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One of Three
Topic Started: Aug 10 2010, 10:32 AM (6,523 Views)
Namira
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[ *  *  *  *  *  *  * ]
The trees abruptly fell away and there she was standing out in the open. Rosa stopped for a few seconds and looked at the building that had appeared in front of her. A little cottage in the lee of the looming mountain above her, seemingly uninhabited, although that seemed a foolish thing to take for granted. She let out a little sigh. This wasn't what she'd been searching after since beginning to walk, but it would do for now. Rosa had been after an escape from this suffocating thicket of trees, but a momentary shelter would work wonders.

If, that was, it was safe. Rosa didn't like her chances in any kind of fight, and she was too cynical to believe that nobody at all would be playing. It wouldn't be everyone, hell, it probably wouldn't even be most people, but there would be enough. That, she firmly believed. So caution was the best option, because walkie-talkies weren't going to allow her to get out of trouble if she found herself beleagured, no way.

Rosa circled the house, avoiding moving directly towards the front entrance. Maybe there was a back door, maybe not, but she needed to case the place a little first. Approaching the building finally, Rosa peered through one of the windows; a little office of sorts, filled with filing cabinets and a desk. Next window, a bedroom, king-size and a chest of drawers with a TV on top of it. Moving on, Rosa found herself looking into an open-plan room, a kitchen area, sofa and a wrecked coffee table clearly visible. There was no sign of anybody in there.

Was that safe? Probably not, but it was as close to it as Rosa was likely to get. Returning to the front of the cottage, the Fiametta opened the door and stepped inside, looking around constantly to ensure that there was nobody lurking in the shadows that she'd missed whilst looking through the windows. Thankfully, there were no such people forthcoming, and Rosa sagged ever so slightly, relieved.

All the same, there was nothing stopping company from arriving and Rosa cast about, chewing on her bottom lip. She didn't want people to be able to just... waltz straight in whilst she was taking a few moments to compose herself and relax. There was a lock on the door, but Rosa was about as likely to find that as for both of her siblings to materialise out of thin air. Looking over to the lounge area, Rosa hit upon an idea and walked over. The armchair situated there was pretty sizeable... but it didn't seem impossible to move.

Rosa gave pushing it a try and was reward with a very slight motion. She gritted her teeth and groaned. This wasn't going to be easy. Putting her back into it, Rosa heaved on the chair, getting it to slide inch by inch along the carpet and towards the door. For somebody of her physique, it was a strain and Rosa was breathing hard, sweating slightly by the time that she was done. But at the end of it all, the armchair was wedged firmly behind the front door. It would certainly make getting in through there a tricky prospect.

Only then did Rosa relax, and the loss of tension was small. She immediately headed for where she remembered the bedroom being, leaving the door open after entering and tossing both daypack and duffle bag carelessly onto the floor. Eyeing the window, Rosa went over to it and drew the curtains, meaning at least that nobody could just look in and see her. Checking the windows had been easy, if there were players out there, Rosa didn't want to make their job easier. Somebody had left a heap of stuff on the bed, a number of items which Rosa just swept off onto the floor without bothering to examine.

Finally, she sat on the bed and curled up, hugging her knees to her chest. Rosa rocked back and forward a few times, thinking on how utterly screwed up this situation was, how badly she just wanted to be back home and then sticking on one other subject. How Frankie and Ily were doing.

Because they were her sister and brother, no more than five minutes removed from her in age. Ilario might have been a bore and a lecturer, and Frankie might have been a pothead, but they were family. They watched out for each ot-... well, Ilario mostly watched out for her and Frankie, but for each of their issues with one another, they were still close.

Rosa didn't want to think about either of them getting hurt.

As for me... well, I'm more fucked than that one time at that guy's party when he asked if his friend could j-...

She shook her head. Not the sort of thing that she needed to be thinking about right now. Definitely not. Rosa sighed, then thought back to the one final member of her family and gave a hollow laugh. She looked up, then spoke into thin air.

"Hey Junior. You notice me yet?"

