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I Was Once Alive
Topic Started: Jun 25 2014, 04:32 PM (1,440 Views)
dmboogie
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A Delicate Machine
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
((Michael Mitchellson: Continued from The Faster the Treadmill))

Capitalism, ho. As good a reason as any to go to the fucking mall, Michael guessed. After a week of being trapped in a hellhole, there certainly wasn't gonna be any more useful shit left, but it was still probably a good place to hide out or some shit like that. Maybe, if he was lucky, there'd be a bookstore. If there were books on the island, Michael figured that Daniel would be there, like the predictable nerd he was. This was in fact perfectly sound logic and not at all a desperate assumption.

There wasn't a bookstore. Lots of shitty clothing, but not a bookstore. Damn you, urban planners, for not allowing Michael even a moment of hope before shitting on him again. That was obviously the reason for such a horrid omission, not just the fact that people don't go to a shitty vacation island to buy books.

Michael leaned against a wall and sighed. Eight days. Eight fucking days. There couldn't be that many people left, could there? If worst came to worst, he'd probably find Daniel through plain old process of elimination. 'Hey, bro, everyone else is dead, so there's only one place you could be! Reunited at last!' Then they'd find a meadow and run at each other in slow-mo. Hopefully not tripping over any of the corpses that were bound to be in the meadow.

Christ, that was depressing. Michael'd gotten so used to seeing corpses that he couldn't even have a fucking daydream without including them. He sighed again, idly adjusting his hat.
a tribute for the dead and dying

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Deamon
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((Christopher Harlin continued from The Faster the Treadmill))

Chris was getting sick of walking. Carrying two bags with him had seemed like a good idea at the time but the combined weight of them was starting to make his shoulders ache. He doubted that would have been the case normally but he was tired and worn-down after all the time he had spent on the island.

He'd allowed himself to be led by Michael; it wasn't like he had any preference where they went after all. Basically everything on the island contained memories of an event Chris would have most likely preferred to forget about. He didn't know when he last had a smile on his face. Things like that felt like they were a different life.

Michael had led them to a mall, Chris didn't know why but he was sure there was a reason for it. He was doubtful people still did things on a whim. Not when the chance of a way off the island alive was so close. Every decision was most likely being carefully weighed to make sure someone didn't get murdered as they looked for shelter.

Michael stopped to lean on a wall and Chris moved past him. There were plenty of stores on the first floor, meaning plenty of hiding spots. Chris stuck his head into the closest one to them to check for anyone and instead was greeted by a corpse. He didn't dwell on it, the sight of a corpse was becoming all too common a thing for him to see, a terrifying thought by itself.

He returned to where Michael was and dropped his bags down, relieved to be rid of the weight.

"Doesn't seem to be anyone close to us." He said before realising he was talking directly to a deaf man, he was starting to lose his mind a little. He just hoped Maddie was close enough to have heard him.
Kimiko Kao - - - - - - - The Lagniappe
Travis "Trav" Lynch - - They Stumbled Into Faith and Thought
Cameron Herrig - Ω - Ω - Shock Me

V5
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"They'll tell you failure is not an option. That is ridiculous. Failure is always an option. Failure is the most readily available option at all times. But it's a choice. You can choose to fail. You can choose to succeed."
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VoltTurtle
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((Madeline Wilcox continued from The Faster The Treadmill))

Madeline walked behind Chris and Michael, sweating slightly from all of the walking they had done already that day.

It wasn't that hot out, she would actually call it pleasant, but the walking required her to exert herself. She had dealt with the shift in hormones the previous day, it wasn't pleasant and gave her a headache, but she survived. She was still feeling slightly off and a bit nauseous because of the hormonal shift, but it wasn't nearly as bad as it was the day before.

The three of them arrived at where they were heading, apparently, Maddie didn't really know where they were going, although she did know they had arrived in the mall and apparently were going to the top floor, she had just allowed Michael to take the lead. She put her bag down behind the two of them and drank some water to get her hydration back up.

She had found herself worrying about the smaller things, water, food, reasonable sleep, both yesterday and today more than she had on other days. Maybe she felt safer from potential harm from others so she just wanted to take care of herself, maybe she just wanted to care for her own needs a little bit more than normal. Regardless, she had more sleep the previous night than she had any other day, the recurring nightmares having given her a break, and also drank more water and ate more food than she had on previous days.

She put her water bottle back in her bag, half empty now, and looked back up at Chris and Michael. Just in time, Chris said something. He seemed to be talking to Michael which puzzled her, since Michael was deaf and Chris knew that now. She had heard him though, maybe that was the point even if he didn't seem to be talking to her.

