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Maladjusted; Never to be trusted. Ema Ryan finale.
Topic Started: Oct 29 2011, 11:53 AM (1,169 Views)
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Oh my god you guys The Riz killed Cara what do!?
[ *  *  * ]
[We Can Live with the Sadness --> Ema Ryan]

Walking away didn't last long. Limping didn't, either. Movement in general was difficult. With every step, every staggering lurch, every stomach-juggling trip and every desperate climb back up to her feet, a certain wounded Irish girl found herself less and less lucid, more and more light in the head, given to long periods standing - or rather, wobbling - in place, believing them to only last a few seconds each. Even as the sun rose high into the noon sky, made its steady way down into the afternoon, the world around Ema Ryan blurred at the ages, shone in the centre of her focus like a photograph overexposed, or a monitor tilted into the sunlight. The corona of what was still visible in the classical sense was a comforting little piece of normality, though. It was also all Ema had to navigate by, besides her rapidly numbing sense of touch.

A sense of touch that told her there was something thick and warm slowly rolling down her ankle. A lot of that something, most likely. Yeah. Something. Blood is something, girly, and don't tell me you haven't seen enough of it.

Whose voice was that? Didn't sound like an inner monologue kind of voice, but... no, it didn't come from somewhere else, either. So what did that mean? She was hearing things? No, hearing things that aren't there is usually still directional. So... she was hearing voices? Not a good sign. But she was digressing, the answer was obvious, as to whose voice it was, at least.

...so why now?

And that's an obvious one too.

Yeah, uh, remember when you got shot? That didn't stop being a thing or anything.
You're not helping here.

My bad, bro. I'd help properly, only I'm sort of dead...but you knew that, didn't you?

There was no answer to that. No. Why did she need to answer her? She wasn't real. She was dead. Ema killed her, days ago. Her body was lying at the bottom of a river in a danger zone. Ema didn't have to answer to Hayley. Didn't stop her wanting to. Didn't stop her single eye moistening with the beginnings of a tear, or her mouth, dry from the rapid, light, strained breathing, from wanting to apologise for her every failing.

No, no no no, I'm meant to be... who am I kidding? I'm not going home.

There was a residential street not far in the distance. A door, probably locked, only a few hundred metres away. She could always try the window. There'd be a bed inside. Or even a sofa. That would be nice. About that time, Ema realised she was still resting all of her weight on her right knee. She looked down, true enough, very little of her left ankle wasn't dyed red. Better get a move on.

No time to wait for therapists and shit, might as well just... I dunno.

She forced herself back up. Might as well just what? Admit to herself how she felt? Not immortal, not strong, not even right? No, she'd been right to try fighting. She'd failed, but it had been the only correct choice left to her. No, the people she'd killed didn't deserve to die. Neither did she, though.

Survival of the Fittest. Nobody deserves to die. But only one person gets to survive.

Ema's casualties hadn't been good enough. Ema hadn't been good enough.

The door was almost in reach, now. Twenty feet, maybe less? A few seconds more, a few steps further, and then a well deserved rest.

Do I really deserve it, though?

Define rest.
I just want to lay down somewhere comfortable. Is that so wrong?

That's what everyone wants, love. But then Survival of the Fittest became a thing, and then you got shot, and hell if the odds are really in your favor.
I don't need this. Not now. Can't you just... just... leave me alone?

Oh, hey, maybe that's what you wanted all along, yeah? Should have told me earlier, shit, maybe I'd still be alive if I hadn't been stuck taking care of your sorry ass.
That's not fair. Fuck, I was stronger than you were. I... I always have been.

That was a barefaced lie. It was fair. Ema had often casually claimed to believe that everybody got what they deserved, one way or another. She'd never had this in mind. But, in a roundabout sense, she deserved what she was getting right now. She'd earned her continued survival, and just the same, she'd earned her slow, lonely death. Even Hayley's voice, now in lucidity recognised as a wishful hallucination, had abandoned her. Even her legs wanted nothing more to do with her, and had no further compulsion to help.

And so Ema dropped like a proverbial ton of bricks, tipping almost comically forwards as her left foot outright refused to follow her instructions. There was still enough strength in the girl's arms to cover her face before it collided with the pavement. She landed, bruised and grazed, mere inches from the house she'd been so set on reaching. So close. But it might as well have been miles. Ema reached out, stretching her fingers as far as they'd go, falling short of the inviting wooden door by a few feet, a little less than her own height. One more step, maybe two, she'd have been able to touch it, that would've been a small comfort in itself.

