Portal Breach: The Collision of Worlds :: v.4.0


    The Home of Our Dreams

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    Jo Pistonne
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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Jo Pistonne on Fri Jul 29, 2011 4:28 am

    Big Z, of course it was small. It was a sink, not a bathtub.

    Truth be told, upon closer inspection, Jo realized that the second living room on the plans was actually a large porch that led to the backyard. That was so cool! It'd be wonderful to sit outside here on a hot day in the shade. But the rest of the house... she didn't need a study and if it was just her Proxy, they wouldn't be needing a dining room either. But the house looked so gorgeous despite its large size! Oh, if only Jo could find a house just like this but smaller...! Craters, why was this neighborhood so family-based?

    "Well, it doesn't hurt to plan for the future maybe," she mumbled, going a little red. But be realistic, Jo. That would take ages to happen and by then she'd probably be looking for a new house again. She shook her head, then decided, "I really like the style and layout, but it's just too big. I hope there are other similar houses in the vicinity that are just the right size for me and Proxy." And the occasional guest like she said. Zurg, of course, was going to be that guest, but who knew if she'd need another room for emergencies? And it wasn't fair for Proxy to not have his own room. The way things were now, he was stuck in the living room or kitchen!

    "Let's check upstairs too before our final verdict, though." This house kept singing to her, blast it, but it was going to be too steep to afford. The second floor had two bathrooms with showers, but only one, the one connected to the master bedroom, had a tub. There were three bedrooms in total, and two could hold double beds just fine, and the one seemed to be the perfect size for a child or Proxy. There was even an extra room as some sort of attic, or storage space, that could prove useful.

    But the house, although magnificent in Jo's mind, was just too big. Sigh.
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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Zurg on Fri Jul 29, 2011 4:44 am

    Oh, durr. His alien was showing. Of course that was a sink! He should slap himself!

    Zurg voiced Jo's exact thoughts, and the man finished smelling a fake bouquet. Why did they have false flowers... What was the point of that!? Preserved beauty was nothing like the real, living thing. "This place is so family-orientated." Even from another room his voice traveled fairly easily. Hello, dual-toned vocal chords. "You notice that darn near everyone has kids here? I barely see any elderly folks, and the most I see running about are kids! Most seem to be in their single digits. I wonder why that is..." He was soon at Jo's location once again and the alien couldn't resist peeking through the blinds to spy those very kids he had mentioned. "Even nooooow... there are seven of them... playing." Zurg ducked down when a few looked this way and he made some very silly, strange noises. "This place is like a breeding colony!" He remarked in a low hiss. Of course he was just kidding around and it was all for some good fun. Maybe the people around here really liked kids? More power to them, you know? Not his brats, not his worries.

    "Ahhhh, well." Zurg shrugged and went back to walking down the hall, peering down each room. Hey, there was a very gorgeous bathtub in there! Hey, he was already in it, lounging around! The man was positively struck with fancy and he lazily sunk into the porcelain, kicking a leg straight up like a regular showgirl taking her diamond bath. "It's an immensely pleasant house, but it's still big, don't you think?" He asked from the bathroom before rolling onto his stomach and gripping the edge, peering over it. That was such a lovely tile upon the floor. Wait, what did Jo say? "What future?" Don't forget, Jo! Zurg had great hearing! Too bad he didn't always employ it 100%.

    Getting the hint that Jo really loved this house, he had a rather nifty idea. "Oh, Jo!" Zurg sprung out of the bathtub with a gay hop and skipped on over to her. "If you really dig this layout and style, why don't you keep the floor plans?" He suggested. "That way if you don't find the house of your dreams, we can always modify this one and build! What we in the trade pool call a double-dilly~!"

    Now he was a guy who thought about the future. Just... not as far as Jo had.

    (Night, Jo! Time for my shuteye.)


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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Jo Pistonne on Fri Jul 29, 2011 11:28 am

    Come to think of it, Zurg was right. Everyone did have kids here. She didn't think she'd spotted anybody without a kid in tow. Some had babies, some just small children, and some had both babies and toddlers running amok. He spied through the window, then ducked and started to make some strange noises, and Jo had to cover her mouth to keep from laughing out loud and alerting the kids outside. He looked like he was part of some sort of undercover agency, ducking out of sight like that. All he was missing was the camouflage uniform and binoculars.

