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Brooklyn Archer

0 · 1,201 views · located in New York, NY

a character in “The Lost and Found”, as played by BurningBridges

Description

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I was born under the name of:
Brooke Carolyn Archer

You can call me:
Brooklyn

My age is:
23

I was born on:
June 21st

I was born in:
South Orange, NJ

I have been homeless for:
8 years

Role:
The Bitch


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People would describe me as being:
Guarded | Passive Aggressive | Sensitive | Strong | Hardworking | Independent

Brooklyn is undoubtedly a hard worker. She's currently working two jobs and really doesn't mind the hustle since it pays off. She's determined, strong-minded and willing to take on new challenges, so long as there are perks for her. That too, is probably a big part of who she is. Brooklyn has been out here long enough to know that there's no use in helping people unless she's going to benefit from it as well. She definitely has trust issues, but she would deny that it really interferes with her life because she isn't seeking new friends. There's no need to share her life story or become best friends with someone when she couldn't care less if they disappeared the next day. Out here, she's learned to keep her guard up and not get too close to too many people because it'll just end in disappointment. She sees the mindset as being realistic but some claim it's closer to pessimism. Even if it is, why should she be optimistic? Almost an entire half of her life has been filled with hurt and she doesn't expect it to change anytime soon.

Besides being guarded, she definitely can come off as simply being a bitch. She's witty but sarcastic, and isn't innocent of saying things that she knows will provoke arguments or negative reactions. A lot of the things she does are calculated. She says and does things expecting a certain reaction from people and likes to see how far she can push people until they snap. She knows it's a poor character trait and she's the type who can dish it but can't really take it. She does a good job at acting like the things people say to her don't faze her, but she does take a lot of things to heart. Her emotions are generally internalized though, so unless she's arguing with someone she's extremely close with, she won't cry or show any signs of vulnerability. Instead, she'll spend days alternating between feeling guilty for whatever she did, and trying to convince herself that she shouldn't feel guilty - that if she starts to feel guilty, it'll show that she's weak and cares too much.

Her bad side may be more prevalent but there is a sociable side of her too. She has a heart and if one of the others ever needed her help, she would be there to give it to them. She wouldn't want them to speak of her doing a good deed ever again, but she'd probably be there to lend a hand if needed. Although she doesn't show this side of her with the others, Brooklyn is pretty wild. She's calmed down a lot compared to how she was a few years ago, but she's still spending at least one or two nights getting wasted at clubs after work. Alcohol and drugs (usually cocaine or weed) are her releases, and in addition to spending more money than she should on that, she also has a bit of a shopping addiction. If she was less impulsive when it came to those two habits, she would undoubtedly be able to support herself with at least a studio apartment.

Some things I like are:
Shopping | Alcohol | Silence | Warm weather | Heels | Being busy | Cliché Romance

Some things I dislike are:
Thinking about her family | Accepting responsibility | Waking up early | Being broke | Winter

Fears:
Brooklyn's biggest fear is dying on the streets. She doesn't want this to be her life and what she's remembered for. She's been homeless for longer than she ever would have imagined and is scared that she might never be able to get her life in order. Besides that, she's terrified of the idea of being raped, and she hates needles.

Dreams:
When she was a little girl, she'd tell you that she wanted to be a ballerina or a nurse and back then, she probably had the potential to become at least the latter. Now, her biggest dream is to get out of New York. She loves the city but wants to restart her life, and there's no way that she can do it here with all of her bad habits stemming from what the city life has to offer. Eventually, she would love to have a family but for now, moving somewhere warm would be a good start.


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Background:
There isn't much to say about Brooklyn's childhood. She was born as Brooklyn Carolyn Archer and lived in an average New Jersey suburb with her mother Andrea, a registered nurse, and her father Larry, a professor at a local university. When she was six, she became the older sister of Julia Grace Archer. Nothing noteworthy really occurred until the night of her aunt's wedding. Brooklyn was fifteen at the time and every the ceremony, had opted to spend the night at a friend's house. Her parents had arranged for Grace to also stay with a friend but at around three AM that morning, she was homesick and the friend's parents requested that her parents take her home. Larry and Andrea were enjoying themselves at the wedding, and clearly, they went overboard. In their defense, neither had planned on driving that night until they got the call about Grace, but both were old enough where that excuse couldn't excuse Larry driving drunk to pick up Grace. On their way home, Larry ran a red light and their car was T-Boned by a truck. The entire back half of their minivan was torn off and although the other driver, Andrea and Larry walked away with a few scrapes and bruises, Grace didn't. After a few hours on life support, she was declared brain dead.

Brooklyn woke up the next morning to find out that her sister was dead and her father was being charged with vehicular manslaughter. Her mundane life was turned upside down and this would just be the start of her troubles. Her father had been released from jail on bail but would never reach his court day. About a week after the crash, he committed suicide. The weight of having killed his youngest daughter was too much to bare and he didn't think that he deserved to be alive if he had taken that chance away from his baby. It's probably a pain that can't be understood unless you're experiencing it, but Brooklyn saw his move as being selfish. He had already caused her an immense amount of pain and now he was just going to die too? Her father had robbed her of her sister and now himself as well.

Not surprisingly, the whole ordeal really ruined Brooklyn's youth. She was broken in ways that couldn't be fixed and no amount of therapy or antidepressants that her mother forced on her could help. Eventually, her mother gave up trying. She was dealing with something that was equally, if not worse, than Brooklyn, and although she couldn't bring herself to take as extreme actions as her late husband, she didn't want to deal with reality either. She turned to alcohol for comfort, never went back to work after taking a personal leave and eventually ended up moving in with a man she had met at a local bar. Andrea's personality had shifted so dramatically that Brooklyn didn't see her as her mother anymore. She was nasty, degrading and sometimes even violent and her deadbeat boyfriend wasn't much better. By now, Grace was eighteen, had graduated high school a week earlier, and was sick and was desperate for an escape. After one particularly painful night of having to listen to her mother claim that had she been a better sister to Grace and invited her to spend the night with her and her friend, none of this would have happened, she left.

With a backpack stuffed with two outfits and around two-hundred-dollars, she boarded a train to New York City. Her first stop there was a small restaurant, Finnegan's Irish Pub. She wasn't used to the homeless life and wouldn't realize that spending twenty-dollars on a meal wasn't resourceful, but honestly, at this point, Brooklyn was still considering returning home in a day or so, when the runaway life got old. However, when she found out that the pub was hiring waitresses, she inquired with the owner and was given a job on the spot. After (sheepishly) explaining her situation to him, he offered her a small room above the bar as a temporary home. It was supposed to be an office but he rarely used it, and at the time, was living a few blocks away in an apartment with his wife. It was supposed to be a temporary living situation, but Brooklyn only moved out a year later, when Finn's wife divorced him due to his alcoholism and he was forced to move out of their home. He needed the space and Brooklyn wasn't going to overstay her welcome, but he did offer her the bar's basement. As drab and dark as it was, she made it work. She had no other choice, but because she knew Finn was struggling financially, she found work elsewhere. His pub's business had been poor and she knew that it would be pushing it to ask him to consider to pay her and house her for free.

She began waiting tables at a diner a few blocks away and here, her life took a turn for the better. One of the other waitresses she worked with got her a night job at the strip joint she worked at. It was definitely something that started off as being out of her comfort zone, but the money was worth it. The money was so worth it. It was the first time in her life that she was making a lot of money and she couldn't handle that change for a while. Nearly every night after her shift, she would hit up some of the most expensive clubs in the city. Drugs, alcohol and sex became her favorite pastimes and it took a lot of nights stumbling home drunk and passing out in cabs for her to learn that her habits were reckless. Even now, she still is a bit of a party girl, but with age, she's grown a lot more responsible.

A few weeks after she moved into Finn's basement, the man given a job to another runaway, Alex Moreno. Although she was hesitant, she agreed when he asked her if she would be comfortable sharing the basement room with the boy. Less than a month later, she was dating him, and their relationship lasted a good five years. Brooklyn really loved Alex, and she still does. However, she just didn't feel like the relationship was going anywhere and one night after being quite intoxicated, she started an argument with him about how he had no future and didn't actually love her if he refused to provide. It was overblown, unnecessary and offensive, but the next morning, her pride was still too strong to admit any fault in the argument. The couple separated and even though everyone assumed it would be one of their normal fights where after a few days, they'd be back together, it didn't happen that way. Brooklyn packed up her stuff and ended up spending a few weeks in a hotel and the rest with a girl she works with. Now, she's decided that if anyone should have to move out, it should be Alex. She lived at Finn's first and shouldn't have to waste her money avoiding him. Besides, she's still convinced that it was his fault that they broke up in the first place.

Job:
Waitress by day, stripper (or exotic dancer, as she prefers) by night


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Height/Weight or build:
5'8, 125 lbs

Eye color:
Blue

Hair color:
Blonde

Other:
Scars, piercings, tattoos, etc.

Face claim:
Amber Heard

So begins...

Brooklyn Archer's Story

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer
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As if working the from seven in the morning to three in the afternoon at the diner wasn't bad enough, Brooklyn was faced with an even more draining afternoon. She was supposed to move back into the basement. After months of dealing with Roman practically begging her to come back, she had agreed. She had made it seem like she was only doing so because he was her friend, and more so, because she believed that Nick was in shambles without her. Really though, Brooklyn was running out of places to couch hop. She was currently staying with one of the girls she worked at the strip club with, but she knew that Bethany didn't have much space. It was a one bedroom apartment that already housed her, her two children, and occasionally one of their deadbeat fathers. She was a nice girl and never accepted any of the money that Brooklyn offered to go towards rent, and constantly insisted that she was welcome on their couch for as long as she needed, but Brooklyn felt like a burden. Between government assistance and the stripping money, Bethany was able to afford her apartment, and Brooklyn not only worked at the club, but also as a waitress. If she wasn't such an impulsive spender, she would undoubtedly be able to afford some tiny apartment if she wanted to. Maybe that was Brooklyn's problem. As much as she hounded Nick for not having his shit together, she couldn't get her own together either. She told herself that she wanted to get off of the streets so badly but no matter what she thought, the motivation wasn't there.

"Hey, be careful with that one, bitch," Brooklyn nodded towards the cardboard box in Roman's hand. It contained a couple of bottles of vodka wrapped in her winter coat and some clothes for cushioning. "You're going to need more than just some street fighting skills if you drop my alcohol," she smirked. Her hands were full with a large box containing the rest of her clothes, or else she would have slapped the back of his head for being so careless. Aside from those two boxes and the backpack on her back, she wasn't bringing anything else to the basement yet. They didn't have any way to carry any more of it, and honestly, Brooklyn didn't want to show up with boxes of new, expensive clothes that she didn't need. Her compulsive shopping habits made her look like a hypocrite when the fight that split her and Nick up had spurred over her hounding him for spending a couple hundred dollars on a tattoo. She didn't need a Chanel bag any more than he needed that tattoo and she didn't need the first thing he said to her to be "I told you so".

