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/qst/ - Quests

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"You might be a smart girl, but you aren't a lucky one"

You play as Delilah, an unfortunate young girl going through tough times.

=Links and Information=


Thanks to an anon, here is the pastebin of just the text. With threads purposely being misarchived, this should be available and accessible instead:
Melancholic Quest Collection 1 (1-4): http://pastebin.com/hTK0fQmd
Melancholic Quest Collection 2: http://pastebin.com/cX4HC6Q9
Melancholic Quest Collection 3: http://pastebin.com/sTuR8xJv
Melancholic Quest Collection 4: http://pastebin.com/RPwa7nEt
Melancholic Quest Collection 5: http://pastebin.com/DJ71TtFc
Melancholic Quest Collection 6: http://pastebin.com/xxCdZfx6
Melancholic Quest Collection 7: http://pastebin.com/7skcyeX0

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


Twitter; @Cowboy_Sue
Discord; https://discord.gg/8CCdcQ3 <--updated to be working
Chat room with me and other players. I answer questions, post sketches, and act cheeky.
You make sure that no one is giving enough attention to scold you before opening the door, sitting on the edge of the front seat so you can bolt out if necessary. Brandi seems to be crying too hard into her hands to even notice that you came in, that or she just does not care about you right now. Not that you can blame her but it makes it harder for you to find the nerve to speak up and you start to seriously consider against it.

In fact you end up just sitting there for a long while, opening your mouth occasionally in an attempt to speak up but finding nothing to say. The smell of blood lingers in the air just subdued enough for you to ignore it. If you were sitting right next to her it might be a problem but here in the front seat and with the door cracked up it makes you believe that you might have a little bit of control.

"I um..." With the occasional glance back but becoming intimidated each time you catch icy blue eyes peeking up from her hands you end up stammering at the glove box instead. "I h-hope you don't um, d-don't mind me in h-here right now."

The following silence makes you think that the effort was for nothing, why would she want to talk to you right now anyways? You're with the people who shot and kidnapped her. If it was you in the backseat you sure as hell wouldn't want any of those people trying to act too friendly with you.

"...so there really is a kid here." Brandi's mumbling is clear enough in the mostly empty car and the lack of anger in her voice makes you feel better. at least a bit.

"Actually I just turned fourteen the other day so um...so I'm not a k-...a kid..." It feels stupid saying that aloud, especially when all you had done just now was hide. The car shakes with the new loads added to the back and you hope that means getting to leave soon.

"You look like a kid to me." Her voice is hoarse now, tired after everything she's gone through in such a short amount of time.

"I guess so..." you force a happy face when you look back at Brandi, making sure to avoid eye contact, "I was um, I got my picture taken for an ID earlier and when I asked the guy said no one would believe it if he put twenty years old on there-" The laugh that leaves you is short and fake and you once again feel stupid for talking again. You resign yourself to staring at the dash in front of you, watching in the reflection of the window as Camilla comes over with a heavy sack in her arms.

Brandi glares at her, not taking an eye off the woman till she dips out of view behind the open trunk. "Have they hurt you?"
It takes you a little to realize who she's talking about and you can't help but look back at her to answer such an absurd question. "Them?" you ask while pointing to where Rizzo and Camilla are securing whatever cargo it is that Crockett brings over to them. "No, they're my friends. I...I know it's h-hard to believe right now but they're... they've been good people to me." You were going to use the word good to describe them but in the current situation you don't feel comfortable using that.

Brandi eyes what movements she can see with a careful eye before looking back at you, trying to move closer despite her hands being secured to the seat in front of her. "How much do you actually know about these guys? You haven't been with them long have you?"

You don't try to answer, feeling afraid to. The silence serves enough for Brandi.

"That guy, Ace Crockett? I know he used to be a cop, I know Grant and Mariano have mentioned that before. I'd never trust anyone as scummy as that but-" her words cut off short as Camilla walks past the car again, meeting Crockett part way to bring the last of the load into the car. "...those two though, the Italians. What's they're name, Ricci or Russo or-"

"Rizzo." Your voice barely squeaks up to correct her and Brandi's face goes white.

"Yeah... Yeah, I friggin' knew it!" Her hands clench up tight and she starts trying to pull herself free again, stopping only when she realizes that it's not going to help her. Even when she stops pulling on her restraints Brandi looks like a feral animal trapped, ready to try anything to escape whatever unknown fate is going to come upon her. "Those two, you swear they haven't done nothin' to you?"

Your head shakes no slowly, unsure of what she could be implying. "They're ni-...they've been good to me."

Brandi is staring you down now, not in spite like she does at Camilla but with one of pity and fear.

"I bet they haven't told you anything about them."

"They have," you quickly pipe up but you add in a quiet voice, "they've told me a bit. But they haven't done anything awful! I mean b-besides..." You're not sure what you would call what just happened here, only that the word good does not apply again.

