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Memories of the City; Open
Topic Started: Nov 11 2013, 10:48 AM (1,348 Views)
Espi
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[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
((Theodore Fletcher's story continues from Memory))

Theo had traveled for a while before he decided to return to Gabby's body.

After he felt comfortably far from the other killers, he'd walked along a few roads and paths, following his map and compass, before successfully navigating his way to the overlook. It was just as good a view as he remembered, with the exception of the dried blood smeared on the ground.

Not to mention the rotting stench. Disgusting and, more importantly, a disturbing reminder of how close he was to death at all times.

He noticed Gabby's body laying, draped haphazardly in a bed of flowers in what was presumably someone's attempt to memorialize his first victim. Theo kind of wished he'd thought of that, but it didn't matter now. He'd murdered her, stupidly, and now he was deep in blood and gore.

Theo needed to make a resolution. He sat at a clean bench, and gazed off the cliff. He could jump it, go the way of his hat, and die on his own terms. Or he could choose to not waste his life, or the lives of his victims, and make it as far as he could, and win this. He was at a disadvantage, sure, but he could recover, get some tools, lay low, anything it took to score his prize.

His life, his future, his destiny, escape his fate and move on from this island. That was his goal.

Theo sighed, and kicked a rock over the edge. He listened to it bounce down the cliff face. He was such a melodramatic jackass. He wanted to live, so he was going to keep trying to do so. He wasn't going to stick to morality, because that was suicide. He wasn't going to be honorable, noble or good, because that was also suicide.

It only made sense. Strategy, logic, smarts, pragmatism. He was going to use these tools to stay alive, and not let all the shit he'd done be for nothing.

Simple, right?

Theo laughed. Yeah, right, he wished,
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Rattlesnake
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Now you may be wondering, who was wearing the bolo tie? Me or the shark? Answer: YES!
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
((Katarina Konipaski continued from Memory))

She considered for a moment that she really didn't know what she was doing.

The days had stretched to ages, but caution was her ally. No need to stick her neck out and go chasing after trouble or even move more than she really had to. That had all seemed logical. She'd sit there with her scythe and her gun until someone wanted her to move, and when they asked, her gun would tell them no and when her collar beeped she'd find another room and do it over again. That was how you survived, boring as it was, but then she'd stepped over some poor kid she hadn't thought twice about before and now suddenly he was so important. Important enough to track over half the stupid island. Maybe she was growing bold from boredom, or maybe she was falling into the games that so inevitably killed their players. Or maybe, she thought on every revolution of the argument through her head, there was something else. Something he was ignorant of that she felt only he could offer.

Regardless, she'd found her mark, it seemed, just sitting in the open like the perfect idiot. She really was right about that, wasn't she?

She stepped up, put her weight on the handle of her scythe.

"I wasn't finished talking to you."
VeeFive


V4


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

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Espi
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"Apparently. What is it this time?"

Theo spoke without thinking, because he recognized Kat's voice in an instant.

Huh. Apparently Theo was easier to track than he'd expected. Or at least, he was easy enough to track that Kat had managed it, and in all honesty he wasn't sure whether he needed to be afraid or not. Sure, he'd blatantly run away earlier, but she couldn't be persistent enough to want to kill him and chase him across the entire island, right?

Theo hoped not.

Theo stood up, and turned around to face Kat, who was holding her scythe. Theo wasn't sure if it could reach him from this distance, but it probably didn't matter. She could attack him and there'd be nothing her could do about it, other than maybe run and hope she didn't think to shoot him. He nodded at Kat, brushing back his absolutely filthy hair.

"Didn't feel like sticking around with Steven?"
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Rattlesnake
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Now you may be wondering, who was wearing the bolo tie? Me or the shark? Answer: YES!
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
"He's not my type."

She let that hang for a bit. For all her doggedness, it occurred to her in the moment that she wasn't entirely sure what to say. They'd had a nice racket going in the deserted alleyway, until they found it wasn't deserted any longer. And she'd dropped her bombshell there, or at least what she considered the big reveal in that back-and-forth, the bit that made no sense until he begged her to elaborate, and Steven had shown up and so that moment was gone. 'Counting on me?' he'd ask, 'How?' And then she'd unwind her plans like a ribbon and maybe she'd have her realization there instead of on the road, the face-smackingly obvious revelation that it wasn't just him, not by a long shot, and that she'd found new, untrodden ground on the path to survival. Everyone was a means to an end, she could say, except sometimes they could be something else as well, and that would be good to share with Theo because it was sincere and honest and true. And it paved the way for her other objective, the one whose seeds left her crying on the bench and whose blossoming had marked her path in Theo's footsteps. The least and most important one.

