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If That's Who I Am, Then I'll Fight Who I Am; Night, Day 5 (private)
Topic Started: Feb 15 2017, 06:35 PM (1,228 Views)
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(Audrey Reyes continued from Hang in There.)

Audrey forgot what day it was. Not the day of the week, the 'day'. Day 7? Day 10? It is hard to keep your inner clock set when you sleep for twenty hours straight.

Audrey knew it was a terrible idea to let herself sleep for so long on the familiar floor of the therapy room. She could not help it though. You see, Audrey Reyes had the miraculous superpower of being able to lay down and sleep anywhere, anytime. On the couch, in the waiting room of the doctor's office, even on the cold, dirty linoleum floor. She got it from her mother's side. It was unusual for her to sleep for such a long stretch of time though.

She was still fuming about Al, even as she was waking up. Alessio, who just up and ditched her after she nearly saved his life. Audrey defended her out of the goodness of her heart and -

And it was all a waste of breath. And for what? So Alessio can go and kill a bunch of other people?

She did not want to think of Al like that, because Al is - was - her friend. But it's not like her saving him meant anything to him. If it did, he might have not been so eager to scamper away as he did.

It was nighttime when Audrey fell asleep. It was nighttime when Audrey finally woke up, and without any way to tell the time, she wasn't even sure how long she slept for. The loudspeakers managed to wrench her from REM, but just barely. So she *knew* she was asleep for a long, long time. She also knew that she did not listen to the announcements, so she wasn't even sure if Al ended up killing anyone else. Quite frankly she did not want to know. Ignorance is bliss.

You want to know the worst part about sleeping for twenty hours straight?

No dreams. No fading little memories of traveling to space, no visions of sugar plums dancing in her head. No nightmares of terrorists killing Audrey's teachers. Just, nothing. Like a movie dissolving from one shot to the next, implying the passage of time rather than showing it.

That's the worst. She hated it. She hated this Orwellian death game. But she didn't exactly have much choice in the matter.

Audrey found it difficult to sit up but she managed it. She grunted, feeling the muscles in her neck strain as she craned her neck. She rubbed away the sleep in her eyes with the sleeve of her hoodie and wondered whether she should just kill herself or not.

The thought seemed extreme, sudden, but to Audrey it was a good question.

What was she even doing here?

Why was she even wasting her time? It wasn't like she was ever going to survive.

Should she just wait for someone to kill her? Or would it be better to cut out the middleman?

... Head in her hands, Audrey cursed. She shut her eyes tight. This was ridiculous. Audrey was being silly. She had to get a lid on herself, "compartmentalize." There had to be something she was missing, some way she could get back home without doing the unthinkable. "Compartmentalize." She was going to be a director for christsake, she couldn't just give up on that! "Compartmentalize."

Audrey slapped the side of her head. She breathed in deep and exhaled through her nose.

She would not let this game beat her. But that meant she had to play it.

Audrey was tired of a lot of things, but she was especially tired of this Futilitarian bullshit.
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This place was familiar.

((Alvaro Vacanti, continued from When Can I Stop Being Bad?))

Even though it was dark, even though it was hard for his eyes to see, he still recognised this place. The hallways. The open rooms besides them. He had been here before. He had walked down this hallway before. The feeling of deja vu that emerged as he began to creep was growing and growing with every passing step. The gun had been laid to side in his hands earlier, but it was now raised. He had been here before. He knew it. He didnít know when exactly and he didnít know exactly where in the asylum it was but he knew it. He knew it. The feeling of the night was cold and all the thoughts from before still yet lingered in his mind but the one thing there, the one thought that prevailed, was the feeling of familiarity. He had been here before. He was sure of it.

The corpse in the middle of the hallway confirmed his suspicions.

He had stood there, for a while, looking at Jasper. At his corpse. At what he had done. Two days ago - no, more than that, he had forgotten - he hadnít been like this. He was alive. Smiling. Talking to his friend.

And now he was like this.

A corpse.

And it was all Alvaroís fault.


He knew what had to happen now.

He knew he had to do this.

