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Jenny From the Block
Topic Started: Feb 17 2017, 03:13 AM (787 Views)
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((Hazel Jung continued from If You Had My Love ))

Hazel lay on the floor of the radio tower with her feet up against a wall. She picked at one of her food bars.

"You know, I think maybe people are often too hard on Inspector Javert. I mean, sure, he's a total jerk and I guess there needs to be a solid human antagonist for parts of the story but I think people sometimes don't consider the circumstances that make people think in such binary terms."

She looked upside down at Jordan.

"What do you think?"
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((Jordan Green continued from If You Had My Love))

"I can kinda see that. He was trying to do what he believed in. I mean that's why it's a tragedy after all, when two things that are right meet in contradiction."

Jordan was sitting on one of the tables, back leaning against some of the equipment. Some of it was familiar in a way, like some of the devices they used backstage, but like Vanessa (had it been Vanessa?) had told them none of it was working.

"But even if the circumstances lead to it, I think people have the chance and the choice to change, and Valjean had given him both. But at the end he really couldn't handle it, could he? That the world was more complex than he ever thought it was."

He let his legs swing under the table.

Jeremy wasn't here yet.

That was unnerving in it's own way. He'd said he'd be here but every moment that past made that seem all the more unlikely.

"I don't know, it's hard for me to really sympathise I guess."

He paused, thinking a little harder about what he was saying.

"Besides, he's a spoilsport." Jordan declared, standing up to punctuate his statement, as if that was all that really needed to be said.
Edited by Randomness, Feb 28 2017, 05:34 AM.
"I have the heart of a young boy. I keep it in a jar on my desk" -- Stephen King

Those no longer with us

It's the Grand Map of Doom! v6
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Hazel bit her thumbnail and gave an upside down smile at Jordon. Her eyes drifted down to the others sharing her space on the floor.

She rolled over until she was on her stomach and did half of a push-up to lift herself off the ground.

"We should probably clean up," she said, tilting her head to the dead girls shot in the face on the floor. "You know, if we're going to be here awhile."

Hazel grabbed one girl by the feet and started dragging her out of the control room. It was a little harder than she thought and she dug her heels in, pulling the corpse out of their space.

"Yeah, the tragedy is good people being against each other. I guess I understand a little better the idea of being so set against something that it's hard to look past whatever the crime is to consider context or if the person changed," she said as she dragged the body past the door.

"You're right, he's a total spoilsport because well, the plot wouldn't happen if he wasn't. Do you think people really ever change or do they just make different choices that more or less align with like, a core sense of self? I don't think Valjean was ever really a bad guy."

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"Cleaning up isn't the term I'd use."

Jordan pushed the other body gingerly, trying his best not to be disrespectful, yet still trying to actually get the work done. The way they were being dragged looked like it hurt and he couldn't help but feel sorry for them.

Jennifer, the photographer, she liked movies too, and he was quite sure he remembered talking to her about the Oscars a few months back. Leslie, she wrote too, but her personality was a little abrasive for him to really care to hang about her. But they were dead, and any concerns of the 'how much do I actually know you' and the 'oh my god, I know you but I've forgotten your name' kind, were replaced by the question of what the socially appropriate way of laying a classmate's corpse to rest was.

Definitely not this.

"I don't think it was really ever in doubt. He's a thief who tried to break out of prison, but there are people in school who'd done way worse, but I don't think of anyone as really bad."

Bad taste, he realised. He'd been thinking of people who went above and beyond to belittle to hurt and embarrass, the arseholes who didn't think twice about anyone but themselves, and not the very real things that were happening right now. Then again, he had been trying very hard not to think about it, and it seemed to work.

Maybe if he kept talking Hazel wouldn't realise the blunder.

"Y-yeah, but I think people can change. Like, your experiences build upon each other, right?" He placed one hand over another to illustrate his point.

"Kinda like a tower. But you don't have to build straight up, you can kinda build diagonally sideways? So as you get older, your experiences and choices can move you further away from the person you were before, but you're still not that different from you were yesterday, or the day before, and maybe it's only when you look down at the foundation that you realise that it's someone completely different down there looking up at you."

