Ongoing Games (In-Character)Play-by-post games are going on in this forum as we speak (well, read). All threads on this board are actual games, so please, only post on a thread if you are a player of that game.
Amy met Mike in the library. He was fifteen minutes late, and smelled a tad like sawdust. His hair was also greased up pretty well, making his styled crew cut hard like a helmet. Still, he was outgoing, and had a good smile. His voice was deep, and he knew a good deal about computers. She’d never met someone so interested in them. The way he spoke of them was as if they were magic.
He was a bit too fond of celebrity news, but he’d get back on subject soon enough. What made him really interesting were his eyes which always seemed sad, even when he was grinning from ear to ear. Maybe it was actually not just a good smile, but great.
The second date was even better, taking Amy to the harbor. He admitted he was a messy eater, and didn’t eat anything off his plate until she went to the restroom, but he got most of it down in the five minutes. He said he really liked her, because she were observant. A good eye was something to be admired what with all the lights and distraction. No, she was special he said.
She's showing up on to your third date now. It’s after dinner, but he asked her to come to a dive on the southwest part of town, on the edge where things really start to get bad. He said he grew up there, and knew the people who owned it. She's just outside and you can see him waiting by one of the windows. He’s wearing a brown leather jacket and jeans. He can’t see you. The dive is called the “Turtle’s Shell”. There’s only one old pickup parked there, probably the owned by the same person as the dive. The vehicle and the joint sort of match in a way, like both haven’t been maintained to the same extent.
Amy starts walking towards the door, without much hurry, taking her time to take a look at the establishment and its surroundings. She has actually took some time in dressing, this evening. Nothing particularly fancy, but black jeans and a pale blue top that actually for once show a bit of curves , at least that little bit that she has to show, all completed with a black jeans jacket.
Out of habit, she had noticed just the single pickup: that means Mike has come on foot, like her. Amy wonders if that means he still lives in the area, or simply that, like her, he can’t afford a car. Mike has been very private in the last dates, and hasn’t shared a lot of information about himself. Not that she has, either... it had took a while, and a bit of gentle prodding, to bring her to tell him that her real name is Amy, and he could call her that if he wanted. Still, he more often than not keeps using ‘Evaz’. Amy has decided she likes that: it’s like he is making an effort to respect her privacy. She is a bit ashamed to think that she hasn’t made the same effort: she has tried to dig something up on him even before she met him for the first time.
Unfortunately, she has come up with nothing, which is...a bit surprising really, but nothing she is worried about. She just started digging a week ago. Give her time and she would find something. No one goes through life leaving no traces.
Or, she thinks with a sigh, I could just give up, relax and see where this takes me. He is actually a great guy. I haven’t exactly seen many of those queuing at my door lately. Last one to express a bit of interest had been a loud boor who had tried to punch her when she told him she wasn’t interested. Luckily, her boss had shoved him out of the door rather quickly.
If he asks me if I want to go home with him tonight, I will. She decides,on the spot. Hell, I could ask him if he wants to come home with me, come to think of it. It’s not like I’m sixteen anymore. She opens the door and smiles when Mike turns towards her.
“Hello, Mike, good evening.” she says, with a happy note in her voice. Oh, yeah. I’m really heading towards a full-blown crush. It would be the first since high school but all the signs are there.
I know you said no coloured text, but could I bold thoughts and speech? It improves readability a lot.
If you are against it, however, I can cope.
"Evaz." He flashed bleached white teeth, then stood up and gave her a hug. He seemed both the schoolboy and a a grown man at the same time. Guys were perplexing that way, always seeming to be polar opposites at once. Funny yet dull. Nice but mean. Smart and stupid. Normally they were the last one.
Right now Mike wasn't stupid at all.
She could see a red wine glass on his end of the table, untouched. As they sat down he waved over to the old man wiping a dish with a dark grey hand towel.
"Ah, so this is the lady you told me about Mike?"
"Sure is. Evaz, this is Duke. He owns this little slice of heaven. Known each other since I was a kid."
"Hell Mike, I knew you when you were a sparkle in your daddy's eyes." The two shared a laugh, making Amy feel like a thirdd wheel, but only for a moment. "So what'll be miss? I see Mike still hasn't come to appreciate my cooking, always him and his buddies come after dinner. Would you like coffee, tea, beer?" Amy noticed an old tattoo on Duke's arm, something he probably got as a soldier. He had a long face, the kind that probably didn't look anything like his face in younger days.
