Dead Ringer

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Dead Ringer

Iceblock
Survivor
Joined: March 4th, 2011, 4:22 am

June 4th, 2013, 4:26 am #1

((David Cordell continued from Circle of Fifths and V5 Pregame))

David stared at the phone.

It was a wireless phone, black with a grey backing. Nothing special. It had been sitting in its charger all day, not doing much of anything. Partly because it was an inanimate object, partly because no one had bothered to call David.

He supposed he should have been glad.

He hadn't watched the game yet. No, the show. No. He couldn't wrap it up in pretty words and think that it was better. He hadn't watched the videos streaming online that showed how all of his classmates had died. Were going to die.

David didn't want to give up hope yet, but he had seen the essays. The treatises, the online news posts. The webpages they filled in in the places where Wikipedia editors had put the "citation needed."

Yeah.

Students from Aurora High School in Seattle, Washington were kidnapped by terrorists, citation needed. He remembered seeing that even before his mother had called him down to break the news. He'd thought it was a prank, at first. He wished he could have kept believing that, that all his classmates had really crashed into the ocean and perished instantly. End of story.

He was still staring at the phone. The slightly gray, slightly green screen displayed little. Just a battery meter, a small line of text that told him he hadn't received any messages.

Breaking his gaze from it for just a second, he glanced back at the screen of his laptop on his desk. It'd been thirty minutes since he'd heard the news. He'd brushed off his mom, come back into his room to... what? Somehow change things by looking up things on the internet? Invent a rescue mission when his friends and classmates were most likely already dead?

The phone rang for the first time, and almost without a thought, David unplugged it.

It kept ringing. All he'd done was unplug the charger.
[+] spoiler
This space intentionally left blank.
[+] spoiler
V6:
B041: Wayne Cox -- KABAR Combat Knife -- Forget-Me-Not
G053: Melanie Beckett -- Tickle Me Elmo -- Knife to the Canvas

V5:
G069: Lauren Rowe -- Empty Syringe/Needle -- I'll be Their Bogeyman

V5 Pregame:
David Cordell -- Dead Ringer
Jason Lin -- Dead Ender
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Iceblock
Survivor
Joined: March 4th, 2011, 4:22 am

June 4th, 2013, 5:53 am #2

He put his head in his hands as the noise stopped. Someone must have picked it up downstairs. His parents would know who had called soon enough. Maybe it was the school. Maybe it was the government. Maybe it was a family friend who hadn't heard that David had missed the trip. Either way, it wouldn't be anything good. He watched the screen of the phone until it told him the phone line was no longer in use.

One of his parents was walking up the stairs. His mom, probably, from the sound of the footsteps. David locked his bedroom door. Ignored the knocks. Ignored the David-do-you-want-to-talk-about-it's. She went away after a while.

He sighed, ran his hands through his hair, adjusted his glasses. It wasn't fair. Wasn't fair that he was the one that got to live, while his classmates...

His hand shot out, grabbed the phone.

Seriously, fuck all this. He'd been through all this before, when he'd first heard about the plane crash. This was just false hope before their second deaths, this was just the same crushing bullshit all over again. He needed to talk to someone. Someone his age. The pages of his brain turned, fumbling through all the phone numbers, all the people he knew.

A fellow band geek might be best. A senior. The other flutes, mostly girls, they were okay, but he needed someone who felt like he felt right now. There weren't any senior flutes except him left. Not many seniors in the whole band left. Daniel, Takeshi, Alex, Owen, Tim, Phoebe, Francis, they'd all gone on the trip. So many names. He shook it off.

Who was left? Genie and Cody had been suspended for the senior prank business, that's what he remembered. There were others too that hadn't gone on the trip, like the Larson guy. Two trumpets and a saxophone. Loud as hell.

He slumped in his seat, not even managing to smile at that.

None of them were like, best friends with him. They probably wouldn't want to talk. Not when they had their own friends to mourn. But he had to try. He dialed the first number on his list.

He heard a ring, a second ring, and then the sound of someone picking up.

"Hello?" David said. He hesitated. "It's David. David Cordell."
[+] spoiler
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[+] spoiler
V6:
B041: Wayne Cox -- KABAR Combat Knife -- Forget-Me-Not
G053: Melanie Beckett -- Tickle Me Elmo -- Knife to the Canvas

V5:
G069: Lauren Rowe -- Empty Syringe/Needle -- I'll be Their Bogeyman

V5 Pregame:
David Cordell -- Dead Ringer
Jason Lin -- Dead Ender
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BetaKnight
Winner
Joined: December 14th, 2008, 9:39 pm

June 4th, 2013, 6:31 am #3

"Dave? Flutist Dave?"

