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It's Everything's Nature to Fall; Private Thread
Topic Started: Nov 20 2010, 03:55 AM (4,087 Views)
Dr. Nic
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How cute.
[ *  * ]
I'm not thinking about it... I'm just doing it.

His hand tightened around the grip of the gun, hidden in the backpack and just waiting to be drawn. There was no reason to hesitate and no reason to delay. Nothing was there to stop him from simply pulling the firearm from it's place of hiding and making Jason pay for what he did. Make him face the consequences of his actions. Make him pay for pulling the trigger and ending a life. Make him pay... for the exact same thing William had done. That's what it was, wasn't it? Why his hand wouldn't remove itself from the backpack, why he couldn't pull the weapon out and do what he knew had to be done. Because Jason's reasons for doing what he did.... they weren't far removed from the reasons that William did what he had done not two days prior.

It's not the same. It's not. It's...

It is... isn't it?


William had panicked and pulled his gun on Trevor, had flinched and pulled the trigger out of reflex and reaction. He wasn't thinking when he did it. He just panicked and pulled the trigger to protect himself and Tiffany. He didn't know if Trevor could have had a gun and was hostile, he didn't know if that sudden movement was him going for a weapon. Will just panicked and did what had to be done at the time to protect the one he cared for, right?

Right?

But... but it's not the same. It can't be the same. I can't be like... like him!

But you are.

But...

But he couldn't afford to let him get away with what he'd done. No matter the reason, he still killed Tiffany. He still pulled the trigger on an innocent girl, a girl who had done nothing to harm anyone and never would. No matter what the reasons were or why Jason had done it, Will just couldn't let him get away with it. Even if it meant he may have to meet the same fate, Will wasn't going to let Jason just get away with what he did. He couldn't. If he sought forgiveness for his own actions, he would have to seek forgiveness for Jason's... and that was something he simply couldn't do.

He asked himself this question once before, hadn't he?

If protecting the ones he cared for meant ending the lives of others... would he be able to do it?

He answered before... and he would answer again.

Yes.

"Jason!"

He pulled the handgun from the backpack. Peter had taken action and now it was William's turn. He stood and took aim, searching for the opening. A moment when Peter was out of harms way and there was a clean shot at Jason. Just one moment. Just one single moment is all it would take as Will aimed at the boy.

At the murderer.

It didn't matter if his actions would condemn himself to the very fate he wished to condemn Jason to. He made his decision... a long time ago.

"I said burn in hell!"

He pulled the trigger...



Pain. Silence.




And everything went dark.
Boy #??? - Joshua Edwards
Hanging out somewhere, playing his heart out.
Writer and local retail slave at the comic book store.

Girl #??? - Viktoriya "Vika" Starikova
Floating in the void, unfinished and half-formed.
Hot headed member of the soft ball team, secretly wishing she could fly.

Those who were
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MK Kilmarnock
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Hate, hate, HATE!!!
[ *  *  *  *  *  *  * ]
With a dull but satisfying thud and fire in his knuckles, Brook watched Will fall. Maybe the boy was just temporarily disabled, possibly having been given a concussion. Maybe he was even dead, it didn't matter to Brook. Will needed to sleep, and that mission had all but been accomplished.

It seemed so simple, too, how it all went down. Will pointed his gun, focusing so intently. Everybody had all forgotten about poor, broken Brook. Well, almost everybody. There was still Jason, crying out his name to seek attention, or... or something. He couldn't be bothered to worry too much about it... not when there were other matters at hand. There remained places to go, things to do, and a monument to dedicate, and nobody else in the group was to be invited. And as Will continued to point that gun, to focus and stare like some idiot waiting for his cue, it was elementary to get behind him. One careful, spiteful punch to the goddamn occipital bone was more than enough to do the trick.

Jason could rough-cuddle with Peter in a fight to the death for as long as he wanted and as long as he could survive, for all Brook cared. Peter could be damned, he'd hardly bat an eye. As for Will... Brook only gave the unconcious boy the dignity of a second or two's worth of attention before lowering himself to the peaceful body of the girl he loved, the girl he cared about.

Jason's crime was terrible, but there would be no sleep lost over what Brook had done to Will. Somewhere, deep inside, he still didn't want to see his best friend die. That bridge would be crossed when Brook reached it. For now?

Ta ta for now, Jason... it's been fun. It really has, but she's just so...

The yearnful and crushed boy picked up the body of the girl. He wished he could pause to admire her form, to marvel how she managed to look so well even spattered in that vile blood. Luckily, the conclusion was simple enough that he could begin moving right away, to get away from this whole mess, to take away Tiffany's body and give her a mountain's worth of memories.

The world will not forget you... nor your blood. Even it can't be left behind... not on my watch.

Brook snickered to himself as he carried the girl, caring for nothing else.
V6 Tributes

Spoilers, Ricky didn't win V5

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Solitair
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Where modesty's ill manners, 'tis but fit that impudence and malice pass for wit.
[ *  *  *  * ]
So began another milestone in Eiko Haraguchi's continuing education. Now that she'd learned to survive in harsh terrain, to bear the smell of death lingering around the island like permafrost, to endure the loneliness of life on the island, it was time for her to engage in her first battle, the moment when the cold dread of her existence turned to white-hot, mindless panic.

Were she a direct participant in the battle, she would be dead now. The moment of truth came upon her too suddenly; even with her weapon in what she thought was the ready position, she missed it completely. Peter and Harris were locked in a life-or-death struggle, and oddly, it seemed an even match, considering that Peter had a sword and Harris used using nothing more than a tree branch to fend him off. She was thankful that Harris wasn't using his gun beyond that first shot, she guessed, but the melee combat flew by too fast for her to keep up. Peter slashed. Harris dodged and countered. They kept moving too fast for Eiko to pick out Harris and hit him with her polearm. As angry as she was at him, she would rather let them both go than risk ripping apart Peter's flesh.

