Modifications and Mistakes

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Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Sat Jan 28, 2012 3:17 am

Josh found a small shop with a decent grinder, plenty of tools, and even a few spare pairs of coveralls accessible for working on the SUV. He found an auto parts store where he could get part of what he needed, an auto dismantlers for others, and a military base where he could get the last of them. He even managed to find welding equipment he could use to add reinforced plating, exterior weaponry, and a storage area on the top. Hours of hard work later the exterior modifications were well done. He'd found that much of the work had already been done for them, given that much of the body was already triple reinforced to prevent even the strongest hollow-points from reaching the inside of the vehicle, but Josh added one more layer of bulletproof, impact resistant sheeting, just in case. Bulletproof glass was replaced with military grade armored glass instead, as well, capable of holding up to heave the heaviest of artillery. He'd installed the storage compartment on top as well as the new seating inside and was just finishing up the wiring when he noted how late it had become. He decided upon finally taking a much needed break, noting the rapid darkening of the skies all around, when it all broke loose..

Dark birds with glowing red eyes dove in like fighter jets, forcing Josh to end his break early. He jumped up and into the vehicle, which was still up on the lift, slamming his door nearest them with only a few scrapes, then back out the other side, swearing silently as he landed painfully then rolled, grabbing the arc welder and lighting it, turning the gas up as high as it would go and setting the birds aflame as they made their way around. A few moments later, the birds appeared to be gone. Josh moved to drag the long cords and hoses in so that he could close the great garage door. The moment he got within three feet of the door, he knew he'd made a mistake. He was to tired. He knew that already. He'd known it since earlier at the mutant-infested Target store.

The howling began with a single animal then grew to a near deafening volume as the first ran at Josh, mouth agape, snarling as lunged forward. Josh was thrown face first onto the concrete, the wind knocked out of him as he twisted painfully, getting his hands and knees up just in time to keep the wolf's mouth from closing around his neck. He struggled to keep great teeth from finding purchase as he reached for the gun in his waistband. Drawing it, he brought it up quickly and fire directly into the mouth of the beast, then rolled with it, firing at the others beyond the entrance as he scrambled forward again. He rose unsteadily, firing with one hand as he pulled the heavy rolling door down with the other, then sank to the floor against it, shaking and bleeding from several small scrapes and cuts and one large gash across his forehead from when he, the wolf creature, and the cement all met.

He could almost sense his brother reaching out to him, angry and afraid... almost respond...

Then there was only darkness.
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Tue Feb 21, 2012 12:58 am

Josh groaned and blinked against the light that filtered into the shop, making to rise.

"Easy there, boy. Let us finish stitching you up there, first. Looks like Eric did you a solid before you put him down, eh boy?" an older man quipped, then laughed at his own joke, keeping his gun leveled at the dark haired boy's head even as the young girl finished stitching up the gash in his forehead. "We've got a bit to talk about. You've put us down a stud, boy. Seems you'll do well enough to replace him, though. Doesn't it, Jennifer"

Josh forced himself to breathe, looking slowly around, not liking the sound of this at all. His vision was doubled and his head hurt like hell, but he wasn't going to pass out again as near as he could tell, and he wasn't staying here with someone aiming a gun at his head either. Not if he could help it. Three people were there in the shop with him.

One male, armed with a gun, currently pointed at him. One man, unarmed, standing near the door. One female, early teens, unarmed as well.

He rolled, moving away from the girl and getting his feet underneath him. His hand closed around a heavy wrench as he eyed the exit.

"Come on, boy," the man urged, cocking the gun and aiming it carefully. "You don't want to go out this way. Not when we've got so much to offer you." He grinned slowly. "Imagine it... unimaginable strength... power beyond your wildest dreams. And girls... wait until you see them, boy. Now, put that wrench down and settle down. I'd hate to have to shoot you dead this quick."
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Mon Mar 12, 2012 12:36 pm

Zack looking in on Hattie, who’d awakened and now was having tea with the various porcelain dolls in the princess room where she’d been left. She seemed to take no note of his presence as she spoke to her ‘guests’. He watched her a moment then stepped back, leaving her to her party. He considered going in and checking on Seb or Lia, but thought better of it. Instead he set the ham radio to the channel Abby suggested they monitor where her people could be reached if they needed anything. After a moment, he went down into the basement and brought up the other ham radio, the one they’d already had, and set it to the channel she’d suggested they ignore, the one the opposition might chat on.

“…helped them get settled in. Typical, right?” a male’s voice came on the enemy channel. “Even gave them our food. Stupid girl. And they let her!” the voice continued.

“Yes, well, your sister’s persuasive, and the rest of ‘em ain’t never been too bright, Scotty,” a sympathetic voice commiserated. “But we’ll have her before long. Then you’ll get the respect you deserve.”

“There’s a girl in there,” the first voice told the other. “A pretty one, too. Abby’s given me permission to talk to her. As if she could stop me. I left myself a way in tonight, too. She thinks they’re all sealed up, but they’re not. I’m going to have my bride. Tonight, she becomes mine.”

Zack didn’t wait to hear more. Instead, he began loading all the spare weapons Josh had left behind. They’d get in here over his dead body.

****************

Josh cocked his head to the side. His vision was blurred, but his hearing seemed fine. Closing his eyes, he drew a deep breath, still holding the wrench in his hand.

“Come on, boy. We’ll get you back to the house and fix ya so nothing like this’ll ever hurt you again. You’ll be…” the man droned on.

Josh didn’t wait to hear what he would be. Moving with a speed he should not possess he lunged forward, ignoring the hot steel that ricocheted from where he’d been, he shoved the wrench through the still speaking man’s chest and out his back. Grasping his wrist as he fell, he turned the gun the man held toward the screaming girl running at him and fired, noting when the sound of her heartbeat stopped.

The man near the door leaped, knocking the injured young man backwards to the cement floor and sending the gun flying. He was surprised when that injured young man shifted, using his own weight against him. “What are you?” the man asked, his eyes wide as he looked up into those pale blue eyes, still grappling against the boy but gaining no purchase.

Josh sighed tiredly before answering in nearly inaudible tones, “A mistake.”

He slammed the man's head into the cement then turned it almost completely backwards before rolling off the twitching body and laying there a moment, breathing slowly and blinking hard against the dizziness. Rising unsteadily, he lurched toward the hydraulic lift and lowered the SUV back down, starting it up and arming the weaponry he’d added before opening the bay doors again. There were people milling around outside as if waiting for something.

“He killed them!” someone looking in shouted as Josh stumbled back into the SUV, putting it in gear and speeding back out of the shop, sending people scrambling out of the way as he careened blindly back toward the house where his family waited.
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Lia on Wed Mar 14, 2012 7:09 pm

The shower had at least given Lia time to let her frustration abate, though the sting was still there.

But it wasn't like he hadn't been telling the truth, either.

So, with that in mind, the dancer finished putting her hair into the ponytail, set her wet towel in the restroom, and made her way back downstairs, determined to keep her temper in check should any more commentary be made about eligible young werewolves and her romantic life. The bottom line is, as Sebastian had made it very known, who she saw and who she showed interest in, was none of their business.

"Woah... You do realize we're safe here, now, right?" Lia asked Zack once she found him. He was obviously in the process of arming them to the teeth. "Unless you're planning on going out there to find Josh?" He was, after all, nearly besides himself with worry for his brother.
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Sat Mar 17, 2012 1:07 am

Zack shook his head, continuing to load the weapons. "We're not safe," he told her, nodding toward the ham radios. "I've been listening in, on both channels. Abby's wrong. She might be friendly, but not everyone in her camp is really in her camp. Her own brother's ready to sell her out, but not before he 'claims his bride' tonight. And he's made sure he can get in to get her, too." He gestured around the house. "I need to look. Really look. Find the hole he left and seal it, but first we need to get these...." His voice trailed off, his eyes going wide. "Crap," he hissed. "Finish loading these," he said, hurrying to get the pack full of medical supplies and Josh's clothing pack and depositing them in the bathroom before running toward the garage. "Keep Hattie upstairs, okay? Don't let her come down until... well, until I say. Okay?"
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Seabay Florentine on Mon Mar 19, 2012 2:32 am

Seabay frowned as Zack ran by him, still brushing his long hair's tangles out and dripping as he entered the kitchen. He had caught some of Zack's quick talking, and wondered again just what they had gotten themselves into. It was nice to be in fresh clean clothes, though, and have had a real shower, at that. The blind teen hadn't felt so good in weeks. Unfortunately, like all good things these days, it wasn't going to last long, it seemed.

Draping his towel across his shoulders, he turned back to his room and retrieved his coat and gun, tucking knife and handy-tool into pockets again. Returning to join Lia with packs in hand, he set them on the floor out of the way. Marta looked up from her spot lounging on a rug.

"Guess that means we've got trouble again, right? I heard most of what Zack said, though I think I mostly caught the 'Abby's wrong' and 'hole' parts. Heck, I'm just glad we had a chance to shower and sleep some. Not many places with any true security these days... though I guess that proves here, too." He couldn't help it. The blind teen was a bit disappointed and despressed by that. He'd hoped once again, only to have it dashed. Hell, his past few years had been that way. Reaching back with a scrunchie, he tied wet hair back. "I take it we're going to try holding out another night. Do you think we have enough ammo for a whole pack of monsters, though?"
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Tue Mar 20, 2012 3:03 am

"It's probably okay," Zack said, though he didn't really believe it. "Just do me a favor and monitor those radios, okay? Both of them. I'll be right back."

Zack ran out into the garage and hit the button to open the door just in time for the SUV to pull in. Hitting the button again, the door closed behind the vehicle as he ran to the driver's side door.

"Prepričajte se, da so vrata zaklenjena," Josh muttered as he sat there, gazing at the bloody finger prints his own hands had left upon the wheel.