"Shit kid, you gotta be careful." Brandi quickly switches to a hushed tone, doing her best to lean in close to you. "They tell you about the awful stuff? Why they had to leave Italy, all that?"

Camilla had mentioned before the trouble she had gotten in, how she defended herself and those actions led to her fleeing. Nothing that made you feel suspicious about her or Rizzo, but the look on Brandi's face is telling a different story.

Ask Brandi to tell you?
Nah, we're not back in middle school where gossip is worth its implications in gold.
You turn away from Brandi, choosing to look out the window rather than see the frantic expression painted over her face.

"No, I'm an adult now..." It's hard for you to keep from stammering but your teeth grit together and you pull through. Mostly. "I don't need to listen to any g-... any gossip."

In the blurry and dark reflection of the window you can see Brandi fall back down into place. "Gossip...?" Any hope has left her voice now as she stares blankly at you. The smudged mess of mascara that stains her cheeks manages to show through on her paled face and a shaky, scared breath leaves her chest. "They've got you fooled, don't they?"

The use of the word fool bothers you more than it should, you're quickly reaching the limit of what you can handle today.

"Stop!" Your hands come to cover your ears just to make sure that nothing awful reaches you. "Don't say anything! They've been h-helping me...!" From outside you hear the low and harsh utterance of 'goddammit' before Crockett steps over to you. Glaring into the window he wastes no time pulling the door from your hand, grabbing it instead with every intention to pull you away.

"I told you to stand outside-"

"Let her, we have to leave now." Rizzo calls out to him, the slam of the trunk following soon after. "Camilla, sit in the back with me, we'll let him drive." You're released, Crockett refusing to look at you before he goes to retrieve the keys.

As the doctor comes into the car you can see a scrape against his forehead, making you wonder if either of them suffered any other injuries. You return to the front seat, feeling guilty about getting scolded.

With Camilla behind you, she and Rizzo sit on either sides of the backseat and untie Brandi from the chair so that she has to stay between them. It's uncomfortably silent the whole time, no one saying a word as Crockett starts up the car.

He gives a farewell wave to Palmer, driving past her parked patrol car on the bottom level of the garage. It feels wrong to go out on to the road in the middle of the day while a hostage rides with but it's a sickening feeling to realize how hard it would be for someone to notice.
"...can you at least untie my friggin' hands? This rope is startin' to hurt me." Brandi is the first to speak up and you don't enjoy any uncomfortable moment of it. Her words are low and scratchy, her only movements coming from her trying to show off the mark from her restraints.

"When we get to where we need to be, it won't be long." Harsh and quick to the point with his words you absolutely hate seeing whatever side of Crockett this is.

"C'mon, you owe me this much." A remnant of kick returns back to Brandi's words and you start to hear a shuffle directly behind you. "What can I do? I ain't got nothing on me and you've already shot me. Unless you're wanting me to hurt-"

"Please, it would be easier if you remained quiet." Camilla speaks up for the first time but you can barely hear it over the rumble of the car. Oddly meek you wonder if something had happened to her that you hadn't known about. While you can definitely pick up the smell of blood in the air occasionally it's nothing that you can't block out with the handkerchief.

"Do I?" Resent puts more fire in Brandi's words and in the rearview mirror you can see her mouth curl in a sneer. "Why the fuck should I listen to anything you have to say-"

There's a quick rustle of movement and her words fall silent again. Her heavy breathing leaves a sense of fear in your chest and you're unable to tell if she was silenced with Camilla's gun or just the implied threat of it again.

"I'm-" Camilla speaks up again, her voice shaking harder with each word. "I am so s-sorry I hurt you, I really am."

Brandi remains afraid to speak in the following seconds, eventually muttering loud enough for everyone to hear.

"I don't care."

You don't dare look at anyone else in the car and do your best to take up as little room as possible. Just the distraction of the radio would be nice but you don't dare to ask for it, choosing instead to suffer with in the bitter silence with the others.


It's shocking that Brandi remains quiet during the car ride, barely putting up a fight when Rizzo suggests blindfolding her. Under the suggestion of preventing her from figuring out where the compound is, it only adds to feeling of all this being incredibly wrong.
You would have thought that pulling back into the familiar, isolated and fenced off fortress would have been welcoming but the feeling quickly passes when Camilla attempts to remove their captive from the vehicle.

"Come on, we're going in." she tried to say calmly, put upon grabbing onto Brandi's shoulder she caused the woman to try and jump back.

"Uh uh!" Brandi yells out. Blind, unable to use her hands and with a crippled foot she shouldn't stand much of a chance yet you're hardly able to peel your eyes away as she begin to wiggle and kick her way down the seat. "I'm not gettin' out, I'm not about to let you take me out to some friggin' ditch to shoot!"

"We're not going to hurt you anymore-"

"Like I'm gonna believe you! I know who you are, I shoulda known the friggin' baby killer would have been fine with shooting me!"

