"We tried to be better, but we aren't. I don't think anyone could last more than a week here if they weren't willing to do bad things." - Alba Reyes

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Plush Wants To Read Your Dead Things!
Mara please : )

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Hi folks. My computer at home wouldn't turn on Monday night and so I took it to the computer hospital (Apple store) where they are keeping it for repairs. So I've only been able to come on when I'm at work. Hopefully I'll get my computer back by next week. But obviously this means nights and weekends I won't be around til lappy comes home

Looking for rollergirls and pregnant girls
I will roller derby with you, despite how much I hate you and your Canadianness

Paradise
He responded. He wouldn’t change anything. She thought it was a weird answer as she closed her eyes. He kissed the top of her head. Mara felt treasured. For the first time in her life she felt worthy of love even though she wasn’t perfect. She didn’t need to be.

“We’ve both….been through so much and I can’t imagine being alone now. At least with you here, I have someone to talk to. Someone who understands…”

The light in the park dimmed. Her grasp on him became loose. Mara fell to the side, unconscious in Hansel’s lap.

The first stars peeked out from behind the sky while a voice spoke once more from the loudspeakers. It washed over her, muffled sound to the lifeless looking pair. Not long after, another set of voices approached.

“This isn’t like the last one. I don’t think she’s doing it to be difficult. I really don’t think she can get up.”

“Someone shake her.”

A pair of hands grabbed her by the shoulders and gently nudged her. Her eyes fluttered open and saw a man in what looked like a SWAT uniform with two women behind him; a stern looking Asian woman and a scowling blonde. He shined a flashlight in her face and she blinked slowly, watching everything swim in and out of focus.

“My name is Sonia, this is Cecily,” explained the woman. “Congratulations, Miss Montalvo.”

“Congratulations?”

“You are the winner of Survival of the Fittest,” said Sonia.

Mara looked back at the boy she’d been sleeping on, now slumped over and staring with half-lidded glassy eyes. She broke out of the man’s hold and held onto Hansel in a tight hug.

“What are you doing? You have to help him!” she shouted. Mara buried her face into his chest.

“Some winner,” sneered the blonde woman, Cecily, crossing her arms. She was beautiful, polished and haughty. This woman seemed so familiar.

Mara felt a hand on her shoulder and she looked up and saw a blurry version of Sonia.

“That’s not what we do and even if it was, it’s too late. Come on.”

Four or five more identically dressed people now accompanied the SWAT man. He held out a hand. She hesitated a moment before putting her hand in his and nodding. The man nodded back and helped her to her feet.

“Do you have any additional weapons on you?”

“No,” Mara replied shakily, though two of them began patting her down anyway.

“Gross,” sighed Cecily, looking at both teens. “I thought she was supposed to be some kind of beauty queen or something. Figures the first one of these trips I go on I get to see the messy wreck. At least Calvert was cute and the other ones were fun.”

Sonia held up a hand but Mara suddenly mumbled something barely audible even to herself, staring at Cecily.

Cecily put her hands on her hips and bent down to Mara’s level.

“Did you have something you wanted to say? We had to come all the way out here to pick you up because you couldn’t walk your dainty ass to the pick-up point like all the other winners.”

She mumbled a second time, still inaudible, staring daggers at Cecily.

Cecily balled her fist and moved in when suddenly Mara jumped forward. She grabbed hold of Cecily by the cheeks and mashed her face against the woman’s viciously. Mara held onto the kiss, covering Cecily in grime and blood: hers, Joey’s and Finn’s until something struck the side of her head.

In the seconds before she went unconscious and fell into the arms of a SWAT member, all she remembered was Cecily’s infuriated, filthy face and Sonia doubled over in laughter.


((Amaranta Montalvo continued in the epilogue))