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Pretty Handsome Awkward; Open; Morning of Day 5
Topic Started: Jan 10 2011, 11:49 AM (4,117 Views)
Hollyquin
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A friendly clown welcomes you to LOCAH. It seems he would like to be your guide.
[ *  *  *  *  * ]
[[Vivien Morin continued from Fabuleux]]

Well. This...it resembles shelter, at least. That's the important bit, isn't it?

It had been a rather long day for poor Vivien, high-tailing it as he was as far away as possible from a certain crazy girl and a certain boy with a certain shotgun. A certain not-at-all pretty sight that he wanted no part in. Someone was going to die there in short order, he was sure; he'd keep his ear open during morning announcements for the names Sofia and Janet and Fatty John.

In the meantime, though, Vivian needed to be somewhere. Else. Somewhere without shooting, preferably, and somewhere clean would be nice. His dress was far too pretty for this.

His lack of shoes was mucking things up. Vivien was fairly good at walking in heels- though admittedly the red pumps he'd been wearing earlier had been deathtraps- but running around barefoot was a completely foreign experience to him. He loved shoes, after all. Why would he ever purposely go without them? Of course now that was working against him in the worst way. The ground here wasn't exactly level, or soft, or kind to delicate soles like Vivien's- there were rocks, tree roots, all sorts of fun things for him to injure himself on. Every step was painful.

Oh, my poor feet...I must invest in some good foot cream after this game. Something expensive, I'll need the best to get the...wilderness off my feet. Oh, but I must be getting calluses! How unattractive. Poor, innocent me...

He had shoes, of course, in his bag- Vivien Morin would never give up his clothing, even in the face of death- but in his flight he had entirely forgotten about them. By the time he remembered their existence- a couple of hours later, far from the scene he'd fled- it was far too late for his feet. He pulled on a pair of black ballet flats, wincing partially from pain and partially because they in no way matched his dress.

I'll have to change at first opportunity. I must have something black in this bag, somewhere...

It was around then that he discovered that which resembled shelter.

It was...what was it? A sawmill? Yes, that was it, Vivien had remembered seeing it during a cursory inspection of his map- it was right smack in the middle of the island, and quite large to boot. The thick layer of sawdust that covered everything was nearly enough to make him turn back, though.

It's filthy. I'll be filthy. My dress...

But the desire for a place to spend the night- the sun was already beginning to set- won out in the end. After a few minutes spend tiptoeing through sawdust, Vivien chose a small building near the mill itself and went inside.

He immediately knew he'd made a good decision. Beds...beds! Somewhere to sleep that isn't the ground...oh, excellent. Fabulous. I approve entirely of this. Not really up to my standards, but beggars can't be choosers, really. It was some sort of...he wanted to say dormitory, that felt like a good word, presumably for workers at this sawmill. He spared a quick, curious thought as to the fate of those workers before giving it up and selecting his bed.

Well. I have a place to sleep, that's a wonderful place to start. Now all I need is a plan.

I still need a...bodyguard, of sorts. A protector. An ally. Preferably someone stupid, but strong. And attractive, oh yes, some pretty boy with muscle, that's ideal. Pretty boys love a damsel in distress and what am I but a damsel in distress? All they have to not know is exactly how smart I really am.

And that I have a gun. That too. Probably nothing they need to know.


He smiled to himself as her curled up under the thin covers of his chosen resting place. I can do this. Absolutely no trouble at all.

---

BZZZZZZZZZZT.

As usual it was the rude sound of Danya's morning announcement that woke him up. He didn't pay much attention- he was grateful for the sound, almost, as it at least served as a quite good alarm clock.

"Good morning, survivors. Yet again, you've managed to exceed my expectations. Twenty five more of you met their tragic and heart-wrenching ends yesterday, making it the best day yet.

He frowned as he climbed out of bed, immediately digging through his bag for a new outfit. That's quite a lot. A lot more than yesterday. Probably a good thing though, less competition, at least...

Vivien eventually found himself a little black dress- a cute little thing, light fabric, made for summer- that perfectly complimented the ballet flats he was wearing. He changed quickly- rather sensitive about the cameras he knew were around- while he listened to the rest of the announcement. To his surprise, none of the names of the trio from the afternoon before came up- apparently they'd all survived that little encounter. On the other hand, it looked like pretty-boy Maxwell was still causing trouble. Sebastian Decartes now too, Vivian remembered him, another handsome one. Must all the gorgeous boys on the island turn out to be psychopathic killers? It is honestly ruining my mood. Not to mention my plans. Must I worry that whatever dumb muscle I pick up is going to kill me? Not fun, not at all. I really must find some leading man or another.

