Welcome Guest [Log In] [Register]
Welcome to Survival of the Fittest, a RPing board loosely based off of Koshun Takami's Battle Royale, with its own unique plot and spin on the 'deadly game'. We've been around quite a while, and are now in our thirteenth year, so don't worry about us going anywhere any time soon!

If you're a newcomer and interested in joining, then please make sure you check out the rules. You may also want to read the FAQ, introduce yourself and stop by the chat to meet some of our members. If you're still not quite sure where to start, then we have a great New Member's Guide with a lot of useful information about getting going. Don't hesitate to PM a member of staff (they have purple usernames) if you have any questions about SOTF and how to get started!

Let the games begin!

Username:   Password:
Add Reply
From Here On Out; Born Burning
Topic Started: Apr 9 2017, 08:00 PM (357 Views)
Cicada Days
Member Avatar
keep running yoshi
[ *  *  *  *  * ]
The desolate summer sun beat down on her, but she wasn’t paying so much attention. She’d walked minutes, hours, between their home and Cochise, sweat visibly pasted the bodice of her shirt to her chest. Why the hell had she thought it would be a good idea to wear a black knit tee on a day this hot? Well. She’d done it. With an irate grunt she yanked the door of Diamondback half off it’s hinges. The only greeter they had on hand for her heat stroke ass was the friendly embrace of climate control.

Her body quickly cooled down from the dangerous levels of overheating, but honestly she failed to notice the difference. Every single block she’d walked on her way here had looked the same. Every droplet of sweat she had spilled like blood had felt the same. Felt like nothing.

She recklessly exhaled, then collapsed into the nearest chair. Her body briefly went ragdoll on her, and she only felt the impact of the seat rising up to meet her right in the hard of her tailbone.

Ben had been gone for almost four weeks now.

((Lana Fields continued from Losing Touch))

She tried to pay that fact no mind. They’d find him when they found him.

She inspected the veneer of her surroundings. Faux countertop, cheap plastic widgets, washed out bright lighting, termite-kissed wooden paneling, the framed photos from Sundae Challenge… um, fuck, it was all more or less exactly her childhood bottled up and sold at a reasonable price to her, pint by pint by plastic spoon. Lana remembered that when she’d been six her sole overriding ambition in life had been to see her picture up on that wall.

She’d gotten up on there, next to Ben. Actual recipient of the reward. He’d given her the certificate.

Dad and Mom had also been in the photos.

Dad’s hair had already been gone by then.

Lana anxiously glanced about, away from that slice of her own life pinned onto the wall. Marie was going to be late again, wasn’t she? Lana checked the text again real quick. Quarter past noon. Most important question was, who had decided going out at this hour of day when the sun was most threatening it’s red giant phase was a good idea? Second most important, Marie? Hellloooo? Went through the sweatshop of hell for you, so, show up?

Lana settled a bit, quietly. The store intercom was playing a news report, something innocuous about flash flood watches a few counties over. In one ear, out the other.
The Dies Before First Rolls Squad

The Nights
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Cicada Days
Member Avatar
keep running yoshi
[ *  *  *  *  * ]
Lana paced a full PE class mile in maybe fifteen seconds of restlessness. She glanced here, there; here was her phone's green plastic blob shell and there was the cashier on duty. A face Lana had known since she'd been ten, Mr. Gasset was kindly widower wrinkles and smiles. Mom had invited him to the house for dinner twice before. He was looking at her like the abyss liked to stare back. Lana felt that smile of his was heavy somehow, overburdened despite the lively energy he kept on tap to put his daughter through college with... three jobs, it was three jobs total.

She felt like she needed to say something, greet him somehow, but the words weren't coming to mind. Their eyes just remained ships passing in the night until there was someone else murmuring Lana's way.

Lana turned, right into Marie's face almost. They had stolen chunks of each other's personal space but the energy to step back wasn't forthcoming for Lana.

"Yeah, I believe you." Lana's voice was simple, less syllables than she needed in a mute monotone. She forced a bit more color into the next few words. "Even when school's already over you find a way to disrupt schedules with bathroom breaks, huh."

Marie jaggedly swerved, her eyes temporarily seemed AWOL. Lana was aware of Marie's vertigo-like tendencies, of course... she wasn't so aware it was contagious. Lana herself felt woozy, like she could have hurled chunks worth of her she hadn't even been in the mood to eat the last day, there was jackshit in that stomach of hers. But the moment passed, both girls recovered and then Lana was gently hugging Marie a bit closer with one arm around her shoulder.

