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Misc RP Logs

[Sable] Meteorites

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Title: Meteorites
Number: 790
Date: Aug 27, 2009 at 11:40 PM
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Divinatas – Aug 27, 2009 at 11:40 PM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

[i]’Are you sure you’re okay there alone, sweetie? Should I call up Aunt Jen to stay with you?'[/i]

“Ugh! Please don’t! She’s smokes three packs a day! It’s okay, Mom, I swear. You and Dad should enjoy your trip. Most of the time I’m staying late at school anyway. Speaking of which, I [i]really[/i] have to go. I have Student Council duties today. We’re signing in the new students before school starts next week.” Skylar glanced at the clock. It was only 10 AM, but she wanted to be there early and make sure everything went smooth.

[i]’We’ll call you next weekend! Stay safe and Father says he loves you!'[/i]

“Looove yooou toooo!” Skylar said quickly before hanging up the phone with a sigh. As much as she loved her parents, she was glad they finally decided to take their ‘Round the World’ trip without her! It took her three weeks to convince them that it’d be perfect if they left when the school year started. Her Junior year was going to be busy-busy and clingy-parents were super distracting!

Skylar dashed over to the door to shrug on her coat and pulled her bag over her shoulder. She was almost out the door before she had to double back and snatch a silver chain off the corner to hang around her neck. She couldn’t leave without her special good luck charm! Over the summer while digging around for new rocks for her collection she found the most awesome stone. It [i]had[/i] to be one of those fallen meteorites, so she couldn’t resist tumbling it until it was smooth and hooking it to a chain to wear. It was quite the prize for the President of the Geology Club!

It didn’t take her long to walk to school, though there was a few moments she had to stop and look around curiously. For a week she’d been getting that creepy ‘being watched’ feeling, but considering it started not long after her parents left she was pretty sure it was just that First Time Alone paranoia.

Walking in to the school courtyard, she waved to the few people that had already arrived and moved directly to her table to start setting up. This year she was determined to get more than two people to join her club![/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 12:00 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

Jean-Luc resisted the urge to shave off his hair again as he walked onto the campus for the first ‘official’ time. Naturally, he’d scouted, patrolled, and researched the grounds far in advance, but this was the first time he would be able to pass without question. His registration was complete and he even had a student ID to prove that he belonged. Hell, he’d even grown his hair out because long hair seemed like the thing in this area.

Although the young soldier may have thought his disguise was perfect, nothing could mask his precise gait or his fluid movements– the movements of a man always ready to spring. He exuded alertness without seeming paranoid, and his exacting stance spoke of years of discipline. Not even the baseball cap could hide his serious expression as he identified his target and approached.

“Hi.” The target, one Skylar Lynn Connelly, would be living alone in approximately two hours, barring flight delays. Her home premises was being secured even as they spoke by a team of specialists who would be disguised as landscapers. He needed to infiltrate and establish relations quickly, so as to be secure within the given window of time.

Realizing that only awkward silence was descending, Jean-Luc forced a smile. It came out as more of a pained grimace, but he had no way of assessing that. “I’m a transfer to this academy. Jean-Luc Girard.” He offered his hand to the girl stoically.

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 12:14 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

Skylar was just adjusting the sign for her table when she got a quick “[i]Hi.”[/i] followed by an expression that looked like he just swallowed a frog. That was it? She eyed him carefully before he finally spit out the rest of his greeting. [i]”I’m a transfer to this academy. Jean-Luc Girard.”[/i]

She looked down at his hand, resisting that urge to roll her eyes, and shook it. That was the polite thing to do, no matter how weird it was shaking hands with someone who couldn’t be much older than she was. …then it dawn on her that this was the perfect opportunity to claim him before some other club got him. Transfer students were fresh meat!

Skylar put on her best smile. “I’m Skylar. Did you know rocks can tell you the history of planet Earth?” She moved quickly around her table, fumbling through papers until she found her bag and pulled out a brown box. “If you joined the Geology club, you’d be able to join us every weekend for field trips. Which is way more entertaining than the nonsense Science Club gets in to, I promise!”[/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 12:27 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

Seeing a quick way to glue himself to his target, Jean-Luc quickly nodded. “Of course. Where do I sign, President Connelly?”

Sensing a movement just behind him, Jean-Luc shifted, then shot his hand out suddenly to catch his aggressor across the neck, sending him sprawling. A pivot and a swift kick sent a soccer ball flying towards the building, and a sweaty and wheezing varsity player dropped to the ground, clutching at his throat. Jean-Luc knelt and did a quick body search of the down player before realizing that it was just another student. Still, he couldn’t be too careful.

“Are you hurt?” He stepped over the (still wheezing) body toward Skylar, ignoring the angry cries from the soccer player’s approaching teammates. “I was unaware that sports practices were not confined to their respective fields.”

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 12:41 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

Yes! She totally scored a new member and signups hadn’t even officially started! “I’ll just get-” Skylar was snatching up the signup sheets when [i]WHAM[/i]! Down went Jake Bradly like a sack of bricks. She dropped her folder as her mouth fell open in surprise, while her new recruit search [i]the body[/i] for… god only knew what.

..and he was asking HER if she was okay?

“Are you totally bonkers?!” she asked, circling around her table to kneel next to Jake and help him sit up. She spent her whole sophomore year trying to get Jake Bradley’s attention and this wasn’t exactly the way she wanted to meet him!

“Wow Jake, you took that hit like a karate champion!” Skylar tried to laugh all easy-going like, but she sounded way more awkward than she wanted to. She cast a look over her shoulder and subtly shook a fist at the new guy. Oh, she was gonna kill him!
[/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 12:58 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

“If he were a champion in karate, he would have rolled instead of allowing himself to remain in a prone position.”

“Hey, what the hell?!” Another teen Jean-Luc didn’t know bounded up to the small group and looked at Jake. “You think you can just–”

A second body dropped close to the first, but this one still retaining its power of speech, at least. Jean-Luc forced more pressure on the arm he had twisted behind the second boy’s back.

“I do not appreciate your aggressive tone,” he explained calmly. “I am sure this is simply a misunderstanding. I was under the impression that Jake here night be attacking Miss Connelly, so I took action. Nothing to take offense over, right?” Any more pressure and the boy’s arm would probably break.

Ignoring the new irritation for now, Jean-Luc turned back to Skylar. “Now, where is that form?”

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 1:09 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

Before she could even give him a lecture about attacking his classmates, he had someone else in an arm hold. Quick! Damage control maneuvers!

“Ha ha ha! And this is why you don’t join the Judo Club! They’re all maniacs. Try Geology, it’s safer!” Skylar announced loudly as she rose to her feet and inched over to Jean-Luc. Before anyone muttered a [i]’what the hell?'[/i], she was grabbing him by the shirt and dragging him away from the scene.

Skylar passed by her table long enough to snatch up her bag, but continue dragging Jean-Luc across the courtyard until they rounded a corner. Away from sight, and potential victims!

For a minute she looked like she was going to hit him with her bag, but she controlled the urge and took a deep breath. Caaaalm. Someone was playing a joke on her. That’s it.

“Alright, what’s your deal? Did someone pay you to sabotage my table? Did that four-eyed jerk from Science send you over to scare away my potentials? Cause I’ll tell you right now, if you are, I’m going to break every single one of your toes.”
[/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 1:22 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

Calmly and, as far as anyone could tell, completely seriously, Jean-Luc said, “I wasn’t aware that was one of your talents. It’s fortunate that you have some self-defense training.” Straightening his shirt with the absent movements of one who is used to being neat, he continued.

“I am not sabotaging your club. I am trying to apply despite all interruptions. And I wasn’t using Judo.” How much was safe to tell her? Not much, probably. It was equally probably that she would turn out to be a dead lead. And then he would be too.

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 1:29 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

Skylar stared him down. It was that look her mom liked to give her when she was trying to dig up the truth. But, his expression didn’t change and he stood there just as serious. As if he hadn’t just assaulted two people for no reason. Why did she always end up with the crazy ones?!

Well, a member was a member. Finally giving an exasperated sigh, she pinched the bridge of her nose. “Are you sure you have the right club? Cause I don’t care if you’re using Judo, or Karate, or Jedi Training. There’s no fighting or martial arts in Geology club. We dig up rocks.” she eyed him again trying to gauge his reaction. Maybe he was embarrassed and didn’t want to admit he stumbled over the wrong club!
[/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 1:37 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

“Well, I’m sure that digging up rocks has enough functional similarities to unearthing mines to be comparable. If you are the president of the geology club and attend all meetings and trips, then I am in the correct place.”

Watching her pinch the bridge of her nose, he couldn’t help but feel a small thrill of hope. “Do you have a headache, Miss Connelly?”

It could be a symptom he was supposed to be looking for. If he had been brought up particularly religious, Jean-Luc would have been offering prayers that his assignment would not simply turn out to be a false trail. As his last mission, he hoped he could resign with a final success.

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 1:47 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

Unearthing mines…? “Yeah, as a matter of fact I do.” she said, at least trying to refrain from sounding sarcastic. Where did he come from? The Congo? Skylar moved around him to lean and peer around the corner. It looked like the crowd had dispersed and the Soccer guys had left, probably to nurse wounds and plan revenge. At least it was safe for the moment!

“Come on. I have to finish setting up my table.” If he scared off any club potentials, she was going to skin him alive. Skylar took his arm to drag him back to the table and set down her bag. With a quick glance around, it didn’t look like she was lucky enough to have everyone forget about the previous little incident! There was plenty of pointing and whispering.

She groaned inwardly as she picked up her folder from the ground… and then paused. “Hey! Where did my box of rocks go?”[/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 1:58 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

“Have you found the frequency of headaches you have has been increasing lately?”

He allowed himself to be dragged to Skylar’s club table. He didn’t mind the whispering, although it occurred to him that he was supposed to keep a low profile. Well, then a pair of idiots shouldn’t have attempted to attack a fully trained professional with effective rank of Lieutenant. That was just their bad judgment.

He was fully prepared to dismiss the ‘crisis’ of her box of rocks, but when he found it sitting under a chair, partly open as though it had just fallen, an alarm went off in his head. He scanned the small crowd suspiciously, but because he had been lax and allowed himself to be taken away from her base of operations, there was no way for him to know if someone had slipped in and out during the commotion.

Kneeling, he felt the box very carefully with the sensitive pads of his fingers. Could there be something in it that was not there prior? Laying on the table, he meticulously arranged the rocks and began to deconstruct the box itself. Reaching over, he stopped Skylar from touching one of her specimens by grabbing her wrist firmly.

“Don’t touch anything. Just tell me if you see anything missing or that you didn’t have before.” It would be just his luck to lose his target on the first day.

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 2:06 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

“Been increasingly getting worse in the past fifteen minutes.” she muttered. It took her all summer to hunt down those rocks! Skylar looked relieved when her new member seemed to find them and set the box on the table. She reached out to take one but he grabbed her wrist.

Raising and eyebrow, she almost laughed. “Oh come on. It’s way to early in the school year for anyone to hide a bomb in there.” Skylar counted the stones on the table, making note of each one. Nope! Not a single one missing, that was good!

“Everything is still here. Except I don’t remember this one.” Despite his warning, she was snatching the extra rock from the table and taking a look at it. Looked like one of the rocks from the parking lot![/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 2:24 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

“N–” Before he could protest properly, Skylar did the one thing he told her [i]not[/i] to do and picked up a rock. If she was going to say that everything was fine then she should make sure first, dammit!

When the so-called rock started to take on a greasy sheen is when he started to panic. Grabbing a piece of paper, he used it to shield his hand and grab the false stone from her. He crumpled it and shoved it in his pocket even as he grabbed her hand and, without a moment’s hesitation, put the fingers she had used to pick up the stone into his mouth. He worked his tongue around her flesh carefully, eyes closed in concentration. Who knew what the hell it had been holding.

Suddenly, he tasted blood. Surely not some kind of acid?! He pulled his mouth away and spit to the side, only just feeling his mouth beginning to burn. Her hand was starting to blister. Back into his mouth it went, although it tasted sweet and not at all like the bitterness an acid or a base should have. Something about it was vaguely familiar…

His eyes shot open. It couldn’t Synth-M detox… could it?

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 2:47 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

“What are you-” There was a soft eep~! From her when he snatched her hand and stuff her finger in his [i]mouth[/i] of all places! Skylar was so stunned she could only stare at him in surprise! He was officially some sort of deviant lunatic, with a fetish for knocking people out and sucking on fingers! By the second time he did it, there was a subtle burn that was starting to get increasingly uncomfortable.

Skylar swatted at him before confiscating her hand back. She might have accused him of having acid-spit, but upon inspecting her hand it looked more like she was just having an allergic reaction. It’d be just like those Science Nerds to hide a peanut oil covered rock in her box. She fumbled for her bag to look for her packet of benadryl.

“Could you stop being [i]weird[/i] for ten seconds!?” she was going to say more, but that burning was becoming hard to ignore! She bit her bottom lip and shook her hand while she dug in the bag. “Christ! They weren’t kidding about allergies getting worse!”[/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 3:00 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

“You have allergies?” That was a little disappointing. Still it wasn’t as alarming as what was happening right now. As much as he wanted to figure out if she was a viable target or not, he didn’t want everyone else to know.

“Nevermind, we have to go.” He grabbed her purse and her bag, slung both over his shoulder, and then grabbed her hand. Stuffing her fingers back into his mouth, he began suckling and massaging them with his mouth, trying to draw out the poison before it spread to her blood. A normal person would just be sick for a few hours, but if she was viable… Well, he wasn’t sure what would happen, but it might include blowing up a city block or becoming completely demented or anything in between. Not good.

He didn’t bother trying to mumble excuses as he plowed his way through the crowd and sprinted back for her house. The poison was starting to spread into him as well, and he could feel it taking effect. He leapt much too high attempting to dodge a car, and the two of them landed with a loud thump on its roof. He didn’t stop– just ran faster.

When he got to her door, the ‘landscaping’ crew was there. Seeing an emergency afoot, one of them rushed ahead and unlocked Skylar’s door. Jean-Luc tumbled Skylar onto a couch and knelt by her, trembling and sweating with the sudden exertion and toxin. Behind him, he could hear the door lock shut.