He stopped there, not quite pleased with the metaphor. It's supposed to be harder to change when you have more experiences, but buildings were able to bend more at the top because they were supporting less weight there. Something about feedback, but the thoughts came as a tangle, and he gave up on going any further with it.

"Okay, there was supposed to be more but my analogy has completely gotten away from me."
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Hazel stood for a moment looking at the two bodies they'd pulled out of the hallway. She didn't know why it took until now to strike her how creepy they were and she thought that she must have been crazy just a second ago to casually drag one of them out. Some kind of delayed reaction or maybe a coping mechanism. Either way, it was better that they weren't in the room they were waiting in anymore, so it was probably a good kind of temporary insanity.

Jordan was looking a little green after having to shuffle around their former classmates. Involuntarily, she smiled. Hazel suddenly thought about asking him if he believed in ghosts, but thankfully he kept talking about the nature of how people change.

Something about it hit her very deeply. "No, it makes perfect sense," she said quickly after he tried to retract it.

"If you change something a little bit every time then soon there's the original foundation at the bottom but it's way different from the thing that started."

Hazel looked down and privately wondered what effect every rotten brick the island was piling up on each of their personal towers was having.

"It's too bad we weren't better friends before," she said quietly, not looking up. "If there's anything good that came out of this complete garbage fire, it's that I got to get to know you better."

Hazel put a hand on his shoulder and tried to give her best cheerful smile, hoping it covered up how scared and worried she was.
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“So hey, uh… terrorist dudes?”

((Jeremy Frasier, continued from Idiot Launch))

He’d been walking slower than he normally did. He wasn’t really sure why that was the case. It wasn’t because of the situation, no. He had already had that change a couple days ago, after he had talked to Scout in the Church. It wasn’t because of his injuries, either. Those were bad, yeah (ugggghhhhh he hoped these were like, easily healable bruises or something, he really didn’t like the thought of spending the rest of his days having to feel these), but the bruises were on his chest and face. They wouldn’t have affected the way he walked. It wasn’t due to like, the place or the people, either. He was alone right now, and the island was slowly losing its “new place!” luster with every sight of it he resaw.

So he wasn’t really sure why he was going slower. All he really knew was that it was a bad thing. It left him to his thoughts. It made him have to think about what had happened previously.

And that wasn’t good.

So, the only thing he could do was distract himself. Do something, so that he didn’t have to think about anything else.

In theory, anyway.

“So, um, I think I heard at some point on the announcements that you guys don’t make deals with us, so I don’t think I’m going to get anything accomplished from this other than getting some false hope come tomorrow, but I’m sorta alone now and don’t really have a lot to do so fuck it, may as well try.”

He had stopped walking to say this. He could see the radio tower in the distance. He supposed that maybe if he kept walking for a bit he could get there in like, five minutes or so. That was probably what he should be doing right now.

But eh, he needed a break. A breather. Whatever it was called, this was it.

“So, uh, like…”

Fuck, how did he actually say this? ‘Dear terrorists overlords, please fulfill my extremely stupid request that I’m stating right here.’

“There’s this, uh… show. On TV. That I like watching. Survivor. Blame Serena for getting me into it, wherever she is or whatever she’s doing. Anyway, like, it’s… a show. That I like. Haven’t missed an episode since I’ve- uh, I started watching it.”

The camera was up above him, on top of a tree. He had looked at it, for a bit, before disengaging eye contact. He imagined that wherever they were airing it they weren’t going to switch to another camera. He couldn’t see many good angles around him.

“Although, like, then this sorta happened. Made me miss the last episode. So, like-”

He stopped. Paused.


“I dunno. I thought before I opened my mouth here I’d sound cooler or funnier or more convincing or less fucking pathetic or something but apparently that’s not the case. If you actually, like, tell me what happened or told me who got voted off that’d be great but honestly I don’t even have anything to give you guys. Just, like, feel free to bury me all you like. Tell everyone else here that I’m the literal embodiment of first world problems. You don’t even have to like, do anything in exchange for that. Just burn my image of goodwill in front of everyone, I guess.”

He turned away from the camera.

“They probably already think I’m a monster for what I did.”

Look at that idiot over there, just trying to distract himself from realising what he was the one who’d killed Junko and that trying to claim otherwise was just delaying the inevitable.

