Everything seemed to be going so well. She, Janet and Jay were all well armed, they didn't need to worry about Hayley because girl-whose-name-she-didn't-know-but-recognised-as-being-the-one-that-shot-Kyle was going away. No big standoff, no large body-count, just nice friendly backing off. Later on they could ambush her or something and then their group wouldn't have to lose anyone. Outright firefights, Ema was quite convinced, were never a good idea.
And then something that was never a good idea happened.
Hayley got up, shoved Ema aside. She demanded Charlene come back. Then they started talking. And it wasn't a friendly conversation. It was anything but friendly; if anything, it seemed like Charlene was intentionally baiting Hayley, trying to rile her up and make her start shooting. What the actual fuck was she thinking? Did she have a death wish? "You killed five people for no reason."
- assuming stuff and making accusations (close to the truth or otherwise), yup, she had a death wish.
And Hayley was, evidently, glad to oblige. A solitary gunshot. It hit. Charlene's response was close behind, it did not hit.
From there, everything should have been fine. The girl should have just gone down and died quietly, so Ema et al could just go on with their fucked up lives with no further distracting gunfire. It should've been fine, and probably would've. But it wasn't, because one of the soon-to-be-deceased's friends decided to show up too. Being alone was too much to ask for, clearly.
So a third bullet tore through the air. Ema had seen it coming from the moment the new girl reached for her gun. In the moments she had to react, she made up her mind and acted quickly. What would Price do?
, thinking like him hadn't steered her wrong so far, might as well keep it up. According to Ema, he'd protect his comrades. So she did. She dived in Hayley's general direction, no time for finesse, shoving her to the ground. Of course, the bullet was going something close to the speed of sound, so if it took her about as long to think as it did Thea to pull the trigger, there wasn't much of a grace period for her and Hayley to be out of the line of fire. Hayley made it, being underneath Ema.
Ema did too. Just.
She dropped to the floor awkwardly, a mess of flailing limbs and howling vocal chords, and rolled off of Hayley. The wound, which she'd later find out was superficial, essentially a very shallow laceration, stung like a bitch and burned from the friction - bullets, not sharp like knives, just fast. That pain, along with being on the floor with hair in her eyes, was a large factor in what she did next. She opened fire, five rapid, panicked shots in the general direction of Thea, none of them remotely accurate, but probably close enough to make her rethink standing in the open. With that obligation taken care of, Ema let her right arm fall, whilst her left hand flew to the wound on her shoulder. She felt liquid, blood, but not much. She'd live.
It was about at that point that she noticed Hayley getting up, hurriedly dressing and making ready to take off in pursuit of... probably the other shooter. Groaning, Ema got to her feet as well, and in lieu of wasting time putting a shirt on underneath, just zipped her coat up. And it was at about that point that she realised Hayley's vision was focused not on where Thea had been, but on Jay, who seemed to be bolting beachward. Profanities were uttered, and Hayley ran after him.
Ema looked to Janet briefly, before grabbing her own stuff and following. What the big deal was about keeping Jay around was, Ema wasn't entirely certain, but losing sight of Hayley was most definitely not an option.
[Ema Ryan --> The Stoner Always Dies]