Kohana Creek

Realistic

0 INK

a part of Kohana Creek, by hawaiianhoney.

Kohana Creek

hawaiianhoney holds sovereignty over Realistic, giving them the ability to make limited changes.
317 readers have been here.
2,533 readers have visited Kohana Creek since hawaiianhoney created it.
usernamesareadrag are listed as curators, giving them final say over any conflict & the ability to clean up mistakes.

Setting

Default Location for Kohana Creek
Create a Character Here »

Realistic

Kohana Creek

Minimap

Realistic is a part of Kohana Creek.

1 Places in Realistic:

5 Characters Here

Giselle Torres [31] "Just let me help you, okay."
Matthew Granger [26] "Look, I'm just trying to be a better person."
Hope Louis [25] "Do you like ponies?"
Charity Louis [9] "I didn't dream of a life like this; No one does. But I'll do what I can with what I have."
Drew Williams [7] "I... No, I'm just tired."

Start Character Here »


Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Hope Louis Character Portrait: Matthew Granger

0.00 INK

Matthew should have left the moment the sparkly, pink purse came out, twinkling in the artificial light of a nearby lamp. He should have lied, should have pretended that he'd left the oven on or had an appointment that he'd completely forgotten about. Something, anything to escape from Ms. Torres apartment and, in particular, the little girl with the determined yet gleeful look on her face and said pink purse in her arms. But he didn't, either trusting that Ms. Torres would stop Hope if whatever she had up her sleeve was too silly or not wanting to upset the little neighbor girl who just looked so excited. So, really, it was his fault that he hadn't fled by the time the tube of lipstick came out. His fate had been sealed.

That's what found him sitting quite still as Hope wielded her make-up tool with all the expertise of a six-year-old girl, slowly feeling his masculinity drain away with each press of the brilliantly red lipstick. It reminded him, disturbingly enough, of his childhood. Now that was something that would interest his therapist if he ever said it out loud. Not that he'd willingly dolled himself up, but he'd been the youngest child, the only boy with four older sisters who were just as gleeful about make-up as Hope(well, not the second oldest Annie, but she'd just been thrilled to make her little brother as uncomfortable as possible). He had probably been an adorable sight back then with his face that had yet to lose its baby fat and smooth skin. Right now, he mentally lamented as he obediently shut his eyes to allow Hope to apply the eye shadow, it was most certainly not adorable. It was probably bizarre, more than a little weird, and the scruff on his face was not helping.

He had no idea what he looked like right now, even after he was allowed to open his eyes once the brush stopped dusting colored powder- purple powder, he noted in a mild horror as she put the eyeshadow away. There was no mirror to glance into to see the damage and he refused, absolutely refused, to spare Ms. Torres a glance because, well, he might just die of embarrassment. He must look like a drag queen now, a really, really amateur drag queen. Still, he pushed down his own distress and let Hope carry on with her beautification project, even if the mere mention of mascara was more than a little scary. Back in the day, he'd been jabbed in the eye with an errant brush more than once by a flippant older sister.

Thankfully there was nothing actually near his eye when there was a crash in the hallway. It distracted everyone, himself included, from the current "princess game". It was a great clatter, like furniture falling over, and highly unusual on the twenty-third floor(he'd say everywhere in Kohana Creek but during some of his maintenance calls elsewhere in the building, he'd heard plenty of furniture crashing from, uh, overly-enthusiastic couples).

"Maybe someone should go check," He mumbled out, almost grasping the chance to leave until he realized that, yes, he still had make-up on his face and, no, he wasn't going out like that just because of a loud noise. He already had a reputation for being strange, he didn't need this out of context moment added to his already awkward behavior. So he stayed put, glancing around the room. Piper came back in with a soaked shirt apparently from a dishwashing incident(he politely averted his eyes), asking what it was. And then there was Hope, her smile finally vanished. She scooted a little closer to him and, really, didn't that just pull at his heart strings? The innate desire to protect or at least comfort made him a little bit stupid. Well, more stupid than normal. To Hell with his manliness- he'd given that up the moment he hadn't run from the pink, sparkly purse.

"I, um, wouldn't worry about it. Now, how about the, ah, the mascara?" He tried for a little smile and, for once, it looked genuine if a little lopsided. Just a way to distract the darling of Kohana Creek from whatever was going on outside. And if that meant acting as a human doll and looking like a reject from The Rocky Horror Picture Show, well then so bet it.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Charity Louis Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Hope Louis Character Portrait: Matthew Granger

0.00 INK

Hope, a little confused and a little scared, waited patiently for what ever made the noise outside to reveal it's self. Everyone in the room began to make small comments on it, which only made her suspicion grow. Hope, never in her life would want to go check out what ever noise it was. But.. still, she might have done it if there weren't so many other adults around that were able to do it themselves.

"I, um, wouldn't worry about it. Now, how about the, ah, the mascara?" Little Hope heard Matthew ask. Hope turned her back towards him and almost answered with a big 'Yeah', But Giselle beat her to it. "No that's okay... it's getting late and your mom will be here any minute." Hope's smile faded a bit at the news, but the realization that her mother would be home soon put butterflies in her stomach. "Alright, but Mr. Matthew owes me a make-over." Hope stated, glancing back at him with a little smug face. Giselle got down beside the two of them and began to pick up some of the make-up pieces, putting them back into the sparkly pink bag. Hope instantly got down and did the same, picking up the pieces all at once then dropping them into the bag all together. Soon the area was cleaned up and Hope began to get a little bored again.. until a few certain abrupt noises caught her attention.

"Giselle? It's Charity." Hope heard her mother's voice through the door. Oh, such excitement grew inside of her as Giselle got back up, shared a smile and went to answer the door. Hope stood up too, not to go to the door but to go fetch her backpack. It just had the few things the girl might need; A small change of clothes, a coloring book she got from Eloise, those kinds of things."Guess who's here Hope." Giselle asked in a tone suggesting that Hope already knew. Hope grabbed her bag out of the kitchen and briskly made her way back to the front door. "Mommy!" She shouted gleefully, running past Giselle and into her mother's arms.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Severin Macer

0.00 INK

After a long day of work a man wearing a suit and tie sluggishly lumbered down the hall and to his apartment door. There was more noise and unrest than usual, but he ignored them more or less looking forward to collapsing onto his bed and sleeping the night away. Way too tired to even have any form of dinner only to settle to sleep until the next morning. Work just keeps piling and piling up on his desk every time he finish one stack another, usually taller than the other would appear. His laptop bag slung over his shoulder as the owner dropped the load onto the floor to fumble for his eyes. A quiet metallic of clicks later he inserted the right key and twisted the door handle. Only to tread on a piece of paper that he only just realized it was there, with movements like a laggard he picks up the piece of paper and read with his tired eyes. Once the message sunk in it a look of confusion cross his face. 'What in the world?... A meeting? Tomorrow morning?' With a shrug he was more eager to sleep on his warm and comfortable mattress. He closed the door behind him, toes off his shoes and hung his overcoat. The apartment was dimly lit only illuminated by a ray of moon light passing through a few windows.

Severin made his way through the kitchen using the moonlight as a means to navigate through the furniture and avoid bumping into a upright piano on the way. When he finally reached his room, he did a quick brushing of his teeth and retired back to his room where he peeled off the suit, and slip off his tie to change into to his sleepwear. Not long did he place his phone on the bedside table, plugged it into the charger before throwing the covers over him. He ran a hand over his face as he quickly input in the password to unlock his phone, swiping through the apps of his phone with a thumb and he touched the screen to open up the text application.

-Goodnight Piper hope to see you tomorrow morning!

He pressed 'send' after he wrote the text and received a notification saying it had sent to the intended sender. With a fond smile he stared at Piper's profile picture for a few seconds and placed the phone back on the side table. His eyes stared at the ceiling until sleep overtook him sleeping peacefully after a long day of work.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Charity Louis Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Hope Louis Character Portrait: Matthew Granger Character Portrait: Severin Macer

0.00 INK

#, as written by Issa
Piper Torres


The others in Giselle's flat were more inclined to ignore the strange sound. Piper was plenty happy to push the sound to the back of her mind, she guessed it was probably just someone dropping plates next door or, as Giselle had suggested, someone moving furniture.

She turned her attention fully onto the other three and, immediately had to turn back around. A grin split across her face and she forced herself not to laugh, although she was sure that the odd giggle escaped and she had to hug herself to stop her shoulders from shaking. Mathew's face was a stunning art work of bright pinks and purple, Hope's small make-up bag spilled open as she played her game with him. The man obviously possessed a hell of a lot of patience, after-all not everyone would let a little girl play dress-up on them.

Composing herself Piper turned back to the three, her grin only a small smile now. Giselle, taking pity on Mathew put a stop to the play and began to pick up the make-up. A moment later a knock on the apartment door and Giselle straightened and headed to open it. It appeared that it was Hope's mother, judging by Giselle's shout from the door and Hope's excited cry of "Mummy!" .

