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


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    Livewire
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    Speak

    Post by Livewire on Sun Mar 27, 2016 10:02 pm

    Date: 3/14
    Time: 18:17

    "Hruff."  A wet nose touched against the inside of Livewire's elbow once more as Penny huffed softly.  The dog had hardly left Livewire's side except to eat and go on walks since the child had returned. Little black eyes, nearly crowded out by the volume of warm fur surrounding them, had been ever-watchful of the femme. No more would Livewire leave her side!  No more would her child slip away under her watch!

    She had known that something was different when the child had been returned, curled up in the arms of the Tall Stinky Needs-To-Loosen-Up-A-Little one. Penny had effectively run the house ever since the two girls had been left to her care and, even though they seemed to be doing a good job, the self-proclaimed queen felt that her own watch was far superior to the new guardians. She knew that the child was unwell. She knew when the child had changed and she (completely on purpose, of course) had generously allowed the child to move past her watch.  

    …except that had turned out to be a bad idea.

    Penny breathed another great huff through her wet nose at Tiresias. The others were back to normal now, playing with one another and roughhousing. Penny thought herself above such rabble, and for good reason too. Who else had such a luxurious coat?  Who else took such good care of the hard child?  No one.  No one had watched over Livewire like she had. She had seen the child through so...so much. She was the one who stayed up when the child screamed and licked her until she calmed down!  She was the one who hopped into her lap when the child looked sad!  She was the caretaker here!  

    The dog scooted herself forward a bit more as the child's fingers sought out that tender spot behind her left ear. Aaah, a fitting scratching for a Queen. Livewire always gave such good affection.  This wasn't the best given, though, and even Penny's inflated ego did not blind her to why.

    When The Pale One and the Grinning One left, Livewire and her sister had grown despondent. Even for Penny, her faithful companion, Livewire had ceased to reach out. A wet tongue licked across her nose as a bit of yarn-fuzz lighted on it from Livewire's sweater, temporarily sending her thoughts off-track. Livewire, bless her, did not cease in her actions as Penny figured out the business occuring on the end of her nose.

    Tiresias, if he could see this, would roll his eyes.  Unfortunately he could not see this and thus did not roll his eyes.  Instead he was perched on the top of the first of many platforms that Livewire had constructed. He was soaking up the last few rays of light from the window that warmed the carpeted riser. The cat yawned as a sound from below twitched his ear down, towards the door. Three days had passed with Livewire in her room. Three days had passed without one word from his caretaker. Three days with only physical touches, but even those weren't the same.

    He knew that she wasn't the same.

    Livewire knew that, too. The child's head rose as the front door clicked shut again. Kev was home. Today was the day where he worked while Fear stayed home to watch her.  She looked towards the door, ajar by a few inches, and closed her optics as his footsteps sounded clearly in her audio receptors.  There...there was so much guilt. It was easier when Kev was gone. It was so much easier for her to just sit and not think about him. To not imagine him walking around the house knowing that she was there but knowing at the same time that she would not speak to him.

    She hadn't spoken to either of them.

    Livewire huffed a gentle burst of air through her vents, much like the Chow in her lap was just doing. She looked down at Penny and gently moved to rub against the dog's face. This was a familiar signal and so, with much huffing and dramatics, Penny moved off of Livewire's lap.  Her great head laid down upon her paws as the child stood to her feet and dusted herself off. Just knowing that Kev was there filled her with a sick dread, a fear, a pain.  She had betrayed them both.  Kev, though, she had betrayed most of all.

    Her feet carried her out of her room for the first time in the three days that Fear had returned with her.   Each step was calculated, hesitating, and fearful. There was so much shame in her that she didn't want to even get up off of the floor. She had to do this, though. She couldn't let that pain stand even if the thought of confronting them, of talking to them, terrified her.

    The wooden steps creaked softly with her weight as she made her way downstairs. The child's hand gripped the banister as she steadied herself, preparing, before following Kev's movements.

    It was time to…

    Well.

    She didn't know.
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    Re: Speak

    Post by Kev on Sun Mar 27, 2016 11:30 pm

    Another day at work, finished. Kev's feet dragged behind, boots skidding against the cement. The sidewalk lifted up ever so slightly, as Kev passed an area of the sidewalk that dipped down to allow for a path across the street. His toe caught on the cement, and arms splayed out as the alien caught himself before he could fall. A hiss escaped him, shaking his foot as numbness surged throughout it. "Mmm..." Rolling his eyes in annoyance at himself, Kev straightened back up. Grasping his elbows and pulling his arms closer, Kev stared down at the cement. After nearly tripping, he picked his feet up more and kept a better watch on the sidewalk. Though he tried to be attentive, Kev found his gaze boring straight through.

    The alien shook his head, attempting to shrug off the daze that seemed to have surrounded him for the past few days. It got worse after going to the City Noise. The customers had been fine, very polite actually. Records had been sold, a few band Tees, and a collection of CDs. Even a new pair of headphones. The fault didn't even lie with the building itself, just...the memories surrounding it. Skyler had worked there for even longer than Kev had, as she was originally Zippy's only customer. Kev decided to get an honest job, and getting to work with two of his best friends was only a cherry on top for him. It was as if the building was cursed. Xavier and Shiro had disappeared without a trace, as had Minerva long before the two of them. Even Zippy, who founded the place and hired them, had vanished from their lives. Just the two of them, alone with a store. Kev probably could have left, and the shop left to disappear like so many others. But that felt wrong. Wrong to Zippy's memory, and wrong to leave Skyler with the responsibility. She had still been so young, after all. She couldn't run it on her own. Getting to be a boss alongside her was nice. Together they brainstormed nice ideas, made up schedules. Counted up inventory and sent out orders for more. It seemed to bring them together, even as they shared more losses.

