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Thanatophobia; Day 3, Afternoon - Open
Topic Started: Nov 12 2016, 08:01 PM (1,128 Views)
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And I am still hungry.
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Johnny had been uncharacteristically quiet for the last day or so, Raina thought. Maybe it was the dwindling responses he could get out of her and the lack of anybody else. Maybe he was just doing his best to keep it all together and keep soldiering on, like she was. She didn't want to ask and open that particular can of worms.

They worked their way down to the first floor of the asylum, which they'd bypassed on their first day. Raina wasn't sure what, if anything, they'd find in this old shell of a building, but it was better to scour the place now than overlook something essential. There had to be something on the island. She had an inkling that threatened to become a certainty - the first Danger Zone had been the supply depot, and now the utilities compound. There had to be something there, for the people pulling the strings to keep them out of those places one after the other. Raina wasn't sure if she and Johnny could make it to the supply depot before the next day, but that was the next stop on her list once they finished with the asylum.

There was still frustratingly little here. It wasn't like she'd been expecting some kind of technological treasure trove, but this place was still supposed to be like a hospital, right? A leeches-and-lobotomies style hospital, yes, but still a hospital. There should have been something. She was loathe to return to the basement, but if all the equipment was there...

But she'd think of something. She would.

Raina was so lost in her thoughts that she'd almost reached the group therapy room before really registering that voices were coming from within. She scolded herself to pay more attention, to not get so wrapped up in the details this early that she ran them right into disaster before they accomplished anything. One step at a time.

A glance at Johnny with raised eyebrows only got the expression mirrored back at her, and Raina nodded more to herself than to him. The voices sounded calm, if not relaxed. She placed one hand on the door and pushed it further open. "Hey... hello?"
"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."
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And I am still hungry.
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
The relief she felt was a surprise. Raina couldn't help but smile at Jasper's bright greeting; a tired and faintly strained smile, but still a smile. Familiar faces, friendly faces, faces which belonged to people that she knew were smart and at least somewhat capable. It was probably the best encounter they could hope for right now.

"Hey Jasper, Audrey," she said, raising her hand in a half-wave back at them. "We've been looking around for supplies, actually, haven't been up to much. I dunno about taking a break yet." More sitting and doing nothing would become more excuses, more putting off her responsibilities. "I don't suppose you guys have found anything really useful around here, huh?" She asked, wrinkling her nose a bit to express her distaste for the old building. The labs in the basement nagged at the back of her mind again.

Basement, supply depot, utilities compound. She brought the map into her mind, drawing a little dotted line from destination to destination. There was a radio tower in the utilities area, she remembered. Probably useless, probably picked clean by anyone who had come before them. But if she could get her hands on something like a radio elsewhere and get it to the tower...

She didn't voice her plans. Cameras and microphones everywhere, and she didn't want to have to answer questions on the fly when people started poking holes in her ideas. Like they had come up with anything better.

"...Have you seen anyone from the robotics club? Penny, Al, Lily? Johnny and I have been on our own since the first day." Since Beaks and Scarlett ran off to Nancy and her axe. An unpleasant knot twisted in Raina's stomach as the realization that she would never see Scarlett again settled over her. Where had Beaks gone after that?

She did her best to keep her face neutral. Don't dwell on it. Big picture.
"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."
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And I am still hungry.
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And just like that the whole situation had gone, as Raina's older brother might put it, tits up. It was a good thing she hadn't launched into some grand explanation of her not-quite-plan, actually, because getting shot in the head in the middle of a pompous speech was pretty far up there on ways that she did not want to be remembered. That was a politician's death.

She'd frozen up as soon as she saw Alvaro with the gun. In a way, that was good. It gave her time to assess the situation, since apparently there was a situation to assess and not just a drive-by (run-by?) shooting going on here. So. Alvaro, gun, his name on the announcements. Looked like he'd taken a beating, looked half an inch and some nudging from getting his name on the announcements again. And Jasper - sweet, well-intentioned Jasper, Raina didn't think she'd ever have pegged him as brave before this - stepping forward to try and save all of their miserable lives.

And the craziest thing? It looked like it might work.

But "might" wasn't good enough.

Big picture. Pragmatism isn't cowardice. High-risk, high-reward doesn't mean much if the only reward is not getting filled with bullets.

Slowly, very slowly, Raina slid one step back away from Alvaro, Jasper, and Audrey. None of them noticed. Good. She shot a glance over at Johnny, trying to make sure they were on the same wavelength. He knew a little something about guns, didn't he? Not that it would come much in handy if he wasn't the one holding it, she supposed. Raina had never actually seen a real big gun like this up close, and all she needed to know about it was what happened if it was pointed at you when someone pulled the trigger.

Still keeping her movements slow so as not to attract attention, Raina reached over and grasped Johnny's bony wrist. There was another exit behind them, not blocked by Alvaro like the first one they'd come through. At an angle, they might be harder to hit.

Raina looked back at Audrey and Jasper. She liked them. She didn't want them to die, not like this.

Let them go.

Without saying a word, Raina spun and ran, dragging Johnny out the door with her.

They weren't far gone when the gunfire exploded behind them.

((Raina Rose and Johnny McKay continued in Coward Mont Blanc))
"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."
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