Left alone with Mathew in the lounge Piper didn't know where to look. Piper, trying not to make eye contact with Mathew in case she began to laugh in his face - a very real problem at the moment, followed the sounds coming from the door. She heard Giselle's footsteps as she left the entrance and went into the kitchen. She came into the lounge for long enough to say to Piper,
"It's getting late Piper, you should get home, and thanks for cleaning up, your a life savor... oh and don't forget about the meeting." . Then she was gone again, leaving Piper with the distinct feeling that she was being kicked out and avoided. Piper frowned momentarily, she had wanted to get her aunt alone to question her about her behaviour at dinner, but it appeared that she wouldn't have a chance tonight.

With a sigh Piper turned towards Mathew. Any danger of her laughing at his makeup was lost in her worry about her aunt.
"I'll see you... around." Piper fare-welled him, unsure how formal or friendly to be since really, they hadn't talked much before today. She walked through the corridor and to the apartment door. There Giselle, Hope and Charity were gathered, Giselle handing over the left-over takeaways.
Piper nodded a greeting at Charity, she didn't know the woman that well but had no reason not to be friendly. Smiling at Hope Piper gave her a little wave,
"It's been nice seeing you Charity." She told the girl before turning to her aunt. "I'd best leave now, but I'll come around before the meeting tomorrow." Piper didn't pose it as a question, she would come and visit her aunt. She was determined to get her alone and find out what was wrong with her.

With a final wave she squeezed through the door and into the corridor. It was most likely the change of atmosphere but suddenly Piper felt a wave of fatigue wash over her. A late night of assignments and early morning had finally caught up with her. Fighting back a yawn she wondered back to her apartment, pushing her keys into the lock as she reached her door. A buzzing in her pocket indicated that someone had sent her a text. As she opened the door, pushing against it with her back, she pulled the phone out of her pocket and unlocked it with a swipe of her thumb.

- -Goodnight Piper hope to see you tomorrow morning! -

A smile lit her face as she read the text from Severin. She hadn't seen him all day, a mixture of him being busy with work and she being forced to spend hours in the university library finishing her assignment.

- Night! xx - She sent back, hoping she wouldn't wake him with her text. As always when she thought of Severin a tickling of guilt pricked her consciousness. She was getting better at ignoring it but she doubted that it would ever completely leave.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Charity Louis Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Hope Louis

0.00 INK





Charity offers the woman at the door a warm smile, for she is on rather good terms with the young teacher who so kindly watches Hope for her on nights when she can't find anyone else to do so. She tries not to glance back towards the room from which the noise had come earlier, and only just barely succeeds, keeping her eyes on Giselle. Well, they soon move over Giselle's shoulder and into the apartment, despite the fact that Hope remains out of sight, even in that glance. She tucks a lock of brown hair behind her own ear, patiently waiting for Giselle to say something, though the waiting is a very brief one. The Hispanic woman turns and calls out to Hope over her shoulder, asking the little girl to guess after a fairly obvious answer. "It's the tooth fairy, by the way!" Charity chimes in with a smile, before turning her attention back towards Giselle, who has begun to say something about having something for Charity.

"Oh? Well, you don't need to-" but the protests are in vain, as Giselle retreats back into the apartment and out of sight temporarily, leaving a time gap in which a particular little girl runs through the kitchen and towards the door, exclaiming 'mommy' with an excitement that never fails to melt Charity's heart. The entire floor seems to be somewhat enchanted by Hope, but no one has quite as much affection for the precious little girl as her mother does. As Hope comes within reach, Charity easily hoists her up, stepping out of the doorway so that she can hold Hope up and spin around, beaming brightly at her daughter. Exhaustion is still telling in her features, but it is lessened slightly by her smile and the warm look in her chocolate eyes.

"Hello there, sweetheart. Were you good for Ms. Torres?" she asks, expecting the answer to be yes. Even when that isn't the honest answer, it tends to be the one that Hope gives. Besides, what she is really asking for is a briefing on what Hope has done for the past few hours, because she knows that the girl will take the question and launch into a detail and animated account of her evening. Her daughter's enthusiasm is more refreshing, often times, than a cool bottle of water would be to Charity. Before Hope can respond, however, Giselle has returned with a tell-tale white box, making it obvious what she is bringing back to Charity, whose face lights up momentarily at the sight of the food container. The gnawing feeling in her stomach is suddenly more powerful, and this is entirely due to the knowledge that there is food within those white cardboard flaps.

Still, she is hesitant to take it, knowing that Giselle might be better off saving it for takeout. "Oh, you don't have to give it to me- you can save it for lunch tomorrow or something, right? Wait, here," Charity shifts Hope into one arm and fishes through her purse, carefully extracting a wallet and managing to, through a combination of experience and skill, pull out a wrinkled and worn five dollar bill, "Here, for Hope's portion of the meal."

Although Charity knows that Hope probably didn't eat that much, and that Giselle would never actually ask for reimbursement, she is always trying to get the kind woman to accept some sort of money in return for taking the time to watch and take care of Hope for her. It is a rare night when she succeeds, but Charity is often to blame for such things as Giselle finding a five dollar bill on the floor just inside her, or something like that.

"Good evening, Piper," Charity responds in turn, offering the girl a smile and shifting Hope over to her other arm. She looks at her daughter and tucks a curl of hair behind the girl's ear. "We need to get you in bed," the mother comments.




Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Chastity Louis Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Hope Louis Character Portrait: Matthew Granger

0.00 INK

Apparently his diversion had done the trick, distracting Hope from the sudden commotion that had long since gone silent in the hallway outside. Her lips turned into a grin and he couldn't help but tense when his eyes caught sight of the mascara tube clutched in her inexperienced hands. Thankfully, Giselle chose that moment to step in, putting a stop to Hope using him to practice her beautician skills. Matthew held in a sigh of relief as Hope reluctantly stopped her impromptu makeover, even if the smug look on her face was more than a little unnerving. He tried for a little smile, more self conscious than usual because he could just feel the lipstick caking the general vicinity of his lips, but, with any luck, she like most children would forget the promise in the morning. Besides, even if Giselle had allowed this little catastrophe to happen, he was quite sure that Hope's mother would disagree with letting the strange maintenance man put make-up on her only child. To be fair, he wouldn't either, but that said more about his self esteem than common sense.

His hands were itching to begin to wipe the red lipstick from his lips, but he held back, instead busying himself by looking anywhere but at Giselle and Piper as Hope and Ms. Torres packed her makeover supplies into the pink, sparkly purse. To be quite honest, he felt a bit trapped, even if he was a guest, in his neighbor's living room. Face painted probably like a clown, his mouth unwilling to open to even try for a conversation because he knew that Piper and Ms. Torres were doing their best to hold in their laughter and any attempt by himself to say anything might break the dam gates withholding a flood of laughter. So, he stayed quiet, fiddling with his fingers and resisting the urge to indulge in the nervous tic of biting his lips.

With Charity's arrival to pick up her daughter, he actually started to pay attention to the world around him again. Everyone was leaving now, the little impromptu get-together coming to an end as Hope was ushered into her mother's waiting arms and Piper prepared to go as well. Speaking of the latter, he finally managed to look her way only to see the young woman pointedly not looking at him, the unmistakable look of withheld laughter on her face. Matthew's gaze immediately went back to the floor, cheeks flushing a rosy red color. Embarrassment, not that was a familiar emotion. Finally, something familiar, even if it was rather upsetting, in this bizarre evening. Honestly, eating with his neighbors, getting a make-over, actually talking to other residents... It was like an episode of the Twilight Zone come to life, as sad as that was. It hadn't been bad, per say, just... strange. Well, at least he was tucked away in the living room and didn't have to deal with Charity because that- that would have raised more than a few questions if she was anything like his own mother had been.

"I'll see you... around." He glanced up again to see that Piper had directed that goodbye to him. Well, at least it didn't look like she wanted to laugh at him anymore for whatever reason. Maybe she had more important things to do, or maybe she'd just decided to take pity on the odd maintenance man huddled in her aunt's living room.

"Yeah, um, tomorrow. At the meeting, I mean," He said, trying for another little smile before looking away quickly, eaves dropping on the little conversation at Giselle's door. Which was when he realized that, yes, Hope was out of the room and wouldn't be coming back. As much as he hated to destroy an artist's masterpiece, well, he hated to be dolled up even more. A second later he was furiously wiping some of the excess lipstick off on the back of his hand, pausing to stare in mild horror at how much accumulated on his skin. And there was still some on his lips, the ineffectual scrubbing leaving behind a red stain not unlike a circus clown. Oh, Lord, had she used the entire tube? Even if she hadn't, it still felt like it. Why couldn't she have used lipgloss instead? He bit his lip out of habit and could taste the left over makeup, the flavor unpleasant and depressingly reminiscent of when he'd kissed his ex-girlfriend on nights when she'd dragged him to the club. Before his grandmother had died. Before... everything.

The apartment was silent then, Piper having taken her leave and Hope having been sent off with her mother for the night leaving Ms. Torres and Matthew as the apartment's sole occupants. Matthew couldn't quite decide if that was more or less awkward, decided on more, and prepared to leave before Giselle came back into the room, an apology and thanks tumbling from her lips together and unable to quite make eye contact for obvious reasons(not that he really liked eye contact, but a lot of people at least tried for it).

