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Carpe Noctum; Day 3
Topic Started: Oct 12 2010, 01:37 AM (4,910 Views)
Rattlesnake
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Now you may be wondering, who was wearing the bolo tie? Me or the shark? Answer: YES!
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
An hour flashed by in disguised as a few seconds. Or was it a seconds as an hour? Time seemed to have simply given up and wandered off for a smoke. He'd just stand there in the darkness until it made up its mind. Unless this was it, the end of time itself, where nothing even meant anything any more. Or maybe he was dead and this was purgatory or an island existing a a tangent to time, heck he was probably about to show up as a special guest on Lost or something-

All of these thoughts flashed by in a handful of seconds that he would recall as having lasted much longer than that.

But before that, he was fighting. Again. He'd never gotten into a fight in his old life, but his new life seemed to be just an endless chain of them, connected by brief periods filled with dread. Because he knew it would happen again. Heck, he was going for people. Dangerous people. Murderous people. What kind of strategy was that? But you needed to get the players early, kill-

Kill. His forehead made contact with David's nose. He felt it break, felt it shatter, felt it collapse. Crumbling inwards with a sound not unlike rubbing gravel together, leaking, gushing, spewing red all over his forehead and all over his face and all over his shirt. Nick felt his opponent go limp; he released his grip, and the kid collapsed on the floor in a heap.

Dead.

Another human life, gone. No, wait, maybe not. Yet, at least. The headbutt left a terrible pain between his eyes, but that was nothing compared to what he'd dealt. Maybe he wouldn't die right away, but there was no doubt the winner wouldn't spend a week roaming the island with his nose transformed from an "outy" to an "inny."

Nick turned to find the sword. He wasn't a cruel man. Proud sometimes, maybe, and a bit of a short fuse when he was so tired and so irritable. But really, who wasn't? Society, the media, hounding people the public disliked, beatifying those they liked, it was nothing more than a giant contest where the guy with the biggest ego wins. But he, Nick, he had reason to be proud. The only person you could ever rely on was yourself, and his self was competent beyond everyone else's wildest dreams. Surely nobody else would have the decency to do this, be so helpful to his classmate during his last moments on Earth, Calm, cool, collected, finish the job. Finish murdering his classmate for shining a flashlight in his eyes.

No, wait-

WHAM

The first thing he thought was that maybe the boy was dead, and his vengeful spirit had just delivered a haymaker. The second thing he thought was that time seemed so distorted, maybe it had stopped.
His third thought was that something had just hit his face-

His first thought was that time seemed rather distorted. Then the punch, and then the vengeful spirit hypothesis. That seemed to be right. Stupid chronology. He returned his thoughts to the situation at hand within a second that-

He returned his thoughts to the situation at hand.

There was someone else in the tunnel, unless vengeful spirits were in the habit of putting on flashing explosive collars. That someone was holding him up against the wall. As Nick's bruised head screamed a bubbling, roiling scream that echoed throughout his body, half-furious, half-pleading, because there was no way he'd die like Tom, smashed open with his glorious brains spilling onto the floor, the best brains in his class - screw that, in the school - splashed across cold, uncaring rock with wild abandon. Cruel ironic retribution from a universe that wouldn't stop teasing him and from classmates that wouldn't stop hounding him even after they were dead, because if ghosts were real, there were two of them that needn't travel far to dash his head to pieces in revenge.

The student spoke. Not student, figure. Shadow, form, phantom, something he didn't have to feel so bad about killing because it was telling him it would kill him or something, and he'd have to fight back. He couldn't die like this. He wanted to see death coming, feel it, meet his new friend by looking him in the eye, and he couldn't do that if he was trapped. The indignity of it all, trapped in a cave on an island he hadn't yet figured out how to flee. He didn't care what they wanted, he just wanted out. He spat, trying to find purchase with strangling hands, trying to wrench himself out of the newcomer's iron grip, trying to drive the kid's testicles into the roof of his mouth with his knee.

Just trying to survive.
VeeFive


V4


NO. THERE IS NO MORE TIME, EVEN FOR CAKE. FOR YOU, THE CAKE IS OVER. YOU HAVE REACHED THE END OF CAKE.

