"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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Dr. Nic
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How cute.
[ *  * ]
With a soft smile and her mind at ease, at least more so than it had been, Sofia relaxed and let the tension in her muscles drain away; She couldn't shake the feeling of uneasiness, of the idea that she should never drop her guard completely, but for now, with the thought that he wasn't going to suddenly attack her, she relaxed. She even laughed, however slightly, at his response to her comment, enjoying that moment of peace and enjoying that it made her feel as if everything was going to be alright, that nothing had really changed; As if they had never really left school, with the pop culture humor and the awkward moments, with the bad jokes and teenagers just being teenagers. It was nice, no matter how long or short it lasted.

They spoke for a moment, trading brief suspicions of who could be around, if there indeed was someone else around; She knew she saw silhouettes when she was still a fair distance away, but now she was starting to doubt her once adamant assumptions. They could have been trees or bushes or even the shadows playing tricks on her mind, on her eyes; After all, she hadn't seen or heard anyone run away, hadn't noticed any quickly darting silhouettes behind the trees and near the bushes she could make out. It really could have just been the shadows playing a trick, with the light from above peeking through the canopy of branches and leaves.

"So, do you know wh-"

In the middle of her sentence, in the middle of asking Micheal a question, there was movement a short distance away; A voice and someone standing up suddenly, something Sofia hadn't expected. She had been right before, she shouldn't have assumed she was wrong when she hadn't seen anybody when she got closer, but now it was too late and she was... she was... falling. Tripping, to be precise, in her frantic attempt to back away from and turn towards the suddenly appearing girl; She'd had time enough to point the lead pipe out at the girl before she hit the detritus covered ground.

"Holy crap!"

Not the best way to approach a new presence, falling on her butt and shouting as she did, but there was little she could do about that now; She had to act fast, she had to recover from her short drop and sudden stop. Scrambling to her feet, she backed up, holding the weapon out in front of her with both her hands, her white knuckle grip returning as she stared at the girl, listened as she spoke; Her name was Jackie, not that introductions were completely necessary. She wanted them to be friendly, which was understandable... and then she made a threat, making herself appear non-so-friendly; While at first fearful, Sofia was just slightly confused now, especially since the girl didn't appear to have any weapon to speak of and she was threatening Sofia, an admittedly tomboyish girl with a lead pipe.

And then, the second voice chimed in with a threat of... a rock.

"....You're kidding, right?"

She was supposed to the scared of that? Of a girl with nothing, of another with a rock, hiding behind an old log; Sofia realized then that she was probably going to be much more intimidating than either of them, that the boy nearby was probably more intimidating than both of the girls. She didn't need to be scared, didn't need to be fearful of everyone she met; She wasn't the only one who was afraid, who was fearing for her life. Everyone was. No one really wanted to hurt their friends, they were all just scared and alone and just like her.

"Come out from there. We're not going to hurt you. And I doubt you'll hurt us."

Sofia let her arms drop back to her sides as she shook off her doubt and made her decision.


She smiled.



"It's okay. Everything will be alright."
Boy #??? - Joshua Edwards
Hanging out somewhere, playing his heart out.
Writer and local retail slave at the comic book store.

Girl #??? - Viktoriya "Vika" Starikova
Floating in the void, unfinished and half-formed.
Hot headed member of the soft ball team, secretly wishing she could fly.

Those who were
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When the Bite Just Isn't Sharp Enough · The Woods: Inland