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Woof Woof, I'm a Dog. Kill your Friends.; paging grim, otherwise open!
Topic Started: Nov 8 2016, 04:49 AM (1,766 Views)
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Previously, on Survival of the Fittest:

Alex and Jeremy left the cell where Conrad was. They had walked around, for a bit. Trying to find the right place. Trying to avoid confrontation. Alex didn’t want a fight, and Jeremy didn’t want Alex to attempt to kill anyone, so it was a pretty quick agreement. Even then, it wasn’t like they were trying that hard. They kept a lookout for any people or noises, but most of the halls were empty. It was probably everyone else being smart, but Jeremy wasn’t going to complain about that. It meant that Alex didn’t see any of their classmates. It meant that there wouldn’t be a confrontation. It meant that Jeremy didn’t have to question what he was doing whenever somebody else did something. Maybe it wasn’t the best outcome, maybe he didn’t make the right choice, but it worked out, for the most part.

They had found this room after a bit of time spent searching. How long exactly Jeremy didn’t know (again, no watch; kinda hard to tell time without one), but it wasn’t instant. Maybe a couple of hours, if he had to guess. They took a look inside, saw that it was empty, saw that the room worked, and sat down inside. Dropped their stuff. Explored, for a bit. There were notepads and pens in the shelves. There was money on the floor. Jeremy had taken both of those. They could come in handy later. Alex suggested a system involving cans and strings. Jeremy wasn’t sure how it worked, but he was like sure, whatever, and Alex got to work on that. Apparently they were in a secluded place so they’d know if someone was coming. It was a pretty neat system, Jeremy had to compliment him there.

Then the tiredness came to both their eyes. They elected to sleep in shifts. One person sleep, one person keep guard for as long as they thought an hour was. That was Jeremy’s suggestion, and they went with it. Nothing else really happened during the night.

Well, no, actually, that was a lie. There was one thing, during one of Jeremy’s guard shifts. He sorta got bored. Figured that reflecting on things, figuring out how his future was going to be was important. There was a list, in his head. Three items. They were okay, but one of the items needed expanding. So, with the notepad and pen that he had…

1. Have fun, above all else.
2. Get to Emma. As soon as possible.
3. Find Serena. Make sure she's safe.
4. Figure out what the fuck to do with Alex.
5. Find Al. Say hi.
6. Find Clarice. Apologise for earlier.
7. Figure out who else should be on this list. Retroactively add them.
8. Find Josh's corpse. Give last respects, for what they're worth to him.
9. Find Jasmine. Figure out what happens when you get there.
10. Find Caedyn, get closure in that area, if you can.
11. Pursue hopeless venture of survival, if above conditions have been fulfilled.

It was a little long, there were some things probably not in the right order; but hey, it worked for what it was.

((Jeremy Frasier, continued from This World Belongs to the Mad))

The two had been awake for a while now. Neither could sleep that well. Neither really wanted to stay asleep, given the situation. If Jeremy had to guess, he was probably less worried, but there was still the iffy subject in his head about a known killer and probable psychopath being the one person stopping anyone from stabbing him while they slept. Oh well. At least nobody came during the night. He would have liked to say that it was because of either of the systems that they had created, but no. The night was silent. Nobody moved to this location.

He chuckled, slightly. His classmates were being smart. That was nothing but good for him.

And that was when the crackling of the speakers sounded. That was when both of them went silent. It seemed that now was the time for the announcement.

So he listened. Made sure to remember what was here. Nancy was at 3. Kimiko was at 2. Oskar was new. Fucking Brendan was new. He’d have to look out for them, in the future. Not out of concern for himself, but maybe out of interest.

Then the last two dead were named. Danny bit. Sam bit. Neither were his friends, but he knew both of them. Danny was friendly - one of the first people he had met here - and he had been acquaintances with Sam. Not in the same groups, or anything, but they had talked. About writing, about ideas, that one day where Mrs Webber was super late to class. He knew Danny. He knew Samuel.