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Brackie
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personification of adhd
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Nick, he wouldn't stop moving. From the moment Maf's large hands engrasped his thin neck, it was like someone shined bright flashing lights in his face. He recieved a wad of spit on the chest, a scratching of hands around the wrist, and even an attempted kick in the groin. It all proved worthless to the boy in front of him when Maf responded to each of these actions in kind with solemn silence. Not a struggle. Not a response. Although the most recent attempt to free himself proved more harmful, Maf remained vigilante.

He wasn't going to harm this guy any more than he already had. His force, the amount of exertion he'd put into trying to get this guy to tell him what he knew was nothing more than necessary. Maf wasn't a morally violent person at all, but this was proving to be a bad choice.

Closing his eyes, trying his best to ignore the fragile hits, he squeezed his hand.

It wasn't anything deadly. It was a brief but powerful pull against the throat, less than 3 seconds, after which he loosened slightly, back to where it was.

...what had he just done? He...he could have killed him!

Was there any real danger in actually killing the guy?

No, there couldn't have been, could there?

That was almost what he thought back during that football match...

He opened his eyes again. It was all just to find out what the guy knew...but he wasn't responding.

...necessary force.

Maf's left hand, which had been laying dormant this whole time, moved to his collar. This would show him, even if he didn't really mean it, how far he was willing to go to get a real answer, a straight answer...

He lay his fingers along the edge, only slightly recieving a grip on it. Closing his eyes, Maf sighed, then looked straight into Nick's.

"I don't want to do this, but if you don't tell me what I asked...I'll do it. I don't care that I'll kill myself, but you...you want to find Jenniifer. I need to find Jennifer. Tell me what I wanted to know."

This was it, the edge of it. The moment which would make or break him.

All the cards were layed on the table.
Edited by Brackie, Dec 3 2010, 06:56 AM.
Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image
Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image

I can't sing but I wrote you a song

Wrong notes but the melody's so clear

When I'm lost, I'm still close to gold

cause I found my treasure in you
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Rattlesnake
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Now you may be wondering, who was wearing the bolo tie? Me or the shark? Answer: YES!
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
It wasn't that Nick didn't want to give an answer. That wasn't the cause of his struggle. After all, he didn't have anything to hide. And if he did have something to hide, he could just lie through his teeth. Putting his game face on, covering up his depression, it had given him experience in that area. It wasn't exactly the same thing. But it was still a lie.

At the moment, he didn't really care about putting his emotions on display. Not if he could he could use anger, hatred, fear, anything to get enough adrenaline to break the giant's vicelike grip. But for Nick's tired, skinny body, it seemed there wasn't enough adrenaline in the world. Fists were laughably useless; scratching and grasping, annoyingly so; kicking, alarmingly so. He didn't really know if the guy would do to him, but if he wanted to kill him, he wouldn't be able to stop him. That's what was sending his heart racing. That was why he struggled so viciously. That trapped feeling, closing in on him, locking him in a room with the Grim Reaper. It descended on him just like claustrophobia, and in a sense, it was. Because his life depended solely on the actions of someone else, someone he couldn't trust fully because he could only trust himself. A chilling prospect.

He jerked his knee up once more, and then one massive hand closed around his neck. Powerful fingers dug into the sides of his neck and he wondered if he would just collapse like Buttercup in front of Fezzick, but even if he didn't it wouldn't really matter because whether his arteries were cut off or his windpipe was crushed he was totally helpless and the tunnel was closing around him and there was nothing he could do to stop it zero things he could do with his brain or with his mouth or with his body and then he'd just be a corpse a third corpse on the wall of the cave and there was nothing he could say no last words no talking him out of it

Pressure, gone. Lessened, at least - he was still caught in an unbreakable grip. What the hell did the kid think he was doing? Chickening out, letting Nick die a slow and painful death as he worked out how to wrap his tiny little mind around the idea of killing, which was so darned easy if you could handle the surge of emotion that came with it, just squeeze and hold and holy crap on a stick, he'd grabbed his collar.

For two seconds, it would have been easy to mistake Nick for a statue, a beaten, harried statue with a drop of blood collecting on the end of his nose, drawing from the rivulets oozing down from his forehead. He didn't know where, or rather who exactly the blood came from, and he really didn't want to discover whether it was his own or the deceased badly injured student's, languishing on the tip of his nose, breaking and falling with a nearly inaudible plip on the ground below.

