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party wurmple never sleeps. only dances.
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((Bryony Adams continued from In This Starless Night))

Bryony looked down at the card in her hand as a sigh escaped her lips. There were seven red diamonds on the face of the card, and a pattern that made her feel more and more nauseous the longer she looked at it on the back. She had no idea if the seven of diamonds was significant in any way. She’d never played poker or blackjack or, well… done much of anything to do with cards aside from go fish, so she had no clue whether it was important in any card games or what it represented in cartomancy or the like. But right now, she was keeping it close to her chest and looking down at it every now and then whilst they walked, because to her, it represented that little bit of hope she was so desperately clinging on to.

And God knows, she needed a reminder that she just had to keep pushing forwards right now.

Oskar had been killed yesterday, and Bryony’s heart and mind were in utter turmoil over it. He had been a dear, trusted friend back at home, someone she could talk to about nearly anything, someone she could turn to when things were looking down. And she wanted so desperately to be heartbroken over his death, but there was a mental blockade that had stopped her from totally breaking down when the announcements had played that morning. He’d killed someone on the first day, hadn’t he? She didn’t know what had happened between him and Jane to cause it to happen, whether there had been some sort of misunderstanding, or whether he had acted in self-defence, or whether he’d actually had malice in his heart the whole time. And now she’d never get the chance to even ask him, and never get the chance to believe in him again.

And the worst part was that it hadn’t even been his death that had hit her the hardest. Henry had died last night, and another one of her friends had killed him. She was scared, in all honesty. This wasn’t something Al would have ever, ever done. But he had done it, and she wanted desperately to ask him why, what had caused this very real change over him, but she was even more terrified at what he’d do if she confronted him like that.

That wasn’t even getting into the fact that she’d been talking to Henry mere hours before he’d met his maker. That someone she had seen living and breathing and moving right in front of her had gone off and been killed was… hard to stomach, to put it mildly. Bryony wondered, as she trailed behind Bridgette, whether it had been her fault. Whether she had pushed Henry away by instantly asking for food, whether he secretly hated her and didn’t want to be around her, whether she could have done a better job of trying to get him stay and help her out.

Bryony’s feet dragged to a halt and she looked at the face of the card again. She sniffed, and sighed again, and tried to think of seven small mercies to go with each of the diamonds staring up at her.

Her t-shirt had finally dried out enough to the point that she had felt comfortable slipping the creased garment on underneath her hoody before they’d left the staff block. That was one. It had stopped raining, and her clothes were fairly quickly drying out from the brief showers. That counted as two, bringing her to three. She felt guilty thinking it, but the fact that Bridgette hadn’t decided to murder her in her sleep was, well, obviously a good thing. Most importantly, and a fact that collectively brought her up to seven small mercies, was that there were still people out there on the island for her. Alice was still alive. Sandra was still alive. Alba was still alive.

Hope. She just had to keep on hoping for the best, and maybe some tiny miracle would happen. Bryony tucked the card back in her hoody pocket, and started jogging to make up the distance between her and Bridgette, almost running into the other girl’s arm as she gestured to stop. There was another girl a few metres away from them, that Bryony recognised from her classes as Nadia Riva. Aside from that, though, they were pretty much like chalk and cheese. The odds of a quick-tempered model and a meek little artist becoming friends had always been slim.

Bryony gave Nadia a hesitant little wave anyway. She could still be friendly and helpful, after all. She might have even seen Alba at some point. She could only hope for the best, even when she was expecting the worst.


"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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