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Riddles Of Monsters
Topic Started: Apr 3 2011, 02:25 AM (3,619 Views)
Jonny
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You hate kings and you think kings are really stupid. They are petty, bossy tyrants and are really full of themselves and are basically awful in every way.
[ *  *  * ]
(Julian Avery continued from The Dead Flag Blues)

All the time in the world since that last gunshot rang out, all the reasons in the world to want to think of something else, anything else, and yet only three words in his head.

He killed him.

That was a while ago, now. Three more words since then.

I did nothing.

And that was pretty much it.

You alright with that, Julian? You gonna move past it that fast? Let it slide? Like, hey, sometimes even the best of us can't save a single person when we've got guns and we' apparently don't mind using them and all we had to do was point it, scare the one guy off, scare the other guy straight, or just say something, say anything, say anything at all.

It's not your fault, Julian! Anyone else would've done the same as you. Anyone else would have been scared and useless and frozen until the smoke cleared and there was nothing left but a small girl you could talk tough to.

But you can't even do that anymore, can you? God knows you want to. Just tear into her about the stupid bullshit decisions she's talked you into. Ask her how many people are dead because of words she said (the answer is one), and about how many people ought to be dead that aren't (the answer is also one). Give her some of that fire and brimstone we all know and love you for.

You can't and you won't.

It's like this: she's a good person. Fuck, she's a better person than you could ever hope to be. She hasn't killed anyone yet, and she's never gonna, so you can hop down from that molehill of yours whenever you're done pretending it's a moral high ground.

And also she cried.

Which is where all the resolve melts away and all the fire and brimstone simmers down just a bit. You tried the pissed off righteous man act and all you did was make that poor girl cry. And so you wanted to give her a hug and tell her everything was gonna be alright, but somehow there was the suspicion that it wouldn't really go over that well.

If Julian was going to carve a path of bloody self-righteousness across this island, he was determined to do it without making any girls cry.

So after making a little camp, after giving nice and reasonable and soft-spoken instructions about proper water purification, Julian fucked off. Give himself some time to breathe, give himself some time to think about something other than how hard it was to resist the urge to yell at her so loud right now. Give her-- and this was the least he could do for her after the unkind words-- a moment or two alone with the boy she loved.

Oh, right, that part. Julian had figured that part out a while ago.

It hadn't seemed relevant until now.
Jeremy Franco is alive. You can write a better ending, goddammit.

Charlie DuClare is dead. And nothing was easy anymore except to smile.
Julian Avery is dead. Courage was the man with a gun in his hand.
JJ Sturn is dead. Fuck it, all good things gotta come to an end.
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Jonny
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You hate kings and you think kings are really stupid. They are petty, bossy tyrants and are really full of themselves and are basically awful in every way.
[ *  *  * ]
((GMing approved))

You're talking, Raidon. You're talking and Julian isn't particularly inclined to hearing you talk right now, mainly because when you open your mouth you are just dumb as shit.

What happened, man? What the hell happened to that badass bravado back between the fallen trees? Where's that guy, who stood tall and talked shit and sparred with Julian like some beautiful dark warrior poet? Where the fuck was the man who set off Julian's epic journey of justice and vengeance, that methodical assassin with the check marks beside his name going up, up, up? Hey you, scrawny asshole with the knife wound, help Julian look for his goddamn nemesis.

“Yeah, no, I gotcha. Roland was just being scary as fuck, all packin' a knife and plenty of distance away when there's two of us with guns. Shit, it was all I could do not to freeze up with terror.” But Julian, that's exactly what you did, you totally did that, did you forget that you “Don't gimme that bullshit, man.”

Not a villain giving his manifesto, not an unrepentant criminal spitting in the face of justice.

A small child. One who'd fucked something up at school and was trying to explain it to his papa.

“You know, Raidon, I don't think I've ever met anyone who's as goddamn scared of everything as you are.”

