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Adam & Eve & Steve; pm before entry, please
Topic Started: Jan 24 2014, 05:23 PM (2,149 Views)
Mimi
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[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Phoebe Cho, girl no. 031, continued from: MELTDOWN

Any other time, the island was nothing but fear and sadness, but as she sat perched on one of the overlook's many benches between Darren and Marcus, Phoebe couldn't help but appreciate the beauty of it. These were more than likely the last days of her life, after all, and she wanted to make the most of what little time she had left. This coud be her last sunrise and she wanted to enjoy it.

Often, back before the game, she envisioned herself traveling after school was over and done with, exploring all the most romantic and beautiful locations in the world; Paris, Milan, Bali, anything. She wanted to see it all, immerse herself in the scenery, imagine all the stories that had played out on those grounds. This island would do in a pinch though, she decided. It had its own stories to tell. Maybe lovers or families gathering the same way she and the boys were to watch their own sunsets long before they'd even knew this place existed. Part of her wondered where those people were now, if they were still fondly thinking back on their memories of this place while the graduating class sat dying. It was tragic, but beautiful in a way. Like some Shakespearian drama.

Phoebe pulled her knees closer to her body under one of Darren's oversized hoodies as a brisk breeze passed. She hadn't packed warmly for Disneyland, unfortunately, but Darren came to her rescue. She'd been wearing the bright blue garment since the night they'd left the reactors and it had seen some wear and tear since then, leaving her feeling mildly guilty as she fully intended to return it.

Weeks ago, she never would have thought it possible to get as close to someone in three days as she felt to Darren and Marcus, but it happened. They reminded her of her brothers back home, like she was personally responsible for their well being. Darren especially. The few times they'd actually managed to make camp and get a little rest, she caught Darren crying in his sleep and it brought back all the memories of one of the twins running into her room when they were younger and spooked by some twisting shadow in the corner. She'd be annoyed, as any big sister woken from their slumber would be, but she'd bring them into her bed and hold them until they fell asleep. She did the same with Darren, humming and rubbing his hair until he'd calmed down.

On the other hand, she felt she was Marcus' Darren. Nothing seemed the phase him, even though she knew deep down he was just as afraid as the rest of them were. He never let it show though. Not even when they'd heard gunshots feet from their camp did he let it show. She admired his steely resolved and level head, but she wanted to help him the same way she helped Darren, let him know they they were there for him. Maybe he did know. He probably did. She hoped, anyway. Maybe he was just afraid of getting to close when their days were limited.

“There's so many things we won't get to experience,” Phoebe said, breaking the silence between the three as they watched the mingling of pinks and oranges in the sky.

“I'm never going to get married or have a family or anything. I had this whole book at home with all my plans for my future wedding and the names of all my kids picked out and everything. Now they're just going to go to waste.”

Quickly afterwards, she realized what a downer she was being on an otherwise moment of peace on the island and immediately tried to rectify it.

“At least I won't have to go through menopause. And you guys aren't going to have to lose your hair.”

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((Marcus Leung continued from Meltdown))

It had been hard to relax the last few days. Marcus had felt tired, drained, sometimes sleepy, but sleepy wasn't the same as relaxed.

He was very nearly relaxed now, though, sitting here watching the sunrise. Phoebe and Darren seemed peaceful too, and that was good. When one of the three of them got on edge, it seemed to spread to the other two until they were all anxiously looking over their shoulders. They'd drifted in and out of the woods and the urban areas over the last few days, bumping into the odd person or group. Everyone they met seemed as jumpy as them though, and they inevitably made some excuse to get on their way before paranoia took hold.

It hurt, really, that people they'd gone to school with for years couldn't trust them after a few days and vice versa. It made Marcus wonder how many friends he'd ever really had. Those kinds of thoughts had a way of keeping you up at night.

He hadn't voiced his doubts to Phoebe and Darren. He didn't want to worry them, and maybe there was a part of him that was a little bit afraid that the paranoia would take hold of them too.

If Marcus knew one thing, it was that he didn't want to die alone.

He must have started nodding off a little bit, because he started fully awake when Phoebe spoke up. Get married, have a family. His parents had probably been worried that he'd end up doing exactly that before he was out of high school.

