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Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien
Topic Started: Aug 18 2014, 11:58 PM (1,959 Views)
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In the days after Ian’s death, Bella felt stronger than she’d ever been in her entire lifetime.

She hadn’t achieved much, mostly darting from hiding spot to hiding spot - having spent the majority of the time holed up in one of the shops that dotted the streets - and dividing her time between eating and sleeping fitfully, weapons embraced comfortingly by her side, having not encountered a single soul since she’d left the park. But even so, the knowledge that anybody who saw her or found the mess she’d made of Ian’s body would know that she was no longer that sweetheart swimmer from Aurora High, was enough. She was better than that now, a killer who fought back and didn’t hide behind false-friends, no longer someone relying on others to fight her battles for her.

All she needed was herself.

She was free.

((Mirabella Strong continued from Glass))

Bella didn’t know how or when she’d returned to the apartment complexes, but it seemed to almost call to her, propelling her towards it above every other area still available to her. Most of the island had been cordoned off - in order to force them all together, she supposed - and for that she couldn’t have been happier. It meant that the chances of finding someone was greater, that someone else would truly know who she’d become. The town was scattered with bodies, even more so than when she’d first made her journey there, the vast majority of which had decayed beyond recognition and which she took due care to avoid as she made her way towards her current position. She was currently situated atop one of the several graffitied lunch benches that pocketed the multiple courtyards, reclining peacefully against the well-worn wood with a pair of sunglasses she’d found whilst pilfering through the store she‘d been resting in propped upon her nose as protection from the sun’s rays, and her bags nestled tightly beside her.

She felt ever-so-slightly safer with the weaponry she’d gathered from the scene she’d left behind, her newfound kukri knife restrained tightly at her side by the loops of her belt; whilst her sickle was held tightly in her familiar grip and her cat o’ nine tails found its place with the rest of her belongings. She’d been running low on rations too, and what little remained of Ian and Alda’s food was gladly welcomed by her. She’d never been a big eater back home, but change was something she was more than used to by now and it came as no surprise to her as she wolfed down a trio of ration bars in quick succession, barely leaving time to savour the revolting taste before replenishing her thirst with the draining of several tepid water bottles. It felt good to indulge, to no longer worry about conserving her belongings as fastidiously as she’d been doing. For the first time in a long while, perhaps even before she’d been tossed into this island, she could sit back and relax.

Of course, relaxation was a fleeting luxury, as evidenced by the all-too familiar - routine, almost - crackling of loudspeakers that preceded the morning announcements. Her kill was first on the list, and as her name and Ian’s were recited for all the world to hear, she couldn’t help but feel a blossom of pride flare within her. Truthfully, she’d been concerned when her kill hadn’t been announced with the other deaths the previous day, but she’d been too overwhelmed by the fatigue of the past week to do much to protest her removal from the listings. Now, though, she was fully revitalised and awake for the moment the rest of the world knew who she was. It was a feeling she’d never experienced before; she didn’t know what it was or how to describe it, only that it felt good.

Both Ami and Hansel had killed twice more, together taking out four boys whose names barely registered with her. They’d tied for the kill award for it too, and Bella hoped that their meeting would end in bloodshed. The other deaths and other killers only garnered the faintest of recognition from her too, save for Katarina - who was doing rather well for herself in spite of the bludgeoning she’d been given. Part of Bella wanted for the pair of them to meet again, to finish what she’d started without any Ami around to stop her from fully exacting what she wanted to do.

However, it was the last name that Danya provided them that truly struck a chord with Bella. Andi Victorino, the murderous, evil, fucking bitch, was gone, her flame snuffed out by Miles Strickland - whom Bella had never really liked at school but would’ve gratefully shook hands with as congratulations if he hadn’t been also killed in the process. Hearing Andi’s name sent pure warmth running through her, cheeks flushing with a bright red as a wide smile stretched brightly across her face. There was no way she could’ve hidden her sheer happiness as it overtook her, even if she wanted to, unable to stop the rattling in her chest as a soft giggle passed through her lips. Seconds later, she was doubled-over, ribs painfully digging against her skin, not bothering to keep quite or try to restrain her laughter - long, hard laughs that shook her entire body - as it echoed around the deserted courtyard and the surrounding area.