And they were two faces that he’d never see again.

The people on the list were even more important, now.

He turned. Saw Alex. Saw his expression.

Maybe it was best that Jeremy knew how he was feeling.

“You know anyone up there?”
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Jeremy’s head turned away, slightly. Towards the door.

Alex was right.

He knew everybody up there, to some extent. Even if he wasn’t friends with them, even if they hadn’t been people he’d met on this island, that didn’t mean they were people totally alien to him. They were faces. Ones he saw on the grounds. Ones he saw answering questions or making jokes in class. Ones he occasionally worked with for the sake of both their grades. One or two he would call friends, for better or worse. Maybe they weren’t the most important people in the world. Maybe one or two of them were capable of annoying him, from time to time. But they were still people. They were still faces.

And everybody up there was a face that he’d never see again.

...He just had to work harder. Find the ones who especially mattered. He had a list, and he was going to work it down until the day he died. One item at a time. Maybe not in the exact order, but eh.

He’d take what he could get.

And Alex was finally making a little bit of sense now. He smiled, slightly. Best to return the favour.

“Yeah. They did.”

He looked down, again. At the floor. Then up. At Alex. In his eyes. Then away, again.

It felt a little bit odd, saying this.

“The best we can do is make sure the others get better. Give the people we care about our respects.”

He paused. Looked down. Breathed out through his nose.

“At least before anything happens to them.”
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An interesting notion.

That was what Alex had just said, for the people who didn’t quite hear what had just come out of his mouth. An interesting notion. The words that Jeremy had just put out of his mouth in an attempt to be nice were ones that Alex Tarquin personally found interest in. Jeremy didn’t know what that meant. Tone indicated seriousness, Alex’s eyes were smiling as they looked at him. That meant something. Jeremy wasn’t sure what. Maybe he had somehow convinced Alex to put down his sword or some shit like that. Maybe what he just said was the nail in the coffin and Alex would turn his sword on Jeremy; and despite all the clamouring and all the claiming by Jeremy about the fact that he knew that he wasn’t getting out of here, he sorta didn’t exactly want that to happen. There was a list. Jeremy wanted to at the very least achieve something on there.

So yeah, he didn’t know, and-

The rattling of the cans made him snap to attention. Alex’s trap thing had been activated.

Someone was here.

Alex gave him an order. Put the gun at the ready. No real problemo, it was in his pocket anyway. He stood up, followed Alex. To the other inside half of the room, next to the door. That was where Alex had stopped, that was where Jeremy had stopped. They’d likely open the door. Then something would happen. Likely not pretty. Likely like what had happened with Michael yesterday. It sucked, but he knew that he had to get used to it. This wasn’t back then, when he saw the image of the person in a garden covered in blood. This was now, and the person was standing there right in front of him. He just had to deal with what was going to happen, whether he liked it or not.

But wait.


He couldn’t.

Because the people out there? He didn’t know who they were. They could be anyone. They could be someone like Isabel or Nancy or Kimiko. Someone more dangerous than the average classmate.

They could be Emma.

They could be Serena.

No. He couldn’t. He had to do something. He had to stop this.

Four quick signals went out as Jeremy took a step forward. Finger pointed at Alex, finger pointed at the ground. Finger pointed at Jeremy, finger pointed at the door.

He took two more steps. His head was out the door. His head was looking at the people.

“Oh, uh… hi. Sorry ‘bout the cans. Sorta kinda need them, considering the situation we’re in.”
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The boy talking to him right now was Jordan Green. He was… okay, bordering on cool. Acquaintance would probably be the best word for what their relationship, was. Not a friend - he tended to keep getting Jeremy into arguments and they didn’t really share hobbies or clubs to make conversation more easy - but someone he could choose to talk to if none of the other options were disabled. The girl behind him freaking out was Hazel. Jung. Not Jo. She was less someone Jeremy knew about and more someone Jeremy knew of. Or rather, had heard of. She was on the anti-bullying committee, did some stuff around school, and apparently did some weird stuff behind closed doors, from what he heard. Not that he really cared now though. Neither of them were on the announcements, and neither of them were on his list. They weren’t exactly highest or lowest priority, right now.

