The Ballad of Ackbar

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

May 1st, 2011, 10:46 pm #1

((Kris Hartmann continued from Feral Intelligence))

Sitting with her back up against one of the mirrors that was still actually intact, Kris waited.

Anybody that looked at her could have been forgiven for mistaking her for one of the dead. In spite of a change of clothes prior to the encounter in the square, Kris was still splattered with blood, especially over her face. Her hair... the state of her formerly white blonde hair made it look like somebody had cracked her skull open. It was a congealed mass, plastered to her head, no trace of its former colouration remaining.

It wasn't only her appearance, though, it was her posture. Kris slumped like a corpse, eyes just barely open, facing towards the busted open entrance in the distance. There was a corridor of sorts clear through what mirrors remained unbroken. Her perch was against the opposite wall to the entrance, and for very good reason. Getting too close to that entrance would be... a bad idea. Kris's grenade launcher was cradled in one arm, her hand gently resting upon it. And in her other...

Well, Kris's opposite hand was underneath her shirt, perhaps, to some observer, nursing a wound. To the inattentive... this had been a bloodbath, many killed, the winner barely outliving her victims. If, of course, they hadn't meticulously tracked the announcements.

It was a house of the dead.

By the entrance lay Alan Rickhall. On his back was a bag labelled with a name that was not his own, and one that until recently, a certain individual had been carrying around.

R.J. Lowe

A smile twitched the face of Kris Hartmann, for the briefest instant.

Then all was still again.

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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Solitair
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Joined: April 26th, 2008, 11:42 pm

May 3rd, 2011, 2:10 pm #2

((Roland Hayes continued from Bitti Rüya))

Roland had offered to trade weapons with Harun as they walked away from the gazebo together. The idea only stood for as long as Harun to point out that he didn't have any other weapons. For some reason, Roland got it into his head that Harun had both a sword and a gun with him, and he sort of did, but they were one and the same. The same goofy weapon that cut open his fingers and destroyed Rashid's neck.

Roland didn't want it anymore.

Mostly he just found himself trudging behind Harun, dragging a harpoon that felt more like an achor. Even if it was pristine and well-maintained, there wasn't much it could do to help him. There were scores of people with guns on the island, people who could kill him with a pull of a trigger and easily dodge any pathetic attempt at throwing the harpoon from a distance. But it wasn't pristine; Roland had done a terrible job of caring for it, dragging it along the ground and banging the blade against hard surfaces as he carried it. Now the tip was blunted, the sharp blades pitted and worn down. He doubted he could kill anyone with this thing unless he slammed it into their prone body. Were it not for Dutchy, he would have abandoned it long ago.

Neither of them knew where they were going or what they were doing. They just wanted to find some friends, any friends at all, and get some idea of what to do from them. Their search would continue until they found them, or more likely, when a well-armed killer would pick them off like grapes. No other possibilities existed, and the scary part was that Roland liked the other possibility the more he thought about it.

Why wait?

As the two of them reached the edge of the fun fair, Roland tossed his harpoon aside and fell to his knees. "Harun, stop," he said in a dull monotone. "I can't go anymore."

He looked up at Harun with dull, empty eyes. All his tears were gone; he'd used them all one Lily and Max and Rashid and everybody else. There were none left for him.

With a heavy heart, he lifted his hand to his head and pointed to the center of his forehead, right above his eyes.

"Shoot me. Right here."
WickedIcon: i just launched a baby wearing a denim jacket and a bowler hat across a hospital, through a window, killing several patients, destroying thousands of dollars of equipment, and finally coming to rest on the body of a presumably dead clown
WickedIcon: this is the best dollar i've spent in several years

chitoryu12I have yet to find gay sex that involves the men punching each other. I must not be on the internet enough

Turning Pages: Read some books along with me, why don't you?

