Peter hadn't really worked out all the possible outcomes of him trying to be all chivalrous to Eiko: a side effect of doing things impulsively instead of thinking it through logically. Not that it was easy to be all reasonable when faced with a cute crying asian girl. Now that she was hugging him, and crying on his shoulder, and being a model distressed damsel, it was even harder to think straight. This is awkward as fuck.
Take advantage of this. She's weak and an easy target.
Again, instinct took over, and Peter gently wrapped his arms around Eiko's shoulders, rocking her gently as she cried. It felt oddly natural for him. In the past, Peter might've been that shoulder to cry on for some close friends, but Eiko was just someone he knew in passing from school. If it weren't for Survival of the Fittest, he might never had spent much time with her or even talked to her. Regardless, they were together now because of the circumstances imposed by the game. Still, he didn't know her very well, and he felt limited in his options to comfort her.
Still, he didn't want to let go. It was a position that felt too right to give up. Something in his head was telling him that he needed
to take a step back and look at the whole situation again. That was unimportant. What was important was that he was going to protect Eiko.
Then, as sudden as it had begun, Eiko pushed herself off him, sputtering an apology. She was back into her calm collected self that she kept up back in school. Peter couldn't blame her, it was a mask that she was comfortable with. Just as it was for him. Now that she wasn't hugging him and making him feel sort of fuzzy and non-thinky, he could tackle the situation the way he always tried to do: with a plan.
Because plans always go well. Face it, plans don't stay intact past step 1.
"I won't tell anyone," he said jokingly. Not that anyone would be surprised to see a girl break down into tears because of the game. He caught her gaze drifting past him to the people that he had left behind. "Don't go near those guys," He said as he gestured to the group with a jerk of his arm. "They've got a stupid plan that'll probably get all of them killed. Jarocki's with them and he'll probably-" Peter cut himself off before he completed the thought. Wait. Am I really thinking that?"
Honesty only works when I'm NOT filtering everything through my brain first.
"Jarocki's with them and I don't trust him," he amended. He then pointed forward toward the large mansion not too far away. "I'm heading there to drop off some of my stuff," Peter shrugged his shoulders, making the heavy backpack bob in unison with the motion, "then we'll figure out what to do from there." Stepping past her, Peter started to make his way toward the mansion.
In retrospect, Peter had no idea how he was going to protect Eiko. He couldn't just hide her in a hole or something like that; somebody could stumble on her and then he'd be nowhere nearby. So he had to bring her along with him as he looked for people that wouldn't play. But that didn't answer the question of how he was going to protect
Would he take a bullet for her? It seemed like a very inefficient way to protect somebody. He'd die after jumping in the way, and that would just leave her vulnerable again. Also, lots of pain was involved. Peter wasn't even sure if he could bring himself to do that for Eiko. He still barely knew her. Sacrifice wasn't something to be thrown around lightly.
Maybe help her get away if a situation went bad? He could distract an enemy while she ran away. But then they'd be separated, which would lead to other possible bad things. Also, there was no guarantee that he could come out of something like that in one piece.
He could take out anyone that was a threat. Preferably not killing them, but players would probably not stop killing just because they'd been knocked out or disarmed. Peter only had a sword, but he knew it was better than a lot of other weapons that some kids got. He didn't know how to use it beyond swinging it at random, but hopefully that'd be the most he'd need to do. Still, this option likely involved killing others. Peter wasn't sure if he could do that, not even to protect somebody else.
Peter mused on this as he continued to walk toward the mansion. There were no other plausible options: all of them boiled down to one of the scenarios he had considered. With a sigh, he pushed it out of mind again. There were too many things riding on the decision. He'd cross the bridge when he came to it. That was the only way to handle things now.
Missed an option: kill her. That'll protect her from the rest of the horrors of the game.
((Peter Siu continued in Don't go breaking my heart...