Didn’t mean he wasn’t going to talk to them, though.

“Yeah, it’s helped. I’ve sorta been messing it up by walking out the room immediately after it’s triggered but eh, I’ll figure out how to not do that in enough time.”

Another question followed. Little bit of a harder one to answer. Maybe he’d just keep them out of the room, if that was possible, it wouldn’t be too hard to do so.

“But yeah, I’m alo-”

Jeremy froze up.


So much for that plan.
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((gonna break post order here; sorry Rugga))

Everything had erupted around Jeremy.

Well no, it hadn’t. He couldn’t say that. Everything was fine. Nobody in this room was fighting. Nobody in this room was killing. To the cameras, to the people watching in, everything seemed normal. But it wasn’t. That was what Jeremy was trying to get at. The appearance of Alex in the corridor outside had changed everything. Revealed everything. Jeremy was a liar. Jeremy was allied with a killer. There was a killer in the corridor with three - he shook his head - two innocents. Nothing good was going to come out of this. It was going to be like Lily, like Michael again. Someone was going to get hurt. Maybe killed, he didn’t know. There was going to be blood on the floor, that was the constant. That was what was going to happen here.

Well no, he could do something, but what? What could he do to somehow make the situation normal again? They were on an island. He had been caught as a liar. Someone who cut up a girl during the first day was standing here with the free of them.

His body tensed. His mind froze up. There was nothing he could do, there was nothing he could think of and everything under the surface was going to rise up and bubble and burst.

Voices. All around him. A casual goodbye. The disappearance of the latter two.

Shouting. Anger. His ally. Angry. Storming.

The slamming of the door brought him back. He was alone. Where was everyone? The latter two had left, that was right, but where was Alex?

He looked around. Hand on his gun, eyes looking for the shape he’d kept in them for the past day.

...Chair room. That had to be it. He must have gone back to base, or something. He stepped forward, opening the door.

The familiar shape laid in front of him. Looking down. At the floor. Away from the cameras.

There was a glimpse. A spark. A familiar feeling that he was seeing right now.

“You okay?”

Jeremy knew he wasn’t, but really, was there anything else he could have said?
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He wasn’t sure whether he could say he saw Alex’s reply coming or not.

Because he knew the hints. He had seen the hints. Before he had came, before he had spoken, Alex was standing here by himself. Looking down, just as Jeremy did every time he didn’t want someone else to meet his gaze. The hints were there, but he didn’t even realise that Alex was the one giving them. He was a Darwinist. A villain. A person Jeremy willingly chose to work with, yes, but out of interest. He had killed someone, and Jeremy had watched as he mutilated another. That was what he had seen. The villain was the part of Alex he knew. Not… what he was now. Not the person whose tears he could see smearing his face. Not the person talking about others. Not the person placing their importance on the others that they had once knew.

There was more of himself in Alex than Jeremy had thought.

He didn’t know whether he liked that or not.

Because, like, they were on an island, and the only way to get off was to be the last person on it still alive. He got that. You got that. There was no point in even stating this, it was the thing everyone knew. But the thing was, he didn’t ask for this. Nobody had. When he had woken up the day of the science trip he hadn’t been expecting to be taken from where he was and put on an island where he knew no matter how hard he tried or how much he fought he was never getting off alive. Did he want that to happen? No, he didn’t. Did he want to die? No; there wasn’t even any fucking point in stating that either. Everything he had cared for - his friends, his parents, BB, his piano, his violin, his normal average stagnant everyday life - was gone now, with the only thing remaining being the grim acceptance that he and everyone he cared about would die.