But that was the story of her life. A little more of this, a bit more of that, she'd be so much more. Sure, she'd passed her exams with flying colours, her parents had been proud of her, she'd been accepted by MIT of all places. But all the same, the girl had fallen short of everything she'd really cared for. She'd let Hayley slip away, first to the charms of a boy, then to the fists of a girl. She'd left behind what few friends she had in Ireland, failed to stay close to them. Hadn't made any more in Minnesota, either. Hadn't made the slightest effort to get in shape or anything else that might've helped her chase her dreams. No, she'd just coasted through life, doing as much as she had to, being good enough. Never being... right.

All feeling was gone from the girl's leg, now. That was comforting, really. The beautiful numb feeling of dead weight below the knee was easily preferable to the searing pain she'd felt before now. At least, it was, before Ema came to realise what it meant. Her right foot felt cold. Her ankle, too. And both hands, in fact. She'd lost a lot of blood. Were she able to look back, she was sure she'd see quite a substantial pool of it. So much for that bandage.

God, she felt so cold, though. All the poor girl wanted was to curl up and sleep for a while. Her head felt so... so very light. Nothing seemed to be in focus any more. It couldn't hurt to just... maybe close her eyes for a little while, right?

[Consider this a pseudo-placeholder. More like a work in progress. Just so you guys know I am working on this death and all. I'll finish it in a second post, or possibly an edit. Most likely a second post.]
Every time you fall asleep you die. Someone else wakes up in your body, thinking they're you.
You are alone and trapped in your own mind, the world around you is your lie.
Soon you will be nothing, you will never again hear sounds, never again see colours, never again be anyone.

Riley Moon appreciates that Action Needs an Audience, but it's hard not to watch. Hair Status: Bubblegum Pink
Parallel with: The Heavy Weapons Guy

The Past
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Oh my god you guys The Riz killed Cara what do!?
[ *  *  * ]
Ema expected to come to with a start, for her eyes to snap open and her mind to realise how vulnerable she was at that very moment. She was still used to survival being an achievable goal. When she eventually realised she was awake at all, she recalled how gradual a process it had been. Her eyelids, no, eyelid, singular, had been reluctant to budge, and the afternoon light - even weakened by the shade her hair provided - stung with its aggressive brightness. But she had to get up, had to keep going.

Getting up was out of the question, though. One leg refused to budge at all, the other seemed stuck fast in something thick and sticky. Her own blood, she soon remembered. Something warm was dripping down her cheek, too.

Eyelid, singular.

This is it, then? I figured it would hurt more. Everything's so... numb.

I know that feel, girly. Just...hope it stays that way.

Huh? That was new. Hearing voices, was it now? Heh, she must be losing it. Her sanity, that is. Not blood. Well, blood too, but she wasn't specifying that. Ema didn't need any reminding that she was losing that, not any more than the sticky ooze surrounding the leg she still had feeling in or the stinging taste of it running down from her cheekbone to her lips, worming its way into her mouth and assaulting her tongue with that oh-so-distinctive flavour. But that was besides the point. What even was the point? Voices. No, voice. Singular. But that wasn't new. Why would she think it was new? Because beforehand she hadn't heard them as though there was actually someone standing in front of her, actually speaking.

So those shoes must've always been there, she just hadn't noticed them standing, well, right before her eyes. Eye. Singular. Yeah. But right in front of her, that was the point. Raising her head wasn't a thing, though. Aiming her good eye upwards didn't do much but show the familiar-sounding person's silhouette almost in full. Silhouette? How did that work? They looked as though they had the sun behind them, but... wasn't there a house there? Huh. It didn't make a bit of sense to Ema. But did it really have to?

Where'd you come from?

It was supposed to be out loud. Ema never actually noticed that she remained silent.

What kind of question is that? I was already here.
Oh. Okay. Who are you?

You are ridiculous, girly, you really are. You'd think you'd have seen enough of me...heh.

That voice. That accent. The choice of pronoun. "Girly". It was all so... her. The figure bent at the knees, seemed to take Ema by the chin and lift her face up to see. In truth, the girl never moved. Just her perspective, in a vision she was much too far removed from lucidity to recognise as false.

Oh God. I've missed you.

It was her mouth, that Ema saw first. Out of that blur of darkness and flesh, came the distinct form of Hayley Kelly's mouth. Her cheeks and chin followed soon after, nose, eyes, but nothing more. A disembodied face, hovering before the dying girl's field of view. Smirking. Odd time to be smirking. Couldn't she see that Ema was dying here? Maybe that was why. Maybe she'd come to whisk her away to a better place.

Fat chance. There's no "better place" for people like me. Like us.

I mean, I dunno if I'd agree with that. It's hard to get worse than bleeding to death on Survival of the Fittest, y'know?

