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The Scarlet Garden; Morning Day 5; Open
Topic Started: Feb 4 2017, 01:27 PM (1,106 Views)
Emprexx Plush
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Paige/EP/Plush, they/them pronouns pls thanks :3
[ *  *  *  *  *  *  * ]
It was their chance. Somebody already got hit and everything was kicking off. All they needed was to introduce a little chaos. Not more targets by jumping out guns blazing, but by playing on the hair triggers that were already out there. If they all shot each other, she and Jazzy could waltz away unharmed and re-armed. The perfect crime at the perfect time.

There was no way this one could go wrong. She was sure of it.

Caedyn started to raise her gun. "Stay still," she whispered to Jazzy before giving her a wink and a quick peck on the forehead. "And cover your ears, babe." With that, she put her hands around the gun, braced herself against the tree, and fired two shots off into the air. In her head, the others wouldn't even think about where the shots were coming from or if anyone was hit. They'd just pop off and shoot each other in a panic. Or at least, that's what was in her head before the ear-splitting ache of close range gun fire filled it up instead.
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Brendan didn't even realize what had happened at first. He was on the ground and he felt the pain suddenly start to sink in. He let out a small whimper and he was trying hard not to lose it. Jae had just done that. Why, why, why, why?! Did Jae really have a death wish? Brendan couldn't believe it. But the arrow sticking out of him was accurate proof of Jae's malice for him. He never thought that things would have gotten worse like this.

He sat up slowly and he let out a soft groan. He touched the arrow with his fingertips and he didn't try to take it out. He was sure that it could only make things worse if he did. Maybe he would bleed out more. He didn't know. His mind was still in a bit of shock over getting shot with an arrow.

Alba was screaming his name and now she was yelling at Jae for what he had just done. Brendan noticed that she was aiming her rifle at Jae as well. He wasn't sure how he felt about that. But Alba was trying to protect him like they had promised to do not that long ago. Brendan felt a lump forming in his throat. He wanted to cry. But he held back his tears. Now was not the time for him to cry. Alba was telling him to run away and let her catch up to him.

"No, I'm not going to leave you, Alba.... Nnnn.... I--"

He suddenly heard gunshots and it made him almost jump out of his skin. Where were they coming from? They weren't coming from Alba's rifle. So.....
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Jae exhaled and the static cleared from his vision as Alba's scream cut through his mental fog. Despite everything, he felt the urge to laugh.

Don't do it again. Bad dog. Alba was just as spineless as Brendan was. Jae lurched up regardless, not knowing if he was going to go ahead and leave or if he would try to reload and fire again-

Gunfire split the air and Jae jumped, free hand instinctively clutching at his chest, but he hadn't been shot, Alba hadn't shot him, Brendan hadn't shot him and where was that prize Brendan had won anyway-?

Behind him. The shots had come from behind him, around the tree.

Jae wheeled around, heart in his throat, one hand already in his bag for another bolt to reload, the wind whipping his hair into his face as he moved. The fact that he had just turned his back to the only armed person he could actually see was lost on him in the sudden burst of adrenaline, waking him up fully for the first time that day.
"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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Alba prayed Jae would just turn around and run away like he was being chased by a rattlesnake. She still wasn't sure she could actually shoot him, but she had to protect Brendan. She had to do something to help her friend, even if it was acting tough and using superior weaponry to force someone to hightail it out of there.

Unfortunately, someone else was close by, as the sound of gunfire filled the air. Alba screamed again and jumped in place. Her eyes instinctively shut for a second and a half as her hands tightened. Her eyes quickly opened when she realized that she had pulled the trigger at the same time. Her heart stopped beating. She expected there to be a third gunshot, one much louder since it was coming from her weapon. She was still pointing the gun at Jae, so she probably would have shot him.

But there was silence. It took her a few seconds to register it, but suddenly, Alba understood why. Three days ago, when Kimiko stabbed Bradley and Alba held him as he bled out, she grabbed Bradley's gun and took off. She didn't grab anything else, expecting to come back shortly after with Kimiko in tow. She had made many assumptions that day, but there was one assumption that was finally coming back to bite her.

She had no idea how the gun worked.

She did take the extra ammo from his bag, but she didn't grab anything that told her how to use the gun. She hadn't been forced to use the rifle in the last few days, and she hadn't thought to use the gun for a few test shots against some cans or whatever inanimate objects she could find. She had pointed it at people, but she never actually had to pull the trigger. Alba had never fired a gun before, and now she realized how foolish that could be. The rifle was as useful as a pool noodle if she didn't know how to use it, and what may have been the middle of a gunfight wasn't the time to learn how.

Thus, Alba crouched low, near the injured Brendan.

"Brendan, we're leaving. Now," she said. "Can you get up?"
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Brendan couldn't move until Alba had spoken to him. She said that they were leaving and he had to agree with her on doing so. Jae could deal with whoever had been shooting. Brendan never wanted to see Jae again anyway. If he did see Jae again.... Then Brendan would not hold back and he could make him pay for what he had done to him. It would be fair as Brendan had been shot with a freaking arrow.