    Lately, the place only seemed to be a reminder of days and people long gone. Things were easier at home. Fear was there, always waiting. Always ready to hold him close. And Livewire... The femme kept to her room, and it was as if nothing had happened. She was quiet, and she barely moved, just as before. He and Fear still took turns with their shifts, and the pendant had been hidden away. Any residual pain from her betrayal of his trust had dulled by now. Kev wished he could talk to her and hold her, but it was as if an invisible wall had been put up. He still gave her a hug when she returned home, and he'd wrap an arm around her shoulders before leaving for work, but words addressing what happened seemed to die before they could even be conceptualized. What was there left to say? Fear had already handled it. They simply had to...wait.

    Rubber soles stamped across cement, as Kev made his way down the walkway that lead to the very familiar red door. Already, he felt better just to see his home. Creeeak... Stepping inside of the doorway, he shut the door behind himself with a click, and locked it. A few barks greeted him, though they came from the living room instead of the foyer. Walking to the right, Kev peeked in to find Fear sitting on the couch across from the living room. Corpse body rather stiff, nestled up to his side was a large black beast of a dog. It was Metus, who seemed to fit in Fear's side as if he were made for him. From the doorway, Kev could spy two stumpy paws and a brown furry butt with a waggly tail. The front of the dog was hidden by the couch. That had to be Percy, head likely resting by the ghoul's massive feet. Draped around Fear's shoulders like a boa was a multicolored little lump, Shally of course. The sight of it already seemed to melt Kev's malaise. From Fear's body language, he looked to be reading something. It was something he often found Fear doing when he returned from work.

    "Hi, Kikiri. What're you reading?" Kev asked, moving to step further into the room and join his guypal. Creaking suddenly drew his attention, blue eyes blinking as he snapped to attention. Spine stiffening up, Kev leaned backwards to peek over the doorway and look to the stairs--and what he found wasn't what he expected to see. The lean alien hadn't seen Livewire move for nearly half a month. She had been stationary since they found her in the inn. But now... The femme stood at the bottom of the stairs, hand clutching the banister. His eyes widened, effectively shocked as he stared at her from the doorway. His own hands bunched up close to his own chest, pressing tight against himself as his voice squeaked out to her. "Livewire...?"


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    Re: Speak

    Post by Fear on Mon Mar 28, 2016 5:16 pm

    Things were slowly getting better. Only three days had passed since then, but... they were.

    Fear did what he normally liked on a day off: he rose early (preferably at the crack of dawn), walked the dogs, fed all the animals, and tidied up the property with whatever he saw fit. The fiend usually kept to the outside and handled the nitty-gritty aspects of nature, but ever since Livewire hadn't been the same... Well, suffice to say, soon the helmeted ghoul found everyday mundane things like the wash and dishes on his expansive list of chores. Truly a godsend in disguise, for he never particularly cared for idleness. His cooking was unfortunately a lost cause.

    It had been a rather lovely day, come to think. And while most of it had been spent working and keeping busy, Fear at times sneaked pauses in-between for himself. A smoke here, a moment of peace and quiet there... Just small moments where he could recuperate and admire the little things. It helped - admiring the little things, that was. They kept him grounded in the 'now', where he didn't feel like a detached soul aimlessly traveling from one event to the next. He could stop to observe a handful insects go about their morning routine. He could peer over the fence and fancy a daydream or two about the neighbours' lives (and, of course, how to creatively purge them). He could even sit down to watch a few programs and laugh at the outrageous and colourful happenings of modern day telly. All of this, no matter how simple or boring, he could do without fear of judgement or impossible demands. Yes, it had been a lovely day. A little lonely, but not everything was perfect.

    By the time Kev returned home from work, Fear had already been into the first chapter of his book.

    Clik!

    "Hi, Kikiri. What're you reading?"

    "Hello, Honey Bunchesss. And I haven't the foggiessst idea, ha ha." Truth be told, Fear had been staring at the same paragraph for nearly an hour. Why? Well, there were many reasons as to 'why'. Terrible vision... a lack of focus... growing anticipation... His inability to read even a single word had only worsened when Kev stubbed his foot on the sidewalk. Oh, and speaking of that...

    A leathery hand dug for something beneath Metus' body, the Great Dane far too content to move. "I think it isss warm enough by now. Here you are, Kev." In the fiend's hand was a petite square, made out of colourful fabric and limp. He lightly threw it to the alien and went back to 'reading'. "Kick off your trainersss and put it on your toesss. It will help alleviate the throbbing and general dissscomfort." Fear would have prepared something ice-cold, as that was the general method of relieving a swollen bump, but given Kev's unique physiology... it was ill-advised. "How wasss work?" the ghoul asked. "I hope it hadn't been too ssstresssful. A lot of the younger crowd had been excitedly chatting about 'pie day', or sssomething nonsssensssical like that. I haven't a right clue what that meanssss." Why get so worked up about something so humdrum as pie? Though, come to think, a scrumptious shepherd's pie would do a lot of good... Oh if only Fear could exchange his empathy for an actually useful ability, like taste or touch.

    Anyway, they had company. Kev was naturally shocked by who lingered in the shadows like a curious ghost.