"No, no, it's fine. She was just, uh, just being a kid," He said, waving it off. Another apology from Ms. Torres. Huh. Being on the receiving end still felt so foreign to him. "I'll just-" But before he could finish that sentence, he was being whirled away by Ms. Torres, tugged down the hallway and into her master bathroom(the sink had sprung a leak three months ago, he recalled automatically) with a promise to erase the mess from his face. He moved where she indicated and only then did he realize what a close proximity they were in. It had been alright with Hope, just a kid playing dress-up, but with Giselle it was all the more awkward. The bathroom seemed ten times smaller and he flinched when she raised the cotton ball to wipe the eye shadow off of his eye. Still, he took a deep breath(mildly regretting it because the make-up remover wasn't a completely neutral smell), and closed his eyes obediently, leaning his head down so that she would have better access and not have to stretch quite so much.

"It wasn't exactly the worst Friday night either. Really, um, thanks for the dinner," He mumbled in reply, a lame attempt at brightening the mood as she continued her work. And, honestly, it wasn't. He'd had good food, hadn't gone to bed at a depressingly early hour, and had even filled his socialization-with-neighbors quota for the month if not the year. Yes, he'd had Friday nights much worse than this. Much, much worse.

"Again, I'm really sorry, Matthew... It is okay if I call you Matthew right?" The question ultimately caught him off guard and his eyes fluttered open. The question was simple enough, just a little bit of pleasantries, but the last time someone had shown the courtesy to ask had been, well it seemed to have been a long, long time ago. Around here he was "Mr. Granger" or "the maintenance guy" or "that guy" or even just "Hey, you, when are you going to fix my toilet?"

"Of course," He replied before almost instantly toning down his answer. He didn't need to sound so eager for someone to call him by his first name- besides, Ms. Torres was an admittedly beautiful woman. He didn't want his enthusiasm to come off the wrong way. "I mean, uh, yeah, that'd be fine, Ms. Torres. I'd, I'd actually prefer it. Mr. Granger sounds too old..." He clamped his mouth shut automatically, cutting off the rambling.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Samuel Williams Character Portrait: Sage Blackwood

0.00 INK

Sage sighendd and took Sam's outstretched hand. "I love her Sam... I love her..." He'd sigh and walk with Sam, gladly able to finally make his way home. Though were Sage sober enough, he would've remembered his phone, and probably remembered how much he loved his car.... "What would you do Sam? The ring's at my place... I want Giselle to know how much I love her." Sage probably sounded pathetic but he didn't care.

Stopping for a moment to vomit in the alley he'd wipe his face, grimacing and continue on his path. He wasn't a broken man... yet he was. Mostly when he was drunk was he a broken desperate pathetic man...but sober... he was proud and carefree. His blue eyes turned to Sam as he stopped walking.

"What can I do to fix things..."

(sorry its short... I can't think of anythin... its one of those days...)

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Matthew Granger

0.00 INK




"Right." Elle moved over to side to reach for another cotton ball. She again slightly doused it with the removing liquid. Leaning over slightly with a look of uneasiness, she released a deep breath. Elle lowered her eyes to his mouth that contained that bright flaming lipstick, applied sloppy that resembled a rundown 'whore' if you will. "I'm just...gonna." Not that she didn't already do this everyday, removing the blush, lipstick even lashes occasionally. Though she had yet to remove it for another person aside Piper so doing the service for someone else, namely a man, it was a bit more tricky. "Your lips." She quickly added before pressing the cotton against his lips. The brunette kept her eyes trained on the 'drudgery' at hand. Just another stymie to prevent her from sleeping.

With a few flickers of her hand, the cherry colored lipstick had begun to fade off onto the fabric. "There. All done." She proposed a methodical smile as a means of concluding things. Hopefully he wasn't truly upset with her, even if her did not physically display asperity. It still didn't mean he was not feeling a certain kind of way. Specifically an irascibility. Just the thought of creating malevolence between the two. Because Matthew had been so kind and patient with not only Hope but with her as well, Elle really wanted to keep him in armistice not only cause they were neighbors but also Matthew was the maintenance man. And Elle had the worst luck with things disintegrating within her apartment minus all the upgrades she had made.

After clearing up the counter, Elle brought Matthew back into the living room, where once again she apologized and thanked him all in the same sentence. The Latina offered the man a beer, although she would completely understand if he ran for the heels. Surprisingly he didn't. Matthew actually decided to sit down on the couch and enjoy a beer. Beer that Elle desperately needed to get rid off considering she only kept them there in the first place for Sage. And obviously she wouldn't be drinking them herself. She flipped on the television, finding it now more appropriate to put on something more adult friendly. Well at least something appealing to someone over the age of six. During of which the two had light conversation. A little of on the current broadcasting, at one point, Giselle had to explain to Matthew to stop calling her 'Ms. Torres' and simply Elle. After about two or so corrections, he had finally got it down pact.

Subsequent to them finishing up a episode of 'Californication', Elle lids began to feel heavy. The harder she fought to keep them open the quicker she would fall captive to slumber. Eventually she drifted off to a light doze. Her posture had slouched, causing her frame to lean over to the side where Matthew was sitting. As time went on the deeper her sleep became. Giselle's' slumber was briefly interrupted by the sinking down to his lap, with that came a relaxing heat that settled her. Elle moaned unconsciously following the brief disturbance before drifting back to sleep. Somewhere off in dreamland, the woman was unaware that she had fell asleep on top of his lap.




Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sebastian Gray Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Chastity Louis Character Portrait: Samuel Williams Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Sage Blackwood Character Portrait: Hope Louis Character Portrait: Eloise Pardon Character Portrait: Matthew Granger Character Portrait: Drew Williams Character Portrait: Severin Macer Character Portrait: Amelia Cardozo

0.00 INK

Well, at least he wasn't the only person feeling awkward, Matthew thought wryly as Ms. Torres hesitated before determinedly wiped at the lipstick spread on and around his mouth like he was some sort of clown escaped from the circus. That part was partially his own fault from when he'd attempted to wipe it away earlier, but that was neither here nor there. He wished that he had thought to suggest that he clean himself up, but with the deed nearly done, it was too late to voice any resistance. The faint odor of make-up remover wafted up from his mouth from the doused cotton ball, an almost comforting scent. It reminded him of the bathroom he'd shared with his sisters, how they never remembered to put the lid back on the bottle of make-up remover and the countless times they or he had accidentally knocked it over, dousing the sink. Then again, it also reminded him of Miranda, so that was a bit of a double-edged sword, wasn't it?

At this proximity, Matthew wasn't quite sure where he was supposed to look without looking incredibly awkward. His eyes trailed around the bathroom past Ms. Torres' head, trying to find something to occupy himself as she swiped away the red surrounding his lips. Unavoidably his gaze fell back on her and, given their close distance, he could really see how exhausted she looked. Maybe it was because the week was officially over and she'd spent it looking after children, maybe she was stressed about something- whatever it was, she looked as if she needed a good night's sleep at least, maybe a weekend of relaxation. He didn't say anything, though. It wasn't exactly his place to give advice to someone so put together while he was just... Well, Matthew, the maintenance man. The ex drug addict. The awkward, lonely guy in apartment 1100.

"There. All done." He had to hold in a relieved sigh as she finally backed away, a smile that he couldn't quite tell if it was just polite or friendly stretched across her lips. Matthew straightened up then, backing away from the sink himself. Now, he thought, was the time to go. He no longer looked like an experimenting drag queen and could leave with his head held high(well, metaphorically speaking; his posture was atrocious). He trailed behind Ms. Torres, barely keeping in the yawn that threatened to escape his lips. Oh. He was tired. It was a sudden sort of revelation. He'd been so caught up in his own thoughts and little problems that he hadn't even noticed the exhaustion from today slowly crawling over him, urging him to rest.

Which was why he surprised even himself by accept Ms. Torres offer of a beer. Hadn't he just been thinking about returning to his room and heading off to bed? Whatever the reason, here he was now, settled on Ms. Torres' couch as she flipped through the channels. He took a sip, the once familiar burn trickling down his throat followed by a brief bit of pleasure. He didn't often indulge in alcohol, too intent on keeping himself in the right frame of mind, keeping in control, but he'd have a drink with Simon every once in a while. So maybe that was the reason he was able to keep up small talk with Ms. Torres- no, Elle, he mentally corrected after she'd verbally done so at least three times. It was just like having a drink with a friend.

As the night trailed on, his own tiredness began to take over, his head lolling back onto the couch as they finished some show he'd never seen and would probably never watch again. His eyes fluttered shut and his breathing began to even out, so maybe it was no surprise that he hardly noticed the warm presence that was slowly becoming closer and closer. If anything it made him sleepier, the added warmth lulling him to sleep.

He woke up at around four in the morning, a time broadcasted by the DVR under the television which was playing some sort of infomercial now about some sort of blender or something. He blinked tiredly, entertaining the idea of getting off of his couch and making the short walk to his bed when he realized something. This wasn't his couch, far too modern and un-plush, even if that wasn't a word. Then he realized something else. This wasn't his apartment. This couldn't be his apartment because it did not look like his apartment at all. This was Ms. Torr- Elle, his mind sleepily supplied- Elle's apartment. Which was when he noticed a third thing. There was someone on his lap. His neighbor's head was using his lap as a pillow, her long hair spread out across his legs. It took every ounce of self-control not to let out a yelp of surprise or throw himself off of the couch or something because this wasn't right. Nope. Not at all. They were barely even friends at this point, and he was pretty sure that you had to be pretty damn good friends to sleep on each other like this.