All dressed up now with nowhere to go, Vivien spent a few moments putting on his makeup.

At least no one important is dead.

He looked in the mirror, confirmed that he was stunning (not that there was ever any doubt), and packed up his bag. But- he didn't want to move on just yet. Why should he? He was comfortable, he had shelter, he had nothing to do and nowhere to go.

For the sake of being cautious, though- he pulled on his daypack, threw his duffel bag over his shoulder, and cautiously took a step outside, his right hand in his bag, curled around the grip of his gun. If he was going to spend any more time here, he might as well make sure there was no one else lying in wait.

And...I must be ready to flee if necessary.

...Hopefully it won't be.
being meguca is suffering

[V5] ALIVE:
[x] Aidan Flynn [B???] // Passing slowly though the vector, damp with fog, the bog that grows the former business sector...
[x] Chitose Saionji [G???] // 公園に千歳は本を読む!

[V5] CONCEPTS:
Winston Evans aced the last English test and would like to point out how gorgeous your shoes are.

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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.
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((Teo Weinstock continued from The Downside of Being Paranoid as Balls))

Teo squinted at the figure silhouetted by the doorway to the sawmill in the distance. He had ranged a little further ahead of Gracie and Nick to ensure nothing went wrong. Worst case scenario they'd be on his position in minutes so he wasn't overly concerned. The announcements crackled through the air once more and Teo took careful note about the names, both victims and killers. It seemed there were a few he'd need to be on his toes about but all things considered he was surprised that more of his classmates hadn't turned on each other. Thinking about it for a short time however he realised that most of them probably didn't have brains to understand the situation and that others more than likely had an idealistic view on the whole thing. Either way he had an advantage.

Taking a closer look at the figure he couldn't help but smile. Whoever it was, they were wearing a dress, therefore female and easy pickings for Teo, Nick and Gracie. He frowned momentarily when he saw the gun but quickly turned it around. He could convince her to give him the weapon, shouldn't take too much convincing and then they would have two ranged weapons, excluding of course Gracie's ancient rifle, which in the girls hands was a hinderence more than an advantage, although he wouldn't tell that to her face. A brief thought crossed Teo's mind. This girl was standing all by herself out in the open with a tight black dress on and everything stank of a trap of some sorts. She wouldn't of made it this far alone, Teo was sure. He would wait for Gracie and Nick to arrive; consult them before doing anything stupid. Probably for the best.
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."

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((Nick LeMonde continued from The Various Downsides of Becoming "Paranoid as Balls" ))


Nick plodded forward next to Gracie. Up ahead Teo had run toward the thing on their map labeled as a sawmill.

There were announcements about a girl named Liz through out the previous day. It was the one Nick had strangled back on the first day. He'd let her go because he heard Jessica's voice telling him he had no right to judge. It was because of her five people were dead. He was conflicted. He shouldn't have killed her, but he'd decided to kill now. If he'd killed her he would have saved lives. Trying to logic this out made his head pound even more. He closed her eyes and decided to stop thinking about it.


The regularly scheduled morning announcements were blaring now and he let them wash over him. He'd hardly paid attention to the other announcements before this one, so he made only a slight effort to register the killers and kills. He recognized those gone and those turned hunters and each name on each side stung, but none carried more weight than any other. In other words, his girls, his Jessica, was safe. It was a selfish thought to have, but his shame was fading with his energy. They'd walked so long now without seeing another person. They hadn't rested much, always moving. Almost half the class was gone now. It was strange to imagine that if all the current survivors were put in the auditorium as school for a pep rally, a solid half of the gym would be empty.


They'd been walking and walking and now Teo was in front, and now Teo was checking the Sawmill. He needed to rest soon. The ground was fuzzy, the crackle of the rocks and dirt under his shoes seemed to reach his ears slower than he felt they should. It was almost like a dream.

Will it be just like I'm dreaming? Will it be just like they're dreaming?

Nick wanted to rest but it was like he was constantly on an adrenaline rush ever since they'd left the fair. He was alert even when he was tired, he was queasy with anxiousness. Nick stopped and put a hand on a tree; his hand hung down weighted by his weapon. Up ahead Teo ran towards the building where it looked like a girl in a dress was standing. That was..... unusual. Nick collected himself and trotted after Teo.