And then she remembered, remembered the pain and the emptiness and the fact that no matter what she did or who she killed, it’d never bring her Garrett back, and the warmth was replaced with blackness and the laughter was replaced with screaming, and there was nothing she could do as the world crashed and burned around her once more.
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[ *  *  * ]
((Juhan Levandi continues from A Manic Depressive Named Laughing Boy))

Juhan stumbled towards the apartments, disappearing with every step. His nerves would flare and he'd feel himself falling for a millisecond. But then everything would be fine for a few more seconds, until he felt himself fainting, disappearing once more. But then back to normal.

It would be a rather merciful way to die. Merciful for the kid marked with his sins, with the rust-colored stains on his T-shirt and jeans and his puffy eyes, wet cheeks, mumbling sorry's for something unforgivable. It would be the best deal he'd ever get. To just disappear one more time, to fall one last time, and to never wake up.

But it never happened. His body psyched him again and again. So, he stumbled somewhere, anywhere.

The announcements had played just recently, packed even more gut punches. It hurt moving his fingers. He'd pounded them into the ground an uncountable number of times after he heard the first names, almost screamed out his vocal cords. Ian had been killed by Bella. Bella, the lost girl, the innocent, smiling one, the one they'd spent days finding. And now she was just as gone as the others, gone, gone, Maynard said, all of them, gone.

Through his screaming and fist-pounding, Juhan registered the fact that his name wasn't mentioned. Ami's and Maynard's was, the former twice, but not Juhan. Because the announcements never showed every side of the story, never. All that mattered was who fired the final shot, not why.

There wasn't anywhere left to go. The places he could hide, curl up, disappear, they were all going, drawing him to all the memories he wanted to leave behind. The apartments had some. This was where the escape group met, after that mad dash from the beach. Where they started planning, hoping, when there was still hope, when there were still people who weren't gone. And now it was just a monument to all the people Juhan had failed to save. But there was no other place, nowhere left to go, no one left.

The wailing and screaming drifted to his ears long before he recognized Bella, hair much shorter than the last time he saw her. So many questions came to mind as he stumbled his way closer to the benches. Why'd you do it, what happened, what did Ian do-

Maynard.

No, no, no, no. Never again, never shall he ask another question, seek for answers that are there, no more, sorry Maynard sorry, never again, never.

Instead of the millions of questions that he wanted to ask, he mumbled out safe words, ones that wouldn't bring any more pain. No more.

"Hey there."
Edited by Maraoone, Aug 26 2014, 10:10 PM.
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Previous Threads: Sæglópur - Until all our yesterdays are lighted fools... - the way to dusty death - a concrete cave - I'd Say That I've Had Worse Days, but Then I'd Be Lying - Get Me Away From Here, I'm Dying - Until Then, You Are Free - Cast in the Name of God
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Screaming didn’t achieve anything. No matter how long Bella screamed or cried, let tears burn their familiar trail down her cheeks or tore her lungs until their were shrivelled and raw, none of it would bring her Garrett, or anything that she’d lost, back. Nothing could, not even the death of the bitch who’d taken him. She’d expected something, some great blossom of happiness that would make everything better once Andi was gone, but that bubble had burst almost as soon as it’d arrived. And after that, there was nothing left, nothing else for her to cling to amongst the wreckage her life had become. But, then again, there was something else, something she knew she was good at and had only learned her skill for a day ago, and that something helped wash away some of the pain and anger that was continuously flaring within her. It was all she had, and there was no way she’d relinquish it.

