"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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Now you may be wondering, who was wearing the bolo tie? Me or the shark? Answer: YES!
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Myriad scenes flitted through Kari's mind when she heard the scream in the distance.

This was not one of them.

Her SMG could fire on full auto, but her mouth seemed to be all jammed up. A million words twisted over in her mind, one for every scenario that didn't involve breaking a classmate's illusions. It wasn't fair. Why should she have to break it to Carol? Danya had already broken it to them. Shattered it, in fact. Just like their lives. It pained Kari to see someone so unprepared for the world of pain and murder stretching out before them to the end of their life, which couldn't be long - not when she, Kari, was going to win it all.

"Carol," she started. Her voice lacked all the steely decisiveness and calming assurance she tried to pour into it. She stopped flat, acknowledging a thought that came screaming out of nowhere - how much nicer it would be if Carol was pointing some wicked instrument into her face, something nice and spiky and full of malice and maybe explosives. At least then she'd know what to do. Flip her ponytail back unnecessarily, take a firm stance, point her weapon right back. And if she thought about it long enough, she could even convince herself that she'd find the guts to pull the trigger. She would ruin a life, but she could do so in glorious, justifiable self-defense. If only she could find the guts. She swallowed.

"We're... not in Minnesota any more. We're really far away. Like, really far. I'd tell you to sit down, but -" she couldn't contain it any more, "Survival of the Fittest. Survival of the Fittest, Carol, do you know what that means? That's not a lake. That's the ocean. The ocean! And there," she pointed, swivelling around, "or there, or there - some way, there's home. Don't you remember the auditorium? Were you awake? Those teachers... He shot them. And," she blazed onwards, rattling the gun before her in two white-knuckled hands, "This. If he was here, I'd shoot him, I really think I would."

Breathing deeply, Kari cast an eye over the wide expanse of blue, but quickly swept her gaze back over the beach. It was on land, not by sea, that people would come, and there really wasn't time to stop and smell the roses. Or, for that matter, dead fish and rotting seaweed.

Wrinkling her nose and wiping her eyes, she turned back to Carol, extending her hand downwards again. "Come one. Let's get out of here."



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Under The Sea Is Where No One Wants To Be · The Beach: North