The elevator in Bethany's building was broken, so it took a couple of minutes for the two of them to navigate the four flights of stairs to get to the building's dingy lobby. She used a foot to push the front door open and was met with warm air that was probably cooler than the musty air inside of the old building. The skies were greying too. Rain was never good when you were homeless. Even with them technically having a home, it meant that most of the residents would be packed into the tiny basement, and Brooklyn almost preferred sitting out in the rain than dealing with that. She hoped that it would at least bring some relief from the blistering heat that this summer was already bringing. As she shifted the heavy box in her arms, she glanced over at Roman. "So, you know that I'm not gonna get sentimental and shit on you, but I have to admit that it's going to be nice to be back with you guys. I mean, you're the only loser I can bum cigarettes off without having to pay you back. What's changed since I left, besides Nick crying himself to sleep every night? Did someone finally cut Holly's vocal cords? Makayla get AIDS?"

Setting

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Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer
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#, as written by Cure
The stench of the city's morning trash was preferable to the stink of the apartment. The hallway smelled of piss and cigarette smoke, and the room itself smelled no better. A sweet, rotted aroma filled the air, smelling like a decaying fruit. Roman simply glanced at Brooke when he saw the mess she had been living in. After Brooke had gathered her things, a box in his hands, he made his way for the door and tripped over a mini vacuum lying on the ground. The box jostled in his arms as he tried to steady himself, and of course Brooke's only concern was her precious alcohol, and he gave her another look when he realized she'd dedicated a box to alcohol.

"I think I could take you, Brooke," he said as he shook his leg out of the piles of junk on the carpet. After getting out of the smelly room, he forgot the stench of the hallway and was quick to get out, but of course the elevators were broken because the place was a shit hole. He leaned his head against the side of the elevator and groaned before following Brooke who didn't seem to react to the elevator's malfunction, as if it were to be expected. Four flights of stairs and a warm welcome into the heat of the city later, he was out of breath. He set the box on the edge of the curb and lit a cigarette to, ironically, get his breath back. He looked up against the clouds; hoped they could make it back before it rained. Hope they could make it back in enough time for him to catch Brooke up on a few details he'd left out over the past eight weeks. Like Savannah.

"So, you know that I'm not gonna get sentimental and shit on you," Brooke began in which Roman nodded and murmured, "Of course," as he exhaled the smoke and watched it lift off on the faint breeze. Roman flagged down a taxi without thinking about it, the act second nature by now, and missed most of what Brooke said, too busy planning out what he would say, how he would say it, if he should say it. He only heard the last bit about Makayla getting AIDS and so he stood and looked at Brooke for a few seconds, clearly confused before he just smiled a little, realizing she was probably being cheeky as usual. "Yeah," he said as he threw his cigarette out.

He took the box and bag from Brooke without saying much aloud. Maybe he could just be blunt. Come clean in the taxi; surely Brooke had enough decency to keep her poise in a taxi. "So, Nick misses you and all, and--funny story--he actually misses you so much that he's been having this fling with this new girl, Savannah who I conveniently forgot to mention the entire time you've been gone." No. That wouldn't work. He would need to tell her from far, far away so he couldn't get harmed from the aftershock of the tantrum she was sure to throw once she heard. Or maybe he just shouldn't say anything and let Nick fend for himself. Or maybe if they were quick, they could drop her things off, he could take her to lunch and try to break it to her that way. Or maybe he'd just jump off a bridge because that seemed to be a lot easier than dealing with Brooklyn's raft.

The slam of the trunk beneath his hands brought him back to the thick heat, to the subtle ache in his wrists. Which reminded him, he needed to get more tape for his wrists. Or maybe he needed to talk to Robbie again. He'd definitely need to talk to Robbie after Brooke got back. Which was another secret he was keeping. A pang of guilt tickled his core from this thought. He was mad at Nick for keeping things from him, and yet he had his own. But who didn't? Roman shook his head and his wrists as he opened the door for Brooke. He hoped she hadn't said anything that he'd missed, and in case he did, he just smiled quickly. "I've got the fare," he said as he slid in beside her.

A cigarette. That's what he needed. He leaned forward and told the driver where to go. His jeans made good use for collecting the sweat off his palms. The armrest on the door provided useful for him to tap his fingers against, and when he wasn't doing that, he busied himself to chewing on what little bit of nail he had left. Suddenly aware of his fidgeting, he turned to Brooke; smiled again, faintly, after clearing his throat. "You'd better be on your best behavior when we get there," he said and he ruffled the crown of her head, leaving a teased swarm in its place. As he moved his hand, he regretted it. He was nervous again. She was going to found out. She probably knew. He should get her to talk. No. Complain. That's what she liked. "Any fun diner stories?"

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Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer
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"You paying the fare is the least you could do for me, Roman. I'm relieving you of the job of being Nick's personal therapist. If anything, you should be buying me a Porsche." She hadn't picked up on how strangely Roman was acting until they were seated in the back of the car. Without a heavy box in her arms and the weight of the heat being temporarily lifted in the cool car, she was able focus on him. Between wiping his hands on his hands, shooting direction's to the cab driver, tapping his fingers against the armrest and chewing on his nails, he was fidgeting enough to be mistaken for a meth addict. Before she could accuse him of being one, he seemed to notice her trying to read him and he looked over and smiled at her. She had seen Roman almost every day since she left the warehouse, but she tried to brush off this oddness with her just forgetting his normal mannerisms. Maybe he just was this awkward. It would be a good answer to her very common, playful question on why no girls wanted to date him.

When he reached across the middle seat and ruffled her hair, she couldn't stop her eyebrows from rising. What the fuck? He had to be on some sort of drug to be acting so strangely. The two of them got physical sometimes, but it was always them playing rough. She would punch him in the arm when he was being an ass, or obnoxiously hug him when she felt like he was getting too sentimental, and he would shove her off. Him ruffling her hair just wasn't a natural way that he would interact with her, and it made her just as uncomfortable as it made him. "Are you on drugs, bitch?" She added the suddenly-common nickname to try to lighten the now awkward mood. The thought of him just being nervous didn't even come across her mind, probably because she didn't know there was anything for him to be nervous over. Other than the possibility of Nick and her not working out again, what else could go wrong? And even with that possibility, Roman had insisted that Nick wanted her to come back - no, needed her to come back, so he couldn't be worried over that. As she fixed her hair, she glanced back at him. "And you know that I'm always on my best behavior. As long as Lennie isn't trying to be modern day Mother Theresa, Makayla keeps Holly on a leash and Robbie's not shooting up two feet away from me, I'll be fine." Referencing the others brought half a smile to her face. She did kind of miss them. It wasn't enough for her to think about them every day or come back for even a short visit, but living with some of the others for so long made them part of her everyday life. It would take thirty seconds around them to obliterate any type of positive vibes she had associated with their memories, but for now, she was almost looking forward to return to the basement. It was her home, even if she didn't want to accept that.

She allowed him to shift the conversation to her job. She didn't want to spend too much energy attempting to read his behavior, and today had been a busy shift anyway. "'Fun' and 'diner' should never be used in the same sentence," she rolled her eyes. "It's the same shit, everyday. Today I had this mom and her two kids, right? The kids had to have been seven or eight, and they were the biggest fucking brats I've ever seen. One of the bitches knocked over her drink and of course the bus boy was on break so I had to clean it up, and then the other one almost knocked over a tray of food when she was looking for the bathroom or something. They made Holly look like an angel." She would probably take that back after dealing with Holly for two minutes again, but Brooklyn was always dramatic when she needed to victimize herself. "And then, I get these two old woman who come in maybe once a week, and they tell me they want their 'usual order'. Like, really, bitch? Do you think I memorize what kind of sandwich you get? Because I really care that much, that I have the time and energy to remember what you get when you come in here once in a blue moon? If I didn't work for tips, Roman, I'm telling you, I would have cut a bitch today." Brooklyn liked complaining, so she didn't even notice that the rush hour traffic seemed to be starting early today as their cab sat at a red light. "If Nick could save even a dollar of the nothing he makes, maybe I wouldn't have to work two jobs," she added, shooting Roman a knowing look.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft
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#, as written by Cure
His tactic in getting her to complain worked. Without missing a beat, she dove into her treacherous day at work. He knew that being a waiter or waitress wasn't easy work and they were treated terribly a lot of the times, but Brooke's stories were comical more than anything. Her dramatization of the situations, even as she told him right now, he could see her become annoyed as she rolled her eyes and scoffed through her stories. And although he was used to Brooke and her ways by now, he couldn't help by redden in embarrassment from her describing a kid as a bitch. He glanced over at the taxi driver the way a mother might when her child says something unknowingly inappropriate, hoping no one had heard.

It took them an extra twenty minutes just to get back to Finn's due to traffic. And on top of that, the driver was one of the those that drove around the entire city to rack up the meter. Roman groaned internally, knowing he should have had Brooklyn given the man the address. Every now and then, a driver would hear Roman and assume he was a tourist and purposely go in circles, thinking him unfamiliar with the area. This driver was no different, and chose to drive past the Brooklyn Bridge where it was busy with tour buses and taxis trying the same tactics. Roman leaned forward, grabbing the back of the driver's seat.

"You know we're on the other side of the city, yeah?"

The driver had a thick accent; he must have been Arabic. He looked at him and said, "No, we are very close. Almost there." And the man was persistent for quite some time before Roman detailed directions on how to actually get to Finn's. The man was clearly annoyed, seeing that he just got unlucky this time, but after glancing at the meter and seeming satisfied, he went the right way. The bad mood was set in Killens by the time they arrived at Finn's. He wasn't planning on paying for a dodgy driver on top of the extra traffic. He had to pay Giovanni back for losing last week. The fight didn't even last thirty seconds before his opponent knocked Killens out. To be fair, the guy had an extra hundred pounds on Killens, and he was a dirty fighter. There was no way Roman could have beaten him, and even if he could, Roman would have purposely turned in the match. You win too many fights, you piss off certain people.

"I'll carry the stuff, Brooke," Roman said as he begrudgingly forked over the money. The dent wasn't so bad, hardly anything if he didn't have so little to actually use for himself. But he had to save up for the next entry fee, which would likely be $200. Then he had to put some aside for Giovanni, who would probably take a larger sum out of Roman's share if he were to win the next fight. He could hear his voice now, coughing in his own cigar smoke, "You know how lucky you are to have me? I could find a guy three times your size who'll bring home more than your skinny ass." And that damn tape. He still needed tape.

"Have a nice day, sir," the driver said with a cheerful smile.