But could he?

He didnít know.

So he stepped forward. Past the corpse. There was a trail of blood, going past it. He took his steps, turned.


It was her.

She was there.

She was standing there.


The gun dropped from his hands. Clattered to the floor.


He knew what he had to do now.

ďI need you to do something for me.Ē
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Audrey turned her head. Towards the voice

There was barely any reaction from her. The turn of her head and their matched eye-contact was the only indication that she even heard Alvaro.

One of her legs wobbled. She was halfway through standing up when Alvaro entered the picture. It only took a second to straighten herself, a brief moment of weakness.

She did not respond to Alvaro at first. Her throat felt dry and she coughed into a clenched fist.

Audrey wanted to be mad. She wanted to scream at Alvaro, chuck something at his head. That's what she said she would do if she ever saw Alvaro Vacanti again.

She wasn't mad though. She didn't have it in her. Alvaro picked the best moment to wander back into Audrey's life; when she was at her weakest. She was just too tired to stay mad at him, too tired to react accordingly. In hindsight, that scared the shit out of her. What if he pulled a gun out on her and shot her dead? Somehow she doubted that would ever happen. Jasper only died because Alvaro was jumpy. She knew that, and she had a feeling Alvaro knew that as well. It was an accident. That didn't clean Alvaro's hands, but it was an accident. And if he had killed anyone else after Jasper... Well. Audrey slept through the announcements. Ignorance is bliss. She guessed.

Audrey wiped the growing tears in his eyes away. Wait, was she sneering?

"Yeah, Alvaro. Hi."

Okay. Maybe she was still a bit pissed. Still bitter. Audrey wasn't perfect for christsake.

Alvaro needed Audrey to do something for him. She grunted,

"I - " Audrey sniffled. The muscles in her lips ached. "I don't think you're in any position to be asking for favors, Alvaro."
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He stepped forward. His face dropped. His eyes went up. Into Audrey's. Into her's.

"Please, I..."

He looked down. Away. Up again.

"...I can't do this anymore. I need you to..."

He stopped. Paused. Looked away, again.

"I need you to help me with something. I need you to-"

He breathed. In, out.

"I need you to do it for me."
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Audrey squinted, sighed through clenched teeth. Okay, compartmentalize. Alvaro clearly needs her for something. She should stop being so passive aggressive and listen to him.

Her heart fluttered for a brief moment as their eyes locked. Alvaro said that he can't do this anymore. He needed her help to do something. Alvaro could not look Audrey in the eyes when he said that.

Alvaro was acting strange. Talking strange, looking strange, breathing strange.

That, in itself, wasn't all that strange. Come on. He did kill a bunch of people in the past couple of days. Audrey could not blame him for changing; the island changed her too, as much as she did not want to admit it.

What was 'strange' was what Alvaro was asking her to do.

He wanted her to do 'it'. 'It' being...?

She squinted even harder at that.

"Okay, hold on."

Audrey took a step forward, arms crossed under her chest.

"You need to slow down Alvaro. I have no idea what you're asking."

Another step forward. They were only three feet away from one another. Audrey looked Alvaro straight in the eye.

"What exactly do you want me to do?"

Audrey thought she was giving him the benefit of the doubt.
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ďKill me.Ē

A pause.

ďI need you to kill me.Ē
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Audrey slapped Alvaro so hard it left a mark.

It did not fully sink in that she struck Alvaro. Slapped him open-palmed across the cheek. Not until her brain registered the stinging in her hand.

Audrey thought she didn't have it in her to be mad.

She thought wrong. She thought SO wrong.

It was like pulling teeth trying to keep her composure, to compartmentalize. Because Audrey was already at breaking point. She was already thinking about killing herself. Now there was a line that she could not cross, a line overlooking a cliff and Alvaro was pushing her over. He was pushing her and he didn't even care! He didn't give a fuck did he? God she was going to lose her shit. She was going to lose her shit at a known killer that would get her killed, or humiliate her family, or both. That scared her.

He scared her.

He was a killer. And he was asking Audrey to kill him.