Someone else would have to even the odds. For a moment, it looked like Hearst would pull through. He, too, had a gun, and had more confidence that he could hit his target, despite the risk being far greater. She turned to look at Harris again, ready to see his body spray red mist.

Instead, Harris turned and shouted in horror at his partner, Brooks. Eiko turned back and watched Hearst collapse, thanks to Brooks's clenched fist. Before she could say anything, he turned and knelt down, reaching his hands under Tiffany's body.

What was he doing with that? Eiko guessed that Brooks was as good a friend of Tiffany's as Peters. Perhaps he wanted to pay his last respects, to give her a proper burial? She shivered at the thought of burying a corpse, a creepy American tradition she'd never gotten used to, when it occurred to her that Brooks wasn't waiting for the fight to end. The body hung limply in his arms, bouncing its head sickeningly as he started to pick up the pace.

Then Eiko remembered seeing Brooks before, seeing him with Peter at the Prom, when they drank punch as she danced with her date. She only caught snippets of their conversation; they talked about love, and Tiffany, and missed opportunities.

Brook had laughed to himself as he walked away with Tiffany.

That one detail spawned a nameless dread within Eiko, making her remember that she had legs and a long, studded pole with prongs on the end. She kept it gripped tight in her hands, held it in front of her as she chased after him. "Brooks-san! Where are you going?" she asked, a twinge of worry in her voice the first time she called out to him. He didn't listen, instead increasing his speed. She found herself struggling to catch up with him, her shouts growing more shrill and passionate.

"Brooks-san! BROOKS-SAAAAAN!"
WickedIcon: i just launched a baby wearing a denim jacket and a bowler hat across a hospital, through a window, killing several patients, destroying thousands of dollars of equipment, and finally coming to rest on the body of a presumably dead clown
WickedIcon: this is the best dollar i've spent in several years

chitoryu12I have yet to find gay sex that involves the men punching each other. I must not be on the internet enough

Turning Pages: Read some books along with me, why don't you?

V4:
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V5:
Arthur Wells: The Artist ... ... ... ... ?
Rose Matheson: The Sprinter ... ?
Ilya Volkov: The Wrestler ... ... ... ... !
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MK Kilmarnock
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Hate, hate, HATE!!!
[ *  *  *  *  *  *  * ]
((I THINK all the godmodding is approved. I'm on a bit of short notice, but yeah, I hope this does the trick!))

True to his prediction, everybody was too busy squabbling about who did what or in what matter. Nobody could see, like Brook could, that it was all pointless. What was done was done; the delicate flower in his arms had been trampled upon irrevocably, her perfect body broken and killed. As he looked down to her with a sad grin on his face, the way her head drooped past his arms reminded him of an injured bird he once plucked from the condemning dangers of the ground. Tiffany was a lot like that… a bird who had lost her way, but he was about to place her where she belonged, give her an eternal purpose.

Of course, somebody was apt to get in the way of it. Somebody ALWAYS had to be getting in the way of things… and this time it was Eiko. Eiko, that annoying, cold, she’s-all-business bitch who could never really look past the end of her own goddamn nose and try to think big. Brook clutched the sleeping beauty in his arms at the sound of the god awful screeching call beckoning to him. He kept running, at least at first, but there was no way he could keep outpacing the girl forever. He was the superior runner, no doubt, but he was also the one carrying more weight.

Nobody will get between us. Nobody will stop your immortalization, Tiffany, I promise! But if she’s all to eager to help, I’ll let her! Yeah… yeah, that’s brilliant! For now, though, I gotta get her off of us both…

Frowning, Brook scoured the area for a suitable spot. He should’ve been far away enough from the group to be able to take care of things as he needed, but if anybody followed Eiko, he was going to have one hell of a time getting out of this mess. Still, nothing he could do but hope for the best. Forcing the smile back to his face came naturally and, soon, it existed all by itself when he set Tiffany down behind a tree, turning to await Eiko’s arrival from around the corner.

“Eiko-saaaan, Eiko-saaaaan!” Brook giggled as she came into view. Though he didn’t quite intend it, the way he called back to her was slightly mocking, and in a high-pitched faux accent. God, it was annoying how she shouted after him like that… didn’t she realize that she could fuck up all of his plans just then?

Stupid, stupid slut, always rushing off in her business-y manner before taking a second to think…

He had to make this quick… Eiko had to be disposed of, and quick. The bad side of things was that Leila, being the stupid Novocain-twat whore that she was, had to go and steal his gun… and how? By being a disgusting pig and smearing her goddamn, dirty, hogwash-ridden blood all over his face! He trembled a little just thinking about it… honestly, how stupid did Jason think he was? Mud… of course, mud! But no… he knew that smell, but he let Jason cow him into thinking it was something so innocent.

Jason… oh, how Jason still cared about him so… too bad that the next time Brook saw him, he was going to break his dear friend’s kneecaps and feed them to him.

The good side to all of this, though, was that Eiko seemed to be rather clumsy with that weapon as she approached him. Maybe he could still make something of this… but carefully. “Eiko-saaaaan… I’m so glad you’re here!” He sounded weak, intentionally at that, as he took the two steps he needed to gently push aside the weapon… and then smack her in the jaw.

“HAUL OFF, YOU SLANTED BITCH!” Brook yelled. No, he didn’t yell it; he screamed at her as he struck her, his body behaving like a cornered animal. He hoped it was enough to deter Eiko as he darted back to Tiffany’s body, roughly slung her over his shoulder, and ran for the hills.

((Liam “Brook” Brooks, continued in... Bloodgarden))
Edited by MK Kilmarnock, Dec 24 2010, 06:50 PM.
V6 Tributes

Spoilers, Ricky didn't win V5

Things We Say
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Dr. Nic
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How cute.
[ *  * ]
[Idle post to avoid inactivity.]

