"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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Namira
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((Where Do You Go From Here? --> Bounce))

This was beyond bad. Beyond awful. How the hell had she managed to screw things up this much? Meeting Aaron's group had been a boost, even if she hadn't been sure what to think of him, but dammit it'd delayed Bounce. Too long. And that, frankly, was her own damn fault. How much more stupid could she get? After all the versions of SOTF she'd watched, all the groups she'd tracked, Bounce STILL hadn't considered that splitting up would be a bad idea. How often had she seen that? Groups not sticking closely enough together, travelling too quickly, not keeping their stragglers alongside them.

Not often something as crowningly moronic as going separate ways through a sizeable town, though. Wasn't she supposed to be the guru here? Bounce's strength, her only edge was her knowledge, and yet she was still making the dumb mistakes. Splitting up had been the first, not heading out to meet the rendezvous early had been the next. And now... she was in the dead centre of the place Bounce rated as the most dangerous on the island. Alone.

Nice going, Yelizaveta. Nice going.

Bounce had spent much of the previous night stumbling around in the dark, caught up in the panicked hope (or delusion) that if she ran around enough, she'd run into Victoria eventually. Never mind she'd told her to move on if she didn't show up for the meeting, or that night-time adventures were a good way to run afoul of enterprising players. After realising that she was going to collapse from a combination of exhaustion and nervous breakdown, Bounce had sheltered for the night in one of the abandoned houses, bunking down in the bottom of a wardrobe to snatch a couple of fitful, uncomfortable hours sleep.

After the announcement, Bounce had stayed holed up inside for a little while longer, trying to reason through her options and not making a very good job of it. She probably spent more of the time attempting to hold herself together. That had gone... okay. Bounce had cried for a bit, but quietly, and since she hadn't had a full on panic attack, she really had to count it as a success. A small one, but still a success. She'd been about to leave when the next announcement had arrived.

Unexpected, and it most definitely meant that something was awry. Danya didn't just break his schedule for fun. Bounce knew that very well. Had there been some kind of fault, like last time around? Maybe somebody had-

Oh yes. Yes they had.

Somebody - Liz Polanski, had done it. They'd figured out how to disable the collar. That hadn't been stated explicitly, but really, what else could it have been? Nothing else would warrant an announcement. Regular interference was a detonated collar. Which meant... which meant Polanski had somehow managed to stop them from blowing her up. There had been a tremor of hope, which had been immediately suppressed by a feeling of utter uselessness.

Three versions, Bounce had watched. Every tactic, every attempt. And she still couldn't come up with the first idea how to get out of there. Yet somebody else had. She'd been so resigned to thinking that it was impossible that she hadn't even considered-

Well, didn't that just make her a big ball of useless?

Bounce had meandered around town for a little while longer, more or less aimlessly, the hopes of finding Victoria completely vague and tenuous at best. It was the wandering of a girl who simply put, had no damn idea what to do or where to go. She hadn't met anybody... yet, but it seemed to be inevitable. Somehow, she'd managed to put herself in an even worse position than that she'd started it. At least then, she'd had an ally.

Abruptly, the street gave way to an open area, some kind of park. At the centre of it was an elaborate fountain. Bounce blinked, then winced. Nice going, Lizzie. Not only was she still in the town, she'd somehow managed to make her way into the direct middle of it. If nothing else, she should've tried to head on out of there. Instead she'd wound up... here.

Bounce cast about for a short while, keeping an eye out for threats (as if seeing them coming would do her any good). Then she spotted them. Bodies. She stopped and stared at the pair of corpses by the fountain, one massive, one diminutive. The first she'd seen. Bounce trembled, just a little, not really noticable unless somebody were right next to her... but she didn't stop. Couldn't make herself.

In fact, it barely registered that her collar let out a shrill beep, up until the announcement started up all over again. Bounce tore her eyes away from the bodies to look around wildly, her eyes unfocused. Somebody was causing some serious trouble, that much was clear. And playing roulette with everyone at the same time. Somehow, Bounce couldn't quite bring herself to care.

Fuck. Fuck. You're losing your grip Lizzie! Calm down. Seriously, calm down RIGHT now.

Bounce crouched down on the ground by the fountain, held her head with both hands, pushing hard at the sides of her skull.

Muttered to herself. "Hold it together. Hold it together... come on, hold it together..."
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