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Rivers in the Desert
Topic Started: Sep 10 2017, 11:57 AM (5,692 Views)
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Fiyori's palm extended to her chin, which she began to scratch. The other played drums with her left temple. She wondered why her face was so unusually wet.

"When I was, four or five years old, or maybe younger, Ma and Pa took me and went on a trip. Somewhere sad and cold, I think. Washington, got an old friend of the family living there."

She paused talking for a moment, scanning the horizon for nothing in particular.

"Well, no. At that point he wasn't living there. Because he was dead you know. Don't what it was, but Pa said there was a big funeral or something. Really formal event, had to wear some dumb... uh, yea, some dumb pant suit. But, for children."

Fiyori paused again, this time she chuckled for herself. The image of a tiny Fiyori waddling about in some Angela Merkel cosplay was funny. Even if the reality of it wasn't the hilarity Fiyori imagined.

"So yea, we were there, in that pretty church up north in our pretty clothes. Anyway, while everyone was wailing or crying or something, I felt a bit different. A bit more poopy, if you get me. So, I was like, I need to go poop. I said that to my parents. And they were like, of course! You have to go poop, you go poop. So they showed me the toiled and I was a big girl so I went all alone.

"Then there I was, in that bathroom. I finished my business, and then started wiping. And now we get to the good part. I was wiping, and suddenly the piece of toiler paper wasn't there anymore. Like, you have to imagine. You're standing there, minding your own shit and suddenly you're lacking the paper you just held a moment ago. And you're like, 'what the fuck', because you were so sure you just held it but then you didn't. And it wasn't in the toilet. For a moment I was afraid it slipped into a leg of pants or anything while they were down, but that wasn't true either. Looked over the floor, didn't find it there.

"Really strange, I tell you. Fucked with my mind hard. For years I was puzzled about that piece of toilet paper that just vanished."

Fiyori rocked back and forth a very little. Her hands had returned to rest on her pants - also suspiciously wet - and she studied the dirt under her finger nails absentmindedly.

"I'd had hoped there was a point to this story. I think it's safe to say that there isn't."

Finally, Fiyori turned her head to look at Nate.

"I don't want to go home. I want more.

"Nate, do you?"
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Nate sat there looking at Fiyori in disbelief, mouth agape. He’d thought he was at his end, that there wasn’t much room for feeling anymore, but Fiyori’s story was powerful in its absurdity.

“You’re weird, you know that?”

He turned back to the view, trying to shake it off. If nothing else, it had at least changed the mood, just a little. He wasn’t relaxing or anything, but it was something. Something different fuelled by a lot of nonsense.

“I promised Matt that I’d to go home. He said it was because I deserved to, and, I don’t know, maybe he died because of that. Maybe if I hadn’t been hugging him, or something, he might’ve noticed Blair.”

He pulled at the jacket again. It didn’t matter anymore, because they were both dead, but it might’ve made the difference. He didn’t think he felt guilty, but understanding any feelings at that point was so beyond his reach that it was simply impossible to tell.

“I don’t want him to have died for nothing, I want this to be over. I know we all do, but these are the rules, aren’t they?” he glanced down at the gun, still by his side. When had he let it go? “It only gets to be over for one of us.”

He sat there a moment longer. It was nice to think that that was possible. He wanted to still think that. He had to.

“What do you mean, more?”
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Jae's brow furrowed in irritation. His eyes threatened to close again but he kept them open, watching Candice with a half-lidded, vaguely disdainful gaze. "That's my name, don't wear it out," he drawled.

Was there a point to her questioning? Probably not. Maybe she was trying to psych herself up to kill him - did he have more on record than Fiyori did at this point? He wasn't sure. Anyhow, maybe Candice had decided to just lay in wait until the end and then take out whoever she deemed the biggest threat. Jae doubted it, doubted anyone who would walk up to a half-corpse and ask if they were okay would consider anything approaching strategy.

Maybe she had beef with him because he'd killed a friend of hers. Maybe she really was just deadass stupid and wanted to make conversation when she ought to have shot him in the face as soon as he opened his eyes and confirmed he wasn't quite dead on the outside.

Jae might have been able to articulate these points to her if his tongue hadn't felt so heavy with the lingering effects of alcohol. But fuck it, who really cared about her ulterior motive? He didn't.