    "Oh Kev, don't act ssso sssurprisssed," Fear playfully ribbed. "Of courssse that isss Livewire. Who elssse could it be? Come now, you are going to make her feel awkward. Why don't you have a ssseat and get to mending your foot."
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    Re: Speak

    Post by Livewire on Fri Apr 01, 2016 10:15 pm

    A little ghost indeed.

    Livewire flinched bodily when Kev seemed to be alarmed at her presence. Did he not want her downstairs? Was she actually grounded to her room alone? She didn't…know. She figured she was grounded, that seemed to be the logical thing to happen, but Livewire's lack of movement since returning had left her unknowing of the boundaries she might be under currently. Should she have stayed in her room? But then wouldn't Fear have said something, telling her to go back?

    Was she allowed to be downstairs with them?

    Apparently Kev had hurt himself. Fear didn't seem too concerned and Livewire…well, she couldn't quite bring herself to look directly at him. Kev really didn't need to actually do anything to make her any more or less awkward. She had plateaued in that sense. Partially, that plateau was what drove her to take those first steps out of her room and down the stairs. The child stayed where she was at the base of the stairs for a few moments. One of her arms was crossed in front of her, held tight to her abdomen and clutching the elbow of its bodily twin. It felt almost painful to be here.

    To be honest she couldn't tell if she was just in pain all of the time or if this pain was specific to being near Kev and Fear. Even the seemingly futile attempts at reaching out that Kev had continued to do hadn't clarified this pain. Regardless, she came. She came to be around them even if her own guilt felt like it was stabbing her in the feet with each step.

    The child advanced forward until finally entering the room. She looked briefly at Kev and Fear's direction before quietly placing herself down on one end of their sofa. The child fidgeted and never once looked up at her guardians as her fingers nervously picked a few strands of orange fur out of her sweater sleeves. She couldn't bring herself to speak, to even see them, but...

    But it was progress, wasn't it? It was still progress.
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    Re: Speak

    Post by Kev on Sat Apr 02, 2016 4:28 am

    A soft chirr sounded from the alien at the sound of Fear's nickname. Honey bunches...~ When a man had someone like the ghoul to greet them upon coming home, it made home that much brighter. No matter how dark a time they were going through. "Yeah? Maybe I can help shed some light on the subject." Kev suggested, index finger and thumb curling to create a 'monocle' that he positioned over one of his own dark blue eyes. The other eye winked, the lean reptile's reference hopefully easy to understand. Time to be Fear's seeing-eye guypal.

    "Hm?" His head cocked to the side in confusion. Warm? He caught a brief glance at a square shape before Fear tossed it in Kev's direction. The alien started, both hands reaching out to clap around the square in mid-air with a light slap! He pulled his hands closer, peering down as they parted to reveal a small, square bit of fabric. Rubbing his palms together, he tested the softness of the odd thing, noting a strange sort of feeling inside, like gel? True to Fear's word, it was quite warm. But...what was it? Kev peeked over his fingers back at the seated man, who urged him to remove his shoes and apply the square to his toes. Ah... Kev's toes wiggled within his boots and emerald scales seemed to brighten in color as the alien flushed. "T-thank you, Fear. That was very thoughtful of you." How thick could you get, tripping over your own feet? Ugh... At least micurren was here to supply him with something for the swelling.

    Kev got to work on removing his boots, pulling one off as he reported to Fear about his day. He leaned against the doorway for balance as he pulled the stubborn boot off. "Work was alright, sold a good variety of things today... I didn't hear anything about pie though. Maybe there was a discount or a deal at one of the bakeries?" The shoe was deposited by the door, toes wriggling against the carpet as one in particular had a slight discoloration to it and some swelling. Varying shades of green branched around the point of impact that was a circle of greensh yellow, a bruise that gave a light throb once released from the shoe. "It wasn't...too stressful." Kev assured as he pulled the other boot off, more quickly than he had the first. The job itself really wasn't all that stressful, it was just that building...

    Before the alien could hop on the couch and apply the square to his foot, there lingered a yellow femme that drew his attention. Even more than his beloved guypal, she drew his attention and a fair bit of concern. His fingers knitted together, worried at the flinch. Was he too loud? Too...unwelcoming? His shoulders hiked up, almost defensively before listening to Fear. Right...of course. Livewire finally comes downstairs, and Kev makes her feel awkward...hopefully not awkward enough to retreat back into her room and never try again. He gave her a tentative look, as if not quite willing to just leave her alone on the stairs. But the femme didn't seem to be looking directly at him, glowing blue optics avoiding his gaze and arms wrapped around herself. She looked the same as she had when they found her at the inn, arms holding tight to her chest. He lingered in the doorway for a moment. "...It's good, to see you. Out and about, t-that is..." It was the closest he'd get to saying 'good bye' as he heeded Fear's wise words and gave her a bit of space, rather than gawk at her as if she didn't even belong downstairs.

    Walking across the room, steps a bit tender and tentative for his injured foot, Kev claimed the side of Fear that Metus hadn't. His slim body easily slid into place against the side of Fear's chest. The chill that roiled off of the man was almost welcomed, as Kev folded his legs up onto the couch as well. Knees snugly against his own chest, he laid the square to rest over his bruise. With a deep sigh, he leaned backwards and against Fear as his body seemed to relax, like a spring had finally been released. "Mm...~" Livewire's movements had been so tentative that he didn't realize she had moved until he spotted her at the end of the couch. The alien blinked and glanced to Fear, recognizing this as a step towards recovery. She was still quite hurt, and frankly so was he. But this was...a sign, right? He observed her only for a few moments, not wanting to make her feel uncomfortable. Instead, he gave Fear a pleased squint and bumped his temple against his chest.