V4:
[+] spoiler
B081 - Roland Hayes Condition: DEAD.
"Fuck it." c3< c3< c3< c3< c3< c3< c3<
G070 - Cassidy Wakemore Condition: DEAD.
"No doubts. No regrets." <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3
G076 - Lillian Hayes Condition: DEAD.
"My best wasn't good enough..." <> <> <> <>
G079 - Eiko Haraguchi Condition: ELIMINATED.
"Is it really over?" <3< <3< <3< <3< <3< <3< <3< <3<
V5:
Arthur Wells: The Artist ... ... ... ... ?
Rose Matheson: The Sprinter ... ?
Ilya Volkov: The Wrestler ... ... ... ... !
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General Goose
Winner
Joined: June 23rd, 2010, 1:18 am

May 5th, 2011, 7:47 pm #3

((Harun Kemal continued from Bitti Rüya))

Harun eventually found himself leading Roland around the island. There was very little conversation between the two; once Roland had realised that it was impossible to separate the sword and the gun components of his sword-gun, he dropped the whole "wanna trade weapons" act. After that, the two didn't talk much. Most subjects of conversation available at the time were rather depressing, and it was better not to think, let alone talk, about them.

Despite Harun being the "leader" out of the pair, he would be the first to admit he didn't have the faintest idea where he was going or what he was looking for. They were just wandering around aimlessly around the island, hoping they didn't stumble upon a psychopathic killer's bloodstained lair, and hoping they did stumble onto a friend from their days at Bayview or another potential ally. However, no such luck. They ran into a few bodies and a couple of sites of past battles between students, but no human contact. Which, speaking honestly, suited Harun just fine.

So instead Harun passed the time by polishing his weapon and frequently checking the number of bullets left in his revolver-sword-thing. It was weird seeing only five dusty, antiquated bullets inside the chamber of the gun instead of the six he'd grown accustomed to.

Eventually, the two reached a location Harun could only assume was the Fun Fair that he remembered being prominently featured on the map.

And out of nowhere, Roland, who up until then had been engaged in quiet thought, dumped his harpoon on the ground. The big, clunky weapon made a disconcerting noise as it landed on the ground, and Harun turned around, half-expecting Roland to be dead and a killer standing over him. Instead, he was on his knees, his eyes dead and devoid of emotion.

His hand moved up to his forehead.

He asked Harun to shoot him.

"No."

Harun was being selfish. He didn't want to kill another friend. He understood one-hundred percent why Roland had made that request, and he probably would have done the same thing in Roland's shoes. But Harun didn't want to shoot Roland. He just didn't feel like it, and for that reason alone, Roland was not going to die by Harun's hand.

"Sorry to disappoint. I just can't do it."
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Solitair
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Joined: April 26th, 2008, 11:42 pm

May 7th, 2011, 11:15 pm #4

Roland looked up at Harun, waiting for Harun to continue his little speech. Seconds passed, and Roland came to the realization that there was no little speech. Roland expected Harun to make an impassioned effort to try and live on, to see the silver lining in their grim situation and hold out for the hope that the rest of the Activist Club could meet up again. Together the five of them could follow Sarah's plan and snatch victory from the jaws of defeat, hitting these motherfuckers where it hurt, and maybe, just maybe, they'd get to see their families again.

But no. All Harun wanted to say to Roland was that he couldn't help him kill himself. He didn't even seem that opposed to Roland doing it his own damn self. He didn't have the energy to lie.

Roland could make it work. He remembered that several students had already pulled their collars, making what was probably the smart choice in the long run. All he had to do now was reach up, slide his fingers under that metal circle, and pull. It would only hurt for a second. He shut his eyes, held his breath, and waited for the moment to come, when he could finally get out of this wretched game.

But it never did.

The warm touch of the collar's metal on his fingers rose to the forefront of his mind. For some reason he expected them to be cooler, but that wouldn't make sense; his body heat had permeated the metal for the last hundred hours or so. It got mixed in with awareness of his shallow breathing. Roland grimaced and psyched himself up. This time he'd get it over with, yank his collar off with one quick motion.

But that didn't happen. His fingers gently pulled on it, never exerting any serious strength. It wasn't so easy when he had to do it himself, when he couldn't coerce a friend into killing him for him.

"Fuck it," he said, looking for his discarded harpoon. As he grabbed it and stood up, he wondered why he would ever not kill himself. It wasn't because of Harun. Everything that made his relationship with Harun fun and meaningful and enjoyable was gone. On the island, they weren't conversing idly, getting into political debates and shooting the shit about roleplaying and writing and college plans. They'd exchanged no words between Roland's request for a weapon and his plea for a bullet in the brain. On the island they were nothing more than flimsy allies increasing each other's chances of survival, a relationship maintained not by camaraderie, but by desperation.