Camilla's actions come to a halt while a look of being sick spreads across her face. Her slack is made up for by Rizzo, who attempts to grab the woman from his side of the car. "Freaking out like this is not good for you. Just come with and we can get you patched up better."

"No! I'm not goin' anywhere! You get Grant or Mariano or who the fuck ever on the phone! I'm not leaving this car till I'm going home, I'm not-" Any attempts to grab her result in her violent thrashing, a scream shortly leaving her lips in an act of frustration.

You don't get a chance to watch the scene for long as Crockett pulls you away, pulling you along out of the garage and into the main room.

"Lawrence!" he snaps, voice echoing down the halls. Sure enough he comes striding out of his room with his face a mix of concern and confusion. Upon seeing each other there's a moment of relief before you're, mostly gently, pushed over in his direction. "Keep her occupied, please. We're trying to take care of a situation."

You walk to Lawrence as he agrees to the order, leading you back the way he came with a hand on your back before there's any chance of arguing against it. Not that you want to, the muffled cries of Brandi coming through the door are more than enough to deter you away. With one look back you watch as Crockett vanishes back behind the garage door, going to deal with Brandi.

The pounding in your chest doesn't stop when Lawrence leads you the seclusion of his room, far away from whatever mess is going on outside. Once closed away from the madness you catch Lawrence off guard by throwing your arms around him. Your eyes begin to water but it's not quite enough to make you cry, not yet.

"It's been such a bad day..." your voice wavers and you feel Lawrence crouch down so you can lead against his shoulder, "I want it to be over already, I want-..." The words crack and you fall quiet, sniffling and trying to keep from breaking down. It's tough but you manage to do so, especially since you're in a warm and comforting embrace rather than crouched down in the car.
You take your moment to calm down and let Lawrence go, trying to give him a smile despite being close to tears. He gives one back, letting you imagine that things are okay for now.

He lets you sit on his bed and wrap up in the unmade blanket, taking a moment to put up the loose lined paper covering his desk. Only some of the pages have writing on it, most that looks to be Lawrence's. There's no mention of their contents as he puts them away in a folder. His coat had been thrown on the bed earlier and you take the moment to grab it, slipping it on for an extra sense of security. It feels warm still, like he had just taken it off recently, and the contents of the pockets are a bit heavy.

Lawrence doesn't look too concerned about you wearing it so you decide to keep it on for now. The sleeves extend far past your arms but you barely put up the effort to keep them pulled up, similar to the effort you put in to keep the collar tidy and straight. You're just glad that you get to spend this time with him though you would have preferred calmer circumstances. Whatever is happening outside is out of sight and out of mind.

As you feel the outside of the coat pocket you can very clearly make out the rectangle shape of a cigarette carton, not that you can really find the energy to try and scold him about that right now.

It does, however, remind you of the secret pages you stole from the journal. Those still rest in your jacket pocket, reminding you of what you've been trying to accomplish. No one likes to tell you things, even when you had to witness something as violent as today happen with little context. And while Lawrence keeps more from you than you'd like you also know that if you try hard enough he'll spill a little information for you, if you try hard enough anyways.

You would love to know more about the items Crockett bought today, or if the disaster of a 'deal' that happened at the garage is a common thing when they go out.

Brandi's use of the word baby killer strikes you too and you have to wonder if Lawrence would know anything about that or any of the other rumors she might have told you.

Or you can just say that today has been long enough and not even try to think about how awful it had been. It's not like you get a chance alone with Lawrence like this too often and you need to make the most out of however you decide to spend it.
Let's call it a day and chill with Law. Everything will be easier to think on when we've recovered from the stress anyway.
update coming in a few hours, my bad my trip turned out more involved than expected
Closing your eyes and putting those bad thoughts out of mind you curl up in the bed, pressing the material of the coat against your face.

Of course you can smell him on there and it's a scent you have found comfort in. Something else familiar lingers in there, faint but mixed with the cloth. Between the prickling sensation in your head and the awkward way his shoulder sometimes jerks in pain it's obvious that Lawrence is still very much healing from his injury.

"You don't have to hurry, I can wait." You speak up just loud enough for the words to reach Lawrence from where you still lay in bed. "But when um...when you're done I wouldn't mind um, c-cuddling or something." While you don't want to be a nuisance the courtesy just outweighs your desire for attention.

The soft noises that come from Lawrence's direction are just enough for you to focus on, the creak of the chair and the shuffle of papers keeping you distracted enough to not think about what could be happening outside. It doesn't take long before you can pick out the sounds of his breathing, taking notice of the almost silent yawn he gives. It looks like he is going to make you wait just a bit longer before coming over, but as you barely manage to stifle a much louder yawn things feel okay right now.