    "Alright, show me this book of your's and I can give us an inkling of what we're supposed to be reading."


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    Re: Speak

    Post by Fear on Tue Apr 05, 2016 2:16 am

    Look at the alien standing over there, feeling all bubbly at the nickname. Yes sirree, boy! Kev was an easy one to please. Fear didn't mind, however. He rather liked how the living room (what an odd name) seemed to lighten up. It was as if a great big storm cloud - and one other than himself - had rumbled off to sour another poor soul's evening. "Oh, I don't know, Kev..." rasped a hesitant superfiend. "Even if thessse old eyesss cannot sssee asss well asss yoursss, methinksss you would not find thisss sssubject very fassscinating." And for more reasons than just one, naturally. He closed the book for the time being and rigidly set it atop Metus' back, letting the drowsy Great Dane keep vigilant watch over the weighty thing. Fear glanced back over, admitting, "I'm afraid it'sss a rather dry read." Kev was certain to dislike it.

    Ah! But it was good to hear that Kev's day had not been stressful and that he wasn't pestered by the strange notion of a holiday solely for pie. Blimey, what next, a holiday for cake and biscuits? He openly snorted at the thought. Youths with nothing better else to do...

    Speaking of youths... Their youth was just now making her move.

    Fear needn't turn his head or engage in any telling body language; he knew where she was, what she thought, and how she felt - all unfettered from the accursed pendant upstairs. While the femme's mind was anything less than ideal, she was nevertheless home, safe, and under supervision. The helmeted ghoul couldn't ask for much else. "You are welcome, Kev, and I am glad that today'sss ssshift wasss not hard on you," he hissed. A leathery hand patted the cushion beside him.

    True to his nature (and desire), Kev hobbled over and nestled into the undead's chilly side, mirroring the snoring pooch on the opposite end. Shally and Percy hardly flinched, though the latter quietly panted with a fledgling smile.

    "...It's good, to see you. Out and about, t-that is..."

    Oh Kev, you scaly numpty...

    Pardon the ghoul for missing a heartbeat or two (can you blame him?), but Fear honestly didn't see what the big fuss was about. Livewire was downstairs, yes. Livewire was in their company, yes. How was that in any way jarring? But, then again... Fear had already forgiven her little stunt a few days ago.

    THOK!

    A solid object collided with the top of Kev's skull without warning, heavy enough to rattle his melon but light enough to keep that lovely emerald neck of his from snapping. "Here you are," the superfiend piped up, rapping his pointed nails against a hard surface. Three guesses as to what had just landed squarely on the alien's bald head. "The book, asss you have demanded. Don't sssay I didn't warn you, though..." And warn the alien Fear did, for was soon as Kev reached up and grabbed the book for better inspection... He would spot nothing but big, bold yellow lettering and polished chrome to fancy the curious gaze. In his hands was not a book about faraway lands and magical kingdoms. It wasn't even a book about history or deep philosophical thought.

    No, it was actually a book about motorcycles. That's right, motorcycles. More specifically, how to build a loud and noisy hog for the yearnful superfiend wishing to relive his glory days, where on the hardest of beats it was just a weary Judge and his trusty standard issue bike.

    Contentment.

    Nothing but contentment as Fear leaned back in the couch and popped the bulbous knuckles in his gnarled hands one-by-one. "Mm~! I jussst can't wait to hear you weave a tale out of thisss one, Kev," he teased, chuckling. "Try to make it captivating, yeah?" And be sure to include a healthy amount of gory bits and death, if you want maximum style points.
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    Re: Speak

    Post by Livewire on Mon Apr 11, 2016 9:46 am

    The child's shoulders tensed up when Kev addressed her, and she mostly hated herself for that reaction. How stupid was it that him addressing her had become a bad thing? Since when had she been this reactive, this negative, to his acknowledgements and affections? It had been weeks since Livewire had been able to bring herself to even hug him back. It felt like every word from him was undeserved, and she couldn't even think about accepting them. She was not in the right mind, the right state, to accept any of it.

    As such, she was grateful for Fear not pursuing or adding on to Kev's statements. Small hands clutched at the fabric of her sleeves as most of her regretted coming down at all. A small, stubborn part of her refused to give that majority voice, and powered through. She would power through. She really just didn't know how to give up, but at least, in this case, it could help. She listened to them talk with her head lowered and her gaze downcast. But...at least she was here, right?

    Heavy steps trotted down the stairs before the fluffy bulk of Penny (with a small passenger hitching a ride) emerged from around the railing. The chow huffed happily when she spotted Livewire before bounding over and, without even trying to ask permission (she was queen, after all) hopping up beside the quiet child. A flat, dull tongue lapped at Livewire's cheek until metal fingers rubbed behind her ears. The chow sat down heavily on the couch before plopping her head into the child's lap with her tail lazily wagging. The freeloading passenger crawled off of Penny once she stopped moving and picked his way across Livewire, sniffing around until he found the familiar spot of her sweater where speckles of lubricating fluid would sometimes gather from her elbow. She cradled her arm as Tiresias settled in with a soft meow.