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((Gracie Wainwright continued from The Various Downsides of Becoming "Paranoid as Balls"))

Gracie trudged along beside Nick, Teo somewhere ahead of them. He finally stopped and Gracie let out a grunt of relief, finally her cheek had started throbbing again and her legs were trying to join in. She was about to voice her complaints when the morning announcements began. She shook her head and tried to figure out just how many classmates had been lost in the last five days. If she remembered correctly it was around 100. One hundred students in five days, she shivered as the reality of it hit home. But she was still here, her and her boys. That was definitly postworthy. What she wouldn't give for some internet access.

Nick’s sudden movement caught her attention and she looked past him to see what he was jogging towards. The girl silhouetted in the doorway was a surprise, but she couldn’t figure out why Nick seemed so eager to see her. She followed after him as he jogged away from her. As Gracie came closer she realized whoever it was had on a dress. Who wears a dress on a camping trip?
V5 characters
Kaliska Day
Kathryn Nguyen G61 - deceased Start
Bianca Howard G45 - deceased Start
Logan Cadagon B16 - deceased Start

V4 Characters:
Thea Kairos - G067 - deceased
Alexandria "Alex" Jackson - G046 - rescued
Marion Summers - G074 - deceased
Gracie Wainwright - G081 - deceased
Samaya Boen-Hilstrand - G064-deceased
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Hollyquin
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Well now. This is a surprise.

In all honesty, Vivien wasn't expecting company. He expected to be able to stay here in peace and not have to worry about dying for a couple more hours, at least. Of course, this was Survival of the Fittest, and plans of the not-being-in-danger were getting more and more difficult to keep with each passing second. So he shouldn't have really be shocked by the arrival of three other students, coming over from who-knows-where. Two boys and a girl, he could tell from this distance. He kept his hand around the grip of the gun, but slipped it further into his bag. No reason to arouse any suspicion.

This could be really good for me, or it could be really, really bad. All depends on who they are...

That question was answered for him rather quickly as the three came closer.

Gracie fucking Wainwright. Queen bitch of the social network. As much as Vivien could appreciate a fashionista, Gracie...irritated him. Bitchy only went so far and Gracie went way past the line. After all, even Vivien had a soul. Sometimes. Hee. She had a gun, which had Viv's full disapproval. He'd have to play nice, or at least pretend, at least for a little while. Long enough to not be killed by Gracie Wainwright. After all this, I would hate to be taken out by a skank like her...

Nick LeMonde. Vivien didn't honestly know all that much about him, other than that he was a nice guy. Certainly big enough to make a half-decent bodyguard. His weapon...what was that? He was holding a...a thing, Viv didn't know enough about weapons to know anything about it other than that it looked more like a bizarre accessory than something you kill people with. For the moment, he wasn't worried.

And...

Oooh.

Teo Weinstock. Football player extraordinare and so many kinds of delicious.

And holding a crossbow.

Perfect. Too perfect. What I wouldn't do to have him on my side...God, he's cute. Oh, it's like being back at Bayview all over again...

Vivien fanned himself dramatically with his free hand, unsure whether or not the trio could see the action but feeling it to be necessary anyway. I suppose I ought to be a good hostess and go greet them. Hopefully Gracie won't choose to shoot me on sight... He had no such worries about Teo. Viv was, after all, the prettiest girl on the island. What boy would kill him without talking to him first...?

And so he walked, slowly- so as not to provoke any unnecessary gunfire- towards them, making up the distance and moving as gracefully as he was able. He put on his sweetest smile, flicked his hair, and looked right at Teo.

"Well, hello."
Edited by Hollyquin, Jan 20 2011, 12:36 PM.
being meguca is suffering

[V5] ALIVE:
[x] Aidan Flynn [B???] // Passing slowly though the vector, damp with fog, the bog that grows the former business sector...
[x] Chitose Saionji [G???] // 公園に千歳は本を読む!

[V5] CONCEPTS:
Winston Evans aced the last English test and would like to point out how gorgeous your shoes are.

Those Who've Known - V4
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((Mike Jeffries continued from Fuck.))

Things hadn't gone the greatest for Mike Jeffries. He'd gotten some rest, yeah, but he wasn't a bit closer to finding anything useful. No magic ways off this island. No reliable allies. He'd lost track of Madeleine. Yeah, stuff wasn't so hot.