So you walk around for a bit, and you figure out what to do. You figure having fun is important - may as well enjoy your last days, after all - but you know that it won’t end well. You ring a bell, because it's there and you may as well, but all it does is hurt people. Get a friend injured, drive a classmate insane, show another his deathbed. You figure that you may as well get some closure, but you know that won’t happen. One of your friends got killed by Caedyn’s bitch the first day, you don’t know how long the others will last. You know that. You know that there’s no way past that. You know its going to happen sooner or later.

And then you find a dude. He’s kinda fun. Interesting personality, and willing to not eviscerate you. You talk, you chat, and you think it’s kinda fun. Little distraction for the moment, probably not something that long lasting, but then he offers you a deal. Then he gives you a chance. Top two. Guaranteed, so long as you travel with him. You take it. You act like you’re better, you hesitate about the whole thing with killing, and yet you take it. You act as if you’re having fun, travelling with this interesting character who’s friendly to you, but maybe there’s more to it. Maybe you want that hope. Maybe you want to distract yourself. Honestly, that’s probably it. Maybe you just don’t want to think, given all the horrors you now know lie within.

Alex had opened up, and Jeremy didn’t know what to think of it. They were similar. Nearly the same. They were hiding things underneath. Neither were really who they showed themselves to be.

He didn’t know whether he liked that or not.

And then he heard the footsteps - the voices, in the hallway. Talking, planning. He didn’t like that, probably meant they were coming. Another confrontation.

He looked Alex in the eyes. Alex the human, previously thought to be Alex the Monster.

He didn’t know whether he liked that or not.

But he knew that right now he needed that monster to come back.

“Because they’re weak.”

His expression stayed the same. Slight frown. Default expression.

“They know where they are. They know what’s likely going to happen to them. They know that, but they don’t realise it. They think they’re going to be the one. They hope that they’re the one. There’s probably less than a one percent chance that it’s going to be them, and yet they don’t really realise that. They probably think that they can stand around for a couple days and they’ll make it home. Happy and free.”

He didn’t know how this was going to come off to Alex. Maybe reminding him about the fact that he was going to die probably wasn’t the greatest idea. Better than nothing though, he supposed.

“But the people who actually choose to fight? The people who decide to at least try to be that one? They’re the monsters. At least, that’s what they think. They think that they’re better because they haven’t done anything yet. They think that they’re better because they think that they haven’t fallen for what the people on the speakers say. They’re wrong. They think you’re a monster. They call you a monster. They’re probably wrong. I still sorta dunno why you did what you did to Rea, but I know that what they’re saying about you isn’t true.”

He took a breath. He tended not to speak as long as he was doing now. His spit still felt frothy, but after a quick pause, he was fine. Good to go again.

“The people, on the speakers. They’ve tried to make you a bogeyman in everyone’s eyes, and they’ve succeeded. All the people who say that they’re better, they’ve fallen for what the people up there have said. They call you a monster. They think that you saw a defenseless girl and cut her up like nothing. Maybe that’s actually what happened. Likely not, given what she was like before now.”

There was a lot of truth in what he was saying. He wasn’t sure what to think about that.

“Basically? You’re their bogeyman now, and that might not end up changing for them. Worst case scenario?”

He didn’t know how to continue. He wasn’t sure where he was going with this.

“I might be your only friend from now on.”

He stopped.

Looked away.

There was a line.

He didn’t know how far he’d gone.
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He did it.

He said it.

Every line that you could possibly think of in this situation had been crossed. Jeremy was now willingly working with the bad guys and was probably now actively undermining his own goals. He had been looking for his friends. He had given himself goals to fulfill. He gave company to a murderer, yeah, but it wasn’t like he was assisting him that much. He stood back - freaked out - as Michael’s finger got cut off. That couldn’t be called helping. That couldn’t be called assisting. He was the moral center of this operation. He was trying to stop Alex from just wantonly killing people. He was trying to not advocate the murders, but nope. Fuck that. Guess he was one of the bad guys now. May as well take the gun and blow everyone’s brains out where they stood, because no. He didn’t want to do that. That wasn’t who he wanted to be.

