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Topic Started: Nov 13 2013, 05:10 PM (1,025 Views)
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[Originally posted by Jonny]

Never was about where the car would take them.

Only math in Zoe's head, only three and two makes five, only the hope that three and two would now make five. Math is how we stay alive, we add and add and add, more of us together, more of us friends, more of us not killing. And when whoever comes on the loudspeakers and tells us about all the dead bodies, it just won't make any sense, because there's so many of us here, so many alive and are you sure someone really died? So unlikely, so unlikely. Five was a start towards that. Zoe and Oscar and Cooper and Gray and Andi was five.

“It's alright by me.” Not exactly a call to arms. You wanna go to Wendy's for lunch today? It's alright by me. You wanna cling to as many people as possible to deny the inevitability of death? It's alright by me. Nobody was rallied to anything.

Something wrong with the math, though. Cooper looking sour, Andi sounding sour, the fact slowly dawning on Zoe that maybe nobody here actually liked each other. Which she could forgive them, honestly, one and all, because she didn't actually like anyone here either. But you wouldn't know it, you wouldn't know it, Zoe so subtle and Zoe so quiet and when she speaks at all nobody's gonna go hunting for the animus in those four, five words. Maybe if everyone else shut up, they could be as good a friend as Zoe?

A friend as good as Zoe ought to be tending to Cooper right now, bruised ego and curse words. Hand on his shoulder and some kind of hey-it's-okay, some kind of reassurance that he was right and Andi was wrong but why the hell would she do that when Andi was the only one of these clowns she even liked? And if she drew her battle line here, Andi on the other side armed with the artillery of unkind words, and Cooper on this side with nothing to offer to anyone ever.

But a hand on Cooper's shoulder anyway, an overture of awkward noncommittal goodwill for her fellow man, a word or two of hey-it's-okay before he shrugged her off and the whole thing ended up useless. A glance back at Gray and Andi, glance like can-you-believe-this-clown, also useless in all likelihood but it was good practice anyway to start scrambling while she had a face to save.
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[Originally posted by Greg The Anti-Viking]

((Skipping to prevent inactivity, my appologies))

Oscar had, for a moment, forgotten the issue of whether his companions would accept the idea of travelling in an expanded pack. While it was good that Zoe shared in the idea of working together, even in a temporary sense, Cooper's reaction was considerably less warm to the idea.

That was a mistake on his part, given that even after just meeting; Cooper and Andi were at odds. It didn't take much to notice that, if he had been paying attention. Of course now, the cards were on the table, and it wasn't exactly like he could say, 'sorry, I take it back, my mistake'.

The good news for Cooper though, is that travel would take a day at most. At least by Oscar's calculation, it wasn't as if they would be stuck together forever. It was just like a day of school, if you didn't like someone, you could at least be mature and make it through the day.

At least, he hoped as such, turning his head from Gray over to Andi, awaiting her rebuttal. Perhaps it wouldn't even matter if Cooper liked it or not? The decision for the journey came down to her. And he was left to wait.
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[Originally posted by Mimi]

Gray was taking a backseat on the decision making, forcing her to be the hammer vote on whether or not they'd all stick together. While Andi wasn't shy about her opinion, circumstances were different and she realized pretty quickly that being as vocal as she was back in Aurora would get them in trouble. Starting with Cooper, it seemed. She'd meant her jab as a joke, picking up on his seeming self-deprecation and rolling with it the same way she'd joke with the girls on the team, but Cooper didn't think she was as funny as she did, evidently. She stood tall, arms crossed and body unmoving as Cooper pouted. She wasn't going to apologize, not for something so small. If he was going to be this sensitive about something so small when he had bigger things to worry about, that was on him. And she especially wasn't going to apologize when he'd decided to be a bitch and whisper things under his breath. Everything in her was telling her to kick Cooper in the crotch, show him what a bitch really was.