Look at that fucking asshole over there, thinking he was so grand and so almighty that he could get the rulers of this place to bow down to his will.

Look at that kid over there, depressed and scared out of his mind.

He just hoped that whoever was watching this was getting their kicks. Their laughs.

He supposed he deserved it, in a way.

He walked away, the view of the camera switching as he went out of sight.

The door opened. The person behind the two took their steps to the centre of the room.

The chisel and the CD player went down onto the table.

“Early bird gets first pick. I’m taking the baseball bat.”
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The thought was amplified by Hazel's next statement.

He didn't know what to feel.

Scratch that. He knew exactly what he was supposed to feel which made it all the more weird that he wasn't feeling it. The compliments were nice, yet at the same time they were almost suffocating, squeezing the air out of him slowly, as if smothering someone with words was something that could actual happen in reality.

"I mean- Yeah, um, me too. It's been..." Cool. That was the word on the tip of his tongue but did nothing to capture any part of what he felt. Neither did good. Nor nice. Nor lovely, nor great, or any other words that his mental thesaurus was bringing up at the moment.

"Fun." It sounded wrong like this. Seperate in its own sentence, as if it was some sarcastic comment when he was trying to be absolutetly sincere. And past tense. As if it was the end of it. As if something was changing now, that everything good was about to dissappear as abruptly as they had found it.

But it had been fun.

It had hurt too, he was tired and miserable and had had more near death experiences than he'd ever want to have. It had been an absolutely pain to be here these past few days.

And yet it had been fun.

The most fun that he'd had all senior year.

More than arguing with classmates in the hallways over movies, more than working with the rest of the theater club on a production, more than anything that he could remember in the longest time.

"So, thanks."

But the thought made him worried.

Should he really be feeling like this, right now?

Feeling like he had found the friendship of a lifetime when he was basically on the verge of dying. Wasn't that ironic?

There was something else. But he didn't know what. Somewhere in his head was a thought half-formed, that he wanted to say, that he needed to say. But the door flung open and the thought escaped him, flittering away in a way that let him knew he was never would have caught it even if he hadn't been interrupted.

It was far later than expected, but Jeremy was here at last. But surprise faded into relief and then back into surprise, the scrapes and bruises a telltale sign that something had happened in the time they'd been apart.

"What- Are you okay?" A chisel and a disc player? What had he been doing?

"And baseball bat?" he added, the level of incredulity in his tone slightly strained.
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Hazel tilted her head a fraction of an inch to her left and the corners of her eyes picked up slightly at the response. Jordan stuttered trying to find the appropriate words. A genuineness radiated from him and his answer that picked her up. Her smile spread and became sincere instead of a shoddy attempt to convince herself things were alright.

Her heart lifted along with her eyebrows as he finished. There was a friendly warmth in the room that reminded of her of the comfort she felt hanging out with her friends at home, totally at ease, making cracks about school. Hazel slowly closed her eyes, which stayed closed for two seconds before flying open at the sudden sound of the door and Jeremy.

Hazel whipped towards the door ready at first to have to defend herself from whoever had come, but her stance relaxed a bit when she saw who it was. Her hand flew up to her mouth, covering a half-gasp.

"What happened to you?" she said, stepping forward to try and see his injuries more clearly. "It looks like you got jumped."

He placed two objects on the table, keeping the bat for himself. Hazel briefly looked at them before rushing forward to try and look at the injuries on his face.

"Who did this? What happened?" she asked, prodding a bruise on his face with a feather-light touch. "Are you okay?"
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“No. Not really.”

The two had thrown questions at him. Quite a lot of them, in fact. They weren’t ones that he was hoping to have to answer the moment he walked in the room but honestly he didn’t know what he was expecting. ‘Hey, the dude who travelled with us finally came back, let’s give him cursory greetings and then resume what we were doing previously.’ ‘Hey, the dude who we haven’t seen in a day came back covered in bruises, let’s not question at all why he got those.’ ‘Hey Jeremy, you abandoned us. Fuck you, you fucking shitbird.’ He supposed something like that, if anything. Honestly he was just sorta surprised they were here. He sorta just abandoned them. The best case scenario that he imagined was that he’d come here, find the place empty, and just chill for the night.