Genie took the phone away from her ear and stared at it in shock. What was Dave doing calling her? They hadn't talked since graduation. Well, since he had graduated since she had been barred from the ceremony. She absently rubbed at the slowly healing burn on her hand.

"Uh, yeah, hi," she responded as she tucked the phone back against her ear. "How are you? What's going on?"
[+] spoiler



Rebecca Kiesling Girl 50 armed with One Package Sharpie Minis

Iselle Ovalle-Vandermeer Girl 10 armed with Five foot hickory walking stick

Cooper Komorowski Boy 63 armed with WASP knife

Genie Banneman - banned from Senior Trip

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Iceblock
Survivor
Joined: March 4th, 2011, 4:22 am

June 4th, 2013, 6:36 am #4

He gulped. He'd forgotten, just for a moment, that she was one of the people who called him Dave.

Normally David didn't care what people called him. But in the thirty minutes past, from looking online, he knew at least one person was really, definitely dead. Dave Russell.

David was Flutist Dave. Not Volunteer Dave. Not Redhead Dave. Not Dead Dave.

He didn't need to be reminded.

"Yeah," he said. "Flutist Dave. I'm... Look, uh, Genie. Have you seen the news?"
[+] spoiler
This space intentionally left blank.
[+] spoiler
V6:
B041: Wayne Cox -- KABAR Combat Knife -- Forget-Me-Not
G053: Melanie Beckett -- Tickle Me Elmo -- Knife to the Canvas

V5:
G069: Lauren Rowe -- Empty Syringe/Needle -- I'll be Their Bogeyman

V5 Pregame:
David Cordell -- Dead Ringer
Jason Lin -- Dead Ender
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BetaKnight
Winner
Joined: December 14th, 2008, 9:39 pm

June 4th, 2013, 6:31 pm #5

"The news? No, I don't watch the news anymore. Not since they tried to interview us after...," she trailed off. Not since the day they held the memorial for everyone who died in the crash. Not since the day those damn vultures had shoved microphones at everyone, asking stupid questions like, 'How do you feel?'

How did they think she felt? Her friends were dead. Her bandmates were dead. Sean was dead. Dead because she thought she was doing the right thing by not giving up him when Freeman called them on the carpet. If she had just said, just opened her mouth and spilled all the details, he would still be here. Why hadn't she said anything?

Roughly clearing her throat, she finished her thought. "Not since after the memorials."

The fact was that Dave was making her uncomfortable and a little angry. "Why? Why are you calling to ask me about the news?"
[+] spoiler



Rebecca Kiesling Girl 50 armed with One Package Sharpie Minis

Iselle Ovalle-Vandermeer Girl 10 armed with Five foot hickory walking stick

Cooper Komorowski Boy 63 armed with WASP knife

Genie Banneman - banned from Senior Trip

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Iceblock
Survivor
Joined: March 4th, 2011, 4:22 am

June 4th, 2013, 9:37 pm #6

"It's... it's important."

A hollow feeling was forming in the pit of his stomach. She didn't know. Of course she didn't know. He'd been on the internet for hours and had only found out less than an hour ago.

David could hear an edge in Genie's voice already, and he was the bringer of bad news. The memorials for the plane crash had been depressing, but at least it had been an act of nature. Something that hadn't been anyone's fault. This was worse.

And he couldn't figure out how to mince the words so that it sounded gentler.

"It's Survival of the Fittest. It's Aurora."

The words were harsh, but his voice wasn't.
[+] spoiler
This space intentionally left blank.
[+] spoiler
V6:
B041: Wayne Cox -- KABAR Combat Knife -- Forget-Me-Not
G053: Melanie Beckett -- Tickle Me Elmo -- Knife to the Canvas

V5:
G069: Lauren Rowe -- Empty Syringe/Needle -- I'll be Their Bogeyman

V5 Pregame:
David Cordell -- Dead Ringer
Jason Lin -- Dead Ender
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BetaKnight
Winner
Joined: December 14th, 2008, 9:39 pm

June 4th, 2013, 10:20 pm #7

"What's Aurora?" She frowned as she reached up with her free hand to rub her scalp. She was getting a headache. This cryptic shit was starting to piss her off. Why on Earth did Dave call to talk about the crash? There wasn't anything more to say. Everyone was dead.

