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/qst/ - Quests

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=Thread 19=

You are Delilah, a young girl with a strange affliction suffering in a world that does not care. A runaway living on the streets, you go through several hardships and struggles in an attempts to find peace and happiness for yourself. The world is not simply black and white, nor are the people living in it.

Can you push through all the misery that surrounds you, or will you fall to this gray world?

=Links and Information=

Story Thus Far (Raw and a mess, will work on cleaned up versions.):

http://pastebin.com/WnGZwK04 (embed) (embed) (embed) Part 1
http://pastebin.com/eGfGW8jV (embed) (embed) (embed) Part 2 (Part two seems to be somewhat messed up in addition to not being caught up. I will attempt to fix, but archives seem to be your better option for catch up)



Quick Glance (SPOILERS) The quick Who is Who and what Delilah has. Mostly accurate.:


Twitter; @Cowboy_Sue
Discord; https://discord.gg/0107qV9kiFDlUH9nY
Chat room with me and other players. I answer questions, post sketches, and act cheeky.

Last Thread:
You wait on the couch, listening to John cook. It would be good of you to at least offer to help him out, right? He should know if his blood is 'clean' or not, right? Remaining quiet, you try to think about the best way to approach the question while John brings over two plates, falling on the couch next to you.

John eats away at the freshly made breakfast while you push around the diced potatoes with the fork. It's hard enough to ask Lawrence for this, maybe you should try to ease into it.

"Are you safe?" Of course it had to come out stupid sounding, you can't just handle this like a normal person.

"Well, assumin' you ain't gonna try to shoot me then I think I am, missy." John answers between bites, and you realize that you're forced to follow through with asking him.

"I mean um...your blood. Do you think the stuff that um...that you were on last night is gone? Cause if it's safe then I can uh...I can do my thing and help yo-"

"I don't know if I could have you do that..."

"It's okay, I don't mind. Especially if it will help, there's not much else I can do that's useful."

John's mouth twists up slightly and as he looks over you start to feel...judged? Not quite like that, he isn't being mean but you do feel rather under the spotlight.

"How are you able to do that?" He asks.

"With uh...just with my tongu-"

"No I mean, how did you get this way? I'm not tryna make you feel bad or nothin' but it's just strange I guess. You've shown me that it works but I still can't wrap my head around it, feels like I still don't believe it. And you make it seem like it's no big thing...maybe I'm the weird one but it just seems..."

"I..." You think it over. Have you really been treating it like it's nothing? Are you really just...used to it now? That it's only an inconvenience, not just something that makes you into a-

"I'm some kind of freak, aren't I?" Your words sting you harder then John's did. Of course he thinks this is weird, anyone normal would. Have you just become that used to it? Were you expecting to get through life dealing with this like it's just some sort of sickness and not like the sort of freakishness that it really is.

"Ah hell, I didn't mean to bring ya down. I was bein' dumb and just spouting off anythin' my stupid head came up with. It makes ya useful and helpful, and that's what matters yeah?" John is trying to calm you down, but the fact remains between you.

You aren't normal, and whatever made you this way is scary.

Isn't how much you have became used to it just as scary though?

There isn't anything you feel like you can say right now, your eyes stuck staring at your plate.

"Ah here, if you don't mind then..." John removes his arm from the jacket, rolling up his sleeve and peeling away the bandage covering his wound. "This would be the only thing I really need, been hurtin' like hell. Don't think I could have feel asleep last night if I didn't ah...dabble in my stash. Only reason I dipped into it, felt like my arm was on fire."

You look at the wound and can't help as you flinch at the sight. Cuts and bruises are one thing, and Lawrence's scrape with the bullet wasn't that bad. This is a gouge though, not big but you doubt that John had just been grazed. If you had to guess, he dug out whatever was inside himself.

For the first time in a long time, you find it hard to approach the wound. It looks gruesome and terrible, but something that definitely should be addressed. You also feel awkward putting your mouth on him, but as soon as your lips touch the gape the familiar rush begins to hit you.

An earthy flavor fills your mouth, and though it's only slight there is the wooden one present. There's also the mix of something...metallic? If he really did dig out a bullet then that's where that flavor is coming from, if you had to guess.

The lightheaded feeling comes soon enough, and you hope that either you or John has the strength to stop you.


Pushing yourself away, you force some distance between you and John. You would love to keep going, to continue that wonderful feeling, to make yourself feel amazing...

But you don't want to be a freak that also loses control.

It's hard though...it's so hard.

"All uh...all done!" You chime, wiping your mouth clean. John doesn't look at his arm again, covering up and placing his jacket back on.

"Do you feel uh...do you feel okay?" He asks, looking over at you.

"I think so...I mean I feel great but uh...ummm...not like last time. Like I just feel uh..." You make a small flourishing gesture with your hands. "Just like that~"

"Uh huh...I'm uh...I'm gonna clean up the kitchen. Try not to hurt yourself or uh..."

"I'll be fiiine. You go and clean~! Wash the dishes~!"


As John is cleaning up the mess in the kitchen you sit on the couch, looking around the room. Your head feels nice, but you still can't help but wonder where Lawrence and Faraway are. It's a weird feeling, this nice lightness mixed in with worry. You don't like it, you just want to feel the lightness.

The phone next to the couch rings, and out of habit you reach over to answer it.

"Hello?" You ask, and realize right away that this isn't your house. Whatever, you'll just let whoever is on the other side know that Faraway is busy and that you'll take a messa-...they hung up. How rude...you place the receiver back down and hear John call out from the kitchen.

"It might not be a good idea to answer the phone in someone else's h-"

The phone rings again and you can't help but pick it up again, against John's warning. You realize that it's a bad idea once it's back in your hand. Why do you have to be so impulsive when you're like this?


"Ah yes, Delilah? You made it back then!" Faraway's voice is on the other end this time, and you mouth this over to John before returning back to the conversation.

"Yeah, we got back o-...sorry about answering your phone..."

"It's fine, I was hoping you would answer. I just wanted to let you know that we are still over here at the hospital. I just need to make sure I know what Alexandra's condition is going to be before I can leave."

"Oh, okay okay." You really hope that Faraway can't tell that you're a bit loopy right now.

"Lawrence is here with me too, I'll just drive us both back. Is John doing okay?"

"Yeah he's fine, just uh...fine."

"Good, help yourself to what you need. It might be another hour or so before we leave."

You try to think to think if there's anything you need to tell or ask Faraway about right now...
Ask why he hung up before.
"Alright but um..." You think back to the call before, that was weird...right?

"What is it?"

"Why did you hang up earlier? Did the call drop or something?"

"I didn't call earlier," Faraway says. "The phone here at the hospital has been busy, I had to wait for it to clear up."

"So that wasn't you just a few minutes ago?"

"Maybe it was a wrong number, don't worry about it- Ah, hold on...Lawrence wants me to relay a message." You can hear Faraway looking over a note and you begin to worry. Is something wrong?

"Alright dear, Lawrence wants me to tell you....'Behave'."

"Is...that it?"

"Yes, now I'm going to let you go. It seems like it's rather busy here. Just try to hold tight till we return, alright?"

"Alright, thank you-" As soon as you say this the phone is hung up on Faraway's side. That call earlier wasn't him...maybe it was a friend of his or something? Maybe hearing a girl's voice scared them?

"Everything alright?" John asks, drying his hands on his jeans as he walks over.

"Um...yeah. They don't know about that girl yet, but Mr. Faraway said that they should umm...they should be back soon!" You hang up the phone and look towards the clock. It's only about eleven-twenty right now, but it feels like a lot has happened today.

"Shame that she's got somethin' like that happening to her," John sits down in the armchair this time, and you notice that you have spread out to take up most of the room on the couch. "Is he married? Saw a picture of him with a lady, we gotta worry about her walkin' in on us?"

"Oh, uh...Mr. Faraway said he's a um...a widower. I think she died a few years ago."

"Ah, I'll make sure not to ask. He didn't strike me as the type to uh...take a bride. They got any kids?"

"No, she um...she died because her body couldn't handle the baby or something..."

"Jesus, that's tragic." It feels awkward talking about Faraway in his apartment, but with your mind the way it is right now you aren't exactly making the best choices. This is even further proven with your next question.

"Did you want kids?" What an inconsiderate thing for you to ask. "W-Wait...um, you don't have to answer that, I'm being rude."

"I did. I think I did, anyways." You're surprised to hear John answer so soon, but from the tone if his voice you know that whatever answer you get isn't going to be a good one.

"Wife didn't really want kids, but I figured I had to start a family. Kids would have been nice, I thought. Course I was tryna plan for all that before I was sent over to Ukraine. When I came back the thought was kinda just...pushed aside. And then when my wife told me she was pregnant I didn't believe her...er, rather...I didn't believe it was mine."

"Why not...?"

"I knew she was seein' someone else behind my back, and when I tried adding up the months to the last time we had sex it just...didn't seem likely. Only had sex twice when I came back home...didn't tell her that. Just tried to act happy about it, but I knew she was still seein' that guy behind my back. One night we argued and I'd been drinkin', she threatened to get rid of the baby and I was just-..." John falls silent, and he looks out towards the window. "...either way, turns out the baby was mine, as hard as it is to believe. She kept it, which I thought meant I could at least get some visitation rights. Turned out she was able to pull some strings and uh...long story short, I can't ever go see my kid. Won't tell me nothin' about them, won't gimme any pictures, nothin'. Not like I could really do much, but uh...I still woulda have liked for the kid to know their dead-beat of a dad, ya know?"

"Your wife um...she kinda sounds like a uh...a bad word I shouldn't say..."

"She could have her bitchy moments, that's for sure. Then again I don't think I was givin' her what she needed. Couldn't hold a good job, scared her when I went loony, couldn't even perform my duties as a husband. She might have had problems, but I certainly didn't help."

"I didn't mean to ask, it just kinda...came out..." You apologize, trying to think past the buzzing.

"I didn't mean to make ya feel bad again. You think the TV in here works?" John points at the television, changing the focus of the conversation. "Might be nice to watch the news."

"Oh, let me see...uh..." You take the time to turn on the television and flip through the channels, settling on a local station. "This fine?"

"Yeah, it's fine."

You stretch out on the couch again, hoping Faraway doesn't mind. The segment cuts away to commercials, and by the time the anchors come back John has already fallen asleep. It'll be good for him to nap, and maybe you can learn something from the news.


It must have been too boring or maybe you were too comfortable or a combination of the two, but when you wake up there's the middle of a sitcom playing. You don't know what's going on in it, nor do you find it funny, but in your sleepy haze you watch it anyways.

As the next commercial break takes over there's a knock at the door. You consider ignoring it, but you remember that Faraway gave you his key. Leaving John where he sleeps you go over to the door, and begin to unlock it.

Wait...you might not be at your sharpest right now, but you know that it might not be them either. It's a dumb move, but you reset the deadbolt with a heavy thud and look through the peephole.

...that's not Faraway or Lawrence. You can't really see their faces, but it appears to be two men. Maybe their friends of Faraway, or just...door to door salesmen? You'll just ignore the-

"Investigators, open up. We know you're home."

You jump at the sound of one of the men talking. Investigators? Like...like police officers? Why would police be here? Shoot...that means you have to let them in, right? Maybe you can just ignore them...

There's another round of knocking, harder and heavier this time and it makes your heart race.

Is it illegal to ignore officers? What if they come in and arrest you?

You're starting to freak out, and looking over you can see John is just starting to wake up. Another bout of knocking sends your heart racing even faster.

Oh man...what are you supposed to do? This isn't your apartment, but they seem persistent on getting in...
You don't like the police, don't let them in.
Wake up John, tell him what's going on.
They haven't held a badge to the peep hole. Ask to see identification. If the badge looks real ask if they have a warrant/open door with chain thing still on and talk with them.

DONT LET THEM IN JUST YET DELILAH! Christ sake they could be anyone.
Don't respond to them, and motion for John to stay quiet. How would they even know we're in here? Was that them on the phone before?

... why would they say "home"? Do they think Mr. Faraway is home? Couldn't the guy in the reception have told them he's not home if they're cops?

What if they're not even real cops, but those guys in the mysterious cars? What if they've found us and are going to hand us over to Bower?
John will know what to do. Asking for a warrant or whatever will only confirm that we're here if it's Bower's guys. Even if it's the actual police, how are we gonna explain the fact that two homeless are squatting in this dude's apt?
You know, I've seen these threads all over the catalog, and I'm not one to judge, but that looks like a dude.

As in, not feminine in the least.
Don't let them see us
That's the idea m80
You back up, making your way over to John while keeping your eyes on the door.

"What's uh...what's goin' o-" You shush John, trying to keep yourself collected as more knocks ring through the door.

"Who is that?" He whispers, sitting up at attention now. The TV is still playing in the background, and you hope that if they can hear it the noise will cover the sound of talking.