But they were here. He supposed that was good.

Now he was going to have to figure out how to explain what happened to them, though.

He supposed he could lie. He might be able to tell a good one. He ran into Isabel or Nancy or anyone else who was a confirmed shitty person and they beat him up real good.

But he knew that it wouldn’t last long. The terrorists would eventually say it sooner or later. Talk all on about how he totally turned a gun on his friend. He sorta had to tell the truth. Give the better impression first.

Besides, they cared about him. They came here. They asked if he was okay first and foremost.

He could at least tell the truth. Give them a little bit of that courtesy back.

He sighed.

“Long story short is that I met Junko, we talked, and then she started beating me against the ground with her baseball bat.”

He lifted the gun out of his pocket. Held two fingers on the hold.

Looked away.

“There wasn’t a lot else I could have done.”
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He'd gotten in a fight. That made sense. There were people killing out there. There were people dead right at the door, so he couldn't just pretend that it was a figment of his imagination. But even Jeremy should know that his story was adding more questions than answers, right?

Junko of all people. She may have been impulsive but, the way Jeremy put it was just dismissive.

And why did everyone he meet seem to go on a journey of violence after they'd met him. Tara, Jay, and now Jeremy. As if everyone he interacted with had to show just how messed up the island was. As if they had to prove to him that people could be messed up.

The point had been made days ago.

"Wait- Is she..." The question didn't need to end. Jeremy was looking away now and Jordan knew, he knew what the answer was.

"Oh my god." He didn't mean to say it out loud. But this was too much to completely internalise.

Alex was a self absorbed prick and Jay was a gothy jerk but Jeremy was Jeremy was Jeremy and he was trying and failing to sympathise with a murderer. And he hated the nagging self justification that it was okay that he was failing because he was moral and not a murderer but it was Jeremy who was the murderer. Ha, All his talk about Javert, and now he was like this. He was the absolute worst hypocrite he knew.

He wanted to pace, pacing always seemed to get his thoughts in order, but there didn't feel like there was enough room for that here.

Instead, he found himself leaning against the desk he had been standing near for support, his hands slamming on the table just a little too loud for comfort.
Edited by Randomness, Mar 6 2017, 09:31 AM.
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"Jukno?" she asked, frowning and inspecting one of his facial bruises.

Hazel didn't know anything about her. She didn't know if what he said made sense or not. Jeremy took the gun out of his pocket and Hazel felt her heart jump into her throat and she took a quick step back with her hand snapping away from Jeremy and clutching her chest instead.

His next words indicated that he'd just taken out his gun for illustrative purposes and more importantly, to suggest he'd shot Junko which Jordan immediately requested clarity on before finding it himself.

Her hand slid down away from her chest and back to her side. She could feel her breathing had picked up from the momentary panic and took a deep breath that she disguised as a sigh. Hazel slowly moved towards her bag and unzipped it.

He'd killed someone and unlike the last killer they'd encountered he seemed to be pretty sane and implied that it was done in self defense, which made it difficult to write him off. Truthfully, she didn't want to. Hazel got a water bottle out of the bag and held it up to him.

She could ask him what happened or ask him what circumstances lead to him killing Junko. The second question was a little more confrontational, though it was probably the most important question they could ask regarding the situation.

"It's kind of cold. It might help a little" she said about the bottle, putting it on the table.

Hazel's foot knocked her bag and the CD fell partially onto the floor. She knelt down to pick it up and shot a furtive look at Jordan.

What should we do?

Her hand took hold of the fallen item and her nails clacked lightly against the plastic case.

Ask how he killed Junko.

But what if she didn't want to know the truth? What if it made it impossible for him to stay with them? It wasn't that she was really so attached to Jeremy, but that there were so few people that could be counted on. Here was a person who said he'd come back to them and he did.


She put the CD down next to the stereo he'd brought them, leaving her hand on top of it.

"....found this," she said, looking to the objects on the table rather than at Jeremy.

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Well, that wasn’t really the reaction that Jeremy was hoping to get.

But really, what did he expect? It wasn’t like they were going to empathize with him. It wasn’t like they were going to tell him that it was okay. It wasn’t. What he did wasn’t okay. He should have known from the start that they weren’t going to give him any sympathy for it, so why did he assume that?