    She followed Zurg over to the master bedroom's bathroom, watching him plop into the tub without a care; but by the looks of it, it was a comfy fit. The showgirl leg proved it. "Too big, hence too pricey and unnecessary." Now that the mechanic thought about it, even though she'd practically set her heart on this house, what would happen when Zurg wasn't around, or Proxy? She'd be in it all alone. Though she had no qualms about being on her own for extended periods of time, being used to such a phenomenon on Tradeworld, that didn't mean that she didn't long for companionship or that it wouldn't get to her after a while. No, a smaller and cozier house was the way to go.

    If only they could find one practically like this place!

    Jo looked up at Zurg, blinking. "You mean like modify these plans so we can build a new place from the modified plans?" That... actually sounded like a great idea! But it would take time and money. Houses didn't just grow on trees -- oh wait, they did with Zurg. "Big Z, you're a genius!" She wrapped her arms around his neck and gave him a squeaky kiss of glee. Maybe it could work!

    "We've still got one more place to check out, though," she reminded him, pulling out the telltale folder again. "It's blue again and made by the same company, so it ought to be similar in design. It's about fifteen minutes away on foot." She closed the folder, replaced the band, and tucked it under her arm. Ready?" she smiled, offering a hand.


    (( Night! I woke up a little earlier than usual just to post back to you. See you on my break! ))
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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Zurg on Fri Jul 29, 2011 3:25 pm

    Praise and a kiss later, Zurg was as bashful as the dwarf. "Oho, stop~! You're just saying that..." It was really a simple suggestion, but if Jo wanted to shower him in love and attention? Okay! Win-win situation! But something was missing... What was it?

    "I get the feeling you like blue houses." He took her hand when offered and they both walked down and out of the fourth house. It was a lovely house, don't get him wrong, but it just wasn't for Jo. It was too much house for her, which was the problem. Still, it wasn't very bad at all. The backyard had been amazing. "And fifteen minutes away? Meaning it's still in this -- " He looked around carefully to make sure no one was around and he whispered all secret-like. " -- breeding colony?" If anyone asked where his kids were he'd just zap in a few grubs and point to them. Oh, that'd be a riot! Jo would never stand for the grubs going inside, however. Something about germs and dirt.

    But all-in-all, the area really wasn't that bad. Sure, explosion of humans, but none of them had been outwardly hostile. They appeared to cling to themselves and take care of their chores. Area was also clean, hardly any litter, and he didn't spot any sense of crime or fear happening about. Yes... could be a nice little area for Jo. He was still going to install ninja lawn gnomes with mounted plasma turrets, however. Maybe a few toadstool cannons, too.

    The sun a little higher now and the day hotter, Zurg fiddled with his collar using a hooked finger and he coughed. "So, Jo~!" Some conversation to pass the time and to keep his mind off of the heat. "What do you think about your day so far? You've now seen four houses, and traveled further than you have ever before on Portal Breach -- Planet Z not withstanding. How do you feel about that?" That missing itch again. Something was missing, but what!?


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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Jo Pistonne on Fri Jul 29, 2011 5:09 pm

    "Nah-uh! I'd be as lost as a little moozle without my shepherd to whip my tush into gear~" And there she went again with that naughty, naughty innuendo. Not that she minded at all, teehee! Insinuating such things just to see Zurg's golden reactions was always a perk. '"And sure I do. Blue's my favorite color, after all!"

    Still grinning, she took his hand and they walked down the stairs again, exiting the house. Turning her head over her shoulder, Jo took one last longing look at it, promising herself that she'd find a house very similar to it or build one like it from scratch. She supposed a good comparison to the house would be a "first crush". Nothing like your "real love", but someone you'd remember fondly all the same. But besides, there was plenty of time to look at other places. Checking everything over before reaching a final decision was the right thing to go about these things.

    The mechanic bit on her lower lip to keep from laughing out lout at Zurg's furtive whisper. She followed him down the sidewalk, ignoring the stares for the most part as she enjoyed the sun's warmth, the cool breeze, and Zurg's fingers wrapped snugly between her own. She noticed him fiddling with his collar at one point and decided that the sun was starting to get to him. She couldn't help herself from wondering whether she could help him with his collar, but she cleared her mind of such dirty thoughts and considered his questions. Hopefully, they'd find some shade for him soon.

    "I like it so far!" That was an easy enough answer. She'd make up the rest as they went along. "It's such a chore to travel all around the city, but it's actually worth it when you find the pretty places like this. Breeding colony notwithstanding!" She giggled and began to swing his arm back and forth, like a child would do to a parent, as she ran her free hand through her sweaty hair. It really was a pleasant day, and she caught her mind drifting off on other subjects.