"I don't know...they said they were uh...investigators?" Your fear and confusion is trying to take over, your voice cracking.

"What like, police?" John is a bit groggy, trying to shake himself awake.

"They didn't have like...uniforms o-...well, they were wearing coats. They didn't look like cops I guess?"

"They didn't say cops though, right?"

"N-..no, they didn't. All they said was 'we know you're home', but I don't know if they meant like...Mr. Faraway or what...I unlocked the door a bit before I checked who it was..."

"Uh, here. I'll go check, but they can't stay out there forever. If they looks like cops then I'll deal with them, but if they aren't...we'll just try to wait them out, okay?"

You nod and stay over by the couch as John creeps over to the door. He looks through the peephole, and though there's knocking once again the door remains unopened.

What if they are police and they bust in and try to arrest you?

What if they aren't police? What if...Jesus, could those be those men? What if they force themselves in? What if they try to drag you away, drag you off to...take you away to...to Bower...

Your eyes fall upon the gun on the table. If they came in here...could you scare them away using that? Reaching for it, you can see your hand is shaking. Dammit...there's no way you could even hold that thing properly enough to shoot. John said you don't always have to shoot it though, right? Like...you can use it to scare away whoever it is at the door?

Holding the cold metal in your hand, yo begin to lift up the gun. There's...no actual way you could fire this thing, right?

...you're too scared.

The gun clanks to the table and you fear the noise will give away your presence. Not that you haven't already done that at this point...

The quietness that follows brings along a tension, fear that they haven't given up. John takes another look through the peephole and sighs, walking back over.

"They walked off. Didn't look like no cops I've ever seen before." John eyes the gun, seeing that it has been moved. You look away from it and hope he doesn't question you about it. You neither want to admit the fact that you considered using the gun or that you couldn't even force yourself to hold it.

"So...we aren't gonna uh...get arrested?" You ask, John sitting on the couch.

"I mean, don't think either of us have done anythin' illegal. Course it probably don't look no good, us bein' here with Faraway gone. Not that us bein' here is against the law or nothin'. You know who them SOB's were?"

"Uh...I'm not 100% sure on this but they might have...might be the men who have been f-...following me."

"Following you...wait..."

"I think they were hired by...Bower. The man w-who-"

"If I'd known that I'd snap their necks right there...either way, they're gone. If it was them then I doubt they would have any kinda legal power to barge in. Pretty sure cops need a uh...a warrant to do that themselves. Less Faraway here is some secret criminal mastermind, I doubt he'd be doin' anything to earn himself a house search," John says, looking up at the clock. "Jesus, it's almost one, where are they?"

"Maybe that Alex girl is taking longer to get better then they thought..."

"Well, anyone else comes knockin' you let me handle the door, alright?" John says and you nod. "Good, now uh...does Faraway know about your whole thing with the uh, with the blood?"

"No. The only ones who know about it are um...you, Lawrence, Jessica knows a bit...uh...Sam knows that I'm sick b-"

"Ah shit, Sam!" John jumps up, but realizing there is nothing that he can do at the moment he only looks lost.

"What is it? Is...is Sam okay?" You knew that he was looking for a new place, but John was out of it last night...what if Sam needed help?

"I mean, he ain't in trouble or nothin' but...shit. I left him hangin'...he'll be fine. Might be sore at me and Law but...it's fine. It'll be fine."

"Where is he at, anyways?"

"Warren offered to help us secure a place, even if it was a temporary one. Over by ah...the old football field...you probably don't know where that is. Anyways, I was supposed to figure out what was goin' on with you and Lawrence and make sure we have a way to communicate, bring y'all over if I needed to." John sounds exhausted just talking about this. "It's tough. Lotta places we found either wouldn't be good till the summer or were just too dangerous, couldn't bring you kids over there."

"Thanks for working so hard on that. I still can't believe you got shot..."

"I've survived worse. Plus I can still walk, can't I? All that matters. I uh, I owe you two bullets, by the way." John gives you a somewhat guilty grin. "They nicked me first, but everyone learns to fear ole John Boseman when he's got himself a gun."

"That's fine, I um...I'm not too worried about the bullets."

"Y'know, that gun is a beauty. Needed a bit of upkeep, but she fires nicely. Sam has the ammo I bought for it, I'll make sure to show you how to reload and clean it properly later. Said it was your grandfather's?"

"Yeah. My grandma kept it around, in her bedroom."

"It'll deter any thief, that's for sure." John picks up the gun, looking over it. You can't help but think about your grandmother. Where could she be? What about your mother, how is she doing? Maybe you should try to visit her when you have a chance, see how she's doing at least.

Dammit...your head is cloudy but you aren't just light and floaty. If anything you just feel like a confused mess.

The phone starts to ring and you reach for it instinctively but stop yourself from picking up the receiver.

"Should I answer it...?"

"It might be Faraway. I'll listen in, but go ahead an answer."

You nod and pick up the phone to your ear. For whatever reason you can't get the words out, still scared from earlier.

"Mr. Faraway? Can you hear me?" The voice on the other end is a man, and not one that you know.

You can't find the words to speak, and the man on the other end does it for you.

"Mr. Faraway? Hello? Are you there?"

You aren't sure what to say. Of course you could pass the phone to John, or you could just speak to the person on the other end. Maybe you should just hang up...

I have to go be a degenerate for a while now, just a heads up!
Say nothing and wait for them to hang up
Hand the phone over and mouth that someone's asking for Mr. Faraway. Offer any information that might seem useful, like about Al's sister.
>>mr.faraway is busy at the moment. May I take a message?
Seems like a good play. If they ask, tell them we're a friend' kid or something.
We seem too unsettled to lie on the fly right now so that has to fall on John
Alright, back home now and writing.
thanks babe
You stay silent for a bit, hoping the other person will hang up first.

"Mr. Faraway, please say something. I'll have to come up if you don't."

Looking towards John, you push the phone over to him in a panic.

"Take it...!" You mouth to him.

"What am I supposed to say?"

"I'll uh...I'll tell you!" As you say this the voice on the other end calls out for Faraway again. John doesn't look too happy about it, but he presses his ear against the receiver.

"Er, hello. Sorry about that, dropped the phone...you're right, I'm not Faraway. He's uh..." John looks towards you, and you feed him some quick information.

"You see, Al is out for the moment. Invited some guests over and noticed he needed to run out for a moment. Should be back any moment now, 'les of course he meets up with Car-...Sharron..then who knows when that man'll come back. Ah but I can take a message for him."

Thank god John is handling this well. You aren't the one talking but you still feel anxious over this. He looks like he's had to do this sort of thing often. The voice on the other end is muffled, you can't make out any of the words only the fact that the man is talking.

"Uh huh...ah well I didn't feel like it was right to let people into his home while he's away...just tell them to come by some other time...uh huh...no sir, I'm afraid I don't know...yeah, alright. Thank ya." John hangs up the phone and the moment it clicks you can't help but lay down your barrage of questions.

"Who was that? What did they want? Are they going to come up he-"

"Relax missy. Said he was the front desk. Sounds like those two went down to ask him if Faraway was home, tellin' him it was an emergency that they see him. Course I wasn't bout to let them in, sounded like they really hounded that guy so they could come in."

"Oh god..."

"Ain't no way they can get in here. Doubt they would be allowed to loiter downstairs, though there's not too much they can do with them outside. Would Law recognize them?"

"Yeah, but um...I think they would recognize him too..." How the hell could they have found this place? It's not like they could recognize you, right? You don't recall any sort of cars following you either, it feels like you could spot that dreaded car from miles away at this point.

"Law doesn't really blend in too well with the crowd...wait, do they know Faraway?"

"I...don't think so? Mr. Faraway mentioned that he um...he knew of B-..Bower before, but just from work. Like, I don't think they've actually met or anything like that, just that he has a kinda bad reputation with people..."

"Shit, they'll see Lawrence when he walks in then, won't they? Maybe they'll get kicked out before then...plus Faraway has a car right? I imagine so, there's that garage connected to the building. If they come in through there then maybe those two won't see 'em." John is thinking over this, and you're glad that you won't have to do this alone right now.

"Do you think staying here with be safe?"

"Well, it's not like they could carry you out kickin' and screamin' without somebody gettin' suspicious. That's banking on the idea that they're even able to get theirs hands on you." John leans back in the chair, arms crossed and his face grimacing. "I really need to get over to where Sam is. Can't leave you alone though...where the hell is Law? Even just Faraway bein' here would make me feel better. Not that I'm sayin' you're in danger here but...just bein' cautious ya know?"

"Yeah, I understand. I just wish I didn't have to do that though."

"Me neither, missy." John sits in silence after this, thinking over plans. You allow him the needed quiet, looking back towards the television. Some other dumb show is playing right now, but you can't be bothered to try and pay attention to it.

"Once Law gets here, assumin' he didn't get himself in trouble at the hospital or somethin', I'll have him tag along with me to go see Sam. So long as Faraway don't mind you spending a night or two here. We can check out this new place and then maybe get ourselves moved, come back for ya...how does that sound?" John asks, looking over towards you. "It ain't a great plan, we were supposed to have this place hunkered down earlier but...life just don't work out the way you plan it sometimes."

"What if I can't stay here?"

"I doubt Faraway would turn you down, but in that case...eh, we may have to find some place we can stick ya down for a few nights. Maybe we can find out a way to get a cheap motel room or somethin'...might have to go ahead and do that for the kids but..." John looks like he's about to say something more, and you can't help yourself from asking;

"But what?"

"Now...don't you think we're singling you out or nothin', we're just tryin' to do our best to keep everyone safe. But ah...for the time bein', till we can find a stable enough place, we figured it would be best to keep you separated for the whole group. We don't know who all you might have been seen with, and it's a lot easier to protect one teenager then a bunch of little ones."

"Ah...right. I guess I am kinda bad to keep around..."

"I know it sounds bad, but it really ain't. We aren't pushin' you out or nothin'. Just need to try and get a place secured, move everyone over, and then we can figure out the best way to keep ya safe and ah..."


"We don't want to hide you away. Staying cooped up ain't healthy for y-"

"Neither is running away constantly," You look away as you say this. "Or getting caught..."

"You ain't gonna get caught. Not when you're with us, alright?" John leans forward, his face and words serious. "That's a promise missy. Understand?"


A blaring siren cuts your words short, the sound loud and abrupt. You shriek in surprise and cover your ears at the sound.

"What...is that?!" You shout over the sound, looking over at John is attempting to block out the noise too.

"S-...shit...fire a-...alarm!"

The sounds of people moving upstairs and in the hall way mix in with the deafening noise. Is it really that loud...? You doubt that being 'loopy' right now is helping you...

"Do we have to get out?" You yell your question to John, trying to read his lips.

"Might be false al-..alarm. But I can't t-tell..." Even through the clutter of noise you can hear that John's voice is breaking and stuttering, his hands beginning to shake.

You can't smell smoke, and you recall your times in school when the fire-alarm had been pulled before. What if it's one of those situations?

What if it isn't?

You could try staying in here and wait to see if it's a false alarm or not, that might be a bit risky though.

Maybe you and John should go out anyways? Though he doesn't look in too good of shape right now...would taking him out with all those other people even be a good idea? Maybe you could wait just a few moments?

Why is this choice falling on you...
Stay, that alarm is much too perfectly timed, like someone trying to draw us out...
I bet its those guys at the door trying to get us to leave with a false fire alarm. Ither way neither of us is in any condition to be doing any quick movements or maneuvers in the crowds of people& could very easily get splitt up

>don't take the b8
Looking up at the corner in the kitchen, the flashing light of the alarm catches your eye.

There's no way this can be a real fire, right? Not with those guys trying to get in only a few minutes ago. This just has to be some sort of trap. Despite it going against everything school taught you about fire safety, it would be safer to stay.

"I think we s-" You turn back to John, your words falling beneath the alarm.

John's eyes are unfocused, watching an invisible scene play out in his mind. The alarm has made you anxious, but it is pure fear blanketing his face. Each flash of the light makes you blink, but John's unfocused eyes are staring off wide and glazed over.



"John!" You're shouting louder now, coming up to grab his sleeve. He needs to snap out of it, even if it really is just a trick you can't afford to have him like this. His lack of a reaction isn't promising, but you also fear that you're doing this wrong.

"JOHN!" Grabbing his arm and giving him a quick shake, you yell as loud as you can and force your voice to cut through the alarm. "SNAP OUT O-"

"Stay here Nadia," John mutters as he pushes you aside, storming over to the door. He places his palm against the door and follows this up by feeling the knob. As John goes to another wall and feels it up you can recognize what he's doing, they taught you something similar in school. John systematically goes to each wall, reaches up on the couch to touch the ceiling.