After all, you came back safe and Lawrence is here with you two. Maybe that's all you really need, the thought leaving a prickling sensation against your scalp. You feel light headed but it's not all that unpleasant, making you feel relaxed enough to close your eyes and wait for Lawrence to come over.
The room is darker when you look around again and the blanket lays over your body. Turning away from the wall you wonder where Lawrence went, only to find his body laying next to you beneath the covers. You can't help but lay there in the complete silence, slowly making out the silhouette of his face and neck in the blackness.

Laying there, you can't help but think about how being like this makes you two like a real couple. Sleeping together like this -even if you can't recall Lawrence putting you under the blanket or getting into bed himself- it makes you feel normal. You can feel like a good girlfriend or wife or whatever it is he wants to call you and the ring on your finger will be so much more deserved. There's no chill in the room as you reach out yet there's goosebumps rising up on your bare arm, a creep tingling up your spine.
You don't feel any fear in coming to Lawrence and wrapping an arm around him, it must just be excitement you feel crawling up your core right now. Just like a normal girl, you're just like a normal girl cuddling up close to her man. The light strands of hair cling to your cheek for some reason but you can barely care about that as you bury your face against the static, solid span of his chest. All you can do is give out a contempt sigh, closing your eyes again and feeling like you're floating.

It's when you notice that your hair has started to feel wet and clumped up together that you finally decide to investigate why it's this way. Something wet has splashed across your cheek, or perhaps dribbled from your mouth as your fingertips follow the sensation to your lips. Thinking that maybe you had been drooling your sleep it doesn't take too long for you to tell that whatever it is it has stained your fingers. Somehow your vision starts to let the sight come into focus- the tips of your fingers have been stained a dark, sickly color from whatever it is coming from your mouth.

It reminiscent of your blood, inky and inhuman compared to the crimson you see from others. While you begin to think that you somehow bit your tongue while sleeping you can't help but notice that there's a sweetness hanging about in the air, not the unappealing and pungent smell you remember from yours.

Almost too sweet though, it starts to make your stomach turn. A bitter taste fills your mouth as you reach out to Lawrence.

"I th-think I n-need-" With a hand against his shoulder you come to find that he's lacking the warmth you usually find, that he hasn't moved at all since you've come to. Breathign becomes much harder now as your black stained hands holds onto his cheeks, gentle pulling his face to try and look at you. Somehow you can now see his features, his half lidded eyes lacking any signs of life, the trail of black that trickles from his mouth and leaves the white of his teeth blotched. His throat is the worst, an unsightly mess of bite marks and carnage right in the center. The flow from the injury is slow but steadily dripping out, turning the sheets beneath him the same evil color.

"Lawrence!" your throat tightens up from how loud you try to shout yet nothing sounds like it's coming out. The grip on his face tightens as you start to shake, the tears streaking down and mixing in with the terrible sin left on your face. "I d-...I d-did this...? I'm s-so s-s-sorry, oh my g-god! Oh my g-god, I n-.... I'm so s-sorry Lawrence, I'm g-going to-"

The gasp that does leave you is very much so audible, leaving you when the sudden movement beneath ends with Lawrence's hand gently gripping your chin. His head turns towards you, eyes still dull and unfocused, and somehow you hear him speak clearer than ever.

The next gasp that leaves you travels loudly in the lit up room and your body jerks upward. Wide eyed and only able to hear the sound of your heartbeat in your ears you look around, trying to figure out what's going on.

Back on top of the covers again and the coat swallowing up your body you can remembering laying down like this, this is how things should be. With a hand on your shoulder you can see now that Lawrence is already over here, helping you to sit up and come out of whatever nightmare you just left. When you look up at him you can see that he's fine, that there's no gash in his throat and no blood or blackness anywhere. He gives a short, crooked grin to let you know things are okay, accepting you into his arms when you throw yourself on him. There's no need to tell him that it was a nightmare, you doubt that it had been quiet during those couple minutes that you fell asleep.

He lets you rest against him, your face vanishing against his shirt and the motion of his hand traveling calmly through your dark hair.

This is fine, things are fine again. You just had a bad nightmare and don't need to think nothing more of it. Lawrence just waits patiently on you, letting you take as much time as needed to recover from the awful episode.

"I'm sorry-" you sniff, sitting back up and clearing your face with the sleeves of his coat. "I didn't mean to... I didn't mean to fall asleep and it's j-just been a r-rough day..." Lawrence nods, showing that he understands. He offers to let you sit close to him and while you hesitate at first you take the offer, pressing your ear against his chest and making sure you can hear his heart beating before you even try to hold him close again. While you continue to calm down he keeps petting your hair, making you realize this is the calmest thing you've done all day.
"Thank you," you whisper, fingers gripping his shirt as you snuggle in closer. He doesn't try to ask what you were dreaming of and you're thankful. It'd be far too much for you to handle right now and you can't help but worry about making him afraid.

A couple minutes pass like this and while you sometimes hear someone outside the hallway walking by nothing tries to disturb the little bit of peace you've earned right now.