“How are you feeling?” he asked hoarsely.

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 3:16 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

“Just to peanuts but I-” Dang it! She hadn’t even found her medicine yet! Wait, that was [i]her[/i] bag he was stealing? She was trying to snatch it back, but there went her fingers in his mouth again and she was being ushered away before she could string two words together.

Skylar had figured she had to be hallucinating, because he was jumping around – with her in tow – like a spidermonkey! Before she knew it, she was back in her own house sitting on the sofa with him asking how she was feeling.

As a matter of fact, she was feeling pretty scared! And confused! And dizzy!

“[i]Bloody stalking kidnapper![/i] she shouted suddenly, reaching over to grab one of the sofa pillows to swing at him! “Lunatic!” Skylar was pretty sure she saw some other people lurking around, but now she wasn’t sure if she was seeing things, or poisoned, or just freaking out! But she did know she was going knock this guy out first and ask the questions later! She dashed for the phone! [/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 3:24 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

“I’m not a stalking kidnapper…” he said. Crap. The poison was stronger than he’d thought. She’d only held that thing for a moment, but she seemed to be fine other than a rash and he was getting worse by the second. Maybe she really wasn’t viable. A little muddled, he thought about what he was going to say next.

“Okay. I’ve been stalking you. Kind of. For your own good. I need to shadow you for a while; make sure no one pulls another stunt like this one.” He fumbled into his pants to look for the false rock again, and the floor lurched up for him. He threw himself violently away from it and forced his legs to brace his weight. A soldier stays standing.

The paper was all but empty. How could they have engineered it to dissolve so quickly? As far as he knew, they had nothing quite like this. The paper was brown and brittle as though it had been held close to a flame for too long, and there was only the smallest pebble left in it. What was happening?

“Sh… shit.”

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 3:38 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

“That’s what all stalkers say, right before they chain you to a fireplace and take off your face with a butterknife!” she exclaimed, grabbing up the phone from a table and taking several steps away from him. She was in the process of dialing a number for the cops when he nearly toppled face first to the floor. He didn’t look like he’d be standing on his feet for much longer. …what she could see of him anyway! Everything was kind of blurry.

Skylar took a look at her hand, and spied the paper and stone he pulled out of his pocket. It [i]did[/i] look a lot different than when he snatched it from her. Some weird experiment from science club?

She dropped the phone back on it’s cradle before dashing for the kitchen. After digging around a few drawers, she pulled out some salad tongs and a plastic bag from the cabinet. When she returned to the living room, she still didn’t look like she trusted him, but she was using the tongs to snatch the stone and paper and was trying to stuff them in to the bag.

“Your old club must have been killer-competitive.” she was trying to make light of the… really weird predicament, but he looked like hell and she didn’t feel so great either![/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 3:44 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

“I guess you could say that.” He let her confiscate the suspicious objects before picking her up and depositing her on the sofa again.

“You need to tell me how you feel. You could be having a… a reaction to it.” He stayed standing, but refused to let her up. “I promise I won’t hurt you, but whoever slipped that into your collection today will.” His vision was dimming to only what he could immediately focus on, so he focused on her face. “Do you feel sick?”

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 3:52 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

There he went being weird again and now she was trapped on the sofa with him leaning and staring. It was awkward and uncomfortable, and she was pretty sure he was tilting dangerous and liable to fall over at any moment. Skylar zipped up the plastic bag and tossed it near the fireplace. If they were going to be all paranoid, it was safe to assume the farther away it was, the better.

She still wasn’t sure what was going on or if she still considered him a stalking kidnapper or not. For the moment she at least tried to be reasonable.

“You look funny.” she replied first. “Everything is blurry and my skin is crawling like there’s little bugs on me and you’re starting to freak me out.” Skylar took a moment to grab his arm and tug so he’d sit down on the sofa instead of weaving around and potentially cracking his head on something. [/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 3:59 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

“N-o don’t…” He tipped dangerously close to Skylar as she yanked him down. He locked his knees and blacked out for a moment, then came to with his face only centimeters away from hers, his hands braced on the sofa back on either side of her head. He trembled again, struggling not to fall on her.

“That’s not good. Bugs… okay. You need to focus very hard. The drug might make you think things are happening when they’re not. You have to fight it. And you have to get it out of your system.” His eyes fluttered shut for a moment, but he forced them open.

“I tried to suck some of it out– keep it from spreading. If you can’t handle it, call one of the landscapers outside. A blond female. Anette. You understand?”

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 4:10 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

Skylar had no idea what he was talking about. Fight what? Call landscapers for help? She was pretty focused now though! He was only a hair away from her face and likely to fall on her any moment! There wasn’t even any wiggle room to duck out of the way without knocking his feet out from under him. …she might have to do it if he didn’t sit down. He had such long eyelashes though, now that he was close enough to see clearly. Didn’t they call that movie star eyes?

She squeezed her eyes shut. “Can you.. sit down?” If he’d sit, then she’d think! There was no reason to get scared or start panicking. He was probably making it sound worse than it was. [i]He[/i] was probably hallucinating! “You sit, I’ll get water.”[/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 4:18 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

“NO!” He grabbed her by the shoulder quickly to keep her from getting up. Unfortunately, the movement threw off his balance, and he all but slid onto the floor and her lap, one hand still pinning her in place.

“Moving around will make it worse. Be calm. Focus. Don’t get your heart rate up.” He had to keep her safe. It was his mission. For now, the only goal in his life. “Your safety comes first.”

His muscles rippled suddenly, making him twitch and convulse. He’d never been hit with S/M-Detox, but he knew about it, and what it would hypothetically do to him. Perversely, he had the urge to write down his symptoms into research notes for his father, but his first prerogative was to stay by Skylar’s side. “I should never have let you take such a stupid risk,” he muttered into her skirt.

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 4:29 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

Keep her heart rate down?! He was making it [i]worse[/i]! There was a crazy guy’s head in her lap and a threat of god-knew-what and and-! Her hands had moved up as if she were going to shove him off, but they just hovered in the air instead. Now she was just afraid to move! What if the sudden movement made his brain explode, or she blacked out? The more she thought about it, the more it was harder to breath! She was having hot flashes, but that could have just as easily been embarrassment with him grumbling against her legs.

He twitched and she nearly gave a squeak. What if her were dying right here in her lap?! “Last thing I want to be afraid of is rocks.” she mumbled out, deciding that at the very least she could keep him talking and make sure he didn’t die while he made sure [i]she[/i] didn’t die. …How complicated!
[/do][/bg]

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Masquerade – Aug 28, 2009 at 4:40 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

“Don’t be afraid of anything. I’m here to watch over you.” He relaxed slowly with his head cradled in her lap. He couldn’t remember the last time someone had allowed him to be so close without grappling him.

“I guess you should know, since it’s a bit late. I’m Lieutenant Jean-Luc Girard, and it’s my aim to defend you with my life. Whether or not you’re viable doesn’t seem to matter to whoever sent you that present, but in a few more weeks we’ll have it figured out one way or another. Until then, please allow me to continue watching over you, ma’am.” He peered up at her through his thick lashes, blurry though his vision was.

[/solid]

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Divinatas – Aug 28, 2009 at 5:03 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

“Huh?” the phrase was high pitched but soft. And most definitely still confused. Viable for what? Wasn’t he a little young for military rank? Or was this part of the hallucinating and now he thought she was a real President? Skylar lowered her hands slowly, if only to take his and move them so he wasn’t pinning her down anymore. Her heartbeat was still beating a thousand miles per hour, but at least nothing was getting worse. Sleepy, really sleepy, but nothing scary.

Skylar gently pat him on the head. A strange motion that was probably more for a puppy than a person. “You’re completely nuts.” Nuts, but for the moment, totally harmless. ..well, as harmless as a guy that attacks students and the acts like a psycho could be. Apparently [i]she[/i] was nuts.

[i]Totally nuts. What is that?[/i] She had tilted her head and across the room, in the reflection of one of the mirrors was something… strange. Yet before she could mention it… she passed out! Her hand resting in his hair.[/do][/bg]

====

Masquerade – Aug 29, 2009 at 6:57 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

Jean-Luc’s evening had been busy. After fighting waves of weakness and brief blindness, he’d alerted his team that something was wrong. The rest of the evening had been a flurry of activity surrounding Skylar and acquiring data for the research department. At 0500 he’d gotten up to start his written reports, give a personal debriefing, and check the security of the Connelly home. Jones had put Skylar to bed after taking a few blood samples and clearing her– the assumption was that she had been only mildly affected and would sleep off the poison. Jean-Luc hadn’t been so lucky, and it had only been this morning that he’d been given more Synth-M. He was still working off the last of his shakiness.

And that was why, at 0800, he was only just finishing his planches and attending to breakfast. Irritated with himself for being so tired, he entered Skylar’s room to double-check the window security and motion detector placement.

How was he supposed to know that (Anette) Jones had taken the liberty of stripping Skylar before putting her to bed?

[/solid]

====

Divinatas – Aug 29, 2009 at 7:08 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

Sleep was a little restless. Skylar had the weirdest dreams! And they had to be dreams, because she was curled up nice and snug in her own bed. Gods, she hated it when had those “wake up and go” dreams. They always felt so real, and then she never felt like she got enough sleep.

A weird sound caught her attention and she sat up in bed. Rubbing her head, she was pretty sure he parents should have left before dawn to catch their plane on time. She looked down and gasped! Where the hell was her pajamas?! Yanking up her blanket to cover herself, that’s when she noticed she wasn’t alone!

Skylar screamed as loud as her voice could carry!

She stopped after a moment… only to scream again! This time she was trying to roll out of bed with her blanket (which resulted in her falling in the floor and having to stumble to her feet) and grabbing the nearest thing her fingers could wrap around. An umbrella.

“You! [i]YOU![/i]”[/do][/bg]

====

Masquerade – Aug 29, 2009 at 7:14 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

Alarmed, Jean-Luc lowered into a fighting crouch and looked for an intruder. Finding none but still wary, he backed up until he could defend Skylar easily.

“Perhaps you’re just still drea–” He was cut off as an umbrella whacked him across the head! He ducked and managed to dodge the second hit. Dancing back, he jumped like a startled cat as a third whack accidentally caused the umbrella to pop open loudly!

“Hey! We’re on the same side, soldier!” he barked. What the hell was wrong with the girl? Maybe she was still suffering side-effects of the poison after all!

[/solid]

====

Divinatas – Aug 29, 2009 at 7:23 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

“Same side?! Same side of what! Unconscious girl molesting!?” With the umbrella open, it wasn’t so easy to take a swing at him. Now she used it as a shield to make sure he stood a good several feet back! Skylar was trying to think through all the morning haze and find some… rational explanation! So it [i]wasn’t[/i] all a dream. She did meet Commander Crazy. Glancing down at her hand, there was a bit of redness, but it was mostly faded. She [i]did[/i] have an allergic reaction to something while setting up her table.

Everything after that just got really weird.

Still, for someone she just met yesterday, he was here in her bedroom and she was naked!

“What are you [i]doing[/i] in here and what happened to my clothes!”[/do][/bg]

====

Masquerade – Aug 29, 2009 at 7:30 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

What the hell was she talking about?

“You’re not naked,” he said slowly, as though she were hard of hearing. “You’re in your underwear.”

“And I am finalizing security on your house. It’s time you woke anyway. It’s already 0800 and breakfast will be ready soon.”

[/solid]

====

Divinatas – Aug 29, 2009 at 7:39 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

Since when was underwear not being naked when you didn’t take off your own clothes and there’s a stranger in your room!

His reply had completely baffled her. Skylar didn’t even know why it surprised her, she distinctly remembered him saying the most obscure things with a straight face. Just like he was doing now. She took a deep breath… but didn’t lower her umbrella.

Skylar opened her mouth to speak, but promptly closed it again. It was hard to figure out what to say! On the one hand, she wanted to resume screaming at him for being a total maniac… on the other, she was pretty curious. And possibly as crazy as he was.

Wait, security on her house?

“…What did you do to my house? Why are you even still here?! And don’t you give me that nonsense of protecting me, there’s nothing to protect me [i]from[/i]! I don’t care if you’re undercover from the ROTC or the government or what! You are totally out of hand! I [i]missed[/i] club signups yesterday! Do you have any idea what that means?”[/do][/bg]

====

Masquerade – Aug 29, 2009 at 7:55 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

“If you require members, I will acquire some for you soon.” He gave her a strange look. “And I’m not sure why you are reacting so badly to your current situation. My review has been satisfactory and it’s Officer Jones who put you to bed.”

Baffled, he finally straightened up from his stance. “Get showered and dressed. We’re scheduled to pick up your completed academy uniforms at 1000 and then rendezvous with security detail for a shopping trip at 1030.”

And with that he went to put the final touches on breakfast.

[/solid]

====

Divinatas – Aug 29, 2009 at 8:07 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

“I don’t SEE an Officer Jones!” she called after him. He was escaping! Scowling, Skylar closed up the umbrella and tossed it aside. He couldn’t just order her to shower and get dressed in her own house! She snatched her clothes out of the closet and marched down the hall to the bathroom. …and she wasn’t doing it because he told her to! Goodness knows what was all over her from yesterday!

She showered and dressed quickly. Opting for a simple peasant blouse and one of her favorite skirts. For a split second she was thinking a shopping trip sounded fun, but had to remind herself that it was suggested by an [i]invader[/i] who was about to get a stern talking to.

After slipping on a pair of shoes, she stalked in to the kitchen ready to do battle!

Breakfast smelled good, and she was definitely starving! Skylar huffed, having to puff herself back up in to angry-mode!