Roman rolled his eyes, turning around. Swinging the backpack over his shoulders, he was almost glad to be back to Finn's so he could lie down and hate the heat, and this damned city, and his damned life, but he remembered as he saw the bar sign with Finn's name decorated in half-working lights. He remember he still had to deal with Brooke and telling her about Savannah. Roman stacked the two boxes on top of each other and picked them up, looking over the side to see. He was sure his hands were leaving sweat stains on the cardboard. He was sure the top box would fall because his hands were shaking. As they entered through the basement door, Roman watched his steps. They would set her things down real fast and leave. He'd complain about the humidity and the fresh smell of Chinese food which was sure to aggravate Brooke, and he would offer they go out and get a cold drink. Just do something to get out of the basement long enough for him to talk about--

Killens stopped two steps from the bottom, hearing Nick's voice. Across the basement, Nick and Savannah were coming down the stairs from the other entrance, holding hands. He suddenly preferred to be driven aimlessly around New York City as the inevitability dawned on him. "Shit," he mumbled and thought in his head repeatedly. As he slowly took the next two steps to the bottom, everything came to him. He realized that in his time of remaining away from the basement, of not telling Nick about him seeing Brooke just about everyday, he also failed to mention to him that Brooke was coming back. He realized that maybe the basement in the next five minutes would become a lot more dangerous than one of his fights. Maybe, he thought, they would be so busy hating each other, that he could escape and move to the next state. Or country.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Zero Diamond Character Portrait: Robbie Amello
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ImageSome point during last nights drunken shenanigans Robbie managed to put himself in a safer than usual situation, at least for the most part. As the screeching sound of the bus woke him it became very clear that he was sitting with his head resting against the grungy window of a fairly packed bus stop, another lucky move on his part seeing as it wasn’t entirely that far from the bar. As he adjusted his seating he made a quick scan of the man that arose as the doors to the bus started to open; he was around his age wasn’t too intimidating but Robbie doubted he’d be able to outrun him if he needed to. It was a quick decision that could easily go wrong, but he knew himself better and knew that he had zero cash on him at all. Adjusting his cargo jacket he stood up tapping the guys arm and with an innocent sounding “What’s the time?” he managefirstwrap two fingers around the man’s wallet and let the man walk away, and his wallet slip from his back pocket practically giving it to Robbie. Before anyone could possibly take note he quickly turned nearly tripping over his pretty much never tied boots, and made his way down the street rummaging through the thin brown leather wallet.

It didn’t have much of anything aside from a twenty and a few coins that he figured was going to be used back there. He ditched the wallet in a dumpster in the alleyway of in between some apartment building and some family business type that he didn’t feel like actually checking out what the name was. Pocketing the cash he continued down the street only to stop in at a corner convenience store. As he walked in a burst of cold air blew in his face, hitting him with the realization that it was another great, sweaty summer day. Days like this reminded him of way back when, when things weren't so complicated. On the other hand it also reminded him that the summer can indeed suck a big one. Bringing him to realize that he was emitting a particular rank that he never seemed to completely get off. This time it was the common mix of alcohol, marijuana and gasoline. Or as he likes to call it the “Gas Attendant.” It wasn’t too shocking, but he never noticed how bad it was until now. How long was he wearing that shirt? Two or Three days? Or maybe the whole week. Little details like that were never really a concern to him.

Robbie nearly tripped yet again as he went through the aisle; this time it was almost over a small child sitting down in the middle of the row as their parent was a little ways ahead doing whatever they were doing as he was trying to recall the last time he changed. He frequented this store a lot and right now he only wanted one thing so he made a beeline for the snack aisle grabbing five bags of chips along with a bottle of water. He practically threw the items at the clerk only offering up an apologetic shrug. As the woman rang up his order he grabbed a bag of lollipops that were on sale to have rung up too.

He managed to down three of the five bags as he reached the bar and was on the way to his fifth lollipop. He had one hell of a sweet tooth when it came to pops; blueberry and watermelon were his favorites but he wouldn’t pass any of the others. As he was rifling through the bag he nearly knocked Killens over as he made his way into the basement. Robbie made an audible grunt of a hello to the others that were hanging out as he zigzaged over to his spot, while first sneaking a handful of candy to Holly's spot. Something Makayla will certainly thank him for later if she doesn't spot them first.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Zero Diamond Character Portrait: Robbie Amello
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Brooklyn didn't even think to grab either of her boxes from the trunk of the car, so she only acknowledged Killens offer with a slight nod. She wasn't the type of person to get nervous easily, but she could feel her heart beating faster as the cab drove away. She didn't know why. Brooklyn had lived at Finn's for longer than anyone else, even Nick. This was her home, and she didn't need to feel like a stranger coming back. Was it Nick? She didn't want him to have the power to suddenly make her feel so antsy, but she did. Her hands were mimicking Roman's as she wiped her palms on her denim shorts and decided that it wasn't Nick. Not exactly, at least. She wasn't scared to come back to the warehouse because Brooklyn felt like she had more of a right than anyone to be living here. It wasn't Nick. Brooklyn had gotten into far too many verbal and sometimes even physical altercations with her ex for his physical presence to scare her.

If anything, it was the idea of something changing that scared her. The basement was her home while she lived there, and along with Nick, she felt like she had some superiority over the others just because she had lived there the longest. Aside from the occasional occurrences of Alexandra trying to be the voice of justice, everyone was familiar with the area of the space that Brooklyn claimed as her own, and with her difficult personality, and knew better than to mess with either. Two months was a long time, though. Knowing Nick, he might have invited Peter Pan and all of his Lost Boys to live there since then. Even though Roman's insistence that Nick was lost without her had gotten her through those two months, now, as she carefully stepped down the steep stairwell, she was beginning to question it. There wasn't much time to think, because unlike the cab rid, her trek downstairs took less than a minute. The hot, heavy air and the smell of Chinese food hit her as soon as she stepped on the concrete ground. Her expression was blank, but her mind was racing as her eyes scanned the room. Lennie and Alex were sitting at the table. They were unsurprisingly the source of the strong food odor. If she wasn't trying confused about the unfamiliar boy sitting with them, she would have rolled her eyes at the pair for already annoying her. The boy was definitely a surprise, but she didn't focus on him too long. Even Robbie brushing past her wasn't enough to warrant any reaction when her eyes finally fell upon Nick. There was no time for her to admire Nick for the first time in two months because he was not alone. Seated next to him on his mattress was some girl who Brooklyn also couldn't recognize, but she knew one thing, and that was that that bitch was sitting way too close to Nick for comfort. Brooklyn had no idea who she was or that she meant anything to Nick, but it could have been Holly sitting with him like that and it still would have flipped her jealousy switch on.

Her first thought was to walk over to Nick and the girl who had early earned the name of "that whore" and ask her who she thought she was, but she didn't. She couldn't stop her eyebrows from raising at the initial shock of the sight, but she also knew in the back of her mind that this girl very well was a nobody, and there was nothing going on between her and Nick. She wasn't going to waste her time and energy on her, or Nick. No, Brooklyn wasn't that type of girl. As she so clearly demonstrated through her two month absence, she was not someone who chased other people, and especially not Nick. If he chose to acknowledge her, that was fine by her, but if not, oh well. She was not going to make the first move when she was doing him a favor just by moving back in.

"Bring that one over here and grab my mattress for me?" Brooklyn said, addressing Killens in a friendly tone but shooting him a daggered look. She still had no idea that Savannah and Nick were anything, but he was still going to hear it from her for not telling her that Zero and Savannah had moved in. She took one of the boxes from his hands and headed over to Makayla and Holly's corner of the basement. She used her foot to push their mattresses and boxes until they were practically on top of Cara's, to make space for her own. There was no way that she was going to set all of her stuff up next to Nick and that whore, and she didn't even want to grace him with her presence enough to go get her mattress herself.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Zero Diamond Character Portrait: Robbie Amello
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Nick honestly wasn't much of a reader. He's was a school person in general and it was a struggle for him to get through books that were assigned to him, let alone read anything for fun on his free time. However, it was clear that writing was Savannah's passion, and even though at first he had only skimmed through her work so he wasn't being offensive, it only took a few pieces for him to realize that she was a great writer. Her stories were interesting and different and it made it even cooler to know that all of these ideas had come straight from her head. He wished that he had some sort of talent like that. He couldn't draw or paint, act or sing, play an instrument or write. He had been athletic growing up, but it wasn't like that brought him anything more than a few trophies when he was in grade school. It made him hope that Savannah's writing career worked out even more. If she had such a passion for something, she was already lucky, but she deserved to be successful too.

He chuckled as she explained that her new story was scary enough to keep him up at night. He doubted it. Living on the streets had allowed him to see some pretty dark things, but he was up for the challenge if she thought it was that scary. "I've got to do some runs tonight, so I'll be up anyway, but I'm sure I can handle it," he grinned as he tugged the binder on to his own lap. The sound of the basement door opening caught Nick's attention like it did Savannah's, but unlike her, he turned his head to look across the room. "We'd hear Holly from a mile away," he laughed, his gaze still set on the stairwell as he waited for the person to make there way down. First came Robbie, and then Roman, and then... Brooklyn?! Nick couldn't have been more surprised and he made that clear as his mouth fell agape. His stomach dropped and he could feel his heart beating a mile a minute. It was a good feeling more than a bad one at first. Brooklyn was back. Brooklyn was back! Savannah had been an amazing help in passing the time with, but Brooklyn was his girl. She had been his girl for seven years and having her standing only a few feet away from him again was unfathomable when only minutes earlier, he had told himself that he just needed to move on from her for good.

Her glare in their direction and refusal to even acknowledge him with a wave was what reminded him of why she had been gone for two months in the first place. He loved her and her mere presence reminded him of that, but this was Brooklyn that they were dealing with and as much as he wanted to forget every bad thing that had happened between them, he still wasn't going to accept all of the blame like she wanted him to. He had stopped himself from chasing her down so many times over the past eight weeks because as much as he loved her, their relationship was way too unstable to keep trying unless they both agreed to change. He had flaws that he needed to work on but so did she, and even in these first two minutes, it was apparent that she wasn't going to accept that. Still, he had to make some effort. Even if he wasn't going to go to the lengths he went to for her originally, he had to do something. He couldn't just sit there and say nothing and let her be her passive aggressive self, especially with Savannah sitting right next to him. Savannah! He warm skin pressed against his reminded him of how screwed he really was. Not only did he sleep with Savannah, but there were feelings there. They weren't the same as what he and Brooklyn shared, but they were something and he couldn't deny that even if he wanted to.

Brooklyn had walked in with Roman, which soon left him wondering how Killens had stumbled upon her, and why he hadn't told her. Brooklyn was not just going to come back here on her own. Between her two jobs, she made more than anyone else here and even with her extremely impulsive spending habits, he was sure she would have been able to afford some place to live. She had friends at both of her jobs who would probably let her stay with them too. He really believed what she had said, that she didn't need him as much as he needed her, and knew that Roman had to have played a part in her coming back. He couldn't ask Roman about it now. Not with Savannah and Brooklyn, as well as Zero, Robbie, Alex and Lennie, all in the room.

He and Brooklyn hadn't been facing the stairs so he nudged for her to turn around. "Uh, so that's Brooklyn," he said, speaking quietly so that hopefully, between the chatter going on at the table and Brooklyn speaking to Killens, only Savannah would hear it. "Roman didn't tell me she was coming back or else I would have warned you. Not like there's anything to be warned about, but..." he was stammering and wasn't sure what to say. "I'll be right back." He didn't know if it was wrong of him to not invite Savannah to come over so he could introduce the two of them, but he already felt the tension Brooklyn brought in with her and didn't want Savannah to be at the other end of her wrath.