After awhile, her screams trailed off, replaced by her ragged breathing as broken and uneven strands of hair floated idly into her vision. She moved her hands to grasp them one swift movement before violently tearing them away and tossing them to the ground, savouring the burn the forceful detachment of follicles brought her. It helped alleviate the frustration boiling within her, if only for a little while. She clasped her hands to her face, clenching her eyes tightly shut against the world as it bore itself back down on her.

She emerged from behind them after only a couple of seconds, letting them slide down her cheeks and into her lap and she rolled her head to meet Juhan’s gaze. Truthfully, his sudden call had startled her somewhat, the distinct familiarity of his voice only sparking the shock even more. She removed her sunglasses before propping them atop her forehead, the lenses nestling in the remnants of her hair, replying to Juhan’s greeting with a bright smile, gums visible and every tooth exposed to the boy standing before her. She hoped the bloodstain was still as distinct as it’d been when she’d applied it, though the tears and general exposure had likely done after with part of it. She almost went to fish for her compact from her bags, but decided against it; whatever remained of Ian’s blood would have to do. For now, she had other things to occupy her time - a reunion that would’ve once brought sheer joy to her. It still could, truthfully - Juhan could see who she was now, and that was even more pleasing.

She hadn’t thought about what she’d do the next time she saw someone beyond relishing whatever reaction they had to the new form she’d taken on, hadn’t let her thought processes progress much beyond that point - having been too taken with the myriad of possible reactions her remaining classmates might have. But here was Juhan, a boy she hadn’t expected to ever meet again, and his reaction was a pitiful ‘hey there’. It wasn’t what she expected nor was it what she hoped for, and she made a mental note to prove herself to him more directly if need be - she’d done it before and it was one of the best experiences of her life, so she knew she wouldn’t hesitate to take the chance. If anything, part of her hoped that Juhan didn’t react further, that he’d stand there so simply and she’d be able to repeat her encounter with Ian, diminish some more of her endless well of anger - without letting her walls down again, she’d never do that again, never.

For now, the simple act of socialisation seemed the best way to go.

It’d make things more of a surprise for Juhan if things went south, at least.

“Juhan,” she said sweetly, “lovely to see you again.” She immediately brought her hand to her face, delicately dancing her fingers across her cheeks before continuing. “I guess you already know who’s this is - they took awhile to announce it, so that’s why it’s not as bright. What’s up?”
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Oh god. She really was, was, was one of them.

Juhan shouldn't have judged Maynard. When they met, he was still him. He still had emotions, logic, and was so, so different from what a killer might be. He should have believed him, stayed with him. But Bella, oh god. If it weren't for the blood on her face and her patched scalp, Juhan could close his eyes and imagine that, yes, this was still the same old Bella, the one they'd lost, with her smile and infectious laugh, it was still her. But just before they met, she'd been screaming, pulling out her hair, and now she was smiling about Ian's blood, their old friend's blood decorating her face. She celebrated it.

Bella wasn't just one of them. She might as well have been their leader.

So Juhan laughed.. Laughed because this, this girl with blood on her face and clothes, smiling and asking 'What's up' is something straight out of a comedy. Laughed so that he wouldn't collapse in on himself. Laughed because if life wants to make him a laughingstock, he'll laugh right back, he will.

In the midst of his fit, he stuttered out, "Oh god, you're, you're serious. I, I can't, I can't..."

He doubled down, and dropped to the ground, gasping for air, tears leaking out of his eyes. And as the seconds passed, his laughter gradually turned to sobs, because all he could do really was cry. Cry because they'd taken too long to find her, so the island found her first. Cry for all the friends, for all the classmates they'd failed to save. Cry just because.

For a minute or so, he stayed this way, face hidden in his knees. Eventually, the sobs subsided, and he looked up and remembered that Bella was still here. Still waiting for an answer, still smiling, still with blood on her face.

No use lying. His rust-stained shirt would already raise enough questions. Would be incredibly disrespectful to Maynard if he lied through his teeth.

