Puddles

The overall Cochise campus is well-maintained and inviting to both students and visitors. In the front of the school is a wide, grassy lawn with benches called "The Green Belt," where some kids eat lunch on sunny days and where underclassmen usually wait to be picked up after school by their parents. There are a few picnic tables scattered about, mostly made out of imitation wood. Around the school is ample parking for students who drive, with a special lot reserved for seniors and roadside parking for everyone else. The design is fairly streamlined so as to prevent the traffic from getting too bad, even in the mornings when everyone is being dropped off. Inside the school, the hallways connecting classrooms are lined with lockers and desks where students like to loiter before and after class.

Puddles

frogue
Winner
Joined: January 10th, 2015, 3:44 am

June 1st, 2015, 11:09 am #1

[Georgia Lee Day, continuing from Silence is Golden]

The ground was wet, though the skies were clear. It was louder outside, but the sound was ambient and indistinct. White noise. Georgia Lee blocked it out.

She'd always gone outside, when she'd needed to clear her head. It was a habit she'd picked up young, born of living in a small house with too many people. There was precious little privacy to be found in 600-odd square feet, and it was safer, always safer, to venture outdoors. There were less distractions, it was easier to calm yourself, and if you couldn't manage that, then at least there were less eyes around to see it.

The memories were of little comfort to Georgia Lee. She didn't feel any connection with her younger self: the girl she recalled was like a stranger to her, like someone she'd seen in a dream, or a film a long time ago. The thought of herself running out to the garden, where her tormentors' voices couldn't reach her, filled her with a strange mixture of pride and shame. Shame, that she had been so weak. Pride, that she wasn't anymore.

Yet hadn't she done just that? Surely, if she had any strength, she would have stood up for herself, confronted Fiyori. She had the right of it, she knew that. The rules were on her side, and her request had been more than reasonable. That she had kept an even, steady pace walking out was just a matter of semantics. She’d run, and anyone who might have been watching the little scene would know that. She’d let some... some moron get under her skin with a word he wasn't even using correctly, and then she'd turned tail and ran like the scared little girl she'd worked so hard not to be.

Georgia Lee realized her breathing was fast. There was a picnic table nearby, and she sat down at it. She was feeling a little unsteady. Disturbed, perhaps.

Was it the pressure? Usually she thrived under it, but maybe it'd simply become too much. She was afraid she wouldn't make it, didn't have what it took to get into Columbia, and now she was flailing around for excuses. She'd let herself get distracted because she wanted to be distracted, because it would be so much easier to not get in and say "oh, see here, this was because of Ty Yazzie". Better that, much better, than to stay the course, try her heart out and simply not be good enough.

Was that what was happening, here? Was she really that weak? All feelings of pride were gone, as Georgia Lee regarded herself with outright disgust. Taking her phone from the front pocket of her bag, she examined her face in the blank, black screen. Her eyes were dry, and clear. Her makeup was intact. She looked strong.

In that, at least, she could take some comfort.
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Namira
Mr. Danya
Joined: May 28th, 2007, 12:31 pm

June 1st, 2015, 7:53 pm #2

"Practical villain problems!"

Pause recording, prop up phone on bench, check angle. All right, this would work.

Annnd... record.

"Hey Wicked Witch, come jump in the puddles!" a forcedly excitable tone.

"Sure!" Vinny leaped 'on camera' and into a puddle, then let out a screech. "OHDEARGOD!"

Miming melting was difficult, but Vincenzo just about managed it.

Back to the cameraphone, stop recording. That would fit into six seconds, no problem. Awesome.

It was only after Vinny put the phone in their pocket, a little grin on their face, that they realised that the scream might have attracted attention. Ah well, attention was fine. There was little Enzo did that didn't attract attention, honestly, and it wasn't as if they were the only person ever to record a vine on campus. They weren't even dressed 'weird', although Enzo hated calling their style weird. It was just, well, their style.

A furtive scope out of the area revealed that, no, there wasn't really anyone around, because it had just been raining all morning, you idiot.

There was, however, a girl - or at least, a girl-looking-individual, sitting on a bench, away off by themselves. That was strange in the middle of lunch... though Enza too was on their own. Damn it all, thwarted by their own logic. Did Vinny know them? Could've sworn... hm. The face was on the tip of their tongue.