    "It's been a while since we spent a day like this together, hasn't it?" she wondered, her voice growing soft. Their path led them past a patch of green where children screamed and ran around in circles, amusing themselves with swings, slides and sandcastles. "I kinda missed it." After the chaos of the past few months, this feeling of peace and normalcy felt almost out of place. "Have you?" she wondered, drifting a little closer and squeezing his hand.
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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Zurg on Fri Jul 29, 2011 5:41 pm

    Whoa, whoa, WHOA. What's this about whipping and on who? "Hah, yeah right." Came the playful snort, Zurg making a brief face. "The only way to get you into gear is by placing a burrito in front of your sorry mug and giving you a swift punt in the fatty tissue." That was the only way to move Jo. The only way. Any other way probably involved him being in some humiliating position. Noooooooooooooo thanks! He already tried on one fur suit for Bonkers and that was as far as he went.

    Latex was out of the question. You know how bad he overheated in latex?

    As they walked on along, the world doing what it normally went through, Zurg just kind of... coasted. It was still strange to him, this... normalcy Jo spoke of. Never would you have found him looking at houses, spending time with someone, and all around being pleasant company back in their home galaxy. Never. Where was the time and the use? At least things at back home were fairly linear and set in their own ways. Here? Here he had to adapt and move out of his comfort zone -- which was all things evil and dastardly. It was easier said than done. You try coping for two years and just finally reaching your breaking point. "I... guess I do, maybe." Not a strong response when asked if he missed anything of this. Oh! "N-Not that I don't miss anything with you, Jo!" Way to go, Zurg. That didn't sound insensitive at all. "I-I mean I always enjoy spending time with you. It's just t-that I... I'm not really used to this type of lifestyle." He only sighed and gestured at everything with his free hand.

    "All of this, everything. Even taking a step back and trying a new pace in life. It's... not something I've been adapting well to. I don't know how else to explain it." How else would he explain to Jo what it felt like to cut back from the role you had always assumed up until this point? She was a mechanic. She could pick up her tools, move, and work somewhere else with no issue. But him? An Evil Emperor wasn't much use if the home galaxy you ruled was destroyed and the people here just... shrug evil away. There was hardly any point to it anymore, and him trying to fit in? That wasn't working out very well, either. He could do it for Jo and a very select few, but... let's just say that the human way of living life wasn't exactly what he was used to. "Oh, look at me." Zurg lightly slapped his face with his palm. "I'm going back into my self-sabotaging ways. I should be happy that we're having a good day together -- and I am -- but it's certainly different going into all these houses and... settling down."

    Wait, she could take that a certain way, couldn't she? Er! "Ah, ah, ooh, I mean -- !" The alien just let out a helpless chuckle, a weak one, and he tried to keep from blushing and appearing silly. Too late. "Nottotakeitthatway,butImeantinthesensethatI'mstartingtofindanewpathinlife,yes! Okay,youknowwhat,I'mjustgoingtostoptalkingnow." His lips were now zipped and he kept on walking with eyes dead ahead.

    An elegant duckling, as always.


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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Jo Pistonne on Fri Jul 29, 2011 6:04 pm

    "Ooh, as long as you're the one doing the punting I'm all game! But be gentle with my rear, it bruises easily~" she said with a small, petulant pout as she batted her backside, even managing to maintain the expression for a few seconds before bursting into laughter.

    Latex would still look darn good on him.

    But back to the present, where Zurg was getting all tongue-tied. He sometimes said the first thing that popped into his head before realizing how bad it sounded. And Jo actually didn't mind that, because it meant that he was being honest and forward with her. If he had a ready answer for everything, it'd be more like the charming Evil Emperor self than Zurg.

    "It's okay, I understand. And honestly? I'm not used to this lifestyle either." She sighed and crossed her arms, resuming to walk beside him, following his pace. "It took me a while to get used to Portal Breach. Sometimes I still feel like a stranger here. But!" she suddenly added, holding up a finger. "You and Proxy and Kev and Lawrence and everyone else make it worthwhile~" Maybe that might help him out a bit, but knowing him he'd still let it get to him. He wouldn't show it, but it would.