It wasn't because of Dutchy, Sarah, or Bridget. The part of him that wanted and hoped for a reunion shrank by the hour, and the rest of him cursed the fact that he didn't make better use of the time he did get with the three of them. What did they accomplish, in the end, besides saving that one crazy girl who ditched them and threatened Dutchy? It almost made him cry again, thinking of how eager they all were to change the world back then. It seemed so easy at the time, when they had access to all the counterculture thinking in the world, when they could tap into the protest culture of a country that, if it didn't support them outright, at least tolerated them and allowed them their voice. There was no toleration here, no support network, nothing. Danya had reduced them to scared, green, untested kids in a cage. He'd shown them their Tiananmen Square.

It wasn't because of Lily. No matter how much he'd tried to dodge the issue by devoting himself to revenge, it didn't matter how much pain he inflicted on Rob. Lily would still be in the arms of God, arms Roland wasn't sure had room for him anymore. Could Roland really follow her path? Did it matter that Roland wouldn't have set foot in church if it weren't her church? Did it matter that he couldn't tell Acts from Ecclesiastes? He should have asked her while he had the chance. She wouldn't have been afraid of death, at least not her own. God, he missed her.

He figured it out as he wandered the fair and caught site of the ruined house of mirrors. It was a while since he'd seen so many bodies at once. Two with gunshot wounds, one with a gaping gash in his chest, and one in pieces, barely recognizable as a body at all. But then he saw a fifth, slumped against the entrance, next to a bag that looked conveniently full.

Were this the first day of the game, Roland's suspicions would have made him make the smart choice, the choice to stay away from the bag. He wouldn't have gotten within a hundred feet of it, let alone opened it. He would have gone another way, a way that didn't have a trap waiting for him. But it was not the first day of the game, Roland was in no sound state of mind, and a diet of stale crackers and bottled water had left his mental energy at an all-time low. He had enough sense to hold a hand in front of Harun, signalling him to stay behind while he checked it out.

He had just enough time to unzip it and see for himself what the contents were.
WickedIcon: i just launched a baby wearing a denim jacket and a bowler hat across a hospital, through a window, killing several patients, destroying thousands of dollars of equipment, and finally coming to rest on the body of a presumably dead clown
WickedIcon: this is the best dollar i've spent in several years

chitoryu12I have yet to find gay sex that involves the men punching each other. I must not be on the internet enough

Turning Pages: Read some books along with me, why don't you?

V4:
[+] spoiler
B081 - Roland Hayes Condition: DEAD.
"Fuck it." c3< c3< c3< c3< c3< c3< c3<
G070 - Cassidy Wakemore Condition: DEAD.
"No doubts. No regrets." <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3
G076 - Lillian Hayes Condition: DEAD.
"My best wasn't good enough..." <> <> <> <>
G079 - Eiko Haraguchi Condition: ELIMINATED.
"Is it really over?" <3< <3< <3< <3< <3< <3< <3< <3<
V5:
Arthur Wells: The Artist ... ... ... ... ?
Rose Matheson: The Sprinter ... ?
Ilya Volkov: The Wrestler ... ... ... ... !
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Namira
Mr. Danya
Joined: May 28th, 2007, 12:31 pm

May 8th, 2011, 8:46 pm #5

Having somebody else's life in the palm of her hand was an unsettling feeling.

This wasn't blind fear.

This wasn't guilt-crazed hallucination.

This wasn't crazed insanity.

This was... calculated... pre-meditated... cold-blooded....

Mörda...

Mörderin.

Killer.

A thumb tucked underneath Kris's shirt caressed what was held tightly clenched in her fist.

Four. She'd killed four. Had tried twice more to take lives. And why? Why... why...? Because she was afraid. Because she was crazy. Because she wanted to. Because she could. Because she didn't want to die. There were many possible reasons. Some rang truer than others. Some resonated only at the very depths of her mind, those dark places where she never wanted to venture.