"Yeah, it's a good thing too, gives a chance for us to relax a bit." Not that Maddie had not already been rather relaxed, at least compared to other days on the island, but actually having that relaxation justified dispelled any anxiety she might have still had. Maddie sat down and leaned up next to the wall, closing her eyes, taking the sounds of the mall and the island in. Peaceful, for the most part. She reflected on the fact that this island was probably a nice place to live at one point.

But now it's the place of a death game, and Maddie was prepared to survive it.
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Emprexx Plush
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"Who are you then?"
"I am part of that power which eternally wills evil and eternally works good."


((Joachim Lovelace continued from Something Something Movie Reference))

Joachim sat reclined in the chair by the window, leafing slowly through a decaying copy of Goethe's Faust. It was the first time in eight days he'd allowed himself to stop and simply reflect. The first time he wasn't working towards some tangible or intangible scheme of service and survival. The first time he allowed himself to shrug away his dissatisfaction with this world between the pages of another.

It reminded him of home.

Reading had been his primary distraction for so long. Yet here, he hadn't even read through the pamphlet they were provided for their survival. It seemed foolish, at the time, like it was a waste of valuable time, but in the face of the last few days it felt like that was already all he'd done.

Jaq was dead, as was her plan, and Paris...

It wouldn't do to think about Paris right now.

So he allowed himself to waste a little time. He didn't care about what anyone else was doing outside. He didn't care that anyone approaching could catch an edge of surprise on him while he was reading. He didn't care about his dwindling supplies.

In the present moment, Joachim cared about surprising little.
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Plush Wants To Read Your Dead Things and your Living Things! As of 8/14/2017, the Living Queue is Closed, and the Dead Queue is Open!
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dmboogie
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A Delicate Machine
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Chris and Maddie filed in behind him, and they soon had their bags piled on the floor in a haphazard pile. Seemed like high time to take a break. Probably wasn't a super idea to do it out in the open, so Michael quickly scanned the mall again, ignoring Chris as the dude talked to him for some reason. If there was a furniture store or some shit they could just find some comfy chairs, but all he could see was a bookstore and lots of clothing- wait, what the hell?

Michael did a double-take. Yep. That was a bookstore. Fuck, he was truly the master of observation. He hastily scribbled a note to the others, Yo, comrades, I'mma just check the bookstore out. Be back in some reasonable period of time. Peace. He casually tossed it onto one of the bags and set off, shotgun in hand.

There was some nerd sitting in a chair by the window, but, unfortunately, he was not Michael's favorite nerd. Fortunately, he soon recognized the nerd to be Joachim, a regular at the book club and pretty cool dude in general. He had been foolish to doubt the power of literacy! Michael grinned and waved to Joachim as he walked closer.

Yo, bro, hella rad to see you around! Michael wrote. Any idea where to find the rest of our friendly islandhood book club? Especially our fabulous co-leader? He handed Joachim the note. This might finally be his lucky break!
a tribute for the dead and dying

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Joachim assumed at some point he'd be interrupted. By someone who wanted answers for why he killed their friends, or why he'd killed in general, or just someone who wanted to kill him. So he was mildly surprised when he saw someone coming towards him with a smile. He and Michael had been casual acquaintances back home, but they weren't so close that he expected to draw a practically Chesire-esque grin just by being around.

Michael's purpose became a little more clear as he pressed a note into Joachim's hand. He tried to picture the names and faces of all their fellow members in the book club as he scanned across the page. He hadn't the faintest clue where most of their bodies were, or why Michael wanted to look for them. Perhaps, like Claire, he wanted to pay his respects to the dead. As impractical as ever, but he understood it slightly more, now. Michael and Daniel had been the life of the club. Seeing his friends one more time made a certain amount of sense.

He borrowed Michael's pencil and began to scrawl, using the book as hard-back.

I do not know where most of the club ended up. I did encounter Daniel once though, in passing. I saw his body lying on a hill near the northern coast line of the island, along the trail Hansel shot him on. It may have slipped off with time and rain. I believe that part of the island is now off-limits. Apologies.

With a brief nod, Joachim handed the note back to Michael and moved to exit the store. He was sure Michael would be disappointed, but he seemed to be handling the deaths well, and as ultimately pointless as his course was, he was slightly envious of him. At least he had purpose.

Purpose was important. It gave provided a sense of meaning and scale. Something to work towards.

He missed having purpose.