He wasn’t sure.

It would have been nice, though.

“Thanks,” he said, as Hazel handed him the water bottle. He supposed that it was supposed to be used for him to clean the bruises on his face. He honestly didn’t really know how to do that, but he appreciated the gesture. His face still hurt. Maybe it’d help? Or maybe he was supposed to drink it and rubbing it on his face would serve nothing but waste water. To be honest he wasn’t sure about this. Maybe he’d speak up. Ask Hazel what he was supposed to do with the water. Good plan? Yeah, good plan. Cleared his confusion out of the air and maybe get a little bit more out of what she was thinking.

But she was looking. At Jordan. With a look on her face that he recognised. They’d been like this before. Shifty. On edge. Back in the asylum, when they’d met with each other. When Alex had come out of the electroshock rooms.

He supposed that this was how it was going to be for him from now on. Shifty eyes. People on edge when they saw him.

Crying, when they thought nobody was watching.

His body moved. Towards the wall. His back found the sweet spot and he slid down, looking up at the ceiling.

To be honest, he was just… just sorta done with today. Maybe he’d just go to sleep now. Skip the rest of it. He’d wake up tomorrow and new things would happen and he’d go through that day and in the big picture this day would end up totally forgotten about. Good plan?



Last days.

No more big picture.


That wouldn’t work then.


Now what?

The voice of Hazel brought him back out of his thoughts. She had said something. Found something, apparently.



He smiled. Little bit more toothy than he would have liked, but whatever.

“So what, we play the CD and see what’s on it? That’s a plan, I guess.”
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Oh god.

She was looking at him for help.

He didn't have the heart to tell her that he wasn't really capable of giving any, and even if he had somehow found the spine necessary for that much, he'd still falter because Jeremy was right here and he was freaking out right now.

But she looked away and took out the CD that they had found at the gym. The scratched surface of the case had pointed them to this radio tower as well. Was that a coincidence? Or something deeper?

He didn't really know, but now was as a good a time as any to find out, right?

Jeremy collapsed against the wall, Hazel looking blankly at the CD player. Him doing whatever it was he was doing.

Something needed to change and maybe the disc was just what they needed right now.

Maybe the disc was a message of some sort. Maybe someone had recorded something for them to hear as some sort of plea for help or something.

"Alright. Let's do it, then."

There was a light whirring noise and the clicking seek sound that he had almost forgotten existed as it prepared to play the song.

The tinny little speaker blared to life and something completely obnoxious started playing.

"What in the-" No. He didn't really want to know, did he?
Edited by Randomness, Mar 8 2017, 04:45 AM.
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Hazel stared at the CD player in disbelief.

~ Don't be fooled by the rock I got. I'm still, I'm still- ~

Her face cracked into a small grin that grew wider with every passing second until she was grinning from ear to ear.

"Ha. Haha. Hahaha!"

She started laughing so hard she hunched over and tears started collecting in the sides of her eyes. Hazel had absolutely no idea what else to do. It was just ridiculous. Hazel bounced up and down and grabbed Jeremy by the hands, forgetting for a moment that they were on a murder island, forgetting that a moment ago the tension over his recent kill was so thick you could practically swim in it, and danced with him.

Hazel flipped her hair back and forth and pulled his arms, alternating with pulling each forward and back to force him to shimmy along with her, laughing still.
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Jeremy watched as Jordan put the CD into the player. He didn’t really have a lot to think in regards to that. It was a basic action. Nothing really odd to say about it, at this point. The music that came out of it was, however. It was… probably something he’d heard of before. Not something he actually heard, but he’d imagine having heard or seen someone joke about it. Jenny from the Block. It was… okay. Not bad, but considering this was probably going to be the last song he’d ever listen to in his life he was sorta hoping that it’d be something he liked more. Anything from the Killers, for an example. Maybe one of the sentimental ABBA songs. Not that this wasn’t okay, of course, but give him another option? He’d probably take that one.

And then Hazel suddenly appeared in front of him, pulling him up onto his feet and forcing him into the center of the room.

His first thought was: wow, how strong was she to be able to do that?

His second thought was: ...what was she doing?