"You're shitting with me, there's no way -"

She took a step back. Audrey laughed, the nerves were eating her alive.

" - Y-You can't be serious. This has to be a joke, right? I can't..."

Another step back. She was shaking her head vigorously, so hard that it honestly hurt her head.
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He did it.

He said it.

Everything had stopped around the two of them. The world had become silent. The room had faded away, and now Audrey was the only other thing that remained. Her eyes. Her expression. He didnít know what she was thinking. He could only look. He could only think. He could only hope that even after what he had done, even after killing all these people, that she still cared enough for him to do it. To help him.

There was a flash of movement.

There was a feeling of sharp pain, on his cheek, stinging and bulging and making the bruises underneath grow.

And immediately, Alvaro knew what Audreyís answer was. She was talking, moving around the question. She was trying to make it seem like she didnít know, but he knew. Her answer was no. She wasnít going to kill him. She was going to leave him alone for him to continue being on this island and he knew that other people would find him and he knew that theyíd hate him for what he did the people he had killed and they were going to shout at him for it they were going to try and take revenge they were going to fight and he was going to kill them he would have to and then itíd happen all over again and again and heíd be fighting and killing and fighting again.


He wouldnít let that happen.

He had to die. Audrey had to kill him. Right here. Right now.

But she wasnít.

She wasnít letting him go. She wasnít letting him leave.

So he had to make her. Attack him. Kill him. End his life.

He had to do it.

He had to make her.

He had to do something.

It was the only thing he knew, at this point.

The foot went up.
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And it landed right at the center of Audrey's stomach.

Audrey flew down, crumpled to the floor. Her arms hugged her torso. The pain was sudden, jutting through her belly and up through her chest. For a second Audrey swore she couldn't breathe. She started panting frantically. Tears welled up in her eyes. She was trying her hardest to breath but it was like she could not inhale.

She didn't know what in the blue hell Alvaro did. It was so sudden. One moment she was on her feet, the next she was crawling back like a pathetic bug. She did not see the kick. All she knew was that Alvaro hurt her.

It was the slap, she thought. He was mad that she slapped him so he hit her back.

Audrey crawled backwards on one elbow. Her feet scrambled, her sneakers squeaking across the floor. There was a bang somewhere in the distance, but Audrey had neither the ability nor the inclination to wonder where the source of the noise came from. Her brain was off-kilter, she barely had any inkling of where she was until she bumped her shoulder against one of the chairs.

That's when she knew that she was about as far away from the door as one could get. And the only thing standing between her and the door is Alvaro.

Alvaro did not cut a very menacing presence, but Audrey was scared shitless.

"Oh please," Audrey said in shuddering, straining gasps. "Please don't kill me."
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The kick connected. Audrey fell. Crawled back.

He hadnít hit her that hard, didnít he? He didnít know. Did he intend to kick her? Yes. Did he intend to attack her? Yes. Did he intend to kill her?

No. No. No. He didnít. He didnít. Maybe it was supposed to hurt her. Maybe doing that was unavoidable. He knew that. He had meant to kick her. He had meant to attack her. But she was on the ground. She was in pain because of what he did. Did he mean that? Did he intend to do that? He didnít know. He knew what he did. He knew why he was doing it. He knew that this had to happen and that he had to do it but did it have to happen like this? Did he have to hurt Audrey in order to do it? He didnít know. He didnít know and he didnít want to hurt Audrey but he had to because this had to happen he had to die she had to kill him but why did it have to be this way? Why did he have to hurt more people? Why did Audrey have to be on the floor, clutching herself in pain?

He didnít know.

But he knew that this had to happen.

He stepped forward.

Raised his foot.

And then she spoke. Asked him not to kill her. Laid below his foot, hands clutched over her stomach. Begging for mercy. Looking into his eyes, hoping that he wouldnít make her like the others.

And it was Audrey.

And she had been there, after the fight with Min-jae. She helped him. She believed him. She was willing to let him be with her.

And she had said no, when he told her to do it. She didnít want to. She didnít want his life gone.

And she had made him happy.

And she had made him feel wanted.