His mind was certainly awake now and he was subsequently wracking it for ideas and plans to act out. He could always go back to sleep or, no, wait! He could pretend to be asleep and "accidentally" wake her up and let her move or something. But, no, that wasn't exactly nice and if he, the guy who had been single for the past few years, found this awkward, he could only imagine how someone who'd just broken up with her boyfriend would feel about this. He stayed there for a moment, staring blankly at the television screen. The infomercial was about knives now, somehow more special than the rest. He let out a quiet sigh. Well, going back to sleep wasn't an option for multiple reasons now.

So, instead, he gently lifted Giselle's head, careful not to tug at her hair, as he slid out from under her before sliding a pillow into place as a welcome substitute to his lap. He thought about leaving then, but some kind(to Giselle, not to him) part of his mind kept urging him to do something more. So he did.

When Matthew finally slipped out the door into the hallway- thankfully void of any living soul lest it look like he was taking the walk of shame which would be unfortunate for both himself and Giselle- the television was turned off, a neatly folded blanket that he'd found in the living room spread over the sleeping woman, and a note was left on the back of the paper that had been taped to her door for the meeting.

Elle,

Thank you for dinner. I had a nice time. I'll see you tomorrow.

-Matthew


The next day, Matthew woke up at 7:30 to his screeching alarm clock which he silenced with a well-placed smack. He groaned slightly, neck sore from when he'd fallen asleep in Giselle's couch- there was no use ignoring that last night had happened, it was a fact of life now. He took a quick shower, got dressed, had a leisurely breakfast of sweet, warm tea with lemon and toast with raspberry jelly, and relaxed, gradually waking up. He sighed as his eyes trailed over the the clock. It was 8:20 now, he may as well head down to the lobby for the meeting with Keilani.

The lobby was empty when he came down which was unsurprising given that it was a Saturday morning and anyone who would be going out this early was already gone, and anyone else was still in their apartments. He settled in one of the comfortable chairs, stifling a yawn. He hadn't exactly gotten much sleep the night before. Now he just had to wait for the tenants of the 20-23 floors to arrive and for this show to get on the road.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Severin Macer

0.00 INK

#, as written by Issa
Piper Torres


For the first time in weeks Piper woke up naturally, not to the buzzing of her early morning alarm clock. The soft light of morning streamed through the small gap in her curtains and fell onto her bed. Stretching in bed she cuddled the blankets around her for another moment, enjoying the warmth of her bed. It wasn't often that she got to sleep in but with an assignment just handed in and nothing immediately due for university she was going to make the most of it. It was a pity that she couldn't go back to sleep, but once awake Piper often found it hard to return to her dreams.

When she finally got up she opened her curtains, blinking at the sudden burst of light. The sun was warm and Piper let a small smile play across her lips. Turning back her bed Piper automatically checked her phone, which was lying on her bedside table. No texts. She shrugged and lazily walked into her lounge. There she spotted the note on her table, lying with the books and bag that she had dumped yesterday. As she took in the note sh suddenly remembered its contents and the meeting. Piper jumped towards the note, smoothing it out to read the meeting time, Lobby at 8.30am. She glanced at her wall clock to see that it was already 8.00am.
"Shit. Shit. Shit." She muttered to herself.
Worried that she would be late Piper ran back into her room, grabbed a towel and rushed into the bathroom. She quickly washed herself, only rinsing her hair due to the time limit. Then, finally out of the shower she dressed in the first outfit that she could find, a pair of denim shorts and a loose jumper. It was casual and her hair was still wet but given that she had to be down in the lobby in two minutes it would have to do.

Picking up her phone and keys and stuffing them into her pockets Piper raced out of her apartment. She paused outside of Severin's room, wondering if she should knock and wait for him. She pulled out her phone again and checked the time, it wasn't quite 8.30am yet.
"Sev!" Piper called, rapping on his apartment door. "Are you in there? We've got a meeting with Keilani in the lobby."
He could already be down there, or sound asleep. If she didn't hear anything from his apartment in the next few minutes than she could always make her own way down to the meeting and text him.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Severin Macer

0.00 INK

(that morning)

The slightly dishevel dark haired man was woken up by a knock at his apartment door, a small groan left his lips as he turned over his back facing the window to the bedside table. That voice...sounds like... "P-piper?" he called out from his bedroom which he knows sounded extremely faint since he was so far away from the door. He started rubbing his eyes using his best...just woken up effort to keep awake. When he was able to focus his eyes at is digital clock it read...8:05 he wondered why would Piper wake him up. That was when he heard her say 'We got a meeting with Keilani in the lobby'. Uh? That is when it hit him, the lobby meeting at 8:30! "Christ!" Quickly pushing the covers away from his body and checked the time for the second time it read 8:09. Dragging his tired body out of bed to the bedroom and into the bathroom.

He shuts the door behind him and grabs a cup from the sink and filled it with mouthwash, he would had brushed his teeth but at a time like this he would rather suffer the burning rather than arriving there late. After their fourth risen that was spat down the drain he check for any stubble at the mirror, a moment later he did a quick washing of his face to get rid of the tiredness from his facial features. For now he won't look like he just woken up from bed and....hopefully Piper won't see him like this again she really hadn't seen him this unkempt for...awhile.

Within a few minutes he snatched a pair of sweats and a plain white t-shirt. In the meanwhile Severin stumbled his way through furniture in his apartment because he was a still he completely stopped as realization took over him, he forgotten his phone. Letting out a small groan since he's just at the door, he quickly retraced his step to his bedroom and snatch his mobile device from the bedside table disconnected from its charger. A text notification alerted him but with a quick swipe of a thumb he read Piper's text from last night, with a small smile he pocketed his phone and quickly walked to the door. Severin slipped on his shoes and wrenched the door open. At the sight of Piper, a wide smile crossed his lips his days always seem brighter every time he sees her though...he really did wished he would stop disappointing her from the past couple of canceled dates. Hopefully after this extremely busy month he can finally catch a break by taking a few days off. For now though he wondered what that meeting was going to be about. "Good morning Piper." he greeted with his usual bright tone leaning against the doorway a little brushed his long bangs out from his eyes. Given the time to be prepared he did not have his hair combed to...look his very best. "Are we heading down there right now?"

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sebastian Gray Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Eloise Pardon Character Portrait: Matthew Granger Character Portrait: Drew Williams Character Portrait: Severin Macer

0.00 INK

Location: Honolulu, Hawaii
Date: Saturday, September 18, 2013
Time: 8:22 A.M.
Temp: 72 F


Slowly Sebastian's heavy lids fluttered wildly before opening to welcome the blazing sunlight. He suffered from cotton mouth and one of the worst headache known to man. The only comfort he felt was the softness of his pillow. Glancing around his partly messy room confirmed his terrible night, being that he'd woken up alone instead of waking up next to some random chick he would have met the night before. After leaning up in his bed, shirtless, Sebastian scratched a lazy hand through his golden locks while releasing a sigh. It was then the memories came crashing back with his stem partially clear. The more he scratched, the more the events of last night became acknowledged.

Of course he remembered leaving Eloise's apartment, her and the little nutcase acting as if he were the bad guy. Why? Simply because he wanted his belongings returned to him. But the realization that Eli spat in his face had did little to soothed his aching head. In fact it made him that much more angry because there was really nothing he could have done with Andrew being in the room. Sebastian subconsciously bit into his bottom lip harshly the longer he thought about it, until the tinge of pain followed by the metallic taste of warm blood began to pool in his mouth. "Shit." He cursed, lifting himself from bed and returning to the master bathroom.

He flipped on the knobs to faucet and brought his hands together to gather up some water. Sebastian swished the cool water around in his mouth before spitting out the rosy-colored water. The next thing he did was gather up some cold water and splashed it into his face. It was a relieving feeling that overall left him refreshed. Moving back into his bedroom and into the living room brought him to the note he snatched angrily off the door last night. It was slightly torn from where he ripped it at the point where the tape started. At first he wasn't going to read it but his curiosity was piqued, so he picked up the paper in a way that he could hold both pieces to make reading it comprehensible.

"Dear Tenant,

As the landlord, I would like to inform you that a meeting for the floors 20-23 are called. The meeting will take place in the lobby tomorrow 9/18/13 at 8:30 A.M.. Very important news and information will be given so I strongly urge everyone to attend. Please take this note seriously. If you happen to miss the meeting for whatever reason then I advise you to either ask a fellow neighbor or visit the desk by Monday 9/20/13. Thank you everyone.

In regard, your Landlord.


Sebastian turned his face in confusion. The old woman had never called a 'group' meeting like this in the past. Not that he didn't respect her he just found it relatively not in his interest to attend. Although considering she had never did this before in the past also alerted Sebastian in a odd way. Perhaps the important changes would pertain to him, even so, he could rarely think about Eli without hurting himself let alone be in the same room. But overall. he decided he wouldn't let that disgusting woman stop him from making his presence known around the complex. With that in mind, Sebastian tossed the note back onto the table and headed back into the bathroom to clear his head in a frore shower.