She was… dancing? Pulling him? Laughing? Honestly, he wasn’t sure. She was going with the music. She was pulling his hands along to it. This was… dancing, yeah. But… okay, uh…

He was confused.

Slightly aroused, as well.

She wanted to dance with him, but, uh...

There was a bit of an issue.

He, uh…

Wasn’t good at dancing? He was sorta like a lumberjack whenever the disco ball went down. He just sorta felt awkward doing it and he couldn’t do it and he’d rather step down, but, like…

There was a girl, on the dancefloor.

Standing in front of him.

Holding his hand.

Trying so hard to get him to dance.

They were different from each other. Skin. Hair. Hair colour. Personality, you name it, but they were both friends. They were both trying to do the same thing.

He couldn’t just say no.

He smiled.


So he pulled her hand back. Forward. Along with the beat.

He was pretty sure this was how it was done.

They’d danced, for a bit, after that. Soon, though, the sleep began to come, and the three of them were too exhausted to do much more. They’d set up their beds, they’d set up watch, and they went to sleep.

They’d woken up around the early morning. Didn’t do much other than that. They’d made small talk, ate a little, and asked about each others lives. Jeremy had participated in that, a little. He wasn’t that good at asking questions to the other two but when they’d asked him some he was happy to answer. He was okay with participating in other discussions, too. He didn’t know much about Les Mis but he’d been in the stage band for a couple school musicals, he was able to tell the story from his side, there. It was sorta fun. Distracting. Apparently, as it turned out, the three had similarities to each other that weren’t being trapped in here. Who knew?

The fun had to end, though. The crackling of the speakers put a stop to it. Jeremy was sitting when he’d heard them, and the news prompted him to lay down, for a bit. On his back. Looking at the ceiling.

The first couple weren’t that bad, really. Al had killed again, but the surprise was nothing like last time. Just told him that he had to find Al. Before it was too late. Really, the most scary part of the announcements was waiting for the one death he already knew was up there. What would they say about it? Jeremy imagined that it wouldn’t be something that really surprised him but he knew it’d probably hit others. Emma. Serena. Maybe Hazel and Jordan. He knew things would be different from now on. Harder. All he needed to know was how much more difficult it was going to be for him.

Maria Cucinotta. Astrid Tate. Travis Lynch. Arthur Bernstein.

Junko Kurosawa.

Attacked Jeremy Frasier for ‘giving up.’

“Wait, what?”

That… was not what he was expecting to hear. They’d just told it how it was. Said out loud that it was self-defense. Jeremy didn’t just walk up and shoot her. Not according to them. It was self defence. She hit him first.

And everyone knew that now.

So what did this mean for Jeremy, if the terrorists suddenly decided to make him innocent?

What did this mean about everyone else?

He wasn’t sure.

He’d have to think about this later. The announcements were still running. There were still a couple names to go.

Scout had killed. That was… a name that probably wasn’t a surprise to hear but it was still something that piqued him up. She’d killed Alvaro. He took out Irene. He took out Barry, back at the bell tower. He supposed that Scout knew one of those names, or something. He didn’t know. He’d have to ask her, if they met again.

The next name made him smile, though. Nancy was finally fucking gone. Taken out by Kimiko Kao. Jenny had been avenged. Clarice too, sorta. He’d have to meet up with the latter, of course, say sorry, but that piqued him right up, as terrible as that was to say. Nancy was gone. There wasn’t anyone else he could have been more glad to hear up there.


That was when he had heard Lily’s name. He’d met her, back when he was with Alex. She’d mocked him, for thinking of teaming up with him. She was up there in the same sentence as Isabel. Nothing more to say than that.

Speaking of Alex, he’d gotten another one as well. Michael. Jeremy… didn’t know what to think about that. He’d have to store it for later, just like with what they said about him.

And somehow, even after all the names had been said, the people up top still had a surprise in store for him.

”and today's winner as voted by the cafeteria is Jeremy Frasier.”

Five in a row.

Somebody buy him a lottery ticket.

He sat back up again. Talked with the other two. He asked if he should go get it. They said okay. They agreed to meet at the west side of the bridge.

He stood up, left.

Nothing really odd to say about it.

((Jeremy Frasier, continued in The Martyr Approach))
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