Brendan nodded towards Alba quietly and he picked up Jerry's weapon with his uninjured hand. He had to make sure that he could never lose it. "Y-Yeah, I....I can get up. We need to get away from here.... Let's go somewhere else, Alba." He said to her in a pained voice as he got up to his feet slowly and he turned to leave with her.

((Brendan Harte continued elsewhere))
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Alba nodded as Brendan got up. She followed after him, keeping her gaze towards Jae and the tree. She had no idea if Jae was going to shoot at her or if some other person was going to come out shooting. Either way, she needed to keep some watch.

Granted, Alba couldn't do anything except run. She didn't have time to figure out how the gun worked while she and Brendan were hauling ass. They just needed to go and give the illusion that they could fire back if needed.

Alba continued to glance back as she and Brendan ran away. They needed to find shelter so they could treat Brendan. They'd also need a place where Alba could figure out the gun. It was clear now she'd have to use it.

((Alba Reyes continued in Santa Sangre))
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Jasmine wrenched back when she realized what Caedyn was planning to do. It was too late for her to do anything; Kay pulled the trigger and Jasmine's ears popped. Jazz had enough sense to know this was definitely a terrible idea. Maybe if there was a dozen people it could work, but there was only three people! And only one of them had a gun, so far as Jasmine knew!

She reeled back, gasped for air and nudged Caedyn with her elbow. The ringing in her ears soon subsided, and Jasmine could make out the telltale sounds of movement from somewhere behind the tree. She clenched her teeth and hissed.

"Caaae-dyyn."

Jasmine could sense the movement from the other side of the tree. It was Min-Jae, trying to peek his head out from the other side. The trick did not work. If it were up to Jasmine, she would run away as fast as she could. Conversations between Min-kun and her were far from amicable, err, friendly, not awkward. She was pretty sure Min-kun hated her guts, and to be honest, Jasmine did not like his personality much either. He was pretty hot though, so of course she felt a sudden, cringing guilt in the pit of her stomach when Min-kun's eyes locked with hers and he would find out that poor, innocent Jasmine was associated with the loud ruckus.

"Throw her under the bus and tell him she's holding you hostage! Save your own ass Jazzy!"

Of course Jasmine would never, ever do that . . .

. . .
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Paige/EP/Plush, they/them pronouns pls thanks :3
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...well that didn't work out as planned. They were supposed to freak out and kill each other. Instead those other two cowards just bailed and left her to deal with this herself. Idiots. She expected absolutely nothing from them, and she was still disappointed. There wasn't any time to plan around their fuck up. Maybe she should have expected this. Fucking vermin, scattering at the first sign of real trouble. She hoped Brendan bled out.

That left her with one pissed off Jae on the other side of the tree though. Not much she could do about that. If she and Jazz had just snuck off together they could have cut their losses on this place, but now she had to deal with him herself. Fine. Whatever. Fine. She'd make it work. That's why she was a winner.

Caedyn stepped around the tree with her gun pointed right about where she hoped he was, ready to pull the trigger if he did anything dumb. "Heeeeey Jaaeeee," she cooed in the same mocking sing song she'd always greeted him in. She took one look at all that blood on his clothes and cocked an eyebrow. "So...who're you wearing?"
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Mother

fucking

Caedyn.

As if Jae needed any further proof that some higher power was fucking with him. It was like a greatest hits record of people he despised. He could see Jasmine over Caedyn's shoulder, and they were all killers, and of fucking course Caedyn had a gun. Unlike Brendan, she had clearly managed to hold onto her prize.

Caedyn's snide little quip set his teeth on edge. He could shoot her too. He didn't expect he would get away with that quite as easily as he had shooting Brendan, but he could do it. His finger curled around the trigger, and he saw Caedyn do the same.

He wasn't going to dignify her with any sort of real answer. He was stuck playing one game already - he wouldn't give Caedyn the satisfaction of letting her rope him into another.

"What the fuck do you want." It was hardly a question, hardly even spoken aloud. He wasn't surprised she and Jazz were playing together. The only surprise really was that nobody had killed either one of them yet.

But hey, that could change.
"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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"H-Hey Min-kuuuun~!" Jasmine managed a soft coo and a hard grin. A hard, anxious, fake-as-hell grin.

"Tell him it was Caedyn's idea! It's Caedyn he wants, not you!"

Jasmine gulped. Of course Min-kun did not like Caedyn very much either. She didn't even think of that. Oh wow, this was *so* bad. Jasmine jolted upright. She had to do something, fast.

"K-Kay was just scared!" Jasmine stammered. She stood up, furiously brushing away a leaf off her shoulder. The sword was in her other hand. "She heard a noise that spooked her an-and she pulled the trigger by accident!" Jasmine spun her head around, gleaming at Caedyn. "Isn't that right Kay? It was all a misunderstanding!"