Hair came next. That was a reality check, if such a phrase could be applied to what Ema Ryan was experiencing just then. Sodden, damp and lank. Green, almost, a bit like a Forsaken, even. Odd choice of comparison, a zombie for a ghost. Heh. But what did it mean for her, or for the two of them, even? A special reservation at Hell, the table near Satan reserved for the kids that kill all their friends? Meanwhile, sodden and torn clothes were filled in, memories of what she'd done to her girlfriend flooded Ema's mind. Hayley turned her head on cue, showing off that gruesome hole.

Sorry about that.

No harm done. ...Wait bad word choice.
So what happens now?

Well, unfortunately I can't pay you back. Ghost hands, y'know. Can't hold guns and things. So you'll have to wait it out, I guess.

Luckily, Ema's body was still comfortably numb. And that sounded like a song title. She couldn't rightly remember by whom, or why she knew it. It just came to mind. Lots of things had been coming to mind lately. Trivial little things, details she'd thought long forgotten. Her life. Not exactly flashing before her eye, but the feeling was comparable.

It's okay. I'm glad you're here. Sorry I asked you to leave me alone before.

With Hayley's help, Ema rose to her feet. Or felt as though she did. The only movement her real body made was her right eyelid drooping shut. The twitching, the shaking, it all stopped. The only real motion that remained was the lazy drip of blood from cheekbone to pavement. Some continued to spill from her leg, too, imperceptibly.

It's okay, honeybee. Didn't mean what I said either. Honest.
That was a comfort. Some part of her almost seemed to realise that it was her own mind, her collected memories talking, not the real Hayley. But even that part was comforted. That tiny, conscious, lucid section of her mind was at peace with at least one of her decisions, finally at peace with choosing to act, to end Hayley's suffering. Inaction would've been easier, for Ema, theoretically. But it'd been the right choice.

Thanks. I... I l... luh...

What was going on here? This wasn't meant to be how it went. Even in her mind, Ema dropped to one knee. Her left leg wasn't wounded, somehow. Come to think of it, she even had both eyes now. Weird. She'd have to figure out how that had happened, just as soon as this absurd agony passed. But it didn't. She dropped to both knees. Reached out for Hayley's hand. She wasn't there. A few metres into the distance, amongst the trees, stood her girlfriend. She had her back to Ema now, and try as she might, the girl couldn't call out to get her attention.

No. No no no. It wasn't supposed to be like this. The redhead shuffled forwards on her knees, trailing blood behind her leg, staining the ground. She never questioned why it was mud, rather than paving slabs. Never wondered how she'd come to be in an entirely different place. Only questioned why Hayley wouldn't hear her, wouldn't just take her hand, tell her it was all okay.

Then she turned around.

And dear God, did she look beautiful. For a moment, Ema found herself wholly enraptured. Hayley walked towards her. There was a smile on her face. Not the wry grin of so many times before, but a genuine, kindly smile.

Hayley reached out a hand. Ema made to grasp it.

And for a split second, she almost succeeded.

But even in her own mind, the girl's body lacked the strength. Pain wracked her small frame, and she fell straight forwards, arm still outstretched, flat on her face. Just the same as she had been in reality all along. She tried looking up again. No Hayley.

A solitary sob made its way through her body, sapping what stamina she had left to force a weak motion out of her chest.

A solitary tear made its way down her face, the thin, transparent and fast-running liquid in start contrast the thick red curtain on the opposite side.

Adrenaline made one final push. Ema almost wasted it on a laugh, despite everything, her instincts still demanded that she tried to survive. No. She had something more important to do. She extended her fingers, tilted her wrist, reached out for her lover, her Hayley, the girl who had always been there. The girl who had never been here. And as if on cue, a butterfly fluttered down to meet the motion, alighting on her index finger.

She'd always hated butterflies. Never understood why people liked them. Creepy fluttery things, no better than moths. But this one was so pretty. And not even slightly lucid as she was, phobias held no sway. In fact, she scarcely knew whether or not the thing was real. Such a beautiful shade of pale blue, so perfectly still, even as her strength deserted her, and her hand dropped. How could such a thing really exist?

Well... that was a question for another time. Another place.

A better place.

Ema could only hope that was where she was headed.

Girl #45 - Ema Ryan - Deceased
Every time you fall asleep you die. Someone else wakes up in your body, thinking they're you.
You are alone and trapped in your own mind, the world around you is your lie.
Soon you will be nothing, you will never again hear sounds, never again see colours, never again be anyone.

Riley Moon appreciates that Action Needs an Audience, but it's hard not to watch. Hair Status: Bubblegum Pink
Parallel with: The Heavy Weapons Guy

The Past
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