"Luckier than the bitch with a bag of skittles."
There was Matt. Jaquilyn quickly jumped into action, she had a goal in mind, and was only getting closer and closer to being able to protect herself. Here was the next step, not part of Joachim's plan, but every opportunity had to be taken.
"Matt!! Oh my God!!!" She ran over towards him, dropping her bag on top of his, and then wrapping her arms around him. She didn't know him well at all, but a mutual acquaintance between them and Cassidy might be enough to justify her seeming so happy to see him.
She moved away soon after. The embrace was meant to be surprising, not awkward. "Have you seen Cassidy or the other girls?!"
Though she'd never been particularly close, or even really friends, with any of the cheerleaders, she wasn't of poor terms with any of them. Stacy was awful, but they didn't interact enough for there to have been a real issue.
She looked down, letting her hair fall over her face to hide her glance at the bags next to them. The closer one had a light cake of dirt in one spot., it must be hers, given her recent fall. She looked back up at Matt, way up at Matt, and brushed her hair out of her face.
She stepped over the bags and turned the other girls. So close to the gun, she just needed an opportunity now.
"Are you guys all okay?"
She opened her mouth to say more, thinking it might be cute to ask if Matt was protecting them. The big sweetheart probably was, and she'd probably earn points for asking, but somebody might mention his gun. Drawing attention to it would rule out the possibility of taking it away sneakily. Without breaking eye contact with any of the new faces, she carefully turned her foot towards Matt's bag. It turned up on it's heel, and lowered twice in a slow, silent "tap". She put her hands behind her back and straightened her posture as she did so. Hopefully, Joachim would see what she'd done and reconsider his plan. Her feet then quickly turned to a more regular stance, she rocked up on her toes before planting her heels.
She thought of her mother for a moment. The woman had always been a master at projecting the perfect emotion to get exactly what she'd wanted, and it had always driven Jaq insane how manipulative she could be. Now Jaq found herself using the same tactics.
She felt no shame, she felt no regret, and not even the disgust she'd always figured a moment like this would inspire. For the first time in a long time, Jaquilyn Locke was able to identify with her mother. She wasn't an evil woman, and though her desires may have been petty, she was ambitious. She was a successful supermodel, she got discounts and special service everywhere she went, her agent was pushing her towards an acting career before getting pregnant. But... ultimately she'd decided that a family was infinitely more important than... Anything...
Jaquilyn's face was hot. Her brief, blank stare was hopefully unnoticed as she waited for the girls to answer her question. She needed to live. She needed to go home and make amends with her family. She needed to hug her mom and apologize for having been so rude for so long. She needed to show her father that she could, and that she wanted to have a healthy relationship with them again. She needed to tell Don that she understood why he'd always defend them when Jaquilyn complained about them too brutally.
She looked up at the girls. Her eyebrows rose slightly in the middle, and her head rotated a few degrees to the side. Her mouth was slightly open, ready to react to whatever they said to show she cared, she was ready to nod to show she understood. She listened to the sharpest detail of every word, she needed to react to everything perfectly.
Not her pride, not her reputation, none of her own values mattered. She needed to survive long enough to see home again.
Nothing was more important than family.
It's kiss or kill and shoot to thrill when you do what you do.
G009 Cassidy Kant
A contestant, a seeker, an abstainer, a klutz, a case of survivor guilt, a repenter, a star crossed lover, a star crossed lover, a damsel in distress, a hot mess, an inspired dreamer, an unwanted ally, a pawn
B034 Joey Caputo
A scout, a follower, a tracker, a rebel without a cause, a slaughtered guinea pig
G017 Jaquilyn Locke
A victim, a survivor, a team player, a doubter, a hunter, a person, a schemer, an instructor, a nomad, a deserter, a self-appointed savior, a repenter, a failure, a hypocrite's scapegoat
I would not die for anyone, but I would kill for you.
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