But he did it.

And he said it.

And all because he was too scared of some fucking footsteps and- fuck knows what he was thinking about. He did bad shit. He didn’t really want to do bad shit from here on out. End of story.

But really, he should have expected this the moment the final two deal came up. Teaming up with a villain would make him have to do evil shit, who knew?

Fuck it.

He made his bed. May as well go lay in it.

“Same difference,” was the only comment he made during Alex’s counter speech. Apparently he succeeded. Apparently he did not make Alex really want to stab him. That was good. Probably the whole only good thing to come out of the whole ideal. Alex walked forward. To the door. He stayed back.

Probably best to stand back a little while the situation was still new. Step forward if it fit him. Stay back until then. No point in talking if the person was someone who'd shoot him down.

May as well become a hypocrite, while he was at it.
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((Skipping post order to avoid inactivity))

“I mean…”

Pause. That… was not what Jeremy was supposed to be doing. The order for himself was to stand still. Look pretty. Be both the brains and the beauty of this operation. That was better for everyone involved. Well, maybe not, but things were going fine as they were going now. No need to step in now. If things went up in flames again then he wasn’t going to be the one with blood on the floor. Yeah. There was good reasoning behind that plan. There was a good reason for that plan. Yeah. Yeah. It was a good plan. Best for this situation. Meant that others did the work and he wasn’t getting hurt because of whatever happened. Good plan? Yeah. Good plan. Probably the best thing Jeremy thought up to do on the island.

So why did Jeremy just open his mouth just now?

He didn’t really know. He knew that that was the dumb thing to do, but he did it anyway. So why?

Well, uh, it was probably because Jordan was being stupid. Or being ignorant. Either/or. And Jeremy didn’t like that. Well, Jeremy used to not like that. Jury was out on his feelings regarding it right now but there was a bit of that muscle memory. Days spent refining his technique. Reigning sharpshooter supreme, or whatever other title existed for that.

Short of it was, when someone was wrong? Jeremy was on the case.

He didn’t know whether he liked that, now.

“You did just try to fake sick on us in order to run away. You hurt Alex’s feelings in the process. As thus, we’re requiring you to fess up on it.”

He stopped. Nothing else really to say. Well actually, there was a slight temptation. Something weird. Something on the very top of that list.

Yeah, why not. He smiled. Tilted his head.

Closed his eyes.

“Or else.”

He giggled, slightly.

God, he was going to hell for this.
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The conversation wizzed itself around Jeremy’s head, twirling and rotating as it swung but never getting close to inside. He did know what was happening. Hazel had apologised to Alex. That was… probably cool. Maybe that would help to calm him down, stop him from going insane and attacking again. Yeah, cool. She could have done it in a way that didn’t remind Alex of the fact that he had directly killed someone, though. She could have also done it in a way that accused Jeremy of killing someone. That wasn’t as cool. He… supposed he couldn’t really blame her, though, annoying as it was to be called out like that. He was with a killer. He did sorta pretend to be evil just a couple moments ago. It was only really natural.

And it was an apology from the both of them. That was good. Wasn’t directed at him nor did he really need one but hey, felt a little good on his end as well.

What happened next was a little weird, though. Not something Jeremy got. Not something Jeremy was entirely understanding. There was an apology from the both of them and Jeremy got that part of the conversation but then Alex responded back and he was accepting the apology and then he went elsewhere? Started comparing himself to the other killers? Said he killed Nancy?

That part at the end sent a little bit of a chill up his spine. Did that happen? When? Jeremy wasn’t there for that. That wasn’t on the announcements. When did that-

Wait, no. He must have misspoke, or something like that. He meant Rea. Slip of the tongue, on his part. Nothing Jeremy had to worry about.

But was it really, though? For a second Jeremy had believed what Alex had just said. For a second Jeremy thought that during some point in the day Alex had gotten out of his sight and put his sword in the girl he had met at the bell tower. Could that have happened at some point? If Jeremy let Alex out of his sight at some point what would happen? Would he kill anyone? Would that actually happen?