She tried to formulate a response with that in mind, but the answer came wafting over on its own. With the shifting breeze went the last breath of fresh air Katarina would ever take, and something thick and sour and cloying climbed up her nostrils in its stead. Except not something, she knew before she even realized, but someone. A human.

More or less.

She sniffed again, theatrically, for his benefit, took the excuse to spike her brow and swipe back the corner of her bangs. "Well, that's... something." Kelly was rotting in the hangar. Rotting just like whoever this was, just like Theo would and just like she would if she made a misstep or sneezed wrong or just got plain unlucky. So fucking fragile. But she'd come at the right time. Her assessment, her wild guesses, had been correct. She looked down at the blood on the ground, up at the one who'd surely put it there.

"Guessing that's your - er, you've been here before? Would explain some things."
VeeFive


V4


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

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Espi
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"Oh, uh, yeah."

Screaming, panicked, stupid decisions, explosions as the gun seared his hand and blew gory chunks in her.

"Gabby Parker."

Friendly greeting. Gun's out, aim, slam! Bat in his arm, scramble for the gun, huge overreaction, paranoid fear, explosions as the gun seared his hand and blew gory chunks in him.

"So, you followed me here."

Resting on a bench. Approaching, gun out, not his, a dirty trick, lies and attacks, a scramble, grabs the gun, explosions as the gun seared his hand and blew gory chunks in him.

Slam, bang, crunch as he is beaten. Punished.

"What do you want from me?"
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MurderWeasel
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[ *  *  *  *  *  *  * ]
((Steven Salazar continued from Loretta, My Darling))

Steven had been right, right in many ways. The bicycle had greatly hastened his progress, even when he cut through the forest. It had enough traction, enough speed. Most of all, it saved him some effort; his legs burned, but not nearly as much as they had after a walk of similar length. His shoulders were spared the strain of backpack straps. After long enough, he was even able to ignore the odor of gasoline from the bottles behind him, making the ride into something pleasant.

As it turned out, Theo had set off into the great wide emptiness of the woodlands. Most of the destinations on the island hugged the coast, and while this had made it more difficult to figure out at what point to stop and turn towards civilization, it had also given Steven a ride blessedly free of distractions and other people. It was quiet, by and large. The typical noises of nature would subside as he passed, and so every time he stopped to listen, he would be distracted only by the rustling of the trees in the breeze and the humming of the insects, too small to be concerned by his passage.

He'd not heard anything at all of note on any of his stops, and so he had kept moving in a mostly straight line, eating a ration bar at one point to keep his energy up, draining a whole bottle of water in one sitting at another, efficiency be damned. There would be places to get more. The terrorists weren't stupid; no point would be made if the entire class died of dehydration, and if they had been hoping for a faster massacre, they could have simply imposed an arbitrary deadline. No, there would be muddy little streams or water still running in buildings, and as long as Steven didn't let things get to the point where he was desperate, it would all be fine. He'd manage something.

And now, he was skimming along a man-made path again, one he had picked up as soon as he found it in the woods. He had seen the aviary off in the distance, but had found nothing to draw him towards it. He was riding along the top of the cliff wall, which stretched quite a ways. Pausing for a moment, he took a deep breath, rolled his shoulder, dismounted his bicycle. He could see what might be figures farther down the way, near the bulk of the flowers, bright even at this distance, but couldn't even make them out enough to be sure.

He scuffed his shoe along the ground, frustrated by his lack of better vision and by the fact that they could be long gone by the time he made it closer. He turned, fully ready to kick the small bench nearby before sinking into it for a rest, when he paused.

There was one of those old metal pairs of binoculars standing there, aimed down at the harbor, but mounted on a swivel. Steven ignored the faded sign next to it, pointing out whatever it had originally been put there to facilitate the view of, and turned it. Yes, it could indeed be rotated to face the figures.