    Settling down? Jo snickered and tried not to laugh as he stumbled over his words, then walked away ashamed. Shaking her head, she went after him and took his hand again, walking alongside him. "If it helps, adapting is something natural. And just because you're not adapting well now doesn't mean you won't adapt better in the future. These things take time. No rush, right?" She squeezed his hand as they tuned a corner.

    They should be getting there soon...
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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Zurg on Sat Jul 30, 2011 12:47 am

    "What!?" Where did this talk of bruises come about? What was she insinuating now that he wasn't getting? Strange woman! "I hope you're talking about the actual action of punting, and not domestic violence or anything like that... That's just so terrible." He mumbled off to the side. Hey, in his defense maybe humans got off on such things. Kinky was the word, if he recalled. Ugh, bunch of devolved primates was what they were. Disgusting!

    Nice try, Jo, but Zurg wasn't that kind of alien.

    "And what do you mean, you're not used to this lifestyle. Why are you seeking it out so much if you're not used to it?" He thought Jo was used to at least some parts of it! The mechanic was closer to this lifestyle than he was! She had lived with neighbours in an apartment complex, went to work like normal, did her chores (at least he hoped), watched TV regularly, had TV dinners, etc. That was better along than what he had done. All he did was make war machines, death showers, and spread his evil across the galaxy. That... wasn't anywhere near this lifestyle, and therein lied a little problem.

    It was a drastic change.

    At least she was finding things funny. He was just quiet again and lost in thought. What else was new. The future. That's right. That's what he had wanted to talk about, but kept on forgetting. Or, more like forced himself to forget. The future was a scary thing, he wasn't going to lie there. What was in the future? What did she see? What did he see? Knowing Jo, her planning wasn't quite as detailed -- she probably knew what she wanted but just didn't know how to go about it. Hence, she didn't use planning. To be honest, that sort of lifestyle scared him. He always lived with plans. Being chaotic and spontaneous was just... scary to him. Craters, when you tell yourself that you're the last of your kind you really don't have room to be dangerous and carefree. Maybe it was because he was so slow and cautious that... Jo had troubles with him? Or... she felt pressured into going against her natural upbringing? It was all so very confusing...

    "Uh, yes. No... No rush. Of course." But here came that time issue again. For his kind, he was rushing through this and it showed. He only knew Jo for what, a year? A year of spending time together was hardly proper to his people, and they would have torn him a new one. Of course, he really didn't care about them anymore (he really did), but their teachings were still hardwired into his brain. You can't forget what you are, no matter how hard you try. And Jo? She was a human, and humans liked having families, kids, slowing down as they got older, and... Zurg sighed and glanced again at his surroundings. Humans liked having something like this. Good homes, safe communities, children, pets, happy couples, stability, and on and on. Out of all those things he really had nothing. Well, if you counted his staff as pets he had some... pets? Not very good pets, personally.

    Oh, who was he kidding. He wasn't really relationship material let alone family material. He didn't know what Jo saw in him, and -- ugh, for the love of purple, there he went yet AGAIN! That self-sabotaging. You know when he was an Evil Emperor this was never an issue. He was always confidence but take the man away from what he knew? You have yourself one scared, confused child. And that's really what he was, wasn't it? A child. A child barely above being a teenager.

    Maybe it wasn't about adapting. Maybe it was --

    Zurg paused to let some yapping adolescent girls cross their way, the trio talking about boys, or something like that.

    Maybe it was about accepting. This lifestyle, for one. Even to his people it wasn't... their way. Yes, he remembered the nightmare about his father and how he was an outsider in it. How could he forget that? Yes, he remembered that even in the living his people had always treated him as some... foreigner. Some unclean thing. That's just how they were, and he accepted that. Right?

    ...Maybe not. Whenever he looked into the mirror he saw an outsider, not a X'rghthu. But, whenever looked into a mirror in a human home? He saw, you guessed it, an alien. For all his talk of saying it didn't bother him, you know it did. And he didn't have to look in mirrors, mind you. Just looking into people's eyes did the trick. Like... looking into Jo's. What he saw was just an alien, and an alien that by all means should have never developed feelings for a human. It was different than looking into a grub's eyes or a brain pod's eyes -- they regarded him as their master. Much, much different.

    Maybe he just didn't feel... comfortable? Maybe, maybe...

    For now, however, he should say something. Jo was probably growing worried about him, and he didn't want her to feel concerned. The gesture was nice, but it wasn't fair on Jo. It always seemed like she was worrying about him, or fretting this or that. He really wanted her to get the house she wanted so she could relax and enjoy her life. After all that had happened these past months don't you think it's justified? Finally, something for her to feel proud in. Genuinely proud.