Marcus managed to crack a smile at Phoebe's attempt to lighten the mood. "I dunno," he said, absently running a hand through his hair, "I think I might be going a little gray."

"But... we can find nice things to do here. Have a party or something." The words felt hollow even to him, but it was an attempt.
"Art enriches the community, Steve, no less than a pulsing fire hose, or a fireman beating down a blazing door. So what if we're drawing a nude man? So what if all we ever draw is a nude man, or the same nude man over and over in all sorts of provocative positions? Context, not content! Process, not subject! Don't be so gauche, Steve, it's beneath you."
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(Darren Fox continued from Meltdown)

Darren shouldn't have nearly as hard as he did. Phoebe presented an interesting point; his father was bald and Darren would have hated losing his hair. His laugh was loud and it hurt his gut.

"Can't imagine what my hair would look like," he said after a deep breath. "I would have been okay, I think. Grayish-orange wouldn't too bad, would it?"

It felt good to smile. It's been, what, a week since he had last smiled? Darren lost count of how long.

Things were quiet. The cold air seemed especially empty, with the slight cool breeze that would rush past occasionally. Darren was grateful he brought a hoodie, though Phoebe appeared to He didn't think twice about offering it to her. It wasn't like he was going to get any use out of a second one, and it just felt like the neighborly thing to do. Plus, it was a way to say thanks without repeating "thank you" over and over.

He kept having nightmares. Kelly, her body stretching the sky, her body ripped like a crushed cherry pie. Blood poured from the sky, burning like acid as soon as it hit his face. He realized on the third night that the reason it burned so hard was that he was crying in his sleep. Phoebe told him that. Phoebe had been there for him each night, helping him to fall back to sleep. Something about how she went out of her way to help him was extremely comforting.

What she didn't know was that both she and Marcus were in there as well, along with most of his friends. His parents, his classmates... They were all there, littering the moldy, disgusting ground like birds shot out of the sky. But no, it wasn't mold was it? Something else, something...

He didn't know he was capable of dreaming up such disturbing things, though it wasn't like he had control over that. Darren shied away from anything gross or disgusting. It bothered him that he was seeing Marcus and Phoebe, two people he only truly met several days ago. Darren wasn't about to mention it either. Not when Marcus was actually smiling. It would have been a shame to ruin that so he avoided mentioning it.

There was no real 'bond' between them in the traditional sense. Darren knew nothing about either of them and it made any attempt at small talk hard. If they weren't here, if they actually made it to Disney Land, he'd probably would have never spoken with either of them. However, with Phoebe acting like a mother and Marcus being the silent, vigilant watcher, Darren just couldn't help being drawn in. It felt safe, like nothing could happen. And, for the past couple of days, nothing did happen.

"A party?" Darren asked, scratching the back of his neck. "Gee, I don't know. Wouldn't we need Balloons and those Party... horns?"

That was an attempt at a joke. A really bad one, Darren thought to himself.

"The view is really pretty though," Darren continued. "The ocean out there looks perfect. I wish I could just jump in..." He paused. "If it wasn't such a high drop, maybe."
Edited by Ciel, Jan 31 2014, 04:33 AM.
V6

G052 - Reed, Jasmine - 0% - Falchion - START END
G060 - Pfeiffer, Scout - 100% - Sawlaska Thunderfuck 5000 - START
G025 - Reyes, Audrey - 0% - Nunchaku - START END

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((Skipping to avoid inactivity))

"Party horns, huh..." An idea came to Marcus and he bent down, running his hand through the grass before he found a suitable blade. He plucked one that seemed fitting and brought it up to his mouth, cupping it between his hands.

He pressed the blade of grass against his lips and blew. At first, there was just a sound like Marcus was failing pretty spectacularly at blowing a raspberry, but but after a few moments he managed to shift the grass just right so that a shrill, surprisingly loud sound was emitted. "There," he said after taking another minute or so to get the hang of it, "perfect party horns."

Marcus glanced down at the now-crumpled grass in his hands. His expression softened a little. "My dad taught me how to do that."
"Art enriches the community, Steve, no less than a pulsing fire hose, or a fireman beating down a blazing door. So what if we're drawing a nude man? So what if all we ever draw is a nude man, or the same nude man over and over in all sorts of provocative positions? Context, not content! Process, not subject! Don't be so gauche, Steve, it's beneath you."
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“We can go to the beach later if you want,” Phoebe responded softly to Darren as Marcus retrieved the blade of grass. She realized quickly that it may be inappropriate, offering day trips in their situation, but she figured it was just a bit away and they could stop by on their way to finding a camp for the night. More so, a beach trip might raise spirits.