Eagerly, Steven lowered his face to the eyeholes, only to be met with darkness. He'd remembered these things from his childhood, from a couple road trips his family had taken down into Oregon, and now he also remembered begging his parents for loose change to make them work. Chewing his lip, he dug in his pocket.

The terrorists had taken almost everything from Steven, but they had left him his wallet. The back flap of it had a zipper, and inside was a change pocket. Steven rarely spent his change, and prayed he'd neglected to empty it out into the jar of coins on his desk before the trip. He'd sent the wallet through the x-ray machine rather than carrying it with him, so long ago at the airport, so he must've had something, right? It would be ridiculous to get fucked over by the lack of twenty-five cents because he'd found the one place left on this island where money held any value.

In his wallet, Steven found a dozen pennies, three nickels, five dimes—all worthless. He also had a dollar twenty-five in quarters, three old, two the shiny state quarters. Minnesota and Nebraska.

He dropped an older quarter into the coin slot, leaned over, and adjusted the focus, then smiled. Sometimes, lightning really did strike twice.
V7:
Juliette Sargent drawn by Mimi and Ryuki
Alton Gerow drawn by Mimi
Lavender Ripley drawn by Mimi
Phillip Olivares drawn by Ryuki
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jimmydalad
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((Continued from The two people in the distance were Paolo and Rebecca))

She was glad that she had gotten some sleep underneath one of the trees before she went searching for Steven. It was not easy carrying around the two weapons, but she managed to do it to the best of her abilities, trying to avoid groups of people as she traveled in search of her friend. One time, she was close to the hospital, but then heard the sound of gunshots. This caused her to keep her distance from there, not wanting to get involved in any showdowns with guns. Guns were better than her improvised spear any day of the week.

Her time alone gave her a lot of time to think. She was probably playing right into the organizer's hands at the moment. She didn't like not having any choice on the matter nor did she like the thought of being a killer. On the other hand though, she reasoned with herself that it was better to not have a choice than be fooled into believing that there was a choice in the first place. The journey she was planning on undertaking was not something that she was going to easily walk out of. She was going to die. She knew that. If she was going to die though, she was going to go down in flames.

She wondered what Melissa was doing now. If the organizers were smart, they wouldn't broadcast the events on the island immediately as to reduce the likelihood of rescue attempts happening. Seeing no evidence for them being idiots, she decided to go off that assumption. Therefore, the only thing that Melissa knew now was that her friend was missing. She didn't even want to think about how her parents were feeling. They would probably be devastated, especially considering that she was their only daughter. The thought that they didn't know where she was would probably terrify them. Then when they found out that she was on Survival of the Fittest.

Her walking eventually lead her to an overlook, and she couldn't help but smile when she got there. She found him. Unfortunately, he wasn't paying attention, too busy looking over in the distance with those binocular things that were made to extract money from the pockets of tourists. She found herself chuckling to herself a little. She had missed the sight of him and judging from the bicycle that he had close to him, he had been doing more productive shit than she had. At the same time, she thought she should teach him a little bit of a lesson.

Dropping her things except for her spear, she quickly ran up towards Steven and stopped a short distance away. She aimed the spear so that it was barely touching the back of her friend.

"You really need to watch your back. After all, you don't know who's gonna be around in these parts." Sharon chided lightly, giving her friend a smirk before lowering her weapon.

"It's been some time mate, how're you doing?"
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Rattlesnake
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Now you may be wondering, who was wearing the bolo tie? Me or the shark? Answer: YES!
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Katarina nodded at the statement that felt half accusation. Hell yeah, she'd followed him, because she didn't give up something good for no reason. Even if, when it came down to it, her goal lay guarded by an unknown quantity. Why had Theo started things off so violently, and why hadn't he attempted to do the same to her? What were his motives? What, simply, made the guy tick? She suspected, maybe that he was just hopelessly stupid. From what she remembered and from what she figured, most killers were. Heck, half of them freaking enjoyed it and went cruising around getting their jollies off like that, which in terms of ensuring one's own death ranked only below randomly regretting everything and attempting forgiveness for the unforgivable. The first type was all well and good if they didn't come after her specifically, and there were steps she could take against that. But the atoners, those were the sort that kept her up at night and ran wild and bloody though her nightmares when she slept. Illogical, unpredictable, deadly as they were stubborn. She couldn't let regret take hold. And she was willing to stalk over half the island to ensure that.