    "I wonder where that house is... I don't see any blue houses." That's because Zurg wasn't looking for a blue house. He was looking to keep himself appearing engrossed in the house search so Jo wouldn't have to stop and tend to him yet again. He hated it when she had to come rushing on over to help him.

    He hated it when she was so... selfless. It was the same as -- "Xenon..." He whispered in the state of a troubled mind.

    Oops.


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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Jo Pistonne on Sat Jul 30, 2011 3:36 am

    Jo rolled her eyes at him. Oh, he couldn't even get a joke sometimes. What was he going on about domestic violence like she was suggesting such a thing? "Never mind, Big Z. The moment's been lost." But she did pinch his cheek (the face cheek, you ninnies) to let him know that all was still good. Oh, his skin was so soft that she even plated a kiss on it. Teehee!

    But back to the present now. Zurg asked her why she was seeking out a lifestyle if she didn't even know about it. "Oh, I didn't mean it like that! Sure, I know the basic lifestyle like get up, go to work, come back home and kick back, but it's still loads different from Tradeworld. Here, I don't have to worry about thieves or people out to swindle or do me in like back there. And I never used to socialize. You needed to watch your back so you didn't get shot!" She kicked at a pebble, stuffing her hands into her pockets. If Zurg was listening, he'd hear her mumble something incoherent before sighing. "But to be honest? I haven't felt like socializing all that much lately. It was fun the first few months, a little at the start of the year... but I'm not a social butterfly. I've been on my own for most of my life and just hanging out with people I din't really know feels off. Like alarms going off in my head. Old habits die hard, I guess." She shrugged and continued along the sidewalk.

    It seemed like it was deep thinking time for the both of them. Jo continued to walk by Zurg, hands in her pockets, pausing only once to let some babbling young girls walk by. They reminded her of some of the girls at school, the ones who had money to preen themselves and went off with boys, eager to grow up too fast, too soon. And Jo? Jo had to grow up when she was six. She had a brief, happy childhood before it was all taken away from her and she suddenly had to learn about the harsh reality of the world. She had to learn how to not be financially tricked, and how to keep her nose out of trouble. She had to learn how to lie to keep herself safe when receiving calls or strange people at her door, although she still really hated lying. She had to learn how to defend herself, feed herself, try hard in reading and math at school so she wouldn't stay behind and so she could learn how to budget and read up on what she needed to know to survive. She had no one to help her with homework, no one to help her with her first job. She learned independence at an early age. But she also learned that despite all the bad things that had happened in her life and the hardships she had to go through, she could still find things to smile about. And smiling and having fun, even at the smallest of things, gave you strength to face the next day.

    She was brought out of her thoughts by Zurg wondering where the blue houses were. Jo brought out the manila folder again and checked the small map. "We should be nearing it. Just another four minutes or so." And then he had to go and mention the darnest person.

    Xenon.

    Now, Jo had heard about Xenon from a few others in the not-so-recent past, and again from a few others in the not-so-distant past. She'd returned, that much the mechanic knew, but Jo figured that if Zurg knew about it, he'd have mentioned it to her. Which was why now, she found it a little surprising he mentioned her name like that just out of the blue. Had he spotted her? She looked around for a moment, but just saw ordinary people. Maybe Xenon was somewhere here in the crowd and the mechanic didn't know what she was looking for? But Kev had also begged her not to mention anything to Zurg and maybe, just maybe, he was only remembering the girl. Best to play things on the safe side first.

    Jo touched his arm, rubbing it with her fingers. He sure was well-built, and how the cosmos was his skin soft here too? "Remembering the past, huh? I went down a trip on memory lane myself. Kind of funny, how things've changed so much." He still looked like he was down in the dumps, though. Jo hugged his arm and laid her head on his shoulder. Or tried to, her head didn't quite reach it. "Try not to think too hard about what's in the past, alright?"
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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Zurg on Sat Jul 30, 2011 3:55 am

    There would be many lost moments to come, too.

    Ah, so Jo wasn't really into this lifestyle. She knew the basics, but nothing quite like this, then. He figured she wasn't a very sociable person, although she certainly did mingle when he first met her. It was perhaps common on Tradeworld for the locals to be wary and mistrusting of anyone. To live on Tradeworld was a dangerous gambit. Either you fit... or you don't. Those that don't hardly talk anymore. They were too busy being fish bait for the mutant fish in the toxic pools pocketed around the planet's surface. "Getting a house for yourself proves some independence and living space. I can understand that." She'd have to greet her neighbours from time to time, however. It was only common courtesy.