Marcus returned with his grass, holding it to his mouth an producing the signature high pitch squeal. She'd never known anyone outside of movies be able to do something like that and was rightfully impressed by his talent and quickly opened her mouth to express it before closing it just as quick when he brought up his dad. Marcus hadn't let much of his emotions out since they'd been together and seeing him get nostalgic about home so suddenly was off-putting. She wanted to say something, offer him some condolences, but there wasn't anything to say that hadn't been said already, so drew her face into her knees and let a silence drift over the trio.

She didn't like when things got moody, especially when they'd done so well keeping themselves alive and in relatively good spirits. It'd been her fault, for bringing up never being able to get married and she was kicking herself over it. Once you started feeling bad for yourself, it was all downhill from there, so she quickly jumped to her feet and turned back toward the boys.

“Hey, let's do something fun, okay?” With a sparkle in her eye, she quickly snatched the blade of grass from Marcus' hand, dropped to her knee, and displayed the blade on outstretched palms.

“Marcus... Josephina?... Leung, will you make me the happiest man on this godforsaken rock and be my wife?” She never expected she'd be the one to pop the question when she got married, but it was twenty-thirteen and she had to sieze the moment. “You can't say no, either. And I trust you'll do us the honor of officiating, Reverend Darren?”

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"Sure," he said, smiling at Phoebe as Marcus was off doing something. It might have been inappropriate but Darren certainly didn't see anything wrong with it. If no one was around to stop them - ! "Yeah, maybe later in the day! That sounds fun."

Marcus came back soon enough, placing a blade of grass in his mouth. Darren nearly doubled-over giggling when Marcus blew, making that alien sound! He was barely able to contain himself! He just wasn't expecting it to actually work! He managed a light chuckle but his voice gave away that he was holding back! The pleasant mood didn't die down for Darren, not even when Marcus mentioned his father.

"Wow, I never knew you could do that." Darren rubbed at the back of his head. "The things you learn in the world, it's always struck me as strange."

Then again, many things in the world felt strange to him. It wasn't anything new. He was about to ask Marcus something else, about his father, but then he noticed Phoebe. He turned his head to look.

"Hey, is something wrong?" He mumbled, not liking Phoebe's silence.

Something about what he said must have clicked for Phoebe, because almost immediately she stood up. She said that they should do something fun. Darren reluctantly nodded, then watched her drop to her knee and...

... What? What was she doing?

Darren did a double-take before finally staring at Phoebe. His mouth was hanging open. And then she turned to look at him, trusting him to do... something.

"Huh? M-Me?"

He was absolutely baffled, but he eventually 'got it', what with the blade of grass and the way she was speaking. Still, Marcus? Phoebe? She was suggesting they...get married. He turned to look at Marcus, gauging his reaction. Was he just as surprised by this as Darren was? When he finally forced himself to look back at Phoebe, he became flustered. He even found himself prodding his fingers, a tic he thought long buried in childhood!

"... but I'm not a... I-I mean, I'm not- "

A voice in the back of his head screamed 'Oh don't be such a buzzkill Darren.'

He propped himself up, mulling it all over in his head. It took him only a minute to see exactly what Phoebe was doing. He found himself smiling after that, nearly ecstatic. Oh wow, that was actually really cool. What a great idea!

"Okay," Darren said, puffing his chest out. "Sure, I'll be the celebrant!" He turned back to look at Marcus. "What do you think? You aren't going to leave the man hanging, are you?"
V6

G052 - Reed, Jasmine - 0% - Falchion - START END
G060 - Pfeiffer, Scout - 100% - Sawlaska Thunderfuck 5000 - START
G025 - Reyes, Audrey - 0% - Nunchaku - START END

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Marcus laughed.

He couldn't help it. Here he was, ready to get all melancholy again, and then Phoebe was down on one knee and she was honest-to-god proposing to him. It wasn't a mocking laugh, and it was at least half tension release, but he laughed all the same.

