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Cursed, Hexed, Spellbound; Anyway you see it, your done
Topic Started: Jun 24 2014, 05:01 PM (1,957 Views)
Fenrir
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Biting The Hand That Feeds
[ *  *  *  * ]
((Shawn Thornton continued from Bitter Dream))

From the theatre to the hotel to the casino; this place really did seem to have everything and big buildings like these were in abundance. All of them strangely unoccupied, at least whenever they made an appearance. You’d think they would have seen more people by now, what with like eighty students in this game, but even on the way over here they had seen nobody. Granted it was night and freezing and anyone smarter than them would have been indoors, but still.

Maybe it was for the best that they hadn’t run into anyone though, given their current track record with meeting new people; one runaway and one attempted murder. Ana’s plan of winning over the hearts and minds of everyone they met was encountering some considerable difficulties.

Speaking of difficulties…

Shawn looked around for Sebastien, finding him leaning against a wall and shivering. With just a group of four they already had one person who looked like he was ready to get out of there first chance he got. Shawn was sure it was his injury that was keeping him here and not much else; as soon as he was feeling better he didn’t expect Sebastien to stick around much longer.

They would just be lucky if he didn’t take a swing at anyone on the way out.

The larger the group got the more troublesome people they were likely to add to the mix; if they couldn’t even handle one then what chance did their plan have. If it carried on this way then the producers wouldn’t need to do anything to stop their treacherous plan from being carried out; they could just sit back and let them self-destruct while watching the ratings climb.

"Okay everyone. Present time from your Empress. Come and get a weapon."

Shawn turned his head to take in the sight of his Queen/Empress/Girlfriend/Wife. She wasn’t looking as chipper now as she was at the start of the game, or even a few hours ago, and her dress wasn’t looking quite so sparkly as when he had first seen it. He guessed the march across the resort had drained even her reserves as well. She was certainly a vision of tarnished royalty right now.

He was still worried about her. Well, he always would be worried about her; right up until the moment they were finally out of this dreadful situation he would be worried about her safety. But right now he was worried about what she might do rather than what might happen to her; she had been becoming more and more unpredictable as the game had gone on, even for her. Her moods seemed to be everywhere and he couldn’t tell what she was thinking; well, he never could but now he couldn’t even guess.

The sight of her licking up someone else’s blood still lingered in his mind.

He’d wanted to talk to her while they were walking but it was surprisingly difficult to engage her in conversation. Now that they were staying still again, now that they were safe again for the time being, he’d take her aside and sit her down and talk to her properly.

It was his job to look after her right? It was his job to protect her and keep her from harm. Shawn never really subscribed to the idea that it was a man’s duty to protect his woman, but it was very easy to believe that when there was nothing that you needed to protect her from.

As long as they were in this situation he had to keep her safe.

Because he was her King.

“What do we have?”
Program V3 Prologue
Michael Bair - Proud to be an American
Quote: N/A
Weapon: Brass Knuckles
Location: N/A
Status: Alive

The Departed
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Fenrir
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Biting The Hand That Feeds
[ *  *  *  * ]
Shawn considered the gun in front of him. He wished he’d paid more attention to the announcement earlier, specifically the part where it described how each person died, then he might be able to turn if this gun had been used to kill somebody already. Or maybe it had already claimed the lives of countless other kids like him; he hadn’t really thought about where they got the weapons for each series of SOTF but presumably they reused some of them. How many owners had this gun had? How many of them had killed or been killed?

Still, a gun in this game could save his life and as much as he hated to admit it he would much rather he had the gun than Sebastien or Jackson. Or Ana for that, it he was perfectly honest, but since she already had that huge rifle and probably wasn’t going to give it up even if he asked nicely there was nothing he could do about that.

He unclipped the knife’s sheath from his belt and placed it on the card table next to the gun, before wrapping his hand around the ice cold metal of the pistol. He didn’t know much about guns, except what he’d seen in movies and on SOTF, but he knew enough not to just grab it by the trigger and start waving it around. He picked it up by the middle part of the weapon where the barrel became the handle and placed it carefully in his pocket; the fact that he didn’t have a holster and it would just be bouncing around in there worried him but there wasn’t an easily apparent solution right now.

He was about to grab the magazine when the announcement came on and like most of the people in the room and probably most of the people in the resort stopped to listen to it. More names he remembered, far too many that he could put a face to as well, people he knew. And Lucia. Again.

"Goddammit Lucia! What the fuck do you think you're doing?"