"Fine. Just fine, you know. The usual, right?" Lana glanced around both ways like she was streetside, looking at nothing in particular despite having an objective in mind. "Order? Sorry if I'm a bit moist. It's hotter out here than jet fuel on steel beams."
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Cicada Days
Member Avatar
keep running yoshi
[ *  *  *  *  * ]
Yeah she'd probably reached a bit with that one?

The faux pas was lost to time.

Marie on the other hand stayed rooted in time and space. To an extent. She seemed tense, she was eating more of her own words than normal. Lana took note of those facts, but they somehow seemed distant within her own head. She hadn't even realized it but at some point in the last four weeks she'd slowly drifted away from herself, becoming an observer to her own body.

Even time wasn't so distinct in it's slippery, sinewy passage. It was Monday... something. June... something.

Maybe.

"Sounds shitty, sorry Marie. Yeah, you should go sit. I got this." Who was that girl saying those things coming out of her mouth?

Eh. Lana only had half a brain for the pretentiously worded. Ben had probably stolen the other half from her just before she'd been born. Lana watched Marie bumble and stumble and crumble away, Lana's pitying frown on her friend's behalf was lost, dead on arrival to the heavy and sagging inertia of her own lips. The order however, was not lost. Lana relayed it to Mr. Gasset, and he smiled that eerily heavy smile at her once more, all while she ordered and stood stock still and received her order and returned to sitting by Marie's side, or somewhere close enough to Marie's side that they could probably look each other in the eye without complications.

"So, uh..."

Lana's eyes were hollow as she stared, she seemed to look without actually seeing. Green with black freckles in a cup was gently placed before Marie. And the moment passed, and another few silent ones for good measure.

"What have you been up to lately? It's been a while since we've spoken I guess. I should've called but I...

uh..."
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Cicada Days
Member Avatar
keep running yoshi
[ *  *  *  *  * ]
Lana felt the briefest of growling stomach complaints as she watched Marie vacuum up her food.

Promptly she told herself to shut up. She probably should have also clued herself in while she was at it, don't stare at people with her mouth slightly gaping like a lardy fish on the chopping block while those people were awkwardly diffusing their own brainfreeze. Thumb in the mouth. Lana swore she'd seen that particular trick before, somewhere besides as a mainstay of the young and barely toilet ready demographic.

'... Not been sleeping... bit paranoid...'

Lana was able to process some of it at a thoroughly inadequate speed. But her brain stayed like a slug, slow and probably slimy. Her expression thus stubbornly stayed, slack jaw, wide eye.

"Hell, I would have lent you my thumb if you'd asked." ... Er. Not sure where that doof of a line had come from, except maybe some loser screenwriters porno scropt. "You know what I mean." She made an idle swipe at the napkin as it skidded by, way too far for her to have bothered making the attempt if she'd been thinking at anything above a paperclip's worth of wattage. She missed, of course, and the wad of paper merrily skipped on by.

Marie said...

"Yeah. We just have to keep believing. Eventually the authorities will..." The authorities the Lana two months younger had never trusted, had derided. Lana's attempt trailed off, syllables becoming an awkwardly shoehorned breath becoming silence. She tried again.

"Sorry you haven't been getting much sleep. Don't worry about not calling. Like...

We're both just kind of forgetful, I guess."

She couldn't put any sort of value or remembrance to the number of weeks that had dredged through her living memory. She couldn't put a name to the faces, not when she hadn't seen them in forever.

"But that's always been our MO, right?" And the tone wasn't a question more than it was a particularly flabby statement.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Cicada Days
Member Avatar
keep running yoshi
[ *  *  *  *  * ]
Yep, no way Lana would have been allowed to get away with that foot-in-mouth-on-head-up-ass comment. Lana would have cringed herself, if she'd been the observer to her own epic failure. Without the smile, probably. Could have just been that Lana had little ability to imagine herself with a smile, period. Not as of late.

It was a bit odd. Lana was normally something of an arrogant smile-er. She hadn't even been dropping the clever hashtag bars someone like that weirdo Tessa Mabel might have been proud of.

"It's because I forgot my tinfoil."

Flaccid, dead on arrival. She'd at least tried to maintain the quota, like Coolidge.

"I dunno." Lana's eyes scanned infinity, that faraway place lying somewhere outside Diamondback's blind-draped windows. "I've been doing a lot of the housework as of late, like. Mom's super busy at work and all." And of course, it was normally Ben who did most of that. "I'll try to not fall asleep on you, Marie." She spared her friend a glance, in the singular. Looked away again, toward nothing in particular. "Have I ever, like... taken you to see Mom's work?"