This wasn't the right thing the smart thing the moral thing the Kris thing to do. But now...

Etain... flash. Gunfire. Gone. Death. Blood.

I can't do it...

There's nothing left.

Father. Uncle. Boarding. Drawing.

Reika. Kimberly. Amber. Al. Janet. R.J...

Why'd this...

No choices.

Too late.


Kris's eyes opened fully. She looked at the person crouched above the bag in the entranceway, the bag which she'd planted alongside the body of Alan Rickhall. She looked at them through bloodshot eyes abruptly pricked with tears, blurring the silhouette across the opposite side of the building, through the corridors of shattered mirrors, glass and bodies.

"I'm sorry," she whispered.

Her thumb slammed onto the button of the detonator.

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 [&#8734;], M79 Grenade Launcher [x6 grenades]
G117 - Jessie Anderson | Still Smiling | Faith
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General Goose
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Joined: June 23rd, 2010, 1:18 am

May 10th, 2011, 4:17 pm #6

Harun tightened his grip around the gunbladethingy after delivering the disappointing news to Roland that, no, Harun would not shoot him in the face. Not only was euthanasia a complete moral grey area in Harun's book, but he was sure there was still a point to Roland's continued existence. Maybe a last minute escape plot, or some final heart-warming reunion or spiritual experience or something before their inevitable demises. But, the appropriate words to try and convince Roland to keep on trucking just didn't come, and Harun just stood there, glaring mutely at the larger boy.

He was impotent to do anything about the situation, and so just tightened his grip on his weapon out of a paranoid fear that maybe Roland would make a crazed, desperate effort to seize the gun from Harun's hands and do the job himself.

But, as expected, that thankfully didn't happen.

Instead, Roland's fingers drifted up towards the collar, placing themselves around the explosive portable prison, and he positioned himself so that, with one good, hard tug, he could end his misery and reduce the once-proud and closely knit activist club to just a miniscule handful of its former membership. Oh, and on a more selfish standpoint, he'd deprive Harun of his only current ally and splatter the mangled remains of his jaw all over Harun's clothing.

But, no. For some reason Harun could not fathom, he seemed to talk himself away from suicide, and let his arms fall to his sides, a defeatist, uncaring look in his eyes.

He got up to his feet, and the two resumed their search of the fun fair, no objective in mind and not a word shared between them.

That was, until the moment Roland spotted the Hall of Mirrors. No words were spoken, but a quick gesture from Roland told Harun to keep still and presumably keep an eye out while Roland investigated the bag of one of the game's many countless victims for highly sought-after supplies.

He stood just far away enough to escape what followed.
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Solitair
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Joined: April 26th, 2008, 11:42 pm

May 16th, 2011, 12:34 am #7

when you walk through the garden
you gotta watch your back
well I beg your pardon
walk the straight and narrow track
if you walk with jesus
he's gonna save your soul
you gotta keep the devil
way down in the hole


No matter what the occasion, no matter who sang those words, they never failed to get Roland excited and pumped for poetry in motion. Every season on The Wire, a different artist covered Tom Waits' Way Down in the Hole, a soulful Christian elegy that ironically reassured safety in a story where the decrepit institutions of the city of Baltimore could easily crush the little man who never had a chance at a better life. From the Blind Boys of Alabama's soulful blues rendition to Waits' original song with his trademark smokes-and-whiskey voice, each cover had managed to be unique and catchy and right in tune with the best show on television.

The best part was that he didn't have to enjoy the all by himself anymore. He forgot how exactly he'd wrapped his sister into watching the show with him, whether she saw him watching it and got interested or he talked up the show and bargained with her until she caved and saw it with him, but either way, things went better than he expected. Slowly but surely she got sucked into the world of the show's fictional Baltimore, not even a stone's throw away from the real deal, and cared about the characters like they were real people. The fourth season finale drove her to tears by the end; she almost couldn't sit through the whole thing in one sitting.

he's got the fire and the fury
at his command
well you don't have to worry
if you hold onto jesus' hand
and we'll all be safe from satan (in the hole, in the hole)
when the thunder rolls (in the hole, in the hole)
but you gotta help me keep the devil (in the hole, in the hole)
way down in the hole (in the bottom of the hole)

Now it was January 2008, and they had just sat down to watch the premiere of The Wire's fifth and final season. It opened promisingly, with Bunk Moreland tricking a murder suspect into thinking a photocopier was a lie detector, and continued from there. Roland watched with his usual sense of rapture, occasionally glancing at Lily to see that she was enjoying it, too. She paid a lot of attention to it, mostly keeping quiet and watching, but something seemed different about her actions, and it wasn't until about a half-hour in that he knew what it was.