"English," Zack reminded him quietly, moving close to help him out of the SUV. "And I did. Don't worry. It's closed and locked again. Nevermind the blood, Josh. I'll clean it up. Let's just get you inside first, okay?"

Josh wasn't in the mood to protest as he exited the vehicle, leaning against the side of it as the room spun wildly. His dark chocolate brown curls were soaked in blood that ran down into his collar and stained the navy colored coveralls he wore. He could argue well enough that it wasn't all his, as it truly wasn't, but nobody looking too closely could miss that the bulk of it likely was.

"Lean on me," Zack offered, trying to hide his own alarm at his brother's condition. He frowned, but wasn't really surprised when his brother refused, knowing Josh would just argue that he wasn't about to risk taking Zack down with him if he fell.

Josh made his way slowly into the house, Zack close behind him, and headed straight for the bathroom, hoping the others would be too busy with whatever they were doing to notice. Zack waited until Josh had closed the door then went for cleaning supplies, pausing for only a moment to listen to the radios and sigh. He supposed that by the time he'd finished cleaning up the blood Josh might be ready to let him help him. He wished he could let Josh have just one night sleeping in a soft bed under warm blankets, but what he heard didn't sound promising. If they were lucky, he might have time to stitch him up and let him rest a few moments while the others packed the car before people started showing up asking questions and making demands. After that, they'd probably need to be on their way.

***

The radios Seabay had been asked to man seemed alive with chatter about the newcomers among them. On the friendly station, they seemed to be planning out who'd take meals when, to make them feel more at home. It seemed as if they'd decided without question the newcomers were staying and wanted to ensure they were safe and welcomed. The other station seemed pleased they were there, but for different reasons. It seemed to them they represented an infusion of new blood waiting to be blended with their own if they agreed to join them. If not, they were meals to be shared among them after sundown. All seemed in agreement on that channel, until someone discovered the bodies.

"He killed them," a male voice said over the ham radio attuned to the 'enemy' side. "Jed, Jennifer and Mitchell. Stabbed Jed clean through with a wrench, shot Jen with Jed's gun and turned Mitch's head clean around. Eric's too, but looking like he might have been the night before, so it was probably self defense. But not this. Sure Jed had his gun, but it wasn't like he'd shoot a newcomer outright, you know?" The voice sounded as if it were edging deeper and deeper into panic as it went on. "He stabbed him with a WRENCH. Who the hell does that?"

"Smell the blood," an older voice directed, it's tone sounding oddly hollow.

"It's... different," the first voice said after a long pause. "Not like ours, but... not quite human, either."

Josh moved silently through the house, paying no notice to the radios as he closed the bathroom door and started the water running. Zack stood in the kitchen, pulling out cleaning supplies, as the conversation on the radio continued.

"I didn't think it would be," the hollow voice answered. "We got us a slayer in our midst. Tell Scott so he can let his sister know. They'll have to turn him over. You can't leave a slayer alive. It's too dangerous. Maybe if they'll turn him over we can still let the others join us."

"What if the others are slayers too?" a younger voice asked.

"Then we'll have to kill them all," the hollow voice answered without inflection. "Won't we."
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Lia on Sun Mar 25, 2012 3:06 pm

As Zack spoke, Lia grimaced. "Okay, seriously, you have got to stop with this conspiracy theory stuff," she answered the boy. "First you guys say to trust these people, now you say not to?" Still, she had instinctually begun loading the guns as instructed, only belatedly thinking about the, "bride," comment. She doubted they were referring to Hattie, and the idea made her blanch visibly.

Zack's panic was further confirmed by the sudden bout of chatter on the, "enemy," radio channel. "Can't we ever catch a break?" she asked Sebastian, sighing, moving with more urgency now.

There were noises coming from the garage, and Lia peered around the corner to see Zack ushering Josh in. The elder Garrity seemed to be rather worse for wear. "Aw hell," she hissed through her teeth. Not only were they going to have to defend themselves, but Josh was out for the count (though she knew he would try his best to get involved). "What happened?" she asked, then made the connection to the rest of the radio chatter they had overheard, then changed her question.

"How bad is he?"
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Tue Mar 27, 2012 8:43 pm

"He's fine," Zack echoed his brother's earlier assurances as Josh stepped into the bathroom and closed the door. "A little banged up. I'll check on him more closely after I clean up the SUV."

Josh turned on the shower before sinking dizzily to the floor to begin rummaging through the medical pack, grateful he'd been able to avoid being examined too closely until he could pull himself together.
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Seabay Florentine on Fri Mar 30, 2012 12:16 am

Seabay sat and started cleaning his gun with the skill and ease of someone long used to it while he listened to the radios. Now and then, given certain information, he paused his work, frowning slightly. He looked up as the garage started and Zack brought Josh in, and that frown deepened as he opened his mouth to ask something, but they were going about their own things too swiftly. He heard the shower start up and sighed, turning back to cleaning his gun, but his ears were perked...

"You may want to go check on him sooner than that," the blind teen told Zack out of concern. After all, unable to see, he couldn't do anything himself for Josh's injuries. "He's definitely moving badly, when he moves on his own at all."

Offering Lia a shrug, he finished putting his gun back together and gave it a test dry-fire at the floor, satisfied by how it clicked. "I don't think there are any breaks anymore," he admitted ruefully. "Though I personally think we need to break out, preferably in daylight. They're not as strong then, and there aren't any birds then. But to take them all on, short of blowing this place up with them and us inside, I don't think we'll succeed. There's too many for a direct fight--and the damn birds, at that. So I vote we pack up, leave a polite note saying we've got word of a better place and thanks for the grub, and run far and fast."
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Sat Mar 31, 2012 1:54 am

Zack frowned at Seb, then paused to listen before setting aside the cleaning rags and solution and heading to the bathroom just in time to hear his brother retching violently. Quickly, he pushed his way into the room, reaching out to hold his brother's hair, only to swear when his hand was quickly soaked with blood, ignoring his brother's silent admonitions to mind his language. He looked around and noted the blood soaked gauze as well.

"A little banged up?" Zack demanded. "Where?"

Josh leaned against the wall, lowered his head and carefully parted his hair.

"It'll need stitches," Zack stated the obvious, rummaging for the kit for a moment before Josh handed it to him. "What? You were going to try doing it yourself?"

Josh shrugged.

"Get in the shower and sit, Josh. It'll be easier if I can see what I'm doing. Between the blood and all that hair, I can't. Maybe the water will help," Zack ordered. frustrated and worried with his older brother. He ignored the amused smirk that touched Josh's features despite his dizziness as he hesitated.

"No, I'm not turning around," Zack pressed. "Trust me, you'd rather I helped you stay up than let you fall. I don't think you want me calling Lia in here to help me pick you back up."

Josh frowned.

"Of course you'll be naked in the shower, Josh. We're all naked when we get in the shower. I've seen it all before, though. Trust me. I've got all the same parts. Now get in the damned shower before you pass out or bleed out, please."
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Lia on Sat Mar 31, 2012 9:56 pm

Garrity wrote:"He's fine," Zack echoed his brother's earlier assurances as Josh stepped into the bathroom and closed the door. "A little banged up. I'll check on him more closely after I clean up the SUV."

"Pipsqueak, the moment that Josh admits he's, 'a little banged up,' you know he's in trouble," Lia called out after Zack, though she didn't think he heard her. The fact was that Josh never let on he was injured in any way, not unless it was bad, and even when he was bad, he never let on to the severity of it.

In fact, it wasn't long before the younger Garrity had reentered the house and made his way into the bathroom where Josh had holed up. The dancer glanced at Seabay, rubbing the back of her neck in frustration.

"I'm not so sure Josh will be up for either fighting or moving quickly out of here," she shared with Sebastian quietly. She looked around them inspecting the nearest windows. "I'm wondering if we should worry most about finding this supposed hole and fix it to at least last out tonight, then try to run first thing tomorrow. We're getting closer to sunset by the minute, Josh is hurt who knows how badly, and we aren't really packed or ready to get out of here quickly. I don't know if we'll have time to make it far enough to be safe."

As she spoke, the dancer didn't much care for her own words, either. "Crap. I feel like we're stuck in a corner." She looked at Sebastian, swallowing against a lump, and admitted oh-so-quietly, quietly enough she wasn't even sure that Seabay would even hear her, "I'm worried."
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Sun Apr 01, 2012 9:47 pm

Josh sat in the tub with his head resting on his knees. Zack moved worked on the sutures.

After a moment he blew out a frustrated breath. "I need more light," he told his brother. "Lia's going to have to come in here and hold the pen light for me."

He fought down a rising sense of panic when his brother failed to protest at all.

Zack moved to the door and opened it a crack. "Lia..." he called, trying hard to keep the panic out of his voice. "Could you come in here a second, please?"

***

Seabay frowned and shrugged, holstering his gun but making sure he could get at it quickly. He stood and put his cleaning kit back together and then into his packs. "Well, I think we all're worried. But worrying won't solve anything, so let's go see to that hole you mentioned. Or, rather, you see and tell me what's up. Then I can try and find stuff to block it, though I think we'd best establish ways to hole up in stages. I vote on indoor traps in case of a breech, and an escape route. Regardless, like you said, lasting as long as we can sounds best." He hadn't forgotten the birds outside...

"How am I supposed to even know that it's a hole?" Lia asked, pushing gently against one of the windows to try to determine if the outside boards seemed loose. She then moved on to the next window and repeated the motion, feeling as though that was rather useless.

Seabay spread his hands helplessly. "How should I know? I'm in the dark more than you here." He just tried rapping on the walls. "A way in. That's all they need. Something simple, probably, as they're not exactly handy with tools in that form, I gather, or we'd be dinner last night. Check the latches maybe?"