After brushing his teeth, Sebastian headed back into his bedroom with his towel wrapped lowly around his lips. Glaring over to his alarm clock revealed it to be 8:22 A.M. He didn't mind showing up late, surely the old woman would start regardless of missing tenants. Sebastian slid open his closet door and rummaged through the racks. A pair of fitted dark blue jeans, an olive-colored v-neck T-shirt were eventually chosen. And after he got dressed, the young man headed into the kitchen where he grabbed himself a bottle of water and nearly guzzled down the entire bottle. Sebastian then grabbed his keys from the rack near the front door, through on a dark beige over-sized beanie and slipped on a pair of beige Vans before heading out.

He quickly locked everything up, dropped his keys back into his pocket and sauntered down the hall where he saw Piper. Sebastian stopped for a moment as he took his time in staring her down. There was never any doubt in his mind that she was beautiful, more beautiful than any other woman he had been smitten with aside from Elosie but that was another story. Piper was just something something he could never truly have, even though technically he 'had' her once. Severin was his best friend, almost like a brother and there he was lusting after his woman. Maybe Sebastian was more humanely interested in the challenge she posed, the taboo-matured diorama. But he knew it was time to snap out of his sinful behavior. So, instead of making a salacious comment, he settled for a simple. "Morning, Piper." His voice somewhat calm and temperate. Which was odd regarding his usual snarky self. The young man glanced over to Severin's door as he thought of something endearing to say, but he he found...nothing. The sound of the door opening from up ahead pushed him along quicker. "Good morning Piper." Sebastian leaned his head against the wall and continued to listen to Severin talk. "Are we heading down there right now?" "Yeah, man. Let's go... don't wanna keep the misses waiting." Sebastian concluded before making his way towards the elevator, his sight slightly obstructed by the viewing of Giselle exiting her apartment. Without hiding his attempt, he let his fall over her clavicle and cleavage region. Probably the favorite-est part of the female body for him. However, the show only lasted a few seconds since he had by that time reached the elevators.





At the ding of the elevator, the doors slid open revealing the wall leading into the lobby. He hadn't been expecting more than three or four people but once he stepped into the lobby, seeing about ten or so surprised him. Sebastian sifted through the people with his eyes, among them were a few familiar people. The weird maintenance man seated in the sofa. There was always something about Mathew that warranted him, however he couldn't place a finger on it. Sitting only a few feet away was the last person he desired to see. He simply rolled his eyes and continued into the lobby. He decided to take one of the empty seat of the near brown colored chairs. "Well, this is a blast." Sebastian mumbled under his breath.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sebastian Gray Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Eloise Pardon Character Portrait: Severin Macer

0.00 INK

#, as written by Issa
Piper Torres


Piper was just about ready to give up on her boyfriend when she heard a faint call coming from inside,
"P-piper. Piper smiled, he sounded half asleep. No doubt he had been sleeping, he had got back late last night after all. Piper contented herself with waiting in the corridor. She could hear the noises of Sev getting ready inside, no doubt he wouldn't be long.

Movement down the corridor caught Piper's attention. Eloise swept by, her eyes resolutely averted from Piper. Piper felt her brows contract in a frown as she glanced after the girl. Piper and Eloise had never had much to do with each other but there was a tension between the two. Piper got the sense that Eloise didn't like her and Piper found herself disliking Eloise in return. At least neither girl felt the need to pretend to be friends, ignoring the other person worked well for them both.

A moment later she was gone and Piper was once again alone in the corridor, until the feeling that she was being watched made her peer down the back down the corridor. Her stomach did a flip, whether from dread or excitement she couldn't tell. Sebastian Gray stood watching her,
"Morning, Piper." His greeting was not filled with the expected sarcasm or biting comment, instead it was calm.
"Sebastian." Piper managed, failing to find anything else to say. She had once found Sebastian so easy to talk to, his presence had sent thrilling chills down her back. Now she didn't want to think.

Thankfully she didn't have long to wait with Sevastion before Severin emerged, confirming Piper's previous thought that Sev had been asleep. His hair wasn't combed and he wore his casual clothes, sweats and a t-shirt. A smile of greeting spread across his face as he opened the door,
"Good morning Piper... Are we heading down there right now?"

"Yeah, man. Let's go... don't wanna keep the misses waiting." Piper couldn't tell if Sebastian's words were sarcastic or not but she was happy to watch him disappear down the corridor.
"Morning Sev." Piper said, turning back to Severin. She smiled at Sev as she tried to push thoughts of Sebastian out of her mind. Leaning forward she gave Sev a teasing peck on the cheek, "Let's go down before Keilani starts the meeting without us." She added.

"Hey, guys. Heading down?... I hope she's has good news, y'know. Something like going down on rent." Giselle's voice drifted up the corridor and Piper turned to find her Aunt making her way to the elevator. Piper followed, knowing that Sev would most likely follow. She greeted her Aunt with a cheery "Morning!" before hoping into the elevator beside her.

The elevator dinged open and Piper stepped out after her aunt. The Lobby was already filling with tenants, the seats quickly being occupied. Piper spotted Sebastian sitting in an armchair, looking bored. Piper's hand found Sev's and she turned a brilliant smile his face, pushing her guilt and the memories of that night from her thoughts.
"Where do you want to sit?" she asked Severin.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sebastian Gray Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Charity Louis Character Portrait: Samuel Williams Character Portrait: Sage Blackwood Character Portrait: Hope Louis Character Portrait: Eloise Pardon Character Portrait: Matthew Granger Character Portrait: Drew Williams Character Portrait: Amelia Cardozo

0.00 INK

Charity

"Hope? Sweetheart?" Charity runs her hands though tangled brown hair and yawns, moving so that her legs hang off of the bed, brushing against the slippers that lay on the ground just beside her. The slippers are old and worn down, any sort of fluffiness erased by overuse until they have become little more than a thin layer between her feet and the chill of the wooden floors that cover all of the family's small apartment. Charity can see that she has slept in a bit past her normal hour, and chalks this up to a late night and various, well, stressful factors of it. The young mother glances over at Hope, who had fallen asleep in her bed beside her, and reaches out to touch her forehead, which is warm but not worryingly so. The young girl looks so peaceful and angelic in sleep that her mother hates to wake her, and thus allows her to continue sleeping. Promise me you won't make the same mistakes, Charity asks of her daughter, though she doesn't actually voice the words, instead sighing very softly and brushing a strand of hair out of the sleeping girl's face. This action reminds her of last night, as Sebastian had done something relatively similar to her, and a chill creeps down the woman's spine immediately, though she tries to shake it off. As far as she can tell, that particular young man has a special gift for giving others the chills with his behavior.

Looking rather tired, and feeling much older than she is, Charity runs her hands through her hair once more before standing up and making her way to the bathroom for a shower, making the consecutive decision to put off breakfast until Hope is awake, so that they can have eggs and fruit together. For the moment, she washes, feeling refreshed by the warmth of the water, a luxury which she hasn't always had. It occurs to the woman that she is one of the younger tenants of this apartment building, and yet feels as though she is one of the older ones. Even people like Piper and Eloise, whom she automatically views as children, are only a few years her juniors. Sometimes, watching those who are younger than her, or in many cases older than her, have so much freedom and potential makes Charity feel rather wistful. By all means, she should be in college right now, and should have the freedom to stay out all night at parties, to date, to be realizing some greater potential. Instead, she takes care of a child, is cautious in everything she does, and steers clear of relationships altogether. This isn't something she blames Hope for, though, and she doesn't regret having her daughter. She blames herself for having a child so soon, and in doing so seems to forget that it wasn't her fault, not entirely. Maybe she shouldn't have been so careless about partying when she was young, but how was she to know that she would be raped in an intoxicated state?

Charity gets out of the shower, trying to leave those useless thoughts behind. Steam clouds the mirror, so she goes without seeing the flush in her cheeks. Returning to the bedroom to dress tells the young woman that her daughter remains out cold, so she dresses as quietly as possible, putting on a simple sundress that had been on sale at a walmart. All of her best clothing are from thrift stores, but she tends to save those for special occasions. Not that she really has any special occasions, outside of taking Hope out for special birthday dinners, or things like that. The woman begins to start brewing a pot of coffee, a beverage which she used to hate but now has come to rely on, when a glance at the clock reminds her of the note she had found under her door late last night. The meeting, she recalls suddenly, seeing that it is starting around. . .one minute from now.

She immediately turns of the coffee maker and haphazardly brushes her hair, pulling on a pair of sandals simultaneously. Charity runs into the bedroom, but finds Hope still asleep. Not wanting to leave her alone in the apartment, she picks the girl up and sits her against her hip before hurrying out to door, forgetting to lock it -though that likely doesn't matter- and rushing to the elevator. Perhaps she wouldn't be in such a rush if it weren't for the landlady- Charity adores the elderly woman, and would never dare to be the one who shows up late to any meeting called by her.