Shit.


That hurt.


That really hurt.

It didn't take long for William to wake from his state of unconsciousness. And when he woke up, not only was the world spinning and more than a little blurry, but his stomach decided it was time to void itself of any contents. He'd only been out for a few minutes but it was a terrible experience, and the nausea that came afterward wasn't making anything better. But at least he was alive and in one piece, Brook hadn't killed him or taken anything... wait.

Where was Tiffany?

She was gone from where she had been, and Brook wasn't there either. What the hell happened here that the two of them were just gone? Did Brook... did he take Tiffany? Did Will fail to protect her even after she was dead, just letting someone take her body and do god knows what with it? God damn it! This can't be happening. First Jason... he kills her, and then Brook runs off with the body while neither Will nor Peter can do anything about it? This shouldn't be happening, it just shouldn't!

But it is.

And it was too late to stop any of it. All he could do is sit there and wallow in his inability to do anything to help his friends. He couldn't save Tiffany, couldn't even give her a proper burial. He couldn't help Peter or kill...

Jason!

They were still over there, weren't they?

It wasn't too late to make at least one thing right. It wasn't too late to take one bit of revenge on a killer. Spitting the taste of sick from his mouth and uneasily rising to his feet, William held the handgun tight. The world was still spinning and everything seemed a little distant, but he could still pull the trigger. He could still do that much.

Now all he needed to do... was find Jason.

But weren't they missing someone else?
Edited by Dr. Nic, Jan 1 2011, 09:31 PM.
Boy #??? - Joshua Edwards
Hanging out somewhere, playing his heart out.
Writer and local retail slave at the comic book store.

Girl #??? - Viktoriya "Vika" Starikova
Floating in the void, unfinished and half-formed.
Hot headed member of the soft ball team, secretly wishing she could fly.

Those who were
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A wonderful fact to reflect upon, that every human creature is constituted to be that profound secret and mystery to every other.
[ *  *  *  * ]
((Nothing Post to avoid inactivity))

Jason was still breathing heavily as the two fighters stepped apart. He took a moment to take it all in, Brook had run off, Eiko in tow. Will was coming to. He knew he had to do something fast, either make a break for it or engage and disarm Will, or chase after Brook. His lips were cracked and his throat dry, he just needed a second more to think, just a minute more...
Sickness: Partially suicidal... very slightly because of my report, but mostly because Jason is dead. All of my personal issues stem from the fact that Jason Harris did not win SotF v4

William 'Woozie' Wu - "Hey Pheebs, you're amazing babe."

V4
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Solomir
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Nanotech Engineer
[ *  *  *  * ]
Swordplay was an art but Peter was no artist. He could barely draw passable stick-men, and even the graphs and diagrams that he drew for physics and math looked like random scribbles of vaguely intersecting curves.

In any case, it wasn't a problem that couldn't be solved by brute force.

Peter made a wide swing with his blade, the steel whistling through the air where Jason had stood a split second before. He could feel that the swing had left him holding the sword in an awkward position, but it wasn't like he knew a proper way of swinging it anyway. Pivoting toward where Jason had dived to from the initial swing, Peter instinctively brought the blade up over his shoulder for his next blow.

The poor branch never stood a chance. Wood fragments burst from the force of the impact, with the blade flew through the cloud of debris. It was an unfamiliar feeling, having a sword cleave through an object instead of being parried aside. Peter’s past experience with weapons had been limited to fencing with padded plastic tubes. Of course, those had the property of being quite incapable of cutting through things, which also made them quite harmless. Now, Peter could really feel what it was like to hold a weapon and to use it.
But I don't need a weapon. Why do I need to hurt people?
If he said he didn’t like how it felt, he’d be lying.
People won't listen until they have a reason to. This just happens to be the easiest way to give them a reason.
With all that power in his hands, it was surprisingly hard to actually hit something though. No matter how much he swung, Jason seemed to find some way to get out of the way each and every time. Instinct guided Peter's hands. He wasn't planning ahead and anticipating Jason's movements, just reacting with each swing. Nothing mattered as long as Peter could line up another slash and actually hit something.

Peter saw, rather than felt, the little victories he scored: once across Jason's arm, like eye for an eye; another tore through his shirt, drawing a barest trickle of blood. They weren't much, but any success was enough to spur Peter into pushing his assault with more zeal. He swung with more power, in hopes that the next hit would deal more damage than just a flesh wound. With each slash, he stepped farther and farther, almost lunging, in order to pressure Jason into submission.

He took the first opening he found, and surged forward with a wild swing aimed high. The blade missed its mark, Jason sidestepping at just the right moment, and bit sharply into the dry bark of a small tree. Jason took the opportunity to launch a fist back at Peter. He shut his eyes and flinched reflexively, but that did little to mitigate the pain from the punch. There was a brief flash of pain, but it felt like it could have lasted for minutes. To add insult to injury, he could still feel the rattling from hitting the tree.
That was stupid. See what happens when I stop thinking for even a second? I get punched and it hurts.
Peter hadn't been hit in a proper fight in years. Getting hit now was definitely an unwelcome sensation, especially since it wasn't just a schoolyard brawl. He staggered back a step, but quickly shook it off and raised his sword to continue the fight. Where he had been hit, Peter could feel the slight tingling, the residual pain from the punch and the imminent swelling that would need tending later. Jason hadn't hit him particularly hard, but Peter knew he had just gotten lucky then. He couldn't afford to get hit again.
Then let's play this the right way. No more random wild swinging.
A deep breath and a brief moment to regather his thoughts was all Peter had time for before redoubling his efforts on the offensive. He left no holes in his attack, no openings for Jason to capitalize on again. Each strike needed to be smart and efficient. Fatigue gnawed at the back of Peter's mind, and he knew he wouldn't be able to keep this up forever. Still, he continued to push the attack one swing after another. If his body was going to shut down from physical exertion, it had damn well better be after he finished the job.