Frowning, Lia did just that. "Not here, I don't think," she then said, moving toward the living room. Just as she had checked the third window, Zack's voice reached her.

Making a face, Seabay waved for Lia to go help. "I'll poke around up here. Go help Pip with Bean before Bean keels over. I've a feeling you might be driving next time, even if he's okay."

"I always have to drive under stressful situations," Lia called back at Sebastian. "Can't I get the fun drives once in awhile?" she asked him wryly.

"You're telling me there's a scenic route somewhere that I missed?" Seb quipped back, rapping walls as he moved to another room, then fingering the locks on the windows, tracing the sides...

"Just a sec," Lia responded to Zack, taking the time to check the other window that was large enough for someone to pass through before heading to him. "What's up, Pip? I'm trying to find our leak," she informed him, though the expression on his face, or however little of it she could see, stopped her short. "What's up?"

"I need you to hold a pen light so I can stitch him up. Please," Zack replied, stepping back to let her in. He shot a look in his brother's direction, noting that he still hadn't moved. The dark purple bruising across the pale skin of his shoulders and back and the red tint to the water washing over him told more about his last day and a half than he'd bothered to share.

It wasn't Josh's nudity that caught Lia off guard. "Holy crap!" she exclaimed despite herself. "Did he get into a fight with a meat grinder? You're sure all I can do is hold a penlight?" As she said it, though, she knew Josh would likely not let her touch him. She was still just Lia, after all. At least Zack was, well, Zack.

"From what they said on the radio, it sounds like he met one of the wolf things last night and then some of the townspeople this morning. It didn't sound like it went well." Zack sighed, gesturing her over. "If you're better at stitching, try it and I'll hold the light, but it needs to get done soon, I think."

Lia shook her head and took the penlight. "I think you should do it. I was never a home-ec kind of girl. So... then he met one of the bad wolves," she surmised as she turned on the light and averted her eyes as best she could. She was trying hard not to comment on the fact that Josh was even more skin and bones than she'd thought, which was saying a lot given the fact that she was a dancer and had seen what genuine anorexia could do to someone.

"Mine end up kind of crooked, but at least they close the hole," Zack admitted, stepping toward his brother and parting his hair again. "Yeah... four, actually. One last night and three this morning. The guy on the radio said he stabbed one of them with a wrench." He began quickly stitching up the gash, growing more anxious when his brother flinched away slightly but still didn't raise his head or react beyond that.

The dancer grimaced and looked away again after briefly glancing at Zack's activities to ensure she was positioned in a way that would be helpful. "Leave it to Josh..." she sighed. "Why does he always insist on running off on his own?"

"He's trying to protect me... us... all of us," Zack defended half-heartedly. "He thinks if he draws them away we'll stay safe."

"Yeah, but if he gets himself killed, he wouldn't be able to protect us anymore, so that's really sort of self-defeating, isn't it?" Lia posed. "Hey, you were the one who was so mad he left." Her tone wasn't without sympathy, however, and it was obvious she was saying these things mostly out of concern for Josh.

"I know," Zack replied to both statements at once. "It looks like he finished the car, though. It's even got new weaponry."

Lia steadied the penlight again, then looked at the mirror again, her features a strange blur due to the steam from the shower. "Yippee. Now we just have to make sure he lives long enough to show us how to use it. And we have to make sure we live long enough to be able to ride it." She caught herself and allowed her tone to soften. "We just have to make sure we make it through tonight. I hope Seabay can find that hole and plug it."

"There," Zack said, stepping back. He watched the water wash over Josh again, not daring to budge until it ran clear. "Look like we got this part, anyway."

With a quick glance down, Lia confirmed Zack's pronouncement. "Yeah, looks good," she said. "Doesn't seem like he's bleeding anywhere else. We can probably turn off the shower."

Josh gave the slightest shake of his head at that.

"He wants to wash up first," Zack told her, "But I think you're right. We should probably just get him dressed. He's already dizzy and he was getting sick when I came in."

Knowing what "washing up" meant to Josh, Lia was inclined to agree with Zack. "Yeah, standing up and working hard enough to wash up in this state? I don't think so, Josh. Not unless you plan on having me standing here holding you up and making sure you don't pass out. That's the deal," she said, arching her eyebrow in anticipation of his response.

"Um, yeah. He's not for that, exactly," Zack laughed wryly. "Stick around outside in case he needs more help than I can manage. Please?"

"Or we just get him dressed," Lia disagreed this time. "I think washing up the way Josh washes up would be too strenuous."

Zack hesitated, then nodded as he noted Josh beginning to shake. "Let's do that," he agreed quietly, reaching past Josh to turn off the water.

"Sorry, Bean," Lia apologized, quoting Sebastian. "This is better for you. Trust us." With that, she said. The dancer grabbed the clothes Zack had brought into the bathroom for Josh and handed them to the younger Garrity. "I'll be right outside," she said. "Just call if you need me." With that, she stood and left the room in question to allow Josh some measure of privacy.
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Sun Apr 01, 2012 9:48 pm

With a sigh, Seabay moved on to the next room, tapping still. He heard Hattie moving about and asked, "Hey, Hattie. Nice to see you're awake again. You're okay?" He thought it utterly odd how she didn't eat or drink, and just kind shut down for hours or days at a time. She... couldn't be human. But whatever she was, he decided, at least she wasn't out to eat them, like former humans were!

Hattie had remained up in the "princess room", oblivious to all the goings on downstairs, having a tea party with porcelain dolls. She looked up and cocked her head to the side, a soft smile gracing her innocent face. "Would you like some tea?"

"Maybe later," Seb answered, sighing. He wouldn't touch her "tea" unless he had someone around to confirm it was drinkable and not likely to poison him a second time. "Say, Hattie, some bad guys want to get in here. Think you can help me find out how they intend to get in? I don't want them spoiling your party here."

Hattie looked up, a hint of concern touching her sweet features. "Where are the other elves? Did the bad guys get them?"

"They're busy organizing stuff," Seb evaded. "These guys hurt Josh, so, we don't want them to come over. They're mean. But they still intend to try, we hear. So, think you can help me make sure they can't get in?"

"I'll help you," Hattie answered, pouring more tea for her 'guests'. "I won't let them hurt you."

"Thanks, Hattie. I kind of suck at 'looking' for stuff like this, you see," Seabay quipped wryly. "We kind of have to hurry, though."

Hattie set aside the teapot. She turned slowly, taking in the room, then cocked her head to the side and seemed to freeze.

Seabay waited, listening himself. After all, he couldn't see what she was up to, but he hadn't heard Hattie clattering with teacups for a minute, so maybe she was doing something?

Hattie started again, then moved toward the vent to the fireplace in her room. "It's here," she told him. "They can come in through here."

Eyebrows arching, Seabay moved to join Hattie, and rapped on the sides of the fireplace, then tested the vent cover. "Hells. Thanks, Hattie. Got ideas for sealing it up? Though personally I think concrete'll be a bit out of our options right now, much as I like that one."

"Wood would be nice," Hattie replied dreamily. "You can fix holes with wood."

Seb considered the size, measuring it with his hands a moment, then nodded. "Wood on fire sounds even better, but unfortunately wouldn't last long enough," he grumbled. "Plus it'd burn us all to death..." Straightening, the blind teen turned to go. "Thanks, Hattie. I'm going to get some then. Want to help?"

"Okay," Hattie answered off-handedly before moving to adjust her guests. "No slouching. A lady never slouches," she admonished.

A knocking at the front door coincided with the announcement on the 'enemy' channel. "Abby's a fool. She's going to check on them now. If we're lucky, they'll kill her next and we can all move on."

"Patience, Scotty," the gravelly voice answered. "Her time's coming."

Seabay mentally shrugged and headed downstairs. He paused at the knock and crackle on the radio--and frowned. "Damn," he muttered. "Crap! Why does everyone want attention all at the same time? I'm coming, I'm coming." With that, he moved to the door, snapping his fingers for Marta to come with him and opening it but blocking it with his body. "Hey there," he greeted with not very much enthusiasm.

Marta, picking up her master's irritation and discomfort, growled softly.

"Hey," Abby greeted him nervously. "I'm sorry to intrude, but I need to talk to all of you. Please."

Seb shook his head firmly. "I'm all you can get right now. Sorry. The others have a bit more urgent business."

"Your missing person. I've heard. That's sort of what I need to talk to you about," Abby acknowledged before lowering her voice. "I'd rather talk where not everyone out here is listening in."

Seabay debated that, frowning, then nodded and let her in, shutting the door firmly behind. "Yeah, we heard, too. You should listen to your buddies more often--before they kill you, too. So... I recommend talking, and fast, because I've some work to do before they get antsy and decide to move. We're taking anyone crazy enough to try down, and we won't go down without a fight. If they think we're easy, well, hell, I already had a death wish before the bombs," the blind teen grumbled. "Trust me, if I'm the last man standing, this place is gonna leave a crater."

Abby sighed, then nodded. "They're basing their panic over a stupid myth. Only the ignorant are falling for it, but there are a lot of them around here." She looked surprised when she noticed the second radio. The one she'd brought was alive with the chatter of her people, setting up to defend the house and it's occupants. The other, however, seemed more interesting to her at the moment. And more heart breaking as well. "That's my brother," she whispered.

Seabay shrugged. "Yeah, well, that's their problem. Ours is staying alive." Sighing, he brushed hair from unseeing eyes. "Look, I know you mean well, but I need the Cliff Notes version of why you're here. I've an access route your team left for them to get us through, and I got to plug it now."

"Okay. Cliff notes version. There's a group of people planning to march this way and I've got people between them and you, ready to die to keep them from reaching you, but I need to know that we're really not going to have to fight on two fronts. Are they right? Are you a danger to the rest of us?" Abby demanded. "I want to believe you're not. I remember the story about slayers and I know full well that they're not supposed to exist, but then neither are we, I suppose."

