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Self Doubts and Hurricanes
Topic Started: Sep 1 2016, 03:52 AM (928 Views)
Aloha
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"Hey, Henry! Wait up!"

((Jasper Bustamante continued from Plutonian Wharf))

Henry was surprisingly fast. The boy wandered off on their way to the warehouse, and he’d jogged after him. Under normal circumstances, Jasper didn’t think he’d get winded from running this far. But having to skirt tide pools and climb over rocks was incredibly taxing. He paused and bent over, hands on his knees as he caught his breath.

Jasper didn’t mind their detour too much. The ocean was beautiful, after all. He smiled and turned to the sea. He hadn’t been in the right state of mind to appreciate it when he woke up. Jasper had only been on the beach a couple of times, when his family would pay Tito Ryan a visit in Long Beach. This beach here was nothing like the one in California, but the sound of crashing waves still reminded him of those times.

Up ahead, Henry started calling out to someone. Jasper turned to see another figure on the shoreline: tall, blonde, and clad in green. It took a moment for him to recognize her. Coleen Reagan was someone he only knew in passing, but she always seemed nice. She was another friendly face on the island.

Jasper's smile grew wider, and he broke out into a sprint.
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Jasper managed to catch up to them. “H-hi Coleen,” he greeted, panting slightly. After taking a moment to catch his breath, he stuck his hands in his pockets and grinned. “How’re you doing?” He’d probably say the same thing if he ran into her back in Kingman. The casual greeting eased his nerves, and maybe it’d have the same effect on her.

Sadly, it didn’t seem to help much. In fact, Coleen looked terrified. His smile faltered, and he raised a brow. Maybe he and Henry had surprised her, but neither of them seemed particularly intimidating. She wasn’t even looking at him; she was looking over his shoulder, at something behind him. He turned around to see Arthur lagging behind, toting his paintb-

“Ohh!” Jasper exclaimed, turning back to Coleen. “It’s all good, that’s not a real gun.” His smile returned.
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Now they were all together. Jasper was glad they’d met up with her. He may not have been close with Coleen, but he was still happy to see a friendly face.

Well, a friendly but disheartened face. “Aw, dang, I gotcha. It’s been pretty rough out here.” Jasper sighed. Then his face lit up. “Don't worry though! Cause we can stick together now! And find more people!” Coleen could be another ally, another friend. They could find some of her friends, and Jasper’s friends, and maybe Henry’s and Arthur’s friends, too.

He envisioned such a large group of people. It would be fantastic! A bunch of friends who’d refuse to give into the terrorists, to slow this ‘game’ to a halt. Jasper remembered that if nobody died on a certain day, all their collars would be blown. It wasn’t a pleasant way to go (going wasn’t pleasant to begin with, of course), but at least they wouldn’t be killing each other.

As he thought, he watched Henry walk off as he yammered on about something or other. Jasper wasn’t too concerned about it until he broke into a sprint.

“What the- Henry?!” Jasper called after him. He looked at the other two, and then back at Henry. Where the hell was he going? Wherever he was headed, he was going out there alone.

And Jasper didn’t want to leave Henry, or anyone, alone.

He turned around and chased after him.
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Jasper was glad Henry hadn’t gotten too far from the group. He slowly skidded to a halt and stood over Henry, curled up and sobbing. It reminded Jasper of how they’d first met up, but now Henry was the one having a breakdown.

He remembered how it had played out before: how Henry had cheered him up, kept him sane. Henry had distracted Jasper from the true horror of their situation, and now he had to return the favor.

It’s what friends do, right?

Jasper knelt down and placed his hand on Henry’s shoulder. “Hey Henry…” he spoke softly, starting to rub. “It’s okay, everything’s gonna be alright...”
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((Skipping for the same reason))

The shove caught Jasper by surprise. One moment he was over Henry, the next he was knocked onto his rear end. He stared blankly up at the other boy in shock, who immediately turned and ran.

Why’d he do that?

He sat there and watched Henry run, his heart sinking further as he got farther and farther away. They were supposed to stick together and survive, or at least spend their last days together in peace. What was wrong? Had he done something wrong? Jasper didn’t know if Henry was touchy, but running off because of it was a bit too much.

Jasper slowly rose to his feet, stepping forward to try and follow. However, his foot caught something, and he stumbled. He looked back on what he’d tripped on, and his eyes widened.

Henry's bag.

His head swiveled back in the direction Henry had run off in, but he was nowhere in sight. Jasper didn’t know why Henry had left, or if he should follow, but now he knew he had to. He just couldn’t leave Henry out there on his own. Especially without his supplies.

Jasper quickly picked up the bag and took off running again, hoping that he could catch up.

((Jasper Bustamante continued in St. Patrick's Purgatory))
Edited by Aloha, Oct 7 2016, 08:03 PM.
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