And all of a sudden a fist flying at Raidon's face, dangerous, brutal, about to hit home but- oh!- in the most clever of feints, stopping an inch or two before it met its target. And Raidon, still there, unmoving, looking pissed off at the world and at one of its citizens in particular. Unmoving, huh. Unflinching. That was honestly unexpected.

And so Julian shrugged.

It was just bullheadedness is what it was. The pathetic instinct to cling to a flattering self-perception. No, no, Raidon wasn't a coward, honest, just look at him stay steady while Julian was faking a punch on him. If he did that enough times, maybe he'd convince Julian that he had a reason behind any of his actions on this island besides pathetic selfish terror.

Maybe he'd convince himself.

“Damn. Aight, maybe you got some courage in there after all. Too bad it's the most useless kind.” And here he tousled Raidon's pretty, pretty head of hair a little. “I'm real disappointed in you, son.”

A few steps back now, but not enough silence to let Raidon get a word in edgewise. There were still words to say.

“You know why you're still alive? It's Mizore. After you passed out I was about to put a bullet in your head, but she stopped me. And she didn't even have to jump in front of any bullets. All it took was me remembering what she asked me not to do.”

“Funny how it is, right? All your kills on this island, they ain't done shit to make you safer. Ain't done shit to keep you alive. Little pacifist girl, though, shit. She's done a damn good job.”

“You say one word to me before you thought this all over very carefully, and I will beat the shit out of you.”
Edited by Jonny, Apr 18 2011, 03:01 AM.
Jeremy Franco is alive. You can write a better ending, goddammit.

Charlie DuClare is dead. And nothing was easy anymore except to smile.
Julian Avery is dead. Courage was the man with a gun in his hand.
JJ Sturn is dead. Fuck it, all good things gotta come to an end.
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Jonny
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You hate kings and you think kings are really stupid. They are petty, bossy tyrants and are really full of themselves and are basically awful in every way.
[ *  *  * ]
So cute when you're angry.

And so, so, so close to having a point. Well, fuck it. No reason to argue in circles like this. If the two of them wanted, they could keep this pissing contest up all day and all night. Back and forth about which killer here was worse, which one was the bigger coward. Both of them being macho assholes and insisting the other guy was the real demon here. Both of them knowing deep down that they were just as goddamn bad as the other guy.

Well at least Julian hoped Raidon knew.

Come on. He has to know. Guy like that, smart guy- yes, Julian was barely finished thinking to himself about how Raidon was just dumb as shit, but he was probably pretty smart when you looked at it objectively- he has to know how pathetic he is.

Otherwise Julian's pretty pissed off here. He kills one guy, one unrepentant fucking killer, and his stupid bullshit conscience has to spend the next few days making him angst about it. If someone like Raidon can get away with killing, what, six people now? And still cling to some pathetic idea that he's justified in any of it. That starts to piss Julian the fuck off.

You don't get to let yourself off easier than Julian, asshole. You don't get to- fuck it, Julian knows exactly how immature this is about to sound, but it's not fucking fair if you let yourself off easier than him. So yeah. Maybe it's pointless. Maybe it's just one big circle jerk. But until Julian knows for sure that Raidon has thought long and hard about what he did, he's gonna keep giving the guy a bit of a hard time. That fucking simple.

And so:

“Damn, son, you got a temper on you.”

Here was an offer from Raidon to end all this shit. Knife handle pointing towards you, nothing standing between you and a kill except a pathetic tiny little promise to fight back. Yeah, sport, sure gonna quake in terror here when you're giving me your only weapon. And when you're already hurt. And when you're some scrawny little chess club fucker who doesn't look like he's taken a punch in his life.

So what was a guy to do besides take the knife?

“I ain't gonna come at you, man. I know you're used to solving all your problems with violence and this has gotta be a tough transition for you, but you got a long way to go before you rile me up enough that I try and kill you.”

Oh, Julian, you incredibly petty asshole. Never change.

“And, uh, before I forget.” Twirled the knife around a little bit. Slowly, though, making sure he wasn't gonna cut himself and look like a total fuckup. “I didn't come after you. I was looking for Mizore, making sure she was alright. Not always about you, man, know what I'm saying? Might wanna try and keep that massive ego of yours in check. Just try, it's the effort that counts.”