"So um..." you don't want Lawrence to grow bored holding you lest he try to get up and dow something else, so you find ways to make a conversation to keep him here. "How's your shoulder feeling?"

His hand comes to reach up and touch the area beneath his sweater, the material barely hiding the lump of bandages beneath.

Okay he mouths, stopping to think about it for a moment afterward. Sore.

Lawrence motions that the discomfort is only a little bit but you can never be sure when to trust that kind of answer with him.

"It's going to take a little while to heal, isn't it?" you ask, feeling a little bad about the subject you chose now. Lawrence tries to answer like it's not that big of a deal but even you know that a bullet injury isn't going to be an overnight process.

He looks ready to try and tell you something more but stops each time, shaking his head at himself when he considers it a bad idea. Eventually though he caves in and musters up the strength to speak up.

"Would... feel better?" he starts to ask, hand tugging at the collar of his shirt. He stops when the white of bandage begins to show from beneath, taking a moment to think about what to say next. "Don't...mind. If you...feel better."

The chill up your spine returns as you look at Lawrence. He's offering himself so willingly that it feels a bit strange but then again so does everything about this anyways. He's just trying to help you through such a terrible day, but you're unsure if it's something you should take up right now.

Accept Lawrence's offer?
Turn him down. Until we know more about the... disorder, it's probably best to not overindulge.

Especially on top of a nightmare like that.
"It's okay," you say while looking away, "I don't need it. Thanks though..." Feeling far too nervous to mention already divulging early today you keep silent with a bite to your lip, unsure of why you feel so bad about the event. It's certainly not the worst part of y our day, that's for sure.

As he allows his shirt to cover up the bandages again you can't help but wonder if you're really seeing disappointment on Lawrence's face. It's just you being unable to think properly right now and you shake any weird thought like that out of your head.

Remembering that this are his coat sleeves falling past your hands you move to take it off, handing it back to him and hoping that you hadn't crushed whatever was inside the pockets. You also remember what contents lay inside of your own and you move quickly to remove it and drape it on the bed's foot post. It'd be best to keep from wrinkling the pages too much, especially with how hard the hand writing is already.

"It's not really that late I know but I was wondering if it would be okay if we, or if I took a nap?" Despite the nightmare you feel sleepy and would love nothing more to get comfortable and fall asleep. "I won't make you take take one with me but I really wouldn't m-mind if you did either..."

Lawrence nods and mouths, love to.
"I want out of these clothes though..." you look down at your kneeling body, hands traveling over what you can't help but think of as filthy now. Accidentally seeing something you don't want to in the hallway or facing the mess you left behind in the bedroom don't sound appealing in the slightest, and while you it doesn't feel right to ask a favor right now you muster the courage to do so anyways. "I can wear some of your clothes though, right? Just something I could sleep in for a bit."

You wait as he gets up and sorts through one of a few growing piles of clothes, sniffing to make the sure the shirt he hands over to you is clean. As far as you can tell it is and that's good enough for you right now, though you don't resist a small jab at him. "It'd be easier to remember which ones were clean if you put them where they're supposed to go." It earns you a quick, teasing flick of your bang before Lawrence turns away to give you privacy.

Just like the coat you're swallowed up in all the excess cloth but you have no complaints about it. The clothes you remove are carefully folded up not only to show Lawrence how to keep tidy but to also carefully conceal away the your removed bra, something you would still feel embarrassed about him seeing. Shuffling beneath the covers you finally let him know that it's okay to turn around now. You keep your back to him, feeling the mattress move and sink in as he joins you. He doesn't join underneath but it's fine with you, the warmth still comes through.

You 're just expecting him to lay there and wait for you to fall asleep again so he can resume his work but you find him turn to face your direction, his hand reaching across your body to hold onto yours where it rests on the mattress. It takes you a bit to get used to this position, though you quickly grow to like it. A way to keep him close without having to look at him as remember the terrible things that you dreamt of.
"I'm glad it's quiet right now," you whisper. Whether it being silent outside is a good or bad thing is something you can think about later. "But I think it might take a little bit before I go to sleep again."

Lawrence nods to tell you that's fine and gives a quick squeeze of the hand engulfed by his. Having his attention is always nice and you feel like talking to him for now, till you fall asleep at least.

You reach up with your other hand so you can bring his closer, holding his bigger one between both of yours. Different short and fleeting thoughts pass in your head right now as you decide about what to talk about;

Planning some kind of date would be nice, as impossible as it might be to accomplish.

Or maybe you should talk about something likely to happen, something like the boarding school your grandmother mentioned. It's not your favorite plan but it's not the worst thing and trying to talk it out more might make it seem less scary.

After what happened today you might feel better if you talk about some kind of emergency plan with Lawrence... just to be safe.