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Rosa sat there on the bed for a while just thinking to herself, trying to organise her jumbled thoughts into some semblance of order and not meeting with much success. This was too insane to reconcile so easily, and Rosa didn't make a lot of headway. But at the least, it was a little less time on her feet and some more time where she didn't have to worry about looking for killers behind every tree. Security did a lot for a girl's nerves.

Well, up until there was an almighty goddamn crash in the other room and Rosa sprang up from the bed, heart hammering. The sound had been slightly muffled (it was followed by the sound of somebody swearing as she got to her feet), so it could only have come from the little office she'd looked into earlier.

Motherfucker! How the hell'd they get in?!

Rosa didn't have time to dwell on what she'd overlooked though, somebody had broken inside, which wasn't exactly a good sign. Someone more innocent might have knocked on the door or called out, this person had deliberately broken in, which meant they hadn't been looking to attract attention.

...Lucky for her they'd somehow fucked up, then.

Rosa didn't waste a second of time. Whatever mishap the intruder had suffered wasn't liable to delay them for long, and Rosa simply couldn't afford to wait. She couldn't get out quickly enough, so that meant one simple thing: time to hide. Bursting from the bedroom, Rosa's eyes roved around desperately before settling on the living area. It wasn't the best of places, but it was about the only option.

Because no way in FUCK was she hiding under the bed.

She sprinted over to that area, vaulted the couch, and bunkered her ass down directly behind it, nerves jangling. This was a stupid plan. This was a moronic goddamn idea. Hiding? What the fuck.

But hey, what else could she do, talk them to death?

Death dealing devices walkie talkies weren't.
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Rosa stayed hunched down behind the sofa, low as she could manage without somehow compressing her bones and shrinking. She was already regretting this, mostly because she'd fucking forgotten to pick up any of her shit and had left it all in the bedroom. Might as well as hold up a glowing neon sign saying 'I'm here! I'm here! Shoot me in the face!'. Even if Rosa somehow didn't end up getting her idiot self killed for that mistake, she still had no way of recovering everything. Strictly speaking she could have bailed straight out of the windows behind her, but that would've left her without any supplies or spare clothes.

So this was where panic had brought her and unfortunately this was where she was going to have to stay for the time being.

Then, out of the blue, a voice called out. It was still deadened by the person speaking being on the other side of a door, but Rosa heard them well enough. Another girl... but not somebody Rosa was familiar enough with to identify through sound alone. Dammit. She listened without saying a word, smirking at what she heard from whoever the intruder was.

Okay, the facts were that this girl was more than likely telling the truth, Rosa could understand the sentiment completely. Entering through a window was just the next progression of what Rosa had herself done. Anyway, the motives that were being claimed were more or less the same; wanting a place to hide out for a bit where you didn't have to worry about somebody popping up out of every shadow.

But the thing was... enough doubt existed in Rosa's mind for her to distrust this mystery voice. How the hell did she know whether this was just a trick? Rosa knew that if she was playing, she wouldn't just jump into every situation with all guns blazing, particularly if she didn't have very good weapons. She'd looked to take things a little more subtly, minimise the effort and maximise the gains. Trickery worked a lot better than brute force.

It was kinda like flirting.

So Rosa didn't say a word from her little hiding place, just waited for the other to make the first move. Rosa didn't want to get into a fight, but she had to get the measure of whoever had broken in before she welcomed them with open arms. Doing that would be an apt way to get burned. Besides, there was no harm in avoiding tipping her hand. This other girl clearly had a gun (well, unless they were bluffing about the mexican standoff thing), whereas Rosa had... well, nothing to remark upon. Best not to reveal that unless she absolutely had to.

C'mon... psyche out. Psyche out. Freak and think I'm setting for an ambush...
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Rosa's ears pricked up as a sound reached them. Somebody was working the handle of a door, slowly though, making it obvious that the intruder wasn't looking to just burst into the room. On the one hand, at least the girl wasn't coming in all gung ho, guns blazing. On the other... well, Rosa would really have preferred if that door had remained comfortably shut.