Seb frowned at her. "Slayers? I don't know what you're talking about, but if you're asking if we'll kill your people if they attack, then yes. Doesn't matter what you think we are, if you think about it. We only fight if we have to, and we've proven that already. You don't want us to fight you? Don't attack us. Simple. Easy. I strongly recommend you don't think so much because the rest is irrelevant. Hell, I've met freakin' angels and vampires. What a person is doesn't matter so much as the person within."

***

"Almost done in there?" Lia called to Zack. "I hear Abby's voice. I'd like to go check out what's going on."

Zack managed to help Josh dry off, except for those thick curls , and into his jeans. "Help me get him to the couch first?" he called back to her as he moved his brother's shaking hands aside and buttoned the shirt for him. "I'll get you a blanket for now. We can do the layer thing later, okay?"

Lia knocked quickly on the bathroom door to make sure it was safe for her to enter, then walked in. "Alright. And you need to eat something and get some water in you, too, Josh. Gotta replenish some of that blood," she said in a tone that left no room for argument from him. With that, she draped Josh's arm over her shoulder, ready to help steady him as best as she good, given their height differential.

Josh tried for the first few steps to make it without leaning on either of them, but the dizzying spin of the room forced him to stop. He closed his eyes, drawing a ragged breath.

"Come on," Zack urged. "We've got you."

"Men," Lia chastised. "Come on, let's go."

Zack covered Josh with a blanket the moment they'd eased him onto the couch. "I'll get food and water for him if you want to find out what's going on," he told Lia.

Lia frowned at Josh a moment, as if deciding if she should leave him unattended, then finally nodded. "Just call if his state changes, okay?" she said, reaching to pat Josh on the hand, then thinking better of it. With that, she darted toward the front door, where Seabay's voice reached her in an apparent riled state. "Hey, what's up?" she asked the two who were apparently deep in conversation.

"She's going to warn them," the young voice they'd come to identify as Scott hissed over the radio. "Stupid... we have to move."

"Be smart, Scotty," the gravel voiced one disagreed. "Let her warn them. She can't' stop fate. You just get ready to claim your bride and leave the rest to us."

Abby flinched at the words from the radio. "I don't care if he's a slayer or not... someone born to kill the unnatural like us. Hell, it might be a good thing if he was. But... yeah... let's just get you all secure. And armed. We'll hold them off as long as we can." She nodded to Lia. "I came to make sure you were all okay, and to find out if the rumors were true. But I don't care if they are or not. He's right. It doesn't matter. "

"Slayer?" Lia asked, confused by Abby's words.

"They're what you get if a vampire female is turned while pregnant. Supposedly, the baby usually doesn't survive, but if it does they end up... stronger. More dangerous. Human, but not. The other vampires usually kill them rather than let them grow up, though, because they grow up to kill other unnatural creatures... like us," Abby clarified.

The blind teen gave a disparaging glance at the radio. "Sorry... I don't think Josh was born just to kill anyone. That'd be a bit too simple an existence for anyone, don't you think?" he chuckled wryly. He waved to Lia. "Abby was thinking she'd warn us about the others. They seem to think Josh is some special kind of killer of their 'kind'... which is ironic since he was born before this virus existed, huh? Anyway, they want to help some. So we might not face quite as many."

Lia's eyebrow rose at the combined explanation. "Vampire? Josh? Yeah, sure," she shrugged. "The guy's weird, but... come on." She glanced at the radio, then back at Abby. "Well, that's good, I think," she then said. "So... what, we just get back to preparing and cross our fingers, then?"

"We prepare. We help you prepare. We help defend until nightfall, when you have to make it through another night. Do you have enough weapons and supplies? What about medical needs?" Abby asked. "And if they think they're coming to get a bride, they must have left an entrance. We need to find it and seal it, don't we?"

Zack took Josh some MREs and water, to find him either asleep or passed out by the time he got back. He hesitated. Should he wake him?

Seabay stood and stretched. "Well, I'm off to get some wood and try plugging the vent. And Abby... I suggest you tell your buddies to worry more about if the vampires themselves survived. Because I can tell you, they're hell of a lot more scary than Josh can ever be if they find you guys are attacking ordinary folk, let alone us. My family did them a favor." Seb smiled wryly. "We kinda adopted them for a bit."

"You're talking crazy, Seb," Lia whispered to the blind teen with a nudge to the ribs. "At least make it believable and tone it down, eh?"

"I've never met a vampire, but if I ever do, I hope to be able to say you'd vouch for me," Abby answered honestly. "Those who stand against you, though. They can have them. all of them." Tears shone in her eyes as she added, "brother or not."

"I think we'll be okay on weapons," Lia then answered aloud, though she glanced sideways toward Josh. "I think we'll be okay medically... I'm... Josh is usually okay on his own." The last comment surprised Lia. "Brother? You mean your brother you were talking about is one of them?" she asked. "Oh... I'm sorry."

The blind teen snorted. "I'm not, Lia. They stayed at my house a while. And one of them saved my damn life." He shook his head. "Sorry, Abby. Your brother should be nicer to strangers. God only knows what else lurks in this world. I honestly hope not to find out. After all, if there's angels... something balances that, right?" He turned to go to the garage. "Hey, Zack, where's the wood?"

Abby followed Lia's glance and frowned. "If you're sure." She looked ashamed as she replied quietly. "Scotty is my brother. He's the last real family I have." Resolutely, she moved to the radio set to her channel and said quietly, "We need some more wood and nails, if you could just put them on the porch."

"Okay... if you say so," the dancer shook her head and rolled her eyes.

Abby turned back to Seb once she received confirmation. "The wood is on the porch. And I know what the opposite of angels is. What do you think caused this virus in the first place?"

Seb growled, "People. And I know exactly who. My parents thought I didn't hear... but I know," the blind teen growled angrily. He turned for the back porch, tread heavy, upset.
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Sun Apr 01, 2012 9:48 pm

The blind teen cracked open the door and collected the wood and nails, then headed upstairs to Hattie's room. "Say, Hattie... how good are you with a hammer?"

"I'm very good with tools," Hattie answered easily. "I used to..." She paused as the snippet of memory drifted away. After a moment, she simply repeated, "I'm very good with tools."

"Well, I can hold boards if you can nail them," the blind teen offered. "I can't hit a nail if my life depended on it..." Pausing, Seabay made a face and sighed. "Which it seems it does."

"You hold. I'll hammer," Hattie agreed.

Feeling out the best way to fit them, Seabay set to placing the boards and handed over the hammer before moving to hold the first in the best spot. "Go for it. Just leave me some thumbs."

Hattie hammered the wood into place with mechanical precision.

The blind teen could only trust his friends to do what they could for Josh. Knowing Josh, he must be in serious shape, or he'd have been up here taking this over--or packing them to skedaddle. He couldn't do much for the other boy, for all he could wish to. Without his sight, he couldn't tell anything that was going on. So he just held up wood for Hattie to secure as firmly as possible.

Hattie hammered each piece of wood as Seb held it, though she listened to the conversation below.

"Do you want cookies?" Hattie asked Seabay. "The tall elf gave me cookies."

"When we're done, sure," Seb agreed, holding up the last one. "I think we're out after this. Does it look solid enough to take on wolf-monster-people?"

Hattie eyed it critically. "More nails," she answered, hammering them in without waiting. "Now it is." She moved off then to get the 'cookies'.

As Hattie looked for her cookies, Seabay ran his hands over their work carefully, flinching as he got a couple splinters. It felt... oddly enough, very secure. Damn, that girl was good!
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Sun Apr 01, 2012 9:49 pm

"Hey Zack, does Josh need anything else?" Lia called to the younger teen, while she still had the chance to ask Abby.

"Um... I don't know," Zack called back nervously. "He's sort of asleep."

Lia frowned, unsure of what to make of that. On the one hand he likely needed his rest. On the other, it could be a bad sign... "Should we wake him up?" she asked Abby helplessly.

Zack set the MREs and water aside, sitting next to his brother uncertainly.

Abby was surprised by the question, but went to check on him. "It depends on what kind of injuries he's got," she told Lia. "Unless he's got serious head injury, it's probably okay to let him sleep. It's the best way for the body to heal."

"He needed stitches in his scalp," she informed Abby, further unsure of whether that qualified as a serious head injury.

"And his forehead, but someone else did those," Zack answered, glancing at Lia. He'd sort of failed to mention that earlier.

Startled at this new revelation, the teen girl looked at Zack pointedly. "Who?"

Abby reached forward and moved Josh's bangs to the side. "Jennifer's stitching. She was always so proud of her stitching," she sighed. "Okay. Two head injuries one after the other isn't good. Was he alert and responsive when he got home?"

"Sort of," Zack replied. "I mean, he drove himself home. And he was able to answer my questions. As able as he usually is, anyway. But he sort of stopped answering after awhile. He shuts down though sometimes. It could have just been because he was so tired. He lost a lot of blood."

"So we should wake him up, then," Lia summarized.

"Wake him up and get him to drink something. Make sure he sips slowly. Make sure he's aware of his surroundings, knows who he is and where he is. Things like that. Then at least every two hours, wake him again to repeat the process." Abby sighed. "There's not much else you can do here. There aren't any real medical facilities left."

"Should he eat?" Zack asked. "He threw up earlier, but he sort of burns through calories fast and drops weight if he doesn't take in enough."

"I'm not sure if you want to push that right now," Abby answered honestly. "Depends on which is really more dangerous. Is it worse for him to drop a few pounds or risk aggravating his injuries vomiting?" She looked over his thin frame and shrugged. "I'm not sure either's a good choice."

"Maybe we can get him to take a thicker shake or something," the dancer suggested wryly. "A combination of the two." Still, she sighed as she gently nudged Josh, trying to wake him up without being too rude about it.