Anything is fine really, you don't mind talking about nothing important just as long as you have his attention.
Keeping it light is probably better to not stress us out. Avoid a stress dream sequel or something.
"Um..." You squeeze at the hand you're holding and get his attention, earning a squeeze back. "I think I'd like to go out to see a movie with you again. Out in a theater, or um... maybe a play again, that would be fine too. Or whatever you'd want to do, I just want to go on a d-date with you again is all..." You mumble the last bit, cheeks heating up hot when Lawrence lets out a breathy, quiet chuckle.

"Okay." He nods and squeezes your hand again. It's dark enough to keep him from seeing how red your cheeks have become but you're honestly just happy right now. After your day today this is easiest the best thing that's happened- even if it turns out to just be talk."I...choose?"

"The movie?" you ask, "Um... okay, only if it's not too scary though. Or ones where it's just some big scary guy shooting a bunch of stuff."

"Are...best." Lawrence raises himself up just enough to look down at you with strands of black hair falling out of their place and against his forehead. You swear his face looks paler than usual, that or the circles under his eyes have grown darker yet he grins all the same. "Have to."

"Hmm.." In the guise of pondering his request you try to study his face harder and hoping nothing else about him seems out of place., "Well, if you make me sit through a loud and boring movie like that then I'm going to make you buy me the most expensive dessert I can find later." Hoping not to creep him out too much you turn away and puff out your cheek, acting like there's nothing wrong aside from his terrible choice in films. "...if the movie isn't too bad I'll share it with you."

An occasional tinge travels up your spine, something you don't quite know how to describe. It leaves you a bit light headed each time, making it easier for your eyes to close and remain that way. In between talking about other places you'd like to visit or how there needs to be photos taken again you end up falling asleep, still holding onto his hand as you do.
Your hands are empty when you pick yourself up from the mattress later and find the room dimmer from before. Just a small light remains on now and you find Lawrence still in bed, though you hear him before seeing him sprawled out against his back. As you carefully navigate out of the blanket and over his limbs you're surprise that there was even room for you in the first place. During the move you very carefully turn his head, just enough to quiet his snores for now.

"You're so loud," you whisper and try to hide your giggle, "You're lucky I don't mind."

Lawrence's eyes peek open briefly and he gives you a short wave before falling right back to sleep again, the sound of your voice barely waking him up right now. Not that you wouldn't mind staying in bed with him but you're painfully thirsty, a metallic taste covering your dry tongue. All you need is something to drink and a quick bite, then you can go lay down again.

Walking causes your bare legs to become chill, bringing your senses back rather quickly. It's only when you're at the door do you wonder if it's fine for you to go outside. You listen to the quiet that lays behind the door, trying to pick up on the sound of anything or anyone outside. There's nothing that you pick up on and, gritting with each noise it makes, you open the door and slip out into the hallway. By now you know how to navigate through in the dark, your hands traveling over the walls as you make it over to the kitchen.

A light escapes from beneath the crack of the door and the floor, warning you that someone might already be inside. Slowly you push it open, just enough to take a look inside.

Someone had just forgotten to hit the switch on their way out and you let out a sigh of relief. Everything will be so much easier if you can just get in and out and not have to talk to anyone.

You stride inside ready to hurry and take back what you might need. Straight to the fridge, where you take a look inside and try to figure out what sounds like it might be tasty right now. When you find a piece of left over birthday cake you immediately take it and begin munching on it, just ready to get the awful taste out of your mouth.
"Huh, so you're still here."

The plate nearly drops from your hand and it takes everything you've got to not choke. Seeing Brandi sit at the table frightens you, and you're not sure if it's because you're scared of her or the fact that you hadn't noticed till now. Most of that fear fades away once you notice that she is handcuffed to the table with enough chain to stand but not near enough to walk away. You manage to relax some, but turn away as you wipe away crumbs and icing from your lips.

She's staring at you, waiting for some sort of response. You wait and pray that someone will walk through the door to prevent this from happening, but as the seconds pass it becomes increasingly more embarrassing for you to stand there turned away and hushed up.

"Aw c'mon, I'm not gonna hurt ya."

You gradually turn back towards her direction, seeing that she is just sitting at the table with a half eaten plate of food shoved aside. Her clothes are different too, a tracksuit much more plain than what she had on the last time you saw her.

"I um... I just came in here to get something to eat." you answer, closing the fridge door. Not wanting to spend too much time in here you go to grab a drink, the awful taste of metal returning. "I'll leave you alone-"

"Hey, wait a sec. You ain't gotta leave yet." She's tired but speaking rather nicely to you, it's a strange comparison to how you'd seen her the rest of the day. "You can stay and eat if you wanna, I'm pretty bored."

"Why are you in here?" you look around, worried that someone will walk back and scold you for talking with her.

"They were tryna get hold of Grant," her face curls up at the mention of his name, "and they decided I needed a little food break. That one guy, Ace? Not the Italian, he went out bout an hour ago. I think, honestly it's been hard keeping track of the time."

"What about...?" You were going to say Camilla's name but decide against it. Brandi can already tell who you were asking about and the same look of disgust pulls on her face.