I'm inclined to say no to bolded text. The reason is I feel that too often dialogue becomes too much of the center point in PbP games. Although dialogue is really important, so is the rest of it too. We can bring it up to everyone in the OOC after the last two post their characters.
Her mind has already taken a tangent on its own. Duke, and “Turtle’s Shell”. This is not a bad lead... maybe I could trace back his parents’ name … Wait. Hadn’t I just decided to give it a rest, and enjoy the evening? Yes. Yes she had. Amy shakes her head, a little embarrassed at herself. Besides, I could always, you know, just ask. It probably would lead to the same kind of questions being asked back, but…isn’t that what relationships are supposed to be about?
“Beer, please” she says, sitting in front of Mike and smiling at him. She tries to sound as natural and casual as possible when she asks "So... do you still live around here?"
"A few blocks away." He takes a glance outside. "Up north, where it starts to get a bit nicer. Felt like my whole life I've been moving up block by block you know?" He thinks for a moment. "But to tell the truth, I wanted to take you to my friend's place. He's having an art exhibit in his studio. Same building. His work's... a bit on the darker side, but I promised him I'd check it out. If you don't want to, I'll just show up later. No problem."
Duke came back with two bottles of Fat Tire, cold and with a thin layer of water on the outside from being kept in an ice bucket. He took a bottle opener and pulled the first one open, pouring it into her glass. Duke gave a quick wink, and headed back to finish the dishes.
"Cheers." He picked up his glass to tap it to hers.
"Oh. No, I'd love to come." Well, an art exhibit... that certainly is new. Nobody has ever asked her to an art exhibit before. She wonders what 'on the darker side' may mean. The first thing that comes to mind is those goth types... which she frankly always found a bit ridiculous. Thankfully, Mike doesn't seem like one of those... for one, there is a distinctive lack of black in his clothes. For the other, he has a hint of a tan: not anything a self-respecting goth would be caught with, Amy supposes.
"Cheers." She raises her glass at the toast, drinking a couple of sips. She is still smiling, and hopes she doesn't seem too much like an idiot. He's nice, he's funny, and he seems genuinely interested. She thinks. That seems almost too good to be true.
"That's good to hear. Yeah, don't worry about Slick so much. Just one too many pretty girls turned him down in high school. He likes to take things normally seen as beautiful, angels, cheerleaders, meadows, and to paint them in a... well, let's just say his paintbrush is the ugly stick." He laughed at the joke. "He's harmless though. He's just shy of five feet, and usually likes to read and listen to NPR on his spare time."
He took another drink hungrily. "I suppose I haven't said much about me yet. I kind of leave the details unsaid, not until I get to know the other person first. Kind of hypocritical, I know." He sounded apologetic. "I'm into retail mostly, sometimes just empty land. Buying, sellling, trading, that sort of thing. Not really what I studied in school, but it pays well enough." He stopped focusing on himself and moved his thoughts to Amy. "What about you though? Why's a smart girl like you working for nickels and dimes?"
Amy shrugs, hiding a small wince. That is a bit of a sore spot, and she usually doesn’t like to talk about her private stuff… but Mike has a smile that inspires trust, somehow. “Well…paying the bills, for one” she says with a light tone, drinking another couple sips of her beer. “I left school at seventeen, I’m not exactly qualified for most jobs. It’s not that bad… justa a bit boring.” She smiles to show that it doesn’t bother her too much.
He make "Mmm" sound. Sort of a way of accepting her reply, for the moment. He returns the smile. "Well, hopefully it's not to boring right now." He chuckled softly. He leaned back and called out to Duke. "I don't suppose you have one more glass ready?"
"Afraid not, that's the last one for now."
Mike shrugged his shoulders. "All right, different question. What do you think about secrets? What do you think should be done with them?" He had a mischievous smile, like a playful kid.
Amy's mind skitters to a halt Oh... is the only thing she's capable to think for a couple of seconds. Why is he asking? Does he know something about...what I do?
"Secrets are...important" she starts cautiously, looking at Mike in the eyes. He is still giving her the half-mischievous smile, but is regarding her warmly. She takes a deep breath and takes the plunge "They should be collected, and treasured. You know, that feeling when you know something important that other people don't and it's beautiful. I..."
Oh, God, I just sounded like a complete nutter she realises, blushing a bit.
"God I feel the same way!" He sounded genuinely excited. Some peopel treat secrets like ugly little things to lock away. Knowledge Amy. I studied game theory in college. I know, I know it's usually for posers or true fanatics, and I admit I was one of the posers. Thought it would be modern Dungeons and Dragons. I may not have even joined intelligence, but I tell you that land acquisition and retail's a battlefield of its own. Only you have wits instead of a rifle."