“Okay, you listen here! [i]You[/i] are going to get out of my house and go back to your own home! I will go back to [i]my[/i] plans which don’t involve you or anything else other than… not having you involved. Agreed?”[/do][/bg]

====

Masquerade – Aug 29, 2009 at 8:21 AM

[solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b]

“That’s not an option any more, Miss Connelly.” After a brief consult with Officer Jones, who was, after all, a female, he had set the dining room table and arranged a plate for Skylar instead of letting her fend for herself in a breakfast free-for-all as he’d intended. Although a military man, he knew how to cook and supplies had been brought in when his medical supplies had, so breakfast consisted of baked cheese potatoes, bacon, pancakes, fresh fruit, water, orange juice, three different kinds of eggs, toast, butter, and marmalade. He’d even made french toast.

Personally, he thought it was overkill. Breakfast was just breakfast, but Officer Jones had said, ‘if a girl isn’t happy when she wakes up naked with a man in her room and doesn’t remember what you did for her last night, the only solution is either to get the hell out or make her a breakfast sent from God himself.’ Of course, she’d laughed a little, and Jean-Luc could hear someone sniggering in the background, but it was the only advice he had.

“I’ll go shower, then,” he told her. “Eat before it gets cold.”

There were even little flowers by her plate!

[/solid]

====

Divinatas – Aug 29, 2009 at 8:41 AM

[bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b]

That’s [i]her[/i] shower. Skylar was grumbling under her breath when she slowly sat down in her chair. This looked like a bribe! Or a setup. Or… something just not at all right. But it [i]did[/i] look delicious, and she wasn’t going to let perfectly good food go to waste!

So Skylar ate slowly, trying not to enjoy it and attempting to think about what she would do about Mister Jean-Luc Girard. He clearly wasn’t going to just leave, (and that STILL didn’t make any sense! what kind of stalker runs off with you to your own house and makes you breakfast?!) …Which meant she was going to have to [i]scare[/i] him away. If he wants to play soldier, she’ll give him a good reason!

