So they searched.
It was not an easy search, by any means. Alex had no way of knowing how long this place had been abandoned, but it had been abandoned, no question of that. Some boxes had rotted away, and patches of mold clung to shelves and walls. Alex wrinkled his nose and made a few wry comments to Sabrina, trying to settle her nerves (and, in doing so, trying to settle his nerves). He had to play the part expertly. He had to be so effortless and unconcerned with danger that no one could help but believe he was good enough to win.
Eventually, however, Sabrina managed to track down some clothes. Scrubsof several different colors in a sealed crate. He started to change at once, only to remember too late that Sabrina was present when he saw the embarassment on her face. He had been in the performer mind-set, thinking of quick changes behind the scenes where no one much cared who saw what or how much.
"Sorry," he said, grabbing his clothes and whisking them behind a convenient shelf.
When he re-emerged, he had lost his designer jeans and replaced them with scrubs. Red on the bottom, black on the top. More, he had clumsily cut apart his old jeans with the machete and fasioned some strips of denim into makeshift knee-pads, a little tight but firm in case he needed to do any crawling. Lastly, he had cut apart another red scrub top and used the fabric to fashion himself a headband. He hoped he had achieved something of a wasteland chic effect.
"Thanks," he said, smiling at Sabrina. "Now, I think I'd like to get comfortable with my weapons. Please keep back."
He stepped into a nearby aisle, a bit wider than most of the places in this storehouse. He practiced with the ridiculously tall blade first. Clumsy, too clumsy, but feel the power in those swings! If he could just learn to use it, he might cleave a man in two. Still, it was awfully slow...
By contrast, the machete was swift and felt lethal in his hand. It brought to mind visions of The Raid, and for a moment he departed the land of horror and doubt, departed from learning to use a blade to kill someone, and entered the wonderful world of make-believe violence, slashing and slicing and kicking at unseen enemies and-
The machete slipped from his hand towards the end of an enthusiastic combo. The flat of the blade bounced off of his boot and slid rattling across the floor. He stared at it, and at his foot, and imagined that blade slicing open his skin to reveal a red welling of blood and meat and...and...!
He hunched over on his knees, damp with sweat, bile in his throat. He stared at that blade--that very real blade, that blade that had been given to him in the hopes that he would strike someone down with it, slice over their flesh and spill their very real blood.
For a moment, he hesitated. But what other tools did he have? What other choice, as he stood on the last stage of his life, with this collar around his neck?
He bent to pick up the machete.