"K-killed someone. Shirt makes it obvious, doesn't it? Didn't mean it. Not really dancing for joy about it," he muttered.
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G062 - Olivia Fischer prayed a thousand prayers in Ye Not [37/107]
Previous Threads: Sæglópur - Until all our yesterdays are lighted fools... - the way to dusty death - a concrete cave - I'd Say That I've Had Worse Days, but Then I'd Be Lying - Get Me Away From Here, I'm Dying - Until Then, You Are Free - Cast in the Name of God
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((Takeshi Yoshikawa continued from Running Away))


There they were. Against all odds, in a single location, there were the last two members of their group.

I set out looking for three, though.

Takeshi had heard about it as he'd been leaving his overnight hideout. Ian had died. Ian had been killed.

Why'd you do it, Bella? He was worried about you! He wanted to search for you.

Why'd she have to go and kill Ian before Takeshi could have talked to him one last time? To see if he really was a killer who needed to die or if Takeshi was at fault for not trusting in his allies.

Was Ian a killer who forced Bella to defend herself? Was Bella a killer instead? Maybe they both were? Neither?

For fucks sake, am I just supposed to walk away again because I can't figure out who not to trust?

No, that wasn't an option. If Bella had only killed Ian because she was defending herself, it wouldn't be right to just leave her alone. If she wasn't, then Juhan might be in danger.

The time to play it safe had long passed by. Being cautious yesterday meant Takeshi had no idea what happened when Bella and Ian had encountered each other. Being cautious today could very well mean he'd have no idea what to do tomorrow, when the announcements would inform him that some kind of killing had gone on between Bella and Juhan.

Knuckles white from gripping his spear, Takeshi stepped out into the courtyard, placing himself in view of the other two.

"Juhan! Bella!"

He called out to them from quite a ways away. Startling them up close might lead to misunderstandings and deaths.
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Bella nodded thoughtfully as Juhan responded, silently urging him to give her the reaction that she wanted as she moved to swing around her legs over the edge of the bench, barely able to restrain the excitement rising within her.

Then he laughed.

And for a moment she could feel a heat begin to flush through her cheeks, anger boiling in the pit of her stomach once more. What was he doing? Why was he acting like this? She could barely comprehend it, couldn’t understand why he was laughing. It was as though he thought she was pathetic, as though her kill was the funniest thing he’d ever heard about. But it wasn’t. It was anything but - it was the greatest thing she’d achieved in her entire lifetime, and if he wouldn’t take her seriously, then she’d have to prove it to him first hand. Her fingers flexed around her sickle, and she almost made to motion to swing before Juhan’s laughs broke and turned to sobs, rough sobs that pierced her eardrums and sent the beginnings of tears dancing along her own line of vision. She roughly swatted them away with her free hand, refusing to return to the crying mess she’d been so many times before. She was better than that now, she was strong and she wouldn’t cry. She’d never cry again, no matter what.

“You’ve killed someone too?” It was hard for Bella to contain the surprise in her voice, almost disbelieving Juhan as he pointed out the bloodstains adorning his shirt. It wasn’t impossible to think that he’d killed someone - most of the island had dwindled away by now, and people were continuing to kill at an even rate, even as killers dropped like flies - but even so, it came as quite a shock. She leaned forward as she continued, her eagerness and excitement clear with every word that passed through her lips. “Who was it? What did you do it with? Come on, you’ve got to tell me all about it. And... it must’ve been pretty recent if they didn’t announce it just before - though they’re pretty slack, honestly, so I wouldn’t be surprised if they take awhile to tell everybody.”

She moved to extend a hand to grip Juhan’s shoulder, grin now brightly plastered across her face, before a third voice broke through the air, a voice she never expected to hear again.

“Oh, hi Takeshi,” she smiled, tilting her head as she gave the other boy a light wave of the fingers. He was still off in the distance, but it was undeniably him, the same boy with whom she’d made seashell necklaces and who’d given her a flower, such a pretty flower. Truthfully, it couldn’t have been more perfect - Juhan and Takeshi, the only two boys she’d allied with whom were still breathing, and they were standing right here. Juhan’s reaction had brought nothing but disappointment to her so far, but Takeshi was someone else, someone else to see what she’d become.

