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((Clarice Halwood continued from In A World Of Shit.))

Nothing else had happened the previous day. Clarice had needed time. But maybe… maybe that had been a mistake. Avoiding any figures in the distance. They could have been friends. Or they could have been Nancy. Or Isabel. Or Kimiko. Or Ty.

Clarice hadn’t been far from the supply depot when the next announcement occurred. She’d gone there afterwards. Now she sat on the rusted truck outside the storehouse. Staring ahead. Thinking. Trying to ignore the persistent itch in her shoulder. She’d tried changing the bandages, but it was difficult with one hand. She hadn’t wanted to look at the wound too hard, either. The job she’d done was probably worse than the one Conrad had done for her.

But… but there was a lot to think about. A lot more besides a bloody shoulder and… and Harold and Conrad and… she had to think of other things for now.

Names stood out on the announcements. Nancy, Isabel, Kimiko. They’d all murdered again.

Clarice wasn’t sure if she could call herself lucky for having escaped Nancy with her life, but… it was certainly something at this stage. And Isabel… well, what could she even say to that? Isabel was a murderer. Still a murderer. So were so many others, but…

And Kimiko. Kimiko had murdered Bradley.

Clarice had hated Bradley. Bradley had been a piece of shit who thought laughing at genocide was acceptable. Last time they met, she’d yelled at him and flipped his plate of nachos. She’d felt like shit after, since one of the employees had had to clean it up. Clarice could just see him doing something so stupid as to mouth off to a killer… but, fuck.

“Dumb shit,” Clarice muttered. Her words weren’t venomous. It was… fuck, she was weirdly sad about it. No matter what Bradley had been, he didn’t deserve to die. No-one here did.

She still couldn’t process Kimiko murdering someone. One person… maybe—just maybe—it could have been an accident. But… she wasn’t the sort who flipped out like that. She was the calm one. She hadn’t been the one flipping nachos at the bowling alley.

Clarice looked around. There would be a camera. There always was. A metal eye staring at her, recording what could be her final moments. Just like the one staring at Harold, still staring at him because she’d fucking left him there. Rotting in view of the world. She found the camera, glinting nearby, and stared at it.

They were dropping like flies. Harold. Conrad. Abby. Bradley. Nancy. Isabel. Kimiko. Clarice had never watched Survival of the Fittest, but she knew enough from some cursory wiki research. (From a purely theoretical standpoint, the concept was an interesting example of propaganda.) She knew that the rescuers from way back hadn’t taken killers. Nancy, Isabel, Kimiko… they’d all as good as killed themselves by murdering.

Not that it mattered if no rescue came. And if Clarice just sat on her ass, staring at walls and the ocean and being sad, how could she expect a rescue to happen?

She had to try something. Even if she couldn’t save anyone, she could do something. Fight back somehow. She knew laying down their arms and waiting for the terrorists to blow their collars… she knew that wouldn’t work. Not now. And even if it did… it wouldn’t hurt the terrorists. Not really. All they’d lose was a bunch of children who were going to die anyway.

But there had to be something.

There had to be.

“Fuck,” Clarice muttered. The anger wasn’t there like it had been yesterday. Frustration, mostly. Frustration that she wasn’t smart enough to find a way out of this. Every moment she sat here, with no ideas, was another moment where someone could die. Where someone could lose their head and doom themselves to dying on this island.

And even if she did figure out a plan, how could she do it under the view of the camera?

Clarice sat there, legs dangling off the edge of the rusty truck. She stared at the camera. And her mind ticked.
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Why We Fight · The Storehouse