She enters the lobby to find that several people have already arrived, including Sebastian and Eloise, both of whom she carefully ignores. Besides, she looks so different than she had last night, washed and fresh, dressed so simply that it gives off an impression of innocence, and they had been doing drugs, so perhaps they won't recall a thing. Of course, that very well may be wishful thinking on her part. Still, a girl can dream. The mother shifts her daughter's sleeping position on her hip and walks over to the crowd, quietly slipping in among them.

Close behind her walks Samuel, who had ultimately given up on waking up his brother, and therefore came downstairs alone, soon walking towards Sage to stand beside him. He holds a cup of coffee in his hand, and looks like a man just about to go to work, as he usually does. Suave and clean cut- that's the way the man prefers to remain. "Any idea what this is all about?" he asks Sage casually.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Sebastian Gray Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Charity Louis Character Portrait: Samuel Williams Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Sage Blackwood Character Portrait: Hope Louis Character Portrait: Eloise Pardon Character Portrait: Matthew Granger Character Portrait: Drew Williams Character Portrait: Severin Macer Character Portrait: Amelia Cardozo

0.00 INK

As time marched slowly on to the meeting time, people began trickling into the lobby in varying degrees of alertness. Some seemed still damp from a rushed shower, others with bed-head and still in pajamas as they shuffled to claim some of the sparse seating like mindless zombies before their daily caffeine infusion. Matthew stayed where he was, wishing that he'd brought his phone to entertain him or, given that he didn't actually have anyone to text per-say, at least give the illusion of being social which was its own brand of depressing. Instead, he glanced around as each new arrival made their way into the room, recognizing, however vaguely, each face. There was that couple from the twenty-second floor who he'd helped with a faulty stove some time ago, the older man from the twentieth-floor who enjoyed ranting about what was wrong with today's young people whenever Matthew had to stop by... Each time someone walked fully into the room, his eyes drifted back to the floor because Heaven forbid they think he was watching them(which he was) or, horror upon horror, that he wanted to talk(which he desperately did not want to do with these people at this hour).

He was dragged forcefully from his people-watching by a sudden shift of weight on his couch. His eyes darted to the side, glancing at the couch's new occupant for just a moment before flickering back the the tiled lobby floor. Renter of apartment number 1109 and his neighbor, Eloise Pardon. It wasn't that they had ever interacted and even their brief, wordless meetings were few and far between. Still, she made him uncomfortable- that was the best way to put it, uncomfortable- from just one specific incidence, even if she probably didn't remember it. They'd been stuck in the elevator together as it rose to their floor. The journey had only been a few moments, but for Matthew it had felt like hours upon aching hours as he quickly recognized the rosy cheeks and glazed over expression, he'd even convinced himself that he could smell it on her, but that may have been his imagination overreacting and cravings he'd tried to keep at bay began to stir. He'd stayed on the phone with Simon for two hours afterwards, depressed with himself that just seeing someone who had dabbled in drugs had nearly broken his will-power.

Still, she didn't seem to want to talk and he was just fine with that. More people began to trickle in, but Matthew avoided looking up this time, instead indulging in the monotony of counting the floor tiles before him in an attempt to stave off boredom. Somewhere around the sixtieth tile, he noticed someone else walking towards the couch and forced himself to glance upwards. Seeing Ms. Torres- Elle, he corrected himself again, something he'd probably still be doing for some time- settling into the seat next to him brought on a feeling of both relief and a minute anxiety. He liked Elle, really he did, probably the best of his neighbors if only because they'd seen each other the most, but, after last night, he had no idea what to do. She didn't seem to have the same problem, however.

"Hey. Sorry for passing out last night... I was just really exhausted. I didn't even hear you leave."

His face flushed for a moment and any attempt at eye-contact on his part was instantly shut down. The comment was innocuous in meaning, but he wasn't stupid, he knew what it sounded like.

"It's, um, it's fine. Thank you for inviting me to, uh, to dinner," He stammered out, tripping over his own words. Maybe it was a deep-seeded need to be polite at least or maybe it was an attempt to clear up any misconceptions. Hopefully no one was listening in to their little conversation(really, who would?), but, still, it was the principle of the matter.

Any further attempt at conversation was thankfully cut off as the last few people filled into the room and a man near the front of the little assembly cleared his throat quite purposefully. Matthew blinked, glancing around the room. He didn't recognize this man bedecked in designer clothes. Who was he? And, more importantly, where was Keilani? The introduction was bizarre as he stared ahead, confusion in his gaze, but that slipped away instantly the moment he announced... he announced that... that...

"Keilani Fergosa, has unfortunately passed away."

It was like time had frozen for a moment, and he knew that Alan Westbrook was still talking, but he simply didn't care because Keilani was dead. She was dead, dead, dead. It was like a block of ice had been dropped into his stomach, chilling him to the bone as emotions battled with one another for dominance. Shock over the news, so sudden and unexpected, horror because he was never going to see Keilani's bright smiling face again or hear her speak, anguish because this was Keilani, one of the few people he clung to with an almost desperation and who cared about him in turn, and anxiety, crippling him for the moment. What was he supposed to do now? What was going to happen? What would he do?

He could already feel pinpricks of tears fighting to escape his eyes and it felt just like when his grandmother had died, didn't it? Like his whole world was gone, a support that he'd needed gone forever. Keilani who had given him a home, a job, a chance when no-one else would even give him a second glance. Keilani who had believed in him, who had invited him over for dinner, who talked to him like he was normal, who had nagged at him like a second mother. She was gone. Gone forever. Matthew wanted to leave now, to curl up in his bed, pull the comforter over his head, and block out the rest of the world until it was safe to come out. He wanted to hold onto something or someone and be reassured that, yes, it would be okay. He wanted- oh, God, he wanted something to numb the pain, to fill the void that had just opened up and there was only one thing he knew that could do that and he really, really shouldn't, but it was so damn tempting right now. He only just prevented himself from panicking over that little revelation as he rubbed at his eyes, wiping away budding tears. He could freak out later- well, freak out more because he was most certainly not okay even right now- but for now his new landlord(that sounded sickening, even in his thoughts) was still talking, even if Matthew didn't quite want to listen.

He took one of the obituaries in his hand, and only just noticed that he was trembling, the paper moving sporadically in his shaking hands. He tried to still them, but he could only concentrate on controlling so many things, and, as he set the paper down next to him and clasped his trembling hands together, he decided that not causing a scene was more important. Much more important. He wouldn't, couldn't expose himself like that, couldn't take away from the meeting. The battle against his tears began anew as he glanced at the pictures on the obituary, but, once more, he wiped them away and tuned back in to the man speaking.

New rent, new leases, new rules. Matthew couldn't help but hate this guy, just a little bit, for changing everything right now. Which wasn't fair, really, none of this was his fault. Then again, he thought bitterly, he might not even be here tomorrow. He was here because he had a deal with Keilani, he was her employee and this well-dressed man could just as easily terminate his job and kick Matthew to the curb. His anxiety doubled as he bit his bottom lip, clasping his hands even tighter together, only releasing them to dutifully pick up one of the sheets illustrating the new guidelines. Why bother, though? The thought was pessimistic, but Matthew considered himself a realist- why keep him around when you could hire someone without a history as sketchy as his own, who was actually trained for the job?

"Oh, and is there a Mr. Mathew Granger here, I need to speak to him privately."

Matthew's mouth suddenly went dry, making speech impossible for a moment as he pulled himself together the best he could. He could break later- would break later- but for now, he had to keep calm and carry on.... Well, until he was safely ensconced in his apartment or former apartment or whatever.

"Right, uh, right here, Mr. Westbrook. I'm- I'm Matthew Granger," He finally forced out, standing awkwardly to his feet, stuffing his still trembling hands into his jean pockets to mask the involuntary movement.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Severin Macer

0.00 INK

#, as written by Issa
Piper Torres


Sitting beside Severin on the couch, Piper watched with growing concern as a strange man entered and addressed the waiting tenants. He introduced himself as Alan Westbrook and indicated his wife Sasha to be the beautiful woman beside him Then he delivered the news that sent a shock through Piper's system: Keilani was dead. Piper, as with many of the Kohana Creek residents, had liked Keilani. She was always a happy presence and seemed to genuinely care for the tenants. Her death was a big schock, after all Piper hadn't even known that she was sick.

Piper numbly took an obituary and glanced at the photos. She had no appointments or deadlines to meet so of course she would go to the funeral. It was the least she could do for Keilani and her family. She felt her eyes grow watery but determinedly pushed back the tears, she didn't want to cry here in front of so many strangers.

Alan Westbrook continued speaking, breaking through Piper's shock only to deliver another blow: Their rent would be increasing. An extra one-hundred and fifty might not seep like a lot for some of the residents, but Piper was a student and only working part-time. She managed to scrap through using the money her parents' sent Giselle for her board. They still thought she was living with her Aunt after all. Piper felt her brows furrow together in a frown, she didn't want to leave Kohana. She would have to take up extra shifts at work or ask her parents for help.

Alan Westbrook continued on with further changes, rules that seemed to Piper a little strict given that all the tenants were adults or children living with their parents. That seemed entirely ridiculous, as if they were a group of rebellious teenagers in a boarding school. If Piper had wanted rules she would have gone to live in one of the university halls of residence.