Lily just watched the screen wistfully, her reactions to the events unfolding more muted than ever before. The new revelations of what went on since the last season ended didn't get any reaction out of her, and the funny moments barely made her crack a smile. It was like Lily had seen this episode before, and now Roland was starting to get that feeling, too. Scene for scene, line for line, all of the spoken words in the episode gave Roland a funny feeling of déjà vu. But that was impossible; it just went on the air.

(in the hole, in the hole)
way down in the hole
(in the hole, in the hole)
(in the hole, in the hole)
way down in the hole


"You alright?" Lily asked, having finally been surprised, this time by Roland's behavior.

"Uh, yeah," he said, getting up and stretching. "Think I'll heat up a pizza for us while we're watching."

"You're gonna miss it."

"Tivo, remember?"

Lily nodded, still looking unsure and confused, while Roland walked into the kitchen and made preparations for the pizza. It took a bit less time for the oven to warm up than he thought it did, but Roland didn't notice, mostly operating on autopilot throughout the process. Why did he remember this, and why did it scare him so much? He searched his memory for something else, anything, and it took the searing kiss of hot metal on his fingers to bring him back to reality.

He cried out in pain and blew on his fingers, cursing his stupidity in forgetting to put on oven mitts. Lily had heard the commotion from the living room and rushed in, making the only sound in the house after switching off the TV. "Roland, are you alright?" she asked him.

Roland looked up and gasped, for the Lily he saw was mutilated and defiled. Hideous purple bruises covered her face, giving it lumps and making it misshapen and asymmetrical. Past her cut and bleeding lips he could see the jagged remains of shattered front teeth. But his eyes kept gravitating to the small round hole in her forehead, just to the right of center. He fell on the ground and backed up, but in the blink of his eye, Lily's face turned pristine again, pristine and sorrowful.

"You saw it, didn't you?" she asked him. "Oh Roland, I'm so sorry…"

Roland's mind scrambled to think of an explanation. As he thought, darker memories floated to the surface. "Who did- Rob?"

"I don't know why he attacked me," Lily said. "I was with Aaron Hughes, and we got in a confrontation, and Aaron ended up shooting him. We got separated, and Rob ran into me later. I guess he had a vest on. He just beat me without saying anything. I thought he was mad at Aaron and taking it out on me."

"He's a racist motherfucker, Lily," Roland spat out, remembering his rage. "He didn't need an excuse to kill a black woman like you."

For a moment, Lily couldn't speak, and Roland couldn't help but roll his eyes. Was she really so naïve as to assume there were no people like Rob in the world? Idiot. "But how do you know?" she asked.

"Everyone knows, Lily. They'd just rather not deal with problems like that, coming from their precious star player. Oh, and Danya flat out called him a Nazi in the announcements. Guess you missed that."

"Tell me you didn't-"

"No, someone else beat me to it. Double knockout." Roland shook his head. Another memory, his last one, suddenly came to him. He opened a daypack and found what looked like white slabs of soft clay wrapped in plastic. Then came a blinding flash and a split-second of pain. The end.

"C4," he muttered. "It was full of C4. It was a fucking trap!"

Lily had asked him something, but he didn't hear it, and now it didn't matter. "C4?" she asked.

Roland punched the tile floor with his hand, idly noting that it wasn't burned at all anymore. He wondered how long the pain would last this time. "And this just minutes, no, seconds, after I decided I wanted to live!"

"What?"

"I wanted to die, alright?" Roland glared at Lily. "I wanted to die after what happened to you, and after I got separated from Dutchy and all the other activists. I met Harun again, right after he killed Rashid, and that fucking broke me. But he wouldn't shoot me and I wouldn't do it myself and I just decided to go on and I didn't know why."