She wasted no time, pointing towards the remnants of Ian’s blood as she spoke, the cheerfulness in her voice unmistakable.

“Do you like the bloodstain? Three guesses whose it is, and the first two don’t count.”
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Juhan's jaw wouldn't shut.

When he confessed, he'd been expecting judgement. He'd waited for Bella to unleash onto him what he'd unleashed onto Maynard, amplified ten times. He'd waited for venomous, hurtful words, for 'Why's' and 'How could you's' because it was all he deserved, all he should get. So, when he was greeted by eagerness and not disgust, or even the slightest disapproval, it hurt so much more than if Bella would've just told him to kill himself. So much.

So as Bella continued letting her morbid, morbid thoughts and inquiries flow out of her mouth, he felt a bit of the anger stir in himself, that anger that had simmered and boiled yesterday. For a short while, he tried to suppress it, tried to avoid repeating the mistakes that led to Maynard. Never again.

But then he let it trickle a bit.

Bella was different, so different. She was despicable, she was crazy. She wasn't herself anymore. So, Juhan glared at her and gritted his teeth.

"Y-you crazy..."

And then Takeshi came, and that rage exploded. He seethed, and turned his glare to him.

He'd abandoned him. Betrayed him, at the worst time possible, left him alone, so alone, after a week of him just tagging along. And now, now, he had the guts to come back? Juhan had a gun next to him, one that he hadn't had any thoughts of using since Ami left because no more mistakes, no more wounds. But with Takeshi, maybe, maybe... no, there were a few questions that he needed answered.

"Where were you?"
Edited by Maraoone, Aug 26 2014, 10:05 PM.
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G062 - Olivia Fischer prayed a thousand prayers in Ye Not [37/107]
Previous Threads: Sæglópur - Until all our yesterdays are lighted fools... - the way to dusty death - a concrete cave - I'd Say That I've Had Worse Days, but Then I'd Be Lying - Get Me Away From Here, I'm Dying - Until Then, You Are Free - Cast in the Name of God
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They were both hostile to Takeshi upon his appearance. Wonderful.

Well, Juhan was hostile. Bella actually seemed downright friendly for a person who was currently covered in somebody else's blood. It was the kind of attitude usually conductive to a long-lasting and mutually beneficial partnership, which should have been a blessing this late in the game.

Unfortunately, she was a person who was currently covered in somebody else's blood.

"I-I was..."

Running away. Hiding. Ditching the rest of you to save my own ass.

None of those were the right way to respond. Too self-centered to help smooth over relations with the others. Too weak-sounding to convince them that attacking Takeshi would be a bad idea.

Too honest.

All that time worrying about what would happen when he found the others, yet he hadn't thought to go over what he would say. Only the motivations of the others.

Now was not the time for Takeshi to suddenly find himself at a loss for words.

"I wasn't so sure about Ian. I mean, c'mon... two people?"

Sorry, Ian, for villifying you like this.

"I was going to come back! I mean, look... I came back. I'm here right now, aren't I? I didn't want to-- didn't just abandon you guys, I just needed to leave-- to take a break. I thought, 'Whoa, this is rough, maybe we should take some time to clear our heads before we do things we might regret to each other.'"

"Even Ian... I wasn't even going to hold what he did against him, unless I thought he was the aggressor in which case I was totally going to hold it against him. I just needed, just, y'know... hasty decisions are bad. They're bad and I didn't want to make one about whether or not to trust you guys so I decided I wouldn't trust you for a little bit..."

It was not, strictly speaking, a lie.

In fact, it could probably be said that Takeshi gave them the truth.

That did not mean, however, that his ramblings weren't meant to give them the right impression of him. He may well have appended 'So please don't hold it against me, Juhan' to the end of every sentence that came out of his mouth.

"After all, we're... I mean, we've always been allies... right, Juhan?"
Let's show that private threads aren't necessary! I pledge not to start any private threads on island in V7. If I started a thread, you are welcome to join it.