But at least he'd found his way towards some shelter. At least he could maybe pull himself together here, near the sawmill. He didn't have anything except the katana, but hey, katanas were as badass as it got. Nobody'd screw with him since he had one. It was practically a law. The katana meant he'd be top dog if he had to.

So he wasn't at all worried as he came up towards the two guys and the girl, who seemed to be checking out some other girl off in the distance. Nope, not worried at all. Instead, he gave them a jaunty wave with his left hand, keeping his right on the katana in case stuff went sour, and shouted, "Yo, anyone around here have the slightest clue what's going on?"
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((Skipping post order to avoid inactivity))

Gracie approached the figure and realized that she should have recognized her instantly. No one else could pull off that dress on a deserted island. Of course Gracie wasn’t sure why anyone would try. Still, she had to give Vivien credit for trying to maintain some semblance of civilization. At least she was going to until Viv decided to hit on Teo.

“Hey, Viv,” she greeted stepping in front of Teo. Before the conversation could continue someone spoke from behind her.

"Yo, anyone around here have the slightest clue what's going on?"

Gracie spun around to find herself looking at Mike Jeffries. Oh great just what we need another empty headed jock. She sighed.

“It’s been,” she paused to count. “Five days and you haven’t figured out what’s going on? Really, I’m amazed you’ve managed to last this long.”
V5 characters
Kaliska Day
Kathryn Nguyen G61 - deceased Start
Bianca Howard G45 - deceased Start
Logan Cadagon B16 - deceased Start

V4 Characters:
Thea Kairos - G067 - deceased
Alexandria "Alex" Jackson - G046 - rescued
Marion Summers - G074 - deceased
Gracie Wainwright - G081 - deceased
Samaya Boen-Hilstrand - G064-deceased
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((Ahh, sorry sorry sorry. I promise to be quick now!))

((Fixed >_>))

Nick turned at the sound of the new arrival. Returned the wave with his weapon hand, jauntily shaking the blade back and forth. Though his movements were of a jovial greeting his eyes held the tiredness of the days taking their toll. Nick wasn't used to being on edge, he was a calm boy mostly. Slowly his eyes traveled down to the thing extending at Mike's arm. It was a katana.

Mike Jeffries. Nice guy. Likes the girls. Good on the basket ball team, he thought as his mind pulled up the file on the blond. He knew of him and they were amiable but by no means close.

"I, uh, I dunno," he said in response. "We only just got here. Me an' Teo and Gracie. Teo just-"

He turned at the sound of footsteps on the dirt. It seemed the person from the sawmill had come down. Nick cocked his head to one side, then the other. The person confused him. "D'ya.....you.....?" he said trying to push through the jumbled thoughts.
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A friendly clown welcomes you to LOCAH. It seems he would like to be your guide.
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“Hey, Viv,” Gracie said, and Vivien frowned automatically. After all, he had obviously been talking to Teo (who was looking yummier by the second), not to mention he couldn't help but be suspicious by Gracie's niceness. He'd never considered them to be on good terms, but then, they never really spoke either. Maybe she didn't hold the disdain for him that he did for her. Though that's strange in itself. Gracie holds disdain for everyone...maybe this game's just changing people's priorities? Didn't mean he had to be- well, he did have to be nice to her because she was holding a gun, but it didn't mean he couldn't be passive-aggressive about it.

"Hey, Gracie. Love the tie-dye. Considering it went out of style, what, two years ago?...it looks good on you."

And a small smile with a subtle undertone of bitch as punctuation.

Vivien was good at passive-aggressive. You could call that his style.

He returned his attention to the boys. There was a new one now, another who Vivien instantly recognized- Mike Jeffries. Basketball player. Delicious basketball player. This was the most beautiful situation Vivien could have possibly dreamed up- surrounded by good-looking boys with good-looking weapons (Mike had a damn katana, of all things- jury was out on Nick's weapon, but Viv was sure he could figure it out) who didn't want to kill him as far as he could tell. Well, he could do without Gracie, but as long as she wasn't shooting him in the head, it should be okay. Perhaps they could work something out. This seemed like a deliciously convenient group to be a part of.

"Boys," Vivien said with a nod and a not at all bitchy, entirely genuine smile. "I'm Vivien, Vivien Morin. And you are...?"