((Joachim Lovelace Continued in The Secret Fate Of All Life))
SotF Characters

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Plush Wants To Read Your Dead Things and your Living Things! As of 8/14/2017, the Living Queue is Closed, and the Dead Queue is Open!
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dmboogie
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A Delicate Machine
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It took Michael a while to fully grasp the content of Joachim's message. The note had no trace of ambiguity, no room for doubt, yet Michael could do nothing but blankly stare at it, neither noticing nor caring as Joachim left. It was wholly at odds with his reality, a thing that shouldn't, couldn't exist. He would have been told, wouldn't he? Michael had been travelling with friends for days, there was no way that they wouldn't have told him, it just couldn't-

But what reason was there for Joachim to lie?

Daniel was dead.

All at once, Michael wilted, beginning to sway where he stood. He collapsed into the chair, hateful note falling out of his right hand. No longer at all aware of the world around him, Michael buried his face in his hands and sobbed.

Later, once the tears had faded, Michael rose from his seat, pulling the brim of his hat down low. Slowly, deliberately, he picked up his shotgun and left the mall. He didn't bother to go back for his companions or his supplies.

((Michael Mitchellson: Continued in I Am a Hero.))
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Deamon
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Relax wasn't the word Chris would have used. There was being able to ease off the throttle or putting your foot down. Right now they were easing off the throttle, saving themselves for the moment they'd need to go full speed again. Michael walked off somewhere, probably to settle down himself. Find somewhere he could unwind. Chris didn't pay much attention. The place seemed empty besides the corpses. He wouldn't end up getting into trouble.

Chris put his bags down, glad to have the opportunity to get their weight off his shoulders. He lay down by Maddie, finding something comfort in having back pressed against a hard surface. It helped fight the dull ache across his body. A couple of the fingers on his hand hurt. He may have done something to them when he beat Stephanie to death. He hadn't slept since then and he dreaded it. He knew he'd relieve the moment in his dreams.

"Hey Maddie, how much longer do you think this will go on for?"


Kimiko Kao - - - - - - - The Lagniappe
Travis "Trav" Lynch - - They Stumbled Into Faith and Thought
Cameron Herrig - Ω - Ω - Shock Me

V5
Unknowns
"They'll tell you failure is not an option. That is ridiculous. Failure is always an option. Failure is the most readily available option at all times. But it's a choice. You can choose to fail. You can choose to succeed."
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VoltTurtle
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Maddie put a little bit more of her weight on the wall, still rather relaxed.

Michael had wandered off, leaving his stuff. He had had an odd look on his face, maybe he was reflecting on something. She was sure he'd be back soon, in any case, maybe he just needed some air for a bit. Maddie understood that, she had needed air a lot so far on the island.

Then, Chris asked her a question. It was a good question, one she had put some thought into but not a whole lot. How long would this go on for, really?

She pondered an answer. "If I were to take a guess... I would say three or four more days. If I had to put a maximum? A week longer, but... I think that's a bit iffy if things keep going at the rate they've been going."

Three or four more days. Three or four more days for her to live or die. These next few days would end up testing all of them that are left. She had to prove herself worthy of being the last one standing, and hopefully not end up losing herself in the process. She once again quietly ignored the fact that everyone needed to die for her to be the last one standing, but she knew that thought would pop up again, it always did.

"One thing I do know though, these next few days are going to really force everyone to play the game like they intended... hiding and running just isn't going to work at this point..." She didn't like that her two primary tactics have stopped working, and that she'd be moved out of her comfort zone, but she was sure she could adapt to anything, given enough time. It was just a matter of if she had enough time in the first place.

But, she couldn't help but have the niggling feeling that she didn't really have any time left at all.
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Deamon
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Three or four more days.

That sounded like an eternity and like it was hardly any time at all at the same time. It was a weird feeling, knowing his potential death was so close but also so far away.

Three or four more days until everyone but one person was left alive. It was a scary notion, almost everyone he knew would be dead and gone in less than a week and those that were never got on the plane or their parents would have to live the rest of their lives after having experienced the deaths of their children, after getting to watch it happen.

Three or four days until he was alive or dead.

"Yeah, it's a grim thought." Chris said with a sigh. "I'm sorry for asking." He thought about what Maddie had said about everyone and while it was a bleak outlook it was honest and was the scenario they were approaching. The question was whether you chose to accept what you did or embraced it. The real struggle would be not getting crushed under the weight of it all. It was harder than it sounded. Chris was already starting to feel that pressure.

