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Fountain of Youth; Day 3 - 6am start (wait 'til Craig Hoyle enters to post)
Topic Started: Oct 10 2010, 05:45 PM (4,700 Views)
MK Kilmarnock
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((Craig Hoyle continued from Laurel and Hardy Got NOTHIN' on Us))

It was only when Craig had organized the majority of this things before Trent had really even gotten underway that he realized he hadn't brought a whole lot. Socks, underwear, a couple pair of denim shorts, and a few XXXL tees were supposed to be enough for the boy. Now he found himself wishing he had brought the Gem of Cyttorak, or Captain America's shield, or maybe Squirrel Girl's bullshit ability to win a situation off-screen when she obviously should not have. That one would be really worth it right about now. The only acceptable substitue for the time being would have to be twin package of ring-dings.

He hated to be a stereotypical fat kid right about now, but with that first bite of chocolate-and-cream-filling goodness, Craig knew for sure that being such a stereotype never tasted so good.

The sugar was definitely welcomed to his body, which had been acting up all day the day before, starting after those stupid announcements. There was football pain, the stinging agony of taking a hit or running drills (a practice which Craig decided must have been designed for some sort of super-human athlete, possibly a being of Krypton), and then there was the strike that the worker's unions, comprised of his muscles, formed. His arms, his legs, his neck, his back... if there was a body part with a name Craig could pronounce, it was probably hurting right about now. Made sense, too; once Trent unzipped his daypack to find that it was a freaking club (Craig had seen a weapon of that style somewhere before, but the name was on the tip of his tongue), Craig realized he was carrying his own body weight, Trent, a club, and all of their other possessions. Sure, it was only a short distance, probably less than 50 yards, max, but STILL.

Craig was big, technically even a giant, but he had learned the hard way that he was not strong. He learned this time and time again, but that didn't stop some from seeing him as some sort of behemoth. That was fine to him, though. Craig liked feeling powerful, as that made him feel useful, and feeling useful was always a good thing. The dissonance here, however, was outstanding: the two boys were in an urban-ish area that was the closest thing to their own world, practically feeling at home and safe in the enclosure, but the applications of Craig's philosphy had to be completely changed in order to fit a world which may have appeared similar, and yet couldn't be further from the real thing. His supposed power used to make him feel needed, but now it would be a survival mechanism. If he and Trent wanted to survive, he'd have to make himself one of the scariest motherfuckers on the planet.

Yeah, in short, they were pretty much doomed.

There may have been an ace-in-the-hole sitting on the fountain next to Craig, though, in the form of the Claymore land mine that had been assigned as his weapon. Not gun, nor knife nor bat, but an explosive. An INDIRECT explosive, at that. In a pinch, Trent and Craig could hole up somewhere, and he could place the mine at the entrance. He couldn't kill anybody, no, that just wouldn't happen, but he could still defend himself, and that little, innocent-looking little box on the fountain's edge could be a get-out-of-maiming-free card for them. Speaking of Trent, Craig looked to him as he chomped on the confectionary cakes. The other boy was seemingly holding up well, which Craig was grateful for. Luckily, he hadn't seemed like a weakling to Trent yet, since Craig still wasn't sure how things would fare if he began to fall behind.

An adjustment to his collar was needed, and gingerly performed, after Craig finished snacking on his cake. Yeah, life for the moment was pretty good as long as he could hold on to the positive things in life. And then...

The loudspeaker sounded.

After the initial screeching was done burning a hole in Craig's eardrum, the football player uncovered his ears to listen to the overly-cheerful man, with that unique and sinister but... also sort of charismatic and endearing voice (all he could think about at this time was Hades from Hercules; the two sounded nothing alike, but shared similar qualities of villainy and likability). There was nothing likable about his message, however.

So, more of their fellow classmates had died. All the killers must have either been terrible people, or there were more unforunate circumstances occuring on this island than reality would often allow. The second one being rather... unrealistic, Craig's mind awakened with a shiver, having the realization that his faith in his classmates may have be-

Wait... Reiko? Reiko Ishida? Killing FOUR PEOPLE!?