And she had been unlike everyone else who he had seen on this island. She didnít hate him. She wanted to help him. She wanted to protect him.

He didnít know what to do.

He didnít know what to say.


But he knew she had to do it.

He knew that he couldnít be here any longer.

ďIím sorry, but this has to-Ē

The first bullet hit his back, piercing through as his body stumbled forward.

The second bullet hit his lung, and the breath was torn out of his body.

The third bullet missed, and he heard the noise it made as ever so familiar.

The fourth bullet hit his stomach.

The body dropped.
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Audrey squealed. Her arms flew from her stomach to her ears, eyes squeezed so tight that all Audrey could see were stars.

The sound ended as quickly as it started, but the reverberations lingered. Audrey could feel the gunfire in her core, in her bones and skin. It was the familiarity of that sound. It was the same sound she heard when Alvaro killed Jasper.

She... She felt sick. She wanted to throw up. She probably would have if there was anything substantial in her stomach.

There was a loud THUNK. Audrey squirmed because it was only a few feet away from her.

She was still panting. Her fingers were trembling. She opened her eyes.

Alvaro was laying in a growing pool of his own blood.

Audrey's brain was overheating. The adrenaline in her system said that she should be dead. Her eyes remained glued to Alvaro.

She crawled over to the boy, checked his pulse because it was the only thing she could think to do. She felt a pulse. Alvaro was still alive.

Inside her body, Audrey felt nothing at all. No fear, no anger, no relief. Audrey Reyes was uncomfortably numb. She exhaled a deep, shuddering breath.

Audrey noticed that there was a third person in the therapy room, but she was in no mind to connect the dots. She lifted her head.

And found herself staring directly into the barrel of the gun.

Audrey realized she was still crying. It was Jasper all over again; things were happening so fast that she could not process everything.

She opened her mouth to say something but she closed it. She did not move, she just stared up at Scout and shook her head.

(Scout Pfeiffer continued from Mystic River)

Scout felt a lot of things. Anger, disgust, hatred. Spend so many days sitting on your ass and talking about how you're going to clean house can turn you into a loathful son of a bitch. Most importantly though, Scout felt vindicated. Impassioned. And the crying girl whose name Scout was blanking on did not discourage her. In fact, she only served to piss her off even more.

Scout closed the gap between her and the rat on the floor. She nudged his shoulder with the end of her shoe with the intent of rolling him over. Whether or not he did so depended on the rat that called himself Alvaro Vacanti.

It was just Scout, the girl and the rat. Asuka was close by, Scout imagined. The gunfire was sure to light a fire under her ass. It really didn't matter who got there when, just that they got there at the right moment. If Scout arrived a moment too soon, things could have become very messy indeed. Not that Scout came in here to play superhero. She held the gun in her hand, a compact little number that tore the rat a new anal cavity. She liked it. It felt good. She could see why people got so fucking crazy about owning them.

She took no pleasure in what she was about to do. Quite the opposite; she found herself hemming and hawing now that she was face to face with the rat. Her eyes moved, glaring at the girl who was sitting at the boy's side. Scout did not understand why she wasn't running for the door. The rat was trying to kill her, right? Actually, Scout did not want to know the reasons. Because she didn't care.

Scout cleared her throat.

"Remember me, asshole?"

"If you lie to me, I'll kill you." She thought to herself.
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It was cold. The blood - his blood - all over his body was warm. It seared. It burned. It hurt. Oh god it hurt. There was a space in his chest and it ached and it screamed and it dominated his mind and he could barely think about anything else other than it. He was hurt. He was in pain. Everything seared and everything hurt and everything on his body felt so hot and he thought itíd be different from this and he thought itíd be peaceful but it wasnít and it hurt and it seared and it felt so warm against his skin and he couldnít think he couldnít feel anything else because it hurt it hurt it hurt and it burned and he couldnít deal with it.

But above all, it felt cold.


A feeling, at the edge of his fingertips. On his arm. They werenít there anymore. There wasnít any pain. There wasnít anything searing or screaming there. There was nothing. No feeling. He didnít have any fingertips anymore. They were gone.