He gathered himself to speak again, words slurring slightly. "If you're gonna kill me, hurry up. I don't have anything t'say to you."

He wondered where Fiyori was.
"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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It should have been so tempting to take him up on his offer.

Seriously, this was Min-jae Parker. Like, her second-least favorite person still left on this island. And this wasn't the petty, snide-remarks-and-social-ostracism kind of everyday hatred. This was a person who had earned legit, "the world would be better off without you in it," life-and-death hatred.

Min-jae deserved to die.

No, he had to die. It was an insult to his victims that there was even the chance that he might be the only one to go home. Somebody owed it to them to prevent that, and it was obvious who that had fallen to.


Candice had the opportunity. Maybe it was the karma of hiding out while dozens of people died, but you couldn't get a better chance than coming across him when he was just lying there.

She had the means, her as-yet-unused gun clenched tightly in her right hand. Candice had no experience firing it, and expected that she would probably be a terrible shot with it, but given the short range, no shortage of ammo, and a stationary, helpless target...

She had the ability to do so.

If it was a situation like this where the other person couldn't move, even somebody like her could make a difference.


All she would have to do is pull a trigger...
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V6 Characters
G31 - Candice Banks (adopted from Somersault) - The Rooftop
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That was a curiosity. Now that Nate had talked, Fiyori suddenly realized that there was a point to her story after all. Had there been a grand award show after all this over, Fiyori would've had to mention Nate in her acceptance speech. Whatever it was that she accepted.

Fiyori flashed a smile - to no-one in particular, but dedicated to Nate - but then put a grim mask on her own face. This was about to be a very serious moment.

"You know, maybe you're just putting yourself under a lot of stress? You talk about 'deserving' things, and 'dying for nothing', and I feel like that's just making your life harder than it needs be."

She put her finger at her lips, nibbled on the nails a bit, sucking the droplets of water in. It spontaneously occurred to her that it was raining, which was why she was getting wet all over the place. The shock of that realization nearly made her forget what she wanted to say, but Fiyori caught herself.

"You want to go home. But also, you want to not kill someone."

Her hand instinctively raised and went behind Nate's back. Almost, she would have patted him on the back but perhaps he would consider that rude.

"So, the question ain't what should be, but rather: what d'ya want to do... more?"

She allowed herself a look over the shoulder. There, in the semi-distance, she could spot the other two half-corpses. She wondered.

Then, she rose to her feet.
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What did he want to do more?

More questions.

She got up before he could reply, but he didn’t care. He didn’t follow as she walked off, towards whatever. Maybe she was just moving away before she shot him. He didn’t bother to check.

What did he want to do more?

He wanted to go home. He wanted this to be over. He wanted to be done.

He didn’t want to kill anyone. That’s what everyone else wanted, not him. That’s what everyone else had been doing.

Fiyori still hadn’t shot him.

What did he want to do more?

He buried his head in his knees. He was so sick of questions.
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Candice was not hurrying it up.

"I've killed five people," Jae offered. "Y'know, if that helps."

Why Jae ever thought to rely on other people to get things done for him, he didn't know. Would've made more progress just holding his mouth open and waiting for the rain to drown him.

There was movement in the corner of his vision. Someone approaching.

He knew that shape, that half-formed nightmare.

Maybe he wouldn't have to wait on Candice after all.

Jae gripped the rifle and used it as a crutch, levering himself to his feet.
"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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It wasn't right for a killer like him to still be around. He should die. It would be easy. He couldn't defend himself.

You could make sure this monster never gets away with what he did.

He was just lying there...


Candice's finger failed to pull the trigger. No, her mind failed to have her finger pull it. Even though he was a monster. Even though the world was a better place without him.

She had heard about what he had done. Knew what kind of person he was. Understood what he deserved. But still, she couldn't do it. She couldn't reconcile his reputation with the way he just waited for her to fire.

She couldn't shoot the boy in front of her who looked to already be dying. Even if he was a monster.

Why can't you look more like a villain, Min-Jae? It just needs to be one last time.


She lowered her gun, letting it point at the ground between her and Min-Jae. Even as he started to rise to his feet, she couldn't bring herself to be hostile enough toward him. Even though she knew in her mind that he might try something, her will couldn't overcome the discrepancy between the name from the announcements and the body in front of her. Knowing that he was probably a danger but unable to convince herself that he was an enemy, Candice resigned herself to keeping a close eye on him.