"How is it? Alright?" You can't tell if John can't hear you or if he's just too determined on assuring the safety of the apartment. He did call you Nadia again...is he alright or is he back into one of his episodes?

"Checking the bedrooms." John goes into the guestroom while you remain in the living room. How sneaky is that, trying to force you out this way? What were they even planning on doing? Grabbing you downstairs? That is your fear, but you realize that it would be a dumb move. If anything they are just being a big inconvenience to everyone.

Looking over at the table, you see the gun laying on the table still.

This is nothing compared to what they've put you through.

Through the loud noises and flashing lights, you've almost calmed down when the smell of smoke wafts through. Wait, the place isn't actually on fire is it?

"J-John...!" You call out, John coming out of the guest room. "D-Do you smell that t-too?"

"It's close. No hotspots though," John speaks quickly, entering into Faraway's room. You cover your ears, trying to block out the sound. Going to the window and glancing out you can see a large crowd of people gathering on the sidewalk across the street. Maybe it wouldn't be so bad going there if you really need to.

Turning back you look at the living room and kitchen.

The smoke smell is present, but you can't see any. It's scary but burnt popcorn does this too, doesn't it? Stinks awful and fills the whole house. This is just the same thing, right? Someone either pulled the alarm or someone is burning food or something...that's all this is.

A flicker of metal catches your eyes and you look towards the front door.

Your heart skips a beat when there's a bump against the door and the sound of the knob trying to turn.

"J-...John!" You shout and rush over to the door, putting up the chain. As soon as your fingers leave the metal the door bumps again and the knob turns open. The deadbolt is still set, but the jiggling and thudding has moved up to the still intact lock.

"John they're trying to get in!" You run to the bedroom, John already rushing out.

He braces up against the door, trying to redo the bottom lock. The knob is messed up, the lock mechanism turning uselessly in place.

"Shit...they have a hammer or somethin', this ain't gonna hold." John presses his whole weight against the door, bracing his feet against the ground.

The alarm makes it hard to think, to concentrate properly.

The metal on the deadbolt clicks and turns, the door opening a crack. John forces it back shut, using all that he can to close it. If he moves from the spot the door will open. The chain is in place, but that thin piece of metal may not last long against them, not with how determined they are to get in here.

You take steps back, trying to think of a solution. It's not like you guys can jump out, and if you remember correctly the fire exit is down the hall. From what little other sounds you can hear most of the people from the building have already left, you two are probably alone in this.

The knife and pepper-spray remain in your pocket, and with the gun back there...maybe you guys can force your way out? But what if they recognize you? Your new disguise will be compromised...you wish your mind was stable right now. The noises and flashing lights and now the new panic don't do well to help you out right now.

John is handling the door fine for now, but it was two men standing outside earlier. He can't keep holding that up, can he? Jesus...what can you do in this hell of a situation?
If there is anything medium size like a chair or small table to assist john(within our capability to move in 10-20 seconds) move that Infront of the door to brace it and go grab johns gun and hand it to him
>he's more experienced and with our 2 shots, accuracy counts.

Get more stuff and brace te door more?
Grab the gun for John, then see if there's something in the kitchen we could throw in these guys' faces, like pepper or chili powder.
In a panic you scan the room for something that can be used to brace the door, give John something besides his body to use. The only thing it seems like you could bring over are one of the kitchen chairs. They aren't heavy but maybe they could still be helpful?

"Can you use this?" You ask as you bring over the chair. John looks it over, pulling it over to the door. The chair is leaned back and wedged underneath the doorknob. The banging on the door persists, and John continues pressing up against it.

"This ain't gonna hold, they keep this up and the damn legs will break!"

"O-Okay just um....dammit it's loud...hold on a second...!" You run back to the living room, to the table. If you were a man you could have brought this over to brace the door, it would hold better then any chair. The gun that lays on top will have to do for now.

Gun in shaky hands, you run back over to John. The heavy metal in your hands scares you, but the men outside even more so.

"Here! Take this!" You present the gun to John, who all but yanks it out of your hands and checks the chamber.

"Shit...alright. Whatever happens just make sure you stay behind me, got it? No rushin' off unless I tell ya to." John closes the gun and looks you in the eyes, his face stern and his words sterner. "Do you understand me?"

"Y-Yes sir." Your ears are starting to ring, you're to the point where you are mostly reading John's lips instead of actually listening.

A loud and hard bump nearly send John tumbling, the chair legs bending beneath the strain. He throws his body back against it,

"Damn sonsofbitches, they come in here and they'll learn what hell looks like," John grips the gun in his hand with enough force turn his knuckles white, a finger inching towards the trigger.

You're ready to pull out the pepper-spray, but that will only have a few hits in it won't it? If you run out when you really need it then it could be trouble.

"Lemme find something I can use to help!" You doubt John can hear you but you rush towards the cabinets and pantry. You can't let them see you, and anything you can do to prevent them from getting near you or John would be ideal. If only you could find...there it is.

Chili Powder

The bright red powder inside hurts your mouth something awful, you can't possibly imagine what it would do to someone's eyes.

The sound of splintering wood causes you to run back over to the door. Beneath the door knob one of the legs has already begun to snap, the other one bending as all the weight falls upon it.

"Stay behind me dammit!" John snaps when you return, the plastic container in hand. "I can't let you get hurt again Na-"

The second leg on the chair bends and breaks beneath the force, leaving John and the chain as the remaining defense.

"Fine, come in you slacked jaw bastards! I'm fuckin' armed though!" Even if they could hear his words from between the door and resonating alarm you doubt it really matters. John backs away, facing the door and gun pointed in front of him. As the door strains against the chain you toss away the cover of the spice.

"If I tell ya to run, you best run like hell. No lookin' back, you got it? I don't know what these idiots think they're doin'-"

The chain snaps and the door swings wide open, the first man stumbling in from the force of his entry. The broken chair trips up his feet and offers enough of a distraction. The end of the gun's handle connect to the man's temple with a loud crack, and a hand on his collar brings him closer. In immediate retaliation the man's forehead connects with the bridge of John's nose, though his grip doesn't loosen any.

The second man is reaching into his pocket, attention focused on the other two. He's going to pull out a gun, like when they tried to shoot at Lawrence. With a deep breath and a step forward you shake the container out in front, a large red cloud filling the air. Instantaneously the man begins to hack and bend over, hands at his eyes.

Take that you fuc-

Dammit, you should have closed your eyes too. Of course the pain makes you gasp and the spice enters your mouth, making you start to cough. Nowhere near as bad as the man with swollen eyes and tears blinding him, but dammit it stings like hell.

You back up, trying to clear your throat and vision. John...you need to stay behind J-

The gunshot manages to make your ears ring even more then before.

"J-...John!" You can barely see through the tears in your eyes. You hope that it was his gun, but you know damn well that it could have been one of the other ones. "Oh my God J-"

The back of your shirt yanks you out of the apartment and rushing down the hall.

"No! J-John! Help me! H-Help!" You try to pull against the hand on your shirt, unable to loosen the grip on you. The free hand comes up to your face just as you are about to enter the emergency stairs.

"Quiet please." That's not John.

"Let me go! D-Don't take me away! P-Please y-...you can't take me...!" You're struggling more against the man's hands, and in instinct you bite down on the hand trying to silence you.

It takes much more effort then you expected to break through skin.

The man's other hand releases you and raises up high in a fist and you prepare yourself for the hit. Instead he strikes the wall, attempting to rip his hand from your teeth. The blood is coming to your mouth but it nearly makes you spit up.

It tastes rotten

There's the fainest hint of a 'normal' flavor underneath, but the spoil makes you feel sick.

Wait, why isn't he trying to hit you or like...pry you off? He pulled you down here but it's like he's trying to touch you the least amount as possible.

Did he really shoot John? Oh god, is John going to be okay? It's so loud in here, you couldn't tell where the bullet came from or where it went.

"Don't take another step."


Through blurry tears you can hardly see the shape of the man down the hall, but with the alarms in the hall being calmer then the one in the apartment the sound of his voice reignites hope.

The hand from your mouth is finally ripped away, his arm coming around your neck, holding you in place. You can't move away from him at the moment, but he also isn't choking you.

"Stand down, I'm not alone." The man holding you speaks up, taking a half step back towards the stairs.

"Yeah? You're friend back there seems real useful, crying like the strong guy he is." John is taking slow and careful steps forward, his hand extended out in front of him, the lights catching on the metal of the gun. "Just let her go-"

"I can't do that, I'm sorry." The man cuts him off, his grip on you tightening. "I really, really am."

"No you're not. If you were then you would let her go and just let us walk out of here." John stops walking forward as the man reaches into his pocket. "No need to make things...messier."

"I really am sorry about all this."

You can see the slightest shadow of the other man crawl out of the room, clawing at his eyes. He attempts to stand but as he starts to rise her doubles over and vomits. He isn't going to be useful anytime soon...good. That means you can focus on the man holding you.

But...should you do something? It feels like you could easily lean down and bite his arm from here. The blood tastes rotten but maybe you can stomach it enough if needed. Or...maybe you should let John handle this? What if this guy is reaching for a gun though? You doubt John would shoot at this guy right now, not with the way he's holding your body in front of his. Dammit...this is scary...

Bedtime for me, see y'all in the morning!
Yell at him that he's not sorry in the least, if he's helping Bower he may as well be raping us himself. Remember what John taught you and strike to incapacitate the assailant.

... what the fuck is he even sorry for, he wasn't raped for three months, or the one with a bunch of psychopaths chasing after him, just so he can be raped again.
good night bae
love you
I second this
I literally see absolutely no logical reason to not bite him as a distraction and let him get off a clean shot. These are very clearly bad men, and even if they aren't, they're incredibly stupid men. This is one of those moments where you have to squint and stretch for a reason to not do anything whe you likely could, and if Delilah thinks of herself as bad or a monster for doing it, I'm going to call Bullshit very loudly on all parties involved.
Hell, if he wasn't so disgusting as draining him would probably cause us to throw up due to food poisoning, I'd suggest that.
Not even that his blood tastes rotten?

Remember someone else with rotten blood?

Well, I think we can at least bit him badly.

Honestly, no. I tend to jump in and out of this quest. Who are we talking, Bower?
is our knife still in our pocket?
And if it is is it possible to reach it and stab the guy somehow?

So she's got something wicked about her, then? Curious.
I mean, sure? Guess you could call a debilitating blood disease "wicked".
You need to do what you can to help in this, can't just stand by and be the poor helpless victim again.

"You're n-not actually sorry." It must surprise the man, hearing you speak right now. "If you...if you were sorry you w-wouldn't be trying to drag me back to h-him!"

"This is just a paycheck for me, I really am sorry about this," He says this without looking down at you, his eyes set on John.

"You're no better then B-Bower."

"Just because he signs my paychecks doesn't mea-"

"You're just b-bringing me back so that he can r-rape me again. You know that right?"

"I-...q-quiet please." The grip around your neck has loosened slightly, and your hand begins to inch towards your pocket.

"You might as well be the one holding me down and f-...fucking me in that case."

Those words strike him as hard as they were for you to say, and his grip falters just enough to give you more wriggle room. Drawing out your knife, you jam the closed handle into his ribs with all the force you muster. The gasp that follows this tells you it hurts, and you once again bring the solid handle down against his side. As his hand comes to stop yours you opt to take the chance bring your heel against his shin, pushing against his leg to force yourself out and away from his hold.

Turning to face the man,you hold your knife out in front of you, blade out this time. He's recovering from the brief assault, and you keep your eyes on him as you back up. John steps forward and pulls you towards him, hand on your shoulder. Glancing back you see the man behind you is starting to stand back up again.

"Fucking...bitch...!" He gasps and sputters out, trying to clear out his eyes. Yours still burn, so you can't begin to think about how bad it is for him.

"Pull your hand out, I know damn well that you dropped your gun back there," John says, moving you closer with careful steps. "You can't risk hittin' her anyways, right? Gotta bring her back in good shape or else no paycheck, is that how it is? Might as well be bringing a lamb to slaughter. But you know what? I don't mind shootin' you, I got more then enough ammo to help clean up the trash."

"Don't let her...fucking hell this burns...don't let her go! We're so close now!" The man behind cries out, unable to help with the situation. "Richard! Come on!"

John continues to march you towards the stairwell again, the gun extended out in front of you.

"You hear her. Take her back, and you might as well be pulling the trigger yourself. She'll be suffering and it will be all on your shoulders. Maybe you think you're a big guy, that it doesn't matter what happens to someone as long as it's pushed outta sight," John speaks again, stopping only a few feet away from the man. "But you'll never be right again. How can you sleep when every time you close your eyes, you'll just be seeing her face begging for help? Course, maybe you are the type of guy who can sleep past all that. In that case I'd be doin' the world a favor by puttin ya down now."