He moved his empty glass away from them both for Duke to take. "The real question is when it's best to use it. That's always the trickiest part. Too soon and you won't get much out of it. Too late and nothing will come out of it all, y'know?"
"I...really? You do?" Amy doesn't quite know what to say. Part of her mind registers what he said and files it away for further consideration. He went to college... he looked like the type. The other part, the fourteen-years-old part of her brain that has been admiring his smile and the deep tone of his voice, is just jumping up and down like an excited squirrel He's perfect, just perfect that part of her is saying How did we get so lucky?
"I'm afraid I'm not too good at the last part" she admits "It never seems like the right time, and when it does, I worry that it may be too late" She gives him a little nervous smile "But I like knowing all the same."
Amy would be the first to admit that she is a little giddy from the drinks and the date, but not so much that she doesn't try to take in all the detailsof the building. She raises an eyebrow at the disembodied old lady's voice asking who she is, but she figures she is just the mandatory old gossip that has to be in each building, and Mike is just humoring her. Even if, it's almost like she was granting them permission to go up. That is a bit odd.
She smiles at Mike when she notices the broken lift "That's not a problem, we can take stairs. I'm used to the exercise." The place where she lives doesn't have a lift, either. "Erm...who is the lady?"
"Her? That's just Elizabeth. She watches the door for us. I admit there's actually not too many of us who live here, so she usually doesn't have much to do." At the tenth floor (of twelve total), Mike was breathing a little hard, not heavily, just harder. He no doubt lived on a lower level.
He walked up to the room and knocked on the door twice, hard.
There was no answer.
Mike tried again.
After apologizing to Amy he tried to open the door to find it unlocked. "Slick? Hey Slick you in here?"
Amy and Mike walked in, and she could see beautiful paintings... in a sense. Reminiscent of the Renaissance when artists captured the true appearance of humanity, so too did Slick, only his people were ugly. Old, fat, scarred. One picture showed a portrait of cheerleaders who were the ugliest high school girls Evaz had ever seen. One was a runway scene with old women with sever hunchbacks. Another was a couple embracing, both who appeared to be burn victims.
It was inspiring and troubling at the same time.
"Slick? Hey buddy!" Mike turned around the corner. His voice grew scared and surprised. "Oh no. What did you do? What did you do? Evaz, meet me downstairs."
"What? No, Mike, what happened? Do you need help?" Amy is certainly not about to just turn her back and leave him here. He sounds scared, and she's an adult woman that has already seen her share of ugliness in life. If there's something wrong, he certainly can count on her and doesn't need to protect her. With those thoughts firmy in mind, she follows him around the corner, to see what's wrong and if she can help.
What she sees is far from what she expected. The first thing she sees is a lage, ugly green puppet next to mike. Then there's what's on the floor. The woman's dead. There's a hammer with the claw end stuck to the back of her head, and she's face down. Black hair lays in tatters and there's a pool all around her.
She can see an official looking ID tag next to the body, but it's too far away to see.
Then the puppet, no, it wasn't a puppet, started speaking. "It wasn't my fault Mike! She came early. I forgot to lock the door, and then she saw me. Flat Face did it Mike, he had to. She would have broken the whole masquer-" He stopped mid-sentence.
Slick was an abomination, with dark green skin like a frog's. His eyes were bulbous and seemed to move independantly. As he spoke, his maw opened wide showing long, thing fangs. He was just under five feet, just as Mike had said. One of Slick's eyes locked onto Amy.
In movies, people usually scream. Oddly enough, that's the only rational thought that Amy manages to fish out in the jumbled mess her mind has become. Mostly, though, she is just thinking disjointed fragments of sentences like That can't... Has to be a performance... Oh, god, is she really dead and, chief amongst all What IS he?
Despite what usually happens in movies, Amy doesn't scream. She doesn't feel there is enough air in her lungs for that. Instead, she takes a couple of step backwards, looking between the body on the floor and the green abomination next to Mike "What... Who... What is this?" she manages to whisper.
One of Slick's eyes stays on Mike, the other moves back and forth between him and Amy.
"Okay, I can explain all of this, I just need to think for a second." He reached down and picked up the woman's ID card, looking at it front and back. "All right, call Donovon up, she'll know what to do."
"D-D-Donovon? I don't think-"
"Flat Face just killed a reporter!" This was the first time Amy hadd seen Mike lose his cool. His face twisted, only for a moment, and she could have sworn there were scabs all over his face.