He was so caught off guard by the two of them coming downstairs that he didn't even glance at Alex, Lennie and Zero as he hurried past them and towards Brooklyn. His pace slowed considerably as he watched her carelessly shove Makayla and Holly's possessions to the side to clear a space for her own. "You're back." He was stating the obvious but he didn't know how else to approach her, especially when she didn't look up despite knowing that he was hovering only a few feet away from her.

"Yup." She didn't even look up as she shuffled through one of the boxes. The clinking inside was a noise he was all too familiar with and he instantly knew that it was her treasured alcohol collection. It didn't distract him enough to not notice how short he was being with him. "Your mattress and blankets are up in Finn's apartment. I can go get them for you, if you want." He was trying to be nice but she still refused to meet his eyes as she pretended to be occupied with what was in her box. "No, Roman's going to get it for me." He nodded and paused, not sure what else to say. She wasn't giving him anything to work with and he was feeling jittery. In an impulsive and frantic move to keep the conversation moving and hopefully break the tension, he looked back towards Savannah and waved her over. "This is Savannah. She, uh, moved in a few weeks ago." Again, Brooklyn refused to look up. He hoped Savannah would come over and show her how nice she was, but he was clearly running on adrenaline to think that Brooklyn and she could ever be friends. Especially after what he and Savannah had done a few nights before, that was probably going to be impossible. Still, what else was he supposed to do when Brooklyn had showed up out of the blue? Between looking back towards Savannah, who he hoped was coming over, and looking down at Brooklyn, he met Roman's gaze for a second. That was all it took for him to give him a look telling him he was dead as soon as they were alone.

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Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft
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ImageSavannah wasn't sure how she felt when the blonde woman came down the stairs. She was even more lost when Nick seemed both sore and sink at the sight of her. She could tell who that was from his look alone. This was Brooklyn, the Brooklyn, the overly cynical, impossibly critical, highly judgmental Brooklyn that left Nick empty.

At least that's what she got from their conversations. It wasn't hard to see why they were together, she was lovely, blonde, and had an aire of dominance about her that Savannah was never able to do. Savannah was always the bookworm, always watching, writing, reading, she was nothing like Brooklyn, despite how they shared a name.

Brooklyn took one look at her and seemed to make the snap decision that they would not be friends. Savannah, wouldn't let that deter her, even as she kicked over Makayla and Holly's mattresses over nearly on top of Cara's.


Well that was rude. she thought, and if they'd had been properly introduced, she would have said so, but she wouldn't be rude, She was raised to be a proper English lady.

. "Uh, so that's Brooklyn," Nick said, softly. Savannah rose her brows. He really didn't have to tell her that. "Roman didn't tell me she was coming back or else I would have warned you. Not like there's anything to be warned about, but..." He paused and Savannah knew what was coming. He was going to her, try to talk to Brooklyn, and she got a sinking feeling that he wasn't going to mention her to Brooklyn, and honestly why would he? It wasn't like they themselves talked about it. ""I'll be right back" He said and she nodded, " Yea..." She said but he was already gone.

Savannah got a lump in her throat. What did this mean? He loved Brooklyn, he didn't have to say it, he talked about her often, negative or not, he loved her. Seven years didn't just go away, especially when Nick wasn't the one to end it. Now she was back, and by the look of her, surely she probably meant to be back in all capacities.

Savannah tried to swallow the lump but it just got caught in her throat.

She realized then, and suddenly, that she didn't like Brooklyn, and she felt bad for it. Only because of how Nick reacted, he still loved her, and it only made her wonder what it meant for them.

To her surprise, Nick turned to her, and waved her over. Savannah hesitated, just a hair, but she felt it. She swallowed again, and walked over. This is Savannah. She, uh, moved in a few weeks ago." He said and Savannah smiled, It was small but genuine.

Savannah politely offered her hand. "Savannah, Savannah Stonecraft," She said, sounding as sweet and as English as she possibly could be at the moment. It wasn't intentional, the English bit anyway. She'd tried to hid her accent sometimes but she still had the English song in her words, and now that she was feeling so many confusing emotions, it only got stronger. "It's a pleasure to meet you." She said, and that was probably the biggest lie she ever told. She wanted to be nice, and kind, but Nick....she wanted Nick more[/, another dark realization that was going to keep her up at night as if she needed anything else.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Zero Diamond
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Lennies eyes twinkled slightly at hearing Alex's accent and smiled while swallowing. "Your one and only." she managed to say in between bites. Pulling out the second pair of chopsticks Lennie handed them to Alex. "Here, you know how to work them right?" she joked with her eyebrow raised questionably. The basement was Lennies home and everyone that lived in it was her family whether they liked her or not. Moments like these always made her happy so she enjoyed them as much as she could. "Get much done today?"

"Plenty, and them some" she answered rather casually while waving back at Nick and Savannah who just walked in. Before she could as Alex about her day though Zero came in next and plopped himself next to Alex. "Haven't seen you two around. I would ask where you were all night, but something tells me I don't want to know."

Lens couldn't help but to laugh a little while talking a sip of her lemonade then offering Alex some. "I ran off with peter pan to never-land." she joked once more before taking a piece of chicken into her mouth. Silence filled the room a couple of minutes later when Lennies eyes landed on . . . Brooke? Whoa, wait she's back!? Lennie felt a smile begin to grow as the blonde stormed around putting her things down. Even though Lennie annoyed Brooklyn she was still part of her family and was happy that she was back.

Her smile didn't last long though when Lens remembered that Nick and Sav were also down here, she slowly slumped down a bit in her chair as if to avoid impending doom. Lenny's concerned puppy eyes began to look in between Alex and Zero swallowing her food hard. The room felt tense now and Lenny didn't really like it. "Hey Zero, why don't we go grab Brooklyn's blankets and stuff from up stairs?" she suggested.

She got to her feet quicker than you can say argument and began heading towards the steps. "We'll be right back Alex, you can have the rest." Lenny wanted Alex to come along too and felt a bit bad leaving her in the midst of a civil war that may occur but she knew that Alex was tired and shouldn't be moving around much. She needed rest and Lennie didn't want to bother her so much. "Hey Roman, come help get her things?" asked Lenny trying to get the boy who looked paler than usual out of there too.

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Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Zero Diamond
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Zero's stormy eyes blinked multiple times as he was pulled up from the table by Lennie. He gazed over at the blond woman. She was pretty, Zero knew that much for sure, but he had no idea who she was. He briefly figured she was new, like him and Savannah, but the way everyone was staring, he knew better that to assume she hadn't been around here before.

Then he heard the name. Brook. He had heard that name many times in the last couple months since he first joined this little makeshift family. Nicks ex girlfriend. From what Zero understood from what he had heard, she had left just before he and Savannah joined. He wondered if she was rejoining the basement, but from the stories he's heard, he didn't really know how to feel about that. When people tried to describe her, they always labeled her as "A bitch." Of course, labels were only that. Labels. But when so many people used the same one, you start to think maybe there are some truth in those statements.

"W-whoa, Lenny. What's going on. You mean the Brook who left around the time Savannah and I joined?" Zero whispered as quietly as he could, but loud enough for Lennie to hear. Zero's eyes were scanning the room, looking for some kind of sigh that shit was about to go down. The fact that Roman had gone pale was one thing, and the tension in the room, now that Zero was paying attention, could be cut though with a chainsaw.

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Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Zero Diamond
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It took all but a split second for Brooke to size up the scene. Instead of exploding, she calmly took a box from Killens and began shoving Makayla and Holly's side of the room on top of Cara's things. Initially he was thankful that she'd remained calm, but he realized after she shot him an evil look, that she was saving her anger for later. Now was as good a time as any, he figured, to pull her aside and explain things. She probably didn't want to be in the basement anyway, but before he could do anything, Nick was beside Brooke like a child caught stealing sweets before dinner. He could tell that not in just his words alone, which were unsure, forced and stammered, but in his demeanor, that Nick was anxious. He was nervous and wanted to get more from Brooke than just a few curt sentences. Roman looked between the two of them, eyes wide, as they spoke almost formulaic; he was just waiting for someone to start shouting, it was bound to happen. In a way, it was funny to see the two of them talk again, if what they were doing even passed as talking. Watching Nick try to feed into Brooke's stubbornness, and Brooke refusing brought back memories. It was comical, really. It was enough to put a slight smile on his face and for his shoulders to relax. There was definitely still something there, he thought, but before he could praise himself for too long, Nick called Savannah over.

For the love of God.

Was Nick high? Roman didn't even glance in Savannah's direction, not caring to see what altercation was bound to happen when she came over. He set the box he'd forgotten he was holding down on the ground, along with Brooke's backpack. The growing tension jogged his memory and reminded him that he should get Brooke's things from upstairs. If not because he was probably going to do it anyway, but because he wasn't trying to stick around. As Savannah made her way over, an innate scowl forming on Roman's face, he locked eyes with Nick. And then every ounce of hope he had in making it out alive was suddenly evaporated. He wouldn't let Nick see this, though, because there were some things Nick was keeping to himself too, and it was apparent in his awkward attempt to keep a fallout from happening. Roman glared at Savannah crossing the room until his eyes met Nick's again, and he returned the same look Nick gave before giving him a tight smile that said, "Have fun."

As he left them, he saw Lennie was trying to make her way up the stairs as well. "Hey, Roman, come help get her things?" Lennie offered. Killens didn't immediately respond as he passed the couch and table. He knew Brooke wasn't going to want just anyone handling her things to begin with, and he didn't really want to be around anyone right now. "I've got it. Thanks," he said, meaning that as hint that he didn't desire help, even if he might have needed it. He doubted the mattress could be too heavy; all it would take was sliding it down the stairs. Roman climbed the stairs two at a time, ready to get out of that environment, and didn't turn back to see if Lennie and the others were following.

He went through the entrance that led to Finn's apartment upstairs. Roman questioned Finn's intelligence since he hardly ever seemed to lock it. A while ago, Roman poked fun at him about it, and Finn responded, in his thick Irish accent with, "Ye plan on stealin' something, ye crumpet-sucka?" Roman knew Finn disliked him because of his English background, of which Killens couldn't really care less, but he could only imagine what he thought of Savannah, who was almost unbearably English at times. After some searching, Roman found Brooke's things. He slid the mattress down the stairs, letting it press against his back as he slowly went down. Within the next few moments, Roman was downstairs again. He slid the mattress near Zero's side of the space, knowing the guy was quiet and wouldn't say anything, especially since he hung out with Lennie and Alex more than anyone else. Or at least that's what he deducted from the few times he actually noticed Zero. The guy was still pretty new, so sometimes Killens forgot he was even there. He didn't bother to ask Zero if it was okay to set Brooke's things here, because at this point, Zero had no choice. He did, however, look at Brooke and say, "Is okay here?" But she only ignored him in response.