"Just..." The man's voice has the slightest crack to it, one that he hides away with his next words. "You have five minutes. After that I'm not going to be so kind."

John says nothing but walks you to the stairwell, facing the man the entire time. Through blurry vision you can barely see the man, but he's avoiding looking at you as much as he can.

"Y-...your blood is sick." You mutter to him as John leads you down the stairs.

You try to listen for the sounds of following steps, for feet rushing down to catch up with your exit.

"We need to get outta here..." John says as he leads you towards an emergency exit, one leading out through the back.

"What? Why? What about Lawrence and Mr. Faraway? We can't just leave!"

"Missy, that guy up there fired his gun. Landed the bullet somewhere in the ceiling, but even if no could could hear that then firemen and police officers combin' through the building to try and figure out where they set off the smoke ain't gonna look good on us. This way when Faraway gets back it can look less like a shoot out and more like a poor attempt at a robbery." John pushes you out into the alley, pocketing the gun as he leads you towards the sidewalk.

"Can't we stay here and wait for them? They're going to be scared if we aren't there!"

"I'll figure that part out, we can try and look up Faraway's number later and give him a call. For now we can't stay here, who knows how many others they might got workin' out here? Right now he's got his hands full with the other guy, and no one else knows that it's the two of us. It might not be the best plan, but we gotta get over to Sam."

"Over at the um...the football field or whatever?"

"Yeah. Edge of town, not too far. Built on the older parts of this place. If we can't catch a bus then walkin' should be fine for now. Said you could recognize their car?"

"Yeah, it's a uh...a blue Lincoln with dark windows," You say this, trying to look around for the offensive vehicle. "W-Why did they let us go?"

"He dropped his gun in the room, it was on the floor when I came out. Should have grabbed it but I couldn't let him drag you off. He tried to fake me out but I know that trick too well. I doubt the guy you peppered would have been willin' to let you go, but that guy holdin' ya? He may try to look tough, but his eyes are soft. Just some schmuck with a terrible choice of a 9 to 5. Maybe he felt bad for ya or didn't realize what kinda guilt it would bring him. Doesn't matter how we got it, what matters is that he gave us those five minutes to run out." John still has that commanding tone to his voice, and while you are grateful that he was able to handle the situation his seriousness does sound intimidating to you.

A firetruck races down the street, a cop car in tow as they pass by in their rush to the apartments. With the door broken and a new hole in his ceiling you hope that Faraway isn't too mad whenever he gets back with Lawrence...why are they taking so long? It feels like they should have came back a while ago.

"I'm sorry you got grabbed like that," John speaks up after the sirens have passed. "I didn't expect him to pull out his gun like that, took me a moment to recover. He didn't hurt ya, did he?"

"Not really. He didn't hit me or anything. I think I hurt myself more...I got some of that chili in my eyes..."

"Couldn't feel good, are ya fine now? Do we need to stop?"

"If we could like...maybe find somewhere to wash my eyes out? I can't see too well right now..." Your eyes do burn, but thanks to your slight buzz still remaining the pain isn't unbearable. For now, that is.


John takes you into a gas station, waiting outside as you try to clear your eyes in the bathroom. Your hands shake as the paper towel in your hand attempts to wipe away the red spice. If you had been there alone then you would be in the back of someone's car, being dragged off to...

You weren't alone and you're not being dragged away. It's fine, John helped you. You two will go find Sam, see what's going on, and then you'll find a payphone and call Faraway, tell Lawrence where you are and then everything will be fine. Your hand comes up to feel for the ring hidden beneath your shirt.

You really miss Lawrence right now. The sooner you can get to him again the better.

Coming out of the restroom, John is leaning up against the wall as if he is trying to catch his breath.

"Are you okay?" You ask, looking over him. You hadn't seen it before, but there's dried blood beneath his nose, from where he must have been struck earlier.

"Yeah...just not as young as I used to be. I'm good. Let's uh...let's just get going now."

Walking back outside, you hang John some napkins for him to clean himself up with.

"Thanks, guess I'm too used to blood on my face huh?" He clears up what he can, and you try to blink your vision clearer. It's better then before, but things are still a bit blurry.

Is there anything you want to tell or ask John right now?
Thank him for being there.

This... Richard clearly knows of Bower's... proclivities and morally objects to it, so why would he... sell his soul like that? To cover medical expenses? Is that really worth the guilt he had to already be struggling with?

Does he even know he's sick?

... and why did they target Mr. Faraway's apartment like that? It's not like they could have known we were there. Were they planning on... forcing Mr. Faraway to talk? What if that's what happened to grandma? To mom?

How do they just...do that? Accepting money to hurt innocent people?
"Thank you for helping me. I...I can't think about what would happen if you hadn't been there."

"I told ya, I would do whatever I could to keep them from gettin' ya. Can't believe I let one of them nab you like that though, gotta do better next time," John is kicking himself over letting you get grabbed, but you're just thankful that you were able to walk away from it. "And now I gotta drag you to some place you don't know nothin' about. So much for me doin' a good job."

"Anything is better right now then going with...with them. I just don't understand, why would someone be willing to just...he knew who he's trying to take me back to. He knows what that m-...what B-Bower wants to do to me but he's still willing to drag me off to...to hell like that?" You recall the taste of his blood. It reminded you a lot of Jessica's, how there is a flavor beneath the festering one. "That guy is sick I think...I mean like his blood is all messed up. I wonder if he even knows it...it kinda reminded me of Jessica's-"

"You didn't do that with Jessica, did you?" John asks this in a panic, stopping in his tracks.

"No, I've um...I've only smelt her blood before but the way his tasted was pretty simila-"

"You didn't swallow any of it back there, did you?"

"It tasted awful so I didn't even try to."

"God...you have to be careful with that sort of thing, understand? I sure as hell don't know how this works and I probably shouldn't be the one lecturing you but there's no tellin' what might be in some of these people's body. I mean, hell, even with me I ended up accidentally ah...drugging ya. What if someone isn't clean? You could end up catching somethin'?" John looks distressed by this. "Shit, I mean...it should be fine if ya didn't swallow any of it right? I ain't a doctor...dammit."

"I'm sorr-"

"Don't apologize, ain't your fault you've been shoved into such a shitty situation." John's words really don't help to settle your panic and fear.

"Do...a lot of people do that? Hurt people just because they get paid to? That's awful..."

"Money is a powerful thing for some people. I mean, ask the right kinda person and they'll tell you that I'm the exact same for being a solider," John answers with a grim tone. "Course it's not always the money that a person wants. Maybe they got to keep a family afloat, pay medical bills, loans, the like. Course I ain't defending their actions, but sometimes you're put in a situation where you got to figure out what's more important. Do you kill a guy to feed your family for another month?"

"I...I don't know...it's not right to kill someone but I guess um...letting your family starve is pretty bad too, isn't it?"

"It's one of those things were I can't give ya a straight answer. Too much involved, and no matter which one you choose there will always be someone yellin' in your ear about making the wrong choice. I don't know why those guys are doin' what they're doin', but to me it don't matter. Whatever they're trying to do involves taking a little girl back to a monster, and I ain't gonna allow it." As John says this you can't help but look towards the spot he keeps the gun. How bad could the situation have became earlier...

"I just don't know how they found Mr. Faraway's apartment. They shouldn't know about him being like...connected to me. I don't think they knew I was going to be there though...what do you think they were trying to do?"

"Get answers, if I had to guess."

"I...I think that's what happened to my grandma. She's been missing and her...her house was gone through. They didn't anything valuable just...just my things..." You neglect to say panties, as it feels like that would make John angry.

"Jesus fuckin' Christ. Let's just get you over to Sam and figure out what we can do from there."


The football field is much smaller and more rundown then you expected. If everything wasn't covered in snow you'd imagine the whole place would be overgrown at this point. There's hardly a spot of metal that isn't rusted or bent or covered in spray paint, the gate allow entrance to the benches is ready to fall off the hinges, and the asphalt on the parking lot if cracked beyond use. There's plenty of space all around, the closest buildings being blocks away.

"Why is it like this? I don't think I saw another field around town before," You ask, watching your step to keep from catching your foot on rubble.

"I don't remember all that well. Somethin' bout a flood coming by and wrecking a lot of damage? Maybe it was a storm...either way, the place needed to be repaired before they could allow to use it again. Fund raising got done but not enough I think, so now the schools just go to the field the next town over for games," John is looking around as he speaks, no doubt looking around for anyone else. "There's been talks about tearin' this all down, but course that costs money too. Just cheaper to just let it sit here, I guess."

You follow John around the field and towards a rather small building. It looks like the type of place that might have been used for storage and the like. The windows are boarded up and a chain was put in place to hold the door closed, but the lock tossed on the ground tells you that it didn't do it's job. John knocks at the door, waiting for whoever to come out.

You're a bit surprised to see the man from the apartments, Warren, step out and close the door behind him.

"There you are," Warren says, leaning against the door. "We've been waiting a long time."

"Eh, just got kinda held up was all." It's obvious that John doesn't like talking to this guy.

"Bet you did," Warren responds, flicking at his own nose. There's a slight tug of a grimace on John's face as he does this. "Guess all that matters is you're here now."

"Where's Sam?"

"He'll be here soon. Hopping' around on one leg tires a man out you know."

"Yeah, alright. Ah, is there a phone booth nearby anywhere? Need to make a call." You're hiding behind John, and when you see Warren look at you his expression doesn't change any. You're hard to recognize right now, just keep out of sight and speak as little as possible and it'll be fine.

"Phone? There should be one over by the lot, should still work. Hell, I think it's even got the phone book with it still."

"Alright, if you'll give us a moment then-"

"Actually, John. I need your help." Warren cuts off John before he can take you back over to the parking lot.

"Can't it wait?"

"Bit of an emergency, I'm afraid. She'll be fine, not like any car could drive through that hell of a lot, plus I think the box is even tucked away near the gate. Long as she doesn't fuck around over there it's not like anyone will see her."

The sooner you can call Faraway the better, but it looks like you'll have to go over there alone for now. Should you try and reach Faraway or stay here with John?
We're out of the way so it should be safe, right? Safeish? We'd have decent overview of everything, and there should be a good few places to run and hide.

If we go careful-like and keep an eye out, it shouldn't be a problem. And Hell, if we can't reach Mr. Faraway, maybe we can reach his sister?
"I'll go make the call real quick. I promise I'll be right back, you can stay here and help him," You point your thumb over the parking lot. "I promise to run back if I see um...anything bad."

"A-...alright. I trust you. Just holler if you need anything." John gives you permission and you rush back over the the front of the field, to the parking lot. Looking back you can see now the the building is just tucked away around the corner. You feel slightly expose, but you can also see that no cars pass by this way. From what you can tell the road the leads on from here just circles around town or something.

Still, you creep along near the gate and keep an eye out for all around. It takes some time and more walking to find the phone-booth, up close to where people would go in and get their tickets. Like the rest of this place the booth is a wreck, what two windows remaining in their panes are smashed and desperately trying to stay together. It doesn't look to be in good working condition, the glass that cracks beneath your boots as you step in doesn't help any either. Picking up the receiver it's a pleasant surprise to hear the dial tone spill out. Danging from it's chain is an extremely worn-out phone book. The pages are yellowed and many of them stuck together from moisture, but if you peel them open carefully and squint then you can read the names and numbers.

It feels like forever has passed, as you one again peel open two stuck papers with slow easy movements. The sound terrifies you, you've already ripped quite a few of the previous pages. But here you are, finally to the last part of the FA- pages. Your fingers go over each name, scanning each one in search of the familiar one.


The number that follows after are smudged, but with a lot of effort and double-checking you are able to piece it together. Slipping the quarters into the slot, your heart is pounding in anticipation. What are you supposed to do if he doesn't answer? Sharron's number was probably on there too, but can you just call her up like that and ask about her brother? Is that weird?

"Hello?" A tried voice breaks through the rings and you nearly jump.

"Mr. Faraway! Is that you? It's Delilah."

"Delilah? Dear where are you? Are you hurt? What about John?"

"We're fine, both of us. I uh...I guess you saw the mess?"

"Mess? My door is knocked in, there's broken furniture, spices and blood on the ground, and there's a bullet in my roof! Not to mention the swarms of officers outside... What on earth happened? Where are you now?"

"It's...kinda a long story and I'm on a pay phone. But um, and I'm sorry about this, but two of the men chasing after me was responsible for all that..."

"Wait, they came here?" Faraway's voice is crackling through static on the phone. How long ago was it since this thing was last used?

"Y-Yeah, I'm so sorry ab-"

"Where are you now? Lawrence is scouring the whole building looking for you!"

"Oh uh, we're both at the old football field. It's the place John was supposed to take him...are you guys alright?" You ask this even though Faraway doesn't sound like he's been hurt, just worn out.