Vinny threw off a lazy salute as they approached. Georgia! That was it. There was an extra bit... Georgia...Lee! Did she share class with them? But wait... no, she was in the year below, wasn't she?

"Hey hey, GLD," Enzo sprawled out on the bench, leaning both arms back on the table. "Not interrupting your phone date, am I?"

SotF: Mini - SCdoes a-rolling! - PV3 Prologue ongoing!
Draw Thread! - Pathfinder! - Writing Thread!
[+] spoiler
13:58 Gianni Oh come on you broke someone's heart
13:59 Gianni you are proud, not embarrassed
13:59 Christian Yes
13:59 Christian Be proud
13:59 Christian Do we not all strive to break a human soul?
[+] spoiler
Vincenzo/a 'Vinny' 'Enzo' Gatti | DO IT FOR THE VINE.
Toby 'Noodle' Andreasson | :|
[+] spoiler
G008 - Kammy So'oialo | wants a new script
G062 - Becca Everett | was a damn superstar
G071 - Sunshine Cho Lee | trusted
[+] spoiler
G026 - Rosalia Fiametta | Found it. | Walkie Talkies
G014 - Yelizaveta 'Bounce' Volkova | Out of here | Gasoline
B060 - Brock Mason | Thump. Thump |
G029 - Kristina 'Kris' Hartmann | Put Down. | Drama Bombs [∞], M79 Grenade Launcher [x6 grenades]
G117 - Jessie Anderson | Still Smiling | Faith
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frogue
Winner
Joined: January 10th, 2015, 3:44 am

June 1st, 2015, 10:05 pm #3

She turned the phone round, holding up the sleeping screen.

"Mirror surrogate".

There was a sheepish little smile on Georgia Lee's face as she said this, and she hated herself for it. What had she to be ashamed of? There was nothing abnormal about her minor vanity, nothing embarrassing about how she'd been comporting herself. She'd been calm. She was keeping her cool.

What she was feeling was annoyance, but it was at herself, not this... person. Vincenzo's arrival had startled her a little, which was itself probably a bad sign: Vincenzo could generally be heard from three classrooms away. Her thoughts were clearly running in circles, and a diversion was welcome.

What's another word for "diversion", Georgia Lee?

Was she just looking for a distraction? Was that what she wanted? The next two years stretched ahead of her, then: her free time frittered away gossipping and giggling and worrying about what people thought of her. She'd make some lovely friends, of course, and then after graduation she could spend the rest of her life with them, stuck here in Kingman. Wouldn't that be nice?

No, she was being ridiculous. Her concentration was already shot, and a conversation was no less likely to fix that then sitting out here alone, making herself anxious.

So when it's someone pretty distracting you, it's suddenly okay? There are words for that type of girl, Georgia Lee.

She knew those words. Some of them she'd called herself before. One of them she'd been called today. She also knew, though, that it wasn't a fit for her. Sitting outside is a reasonable situation to be talking to someone in. In a study space is not. There was a valid distinction between the situations, and as for Vincenzo's smooth skin and dark eyes... those had nothing to do with anything.

There was value in self criticism, of course, but Georgia Lee suspected she was now being indulgent. Wallowing in her negativity was getting her nowhere. She banished those thoughts, and gave her full attention to the student sitting across from her.

Vincenzo, sometimes Vincenza, was another Cochise celebrity for obvious reasons. Harder to pick from a crowd than Ty Yazzie, perhaps, but a much more common object of conversation. There were all sorts of whispers and stories, especially Freshman year, when the whole idea of Vincenzo was new to most of her fellows. There were names, too. Georgia Lee had repeated some of them. She wasn't proud of it, and she was glad she'd never done so to their face.

Thinking about it now she'd never said anything to their face, nor they to hers. What did they want, exactly?

"I'm sorry, can I help you with something?"


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Namira
Mr. Danya
Joined: May 28th, 2007, 12:31 pm

June 2nd, 2015, 1:56 pm #4

"Just using it for its reflective qualities, huh? You'll hurt its feelings."

That same, slightly crooked grin remained on Enzo's face. They probably shouldn't tease so much, they knew, but... well, Vincenzo had never really been able to resist the opportunity for a good joke, and if Georgia Lee couldn't handle a little light jesting, then she probably wasn't worth the effort in the first place.