Killens dropped the mattress down, followed by her blankets; Brooke could unfold them if she wanted to. Right now he didn't really care since he was too fixed on other things, like his palms which were sweating again and his body begin to ache. His breathing was short, deep and raspy as he patted his back pocket and landed on the bulge his cigarette pack left. He pulled one out and balanced it between his lips before making his way up the basement stairs and into the alleyway. Even the heat was refreshing compared to inside. The alley smelled fouly of the nearby Dumpster, but Killens couldn't be brought to care right now. All he wanted, all he really needed, was five seconds alone. He'd finish the cigarette, he thought as he brought the lighter to the other end. He would go back inside and deal with everything. He'd talk to Brooke, or let her yell at him since that's how it would turn out being. He'd deal with Nick when he dealt with Nick. He'd try to put Makayla and Holly's stuff back before they got back, because if Makayla saw what Brooke did, it would just be another fight waiting to happen. Everything would be taken care of later, he told himself. But first, he'd smoke.

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Holly Madden Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Makayla Wright Character Portrait: Zero Diamond Character Portrait: Robbie Amello
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"Haven't seen you two around. I would ask where you were all night, but something tells me I don't want to know."

Taking a sip of Lennie's lemonade, Alex flipped Zero the bird in a playful manner, shaking her head. Her eyes shot up as the door to the basement opened, and one of her least favourite people at the moment, smelling of alcohol, gasoline, and weed. She grimaced at the mixture of smells. She returned to her thoughts, though it didn't last nearly as long as she would have liked before the basement door opened again and footsteps signaled the arrival of Roman.

Opening her mouth to shoot a witty crack at Roman's expense, she shut again once she spotted the blonde girl behind him. Narrowing her eyes a bit, and then widening them in a bit of shock, she reached behind her again for Lennie's lemonade. Sipping it, she intently shot her eyes between Brooklyn and where Nick and Savannah were seated. Poor Savannah. She could see it in Nick's eyes clear as day that he had just fallen for Brooklyn again, and there Savannah was. Sitting right next to him where she had been trying to gain his favour.

Then she looked back at Nick, following his gaze to Roman, who looked like he wanted to run out at any second. If this weren't happening right in front of her, between people she knew, then Alex would have considered this the best free drama entertainment she would probably ever get. However, it was people she knew personally. And she only had one thought running through her mind now.

Shit is about to get interesting.

She watched intently as Nick stood up from where he was next to Savannah, walking over the Brooklyn. She couldn't quite hear what they said, but if the tension in the room grew any more than they would all probably suffocate in it. To Alex's surprise, Nick waved Savannah over to where he was.

As Savannah, introduced herself, Alex heard Lennie off to her side. "Hey Zero, why don't we go grab Brooklyn's blankets and stuff from up stairs?"

Zero didn't so much respond as get dragged away by Lennie, leaving Alex who hissed a quick 'Bastards' at them as they practically ran upstairs with Roman, leaving Alex in the room with the trio who were causing so much tension it was tangible, and Robbie the king drunk. Though admittedly, at the thought of actually having to get up to go with them, Alex felt as though sitting down there may have been the better choice. But she was still in the room. So Alex did the only thing she could really think of.

She leaned back in her chair, kicked her legs up on the table again and crossed them, picked up the Chinese food and chopsticks, and let out a loud sigh.

"You know guys, maybe we should fix Makayla and Holly's stuff up. 'Else Makayla's going to be pissed," she said in a matter-of-fact tone, using the chopsticks to lift some of the Chinese food into her mouth.

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Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Zero Diamond Character Portrait: Robbie Amello
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Brooklyn wanted to talk to Nick, but not here with Lennie, Alex, Robbie, the two new people there to eavesdrop. First, she needed to punch Roman in the face for not telling her that there were new people to begin with. The dark haired boy probably wouldn't be a problem. She immediately assumed that he was a typical drug addict and decided that as long as she watched her belongings around him, there wouldn't be any issues. But the girl... Brooklyn did already hate her. She was jealous and catty and she didn't no that it was with good reason, but she was irked by how close she had been sitting with Nick. Why, in a million years, would Nick think that she wanted to talk to her and more so, why was he introducing her to just Savannah and not the dark haired boy as well? It raised suspicions in Brooklyn's mind and had her glancing back towards Roman, who was now hurrying up the stairs. Lennie had said something about helping him get her things and if she wasn't preoccupied with the new girl approaching, she would have rolled her eyes. It was typical of Lennie to try to help out. She had adopted the peacemaker role of the group and was usually the one trying to help out and alleviate problems. For the most part, she was nothing but nice, but even that was enough to get on Brooklyn's nerves sometimes.

Brooklyn was kneeling on the ground, still dedicating her attention to sorting things out in one of her boxes when Savannah stepped towards her. She had half a mind to just completely ignore the girl, but even Brooklyn wasn't going to be that petty. Instead, she glanced up at her and then at her extended hand, and offered a smile. It was more icy than anything else, but Savannah didn't know her and Brooklyn doubted she would sense that. Nick, on the other hand, and maybe a few of the others who were still present, were sure to get the vibes, though. "I'm sure it is," she responded to Savannah's polite "it's a pleasure to meet you" line. She didn't acknowledge the extended hand and turned her head back towards her box. It was undeniable that it was a rude introduction, but Brooklyn couldn't have cared any less. In her mind, it was even more rude for Savannah to have set up all of her things right next to Nick's, where Brooklyn had always lived. It was rude for Savannah to be all over her ex, it was rude for Nick to invite two new people to stay in a shitty basement that was already packed, and it was rude for Killens to have kept that from her. In true Brooklyn fashion, she felt like compared to what everyone else had done to her, she wasn't acting poorly in the slightest.

She had no issues with continuing to unpack her things despite Nick and Savannah still hovering over her. She wasn't interested in speaking with them, so she wasn't going to waste her breath pretending that she was. Even when Alex spoke up, and hinted that it was wrong for Brooklyn to have plowed through Makayla and Holly's space to make room for her own, she didn't turn her head to react to the blonde. "She'll get over it," was her only response, and it was in a muttered, uninterested tone. Leave it to Alex to want to stick up for Makayla, who in Brooklyn's mind, no one gave a damn about. If she hadn't trudged Holly along into the basement with her, Brooklyn probably never would have had an issue with her. On the outside, Brooklyn made it clear that her issue with the pair was how unrelentingly loud and obnoxious Holly was, and how she felt like Makayla didn't do enough to tame that. She would never admit it, but it was more than that though. Makayla got to have a little sister, and Brooklyn didn't. It bothered her for reasons she couldn't understand, and what irked her even more was that Makayla was a good sister. Even though she was vocal about feeling otherwise, everyone knew that Kay was good to Holly. Better to Holly than any of them could be if they were actually responsible for her, at least.

The next few minutes were spent sifting through her boxes. She pulled out a couple bottles of alcohol and lined a small section of the wall with them, and then rummaged through the rest of her belongings. Killens had come down in the midst of that and had brought her mattress with him. He set it down on the opposite side of the room and asked if it was okay, and even though it definitely was not okay, she didn't respond. He was probably trying to avoid a blowout between her and Makayla, but it was too little, too late for him to try to play peacekeeper now. She allowed him to wander off before getting up, side stepping Nick and Savannah, and dragging her mattress over to new self-proclaimed new area. There was still work to be done and still a couple of boxes of things at her friend's house, but she wasn't in the mood to put it together now. Especially now when Alex and Lennie would probably try to step in and get her to at least share the space better with Holly, Makayla and Cara. The thought of Cara reminded Brooklyn of the blonde, and Brooklyn hoped that she was on her way back soon. She was the easiest roommate to tolerate and Brooklyn was already planning on dragging her out to get dinner or something, so that she could avoid being in the warehouse without looking like she was just running off alone because she was intimidated. "Where's Cara?" The question was directed to no one in particular, but she made sure her eyes landed on Alex rather than Nick and Savannah.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Zero Diamond Character Portrait: Robbie Amello
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Savannah was doing the best that she could, but Brooklyn didn't bother to return even an ounce of kindness. She couldn't even shake Savannah's hand or reciprocate that it was nice to meet her as well. Instead, she agreed that it was a pleasure for Savannah to meet her and turned her attention back to setting up her area, as if they weren't still standing right there. He quickly shot Savannah an apologetic look. She didn't deserve to be treated that way and Nick hoped his look told her that, but he didn't have it in him to start a fight with Brooklyn when she had been back for less than five minutes. Her coming back was supposed to be a good thing. It's what he had been hoping would happen for so long, but it didn't feel that great now. There were so many emotions swirling around in his brain and he didn't know what to do. Savannah had proven herself to be an amazing friend by letting him vent to her about Brooklyn and building his emotional and mental health back up after she left. She had shown that she could be more than just a friend too. They spent a heated night together, and even on occasions like today's lunch, the atmosphere around them just suggested that there was more between them than just a friendship. But Brooklyn had been his everything for so long. He had survived without her and if she had been gone for another couple of weeks, he probably would have been able to accept that he needed to move on from her for good. Now, he was caught in the middle of both girls and he didn't know what to do or say to either of them.

When Roman, Lennie and Zero headed towards the stairs, Nick again felt inclined to say something to break the silence. At the same time, it was apparent that Brooklyn wanted no part in a conversation that involved either him or Savannah and he didn't want to give her a chance to snub Savannah's friendliness again. When Brooklyn turned her body to face away from them, he quickly mouthed "I'm sorry" to Savannah because he really was. He was apologizing for Brooklyn's attitude mainly, but also for putting her in this awkward situation. Physically, and mentally. Whatever he and Savannah were was now going to be even more challenging to figure out, and again, he had to place the blame on Roman. As the seconds passed and he uncomfortably glanced between Brooklyn, who seemed comfortable with ignoring them and claiming Holly and Makayla's territory as her own, and Savannah, who seemed unsure of how to continue, he became more sure that Roman had set this up. Nick and Roman had become like brothers after they met on the streets years ago, and it was now becoming apparent to Nick that Roman must have become jealous of Savannah. He and Brooklyn always included Roman because they had been sort of a trio. It was never odd for Roman to tag along when they hung out, but almost as soon as Savannah just the group, Roman brushed her off. It was as if he were making up for Brooklyn's attitude by not giving Savannah a chance and brushing off any attempt she made to get to know him. He didn't expect Roman to open up to her like he had, but at the same time, Nick felt like he snubbed her more than he did anyone else. Either he had been seeing Brooke all along and was taking her side in their fight, or he was jealous of Savannah. Maybe a mix of both. The suspicion was enough for him to decide that he couldn't put off talking to Roman.

When his friend reappeared, placed Brooklyn's possessions next to Zero's and then left, Nick had a good idea that he was going out to smoke. He knew Roman well enough that just judging by the look on his face, he was stressed, and that pointed towards him needing a smoke. As soon as Brooklyn got up to reclaim her mattress and drag it to where she wanted it, he turned to Savannah. "Savannah, I'm so sorry about... that. I promise she's not that bad, really. I need to go talk to Roman, but I'll be back in a few minutes. Just don't let her get to you, alright? I swear this won't be as bad as it seems." He was speaking quickly, partly because he was still incredibly anxious and partly because he needed to finish speaking before Brooklyn was back in earshot. Alex had spoken about them needing to fix Holly and Makayla's things, and it was probably an indirect way of her telling Brooklyn that they weren't going to tolerate her ruining the sisters' setup. That impending drama was one less thing Nick needed to deal with, especially when Brooklyn passively responded that Makayla would just need to "get over it". Alex would be able to handle that, he was sure, and it would hopefully reassure Savannah that Brooklyn wasn't the bully that she was already making herself out to be.