Shawn managed not to jump at the outburst happening right beside him but only because he was preoccupied with his own thoughts. His thoughts were probably along the same lines as Ana’s; would they be able to help Lucia if she kept appearing on the announcements like this? Shawn had assumed at first that Lucia had simply acted in self-defence but with her name appearing a second time on the very next announcement he had to wonder.

"Everybody's going on like animals. How the hell am I supposed to protect or redeem any of them if they keep on building up evil? How is anyone going to support us if the only people we have left to help are murderers?" She turned to face him. "Darling, you have to help me out here. I'm losing my damn mind trying to figure this out and I need help. I'm drowning in my own helplessness here. Is my plan futile? Am I doing this all for nothing?"

Redeeming. Evil. The way she was speaking it was like she was starting to believe her own story. Maybe he was reading too much into it but she had given him enough reasons for concern. Still, here she was asking for his help and saving the trouble of him having to talk to her later.

“You’re not supposed to redeem them; you are supposed to get them home. They aren’t evil, they aren’t murderers, they’re us. They’re us dealt a worse hand and put into a worse situation; who’s to say we wouldn’t do the same as them if we were in the same place they were? If we were attacked, if we were scared, if we thought we were going to die.”

Preaching much be contagious because now he was the one giving the big speech. Not that he had the same grandeur and showmanship as his girlfriend which, as a magician, was actually pretty disappointing.

“Ok, some of them probably are evil murderers. But Lucia, Gabriel, maybe even that Jewel girl could just be scared and feel like they had no other choice. That’s what this group is right? Your plan? Another choice. A peaceful option. A different way.”

He was speaking loud enough that he hoped Sebastien and Jackson were hearing this as well. Maybe it would help lower the tension a bit. “If we meet any of those people we should give them a chance. Maybe it’ll all work out?”

He turned away from Ana and picked up the pistol magazine from the card table and held it up. “Not that I think we should be stupid about it or anything. You two should come get a weapon as well.”
Program V3 Prologue
Michael Bair - Proud to be an American
Quote: N/A
Weapon: Brass Knuckles
Location: N/A
Status: Alive

The Departed
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Fenrir
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Biting The Hand That Feeds
[ *  *  *  * ]
Shawn didn’t hear Sebastien’s comment and he barely paid attention to what Jackson said, he was too busy looking at the girl who had just walked in with appraising eyes. She was tall and thin, long black hair with lots of piercings and dark clothing to boot; kind of pretty if you liked the goth thing. Most importantly he didn’t recognise her, which placed her as a student from the other school. Actually, no; most importantly she was carrying a weapon.

It was hard not to notice the wicked looking gun in her hands or the baton sticking out of her coat; the presence of the weapons unnerved him. True it wasn’t much compared to their own arsenal he had to admit, but there was a difference between them; they had weapons, she was armed. She looked like she was ready to use those weapons while he doubted any of them, except probably Ana, could say the same.

That being said she wasn’t exactly being threatening at the moment; she had her gun in her hands sure, but it was more like she was cradling it than wielding it. She was smiling and seemed friendly enough, her question was innocuous and her tone non-threatening. Even so, something about her seemed off to Shawn.

Maybe he was just prejudiced about the dark clothes, the piercings and the SOTF villain t-shirt. But something told him that people holding guns and acting friendly at the same time weren’t right. If you were brandishing a weapon you would be more aggressive or defensive in your actions. If you were genuinely friendly you wouldn’t flaunt your weapons like that.

Even so he was willing to give her the benefit of the doubt. As the guy who just spouted a load of crap about tolerance and understand even for the killers he didn’t have much choice. He patted his pocket discreetly to check that the gun was still there and then stepped away from Anastasia. He walked around the table and forward until he was closer to the girl than Jackson was.

“Hey. There’s not much going on, we just got here so we’re still getting settled. You’re from the other school right? I would probably remember you otherwise. My name’s Shawn.”

He took a few more steps away from the others and closer to the girl. Some part of him warned him that this wasn’t a good idea but he went ahead with it anyway; Maybe a part of him was thinking if he got closer he could stop her before she tried anything dangerous, if his hunch about her turned out to be right.

He still kept enough sense to stop well before he got close enough to the girl that she could reach him with that axe-gun thing or her baton. He’d left his knife on the table so he felt even less confident about winning a fight than he would have done even if he had it.

