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Viewing Single Post From: We All Look So Perfect
The Homeless Bearde
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"Two plus two is four, minus one is three quick maths"
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((CS3: Douglas Sharpe, Start))

The only thing on Dougie's immediate mind was that he didn't know what to do with his hands.

It was silly. Stupid, even, that one of his very first thoughts when he had woke at this - resort? Beach? - was that he had always clammed up on camera, stuttered and made an ass of himself. He had never been one to care too much about image - the notable, wide scar on his chin, tan against chocolate, likely had something to do with that - but something about his entire life from now until...

It shook him up.

He had started, after getting his bearings - a hallway, pretty nondescript, with a large red curtain in front of him - by finding the bandanna - a blue stingray - and tying it onto his wrist over his green sweatshirt, rummaging to find the remains of his day pack and take supply. His moves were automatic as he found the subway sandwich, powerade, skittles - an assortment and mockery of a meal - a map...

A Tickle-Me-Elmo.

He stared at the little red ball of fur, with the "Press me!" sticker still attached to its hand. With a very cautious, shaky hand, he reached forwards, squeezing down on the hand of the little monster with a thumb and forefinger.

Elmo immediately erupted into giggles, falling onto his back and rolling around in uncontrollable, fairly demonic laughter.

Dougie stared at the toy, both relieved and bitter in a single breath. A kid's toy as a weapon meant that he didn't get a proper weapon. A lack of weapon meant that he wasn't pressured to murder.

Okay.

He unfurled the map, looking at it with a critical eye, frowning at the names of the places. This was called the Lanai Resort, apparently. Complete with Cabana Cul De Sacs, the Aloha Daycare Center, and a Sunshine Tower.

Who the fuck named this place?

He folded the map into neat quarters, shoved it in his back pocket just as Elmo stopped giggling. He hesitated, then reached for the furry red toy, flipping him over, and prying at his butt.

The tearing of velcroe was loud in the space, and he paused, listening. When the dogs of war didn't descend, he felt along until he found the little plastic battery housing, pried it open, and pulled the four AA batteries out with a fingernail.

With one hand, he slipped the batteries into his pocket - impulsive - and put Elmo back into his bag with the other. He let out a breath, adjusted his purple beanie.

And that's when he heard it - squeak of shoes, a clamber as footsteps walked up. Behind the curtain, Dougie realized, was someone.

Slowly, surely, he approached, two dark brown fingers pulling the curtain away from the wall, one green eye taking in the girl as she reached into her bag, rummaged around. He felt a sense of relief when she wasn't holding a huge gun, or - potentially worse - when she didn't happen to be a huge, tattoed kid named Stone.

Taking a deep breath, Dougie stepped from the curtain slowly, bag in hand and both hands outstretched in a sign of peace, facing her with his whole body.

"Friendly," he said, his voice echoing in the silence.
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