Eh. Maybe that wasn't fair. Enzo could honestly admit that their forthright attitude was a bit of a defence mechanism; if they put themselves out there, then it would quickly become clear who was and wasn't going to put up with them. If that meant alienating people who thought that Enzo was too forward, too outgoing, too brash? That was all right. It was a test, almost; Vinny always wore their heart on their sleeve, and while it was true they weren't constantly teasing, being a smartass, anyone that couldn't put up with it was going to be in for a nasty surprise. No, better to let people know what they were in for than wind up getting annoyed with Vinny later.

Though, really, there weren't too many folks around school that had managed to get over the genderqueer part and then subsequently taken issue with Vincenza's personality. It sucked that little more than their presentation was enough for others to give them grief, but then, that was people. People were shit most of the time.

Georgia Lee wasn't looking one hundred percent comfortable, for her part. Probably bugged by Vinny coming out of nowhere to interrupt her 'mirror time'. Enzo didn't know, though... she seemed kind of, well, a little glum, as much as Enzo was any good at reading mood. They liked to think they were decent at it.

"Just not a lot of people out here, Rainy," Enzo remarked cheerfully, slipping into their habitual style of naming without even thinking about it. "Was wondering what had you all by your lonesome, was all."

SotF: Mini - SCdoes a-rolling! - PV3 Prologue ongoing!
Draw Thread! - Pathfinder! - Writing Thread!
[+] spoiler
13:58 Gianni Oh come on you broke someone's heart
13:59 Gianni you are proud, not embarrassed
13:59 Christian Yes
13:59 Christian Be proud
13:59 Christian Do we not all strive to break a human soul?
[+] spoiler
Vincenzo/a 'Vinny' 'Enzo' Gatti | DO IT FOR THE VINE.
Toby 'Noodle' Andreasson | :|
[+] spoiler
G008 - Kammy So'oialo | wants a new script
G062 - Becca Everett | was a damn superstar
G071 - Sunshine Cho Lee | trusted
[+] spoiler
G026 - Rosalia Fiametta | Found it. | Walkie Talkies
G014 - Yelizaveta 'Bounce' Volkova | Out of here | Gasoline
B060 - Brock Mason | Thump. Thump |
G029 - Kristina 'Kris' Hartmann | Put Down. | Drama Bombs [∞], M79 Grenade Launcher [x6 grenades]
G117 - Jessie Anderson | Still Smiling | Faith
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frogue
Winner
Joined: January 10th, 2015, 3:44 am

June 2nd, 2015, 3:02 pm #5

"Just getting some air. I had a... difference of opinion, I guess, with some people. We disagreed about the appropriate volume for personal conversations in a student learning environment. When people are trying to study. Which I was."

Georgia Lee spoke slowly, choosing her words with care. Knowing of someone wasn't the same as knowing them. Did Vincenzo and Ty know each other? Were they friends? Was Vincenzo the sort to keep things to themself, or would anything she said be all over the school come the end of the day? Worrying about what others thought of her was a waste of time, she knew that, but there was also nothing to be gained by actively making them resent her.

What's more, on top of that rickety pile of conversational traps sat her utter lack of knowledge of how to address Vincenzo. The preferred pronoun was "they", that much she knew. She remembered thinking that it was bad english: they implies plurality, and he/she is preferable in situation of gender ambiguity. Though here it wasn't ambiguous so much as it was unfixed. Perhaps the plurality was intentional? In some ways Vincenzo did very much seem like two people. They had two names, after all. She wondered how they were registered in the school's systems. She wondered what they'd do, once they graduated.

A different gender every day wouldn't be an easy sell to an employer, especially in Arizona. It shouldn't set colleges off, though: it probably couldn't, what with anti-discrimination provisions and all that. Should she ask about that? No, better not. Still, there was so much she didn't know, so much she wanted to know.

She tried to picture what it would be like, if people constantly had questions for her. There was little about Georgia Lee's existence that provoked anything in the way of questioning. She went to school. She went places after school. She worked on her admission. Everything she did was straightforward, everything made sense. It was hard to imagine people always needing her to explain things to them: who she was, why she wore what she was wearing, what was it like to ber her, was it hard, how was she so strong? The gaggle of questioners had the faces of her sisters, and they filled her with an almost palpable revulsion. She resolved then to not be one of them. No questions.