But she had to think about Fiona. It'd be stupid to die for something so petty when it was so important that she survive for her. Rather than marching over and making sure Cooper never procreated, Andi remained firmly in her spot, taking a deep breath in an attempt to calm down.

"Did you say something, Cooper?" She inquired, trying to keep her voice steady, though her annoyance was seeping its way in.

She didn't wait for him to respond, instead turning to face Oscar before speaking once more,

"I don't think it's a good idea to stick together. A big group moving around would just attract attention," She said, voice still coming off slightly harsh without her intending for it to, "That, and I don't handle sensitive people well."

She'd intended that one, unable to just let what Cooper said go.
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[Originally posted by BetaKnight]

Oh. So that’s how she wanted to play this, was it?

He had walked away and tried to keep his emotions to himself, but that wasn’t good enough for Andi-the-Bitch. Oh no, of course not. She wanted to run her goddamn mouth and then attempt to call him out for responding, as if she could shame him into silence. Did this crazy bitch think he was intimidated in the least by her skank ass?

She wanted to see what he would do? Fuck her. They would throw down.

Cooper turned from the perimeter of their little grouping, staring at Andi with a burning intensity. Two could play the ‘talk shit without yelling’ game. He knew the rules. In fact, he was from a family of champs at this game. His mom and Aunt Cheryl play it at every holiday for as long as he could remember.

‘Say your piece and then bounce,’ he reminded himself as he took a steadying breath. ‘You don’t need to take no shit from some used up, busted ass ho.’ He smoothed down his shirt as he slowly exhaled. Only one opportunity to do this.

“I said, Andi, that you were a fucking bitch.” Cooper projected as much as he could, making sure to enunciate as much as possible. He followed up his proclamation by flashing Andi the bird on both hands. There. Let’s see who the sensitive one was now.

He raised the rest of his fingers and gave a normal wave to Oscar and Zoe. “It’s been real. I’m out. Peace.”

With that, Cooper walked off. He didn’t know where he was going other than it was a place without Andi Victorino.

((Cooper Komorowski continued in Catus Carnival))
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[Originally posted by Deamon]

Everything had been going well, up until Andi had made a joke at Cooper’s expense. That was the exact point everything fell apart. Cooper reacted about as poorly as he possibly could have and then left. So that was one member of their 'group' down before they'd even started going anywhere. Not that it mattered, since Andi didn't want to travel in a big group. Whether or not she'd deem the group small enough with Cooper's departure was yet to be seen, but whatever the case they had lost a potential ally. Gray was glad it hadn't escalated beyond name calling at the very least since most of them would have had the means to cause serious harm to each other. Regardless it was the second time Andi had driven away someone who could have been their ally, first it was Cassidy and now Cooper and they had yet to see whether Oscar and Zoe were planning on staying.

Gray wasn't going to try and stop Cooper as he walked away because clearly nothing was going to make him stay...unless Andi left the group maybe. But if Andi left Gray was leaving too, since he'd made a deal with her and he was going to see it through to the end and that was looking like it may have been more difficult than it had first seemed. Andi could have been purposefully driving away people she didn't want in the group though, it could have been likely considering how Andi acted differently around him.

Gray adjusted his beanie and took a look at Oscar and Zoe, he was wondering how they would react to what had just happened. After all they had been travelling with Cooper. Had being the keyword since Andi had driven him off, maybe it was for the best, since if he couldn't take a joke then he would have snapped at Andi eventually.

Maybe it was time to step up and make a decision before everything fell apart. That was what Gray was leaning towards, it was funny in a way since Andi was the one who had told him he needed to man up in the first place, and here he was putting that idea into action.

"Ok. I think it's best if me and Andi just go the Airstrip. You two can come with us, but we should split-up once we get there. Or I guess you could go your own way."

Maybe just having the two of them stick together would be for the best in the long run, their encounters with others always ended badly and they seemed to be able to get on just fine by themselves. Gray picked up his pack and slung it over his shoulder before turning to face Oscar and Zoe. He didn't know how they'd react to what he just said so instead of immediately heading off he waited to see what their choice was.