"No.... no, fucking impossible!" Craig moaned in the same way he would have if he found out some loser like Brett Favre was brought to his beloved Minnesota Vikings. "This is a mistake... this is a mistake, it's Reiko!" Reiko was such a beautiful girl, perky and innocent in her own little way... oh, right, and little. She was a midget compared to himself. The girl was built in such a way that, even if provoked, the most she was likely to do was throw a fit or maybe get into a small catfight! Had the island really made a murderer out of her?

"No..."

Craig sought for a different path. One that had Reiko attacked by numerous people. Maybe she had the means to defend herself, with a gun or something, and in her fear, had to fend off the likes of Kevin and such. He had already forgotten some of the names of lives that Reiko was credited to ending from the previous day (his mind seemed to be a bit 'off' the last time around, or he would've remembered Reiko being called), and had basically missed the ones from this announcement entirely. The only name that mattered was Reiko's now, though. The boy slid off of the stone edge he was sitting on and leaned back until his back struck the wall, a few portions of stone creaking in time with some more clicking and cracking of the pebbles and gravel displaced by his titanic ass. For all that had happened, there had to be a reason. Even so, any explanation that painted Reiko as innocent still depicted at least four of Craig's classmates as evil.

Villains.
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MK Kilmarnock
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((Skipping Stefan, trying to stay in activity))

"Man, we... we gotta do something, this is just stupid-crazy now..."

Craig rubbed his face to catch every bead of sweat dropping off of it, desperate to disprove the unfallible myths spread by that loudspeaker. "I didn't think... oh god, I didn't think any of us would be... be EVIL enough to actually kill anybody else! Shit, these guys make the Joker proud with how they've made us all nuts!"

Craig was about to continue his rant to Trent when he heard a voice... the voice of somebody who was rather familiar to him. Craig paused for a moment... a loooooooong moment as he dwelt on who the voice could have belonged to. The memory of any day at Bayview felt like a flashback to years passed, despite the fact that just a week ago, Craig would've been in school. Or maybe he'd be at home, since it was the weekend. He honestly wasn't sure... how many days was it? Was this day 2? Day 3? Was time flying when he clearly wasn't ha-

Owen. The voice was Owen.

"BUBBLE BOBINSKI!" Craig shouted, standing up as he looked for the voice. He wasn't thinking very clearly about it, but the words that he shouted probably would've sounded like a non-sequiteur to anybody not in the know, but Owen? The tiny boy would've remembered the friendly nickname offered to him by the largest guy in Bayview, and a fast friend to boot. But... Owen was nowhere to be seen.

"... Owen?"
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"Craig, get over here."

"Wh... w-what is it?"

Trent's voice was saturated with fear to the point where it was practically dripping with it. What... did he see something? What could Trent have possibly found? Was it a weapon of some sort as evidence of some macabre (Craig was really never sure how to pronounce that) crime, or... did Trent find even darker evidence... the kind that would satisfy Habeus Corpus? Craig shied away from the fountain by once step, looking at Trent's face yet refusing to trace his gaze to the spot where he was looking. If there was a body in the flowerbed, he didn't want to see it...

"I think someone's hiding."

... That was it? Somebody was hiding in the flowers? The tension held up for a few seconds more in consideration of how he should've reacted, but it fell through in a matter of just a few seconds. "Oh... oh, right!" Craig had to force some uneasiness within himself, but he was glad to have some company to join himself and Trent, particular when Owen seemed to disappear. Or maybe he was just imagining things? Who knew... but if he was imagining his friends, then he was either losing it, or going through an understandable period of loneliness. This wasn't meant to knock on Trent or anything, but often a person needs more than one companion.

Craig stepped cautiously to the patch of flowers, gulping. He saw the dark shape within as well, but it didn't seem to be moving much at all... what if it was a body? Then what? He wasn't sure how well he'd handle that. Then the flowers moved.

Craig let out a bit of a surprised cough or squeak, or a strange mix between the two, and he let it out almost before the flowers had even moved. A girl rose from the flowers, her arms up and... as surprising as the event was, she seemed to be shaking harder than Craig had at any time on this island. Quite the feat, considering his gut tended to act similar to grape jelly in terms of movement.

"L-Look I wasn't spying on you g-guys! I was just w-waiting for you to go away!"