He patted his pocket and when he felt the pre-rolled joint and his lighter inside, he gave Savannah one last unsure smile and headed towards the stairs. He opted for the ones that led straight into the alley, rather than go through the bar, and found Roman outside, smoking a cigarette as he expected. "Really, man? Really? You bring her back without even warning me?" Nick was speaking calmly, but only because he was busy lighting his joint. Knowing that he would soon be high, and that there was already enough drama in the near future, were the only things keeping him from snapping at Roman. Once his joint was lit, he stepped behind the privacy of the dumpster and rested his back against the brick building wall. He inhaled deeply, knowing that it was probably going to take more than one joint for him to keep calm after whatever explanation Roman had to give him.

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Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Nick Moreno
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#, as written by Cure
In the middle of a draw, the basement door opened and Nick appeared beside him. Roman rolled his eyes theatrically and glared at him before looking the other way. He just wanted to finish his cigarette alone and not talk to anybody. Two months of Nick's secretive behavior, pretending like nothing was happening between him and Savannah, and now he wanted to talk. What made him even more irritated than the still thick heat despite it being around five in the morning, and even more than all the drama that was bound to occur, was the fact that he knew he wasn't entirely in the right. He knew he was being childish. He could have talked to Nick as soon as things started bothering him, but for some reason he didn't. Part of it was because he wanted to mad at Nick. If he had gone after Brooke, this all could have been avoided. Savannah and his fling with her could have been avoided. And then another part of it was because, like a child, he wanted Nick to see that he was bothered. He didn't want to have to go to Nick about it because then he'd seem juvenile. What would he have said? "Hey, I don't like Savannah. Go find Brooke and get your shit together." And then a final part, which always seemed to be a factor, was because he was so protective over Nick. It was the reason he didn't like Brooke for so long because he was sure she would come and tear him away. And now it's a reason why he doesn't like Savannah, among other reasons. He figured that if Nick could be over Brooke just like that, after all their years together, then he could easily be over Roman as well. Deep down, he knew didn't need him as much as he needed Nick. And that bothered him; it still did.

"Really, man? Really? You bring her back without even warning me?" Nick said, surprisingly calm, but Killens could tell he was working to do so. The blunt in his hand only furthered his point. Roman watched him light it and inhale before saying anything. He wanted to be mad at him longer, while he stood could, because it was almost impossible to hate him, or at least not for very long. And so when there were times like these when he wouldn't mind just hitting Nick, he secretly cherished them because it made him think that maybe he didn't need Nick as badly as he did. He lived the lie a moment longer, focusing on his cigarette and refusing to meet Nick's eyes before speaking.

"Sorry," he said. "I forgot." Which was true. Small details were slipping his mind more recently, and those small details tended to have big effects, like this one. Before he could seem sincere for too long, he clarified his point. "I forgot we were telling each other stuff like that. But at least I'm not fucking her behind your back, so." He knew Nick's romantic life was really none of his business, and he likely forgot that he wasn't entitled to this since he was so used to Brooke being around. With the way Nick and Brooke carried on and Roman always finding himself in the midst of their fights, it was almost like he was dating them too. When they fought with each other, he was fighting too. So in a way, he was always a part of their relationship and even though he didn't know every single detail about them, being best friends with both of them did have an effect on what he knew and what he felt he should know.

Nick didn’t seem to pick up on Roman’s jab at his relationship with Savannah since he simply looked at him befuddled. Killens watched him focus on his joint before he finally responded, slower this time as the drug began to take effect, “Thanks, I guess? I just don't know what the fuck to do now. You know, with her and Savannah. You should've seen how nasty she was being to her already."

Roman stared at him with his mouth hanging open. Did he have to spell everything out for Nick? He couldn’t help but roll his eyes and toss his cigarette to the side. What a waste, he thought as he watched it land next to flattened piece of chewed up gum. He hardly calmed at all; he was still stressed. Looking back at Nick and seeing the worry on his face made him rethink things, despite himself. Nick’s obliviousness to his frustration only made him feel foolish and guilty. Here he was being honest with him, and Roman was acting like he was twelve. He doubted any of what Nick did was meant to bother him the way it did, and that was clear since even now he couldn’t seem to tell. Although he didn’t want to, he swallowed his pride and turned back to Nick.

“You still have feelings for her. She still has feelings for you,” he said. “I’ve been telling her you really missed her, and I didn’t bring up Savannah. I didn’t know you two would be here, so I didn’t have time to break it to her before she saw you two together. So she’s probably just hurt seeing you with her, especially after I pretty much made it seem like you were drowning in your own tears with her gone. But I saw the way you were looking at her Nick. I’m pretty sure everyone did.”

"Yeah? Well it's a lot more complicated than that now, Killens. I can love her all I want but that doesn't mean that shit changed with her. You know Brooke as well as I do." Which was true. He knew Brooke was at fault too. He couldn't really blame Nick for putting his foot down after all these years, but that didn't mean he had to agree with everything that happened afterward. Nick took a deep breath and formed his thoughts before he continued. "She's not going to change and I can't keep playing this game with her." He didn't say anything else after that, although Killens thought he was going to. It still looked like he had much more to say, but instead he just shook his head as if that would somehow get rid of whatever else was on his mind. Without word, Nick flicked his joint to the ground and made his way to the front of the alley. "Fuck, I need a drink," he said. "I'll be back down in a little if they ask..."

Roman debated following him, but after he disappeared around the corner, he settled with himself that he wasn't going to. They both needed to clear their head. Roman, well, he didn't have much to think over. The only thing he had to worry about was Brooke, and even that wasn't too worrisome since he knew Brooke wasn't going to let him get a word in anyway. There was no point in trying to open up with Nick. It was really just the basement's environment he didn't really want to go back to. With a sigh, he pulled out another cigarette, giving another try at being alone for a few moments. He just wanted to be annoyed with himself for a bit since nothing else was required of him, and so couldn't prevent him from feeling at least somewhat guilty for how things turned out. Nick and Brooke had to work this out on their own, as did Nick and Savannah, of which he wanted no part of anyway. Above him, the clouds swelled as much as they could before they'd have no other choice but to burst. There would be a storm tonight for sure.

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Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Robbie Amello
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Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Robbie Amello
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ImageRobbie was still in his thoughts when he plopped on his mattress and realized how much tension was built up in the room. It also made sense as to why Roman was carrying a bunch of boxes. How long has she been here? Brooklyn was back and he couldn't help but have an impish grin sprawled across his face as he looked back and forth to the others faces, all of which showing equal confusion except for Roman who looked more like he wanted to get the hell out of the situation as fast as possible. Luckily for them it didn’t take long before the room started to empty it would make sense for him to follow suit but then again, he did come back to get some peace however doubtful that was going to be now.

"You know guys, maybe we should fix Makayla and Holly's stuff up. 'Else Makayla's going to be pissed." Alex chimed in. Robbie thought about making some snide and sarcastic remark, but figured otherwise with everything that had happened there was no need for him to dig himself an even greater hole then the one he was already sitting in with her. He was still trying to figure out a way he could make up for it though he hasn’t been able to come up with anything in particular yet and he doubted another "sorry" would matter.

Rolling the watermelon flavored lollipop to the side of his mouth a bit down, making an audible cracking sound and stood up quickly changing into a clean, well cleaner than what he was currently wearing, black shirt and throwing his jacket on his mattress. “Well, I’m gonna go have a drink,” He made his way up the staircase not before mumbling “for everyone.” As his boot hit the first step.

He took the first empty seat at the bar and laid down some cash “I will take whatever beer this can get me.” He spat out to anyone that was listening as he wrapped the stem of the candy in a napkin and pulled a cigarette from his pocket. To him the two tastes always complimented each other in the strangest way or it was just the ramblings of a mad man. Hopefully after a drink or ten he'd be able to ignore everyone and pass out without a hitch then again with his luck there would always be a hitch.

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Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Robbie Amello
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Image"I'm sure it is..."
Savannah blinked. Her hand still hovering in the air, unshaken as Brooklyn walked off, clearly not wanting to have anything to do with her or Nick at the moment and at that point, Savannah wanted nothing to do with her. Nick shot her an apologetic look and Savannah ran her hand through her curly black hair as Brooklyn went off to reclaim her space.

"Savannah, I'm so sorry about... that. I promise she's not that bad, really. I need to go talk to Roman, but I'll be back in a few minutes. Just don't let her get to you, alright? I swear this won't be as bad as it seems." He said and Savannah shrugged, trying to play passive but she had gotten to her. She tried, God, how she tried to be nice, kind, friendly and polite, she knew, Nick told her how much of a...Savannah took a calming breath. She wouldn't say it. She wouldn't call a woman out of her name, it was rude and she wasn't raised that way. She wouldn't even think it, despite how much she wanted to. "Okay." was all she could manage.

She didn't want to judge the girl based on what she was told but clearly Nick wasn't lying, at least he hadn't been, because his last statement was that. A lie. He said she's not that bad, but no, she was, and she got the feeling it wasn't the end of it. So maybe she wasn't that bad. Savannah got the dark feeling, she was much worse. Nick left her, down there, with Brooklyn, the others were there but Savannah couldn't help but feel as alone as she did when she first got off the plane.

Taking a deep breath, Savannah thought, she'd try again, without Nick in the room. She walked up to Brooklyn with a smile. "Would you like some help?" She asked her, honestly. She wanted to help her, she wanted to show her that she wasn't a bad person, someone that she didn't have to hate, despite whatever it was with Nick. Savannah didn't know what was going to happen next, but she didn't want to fight. Nick would have to make a choice, and she wasn't going to make it easy by mimicking Brooklyn's attitude. "Have you any luggage, or something, I can assist you with?"

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Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Zero Diamond
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Zero, for lack of a better word, was lost. The whole basement was a mess with drama about the girl (Brook, Zero had to remind himself). First, Roman moves Brooks stuff right next to his, a fact he really couldn't care less about so long as she minded her own business, but then she started moving it to the other side of the room where Holly and Makayla's stuff was. Something about that sent a part of him on edge, knowing that Makayla would not like that at all. Zero was no idiot. He knew she had been feeling sick lately. Maybe it wasn't obvious to everyone, but he had always payed attention to stuff like that.

Then Alex chimed in, suggesting that they fix up Holly and Makala's stuff. Zero agreed and waiting for others to start pitching in to help her out, but for the most part she was ignored.

Zero sighed, walking over to where Brooklyn was and started picking up some of the things that had gotten pushed to the side, and replaced them in their proper location, all the while trying not to disturb Brook as he most certainly didn't want any drama turned his way. Zero was always good at going unnoticed, and besides Brooklyn seemed preoccupied with talking to Savannah at the moment. He knew he should probably be getting out of the way as soon as possible, rather than be stuck in an argument should it occur. God, what was Killens thinking, bringing her back without warning?

Over the heads of the two girls, he glanced back up at Alex on the other side of the room. Zero made a mental note to ask some more questions about Brooklyn later, and maybe get to know a bit more of her history with Nick and the other tenants of the basement. That was the problem with being the new guy. He had no idea the history of the people who lived here. Before the last two months, he was lost of whatever had happened among any of his new roommates.

