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Grim Wolf
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The Very Best
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(ENTER Alex Tarquin)

Alex Tarquin hated guns.

Not because they killed people, or anything like that. A gun's purpose was to kill, and he'd much rather have armies shooting at each other than trying to beat each other up. But guns ruined fight scenes. A gun carries too much lethal weight and potential. It was what made some of the old Star Wars movies so frustrating; watching characters weave through barrages of laser light as though they were slower than bullets. Say what you would about the prequel trilogy, but at least they'd established a plausible way to pit sword-wielding mystics against armies. Given them just enough supernatural justification that you almost believed the Jedi could be real. Made a mockery of the very concept of imperial marksmanship by an implying that those poor Stormtroopers had never really had a chance.

But how to justify Han Solo? How to justify the myriad characters whose only real talent was "cannot be hit by an army's worth of bullets?" And any director and choreographer worth their salt couldn't do it.

The clearest example of this disheartening phenomenon was, in Alex's opinion, The Raid 2. After one of the most flawless action sequences Alex had ever seen, the perfect choreography was interrupted by a half-hearted gunfight. Falling action? More like failing action. And that was the problem; by the rules of the movies, guns always trumped the up-close, visceral, personal perfection of a martial arts brawl. The Raid had managed to achieve its towering heights of perfection by playing the sequence in reverse; functional gunfights until ammo was depleted, then brutal brawling as the characters did their best to make do with what little they had.

And yet, he couldn't dismiss the potential of cinematic gunfights entirely. John Wick, Hot Fuzz,, and the achingly perfect showdown in Django Unchained all perfectly encapsulated what a gunfight would be. But in order to make up his mind, Alex Tarquin had to do what he always did, and get a sense of what was required to make a gunfight perfect. It had not taken him long to hatch his half-baked plan. A paintball fight would given him the incentive to dodge--the paint of getting hit by a paintball--while providing him a fairly realistic simulcrum of what a gun could do. And while he didn't have any paintball gear, his parents were more than happy to indulge him when he explained what he needed and why.

When he pulled up in front of the abandoned Paintball U in his 2014 Toyota Camry, his heart was beating erratically, and the same butterflies that often filled him with stage anxiety were beating up a storm in his stomach. Nothing he'd read online had indicated it was actually illegal to come here, but he hadn't read anything that said it was exactly legal either--hence why he'd asked everyone who was interested to come close to midnight sans lights, so he didn't have to worry about the cops coming down on them too hard. He parked a ways away from the sole streetlight nearby and stepped out of the car, green eyes sweeping around and looking for anything out of the ordinary. He wore the faded, ragged jeans he usually used while he was working backstage, and his white undershirt was pulled taut against his powerful frame.

He used his keys to pop the trunk to his car, and started digging through his brand-new gear.
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V6 Players

Tara Behzad: "They don't get to decide how I die."

Lizzie Luz: "I don't want to go."

Alex Tarquin: "No more masks."

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