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Namira
Mr. Danya
Joined: May 28th, 2007, 12:31 pm

June 3rd, 2015, 10:21 pm #6

'Difference of opinion', which, Vinny knew, was code for getting into an argument. Enzo never really understood why people did that. It wasn't as if they were going to think that it somehow wasn't an argument just because Georgia phrased it so delicately - and the passive aggressive streak to the condemnation made it perfectly clear that the girl was annoyed by what had happened. On top of that, it wasn't as if Enzo was going to get their panties in a bunch if Georgia just told them what had happened. It clearly wasn't private enough for Georgia not to say anything.

Eh. Whatever. They supposed it was just another way in which they looked at things differently to other people. Vincenzo wouldn't call it tactless so much as being direct. They knew when to keep their mouth shut, for sure... they just didn't see the point of dancing around the point.

"Sucks, Rainy," Enzo replied, after a second, and quite honestly. They were loud; they knew full well that they were very loud. That was why they tried to keep that kind of thing out of study areas. Well, not even tried. They did keep it out. Because, y'know, vining was fun and all but vining where other people were trying to do work went from funny to just plain trolling, and hey, sometimes Vincenzo wanted to use the library to study, too. Do unto others, or whatever. "Figures people would screw around indoors when the weather isn't great."

"Me, well..." Enza shrugged, smiled again. "I can screw around perfectly fine outside."

SotF: Mini - SCdoes a-rolling! - PV3 Prologue ongoing!
Draw Thread! - Pathfinder! - Writing Thread!
[+] spoiler
13:58 Gianni Oh come on you broke someone's heart
13:59 Gianni you are proud, not embarrassed
13:59 Christian Yes
13:59 Christian Be proud
13:59 Christian Do we not all strive to break a human soul?
[+] spoiler
Vincenzo/a 'Vinny' 'Enzo' Gatti | DO IT FOR THE VINE.
Toby 'Noodle' Andreasson | :|
[+] spoiler
G008 - Kammy So'oialo | wants a new script
G062 - Becca Everett | was a damn superstar
G071 - Sunshine Cho Lee | trusted
[+] spoiler
G026 - Rosalia Fiametta | Found it. | Walkie Talkies
G014 - Yelizaveta 'Bounce' Volkova | Out of here | Gasoline
B060 - Brock Mason | Thump. Thump |
G029 - Kristina 'Kris' Hartmann | Put Down. | Drama Bombs [∞], M79 Grenade Launcher [x6 grenades]
G117 - Jessie Anderson | Still Smiling | Faith
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frogue
Winner
Joined: January 10th, 2015, 3:44 am

June 3rd, 2015, 11:30 pm #7

"I'm not saying people should stay outside, when it rains. Of course they should come in when it's raining. And then, you know, of course there are people who are going to be loud, too. They can't help it, it's just their nature."

She faltered a little, hoping Vincenzo didn't think she was talking about them.

"Not that anything's wrong with that. I don't blame them, they're fine. So I simply pointed out that, given that the library is a space designated for study, perhaps their larking about might be better located... elsewhere? Or even that it could be continued at a lower volume. I didn't even say they needed to leave! I didn't say they needed to do anything, just that their conversation was making it hard to concentrate. That's not rude, right? That's a fact. That's, objectively, a fact. You can prove that."

Well that was... a rant. Georgia Lee looked down at her phone, as if some option to delete her little outburst would pop up on screen.

It remained stubbornly blank. She didn't need to see her reflection to know that a flush was creeping into her cheeks and neck. Her hand raised to scratch her nose, but she caught the gesture and turned it into a half-hearted patting of her hair into place, not wanting to draw attention to her reddening complexion. Her eyes stayed fixed on the phone.

"And then they call me a hypocrite. How on earth does that make me a hypocrite? I wasn't breaking the rules. I like the rules! without rules you just have... people running around, doing whatever they want."

People... screwing around, you might say?

There was no way that Vincenzo wouldn't take that as a dig at them. She chanced a glance up, but their expression was unreadable. Amusement, maybe? They didn't look particularly offended to her, though she'd never seen offence on that face before. Would she even recognize it if she did see it? She couldn't be sure. It was best to play it safe.