There was a long silence after that little sound, Rosa strained to detect any further noises but she couldn't make out a thing. No footsteps, no metallic sounds that might have indicated a gun being prepared to fired. Nothing. It was quiet as a morgue.

Okay wow nice fucking imagery there. Real positive, Rosa.

At long last, the voice again, this time not quite as muffled. The door had definitely been opened. Rosa couldn't tell whether they were in the main room itself or had stuck in the office, but the girl was definitely more distinct now. Rosa knew the voice, she was sure she did, but... not enough to place. Dammit. Apparently they wanted to make best friends and go skipping off into the sunset surrounding by rainbows and a chorus of puppies.

Well not exactly, but that was the thrust of things, something which Rosa wasn't particularly inclined to believe. More likely, this chick wanted to make sure that Rosa herself wasn't going to start shooting the second she stepped through the door... so that she could start shooting at Rosa. Paranoid? Maybe it was, but if there was ever a time and a place to be neurotic, it was here.

All the same, Rosa mulled over what the other girl was saying, but pitched it in how relative it was to her. The intruder was obviously still inside of the office, so she couldn't have too good an idea where Rosa was right now... speaking risked revealing her position, but it depended on whether the other girl was looking... and how much she said. Much as the cynic in her wanted to avoid any danger, this clearly wasn't going to work.

Can't camp out behind here forever... best to take advantage of the offer whilst it's on the table.

"Okay, I'll bite.. Unload the gun. Toss it into the middle of the room. Then we'll talk."

Rosa kinda wished, at that moment, she knew how to throw her voice.
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There were a few moments of silence. In her hiding place, Rosa sweated, a knot of anxiety clenching her stomach in a death grip. She felt certain that she'd made a mistake and that any moment now a volley of bullets was going to rip through the sofa and tear into her body- the girl spoke again.

You figured it out, huh? Is my voice really that distinctive?

She didn't respond. She wasn't going to be drawn into talking further until she was sure that the intruder wasn't trying to figure out her position. Rosa hadn't become any less guarded after she'd been identified, because that would've been nothing short of idotic. Did it matter if the other girl knew her? Not particularly. They were in the same year; to some extent or another they all knew each other. Rosa didn't believe for a second that it would stop everyone from killing.

For Rosa, that was a non-argument. There were serious assholes in this world, she'd run across some of them and could put names to some of those faces (hello JJ Sturn!). Out of everyone in the year that had come out on this trip, the odds that none of them would be willing to put their lives in front of everyone elses were ludicrous. Most people were selfish and although for a majority of the class, that wouldn't transmit to murder... it would for enough of them.

Which was why, when Rosa's identification led to a sound of relief from the intruder, the Fiametta was sceptical. Either the other girl was hopelessly naive, or she was trying to lull her into a false sense of security. What the hell did she know about Rosa to be so confident about her motives? Unless she was some sort of mind reader, the answer was 'not a goddamn thing'.

Osborne, huh? What do I know about you? ...Kinda hot. A little vain, I guess. Wow. That gives me fuck all.

At the next question, Rosa again refused to make a sound. Vera could assume away, there was no way in hell she was going to get Rosa to confirm she was unarmed. The stalemate was going nowhere but if the other girl had bad intentions, keeping things secret was the only advantage Rosa was going to get.

"Unload the gun, then slide it a little way away from that door. Then we'll talk," Rosa's voice was perfectly even and she was amazed at the absence of any tremor. If Vera wasn't going to play ball with that, Rosa would just have to take her chances with the windows behind her hiding place. It was the best offer she was prepared to give.
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There was a skittering sound, then a light 'thunk' as something - presumably Vera's gun, hit one of the kitchen appliances. Rosa was about to extricate herself from her hiding spot and reveal herself to the other girl when a wave of paranoia surged up within her. What was to say she'd really tossed the gun? After all, all she'd heard was the sound of an impact, she couldn't exactly identify what the object that had been thrown was just from that. What if Vera had thrown ... well, anything of a reasonable size instead of the gun? She could be waiting there for Rosa to show her face just so she could open fire.