From where he was lying he sighed. "Your right, pretty soon everyone's going to have blood on their hands whether they like it or not. I guess the terrorists win when that happens don't they?"

How could you do anything good in the situation they were in?
Kimiko Kao - - - - - - - The Lagniappe
Travis "Trav" Lynch - - They Stumbled Into Faith and Thought
Cameron Herrig - Ω - Ω - Shock Me

V5
Unknowns
"They'll tell you failure is not an option. That is ridiculous. Failure is always an option. Failure is the most readily available option at all times. But it's a choice. You can choose to fail. You can choose to succeed."
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NotAFlyingToy
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((Hansel Williams, I won't be wronged...))

Hansel left the bathroom, his freshly bandaged hand making him feel slightly better, the semi-automatic shotgun in his hands doing even more to contribute to that feeling. He took a moment to get his bearings, before heading towards what he figured the exit was.

He stopped when he saw two figures in the distance, and immediately ducked back into the alcove that led to the ladies' and men's bathrooms, peering around the corner.

He didn't recognize them from this distance.

If they came closer, he'd deal with them. But he was too hurt - too fresh from fight - to go looking for an odd-man combat right now.
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Deamon
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((Skipping to get Chris' death done))

As Chris lay there it occurred to him that Michael had been gone for a long time. Back home, it wouldn't have been an issue. But they weren't back home and that meant he could have been in trouble. He hadn't exactly done a thorough search of the mall when he'd looked around, so it was possible Michael had been attacked by someone who was hiding. That was enough of a risk to make Chris get up and get his gun out.

"I'm going to look for Michael. He's been gone a while, it's probably nothing but I want to make sure." He told Maddie as he flicked the safety of his gun off. "I'll make it quick."

He'd find Michael and bring him back, then they could find some where less open to hole up it wouldn't be an issue. He made his way along the upper floor of the mall, looking in every store as he did. There wasn't any sign of Michael. The only place he couldn't just look into was the toilets since they had a little corridor leading to him.

As Chris rounded the corner to check the toilets he bumped into someone he didn't think he'd see again so soon.

Hansel had been hiding, and he'd walked right up to him.
Kimiko Kao - - - - - - - The Lagniappe
Travis "Trav" Lynch - - They Stumbled Into Faith and Thought
Cameron Herrig - Ω - Ω - Shock Me

V5
Unknowns
"They'll tell you failure is not an option. That is ridiculous. Failure is always an option. Failure is the most readily available option at all times. But it's a choice. You can choose to fail. You can choose to succeed."
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NotAFlyingToy
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It was funny, the things a shotgun pressed to the chin could do to a person. In Chris' case, it froze him, if temporarily.

Hansel moved quickly, hooking the front of Chris' shirt with his two remaining fingers on his left hand and hauling him into the alcove, out of sight of any would-be reinforcements. He pushed Chris against the back wall of the alcove, between the Men's and Ladies' room doors, and pressed the muzzle against Chris' throat.

"Where are your f-friends?" he ground out, watching the other boys' eyes.
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Deamon
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The wall was cold; the muzzle of the gun was cold against his throat too. If Chris had been scared the first time he'd met Hansel he now knew what real fear was.

He was probably dead. Correction: he was dead. Hansel would be able to shoot him before he could try anything. He asked where his friends were, that almost made Chris smile. His friends were dead. If he meant Michael and Maddie he had their relationship wrong. They were just a group brought together by Hansel ironically enough. The same person who was about to break it apart.

"They're gone." Chris managed to force out. "No one here but me."

It was the only thing he could think of to save Maddie
Kimiko Kao - - - - - - - The Lagniappe
Travis "Trav" Lynch - - They Stumbled Into Faith and Thought
Cameron Herrig - Ω - Ω - Shock Me

V5
Unknowns
"They'll tell you failure is not an option. That is ridiculous. Failure is always an option. Failure is the most readily available option at all times. But it's a choice. You can choose to fail. You can choose to succeed."
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NotAFlyingToy
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So Chris could lie with the barrel of a gun pressing into him. Hansel let the lie stand, nodding as if he believed him, agreeing even though he'd seen someone else with Chris in the distance. It didn't really matter, either way.

There was no point to pretending that this would end any other way than it was going to. Judging by the fear in Chris' eyes - the same fear that Hansel felt when looking in his reflection - Chris knew it as well as he did.

The least he could do was spare him as much as he could.

"Nose t-tuh-hoo the wall, Kuh-riss," he said, taking a step back, "and nuh-no sound, nuh-nuh-no sudden muh-hooves."
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