"Well enough anyways. When Lawrence comes back up here I'll let him know you called, he'll probably come racing after you."

"I figured."

"Listen, I can't sta-....-ere with t-....-y the apartment is in, I'll hav-...-with Sharron. If y-...thing then jus-..." Faraway's voice begins to get lost in the static, most of his words must too fuzzy to hear properly.

"Wait, you're breaking up on me, hello? Can you hear me? Mr. Faraway, can you he-" Instead of static you are greeted by the sound of a half broken machine begging for more quarters. Disappointed you place the receiver back, fearing the whole phone box may come crashing to the ground. Carefully you tear out the page containing Faraway's number and, hopefully, his sister's.

Once again taking care to make sure no one is watching, you stay along the edge of the field and head back towards the storage building. You notice that neither John or Warren are in sight, but perhaps he needed help moving something?

Back against the door, you decide it would be best to wait there patiently. They shouldn't take too long.


As the minutes pass you grow more worried. Just where the hell are they? Warren didn't need that much help, did he? Where would they even go? It doesn't sound like they are in the building behind you. You circle around the small square of a building, looking off in the distance. A bit of a way is another similar storage unit, closer to the other side of the field. Even if they went over there it shouldn't take this long, right?

Starring in that direction, you do your best to look for any signs of movement. Your search is interrupted by the sound of hard thumping from the wall behind you. The possibility of something merely falling over crossed your mind before more thumps followed in it's place. There's something in there, something alive. You look desperately around again, where is John?

Is this why Warren closed the doors so quickly when you guys came? Is he hiding something? Or maybe he's hiding someone.

You aren't sure if you should try and see what this is inside or if you should go try to find John...
Check if anything can be seen through the boarded-up windows before we start opening any doors. We should definitely not faff around too much without John, though.
We shoulda grabbed the gun before we went to the phone...

Yea look thru the boards if possible

One hand on the knife one on the pepper spray if we do enter
I vote to tongue punch his fartbox.
Shit got busy with irl stuff, writing now.
Everything about this is frightening, but you decide that you should take a look at what is inside the building, even if it's only a quick peek. The thumping continues, an irregular pace and loudness, as if something is struggling inside.

Funny, that's how you usually feel.

The boards serve little use aside from maybe keeping people out, and if someone was determined to it would only take a hammer and some time to remove the wood. Of course it's only you standing out here right now with nothing but your bare hands. Well, you have your knife but keeping intact would be preferred. In what little cracks there are, you attempt to peer through the boards. Inside is dark, the only light coming through the miniscule breaks in the other slabs of wood. Smells like a mixture of dusty, wet, and...alcohol? Beer, that's the smell of beer.

The thumping scares you back, but you force yourself to look inside again. Ignoring the noise that is coming from the same wall you are standing by, you attempt to find any signs of what it may be. In the very corner of your eye, beyond what you can see in your current location, there is a quick flash of...white? No, gray. It moves out of sight again in tune with the thumping. That's a person tied up inside, isn't it? What if they aren't tied up though...ah but what if they are? You can't just leave them in there like that...unless there's a good reason for them to be like that.

You can maybe try a peek through the doors. If it's someone tied up then you can try and figure out if they're someone trustworthy enough to untie...or you can run like hell if that isn't the case. Just a quick look, maybe they won't notice you if you're careful. Still, to be on the safe side...

With the pepper spray open in one hand and your knife clutched in the other, you approach the door. The chain isn't locked but just wrapped around the handles to keep it from swinging open, especially if someone from the inside it trying to leave. You flinch with each clank of the metal but do your best to remove it without causing too much of a ruckus. With the chain falling to the ground, you prepare yourself to look in. At the sign of danger, any danger at all, you'll bolt. If a mouse so much as looks at your funny you'll run to find John.

You know damn well that whatever is making the noise isn't just some mouse.

A deep breath for preparation, you begin to push the door open. Clouded over sunlight creeps in to light up the place, dust hanging about in the air. The movement stops and instantly becomes replaced by muffled talking. It scares the hell out of you, and you're ready to run off but your eyes come to find that graying hair again.

"Sam?!" You yell in surprise, seeing the old man bound to a chair and gagged. You rush over to him immediately, looking over his position. Arms tied by rope behind his back and his leg to the chair, a piece of duct-tape over his mouth.

"What hap-, ah hold on," You reach for a corner of the tape, noticing that parts of his mustache and beard are attached to it. "S-Sorry, this is going to hurt..."

In one swift motion you free Sam's mouth of it's covering, the man gasping for breath immediately.

"Dammit...thank you..." Sam's voice is raspy, as if he has been like this for some time now. "Can you ah...get my hands for me now?"

"Yes! I...Jesus, what happened?" You go around behind the chair, taking your knife to begin slicing away at the ropes, it sure looks a lot easier when they do this in the movies. You had noticed that Sam did have a black-eye, just like John said. It looks like he's got some more cut ups and bruises too though, signs of a bigger fight then you had imagined.

"That bastard Warren did this to me, h-SHIT! Are you here alone?"

"No, I came down here with John...he's with Warren right now. I had to go make a call and...and Warren said he needed John's help with somethin-"

"You need to get me out of here as fast as you can, do you understand?" It feels like you are being scolded, and your efforts at cutting through the ropes are doubled.

"I'm trying...I don't think it's catching the r-rope well..."

"As fast as you can, do you know where he might have taken John?" It looks like Sam is ready to jump up at any moment, and you see that his crutch is tossed to the side. Is it snapped in half?

"There's that uh, building over to the left. I don't know if they're actually over there th-..ouch, over there. I haven't seen or heard them since I came...why is this so hard...since I came back." The rope has been doubled over and twisted around itself many times over, forcing you to cut through several rows before it can be tugged loose. It hurts your fingers pulling it off, but you know it needs to be done.

"And uh...there! Your hands are free!"

"My leg, hurry! It should be easier this time...dammit Warren...just...god DAMMIT!" Sam rubs over his rope burned wrists as you move down to cut away the restraint on his leg. This takes much less time and you soon free him completely.

"Do you think he'd hurt John?" You ask, pulling the ropes away.

"He did this to me, and I thought he was my friend. We've got to hurry over there, grab my crutch for me," Sam stands up, bracing himself on the chair. His entire body is shaking, getting used to finally having the chance to stand again. Kicking empty beer cans out of the way you rush to bring Sam his crutch, your heart sinking at the sight of it bottom part being snapped.

"Can you still use this?" You ask, presenting it to him. Sam takes it from you, a scowl on his face.

"How low of him...shit, help me find something else I can use real quick." Sam holds on to the broken crutch for now, and begins sweeping the room. You help him look, but there are only a few scattered boxes around. They all look to be holding either dented up helmets or cleats, nothing that can help right now.

"Wait, can you use uh..." You pick up what must have once been a color guard's prop. "I think it's a flag pole..."

"Good enough, let's get going!" Sam grabs the pole from your hands, using it as a makeshift crane. He's surprisingly spry with it, making good ground. You rush ahead just enough to push obstacles out of the way, pushing the door wide open for him.

"AH dammit, sun hurting my eyes...which way is this shed?"

"Here, this way I'll ta-"

A resounding gunshot travels through the air, proving your hunch correct.

"Wait, does Warren have a gun?" You turn to Sam in a panic, and he has already begun to rush towards the noise. You keep up speed with him, looking for the sign of anyone up ahead. Why the hell did it have to be so far?

"He's got one he always liked to show off, his 'souvenir' from the war. Never once saw him shoot it and I know damn well that he'd rather spend his money on liquor then bullets. John's got that gun with him too...I can't tell which one that might have been. Dammit all..." Sam is becoming out of breath, gasping for air as he continues rushing towards the storage building. Does this mean you could potentially be running towards a gun fight?

How the hell are you supposed to approach this? All you have is your knife and pepper spray...it doesn't look like Sam is carrying any kind of weapon on him.

"Ah! Wait!" Sam stops in place and you accidentally run past him. Looking towards the building and then back at him, you're in an obvious panic.

"What? What is it?"

"You stay back, don't even think about coming up here do you understand? Let me try to sort this out."

"He wouldn't try to hurt me, would he?"

"It's not that he would hurt you on purpose, but I know for a fact that accuracy was never Warren's strong point. I might have to try to talk some sense into that fool, but knowing him..." Sam starts rushing forward again and you stay in place, watching him go.

Are you really that useless? Of course you aren't a trained veteran either, not like all three of these guys are. But...dammit, are you really supposed to stand back here and watch this happen? Hell, you can't even try and watch them from here.

The knife is still in your hand, the pepper-spray in your pocket. There's possibly two guns involved right now though, you can't just run in there.

You feel so useless right now, even more so when Sam walks around the building to the other side. You can't see anyone, but knowing that a fight might be going on scares the living hell out of you.

With nothing but your knife and spray, you worry about your safety. You also worry about Sam and John's safety right now too though. Sam told you to stay back, but maybe there's a way for you to try and help? Or maybe it would be good for you to listen to him and wait to see what happens...

bedybye time for me, see you guys in the morning
It'd probably be best if we don't stand out in the open if Warren comes out, maybe if we hide along the wall just out of sight.

Maybe we can even hear what's going on inside.
Up and about
multitasking a bit at the moment, sorry
If you stand out in the open like this and Warren walks out then he'll see you right away, right? Just like with the football field, you should just try to walk along the side of the building to help stay out of sight. Maybe you can figure out what's going on with the situation too...God, you hope this isn't a situation though.

You stop every time it looks like there is movement at the building, your heart pounding harder and harder with each step you take. Knife and spray grasped tight in your hands, doing everything you can to keep your breathing steady. There was just one gun shot...maybe it was a warning shot or something, right?

The second round that echoes through the air diminishes what shreds of hope you have for this. Approaching the building, you duck low and try to avoid any of the windows. These were also boarded up, but it appears like time and weather have taken a much greater toll on these. Cracks and loose nails give way to spaces to peek through, but you stop yourself from doing so. When it is time for you to take a look, you'll need to do so carefully, in a way that will prevent Warren from spotting you.

You don't need to look inside to hear the voices from inside.

"-reassure on it! Press down...dammit...DAMMIT!" Sam's voice yells out from the cracks. "You son of a bitch! I helped you when you needed it and this is how you repay me?"

"-...it hurts...Sam I...I can't fe-...my l-..." John's voice is softer, but it scares you even more then Sam's did, a whisper trying to rise over the pain.

"Just keep your hand there! Just think about that right now, you'll be okay, I can fix this!" From the sound of it, Sam and John are on the other side of the building, away from the door.

"Why do you have to be selfish about this?" This time Warren is speaking, he's closer to where you are, his back must be towards the door if he's facing Sam.

"Me being selfish? You want to turn in some poor child for a reward!"

"That's a lot of money, Sam think about it. Fifty thousand dollars, who couldn't use that? You sure as hell could, your little check from the government can't keep you stable, then what about your granddaughter? You're just going to let your own flesh and blood live in the streets to keep someone else safe? Aren't you failing your duties as a guardian? Didn't you mention that if anyone laid a finger on Marilyn that you wouldn't hesitate to snap their neck? Hell, you have other kids in your little group, don't you? Are you really willing to let a bunch of them live on the streets? That's no way to group up and you damn well know it."

You clutch your knife tighter as he says this, why do you feel so heavy?

"You'll be sending her to hell Warren. She will be suffering forever and it'll be your fault."

"I've carried heavier weight on my shoulders. Kill a hundred to save a thousand, you know that phrase well don't you. Weren't you the one who told me back in the day?"

"Wa-...if you t-take he-....-en he'll end up rap-...might end up kil-...you can't send her there..." Jon's voice is only to come up loud enough for you to hear snippets of his sentence, but you can piece together what he's saying enough.

"Yeah? And did either of you do anything to stop civies from getting killed? What about the other soldiers forced to fight? Did you spare them? Don't you stand there in front of me, trying to tell me that you want to do the right thing now. You'll turn a blind eye to a family being gunned down, but this is where you draw the limit? Sam, you know what they would call us if they knew what we had done when we returned from the war? Baby killers. Monsters, no way we could justify any of that. But cause all of it stayed hush-hush they applauded us as failed heroes instead. And then what? After the cameras were gone they left us alone, dumped us in a ditch, leaving us to fend for ourselves. Fuck, look at what happened to you John! Served twice, got fucked up trying to do his job, and now where are you? Bleeding in some godforsaken shitty shack in a town that doesn't give two damns about you. If you weren't here? You'd be lying in some alley, dying or dead with a bottle at your side and people walking by! There wasn't even a decency to give you help for your fucking mental problems! The war literally fucked you up and they did nothing to help you! A normal man is turned fucking looney trying to follow orders, they might as well have shot you right there, at least you'd be out of your misery. They do want us gone or dead though, you know that? We're just an eyesore to them, a god damned inconvenience! We fight for them, and this is how they treat us! If this is my one chance to help myself, to help some of the other sorry bastards thrown away in the streets...then so be it. If I can toss a grenade into a home, then I can hand over a girl, that don't mean I feel good about it."