Rosa found her feelings perfectly justified. It was an instinct thing. Normally, Rosa wasn't nearly so cautious, but normally she wasn't on an island where there could be a killer around every corner, either. It balanced out.

She ignored Vera again, cogs turning in her mind. Rosa had to either find a way to ensure the other girl was telling the truth, or assume that she wasn't and find a way to get the hell out of there. One option was the windows alongside the sofa, but they all of a sudden looked incredibly exposed. If she was being stalked, then she'd present a fine target.

Rosa let out a tiny sigh, barely audible. Best to try and get all the information before psyching herself out. Running without all the facts in hand wouldn't be smart, not with her bags lying abandoned in the bedroom. She had to check this out somehow.

Squirming forward, Rosa crawled her way around the back of the sofa, grimacing at the tight confines between the furniture and the wall. She could already feel aches setting in from how long she'd been behind there. So much for running away, she'd probably have muscle spasms. Reaching the end of the couch, Rosa slowly, very slowly, stuck her head out into the open. Unless she'd miscalculated, she wouldn't be visible from the office from here...

Right... there, the gun's right there, let's chill the fuck out.

Rosa picked herself up off the floor and stepped into the open. Vera was exactly where she'd thought, standing in the doorway of the office. The Fiametta inclined her head very slightly, not much disposed towards relaxing her guard. There was a long way to go for trust here. A nice body hardly meant a reliable person. Rosa herself knew that.

There was a hammering at the door of the cottage, but luckily Rosa's obstruction was holding. Seemed that blocking the door with the armchair had been a good idea after all. Then, a voice.

Craig... I only know one Craig. Fat Craig. Fuck, that guy's huge! Football player to boot. It'd be my luck to run across one of JJ's cronies...

"Craig what the fuck do you want?"

Yeah, she wasn't in much of a mood for 'polite'.
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"..."

Craig was wheedling, and Rosa didn't know what to make of it. She wanted - she wanted badly to just be cold and tell him to fuck off with whichever Trent he had with him (Savage and Hunter... nice pair of names to go with an ass and an ex-con). But... his whining struck a chord, somewhere. It spoke to her, in some small way, it resonated with rejections and spurned attempts at rejection...

...This place is gonna get way too fucking crowded.

Rosa walked over to Vera's gun and scooped it up, looking at the other girl and mouthing 'one minute'. It would probably be a better idea for the person with, you know, the ammunition to be the one with the gun, but as it happened Rosa still didn't trust Vera and wasn't about to let her have free reign on protecting her.

The weapon was surprisingly heavy, but after readjusting, Rosa held it comfortably enough, albeit with distaste. Even unloaded, carrying the gun made her uneasy. Still, if it meant warding off aggression from Craig... Nobody that hung around with JJ Sturn that much could be a hundred percent nice guy. Hell, how the relationship between her and the captain of the football team had ended was common knowledge. She'd sported that cut near her left eye for weeks, and a black eye accompanied it most of the way.

In spite of that little note he'd hit with her... Rosa wasn't trusting Craig either.

"Craig... don't even fucking try to screw me around, alright?" Rosa went to the door, gritted her teeth, then grabbed the armchair and hauled it back from the entrance a little, enough that the guy outside would be able to push it back the rest of the distance without it wedging against the wall.

"If you push hard enough, you'll be able to get in," Craig was a big guy, he could handle the strain.

Notice me yet? ...I wonder where Ily and Frankie are.
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Seeing Craig squeeze into the building, carrying Trent along with him (Savage, as it happened, but the guy was out like a light so it didn't matter), it... well, it didn't exactly move Rosa, but it made something spring into the forefront of her mind. Hoyle was scared, he was panicked and he was goddamned huge. If the football player, albeit the one whose bulk was more muscle than fat, was so helpless, how the hell were the others going to be getting on? What was Ilario going to do, given this situation? For crying out loud, her brother seemed on the verge of a nervous break down anyway, let alone with people killing each other. Frankie? Jeez, that wasn't exactly any better. She was less of a pussy than Ily, but that also hinged on her not being high.