Josh didn't react immediately, which made Zack more worried, as Josh was always such a light sleeper, but all he said was, "We have some of those protein shake things." He went to get them as Josh finally began to stir.

"Josh," Lia prompted more insistently when she realized Josh wasn't moving.

"Okay," Abby said as he slowly opened his eyes, only to close them right away against the light. She waited until he opened them again, noting that his pupils seemed to respond normally. That was a good sign at least. Then she rose and headed for the door, knowing that she still had a lot to do if she was going to make sure that these four made it through another night. "Let me know if you need anything else. I'll check back before sundown."


Last edited by Garrity on Tue Jun 26, 2012 7:01 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Mon Apr 02, 2012 9:13 pm

"Josh!" Lia said, more insistently. "Wake up, you... you... dummy!"

Seabay finished cleaning another gun, and set it aside with a sigh at the table. "How's he doing?" he asked.

Josh groaned softly and forced his eyes open, making to sit up.

Zack hurried over from the kitchen, protein shake in one hand (though Josh had refused to touch it so far), and a bottle of water in the other.

"Still the same," Lia answered, though now Josh was stirring. "In and out..." She sighed worriedly, shaking her head. "Can't you just have a little so Zack will stop hovering?" she begged Josh, knowing Zack was always the route to making Josh do anything.

Hattie sat at the table, staring unblinking at the food in front of her as if it wasn't there.

Josh looked at her as if she were speaking a foreign language then made to stand.

"What are you doing?" the dancer chastised, standing up quickly to prevent Josh from getting further in his attempt to stand.

Seabay face palmed. "Hell. He needs a babysitter, and we're about to have the fight of our lives on our hands. Great," he muttered.

"Great," she sighed as she pushed him down. "Plus, we're stuck here with werewolves between us and other, badder werewolves... Somehow I don't feel great about this situation."

"He doesn't need a babysitter," Zack protested, though he knew full well Seb was right.

"Yes, he does," Lia countered. "Maybe Hattie can handle the job... if she'd snap out of this one sooner rather than later."

He sat down quickly next to his bewildered looking brother, offering him the shake again. Josh took the bottle of water instead.

"He's just a little tired right now," Zack argued quietly. "He'll rest a little more and he'll be fine."

The dancer looked at Zack with a shake of her head. "Yeah, he'll be fine, but we have to get through tonight first, and right now that's looking like no easy feat."

Josh looked at Zack questioningly.

Seb shot Zack a withering look. "If he doesn't need a babysitter, why are you being one? And you said he's just tired hours ago. It's not changing. He's not going to be better in time to help, and he'll still need help when we'll all be busy. I want a plan for that. If we want to get out of this alive, I don't think he's going to be helping us and I want to know what to do before we have to do it."

Zack glared at Seb. "He's busted his ass protecting us and never complained for having to watch out for either of you."

"Are we complaining?" Lia asked Zack. "We're just stating fact here. He needs someone to watch him while we try to make it through tonight, and Seb's right. We need a plan. So here's my vote. We turn on all the outside lights, one of us takes the hole upstairs to make sure that stays secure, and the other two of us go with the other likely entrances, like, say, the front door. Our other option is to hole up together in the basement and make our stand there, like that 300 movie."

The blind teen rolled his eyes. "I'm not saying I'm upset about protecting him. Listen to me, Zack. I'm saying we need to figure out what to do!"

Zack turned to his brother and spoke softly in a language which was most definitely not English. Josh reached for the gun on the table nearest him.

The blind teen heard the gun move and blanched. "Oh hell no. If you think Mister Dazed and Confused should be shooting, I'll conk him out myself. I do not want to get shot in the back, thanks! And I know about shooting blind!"

"Woah," Lia said as Josh moved for the gun. "Slow down. What are you two planning?"

"He can't even hold his water straight!" Seb complained.

"He managed to get himself out of that garage even though he was hurt," Zack reminded them. "He's not sure he'll be much use hand to hand right now, but he's pretty sure he can still shoot straight for now." Zack looked at his brother closely, wanting to argue further, but the fact was Seb was right. Josh's hand shook enough that it took both to manage the bottle of water.

"Yeah, he got himself out of the garage just before he passed out. His situation's kind of deteriorated since then, if you hadn't noticed," Lia argued.

Shaking his head, Seabay got up and walked off towards the garage. "You know what, if you can't see reason, I'm gonna go for a walk. We don't have time for BS. I'm not gonna argue irreverent details with you. Josh, you suck at helping right now and face it instead of protesting and wasting time arguing, okay? If you want to help, come up with some defensive strategy."

"He's just a little rattled," Zack protested quietly, though he wasn't so sure. "He just needs a little time. But... yeah... we should probably prod Hattie. She can keep an eye on him when this all comes to a head. He didn't argue with you, I did," Zack protested. "But hey... way to kick when someone's down. Enjoy your walk..." He went to check on the rest of the weapons and make sure the house was secure.

Lia, for once, found herself being the gentler of the two between herself and Sebastian. "Look, yes, he's rattled. He needs time and he'll be fine, but Seabay's right. He won't be better in time to help us tonight, and right now we're just wasting time arguing when we should be getting ready for this. For once, Josh, could you please, please trust us?"

Striding off, Seabay just waved off Zack's words about being rattled, not even replying.

Marta sighed and curled up on the rug.

"Boys," Lia growled as Sebastian left in one direction and Zack in the other. "You know you guys aren't helping either with this arguing!" she yelled after them both. "We're supposed to go as a team if we want to live!"

Josh sighed and settled back against the couch. "Take the rapid fire with you," he said to Seb quietly, though he wasn't sure he heard him. Most of the time they didn't seem to.

Startled at the almost unfamiliar voice, Lia looked at Josh with wide eyes. It took her a few moments to compose herself enough to ask, "Where is it?"

Seb stopped, flashing Lia a glare. "Yeah, well, last I heard, a team thinks in reality. Reality says Josh is down and we've a problem on our hands." He had heard Josh, though... and he softened some, blushing a little. "I don't need it, Josh. I'm only gonna go pace in the garage. But later, yeah, it'd be useful."

Josh gestured toward the red pack jammed almost unnoticed in the corner. "All five..." he answered, indicating he'd managed to acquire one for each of them. He nodded at Seb's words, struggling to keep his eyes open.

"Relax, Seb," Lia glared back, "I'm not the enemy here. We're all stressed but you don't need to take it out on any of us either." To think she actually usually liked the guy... "I'll get them," she then promised Josh, standing to retrieve the indicated items if only it put the elder Garrity at ease.

Zack came back downstairs, gun still ready, and went to the radios. The chatter had continued almost nonstop on both as one group worked to coordinate an attack, the other a defense.

"I'm not taking it out on you," Seb grumbled. "I'm just sick of this 'oh he's fine' 'no he's not' back and forth stuff. It's been hours of that. I'd rather be doing something, to be honest, than arguing that."

The dancer set the guns nearer the group for access, then moved to the kitchen table. 'Well, then, go do something productive," she answered irritably, before she put a hand on Hattie's shoulder. "Hey kid, you in there?"

Shaking his head, Seabay opened the door for the garage and closed it... intent on pacing, bad legs or not.

"Of course he's not fine," Zack answered, in a voice sounding fearful and broken, though he knew full well Seb couldn't hear him in the garage. "But hey... the SUV's great, right. And we're well armed. And you'll be well fed whether he dies or not, so it's not like you really need him anymore anyway, right?" The fact was, he was glad Seb couldn't hear him. He was being unfair and he knew it. But then, so was everything else about this situation, wasn't it?

Hattie turned her head slowly toward Lia, cocking it to the side and staring through her. "I think I'd like some cheesecake now, please," she said dreamily.

"Yeah, I'll be right on that," Lia grumbled, straightening, then moved to talk to Zack. "You, stop feeling sorry for yourself," she instructed. "You know we care about Josh, and if you actually think otherwise, then you can take off on your own when this is over... but for now, this crabbing and arguing isn't getting us anywhere. So instead of sitting here complaining, get up and do something to get us ready for tonight so that you can get to the point where you can leave Seb and I in the dust with Josh."

"No, it doesn't help. And nobody wants to leave you and him," Zack answered, wiping his eyes. "That's the problem." He gestured toward the radios. "The fighting’s started. I put the spare ammo for each of the guns near them, in case we have to reload in a hurry."

Lia shook her head. "For them, yes. For us, no. Now get up and do something," she said, ruffling his hair. "Now I'm going to have to go get Seb to quit sulking too, so do me a favor, please, and just do this? Maybe you can even get Hattie back to us."

Seabay could hear noise outside the garage door. After all, it let plenty of sound in through its walls. He returned inside, making a face. "Well, time's up. What'll it be? Cellar, or SUV, ready to run if they breach?"

"I'm not sure about handing her a weapon," Zack admitted. "She's almost as lost as he is."

"Cool, Zack. Good idea," she smiled, trying to encourage him, quietly wondering how she'd become mom to these moody teenagers. "Yeah, but she can at least keep Josh in check," Lia answered, "or make her aware enough so she can run if we need to."

Marta got up, stretching and whined softly.

"Hattie can monitor Josh, but I agree, I don't think she'll be able to help in any other way," Seb said.

Josh rose unsteadily and went to kneel in front of Hattie. "Tea time," he told her quietly, knowing Seabay was probably right. They'd be better off right now if they were both out of the way.

"Again, though--where's our last stand? SUV, or cellar?" Seb asked urgently.

Hattie looked at Josh, a ghost of recognition crossing her features for the briefest moment before her usual dreamy expression returned.

Lia gave it all some thought, before answering, "SUV. If we need to make a run for it, at least that'd give us a chance."

"I think we're probably better off staying in here," Zack answered. "We're secured and well-armed and there's room to move and take cover if we need it."