The sound of a gun cocking follows Warren's words.

"Now, tell me Sam. That girl, the one with the short black hair, she's the same one from the posters isn't she? She's still around, right? You have to tell me that it's her, I need to be sure before I call it in."

"Go to hell."

"I'll meet you there. Just a reminder, I still have ammo left."

"You're lying."

"Want to test that out? Just tell me if it's her and I'll you fix up John here. Or else I'll have to go looking for her, and I'll need to make sure you can't stop me."

"I'm not telling you shit."

"Sam, think about your granddaughter. You're all she has left, isn't that right? Do you really think she can make it on her own? If you're gone, then who'll take care of her?"

"I'm not afraid." Sam's words ring out true, but you are terrified.

John is hurt, Warren is holding Sam hostage.

Warren has his back towards the door, but you know he has a gun. He wouldn't shoot at you, would he? If you're supposed to be turned in for a reward...

But what the hell can you do? All you have is your knife and pepper-spray...why isn't Lawrence here? This is scary...this is terrible...

Are you supposed to try and give yourself up? Maybe Sam could figure something out if Warren is occupied with you...

You could try to jump him, if you're careful about how you go about it.

What if he comes out looking for you? If you had to guess you're much faster then he is...

How do you approach this?
I realize the formatting on this one is fucking shite, and I apologize. I always forget it looks way different on this part.
Rolled 2 (1d20)

Incapacitate him
Rolled 52 (1d100)

Rolling for the 'tripping'
Take a deep breath and make sure we can use the knife and mace in swift motions without brandishing them. Knock on the door and pretend like we've heard nothing, ask if John or Sam is in there.

Claim Lawrence is coming, so are we in this shed or the other.

When the opportunity presents itself, mace the bastard. Kick him in the groin. Punch him in the throat. Remember what John taught us.

... he would do much worse to us without even thinking twice.

No rolls in this quest, boys.
I like the basis of this idea.
Rolled 35 (1d100)

>Sue told me to write the next update for her quest.

>So here it is.

Delilah goes to the Jon and begins to apply pressure to the gunshot wound.

“Please Mister, you gotta get up. They're gonna kidnap me.”

He unfortunately doesn't seem to be doing too well. He nods in and out of consciousness,

>Apply first aid
>Leave him behind
>Give in to your bloodlust

I thought this quest doesn't do choices.
>Give in to your bloodlust
WHat the fuckl is this shit TRICKwhat the hell CHOICE

writing real update <3 ty Trick
Aight you start drinking his blood.

Bleh bleh, you're a vampire.

>Turn into a bat
>Fight Raiden
>Hypnotize beautiful women
>Turn into a bat
You need to stay calm. No matter how scary this whole situation is, you need to not freak out. Repeating that over and over doesn't stop your hands from shaking, but your legs move you forward. Standing in front of the door, you try to listen to the conversation. They aren't yelling, but the calm only feeds the fear. The spray in a pocket, the knife in the other, you keep a hand nearby. Just one swift motion and you'll pull them out, but showing that you're armed isn't going to be too helpful.

Hand shaking like crazy, you're still capable of knocking.

"Um...h-...hello? Is...John in here? I couldn't find you guys." You decide not to mention Sam, hoping to look as inconspicuous as possible. There's some waiting, and you can barely hear the muffled sounds of Warren's voice before the door opens. His body black the small crack made,

The smell of blood wafting up tells more then you need to know.

"Um, h-hey...L-Lawrence is supposed to be coming by soon and I need to know if um...if we're meeting him over in this shed or that one." You point back over to the other one, trying your hardest to sound convincing. "Is um...everything alright?"

"Lawrence is coming here?" Warren speaks in a panic and it reflects on his bruised up face.

"Yeah, he should be here soon. Where's um...where's John? Or maybe Sam? I haven't seen him around..." You pretend to glance around, as if searching for the men, but you know damn well where they are.

"You need to come with me, we need to wait up by the gate." Warren is trying to walk out without you seeing inside. "We need to wait up front."

"I don't want to go up front, I want to see John." You resist against Warren's hand on your shoulder, as he tries to shut the door behind him. In his other hand is his gun, small, dirty, and worn compared to your grandfather's.

"You need to come with me, we'll see John soon."

You back up and away from his hand.

"What's in the shed? Is Sam in there? I need to know where Lawrence is supposed to meet us." You try to bombard him with questions, if for the sake of trying to confuse him.

"Just head ov-"

"I don't want to go."

"It's not your choice." Warren begins to try and drag you off, his hand on the back of your neck. You have prepared yourself for this and bring the back of your heel into his shin as you pull forward. It catches him off guard enough for you to take your steps forward, mace pulled out from your pocket.

"Like hell it's not my choice!" Shouting this, you release a continuous spray to Warren's face. Almost immediately his face scrunches up and tears stream down his eyes. You remember to face away from the cloud, but the acidic smell lingers in the air. Coughing and sputtering Warren is attempting to wipe away the painful spray, but if the chili powder from before taught you anything it will be a long while before he's back in action.

Pushing him away you run to the building, pulling open the door. Once again the blood hits you hard, but you cover your nose to push past the scent.

"Sam? It's me-...oh, my God."

Sam's hands are pressed up against John's hip, blood pouring out to the dusty floor. John's eyes are only half open, skin pale and breathes shallow.

"Quick! Find me something I can use! I need to stop the bleeding!" Sam yells and you begin to search around. You take careful note to where Warren is, crouched over the ground trying to breathe.

"Here! Just uh..." Taking out the knife, you cut and rip off a long strip of cloth from your dress, handing it over to Sam. As he replaces his blood soaked hands with the material, the smell feels overwhelming. Your body shivers and you have to repeat in your head over and over again to ignore it.

"Am...I gonna m-...make it..." John asks between heavy breaths, his hands already covered in blood.

"Yeah...yeah, Warren can't aim for shit. Just focus on staying awake, you hear me? Stay. Awake." Sam looks over at you now. "You okay? What happened with Warren?"

"I uh...p-pepper spray...I hit him with that..." You try to advert your gaze elsewhere. This is a lot of blood, it's making you feel weak. There's a new fear inside you now. That fear of losing control...everything feels too overpowering right now.

"He still has that gun on him. We need to get that away. I doubt he'll be able to see straight for a couple hours but..." Sam is torn between trying to disarm Warren and attending to John. "I need to get him out of here, once the bleeding has slowed down. But if Warren still has that gun, he might try everything he can to stop us from leaving..."

"W-...What if we like...knocked him out or something? O-..or maybe I could spray him again?"

"I don't think we'll be alone here for much longer. When that bastard had me tied up he spoke with at least two other men, I think they were guys from the VFW. This was a trap, this had always been a trap. The first place we went to and now this...dammit all!" Sam folds the bloodied cloth up into a tight square, pressing it back down against the wound.

"Listen, this is grim, I won't lie. I won't call that bullet nothing, but this all could have turned out worse. Warren can't clean his gun for shit and he sure as hell can't aim. He'd fucking miss a shot point blank...but we can't risk him just firing off at random either..."

Someone needs to get that gun from Warren, and someone needs to stay here with John.

Of course you would rather try and help with John's bleeding, but the amount of blood around you...it frightens you. This isn't some little cut...this isn't something you can just force yourself to ignore. It's going to take every of will power you have to not lose control.

But then there's Warren. He can't see or breathe, his legs are barely holding him up. The gun rests in his hands though, held tightly from the pain. If it's you then maybe Warren will try not to hurt you as much as possible. Would he get the full reward if he handed you over...broken? Not to mention you still have your knife at hand.

Why isn't Lawrence here yet? This is awful, absolutely terrifying.

God...and if Warren has back up coming...

You need to think of a plan of action, and quick.

sorry about the slow updates today, i had something unexpected come up
We have to subdue Warren somehow, chances are we'd be overwhelmed by the smell and sight of John's blood. And our... ability wouldn't really help since he's already lost so much blood, and the bullet would remain inside him, wouldn't it? That'd be bad...

Maybe there's something heavy and blunt we can use in here, something that could knock Warren out or disarm him.

... if he's really so indifferent to how he gets the money, why doesn't he just rob Bower?
He's an idiot.

But yeah.

Find something heavy to knock him out with, or some kinda garrote to strangle him into unconsciousness. Failing that, see what his blood tastes like. Blood loss is a consistent debilitator, as you can well see.
why not just kill him?

He was about to kill 2 of our friends and take us back. I feel this guy won't be missed
Because we're not an anime, but an emotionally and psychologically broken teenage girl and it'd have compounding repercussions,

There's also an important difference between defense, and wanton violence. It's cropped up before.
Agreed that it'd have compounding repercussions (even if I'm not sure what those repercussions are)
disagree with calling it wanton violence. I feel this could be considered justifiable homicide.
Also everyone keeps saying that, and while I get it and understand the tone this whole thing wants to/does have, it also kinda made me start to lose interest in the quest in terms of 'oh, I care about this whole situation'. I'm mostly just participating in the quest to see at least one of three scenarios I'm hoping for happen.
Taking a life is a debt one's conscience can't pay off regardless of how hard one thinks one is.

Keep saying what? That Delilah is a teenage girl? Traumatized? Not an anime?
Killing someone doesn't seem like a good choice for a teen let alone a girl so let's go with >>356365
Eh. I guess. I have a phenomenally hard time applying my real-life morals to fictional entertainment like this- I strongly mentally partition that away.

'Not an anime'.

I dunno, maybe this just isn't the quest for me. It seems too...bleh.
"I'll...I'll take care of Warren." You announce, only loud enough for Sam to hear you.

"What? No, you stay here and hold this down for me! I'll han-" As Sam protests you grab the flagpole he had been using as a makeshift crutch. It's not exactly heavy, but it is solid and the ball ornament at the end looks menacing enough. Sam looks like he's ready to drag you back, but the bleeding wound in John's leg holds him there. Before he can say anything to try and convince you otherwise you turn and rush out from the building, pole in hand. The fresh air is a welcome relief from the dangerously compelling smell that was just begging you to lose control. To make you...

No. Crazy.

You need to try and stay in control, and if that means you now have the task of disarming a man, then so be it.

That doesn't make you feel any less afraid.

Warren is standing, bent over as he's spitting and hacking out a lung, retching from the spray, gun still at hand. There's no way you can just go over and grab it, even with him blinded that doesn't mean his strength would be gone. You're going to have to attack him, plain and simple. Just like in the alley, just like those guys who attacked Lawrence. You're doing this to help Sam and John.

Even though it's entirely your fault that they're in this situation to begin with.

You take deep breaths, focusing on keeping your hands and arms steady. You need to do this right, if he thinks you're one of the guys and he doesn't go down right away that might mean you'll end up with a bullet too.

"H-...hey!" You call out, alerting Warren that it's you standing behind him. The moment the word come out you brace your stance and bring the pole back as far as you can, coming in for a batter swing. It'll hurt like hell, but a good hit to the back of the head should be enough to keep him down, right? He's a grown man, what real damage could a swing from a little girl do?

To your shock Warren turns to look towards the sound. The force of your swing is unstoppable, and rather then the side of his head the cold and uncaring metal connects with vulnerable face. The world around feels like it's moving in slow motion as blood flies out in the air, speckling the gray pole and cascading down. If it was the crimson flying out then this wouldn't be so bad, you were prepared for blood.

Never, in your entire life, have you seen an eyeball come out from someone's socket though. You've seen pictures of them in jars and the like from school, but never dangling by the nerve. You feel too shocked for words, only able to watch as Warren bumbles about further with the blood gushing out of his face. It looks like he's in shock, and you begin to wonder if he even feels the pain.


The gun is lifted up and pointed at your direction. Rather then a men ready to collect a paycheck, before you stands a man ready to take revenge.


And just like in your bedroom, when you stood there with a vase in hand and a monster of a man in front of you, the feeling of instinct kicks in. Not fully realizing it you bring the pole up high over your head and slam it down with a sickening crack. The wrist once holding the gun has become useless and bent, the weapon dropping to the ground. Not waiting for Warren to have a chance to attack you strike him again, connecting another solid blow to his stomach. The combined pain from your attacks do their job and the man crumbles to the ground, gurgling past blood, spit, and vomit as his body begins to spasm.

You're not done yet.

There's still too much anger inside. You need to let it out.

You won't be taken in. You won't be hurt again.

Raising up the pole over your head, you feel as if in a trance. An angry and terrible trance, clawing up from your stomach and to the rest of your body, sinking it's venomous claws into your hands, guiding you into channeling your own need of revenge.