    The animals were welcome distractions. Something for Livewire to focus on to distract her from just how awkward she felt in the presence of her guardians. Plus, they were fluffy, and fluffy just made everything better.
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    Re: Speak

    Post by Kev on Tue Apr 12, 2016 12:57 am

    "Ah, I'm sure it'll be a fine subject! Dry read or no, I'd like to read something other than price tags and a cash register." After a few hours of work, it'd be nice to read something with depth. Perhaps an interesting plot... Ooh, and great characters! No matter what the book was about, getting the gears in his little brain turning again would be a great way to shake off the malaise of work. The alien batted his eyes at the beckoning hand, very happy indeed to be home. "It's not so hard when I have you to look forward to." So long as he had Fear to look forward to when he came home, Kev could very well take up a job working in the sewers.

    Dark blue gloves were tugged off of each hand and stowed away within the pockets of his jacket as he approached Fear's couch. The alien plopped down easily beside Fear, an arm looping around his thin rib cage and already nuzzling his cheek against the ghoul's thick black sweater. Amidst the cuddling though, Kev stole a glance at the yellow femme who still seemed so...stiff. Silent. From the way she was clutching her own sleeves, Livewire may even be upset. What could he do...? What should he say? Was he making her uncomfortable? Agh, why was this so hard? Interacting with Livewire used to be so easy! The two of them had shared a body for a month! Yet here Kev was, lost as ever. What should he--

    THOK!

    Well, that was one way to be jolted out of his thoughts. Kev's head jerked to the side, the edges of the book rubbing against his scales in a way that elicited a soft sss. Squinting a buggy eye at Fear and his tapping secretary nails, Kev reached up to take the book. Holding it out so he could properly read it...the alien blinked at the title. Big and bright lettering, detailing that Fear was reading about...how to build a cheap chopper? Still holding the book securely in his hands, Kev peeked up at Fear with interest in his eyes. "Fear, you want to build a chopper? If you want, I could always buy you one! Or, help you get the supplies." The scaly man leafed through the pages, head tilted like a curious dog as he breezed through the contents. True to Fear's word, this book didn't exactly have a story within it... Instead, it was an instructional manual for building a bike. It may as well be written in a language Kev didn't know...

    Heavy footsteps drew his attention, glancing up just in time to see a furry lump of rusty red and a small splotch of black making its way to Livewire. The chow leapt up into the femme's spot, head in her lap and curly tail wagging. Tiresias the hitchhiker found a spot in Livewire's elbow, nestling in place like a baby being rocked to sleep. Kev nearly cooed, though he kept silent so he would not disturb the scene. Those animals really did love her...

    "Mm~! I jussst can't wait to hear you weave a tale out of thisss one, Kev,"

    "Hm?" His gaze snapped back onto the iron helm, staring up at him with raised brows. Weave a tale about what?

    "Try to make it captivating, yeah?"

    Tick tick tick...ding! It came to him, and the alien's shoulders hiked up like a scolded dog, skull lurching forward. Riiiiight... Kev had intended on reading the book out loud for them all to hear and partake in. The ghoul wanted a story, did he? Like ice melting into a puddle, Kev's shoulders melted back into a casual shrug as he laid the book across his lap and opened it to the first page. With only the squintiest of happy looks, Kev started. "'How to Build a Cheap Chopper From $5,000 tp $20,000', by Timothy Remus." Spoken like a true story teller! Kev flipped the page...and gawked at the contents. The urge to snap the book shut like a mousetrap rose in the back of his mind, but the alien persevered. An index finger briefly flipped through the pages, leaning his head down to peer at the contents and pick out certain details.

    "Once upon a time, there was a...uh. Honda bike! That really wanted to be a big bad chopper. B-but he didn't have a lot of money. Soooo..." Paper rustled as Kev flipped back and forth through the manual. "He found a used bike that didn't need her parts anymore! He went to the bike Doctor, who agreed to donate parts from the used bike onto him for cheap! The used bike was happy, because she'd have a new life and get to help another bike achieve his dream. The surgery was a success, and for the simple price of..." A quick peek at the cover, "Five thousand to twenty thousand dollars, he was a real chopper! Just like he always wanted. The end!" PAP! The book was closed between his hands, the alien peeking up at Fear expectantly to get his reaction and critique. What do you think, Fear? Emmy material?


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    Re: Speak

    Post by Fear on Tue Apr 12, 2016 10:22 pm

    Yes, at least she was here.

    Now the living room was starting to get crowded. Between listening to Kev's sappy (but welcomed) thoughts and Livewire's internal dilemma, one would think adding a few barks and meows was a piece of cake. Penny, the Queen Bee; Tiresias, the inquisitive snooper; Metus, Percy, and Shally... These intrusive thoughts had all the trims and trappings of a psychic migraine, but Fear wouldn't bid a single one of them away. Everything just felt so... right, like how it used to be. Like how it should be.

    "It's not so hard when I have you to look forward to."

    Music to his ears. Before the alien knew it, a large ice-cold hand reached over and cupped the underside of Kev's chin. "Aw, you big sssap~!" the helmeted ghoul teased, wiggling Kev's face like it were a toddler's. "Jussst what I've alwaysss wanted to hear: appreciation." It was a couple of centuries overdue; but hey, who's counting? "And you buy me a motorcycle...? Tut!" Oh Kev, you well-intentioned ladies' handbag. A hardened fingernail lightly flicked the spot between the alien's eyes as Fear rested a spindly arm around Kev's torso. "Don't be sssilly," he hissed. "There'sss no real joy in jussst purchasssing a bike and then driving it home. Any chump with a disssciplined sssavingsss account can do that. No, Kev... I want to build a bike - to prove worthy of a bike. Besssidesss..." The undead shrugged, gently rubbing the alien's side. "I kind of, you know, want to trick mine out. Jussst a boyissssh fantasssy, ha ha." Fear was thinking skulls. Skulls were plenty mature, right? Maybe some chains and pteranodon motifs...