"Poor Keilani, I didn't even know she was sick." Piper said to Severin. She pushed thoughts of the new rules and increased rent temporarily out of her mind. She could think on them later, right now the biggest news was really Keilani's death. "Will you be free to go to the funeral? I'd like to go." Piper added, glancing again at the obituary in her hand. She would like to attend the funeral with Severin, it would be nice to have him to lean on, but she knew with his work schedule that he might not be able to take the time off. Yes, tomorrow was a Sunday so the chances were better that he would be able to come, but Piper knew that if any work did pop up Severin would be forced to see to it, weekend or not.

Out of the corner of her eye Piper spotted Giselle leaving and making her way to the elevator. No doubt she would be attending the funeral so if Severin couldn't make it Piper would see if she could go with Giselle. Piper had never done well with funerals. She had had a childhood friend die from cancer a few years back and she had found the funeral unbearable.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Piper Torres Character Portrait: Severin Macer

0.00 INK

At first he thinks its just 'refreshing' the rules and it was mandatory for them to hear them. Though something really did scream 'fishy' to him about the man wearing a suit...Alan and his wife Sasha. "Keilani Fergosa, has unfortunately passed away." The news had captured Severin's attention so quickly his head snapped up to Alan, hoping the other man would give out more information or at least try to absorb his other words. Very quickly he found out they were admin stuff. What annoyed him the most was the fact of how quickly he seem to 'get down to business'. The way he seemed so...well smug about it like some of the people he had encountered. He blinked a little shock to hear that news coming from such a nice day. As the pamphlet was passed to his hands, Severin murmured a word of thanks before opening it to read the obituary. Sure he had not personally knew the landlady well but enough to know she had a good heart. Through word of mouth by the other tenants most of them were kind so he thought of nothing ill about his landlady.

Then he heard Piper asking him if he would be free to attend the funeral. Giving the pamphlet another glance, he read the date and bit his tongue. God...he really should pay his respect and attend the date. Ah he might pay back for extra long hours for taking one day off, but it's important surely his boss knows that. "I think I should be able to get a day off. I might...need to tell them about this today." His hand that was still holding Piper's gave a gentle squeeze. Even if he had known Piper for not a long while, he does have a clue she needs someone to comfort her. Whether it was a faceless co-worker or a loved one. Maybe tomorrow he could finally spend some time with Piper, not the best day to catch up but it's a day he would not waste. He can try to cheer her up or at least comfort her at the funeral, be that attentive boyfriend he always been before his busy schedule had choked his free time. "Me too...she never appeared...unwell every time I saw her."

Now regarding about the 'new' rules that were placed, he quirked a eyebrow at the $150 raise for the rent. That...is surely going to affect his living already. Well there goes more of his hard earned cash. At the thought of going to work after this meeting had given him a sort of downer mood. Just because he doesn't cry right now doesn't mean he is a heartless person. Nope, everything is going to come back right at the funeral. It always has no matter who and especially it was someone extremely close to him...

Maybe he should...for today call in for a half day off, some of the work he would able to do at home anyway. A sound of movement alerted some of the tenants had started to move on to their daily lives. Needing that solace so anyone who is close to Keilani needed that time to let that information to absorb. Even he needs one, because she had such a huge impact on everyone she had encountered like keeping things peaceful here in Kohana Creek. "Things...are not going to be the same are they?" he asked Piper in a undertone, his gaze went from her face to her hands. Finding sufficient funds and strict new policy might be one of the stressful factors that might cause a change of atmosphere in the complex.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Samuel Williams Character Portrait: Sage Blackwood Character Portrait: Amelia Cardozo

0.00 INK

-

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Samuel Williams Character Portrait: Sage Blackwood Character Portrait: Amelia Cardozo

0.00 INK


Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Giselle Torres Character Portrait: Matthew Granger

0.00 INK

It was with only a mild flinch that Matthew allowed himself to be guided away by his new landlord, the hand on his back unfamiliar and unwelcome. Still, he didn't retreat from the touch, didn't ask the older man to keep out of his personal space despite visibly stiffening at the contact. Matthew was, by nature, not confrontational and the sooner this meeting was over, the sooner his future in Kohana Creek was spelled out in front of him, the sooner he could leave and do... something. He didn't know what, and the options that had begun to appear in his mind were less than optimal.

He relaxed minutely when Mr. Westbrook's hands returned to his sides, but not completely as the man began to speak. The words were comforting enough, dashing away any worry he had over losing his job, but the way that he said them didn't sit well with Matthew. The grin painted on the other man's face- confident and showing too many teeth, a smile that was practiced- that Matthew had glimpsed when his eyes finally risked settling on the other man felt inappropriate given the situation. The mention of Keilani, of her own doing in keeping Matthew's job safe and sound, made him feel ill, a sharp pang of loss ringing through him once more. Of course she had- she was Keilani, she wouldn't leave anyone to fend for themselves if she could help it. It was just the type of person that she was. Even after passing away, she was taking care of him.

Despite the situation, the compliments, the acknowledgement of his own value to Kohana Creek, made him embarrassed in a pleasant sort of way. If it had been a normal point of time, he might have even managed a bashful smile or even stammered out a thank-you, especially when he talked about a promotion. A promotion. He couldn't quite fathom it and everything was happening too fast for him to really understand- benefits, hot coworkers(it wouldn't be until later that he realized how weird that was coming from his new boss), new beginnings on Monday all swirled together in his mind in a sort of chaotic cloud.

"Yeah, tomorrow," He finally breathed out, then added, voice perhaps a little louder than intended, "Thank you- I mean... Thanks." He made his escape then, quickly passing by other tenants still milling about the lobby, ignoring his neighbors and their reactions in favor of following his one-tract mind, intent on reaching his apartment and soon. The elevators were filling quickly, so he made a bee-line towards the stairs. The climb would take a while, but at this time on a Saturday, they would assuredly be empty. It wasn't like he had to really worry about anyone else following behind, either- most avoided the long trek up if they lived any higher than the fifth floor.

The only downside of taking the stairs, however, was being lost in his own thoughts, the tapping noise of his feet on the steps the only other sound in the stairway. The reality of the situation was slowly setting in and his hands began to tremble once more, eyes burning with the tears that threatened to well up without any distractions to keep them at bay. Loss wasn't foreign to Matthew, but that didn't make it any easier to deal with, nor did the memories of his last attempt to cope with something like this. He needed a distraction, any sort of distraction- he couldn't sit and wallow in his own sorrow, suffering silently in his apartment. What was that saying- idle hands are the devil's playthings?

The trek up to the twenty-third floor was suddenly over and the maintenance man nearly ran to his door, fumbling for his key and not bothering to fully shut the door behind him. Matthew took a deep breath only for it to be cut off in an almost choking sob as his eyes glanced around the room looking for something, anything to do now. He was at a loss. His apartment didn't feel safe right now, more enclosed than anything, like it was trapping him within the room. It was suffocating him, closing in on him until a sudden chime broke into his meltdown. His phone. His phone. He scrambled over to his coffee table, answering the cell phone right before the ringing noise was supposed to stop.

"Hello?"

"I thought you weren't going to answer, Matty. Stay up too late partying last night?" A familiar voice gently teased and this time Matthew actually did sob, but from relief. Simon. Oh, thank God, Simon.

"Matty?" He didn't answer at first, despite the concern in his friend's voice, just curled up on the floor, sobbing. Because now it was safe because there was someone to talk to. He was alone in the room, but not alone at the same time.

"Matty, what's going on? Matthew, talk to me, please," Simon's voice was more frantic now, more serious if the lack of nickname meant anything.

"Keilani's dead." It wasn't the most eloquent statement, choked out through his tears, nor was it the best way to get into a conversation. There was an audible pause on Simon's end, a quick intake of breath and Matthew could kick himself because Keilani had been Simon's actual friend, not landlady and employer. He didn't deserve to have it broken to him like that, with even less finesse than Alan Westbrook's announcement. "I'm sorry-"

"Don't be sorry. Thank you for telling me." If there was a catch in the professor's voice, Matthew pretended not to hear it. "Are you okay, Matty?"

"Yes." No. He meant no, but he didn't want to worry Simon, not really. "My, uh, the job. The new landlord is keeping me, giving me a raise. Benefits. He seems... nice." Nice wasn't quite the right word, but it made everything sound a little more optimistic than it really was.

"I didn't ask about your job, Matty. Are you okay?"

"Yes." There he went again, the lie so obvious that he wasn't quite sure why he was even trying. "The funeral, it's- Tomorrow. At noon. Are you...?"

"Of course. I wouldn't miss it for anything," Simon reassured and Matthew let out another little sob of relief because as nice as it was to hear his friend, his support, he'd prefer him to physically be there, to be able to keep Matthew from doing something stupid.

"Lana and I will be back as soon as possible." A pause again. "Matty? You're strong, you know that? You're one of the strongest people I know. We'll be back soon, okay? Are you going to be all right in the meantime?"

"Probably." Maybe. Yes. No. He didn't know. He heard the double meaning behind the words 'Don't do anything stupid. Don't give in.' "I'll see you when you get back." Get back soon, please.