And he threw the knife into the ground, not quite well enough that it landed blade-first or anything. Oh well, it was still far enough away from Raidon that he'd have to hobble over painfully to fetch it. Awesome.

“You can go pick it up if it's important to you.”
Jeremy Franco is alive. You can write a better ending, goddammit.

Charlie DuClare is dead. And nothing was easy anymore except to smile.
Julian Avery is dead. Courage was the man with a gun in his hand.
JJ Sturn is dead. Fuck it, all good things gotta come to an end.
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Jonny
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You hate kings and you think kings are really stupid. They are petty, bossy tyrants and are really full of themselves and are basically awful in every way.
[ *  *  * ]
You can keep going long as you like, pal. You can huff and you can puff and you can go ahead and blow me. You can marshall all your words, but they will come tumbling down every time. Because your name is in Julian's notebook and there are six little checkmarks near it. Six.

Six good reasons to never listen to a word you have to say.

Oh, that is of course with the exception of four particular words and whoa, hey, look at this, they were tumbling out of Raidon's mouth in the right order and everything. Fine, I'm a coward. Aww, it was like Christmas up in this bitch. Clumsily gift-wrapped in some more meaningless self-justifying bullshit, but Julian couldn't really fault the guy for that.

We all gotta hold on to whatever scrap of pride we can, so if you want to start talking about vengeance, then you can put that word on a big huge banner when you host your pity party. And you can invite every other person on this island who lost a friend and used it as an excuse to throw a hissy fit with their Glock.

But for now? You told Julian exactly what he wanted to hear. So you guys are cool.

“Aight, we cool. No use going in circles like this, yeah? Just don't kill another man.” Please, Raidon. If there's anything that Julian says that you don't immediately dismiss as a petty taunt or a piece of smug posturing, let it be that.

And the one boy extended a hand to the other. To get the other boy back on his feet, lend him a bit of support. If you were far away, and you couldn't make out the looks on their faces, you could almost mistake them for friends.

“Come on, man. How about we go check on Mizore? She's gotta be ten times the company I could ever be.”

Oh, Julian and Raidon. That wacky pair, with their wacky misadventures and their threats of violence. And with someone else's blood still plain to see on Raidon. And with a pair of someone elses lying dead while Julian did nothing. Oh, Julian and Raidon. They'd been through so much together on this island, hadn't they.

And if you were far away, you could almost mistake them for enemies.
Jeremy Franco is alive. You can write a better ending, goddammit.

Charlie DuClare is dead. And nothing was easy anymore except to smile.
Julian Avery is dead. Courage was the man with a gun in his hand.
JJ Sturn is dead. Fuck it, all good things gotta come to an end.
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Jonny
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You hate kings and you think kings are really stupid. They are petty, bossy tyrants and are really full of themselves and are basically awful in every way.
[ *  *  * ]
Not so loud, Mizore, you'll scare somebody.

A hop and a step and Julian was there. Or hell, maybe he'd been there all along watching the two of them talk, standing back like the smug asshole he was. Aww, who can ever tell with these kinds of things? He probably just ran up at a lucky moment that let it be extra-special-dramatic when he said,

“Don't. If you're thinking of trying some I-got-a-hostage bullshit, just don't. You got nothing to threaten her with, and even if you did, I'd rather you both die than let your ass get away.”

Mizore. I'm bluffing. Can you hear me? Can you- you can tell, right? You know that. Mizore, I'm not gonna let him hurt you. I don't even- I don't know how right now, but just relax, just don't worry and relax because I won't let him hurt you. You know that. You know I'm bluffing. You have to know that.

“Here's how it's gonna go down. You gonna start running,” point over into the distance with your sword, so you can both suggest a potential running route and remind him that you got a sword, “cause that gives you a few more seconds before I start cutting you open. That's your best case scenario.”

Aww, did it go this well in your head, Julian? Did your grand plan for catching up to Max include talking like the lead in a mediocre action movie? Did it feature that really clever part where the kindhearted pacifist girl starts getting choked and then you tell her you're fine with her dying?