And the kid holding the collar did nothing but let off a sigh. Was this a threat, or another attempt to kill him? Whichever it was, it was so incredibly stupid, maybe the single worst way to get the job done. He could try calling the kid's bluff - surely he knew what danger he was putting himself in, and he'd let go in fear of his own life. But if he didn't realize that missing an entire hand would toss his chances of winning into the dumpster, he might just pull it. So, which was it? Would he really-

"Do it. I don't care that I'll kill myself..."

Aw, come ON!

That was the icing on the cake. Nick couldn't out-crazy sane a guy who was just as crazy sane as he was. Now he would be forced to give in, he'd have to-

Oh, right. Tell him when I saw Jennifer. Not, like, kill myself or something. Kind of slipped my mind there when I totally almost died.

"Umm..." Nick was pretty choppy at improv. And he wasn't normally in such an awkward situation. "We were in this cave, actually. Isn't that - not ironic, umm, funny? You totally heard me call for her, so, uh, you notice how I asked if she was still here? 'Cause I don't think she even left that long ago. It was early on the second day, I think. No, know. Like the "I know" kind, not-" Pressure on his throat told him his little tangent wasn't necessary. "So it was definitely the morning of the second day. I slept on that little ledge-, uh, right, so she came walking through the tunnel. And I talked to her, and she helped me wrap my arm. She was so nice, she told me I didn't deserve to die," he could feel tears welling up, but he forced his voice to stay smooth and unwavering. "I just - that meant a lot, you know, since the whole Daniel thing, and Maxwell worked me over, may he rot in pieces. So then there was this fight, and one kid was hurt real bad, so she was taking care of him, and the other, uh, well, he got killed, and someone dragged his corpse outside so I think maybe she was staying in here for a while because, you know, I don't think he was making very good company."

Nick was amazed by how much talking he'd done when he swore he couldn't get out half a sentence. The blood coming down his face was drying off, starting to get thick and sticky. He really didn't want to say any more. A sudden chill hummed up and down his ribcage as David's nose crunched horribly against his forehead. Bone shattering, snapping, crackling, splintering, spurting blood, something creeping up behind him but he didn't know what, some demon for whom solid rock had no meaning coming through the wall he was pressed against to wrench his spine right out of his body...

He shivered.

"So, uh, you're gonna let me go, yeah?"
VeeFive


V4


NO. THERE IS NO MORE TIME, EVEN FOR CAKE. FOR YOU, THE CAKE IS OVER. YOU HAVE REACHED THE END OF CAKE.

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Brackie
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personification of adhd
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
((sooo sorry for the wait))

The boy spoke, and Maf listened. It wouldn't have been right to assume the boy was lying from the get-go, but in any case it remained clear that the boy did indeed meet Jennifer. And he didn't even try and cover up the fact that he was responsible for death here, of all places. What's more, he wasn't...he wasn't even mildly disturbed by the same fact. Is that what happened to the people who ended up playing here? Is that what would happen to him or Nathan or Jason or Liam? Would they eventually...turn, just stop caring? Become jaded by the very concept that, well, someone was dead by your hand?

Maybe Maf should have just realised it sooner. If he decided to just stop caring, then he would be no different than the killers, the players, everyone else who had lost themselves to this game, this sick game.

What he wouldn't have given to just ensure that Jennifer remained safe from the small, wirey boy in front of him. If he enclosed his neck, it would be like a death sentence nailed into his skin. Not just for the boy, but for Maf as well. A misguided attempt at making sure that his friends, his mates, his...that Jennifer remained safe from just one more person who was out to make sure that his friends had a slimmer, yet better, chance of being safe wherever they were now, would mean that everyone he ever knew would be out to kill him. And the worse thing of all was that...that people he knew had already travelled down the same path as everyone in the small, dark tunnel in front of them.

...Dammit, he left Nathan out to dry, didn't he?

As the boy stopped speaking, all these thoughts, thoughts that didn't belong to him, were slapped away by invisible hands. He wouldn't do that, no. No matter the fact that Nick Reid was...was a killer, the corresponding fact still remained that he was also a human being. Every person Maf had met in his life, even the arrogant people, the people who were pricks, to say the least, the people who hated people and everyone around him, they were still people.

So because Nick Reid was, in all essences, a person, Maf released him from his grip with both hands. Maf was still a person who didn't want to hand out violence that easily, or retribution, so when he turned around and walked back to his bags, he knew that Nick wasn't going to hurt him. The laws of nature prevailed over the laws of human nature; Maf was big, Nick was small.