Of course, he knew their names. But they'd never spoken before, and people tended to find Vivien's practically encyclopedic knowledge of the senior class (the popular and/or good-looking ones, at least) slightly unnerving. Besides, hopefully introductions would help relieve the tension. As sure as he was that no one here was going to kill him (yet), he couldn't help but feel a little on edge around a gun, a crossbow and a katana.
Edited by Hollyquin, Feb 1 2011, 05:28 PM.
being meguca is suffering

[V5] ALIVE:
[x] Aidan Flynn [B???] // Passing slowly though the vector, damp with fog, the bog that grows the former business sector...
[x] Chitose Saionji [G???] // 公園に千歳は本を読む!

[V5] CONCEPTS:
Winston Evans aced the last English test and would like to point out how gorgeous your shoes are.

Those Who've Known - V4
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That was pretty great, you know? Mike tried to start a friendly little chat, just a little conversation, nothing special, and this girl (Gracie, yeah) jumped right down his throat over it. Just what he needed right now. Yeah, because clearly he'd not noticed they were all on death island, clearly he'd just been twiddling his thumbs and ignoring stuff. Then Nick got all flustered, going on and stuff. Explained he was with Teo and Gracie. And the other person got started towards them, and Mike realized it was Vivien Morin.

Well, Mike didn't really have a problem with what his classmates did with their free time, but ew. And Vivien immediately got all acerbic with Gracie. Mike didn't mind seeing the girl put in her place, but he sure didn't need a snarkfest right now, especially not one with all the subtlety and circumspection of a rampaging moose.

So he answered, "Mike Jeffries. And, hate to say it, but maybe you'd better run along back up that hill, Vivien, 'cause I don't want any trouble and I just can't see you and Gracie there coexisting without gutting each other."

Yeah, get going, Vivien. Leave Mike alone. Hey, maybe take Gracie with you or something, kill each other out of sight.

And just in case, Mike's hand stayed fucking steady on that katana.
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The katana. Mike Jeffries. They weren't close, not very close at all. Never had a problem sprung up between them, but still.... He wasn't a girl either. Would Nick have felt worse about killing a girl than a boy? A good person to get one's feet wet.... Killing?! Yes, killing. He had decided on it already. Nick had thought about it and he came to the conclusion that the rules said to kill so you follow the rules. Gruesome, awful rules, but rules all the same. Rules make things so much easier to understand. Though his problem wasn't in the understanding, it was in the action.

I told Teo to kill Clio. But that was different. She wasn't a girl anymore. She was a cold blooded murderer who laughed at us when she talked about killing the violin player. This is just a guy. Just a guy who didn't do no harm to anyone.

Teo was trying to calm everyone when Nick came out of his cloud of thoughts.

"Do you know you're wearing a dress?" he blurted out to Vivien.
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"And, hate to say it, but maybe you'd better run along back up that hill, Vivien, 'cause I don't want any trouble and I just can't see you and Gracie there coexisting without gutting each other."

Gracie was surprised at the newfound ally. He was actually on her side? Well maybe. Maybe if she looked at it sideways and squinted. Ignoring Nick’s totally remarkable levels of cluelessness, she huffed a laugh. “Nonsense, we can all be friends here,” Gracie said offering the group a sickly sweet smile.

She then turned her full attention to Vivien. “I’m so glad you like it,” Gracie said with faked enthusiasm. “You know I like to be a leader in fashion. Unlike some others around school, you know who I’m talking about of course. And look at you. That dress flatters you so, it’s just…just really too bad no one here’s at all interested in what you’re trying to sell. So why don’t you just stop trying so hard, it’s really just kind of pathetic.”

She stepped past the girl and began to make her way towards the building Vivien had just left. “Is there actually a place for us to get cleaned up in here?”
V5 characters
Kaliska Day
Kathryn Nguyen G61 - deceased Start
Bianca Howard G45 - deceased Start
Logan Cadagon B16 - deceased Start

V4 Characters:
Thea Kairos - G067 - deceased
Alexandria "Alex" Jackson - G046 - rescued
Marion Summers - G074 - deceased
Gracie Wainwright - G081 - deceased
Samaya Boen-Hilstrand - G064-deceased
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Wow. Did super-bitch time start when I stopped paying attention?