And it was spreading. The feeling was going through his body. Rising up through his arms taking away what was there until there wasnít anything left for it to take.

Was this how Jasper felt, as he had bled out here?

Was this how Irene felt, after the bullet had hit her stomach?

He didnít know.

He hadnít felt the kick, as it impacted against his shoulder. He hadnít felt anything as his body was turned over. The feeling was dull. Drowned out by everything else.

But the face standing above him brought him back, for a brief second.


She was holding the gun.

She had shot him.

And he didnít know what was going to happen next.

Breathe in, breathe-




But he couldnít he couldnít breathe and he was looking up and she was staring at him and she had a smile on her face and he couldnít breathe but he needed to breathe- needed to- needed to-


He tried moving his hands. He tried bringing them to his throat.

He couldnít.


His hands shook, twitched as she looked him in the eyes.

And that was all they could do.
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Scout Pfeiffer hovered over the rat, the gun pointed down, her wrists keeping a tight grip on the handle. She heard the rat loud and clear, and she debated what it was asking for. Whatever. She scoffed at the mere notion, her finger hovering over the gun trigger. Scout could feel herself hesitating and she wanted to quell whatever was holding her back. Her finger tightened around the trigger. Ready to pull it. Ready to finish what she started.

"No, stop!"

She sneered at the girl on the floor.

"Stop?" Scout asked. "Stop what?"

The girl said."Don't shoot him! Please!."

Scout was beside herself with confusion and rage. She almost pulled the gun on the girl, almost. She stopped herself. Not that way, she told herself. Instead she ran a hand through her hair and clicked her tongue. "... But he just tried to kill you."

"No, he..." The girl balled her hands into fists. "He was..."

Scout just stared shocked as the girl reached down to clutch the dying rat's arm. When Scout rolled the rodent over, all of the blood began to pool out. The girl did not even realize she was kneeling in a pool of blood. It was going to stain her skirt. The girl was sobbing. She was sobbing for the rat. The girl must have been in shock, Scout determined. She did not want to consider the alternative; that she actually cared about a dying rat.

The girl tried to put on a smile, despite being a sobbing mess. "It's okay Alvaro. Everything's okay."

Scout squinted. She looked behind her shoulder, searching for Asuka. She did not want to look at the rat and its girlfriend. It was going to die, whether it liked it or not. There was no helping it now.
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It was warm. The blood - his blood - burned against his skin. It seared. It hurt. The pain had yet to stop raging through his body and it hurt it hurt and he couldnít even describe it he couldnít even think of anything to compare what he felt with this it hurt it hurt and he could barely think about anything else he could barely feel anything over the pain of the gun. But it was dulling. Fading. Going away. It was still there and oh god it hurt it hurt but it was leaving him. It was going away. Was this what they felt like? Was this how they died? He didnít know. His body was warm and hot and in pain and he was scared and he could barely think and he didnít think itíd be like this he thought itíd be better he thought itíd be a good think but it wasnít and he was hot and in pain and he could barely think and he didnít want it to be like this he didnít want to go this way.

But he wasnít cold, anymore. His body no longer felt the numbness spreading.

Because there was something - someone - touching him.

It felt warm.

Gentle. Nice.

And he could ignore the pain, for a moment.

He could ignore the feeling of the blood on his body.

Because there was someone. Above him. Looking at him. With a look on her face. An expression in her eyes. What was it? He didnít know. He wasnít sure what the name was. But there was something there. On her face. In her eyes. They were longing. She was smiling. Weakly. Her face was strained. Wet. He didnít know what the word for that was, but he knew something. She cared. He was dying in front of her, and she didnít want him to. She wasnít like anyone else. Not like Min-jae. Isaac. Jonathan. Lily. Scout. Matt. Michael. Maria. Irene. Serena. Melanie. Aidan. Not like any of them. She liked him. He knew that now.

And she cared about him. She was comforting him.

He had to say something. She was likeÖ a customer. She was being nice to him.

He had to pay that back somehow.