The girl was Haruka Watanabe. Craig could never forget that freaking name... it was just so much fun to say! Ha-ru-ka Wa-ta-na-be. It can amuse small children and artistic giants for hours at a time. The two were almost the same height at the given vantage points, impressive considering Haruka rose from and was standing on a raised flowerbed, boosting her height by nearly two feet.

"Just, leave me a-alone and I'll leave, o-okay?"

Well, this was certainly a familiar reaction, and one that was far more understandable when, according to the powers that be, their mutual classmates were dying (but pics or it didn't happen, damn it!). Still, Craig felt absolutely terrible that the girl would be so frightful of the two... they wouldn't hurt her at all! Not Trent, and certainly not himself...

"Hey, ease up! It's me, Craig! You know, went to school together? We were jus' sitting here, Haruka, so you're alright! S-Scared us a bit, though!" Craig ended the sentence on a note of ease, chuckling. "Sit with us if you want, or go if you want... We're just hanging out for a little bit. My legs hurt like hell!"
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Craig hardly had time to sit down before this particular area became very popular. Somebody had just stumbled out of nowhere near Haruka, at least relative to him, and the other one had stumbled in front of the entire group and was now scrambling backwards while going on about how he didn't want to be killed. The experience was certainly... shocking, to one extend or another, and left Craig sitting on the edge of the flowerbed for a few moments, dumbfounded. Wasn't every day people just showed up for next to no reason and proceeded ot make no sense. Then again, in a strange manner mirroring that of a nonsensical exhibit, it all fit together.

Out of the corner of his eye, he could see Trent take a look over to him, a look which Craig returned. Not a word was exchanged between the two, at least verbally, but just the mutual looks spoke volumes. Making the statement of 'what the fuck is going on?' or 'what do we do now?' would have been pretty accurate. There seemed, in the midst of that look, an agreement that was made. Haruka seemed to have calmed down, at least before the boy (Craig couldn't remember his name... but he kept thinking about coffee and yo-yo's whenever he saw the guy's face, so maybe...) had showed up. Trent seemed to have his hands full with the begger, so Craig decided to do whatever came natural.

"Uh... hey there! Don't worry about it too much, just sit with us if you want. We're resting, not going to kill you either."

All of this was sending a disconcerting message however, and the more Craig dwelled on it, the more he found the implications to be unsettling. He could see this happening if they had just gotten on the island; most, if not all of the kids would have been in shock, just waking up in a whole new world. Hell, they should all still be a little bit scared even two days later, but... not this scared.

They wouldn't be this scared unless something had happened.

The full weight of the announcements still hadn't fallen on Craig's heart. Maybe it was because he hadn't seen the horror for himself; the message could just be propaganda, for all he knew. Where others tried to relax but couldn't, Craig was trying to find the horror in the situation, yet failed. He wasn't on an island with escaped convicts, these were kids. Kids with collars that made poor fashion statements and a random assortment of weapons, but kids nonetheless. Craig knew these faces... grew up with most, knew that even the jocks and the snide commenters were as human as the rest of them, full of anxiety and the potential to grow. Yet, by day 3, three students had shown themselves to Craig and Trent, and they all seemed to be at wit's end.

What had they all seen?
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((Okay, as hypocritical as this seems, I have shit to get done that's on a deadline. So I'm skipping.))

The sudden appearance of yet another newcomer was nothing. Others would get a bit nervewracked at an area like this growing in population, but the more kids that joined the party at the fountain, the more everything felt like Bayview all over again. It was a feeling that lifted Craig's spirits, and brought him further and further away from the one tiny corner of his mind that understood the darkness of the situation. The problem, however, was that this person was Staffan Kronwall.

Or... or was it Nik? Staffan? Nik? It was one of the Kronwalls, and Craig was positive he had heard 'Kronwall' come up in the announcements. What's more, he had heard the name come up on the side of the killers, and not the deceased. This meant that the boy approaching the group had a pretty good chance of being the killer and, while Craig wasn't really that good at math, it didn't take an A student to figure out the chance of that being so was 50%. In a life or death situation, 50% was a lot.

"Uh.... hey, look, but... could you leave?" It hurt him to say such a thing, but Craig was trying to look out for everybody else at the fountain. He'd tolerate many things, but he was trying to stay away from the fact that people on this island had killed. There could be a killer in front of him right now. "I don't care if it was you or your brother, I can't even remember... but one of you... one of you kinda killed somebody, and I can't even wrap my head around that statement right now. So, um... go away?"