"She's the one that left me in here. Chained me up then said that she would be 'right back', that she just had to give a hand with that old lady back there." Brandi shuffles around the potatoes on her plate as a wave of shock travels down, something that must show on your face. "Ah wait, sorry. That's... she's related to you, right?"

You just nod, unsure if that was too much to tell her.

"Didn't mean to scare you like that. They might just be talking, I dunno. Left me here alone for a while though and I just wanna lay down and sleep now. Helluva day, but I guess you were there for that." Her fork clatters back down to the plate and she mumbles, "...really wish I could smoke."

"I'm um, sorry..." you aren't sure what to say to this woman, instead trying to drown out the twangy sensation in your mouth with cold water.
"Don't worry, there's nothing I need you to apologize for." Brandi watches you from the table, making you grow more and more nervous by the second. "Well, I'm not gonna try to force you to hang out here with me kid. I understand why you wouldn't wanna, but maybe you wouldn't mind doing me a favor."

There's a small grimace on your face as you ask, "A favor?"

"Nothing awful," she shakes her head, "There's just something in my jacket pocket that I'd like, that's all."

"What is it?" you're a bit curious now, though making sure to keep your caution up.

With her fingers Brandi traces a small square in the air, "Just a photo, that's all. Just in my wallet in my pocket, don't need anything else."

"Um..." While you feel stupid for doing so you still feel the need to ask, "Is there a reason why you don't have it right now?"

Brandi grins in a way that makes you feel uncomfortable. "Cause despite getting shot and taken hostage, I get treated like a prisoner. Worse actually, who heard of photos being considered contraband?" The smile on her face grows softer and she adds, "It's a photo of my dad though, and it'd make me feel a little bit better if I knew that it was safe with me."

You nod in understanding, still not agreeing to it. "Where would it be though?"

"My coat? Took it off in that ex-cop guy's office, probably still hanging there on the rack or something. That or it's in a box with my other clothes- just like when you check into a prison." Brandi laughs at this, leaving you to think about what to do.

You could just head back to bed now or stay for just a little bit, enough to pass some of the time with her.

If it's just a photo and Crockett has left though this might not be such a hard thing to do, and if it's something to make such a terrible situation a little bit better then maybe you can get it over with.

What do you do?
Let's try and get her the photo, she probably has her reasons for wanting to have it with her.

We can try keeping her company after.
Might as well try to help.

This is a real stealth thread huh, I only just NOW realize it was up.
All good anon, had a funky posting schedule due to a trip anyways
"It's just one photo, right?"

"Yep," Brandi nods, "that's all."

You think about it a while longer but can't find it in your heart to say no. "Okay, I'll try my best. Don't tell anyone you saw me though, please?"

"Wouldn't dream of it." She grins at you and starts picking at her food again. "Thanks for this, kid."

Wondering what sort of trouble you have just gotten yourself into you approach the door and mumble, "I'm not a kid..."

A breathy chuckle leaves Brandi. "Right, sorry bout that," she apologizes with a wider grin, "We are both ladies, I'll stop calling you a kid."

Barely stopping short of thanking her you just slip out with only a nod. The way being illuminated only by the light escaping beneath the kitchen door you have to take a moment to adjust your vision again, walking slowly as you figure out which way to head. Another light catches you attention down a hall, a sliver trailing out from a door not quite shut all the way. From here you can tell that it's the door to your grandmother's room and, while unable to make out what is being said at all, the occasional faint sound of conversation picks up through the gap.

Though not knowing what exactly is going on is worrying you try to hope that it's nothing too horrible.

Getting to Crockett's office is easy but it still has you scared of being discovered every part of the way. Even with the lights off inside you expect to open the door and find him at his desk, just waiting to catch you sneaking around. It's dark and uncomfortably quiet, the stacks of boxes outlined in your adjusted vision. You only turn on the light once you've shut yourself in, breathing a sigh of relief when things are a bit less spooky.

It takes some careful searching around but you manage to find an out of place jacket folded over on the desk. While trying to keep it in place you start to rummage through the first pocket, only coming up with sticks of gum and a tube of lipstick. Her other pocket brings out a long wallet, and with it the edges of something white poking out. Going through someones personal belongings despite having permission makes you feel skeevy, even more so when you open the wallet to retrieve what's inside.

Ignoring the cards and dollar bills lined up neatly in the pockets you slip out the square of white and give it a quick peek inside. The shiny surface of a photograph reflects back and gives you a reason to head back. Replacing the wallet and making sure everything is how it was you flips off the lights and slip out.
Hiding it against your chest you can feel just how old this photograph must be, dirty and tattered from being around so long. Unsure of where you'd hide it if needed you feel incredibly lucky for making it back to the kitchen unhindered. It manages to last as you peek through the door first, assuring that no one else is in there before enter.