He paused to let Lily get a word in, but she didn't have any, just waiting for him to finish his spiel. "I know why now, though. It's 'cause of mom and dad. I just didn't want them to lose both their kids. Christ, I can't imagine."

Lily looked concerned, like she was thinking carefully about what to say next. "Roland… I guess the activists were planning on an escape?"

"Yeah, we were. I can't fucking remember what Sarah came up with. I didn't contribute shit, not even a good weapon."

"I was, too. It was me and Aaron and Aileen and that Naruto fan, Richard. But now that I think about it, I don't think Aaron was serious. He was just using us to protect himself."

"Is this going somewhere, Lillian?" Roland snapped.

Lily winced. "Well, would you have wanted to survive and get back to mom and dad even if you couldn't escape?" She danced around the elephant in the room expertly, like a motherfucking ballerina.

"You're asking if I would have killed," he clarified. "And yeah, if I had to and I could, I would have."

"Would you have followed that boy in the video?" Lily's voice began to sound hurt, sound offended. "Would you have turned on Sarah and Dutchy and Harun like he did his girlfriend?"

"Jesus Christ, you gotta fucking ask? Riz went too far, he went crazy, and his folks disowned him. Why the fuck would I do that?" He smelled burning pizza in the oven and didn't give a fuck, watching Lily scramble to get the pizza out and turn the oven off. "What about you, Lily? Would you have stuck with that crooked fuckbucket to the bitter end, just in case it turned out he was on to something after all?"

He could feel that burn her even as she offloaded the pizza with her back to him. "Maybe I would have, Roland. Maybe I'd find someone else to help. It doesn't matter now."

"But you wouldn't have fired a fucking gun, right?" he asked, unwilling to let the subject she brought up get dropped. "You would've just let everything go and let people walk right over you without a goddamn thought to how mom or dad or anyone else would miss you? Is that just not your problem anymore?"

Lily made a loud scraping sound, a spasm of metaphysical muscles jerking the pizza cutter the wrong way on the cutting board. "The thought did occur to me, Roland, and it hurts me too. But it would hurt me even more to know that I kept someone else from their parents and their future. I would never be able to live with myself for the rest of my life, and that would be just as bad as dying young. Maybe worse."

"You're gonna bring this back to God and Jesus, aren't you?" he shouted. "Was that your plan all along? Just play the victim and the martyr and try to get out of the game early and get to the Pearly Gates with a "clean" conscience and fuck the mortal plane? Gosh, Lily, that plan SUCKS!"

The pizza cutter clattered on the counter, and Lily started to tremble, standing ramrod stiff. "Here we are, Lily, and it's the same goddamn life as the last one! I don't see milk and honey, I don't see no Pearly Gates, and I sure as fuck don't see God!"

Lily whirled around and slapped him in the face. Before he could think, he slapped her right back, sending her clattering into the oven door. He gasped and bent down to try and help her back up, but she got back up on her own, wobbling to her feet.

"Oh God. Oh God, Lily, I'm so s-"

"Don't you ever say His name again, you fat sack of shit!"

Roland stared at Lily, dumbstruck, and Lily stared right through him. He didn't know how much time passed between the two of them before Lily started walking out the door.

"Lily, where-"

"Away from you," she said with barely restrained anger. "It's pretty clear we need some time apart while you get your act together. Don't come looking for me." She stepped out the door and vanished, leaving Roland all alone in their house. He followed her, only to find himself on the porch outside, a few neighbors giving him a curious look.

He trudged back inside and gripped the banister, then kicked a hole in the drywall next to the door. Would that hole stay there after he forgot about it? Would it stay in future memories? Would there be any future memories?

He wondered if a ghost like him could get drunk. He knew that his dad kept a liquor cabinet in his room, and sure enough, there it was, locked without a key. Roland's foot proven enough of a key, and soon he had a bottle of Kentucky bourbon in his hand. After a brief mental debate, he decided he wouldn't need the shot glasses, and just brought the bottle back down.

As he dropped back on the couch and held the open bottle up to his mouth, he remembered a special phrase that kept coming up again and again in the show. "All in the game," it went. "All in the game."