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Bella flicked the remnants of her hair behind her shoulders before pushing herself into a standing position, tilting her head as Juhan spoke. He’d started to say something to her, her attention grasped firmly by the few words that vacated his mouth, but then he trailed off - something she herself had done much too often before. Not anymore, though. If she needed to say something, she’d say it, whatever the consequences would be.

Juhan turned to address Takeshi at that point, asking him a question that barely related to her. She idly ran her fingers along her sickle as Takeshi replied to Juhan’s query, almost content to sit back and let their conversation unfold before her, but as she did so her curiosity over Juhan’s aborted statement quickly proved itself too strong. She’d bitten her tongue for too long, had done so ever since her protestations had resulted in Francis’s death. But she was better than that now, she wasn’t some meek girl content to let everything swirl around her without expressing a word of protest.

She wasn’t going to sit back and let the opportunity go to waste, or let her questions go unanswered. Not anymore. So that’s why she rotated her head to offer Juhan her steely gaze, eyes focused intently upon him as she spoke with nary a trace of emotion tinting her voice.

“You crazy ‘what’, Juhan?”
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Two people, two questions to answer, two people he had to say something to. And boy, Juhan had a lot to say.

Takeshi first.

"Were. Were allies. And I don't believe a word you're saying. Not a single word. You leave to 'take a break', and disappear for two days? Does it take that long to clear your thoughts? And you abandon me right then? If you wanted to bail out from us, sure, fine, but why then? I, I almost got killed."

He lifted his shirt and slightly pulled down the side of his shorts, showing a purple bruise. Part of Juhan told him to stop, to stop repeating his mistakes. But he went on spitting out words, because the rest of him realized that his mistake wasn't getting angry. It was getting angry at Maynard. But with Takeshi, and Bella, he had every right, and then some. No need to stay silent, no need to hide inside himself. They did wrong. Maynard didn't.

Besides, anger was an easier emotion than guilt, or grief, or misery, because when you let out anger, it felt cathartic, a little bit of a high, sorta. And in this island, you treasured the little moments, the little things, because that's all the good feelings you'd ever get. No more laughter, no more bonding moments or small talks that didn't make you look into the dark more. All you could do is scramble for the tiniest bits of relief, never mind the consequences. So, he raged, and he raged, and he raged.

"Ian, he gave me this bruise after killing Alda. Tackled me, tried to make me stay. Might've had a knife in his hand. You left me to that, Takeshi."

Now to Bella.

"You crazy bitch, Bella. You crazy, crazy bitch. You, you show up with blood on your face and grin after screaming like crazy and ask me whose blood it is and I just no, no, you were gone for two days. Just two days, and you became this. And instead of acting shocked or mad about me killing someone, you just ask me more details? What, what do you expect me to say?"
Edited by Maraoone, Aug 29 2014, 09:33 AM.
V6 Characters:
G062 - Olivia Fischer prayed a thousand prayers in Ye Not [37/107]
Previous Threads: Sæglópur - Until all our yesterdays are lighted fools... - the way to dusty death - a concrete cave - I'd Say That I've Had Worse Days, but Then I'd Be Lying - Get Me Away From Here, I'm Dying - Until Then, You Are Free - Cast in the Name of God
Memories: Sometimes when we reach for the stars...
Weapon: Lobotomy pick.

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"Were"

So that was it, it seemed. Their group was finished. Allies no longer. The end of a fellowship and all that.

Rather, it had been over for quite some time. Takeshi had just been slow in noticing it.

Maybe at this stage of the game, thinking you could have allies was mere insanity. There were what, two dozen people left?

One dozen?


At any rate, the chances of Juhan and Takeshi helping each other seemed to be nonexistant. As for Bella... well, she still seemed crazy. Too cheerful.

She still had blood on her. Still seemed happy about it.