    True to form, Kev had naturally forgotten about the fool's quest he had unwittingly enlisted himself to and was already struggling with the table of contents. Like clockwork. "The ssstory," Fear dutifully reminded. Oh yes, he was quite enjoying himself. Like the dry read so far, Kev? Told you it wasn't anything you'd fancy... But why listen to him, huh? After all, Fear was just a big, smelly and generally disliked corpse. Go on, show the world your imaginative genius~!

    "Once upon a time, there was a...uh. Honda bike! That really wanted to be a big bad chopper. B-but he didn't have a lot of money. Soooo..."

    ...Oh good lord.

    "Did you jussst... make a ssstory about motorcycle cannibalisssm?" Leave it to Kev... "Well, I sssuppossse that will have to do," Fear muttered, his reluctance palpable. Moral of the story, never ask a tree savage for a creative tale about motorcycles. He retrieved his book, away from Kev's questionable hands, and set it aside for now. "You're no Ssspielberg, but it could be sssomething. You know, like one of thossse cheap B-movie flicksss you take sssomeone you really hate to go watch." Hey, Kev wanted honest critique, no? Can't get anymore honest than this! Or could you... A pensive hum escaped the ghoul's throat, ancient gears turning. Give him a moment, bless. "What'd you think about Kev'sss interesssting little ssstory, Livewire?" A complete and totally natural attempt at integrating the femme into their discussion. Kev, take pointers.
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    Re: Speak

    Post by Livewire on Wed Apr 20, 2016 10:16 pm

    It was good. It was good to be here, and just listening to them helped. The natural conversations that flowed from Kev and Fear always drew Livewire in, made her pay attention and feel…something. They had even when the three of them didn't really know each other yet.  Kev was her best friend, Fear was an awkward but well-meaning (in his own way) corpse, and Livewire would rather let her mind stay broken than face what had happened to her.

    It was powerful, their voices. It meant something to her.  Even something as silly as this book and Kev's story added a warm edge to the cold glass shards inside her. To listen to them speak affectionately to one another, to tease and play with their words, was enough of a draw to bring Livewire down the stairs and before them. Each moment that passed made it a little easier to stay.

    But it would not get better so quickly.

    She still kept her eyes down.  She didn't want to look at them and a part of her didn't want them to look at her, either. Instead, she just wanted to listen. It was pleasant how Fear's deep bass and Kev's lighter tone played off of each other so well. It was nice to listen to them.

    …until Kev started telling the story.

    Oh dear.

    Livewire's fingers slowed their workings against Penny's fur the longer that the tale was spun. The child's eyes widened slightly and she felt the pricks of distress at the edges of her awareness. Oh…oh, Kev, no that…was so bad. He just found an old bike?  And a doctor just agreed to take the parts from someone who may not need them but was still obviously using them just so he could go faster and be a different kind of bike? And the way that Kev was saying it! So peppy, as though this was totally fine! Maybe this would work for some sort of psychological horror story.  Even a story could use that care-free tone in a way to imply the instability of the point of view, but...

    Well, Livewire didn't think Kev had put that much thought into it.

    And then Fear addressed her.

    The child's shoulders rose slightly. Immediately she curled in on herself mentally, recoiling from the fact that her little self-imposed fantasy of being-there-but-not-really-being-there had been shattered. She felt the urge to run, to go back upstairs and slick back into the corner, under the blanket, and...

    It was…

    She didn't.  Fingers brushed through Penny's fur. Tiresias's purrs were used as an auditory anchor and her mind, like her shoulders, slowly relaxed from their coiling. She wanted to try, even if she couldn't really say the words.

    Could make a nice horror novel. With a lot of work.

    So, so much work.
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    Re: Speak

    Post by Kev on Thu Apr 21, 2016 10:50 pm

    Long, spindly fingers grasped Kev's chin, cold digits dancing across his scales as he wiggled Kev's chin around in his grasp. The alien's head followed the movement, chuckling lightly as Fear's talons brushed against his scales. "Mm~!" True to Fear's word, he did feel like some sort of sap. As if his chest was just full of syrup that was gushing on out. It felt...nice. "Cause I do appreciate you!" Just wanted to swoop that big man into his arms, but their size difference made it hard. So instead, he merely bumped his cheeks against Fear's hand. One nail flicked the space between Kev's eyes, and he blinked in surprise, Fear's other arm looped around his chest. Squinting one eye in response to the flick, he leaned into the ghoul as he listened. Aah...so Fear thought it'd be more satisfying to make a motorcycle, rather than just buy one that was fresh and new. Putting in the elbow grease to build it up, having a great project to tinker with...and apparently a boyhood dream at that.

    "Well, far be it from me to deny a man his boyhood fantasy. Alright Fear.~ I'll let you buy the parts yourself! And maybe you can take me for a spin when you're finished?" Skulls, chains... Sounds like a very interesting bike! He leaned into the rubs, almost arching into the movement. "I'd really like to see what sort of bike you'll make, Kikiri. I bet it'll be great!" Who knew Fear was such a grease monkey? And ironically good at reminding Kev of something he had forgotten, in this case the story. "Right, right. Thank you!"