ďThankÖ you.Ē

Maybe she was lying to him.

Maybe her feelings werenít genuine.

But he wasnít going to question it. He didnít have to. She was there, in front of him. Holding his arm. Smiling.

He didnít have to be scared anymore.

The pain had gone, by this point. It had been growing duller and duller as time went on, until he could barely feel it anymore. His sight had also vanished. Colours, then shapes, then everything else as he had closed his eyes. His blood had cooled. Stopped burning against his skin. He wasnít really sure what caused that, whether it was the numbness or time passing or whatever else could have caused this.

But it didnít matter. Even after the pain had gone, even after he had closed his eyes, even after the feeling of the heat had gone from his body, he could still feel her hand, against his arm.

Maybe this wasnít how they died. Maybe heíd been better off than them.

Maybe if he got the chance to see them again, heíd apologise. Say sorry. For everything he did.

Maybe theyíd accept it. Maybe they - him, Barry, Jasper, Irene - could be friends again.

Heíd just have to find out, at this point.

Breathe in, breathe out.


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Was Audrey lying? No, she was not.

Was Audrey genuine? That was debatable.

Shock, and any resulting the temporary lapse of judgement, had nothing to do with it. Alvaro was dying, dead, he was dead. She recognized that, knew it when she checked the boy's pulse. But had it been her bleeding out on the floor, she would have wanted someone by her side too. Alvaro used to be a friend. She wanted to remember him as such.

The girl was staring at her. She could feel her eyes staring into her. Audrey did not pay Scout Pfeiffer any mind. She swiped the remnants of tears from her eyes, groaning as she realized that she was sitting in a pool of Alvaro's blood. There was no queasiness, no revulsion, and that struck her as strange. Disturbing, even.

Scout spoke up in that gruff voice of hers."You should have moved. I could have shot you."

Audrey finally met Scout's gaze. She didn't laugh, but there was a sick little smirk on her lips.

"Yeah, and? How the heck does that matter to you, Scout?"

The ginger girl straightened her shoulders. A note of surprised crossed brows but it passed. Was Scout expecting a thank you? Did she think she was some hero? Because she was far from that, Audrey could assure her. Scout didn't meet Audrey's gaze, like she was refusing to look at her. Audrey wanted to interpret that lack of eye-contact as guilt but she knew better. Scout was kind of a bitch. Well, she was a bitch in school, anyway. Audrey did not like having to deal with her.

"I thought I recognized you," Scout's voice wavered."You're in Dukoff's class, right?"

Audrey gave a stiff nod of her head. 'Yeah, Scout. You sit next to me in history class. You can't be this dumb.' Audrey held her tongue. Getting up to her feet, Audrey fumbled for her dufflebag, hoping to at least dab her skirt with something. There was a feeling in Audrey's chest that told her that Scout was going to try to start a conversation. The pregnant, awkward pause Scout gave was evidence enough. Audrey could remember that pause; when she was a socially awkward kid who could barely carry a conversation. It made her cringe. Made her even more pissed.

Scout went to speak and Audrey interrupted her.

"DON'T," Audrey raised her voice, "talk to me. Leave me alone."

"... Why?"

"Why? You just killed someone right in front of me! You killed one of my friends!"

"... But he was trying to kill you?"

Audrey went to respond and - stopped. She just. Scout didn't get it. Audrey was furious, she was sad and she did not want to explain it, she just wanted to wallow in her misery, alone. It was ironic, then, that she spent the past day not seeing a single soul but the ONE time she wanted to be alone...

It was her turn to avoid looking Scout in the eye, though that had more to do with the corpse on the floor directly in front of the ginger than the ginger herself. Audrey mumbled an apology. She appreciated what Scout did, and she was glad she got there when she did.

That did not mean Audrey had to kowtow. Worship the ground Scout stood on.

That did not mean Audrey had to be happy about it. Glad to watch another person die right in front of her. Relieved that Audrey herself wasn't caught in the crosshairs.

Scout stopped talking. Good. Audrey didn't feel like talking to anyone, least of all to Alvaro's killer.
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