The dancer actually laughed as she and Zack answered in unison completely different opinions. "Oh boy," she said, unable to stop herself. "Okay, fine, I'll defer to Zack. We stay."

Zack laughed. "What do you think, Seb," he asked, ready to let him make the decision.

Seb shrugged and sighed. "Doesn't matter. Two said here. In that case, Josh and Hattie, you guys better hit the cellar and we go to you for ammo and stuff."

"Hey, if you have another thought, I'd love to hear it still," Lia told Sebastian. "Just because we said so doesn't mean our reasoning's any better than yours."

Josh nodded, rising again slowly, holding his hand out to the small girl.

Hattie took his hand, then reached out to steady him. "Are the orcs coming now?" she asked Seabay.

Seb shook his head. "I just thought the SUV'd be smart because Josh suped it up with stuff and it'd be better to use that, maybe even chance breaking out, as opposed to being trapped below with no final escape and them inheriting his hard work if we fail. But hey, I don't know half of what's below, either. And we don't have much time to debate this." He nodded at Hattie. "I guess so. Go hide with Josh, okay? He needs company."

"Good point," Zack answered slowly. "Josh said he even added new weapons to it." He actually laughed then. "When we were younger we stayed with some people for a while. He got into the garage and tinkered with all the cars and motorcycles and things. Turned out to be a good thing for them in the long run, but I'm pretty sure not everyone appreciated it at first. He really liked doing that kind of stuff."

The blind boy blushed. "Look, you asked. I'd rather not be discussing it still when they hit the doors." Though Seb smiled wryly at Zack. "You can tell us the story after, though. It'd be fun to hear then."

Hattie and Josh moved toward the cellar, seemingly oblivious to the conversation around them or the increasing sound of fighting outside.

"We did ask," Lia agreed. "Maybe... one of us could stay close to the garage... gives one of us a chance to use the car and its weapons in case of last resort?" she suggested.

"Sure," Zack replied, sobering. "After we're done." He looked at Lia and shrugged. "That should probably be the one to do that if we're going to. You're the only one who can drive right now."

"That'd have to be you, then," Seb told Lia. "I can't drive it or tell what changed inside. I'll take front door, I guess. I can hit a massed group pretty good, I think, and they have to come at me from the same spot."

She the waved to the guns Josh had insisted they use. "I think those'll be helpful, too. So, everyone take up their posts. Where? Uh, sure," she agreed. "I guess I can just get in and start mashing buttons. Fun times. It'll be like playing a video game," she teased.

"It's usually pretty obvious. He puts extra speed controls on the back of the steering wheel, firing mechanisms on the front of it, and anything else on the dash," Zack assured her.

Lia shrugged as she began gearing up, picking up some of the weapons and putting them in various places on her person. "Okay... I'm sure I'd be able to figure it out," she said.

Zack nodded. "I'll take the back, then," he said, gathering up a bunch of weapons as well. "Yell if you need me."

As if on cue, a scream reached them, accompanied by a hard thump against the front door.

Seabay collected a few as well, tucking the reloads into his belt and pockets. "If you have to, bring the place down. That'd kind of seal the cellar with the debris, so that'd still be safe." But he didn't say he was considering being there if it got that bad. "If you need Marta, either of you, yell for backup." Picking up his pace, Seb flung himself next to the door, Marta bounding up beside him. The large dog took position before the door, teeth bared, while Seb took the safety off his gun, cocking it.

Without waiting any longer, Lia dashed up the stairs, ready to monitor the top floors, hoping desperately nothing would get through... well, anywhere in the house.

The sound of someone pounding at the vent in the princess room rang out, followed by cursing. "They found it. All that's left is the cellar entrance now."

Lia had gotten upstairs just in time to hear the voice, and blanched at this new information. "The cellar!" she screamed loudly, dashing back downstairs. "There's an opening in the cellar!!!"

Someone tried the front door, then started shooting at it.

Marta dodged aside, growling. Seb cursed and jammed the nozzle of his gun into a hole from their shots, then let loose back a volley. "Marta, go to Josh!" The dog growled again, then raced for the cellar.

Pounding started at the back door, leaving Zack returning fire there as well.

Shots and screams came up from the cellar.

"Crap!" the blind teen cursed again, sending off another volley. "Leave us the hell alone, you bastards! Go lick your ass or something!"

"Josh! Hattie!" Lia called, practically falling down the stairs to reach the two who were in imminent danger. Her own fall would be irrelevant if she couldn't get to them in time, as not only would they be hurt, or worse, but the house would be overrun in no time.

"Might as well let us in," a voice came from somewhere outside the front door. "You could still survive this."

Josh was kneeling, weapon in hand but unused. In the center of the cellar stood Hattie, eyes glowing, smoking weapons of some sort extending where her hands were before. Both she and Josh were fine. The bodies of the would-be intruders still hung in the small opening they'd tried to enter through.

"Says the guy who tried killing our buddy and killed his own sister. Yeah, like I'll believe you now..." Seb grumbled, reloading. He set the gun back to the door. "I'm afraid to die, I admit it. But I've kinda gotten used to that feeling because I felt it a lot after I went blind. I may be afraid--but I'm sure as hell ready to take you with me!"

"They've got a monster in the cellar," someone cried on the radio.

Marta whined, cocking her head, confused... She barked a couple times at the intruders beyond the cellar. What did Seabay want her to do for them?

Out of breath, Lia stopped at the bottom of the stairs, taking in the sight before her. "Ha.... Hattie?" she asked, looking at Josh dumbfounded.

"Give us the slayer and we'll let the rest of you live. We want to let you live," the voice replied. "Don't you understand, we want to let you join us."

Josh looked almost as stunned.

She knew she couldn't stay down here uselessly staring at Hattie, so Lia finally managed, "Good job, Hattie... If they keep trying just, up, keep doing that. Keep the elves safe." She wasn't quite sure she should ask Hattie to come upstairs to protect them, though if it came to it, at least they had a secret weapon downstairs. "I'm going to go back upstairs now, and see what I can do."

"The orcs were coming," Hattie answered. The guns retracted, her hands resuming their own place.

"You guys are idiots," the blind teen shot back. "We don't abandon friends, and nobody'd slay you if you left them the hell alone! And on top of that, no, I don't want to end up licking my own butt and sniffing that of others! I have a dog. I don't want to be one! Now go away, or I'll shoot again." The gun took a bead on the voice.

"Sorry to hear that," the voice answered before shouting to the others, "BURN IT DOWN!"

Seb fired. "Bastards," he muttered. "Hey, guys? They intend to burn us out!"

Lia cursed as she emerged from downstairs. "That doesn't leave us much room to argue. We need to go to the SUV," she said.

Zack came tearing through from the back. "They lit up the back. We have to go now!"

"Marta! Josh, Hattie! Get to the SUV!" Seb fired a few more shots to where the voices had been... "Lia, start it up!"

Lia dashed out to the SUV and jumped into the driver's seat, grabbing the keys from the dashboard.

Zack started grabbing everything he could, hauling it to the car as Josh led Hattie up the stairs.

Josh nudged Hattie toward Zack and nodded as he reached down to grab hold of Marta.

Seabay fired towards wherever he could hear movement outside... He was generous at cutting down in lines...

Zack ushered Hattie as fast as he could toward the SUV.

"Find Seabay," Josh told Marta, then made his way toward the SUV as well. He hated to admit it, but he was glad when Zack came back for him.

"Come on," Zack told him, steadying his brother even as he hurried him toward the vehicle.

Lia was busy inspecting the controls on the car, trying to figure out what was what so that she could be ready the moment they burst through the garage doors. She was, admittedly, nervous. "So, what, we just leave Abby and hers alone in this?" Sadly, she felt somewhat guilty about that. Still, she didn't see how else they could help.

Zack helped Josh in and got him buckled, "I don't know that we have much choice. We can maybe use some of the weapons to take out some of the bad ones, if we can figure out which is which, on the way out." When the older Garrity closed his eyes, swallowing hard Zack whispered, "Please don't get sick in the car," forcing Josh to laugh quietly in spite of himself.

Marta came bounding up, and barked several times sharply, even as Seabay loaded a new clip. He could feel the warmth building up, smell the smoke starting to fill the house. He coughed harshly. "Damn it... One minute more, Marta..."

Zack reached around Josh, helping Hattie buckle in, then headed back to get Seb and Marta.

"You guys ready?" the blind teen yelled.

"SEABAY! COME ON!" Lia called out to the teen from the garage. "WE'RE WAITING ON YOU!"

One final volley, and Seabay slung the gun on his shoulder, grabbing hold of Marta's harness. "The SUV!" he ordered. The dog almost dragged him to it, eager to get going, too.

"Everyone's in but you," Zack answered, falling back and flinging the SUV door open for him and the dog. "The seats are a little different than they were before," he cautioned Seb, "but there's more room for you and Marta both. I've got the door."

The moment Sebastian was in the car, Lia started it up, stating, "Everyone be sure to buckle up." What that, she revved the engine, ready to take on whatever awaited them outside.

Marta piled in and Seb dove in after, almost literally. "Just go!" he suggested.
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Naitachel on Wed Apr 18, 2012 9:57 pm

Zack hit the remote for the garage door and held on, examining the dashboard for any clues as to the adaptations his brother had made to it.

"You all buckled in?" Lia asked, wanting to do Josh proud. She didn't, however, wait for their answer before stepping heavily on the gas, knowing whatever they hit on the way out the door wasn't friendly.

"Just go!" Seabay demanded, fumbling for his seat-belt. Marta was already pressed firmly to the floor, braced for action.

Zack reached out and pushed the green button on the dash and held on as the SUV vibrated, weapons emerging from the roof and fenders. "We're all good, just go..." Zack agreed, looking for the controls. After a moment, he told Lia, "He says the weapons controls are on the wheel. Right at two, left at ten, roof artillery at 12 o'clock."