If things went well, everything was going to stay in the territory of hunky-dory. Nik or Staffan or who-the-fuck-ever would beat it, and everybody at the fountain would be just fine. If the hockey player (Craig knew they both engaged in that sport, and thus they at least had a common descriptor) persisted, though, Craig knew he might have to pull a tough-guy routine, and that could be more risky. Still, if he had to do it, he'd do it.

Anything to keep everybody safe.
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((You can safely assume posting order will be hopelessly butchered for the remainder of the thread as we move on towards progress))

By the time that he had even noticed him running by, Trent was already on the ground. Felled by the gun that had just been pulled on him.

Oh god... he's got a gun... he said Staffan did it? Then this is Nik.. and he's got a gun too! Trent was just trying to help! Oh fuck... Trent!!!

Craig let loose a desperate yell and ran for the boy with the gun. Funny, how the distance between himself and Nik was just long enough to enable him to hit his top speed, and thus his charge wasn't all that different from football. Granted, his top speed was pathetically slow, but many a lineman from an opposing high school team had to hold their aching backs after the giant of Bayview with 'Hoyle' written on his back came crashing down on him. Nik looked like he could withstand anything Craig threw out, but at the moment, his mind could be best described as 'single track'.

The fucker had knocked down Trent. No... that wasn't the right way to think. Trent was going to die of Craig didn't do anything!

The initial force of his bull rush was just enough to drive Nik back, and that's what Craig wanted. His massive arms looped around the well-built hockey player, locking around behind the boy's back and pinning Nik's arms the best Craig was capable of doing. If Nik decided to shoot Craig at this point, well... there wasn't much that Craig could do. But it wasn't Trent getting shot, or any of the other innocent children. There was a plus...

"GUYS!" Craig screamed to any of the kids behind him that were willing to listen. "Please, just get Trent and get out of here! RUN! NOW!"
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The main objective was to send Nik down to the ground off his feet, and make him drop his gun. That was all Craig really wanted to do, but fear was pushing him onward. The fear in itself was potent enough to drive his actions, and that in itself terrified him. Right away, just from a glance of Nik's build, Craig knew that he'd have to hold on tight and do all he could to fight for everybody's safety, but even his flailing the boy around struck him. Craig was stricken by his actions just as bad as he had been to watch Trent fall trying to save him.

I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I'm sorry! Craig repeated with every shake, gasping and wrenching to try and disorient the boy. Why did it have to come to this? The exact flow of events was lost to him, but Craig knew he didn't want this. He could only hope for the soul of the boy in his grasp that he didn't want it to come down to violence either, but none of that could be changed the moment Trent rushed ahead. The moment he was sent face down in the hard, cobbled ground.

This was all the Kronwall's fault, Craig had imagined for a moment. It was just enough anger, enough rage to put that extra 'oomph' in his thrashing, which he immediately regretted... that was, until he heard the clatter of something fall. Still holding Nik, Craig peered down to see the gun had fallen off to the side, slightly behind him. That was good... then nobody could be shot, Craig could push the boy back, explain what was going on and that he could do whatever he wanted, but not stay-

WHAM!

The blow that had struck him was a near miss, near enough to possibly trim a few unmentionable hairs, but the shot suffered to Craig's thigh was more or less just as debilitating. The boy's tall, obese frame threatened to crumble as his leg bowed, and in order to stay standing without clutching onto Nik, he pedaled his feet to the right. That had hurt, but... after what he had done, he deserved it. At least a little bit, it was just a quick shot to the groin, nothing severe...

Then the Kronwall dove for the gun.

No... this wasn't the way it was supposed to go! They were supposed to talk, work things out or... or something! There had to be some reason here for what was going through each of their minds, but Craig was at a loss to explain it. There was no proof denying some diabolical thought, aside from the fact that Craig knew... he just KNEW that there was no true comic book villains here. Not on this island, not from his class. They were all heroes, upstanding or not. Craig, stumbling forward through the pain, headed for the gun to remove it, to give them both enough time to understand. Even jerks like Wolverine and The Punisher were heroes, after all.