But he intended to find out.

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Holly Madden Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Cara Forrester Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Makayla Wright Character Portrait: Zero Diamond Character Portrait: Robbie Amello
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"Look, it's Cara!" Holly spotted the blonde from the other side of the street and soon realized that they were home. She was excited to see her, and even more so after her story to Makayla reminded her of how enjoyable hanging out with Cara was. Makayla and Cara exchanged greetings but Holly didn't even get out a "hello" before Cara brought up their day at the pool and her mind was racing to explain the day. The cold water. The kid with the Spongebob bathing suit. The strawberry scented shampoo Makayla brought to the showers. There was a white dog that they passed on the way to the pool, and a swarm of pigeons that they interrupted on their walk back. She had to tell her about Wendy's, how they were out of all of the good toys, and how she wanted to go back to Toys R Us again. There was too much for her to say and she didn't know where to start. "It was so fun, right Kay?" her sister gave her a strained smile and a nod of her head. Holly was about to start her narrative of the day's events when Cara suggested they go to Finn's. The two girls were old enough to drink, and regardless of Holly being twenty-one, she still frequented Finn's if Makayla was going. That wasn't to say that she was welcomed there, because even though Finn made an effort to put up with her, he couldn't always put up the front that the others could. All it took were a few questions that he disliked and had answered a million times - why he had an accent, why he left Ireland, why he didn't have a girlfriend and why he liked beer so much - for him to remind Makayla that she was too young to be sitting at his bar.

"Holly, come." Her sister tugged her before she could object or continue her story to Cara, and as they stepped inside, her mind had shifted from the story anyway. Finn's bar was familiar to her but her eyes still wandered whenever she walked in. It was generally the same people who frequented the place but Holly was always curious to see what company she would have for however long they stayed up there. Tonight, the bar was as crowded as it got, which left Holly with many potential conversation partners. There was a woman in her mid-thirties who caught Holly's eye first. The skimpy pink halter top she wore revealed a large skull tattoo on her bare shoulder, and upon sighting it, Holly was intrigued. She wondered why the woman had chose a skull when she could have gotten a picture of a dog or the sun instead. She was sure that she must know Roman, since his tattoos were the most remarkable thing about him in Holly's mind. Others in the basement, including her sister and Nick, had tattoos, but before she could approach the woman, her freedom was again limited by Makayla's grab. She was tugged past the lady, only briefly noticing Nick when her sister slowed her pace to say something to him, and then led them to a table. It was the most isolated table in the bar and had probably been chosen by Makayla with good reason.

She followed Makayla's direction and sat on one of the high chairs, only silent as she tried to process the loud and interesting scene around her. Makayla's insistence that they not order anything had Holly nodding, but only because she wasn't listening to what her sister was saying. Of course she was going to order something when Cara insisted! Why wouldn't she?! Holly didn't understand the type of logic and etiquette that her sister tried to adhere to. She was already dependent on Makayla, so being dependent on Cara too didn't bother her at all. She again, wasn't sure what to say first, and her eyes were frantically moving across the bar as if she were trying to settle on the most important thing to start on. "I need to tell Savannah that Nick is here!" she finally chirped, jumping off the chair and heading towards the back staircases before Makayla could do more than reach out and try to grab her.

As far as Holly knew, Savannah didn't work, and whenever Nick wasn't on a drug run, he was with Savannah. She assumed that Savannah was downstairs and must not have known that Nick was home. Aside from Savannah's interest in writing and reading- two of the very few things that Holly disliked, Holly liked her. Her accent was interesting and Holly never ran out of questions to ask her about England, especially since she humored them more than Roman did. She bounded down the stairs and skipped the last three, opting to obnoxiously jump to the floor. "Savannah!!! Nick is upstairs for you!" she shouted, before even looking to see if Savannah was there. When she did glance around, she noticed Alex at the table eating Chinese food, Zero sitting by her area, Savannah close by... and Brooklyn! Holly's exclamation probably couldn't have come at a worse time but she didn't even remember the reason for coming downstairs when she spotted Brooklyn. Zero and Savannah were probably caught off guard by how tense the basement was, but Holly wasn't aware of any sort of negative vibes present. Brooklyn was back and even if she was the one that Brooklyn was very vocal about disliking, her presence brought a wide smile to Holly's face. "I didn't know you were still alive!" she spoke, not hesitating to kneel down next to Brooklyn and throw her arms around her shoulders. "Did you know that I went to the pool today, and this is Savannah and she's friends with Nick, and she lived in Australia, and Zero is that boy." There was so much to catch Brooklyn up on, and as her eyes fell upon what Brooklyn was doing, she was glad to see that the blonde was going to be staying next to them. She didn't even notice how that had caused her and Makayla's stuff to end up knocked over and shoved into Cara's area, or how Zero was doing his best to fix it. Her mind was moving even faster than it had been at the bar, if that was possible, and before she could utter another jumbled thought to the trio, she was up, passing Lennie and taking Zero's empty seat at the table next to Alex. "Hi Alex," she beamed. She studied the Chinese food containers in front of Alex, but was still full from the meager Wendy's meal and didn't request some for herself. There was one thing she was interested in, though. "Did you get any fortune cookies?"

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Characters Present

Character Portrait: Holly Madden Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Nick Moreno Character Portrait: Cara Forrester Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Makayla Wright Character Portrait: Zero Diamond Character Portrait: Robbie Amello
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Savannah felt as if she were holding her breath, as she waited for Brooklyn to speak. It wasn't until Holly's voice sprang out from nowhere, did she breathe, even if it was only gasp a little. "Savannah!!! Nick is upstairs for you!"the young girl called, and Savannah closed her eyes, yet smiled. She looked at Brooklyn, tension evident in her posture before Holly came running over, and careening into Brooklyn with a hug. She swallowed. She could use a 'Holly Hug' at the moment, the girl was as sweet as can be, and Savannah wouldn't mind a nice big bear hug from the tiny girl.
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The girl went on 'introducing' everyone to Brooklyn. "Did you know that I went to the pool today, and this is Savannah and she's friends with Nick, and she lived in Australia, and Zero is that boy." she went on before skipping off.

"Well if you will excuse me." She said to Brooklyn and if she were honest, she was glad that Holly relayed the message so blissful unaware of the tension in the room, Savannah smiled and nodded and went off but not before chuckled. "London, England, Not Australia." She told her before going off to find Nick, wherever he may be.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Holly Madden Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Savannah Stonecraft Character Portrait: Zero Diamond
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No one helped her locate Cara, but Brooklyn was too annoyed to scoff at their silence when Zero came over and started fiddling with Makayla and Holly's things. He probably meant nothing bad by it. In fact, if Brooklyn wasn't so petty and defensive, she never would have looked far enough into his actions to believe him to be acting out of passive aggression. He saw her sitting right there. He knew that she was the one who had knocked over there things. Did he think that by him trying to be the good guy and fixing everything, that she would suddenly decide to do the right thing and join in in helping him? The only explanation she could conjure for this unfamiliar guy caring enough about the duo's possessions was that he was Makayla's boyfriend. Or more likely, he paid her to sleep with him. He was too frail looking for Brooklyn to imagine Makayla and him actually being a compatible pair, but then again, Makayla couldn't have very high standards.

Brooklyn was beginning to think that she needed to spell it out for Savannah that she didn't want to see her, hear her, or knew she existed. She did not need help, and what kind of question was that asking if she had any luggage? She had the backpack and two boxes that Killens had brought in and a couple of cardboard boxes filled with junk still left at her friend's house. Was this sleepaway camp or a trip to the Bahamas? She glanced up at her, ready to shoot some sarcastic remark about how she must have left all of her Louis Vuitton suitcases at the airport when she landed from her weekend getaway to Paris, when Holly came down. Brooklyn had no right to be surprised. It was her who was coming back unannounced and she knew good and well that a girl like Holly was not going to suddenly grow up over two months. Still, Brooklyn wasn't prepared for the redhead tossing herself onto her without hesitation. If there was one thing that Brooklyn had made clear, it was that even more than she hated Holly touching her things, she hated Holly touching her. Whether it was a hug, an attempt at holding her hand, or playing with her hair, Brooklyn couldn't stand it. Though Holly was the one who tested her more than anyone, it wasn't a hatred that was specific to her. Aside from Nick, she hated being touched intimately by anyone, to a point that explained why she had been irked earlier by Killens doing it. It just made her uncomfortable, especially considering that she wasn't a very sentimental or emotional person to begin with.

Holly's welcoming wasn't appreciated, as made clear by Brooklyn's grimace, and she wouldn't admit it, but there was a part of her that was happy to see Holly. Not only did her presence deter Savannah and save Brooklyn from the aftermath that would come with snapping at her, but there was a part of her, deep, deep down, that liked Holly. The girl offered unconditional love to everyone and such warmth was scarce in their situation. She could appreciate it for all of thirty seconds, but was more than glad when the girl hurried away as soon as she came. Brooklyn had only mumbled (in a tone that she did her best to sound pleasant) "Hey Holls," before she left to talk to Alex. Brooklyn still hadn't really acknowledged Alex but it wasn't necessary. The girls were definitely on better terms than Brooklyn was with Makayla, but they weren't exactly friends. At least, not in the sense that Brooklyn owed her some sappy hug and story about how much she missed her.

Within a few minutes, the rest of her things were set up, Savannah had traipsed upstairs after leaving her with some comment about where she was from - as if Brooklyn gave a fuck - and Roman reappeared. She didn't acknowledge Roman, especially not after seeing that Nick had already gotten to him first, and once she was on her feet, stepped towards Holly, Alex and Lennie. She considered going upstairs to Finn's apartment to shower and get some time to herself. He was the closest thing to a father figure that she had and she felt like she was even closer with him than Nick was. He wouldn't mind her using his apartment and even more so, she knew she owed him an explanation for her side of the story. However, she also knew that Savannah had just walked up the steps leading into the back of the bar, and according to Holly, Nick was up there as well. That was definitely something that she was not in the mood to deal with, so instead, she decided to repeat her question from earlier to the three girls. "Is Cara around?"

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Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Holly Madden Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Jackson King Character Portrait: Zero Diamond
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If Jackson wanted to work hard, make an honest living and have morals, he wouldn't have chosen the street life. That's right, he chose to live out here. It wasn't a choice in the same realm as Cara's, since Jackson hadn't just tossed the little bit of potential he had out the window for some temporary adventure. His life had already been on a downward spiral when he said 'fuck it' and left his small Pennsylvania town for the big apple. Granted, when he left home he was ignorant to the true reality of being homeless. Books and movies made the life out to be far more glamorous than it was and coming from a middle class family, it took a few months for him to adjust to just how alone and broke he really was. Jackson had been diagnosed with ODD, oppositional defiant disorder, as a child, so crawling back to his family was far worse of an option in his mind than braving the harsh weather and poor conditions, but even for him, this was no honeymoon. Sure, he had the others in the warehouse. Cara and Makayla were fun to share his nights with. Holly was a pain in the ass but her cheerfulness lightened the mood a lot. Considering the amount of blunts Jackson had bummed off of Nick, he had to say he was a decent guy. Roman, Lennie, Robbie and Zero were all alright as well, Alex was smoking hot and was fun to mess with, and he was still considering making Savannah the next victim of his sticky fingers. They were all good enough roommates, especially considering how many mentally ill or just fucked up in general people lived on the streets of New York.