Another line of red, another victory, appeared on Jason's leg. Peter felt it this time; the slight resistance of flesh giving way to cold sharpened steel enhanced the sense of achievement. There was only a brief moment to savor it, but at least he could do that, unlike when he had cut Lucas' throat open. Then, it had just been doing what needed to be done. There was no special accomplishment to it, just finishing off something somebody else had started. This time, he worked hard for it. Sweat beaded on his forehead, and each swing felt more laborious. But now that he had hit a vital spot, the end was in sight. Instead of following with another swing, Peter instead took advantage of the hit to Jason's leg to quickly ram his shoulder against the other boy. The blow took Jason by surprise, and knocked him off balance. Peter was going to make sure the murderer got what he deserved, and closed in for the finishing blow.
Idiot! That would leave me totally open!
Somehow he still managed to miss. Instead of sinking into flesh and bone, the sword instead dug itself a nice spot in the tree right behind Jason.

The barest moment of surprise was enough to distract Peter from what came next. Something, probably Jason's leg, slammed into Peter's abdomen and knocked the wind out of him. He released his grip on his weapon, instinctively pulling his hand to thump against his chest to clear his airway. The step back was probably what saved him from the incoming fist; the space gave him just enough time to stop the blow aimed at his head. He wasn't so quick to stop the second one, which hammered into his chest with like his mom's old feather duster.
That thing used to fucking hurt. And she kept saying it was because I was "talking back".
More blows rained down on him. For each one he managed to stop, three more found their mark. Peter had never been in a real fistfight. The rules at his old school was more than enough deterrent from even the slightest hints of violence, and Peter had eventually mellowed to the point where there were other ways of expressing dislike for a person without resorting to his fists. Each hit was another brief flash of pain, and Peter knew he couldn't keep himself up for much longer. He just wasn't a fighter.
Don't be a loser. People don't accomplish things when they keep telling themselves they're incompetent. Man up.
No. He had to fight. Even if he wasn't good at it, he had to fight. How else would he protect his friends? He'd already tasted failure, and he wasn't going to let it happen again because he was a spineless quitter.

The next punch seemed to move in slow motion, at least slow enough for Peter to actually read it and get out of the way. Ducking down a little, he let the hand slip past his shoulder, the movement whooshing past his ear, and returned fire with a wide hook from his right arm. The impact of his fist to jawbone was immensely satisfying, as well as extremely painful (for both parties). Physics followed up, transferring the momentum from one body to the other, and sending the smaller boy tumbling aside.

In a less serious situation, Peter might have just gaped at the damage he had just wrought. He hadn't meant to hit that hard, but considering the bruises he'd have all over his body the next day, this would've been considered fair. Instead, Peter turned and took three long steps back to where his sword had gotten stuck in the tree, waggling his hand slightly to shake off the stinging from the earlier punch. The didn't dislodge from a strong tug, but Peter would rather get his weapon back than continue the brawl without a weapon.

Jason's yell took Peter by surprise. It hadn't even been directed at him, but perhaps that was what had been so surprising about it. Or it might've been that hint of horror laced in his words. Whatever it was, Peter turned to look at Jason, who was in turn looking elsewhere. Peter's eyes tracked Jason's gaze, just in time to catch someone disappearing in the nearby brush, followed shortly by the the profile of Eiko. Will was on the ground, either unconscious or possibly worse.

Tiffany's body was nowhere to be seen.

Whatever thoughts Peter had prior to witnessing this tableau were instantly replaced by a whole different set of emotions. Fear. Confusion. Duty. Jason may have deserved to die for what he had done, but that could be taken care of later, after Peter had made sure Eiko and Will were safe. He needed to check to make sure Will was still alive. He needed to follow Eiko to make sure she wasn't getting herself into something stupid that would result in her getting killed. And he needed to follow up and make sure Jason paid for what he had done.

But the most pressing issue was where Tiffany's body had gone. Had Brook taken it? Why? It made no sense, but there was somebody here that might be able to shed some light.

Peter whirled to face Jason and slowly walked up to him, making sure to maintain a glare of cold steel. "What the fuck happened? Where the fuck did they go?" He left his arms at his side. There were things more pressing than trying to fight again and hopefully Jason wouldn't get some stupid ideas and try to punch him again.
V5


B036: Benjamin Ward: "Sh-shut the fuck up. Or I'll k-kick your ass."
B047: Marcus Leung: "Let's start by staying calm."


V4

Rest in peace

B004 - Peter Siu: "We're all fuck-ups."
G006 - Tiffany Baker: "Will you stay with me, until I wake up?"
G027 - Marybeth Witherspoon: "The cameras are pointing here, not there."
B115 - Tony Russo: "I'm sorry...."
G087 - Rachel Gettys: "I detest all my sins, because I dread the loss of heaven and the pains of hell."
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A wonderful fact to reflect upon, that every human creature is constituted to be that profound secret and mystery to every other.
[ *  *  *  * ]
Jason bled from numerous cuts and gashes, his breathing heavy and laboured. Brook and Eiko's sudden departure had given him a short reprise from Peter and Jason used it wisely. There was no way he could think, try and understand what just happened when he was pressed like this. He needed to get away, analyse the situation and come up with a plan. He needed to find Brook, bring him back and regroup with Nathan and Maf before something happened.

He whipped out his pistol again, unsafely jammed in his shorts. The weapon was covered with grime and slick with swamp muck. He hoped it would still work. The manual had said it was used in underwater assaults, so he presumed it would. Either way it was still a terrifying prop. Pointing at Peter he yelled out, his breath horse.