Let's show that private threads aren't necessary! I pledge not to start any private threads on island in V7. If I started a thread, you are welcome to join it.

V6 Characters
G31 - Candice Banks (adopted from Somersault) - The Rooftop
G35 - Bernadette Thomas (adopted from Imehal) (Deceased) - Northwest Cliffs

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Ah, so they noticed Fiyori. At least, Min-jae did. Took him a good while. It was an interesting sight to behold. Even in the face of death, it took Min-jae forever to rose to his feet. Didn't care about shit-all, and the thing that ended up getting him on his feet was a gun and - Fiyori speculated a bit vainly - being very passionate about a special someone.

Honestly, in that moment Fiyori felt very 'me too thanks' about this whole thing.

Fiyori took the important matters into her own hands. By that, she meant she took her gun and flicked the safety off. It's barrel still pointed at the ground, of course. No need for an accidental discharge. Fiyori ain't no boy of fifteen years anymore. Never was but aside from that, she had no intention to kill someone accidentally anyway.

Her bag fell to the ground, splashing some water. She wouldn't need it anymore.

"Min-jae."

And, come to think of it...

"Candice. Don't think we've had the pleasure yet."

Maybe. Fiyori really wasn't sure about that one. Two weeks on hell island, blood loss and a fuckton of pain meds did wonders about your mental capacities. Wonder, in the sense of 'wondering where they all went'. Anyway, Fiyori stopped moving.
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The rain was still pouring down on his head, as he looked off towards the horizon. He was felt like he should turn around, see what Fiyori was doing, but he didn’t. It still didn’t matter.

Even if he forgot about Matt, for just a moment, what did that mean? That he wouldn’t have to kill anyone? That he wouldn’t get to go home, as a result? That he’d be shot dead, or whatever the terrorists did if you didn’t take part in their sick mess they called a game?

He exhaled. He couldn’t do this. Couldn’t just sit there. Couldn’t be alone with himself. Not anymore.

He picked up the gun, got up, and turned around to see where Fiyori had gone.
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Jae didn't return Fiyori's greeting, didn't stop to wonder if she intended to toy with him or Candice or whatever else it was that Fiyoris did.

His fingers felt slower than he wanted, clumsy, his left hand still dully throbbing in pain with every movement, and he thought of that for just a second, thought about how some parts of him would never be right again no matter how he ended up and he could have screamed if he'd had the energy and enough air in his lungs




but he didn't.



Clumsy slurring thoughts and the rain running down his face and for an instant it felt like a dream-


He found the safety, and the rifle came up. Fiyori only deserved one answer. Jae wasn't interested in whatever she had planned.

He didn't take the time to aim, firing somewhere over Candice's shoulder at Fiyori and not caring whether he hit Candice in the crossfire or if that finally motivated her to shoot back at him.
"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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Bullets flew through the air beside Candice, directed at a target somewhere behind her. Well, maybe they had been intended to hit her, and Min-Jae's condition was such that he couldn't even aim at someone right in front of him, but Candice rather doubted that that was the case. Sure, he was in bad shape, but at the same time he had managed to last this long, so he must be someone who could handle himself even in those circumstances. He would act the same as he had before.

A dying killer was still a killer. She had gotten too hung up on the first part.

While the fact that Min-Jae had not attacked her but instead this new threat may have been considered evidence that she had not made the wrong decision when she didn't take the chance to eliminate him, it was at the same time twice as much evidence for how much of an idiot she had been. He had gone from "almost dead" to "almost dead, but firing his gun anyway" before she could react.

Min-Jae hadn't shot her... but he could have.


This was the revelation that Candice should have been taking to heart. Yet even now, she pushed aside those thoughts.

When Min-Jae started shooting, I was distracted, I probably would have been fine if I hadn't been already caught off guard. This was the kind of lame excuse she made for herself. She probably wouldn't have been fine even had she not been distracted, and in the end Candice knew that this excuse wasn't any sort of justification. Even if she hadn't taken her attention away from Min-Jae in the moment before he began firing, she still wouldn't have been able to react. Her mistake had been from when she began interacting with him, when she treated him as a victim and not a villain. But none of this mattered. It wasn't important whether or not Candice would have fared better without her attention being divided.

The important thing was who had distracted her in the first place. The voice that she had heard briefly before the sound of gunfire had drowned everything else out.