Why the hell should it just be you that hurts?

Just keep beating this man, keep on hitting him till the pole breaks. And if he's still breathing? Use your hands. Your teeth. Rip and tear. You aren't going to be hurting anymore. You aren't going to be the victim. You won't be afraid anymore. You won't let the monsters hurt you.

You'll become one if you have to

Just bring that pole over your head and swing down, doesn't matter where you hit, doesn't matter as long as you're hitting him. Someone. Anyo-


Sam's voice makes you falter, but the sound of your name even more so.

That's not the name of a murderer, is it?

You...were just supposed to get the gun away from him. And instead,

You've maimed Warren, haven't you? He's still breathing, but...

Jesus, you knocked out his eye. You've crushed that part of skull.

He's a mess of blood and vomit and his eyeball is hanging by strands and...

You're a fucking monster.

You did this to him, but realizing the full extent of your actions makes you scream. You back away and trip, resorting to crawling from his bleeding body, leaving the pole behind. You're certain that you saw bits of him sticking to the metal. The thought and images of it make you throw up, nothing it okay right now.

Is this how it looked in the alley? With the guy you beat with the bat? Was he a mess like that too? You were so out of it, that night was a blur. You wish this could be like that, you don't ever want to see Warren's face like that again. Something straight from a nightmare, and you're the one who caused it. All your fault, it's all your fault it's all your faultit'sallyourfaul-

"Delilah! Are you alright?!"

Looking up you can see Sam balancing on the doorway, using the walls as a way to move up front.

"I...I t-th-think I j-just k-killed..." You throw up again, mostly bile and spit at this point.

"Christ, can you stand up? Did he hurt you? I heard him yelling!" Looking back up you can see that Sam has your grandfather's gun in hand. He pockets it and leans down to offer you a hand up. You take the offer, but it feels like your legs don't even work anymore. Everything is just too much, way too much.

You can tell that Sam can see Warren from here, and you notice of disgust on his face. How could a girl like you accomplish something like that?

You only wanted to take him down, not...not kill him.

"He's dead isn't he?" You ask, staring out in front of you but looking at nothing.

"Warren? He's still breathing...he can survive that." Sam is short and blunt to the point, as if he's trying to move from the subject quickly.

"I did that to him."

"You didn't kill him, just hold tight while I take care of John. We need to move, and soon." Sam returns to John, over looking the wound. John's eyes are closed, but he's breathing.

"John, you have to stay awake, alright? Don't fall asleep on me." Sam scolds him, but only out of concern for his safety. It doesn't look like the blood is as bad as before, but the smell...Jesus the smell.

Okay, just...calm down. Think about anything else but the man outside. Think about anything other then the fact that you have hurt a person.


What about that guy in the alley? Did you kill him? You had a bat and didn't stop, you drank his blood, you hurt him bad

You fucking monster

Just trying to protect yourself, right? They hurt you first, they wanted to hurt you

Why doesn't that take the guilt away?

Glancing down, you can see John is struggling to stay awake.

Should you try and keep him awake? Talking to him might help, but you'll probably have to get up close in order for it to work. Maybe you can just...ignore the smell if you try hard enough.

Or...maybe you could take care of his wound? Offer to help right now? That's...a scary thought though. There's so much and...and Sam will know what a freak you are.

Just standing in here might be hard enough though, maybe you should be useless and stand outside and just...just try to ignore the man you've put in the ground.

God you feel sick...you feel useless...what the hell are you supposed to do?
Damn bitch just leave his ass where he at, he ain't give a fuck bout you, nigga tryna kill you, fuck that nigga
Try getting him talking about... his time in boot camp. If we can endure this, we'd be stronger than the desire... the malevolence. Maybe Lawrence actually is right around the bend.

Try,,, casually asking if it'd be bad for a wound to heal around a bullet...
Try helping and keeping him alive, even though he may still betray us.
Sue is referring to John.
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Rin a best
You can't go and stand by the mistake you've made. It'll be tough, but the best thing you can do right now is help with John. It's hard looking down at him in this state, but you can force yourself to endure it. If anything it'll get your mind off the wreckage outside. The one you caused, the person you hurt, the person who will di-

"John...?" You kneel down, and at the sound of his name John's dull blue eyes force themselves open to look up at you.

"Hey there...missy. You uh...okay...?" John tries to smile, but exhaustion makes it falter and he flinches in pain.

"Me? Y-...you're the one who got shot!" You cover your mouth as soon as you say this. Of course he knows that happened, there's no good reason to try and remind him.

"Yeah? That's what ah...h-hurts? T-...thought it was just a uh...a uh...damn, what was I gonna...gonna say..." John is trying to keep positive about this, but he's starting to fade. As he looks for his words it looks like he falls asleep and you shake him awake with careful movements again.


"Huh? Must've uh...dozed off there. Um...what're we talkin' bout..?"

"About...about y-your time in the ar-...boot-camp...?" You look toward Sam to make sure this is an alright subject to talk about and he nods in approval, returning to his work. Man...the smell is almost making you light headed. That feeling of being so close to something you want and it's just-

"Boot camp? Ooh boy...that was a uh...that was a time, l-..let me tell you. Always uh...was a-...always hot as h-hell, m-...most miserable ti-...time of my life. R-...Reason I decided to uh...to n-not stay d-down south..."

"Delilah, please get me one of those boxes." Sam interrupts, gesturing over to some of the ones pushed into a corner. Avoiding the sight of red as much as possible you begin to push one of the full and heavy boxes over.

"What do you need this for?"

"Need to elevate his legs, can you raise them up for me?"

"S-Shit...are we gonna have to dig out the bullet...?" John is ignored by Sam, his voice in a panic. You, as careful as you can, hoist up John's leg as Sam pulls the box underneath. Your efforts weren't good enough, as John still flinches and cries out in pain.

"J-Jesus...!" John pants, his hands curling up to grasp at nothin.

"I'm so sorry...!" You lower his leg down, feeling awful about it.

"Dammit, it opened up a bit, don't move. You need to remove your belt son, we gotta keep the blood flow proper." Sam's hand returns to holding down the cloth, his hands long since becoming red. John's shaky hands come up to undo his belt, proving to be much more difficult then he can handle.

"Did anything else happen at boot camp?" You move in and help him remove the buckle, trying to shift the focus on anything other then that or the blood.

"H-...had this time when...uh...it was blazin' h-..hot for weeks. Hit a hundred d-degrees every day and then...then ah one day d-...during training o-..outside it just...just rained. S-Started p-...pouring down like....like a uh...like a flood. B-But from the sk-..sky. Never s-seen that much rain b-before...didn't stop a-all day. S-Still had t-..to train in it of c-course but we...we liked it b-better then the damn s-sun...and then th-..was this o-...time...we got toge...and ma-..." John's words are slipping and you toss his belt down to move back at his face.

"Come on John, tell me more stories, I want to hear them." You hold his face between your hands, not letting go till he opens his eyes again.

"Ah, don't be s-scared missy. I've g-..gone through worse. K-..Know what my barracks d-...did once at boot camp? Heh...they f-found p-...'proof' that I was gay. Tr-..Tried to bully me and b-break me so I'd a-...admit it. Never would...even when t-..they wrote stuff like fag and q-...queer on the tags of m-...uh...my clothes. Wore 'em anyways. Didn't like how I was uh...wasn't breakin' from it so they d-...decided to teach me a lesson. While I s-..slept they came around my bed and...Heh, you know what it's l-...lick being beaten with a buncha socks filled with soap and b-...batteries?"

"N-..No, I don't."

"Heheh...this a-ain't nothin' compared to that." John tries to grin, but it's hard to feel good about any of this. You feel sick yet you so desperately want the blood that is just being wasted on the ground.

"Um so...w-what would happen if the bullet was left in while it uh...healed?"

"Depends where it uh...where i-it is, right doc?"

"Lotta factors going into it, but there are plenty of cases where leaving the bullet in is preferred...how close was this?" Sam asks, pulling back the cloth to look at the wound the best he can. When there's no answer Sam asks again. "John! How close was this? Not point blank, right?"

"Oh uh...no W-Warren was uh...few feet b-behind me...got me when I wasn't uh...lookin'. Flanked me...p-pretty cowardly w-...way to attack, yeah?" John tries to laugh but that proves to be too much effort for him.

"Looks like we might have to leave it in, I don't think it'd be good if I dug round in there."

"Thank God...diggin' them out is the uh...it's the worst." John is trying to keep upbeat, but his cheeriness in the situation feels out of place.

"Is he...going to be able to walk out of here?" You know this question is a heavy one, but it needed to be asked. There's no way you or Sam could carry him, and it doesn't look like there's much else in here to help out. Where the hell is Lawrence? He could carry John easily.

"He's...not going to be able to put pressure on it for a while." Sam is hesitant to answer, beating around the bush slightly. "If he stands up on it too much then it could complicate things."

"How the hell am I gonna get outta here...?" John is speaking in a panic again, his eyes lighting up in fear. "We can't...can't call an ambulance down here."

"Calm down, panicking won't help you."

"Um...Lawrence is supposed to be coming down here, but um I don't know how much longer..."

"We can't afford to stick around, we need to head out before Warren's buddies get back here...maybe if we...no that won't work..." Sam is trying to brainstorm, time slowly ticking away. If Warren's friends come down and see what you did there's no way you guys are getting out of here.

"Leave me."

John's voice is much stronger then before, and you're almost unsure that he really said just now.

"What are you talking about? L-Leave you in here?" You look at him, fighting the urge to look at the blood.

"If ah...if Law's comin' down he can carry me out, but uh...you uh guys can't do it on your own."

"What if the others come back? What do you think you'll do?" Sam asks.

"You ah...said there's was two of em? Great, I got two bullets. When I'm ah...done I should have one to spare." John smiles wide at this, showing off his confidence. "Warren shoulda ah...paid attention during basic."


"He's right." Sam cuts you off, and you look up at him in confusion.

"What? You can't be saying that we're...we're really going to leave here alone!"

"I don't like it either, but why let this go in vain? They come here before Lawrence and then what? We have little other choice. Now, find me something I can wrap around this." Sam is refusing to listen to anything else you'll say, and you follow his orders to find a way to tie on the makeshift bandage. Tearing off another line of cloth from the bottom of your dress, you look back towards his leg.

Should you offer to help with the wound, and have Sam know your secret...

Or just leave John as he is?
... might as well do it and improve John's chances, it'd even serve to show Sam we weren't kidding when we said something was wrong with us.
Sam already know something is weird about us, might as well let him in on it. We can trust him, especially after he defended you from Warren.
Can't we retrieve the gun from Warrens corpse and give it to john as a second gun?

It should still have between 5-11 shots left depending on the clip size. Wouldent that give us a much better outlook on having to leave him here?

Also let's go for it, maybe we can do our thing fast as we tell Sam to go grab the gun?
"Wait, before you do that..." You kneel down with Sam before he ties off the wound. "I...I can do something to h-help."

"What are you talking about? We need to leave." Of course Sam doesn't know what you're talking about, if anything it looks like you're just wasting time.

"Listen, missy, you ain't....ain't gotta do th-..that. Ole J-Jo...John will be fine..." John sounds like he's trying to hide your secret, and you shake your head in retaliation.

"I'm not good for anything else, let me do this at least."

John is looking at you with uncertainty on his face, and Sam is even more confused.

"We don't have time to lolly-gag, either tell me what the hell you're talking about or get your ass up. We have to move!"

"Sam, just give me a moment...I can um...I can do something to help him, just a little bit." Try not to rush, show restraint. "I told you I was sick and um....this is part of it."

You remove the cloth from John's skin, a grisly hole greeting you through blood cracked skin. Leaning down, you stop once and look up at John, your face just hovering above the wonderful source of the smell.

"Um...you don't mind, right? You wait for permission, and though it doesn't look like he likes the idea John nods in approval.

"What the hell are you about to d-"

Sam stops as soon as your mouth connects to the entrance. Sweet, nice, smooth....it's good, and you love it. But remember, remember to stay in control...it's amazing though. Your hands come up to hold John and you can feel that instinct from earlier come in. This is great, another hit. Another does, another good feeling. You want more, you want it all, you wi-

In an instant you're yanked away, a trail of blood at the corner of your mouth.

"What the HELL do you think you're doing? Do you want to get sick or something?" Sam is livid, a look of disgust on his face.

"Um...what? Oh, fixing him. I can do that with uh...with my like my tongue or whatever." You point at your mouth, expecting Sam to instantly accept this answer.

"Are you crazy?"

"...am I?" You play around with the idea in your head. "Huh...maybe..."

"Sam, l-...listen. I don't uh...I don't understand it...either but ah, g-give her a c-..chance to explain later. I...promise that it's true. As ah...hard as it is to believe..." John has a pleading look on his face, trying ton convey it for you. Right now you're too far in the clouds to properly handle this. "I can v-...vouch for her, and so c-...can Law. Please Sam, b-believe me...you can do that..."

