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A wonderful fact to reflect upon, that every human creature is constituted to be that profound secret and mystery to every other.
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Jason grimaced slightly when Brook mentioned Tiffany. He didn't turn around and show his friend that though. He didn't want to say anything but the girl was probably already dead and even if she was alive it would only get them in to trouble. He had joked from time to time that the girl would be the death of Brook and he was going to make sure that never happened. He involuntarily squeezed the gun in his hand a little tighter.

As Maf called out from the knoll Jason steadied himself, almost instinctively dropping in to a crouched position much like he did when preparing for a jump while snowboarding. Seeing the figure cresting the hill Jason awkwardly regained his balance and waved over to his Fijian friend. Moving over to him he held his hand out and 'side fived' his gym friend, the familiar movement of a ritual practiced day in and day out brought a smile to Jason's face.

"Maf." Jason said as he checked that Brook and Nathan were following him. "You have no idea how good it is to see you mate. We're in a boatload of shit, but we're going to do the best we can. Stick together, play smart, we might just be around long enough to figure something out." Jason didn't really think they had much chance of 'figuring something out' but hope was a fragile thing and he had to make sure no one gave in. He didn't mean to take on the mantle of a leader, but what with Brook still being shook up and Nath and Maf showing up it seemed like it was the natural thing to do. Truth be told he was hoping that Nathan would of stepped up to the plate like he did at track.

As Nathan and Brook reached the top of the hill Jason smiled once more. "Nathan's finally going to break that 11.0 on his hundred metre sprint." The 11.0 was an old joke that the track team had shared. Especially amongst the short distance runners. That was the time to beat and day in and day out they would never hit it. Jason had jokingly promised Nathan once that they would both break it before they finished college.

It seemed almost ridiculous now, as the four boys stood looking southward towards the rest of the island. A hundred thoughts flooded Jason's mind, each more foolish that the last, he couldn't quite place it but it really seemed that this was the beginning of something new and he was excited, despite the situation. It was like when he stood at the edge of a black diamond run or when he peered over the edge of a cliff, getting ready to abseil down but only this time he had people to look after, his friends and they were counting on him.

He was never the leader in school preferring to relax and be part of the crowd, but now glancing at Brook he could see that his friend could fall apart at a moment's notice so he had to be resolute, maintain his composure and never falter, not even for a second. They were his responsibility now and he was going to make sure that they were the ones that remained, whatever it took.

Looking at his companions he took a deep breath. They all deserved to live so much. Brook; his best friend, smart, caring and reliable. He had a bright future ahead of him, he was going to revolutionise America's irrigation system.

---

Jason stood in the flower shop, looking at what he strongly suspected was some kind of rose, but despite the time he spent around Brook he wouldn't be able to tell the difference between the most obvious of flora. Swinging his backpack on to his left shoulder he turned to Brook who was staring at a small sprinkler part.

"Hey Jase?"

"Yeah mate?"

"This project is my key to college"

"Brook mate, you are going to change the planet with that project of yours."


---

Jason couldn't imagine having the future taken away from anyone, least of all Brook. Glancing past his friend to Nathan he nodded grimly. Nathan was competitive, he could take the hard truth if needed.

---

"Go again!" Nathan yelled as the two boys tagged the flags at the end of the track field. "One more"

Jason took a sharp intake of breath as he pushed himself off again, Nathan was already a few feet ahead of him and pushing hard as the big clock looking over the field ticked by.

"I." Jason panted as he accelerated trying to draw aside of Nathan, "am so tired"

"Geoffrey wouldn't be tired yet Jason, I need to break his time."

"Geoffrey's not here Nath, he's not here."

11.6. Not fast enough. The two boys turned to do the sprint again.


---

Finally he looked back at Maf, the fourth member of their little group. The Fijian had the gun at his hip like some sort of police officer on one of those tv shows that were so prolific during that prime time slot. He looked dangerous, but Jason knew Maf was probably the least likely of anyone on the island to even hurt another person. Jason knew he would be looking for Jen, and he decided he would help, better than Brook's hangup at least.

---

The group of boys stood cautiously at the edge of the dance floor as all around them their fellow students got up and danced to the music blaring from the speakers in the hall.

"Maf is one lucky son of a bitch hey Brook?"

"I suppose so." came the response. The taller boy's eyes were fully focused on Tiffany twirling away on the dance floor, his thoughts far away.

Jason didn't mind though, he was happy Maf had finally got a break. He suspected the gentle giant hand never truly forgiven himself for the tackle he made back in junior year. He caught the smile Maf gave Jen as the two held hands. It was the first time in a long while Jason had seen him this happy.

"Hey Maf!" he yelled out and the Fijian turned his way, his eyes lingering on his date. "You go for it mate!" Maf blushed and smiled shyly as he turned back to Jen and murmered something to her.

Jason strolled on to the dancefloor, it was going to be a good night.


The gentle breeze brought Jason back to the present. "Fuck, couldn't of been some other school," he murmured. Turning back to the trio behind him, guns held at their side, standing at the top of the hill like some sort of action movie poster he grinned and spoke up. "Moment of truth guys. Teamates for life or what?"

And with that he moved southwards.

((Jason Harris continued in The Only Way Is Up))
Edited by MK Kilmarnock, Sep 1 2010, 09:18 AM.
Sickness: Partially suicidal... very slightly because of my report, but mostly because Jason is dead. All of my personal issues stem from the fact that Jason Harris did not win SotF v4

William 'Woozie' Wu - "Hey Pheebs, you're amazing babe."

V4
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Flowerhead · The Felled Forest: North