Darren's gentle ribbing brought him back to earth a bit, and he cleared his throat, trying to put on a serious face. "Okay."

"I mean, uh, yes. Yes, Phoebe... Alexander... Cho, I will marry you." Because they were here in some place no one had ever heard of, and Marcus Leung had never in his life done anything daring until just now, so he extended his left hand to Phoebe, fingers spread.

The sun was almost fully over the horizon now, washing over and warming them. Darren was smiling more than he had since they had found him, and Phoebe looked so determined and serious that it was hard not to giggle again, but Marcus managed to hold it in and face her with a small, soft smile.

"Go on, make me a proper lady."
"Art enriches the community, Steve, no less than a pulsing fire hose, or a fireman beating down a blazing door. So what if we're drawing a nude man? So what if all we ever draw is a nude man, or the same nude man over and over in all sorts of provocative positions? Context, not content! Process, not subject! Don't be so gauche, Steve, it's beneath you."
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Phoebe's stoic visage was broken by a tight smile that struggled to hold back a fit of laughter. It'd been days since she'd smiled, let alone laughed and the muscles in her face were sore from disuse, but it felt good nonetheless, to be truly happy even if it was just in their own little fairy tale world far away from reality.

Still trying to stop herself from full-on laughing, Phoebe cleared her throat and attempted to reclaim her stoney gaze, lowering her voice as best as she could as she spoke.

“Fabulous. My grandparents will be so happy when they see that I've found such a demure asian bride,”

Phoebe fumbled to tie the flimsy blade of grass around Marcus' outstretched finger, only for it to snap cleanly in half in her hands. She stared at it for a moment, doe-eyed and surprised, eyes darting from one half to the other pinched between her thumb and index fingers before finally succumbing to a wave of laughter.

“Oh no!” She exclaimed between giggles, her charade of manliness vanishing as her voice slipped back into femininity, “The guys at the Jared's said this would last forever! What shoddy workmanship!”

She dropped the halves to ground and began waving her hands frantically at Darren.

“Reverend! Fix this! We need rings!”

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((Michael Mitchellson: Continued from If I had known this...))

They managed to survive the night in the hospital without any vengeful ghosts or creepy zombies or asshole cowboys killing them in their sleep, which Michael considered a definite plus. A probable minus was that Michael and Tim now had a day's worth of distance between them and Corey. It was no matter, though! All the distance in the world meant nothing to a bond of friendship, or at least a bond of somewhat acquaintanceship with some dude you sorta just picked up along the way!

Whatever the case, Corey sure as hell wasn't in the hospital, so Michael and Tim left early after the morning announcements. He had to make a deliberate effort not to look at Carlon's body as they passed through the first floor's lobby to avoid a repeat of yesterday's breakdo- overflow of grieving manly spirit.

Hope you're in a better place now, dude. I'm sorry I wasn't around to help you out.

Not really having a clear idea of where to go next, the group sort of just casually ambled over to the nearby scenic lookout. It had the words scenic and lookout in the name, so it had to have a good view, right? Maybe they'd be able to miraculously spot their missing asshole.

The area was already occupied by the time Michael and Tim got there, though, by what appeared to be... a fucking marriage proposal? Michael didn't really know the dorky ginger kid or the dude with the cap, but he did recognize the girl who had been somberly kneeling before spontaneously flailing about in what appeared to be a giggling fit.

Hells yeah, Phoebe! Someone I can actually talk to!

Phoebe was a cool chick and she was one of like two kids other than Daniel in the high school who knew sign language, so they'd always gotten along pretty well. Not like "BEST FRIENDS FOREVER I WILL ENGRAVE YOUR NAME ON THIS FRIENDSHIP RING AND THEN THROW IT INTO A VOLCANO IN YOUR HONOR", but probably somewhere in the "chill bros" category.

Michael waved to get Phoebe's attention, before casually thrusting his shotgun at Tim to hold so he could actually sign. One-handed signing was a thing that existed, of course, but it was also a really big pain. Tim was a trustworthy dude, and since he was now holding the flamethrower and the automatic shotgun, the universal laws of badassitude made him invulnerable to all harm.