"Not that anything's wrong with that."
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Namira
Mr. Danya
Joined: May 28th, 2007, 12:31 pm

June 5th, 2015, 10:14 pm #8

Vincenzo tried to keep a smile from their face and didn't quite succeed as Georgia, to put it quite lightly, went off on a little tirade. They figured that she'd be wrapped up enough in her own irritation that they could maybe get away with finding it funny, and maybe it wasn't entirely fair to express sympathy and then find mirth in the situation. Honestly, it was more that Georgia Lee was just so flustered about what had happened. Like, of course it sucked that she'd been interrupted, and moreso that whoever had done the interrupting had acted like they'd done nothing wrong but... aw, c'mon, it was still sort of funny that she was so wound up.

Hehe, 'larking'.

While they were on the topic, was it hypocritical of Enzo to be all snerky and at the same time make nice? Enzo didn't think so. It was possible to find humour in something that one didn't necessarily agree with, and hey, Vinny would rather laugh something off than get pissed off. If Enzo allowed themselves to get annoyed at everything, then they'd barely get anything done. They'd be miserable all the time, and the entire point of... well, being how they were was to not be miserable.

Meh. Nobody could fault them for being themself, right?

The smile broke out into a full fledged grin as Georgia Lee continued on, inadvertently sounding like she was condemning Vincenza. They didn't think that the girl actually meant that how it had come out, and Enzo's teeth snagged their lip, trying to hold back from bubbling outward.

"Don't worry, Rainy, I make sure I do whatever I want away from people who might get mad. Heck, I'm not risking one of those rants turned my way," Enzo winked, taking a little of the sting out of their words.

SotF: Mini - SCdoes a-rolling! - PV3 Prologue ongoing!
Draw Thread! - Pathfinder! - Writing Thread!
[+] spoiler
13:58 Gianni Oh come on you broke someone's heart
13:59 Gianni you are proud, not embarrassed
13:59 Christian Yes
13:59 Christian Be proud
13:59 Christian Do we not all strive to break a human soul?
[+] spoiler
Vincenzo/a 'Vinny' 'Enzo' Gatti | DO IT FOR THE VINE.
Toby 'Noodle' Andreasson | :|
[+] spoiler
G008 - Kammy So'oialo | wants a new script
G062 - Becca Everett | was a damn superstar
G071 - Sunshine Cho Lee | trusted
[+] spoiler
G026 - Rosalia Fiametta | Found it. | Walkie Talkies
G014 - Yelizaveta 'Bounce' Volkova | Out of here | Gasoline
B060 - Brock Mason | Thump. Thump |
G029 - Kristina 'Kris' Hartmann | Put Down. | Drama Bombs [∞], M79 Grenade Launcher [x6 grenades]
G117 - Jessie Anderson | Still Smiling | Faith
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frogue
Winner
Joined: January 10th, 2015, 3:44 am

June 6th, 2015, 12:44 am #9

They were calling her "Rainy", Georgia Lee realized. She'd simply been taking it as repeated references to the weather. Strange, but no stranger than anything else about her companion.

She'd had nicknames before, and all of them had been cruel. Was this one? If it was a joke, it wasn't one that she got, but that wasn't anything new. A lot of her classmates' humour was wasted on her, and she knew that. She'd made her peace with that, but if someone was having a joke at her expense, she still wanted to know. She had the right to know, she felt.

Vincenzo was friendly. Charming, even. There was an air about them, a total lack of tension, which set her at ease, somehow. Georgia Lee didn't trust it. Vincenzo was pleasant company, relaxing to be around, and when people relaxed they made mistakes. They slipped up. She herself made a habit of relaxing as little as possible.

There'd be plenty of time to relax after graduation.

She wanted to trust that smile, and so she made herself suspicious of it. Was it amusement? Was she just some idiot junior to them? Were they laughing, thinking about how they'd tell their good friend Ty about this later?

She wanted to respond, to make some joke, some comment, and so she said nothing. She wanted to stare into those dark eyes, and so she looked away. The ground was already drying up.