"You're goddamn right it is," Roland said, before tilting the bottle back.

-----

This will be the final entry of The Seeker, and unfortunately, your regular author, my son Roland, is unavailable. Last week he was abducted by Survival of the Fittest, the same program that he has spent a great deal of time railing against on this very blog, and less than five hours ago I saw his body disintegrate on live television, an explosive reducing his body to a ground beef and a bloody smear. It took me a long time to recover from seeing that, especially after seeing his sister's death days ago.

If you've never been a parent who's experienced the loss of a child, I can't explain the horrible, gut-wrenching feeling that accompanies the realization that your child is gone forever, or the empty feeling that stays with you for days on end. As a writer, I'm in the habit of attempting to convey similar feelings through my writing, but now I realize that none of my efforts could possibly encapsulate the real, horrible experience. Much like my son in his final hour of life, I seriously considered the possibility of suicide, going as far as holding a steak knife in my hands before putting it back down and resigning myself to a life without my beloved children.

Before he was kidnapped, I never paid much attention to Roland's pet cause of anti-SOTF activism. Like most people, the idea of opposing it never crossed my mind; I found the topic disgusting and moved on with my daily life, an attitude that my son characterized as ignorant, lazy, and far too prevalent in American culture. And just like most of you, I didn't believe that Survival of the Fittest involved real students dying real deaths in remote corners of the world, because I didn't want to. No matter how much I agreed with him on the shortcomings and moral failings of our government, I never truly thought that they would allow for routine abductions of innocent teenagers without any hint of resistance.

As my son suffered and died on the island, I looked through the archives of this blog, and for the first time I realize that this wasn't just an idle hobby of Roland's. It was a blazing passion of his, a way for him to spread political information in order to get people to care more about the world around him. Judging by the comments, it worked; I've grown to recognize dozens of regular contributors engaging in lively debate with each other and with Roland. Even at your most hostile, most of you have debated intelligently and brought up good counterpoints to each other.

There are, however, still people in the comments, and in the world in general, who adamantly refuse to believe in the reality of SOTF. Many of them admit to being fans of the show, but others are not. If any such people are reading this, I implore you to do research. Roland has already done most of the work for you, linking to some of the most prominent anti-SOTF sites on the internet and making explicit connections between some of your favorite "characters" on the show and real high school students. At this point, the only thing preventing you from coming to Roland's point of view is your own willful ignorance, and perhaps your voyeuristic delight in seeing people suffer and die in melodramatic fashion. Roland has already made his disgust viscerally clear in that regard and I don't want to start fights I have no intention of finishing online, so I will simply echo his sentiments and move on.

Reading through this blog has given me the desire to pick up where my son left off in political activism, but sadly I will not be doing so here. This is my son's work first and foremost, and it feels wrong of me to try and continue The Seeker in his wake. It breaks my heart enough to intrude with this one post, but I thought I could bring Roland's online friends some closure. It's the least I can do after all of the happiness you brought him.

I implore all of you not to forget about Roland, not to let him fade from memory as most of the victims of SOTF have over the years. Hopefully we can continue his work ourselves, and with luck, our voices will be heard, and our government will be forced to put this sick program out of its misery.

Sincerely,
Michael Hayes

B87: ROLAND HAYES - DECEASED
WickedIcon: i just launched a baby wearing a denim jacket and a bowler hat across a hospital, through a window, killing several patients, destroying thousands of dollars of equipment, and finally coming to rest on the body of a presumably dead clown
WickedIcon: this is the best dollar i've spent in several years

chitoryu12I have yet to find gay sex that involves the men punching each other. I must not be on the internet enough

Turning Pages: Read some books along with me, why don't you?