"Okay. I'll see you then, Matty." The other man waited a beat before all Matthew could hear was a dial tone. He slumped over onto the floor, clutching the phone in his hands. The relief only lasted a minute before that feeling of suffocation came back, an itching, irritating need spreading across his body. The room was too quiet and not quiet enough, his mind was racing again and he felt so stupid. He'd only just hung up and here he was, breaking down again. As if sensing that weakness, emotion was welling up inside of him, an ache of pain and loss threatening to pull him under.

The thing about drugs was that he didn't miss them. He didn't miss the smell- it was disgusting, noxious and biting-, he didn't miss the sight, the taste. It was the aftereffects that he missed, that tranquility and calm or, in other occasions, euphoria and pure bliss. With that he didn't have to deal with this pain, with the anguish or the emptiness. He didn't know how to cope without them, really. He'd never had to before, had never tried to.

His fingers brushed over the keypad of his phone, familiar numbers trailing through his mind. Miranda, Blake, Jazz... They were all just a phone-call away. His thumb hesitated before pressing down. 6-7-5-

"Matthew? Are you alright?" The voice was accompanied by a hand tenderly brushing his forehead, and he couldn't help but startle, shooting up into sitting position and skittering away from the intruder. He blinked, trying to comprehend what was going on.

"Ms. Torres? Elle?" Even in his shock, he had to correct himself. "What are you doing here?" He must have looked a right mess, face wet and red from crying, probably a bit of snot that he hastily wiped away with his sleeve(pretty criers, Matthew was convinced, were only on television or in the movies- no one looked good crying).

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Charity Louis Character Portrait: Samuel Williams Character Portrait: Sage Blackwood Character Portrait: Hope Louis Character Portrait: Amelia Cardozo

0.00 INK

Charity

Charity looks around briefly at the others, scanning the crowd to see if anyone seems to have an idea about what is going on. Seeing no signs of awareness on the faces of anyone but the stranger at the front of the group, she gives in and watches him. The young mother doesn't really stand with any other people at the moment, not on the fringes but not clearly near anyone in particular, other than her daughter, of course. Hope starts to stir slightly, so Charity looks about for an open chair that she may place her daughter in for the moment. Seeing none, she shifts the little girl's position in her arms slightly, and continues to wait for the news. What comes next feels like a punch in the stomach, sudden and painful. Her grip on Hope is suddenly tighter when the man, who introduces himself as Alan Westbrook, announces the death of Keilani Fergosa. It seems that only a few weeks ago, the elderly woman had been kind enough to watch Hope for her while Charity worked. Until only a few hours ago, the kindly landlady had been the only one who knew about Charity's employment, but she had never judged the young mother for this- not openly, anyway, though Charity trusts that she hadn't done so privately, either. I knew that she was sick, but, the young woman takes a deep breath to steady herself. Besides, if she seems to be overly sad, it might disturb Hope, who opens her eyes now and again before drifting back to sleep.

Someone hands Charity a pamphlet, though she can't entirely recall taking it, merely finding it within her free hand. She looks at it blankly for a moment, before stroking Hope's hair with the same hand. She doesn't have a pocket, and so it remains in her hand as she holds her daughter and absorbs the information. Perhaps she hadn't been as close as some to Mrs. Fergosa, but the elderly woman had been like an angel, a saint, to Charity, and the loss of her is like an icicle stabbed through her stomach, sending a chill up her spine and making her feel inexplicably cold all over. It is hardly a pleasant feeling, that much is true, but she can't do anything about it, despite a sudden urge to put on a thick coat and fall asleep with Hope in her arms.

Not really giving the people as much time as they need, or at least deserve, to absorb the information, the smartly dressed man speaks back up, drawing attention to him and his clearly well taken care of wife. They practically smell of money, the sort of people who were born and raised in it, and have grown distant from others because of it. Distant from those who do not walk in the same radiance as them, anyway. This is painfully clear by his next few comments, which strike Charity in an entirely different way than the news of Keilani's death had. She begins running the math in her head, realizing that they are going to have to start cutting back to fit this new rent. Rather than the chill from before, a wave of nausea comes over the young woman, who has to tense every muscle in order to keep her knees from buckling and from needing to lean against something. $150 is grocery money, is clothing allowance- it's Hope's field trips and other school expenses. Having resolved long ago to give her daughter as best as she can, Charity immediately begins to think about how she can cut down on her own expenses. About which meals she can skip over, or what purchases aren't really necessary.

The mother buries her face into her daughter's shoulder for a moment, whispering "I love you" to her, before taking another deep breath and looking over at Mr. Westbrook. He seems to have finished his briefing, which is some sort of relief for the young woman. I can just work longer hours from now on, she thinks. To be honest, the woman, only 21 and yet so much older, has knots of stress and is probably developing a stomach ulcer from the same demon- stress. But all of that is low on her list of priorities, and so go unchecked. Hope had begun to wake up now, and squirmed to be let onto the floor. Charity outs her down, but still grips her daughter's hand.

"Mommy, what's happened?" she asks, so Charity sighs, not really wanting to explain this to Hope, but knowing that lying to children about things like death is a terrible idea. "How about we go and get something to eat, okay?" she says, something which Charity agrees with immediately, asking if they can go to a diner she likes that serves delicious milkshakes. Despite knowing that, from hereon out, they'll have to be more careful about funds, Charity smiles and agrees to her daughter's request. They pop upstairs so that Charity can properly brush her hair, wash her face, dress Hope, put on sandals, and go.



Samuel



Samuel raises an eyebrow at Amelia, hearing the sudden shift in her tone, and smiles slightly, running his hands through his hair once again. "Oh, I'm fine. I was never really that close to her- not that it isn't sad, of course," he adds quickly, not wanting to come off as completely uninterested in the death of someone who was near to him, to an extent. Still, he prefers to avoid tension like this, and will usually suppress it or allow it to slide off of him like water off of a well-made rain coat. He understands that she is probably being careful, in case he does have any trauma at the death of Keilani, and is doing his best to put those concerns to rest immediately, because he dislikes people tip toeing about, generally speaking, especially when there isn't any actual need to be doing so.

When Amelia challenges Sage about his skill at egg making, Samuel chuckles slightly and turns his attention back to his friend, who immediately responds that he can cook anything she wants. Whereas I burn toast, Samuel thinks to himself, although in not a self pitying or bitter way- rather a good-humored acknowledgement of his own terrible skills in the kitchen. There is a reason that his diet consists almost entirely of takeout and microwavables, after all. It isn't just laziness, but the result of complete and utter incompetence- incompetence which seems beyond help, to be completely honest.

As Sage begins to walk away, Samuel calls out after him, "I'll be expecting an omelet, then!" before looking back over towards Amelia and smiling again, putting his hands in his pockets. He has no need to go back to his apartment, already bathed and dressed quite nicely, with his wallet and such should he need to leave immediately after attending breakfast at Sage's place. "Are you okay, though?" he asks her courteously, realizing that she is the only one in the trio that has not been offered some sort of comfort, or subtly asked if they need comfort, over the lightning news. Being a nurse doesn't make a person immune to grieving over death, and her cheer may very well all be a show, put on because Sam and Sage aren't exactly exhibiting vulnerability in light of recent news.

"I know Giselle was close to Mrs. Fergosa, but were you as well? You don't really need to have breakfast with us if you don't want to," he says, trying to sound at least moderately gentle without giving the image of tiptoeing or anything like that. After all, such a thing would be hypocrisy, wouldn't it?

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Samuel Williams Character Portrait: Sage Blackwood Character Portrait: Amelia Cardozo

0.00 INK

Amelia crossed her arms across her chest and smirked at Sage as he made his farewells and made his way to his apartment. Where he’d be making eggs she assumed. At this point the day had all ready been so surreal there was probably nothing anyone could say to make it any stranger. Less than four hours ago she’d been on a bus from the hospital back to her apartment and all she could think about was a bath and sleep. Funny, how the day changes with no notice or warning. Amelia had steadily come to realize that apparently that was just how life worked and it pissed her off.

Looking back towards Samuel she shrugged lightly and looked away, a small, sad smile playing at her lips. “I’m fine I think. I don’t know.” She replied, unsure of how to address the grief she was feeling. This was exactly why she needed a drink, so she could just forget. Blot out all the pain and sense of loss with whatever was handy. This meant breakfast and a drink with a couple of near strangers. Whatever it took so she didn't have to be alone with her thoughts.

“I met Keilani when I was her nurse. She was brought into the E.R, horrible cough that wouldn't stop and she’d finally had enough of it. She was so nice to me, kind. I guess she saw something in me she liked because she offered me an apartment and I've been here ever since. But she’s not and it really fucking blows.” Amelia answered honestly, her dark eyes finally looking up at Sam. She was pretty sure he hadn't asked her how she was doing because he actually cared but because he was courteous. The same way she’d ask someone how they were doing, people weren't so different really when you thought about it.

Feeling slightly brazen she held out her arm as if to escort Samuel to Sage’s apartment. “I’m starving, I’m sad and I've never been one to turn down a free meal. “ Amelia offered with a slight grin and a shrug.

cron