    Now things would get interesting, however. With only the corner of one eye Zurg observed Jo appearing a little... surprised. It was told through the mechanic's sudden change in movements. The swiveling of her head, the look of newly found interest, brown eyes darting around as if... searching for someone. Remember, Jo, you were associating with a very clever, intelligent individual. Also a very dangerous one. Yes, he had his dumb moments, but don't let that fool you. He hadn't lived as long as he had for nothing. Jo knew something, but... he decided to play one of his more innocent mind games. Observe.

    "I tend to think about the past, yes. With all the time on my hands, I can't help but do so. I suppose I should inform you that we were a very reflecting people. Can't help but be when you live for so long." When they arrived at a stop sign, the alien waited patiently before looking both ways but he didn't quite walk just yet. Instead, he drew a little grin and kept it mostly to himself. "So, what'd you think of her? Xenon, I mean."

    Uh-oh.


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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Jo Pistonne on Sat Jul 30, 2011 4:18 am

    And the only real reason she'd been mingling was because it was a new world and she had to relearn things. How the people were like, who to watch out for, those kinds of things. She got several good friends out of it, but how could you really call them good friends when you hadn't seen them in months? It was during times like these you knew who your real friends were, the ones who stood by you through thick and thin. And it seemed like now, it was only Zurg. Kind of depressing if you thought about it. The one who claimed he was anti-social was the only constant in Jo's life lately besides Proxy. Hah!

    "I need more space, but not too much. It's time I live in a regular place and gain some independence. Leeching off of the inn's all fine and dandy, but when things start getting crowded and noisy..." She had some really rowdy neighbors at times. Not all the time, but sometimes. "Let's just say some peace and quiet's fine too." And if she wanted to bring down the house, she'd rather not have her neighbors hear every little thing, right~?

    Jo didn't notice Zurg change in the slightest. When he was crafty and hid himself from her, assuming that Evil Emperor mentality again, she usually noticed it. But this change had been so furtive and subtle that she didn't realize how apprehensive things had suddenly become. So she continued to hug his arm like nothing at all had happened. Cosmos, not even his muscles had twitched. Wen Zurg put his mind to it, he was undeniably crafty.

    "But too much thinking might turn your brain to mush! That's what one of my old bosses told me," she admitted with a small laugh. "Ah, it was funny at the time but I forget the context of the joke. Oh, well."

    And what did she think of Xenon? Well, the mechanic hadn't run into her yet, which was just as well. If she had, she'd probably not take too kindly to the girl who'd abandoned Zurg and left him such an emotional wreck. "I only really know what I've heard from you, others, and recently. That she just got up and left one day, but that it might not have been her fault and that... oh." Crater-flipping-viper, she just let loose, didn't she?!

    Well, it was no use hiding it now. She sighed and let her shoulders sag, loosening her grip on his arm a bit, so that he was free to slip it lose if he so desired. "I heard from some people that she might be back. But I only heard about it a few days ago, not even a week. I haven't seen her or heard anything else, though." And here she let herself frown, because the question that hadn't been properly answered by the others back then was one she wanted to know. "But if she's really back, why hasn't she made herself known yet? I don't even know whether to believe the rumors or not."

    And Jo didn't know how Xenon acted or spoke or anything at all. All she knew was that she'd been a dear friend to Zurg, but had vanished one day, leaving him a mess. She'd actually left a short while before Jo arrived on Portal Breach, which meant that Xenon was gone for as long as Jo had been here. What had annoyed the mechanic during her first few months here, however, had been people comparing her to Xenon when she didn't even know the girl! It didn't really bother her anymore, but she wondered whether people would be talking about her and comparing her to Xenon again behind her back.
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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Zurg on Sat Jul 30, 2011 4:37 am

    "I only really know what I've heard from you, others, and recently."

    Mhm. That only secured his fears.