So, what did she want? A fair question, though 'Why did you follow me?' opened up a few more options. She thought a moment, took her weight off the scythe and straightened herself up, putting on her prettiest little smile.

"A couple things. Right now, I just want to talk. I mean, we've got a unique sort of thing going on here. I'm little miss Best Kill, and you... did that," she gestured at the lump in the flowers, "and yet here we are talking to each other. And I figured, you know, maybe there's something to that. I'm playing for keeps, you're playing for keeps, and somehow that keeps us both off each other's lists. And when you think about it—and believe me, I have—" her smile grew warmer, more earnest, "it means that I've got a vested interest in your wellbeing, and you in mine."

She narrowed her eyes, took up a tone she judged more or less as mock-serious. "And that means asking the tough questions. So," she would've made some sort of finger pistol or something at this point, but both hands were full and the real one seemed a mite intimidating for that purpose, "How do you go from headlining the announcements to running off and crying over a grave?"
VeeFive


V4


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

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Espi
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Theo didn't know. Kat's question completely froze him.

Why was he here, in this spot? If he was hoping for some closure, fat chance, not like Gabby was the only one. Did he regret it, yeah, but it wasn't like he could do anything to make it have not happened or anything. Maybe longing for his lost innocence or some bullshit? Possibly, but not likely, given that that didn't matter anymore. And there was no pragmatic reason, either, he wasn't getting any tools or anything, her bag was gone.

He supposed he just felt like it. Why not? It was a pretty view.

Theo shrugged. "I...made a decision, and...even if it's the smart way, the logical way, that doesn't make it the right way. I might live because I shot her, but..." He shook his head, and turned around to face the setting sun. It was nice and warm.

"Kat, why are you here?" Theo turned to face her. Time to flip the tables back onto her. "Why seek me out in the first place, why follow me here across the goddamned island, why are you still talking to me, if you wanted to, to kill me it's not exactly smart to start chatting and I think you're probably pretty smart. What's up?"
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MurderWeasel
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[ *  *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Steven tensed as the point touched the base of his spine. The binoculars went click and his vision turned black. His mind raced, trying to figure out a good way to back down any killer behind him. They didn't want him dead right away, because he wasn't dead, and so he would figure the right trick, maybe leak some information on who it was he was watching, maybe invent a story out of whole cloth. It was vital that this not end here, not now, not when he hadn't had a chance to even take an honest go at stopping the two before him.

He turned slowly, words forming and dying in his mind, and only a second after his vision registered the girl did he figure out that he wouldn't need any of it.

"Don't need to watch my back when luck's on my side," he said. He chuckled, just a little, nervously, burning off the tension.

Sharon. It was Sharon, thank God, and so he wouldn't have to make excuses, except perhaps for abandoning her. She wouldn't delay him, wouldn't interfere. He could keep going, and he could accomplish what needed doing.

"How are you?" He smiled, then, after a second, turned back around and slotted another old quarter into the binoculars.

"I've got a couple killers scouted out. Take a look. Could be trouble."

And all the while, he was hoping Sharon couldn't tell how hard his heart was hammering. At least he hadn't started sweating. After all, he'd just changed into a nicer shirt.
V7:
Juliette Sargent drawn by Mimi and Ryuki
Alton Gerow drawn by Mimi
Lavender Ripley drawn by Mimi
Phillip Olivares drawn by Ryuki
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jimmydalad
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"Luck isn't going to be on your side all the time though, mate" Sharon commented in a warning tone, but gave him a friendly smile in any case as she withdrew her spear and held it by her side.

"Well I've been fine. You gave me a real shock after you left you bastard." She replied in a tone of mock-annoyance, prodding his sides with her right hand. "After I took some time to get to terms with situation and realized something. I'm not going to just let any poor sap off you so easily. After all, that would really be stupid and you deserve better and judging from what just happened right now, it's a good thing I'm here to save your ass."

She crossed her arms and blew some stray hair that was jutting out of her beret away from her face, listening to how there were killers about the place. Of course Steven would find the people that were actively killing each other. That was just the sort of thing he would do in the first place. She was glad she was here, just so she could keep an eye on him.

"So what's the plan Steven. I doubt attacking them is the best idea since I've only got a spear-thing and a 2x4 with nails in it while they have guns. This isn't a video game, so we both know who is going to win out in the end."