"Don't get any closer. I did what I had to, you all saw her pull the gun. You all saw it!" His voice took on a hysterical edge and he checked himself mentally. "I don't want to hurt you, but we both know the game. I..." Jason was lost for words. He needed to figure this out. "Don't follow me. Or you'll get one in the head."

Cautiously Jason backed off, retreating carefully out of the clearing and in to the swampy bushland, headed back towards the residential district. Once he was sure he put enough distance between himself and the two remaining boys he broke in to a run. He just needed to get away. Get away from that place, that feeling, that instant.

((Jason Harris continued in ...But That Was Yesterday))
Sickness: Partially suicidal... very slightly because of my report, but mostly because Jason is dead. All of my personal issues stem from the fact that Jason Harris did not win SotF v4

William 'Woozie' Wu - "Hey Pheebs, you're amazing babe."

V4
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Solitair
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Where modesty's ill manners, 'tis but fit that impudence and malice pass for wit.
[ *  *  *  * ]
After Brooks vanished into the distance, Eiko stood still, eyes focused on the space where she last saw him. Him and Tiffany. Gone.

This was after she tumbled backwards into the swamp, flailing her arms and shouting in surprise. She hit the foul, murky water with a slow, deep splash, followed by the force of gallons of water flowing over her, rendering her a murky silhouette as seen from above. She remembered the few seconds she spent under swamp water in disturbing detail, and probably always would.

There was the feeling of water invading her, trespassing in her mouth, nose, and ears, that foul-tasting swill threatening to infest her lungs and pull her into the depths below. It triggered a panic, a deep primordial urge to escape that Eiko was sure she'd never felt before. There was the frightening sensation she had whenever she saw a test and realized she hadn't studied for it correctly, and then there was this! There was no thought here, no fast-paced prediction of outcomes and solutions. Here there was only one good solution, one desirable outcome. Her hands scrabbled madly for something to push against, finding muck and slime and (she could have sworn) something alive, something repulsive.

But finally her head broke the water's surface. She erupted into a protracted coughing fit, reflexively trying to expunge the disgusting fluid from her mouth. She noticed that the water tasted awfully salty and sharp, a taste that lingered after her throat was cleared. Her tongue searched and found that the inside of her left cheek had been mangled. The punch from Brook forced her jaw shut, clamping the cheek between her teeth and slicing it to hell. That spot on her jaw hurt, too; it throbbed like there was an insect there, threatening to burst out of her skin. She touched it and immediately winced. That only infuriated her jaw even more.

Then she looked down, and felt her heart break. That disgusting, bacteria-ridden water had thoroughly soaked into every inch of her clothing. All the inches. She didn't even want to imagine what happened to her hair, though she could feel if plastered against her neck. Her hands trembled as water dripped off of them and she struggled to comprehend what just happened to her.

For a friendly neighborhood gardener, Brooks could put a lot of weight into a punch.

He punched her.

And he called her something.

What was it?

A slanted bitch?

What did slanted m-

Oh.

He said that, did he?

She realized that she could hear herself breathing, the air constricted by the raw flesh of her throat. She could feel her nails digging into her palms, almost hard enough to draw blood. She could feel her facial muscles pulled tight against her skull, threatening to tear themselves loose from their ligaments and shrink into nothing.

All throughout this game she'd tried to think about her every action. She tried to approach things in a reasonable manner, balance the consequences of everything beyond the short term instinctual scale that was expected of her by her captors. But how, oh how, was she supposed to reason with a thing like Brooks? Brooks, who deflated her in an instant and made her look like a laughingstock on national television. Brooks, who brutalized her and made her bleed. Brooks, who threw a vile slur her way and laughed like a child all the way.

Reason be damned. She wanted to break him in half.

Her glance finally fell to the ground and saw her weapon, barely visible below the water. She reached down and pulled it out of the water, grunting at the effort. She wished she could have something better, that she had the sword and Peter had this clumsy thing. With such a mismatched armament it was no wonder Brooks had bested her.

She needed something else. Someone else, rather. She hoped Peter was still where she left him, battling that toad Harris in his own fit of passion. Her pace through the swamp was much faster this time, as she no longer had to worry about getting her legs wet! Why bother? The horses had already escaped, to turn a fucking phrase!

Yeah, looks like Peter hadn't budged an inch at all. Eiko felt a surge of hatred at hearing Harris's sniveling, whiny voice again denying responsibility for murdering an innocent girl. She'd break him, too. First his leg, then maybe his fingers. Oh damn, there he goes, coward that he is. Eiko felt her arm twitch reflexively as she waited for Peter to notice her and ask her what happened.

God, are you okay, Eiko? Where the fuck is Tiffany, Eiko? What's Brooks thinking, Eiko?
WickedIcon: i just launched a baby wearing a denim jacket and a bowler hat across a hospital, through a window, killing several patients, destroying thousands of dollars of equipment, and finally coming to rest on the body of a presumably dead clown
WickedIcon: this is the best dollar i've spent in several years

chitoryu12I have yet to find gay sex that involves the men punching each other. I must not be on the internet enough

Turning Pages: Read some books along with me, why don't you?

V4:
Spoiler: click to toggle


V5:
Arthur Wells: The Artist ... ... ... ... ?
Rose Matheson: The Sprinter ... ?
Ilya Volkov: The Wrestler ... ... ... ... !
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Solomir
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Nanotech Engineer
[ *  *  *  * ]
Oh. That's where it went
Whatever residual anger and confidence Peter had promptly disappeared when Jason whipped out the gun. He froze in midstep. Without a weapon or a distraction, there was no way Peter could get any closer without getting shot for his troubles. He raised his hands, to try to dispel any notions that he was intending to hurt the other boy.

Jason was saying that he did what he had to. Excuses. Flimsy justifications. Peter knew what they sounded like; he'd heard it many times before from watching previous seasons of Survival of the Fittest. Killers trying to paint themselves as being victims just like the people they killed. It didn't change the fact that Jason was a killer.