She had killed Ian... but from what Juhan said, Ian had attacked him first? Maybe it had been the same in other cases... though it might not mean anything in the end. It isn't like that would guarantee that she had good intentions.

The enemy of my enemy could well be nothing but a stronger enemy.

Better to stay on guard.
Let's show that private threads aren't necessary! I pledge not to start any private threads on island in V7. If I started a thread, you are welcome to join it.

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Bella’s vacant expression immediately dropped the second Juhan replied; her nostrils flaring with anger and slightly pursed lips twisting into a grimace that bared her teeth. She didn’t want Juhan to say what he’d said, didn’t want confirmation that he didn’t think of her as the strong woman she’d become. She thought she’d done enough, had truly shown the world who she was now, and had expected Juhan of all people to acknowledge it. But he hadn’t, he’d merely called her a crazy bitch while Takeshi had just stood there in silence, and it didn’t matter whether those things were true or not, because it wasn’t what she wanted to hear, and she needed to hear it more than anything in the world.

Even after all she’d done, it still wasn’t enough.

Her mouth contorted silently as rage boiled in her, struggling to find words as she searched fervently for some response to Juhan’s acidic shouts.

But actions had always spoke louder than words in her experience, and if there was one action Bella knew she was good at, it was the one pulling at her, the one her mind was begging her to undertake.

She’d show him first hand just who she was now.

Both of them.

A smile broke across Bella’s face as she slowly moved forward, closing what little gap there was between herself and the two boys before her.

Then she tightened her grip around her sickle, and swung.
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Maraoone
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Three seconds.

That's all the time Juhan had to decide to choose between fight or flight. Enough time to breathe once or twice, for his heart to beat thrice, four times. But was it enough for him to think, to choose?

Yes, yes, it was more than enough. It was more than enough time for him to regret, to realize the consequences of seeking out that catharsis as Bella ran with her sickle. Because maybe, if he kept his mouth shut and just smiled with everything, be it finding hopes for an escape squashed or seeing Ian hunched over Alda's corpse, maybe if he just stayed good and obedient, no one would be trying to kill him like this. Maybe Maynard would still be alive, maybe Juhan would have someone to scramble for the last happy moments with. And maybe, when he died on this island, he'd be afforded the mercy to die quickly. Maybe Hansel or Katarina or Travis or Mara would come and just shoot him in the head from afar, like target practice, and he'd know none the better. Maybe he'd actually be allowed to disappear.

But no, no, he knew perfectly what his fate would be.

Or could be.

Because from the start, from the very first second he woke up on this island, his goals had been all about survival. It's just who survived that differed. At first, he'd wanted everyone to live, because Juhan was one of those people who wanted to please everyone, no matter what. Then, as the days passed by, he wanted those 'worthy', those who hadn't killed, become one of them, to escape.

And now?

One of the first things Maynard had said to him was that their friends were all gone, all gone. No one left to search for, no friend to die with. The announcer put it as them being in the 'home stretch'. And honestly, there couldn't be anyone good left in this home stretch. Juhan was living proof of that, Bella and her insanity was, Takeshi and his betrayal was. No hands were clean. They were all gone.

First days, everyone should survive. Three or four days, the good ones should survive. And more than a week later, when there's no one left, when they're all gone, when only the wretched are left? Who should survive?

The answer was simple. Juhan would survive. He'd make sure of it.

So, he gripped Takeshi's torso and threw him into Bella's path, and started sprinting away from the apartments.
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Previous Threads: Sæglópur - Until all our yesterdays are lighted fools... - the way to dusty death - a concrete cave - I'd Say That I've Had Worse Days, but Then I'd Be Lying - Get Me Away From Here, I'm Dying - Until Then, You Are Free - Cast in the Name of God
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Muninn
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It wasn't something that Takeshi had seen coming.

He'd assumed that Juhan's anger had a limit to it.

Well, I guess our alliance is finished.

From now on, I'll have to be looking out for myself.

Those were the kind of things that Takeshi had been thinking. He'd thought that they would merely stop protecting each other from enemies. Neutral. Not caring about what happens to each other.