Or had Marie studied in that particular school and had Lana already forgotten, her washcloth of a brain wrung out?
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Cicada Days
Member Avatar
keep running yoshi
[ *  *  *  *  * ]
Okay, cool. They could still share a laugh. Lana wasn't even consciously sure why they hadn't been able to yet. Lana smirk-laughed a bit, a bubbly noise that was reportedly far too adorable in tone for a cool-cat like Lana to pack in her larynx. Went right through lips sealed in a kiss mashed up against a finger of her own folded palms.

"Yep. We're growing up, I guess... Shit, too soon."

...

"Yeah, good idea. I guess I should be doing Ben's room too, that'd only be... uh. Fair."

And. Silence followed. Lana didn't mean for it to but her vocal cords gave out a bit, her brain put out a vague kinda static on all airwaves. Only lasted a second but it had somehow been a memorably heavy lapse in the awkward robot-dancing that was their convo.

"Second grade. ... Have you ever thought about teaching? Like, as a job, or just in general."

...

"I mean, like, I like kids. But I bet it'd be a hard job, just in the... a lot of things out of your control sort of sense."
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Cicada Days
Member Avatar
keep running yoshi
[ *  *  *  *  * ]
"Guess I hear you there, yeah. At least in my case it's one of those things where the responsibility to handle kids is lacking."

...

"I guess it's like, uh... We're both really young anyways. Ben and Arthur are both older, they see things different from us." And that was normally the exact syllable on which Lana inserted a pivot to a 'fuck older brothers' sort of diss.

...

The moment passed.

"They think what they think I guess. And we think what we think too."

Lana buried her eyes in between the finger spaces of one hand, because Mr. Gasset was roaming around shifting the blinds, stabbing Lana's eyes with stray sunrays bouncing off tabletops at strange angles.

"Dunno what I'd do either. But I'm betting neither of us want that same old same old."
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Cicada Days
Member Avatar
keep running yoshi
[ *  *  *  *  * ]
...

Lana didn't even know what either of them were looking at. This place was too familiar.

"I mean, yeah. Webber handed me all my grades out the door, your last period did that for you too right?"

Mrs. Webber. The bane of Ben's existence somehow. She was alright. Lana figured they'd all be laughing about it someday over an email, or doing the digital lol equivalent of laughing, or something like...

"All A's except a solid ass B plus in Precalc. Because, you know..."

Trailing off, puttering out like a car run out of gas soon to be stranded in a desert.

"... Precalc."

...

"... I, uh..."

She was ignoring the warning tone of her own phone, screeching like that still-stranded car composing it's last will in dying mechanical creaks.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Cicada Days
Member Avatar
keep running yoshi
[ *  *  *  *  * ]
"Pain on the brain," Lana nodded, a bit forcefully.

"Hey, you know that we wouldn't have ended up friends if you didn't have some brain power on tap. School's just societal expectation anyways, it doesn't mean..."

Lana watched Marie's eyes shift about, she felt an iota of annoyance bubble up from diving depth in her own head. Inflating to put a headache's worth of pressure on her grey matter.

"Oh yeah. Fuck."

Lana didn't know who'd be calling her at this time.

...

Texting, rather.

But she knew now. The phone crashed to the table mere seconds after Lana's eyes scrolled over it, back and forth, a hundred oscillations per second. The rubbery casing absorbed the fall with a single dull smack. Lana stared. Stared was the only word that could describe it. Maybe a hundred-yard, or a thousand-yard, or looking long and straight through the heart of reality.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
Cicada Days
Member Avatar
keep running yoshi
[ *  *  *  *  * ]
Lana's teeth remained painfully inert.

'THEY FOUND BEN'
'FOUNd the kIDS'
'ITS SOTF'
'ITS SOTF'
'LANA PLEASe'
'respoND'
'DONT TALK TO REPORTERS'
'JUST COME HOME'
'ARE YOU THERE'
'THEY RELEASED'
'VIDEOS'
'DON'T WATCH'
'IT'S ALL TRUE'
'PLEASE JUST'
'JUST COME HOME'
'PLEASE'


Lana tried to look at Marie.

Instead she ran. She abandoned her own phone. She abandoned Marie. She abandoned that framed photo, up there on the wall, of the brother who'd done everything and anything for her, watching down with a smile forever frozen in space and time.

((Lana Fields continued elsewhere))
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
1 user reading this topic (1 Guest and 0 Anonymous)
ZetaBoards - Free Forum Hosting
Create a free forum in seconds.
« Previous Topic · V6 Meanwhile... · Next Topic »
Add Reply