Lia frowned as the SUV lurched forward. "I never was any good at video games," she grumbled. She had no idea what she should use when, and, if not careful, might quickly simply deplete their reserves without doing any good. She'd have to be judicious about using them. Still, she took the time enough to locate each indicated button.

Seabay reached over once he finally got his belt secured to try and feel out how and where Josh lay. "You okay, Josh? Sorry, man, but they're busy and all..." And he couldn't see, so he had to pat around to find out if he was secured, too.

Opening the glove compartment, Zack withdrew what actually looked like a video game controller. "I used to be, but I always had a guide what button operated what before. This time... this could get ugly."

"Just get ugly on them, and let's go!" the blind teen suggested anxiously. After all, he couldn't see if they were about to be surrounded by things that beat the crap out of Josh earlier.

Without further fanfare, the SUV finally cleared the garage's exit, and the group was out in the open, the engine revving loudly. "Yippee," Lia called.

Josh started to say "fine" but realized that was the last thing Seb wanted to hear. Instead, he answered honestly, "Cold..."

"Sorry boys," Lia called as the car bounced over some debris. "This isn't going to be a comfort ride," she admitted. It was obvious they were going to have a lot to contend with.

"Crap," Zack hissed as he looked out and saw their benefactor, Abby, dead on the porch, her body still leaning precariously against the front door.

Lia forced herself to look straight ahead, swallowing thickly. She couldn't think about Abby right now, nor any of the others who were their allies and dying.

Josh tried hard not to flinch as Seb touched him, realizing that his "brother" was just trying to assess where and how he was. He'd have done no less to assure the safety of his family members.

"Crap what?" Seb asked, satisfied that Josh was secure at least. He wriggled to get his outer coat off to put over the bigger teen. "Wrap up, then," he suggested. He'd be okay for a short while without it...

There was fighting in the streets all around them. As they pulled out, some of the people fighting began to lunge at the SUV, pouncing and pounding on it, brandishing weapons and shouting obscenities.

Josh hesitated a moment, frowning. Seb didn't need to be cold, either. He was fairly certain it'd do the blind teen more harm to get chilled than it would him.

"Just pass me my gun," Seb called over the din of fists hitting the car. "I'll need that!"

Lia swerved, trying not to panic as she made her way down the roads, not wanting to give the enemies a chance to damage the SUV, but wanting to avoid those fighting with them as well. "How am I supposed to tell them apart?" she asked frustrated as she swerved around a pair of fighting individuals.

"The good guys won't attack us!" Seb pointed out.

Zack pushed a button and a white hot jet of fire shot out of the tail. "Crap... um... I didn't mean to do that," Zack admitted to Lia. "And he's right... the good guys are fighting to keep them back... the bad guys are coming after us."

"Yeah, but some of them are too busy attacking each other to notice us," Lia retorted, swerving again, though she winced as the SUV ran over an already fallen solider. "Don't use too much of our weapons," she chastised gently. "At least now we know what it does, though."

Josh moved to put the coat around himself, then rolled his eyes, certain he should have remembered something. He reached down between his own and Seb's seats, pushing a button on each. Within moments, both were heating up.

"Josh, I need to know what not to push," Zack called back to his brother as someone jumped onto the side of the vehicle, clinging to the mirror while aiming a weapon in at Lia.

The blind teen sighed happily at the luxury of heated seats. "Got anything electrical? Shock these Klingons?"

Lia screeched and swerved the SUV toward the driver's side, aiming for a nearby building to try to knock him off. "Get off, you overgrown mutt!"

Zack rolled the window down slightly and shouted, "Lean back!" to Lia as he aimed his handgun.

"Blue button," Josh said quietly, swallowing hard and closing his eyes.

The dancer did as bid, or at least as best she could and still maintain control of the vehicle. Her arms weren't exactly that long.

The minute she pushed blue button on the dash, sure enough, the vehicle let out a crackling sound as the smell of singed hair wafted through the ducts as the enemy was flung violently from the vehicle.

"Take that, Newton and your kite!" Lia laughed as she righted the vehicle and smashed over another would-be attacker.

Seb cocked his gun, resting a hand on his window's button, ready to lower and shoot. "That sounds like it works pretty good, Josh," the blind teen commended. "You thought of everything!"

Josh reached out and did something he almost never did... he placed a hand over Seb's. Taking the blind teen's hand, he guided it to a series of buttons on the window and lock control keypad. "Top... fire... center right... weapons... dead center... lights... center left... electricity... bottom... oil..." He withdrew his hand quickly then, blowing out a slow, unsteady sounding breath.

Zack almost dropped his gun as his brother spoke aloud for so long. "Um... okay... same on all sides?" he asked, rather than making Josh feel self-conscious over it.

If she hadn't been so focused on getting them around this corner, Lia would have stopped the car, parked it, and turned around to gape at Josh. "He talks!" she stated, almost in awe.

Josh just nodded, ignoring Lia's outburst. Obviously, he talked.

"Yeah, guy... please don't throw up in the car," Zack said then, more quietly, as another small group lunged at the vehicle. The sun was setting slowly, and he wasn't sure if it'd be better or worse to be here when darkness fell.

As they rounded the corner, Lia pressed one of the buttons on the steering wheel. She wasn't sure what she'd pressed, but the sight before her made it a reflexive action, as more of their enemies were suddenly bearing down on them.

Seb blinked, stunned, and blushed, then ran his fingers over the indicated buttons. "Okay..." he confirmed, memorizing them like keys on a keyboard. "Um... thanks... and like Zack said, try to wait until the ride reaches a complete halt first... You guys let me know what we need and when, okay?" he called ahead.

The ones coming from behind suddenly slid across the pavement, landing awkwardly as the struggled to find their footing, as a black pool appeared beneath their feet.

"Go Speed Racer, go!" Lia said smugly, cringing as she ran over yet another body, or what she hoped was a body. She tried to ignore the fact that she would have nightmares about this for weeks. Of course, that would only matter if they made it out of here alive.

"Thank God you got so fast at doing this," Zack whispered. "Did you install voice commands in this one?" he asked his brother.

Josh shook his head.

"Install what?" Seb coughed, surprised. "Heck, this is plenty, I think!"

"Darnit... he got interrupted before he could finish... he installed voice commands on the other ones he did this way. once that's done, you and I could drive too, Seb," Zack said, still needing to focus on the car, not the enemies, even as he pushed the button to mow them down.

Lia sped down another street, hoping she was heading the right way. "What, you don't like my driving?"

"It's fine; he just thought maybe Seb would like to be able to drive his own car eventually," Zack replied quickly. "LOOK OUT!" he shouted suddenly the sun dipped and everyone around them began to morph into large, snarling wolves.

"I can't drive," Seabay muttered. "I don't have the fine touch with my feet," he admitted.

"Won't need it," Zack told them, fighting down panic as the birds and wolves start to converge around them. "It's all voice operated."

The dancer found herself pressing more heavily on the gas pedal, turning on the lights. It was a trade off... she couldn't see as well, so the increased speed was dangerous, but they couldn't stay and be made into hamburger, either. "Hey, Josho, you didn't happen to put in some big exterior lights on this thing, did you?" she asked.

"Just say which way to aim and what to press for," Seb warned. Marta whined uneasily as the people morphed and the birds came closer.

Josh considered not answering - especially after being called "Josho" - but finally told Seb quietly, "End of the shifter."

Zack couldn't help but smile as his brother responded aloud again.

"Seb, look out! Out your window!" Lia called, trying to swerve.

Seabay jabbed the button for shooting to the side. "Hit the shifter's button, Lia!" he called up.

Lia pressed the button she found on the gear shift, hoping that was what Josh meant.

Zack started pushing buttons at random, unable to tell what's coming at them from where and so taking the "Streetfighter" game approach... just push all the buttons and pray you get lucky...

"Easy, Pip!" Lia called as all hell seemed to break loose. "We need to save some of those!"

The lights brightened to an almost painful degree around them. The birds veered away as the wolves backed off, howling angrily.

The blind teen waited to hear if the car's weapons succeeded, or he'd have to resort to manual methods.

"For what?" Zack countered. "If we don't survive it won't matter if we're out of ammo or not, will it?"

Lia whooped in triumph as the lights scared their attackers off. "Nice thinking, Josho!" she called, then said more reasonably to Zack, "No, but at this rate the ammo isn't doing anything other than being wasted. We might need it later! Hold off, Seb, we've got lights. Hopefully those get us out of the city limits and onto open road where we can make a run for it," she informed the blind teen.

The blind teen nodded. "All right... I kind of wish we could eradicate those damn birds though--so they don't spread this elsewhere."

"Aim the flames upward?" Zack suggested, fingering the analog sticks on the controller in his hand.

"Won't that toast us?" Seb asked uneasily.

"Uh, not sure about that," Lia said uneasily. Something about that didn't seem quite right.

"No," Josh replied.

"No, don't do it, or not it won't fry us?" Zack asked uncertainly. After "listening" a moment, Zack nodded and fired.

Flames shot up and out from all around them. Some birds fell from the sky, but more flew away. Then all was silent. The enemies that had surrounded them before were nowhere to be seen or heard.

Seabay put the safety back on his gun and tucked it into his belt for now. "So... what's going on?" he asked uneasily.

Lia allowed the SUV to slow a little, not quite sure what to think of this. "Nothing," she answered Seabay. "It's quiet... It's... a little too quiet." She wasn't going to turn around and risk going back into that war zone just for the sake of hunting a few birds, though.
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Naitachel on Thu May 31, 2012 4:21 am

Zack looked out at the road ahead. "Seems clear. Can we go any faster?"

Seabay sighed. "See anything we need to worry about? Or do you think we're scott free?" Though that was usually too much to hope for.