What the fuck was Rosa thinking? How was holing up going to help? Somewhere out there, on this goddamn island, were the two people that... she cared about most. Beyond that Frankie always mocked her for her... habits. Beyond that Ily was the apple of Junior's eye. In spite of the fact that none of them saw eye to eye on more or less anything and that their personalities were poles apart from each other... They'd been born together. They'd grown up together. They were three and one.

And Rosa had decided to hide. To retreat into herself. Make them search, make them do the work. Stupid. Stupid. Stupid. How could she? At that very moment, JJ could be punching Ily's teeth down his throat. Dustin Royal, captain asshole, could be drawing a bead on Frankie's chest. ...And Rosa was fucking around with Craig FUCKING Hoyle!

Rosa gritted her teeth, knuckles whitening as she clenched the TEC-9 tightly. A moment later, it went clattering to the floor, bouncing with the impact as Rosa flung the gun from her. The Fiametta's head snapped towards Vera, daring her to make a quick play with eyes filled with rage. Then, she swung around and stalked into the bedroom, grabbing hold of her bag and swinging it over her shoulder.

Swiftly, Rosa returned to the main room, gaze swinging between Vera and Hoyle. No time for them or any more of this bullshit. They were welcome to the shelter, were welcome to sort out the paranoia between them. Rosa was filled with a new sense of urgency, Craig's blubbering snapping her into the realities of what was happening. Every second burned was another second closer to one of the others coming to harm. Sooner or later, it would happen. That meant Rosa had to find them before sooner could even lace up its boots.

"I have something to do. ...Good luck, I guess. May-" Rosa was cut off by the sound of shattering glass. From the direction, it had to have been the office that Vera already entered by.

Fuck! Just what I don't need!

Rosa spun again, looking for an escape route. Vera might have had firepower enough to be considered capable of driving any would-be attacker off, but it happened that the Fiametta didn't trust the other girl. Rosa wasn't a psychic, which meant a healthy dose of paranoia could only be a good thing.

Swiftly, Rosa's eyes alighted on the back window. With a murmured "Bingo," she made a beeline for it.
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Since she'd already been searching for ways out as the sound of the breaking window first reached her ears, Rosa was already most of the way to the back of the station's main room when the front door swung open and Kevin Harding entered, toting a shovel and a threatening demeanour. The Fiametta, making tracks towards the window alongside the sofa she'd hidden behind earlier, turned as Harding spoke, but continued to backpedal, closing the gap to her objective.

Dammit, today was just not her lucky day. Well, it wasn't really anyone's lucky day, but hell if that was going to stop Rosa reserving her own little niche of complaint about it. Kevin Harding... yet another fucking football player. Maybe not one that was on the team consistently, but ...still, all of those guys knew JJ. That meant bad news. It was an unexpected boon that Harding decided to threaten Craig of all people (guess that meant they weren't that much of a hive mind), but hell, the dude could wave shovels at Trent all he wanted. Rosa didn't give a flying fuck about Trent.

Good luck with the gun, bonehead... it's not even fucking loaded.

Then Vera, out of nowhere, turned on the ninja moves. Rosa's jaw dropped slightly as the other girl made a running dive for the TEC-9 and managed to not only snag it, but slam a magazine home too. Harding's shovel at Trent's head was looking all of a sudden a little less intimidating. Much as it was tempting to see Harding wet his pants, Rosa still had no interest in sticking around. After all, what if Vera wasn't trustworthy? Rosa would be next in line after the jocks' blood painted the walls.

Cowardly not to stay and make sure that wouldn't happen? Nope. Rosa had more important things to worry about. Family came first. Always.

Taking the opportunity of the distraction Vera provided, Rosa yanked open the window behind her and just about managed to slither through the opening, though her bags almost got caught on the way through. Landing awkwardly on the ground outside, the Fiametta quickly got to her feet, looked this way and that, then took off. There was no time to lose. Any one of those echoing gunshots could be getting fired at Frankie or Ily.

Or fired by them.

((Rosa continued elsewhere))
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