It was an important decision after all and he didn't want them to feel rushed.
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[Originally posted by Jonny]

How many more times was this going to happen?

There wasn't even any If I stay to it. If Zoe stayed, if she stood stalwart on this newly hallowed ground, it'd happen here and it'd happen soon and it'd happen with these people. But to say her goodbyes and try her luck somewhere else, what would that solve? There was no somewhere-else safe from all these simmering rages, no face so far from contorting itself to hatred. People would yell at each other, and curse each other, and (allow this thought for now) try to hurt each other, because nobody was at all happy to be here. So, new plan to see some smiling faces: find a better island. Should be easy, should be another one a short swim away where nobody died and nothing hurt. It only seemed fair.

But there was a question in front of her, which seemed sorta sorta pressing. And she already knew it was cruel of her to give the answer she would. Unfair to look at Oscar, pensive, expecting his wisdom to rush on forth and carry the day. Hey, hey, Oscar, if you could say your piece so Zoe could pretend it matters, pretend its content swayed her this way or that, it'd be great right now. Great to hear the stern words of a real leader, the kind she needed you to be right now, the kind she could follow a little while longer. So long as there was someone by her side that she could convince herself for a little while had a real plan (nobody had a real plan, not even a little), sundown wouldn't be so hard to swallow. Sunrise, though, that was gonna suck no matter what, sunrise if memory served was time for bells to toll and hearts to break because some asshole needed to remind us that death exists.

Sunrise wouldn't be easier with Oscar around, or anyone else. Sunrise would probably be something to tough out alone. But that wasn't yet, and if Oscar had himself a good answer to this question before them that still slightly looked like a dilemma, she could use a guy like him a little longer. So for now, silence and stares and something a little like hope.
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[Originally posted by Greg The Anti-Viking]

Oscar sighed. There were so many better ways to say what Andi intended that could have prevented, or at least diminished, the reaction from Cooper. Before he could say anything, Cooper was gone. While it was true that Oscar didn't overly like him, he didn't hate him. And besides, given their situation, having another trustworthy person was a blessing.

But alas, with a single sentence, it was gone. And Cooper stormed off into the distance, leaving everyone else behind.

Thankfully, Gray was a great deal more accommodating. The offer to stay with them, at least temporarily would be better than just making the journey alone. There was a nervous side to the proposition of course, Andi had already sent off one member of their team. He couldn't quite believe that she wouldn't do the same of them. But they needed a better idea of where they were. There was no choice in the matter. It was safer in numbers.

He glanced at Zoe. He saw the look in her eyes, the look of someone who was looking to him to speak this time, to provide an idea of what should be done. He flexed his fingers once or twice and turned to look at the others.

"That's fine with me. I really just want to get a better idea of the island. If the worst happens..."

If the worst happens... Oscar turned back to face the tower, trying to hide the gulp that had built its way into his mouth.

"Then we can split up when we get there.”"
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[Originally posted by Jonny]

(This is breaking post order like whoa, but I'm also about to go inactive and need to get out of the way before i go Away)

She hadn't even realized there could be a wrong answer.

But of course there was, and of course Oscar had found it, of course Oscar could and would expound for hours on why he was nothing like a leader. It was all there, all neatly there, every reason to run far far away towards someone who didn't make her want to scream. Oh, the reasons: he'd brought up the worst, no reason other than to remind Zoe and everyone else it was there. He'd waffled and wobbled and toppled over at the actual decision point, nothing solid in sight when he spoke. But worst of all, worst of all, here was his master plan: "I really just want to get a better idea of the island." Zoe figured out everything worth knowing about the island within ten minutes of waking up. Everything since was trying to clear it from her mind. Why oh why would you say something like that?