Georgia Lee was glad she'd come outside when she had. She loved it, after the rain. The air was clearer, the heat less oppressive. It was quieter, too: the roar of the rain passed, but people were still indoors. It just felt more real, somehow. Perhaps it was that you never saw this sort of thing in films. Georgia Lee had noticed that, though she couldn't remember when. Did she like this time because of the observation, or make the observation because she liked this time? You saw rain in movies, and sun, but no inbetween. It was a fleeting time, she supposed, tricky to shoot in before the puddles were all gone.

It was nice, she'd decided, that you couldn't see this at the pictures. It made it more special, somehow. She'd always run out, after in the rain, to be the first one outdoors and have the whole world just be hers, and it always felt special. Perhaps it was a Kingman thing. They'd been 10 inches of rain last year, she stayed updated on these things. Rain here was always an event. Perhaps she'd get sick of it in New York. Perhaps she'd get homesick, even. She hadn't thought there was anything about Kingman she'd miss, but she might miss this.

"Are you staying here? Not now, I mean, but when you graduate."

Her eyes were still on the puddles. She turned towards Vincenzo, their face bemused, hers hopefully blank. She liked to think herself hard to read, but it was one of those things where you simply couldn't tell.

"Do you have a plan, at all? For when you leave here? The school, not Kingman. I mean, not necessarily."
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Namira
Mr. Danya
Joined: May 28th, 2007, 12:31 pm

June 6th, 2015, 5:31 am #10

Georgia Lee wasn't the worst company Vinny had ever had, they decided. Maybe just a little on the highly strung side, though there were far worse faults to have. Enzo could tick off several that they themselves possessed and, by their own reckoning, they were pretty fun to be around. They'd hang around with themself, given the opportunity. Who wouldn't? Vincenzo was awesome. Either way, with that vine from before in pocket, chatting with GLD was a decent enough way to kill some time, chill out for a bit en route to the afternoon nightmare that was Enzo's English class. Ugh. English. Critique and essays beckoned, Enzo's most favouritest schooling endeavours.

Vincenza tuned back into what Georgia was saying, and then for the first time, their smile faltered. Oh, okay, wow. This conversation went from kind-of-entertaining to pretty-dang-serious in a hurry, didn't it?

The future, graduation. Those topics weren't exactly nearest and dearest to Vinny's heart. In fact, in the case of a few specific areas, they were a little bit afraid of what lay ahead of them. The idea of college was an intimidating one, and Enzo was still racked with indecision as to whether they wanted to apply at all. On the other hand, remaining in smalltown Kingman forever, with its goodly array of people who weren't shy about calling out Enzo's 'oddities'... that hardly appealed, either. Would it be any better anywhere else? Vincenzo had a lot of friends in Kingman, but a lot of them would be scattering to the winds across the country at the end of the year, higher education and fame and fortune beckoning.

Damn, GLD sure threw a curveball there.

Vinny rubbed the back of their head, sat up a little straighter. "I dunno, really," they replied softly. "Sometimes I wonder if I could go big with my online stuff, but it's tough. You don't just make that into a career overnight. I want to... well, I want to make sure I can keep doing me, and maybe that means leaving Kingman," a sudden laugh. "So I guess I don't really have a plan, no."

SotF: Mini - SCdoes a-rolling! - PV3 Prologue ongoing!
Draw Thread! - Pathfinder! - Writing Thread!
[+] spoiler
13:58 Gianni Oh come on you broke someone's heart
13:59 Gianni you are proud, not embarrassed
13:59 Christian Yes
13:59 Christian Be proud
13:59 Christian Do we not all strive to break a human soul?
[+] spoiler
Vincenzo/a 'Vinny' 'Enzo' Gatti | DO IT FOR THE VINE.
Toby 'Noodle' Andreasson | :|
[+] spoiler
G008 - Kammy So'oialo | wants a new script
G062 - Becca Everett | was a damn superstar
G071 - Sunshine Cho Lee | trusted
[+] spoiler
G026 - Rosalia Fiametta | Found it. | Walkie Talkies
G014 - Yelizaveta 'Bounce' Volkova | Out of here | Gasoline
B060 - Brock Mason | Thump. Thump |
G029 - Kristina 'Kris' Hartmann | Put Down. | Drama Bombs [∞], M79 Grenade Launcher [x6 grenades]
G117 - Jessie Anderson | Still Smiling | Faith
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