    Fear's reminder given, Kev weaved a tale. A magnificent tale! Like a wordsmith, he waggled his...metaphorical tongue and created a story out of this dry book. The alien's fingers drummed across the cover as he looked up at Fear curiously, awaiting judgement. ...And what a strange judgement it was. "...Cannibalism?" How...what?! "But the bikes didn't eat each other, it was a surgery! It's like organ donation." That was legal and such! Not like cannibalism... Have to do...beh. His shoulders sagged as the book disappeared from his fingertips. The Kryptonistanian kept his arms busy by folding them across his lap in a pout. At least, until Fear tossed him a bone! Well...half a bone. "I'll take that! A b-movie you show to someone you hate, boy... That's pretty lucrative!" Maybe Knock Out could even show it at his Drive-In. And then...the ghoul addressed the wee bumblebee in the room directly. He blinked at Fear before casually turning his head to look at Livewire, curious to hear if she'd answer. Though for a moment Kev was worried she might leave... She seemed to want to be left alone in the corner, right...?

    It was… Could make a nice horror novel.

    ...Whoa. The femme may not have used her mouth, but she reached out mentally instead, long since used to their telepathy and communicating privately with them. Kev's eyes widened for a moment, perceiving the little thought in his mind. He nearly missed the actual words, focusing on the voice instead. Soft, tentative, but... Undeniably her's. What was the last time he'd gone longer than a day without hearing her voice? During training...? His hands reached for one of Fear's, squeezing lightly as the words themselves finally soaked in. A horror novel, was it? Kev chuckled. "That's a novel idea. I didn't mean for it to be a horror story, but I guess I'm just that good~!" Scaly brows waggled with mischief, and he snorted with laughter.


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    Re: Speak

    Post by Fear on Thu Apr 28, 2016 8:58 am

    Could make a nice horror novel.
    "That's a novel idea. I didn't mean for it to be a horror story, but I guess I'm just that good~!"

    Oh goodness, that pun...

    Fear tried his hardest not to groan, the helmeted ghoul tipping his head back and shaking it. Hopeless... Kev was just hopeless. But! A terrible author through and through, the alien's butchered story was just horrible enough for the critic in Livewire to speak out. "Ha ha. I agree with the lassss," he remarked, lounging back. "It could ussse sssome work - a lot of work. Don't put the cart before the horssse, Kev." Unlike the alien, Fear didn't settle his gaze upon the femme. Her awkwardness and desire to scurry back upstairs to hide was enough to keep him mindful. Right, now that the story and subsequent criticism were finished...

    "Sssure, I can take you out for a ride - both of you," the fiend offered. It wasn't the best of topics, but it was perhaps the most natural; anything else, and Livewire might get spooked. And sadly, Fear was no grease monkey. He knew the basics for a motorcycle and some rudimentary fixes on-the-go, but other than that? No, he was rather clueless. "I hope to build sssomething functional," he added, moving the conversation along. "Nothing too big, nothing too sssmall; a chopper for both busssinesss and pleasssure, isss what I want. I'm thinking about following a sssimilar ssstyle and motif that Deadworld had. You know, asss an homage to my old bike. Blimey, it'sss been a while..." Long gone were the days where he was a Judge patrolling his beats, rider and motorcycle alike dispensing justice to the lawless masses. Kind of bittersweet, now that he thought about it... Too bad they hadn't kept their department-issued vehicles.

    But anyway, the present. He rubbed Kev's arm and stretched, the ancient vertebrae in his spine popping. "Once it'sss finissshed, we can go out yonder and enjoy the ssscenery. Go on picnicsss, ssssight-sssee, perhapsss fisssh and camp... There'sss plenty to do out there, in the wildernesssss. I reckon we could find thingsss that no one elssse hassss. Would you two like that?"

    Bit by bit, bait was so lowered ever so slowly...
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    Re: Speak

    Post by Livewire on Sun May 15, 2016 12:45 am

    Oh, oh god. A pun. Kev, Kev no.

    No.

    The femme felt the desire to curl in on herself in the force of that playful pun, but valiantly she resisted. It was true that Kev's approach on writing and story-telling was certainly unique to the alien. It was also completely true that this fact in no way meant that his stories were awful, they were just...unique.

    If she told herself that enough she might even believe it, too.

    The femme felt some tension ease from her frame as she sat in their space, listened to their words, and overall just experienced her guardians once again. Her desire to flee fluctuated with each syllable dropped from the mismatched duo. Always, always, it was outmatched by her desire to stay.  The conversation continued to flow against her meager addition to it. It was calm.  It was...

    It was far from normal but that was okay, too.

    The child directed her optics to Penny beside her. The Chow was not extremely interested in the conversations, rather having a fine enough time on her own sinking into the mattress and claiming it as her own territory. It's not like any self-respecting pants-wearer would take it after she had gotten through with it.  The dog huffed low in her chest as Livewire's lack of response, but overall did not mind. It was a quiet time. That much had been made obvious. It was a quiet time for all of them and Penny was quick to grow accustomed to that. James and Butch were slower, but it wasn't like she could blame them! How could Penny expect her perfect intellect to be mirrored in...

    Well, the other ones. They not-perfect-intellect ones.

    With another great huff, Penny nudged her wet nose against Livewre's hand once more. The femme had ceased in her administrations and Penny, rightful queen that she was, wanted some pettings to enjoy with the silence.

    Livewire, though…

    It… She wanted to, so badly. She wanted to be okay, she wanted all of this nonsense to be behind her like it had never happened. She wanted, more than anything, for it to be as if nothing had happened. /a small thought came to the bidding of Fear's words. In her mind she remembered Fear's complaints of her weight when he took her and Kev onto a wondrous trip into the jungle. A bloody bus, was it?  How weird would it be to put a bloody bus on a motorbike?

