Welcome Guest [Log In] [Register]
Welcome to Survival of the Fittest, a RPing board loosely based off of Koshun Takami's Battle Royale, with its own unique plot and spin on the 'deadly game'. We've been around quite a while, and are now in our thirteenth year, so don't worry about us going anywhere any time soon!

If you're a newcomer and interested in joining, then please make sure you check out the rules. You may also want to read the FAQ, introduce yourself and stop by the chat to meet some of our members. If you're still not quite sure where to start, then we have a great New Member's Guide with a lot of useful information about getting going. Don't hesitate to PM a member of staff (they have purple usernames) if you have any questions about SOTF and how to get started!

Let the games begin!

Username:   Password:
Add Reply
I could live in the world just like a stranger; Open
Topic Started: Feb 24 2016, 04:02 PM (503 Views)
backslash
Member Avatar
And I am still hungry.
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
((Cristóbal Morales continued from Driving Me Crazy))

Cristo toyed with the volume dial of his iPod with one hand and twisted the cord of his earbuds with the other, both unconscious actions. He was more concentrated on the music than what he was doing with his hands; a few nights ago, he'd downloaded some piano covers of his favorite songs off of YouTube, to give him an auditory in addition to the sheet music he'd found. Questionable legality aside, he was pretty confident that listening to the covers outside of practicing them was helping to train his ear to the different parts.

He'd decided to get outside this afternoon instead of sitting in the house just listening to music. It was a beautiful day, bright and sunny with a few spots of cloud drifting over now and again. His iPod was an old, slightly battered model, but it still had a good battery life and he'd felt content to wander the park for a while without worrying that it would run out. He'd strolled for a bit and was now seated on the grass, back against a tree, to watch the occasional other visitors to the park go by.

He'd wonder about them as they passed; where they came from, where they were going, what they were thinking about. There goes a woman with a scarf but no sunglasses - does she not mind the heat and the sun? Is there something on her neck that she wants to cover? A scar? The hickey her boyfriend or girlfriend gave her last night?

There's a guy jogging by, running shorts and no shirt. He's probably just accounting for the heat, but maybe he wants to show off those tattoos. Maybe he's hoping there's someone here who will find him attractive. Maybe he used to be out of shape and he's showing off for himself now more than anyone else.

Cristóbal couldn't say that he knew a lot about people or was particularly good at interacting with them, but they fascinated him. So he watched them go by contentedly, absently mouthing the words to some My Chemical Romance song and wondering about the people who passed him.
"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."
Characters

Others
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
backslash
Member Avatar
And I am still hungry.
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
There was a girl. Cristo knew her but didn't know her; Nadia was in the grade ahead of him at Cochise and had a scary boyfriend, not to mention something of an intimidating personality all on her own. He didn't mind watching her though, as she herself watched the rest of the world through a camera lens. Confident people were always interesting, the way they seemed to not notice the world around them at all in pursuit of whatever they were doing. He sometimes wondered if that was an advantage to them or not.

He drew one leg up to his chest and looped his arms around it, resting his chin on his knee. Was Nadia after nature photography? Pictures of Kingman specifically? Maybe she had no goal in mind right now and was just letting things take their course, like he'd been with his walk through the park.

He saw classmates out like this sometimes, but usually didn't speak to them unless they approached him first. It was sort of hard to explain that you'd noticed someone because you were watching everybody who went by without sounding like some kind of creep. It was hard to explain anything about people-watching at all to most people, really, much less convince them that it was something everyone did unconsciously every day. Nobody wanted to think about the fact that their personal bubble was always getting invaded, whether they were aware of it or not. Going off of what he knew of Nadia already, Cristo could assume that she felt much the same way as most people.
"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."
Characters

Others
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
backslash
Member Avatar
And I am still hungry.
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
The lens of Nadia's camera swept the park, passing Cristóbal before doing another round. She paused and took a picture in his direction.

And another.

And anoth- oh no.

The shift in Cristo's expression from confusion to surprise to mortification was probably clearly visible to Nadia's camera. Crap, crap, crap. She'd seen him staring. He hadn't meant to stare, but- oh God, this could go badly. It didn't take a genius to know that she was making some kind of point by taking a bunch of pictures of him, but he had no idea how to defuse the situation.

Maybe he should just look away and ignore her and they could pretend they never saw each other and this never happened. Oh, but she had pictures of him now and no context for them. What if she showed them to someone and they got weird ideas...?

He had to talk to her. Crap. Assuming she even would want to talk to him and not just brush him off as a creeper. He forced himself to raise one hand and sent a stuttering, uncertain wave in Nadia's direction, and prayed that she hadn't already gotten the idea that he was some kind of stalker.
"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."
Characters

Others
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
backslash
Member Avatar
And I am still hungry.
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Meep.

The closer Nadia got to him, the more Cristo shrank back against the tree as if he could disappear into it and escape from this pending confrontation. He had the urge to hide his face in his knees or with his hands, knowing for certain that his cheeks were flaming by now.

"I, uh, I didn't..." You know, maybe leaving the house today was a mistake.

"I mean, I... sorry..." His voice trailed off into a whisper.
"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."
Characters

Others
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
backslash
Member Avatar
And I am still hungry.
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
"Well, I..." Cristo hesitated, plucking at the grass near his knee as if it was suddenly the most interesting thing in the world. Nadia wasn't yelling and making a scene or threatening to sic her boyfriend on him, which was good, but he was unsure how to explain himself in a way that she would accept.