"It's okay." Another voice came from the front door. "I've already called her. The body's going to be dropped between her house and here. The right people have been contacted." The new man walked around and Amy could see him too, not as monstrous as the first, but hideous nevertheless. True to his name, Flat Face looked like someone had taken and iron and beat it until it was almost perpendicular to the floor. His nose was bent andttwisted. His skin was greyish. He was wearing cacky slacks with suspedners and a wife beater. He had a damp towel slung over his shoulder, clear that he had just showever. "Mike, who is this kine standing here?"
"Flat Face, don't do anything." Mike tried to plea.
"Wha...what did you just call me? Mike, what's..." Think, Amy, for God's sake. She can't keep blurting out the first thing that comes to mind. This is serious. This may very well mean life or death. She tries to look at the door, and judge if she can make a break for it.
"Amy for christ's sake do not go for the door, he'll kill you." He called her Amy, not Evaz. "Flat Face, this is the girl I'm going to embrace. I got Jean's approval."
"Oh?" Flat Face looked at Amy, then back at Mike. "Funny, I have order about that too."
That's when all hel broke loose. She didn't know where Flat Face had been hiding the steel pipe, but it flew from his hands, connecting with Mike's head. He hit the ground hard as Flat Face clutching onto Amy's shoulder. It hurt, a lot. "Look at your Prince charming computer girl."
Mike slowly stumbled up. He didn't have hair anymore. His face, and hands, were covered in scabs, and his face was lopsided. Even his voice was harsher. He looked away from her. "Not so pretty any more is he? Just a monster like the rest of us. That's what he wants to do to you too, make you one of us. Is that what you want computer girl? Let that dull little face of yours take on some character?"
What does he mean 'make me like them'? Do they use acid...oh, god, are they going to throw acid at me? No, can't be, Mike looked normal a minute ago... Suddenly, the paniked trail of thoughts stops, and Amy feels like her mind is clearer. Maybe it's the adrenaline. No, scratch the maybe, it can be nothing else but the adrenaline. What Amy knows is that she really doesn't want to die here... or, if she really has to, she dorsn't want to die screaming like a scared young girl, and beside, she wants to at least know what the hell is happening..
"Keep your hands off me, pipe-boy" she almost spits, ignoring that little terrified squirrel of common sense that is screaming what the hell are you doing in the back of her mind. She tries to wrench out Flat face's clutch, but not to run. Mike had made abundantly clear that running is a bad idea. "Mike, look at me, for God's sake. You brought me here, now tell me what's going on. Please." She hadn't meant to add the please, it has just slipped out.
Mike shook his head shamefully, forcing Flat Face to laugh. He tossed Amy towards Mike, and away from the door. She rolled her ankle and fell down.
"You see computer girl, Mike's a vampire. He's a dead thing that feeds off the blood of the living. Bet all the drinks he ever drank were red, weren't they? He's also a part of a special family of dead people, each with their own unique way to be reviled and laothed as hideous monsters. Mike here has scabs, boils, and a mishapen face. My mine explains my curse. Slick here got the whole package deal.
"You see, monsters really do exist girl, and your boyfriend's one of them. Why do you think such a nice, good looking guy would date a girl like you? Just cause I'm ugly, doesn't mean I can't tell you're nothing special either. No, he's using you. He wants you to show him how to play on that little machine of yours. Isn't that right Mike?"
A what? But... It makes sense. It makes quite a lot of sense actually. Did I ever see him in the sun? And he's never eaten in front of me, and... Oh, god, he asked Duke if he had another ready. If that had been wine, he could have just gone and brought the bottle.
Amy picks herself up from the floor. She is still in that slightly crazed mood that has made her ignore danger when talking to Flat face before. "Yeah, newsflash for you, pipe boy. I may be nothing special, but I wouldn't date you even if you were Brad Pitt's cuter brother. Now if you don't mind, that is a matter between my boyfriend and me." She doesn't really know what she's saying exactly, but it's either letting her mouth run off or collapsing on the floor sobbing... and Amy knows which of the options she prefers.
Flat Face is unmoved. "You have two minutes, Mike, and then we're going to get this started." He walked over towards the door, to make sure Amy had no option of escaping.
Mike was crying. "I'm sorry Evaz, I'm so sorry. Tonight wasn't even supposed to be the night." He looked up, and he truly was hideous. The poor she looked, the worse it got. "He's right. You looking at a dead thing right now. I was just trying to see if you'd be useful enough to us, but... you really are a nice girl. Maybe we could just-"
"No Mike." This time it was Slick. "No, you know what Jean and Donovon will say. She's going to be one of us, no turning back."