Holy hell, Phoebe, am I glad to see you! Michael signed excitedly. Sorry to interrupt your stylish wedding proposal, though! Oh, wait, can I be the flower girl? That'd be hella rad. He refused to be judged. Flowers were fucking beautiful.
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((Timothy Abrams continued from If I had known this, I would have put that patch on 35 years ago.))

Timothy yawned as he stumbled after Michael. He could barely keep his eyes open. Sleep had not come easily for him last night. No matter how hard he tried, he couldn't stop worrying about the others. He still had no idea what how they were ever going to find Corey. How were they supposed to last until help came if they couldn't even stay together?

His thoughts were interrupted as he quickly stopped to avoid bumping into Michael. His eyes opened in surprise as Michael handed him his shotgun. He paused for a moment before tucking the flamethrower's gun attachment into his jeans and taking the gun from his friend. He tensed involuntarily as he realised what he had done. It was a good thing that the flamethrower didn't actually work, or he'd have been in huge trouble if it had fired while putting it in his pants.

As he cradled the shotgun in his hands, he looked up at the scene in front of him. It seemed like he and Michael had crashed some sort of...wedding ceremony? He had no idea what was going on. In any case, the people there didn't seem hostile, so it wouldn't hurt to talk to them for a bit. He watched as Michael began signing to them. Timothy stifled a yawn. It sure would make communication more convenient if they could talk without having to continually pass around a notebook.

Wait. What if Michael asked her about Daniel? Timothy and the others had been able to shield him from the information when all communication went through them first, but he didn't have that ability with sign language. He watched, frozen in place as he dreaded the inevitable.
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Darren clapped his hands together as Marcus said the magic worlds. He had the biggest smile on his lips and the bubbling laughter in his belly felt really, really good. It was from a combination of everything; Phoebe forcing her composure, Marcus's little comment, the way Phoebe fumbled with the grass! Darren just sat there, both hands covering his mouth, teary-eyed and out of breath.

Phoebe turned to Darren, causing him to jump slightly. The laughter from the joke about Jared's caught in the back of his throat and it came out as a cough.

"Oh - oh!" Darren sat up quickly, grass stains already settling into his jeans. "Sure, Phoebe! B-But I don't know how to make those rings..."

He could have rambled on more, about how he didn't even know how to tie a knot, but instead he kept himself quiet and crawled over. He started picking at strands of grass, fumbling with each sheer as he tried to replicate what Phoebe tried to do. The first one ripped in half too, causing him to snort. He was about to wrap a second one around his finger when he caught movement out of the corner of his eye.

Michael Mitchellson, a boy he did not know very well, waved to them. Darren found himself memorized by his hands, moving at a breakneck speed, forming what he could only assume to be sign language.

Oh, Michael could not speak. Darren couldn't recall whether he was mute or death, but he remembered him using sign-language before. Immediately he felt his shoulders slump forward, though he still smiled and waved. A little bit of Lost in Translation wouldn't sour Darren's mood!

This was the best he'd felt in the longest time! Not just over the past week, either. He could not recall another time where he was smiling so much. When he was a kid, maybe, but in high school? No way! The severity of his circumstances were all but gone, now, so much so that it barely occurred to him.

That was, until he noticed Tim.

With a shotgun in his hands.

Darren swallowed.

"He... Hello."
V6

G052 - Reed, Jasmine - 0% - Falchion - START END
G060 - Pfeiffer, Scout - 100% - Sawlaska Thunderfuck 5000 - START
G025 - Reyes, Audrey - 0% - Nunchaku - START END

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Marcus hadn't been expecting their wedding party - that was a funny thing to think, his wedding party - to get interrupted so quickly, much less by somebody brandishing a large gun. Well, to be fair, Tim wasn't quite brandishing it, more like just holding it, but it was vaguely pointed in Marcus's direction and he didn't like that.

"Hey... you." He finished lamely, at a loss for a better greeting. Darren's helpless laughter had faded from the background, so at least Marcus could be relatively sure that he wasn't the only one here who was at a loss. At least Michael and Phoebe seemed to be friends, and Tim just looked more nervous than anything. Marcus could only hope that "nervous" didn't equal "trigger-happy".