Sticking one of the table flowers in her hair, Skylar scribble a note to leave on the kitchen table. [i]’Thanks for breakfast! Leaving without you! <3'[/i] Skylar grabbed her bag and tiptoed out of the house! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Aug 29, 2009 at 9:00 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] Unfortunately for Skylar, Jean-Luc was still used to a military day and took a luxurious five-minute shower before he realized that Skylar might want a little quiet time to herself. So he got dressed and re-checked some of the upper rooms before slipping out a window to have a quiet talk with one of the neighbors. In a trendy button-down, dark jeans, and black boots, Jean-Luc looked like a very well-bred young man out for a casual weekend. Hell, on the advice of the department he even had sunglasses and one of those damn iPhones. He was just explaining to the kindly older lady next door that he was the son of a family friend of the Connelly's when who else but Skylar walked out the door! "Ah, I have to go now. It has been a pleasure to talk with you, ma'am." With a nod, he intercepted Skylar on her way down the driveway. "We're ahead of schedule. That's all right. It was planned with a margin of error in case you were slower to recover than initially projected. If you'll get in the car?" He opened the passenger side door to a modified BMW 7 series high security that easily cost as much has some of the houses in this gentle suburbia. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Aug 29, 2009 at 9:10 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar managed to stifle her scream, even if she did jump when he pounced out of no where! When he opened up the door to a car that was probably worth more than she was, she stomped her foot with a growl and pointed at it. "That's it! No more nice Skylar! I'm not getting in that car and you're going away. Zip. Poof! Goodday Mister Commander!" She wiggled her fingers at him as if she could magically poof him away herself! Alas, that didn't work, so she stuck her tongue out at him and deliberately marched [i]passed[/i] the open car door towards the sidewalk.[/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Aug 29, 2009 at 9:22 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] Jean-Luc stiffened with displeasure. "This is a very valuable vehicle and it took a lot of paperwork and persuasion on my part to have it issued to you. You [i]will[/i] enter this vehicle and I am [i]not[/i] leaving your side until I am recalled from my post or until I am dead. Do you understand?" Short on patience with a girl who had no clue how important she was to the people he was bound to serve, he grabbed her around the waist and slung her into the car, shutting the door before she could leave. He locked it from the outside, slid over the hood, popped himself into the driver's side and locked down the car. Then he reached over and began buckling her into the seat. "Now. We are picking up your uniforms and then you may freely roam, within reason, the stores of the Kirkson Grand Mall to make any purchases you desire. Then you will return with me and the rest of the security retail to a field for basic shooting and self-defense practice. Understood?" [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Aug 29, 2009 at 9:38 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "Hey! Stop!" her complaints went completely ignored and she found herself practically thrown in to the car! The door was slammed and locked with him circling around to enter the driver's side and tying her down to the seat. Well, it felt like tying her down, even if it was just a seat belt. Skylar crossed her arms and glared at him. "Not it's NOT understood! You can't just go treating people like this! I'm a [i]person[/i], not a soldier!" Argh! How confusing! She was getting to go shopping for anything she wanted, but under weirdo surveillance like a prisoner?! How was this supposed to make any sense? Did he realize how totally insane he was? She reached out and took him by the ear. "Are you listening to me?! I'm not doing [i]anything[/i] until you start acting like a normal human being. As soon as I get out of this car I'm going to start screaming like a banshee until everyone in town comes to my rescue." [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Aug 29, 2009 at 9:51 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "Well then you won't get out of the car and I will simply contact my team and inform them to meet us for practice instead of taking you out. Should this behavior continue I can easily call in sick for you at school during the first week, but I suggest that we not resort to that as it would detrimental to the continued existence of your club." He ignored the grip she had on his ear, although he had to admit that it hurt. Fortunately, even if she ripped it off (was she strong enough to do that?) humans could live without ears. "Unless you would like to kill me, it would be much easier if you simply acquiesced. Whether or not you like it, your life is probably in danger and I am here to make sure no harm comes to you. Most Americans would be happy for the increase in their personal safety, and also for the generous peace offering being extended." He looked at her reproachfully, as though her lack of bribe-ability were some kind of flaw. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Aug 29, 2009 at 10:13 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Not her club! He already ruined signup day and that was the most crucial day of the year! Now the only member she had was... was [i]him[/i]! Skylar let go of his ear, but only to cross her arms again and huff. And she was just supposed to [i]believe[/i] him? "That's what the government always says, you know. That they are increasing your safety, but they're actually taking away your freedoms! You're not allowed to treat me like a prisoner." "...but maybe, [i]maybe[/i] if you stop freaking me out I [i]might[/i] go to your um.. practice? But I'm not touching any guns. And if I let you hang around and stay in my club, you have to do everything I say." It was a compromise and far more than he deserved! Skylar knew when she had to give a little rope just to be able to get anywhere. She really didn't want to see how long he'd try to keep her in this car, and if she didn't pick up her uniforms she'd get stuck wearing something hideous for the school year![/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Aug 29, 2009 at 9:41 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "I am willing to listen to your geological expertise," he temporized. He would, of course, do as she asked [i]within reason[/i], but so far she had been anything but reasonable. He carefully pulled the car out of the driveway and headed for the uniforms boutique that all the local academy students purchased from. He needed to pick up a few more spare sets himself, having enrolled hastily only a few weeks before. Although he couldn't be much older than Skylar, his driving was smooth and precise, a far cry from the heady, reckless driving of your typical high-schooler with a posh car. "And you're not a prisoner, but you don't seem to take your own security seriously. Do you believe the President is a prisoner? Yet he is governed by the same security you are. Or maybe it's that you don't take the lives of others seriously." [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Aug 29, 2009 at 9:55 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "Your people skills really suck." Skylar said with offense. Of course she took people's lives seriously! But there was being serious and totally being out of control! She shifted uncomfortably in her seat, at least relieved to see they weren't tearing through the streets like the devil was on their heels. He could drive like a normal person, why couldn't he act like one! "The President governs a whole country and [i]needs[/i] lots of security. And I don't think his bodyguards are nearly as crazy as you are!" She stole a glance at him again. "They're older too. If I am in so much danger why would I get a weirdo that can't the difference between high school students and terrorists?" [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Aug 31, 2009 at 10:27 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "Yet someone in your high school tried to eliminate you through poison." He gave her a pointed look as they coasted into the parking lot attached to the sophisticated clothing shop. "The President's bodyguards are plentiful. Yours are not. Therefore, I alone will see for your security at every moment I may, starting with ten o'clock yesterday. Besides, what makes you think your life is less valuable than the President's?" It was obvious by his demeanor that to him, at least, she really was. He let himself out of the car and opened the passenger side door for her. It would have been a sweet gesture if he hadn't been scanning the area for possible hostiles. He was a little tense, too, wondering if she was really mad enough to scream bloody murder. He would have a hard time explaining it if she did. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Aug 31, 2009 at 4:59 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar hesitated, and though for a brief moment she looked like she still might scream, instead she climbed out of the car and cast him a curious look. He still hadn't explained [i]why[/i] he thought she needed babysitting. As far as she could tell that allergy incident could have easily just been an accident. "You're so weird." Skylar sighed with an exasperated defeat. Alright, if he wanted to be President's Bodyguard, she'd let him. She stepped inside the boutique only pausing long enough to dig around in her back to find her ticket receipt. At the counter she handed it over to the Mister and waited. "You'll really have to relax, though. If you attack people at school you're going to get suspended. No college is going to accept a guy that karate chops people's heads off." she made the motion to mimic what he did to poor Jake Bradly. "I don't need a bodyguard at school, anyway. I needed club members and now I've missed out on the most imperative day of the year!" [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Aug 31, 2009 at 5:13 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] An odd expression crossed Jean-Luc's face-- pain? surprise? sadness?-- at Skylar's comment about college. But he brushed it off as they entered the store. Over her shoulder, he slipped a ticket of his own across the counter, expression stoic once more. "I've told you that I can take care of that if you wish. As your only member I will naturally help you promote club activities and membership. Perhaps you could stage a demonstration in order to generate interest. A demonstration is what interested me in learning explosives identification and deactivation. "Thank you." This last was to the store clerk, who was handing the two of them a series of boxes and pristine plastic-wrapped uniforms on hangers. He took the orders for both of them with apparently no trouble at all, and signed his receipt left-handed. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Aug 31, 2009 at 5:30 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "It's not exactly the easiest to demonstrate without a fieldtrip. For a fieldtrip I need members to fund it in the first place. And no one ever seems to be interested in digging up rocks." she nearly pouted. Two years of running a club with practically no members, and this year she was so determined to get a good head start! Skylar took her boxes and eyed her uniforms with a slight twitch of her nose. Thankfully they were the nice simple style in the black, grey and whites instead of those terrible colors people were trying to get voted in last year. She flashed the clerk a bright smile before leading the way out. "Is everything you like related to blowing stuff up and throwing people? Oh! You know, there are naturally explosive rock formations. It's called fluidizate and you can find a lot of it in the Ukrainian Shield." Okay, so maybe him joining her club was for off-the-wall reasons, but maybe she could get him interested if she appealed to his... strange obsessions! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Aug 31, 2009 at 5:45 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] It took two keys and a pin to open the trunk of the car, but eventually the uniforms were tucked away and they were back on the road toward the mall. "Perhaps if you made geology more active, you would attract more participants. Set up displays on unusual or rare stones in the area. No one your age wants to pass up the opportunity for easy money, even if it means a little digging. My interest in rocks is limited to mostly functional uses." Except for one, but he wasn't going to bring up that particular subject if he could help it. Besides, did a meteorite even count as a rock? [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Aug 31, 2009 at 6:04 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "But it [i]is[/i] functional. For all sorts of things." Well, maybe it wouldn't hurt to have some displays and tantalize people with the awesomeness they could dig up. Skylar spent the rest of the ride looking out the window plotting for displays in silence. When they arrived at the mall, it reminded her about his pre-planned day for them. Seemed like bribery! Could she really get anything she wanted? There was a short list of things she needed for school, but there was the temptation to see how much she could get away with before he'd show a temper. But when she led the way inside, watching him scan around for all those 'dangers' he thought would pop out, she could only sigh. He'd probably need that money when someone sued him for assault! In one of the larger shops, she browsed the clothes on the rack. "I have a pretty cool collection of stones. I have pieces from almost every country in the world and even some from space. Ooh!" Skylar paused to pull out shirt, a male's shirt! It was in a nice deep shade of green and far more casual than what he was currently wearing. She held it up against him to check the size. "Here! Go try this on!" [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 1, 2009 at 9:37 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "I have a sufficient amount of clothing already," he said, trying to edge away from the shirt. "And this outing was designed to enhance your willingness to acquiesce to my presence." Jean-Luc was feeling very out of place here. Plus, he seemed to be attracting attention of some sort. He was garnering mildly hostile looks from other males (luckily, all non-threats. He was less trigger-happy today than he had been yesterday) and glances from other females in the store. He stood closer to Skylar protectively, unsure of his reception. None of the hostility was aimed toward her, however, so he was willing to let it slide. He hadn't really been popular even in his own program. Or his own family, for that matter. "Is this kind of tension common in this store?" he whispered. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 1, 2009 at 9:49 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar glanced around. Besides a few girls pointing in their direction and whispering in girly giggles, she really didn't see what he was talking about. She rolled her eyes, offering him the shirt again. "Not unless you're afraid of girls checking you out. Try it on anyway! The dressing room is right over there, and if you're scared you just have to peek over the door to see me." she flashed him a teasing grin. Scared of girls no doubt! Maybe that's why he was so stuffy. A brand new school, being a weirdo, everything all different. Totally explains everything! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 1, 2009 at 9:55 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "I am not [i]afraid[/i]. Only cautious. I dislike attracting such attention when I should be keeping a low profile." He looked at the shirt and took it in hand. "Will it make you happy if I try this on?" He eyed the shirt warily, as though it might bite him. Did it have writing on it? What the hell did you need a graphic of wings for? "And do you intend to repeat this process? If so, I require two things. First, please simplify this process by submiting all items for inspection at once. Secondly, turnabout is fair play. If I have to try this on, then you must also experiment with clothing." That ought to make her think twice! [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 1, 2009 at 10:59 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] What was this, some sort of diplomatic negotiations? "It's just clothes." she said, seeing if that might make a difference. Alas, he was serious! "I don't mind trying on clothes. It's a deal then!" Why not! It might be kind of fun and maybe a change of clothes would loosen him up a bit. Skylar circled around the racks, making a few quick selections and handing him the hangers. She picked out a nice variety of styles. A little punk, a little rockstar, and some things that were way more appropriate for after school or weekends. When she didn't think he could hold anything else, she dropped a hat on his head, turned him around and was pushing him towards the dressing room doors. "Okay! Only pair short sleeves with jeans. Button shirts can be jeans or slacks. Long sleeves can be with slacks, but only if they don't have prints. If it fits, it's good, otherwise it's a no go! I'll just be waiting out here." [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 1, 2009 at 8:48 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] Okay, so he was trained in battlefield tactics, not social tactics. His plan didn't exactly work out as he'd intended, and now his arms were full of clothes that he wouldn't even have considered on his own, many more outrageous than the first shirt she'd handed him. And there were rules to these things? He got the weird feeling that if Jones were there, she would be laughing at him. "How do I know if these fit?" he asked as she pushed him at a fitting room. "Civilian clothing fits differently. I--" A sales assistant opened a room for him and he was practically shoved in. "Don't move from this spot," he warned Skylar as the door shut on him. Great. He hoped this wasn't a ploy to get rid of him. He would never live it down if she succeeded in escaping him on his second day, and after such a lively first one. Determined to get his torment over with, he undressed and dressed with all the military speed and efficiency he could muster. What the hell were some of these pieces?! Black slacks he could understand. He actually owned a pair or two himself. And jeans were always functional, but why were some of them already ripped? Shoddy workmanship, that's what that was. He wore through clothes quickly enough without buying them already falling apart. In record time, the dressing room door was flung open to reveal Jean-Luc wearing well-fit dark jeans, a black mock turtleneck with a stark white graphic wrapped around his shoulder and across his back, and a fleece-lined bomber jacket that, on most males, would have come off as a bit presumptuous. He looked like he was going from a runway to a Grumman F6F. Personally, he thought he looked like a fool. "This was designed to warm World War Two fighter pilots. While I retain several classes of license, we no longer use open-air cockpits. What is the function of this in a civilian store?" Was he actually irritated? [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 1, 2009 at 9:39 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Fleeing hadn't quite crossed her mind yet. She picked at some of the clothes on a nearby rack, marveling at how it sounded like he was rustling a cow for someone who was just changing clothes. In a nearby mirror she caught a glimpse of her reflection and was trying to smooth out her hair when she paused. Had she seen that face before? Skylar looked over her shoulder to glance around the store, but didn't see them. That was when Jean-Luc finally exited to the dressing room and she tried not to laugh! It wasn't the [i]clothes[/i] that were so funny, but his expression! "I guess it's not quite the look for you! Find something that's less dressy and more comfortable." she replied, taking a glance over her shoulder again. Nope, still gone! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 1, 2009 at 9:57 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] He knew it. He looked like a fool. He undressed hastily and looked for something more 'casual' as she had put it. Grabbing the original green shirt and a pair of jeans, he yanked them on only to realize that the jeans had a large hole through one knee and a plethora of zippers running down one leg. He shook the offending leg as he opened the door again. "What is the purpose of all these zippers?" As he met Skylar's gaze, he saw a movement from the racks of clothes behind her. But he moved to grab her too late. Out of nowhere, a hand appeared and... ...grabbed and pinched a generous part of her firm cheeks! [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 1, 2009 at 10:07 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar gave a startled yelp as she jumped forward and spun around, her hands rubbing her offended rear end! Hiding in the racks was someone that was far too old to be lurking around and hiding under clothes. With a growl she kicked out a foot to slam him in the face! It worked just find, giving a satisfied THUNK, but the offender didn't seem to mind as he grabbed a hold of her ankle and ran his other hand up her leg! "Eyaaah!! Get off me, you perv!!" she held her skirt down, preparing to sock him in the nose again with her other fist![/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 1, 2009 at 10:24 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] He'd heard of this kind of thing happening, but of all the luck for it to happen today and to Skylar! Jean-Luc lunged and grabbed the man's hand, digging his own fingers into the flesh painfully until the molester let go. Then he yanked the man's arm hard, flipping the pervert over his shoulder and onto the floor. Unfortunately, Skylar had not moved far away enough, and the man's flailing landed him almost square on top of her. At this point there were shrieks and a number of cellphone pictures being taken, and he was forced to duck his head and stoop to haul Skylar up, trying to cover her face as well. Dammit! "I'm sorry, but we're going to have to ask you to leave," a store clerk said. "We can't have this kind of trouble in here." Jean-Luc could already see mall security coming up to deal with the older man. This was the absolute last thing he needed! He looked at the man on the floor, who was starting to get up and say something in his own pathetic defense. A flash went off. Jean-Luc was almost angry. He stomped on the man's hand that was still on the floor, increasing the number of yells and shrieks. A camera was revealed, the viewing panel cracked but still usable. A picture of pink stripey panties at just the right angle was showing up on the screen. Grabbing it, he thrust it at the store clerk. "Evidence," he growled, and disappeared into the dressing room. He emerged while still pulling on his own shirt and grabbed Skylar away from a questioning crowd. "We're going." He towed her for the closest exit. Now he would have to call in to shift his schedule around. "This is what happens when you wear impractical clothing," he muttered to himself. He was still keeping an eye on the crowd and trying not to allow a close picture of either him or Skylar to be taken, so he didn't give enough thought to the familiar face coasting behind them in the pedestrian traffic... [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 1, 2009 at 10:40 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] If it wasn't bad enough to have someone pinch her rear (at least that she could live through!), Jean-Luc had to go and make a big scene about it and get them kicked out of the store! Having a perv fall on top of her and just [i]knowing[/i] people were snapping pics to post all over the internet, it sure didn't improve her mood to have Jean-Luc say it was HER fault for wearing a skirt! As soon as they stepped outside through an exit and was out of sight from peeping passerbys, she yanked herself out of his grasp and socked him in the shoulder. "You [i]jerk[/i]! A girl's clothes don't invite perverts! I should be able to wear a skirt without incident!" Skylar moved to sock him again, but ended up stomping her foot on the concrete with a loud GRRR and turning around to stalk away! "You're completely backwards!" She continued to mutter a few other insults at him as she walked away. [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 1, 2009 at 11:06 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "He wouldn't have been able to take a picture of your underwear if you had been wearing pants," he pointed out, and very reasonably so to his mind. "And I'm not the one who assaulted you, so there is no need for anger." He was moving to grab her elbow when suddenly there was a loud BOOM. The pressure made his ears pop, and a second explosion followed closely. Before he could think, he dove on top of Skylar and rolled with her until they were underneath a sturdy truck. The mall exploded and the screams of those in the parking lot were overwhelmed by the tremendous pressure and the rumbling crashing of the architecture cascading into smoking heaps. Concrete and steel rained down, a red-hot beam landing on the truck above them and pinning Jean-Luc painfully to the ground. Glass shards and small debris billowed into their hiding space. He tried to shield her from the worst of it. When the actual explosions seemed to be over, he moved himself experimentally. He could get out, but it wasn't going to be easy. The truck's suspension was miraculously managing to hold up, although the tires had popped with the pressure. He rolled out of under the truck, then reached back under for Skylar. "Come on, we need to--" he jerked out of view suddenly. From the ground, two pairs of feet could be seen scuffling for only a moment before Jean-Luc dropped, a sharp, jagged piece of metal protruding from his side. He kicked out, rolling back onto his feet. "Run!" A shot rang out and he dropped again. This time, he didn't move. Jake Bradley peered under the truck and extended his hand to Skylar. "Hey there, Princess. Looks like you fell in with the Big Bad Wolf. I guess it's good thing my dad taught me hand to hand, huh?" [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 1, 2009 at 11:55 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] He was infuriating! But Skylar couldn't shout at him again, as there was such a sudden loud BOOM followed by a second, she was covering her ears to shield from the sound! Any scream she wanted to make was caught in her throat as she and Jean-Luc were rolling, and coming to a sudden stop under the shelter of a truck. She could feel heat and glass, goodness knows what else and shielded her head with her arms when the metal of the truck gave a sudden screeching lurch when something came crashing down on top of it. Jean-Luc rolled out and she reached for him, but just as quickly he was gone and hitting the ground with a sickening thud! He had told her to run, but she could hardly bring herself to move! The last person she expected to see peeking under the truck was Jake Bradley. [i]"Hey there, Princess. Looks like you fell in with the Big Bad Wolf. I guess it's good thing my dad taught me hand to hand, huh?"[/i] It was such a strange thing for him to say! Skylar hesitated before she took his hand, allowing him to help her out. But immediately, she was scrambling to kneel next to Jean-Luc. There was blood [i]everywhere[/i]. Her hands moved to check to see if he were even still alive, but she was afraid to touch him! "We need a phone! An ambulance, Jake!"[/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 6:39 AM [soli][b]Jake Bradley[/b] "We need to take care of you first, Skylar," Jake said. He turned the biggest, most innocent gaze at her, using his handsome, clear blue eyes to their fullest. Girls had given in to stupid requests for this look. "What were you doing hanging out with this kid, anyway? He's obviously some kind of kidnapper or terrorist or something. You could've been killed!" Taking her my the arm, Jake started to drag her away. "Come on, we gotta get out of here. What if there's another bomb?" [/soli] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 6:50 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "But he's bleeding! He might be dying!" Jean-Luc would tell her to take care of herself first too. ...And he wasn't a terrorist. At least... she was pretty sure by now that Jean-Luc wasn't a kidnapper or terrorist. She was being pulled to her feet, but she was still tugging her arm back. He told her to run, didn't he? But that was before he was lying bloody on the ground! "I can't... I can't just leave him here like this! [i]Especially[/i] if something explodes again!" [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 6:55 AM [soli][b]Jake Bradley[/b] "Skylar. SKYLAR!" He turned her around to face him. "Listen. How long have you known me? This guy just blew into town and attached himself to you. I bet he even had some crazy-ass story about why he keeps stalking you. But you know my dad is ex-Marines, right? I mean, this kid screams terrorist all over him! Just leave him!" He kept a firm grip on her arm and continued to try and haul her away. Unfortunately, she was resisting so much that it made his jacket slide and hitch, revealing for only the barest moment the handle of a handgun in a holster at his side. [/soli] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 7:09 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Jake made sense. Jean-Luc had been a real pain in the ass and everything he did was totally weird, confusing and occasionally really awkward. She [i]did[/i] constantly feel as if she were being bribed when he did something nice. Jake she had known for over a year now, even if he didn't really notice her up until yesterday! ...but that didn't mean he deserved to be left bleeding to death, did it? "O..okay." Skylar had relaxed (as much as she could anyway!) and was intending to let him lead her when she spied a gun under his jacket. She stopped again, jerking out of his grasp! "Why are you carrying around a gun!" [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 7:25 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1785][b]Jake Bradley[/b] The sirens that had been in the distance were rapidly getting closer. "Shit. Shit! Dammit, Skylar, just come on!" He jerked at her, trying to get her to move, but she was resisting too much! He heaved a long-suffering sigh, pulled the gun out of its holster, and fired at her! The bullet came so close to her face that it sliced through quite a number of hairs and left the barest scratch against her ear. "I'm trying to be calm," he said in a completely different tone. "And I'm trying to do this without outright killing Jean-Luc. Stupid asshole doesn't even recognize me. But we can do this your way, too." He marched back over and shoved the still-smoking gun at Jean-Luc's head, then looked up at Skylar with that school-wide-famous charming smile. "What shall we do, Princess?" [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 7:32 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] [i]Faint[/i]! That's what she was gonna do! The gunshot was so loud her ears were still ringing, she might have even reached up to feel that stinging place at her ear, but now she was just afraid to move! Her knees felt like they were going to buckle out from under her. And now Jake Bradley, that super cute guy she had been crushing on all summer was now aiming a gun at Jean-Luc's head and asking her to choose! Choose what?! "Don't! Just don't!" she said quickly, surprised that she could even find her voice to do so. "We can go anywhere, just [i]don't[/i]!" Skylar pleaded![/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 7:44 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=17&pictureid=1785][b]Jake Bradley[/b] "You have no idea who you're wasting your sympathy on. Do you know what [i]his[/i] family has done to hundreds of innocents? What [i]he's[/i] done? Do you even know why he wants you?" With every mention of Jean-Luc, Jake jabbed the gun at him again. "But since you're asking so nice, I'll let him go." Another one of those calm smiles! "You know, I've liked you since the end of freshman year. You were always different from the airheads in our class." He walked calmly back to her, then punched her hard in the gut! "But not different enough, I guess." He fished into a pocket and brought out something that looked like a syringe for a needle, but instead of a needle there was just a flat surface ending in a silver coating. He held her up, keeping her from falling over, and pressed the flat end to her neck! There was the hiss of something decompressing. "Sorry, but it'll be better if you don't remember things. And since you won't be recalling these past couple of days, I probably don't have to keep my promise about Jean-Luc." He tucked the syringe back into his pocket and aimed the gun calmly at Jean-Luc's prone body. He pulled the hammer back slowly... [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 8:21 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Every time he jabbed Jean-Luc with the gun she cringed! It was a relief when he stood to approached her, though short lived when his fist collided with her stomach and she was gasping in pain. Something pressed against her neck followed by a strange ice cold sensation surging it's way through her blood. Skylar gave a soft mewling sound of protest, so sure that she was very likely about to die. [i]'He's going to shoot him anyway..!'[/i] Skylar didn't think again, she just moved! The heel of her foot came down just as hard as she could stomp, catching him in that delicate spot at the ankle with the angled heel of her shoe. When she told Jean-Luc she'd break toes, she wasn't kidding! One of her legs darted between his, to curl around his calf in a quick sweep. Her sudden movements must have caught him by surprise, as she able to use her body weight to crash them both to the ground! Skylar was scrambling to try and steal the gun from him, but it must have knocked from his hands! She rolled off, scooting backwards until her back hit the truck behind her as she glanced around to try and find the gun. But all she could see was shattered glass and mangled metal... and that face! In everything that could reflect, there was that person who wasn't even there at all! Everything was dimming so badly, the reflections were all she could see![/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 2:32 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] Dammit! He hadn't expected Skylar to do something quite so harebrained as try to disarm someone with obviously superior martial skill. But to his surprise, it worked! The gun went flying and Jean-Luc threw his weight to the side to grab it. Rising with it firmly in hand, he grasped the piece of metal in his side, braced himself, and yanked it out. He hissed but kept the gun trained on Jake, insinuating himself between the student and his charge. Shots rang out. Jean-Luc shouted and threw Skylar to the ground, covering her, then rolled back off and dove at Jake. Bullets ricocheted dangerously close to the girl, one shattering a piece of glass and dispelling the mysterious reflection. Another round of shots was fired and suddenly Jean-Luc was rising sharply from the ground. He caught Jake in the throat, this time like he meant it, and Jake was down, gurgling helplessly as Jean-Luc lashed his wrists together and divested him of weapons. "Connelly." He slapped her gently on the cheek, trying to revive her. "Connelly. Get up. Are you hurt?" He forced her onto her feet. "My team is on its way, but we have to move. Can you?" [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 2:47 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Don't forget. Don't forget! Skylar was repeating the phrase in her head, even mumbling it softly over and over. That distant expression across her face seemed to dispel along with the shattered glass. Though she blinked with an owlish confusion as he pulled her too her feet. Skylar shook her head, but it wasn't clear which question she was responding to! She heaved a heavy sniffle, dragging the back of her hand against her cheek to wipe the tears away. Tears feeling ice cold against her hand, and a strange silvery sheen to them, like watered down paint. The question of [i]how[/i] didn't come to her. Instead she was throwing her arms around Jean-Luc's neck and clinging for dear life! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 3:04 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] That definitely wasn't on the list of reactions he thought Skylar would have. Why was she shaking her head? Did that mean she couldn't walk? Deciding to err on the side of caution, he gently scooped her off her feet, bracing her tightly against his chest. Blood oozed from the gash above his hip, but he ignored it. Something was definitely wrong with her. Was she crying silver? Was that an effect of what Jake had given her? Why did Jake seem to know him? Nono. He had to push all the questions out of his mind and just concentrate on what he was going to do. The radio piece nestled behind his ear crackled to life. A new piece of technology, the skin patch sent sound waves directly to his eardrum through his flesh, so it sounded like someone was whispering right next to him. [i]Roman 7, unable to rendezvous at previous location. Location swarmed with local enforcement. Suggesting change of location.[/i] That would be Jones. Damn. They were on their own for a while longer. And Skylar was getting clammy and cold, maybe from shock. He absently massaged her arm with his fingers as he trotted through the parking lot. [i]Roman 7, roger. Requesting coordinates.[/i] As he memorized the numbers being fed through his comm, he wove his way around cars and debris until he found their car. "Stay with me, Skylar. Talk. Don't lose consciousness yet." He unlocked the car and tucked her carefully into the passenger seat, ignoring the grime and blood that smeared the otherwise new upholstery. He slid into the driver's side and threw the car into gear, backing out with complete disregard for the state of the road behind him. They had to get out. Fast. As he turned the wheel, one of his hands slipped, coated in his own blood. Damn, that was worse than he thought. Or maybe some of it was hers? He tried to look her over while still keeping an eye on the road. She'd never said if she was hurt or not. What had that terrorist done to her? [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 3:16 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar didn't want to let go of him, but there wasn't much choice in the matter. Her hands clasps around her seat belt instead as her eyes squeezed shut. Words didn't seem to come to her, she was so busy concentrating on [i]don't forget[/i]. Little pieces were already trying to slip out of her head. Talk! "Are you dead?" That wasn't exactly what she meant to say, but words and thoughts were getting jumbled up. He wanted her to talk. Even with her eyes closed she could feel the motion of the car and it was giving her a weird feeling of vertigo! "'m freezing!" Not her skin but her [i]blood[/i] was cold! Like on a hot day feeling an ice cold soda going down, only it was a chill running through her veins instead![/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 3:25 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] Shit. Cold? "It's probably shock. There's a little switch at the side of your seat. Recline it all the way back." He reached across her and into the dash, pulling out a thin thermal blanket and shaking it out until he could get it over her. He was starting to feel chilly too, but that was more likely blood loss. He turned up the heat in the car and applied more pressure to the gas. They were cutting through back roads now, flying over them much faster than it was probably safe to go. The most important part was that no one was there to see them. "I'm not dead. It was stupid of him to think that I would wander around with no protection." He ripped at the bullet hole in his shirt, revealing a sort of half-shirt that strapped tightly to him like a second skin. Silver shone through in a small circle above where his heart would be, and a metal slug was embedded in the many dense fibers. "See? I'm not even seriously injured. The question is: are you?" [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 3:39 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] If she tilted back, would she pass out? If she passed out, would she forget? She was shaking her head again until she blinked her eyes open to tilt to the side so she could see him. He wasn't dead. "But there's blood." Skylar responded, softly. Was it hers? No, that was his! She couldn't forget! She pried her hands loose from her seat belt, curling them in to the blanket instead. The cold wasn't going away. Everything on the outside was getting warmer, but her blood was still ice cold. For a moment she thought she fell asleep, but a sudden turn jostled her back to consciousness again. "Just don't die. I can't save you." she muttered, her eyes closing again. She needed to call him an ambulance and Jake wasn't helping! He was going to bleed to death! But that's not where they were anymore, was it? [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 3:57 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "As long as it's not yours, everything will be fine." He reached out with one blood-slicked hand to grab hers. His touch was blazing hot and a little sticky, but definitely alive. "You're the one who needs saving. Not me." They veered off the road and continued until they were quite some way into a forest. But they still weren't done. Jean-Luc began yanking things out of the central and glove compartments: a small pack that clipped onto his belt, some devices, two pistols and a machine gun. Then he slid Skylar out of the car again, cradling her gently as he marched deeper into the woods. He had to shift her around to check his location his the GPS every so often, so it was another ten minutes of brisk walking before they emerged into a clearing large enough to let in sunlight but not big enough to allow visibility from above. Here he stopped. He set Skylar down in a patch of warm grass underneath a lightning-struck tree and slid to the ground just beside her. His ragged shirt clung to his skin and he made a face as he pulled the threads away from his side. The good news was that he was much better off than he looked. "Stay awake. Jones and the others will be here soon." [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 4:11 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar was drifting in and out of consciousness, occasionally tensing when she'd wake up and not recall where she was. Staying awake was far more difficult than it sounded! She tried to remain sitting up, but her body was feeling so heavy, she ended up tilting over and collapsing with her head on his lap. That wasn't too bad. He was warm - better than the blanket had been! Skylar curled her fingers to cling to the fabric of his pants, trying desperately to stay awake. "What if I forget and you die when I'm not looking..?" [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 4:42 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "We will all die sometime," he told her softly. "Some sooner rather than later. It is not the length of your life that matters-- it is the quality of it. What you did with the time you had." He could hear footsteps coming toward them and silently picked up the submachine gun by his side. He turned and had almost pulled the trigger before he realized who it was. "Jones," he breathed. "Damn it's never been so nice to see you. She'd been injected with something..." The rest of the day resulted in medical care, soothing ruffled feathers, and more paperwork than he really cared for. In light of the mall bombing, school had been postponed for a few days. A medical specialist was flown in to treat Skylar personally, but there was a lot of doubt as to whether or not she was actually viable. Nonetheless, Jean-Luc was ordered to stay by her. After all, she had generated some interest regardless of her viability, and it was their duty to protect civilians as well. When Skylar finally awoke with a clear head, she was in her own bed, dressed in her own pajamas, and there was no sign of anyone else having ever been in her house. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 4:58 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Morning already! Uugh... if she could only sleep for a few more hours. Not today, though. It was club signup day and she intended to actually get some members this time! Without a groan, she sat up and rubbed her head. God, she [i]hurt[/i]. Must have slept in a bad position. But as she climbed out of bed, something didn't quite feel right. She picked up her brush from the dresser and glanced up at the mirror. [b]DON'T FORGET.[/b] Silver letters over the glass. She reached up her fingers to touch, but in a blink it was gone! Don't forget? Don't forget. There was something really important. She glanced around her room with a weird sort of haze. Everything that could reflect, she could see the words. [i]Don't forget.[/i] Stumbling out of her room, it was there in the hallway too! On the picture frames, even on doorknobs. That's right! It's not Signup day at all. Something happened. As she wandered in to the living room, she was expecting to find someone. The one thing she wasn't supposed to forget! "Help, there's a stalker in my house..?" she asked, and waited! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 5:14 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] It was about the time Skylar got herself downstairs that the doorbell rang, shortly followed by a confident knock. Standing outside was a tall boy with fair hair and a build more slender but no less athletic than Jake's. He wore a school blazer and carried a canvas backpack. The pin on his lapel indicated that he was in Skylar's grade, and he peered at the door through stylish rectangular frames that somehow didn't match the rest of his appearance. "Connelly? You told me we could talk over the first geo club field trip if I dropped by on my way to class, but we're going to be late at this rate!" the boy called. Jean-Luc felt like a fool, but apparently the psych specialists had decided that glasses were needed to make him blend in more and to avoid as much recognition from his first day as possible. At least he'd only gotten a verbal dressing-down for the escapades of last week. The other thing the psychologists and doctors had agreed on was that Skylar was not likely to remember much. That was probably just as well. She would probably fear or hate him if she had. He knocked again. Being late would draw attention they didn't need. "Connelly!" [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 5:26 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Ah HA! There it was. Wait. That wasn't what she was expecting. ...What was she expecting though? Skylar moved to answer the door. She swung it open in the middle of his knocking, nibbling on her bottom lip as she blinked at him. She knew [i]exactly[/i] who this was! But... it was kind of lost somewhere. If she could just think for a few minutes. She reached out to take his glasses, folding them up and just... keeping them. That looked better. "I don't... have anything ready for school." School - probably the most important thing in her entire life - and she wasn't prepared? Did she even pick up her uniforms? She obviously wasn't dressed for classes! "Where are you hiding your guns?" she tested. This scene wasn't right. He was supposed to be weird! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 5:34 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "Guns?" he did his best to sound blank. She wasn't supposed to remember anything! But she didn't sound certain, so maybe he could still convince her. He wasn't a really good liar though. Just cover it up with stress, that was the way. He tried to take his glasses back from her. "Guns aren't allowed at schools, particularly civilian ones. Connelly, classes start in forty-five minutes. Why aren't you dressed?" She looked like a wreck, and her motions on the monitors they'd installed in her house had seemed lost. He pushed his way inside her house and closed the door behind him. "I thought only exemplary students were made presidents of student organizations." He looked around as though seeing her house for the first time. Everything seemed to be secure and in place. He forgot to slouch while he was distracted, and even clasped his hands behind his back as though the house itself were under his review. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 5:43 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar looked offended as she stepped backwards, holding his glasses out of reach. "You're such a jerk!" He did that a lot! Saying insulting things with a straight face. Wasn't she mad at him about her skirt? "You don't even wear glasses." she said slowly. He stood like a military man. That was important. Argh. But so was [i]school[/i]. How could it be school time already? Reluctantly, she was turning around to head back for her room and get dressed. But there it was again. In the mirror. [i]DON'T FORGET.[/i] "Shut up! I'm trying to remember!" she shouted at the mirror as she passed it! It was all still a little muddled, she'd figure it out![/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 5:50 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] What was she trying to remember? As she went upstairs, presumably to her bedroom, he looked at the mirror. There was nothing on it. He breathed on it gently, but there was no invisible script. Nothing on the back. Hm. He replaced it on the wall and went to her kitchen to throw together a breakfast. "What did you forget?" he called up to her. Maybe stressing her was the wrong thing to do. How did you relax a probably hormonal teenaged girl? A cup of fresh fruit with granola and yogurt, coffee in a thermos, and an egg and bacon sandwich later, he waited at the bottom of the stairs for her to come down, holding said items in his hands. She'd have to eat it on the run or they really would be late. "Are you going to return my glasses?" he called up the stairs. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 6:08 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "They're not your glasses!" she shouted. She was just pulling on her socks and shoes. Her uniforms had been there, neatly arranged in her closet. She never arranged things neatly. In fact, a lot of things in her room had been moved around a bit. But there wasn't any time to investigate! She was pulling on her jacket and set his glasses on her nose as she came downstairs. Totally fake glasses. At the bottom of the stairs she took the fruit cup. He made really good breakfast. She remembered that too. "I don't know what I forgot, I'm still figuring it out." she replied. Man, she really didn't want to go to school. That was a first. Skylar sighed! "I guess we better get to school. Maybe I can claim Jake Bradley for my science partner." Of course, as soon as she said it, there was a peculiar expression her face. There was something she was forgetting there too. Didn't he karate chop Jake, or something?[/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 6:32 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "Who's Jake Bradley?" he asked innocently. "Another geo club member?" At least she was eating. He took her bookbag for her and waited patiently for her to lock the door. He just wished Jake would show his face at school. But he obviously had training, and after losing would most likely beat a hasty and very well-covered retreat. It had turned out that his prints weren't in any databases, so he had proved almost impossible to track. The school records and even his driving permit led to informational dead ends. Jake Bradley simply didn't exist. The school was swathed in red, white, blue, and black, a tribute to those killed in the alleged terrorist attack. The theory was that the mall had been the target because the security at the nearby air force base had been too tight. The first order of business this morning was a large memorial service, followed by a speech by the principal and several more talks from the guidance center about mourning and fear. Jean-Luc sat stoically through it all, keeping a suspicious eye on the proceedings. He only moved to sit and stand, and once to intercept the ribbons students were pinning into their uniforms. He refused to let Skylar close to the pins, and insisted on tying the ribbon through her buttonhole instead. Damned if he was going to be careless again. For all he knew there was more than one Jake in this school. It wasn't until around lunchtime that he realized one of his stitches had popped loose. He tried to inconspicuously tighten his bandages under his shirt. He couldn't leave Skylar's side in such an unsecured area! He knew he should have sewn the linen together properly instead of pinning it! [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 6:45 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Who was Jake Bradley? Well, he was only the greatest player on the soccer team and possible her future husband! She didn't say that though. The thoughts didn't sit well with her now. Like she had been betrayed, but there was nothing to betray in the first place. At school there was no sign of Jake Bradley, and worse more there was a lot of commotion about the explosion at the mall. The entire tribute made her feel ill. Guilty. She was sure the entire thing had been her fault! Whatever happened had done it on that day. Skylar was so lost in thought she hadn't noticed Jean-Luc being peculiar. Everything was making her feel so weird she couldn't even concentrate on classes! By lunch, she was ready to sit still somewhere and stare at Jean-Luc until she had it all under control. Speaking of staring, he was twisting around awkwardly. Skylar frowned. "What's hiding under there?" Silver and metal. Silver right - she reached out and poked him in the chest - there! There had been a hole in his shirt! But he wasn't dead. [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 6:54 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "I'm not hiding an--ything." He managed not to wince, but he couldn't help it when his breath hitched as she poked him in the chest. It might not have killed him, but the velocity of a bullet smacking straight into you was no laughing matter! And she'd jabbed him dead in the center of the palm-sized bruise hidden under his shirt! "Are you sure that you're feeling well? A lot of students are going home early. Perhaps you should too." He didn't have a protocol if she remembered what had happened. The statistical chances of that happening and not being viable were so low that they hadn't bothered to plan. But it was looking more and more like she was somehow regaining her lost memories! [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 7:02 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] See! He was wincing! How come he wasn't [i]saying[/i] anything about it though? He knew exactly what she was trying to remember, but he was keeping it a secret! Skylar's hand was moving to poke him in the side when she paused. "I [i]am[/i] a little off today. Missing the first day of school wouldn't hurt." she retracted her hand. If she stayed here any longer, she was going to end up flipping out. Between the memorial making her feel guilty and all the missing pieces, she didn't know how much more she could take! "I'll go home. You'll have to take notes for me and bring my homework. I don't want to get off to a bad start." He wouldn't do it. He was going to insist he took her home. And then she would get mad about him following her, and then he'd say something stupid and she'd call him a jerk. That happened before too! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 7:22 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] Right on cue, Jean-Luc spoke up. "No, I live nearby. I'll walk you home. It's not safe with terrorists around. Besides, if I don't then they'll ask campus security to drive you home." Which would be a lot less safe and a lot more conspicuous. "Nothing of import will happen in classes today. The perceived mental threat to the students is taking priority. Thus are the benefits to a private education." He stood and waited for her to get up so they could go by the nurse's office. There was already a small line forming. At this rate, the classes may as well have been canceled. "Skylar, you poor thing!" Nurse Rourke said. She enveloped Skylar in a warm hug that made Jean-Luc tense for a moment. "This is so horrible. Have you told your parents? Are they coming back soon? I'm so worried that you're all alone at a time like this. Maybe we can arrange for you to stay with a relative..." "I'm a relative, actually." Jean-Luc managed to lie without looking too obvious. "Third cousin on her father's side, but my father and hers were close as children. When Father heard she would be alone, they arranged for me to live close by." The nurse looked at him skeptically. To be honest, there wasn't much of a family resemblance. He invented frantically. He should have memorized those lines better, but spywork wasn't his forte! "I... was in the boy scouts. And ROTC," he said. "In my old school." That didn't seem to convince the nurse. "And we've got a strong sense of family," he finished. He tried to hide the fact that he was sweating with nerves. He could stare down the barrel of a gun but he couldn't lie to a woman old enough to be his mother? Too late he realized that the Girard and Connelly names came from totally different parts of the world. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 7:32 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar didn't exactly take the hug well herself, giving a grim 'aargh, stop touching me!' smile. It was a relief when the Nurse let go, but now she was staring at Jean-Luc with the same quizzical expression as Nurse Rourke! "You're not my [i]cousin[/i]." she said out loud. "I met you... the other day when you signed up for Geology Club!" HA! YES! Jean-Luc Girard! He wanted to join her club and he beat up two students for no reason, and then told her she didn't take her own safety seriously. Then there was that weird allergic reaction and he completely freaked out... Her safety. "Sorry. He's an [i]exchange student[/i] and he's totally embarrassed about it and I don't know why. My parents thought it would be fun but he's kind of weird sometimes." she explained quickly. [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 8:28 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] Jean-Luc shot her a look of horror mixed with relief. Why was she covering for him? Had she actually remembered, or was it for some other reason? "I'm French," he supplied with a perfect Parisian accent. "It seemed most prudent not to stand out more than needed. I apologize." This seemed to make everything clear at once. "Well, if you need anything, make sure to call," the nurse said finally. "I'll excuse the both of you, seeing how you're responsible for each other right now. Make sure to lock up tight and don't open the house for strangers." "Yes ma'am." Jean-Luc said quickly. Before she could change her mind, he took Skylar by the elbow and escaped from the school! He towed her through an irregular back path that popped out in someone's lawn a few blocks from her house. "It was kind of you to cover up for me back there," he said cautiously, as though he hadn't practically sprinted away from the school with her in tow. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 8:38 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Was the accent really necessary? Skylar didn't have much time to question him about it. He made sure to rush them out of school and took a path she'd never even realized was there. She had to watch her feet carefully just to keep up without stumbling. When he finally stopped, she realized there were only a little bit away from her house. "Why aren't you telling me anything?" she asked right away. "I [i]know[/i] something happened, and I [i]know[/i] I don't remember all of it. But you're not a student for sure." Skylar hesitated a moment, with a pained expression. "I know the mall was my fault too, I just can't remember why." That's right. There was blood everywhere and she thought he was dead. She reached out to tug up his shirt and check for the wound! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 8:48 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "Not here." He blocked her from lifting his shirt and escorted her into her house, locking the door before he decided to answer any more questions. "The mall was not your fault. You were just there by coincidence. And I'm not telling you anything because there's nothing to tell. I'm a student here, just like you." He crossed his arms over his chest so she couldn't poke around there anymore! [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 8:55 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "Okay, you are the [i]worst[/i] liar. And I know you are, because we did this before the LAST time you tried to pretend you were normal!" Skylar took their things and set them down out of the way. This was so frustrating! He was making her feel completely crazy, and she was sure everything else had her crazy enough as it was. "All right. If you are just a student, then I can go outside and start screaming random stuff, and no one will care right?" she was already inching for the back door. If he was going to be stubborn she was going to force it out of him until she remembered on her own. "I bet the neighborhood wants to hear about my new military bodyguard!" she had her hand on the doorknob! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 9:05 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "If you open that door, you'll trip the alarm," he told her automatically. Aargh, he wan't supposed to say stuff like that! "Why can't you just accept that I'm a student who happens to like rocks and wants to get to know the president of the geology club?" He'd uncrossed his arms at least. "I am completely normal." [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 9:16 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "Ha! See. We didn't have an alarm system!" She didn't open the door though. Last thing she wanted to do was trip something loud and have ringing in her ears. Her hands moved u quickly to her ears. Someone had [i]shot[/i] at her! There was a brief moment of panic before she squished that back down. All was safe and sound right now. She didn't have to freak out. Huffing, she was running out of ideas to make him spill the beans. The last thing she wanted to was [i]really[/i] get in trouble. He almost died to protect her. And she didn't even thank him. She could barely even remember it. Skylar frowned, and before she knew it she was crossing the floor to throw her arms around his waist and hug him! She didn't mean to squeeze so tight, but it was better than tearing up like a baby! "I don't want to accept you normal." she muttered. "I want to know why you're really here and to say thank you." [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 9:23 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] In seventeen years of life, Jean-Luc couldn't once remember ever being hugged this way. It made him feel odd, like he'd swallowed too much soda at once and it somehow ended up in his chest. Also, it hurt. A lot. Pain was pulsing in his side where her arm was pinching against his bandage and on his chest approximately where her head was resting. He tried to ignore it, along with the urge to break her grapple and throw her across the room. Hug, not grapple. Hug. "It's my duty to protect you. No thanks are necessary," he said instead. He was still trying to figure out what to do with his own arms when he noticed his white shirt slowly staining red. Great. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 9:36 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "So you admit that you are Commander Military Guy!" Caught him! Hook, line, and sinker! He was so tense though, that she loosened her grip near completely. That was when she realized he was bleeding through his shirt. Skylar paled and took a quick step back. That sudden sharp memory of him covered in blood and lying so still on the ground. "You're bleeding again." It was hard to differentiate between this moment and what she remembered! With shaking hands she was moving to get the phone and call him doctor! Or maybe she should get the first aid kit first! Skylar made a sharp turn towards the closet. "You're going to bleed to death like this!" [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 2, 2009 at 9:44 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "First Sergeant is the proper title," he barked, as if to an impertinent subordinate. Then he caught himself. "I mean..." But she wasn't listening anyway. She seemed to be walking around with that lost look on her face again. "Sit down," he said instead. She was holding a first aid kit in her hands, which would do. He took it from her and planted her firmly in a kitchen chair, then sat as well and stripped off his blazer, followed by his ruined dress shirt. He slowly unwrapped the bandage around his waist to reveal the stitches. As he'd predicted, one of them had pulled loose. He began sorting through the kit for the proper materials. He looked up at Skylar, who was looking quite pale. "This is very minor," he repeated. "If colorful." Was that supposed to be military humor? The reference to color was obviously the gigantic bruise on his chest. It was a terrible purple/green/yellow/black color and crisscrossed against it were the pale lines of old scars. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 2, 2009 at 9:55 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "It doesn't look minor to me..." It looked [i]bad[/i]. Skylar had scratched and bruises, but none of them were as bad as that. She remember now, he was going to help her out from under the truck, but someone else was there. He told her to run, but she didn't. Then there was a gunshot and someone else was helping her... "Do you get hurt a lot? In what you do?" He had lots of other scars. Had he been shot before? "What if something happens again and you get hurt worse?" He was still here, so he thought the could be a next time. If there was and she didn't do something he might even die. [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 3, 2009 at 9:10 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "This is minor," he repeated. "It does not impair my ability to function." He frowned at the gash and found temporary sutures in the kit. He got to work, pressing isopropyl and then an antibiotic salve to the bloody wound. It had to hurt, but he didn't blink. "I'm just a student," he continued firmly in response to her other question. "I don't do anything special. But I am... clumsy." The last he said with a slightly sour look. He didn't want to be portrayed as inept, but it was the best cover he could think of. "I run into things a lot." Judging by the scars, he must have run into everything from knives to small fires. "And if I acquire another injury, I will deal with it. There is no need to look so worried. Very little short of death will prevent me from coming to your aid." He said it with such a serious look! "If you need to take your mind off it, though, I could teach you some self-defense. It would be useful in the current environment. It should sufficiently occupy your mind." And maybe help her forget the things she just remembered. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 7:31 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Well... he seemed to be handling the wound okay. Which did help her worry a little less. But he was still trying to deny pretty much everything she was so sure actually happened, and it was starting to make her mad! "Being a [i]military guy[/i] I bet you do know lots of tricks." she said, trying to once again emphasize that she wasn't buying the Student Story. Skylar paused a moment and tilted her head. That reminded her. "Did you say you were going to take me to a practice yester- er... a few days ago? Is that the same thing, or is that going to be one of those 'Pretend it didn't happen so Skylar looks crazy' sort of things?" She sort of wondered if he'd even be able to [i]move[/i] being wounded like that. [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 7:39 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] She definitely wasn't believing that he was just a student. He had the sinking feeling that this might constitute failure on at least one of his objectives, and that somewhere Jones and Rhames were laughing at him. "Being a student makes my situation more dangerous," he said. Maybe if he pretended he didn't hear her hints she would forget all about them! "And yours. As I said, I was in the ROTC in my former school..." A total lie, although as close to the truth as he could get. "...And I have picked up a few tricks. There is an area in which we can practice, if you wish." He finished tending to his wound and began putting things back into the box. "You're just stressed, not crazy. You should take your mind off it." [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 7:54 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar resisted the urge to shake him. ...but decided she [i]did[/i] want to take her mind off things. Regardless of what he said, she knew the mall was still her fault and if something like that were to happen again, she wanted to make sure he wouldn't get hurt in the process. "Okay. I want to learn some self-defense stuff. But you have to tell me why you're here besides babysitting me. ...And where do you [i]live[/i]?" Now that she thought about, Skylar really didn't know anything about him besides... the obvious! She was pretty curious. [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 8:01 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] He rummaged in his bookbag until he came up with a tight black shirt, which he slid on instead of his bloodied uniform shirt. Satisfied, he got up and found a couple bottles of water in her fridge and then escorted her out of the house. The whole time, he was trying to think of what kind of lie to tell her. Glancing at her, he could tell she was losing patience. Oddly enough, he car was already in the driveway! Although now it was dark blue and not black at all. "I live across the street," he said finally. He got her secured in the car and started it, pulling smoothly out of the driveway. "And I'm here to go to school. But since we're neighbors, I thought it would be nice to get to know each other." There was the barest hint of a question at the end of his sentence. Would that be a good enough excuse? Skylar was really sharp, and her guesses were all correct. He had to play things carefully, as she all but had him by the balls! [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 8:15 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] That was believable. Living across the street. The house had been for sale for awhile and was recently purchased. She never saw anyone move in though. Was it like, bodyguard stake out central? Of course, the car being blue through her off a little. This was different. She distinctly remembered black and there being blood getting smeared everywhere. ...although that was a good reason to replace a car! "How much does it cost to have the military replace cars like this?" she asked. "When we get back, I'd like to see the inside of your house. I never knew the people that were there before, so I'd like to see what it looks like inside." He probably had lots of equipment in there! There was no way he'd be able to hide THAT from her![/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 8:24 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "I'm not part of the military. This car was a present from my father." He couldn't make that last line sound believable. If anything, it sounded like getting a gift from his dad was the lying part and not being in the military was the truth! "And my house is very spartan. There is not much to see." Except stacks of equipment designed to monitor Skylar through motion, infrared, readouts for hidden cameras and sound bugs in her house. Other than that, it was totally spartan. Oh, and the hidden locker of gear. But other than that. Eventually, they pulled into a small abandoned lot at the edge of town surrounded by trees. A series of targets, a table, and a small locker were already set up. Jean-Luc helped Skylar out of the car and opened the locker quickly. Four guns of three different types rested inside, as well as goggles, noise cancelers, and boxes of ammo. He pulled out the handguns and set them on the table with some boxes, then handed a set of goggles and noise cancelers to Skylar. "Here. We'll start with firearms." [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 8:35 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Did he really think having a big place like this all setup ahead of schedule was supposed to look natural? Skylar was giving him the [i]look[/i], hoping it'd at least make him sweat. These stories of his really weren't all that well thought out. Even if she didn't remember bits and pieces of the past few days, she totally wouldn't be buying it. The guns though... that was the last straw. "I can't use [i]those[/i]. Are you crazy? Guns are dangerous, and I'm pretty sure you're not supposed to be handing out your military weapons to teenage girls!" [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 8:47 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "These are a civilian model. You should learn to shoot one, even if you don't own one. The others are only to familiarize you with the concept of a shotgun and sub-machine. You need not be accurate with them." "At the very least, let me teach you how to effectively disable this firearm. If you manage to disarm an opponent and cannot utilize it yourself, you should know how to dispose of it efficiently so that it no longer poses a threat. Then, if you still object, I will teach you how to break a hold and how to handle a situation in which you have been made a hostage." Part of him was irked. He was just trying to help her save her own skin! And a subordinate would have just said 'Yes, First Sergeant!' and gotten to work. Civilian life sure was different. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 8:56 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "I definitely don't ever want to shoot someone." Skylar said very seriously. Last the she wanted to do was hurt people. "I don't want to kill anybody." He had that look on his face like he was perturbed by her responses. Was that the military stuff kicking in? He did always get mad when she tried to explain she was just a normal person and normal people don't do this kind of stuff! "Show me everything else. Um..." she paused. "...why would someone have me as a hostage? How likely is that to happen? When we're done here today I can make you dinner at your place." Now she was getting sneaky. Slipping in serious questions with completely harmless comments to see if he'll reply![/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 9:14 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] Slightly frustrated, he nonetheless replaced the safety items in the locker and removed the other two guns, then loaded each one. "If you've ever been inside a gas station or a grocery store, you were already at risk of a hostage situation," he said. "There may be multiple hostages. And breaking holds will help if someone ever grabs you in an attempt to force sexual desire upon you. Being of an age, you are increasingly at risk." He picked up a handgun first. "There are two types of loading. Individual bullets, and in clips, pr magazines. This is one of the latter." He showed her how to tell. "Dinner would be pleasant, but I am capable of cooking for myself." "First rule: never touch the barrel of a gun immediately after it has been fired. If you must, know that it will be extremely hot, and do not relinquish your grip. Second rule: In the case of a firearm utilizing a clip, there is always one bullet in the chamber." Then she showed her how to release the clip with only a single hand, and how to get rid of the extra bullet. His favorite method seemed to be to shoot the attacker. "Even if it doesn't hit, it may deter him." He handed the other gun to her and repeated the motions more slowly, so she could follow. He showed her how to empty the clip so that the bullets scattered. Then he moved on to the other two. He even fired them to get her used to the sound. All this with the deft precision and thoughtlessness of someone who could do it in his sleep. He even hit the targets dead-on almost without aiming. He refused to move on until she could disable a firearm at a reasonable speed. Unfortunately, his idea of reasonable seemed to be based on his own rate, which was damn fast. "When you finish this we will move on to breaking holds." Was that supposed to be an incentive? "And I will allow you to ask me another question." Not that he was obligated to answer truthfully. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 9:30 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar was trying to keep all of his instructions in order. He really was speaking them out too fast. She didn't complain about it, though and did her best to mimic what he did with as little fumbling as possible. It was frustrating! Jean-Luc made it look very easy, and it simply wasn't designed for some teenage girl to be handling! Him [i]firing[/i] the guns was even worse. She jumped the first few times he did it, and cast him a scowl with each one. She was still fighting with one of the guns when she bothered to comment. "I know you can cook for yourself, but I can cook too. If you're going to show me all this, the least I can do is cook dinner at your house." Ha! She managed to disassemble the thing, even if she did accidentally let a curse word slip in the process! "How many people have you bodyguarded before me? Does the government think I'm an alien or something?" Maybe they thought she was a terrorist? But then, she wouldn't be getting a bodyguard, she'd probably get carted away to a prison somewhere! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 9:37 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] He praised her for being able to disassemble one weapon, and then immediately told her to do it again, faster. He didn't mind the cursing. She was as pure as snow compared to some of the language he had heard! "I'm not a bodyguard. I'm just a student. I don't know what the government thinks. And there is no need for thanks. Civilians should look out for each other." He still didn't realize that civilians didn't actually refer to themselves like that. Well, at least he didn't have to flat out lie this time. He'd really never been a bodyguard, although he had served as a temporary escort on a team in the past. He wasn't about to give in to dinner, either, unless refusing would jeopardize building a feeling of mutual trust between the two of them. That rapport might be important later. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 9:47 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar hissed under her breath as she tried again, but it wasn't at the gun this time - it was him! He was really determined to keep this story up! She understood that what happened at the mall was bad, and maybe they - whoever "they" was - might be worried about her flipping out or something if she remembered. But she [i]she[/i] did remember, so keeping up the whole charade wasn't necessary. "What if someone grabs me and wants something [i]other[/i] than uh, sexual desires, but I don't know what they're talking about? Don't bad guys usually torture you until you tell them? If I don't know what they want, they might torture me for hours calling me a liar." She finished with the gun, and before he bothered to tell her it still wasn't fast enough, she was trying to put it back and start the process over. Stupid gun! "Us [i]civilians[/i] also don't dodge having their neighbors over for dinner. Are you afraid of girls?" [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 9:56 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] Afraid of girls? [i]Afraid[/i] of... "No," he said stiffly. "Although I do respect your gender. My house is simply not suitable for guests." "And if someone wants something that you cannot provide, simply tell them that you know nothing about what they are speaking of. Offer alternatives, if possible. Offer any information you do know, but attempt to persuade them that you cannot give information you do not have. It is permissible in your situation to show fear, but not uncontrollable fear. They will become complacent if they believe you will be obedient. Your best defense is to avoid remaining in the situation for long, and generally acquiescing to their demands. That is why we are here today." She was almost up to a decent speed. If only she could do it without looking at the gun! [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 10:08 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "I don't know if I can do that. Talk and make stuff up. Especially not if I get shot at, or fingers get chopped off, or someone else gets shot off." Now she was distracted, hardly paying attention to what she was doing and frowning at the topic. The other day had been so frightening, she couldn't imagine being able to do that again. "I don't think you understand what it's like to be me or a normal person at all! You do this all the time, don't you? Fighting bad guys? I just go to school. Haven't you [i]ever[/i] just... gone to school and not think about this stuff?" Skylar handed him back the gun emptied and reloaded again. "Show me how to stop someone from hitting me! That hurt and I don't want that to happen again."[/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 10:28 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] He suppressed a sigh and accepted the gun back. "You will practice this again tonight." It was obviously an order and not a request. But he moved on anyway. He positioned himself behind her and took her into a firm but gentle hold that let her feel the warm, muscular hardness of his body. "There are several points you should attempt to strike in any person when trying to break free. These are best if you still have some mobility," he spoke into her ear. "The instep." He nudge his instep against her foot to show her. "If possible, underneath the fingernails, or try to bend a finger until it breaks. The nose. You can arc back in try to slam an attacker with your head." He lowered his face so that his nose barely touched her scalp, pairing the area with a demonstration. "Because of my height, this may not normally be readily accessible. The gut. The groin. Don't waste your time on places like the chest and shins. They are made of solid bone and although painful will not afford you much success. If you can twist around, the eyes are a good target, and the throat." He moved her hand to his throat to demonstrate. "This is a good area to strike in order to collapse the trachea." [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 10:42 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "R-right." For a lesson that was supposed to be very serious and informative, Skylar was finding herself feeling a little awkward! And not particularly in a bad way, which had her face slightly flushing and a frown crossing her face. It was nice having a guy hold her like this. Now if she could just get Jake Bradley to ask her out. Grr. Skylar tensed, though she wasn't quite sure why. Maybe the position triggered he [i]flee[/i] reflexes after all, and before she knew it, she was trying sweep one of his feet up with her leg so she could catch him off balance and throw him![/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 10:47 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] Her move might have worked on an amateur like Jake, but it sure wasn't going to work on him! He blocked her sweep hard, then kicked one of her legs far out to the side, twisting her arm back and forcing her to bend at the waist until she was in a [i]very[/i] compromising position. He held her there a moment before he realized what he was doing. "I apologize," he murmured. He let her get back up and took her into the position from earlier. "If you try a move like that and fail, you will end up off-balance and subject to an even greater disadvantage. Please stick to the methods we were discussing. He noticed she was blushing. "Your face is flushed. Should we take a break?" he asked innocently. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 11:00 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] There was an eep~! out of her, but it was more from surprise than harm. How did manage to do that so fast?! And mortifyingly awkward! Now it wasn't just light blushing, but likely worse... and apparently noticeable. The [i]idiot[/i]! "No! I'm fine!" she growled out through her teeth. Since he was the military man, it wouldn't hurt to [i]really[/i] try and beat the devil out of him. ...it'd ease that angry embarrassment and he totally deserved it! So without mercy she was trying to stomp on his foot, break one of his (if not every single one of them) and ram his nose back in to that thick skull of his! Of all the big stupid guy... stuff![/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 11:18 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] This was more like it. Even if she wasn't completely effective, she was certainly trying with much more ardor than she had before! This was the kind of energy and seriousness he was used to. "That's very good, but if you shift your grip to the ring finger--" he was forced to dodge as her head came slamming up toward his nose. "Good. If there were a wall or a tree you could use the leverage to--" and then she smashed her heel into his instep! If he hadn't been wearing reinforced boots, that would have almost hurt! "It would help if you torqued your waist to compensate for your lack of weight--" He barely managed to avoid a very vicious elbow to the groin! She fought like a wildcat! Against his own will, he could feel a grudging kind of admiration. That is, until she actually got in a gut shot. To his newly bandaged side. Jean-Luc growled deep in his throat and jerked Skylar to the side. He had his legs hooked between hers and was in the middle of tackling her to the ground in harsh pin when he realized his mistake. His pain reaction had caused him to use a grapple that would likely hurt her on the hard ground. A brief moment of almost-panic fluttered in his chest at the idea of her getting injured because he couldn't control his instincts, and he twisted sharply to roll her on top of him. They hit the ground with Jean-Luc on the bottom, but he'd used a little too much force. He cradled Skylar in his arms and used another roll to properly kill the force, so that they ended up with her underneath him, his arms and hands bracing her head from impact on the ground. He was breathing heavily, his heart racing, his face very close to hers. He didn't seem to know what to say. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 11:32 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] She couldn't believe he could actually lecture her while she was trying her damnedest to kill him! Skylar's thrill of getting in a hit was quickly turned to regret when she realized [i]where[/i]... and she almost had time to consider hitting an injured military man a bad idea when they both hit the ground. Landing on him, she was afraid she might have hurt him again, and then he ended up [i]on[/i] her! Skylar couldn't decide if she was mad or sorry! She squirmed just a bit to brace her hands against his shoulders, but hadn't moved to push him off. This was a totally weird position! "Sorry." she breathed first. Cause she was. Still, she squirmed again. For some kind of military take-down move, it was strangely... non threatening! "Did I hurt you?"