"Hey, I told you yesterday to get the hell out of here. This is a private building and we don't need freeloaders like you loitering around here. You heard me, get the hell out. Go get a real job and do something to contribute to society, kid." Jackson didn't move at first, and only slowly pulled himself off of the apartment building's steps when he reached the filter of his cigarette. He absentmindedly flicked the butt to the sidewalk, met the building manager's gaze with a blank stare, tossed his backpack over his shoulder and left. Jackson was out of place in the Upper East Side of Manhattan and after making it a habit of loitering in the wealthier parts of town, it also became common for him to be recognized and chased away. Most of them forced him away simply because a kid in dirty clothes and ripped jeans with a cigarette in his mouth didn't benefit the prestigous image of their neighborhood. What they should have been concerned about, however, was how he took advantage of the wealthy residents of the area in the form of theft. He wasn't robbing banks or even stores, but two or three pickpockets a day kept him going. All he needed was twenty bucks a day to get by and it usually only took one wallet, or the purse of a nanny from a playground bench for him to stay afloat.

Today he had went with the latter. It was early in the morning, maybe eight or nine, when Jackson had passed by a playground and spotted a couple of kids playing on the gymnasium. Towards the area of benches sat an empty stroller and from a far distance, he was able to spot a purse. He didn't feel guilty snatching it when the woman he thought it belonged to was preoccupied with chasing the toddler on the other side of the park. She must have been working for a wealthy family to be at a park in this area and the meager forty-three dollars he found in her wallet couldn't hurt her that badly. And if it did, well, Jackson wasn't going to lose any sleep over it.

Cigarettes in New York were wildly expensive. He didn't see any pros to the price, but health wise, it was probably a good thing. Jackson had cut down to going through only one or two packs a week simply because he couldn't afford blowing thirteen dollars on a pack more frequently than that. After purchasing a pack of those, another lighter, three tall boy beers and a street cart hot dog, he only had around fifteen dollars left to his name. It should have left him feeling unsettled but he was too used to it by now to care, and spent the rest of the day wandering through the city. There were no easy pick pockets today and he was too lazy to put more effort into his theft, so around five-thirty, after being driven out of the upper east side, he spent a few dollars on a subway ride back to Finn's.

After a long, hard day of doing nearly nothing, he was ready for bed. He would take a nap for a few hours, get some late night pizza, maybe fuck around with Makayla or Cara, and then wait outside one of the seedier strip joints to rob one of the workers leaving after their shift. He supposed it would be an ordinary night until he took the side entrance downstairs and found that Brooklyn was back. Passing by Killens with only a barely noticeable nod of acknowledgement, he headed towards the table that seated Lennie, Holly and Alex, and had Brooklyn hovering beside it. "Shit, Lex. Now that Brooklyn's back, you're gonna have some competition if you wanna sleep with me as bad as I know you do. You know I have a thing for blondes, and this just adds one more into the mix." He knew that no one knew about his frequent flings with Makayla but the same couldn't be said for him and Cara. Cara was always drunk when they slept together and Jackson was basically drunk every night, so neither of them were very careful with where they had sex or who they were waking up while doing so. He smirked as he looked towards Brooklyn, knowing there was a good chance that this next move would land him with a black eye. "It's good to have you back, Barbie," he purred, his hand brazenly slapping her ass in a move far too typical of the boy who just loved poking the beast... or beasts, considering that he enjoyed provoking almost all of the girls in the basement.

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Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Holly Madden Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Jackson King
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#, as written by Cure
The sky grumbled as Roman finished off his cigarette, feeling somewhat better now. After sighing internally, he went back into the basement and briefly locked eyes with Brooke before she turned away from him. He rolled his eyes inwardly, knowing how long Brooke could hold out if she was mad at you about something. Considering she wasn't the most liked person in the basement, and Nick was kind of out of the picture, he figured she couldn't snub him for as look as she was capable of doing. Zero was in the middle of rearranging Makayla and Holly's thing, of which the latter entered the room as loud as ever and ran straight for Brooke, embracing her as though they were best friends.

Roman went over to his side of the room and leaned against the wall. Watching Holly bounce around the room like a ball in a pinball machine was entertainment enough, but after she plopped next to Alex, reading to start another conversation, Killens was already getting weary of her presence. He decided he would busy himself to some planning, figure out how he would pay off Giovanni. Just the other week, he'd bought a cheap notebook and a pen so he could actually work things like this out, since when he tried doing it in his head, everything became jumbled and crazy. The notebook wasn't completely necessary, if anything it was just an accessory, and really just meant to be a distraction. He was good at approximating and could probably guess about what he needed to do and how long it would take to get things situated. As a kid, he could guess the trajectory of a ball, determine about where it would land, just by looking at it and thinking for a few minutes. And then of course when you apply the numbers, it was just basic physics. Still he figured he would give writing it down a try, if not just to have something to do. But as he wrote down on the paper, his handwriting unsightly even to his own eyes, he only reassured himself why he put off things like this. He hated numbers, albeit them just making sense. It reminded him of his childhood, which was just equations and weird, long passages, IQ tests, and the sorts. If he had to choose between listening to Holly talk everyone's ear off or planning out how he would get his shit together, though, the choice was pretty easy.

The sound of the basement door opening and closing caught his attention briefly. Jackson walked through the door, nodding at Roman faintly, before turning back to whatever he was doing. Jackson wasn't his favorite person, but he stayed out of Roman's way, so he didn't really mind him. The guy was nothing but a Don Juan to all the girls in the basement. Killens was somewhat sure that Jackson did it just to be bothersome, but when he made comments towards Brooke, he found it harder to hold his tongue, but Brooke could stand up for herself. Even now as he made his way over to Alex and Brooklyn, Roman rolled his eyes and shook his head, but went back to figuring out how he could get the essentials. He'd messed up somewhere and couldn't focus with Jackson's annoying voice in the background. Of course the guy wasn't aware of the tension that was currently in the basement, so he couldn't be entirely annoyed with him when he entered and went straight to flirting, but Killens still couldn't refrain himself from shooting a Jackson a look. And as he did, he watched as Braden said, with a stupid grin on his face, "It's good to have you back, Barbie," and proceed to smack Brooke on the butt.

Killens only sat for a second, not sure he saw what he thought he saw. But as the anger he'd manage to eliminate with his cigarette came back, he knew there was no questioning it. Typically Roman tried to stay out of people's way to avoid conflict. He didn't want people to associate his occupation with his actual personality, so if he could abstain from most of the drama that was bound to occur in a small room that housed 11 other people, he would be okay. That was most days, but today was different. He didn't so much care about how anyone perceived him as he tossed the notebook to the side and crossed the room in a few, quick strides. He knew Brooklyn could have taken care of the situation herself, but this was one thing Roman wasn't going to tolerate, and Jackson damn sure got lucky that Nick wasn't down here too. He made his way over to Jackson, shoving him out of the way with one hand. "Watch where you put your fucking hands," he said. He did nothing more, only meaning that as a warning. It took all the power within him not to punch him right then and there though. His fuse was shorter than it was on normal days, and Jackson picked the wrong one to set him off. He only hoped that Jackson walked away, because the last thing that was needed was another fight. However, if it came to it, he wouldn't hesitate.

Setting

Characters Present

Character Portrait: Roman Killens Character Portrait: Holly Madden Character Portrait: Brooklyn Archer Character Portrait: Lennie Adams Character Portrait: Alexandra Decoteaux Character Portrait: Jackson King Character Portrait: Zero Diamond
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Jackson wasn't completely caught off guard when Roman flew in to "rescue" Brooklyn. He was nearly as close to her as Nick was and as far as he was concerned, Roman was vying for a spot in Brooklyn's sheets just as much as he. Really, who wasn't? Brooklyn was hot and had an attitude to match it. Girls like her who played hard to get and had mouths too big for their own good were total turn-ons. It was probably why Jackson's feelings for Makayla were so different than what he felt for Cara. Both girls were hot and great in bed but Cara was too much of a good girl for him. Makayla had that wit and edge that always left him wanting more. Truth be told, Brooklyn probably topped all of the other ladies when it came to her sharp tounge, but as Roman, the knight in shining armor, had just attested to, Brooklyn wasn't going to reciprocate his feelings any time too. Even the shove that Killens gave him wasn't going to be enough for him to cut his chase for Brooklyn short. If that was all it took, he would have stopped hitting on her the day area he moved in. No, Jackson didn't really think he had a chance with Brooklyn, but it wasn't because some lanky wannabe boxer wanted it that way. It was more so because of Nick, who again, Jackson felt was a nice enough dude, and more so, who would most certainly at least kick him out if he were to make a real move on Brooklyn. The slap on her ass was just a playful move, so Jackson didn't think that counted and didn't get why Roman felt the need to go all superhero on him and step in. If anyone could stick up for themselves in this basement, it was Brooklyn. Not only did she stick up for herself on the defensive end, but she was an active participant on the offensive end too.

"Shit, my bad, man. For a minute there, I thought your name was Roman, not Romeo." It was in Jackson's nature to be sarcastic, and he held his hands up in surrender as if it had been as innocent of a mistake as the words behind his sarcastic tone hinted at. "Don't worry, Juliet is all yours. I'm in the mood for something foreign tonight anyway," he chuckled, adding a sultry wink in Alex's direction as he stepped past Roman and continued towards his section of the room. It was surprisingly one of the neater areas of the basement, but only because Jackson barely owned anything. He had three black t-shirts, a couple pairs of boxers and socks, one pair of jeans, a pair of sneakers and boots, his ID and social security card, and a couple bags of half-eaten chips and candies. He set his backpack down against the side of his mattress and pulled out the plastic bag with the three beers in it. Those would come in handy tonight, that was for sure. Speaking of tonight, and casting his fantasy of getting with Alex aside, he was curious as to where his two "friends" were. If Holly was here, that meant that either Makayla or Cara had to be close by. Makayla rarely went out and left Holly with anyone other than Cara, and especially with Brooklyn suddenly being back, she doubted that she would just toss Holly to the wolves, or better yet- wolf, like that. He considered getting back up to ask Holly himself, but Mister Altruism was still standing guard of Brooklyn, who was now apparently his girlfriend. Which kind of made sense, considering that Nick had most likely moved on to Savannah and Jackson couldn't imagine Brooklyn coming back to that scene, unless she had moved on in her own way. And what better way to do that than to fuck Nick's best friend? It was a move that seemed so in-character for Brooklyn that Jackson was certain it was the truth simply based off of his own assumptions and Killens' recent performance. Aside from all of that, as he cracked open one of the beers and folded his thin, flat pillow in half behind his back, he was reminded of how tired he was anyway. Fighting Roman and scouting out Cara and/or Makayla both seemed like too much work, even if the latter might help quench the sex-drive that had came close to causing the former.