...There was a list. On the clipboard. He needed to check it, quickly.

But wait, there were people here. There was a conversation happening. He needed to get out of this. He needed to speak quickly. Think of something. He was good at this. He knew that.

There was a slight pause.

“What he means is: Apology accepted. Welcome to our evil lair, or something like that.”

Okay. Good enough. He could get out of here. The clipboard was on the shelf. Take a step. Grab it. Look at the names. They were still alive, as far as he knew. Good. That was good.

But there was a name that his eyes rested upon. Clarice. Middle of the list. Most noticeable position. Acquaintance. Not a friend on the level of the others on the list but she was important enough to be there. Why was that?

Because he hadn’t gotten his closure. Because he hadn’t gotten his last goodbye with her.

Because he hadn’t been able to apologize to her, for sitting there and doing nothing as the girl he met in the bell tower stuck an axe in her before killing three others.

...Fuck, he needed to do something. Find them quickly. Get to them before it was too late. He knew that. He had to get out of here. He couldn’t ally with a player. He couldn’t do this. He turned. Picked up his bag. Took his ste-

Fuck, Hazel and Jordan were in the doorway. He couldn’t get out until they did.

He was stuck.

The clipboard with the names was in his hand, though.

He looked at them.

Maybe staying in here was a good thing. Maybe they could help.

“Although, uh… If you could help me with this thing that would be great. Have any of you two seen anyone out of the following?”

There was a pause. There was a list, that he was looking at.

“Emma Luz. Serena Waters. Ale- Alessio Rigano. Clarice Halwood. Jos- Jasmine Reed. Cadeyn Miller.”

Another pause. He looked at the list. Top. Middle. Bottom.

All important.

“Or anyone else important, I guess. If you’ve seen any of them that’d be a fantastic help for me.”
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“Thanks, although she’s not really who I’m looking for.”

No, she wasn’t. Again though, the gesture was appreciated. Hazel tried. She wasn’t getting up on him or anything for being in kahoots with a murderer, which was an improvement on what he understood of the previous situation. Besides, not like she would have known that he wasn’t friends with Eliza. Maybe it would have made a little sense if he was. Social nomad. No real group to belong to. That kind of shit. The most Jeremy really cared about his social position, he imagined. Don’t really take him on that. Short of it was: him and Eliza were totally separate, socially. He was with the nerds and the other cool people. She was with… the other non-cool people, he supposed. She wasn’t someone that made lunchtimes cool for him. That belonged to Serena. Al. BB. Those people.

And now he was thinking of the “back thens” again. The things that happened back home. His house. His bed. His life.

He supposed now he knew a part of why the people of the announcements did what they did. Maybe not all of it. Maybe not the entire reason, but a small part, at the very least.

A familiar name emerged into the room, though. One he now remembered. One he only now knew was here.

“Wait, Vanessa Stone?” Not like there was another Vanessa in his year, but he had to make sure. Also had to lead into the next question, as well. “Where’d you see her? What’s she doing?”

Questions were important. Determined whether or not she was on the list. Well, maybe she couldn’t be there, given it was written down, but he could put her name somewhere. Put her name on the paper. Say hi, if they ever met.

And then a third voice rejoined the group, talking to him. Well, about him. Didn’t stop the fact that he was apparently popular. Didn’t stop the fact that Alex was down with the idea of finding friends with him.


Maybe they weren’t so different, after all.

Maybe he didn’t have to leave, now.
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Wait, no, that was right. She was part of that band, along with BB. Along with some other people he didn’t really know about, as well. Yeah, okay, there was that connection there. He didn’t really know what to do with it per say but yeah. He needed to find her. Say hi. Figure out what else happened when he got there. The lack of a plan and the lack of her being on the list was an issue, though, but that was part of the top thing. Have fun. Don’t fret. He was gonna die one day or some shit so why was it important now? Yeah. Yeah. He got that. He knew that. He had it right there at the top. The people on the announcements were wrong. There was no point. Yeah. Yeah. He got that. He knew what was important. Find his friends. That’s all that mattered.