"I don't see anything out there at all," Zack answered.

Lia's eyes remained firmly on the road. "I don't know if faster's a good idea," she answered. "Too fast and we can't stop or avoid... whatever it is that might jump out at us."

"Do we want to?" the blind teen asked.

"You just steer around it. Josh does it all the time," Zack urged. "Come on. We don't want to be anywhere near that town by morning. Right?"

"Look, who's driving here?" Lia asked irritably. "There is such a thing as going too fast to really see and react, okay. We're not all supermen like Josh is and my reflexes aren't as good as his." She hated admitting it, but there it was. "So just back off. I'm going as fast as I dare go. It's either mostly fast and get somewhere or too fast and risk crashing."

"Well, at least we're out of there," Seabay sighed. "So... where do we want to go now? A hospital sounds good, for Josh. We probably better find somewhere with the stuff to make sure he's ok."

"He's not a..." Zack began, then realized he was wrong. "You're right. I'm sorry." To Seb, he shrugged. "I don't know if there are any hospitals still around."

Seb shook his head. "I'm sure there are abandoned ones. They may have X-ray stuff still and the like. Nobody'd loot that. And it's easy to figure out. At least we'd know how bad he's hurt and what to do... maybe find some forgotten meds."

Lia frowned at the idea. "Yeah, but who'll know how to read it? We need a doctor," the dancer sighed. Still, it seemed as good a response as any. "I guess a doctor might be at a hospital, though... If we can find one."

"I know some," Seabay admitted. "I heard them explain mine a million times."

"I read just fine," Zack assured her. "Me and Josh have made it for years without doctors. Josh read more medical books than most of them anyway." He paused, frowning. "But I don't guess that really helps as much right now." He sighed, looking back at his brother. "He can usually manage whatever we need to do."

"Can you really explain to us what we'd be looking for, though?" Lia asked Sebastian with a glimmer of hope. They came to an intersection, and Lia found herself slowing the vehicle as the headlights passed over some old signage. "Which way, Zackster? I meant reading as in... well, seeing what's wrong in an x-ray," Lia tried to explain to the blonde boy.

"I dunno," Zack answered honestly. "I can try. I guess that'll have to do." He paused, trying to remember the maps they'd poured over so long ago.

"Left," Josh answered quietly from the back of the SUV.

"What?" Lia asked, turning to look in the back seat.

Shrugging, Seb sighed. "Well, if Zack can read it... then we're set. I know you just don't want anything too white in the wrong places, like the guts or lungs, and shaped wrong... and no black cracks in the white of bones."

Josh forced his eyes open, cringing slightly as he did so. "Left," he tried again, hoping this time he'd be loud enough to avoid having to repeat it a third time.

"He says we should go left," Zack clarified, in case she didn't hear Josh.

"Go left," Seb echoed.

Josh smiled in spite of himself as both Zack and Seb spoke up for him.

With a sigh, Lia edged the vehicle forward again. It was odd, how dark this world was without the man-made lights that used to light up the sky, even at night. "No need to yell... and in surround-sound, nonetheless," she chuckled nervously. Was this really the right way to go?

Josh laughed quietly at that.

The blind teen chuckled.

"Is there a hospital this way, Josh?" Zack asked, not remembering anything about where they were. "Have we even been here before?"

Josh rolled his eyes, then allowed them to close.

"We haven't been here before," Zack supplied, "But the local maps said there was a hospital this way... but he doesn't think he needs it."

The dancer edged her foot more heavily on the gas, though the road seemed to deteriorate this way. "You're sure we should be going this way?" she asked, squealing and swerving the vehicle as an abandoned car suddenly blocked the right portion of the road. "Oh, well, if the map says so," Lia said shakily. Still, the potholes in the street seemed to be getting somewhat bigger.

"If you want to go to a hospital, it's this way," Zack answered. "If we want to go back to better roads though, I don't think anyone will complain."

"Well, we just want to make sure he's okay, and maybe we can get supplies there, too," Seb explained. "Then we move on. Though... what do you think, Zack? How bad is he?" Seabay wondered, torn. "I can't see... but he's not seeming the best right now, to me."

Lia had to choose to hit one pot hole over another, though the effect was still jarring as the entire SUV bounced uncomfortably, despite the probably modifications made to the vehicle's suspension. "And there are no other hospitals out this way, Josh?" the dancer ask thickly, having bitten her tongue.

Zack nodded. "I know," he said quietly. "His vision is blurred... he's sick to his stomach and off balance. He's having trouble recalling things, which is bad for someone who doesn't usually forget anything." He frowned, sighing. "I think we need to look closer."

"He says if you want to go the other way, the next hospital isn't until Victorville," Zack answered Lia for his brother.

"And that's, what, 8 miles? 20? 40?" Lia asked.

"Fifty two," Zack replied.

Seb sighed. "Better go for this one, I guess..."

Zack nodded, looking back nervously at his brother. "Probably."

Lia slowed to navigate between two more abandoned cars, the vehicle tipping to the right on the embankment in the process. "Sounds so," Lia agreed with Sebastian and Zack. "Any ideas on how we can help him for now, Seb?" the dancer asked. "You' know a little about this, and all." She glanced nervously in the rear-view mirror, afraid of what she might see back there.

"Josh did you manage to get the tread stabilizing on?" Zack asked, remembering what all he'd done in the shop before.
Josh just shook his head slowly. That was one of the things still on his list of things to do.

"He sounds concussed..." The blind teen thought a moment. "Anti-inflammatories, reduce any pressure on his brain maybe... Definitely keep him awake until he's better. Hmmm..."

"Dangit," Zack growled. "We've got seats with heaters and massage mechanisms, but no tread stabilizers. He's been sleeping off and on since he got back already," Zack reminded Seb. "He's hard to wake up, though, which is weird."

"What'd those do?" Lia asked Zack, giving the car gas to bypass a large missing part of the road. "Anti-inflammatories... Do we have those?" she then continued, trying to manage all of this information at once.

"That's concussions for you." Seabay shook his head unhappily. "We better keep waking him, though."

"They worked sort of like tank treads," Zack answered. "So we'd get better traction in potholes and things and wouldn't get stuck." At the next question, he nodded. "We have ibuprofen in the first aid pack."

"Let's give him those? There's stronger stuff in hospitals, I know," Seb suggested.

Zack unbuckled and made his way toward the back of the SUV to find the pack. "We might have something stronger, but I don't think so," he admitted.

"Make it so," Lia said in her best Picard voice. She was clearly falling back on her sense of humor as a way to distract herself, though she glanced into the rear-view mirror again.

Seb quirked a smile. "Hey, anything that can help's worth a try."

"No tread stabilizers. Well, screw that. I'll just have to show those potholes who's boss," the teenaged girl then said just as the SUV jolted again. "Woops. Sorry!" she called back, hoping Zack hadn't been caught in that.

"WHOA... OUCH... I think they're the boss, Lia." Zack laughed. "I found Vicodin. Do we want to give him that?"

Seabay shook his head. "How about the regular stuff? We can give him a high dose of that instead. I think Vicodin might make him more sleepy, though..."

The sound of howling carried from the distance, far behind them.

Lia suddenly slammed on the SUV's breaks. "Crap!" she called as they skidded to a halt, her arm instinctively moving sideways to catch anyone flying toward the windshield from the passenger's seat. Even if Zack wasn't there.

Zack flipped backward over the seat, landing in his brother's lap. "Sorry," he said, looking toward Lia. "What was that?" he called out to her.

Seb jumped, grimacing, even as they were tossed about. "Crap. Think this hospital is far enough to give us time to check Josh out?"

Lia frowned through the windshield, breathing heavily a few moments. "Roadblock," she called. Indeed, the SUV's lights fell on a group of three cars completely blocking the way forward. "Crap crap crap crap," the dancer chanted as she exited the vehicle.

Josh lurched forward, suddenly wide awake with his brother in his lap and his arm out to hold Hattie in her seat. He winced, drawing back slowly to lean his head back against his seat again.

"Mutants... traders... slavers... could belong to anyone," Zack spat. "What're you going to do?"

"The bazooka?" Seb suggested. "Can we blast out?"

Josh nodded his head slowly. "Yeah, we can do that," Zack answered.

"Then let's do it." The blind teen unbelted and turned to go rummage in the back. "Where is it?"

"Going to check it out," Lia answered. "Maybe it's just... there and we can shove it out of the way." Or maybe the bazooka would work best, as Seb suggested, though she wanted to look at things more closely first. "Hey, Seb, does Marta smell anything?" the dancer asked, still remaining near the vehicle.

"It's wired into the top of the SUV," Zack told him, moving to press the glove-box controller into Seb's hand. "Lia, wait. You can't go out there. You don't know what's behind that," Zack protested.

Seb arched a brow at Zack as e clambered back into his seat, and offered the controller back. "You aim. I'm blind, remember?"

Marta stood and moved to sniff by the driver's door, and whined unhappily.

"What's she saying?" Lia asked, still remaining near the SUV door and peering at the roadblock.

"Just death, Lia! Get back in and we can blow it up!" Seb called.

The dancer frowned and sighed, then climbed back into the car. "Okay, then... Zack's up?" she asked, hoping the bazooka would clear the crash. There was no way of knowing how deep this block went or if one hit would be enough to clear it.
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Re: Modifications and Mistakes

Post  Garrity on Fri Jun 08, 2012 11:37 pm

Zack used the bazooka and made short work of the road block, blasting a hole through which the SUV could easily be maneuvered. "Go go go...!" Zack urged, watching the rubble for any sign of movement.

The flashing of light and loud sounds made Josh visibly cringe and audibly moan, his stomach lurching violently as his head felt ready to explode.

"Sorry," Zack said quietly to his brother, though both knew it couldn't be helped.
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