    Can't say Zurg was entirely disappointed, most likely less than thrilled (you remember that, Booster?), and the alien just slid his eyes closed. "So you knew about it, even before I did. I see." While Jo was probably expecting some backlash, it never came. He didn't sigh, growl, or show any display of anger or displeasure. Instead he took a fresh breath of air and walked across the street like it was nothing new. If Jo wanted to still hold his arm she may; he wasn't refusing her, or anything. In fact, he appeared to be taking this... rather well. "The rumours are true." He confirmed all of them with four words and was soon upon the sidewalk again, already strolling on along. "Xenon is back, and no one thought to tell me. Not you, not Red, not Lawrence -- no one thought to. It was until Kev slipped just as you had that I realized what was going on. Ahah, I certainly spooked Kev, that's for sure. Nearly stabbed out his eye." Saying this in passing Zurg slightly paused his words, but he quickly recovered. "I should apologize to him. Hm, perhaps with a lovely summer bouquet and some very fine tea. I'm sure he'd love that."

    Kev's situation settled, it was time to handle Jo's.

    PREPARE YOURSELVES.

    Without another word the Serviceman stopped and he broke contact with Jo, looking her straight in the eyes. "Normally, I would have lost my flipping horns realizing you knew and I didn't. But... I guess doing my services is treating me to cope differently. I oddly don't feel angered or upset. However, that doesn't better the situation. Jo..." Here came that inquisition tone. Nobody expected the Spanish Inquisition, by the way. "...is there any reason why you didn't tell me you had heard about Xenon this past week? Go on, don't be shy. It's best to be honest."

    Don't do a Kev and get your eye almost stabbed out!


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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Jo Pistonne on Sat Jul 30, 2011 5:47 am

    Jo could only wince at that statement, mentally preparing herself. It was true, wasn't it? Maybe she'd found out sooner and maybe she'd found out later, but she hadn't said a thing to him. And why? Because she'd promised not to. Promises were serious to Jo, as were not keeping secrets from her loved one. So having to keep a balance between the two was harder than it looked. And the fact that she'd let her tongue slip made her worry for Kev. But... it seemed that Kev had already paid the price for that. Nearly stabbing out his eye?! Big Z!

    He walked on, and she held his arm even more loosely now, feeling the accusing tone of his voice. She'd barely known anything in her defense, but what could she have said despite that? She barely knew about Xenon and Zurg never brought her up in conversation. How could she have breached the subject without betraying Kev's trust? And how long had he known Xenon had returned?

    He pulled away and Jo stood her ground, her hands by her side. She wouldn't cross her arms; that was a weak gesture. "I didn't mean to hide it, but I promised Kev I wouldn't say anything. And I didn't want to worry you with something I didn't even know was true or not," she explained, looking up at him and trying to maintain eye contact, even though his eyes felt unusually bright and hard to stare at for too long. "And besides... we've only talked about her once. If I hadn't heard a thing and you had instead, would you have told me?" She also had a feeling that he was up to something, something... sinister. She wasn't sure she liked that look on his face. "Are you going to try to find her?" she asked, swallowing.
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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Zurg on Sat Jul 30, 2011 6:16 am

    She didn't wilt, and she didn't break down. It took a strong person to withstand a gaze like that, and he admired the body language greatly. Maybe even more than she realized. If it was at all possible, she might pick up by now that his face had softened just a bit. A tiny bit. It was noticeable around the eyes and corners of his lips. Jo had answered truthfully and he detected no deceit in her words. There was no reason to further interrogate her, so... the alien eased up. What, did she think he was going to ionize her on the spot? Pffffffft. He didn't get to have some of her homemade cherry pie yet~! *fucking shot*

    "Oh, a promise to Kev, was it?" Well, under those circumstances he really couldn't argue. "I won't berate you for keeping your word to a friend, Jo. I know you value your promises, and you've never broken one to me as far as I know. It seems everyone regarding Xenon has just been in this unfortunate series of events. I must say, however... this was the best-kept secret from me since a long time. Normally I find out information in a day's time. Spies and moles, you know." To be fair and to explain himself, he had appeared slightly harsh to get the information out of her. He wasn't really miffed or disturbed -- the circumstances regarding Xenon's reappearance were trying on anyone who had the sole misfortune to get involved. Besides, he couldn't truly be angry with her over this. It wasn't rational at all, and he wasn't about to have another lapse. Kev was the first and last. And to be honest again, he shouldn't have exploded at Kev or threatened his sheep. That was uncalled for.