"Giddit to me!" Craig shouted, flopping for the gun, putting all the energy he could to getting there like it was a fumble he was going to pick up to win the game. Only, somebody on the opposite team had gotten there first. Then they had turned over, the ball facing upwards. And then Craig landed on the player as well as the ball. And then there was a loud noise, the loudest Craig had ever heard in his life, as the crowd going wild produced a shock that could be felt through his entire body.

A shock that was caused by the bullet pulverizing his liver.
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Sometimes, Craig liked to wonder which was stranger: real life, or fiction? 'Stranger' wasn't always the right word in any situation, but it could usually be filled by 'more dramatic' or 'more intense'. The moment when a hero has been felled, dropping in front of the villain for the entire city to see. This all brought him back to the first time he found that issue of Superman in the comic book store, the one where Superman died (and it wasn't much of a spoiler, seeing as it was right there on the stupid cover). Sure, that particular issue might've been a bit overrated or the impact was somewhat lost when Superman came back, but it was a scene that no Superman fan, Craig included, would ever forget.

Here, in the time of his own defeat, the perception of the world was blocked... disjointed. There should have been a whole lot more pain shooting through him, yet Craig felt very little. Even things that weren't pain were hard to feel, as though his skin had decided to take a vacation. He felt himself roll off of Nik and flop to the ground on his back; the ground was there, but none of its hostility seemed to be at work as Craig struck it.

Hearing was out of the picture for now as well. The sound of that blast still rattled around in Craig's head, having disoriented him at first... or maybe that was being caused by something else. Eyes squinted shut, fought the blurriness that threatened to steal precious sight away from him, then opened to see Nik tearing away at his Punisher shirt... his favorite shirt. He seemed concerned, like something was wrong, like somebody was at great peril. The words of the boisterous young man pushed through the ringing to finally reach Craig, dividing the overpowering ringing sound.

"....mean it Craig! I didn't mean it...I just wanted to pass..."

Craig struggled to sit up, to lift his head even with the discomfort of the collar and prop himself up on his elbows so he could look down at what Nik was so concerned about. In the instant he had managed to view his own torn body before the strength in his arms gave out, Craig saw the blood plastered over his front. The amount that there was just seemed unnatural for what had to have happened. He was shot... that fact had now made itself apparent, but how or when it had happened... those details blurred together into a murky soup that Craig just didn't have the time or energy to pick apart.

"Craig, Craig, come on man, can you hear me? Come on man, I didn't mean it. I'm sorry man, I didn't mean it..."

Now the pain had decided to kick in. Far from how Craig had expected after seeing so much blood, it came in waves. A burst of pain would rip through him, then it would subside, then another tsunami of senses would pulse through him again. Breath was stolen away by the rushes, but as they thankfully slowed down to an occasional beat, he found himself able to talk. Nik just seemed so worried all of a sudden, Craig couldn't deny him an answer.

"H... Ha, I know!" He gasped, finding the first few words the hardest. "I know y- ungh!" The knot in his stomach tightened up, knocking the wind out of him more violently than any of this had before. After a few more desperate breaths, Craig struggled on. "I know... t-this really got out of control, huh? S-... sssorry about that..." With that, Craig smiled. The pain couldn't stop him from smiling, nor could the blood, nor the bullet. His will to smile, as long as somebody near him was in pain and needed to be cheered up, was indominatable. Right now, Nik needed that more than anybody.

"Don't blame yourself... th-... people make mistakes. D-Doesn't mean you're any less of a good guy!" Craig chuckled, even if the agony had made sure that another laugh would never escape his throat.

Everything was going to be alright. Craig was wrong... this guy before him, he really wasn't so bad, he just wanted shelter. His doubt had gotten in the way just for a bit, and it got somebody hurt. That wouldn't happen again, not as long as he was around. Everything was going to be alright, Trent would get up and he probably didn't suffer a major head injury... once Craig was all better, maybe he and the Kronwall could both team up and protect them.

Everything will be fine.

Craig wanted to say it, but for the moment, the pain in his abdomen had spread to his lungs, making it rather difficult to breathe. Instead, he smiled at Nik. He smiled, and he closed his eyes.

So slept the gentle giant of Bayview Secondary.

B083 Craig Hoyle: DECEASED
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