can find him in the library surfing the internet, rollerblading around the school's gymnasium or the outdoor track, playing games on a PSP or DS, or goofing off with his friends.

Biography: Apparently, when Nichol's mom had her first ultrasound to determine his gender, something went wrong because they thought he was a girl at first. His parents (who were delighted and planned on naming their brand new baby girl Nicole) got prepared to welcome their new child of the fairer sex and received quite a surprise when it turned out that their new daughter was actually a son. To their credit, they reacted well to the news but they had gotten so attached to the name Nicole that they decided to call their son that but just a little...manned up. Admittedly, the resulting name, Nichol, wasn't all that manly or usual but that's just how things turned out.

While he was mocked throughout childhood for his name, he bore his lumps with good humor and his parents listened to his concerns and complaints. It was because of this constant support from his parents that he grew to be a fairly well adjusted person who didn't hold a grudge against people who made fun of him. He didn't excel at schoolwork, but he was no slacker either and performed admirably through his years.

His run into anime and Japanese culture came from a computer lab, where he had found a folder full of various anime pictures. Curious as to their source, he followed the picture trail and soon dived into the world of anime and manga. Within a year, he was a devoted fan and had a miniature collection of graphic novels and anime DVDs stocked in his room.

He considers anime and games to be his escape from the dull confines of reality. He knows that they're two completely different worlds, but he loves watching and learning about other people's fantasies and how they come out on paper and on television. Oddly enough, it was a manga that got him into the only sport that he really enjoyed, skating.

The manga, Air Gear, made him interested into rollerblading and he soon bought a pair so that he could speed down the streets. He grew to love the sensation of weaving in and out of the crowds and doing various little tricks while zooming across the pavement. Evolving from this came the desire to try ice skating (along with a healthy interest in watching hockey). At the moment, he's simply trying to increase his speed and balance since he much prefers moving fast than doing anything really skillful.

At the school, he immediately joined the anime club the moment he found out about it and attends every single meeting. He's very outgoing with his fellow anime geeks and is quite laid back as well thanks to his parents (whose motto is "Take things as they come and react accordingly, but make sure you don't do something bad first."). He enjoys making friends who have the same hobbies as him but besides that, doesn't go out of his way to interact with others.

Advantages: He's a friendly person so he doesn't have many enemies and at least his legs are muscled so he could probably run for a while. He's also tall, so that could intimidate people. Maybe. Possibly.

Disadvantages: Being fairly laid back doesn't help him prepare for danger situations that come out of nowhere, leading to a slow reaction time when things go wrong. He doesn't have that much outdoor survival knowledge either and what he does know won't help him in SOTF. Fiction and reality are two separate things, after all.

All I Need
(OOC: Haw haw I am lazy and late. Sorry.)

Violetta was all set to go and her mind was already working on what combination of flavors she should get when Eric began talking again. Brief irritation turned into surprise when Eric gave out his extremely nervous confession. Immediately her decision to have chocolate pecan nut cinnamon ice cream was tossed out the window and the brightly-painted gears in her head started working out a good response to his proposal.

'I thought he knew that I had a girlfriend. You know, Cyrille. That girl that always comes with me when we hang out. Maybe we should have amped up the PDA or something. He might have realized that I was totally unavailable or something. And I sure as hell am not going to get a boyfriend and a girlfriend at the same time. That would just be awkward. Well I guess it would be any guy's wet dream or something, but I'm not going to do something like that. I have my own sexual fantasies to worry about, thank you very much.'

She blinked a couple of times and shook her head. 'Okay, that was off topic. Enough about sexual fantasies and back to destroying Eric's hopes and dreams. Maybe I shouldn't think of it that way. Maybe I could consider it...uh, broadening his horizons? Instead of focusing on one fish, namely me, he could go crazy and fish up a bunch of girls? But that doesn't make sense. Hmmm...Wouldn't that hurt? Getting fished out of the sea? Maybe I should find out what that-'

Now Violetta slapped her cheeks, trying to get her thought processes back on track. 'Okay, the best thing would be to just tell him bluntly so that he won't keep hoping. And the most blunt form of rejection is 'No.' So if I tell him 'No', everything should be fine, right? Should I say sorry? Hmmm...no, better to crush his hopes right now. I think...man, this sucks. Saying no sucks. Why can't there be a yes version of no? I could totally go for that. Okay, I think I've spent enough time thinking about this. I have to tell him before his legs shake themselves limp.'

"Uh...no, I already have a girlfriend."

'WHOA THAT CAME OUT BAD.' Violetta thought to herself. But at least she had said it. And that's really what mattered, right? She decided to not think about this. Spinning on her feet, she ran off with her hair and backpack flying behind her. There were just some experiences she never wanted to have and that undoubtedly had to be one of them.