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party wurmple never sleeps. only dances.
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Mia waited patiently, huddled next to the door. Surely they had done enough for the people inside the room to accept them inside, right? They’d done everything they’d been asked, had stated their names and what they were carrying. Sure, maybe the gun might give them a bit more of a pause for thought, but c’mon. She was friends with Al, and she was sure that was enough for him to break through whatever was given him so much concern in there.

After a few more moments, she heard footsteps from inside the room, and her heart leapt. She stood up straight and turned to flash a grin at Candice, before waiting for the person to come out of the room. Hopefully it was Al and not the unknown girl; no disrespect to her at all, but Mia just wanted to see a friendly face right now. She bounced slightly on the balls of her feet as she waited.

And there he was. Al, walking towards them, a pole almost twice his height in one of his hands, such a bizarre sight that it only increased Mia’s joyous grin. He looked slightly worse for wear; like something had shaken him drastically, which she couldn’t blame him for in the slightest, considering their environment. She stepped forwards, prepared to pull her friend into a tight hug.

“Oh, man, Al, it is you! I’ve been worrying about you, y’know, and-“

Al walked straight past her, and both her voice and her grin faltered. She turned to look at him as he strode onwards down the hallway. Words began to form in her mouth and got stuck there, somehow unable to be forced out. Had Al simply not heard her? Maybe. Maybe he was concentrating on something else, completely zoned out from the world at large. Maybe something on the island had happened to damage his hearing.

That didn’t explain why he’d walked straight past them like they weren’t even there.

“Al? Hey, Al?”

A couple words managed to squeak out of Mia’s mouth. If Al had heard them, he made no sign of having done so. He just kept on walking. Eventually he rounded the corner and disappeared from view. Part of Mia’s brain urged her to start walking, put those years of running to good use, and to follow him. Her feet stayed rooted to the spot. Another set of footsteps thudded past, the other girl from the room running after Al, calling for him to wait. After a second, she too was gone.

The hand holding the gun hung limply by her side. For some reason it was shaking.

Slowly, her legs working independently from the rest of her body, she turned and walked into the room they’d been denied entry from until now. Maybe there was something in there that had spooked Al. Maybe he’d done something, something terrible, something that meant he didn’t want to interact with anyone ever again.

There was a pungent, acrid smell in the air that was all too recognisable as vomit. There was an abandoned chess set next to one wall, pieces scattered everywhere, the aftermath of some violent battle. Aside from that, there was nothing. Nothing to show that anything had happened in here. Nothing to suggest there was any reason for Al to just… ignore her.

Mia stood in the centre of the room, staring at nothing in particular. For some reason, tears were welling up in the corners of her eyes.


"bryony and alba would definitely join the terrorists quote me on this put this quote in signatures put it in history books" - Cicada Days, 2017
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