It may well have been his mistake to think that there could be somebody who wasn't an enemy after this much time on the island.

I was an idiot to think that our group could still reunite at this point.

I was an idiot to deliberately seek them out.

I was an idiot to think that Juhan and Bella would just let me walk away after this meeting.

Now, with his chest torn open by Bella's sickle, it was obvious what a stupid move it had been. Perhaps it might not have been the stupidest decision Takeshi had made...

But certainly, it would be the last.


Really, this seems to have been inevitable. Rather, it's definitely overdue.

It's absurd that somebody like me, somebody who couldn't understand what kind of situation this was, managed to survive for over a week on this island.

It should have been unthinkable for a person who wasn't willing to kill to save himself to last this long. Everybody else seemed to have figured it out already.

Nothing takes priority over one's own survival.

Ian had figured it out. Bella had figured it out.

That Juhan had figured it out as well was quite obvious.


This is where I try to be noble to the end, I suppose?

"I forgive you, please survive and go home, that will ensure that there was meaning to my death," is that the sort of thing I should say right now? Maybe I wasn't able to be selfish enough to figure out how to survive here, but I don't think I'm a good enough person right now to be that selfless, either.

I don't really care who wins this stupid game anymore.

But it would really be nice if it wasn't either of you.


B39: TAKESHI YOSHIKAWA - DECEASED
Let's show that private threads aren't necessary! I pledge not to start any private threads on island in V7. If I started a thread, you are welcome to join it.

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Bella almost wanted to laugh as Juhan bolted from the scene - and she would’ve done, if it weren’t for the white-hot anger that overwhelmed every other emotion rampaging through her. He’d thought himself so high and mighty, but when it came down to it he wasn’t any better than the rest of them. Takeshi almost landed on her as Juhan shoved him into her path, and after the shock of his action had fled her system, it took only half a second for her to decide what to do next.

Takeshi was just like Juhan, in some respects. He hadn’t responded as he should have, didn’t react with fear or pride, but instead some mixture of apathy and almost non-existent acknowledgement. He deserved it just as much as Juhan did; and the only thing that was forcing her to take him out first was his presence in her path. Just before she swung once more, Bella let herself think for the briefest of seconds, forced herself to weigh up the gravity of what she was about to do, but in the end, she found she didn’t care. No, killing Takeshi wouldn’t bring back what she’d lost, nor would it do much to temper the anger that burned within her, but it would make her feel a little better - if only by a minuscular amount.

And right now, Bella would take everything she could get.

The blade of her sickle took its time to make its way through Takeshi’s stomach once it entered, dragging as it separated flesh and opened way for a thick rush of blood from the open wound. She drew it out just as quickly, the boy’s blood spilling in a visceral flood that coated the metal blade and its handle and her arms, before driving forward once more. The spear pierced higher into his chest and gave little resistance as she wrenched the hook with as much strength as she could muster, scratching and splintering bone and sending forth yet another stream of crimson. Her eyes were unblinking, fixed firmly onto Takeshi’s, wanting to see the light in them diminish, wanted to see the look of realisation on his face the very second he knew what she’d become.

And then he dropped to the ground like a ragdoll, and Bella smiled as she did so. Because in that final second before his flame was extinguished, he gave her everything she wanted to see. It was the look she lived for, everything she wanted, the only thing she needed anymore. And she wanted to see it again and again, wanted to view, first-hand, people’s reactions to her. It was all she had left, now.

She pivoted wildly on her heel as she saw Juhan quickly make his way out of the courtyard and immediately began running as well, a cocktail of anger and sheer adrenaline mixed with eighteen years of dancing and swimming propelling her forward with each step. The gap didn’t take long to close between them, and her ears were throbbing with the buzzing in her ears and the drumming of her heartbeat and the raggedness of her breath and the shrieks of her boots against the cobblestones, as she launched herself into as strong as tackle as she could muster,

and sent them both crashing violently to the ground.
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