She waited to hear what he had to say. He had to have a plan. He probably already had one. After all, that was what she knew him for.
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Rattlesnake
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Now you may be wondering, who was wearing the bolo tie? Me or the shark? Answer: YES!
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Katarina, too, faced the setting sun, briefly, before turning to scan around herself again. It seemed cold to her. Cold and distant as it passed beneath a horizon she could only dream of touching with the cage still fastened around her neck. It meant another nightfall. Another huddled, shivering rest. Another silent, trepidatious stalk over ground she didn't know, listening to the snaps and sniffs and chirps of things she couldn't see, seeking to spill the rich, warm blood of people who didn't deserve to die.

She let his answer go by without comment. Looked around again, because the fact that you were paranoid didn't mean they weren't after you. Sniffed and twitched her nose and let her brow spasm and smoothed down the goosebumps on her arm. It was easy to forget the human element sometimes. The plural of anecdote wasn't data, as she liked to say. But his honesty, his trepidation, that was all too real, and for a second she almost wanted to lay things out that were really, truly, for his good and not for her survival.

"What's up, eh?" she replied slowly, but the familiar momentum of argument sprung warmth within her chest. "What's up? What's freaking up is you deciding to chuck it all away. You're ready to die now, is that it? You're just gonna flop over and watch it happen, let the poor girl's memory be damned, because then everyone will know that she really, truly died in vain. She didn't deserve it? What an astute observation. None of us freaking do. But if you don't give her the honor of making something out of her death, then..."

She stopped suddenly and sighed. "I'm sorry. I just - look. I think you're being stupid, but you're not a stupid person. You know I'm being honest 'cause I'm not shouting. It's just - you know, it's tough out there. Nobody's gonna pity me, because I did something they can't understand. But you've been there, and you know what it's like, and well - I just want to know I'm not alone."
VeeFive


V4


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

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Espi
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Theo whipped to look at her. "I never said I was giving up or laying down to die." His calm broke and he turned to face her. "I don't want to have to kill people, but I will if it means I don't die tomorrow or the next day." He stared down at her; he had a couple inches on her.

After a moment his glare softened. "I know what you mean. I don't think having friends is going to work out anymore. It's us against them, killers and the victims." A pang of hunger made him wince; he hadn't eaten since the morning, and he was starved and thirsty.

He shook his head. "I've shot 4 people and killed 3 of them and now I don't have much left but a killcount and probably a lot of people who hate my guts. I lost my supplies a while back so I'm pretty much out of options."

He shrugged. "I guess that's the way things go." Theo paused. "You didn't really answer my question. Did you follow me because you want to be killer buddies, or what?"
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Rattlesnake
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Now you may be wondering, who was wearing the bolo tie? Me or the shark? Answer: YES!
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Katarina shrugged noncommittally, but she smiled in sincerity. He was still a stupid kid, she thought. But he wasn't a stupid, dangerous kid, at least not to her, and that made all the difference.

"Sounds fun, but no. I think we both know that's ending with you shooting me, or me shooting you back first." She waved the gun held loose in one hand absentmindedly back and forth to illustrate.

"But it's like I said. We've got an interest in each others' wellbeing. I just wanted to make sure you were ok. Like, really. 'Cause that helps both of us. And then I thought, maybe, if you can be civil where no-one else can-"

She bit her bottom lip, looked furtively around. Risky as hell, but nobody was going to shoot her for it. And in that case..

She pushed the scythe away from her body, let it fall harmlessly to the side. She didn't drop the gun, but she held it loosely, harmlessly as looked up, as she stepped in close and threw her arms around Theo in a hug.
VeeFive


V4


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

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Espi
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The hug was a surprise, but not an unpleasant one. Theo found himself in an embrace and it was comforting but at the same time more than a little upsetting. At home he was fairly huggy, and it was odd how little he'd thought of that habit until now.

This was likely the last hug he'd ever get. That was pretty tragic.

So Theo hugged her back, wrapping his long arms around Kat, and savoring the few moments they had before they went back to Island Mode. That was really all the time he had to spare of humanity; a few seconds tops. Also tragic.

After that, he pulled away and looked down at Kat. "Okay, so now what? We walk away, hope we don't see each other again until one or both of us are dead? Because eventually that has to happen, you know."
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