Somewhere in the back of his mind, Peter understood that he was just as much as guilty as Jason. He too had been hiding behind layers of crafted delusion to keep himself from accepting that he had killed somebody. That his actions had led to people dying. Could he have avoided having to cut Lucas' throat? Could he have saved Tiffany? And now, even Eiko had disappeared. Did he deserve to be treated with any more respect than the murderer that stood before him?

He took a small step back, and watched as Jason turned tail and fled. Peter had no intention of following. If fate decreed it, they would meet again; at which point, Peter would finish what he started. But at the moment, there were lives to save.

Once Jason had disappeared behind a small outcrop of trees, Peter turned and dashed over to where he had seen Will on the ground. He breathed a sigh of relief when he saw that Will had regained consciousness and was trying to prop himself up. "Whoa man," Peter said, putting a hand on Will's shoulder to keep him from overexerting himself, "don't push yourself. Are you okay?" A quick look, showed a lot of mud but no blood or other wounds; that didn't rule out a lot of possibilities though. He could check Will for injuries and assess if he had a concussion.

First things first though. "What happened? Where's everyone else? Eiko and Brook and...." Peter choked on that last name. In all honesty, he didn't want to think about the body, and definitely not about why somebody would move it. It wasn't a question of what he wanted though; some things just needed to be done.
V5


B036: Benjamin Ward: "Sh-shut the fuck up. Or I'll k-kick your ass."
B047: Marcus Leung: "Let's start by staying calm."


V4

Rest in peace

B004 - Peter Siu: "We're all fuck-ups."
G006 - Tiffany Baker: "Will you stay with me, until I wake up?"
G027 - Marybeth Witherspoon: "The cameras are pointing here, not there."
B115 - Tony Russo: "I'm sorry...."
G087 - Rachel Gettys: "I detest all my sins, because I dread the loss of heaven and the pains of hell."
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Dr. Nic
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How cute.
[ *  * ]
William struggled keep upright after that little love tap that Brook left him with, fighting back the nausea and losing. The world was spinning and every time he tried to steady himself or move, his head pounded and things just seemed to get worse. Maybe he shouldn't have tried to get up so soon. But he needed to do something, he needed to stop Jason, he needed to find Peter and make sure that Jason paid for what he did! He had to, no matter what it cost, whether it was his health or his sanity. He just had to.

But his body wouldn't let him.

He stumbled and tripped and fell down to one knee, there in the mud and the muck. No matter how hard he tried, his body just wouldn't let him go on, his head pounding and his blurry vision taking its sweet time to adjust and recover. But he wouldn't be alone there for long as Peter charged his way over to see if Will was alright. Why was he coming over, he should be chasing Jason! He should be making him pay! Jason didn't deserve to get away, to live when Tiffany couldn't! He just didn't.

And I do? How am I different from him?

Hypocrite.

That word stung. It burned and throbbed in his mind as he listened to Peter's questions. His voice was distant and barely audible, the ringing in Will's ears blocking out much of what was said. There was something about Eiko and Brook, probably asking about where they had gone. How was he supposed to know? He was out cold when they all disappeared. When Brook took off with Tiffany and left them all to wonder and worry. Why the hell did he take Tiffany? It just... it didn't make sense. Brook was normal. Brook was nice. Brook was...

Sane? If he lost it so easily, so quickly... what hope do I have?

Will shook his head and tried to regain his composure. Sitting there wasn't going to help anything or answer any of his questions. He'd spent too much time just sitting there in silence trying to recover, he had to get up and push past it. Besides, he still had to answer Peter and they still had to get Eiko back, right? Then they could look for Brook and Jason. Then they could make them pay for what they did. Yeah... that was the plan. That was his plan.

"I'm fine. I'll be alright."

Will forced himself to stand again, trying to stay steady on his feet. The world was slowing and things weren't quite as blurry, and his stomach had finally settled. It would be a while yet before he fully recovered, if he fully recovered, but he didn't seem to be any worse for the wear. He took a moment to check himself before he turned back to Peter.

"I'll be fine. Go get Eiko."

Kneeling back down, Will started to gather his things and pack his bags once again. The first aid kit was strewn everywhere and the ground was still stained with Tiffany's blood, something that William tried hard not to focus on or even look at. There was nothing he could do about that now.

That's not true. I could track them down. If I go alone, I could find them and kill them. I could make them pay.

The unopened packages of gauze, however few there were, went back into the bag. He tried to pay no attention to the direction his thoughts took, focusing on the task at hand. But that idea kept repeating itself in his mind. He could go alone. Leave Peter and Eiko behind to keep them safe. He could find Jason, find Brook, and make them pay for what they did. But could he really fight in his condition? There was no question if he could muster the strength to pull the trigger, but would he be able to aim that gun of his? He could barely see straight right now, let alone shoot straight and hit his target. No matter what weapon he had, it would be useless if he couldn't use it properly. Did he really want to take that chance? Did he really want to go after them now and right losing his own life in the fight? It would all be for not if he was the only one who died. Did he really want all the fighting to be in vain?

No. Not yet. He would wait until the time was right.

But when that time would finally come, if it would come at all, all bets were off. He would make them pay for what they did and when it was all said and done, someone would be dead. Either one of them... or William himself. But either way, it would end. But now was not the time to think of that. He had to get his things and join Peter and Eiko. Pulling the zipper closed on his bag, William slung it on to his back once again, bearing that annoying little weight for a while longer.

"Hm?"

Slipping his hand into the pocket of his pants, he pulled out the spare magazine he'd placed there on the very first day in this place. He'd kept it there the entire time, never actually needing it. He'd fired his weapon a total of three times so far...

Once, when he woke up.

Again, when he killed Trevor.

And finally, when he shot at Jason.