    But…

    She couldn't. She couldn't say a word of this, of the small thoughts still there, still there, but buried. How could she say this when all of her mind fell in harsh and drawn-out lines that she could only take in so much of at a time?
    How could she be expected to joke right now?

    That sounds nice. So, she didn't joke. She didn't share in the playful jabs or the snide comments. It was hard enough to talk, to exist, and she couldn't push past that barrier right then.  Not right then.
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    Re: Speak

    Post by Kev on Fri May 20, 2016 2:15 am

    Wasn't it just...puntastic?~

    Kev snickered lightly, thinking himself quite clever. Alas, the genius of Kev-Mak-Tarr had struck a brick wall of critique, as Fear agreed that his story could use work. The alien snorted. "Well, I did think it up on the fly... You're the one who wanted a little story, after all. I made it up personally, for you! Both of you." How does one turn an instructional manual into a story? Not easily! He figured he deserved some credit for at least conjuring up something. Even if it was bad and apparently full of unfortunate implications... "Before I decide to sell my story for any profit, I'll run it by you two as my editors. How's that sound?" Kev joked with a wink. Not that he really had plans to make a story about a motorcycle in need or organ donations. In hindsight, it really was kind of creepy.

    "Ooh~!" Palms clapped together, fingers interlacing as the alien joined his hands together joyfully. "I'd love to! I've never been on a motorcycle!" Kart, transforming alien car, bumper car, space shuttle, robotic suit, even a bug steed and shadowy bird...but never a motorcycle! The ghoul mused that he wanted a functional motorcycle, one that could harken back to a bike he once had as a Judge. Suppose becoming a Dark Judge gave Fear no time to ride around back on his world... "Would it be able to fit all three of us? Or would we need a little sidecar thing?" It was the only concern he brought up before moving on with a more supportive tone. "I think it's great that you have something to work on and look forward to. To get that big brain on your's ticking like a clock." His hands separated, one clasping over Fear's knee to give it a pat. Sometimes the alien felt bad, feeling as if he hogged all of the ghoul's attention on his own needs and wants. The house, the shop... This chopper wasn't much but it could be all Fear's.

    Cold undead flesh rubbed over Kev's sleeve, the motion seeming to smooth out his body as the alien relaxed against Fear's body. His chin anchored itself into the soft sweater. The former Judge painted a picture of adventure, riding off on the chopper together to have picnics and camp, to fish and see the world. For all of Kev's time here, it seemed most of his adventuring had ever taken place during disastrous events. To explore at their leisure... "I'd absolutely love that." He purred, nuzzling lightly. Penny kept a quiet and vigilant watch, as the cybertronian femme beside her gave the dog pets and seemed a bit hesitant. Not because she didn't want to go. It seems just communicating this way was hard enough for her. "We could have little weekends, camp in the forest, picnic in the grasslands and fish in the rivers... Maybe we could even hike the mountains and ride through the wastelands. There's so much world to see and we could experience it all together."


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    Re: Speak

    Post by Fear on Sat Jun 04, 2016 6:05 pm

    "Well, I did think it up on the fly... You're the one who wanted a little story, after all. I made it up personally, for you! Both of you."

    What, did the alien want a medal?

    Fear snorted, "Obviousssly," and left it tastefully at that. But bless, Kev considered them both his editors. With 'artistic' talent like that, he was bound to need a diligent leash or two. "I am not oppossssed to the posssition, however playful," the superfiend agreed. Just don't expect a free pass, Kev. This was, after all, an editorial position.

    The subject of riding a motorcycle, even as a passenger, brought such delight to the alien's bulbous eyes. "Oh, you've never been?" It wasn't so different, really. There was exposure to the elements and more of a risk while on the carriageway, but it was just like riding a, well, bike. Er... minus toggling between the hand brakes and foot clutch, of course. "I wasss thinking of a cruissser," Fear contemplated aloud, scratching beneath chin with a rancid talon. "A Judge'sss bike wasss consssiderably heavy-duty, fit for whatever wasss thrown at it. I doubt I can replicate my old bike'sss ssspecificationsss exactly, but if I do it right..." He let his sentence dangle for a moment, reminiscing, "then it can asssuredly handle three passsengersss. You can sssit behind me, Kev, and Livewire can sssit in a sssidecar. Both of you will have to wear the appropriate gear, naturally; but I don't think a pair of gogglesss - and a helmet for you, love - will be difficult to manage. Hell, I could even take the dogsss out for a lazy afternoon ride." Aw, just thinking about a nice red scarf, flapping in the wind for Metus, was a pleasant mental image. The pooches would absolutely love it!

    "And my figurative brain alwaysss ticksss like a clock, Kev! I do not sssleep, remember?" But yes, the alien's sentiment was kind and thoughtful. Although building a motorcycle wasn't the most momentous of tasks, it was just enough to keep the helmeted superfiend occupied and appreciative of his roots. Plus, it would be bloody good fun riding out together and enjoying themselves! Weekend camping, fishing, picnics, hikes, just... riding - moving around and experiencing the little things as a cohesive unit. It really did remind him of the old days... And hey, if he managed to blast a highwayman or two into smithereens? All the better for it.

    The rickety old ghoul nodded in agreement, subconsciously leaning against Kev. "I think thisss goal isss a wonderful opportunity - not only for me, but for usss," he rasped. Blimey, there was a whole world out there, largely untamed and unexplored. They could find places just for them - only for them. The land and all its treasures would be their coveted secret.

    It sounded very nice, but most of all?

    They would do it together.

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