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Where There Is Fire, We Will Carry Gasoline; Private thread. Trust me, it's worth it.
Topic Started: Oct 11 2010, 02:03 PM (1,315 Views)
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((Albert Lions continued from Milk of Human Kindness, permission from Clue has been granted))

Christ almighty, what kind of sick place was this that didn't even have a Pizza Hut? Al shuddered to think. The very idea was just so... unamerican. Hours, he had been wandering, but nothing edible was in sight. There were barely even signs that civilization had ever been here. Granted, these trees didn't just chop themselves down, but that didn't really count. Lumberjacks weren't really civilization. Not that he'd ever say that to a lumberjack. They're big and they carry axes.

"You know, you have bread and water."

"Oh, come on," Al objected, "That totally doesn't count."

"It's something, Al. Better than starving, at least."

"You sound like my mother, dude."

Dougal shrugged. Not much he could really reply with, Al figured. So on they went, Al idly dancing through the field of dead trees and stumps, when he noticed something up ahead.

Wait, no, not something. Someone. Maybe they knew their way around this place.

"Hey!" he shouted at the distant figure. "I'm lookin' for something to chow down on! You know where I can find something?"
<Mimi>: You are much nicer than I thought you'd be!
<Stark>: Shut up, fatty.
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Okay. Okay, what.

Clearly, something wasn't quite right here. The shrill cry of the banshee off in the distance caught Al so off-guard, he nearly lost his footing. Holy crap, this girl could yell. He looked around, but no one else was in sight. So... what the heck was this girl's deal? "Y'think maybe she's seeing things or something?" he asked.

"Search me," replied the apparition. "Just try not to ge-"


"Or, just keep doing what it is you do. Whichever."

"Hey, hold on a minute! I'm not gonna hurt you or anything like that, really!" Quickly, he began to approach. If she was hurt, he had to help. It was only right. "C'mon, you okay over there? If you need any help or anything, I can-"

Before he could finish his sentence, before he realized there was even anything in the girl's hand, like a crack of thunder, a loud bang tore through the air.
<Mimi>: You are much nicer than I thought you'd be!
<Stark>: Shut up, fatty.
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Oh man, oh man, oh man, that hurt. It hurt like, like... like getting shot in the gut. There wasn't really an appropriate analogy, no witty comparison, nothing. Getting shot in the gut felt like getting shot in the gut and absolutely nothing else in the entire world. Getting stabbed in the gut? Maybe? Probably not, all things considered. No words really came to mind at all, in fact, save for OH JESUS GOD IT HURTS, and even those he couldn't articulate. Just guttural screaming, crying, and then more screaming when that was done. The wind knocked out of him, he clutched the fresh hole in his abdomen, stumbled back, slipped, and fell flat on his ass, bruising his tailbone in the process. Not that he noticed, of course. Gunshot wounds have a way of distracting you.

The Mosby Scale rates pain on a scale of zero to ten.

"RRRRRRGH OH GOD, oh god, oh god..."

This was at least a solid eighteen. Bare minimum.


That's eight degrees of pain more than Al could take and still remain conscious. As blood leaked its way out of his stomach, everything around him went white. When he came to, he was standing in the middle of the ocean. The island was gone. Not a hint of land anywhere in sight. Just... ocean. In every direction, ocean. Al half-expected to turn around to see the burning wreckage of the Kahana, before it occurred to him that, wait a second, he was standing. On the surface of the freaking ocean. That couldn't be right. Liquid didn't work that way unless you were Jesus or had inflatable shoes or something, neither of which was the case. He spun around to face the only other soul standing there in the middle of the clear, blue sea.


"It's over, Al."

Over? What was over? Lost? It couldn't be over! They can't just end on a cliffhanger like that! How did Locke die? Who the heck is Jacob? Where did the Island go? Wait, no, Dougal doesn't watch Lost, that couldn't b- oh. Ohhhhh.