    Neither frustrated or standoffish, the Serviceman made one of those foreign noises and he wrapped an arm around Jo's waist. They had a house to find, not a hiding young woman. So, Jo close at his side, he sighed at last and resumed their march onward. "I'm sorry for appearing distant when I questioned you, but you must understand, Jo. Xenon and I left on bitter, unspoken terms. I'm still sore over everything even though it's been over a year. It's just..." His eyes fell and so did his words. "It's just that we were friends. We were rocky friends, as with everything that tries to get close with me, but... we were friends. I can't shovel that under the rug and forget about it. We were friends, and... I have abandonment issues. I have a lot of issues, actually. Oh, well." He then snortled something and fanned the self-centered talk out of their faces. "As for telling you about Xenon if I had heard first? Well... I don't know. I might not have as Xenon was closer to me than she was to you. You weren't even around. It's personal. Very." Maybe a little more than anyone realized, except for Hellboy.

    Her question was also one he lost his words at, and the alien shook his head while still looking forward. They should be finding Jo's house soon. "I don't know. I don't know what I'd do if I found her. Half of me wants to atomize her, re-clone her body, and atomize her again. Maybe one atomization process once a day for every day she left me. But then..." He sighed again. "...what kind of friend would I be if I did that. That's just selfish and wrong. The other half just... wants to forget about her. But... I can't do that, either. Friends don't forget friends. They move on, yes, but they don't forget. I'll have to think about it, but later. Now, however~!"

    Jo would then feel a slight pinch in her soft side gut, and the Serviceman gave her startled forehead a small peck. What, you want him to kiss with that wooden plank for a mouth?

    "Now we gotta worry about you finding your dream house so you won't have anymore nightmares and cockroach anxieties. And Jo..." He brought her a liiiiiiiiiiittle bit closer, just the way she liked it. "Thank you for being honest with me. I really appreciate it."

    Inb4 Zimbo screams: BUT KEV WAS BEING HONEST AND YOU NEARLY STABBED OUT HIS DAMN EYE AND THREATENED TO TURN HIS SHEEP INTO MEAT PIES!

    Problem, Zimbo? :trollface:


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    Re: The Home of Our Dreams

    Post by Jo Pistonne on Sat Jul 30, 2011 7:12 am

    She kept her eyes on his face and barely, just barely, saw the corners of his mouth and eyes relax. His body soon followed, and Jo felt herself easing up as well. It seemed the cherry pie would yet live to see another day until the time came for it to pop. *shot too*

    At least Zurg was understanding on the matter. She'd promised Kev and she hated to break that promise, but was she really breaking it if Zurg already knew? And of course Jo kept all her promises to him! She tried, to at least. The picking-up-after-herself promise was a little hard to keep at times, though, especially when she was dead-beat after work. But he still seemed worried and distraught over the subject, like he'd been dwelling on it for a while but hadn't wanted to say or do anything about it to her.

    "Sounds like someone covered it up pretty quickly so word wouldn't get out," she observed. She learned about Xenon being here weeks afterwards, after all. But then again she wasn't socializing all that much lately, so that could also be another reason why she was in the dark. When Overcast and Kev had spoken about it, Jo had the impression that it'd been treated like old news by then.

    He made one of those noises again, the ones that made Jo's insides tingle in a pleasant way, and he wrapped an arm around her waist. That might earn them a few more stares, but Jo didn't even think about that as she wrapped her arm around his waist too. Let them stare for all she cared.

    The mechanic could only nod at Zurg's confession. She wouldn't pretend she fully understood what had happened, but she felt for him. "Hey, relax. She left you, and you were hurt. It's normal to feel like this. I'd be hurt if a friend of mine suddenly got up and left without explanation too." Like that time with her two alien friends, she thought, but there had been an explanation for that. It was a long story to delve into now, however. But the mechanic had felt angered, hurt, upset -- a lot of things that she still remembered and felt keenly at times. It was just one of those things that stayed with you.

    Things could get personal, yeah. She squeezed him closer, snorting at his torture method. "If you do decide on what to do, just tell me first. I don't want you running off and doing anything stupid, you big purple nimrod."

    But before she could say or do anything else, she felt him pinch her side. "Hey, I'm sensitive th--" And cue for the peck which effectively shut her up. Oh, and as for bringing her closer and nuzzling her like that? Yes, she was entirely placated now and she wrapped her arms around his neck and gave him a few kisses. One on the cheek, one on the lip, and one just along the collarbone before coming back up to kiss his lip again. With a dopey grin, she nodded at him. "You don't even have to thank me; I'd never lie to you."

    Too much sap, too much sap!

    Jo drew away a bit, wrapping her arm around his waist again. "Now let's go find that house! I think I see a bit of blue just around the corner. That must be it!"

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