V4:
[+] spoiler
B081 - Roland Hayes Condition: DEAD.
"Fuck it." c3< c3< c3< c3< c3< c3< c3<
G070 - Cassidy Wakemore Condition: DEAD.
"No doubts. No regrets." <3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3
G076 - Lillian Hayes Condition: DEAD.
"My best wasn't good enough..." <> <> <> <>
G079 - Eiko Haraguchi Condition: ELIMINATED.
"Is it really over?" <3< <3< <3< <3< <3< <3< <3< <3<
V5:
Arthur Wells: The Artist ... ... ... ... ?
Rose Matheson: The Sprinter ... ?
Ilya Volkov: The Wrestler ... ... ... ... !
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General Goose
Winner
Joined: June 23rd, 2010, 1:18 am

May 21st, 2011, 11:11 pm #8

There was something so absurd, so...unrealistic, so over-the-top in Roland's vaporisation by the sudden explosion that, as Harun was thrown backgrounds by the force of the explosives and an unbearable ringing noise persisted in his ears for the next few seconds, he couldn't help but ponder if it was just a pessimistic day-dream, or he'd finally gone off the proverbial deep end and seeing or hearing things that weren't true.

The sheer randomness of Roland's fate, the harsh, blunt brutality of the explosive that had ended his time on the island in such an unceremonious manner, the whole irony of Roland's life ending like that straight after he asked Harun to kill him....it was like something out of a film. The explosion, the whole tragic element of Harun's decision not to kill Roland being rendered irrelevant...it was shocking to deal with.

Then again, Harun might simply have been struggling to deal with the brutal, unpreventable death of one of his friends by an explosion right in front of his eyes, and may have simply resorted to the oldest trick in the book, denialism, and feeble attempts to try and justify it.

And so, as Harun looked up, his neck aching as he forced it to look at the bloody smear and scorched earth where Roland Hayes, fellow activist, good friend and good person, once stood, Harun's first words, said in a shaky, hoarse voice, were along the lines of "Oh shit" and variations thereof, repeated quietly under his breath in as many languages as he knew.

And, he was ashamed to say it, but his first thoughts were not concern for his friend's bereaved family, or mourning the tragic way Roland's potential was so meaninglessly cut short, but instead, he picked up his bag (which he had landed on when thrown to his feet), scanning the area for any obvious threat, and then sprinting (or trying to sprint with a sore leg and an underfed stomach) in the opposite direction, his mind a chaotic, petrified blur.

((Harun Kemal continued A Slight Change of Plans.))

V7 peeps:
Nick Ogilvie
Ashlynn Martinek
Bill Winlock
Camille Bellegarde

V6 peeps:
Kiziah Saraki
Bradley Floyd
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Namira
Mr. Danya
Joined: May 28th, 2007, 12:31 pm

June 13th, 2011, 10:15 pm #9

The explosion engulfed Kris's target in a split second. He'd been at ground zero for the detonation, there probably hadn't even been time for him to feel it. She had a brief moment to wince at that thought - as if whether it had been painful mattered - before the effects of the explosion rocked the building.

The front entrance to the hall of mirrors was blown to pieces, leaving a ragged hole were once had been a door, rubble strewn every which way. Several of the mirrors closest to the explosion had been destroyed, leaving yet more broken glass scattered across the floor of the building. With the series of detonations that had taken place within the structure over the past few days, it seemed that in some areas that it was almost on the verge of collapsing.

Kris leaned forward, the trigger for the bomb still clenched in her fist, button still depressed in spite of the C4 being long gone. Her victim - her fifth victim... he hadn't had a hope in hell. It had worked just as she'd thought. ...Just as she'd hoped?

Perfect...

Kris had arranged it all just right, left the explosives in place and... waited.

"Dad always told me to use my brain more, I guess," Kris tried out a laugh, but her voice cracked and she shuddered, hugging her knees into her chest. The detonator fell from her fingers with a clatter, her grenade launcher slipping to the floor.

Coward.

The ex-skater sniffed a little, tears trickling quietly down her face. She was surprised she even had any left after everything that had happened. Kris was surprised she was even able to cry. This was winning, right? She didn't deserve the sorrow.

Slowly, Kris picked herself up, grabbing her weapon as she did so. Turning around, she looked into the mirror and simply stared. Stared at her blood-streaked body and her matted hair, stared at the death grip she had on the grenade launcher, stared deep into her own eyes.

She saw fear. Sadness. Disgust.

She saw determination.

((Kris continued in Livebait))

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 [&#8734;], M79 Grenade Launcher [x6 grenades]
G117 - Jessie Anderson | Still Smiling | Faith
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