He cleared his throat and addressed Tim, since Phoebe seemed busy with Michael. "So we were just... getting married and all. Wanna join the party?"
"Art enriches the community, Steve, no less than a pulsing fire hose, or a fireman beating down a blazing door. So what if we're drawing a nude man? So what if all we ever draw is a nude man, or the same nude man over and over in all sorts of provocative positions? Context, not content! Process, not subject! Don't be so gauche, Steve, it's beneath you."
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A small blossom of wariness rose within Phoebe as the boys appeared in the distance that urged her to her feet, no longer solely invested in the crafting of weddings rings as she cupped a hand over her eyes to block the sunlight from obstructing her view. They hadn't seen a soul since leaving the Nuclear plant a couple days ago. Heard them, sure, the odd gun shot or yelling in the distance, but they'd been spared from having to directly deal with anyone who may have wanted to harm them. It wasn't as if they could even protect themselves if they wanted, either, not with what they'd been given; Marcus' sword the only 'real' deadly weapon in the bunch. All they had were their words and none of them especially excelled especially at those either.

Thankfully, the anxiety dissipated as quick as it had come, vanishing completely when she saw that one of the boys was Michael and she eagerly returned his wave and moved to meet him. Timothy, the other boy, was someone she could only connect a name to, knowing nearly nothing else about him. Michael, on the other hand, was someone she'd always been fond of. Her family had to learn ASL after her brother lost his hearing and she never missed an opportunity to practice it with Michael. It always felt special, to her at least, like they could share something that other people couldn't.

Phoebe laughed at his request and quickly began signing back, not nearly at the same speed Michael had managed, but quick enough not to leave a long pause.

A flower girl in a fedora was just what we were missing, she signed, still smiling as she gave him a once over, Are you okay? Do you guys need water or anything? How have you avoided the dangerzones?

The fact that he was still alive was, in itself, a miracle. She didn't know how long Timothy had been with him and without someone to translate, he'd basically been walking around blind. She glanced over at Timothy and smiled. Other people might have taken advantage of Michael's disability, but he didn't and she felt a strong sense of respect for him for that, if not slightly jarred by the gun in his hands.

“He wants to be the flower gi--,” Phoebe translated, cutting herself off when a revelation hit her, “Flowers! Do you know how to make a daisy-chain, Marcus? We can make one for each other. The wedding is back on!”

We need daisy-chains for our wedding, she signed back to Michael, pointing to one of the several overgrown beds of flowers, will you help me with mine?

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Michael shot Phoebe a thumbs up, though he was caught a bit off guard by her deadly bombardment of questions. Woah, slow down a bit! Tim and I are both totally fine, I'll fill you in on the wonderful details in a second! He signed, still grinning. Their expedition might have turned out pretty shitty results on the Corey and Daniel fronts, but finding Phoebe still counted as a hella rad success!

Ooh, daisy chains? Shiny! Count me right the fuck in! It is time for me to live up to my destiny! Michael signed back to Phoebe, eager to begin his official flower-girl duties.

Ginger kid and the dude who seemed to be the lovely bride appeared to be nervous, for some reason, but Michael figure'd he'd just let Tim the Master Diplomat(a title that Michael had just now bestowed upon him) deal with them. There was catching up to do! He did give them a little wave as he walked past them to join Phoebe, though. Tim may have been holding the official position of ambadassador, but Michael needed to keep his skills up, too. You never knew when a tricky dialogue tree would sneak up on you, after all.

So, how have things been working out for you dudes? Michael signed, figuring that it was best to handle the talking before he occupied his hands with the masterful crafting of a daisy chain. Tim and I broke off from our group yesterday to track down an asshole who bolted for some reason, so we could figure out what the hell his deal was. You haven't seen Corey run by at all, have you? He paused for a moment to pluck a delicate flower from the bush. Oh, have you run into Daniel, at all? I've been looking for that elusive son of a bitch since day one, and I haven't found any sign of the jerk.
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Timothy stood frozen in place as Michael and Phoebe exchanged hand signals. Any second now, everything was going to come crashing down and the last remnants of his group would be washed away.

He took the flamethrower off and put it on the ground. He had to prepare to make a break for it. There would be no convincing these people. He had seen it too many times before. Nobody here could understand the sacrifices that needed to be made for the greater good.

He tightened his grip on Michael's gun as he waited for the inevitable conflict. Whatever happened, things would not end well.
Survival of the Fittest Version 5

Survival of the Fittest Version 7
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