And what better way to find them than actually moving? He liked Hazel’s suggestion. Cool as their base was he’d probably get more by moving around. Yeah. He was down with that. No objections. Take his steps forward and-

And then a third voice rejoined the group.

Alex wasn’t down with the plan.

And he was right. If Jeremy wanted to find his friends, if he wanted to go along with Hazel and Jordan, he couldn’t have Alex with them. He knew that they were scared of Alex. He knew that everyone was. He wasn’t going to find his friends staying with Alex. They would be scared. What would Serena think of him? Emma? Clarice? He knew it wasn’t good. He knew they wouldn’t think good of him. Of Jeremy, either, for sticking with him. No. He couldn’t. If he wanted to find his friends, if he wanted to make sure his last days meant something, he had to go. He had to strike his own path. He had to leave Alex behind.

The choice was clear.

The right option was right there.

But he couldn’t pick it.

Because, you know. There’s this guy. Standing right there in front of you. He’s a cool guy. Fun. Makes you forget that you’re on an island playing a game where the only way to win was to watch everyone you know die. Makes you think about what you’re doing, makes you think why you’re going along with him, but he shows you why you do it. You do it because he’s interesting. He’s a monster. He goes off on these things about being strong but you know that he’s not telling the truth because you’ve seen otherwise. He’s a human. He’s scared and lonely and friendless and you know if you leave him things won’t work out for him. He’s interesting. Better than the other people he’d met. So he knew he had to stay. He knew he had to stick with his friend.

Plus, he had a list to fulfill. Have fun. Make his last days the best he’d ever have.

But could he do that? He knew it was important, but…

Wasn’t that a selfish way of looking at things? Yeah, he had to look out for number one, but he sorta had to think about number two through four, as well. Josh had died before Jeremy got his chance to say goodbye. Clarice had gotten a fucking axe through her arm right before his eyes and he hadn’t done anything about it. He knew how had it hit. He knew how much it hurt. So how could he let that happen to them? Emma, Serena. Al. It’d hurt if he lost them. Maybe the feeling was mutual. Maybe it was as important to them as it was to him that he find them. He knew that now. He’d figured it out. He knew what he had to do now.

And maybe now he could finally make the right choice.

He turned around.

Looked Alex in the eyes.

“You’re right. I guess-”

He didn’t know what to say.

Because no matter how he said it, no matter how good he had been at talking before, he knew that he was leaving his ally- no, his friend behind. He knew that Alex wouldn’t find any others. And he knew that this would be it. This would be their last time. He knew that once he left this room, he’d never see Alex’s face again.

He knew that this would be his last goodbye.

So he couldn’t.

He couldn’t do it.

So he wouldn’t.

He’d give himself hope. He’d assume. He would make sure that they saw each other again.

He turned around. Took his steps. He was right in front of the door.

And then he stopped.

“Hey, Alex?”

A pause. Silence, in the room. Hazel and Jordan had left. It was just the two of them.

It was his last chance.

“Stay alive.”

His last goodbye.

“We still have that promise we gave one another.”

Make it count, Jeremy.

”Don’t break it.”

Good enough.

1. Have fun, above all else.
2. Get to Emma. As soon as possible.
3. Find Serena. Make sure she's safe.
4. Figure out what the fuck to do with Alex.
5. Find Al. Say hi.
6. Find Clarice. Apologise for earlier.
7. Figure out who else should be on this list. Retroactively add them.
8. Find Josh's corpse. Give last respects, for what they're worth to him.
9. Find Jasmine. Figure out what happens when you get there.
10. Find Caedyn, get closure in that area, if you can.
11. Pursue hopeless venture of survival, if above conditions have been fulfilled.

He stepped out the door.

((Jeremy Frasier, continued in The Way The Sun Can Still Burn Down))
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