So she was backing away, soft slowly stepping back as the lies swirled and churned and were at last ready on her tongue: "Sure. Sounds good. I'll go find Cooper? Try and talk him down." Lazy lie, laughable lie, could've played out so much better if she wasn't trying so damn hard to remember whether his name was Cooper or Carter. "See you soon?"

But it wasn't really a question, and they all knew that. Oscar, Andi, Gray, they all knew better, knew most likely that she wasn't really gonna come round back. Zoe, she knew even better than that: knew this place was gonna keep on getting smaller and smaller, and soon enough she'd see someone out of this group once more. Maybe they'd be looking a little pale and bloated at the time. Maybe Zoe would. Eyes open, though. Eyes open ready waiting to see you again, see you soon.

((Zoe Leverett continued elsewhere))
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[Originally posted by Deamon]

Luckily for Gray everyone seemed to be able to hold their tongues after Coopers exit, no one else said something that could have incited or offended someone else. That was a good thing because the less enemies they made like that the better they would all be for it. At least they would be until someone went nuts and started killing everyone they saw which sadly seemed like the way everything was bound to end, whether or not it happened to someone Gray knew was something he didn't want to dwell on. His hand found the gun still hidden under his t-shirt, he didn't know if he wanted to show it to Zoe or Oscar or if it would be better for everyone if he didn't.

Everything became so difficult when every decision could cost someone their life.

Maybe Gray was just over-thinking it, maybe it wouldn't make a difference if he told them or not, he didn't want the risk either way but unfortunately he had to make a decision one way or the other. Doing nothing counted as one of his two options.

Cooper's sudden and aggressive departure seemed to have everyone on edge though so the best option would be not to introduce the presence of the gun. Unless it suddenly became a matter of life and death that he did...which granted did have a chance of happening.

The sun was rapidly going down though so there was a more important issue to deal with. They had to get to the airstrip and there was no way they were going to do that if they kept standing around talking.

Then Zoe left.

She just straight up walked away. Saying she was going to find Cooper and try to calm him down. There was no way even she believed it but Gray didn't say anything, if anything it made everything easier as selfish as that sounded. Less people to look out for and too manage.

It also made the next step extremely easy.

"I guess we should go the airstrip. If Zoe finds Cooper they'll know we were heading there."

With that Gray picked up his pack and swung it over his shoulder. There was no point staying at the overpass anymore, they had wasted too much time already.

((Gray Emerson continued elsewhere...))
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Andi couldn't mask the irritation written across her face as she watched Cooper storm away with Zoe right behind him.

It wasn't the name-calling or the profanities that bothered her. She'd been called a bitch a million times before and would likely be called a bitch a million times in the future, the word losing any power it had on her when she was younger. What made her angry, or sad, or whatever it was that she was feeling, was that she'd given the dipshit a chance. She put aside the promises she made herself to not get close to anyone or trust anyone she wasn't close to to give Cooper a chance, tried to joke with him and make an effort. All for nothing. The only thing she'd gotten was the knowledge that she had the right idea to begin with.

Frustrated, she smoothed some loose hairs behind her ear and avoided eye contact with the boys. She didn't know what to say, or if there was anything to say at all. He made her feel like an asshole, like she'd done something wrong. Maybe she'd been to harsh with her ribbing, but it was just what she was used to with the softball team. They didn't pull any punches and it was the kind of humor she was accustomed to and preferred. She felt like she should apologize to someone and she hated that. Andi wasn't someone who apologized. Apologizing meant admitting defeat and setting aside pride.

It wasn't who she was and fuck Cooper for being a little douchebag and making her feel that way.

Kicking haplessly at the ground, Andi hoisted her bag over her shoulder and finally made eye contact with the boys.

“Let's just go,” She said with nary the hint of enthusiasm. She was too drained to be enthusiastic.

[Andi continued elsewhere]

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Oscar got out of there long before it became a danger zone.

((Oscar Trig continued elsewhere))
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