It started with Jeffries. "Mike Jeffries. And, hate to say it, but maybe you'd better run along back up that hill, Vivien, 'cause I don't want any trouble and I just can't see you and Gracie there coexisting without gutting each other." Ouch. Particularly ouch considering that, despite his voiced reasoning towards why he wanted Vivien to leave, Vivien felt the homophobia coming off of him like stink off of...off of a basketball player, so that was an appropriate analogy, really. It was sort of miraculous that Vivien had so far avoided this kind of treatment, but that sort of miracle wasn't going to last forever, and the reversal of said miracle could very well get him killed.

Of course, Jeffries wasn't wrong about the coexisting without gutting each other bit, but his taking Gracie Wainwright's side, over his, was just insulting. Before he had the chance to answer, though?

"Do you know you're wearing a dress?"

Vivien blinked in surprise and looked over at Nick, who looked shell-shocked. Not in a disgusted or terrified sort of way. More just confused. It was...really rather cute, actually. Vivien re-equipped the charm he'd been quite prepared to shut off, in preparation for verbally ripping Mike Jeffries to shreds, and smiled at him.

"Why, yes, I suppose I am. Did you know, I hadn't noticed until just now?"

“I’m so glad you like it. You know I like to be a leader in fashion. Unlike some others around school, you know who I’m talking about of course. And look at you. That dress flatters you so, it’s just…just really too bad no one here’s at all interested in what you’re trying to sell. So why don’t you just stop trying so hard, it’s really just kind of pathetic.”

Vivien was prepared for that one.

"This old thing? Flattering? Thank you, sweetheart, though I'm sure you haven't seen to much to compete with it, on the island or in your wardrobe. It's cute how you assume that I'm trying to sell something, you do need to stop confusing others with yourself, it's quite off-putting..."

He let her walk past him. This was really growing rather tedious, and as cute as Nick (and Teo...mmm, Teo, he was getting lost in the shuffle of all this) was, it really wasn't worth spending more time with Gracie fucking Wainwright and Jeffries the apparently-intolerant. He took a few steps away from them, stopping to blow a kiss at Jeffries. Just to see him squirm.

"Have fun, gentlemen! And...Gracie."

He smirked.

"See you around, if you don't die first."

[[Vivien Morin continued Classy, Not Classic]]
Edited by Hollyquin, Feb 20 2011, 12:58 AM.
being meguca is suffering

[V5] ALIVE:
[x] Aidan Flynn [B???] // Passing slowly though the vector, damp with fog, the bog that grows the former business sector...
[x] Chitose Saionji [G???] // 公園に千歳は本を読む!

[V5] CONCEPTS:
Winston Evans aced the last English test and would like to point out how gorgeous your shoes are.

Those Who've Known - V4
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Mission fucking accomplished. Vivien went off. Things calmed down. It was just Gracie, Teo, Nick, Mike, and Mike's katana. Great. He took his hand away from the sword and let out a sigh of relief. The tension levels were dropping so quickly he could feel it.

"Glad that's taken care of," he said. "I don't need to walk into another tension explosion."

Really, though, he'd had things pretty good, everything considered. He hadn't even been shot at yet. Yeah. They could just go up to the sawmill and rest a bit, relax, regroup, pull together. No problem.

He was a little nervous, though, for some reason. Maybe it was just the stupidly corny lines Vivien had thrown around. Mike wasn't exactly a master of fashion cut-downs, but even he could tell that those were a little forced. They were all on edge. Stuff had to be pretty seriously whack if a lame bitch-off actually lowered tensions.

He'd worry about that later. For now, he took a couple steps towards the sawmill.

"I figure we should check the place," he said. "Oh, and by the way, what've you all been doing since you got here?"
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Ruggahissy
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i'm not upset
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Nick looked at Mike. This was critical, he had to pay attention. He had to use all of what he knew about reactions to gauge the other boy. Mike sighed. His hand became loose around the weapon and pulled away. His shoulders dropped and came slightly forward. Those were signs that a person was becoming relaxed. Mike was relaxing.

Nick, in contrast tensed up. He bit his lip and swallowed. Waves of temptation had pooled around him, licking his feet, building slowly. So slowly... Now without realizing how it happened he was being dragged under foot; caught by the surprise rip tide that really wouldn't have been a surprise to someone paying attention. He's never been good at that.

"That's a good idea, Mike," he said looking down at his shoes. He picked his head up and looked at Teo. Electric understanding passed between them.

"Great idea," Teo said smoothly flashing another brilliant smile. "You and Mike go around back and make sure no one's camped out there. Gracie and I can get out the front."
things
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