[/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 11:41 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] She was all right! He lowered his head so she couldn't see the relief on his face, but this put his face near her neck. He was still breathing a little hard and his heart was still beating quite fast, but she hadn't been hurt! "It was my mistake. I should have defended better. You did a very good job." His warm breath puffed against her ear. He didn't seem to realize what a compromising position they were in, although for some reason he was starting to get flushed too. Maybe it was all her squirming. He rested his forehead against her momentarily, moving his legs so that he was braced over her. It was a surprisingly comfortable position, and she was so very soft. "Skylar... You should worry more about yourself and less about me. To be honest, it's a very uncomfortable position to be in. I am unaccustomed to it, and it adds another layer of complication. Just trust that I will always do my best to protect you. Please." [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 11:51 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar was glad to know she didn't hurt him too bad, but wasn't so sure about this current situation! As awkward as it was, it also gave her those nice butterflies that she usually reserved for her favorite crushes. ...for the moment she wouldn't complain! "Don't you ever have people worrying about you getting hurt too? I can't [i]not[/i] worry about it, even if you are supposed to be doing all the protecting." Trust certainly wasn't an issue. He almost died to save her, so she didn't doubt he would try. That gave her warm fuzzy thoughts too and she was stick nibbling on her bottom lip.[/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 11:58 AM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "Naturally if I am wounded in such a capacity that I am unable to continue my duties, it would cause a greater strain on others. But it is expected that I am sufficiently adept in handling situations even in extreme duress. I advise you to adopt a similar mentality." He still hadn't gotten up. She was giving him such an odd look. He didn't know how to describe it, but it definitely wasn't pity (which he would have resented) or even simply curiosity (that that was a part of it). "I have been fully capable of conducting myself for more than ten years. It would be an insult and a waste of time to worry about me after I have been assigned." Oops. Did he let too much slip? She was making him feel so weird! [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 12:12 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "Assigned to protect me?" she asked. Of course she knew the answer to that one. He was such an idiot! At least he was the good kind of idiot. But he was also [i]obligated[/i] to protect her, so many getting all girly about it wasn't the best of ideas. Skylar squirmed again. Now she had her fingers curled in to the sleeves of his shirt and she had to force herself to let go. She was almost disappointed. "'m not worried about you doing your job, I just don't want you to die. So don't, okay?" Ten years was a long time to be a mister military man. If he was assigned to her and had to pretend to be a normal guy... then she could at least help him live like a normal guy, as long as he didn't get himself killed![/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 12:17 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] There was something disappointing about her letting go of his sleeve. That was ridiculous, of course, so he tried to ignore it. He hoped she didn't get around to doing the math in her head anytime soon, or just chalk the years up to being an army brat or something. His age was unusual even in his division. "Everyone dies," he said instead. "But I dislike leaving sloppy work, so odds are good that I will have finished here before something so morbid happens." He leaned back until he was sitting on his heels. As he did, he kept his arms firmly around Skylar, with the result that she rose with him until she was practically in his lap! Somehow he couldn't stop wondering about her and what she was thinking. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 12:24 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Cute..! This was SO the way knights would hold princesses and- Wait, that was totally inappropriate! Skylar attempted to refocus her brain on more relevant things. Like him being creepy and morbid about death, like it was no big deal. ...but his comment brought up a very good question! Skylar blinked at him with a quizzical expression. "When [i]are[/i] you going to be finished? Does that mean you'll be leaving whenever I'm not important anymore?"[/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 12:30 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] His expression changed briefly from his usual stoicism to surprise, then sadness, anger, and back again. "You're important," he said firmly. "Don't let anyone tell you otherwise." Although his tone was even, the topic seemed to heat him up somehow. The position was a strain on his side, so he reclined until she really was sitting in his lap. He moved until he was sitting indian style with her still on him, and regarded her seriously. "As to when I will be departing. I cannot answer that. Likely before the year is out. If it takes longer than that, I may be replaced." The way he said it suggested that he might be hiding something. "And now you. I understand that it is customary to reciprocate asking questions when conducting a civilian conversation. Do you believe you are important?" [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 12:43 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Now she was in his lap, and what she should have been doing was swatting at him and escaping to a safe distance. But it wasn't anything like [i]that[/i], and for some reason it was perfectly natural to do. Skylar curled her legs around, so her shoulder was braced against his. She gave a slight frown. "I believe I am important to [i]some[/i]one cause you keep acting like I am. But I really don't think I'm all that special. I mean, I don't hate myself or think I'm useless and dumb stuff like that. I'm just not someone to get all worked up about." What did he mean exactly by 'takes longer than that?' "Who would come to replace you?"[/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 12:50 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "Someone of sufficient skill. I will have no say in the matter, but you would not be left unattended if the situation were not vastly improved." He removed a gun from his belt and handed it to her to practice with. "Why are you so adamant about your normalcy?" [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 1:06 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Stupid gun! Skylar reluctantly took it to start taking it apart, her nose twisting up in annoyance with the thing. "Because I [i]am[/i] normal? It's not so bad, you know. I like going to school and collecting rocks. And I never had to worry about creepy people or stuff in mirrors or guns." she showed him the disarmed gun before, putting it back the way it was supposed to be again. "Why would they replace you anyway? If I get in to trouble? ...or if I [i]don't[/i] get in to trouble?" He still hadn't answered why he was there in the first place! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 1:09 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "I have a deadline," he said evasively. He nodded in approval as she showed him the dissembled gun. "You're getting better. Can you do it without looking?" He covered her eyes with his hands so she couldn't see. "What are you seeing in mirrors?" he asked instead. "Have you noticed suspicious people following you?" He didn't seem to realize that he might be ones of those suspicious people. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 1:20 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "Besides you?" Skylar hesitated a bit. Trying to disassemble a gun without looking was a little harder. But she had played with this one enough by now to know where all it's parts were. That didn't stop her from tilted and trying to cheat and get a peek. "I keep seeing someone in the mirror, but they're not actually around. Once at home and once in the mall. Then it was..." she hesitated a minute, after she'd pulled the gun apart again. The pieces after the mall were the hardest to remember. There was a lot of big blank spaces she couldn't grasp at. "..kind of in everything. For a minute or two. Today was just different. Everything told me not to forget, so I didn't. Mostly. The mirrors and glass and shiny things." Speaking of forgetting, she lost track on whether or not she was taking the gun apart or putting it back together again! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 1:24 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] He lowered his hands from her eyes and stared at her hands. She'd done it successfully, and she learned so much more quickly than he'd expected. And she saw things in mirrors? Was that a sign of viability? To his surprise, he felt disappointed instead of happy. If she had not been viable, she could have been left in peace. "Don't tell anyone about the mirrors. Have you ever tried talking to the people in them? What have you not forgotten?" He put his hands over hers to still them. This was important. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 1:34 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar shook her head slowly with a frown. "It doesn't stay that long. Maybe a few seconds." Was the mirror part important? Or was that just side effects from all the things she keeps getting poisoned with? He stilled her hands from their fussing with the gun. She shrugged her shoulders. "I didn't forget you. That was what I wanted to remember most. He said I wouldn't remember anyway so he could shoot you." But she couldn't remember who "he" was. That was a complete blur. "I can remember almost everything, but not that guy and not very much of what was after. Except lots of blood and some trees."[/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 1:38 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] So she didn't remember the worst of it. That was good. On the other hand, it meant she wouldn't know to stay away from Jake Bradley. "Why did you want to remember me?" He tried to tell himself that this was definitely related to his mission and figuring out whether or not Skylar was viable, but he had to admit he was a little curious. "Don't try too hard. It would have gone better for you if you really had forgotten." He took the gun from her still hands and toyed with the parts. It was peaceful somehow, sitting in the shade of a tree with her. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 1:48 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "Jeeze! You're kind of dense!" she cracked a smirky kind of smile. It felt better to tell him, and more so now that he finally stopped pretending like none of it actually happened. "I didn't want you to die, remember? Especially not after trying to save me. If you're in trouble, I'm going to try and help you. And doooon't give me that 'gonna give a lecture' face! You're pretty much Vice President of my club now, so if you die and I get assassinated, there won't be anyone left to continue my legacy." [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 1:56 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "I can understand taking responsibility for an organization. I didn't realize you would take such things so seriously, though. I apologize." He reassembled the gun in record time and set it in the grass by his hand. "You can't take responsibility for me, though. When death comes for you, it is inevitable." He looked at her dainty hands in his large, rough ones. "...It's getting late. You should return to your home soon." [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 2:03 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Skylar looked up at the sky. She supposed it was getting kind of late. That was too bad. Despite his acceptance of inevitable death, she was sure there would be lots more days. "Yeah, I guess so. Do I get to come over and cook, or are you still banning me from your house cause you're afraid I'll see all your military stuffs?" Ha, ha, ha. If he still tried to ban her, she was going to harass him a bit! She could sneak out of her house and over to his to see how quick he noticed. Well, then again he might tackle her. ...Then again it might still be fun! Skylar was grinning![/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 2:11 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "I will cook for you at your house. Mine lacks a fully equipped kitchen." Not a lie. He was mainly making do with one pot, a mixing bowl, a wooden spatula, and a skillet. He wasn't exactly used to comfort. He tucked his arms around her petite waist and rose smoothly from the ground, making sure she was steady on her feet before he began putting away the practice equipment. He insisted that Skylar take one of the handguns before they left. In the car, he adjusted the mirrors again before taking the wheel in hand. Damn! How many times was he going to get blood on perfectly good clothes? He looked at the red smear on the steering wheel and then at his hand. He would have to bind it tight, then. It would inhibit his movement a little, but it would help keep him healing instead of tearing himself open again every few hours. Frowning, he headed back toward her home. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 2:30 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "You're either a total control freak or afraid to let me cook. I [i]can[/i] cook, you know." The gun she wasn't so happy to have - and how exactly was she supposed to get away with one of those at school? She was fussing with her seatbelt when she caught sight of more blood. She frowned! "We probably shouldn't have done this today. Don't you ever stop to think about your own injuries? You could bleed to death like that without even realizing it." [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 4, 2009 at 2:40 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "I won't. I will attend to it when we reach your residence." He remained silent until they pulled into her driveway. Then he looked at her. "If you wish to cook, you may do so. But it will be here." He nodded at her house. "Now, please allow me to enter first." He got out of the car and padded silently up the front steps. Opening the door (he had a key?!) he peered inside. He disappeared into the house for a moment, then beckoned to Skylar that it was all right to proceed. When she got in, he was clearing the other rooms one by one. Satisfied that no one had been inside while they were out, he returned to wash his hands in hot water at the kitchen sink. "You seem to believe that I have a poor opinion of you." [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 4, 2009 at 2:56 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] How [i]did[/i] he get a key. Was that hers? Skylar waited patiently while he investigated everything. She was hoping he was being a little paranoid with her safety, otherwise she was going to have a really hard time falling asleep tonight! Having her parents gone was supposed to be fun, not scary. "As a matter of fact, you've insulted me a lot!" she replied, opening up the fridge to debate on what she'd make for dinner. An active military guy needed something with meat and protein, right? "You've said I don't take my safety seriously. You've also said I was asking to get attacked when I wear a skirt - Of which I am still totally mad about. You won't let me see your house, you spent all day telling me tall-tales, and you're afraid of my cooking." [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Sep 23, 2009 at 12:26 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "I am not afraid of your cooking," he said tiredly. There was, in fact, very little he was afraid of, but he wasn't really going to say that. He stripped off his shirt again and suppressed a wince of pain as he tended to his much-torn-and-bruised flesh. For someone who was only 17, he was in the kind of excellent condition achieved only by someone who lived or died by it. "And you would not have been accosted had you been wearing pants. They are much more practical for self-defense and retreat, as well. It is not an insult to point out these errors. It is a learning experience. "As for the house..." He sighed. "There is nothing to see. It was purchased only recently and there are no real furnishings. Not even a bed. It is there only for those occasions that you require privacy and when my presence would be made awkward. Is that a satisfactory response?" Sweet baby Jesus, how much steak did this girl think he needed to eat?! [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Sep 24, 2009 at 5:58 AM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] She was going to stuff him like a Christmas Turkey. Then he'd not be afraid of her cooking! But once she thought about it a moment, she put away more than half of the things she pulled out of the fridge, settling for an average meal. For all she knew, if she stuffed him, something might happened and he'd be too full to do crazy military acrobatics or something. Skylar set out some steak, mushrooms and shallots, running a stroganoff recipe through her head as she moved to dig around in a drawer for a knife. "How are you supposed to get any sleep without a decent bed? I don't think you planned ahead for your Skylar-stakeout very well." If she hadn't figured him out, would he have refused to let her come over for Club meetings or homework? Most likely. That wasn't normal teenager behavior either. Clearly the military didn't have kids. Skylar peered over her shoulder at him while chopping shallots. Aside from bruises, blood, and bandages, he looked pretty good shirtless! He was leaner than Jake Bradley, but that probably didn't make much difference. Of course, she got herself caught up in thinking about it, that she nearly let the knife slip and chop off her own finger! A quick snatch of her hand back spared loss of limbs, but she still managed to give herself a cut. Smooth! Checking out a guy and cooking didn't mix! [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Oct 5, 2009 at 7:43 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] "This isn't a stakeout," he said patiently. "It's a security detail. You should pay more attention to your cooking..." And, devil take it, she cut herself. Before she could move, he insinuated himself between her and the counter, removing the knife from her grasp and running the tap. He gently took her hand and let the running water cleanse her cut. He frowned at her hand as he carefully inspected it. "You should be more careful with sharp objects," he chastised. "Sit." He guided her to his seat, still warm from his body, and knelt in front of her. As carefully as though she were made of porcelain, he unwrapped a band-aid and wrapped it around her finger with an expert eye to pressure. And then he gave it the finishing touch: A kiss. "To make it better," he explained. That was something civilians did, right? He'd seen it in a movie once, although the science of it continued to elude him. "I will finish dinner preparations. There is no point in tempting infection or food contamination." He tied an apron over his bandaged chest and pulled out the honing steel from the knife block and stood it on the cutting board, quickly sharpening the knife on it like a pro. He couldn't stand to hold a dulled blade if he could help it. Pretty soon, chopped shallots and paper-thin mushrooms were in neat piles on the cutting board, and he was eying the steak critically. "What were you planning to cook?" He was already wondering how thin to slice the meat. He carefully carved the fat from the perimeter of the steak while he waited for Skylar's verdict. [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Oct 6, 2009 at 8:20 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] Aw, he was so sweet. Since when to military guys give ki- Hey! He totally just hijacked her dinner-planning! Skylar found herself sitting in the chair holding up her bandaged finger and blinking in confusion as he proceeded to take over chopping of the shallots. "It's just a cut." she tried to explain. "I do it all the time! ...Er, well, not ALL the time. But it's not a big deal. No one dies from slipping up while cooking dinner." Skylar almost rose from her seat to take over again, but watching a guy shirtless and wearing an apron in the kitchen was pretty interesting! Kind of like something out of those dirty manga books Crystal's always reading. "Beef Stroganoff. So they better be thin slices, but not too thin. If you'll move, I can do it! I'm supposed to be the one making dinner!" [/do][/bg] ==== Masquerade - Oct 12, 2009 at 12:02 PM [solid=http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php? albumid=17&pictureid=1764][b]Jean-Luc[/b] Jean-Luc was already cutting thin slices of beef after eying again the dubious sharpness of the knife. "You could get an infection," he reiterated, moving to block her. When it became apparent that she wasn't going to give up, he sighed, wiped the blade with a rag, slid it into his belt, and picked her up completely. He deposited her back into the chair and placed a clean finger to her lips, looking at her very seriously. "Please. Let me." [/solid] ==== Divinatas - Oct 12, 2009 at 9:37 PM [bg=#120500][do=#fb503c][imga=right]http://space-kitten.org/forum/picture.php?albumid=1&pictureid=1758[/imga][b][i]Skylar Connelly[/i][/b] "That's no-" Once Skylar was placed back in to the chair, she was trying to protest again, which didn't get far with a finger pressed to her mouth. Why did he have to be so [i]serious[/i] about it! She frowned. Then scowled. Huffed angrily. ...and finally gave a resigned sigh. Pulling his hand away from her mouth, Skylar was still frowning. "God, you're so bossy! What are you going to do if I slip in the shower, or trip over the hose pipe in the backyard? I have to play volley ball in gym class too, and there's a whole lot of hitting going on there!" Skylar had the feeling that the upcoming days were going to be filled with lots of very embarrassing moments. "...Fine! But you have to use the recipe book and do it right."[/do][/bg] ====

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