“I’ve got no problem with you coming in, assuming its ok with everyone else as well. And I shouldn’t have to tell you that you’d have to drop those weapons before we let you in.” That was the real test wasn’t it? If she gave up her weapons, or at least the gun, then it would ease his suspicions of her a little and he honestly wouldn’t have any problem with letting her in. If she didn’t want to give them up them she could just turn around and leave now; being understanding was one thing but he wasn’t going to take any chances with some girl he didn’t know. “Also, if you don’t mind, I’d like you to tell us your name before this goes any further.”

He kind of wanted to put his hands in his pockets, so that he could have a hand on the gun in case this was the moment everything went badly, but he didn’t want to draw attention to the weapon or the bulge it made in his jeans. Instead he settled for hooked his thumbs into his pockets and bet on the fact that he could reach the gun quick enough.
Program V3 Prologue
Michael Bair - Proud to be an American
Quote: N/A
Weapon: Brass Knuckles
Location: N/A
Status: Alive

The Departed
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Fenrir
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Biting The Hand That Feeds
[ *  *  *  * ]
Shawn tensed, more at the laugh than he did the words. The out-of-place smile was bad enough but what kind of person just casually talked about shooting someone then threw out a laugh like that? Then there was the suggestion, if it was true, that somebody had actually told this girl to shoot Ana if she got the chance; did Anastasia really have enemies in this game that they didn’t know about? He knew that not everybody appreciated her unique brand of uniqueness, but to actually want to kill her?

This was one of those times when he really wished Ana would just tone it down a bit; Shawn really didn’t want Ana to have this girls attention right now, not while she had that gun in her hands and not while she was still giving off such an unhinged vibe.

He wasn’t a big watcher of SOTF, but he had seen a few seasons. His sister was the bigger fan and she was able to pick a future psycho out of a line-up with uncanny ability. When they were watching she would suddenly point at someone and say;

See him? He’s going to go crazy. He looks like a loner, he fidgets way too much and he looks at everybody like he’s sizing them up for the chopping block. I give it a day, maybe two, but he’ll snap.

This girl was acting just like the kind of person she always pointed out to him.

She was probably screaming at the TV now for him to just shoot her.

When she revealed her name it didn’t really come as a surprise. This unnerving girl was the same person who had appeared on the announcements time and time again, almost every time accompanied by the name of somebody he knew, by name if nothing else. He tried not to react too strongly, lest he provoke a similarly strong reaction from her, but when she dialled up the smile and the creepiness with it, it was hard not to immediately go on the offensive.

She hadn’t done anything yet but what she said made it very clear that she wasn’t planning on giving up her weapons anytime soon. It was only a matter of time though; despite what he had said earlier there couldn’t be a good reason for all those deaths. You could only claim self-defence so many time and with her body count this girl was definitely a killer, and a dangerous one at that.

Shit. She really had the drop on them as well. Neither Sebastien or Jackson were armed at all and they only had two guns between them and one of those was currently sitting uselessly in his pocket. Did Ana have her rifle near her? Could she grab it before Jewel shot somebody.

He needed to get to his gun quickly and without Jewel shooting him first. Could he do it without her noticing? Maybe, but he’d need some kind of misdirection or a way to hide his hands… ok, yeah, that might work.

Shawn pulled his hands away from his pockets and gave an exaggerated shrug. “Well, shit. That’s puts us in a little bit of a situation doesn’t it? I mean if you’re really who you say you are, and I don’t doubt that you are, then you understand we are going to have a few reservations about letting you just walk around with a gun like that.”

Here Shawn stuffed his hands roughly in his pockets, hoping that the overstated motion would hide the fact he had something in them other than his hands. He then half turned his body away from Jewel, hiding his right hand and arm from sight as he looked over at Anastasia and the others. “I mean, really in this kingdom the only one who should have that kind of power is the Queen, right?”

He gave another large shrug, lifting both hands out of his pockets and the gun in his right hand with it. He made sure to keep his right arm hidden from Jewel and hopefully she was too distracted by all the other movements to notice any glint of steel that might of crept through. He turned his head back to face Jewel but kept his body half turned and his right hand safely out of sight.

“But, what can we do? It’s not like we’re going to force you. Are you sure there’s no chance we can talk you around? You can keep the baton but it would make us all feel a lot better if you weren’t holding your gun like that.”