"J-...we need to go. Now. John, you are sure about staying here, right?"

"As sure as I've...I've ever been."

"Okay, let me do what I can real quick, Delilah, will you please take a look out and make sure no one is coming this way? Rather not have a nasty surprise dropped on us." Sam returns to cover up John's wound, and you get up. It takes a couple of tries but you manage to walk to the door, surveying the scene.

"Uh...all alone." You call out, seeing not a car or person nearby. Well no, there is a person here. It feels unreal, looking down at a man with his eye just hanging out. Bile rises up in your throat again and you turn away, knowing that there is nothing but blood to vomit.

Warren has a gun though, doesn't he? There's bound to be a few shots left, yeah? That makes sense, good thinking Delilah, you're smart. Too bad that means getting close to the body though...just be quick and it'll be fine. Look anywhere but his face, and maybe you won't throw up again.

It's difficult, walking over without trying to look at the eye just resting on his cheek like that. His other intact eye is red, half closed and looking towards the sky. He's breathing, shallow and rattling breaths, and as you approach you can hear the occasional word being mumbled.


Warren doesn't seem to notice you at all, not reacting when you approach. The gun rests on the ground just a few inches away, by a loose and bent hand. Trying to watch out for any movements from him while also trying to ignore the broken face, you crouch down for the gun.

"Stay...away. S-...Stay away...from me..."

Your hand retracts from the black gun, looking over Warren. He's trying to inch away from you, his body failing to move properly. It doesn't look like he's getting up any time soon, but the way he's moving reminds you of the damage you caused, what you did to make him like this. Once again you fight back the urge to throw up and grab the gun instead. It feels different then the revolver, but the heaviness is a reminder of the power it has.

Back in the shed, Sam has found a rake and snaps off the head, creating a walking stick. He wouldn't want to use the flag pole, not with pieces of Warren attached to it...

"Good out there? Ready to leave?" Sam is testing out his newly made cane, leaning on it to walk around.

"Um, almost. Just a moment..." You kneel down in front of John, holding out the gun. "I uh...picked this up from W-...outside."

John looks at the gun but shakes his head.

"Keep it, missy."

"What? No, take this you um...you need to uh...def-...defend yourself!" You keep trying to hand the gun over, but John pushes it back each time. "Take it!"

"Missy, you need th-...this more then I d-...do. Give it over to...to Sam if you're scared but...but uh...try not to be, things'll be...be alright."

It's hard to swallow John's words when you have to look at him like this, on the ground of an abandoned shed with a bullet inside him. You nod anyways, pulling the gun back towards you.

"We need to leave, now." Sam calls out to you, and John uses all of his energy to give you a smile.

"Just remember what ah...I taught you missy. It's a bit different but...but you'll be f-...fine. Keep an eye out...and you'll be okay."

"Delilah." Sam calls you back, waiting by the door. You bite your lip but rise up and back away from John.

"Stay s-safe..."

"What? You d-...don't think John plays s-safe?" John's grin remains but his eyes are drifting shut. Clutching the gun to your chest, looking anywhere that isn't Warren, you wait as Sam does his best to secure the door.

"We have a lot of ground we need to cover, let's get going before it's too late." Sam leads the way, and though using the walking stick is harder then the crutch he is managing well enough. Following, you can't help but look back at the shed as it becomes smaller in the distance.

"Please...get here soon, Lawrence." You whisper to yourself, unsure of how loud your words are over the buzzing in your head.

"You have that gun on you?" Sam asks, and you clutch it in your hands harder.

"Yeah...yeah, I have it right uh...right here."

"See that switch on the side? Use it and then hand it over, I'll take a look at it later." Sam is panting already but forcing himself to keep going. You follow his instructions, locating and moving the switch before passing it off to Sam's hand. You walk with him in silence, circling around the field and back towards the sidewalk. A few more blocks and you'll be back where there are people coming and going, where it'll be easier to blend in. The entire time you keep an eye out for anyone. Any cars, any men...for Lawrence. Nothing comes by, and this is both a relief and disappointment.

"Where are we going?" You ask after the careful trek over uneven parking lot.

"I uh..." Sam is trying to think about the options. "We...can stay over at one of the VFW halls, for a little bit anyways. Try and regain our footing, try and figure out what's going on."

There's nothing else you can add in, and continue to follow Sam in silence.

"You don't feel sick right now, do you?" Sam is the one to break the silence, the two of you finally starting to pass people.

"Hm? I uh...threw up earlier but that was from...f-...no, I don't uh...feel sick." You do whenever you think about Warren, but if you say his name out loud you might lose the contents of your stomach again.

"You're acting a bit...off. A little loopy. You sure you don't feel sick after ah...that...thing with John?"

"Uh...not sick but it's...it makes me feel like, all tingly and warm and junk." It feels like you're confessing a bad deed you've done to a parent, and you almost feel embarrassed about it.

"Do me a favor."

"What is it?"

"Don't do that again. I saw you reaching down and was just thinking to myself...there's no way you were really going to do that. That's..."


"Dangerous. It is odd but...Jesus. Just like over in that village...well, no. I guess you weren't that bad...right? Or what? What is this like with you?"

Why do you feel unsure on you should answer this?

You could tell Sam the whole truth, that you feel great from doing this and that you sometimes have this feeling of losing control, and that if you don't have any for a while you get cravings and headaches...but what if that scares him? That story he told you, about the boy who went crazy with something kind of similar..what if he thinks you'll end up like that?

But what if you just tell him part of the truth? Some of it or...you could just try to play it off as nothing...

What should you tell him?

stupid power surges, i dont lose everything but restarting my computer everytime is a pain
tell the tooth
That it feels... disgusting, but it brings an immense sense of relief. Relief from several things, but particularly the dark thoughts. Sometimes.

We know it's fucked up and gross, but it's the only thing we know we can do to help.

Mom's supposed to be like it too, but she kept it in check by drinking? That's why she drank so heavily wasn't it? Not just because dad died, she drank more than the occasional glass of wine before...

That's why we ran... sort of. A few years after dad died, one of his colleagues tracked down mom and offered to help "treat" our condition, God knows how he knew, but he just... did something else... for three months.

... and then offered up a reward for our capture so he can do it all over...
"It's terrible. It really is." It would be good to get everything out now, and you hope that through your inebriated state you'll find the correct words to say without making yourself look even more like a freak.

"I um, I usually feel disgusting from it, but um...at the same time it makes me feel like...nice. Relief. Like right now I just feel um....okay. And like, I usually don't feel sad or anger or scared during it, um...not usually anyways. But afterward and before and during it just uh, it feels awful. Gross. I hate it, I wish I didn't have to um...didn't have to do this. But I feel sick if I don't and...everything just gets kinda hot. If I don't do it then my head hurts but um...there was one time where it just felt like I was burning. But then I do the thing and I don't feel bad anymore, like right now!" Despite the chipper in your tone, saying these things out loud just reminds you of how bad it really is.

"Wait, you get hot flashes?"

"Hm? Uh, like...onc-, no. Twice. I've had those feelings like...like I'd burst into flames or something! It was awful and gross and just...scary."

"I see, what else can you tell me?"

"Lesse, um...I wasn't always like this. I only just found out a while ago that I was sick or something...but like, I didn't know it? No one told me bout it, and I never recalled like, being really sick. Mom had it too, she passed it on to me I guess? Like a uh....hairy...no wait, hereditary thing? Yeah, but she never told me about it." You try to recall if your mother ever acted sicked, but the only thing you can remember is the booze. "She drank though. A whole lot, even before dad died."

"Anything else?"

"There's um....one more thing." This part is always the hardest for you to think about. "Dad was a doctor, a um...surgeon or something. So he had like, doctor friends too? After he died, I think mom went and asked one of them for help. We moved here and...I don't really know what he did. It was over a couple months though and I wasn't awake for most of it. All I knew was that he um...he did stuff to me, and it was after I woke up that I um...I was different. And I just couldn't stay there and...and I guess this is where I am now." You look over at Sam as you continue to follow him, scared of what he might say.

"I see..." Sam mumbles, probably trying to process everything you've said. "Will you do me one more favor?"

"Um, sure." Your voice can't hide the worry you feel, and you hope he doesn't notice.

"I asked you not to do the...thing earlier." Sam dances around the actual word as you two are now starting to pass people on the sidewalk. "I asked that because...it's dangerous, you could get sick from it. That's obvious. But there's another reason I'm asking you to refrain from that now."


"You mentioned hot flashes, and I want to see something...if you could, and I highly recommend it either way, please do not AH...give in, alright? I want to try and see if I can maybe...take a look at you during these hot flashes you mention. See if there's anything else that happens during that time, that fine with you?"

"Oh...sure." The thought of the headaches and the pain and the awful feelings scare you, but Sam is a doctor and if enduring them means maybe trying to figure out what's wrong then that should be fine, right? You sure as hell don't look forward to it either way though.

The walk is rather long, and you are forced to stop to allow Sam to stop and catch his breath occasionally. Your mind is too fuzzy for you to try and figure out what to talk about right now, and decide to remain quiet for the trip. You do your best to look for any signs of a Lincoln or a Mercedes, and you do your best to look for Lawrence. Nothing and no one stands out, and you can't help but think about John...and Warren.

"Do you think um...do you think John will be okay?" You ask, waiting at a stop light.

"If he gets plenty of fluids and bed rest then it shouldn't be too bad of a recovery."

"Will he be able to to um...walk though?"

"It's...hard to tell for sure, but he won't be paralyzed, if that's what you're asking."

"Oh, okay. That's uh...good." It would be better if he hadn't gotten shot. "What...about W-...W-Warren...?"

Sam's silence doesn't settle well with you at all.

"Did...I kill him?"

"No. He was moving, you didn't kill him."

"He's not going to be okay though, is he?"

"Don't feel bad about it. You did what you needed to." Sam must notice your inability to accept the situation. "Survivor's guilt."


"I'll explain it to you better later, but you might be feeling something called survivor's guilt. Try not to beat yourself up about this, but it'll get you some getting used to." Sam leads you across the street, and a building with the words VFW painted on the front comes to the view. This area doesn't look dangerous, but it looks old and not well taken care of.

"It's been a while since I've been here, but we should be fine here for a bit. Another favor, don't mention Lyn while we're here, and if they ask you about her don't mention anything about us on the streets, alright?" Sam warns you, coming up to the door and stopping before walking in.

"Yeah, I got it."

"Thank you." Sam allows you in and you're surprised to see the inside. You aren't sure what to expect, but it seeing men either watching the television or playing cards didn't really pass your mind. You expected this to be more of a meeting place, not so much a...hang out? It looks like there's even a small kitchen in the back, a staircase leading upstairs. The bottom floor looks to be all one open other wise, the handful of people inside just passing the time. One of the men playing cards sees the two of you enter and hobbles up to the front desk.

"Sam? Sam, is that you?" He calls out, adjusting his glasses. Sam extends his hand and the two share a firm shake.

"How you doing Abe? Been a while."

"You're telling me! This Lyn? She's so big now!" Abe nods towards you, and you feel put on the spot.

"Ah no, Lyn's with friends. I'm just watching this girl for a bit. Her name is D-...Bunny. We just need to hang out here for a bit."

"Well, you already paid your dues so it's yours to use!" Abe begins to talk to Sam about men you don't know and you try not to look like your eavesdropping. Not that you know who any of these people are anyways. You wish you could enjoy your fuzzy feeling, but it's hard to do so right now.

"AH, wait! If you're here then Henry is gonna, hold on. Henry!" Abe calls out from across the room.

"I'm going to have to talk to some of these guys for a bit, but then we'll make a plan," Sam whispers to you. "You can go and sit with any of that guys and the worst they'll do is try to tell you some of their war stories. If that worries you too much then you can head upstairs. If I remember correctly there should be a shower and a room you can lay down in. Not too many others go up there, it might give you some alone time."

You nod and watch as Sam walks up to meet up with another man coming up to greet him.

You could stay down here and try to interact with some of the men, or at least sit down here and keep to yourself while watching the television.

Going upstairs might be good though, and while it doesn't feel unsafe down here being around all these men you don't know kind of...kind of make you feel slightly uncomfortable.

Do you want to stay down here or go up stairs?
> stay downstairs and try to talk to people

It may be boring for us but we should ask to hear some war stories from them

If someone comes up in here trying to take us away we will have an army of ex-military guys ( who think we are a "good kid" for listening to them) to keep us extra safe
Try staying down here for a bit, if Sam says it's safe it's probably safe, right? We can always head upstairs if it becomes too much...

Just keep a bit of distance and hope it doesn't make us seem... aloof. Hope they don't try to... close the distance.

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