Three bullets. How many were left in the magazine? The manual in his bag. It mentioned something about the magazines, about how many bullets they held.

Ten. Ten of them in one magazine, and I have five magazines... One in the gun, three in my bag, and one in my hand.

"Forty seven, huh?"

Slipping the spare magazine back into his pocket, Will turned his attention back to the gun in his hand. It was the only thing he could really trust in this place. But he had to make sure of a few things. Pressing down the magazine catch, he caught the magazine as it slid from the gun. He counted how many were left. Six. Six in the magazine. Slipping the magazine back in the gun, he pulled back the slide just far enough to check for a bullet. There it was. Six in the magazine, one in the chamber.

"I've gotta start practicing with this. Make sure that when it comes down to it, I can hit my target."

He took aim at the ground and stared down the sights.

"I'll kill them."

He made note of the lack of a safety. What had he been messing with then when he first woke up?

The slide stop. I'm an idiot.

He resolved to make this weapon a part of him. To make handling it and firing it natural. It would have to be if he was going to survive this place. It would have to be easy if he was going to kill Jason. It had to be something that he didn't need to think about if he was ever going to have the strength to... to murder his classmates. They were no longer his friends. His friends were the ones with him. The rest of them... they were the ones responsible for Tiffany's death. They were the participants in this twisted game and they would not stand in his way.

I'll kill them. I'll kill them all. I won't let Tiffany die alone... and when it's over, I'll take her home. We'll all go home together.

When it was all said and done, after William had rejoined Peter and Eiko, he turned his attention to the two of them.

"You two ready to leave?"

They should get moving soon... it was getting late, and tomorrow would be a long day.

William lost a friend today.

But as he walked away from the scene... he was content.


I'll make them all pay.

[Boy #61 - William Hearst. Continued in In Theory, This Should Be Easy.]
Edited by Dr. Nic, Jan 29 2011, 09:02 AM.
Boy #??? - Joshua Edwards
Hanging out somewhere, playing his heart out.
Writer and local retail slave at the comic book store.

Girl #??? - Viktoriya "Vika" Starikova
Floating in the void, unfinished and half-formed.
Hot headed member of the soft ball team, secretly wishing she could fly.

Those who were
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Solitair
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Where modesty's ill manners, 'tis but fit that impudence and malice pass for wit.
[ *  *  *  * ]
((I got Solomir's permission to GM Peter a bit.))

As if Eiko's fury at recent events couldn't possibly be further inflamed, neither Peter nor Hearst noticed her for a while. Her appearance, standing at the edge of the swamp, ramrod straight, her hair ruined and covering her face like she was fucking Sadako? They didn't give a shit about that at all. Eiko had to speak up and get their attention. "Here I am, Peter-san!" she hissed, reaching for her hair and flinging it behind her head, then walking right up to Peter.

"You want to know where Tiffany is? She's gone! Brooks took her! Brooks took her and he's going to... to... aaugh!" She screamed again, losing her composure from the mere thought of what just happened. She felt blood well up in her mouth, so she spat it out onto her palm and practically shoved it in Peter's face. "Do you see what he did to me?" she asked him, before pointing to the swollen, discolored bruise to the left of her chin. It looked nasty at this point, swollen and discolored in purple and blue. The thought occurred to her that Brook might, in fact, have fractured her jaw with that punch. Good. She needed that to stoke her anger.

By now she had Peter's full attention, having scared the fuck out of him and made him turn around when she first talked to him. As she showed him her injuries, he flinched at the sight of them, but still reached out and tried to touch Eiko on the shoulder. "Eiko, come, come on. Calm down. Tell me-"

Eiko pushed his hand off of her. "He called me a slant-eyed bitch!"

She saw him freeze, the look on his eyes resembling the expression of a man whose mother, a mother who'd spent two decades being a model parent, punched him in the jaw with absolutely no provocation whatsoever. It took him a moment to recover from that. "Eiko. Calm down and tell me what happened."

This time, Eiko did manage to calm herself down. Just a little, though. Enough to start transforming her anger from a bucket of molten metal to a white hot knife. It still demanded to be unleashed, but now she could direct it, control it and make it hit her target with precision. Now she had help. Now she had Peter and William Hearst. They could help her. Together they outnumbered Brooks and Harris, and if Eiko played her cards right, she'd get to exact her revenge on those two vermin with minimal risk.

But there was just one problem she foresaw: Peter. Was it possible that he wouldn't agree with her vision? She didn't see how; even if she only counted the brief contact they shared with each other before her death, it was clear that Peter and Tiffany shared something special. It only followed that he'd want to honor her by getting her body back. But what about after that? Would he just let Brook go with a warning? Unacceptable.

She breathed more steadily now, thinking of a way she could convince him, a way she could tell him her story. Her mind drifted to what she burst out earlier when he touched him. Did Brooks really say that exact insult? Did she hear it wrong?

Did it matter?

"I... I saw him grab Tiffany-san and run off," she finally said, "then I followed him. I wanted to try and catch him so that I could bring her back. But when I called out to him... He's gone insane. He laughed at me, mocked me, then he stopped and punched me, right here." With tears in her eyes, Eiko pointed at her bruise again. "He pulled his hand out from under her pants and punched me with it!"

It wasn't much of a lie, Eiko thought. What else would Brooks want with Tiffany? Just because she didn't actually see it happen doesn't mean it wasn't on his mind.

"That's it," she finished, feeling a bit drained from her outburst. "I fell into the swamp and bit my cheek."
WickedIcon: i just launched a baby wearing a denim jacket and a bowler hat across a hospital, through a window, killing several patients, destroying thousands of dollars of equipment, and finally coming to rest on the body of a presumably dead clown
WickedIcon: this is the best dollar i've spent in several years

chitoryu12I have yet to find gay sex that involves the men punching each other. I must not be on the internet enough

Turning Pages: Read some books along with me, why don't you?