Or was that just improv?

Or was that just the kind of shit you defaulted to when your back was against the wall?

It was, it was, it was. It was, but it wasn't supposed to be, it wasn't supposed to be this way- there was supposed to be a gun. Where the fuck was the gun? Mizore had it, Mizore would never fire it, Mizore could never give it to him now without risking Max getting his hands on it, Mizore- fuck. Her fault?

Yeah, a little.

But only a little, don't go pinning this shit on her. Ain't hardly nothing more pathetic than playing the blame game when Max fucking Lombardi is in your crosshairs. Metaphorical crosshairs, fuck. Real crosshairs would be way nicer to have right now. Hear that, Mizore? They'd be real nice but for some reason Julian doesn't have any.

Yeah, maybe more than a little.

But it doesn't work that way and you know it. You get pissed off at her... after you save her. Not until then. Never until then. Not a word spoken unkind, not a stray thought of anger. You let that shit happen to you and next thing you know Max used his magic British kung fu shit to take your sword and run you through with it. Thou shalt not get angry at Mizore Soryu, for it is a completely fucked strategy once thou performest the risk-reward analysis.

So now you narrow your eyes and say,

“Start running.”
Jeremy Franco is alive. You can write a better ending, goddammit.

Charlie DuClare is dead. And nothing was easy anymore except to smile.
Julian Avery is dead. Courage was the man with a gun in his hand.
JJ Sturn is dead. Fuck it, all good things gotta come to an end.
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Jonny
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You hate kings and you think kings are really stupid. They are petty, bossy tyrants and are really full of themselves and are basically awful in every way.
[ *  *  * ]
So there was a fight at some point.

Julian? Yeeeaaah, he wasn't looking too good. Sort of in that bravely-soldier-on state, the one where you collapse out of nowhere a few days later and the doctor diagnoses it as He done got his shit fucked up. But hey, you should see the other guy.

Matter of fact, let's. Let's see the other guy, Max Lombardi, right now. Killed almost a dozen people so far, seemed like he was looking to make it fourteen, but we all know what happens when you get greedy. What happens is a Japanese serial killer throws a flashbang at your face and then some jerkoff with a messiah complex starts wailing on you till you nearly pass out from the pain.

This is literally the only possible result.

So shit's not looking too good for you, Max. Two guys who want you dead, right here right now, and nothing you can do about it. And even if some bright angelic mercy makes its ways into their hearts, you're not exactly good to go. Takes a little more than a band-aid and bed rest to fix what you got, son. Maybe find a naïve pacifist girl to patch you up while you put on your shitty Doctor-House-wannabe American accent? That should probably do the trick.

And then this happens:

“Let's go.”

Play a sad little trombone for Max Lombardi. Play that announcement in his ear, again and again, and again and again and again till he realized just what he missed out on. Just what he didn't notice in the midst of his two, four, six, eleven murders. He missed out on an escape. He missed out on life.

So Mizore was leaving. And Raidon was coming with her. And he was telling Julian that it was up to him what to do with Max. Huh, good to know, buddy.

And Max, for his part, wasn't going anywhere anytime soon. Sorta just chilling out on the ground there, maybe a stir here or a spasm there. Wait, let's stomp on his ankle real quick just to see if he's in a moving sort of mood.

Yeah, no, he's good right where he is.

So then the other kid, the big meathead prick with the messiah complex, stoops over Max again, ready to deliver his verdict. Claps a hand on Max's shoulder. Looks him in the eye.

Says, “You're gonna be fine.”

And then he turns to leave.

And then Max is alone.

((Julian Avery continued elsewhere))
Edited by Jonny, May 30 2011, 12:40 AM.
Jeremy Franco is alive. You can write a better ending, goddammit.

Charlie DuClare is dead. And nothing was easy anymore except to smile.
Julian Avery is dead. Courage was the man with a gun in his hand.
JJ Sturn is dead. Fuck it, all good things gotta come to an end.
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