Wait, no, that couldn't be right, either. "Hold on, that can't be it! I got too much to live for! I never got to do open mic night at the Improv! I never finished Persona 3! I never even got to find out what Moxie tastes like! MOXIE, Dougal! You know how important that was to me!" It was clear from the look on his face that he was livid. He really wanted that Moxie.

"Yeah, well, what about me, huh?" Dougal interrupted. "What about the family I'm never gonna see again? What about Annabel? It's not just you, Al. Everyone on that island minus one is losing everything they ever cared about. Think about that for a second."

For a second, Al thought about it. "Right. Everyone minus one. And y'know what? I'm one person. Yeah, that's right, I can count to one. So why not me? Answer me that, Casper."

"Al. Let's be honest. Do you really think you have what it takes to kill? Even when you've got no other choice?"

There was an extended pause, before Al sheepishly replied, "Um.... maybe?"

Dougal said nothing. Just stared through his glasses, lenses opaque through the glare of the sun. Al could pretty much tell what look he was getting, though. He'd seen it before.

"...Okay, probably not."

Dougal smiled, walked up to Al, and draped his arm over his friend's shoulder. "Look at it this way. You don't need that kind of guilt on your shoulders. This is for the best."

"...Yeah. Yeah, alright, I think I can live with that."

The freckled youth patted Al on the back, then began to walk. "Good answer. Now c'mon, let's get going."

Al motioned his hand over the top of his head, making a quiet whooshing sound. Really, Dougal? Dude, come on. Sure, they were dead and all, but have a sense of humor about it. Then again, this was Dougal he was talking about. And really, Al had never minded befo- wait, going where? Heaven? Was that why...

"Dougal, wait a sec. Is... is this why you stuck around? I mean, you coulda just gone ahead anytime, right?"

He stopped dead in his tracks, or whatever your feet make on the surface of the ocean, turned, and offered a wry smile. "It'd be a pretty dick move to just let my best friend die alone, wouldn't it?"

Touche, Augustus. Touche. And so, the two marched off silently into the sunset.

"So, you think they got a Pizza Hut in heaven?"

"Al, you play your cards right, and I'll bet they've even got Moxie."



"Wait, can we put that on hold a minute?" Al asked, turning on his heels and starting back in the opposite direction. "I gotta go take care of something."

"Take care of what?"

"Just some unfinished business!" he shouted back over the horizon. "Shouldn't take more than a minute!"

"Heh," Dougal muttered under his breath. "I see what you did there. Ghost humor. Take your time, man, take your time..."

A million miles away, on an island in the middle of nowhere, Al hadn't been out for more than a few seconds before he awoke in a violent coughing fit, blood spurting from his mouth. The pain came rushing back all at once, and god, did it ever hit hard. Still, he came back here for a reason, and with his friend's words echoing in his mind, he was determined to do what he came to do, however much it hurt. "W-wait... Kris, right?" He knew where he'd seen her before now. She was the skater chick from his algebra class. Nice girl, as he remembered. The kind of girl who's got plenty to live for. His lips curled into a smile, a stark contrast with the blood dripping from his chin. "I-it's not your fault, Kris. I get it... you just want to go home. T-there's nothing... nothing wrong with that..." More coughing. More blood. Everything was starting to blur together. He couldn't even make out her face anymore. But he had to keep going. "I wanted that too... but it wasn't gonna happen, no matter who got to me first. So it... it's okay... I forgive you." Faster and faster, his consciousness was fading. "You don't need that kind of guilt on your shoulders. Just... promise not t-" Even more coughing. Even more blood. One more sentence, Al. Close your eyes. Focus. You can do this. "Promise... not to lose... I'll be... pulling... for..."

No more coughing. No more blood. He didn't have any left to bleed. He sped up his own demise to force out one final speech, and he couldn't even finish, even though he'd come so close.

Still, it was just enough that he could go out smiling.

<Mimi>: You are much nicer than I thought you'd be!
<Stark>: Shut up, fatty.
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