"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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Don't cast aspersions on my asparagus.
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Lili was doing most of the talking. The explaining, the conversing, all the making sure everyone was on the same page and no misunderstandings were occurring. Kizi was okay with that. She needed a few moments to get her thoughts in order. To just absorb the presence of the new arrivals. Relish in the irrefutable evidence before her that there were others who hadn't yet compromised their humanity.

They all seemed pretty courteous. Reasonable. Gregarious. Goodhearted. As good as could be expected, considering the horrors of the island.

Kizi had been lucky, she felt, compared to many of her peers. Perhaps the newcomers had seen far worse things. Endured far greater atrocities. Been confronted with much more palpable evils. In which case, their resilience and fortitude was all the more commendable.

Raina was quiet. Ben seemed happy to stand back. "Thanks, guys," was all she said to their well wishing. It was all that needed to be said.

Penelope, though, she seemed the most eager to talk.

And so Kizi turned to her.

"Yeah, that sounds just about right." Except it wasn't. Not even close to her end goal, really. Similar methods, but there was a divergence. "I mean, it'd certainly deal them a massive blow if their whole 'every teenager's a monster' narrative was disproven, certainly." She clicked her tongue, to hold the floor. It was certainly a far more favourable outcome, one that could deal better long-term consequences, than what the terrorists had in mind. So, on that front, she was telling the truth.

But something - honesty, buoyant optimism, social obliviousness - made her continue to talk. "I mean, I don't think we'd be able to bring the killing to a stop. To a complete standstill. That'd take a few days, y'know? But if we slow it down, if we bring it down to a trickle and have a safe zone for everyone who doesn't want to play...then yeah." She blinked. "The terrorists'll either be forced to intervene, and then we get the moral victory..." Which was basically Penelope's plan.

"Or we drag this out long enough that eventually rescue'll be happen. And then they'll probably pop the collars anyway," she added, realising that grim inevitability with a grim punch, "but hey, we still get the moral victory. Point is, they can't keep us here forever. Not without destroying their 'everyone's evil' mentality." She assumed that was their mindset. The evidence seemed to point to it.

Kizi didn't mean to disparage the worth of a moral victory. Still, though, the ideal moral outcome was still rescue. And all they could do was drag things out.

"And either way, the terrorists lose!" She threw in an extra smile, hoping that would gloss over any differences in levels of optimism. That sort of fundamental philosophical debate was not exactly what interested her at that time. Her voice sped up, her tone perking up, as she turned to the details she had quietly reflected on. "So, I think probably the first thing we'd need to sort out is some sort of safe zone - and because of the whole danger zone thing, it'd need to be flexible, with backups and the like. And, y'know, posters around the island telling people what to expect."
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