He listened for whatever happened next, just to make sure he was right for once.
Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image
Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image

I can't sing but I wrote you a song

Wrong notes but the melody's so clear

When I'm lost, I'm still close to gold

cause I found my treasure in you
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Rattlesnake
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Now you may be wondering, who was wearing the bolo tie? Me or the shark? Answer: YES!
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Goosebumps shot up along Nick's arms, hairs snapping to like a squadron of soldiers even while his face was burning with anticipation. Whether this would be the end of the road for him or just another regrettable speed bump would be decided within the next few seconds... he held his breath, hoping Maf would make his move and not just hold him there for 15 seconds, a minute, 62 seconds, whatever. That nameless ethereal horror was bearing down on him, but if the giant squeezed his throat he'd have something to fight against. He'd claw and kick and tear and rip the collar off his stupid neck, let him pay for his indiscretion, while he, Nick could finally die on his own terms...

And then he was free. He spent an awkward second just standing there, just watching the gloomy dark shape turn its back, tasting the freedom he'd longed for but finding it sour. It was over, and the kid hadn't even said anything. Just stopped. Walked away like Nick was some galling yet inconsequential spider on the wall instead of who he was, a living, breathing, human who had killed an armed man with his bare hands in that very cave-

Or maybe there was something else. There had to be a reason he'd been left alive yet again. How many times was this now? First, there was Alex, and Maxwell, and then Ivan... Nik, Maf, heck, Nick himself, they'd all had more than their fair opportunity to wipe him out. And they weren't bundles of sunshine, either. Ivan had gotten a BKA, he had three two three people die at his own hands, and Maxwell has far from innocent. It had to be more than chance. There was something out there, some cosmic thing that wanted him alive, something with a twisted sense of humor, maybe, but something inestimably potent. That was why Maf had turned away. He had to. There was no choice. There was no killing someone made invincible by providence!

He unfroze. There was Maf, bent over his bag like fate's big, fat marionette. He'd die eventually - they all would. But there was no need to rush things. The flywheel of fate was hooked up to the cogs of destiny, and once the car battery of really crazy coincidences started to send the electricity of something or other to the capacitor of...

Well, there was no point in rushing things at any rate. He'd done his deed for the day. He stepped past the prone form oozing onto the floor, daubing the walls in red, marking the cave so that the angel of death would pass over him for another day. Then, picking up his bag and his sword, he turned towards Maf.

Go teabag a bear trap.
"Thank you, good sir."

And then he was off to the races. The blood trickling lethargically down from his forehead crept down his nose, uncomfortably close to his mouth. He wiped it off roughly on his shoulder, but did no more for the present. He'd clean himself up later, when he wasn't rushing down a black hellhole with a flashlight in one hand, a four-foot instrument of death in the other, and a couple of angry ghosts to outrun.

((Nick Reid continued in All the Untested Virtue))
VeeFive


V4


NO. THERE IS NO MORE TIME, EVEN FOR CAKE. FOR YOU, THE CAKE IS OVER. YOU HAVE REACHED THE END OF CAKE.

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Brackie
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personification of adhd
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
And then...relief.

The boy, the killer, didn't try anything while Maf let him run. He listened with his back turned as the boy mumbled a thank-you, and then scarpered off into the darkness.

...now what?

The big predicament that lay ahead of Maf at this moment was the choice of finding out how exactly to get out of here and meet up with Nathan, or try and find out whether or not the Reid boy was true to his word about Jennifer. It was a cruel choice by fate, and really if he could have done both, split himself in two and have two Maf's wandering the island trying to do everything they needed to do, then that was what would have happened.

In the end, however, he knew that he couldn't abandon his friend any more than he had already. He'd already gotten ahold of all of Nathan's belongings, and chances were that he was going to get worried. Maf wasn't that good of a direction-finder, so chances were it was going to be a while until he got out.

Reid went in one direction, and Maf went in the other.

I'm sorry mate, I'm coming.

((Ma'afu Tuigamala continues in Where Was My Brain?))

[[THREAD CLOSED]]
Edited by Brackie, Mar 20 2011, 08:26 PM.
Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image
Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image

I can't sing but I wrote you a song

Wrong notes but the melody's so clear

When I'm lost, I'm still close to gold

cause I found my treasure in you
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