And if you could stop smiling please and thank you, but I won’t say that to your face.
Program V3 Prologue
Michael Bair - Proud to be an American
Quote: N/A
Weapon: Brass Knuckles
Location: N/A
Status: Alive

The Departed
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Fenrir
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Biting The Hand That Feeds
[ *  *  *  * ]
A blood oath? What the hell was Ana saying now? He daren’t take his eyes off Jewel long enough to take another look back at his girlfriend to see what kind of expression she had on right now, or to check if she was holding a weapon or not. Shawn was reasonably confident he could handle this situation, through words or something else, but Ana’s words were complicating things more than he liked; he really wished she would take a page from Jackson and Sebastien’s book and just stay quiet. He really wanted to keep this between him and Jewel as much as possible so that even if somebody had to be hurt it wouldn’t be one of them.

Jewel wiggled the gun in her hands, drawing attention to the fact that she was now pointing it a little more obviously in his direction, as if he hadn’t been watching it the entire time he was looking in her direction.

She took half a step forward and he tensed and he had to fight not to expose the gun in his right hand. She wasn’t doing anything yet but she was thinking about it, her eyes were darting all over the place like she was trying to decide which one of them to shoot first. Right now her gaze was behind him, most likely Ana in the centre, and that was something he was very much not ok with him.

What could he do? Even if he assumed he was quicker than her, even if she wasn’t looking at him directly, there was no way he could shoot her before she shot him or someone else; her gun was already pointed at him, all she had to do with pull the trigger, even on reflex, before he raised and steadied his arm.

He needed another distraction, something to take her focus off of them for just a microsecond. Somebody or something unexpected. Somebody, please, do something stupid.

"Shawn!"

Jackson shouted his name. He had no idea why and he didn’t really care. Treating it like a starting pistol he snapped into action, his right arm flying up and bringing the gun around from behind his and up to point at Jewel, at the same time he left moving up to grab and steady the right. He fired once, immensely relieved to find that the thing was actually loaded, but he could tell it was wide by a lot; he’d fired way too soon and the bullet sailed far to Jewel’s left and smashed the front of a slot machine. He fired a second time and this one was a lot more on target, but couldn’t for the life of him tell if it was going to hit or not.

His quick reaction and Jackson’s distraction, whatever it was, only bought him enough time for that much; he didn’t get off a third shot.
Program V3 Prologue
Michael Bair - Proud to be an American
Quote: N/A
Weapon: Brass Knuckles
Location: N/A
Status: Alive

The Departed
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Fenrir
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Biting The Hand That Feeds
[ *  *  *  * ]
Missed her by that much.

That was the predominant thought is Shawn’s kind as he lay there. It had all happened so fast that he couldn’t say that he had actually seen it happen and had only experienced it through recollection; he remembered his second shot hitting her backpack, so fucking close to hitting the girl herself that they both thought that it had. And then he had seen the little flare as she fired her own gun, much more on target than he was; how could she miss at that range? Why had he gotten so close?

He was sure the bullet hit him before the sound of the gunshot reached his ears. It struck him under the chin, just above the collar and a little to the left, tearing through his throat and leaving a bloody path through his neck in its wake. Shawn didn’t so much fall and crumble, legs practically disappearing out from under him as his knees gave way and he landed on the floor in a heap.

The gun fell from his limp finger and clattered away somewhere, hopefully nearer to Sebastien or Jackson than Jewel. Shaking hands reached for his neck, clamping down on the wide wound, trying to exert enough pressure to stem the bleeding. The collar interfered with his efforts and he found himself tugging at it to try and move it aside, all thought of explosives forgotten in the face of a more immediate threat.

He was no longer aware of what was going on around him, absorbed in his own futile efforts to stop the bleeding. He didn’t know where Jewel had gone, he wasn’t sure what the others were doing; the sound of someone screaming managed to break through and he really hoped it was Jewel, if only so he wouldn’t have to think about someone he cared about being hurt.

Blood continued to pour through his fingers in torrents. It pooled beneath him and made his fingers slippery, only making his efforts to move the collar aside harder as his soaked digits slid over the smooth metal. The more blood he lost the more his movements slowed, the heavier his arms felt and the darker the edges of his vision got. After no time at all his arms simply fell away from his neck, too tired to lift them anymore. He couldn’t hear anything anymore; he wanted to know what was going on. Where was everybody?

Where was Ana?

Where was Jewel?

Where… where was…

Shawn Thornton – AE3: Deceased
Program V3 Prologue
Michael Bair - Proud to be an American
Quote: N/A
Weapon: Brass Knuckles
Location: N/A
Status: Alive

The Departed
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