Brandi looks up exciting from the table, wanting to get up from the chair but being unable to do so. "Did ya get it?" she whispers, her smiled widening as you nod. You hold out the photo and approach her, keeping your arm out stretched to keep distance. She just takes the picture, all of her attention focused down on it as it becomes unfolded.

You can't help but take a peek, wondering just what sort of photo could be so important.

It's a longer picture than you had imagined, stretching out to a short row of men. From a distance it's hard to make out any of their features in the faded image but you can tell that Brandi is staring intently at it.

'This is um, the right one?" you ask, unsure why she would want something like this so badly.

"Yep," she smiles back at you and ushers you to move closer. You take a few steps closer in curiosity but still try to keep some distance. "One of the only pictures of my dad that I've got. Grant actually found this for me, it was over in his old man's stuff."

In the row of five men she points to one on the far left, the only one not standing but leaning against a car hood and turning away from the camera. "This one right here, that was my dad. Wasn't home a lot and took pictures even less, I'm amazed they managed to convince him to take this one."

You can't help but get a little closer, taking notice that the men seem to be outside of some warehouse type of building. Wooden crates are stacked up on the right side of the image and one of the men in the middle seems to be holding something long and dark in his hands. "You two have the same nose."
"Think so?" she asks, looking back at you to get a nod. Brandi returns back to the photo and points to the man next to her dad, the painted nail pointing at the smiling man's face. "This guy right here, this is Mariano."

"They don't really look anything alike..." you say a little louder than you meant to.

"Oh yeah, well they're not actually father and son. Grant started working for him when he was real young and ended up getting taken under his wing, Mariano always had a soft spot for little losers like that." There's a quiet laugh with the words as she continues to stare at the picture, the grin on her face starting to become more somber. "He's a nice guy, Mariano. Offered to help me after dad died, almost like family to me. But he went and got sick..."

"Sick?" you feel bad for asking, knowing it's too late to retract the question when Brandi gives a sad nod.

"Street rot," she explains in a dry voice, "it's been eatin' him up on the inside. Can barely recognize the guy now, it breaks my heart. Been with it for a year now but he was managing to stave off the worst of it for a while now but, well that's gonna burn a hole in your wallet and he wasn't able to work during that time, not like he used to. Been bedridden for a few months now which means Grant's been in charge and- well, he's okay at taking orders."

"Is...is he always like that?" you dare to ask.

"Grant?" she lets out a sigh, her eyes still fixed on the picture. "He can be a stupid jerk asshole sometimes but... Grant isn't usually that bad, no. Watching Mariano's health go like that is just, it's killing Grant. He loves that man like his honest to god father but he can't make enough money to keep him alive. It's why he's been so stubborn about giving back that money, he's tryna save up for the old guy. Not that I think he should just be fine with abandoning his girlfriend like this..."

You try to keep an eye on the door and think of what to do if someone were to walk in. "He still won't give it back?"
Brandi's head shakes, "No and I think he's been going back on his ah, 'rehab'. Just hoping it's not meth again but course he won't give me an answer..." her voice trails off and when she does speak up again it's almost too quiet for you to hear. "Don't think I could blame him though, if I'm being honest. Nothing's for sure yet but Grant might..." Her head falls into her hand, body shaking as she tries not to cry. "Grant got a positive for street rot too. He hasn't shown any signs yet but if it's showin' up on the test then it's too late. We're hopin' it's just a false positive but if he's sick then thaqt means that I could be too..." Her hand starts to travel idly over her stomach, forming a small bump through the baggy clothes.

Wringing your hands together nervously you ask, "How...how would you have caught it?"

"When he's not being a rude friggin' jerk then he can be a decent enough guy," she says softly, "it is his baby on the way after all. If he's been infected and we're ah, 'lovin' each other' then that means I could catch it. Pretty terrified of that, to be honest."

"I bet you could ask Dr. Rizzo to test you for it, at least that way you can kn-"

"No way." Her head shakes earnestly, "I let them fix my foot but I refuse to let that man or his niece or whatever she is do anything else to me. I don't trust either of them as far as I can friggin' throw them." A tired sigh follows behind, "Gonna be a while before we can afford to get tested again. It's gonna drive me crazy till I know for sure."

You doubt you'd be able to convince Brandi to let Rizzo check her out. The grudge and fear she holds against them is too strong for that, something you wish you could do more about. But at the same time you try to remember if there had been any smell of rot earlier when you had been in the car, but that time feels like such a jumbled rush now you can't find a solid answer.

While you're unsure of how accurate it is you know that giving a quick smell of her blood would at least tell you if she smells sick. If it's really been street rot that you've smelt on those few occasions then you doubt you'd be able to miss that rancid odor.

Offer to help Brandi with this or head back to the room now?
No easy way to phrase it, so it's probably better to leave it alone.
Just go back to bed.
My urge to bully the shit outta her still hasn't passed, so any passive aggressive in character bullying i can do I will take.
New thread up on Tuesday!

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