She looked down at the weapon in her hands. Confirmed that the safety was off.

Thus prepared, Candice turned around, exposing her back to Min-Jae. Maybe he'd shoot her in the back after all. Even if he didn't, she'd probably whiffed on the chance to make sure he never left this island alive. She didn't really care at the moment. though, even though letting him win was the second-worst outcome left in this entire mess. It'd be a nice bonus if she were to get another chance to prevent that later, but Candice thought to herself that she could live with Min-Jae surviving if it were the price to pay to prevent the absolute worst outcome.

The price to hold accountable the girl that was now before Candice.

Fiyori Senay.
Let's show that private threads aren't necessary! I pledge not to start any private threads on island in V7. If I started a thread, you are welcome to join it.

V6 Characters
G31 - Candice Banks (adopted from Somersault) - The Rooftop
G35 - Bernadette Thomas (adopted from Imehal) (Deceased) - Northwest Cliffs

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When the terrorists had announced the finale of their little game, only two of the four names very familiar to Fiyori. Her own, of course, and Min-jae's. Both Nate and Candice were unknown factors. Perhaps, or maybe, or possible had she been in contact with them prior to Survival of the Fittest. Back when they were just normal students.

But that was true for Min-jae too, and look where that went.

So above all and else, Fiyori had hoped to have a little chat with Nate and Candice before things went downhill. Get to know them because things got dark. Nate was interesting. But Candice seemed boring. Never heard of her in the announcement, never met someone who talked about her. And from what Fiyori could see, Candice was even unable to decide whether to shoot half-dead half-wit Min-jae.

Candice was, essentially, an empty book. Full of blank pages. And as such, nothing to read between the lines.

But here they were, Min-jae shooting at Fiyori as a Min-jae ought to do and Candice chose differently. Instead of freezing or fighting back, Candice thought that Min-jae's target was more of an issue than Min-jae himself. Honestly, Fiyori felt very attacked.

Candice did not start the fire. But Fiyori learned how to do it.

When Fiyori raised her own weapon, she meant to aim at Jae. But then her eyes locked with Candice's, and that was now how things would do.

She pulled the trigger.
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Nate hadn’t taken three steps when the shots were fired.

It was the anthem of the island. He’d heard it so many times over this whole thing. He’d heard it in the halls. Out in the open. In his sleep. In his nightmares.

He’d heard it with Alvaro. He’d heard it with Matt.

He stood in that spot, because he couldn’t move from it. He looked down at his hands. Matt’s blood was on them.

“Stop it.”

Not loud enough. They couldn’t hear him. Between the wind and the rain and their violence, it’d just be drowned out. They’d still be killing each other.

He fell to his knees. Clutched his face in his hands. Even at this late hour, even when he knew it was going to happen, he couldn’t bear it.

“Just stop it already!”
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Nobody fired back at Jae. Nobody seemed all that interested in killing him right at the moment, ironically enough.

If you want something done right...




He didn't like having his back to the wall, waiting on whatever bloody conclusion Fiyori and Candice would inevitably come to. He could guess what it would be, but he wasn't going to wait around and watch.

Moving as quickly as he could - which was not very quickly, between his leg, impaired balance, and the wet roof tiles - Jae started limping away as soon as Fiyori's attention shifted.

He didn't have a plan. He just didn't want to be cornered again.



It was cold out here.




The scream pulled him back to reality, made him realize that he had even drifted away from reality in the first place, and Jae slipped.

As the world tilted, he was struck with a sudden, terrible certainty that if he fell, he would never get back up again, and it wasn't time yet, he wasn't ready yet-

He flailed with the rifle, trying to use it to catch his balance, and a stray shot rocketed off somewhere to the side, sending up a small spray of chipped tile as it went. The muzzle of the rifle went down into the ground again and Jae doubled over it, grasping the butt with both hands and panting. Still standing, barely.






"...Oh. Hey."

There was rain running into his eyes, but he recognized that shape. Maybe the scream too, now that he thought about it.

He wondered if he seemed crazy now, finally. Probably.

A gun went off a short distance behind him. He didn't turn to look at who might have taken the bullet. All the focus he could muster was fixed in front of him. Everything was coming back around in one way or another.

Or maybe that was the crazy talking.

"I..." Jae forgot was he was going to say as he tried to say it, licked his lips, and tried again.



"I forgot your name."
"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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