"Damnit Slick, not you too." Mike shook his head again. Guess he didn't like Slick proving to be the strong person, or monster as it were.
"Evaz... I'm sorry, but this is going to be your last night alive."
"Mike, no, you don't get to say you're sorry and then that you're going to kill me in the same breath. It doesn't work like that. Talk to me, dammit". But even as she is talking, her mind is putting two and two together Making me like them... They meant making me a vampire, too. she suddenly realises, and then, very unhelpfully Oh...
"Can I..." her voice breaks for a moment, and she tries again "Can I choose? If I want to stay dead or...become like you?"
Mike shook his head slowly. "Sometimes our kind let's people choose. Not this time. There's politics and... there's nothing I can do." He looked her square in the eye. Even his pretty eyes were off colored and milky. "Maybe one out of hundred, one out of two hundred people don't except the embrace, their soul rejects it and they die despite our best efforts to turn them. Those kinds of peopel are rare, and I'm sorry Evaz but I don't think you're one of them."
The bright colors from the paintings seem to swirl around her and the acrid smell of the paints filled her nsotrils. She could hear the loud tappping of Flat Face's steel toed boots against the wood floor.
"If... you want a minute it's okay."
"She only has a minute!" Flat Face yelled unseen from across the room.
"Sod off, you jerk" she yells right back at Flat face, before turning again to Mike "No, it's... It's okay. I would have chose to live all the same. Well not to live, well...you know. Guess I was right, you really did sound too good to be true. There had to be a catch, somewhere. Hell of a catch, if you ask me." She smiles, trying to look at him in the eye without flinching. In a way, he is still trying to be a nice guy, she figures she owes him at least that. "You don't have a cape, I thought vampires would have a cape." She says, making a little nervous laugh. It's pretty much laughing or screaming in this moment. "So... uhm... How...how does this work, then?"
Mike sighs. "We got rid of capes when people did. Keep up with the times, that's the name of the game." He stood up. "I think it's better if we just save the details. Sorry."
He moved forward and wrapped his arms around her. They weren't a hug of comfort but holding her to keep her in place. He was strong, not as strong as Flat Face, but still strong.
She felt a surge of ecstasy as he sunk his fangs into her. She was afraid to. He was drinking her blood, fast. The world was becoming dizzy, but despite her mind crying out that it was wrong, her body yielded. All went black.
And then but a moment later they opened up again. She was looking face to face at herself, a very, vey pale self, in a mirror.
I'll let you take it away to describe Amy's change. Also put your dots of disciplines on your profile.
Awww, describing Amy's change is [i]exactly[i] what I didn't want to do... I'm not confident enough in my writing skills to pull it off. But I can try, if you take over from me from time to time.
Also, this weekend I'll be posting from a phone, so it's not easy for me to change my sheet, I'll do it on monday. But disciplines would be those agreed in PM . I wouldn't mind someone (Mike, probably) teaching her the basis of Mask of a thousand Faces. It makes more sense than "Oh, look, I can suddenly change my face now...cool!"
Amy tries to move, without much success. Why the mirror? she thinks, trying to make out the details. It's a nice, full-lenght mirror. She always thought she needed a mirror like that in her apartment. She looks around the room, at the... curtains? If those are curtains, they are quite an hideous shade of lime Why am I focusing on the decor when I'm supposed to be dead? Wait... Am I dead? She really can't tell for sure: she's still breahting, but doesn't know if she needs it, or it's just force of habit.
She concentrates very hard on moving, and finds out that if she really puts some effort into it, she can move her right arm Progress, Amy. Come on, one thing at a time. There is a radio on, somewhere, playing 'Justify my love'. Ugh. She hates Madonna. And now her head is itching. Why the hell should her head itch when she's dead, for Christ's sake?
At least she can put her newfound motility to some use. Very slowly, she raises her hand to scrach her head At least I'm still capable of that, she thinks, and then, a couple of seconds later, when a clump of hair remains attached to her fingernails Oh. There's...that, then.
She doesn't have time to complete that thought. Suddenly, there's pain... quite a lot of pain. It starts at the back of her neck, but very soon, it takes over her entire body, and she can't help but yell. In the mirror, she can vaguely see the skin on her forehead cracking open "Mike!" she shouts, between the screaming. You bastard, you did this to me. she thinks, only partially coherently Have the damn decency to be here when I need you!