...Maybe if he just tried really hard, he could become one with the tree and escape this confrontation.

"I... like watching people, I guess?" No, that sounded too uncertain. "I mean, I do. I- I think it's interesting, and it's, um-" Easier than talking to them. Look at how well this was going, for example.

Cristóbal glanced back up at Nadia, but only managed to make eye contact for a brief moment before focusing on a much safer spot somewhere to her left. "I didn't mean to make you uncomfortable, just, you were someone I recognized, and I was wondering what you were taking pictures of..." Headphones cord twisted around one hand, plucking blades of grass with the other. A veritable combo platter of nervous tics as he awaited Nadia's response.
"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."
Characters

Others
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
backslash
Member Avatar
And I am still hungry.
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Cristo let out a soft sigh, almost a mirror of Nadia's, as she spoke. He knew all of this, how people didn't like being watched and how staring at girls would get you in trouble. He wasn't completely out of touch with reality or the way that people worked. Nadia was preaching to the choir, but the choir wasn't going to talk back in this case.

He wasn't sure what he felt now. His sense of contentment had vanished, leaving discomfort and the faintest curl of irritation in its wake. He didn't want or need Nadia lecturing him like this, didn't think that just looking at her in the middle of a public space merited such a response at all.

But he wouldn't say that.

Instead, Cristo plucked another blade of grass and twirled the cord of his headphones some more and kept looking anywhere but Nadia's face. "Yeah," he murmured. "Sorry."

Silence stretched between them again.
"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."
Characters

Others
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
backslash
Member Avatar
And I am still hungry.
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Well now this was just getting really unfair. Cristóbal really didn't like arguing, and in fact usually went out of his way to avoid it, but this... he didn't feel right just sitting here and letting Nadia lecture him about what she thought he was doing with his free time, either. Like he was a sulky child that needed to be scolded. She clearly wasn't just going to let him off the hook if all he did was apologize. Maybe she was the kind of person who just wanted an argument, and she'd just keep pushing until he gave her something.

Cristo didn't want an argument. But maybe they could have a conversation. He probably needed to remind her (or beg her) to delete the pictures she'd taken of him, anyway.

So even though his nerves rose up and made his stomach twist and threatened to choke him, he forced the words out. "You could say that about most things, couldn't you?" One earbud had fallen out, and he twirled it around one finger as he mulled over his own words. "I do a lot of things during the week, usually. School, and baseball, and helping out around the house... Sometimes I go do things with my mom and her boyfriend." The earbud reached the end of its cord and he twirled it in the other direction. "Sometimes, I like to get away from it all."

Cristo glanced up through his eyelashes, trying to judge Nadia's reaction. She was distressingly hard to read, and he had to wonder if anybody else had had issues trying to talk to her. "Don't you..." No, no, he could phrase it better than "Don't you have better things to do too?".

"You're spending your free time in the park, too." Better. Less likely to start a fight about whose hobbies were more important.
"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."
Characters

Others
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
backslash
Member Avatar
And I am still hungry.
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Cristo breathed in deeply, just barely managing to avoid letting it all out in a sigh again. Everything about this situation was uncomfortable and he wanted it over right now. Just what on Earth did Nadia want him to do? He'd apologized. He'd tried to explain himself. He'd tried to point out that he wasn't hurting anyone any more than she was here.

But she wouldn't stop. He couldn't figure out what kind of point she was even trying to make. All she was doing was lording over him how everything he'd done in this exchange was wrong.

Nadia might have been fascinating to wonder about, but Cristóbal was starting to think that he didn't like her all that much.

"No," he said lowly. "I don't want that. And I meant it when I said was sorry for making you uncomfortable." Now please, please, please walk away. Just let this horrendously awkward encounter end so that he could go home and be away from people for the rest of the afternoon.
"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."
Characters

Others
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
backslash
Member Avatar
And I am still hungry.
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Cristo took a breath and put his head down on his knees for a few minutes once Nadia left. Deep breaths, that was it. Deep breaths, don't get upset. Just a little discussion, that was all.

Except that wasn't it at all, and he knew it. He couldn't quite put into words why he was upset, when Nadia was the one who had felt like her personal security was being invaded, but he was. He felt attacked, almost. He'd had people tell him that he was bothering them before, but he hadn't expected anyone to get so annoyed if they caught him watching. He could have wondered why, could have come up with half a dozen reasons that Nadia might have for such a response, but...

Well, he really didn't feel like thinking about her anymore. Or anyone else, for that matter. Not today. The park had turned out to not be such a great idea after all. Maybe in the future he ought to just stick with his neighborhood.

With a soft sigh, Cristo lifted his head from his knees and put his fallen earbud back in. The battery on his iPod was getting low, anyway. All signs pointed to going home and staying there for a good long while as the best course of action.

Cristóbal stood and stretched, shot a quick glance over just to make sure that Nadia wasn't pointing her camera at him again, and left the park.

He tried not to spend too much time that night wondering if she'd really deleted those pictures.

((Cristóbal Morales continued in Wasserweber))
Edited by backslash, May 13 2016, 12:42 PM.
"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."
Characters

Others
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
1 user reading this topic (1 Guest and 0 Anonymous)
« Previous Topic · Liberty Park · Next Topic »
Add Reply