Jasmine Reed had her rare moments of quick thinking.
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Paige/EP/Plush, they/them pronouns pls thanks :3
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They could hash this out right here. He had a bow and she had an actual, factual gun, so she knew who she'd bet on. Jae had it coming for a long time too, he was such an angry prick all the time. He thought he was better than everybody else because he dug his clothes out of a dumpster or something instead of just getting them at a regular store like a normal person. The fuck was wrong with Hot Topic anyway? Why gatekeep when everybody already hates you? It blew her mind. Luckily, she was about to blow his.

But then Jazzy popped out all quivering and rational and deceptive and as much as she wanted to be annoyed she was also so fucking proud. At the very least this whole thing would distract him. If she could get him to put down the crossbow...

Maybe it'd be better not to risk it anyway. He looked pretty fucked up. She didn't need her name on the announcements again if she could help it. They could walk away and let him go kill himself with his bullshit stunts. Caedyn gave a noncommittal shrug. "We just wanna get out of here." She didn't put the gun down though. That wasn't happening until she was sure Jae wasn't gonna cause them any trouble.
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"Like hell."

Excuses. Even back when everything was normal (ha, "back when", it wasn't even a week ago) Jae didn't care much about the why behind a lot of actions that weren't his. Nobody else had ever given a shit when he tried to explain why he did anything, why should he care about their reasons? He didn't care why Caedyn or Jasmine had killed. He didn't care why they were here now. All that mattered was they were here and they were a problem. Reasons didn't matter.

If it had been Jazz on her own, he might have bought it. She had always been... twitchy. Aggravating. He could have believed that she was on edge and acting out of fear here.

Caedyn, however, had never deserved the benefit of the doubt even before she had... done whatever the fuck to whoever the fuck. Jae could hardly remember right now. Her name hadn't been any of the important ones until she was pointing a gun in his face. She didn't look scared now, and she sure as hell hadn't been scared when she was trying to tease him a moment ago.

"Then get the fuck outta here. Plenty of space." He didn't lower the crossbow.

God, if he shot her when her back was turned, he'd be doing everyone a favor.
"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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Jasmine stared at Jae. She blinked. She turned her head and looked at Caedyn. Double take. Triple take. She had no idea what to do. Should they run? Would Min-Kun shoot at them when if they turned their backs on him? Would Caedyn try to take a potshot? Jasmine had no idea. She just...

"Caedyn... Maybe we..."

She stopped talking. Her attention turned to Min-Kun.

"Min-ku - Jae. You aren't going to attack us if we try to leave, right? You would never do that...

"Right?"

She smiled. Fake as fuck. Her heart was drumming against her chest. Maybe they should make a break for it.
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"It kinda looks like that's the plan," Caedyn observed dryly. It was getting really, really hard to stay calm. Jae didn't have any sort of plan or reason for what he did, as usual, he was just a rabid dog lashing out at anybody who pissed him off. She wasn't putting the gun down for a second.

"Jazzy? You should start walking." Her eyes stayed right on Jae's as she spoke. "I'm gonna be right behind you, promise. Just get away from him." Fuck. This was stupid, stupid, stupid. Jae didn't need anymore excuses to focus all that aggression right on her after all, and she was painting a big bullseye right on herself. If something did go down, having Jazzy at her side meant she could stab him and maybe get the bow away. Her odds were much better with her around. If she stayed, though, he could just as easily shoot Jazz as he did her, and he'd have a pretty good shot of hitting her at this range. That was intolerable to her.

Caedyn wasn't going to let this asshole hurt her little bird.
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And how in the hell was he supposed to answer that? "Oh yes Jasmine, of course I'd never even think about hurting either one of you, you've only each killed someone and could very easily kill me."

Jae hadn't quite decided if he was still vehemently opposed to dying, but at least he wouldn't do himself the disservice of letting either Caedyn or Jasmine to be the one who killed him.

...They had almost been friends, he and Caedyn. Once, years ago, when he was just getting into the goth scene and still trying to find his style, they had bumped into each other and hell, they'd hit it off. It all ended exactly as well as anyone would expect, once it became clear that Caedyn was just a self-centered poser and Jae had far better people to spend his time on, but for a while... fuck, he'd once wondered if he had a crush on her.

(Hey, there was an upside to the earth-shattering-revelation-about-yourself-just-before-you-die thing: he could now definitively say that had never been the case.)

It wasn't that long-burned bridge that made Jae's lips twitch up into a mocking facsimile of a smile, though. It was Caedyn playing white knight for Jazz, telling her to go on, get the hell out of here before the big bad Min-jae went wild. As though she had ever cared in the least about anyone other than herself.

...And that, that could give him an answer.

The words on the tip of his tongue were despicable, and if he had still had his wallet on him, Jae just might have bet money that they were in tune with how Caedyn and Jazz were playing the game.

For a split second, he wondered if his parents would still be watching at this point.

"I've got my one." They would know what he meant. And hopefully Caedyn, at least, would be willing to believe that Jae was every bit the lowlife that she was and she would get the hell out of dodge before things went further south. "So fuck off. I don't care about either of you."
"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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