V4:
Spoiler: click to toggle


V5:
Arthur Wells: The Artist ... ... ... ... ?
Rose Matheson: The Sprinter ... ?
Ilya Volkov: The Wrestler ... ... ... ... !
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Solomir
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Nanotech Engineer
[ *  *  *  * ]
Will brushed Peter off, insisting that he was okay and pushing himself to his feet. The wobbling in his posture went a long way in showing just how wrong he was. Instinctively, Peter reached out and wrapped his arm around Will's shoulder to hold him up and keep him from falling again. "Dude. You're anything but fine. Just take it easy." Peter didn't know exactly what had knocked Will down, but his best guess was a hit to the head. Those had a tendency of leaving people dizzy and disoriented. Concussions were something Peter hadn't really learned to treat in First Aid training, but even if he had tried, Will would probably still have responded by waving him off. And telling him to check on Eiko.

"Wait. Where did Eiko go?" Peter asked. He hadn't seen Eiko right after Jason ran off, and Peter had assumed the worst. If Will didn't know where she had gone, then where the hell did-

Eiko's voice took the form of an aggravated hiss, sneaking up on him from behind. Peter gave a little jump at the sudden outburst, but quickly composed himself as he turned around to face the girl. Eiko looked mostly unharmed, if not a little bit more worn and dirty. There was a mark on her face that suggested that she'd gotten punched, but that was far better than something serious like a stab or gunshot wound. Of course, just a casual observation wasn't good enough for Eiko: evidently she needed to shove the idea in his face with a blood smeared palm.

Still, Eiko had confirmed what Peter had suspected: Brook had taken Tiffany. The idea scared him. He'd had an inkling that Brook had more than just a tiny crush on her, and that could get twisted by this game. He'd seen it before, in the previous games. Good people, snapping under the pressure of Danya's sick game and transforming into despicable murderous scum or depraved predators.
That could be me too. I'm not any better than those other people
In the past, Peter had found it interesting. To watch the corruption and breakdown of people forced to participate in this game, while others found the strength to carry forward and become better people. There didn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to what direction someone would walk. Now that he was here, it wasn't interesting any more. It was terrifying, knowing that at any moment, someone he'd have thought was an upstanding and moral person could turn around and become a monster.
It could be anyone. Even Will or Eiko.
Eiko was fuming; her typical aloof stoicism had disappeared along with her unmarred face. There would be another time to contemplate the philosophy of the island. For now, Peter's instincts urged him to wrap his arms around the vulnerable girl and to protect her. "Eiko, co-come on now," Peter said as he stretched his hand out to grasp her shoulder. "Calm down and tell me-"

All of Eiko's frustration and anger seemed to explode from her. She roughly shoved his reaching hand away, and screamed a condemnation at what Brook had called her: a "slant-eyed bitch". Peter was taken aback. Not because he personally found the phrase offensive; racist remarks never registered more than a ripple in his pond of calmness. Rather, he was surprised that Eiko had chosen to repeat that exact phrase. A week ago, back on Bayview's campus, he'd have never heard her say anything like what he was hearing now.
She's losing her grip too. She's becoming a liability
He reached out to her again, and forced more power into his voice. "Eiko, calm down. Tell me exactly what happened." Eiko made no effort to push him away this time. She took a few deep breaths, and then started again at recounting her encounter with Brook. How Brook had taken Tiffany’s body and had attacked Eiko when she followed him.
Wait. His hands were where? That fucker.
“Do you remember which way he went?” Peter asked. Eiko nodded and turned to point behind her. The sun, dipping from its apex, indicated to him that it was somewhat to the east. “Let’s get moving quickly then. He can’t be moving that fast if he’s carrying Tiff.” He looked over at Will, who had finished resting up and was making his way back to the pair, and nodded to acknowledge him.

Peter turned back to take a closer look at Eiko’s face. He lightly brushed her hair aside from the bruise, but made careful effort to not touch the discolored mark directly. “That looks like it hurts,” he said, eliciting a cold glare for stating the obvious. Leave it to him to end up saying superfluous things. “I just gotta get a few things and we can go,” Peter jerked his head back toward where his sword was. Hopefully, he could actually pull the damned thing out of the tree. “If you need me to help you just-“ Eiko cut him off with a curt wave of her hand. She was smart enough to get what he was getting at and evidently didn’t want to waste any more time.

The backpack was more or less where he had left it. The sword’s sheath lay in the mud a few meters away, but at least none of it had gotten into it. That would’ve made cleaning the sword a pain. It took a few hard tugs, culminating in a hard jerk that resulted in Peter feeling quite addled on his back with the sword in his hand. In another time and place, he would have spent a bit more time watching the sky, starting to yellow at the oncoming sunset.

There was no more time for lounging around and enjoying life. The last vestiges of that delusion had shattered with Tiffany’s death. They were surrounded by death, and there might only be one way out of it. Would he walk that path? The question weighed on him heavily as he got up and started walking in the direction that Eiko had pointed in. In the distance, the speakers littered around the swamp screeched to life.

Wait. Where did Eiko say about Brook’s hands?

((Peter Siu continued in Encumbered by Shining Armor))
((Eiko Haraguchi continued in Amazing Journey/Sparks))
V5


B036: Benjamin Ward: "Sh-shut the fuck up. Or I'll k-kick your ass."
B047: Marcus Leung: "Let's start by staying calm."


V4

Rest in peace

B004 - Peter Siu: "We're all fuck-ups."
G006 - Tiffany Baker: "Will you stay with me, until I wake up?"
G027 - Marybeth Witherspoon: "The cameras are pointing here, not there."
B115 - Tony Russo: "I'm sorry...."
G087 - Rachel Gettys: "I detest all my sins, because I dread the loss of heaven and the pains of hell."
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