Gone.

No longer here.

Sean wasn't here because she didn't say anything.

The last time she talked to him, she laughed about not being able to go and how he owed her one of those stupid pirate-themed mouse ear hats for keeping her mouth shut. She actually told him that. That he *owed* her for keeping his name out of everything.

Her grip tightened on the phone as she fought down the swell of shame and regret. "What the hell are you talking about, Dave?"
[+] spoiler



Rebecca Kiesling Girl 50 armed with One Package Sharpie Minis

Iselle Ovalle-Vandermeer Girl 10 armed with Five foot hickory walking stick

Cooper Komorowski Boy 63 armed with WASP knife

Genie Banneman - banned from Senior Trip

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Iceblock
Survivor
Joined: March 4th, 2011, 4:22 am

June 4th, 2013, 10:37 pm #8

"Aurora," David said, his voice rising in volume and pitch. "Aurora High School! Our classmates!"

"There was no plane crash. It wasn't an accident." He was pacing now, roaming around his bedroom, frustratedly gesticulating with the other hand like a madman. "You remember Survival of the Fittest, when we were in middle school? Elementary? Back when you were still playing the flute? It's back."

And he'd just shot all that tact to hell.

He sighed, his voice dropping back to normal, only slightly more ragged than before.

"It's back, Genie."
[+] spoiler
This space intentionally left blank.
[+] spoiler
V6:
B041: Wayne Cox -- KABAR Combat Knife -- Forget-Me-Not
G053: Melanie Beckett -- Tickle Me Elmo -- Knife to the Canvas

V5:
G069: Lauren Rowe -- Empty Syringe/Needle -- I'll be Their Bogeyman

V5 Pregame:
David Cordell -- Dead Ringer
Jason Lin -- Dead Ender
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BetaKnight
Winner
Joined: December 14th, 2008, 9:39 pm

June 5th, 2013, 12:07 am #9

Genie listened in shocked silence, trying to process what Dave was saying. Survival of the Fittest was never something that was discussed in their house. She vaguely remembered what it was, but it was a forbidden topic around their mother. At the time, she and Matt had secretly complained that Mom was unreasonable, that there was nothing wrong with watching it. Lots of Matt's friends had seen it and that hadn't make them terrible people. Now, however, she understood Mom's stance completely.

"No," she said firmly. "No, Dave. I'm not doing this with you. They're gone. They've been gone. This is just a sick..."

She didn't know what to call it. A joke would imply humor and there was nothing funny about this. Pranks were like jokes. Pranks were her and Sean's specialty. "It's just sick," she snapped. "I don't want to talk about this! I'm hanging up now!"
[+] spoiler



Rebecca Kiesling Girl 50 armed with One Package Sharpie Minis

Iselle Ovalle-Vandermeer Girl 10 armed with Five foot hickory walking stick

Cooper Komorowski Boy 63 armed with WASP knife

Genie Banneman - banned from Senior Trip

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Iceblock
Survivor
Joined: March 4th, 2011, 4:22 am

June 5th, 2013, 12:31 am #10

"Genie!"

His breath caught in his throat, and he opened his mouth and closed it again. He just didn't know what to say. So he just started talking, hoping that he wouldn't hear the click on the other end when it came.

"Please, don't hang up."

David stopped pacing, slumped against a wall and began to slowly slide down.

"I think it's just as sick as you do. I didn't call, well, I didn't call because I wanted to play a stupid joke on you."

He closed his eyes halfway down the wall.

"They're gone. I know. But they're gone a different way now, and to tell the honest-to-god truth, I called because... because I couldn't take it anymore alone. But I'm calling now too because you need to know."

He hit the bottom.

"You can hang up now if you want," he said (she probably already had), "but I'm asking you to believe me. Please."

He listened in the silence.
[+] spoiler
This space intentionally left blank.
[+] spoiler
V6:
B041: Wayne Cox -- KABAR Combat Knife -- Forget-Me-Not
G053: Melanie Beckett -- Tickle Me Elmo -- Knife to the Canvas

V5:
G069: Lauren Rowe -- Empty Syringe/Needle -- I'll be Their Bogeyman

V5 Pregame:
David Cordell -- Dead Ringer
Jason Lin -- Dead Ender
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