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Ares Bennett

"It is sometimes an appropriate response to reality to go insane."

0 · 1,247 views · located in New York City

a character in “Time is Running Out”, as played by Scarlet Loup


“It is sometimes an appropriate response to reality to go insane.”
~ Philip K. Dick

Sidney Romeo Bennett

He often goes by his childhood nickname and code name "Ares" after the Greek god of war. Those who call him by his full first name are bound to regret it. Very few even call him "Sid"





"Sane is boring."
~ R.A. Salvatore

A gangly six feet, four inches

A disproportionately lanky one hundred and forty pounds

A dark brown, but often streaked with color when he can find it

A clear, sky blue

A ghostly, sickly sort of pale that results from little sunshine

G E N E R A L__A P P E A R A N C E
Sid has always been a very skinny boy for his height. He towers over most, but obviously lacks the capability of physically fighting someone unless they too lacked body mass. His hair is a bit of a mess, but he likes it that way, and he often likes to dye it absurd colors. His face appears quite boyish and almost flawless. The wicked grin he often wears reminds many of an impish child. He bears very few scars, but the most noticeable of these are a collection of burns on his hands from experimenting with Molotovs. When it comes to clothing, he mimicks the dress of grunge rockstar meets greaser. His wardrobe consists mainly of skinny jeans and t-shirts with his black leather jacket.

“To me, impulsive means foolish. But if a person’s not a little impulsive, they don’t have a pulse.”
― Jarod Kintz

What determines the sanity of a man? Is it their social interactions, their attitude? Regardless, it is obvious to all that Sid is not sane. In fact, it would simply be easier to call him insane. Certainly, don't call him that to his face, for it will probably be met with a punch of a fiery burst of flaming alcohol. And don't call him by his own name, for "Ares" is the only name he responds to unless you're close enough to call him Sid. In fact, very few are aware that he was not born "Ares".

He has an odd obsession with fire and destruction which stem most likely from a neglected childhood, a mind ravaged by drugs and alcohol, and a desire to make himself one of the most powerful people in the country. Don't let it throw you off though. Deep down, he's quite the romantic. Actually, he's a bit too much of a romantic for most people's tastes. Not that he goes around writing poetry. Instead, he likes to announce his quotes and thoughts to the world when they come to him. Most of them are plagiarized, but hey, that's the benefit of no more Google, right?

Look beyond the insanity, the romanticism, and you will truly find a decent person who has somehow managed to come out of a crack house and make something of himself. Before the apocalypse, he was beginning a band with a few friends, and they were about to take their band out of the state. Granted much of his achievements have come about in an alcohol-induced daze, but he believes they are achievements nonetheless and ought not to be discounted despite his lack of consciousness during most of it. He's not the brightest bulb, but he is quick both physically and mentally, and he'll defend you no matter what if you give him reason to.

"In a mad world, only the mad are sane."
~ Akira Kurosawa

✔ Sex ✔ Fire ✔ Cigarettes ✔ Hard Liquor ✔ Romanticizing Things ✔ Attention ✔ Taking Orders ✔ Crude Jokes ✔ Chaos ✔ FC: Taylor Momsen ✔ ✔ Fighting ✔ Small Animals ✔

✖ Disrespect ✖ Failure ✖ Hangovers ✖ Labels ✖ Being Called "Insane" ✖ His First Name ✖ Youngbloods ✖ James Williams ✖ Hazel Luden ✖ Physical Intimidation ✖ Dogs ✖ Smoke ✖

₪ He's basically addicted to sex ₪ Some might call him insane ₪ Before the apocalypse, he was an alcoholic ₪ Bruises easily ₪

✠ Expert on Molotovs and fire in general ✠ Can play the hell out of a guitar ✠ Nimble ✠ Lies without remorse, though he is still not as good at it as James ✠ High tolerance for alcohol ✠

"I do not suffer from insanity. I enjoy every minute of it."
~ Edgar Allen Poe

Ash Stymest

Scarlet Loup

So begins...

Ares Bennett's Story


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ares Bennett Character Portrait: Spencer Hunter Hughes Character Portrait: Stella Markum Character Portrait: Arabella Fields Character Portrait: Jackson Wilkins Character Portrait: Eliza Dallen Character Portrait: Katrina Lyons Character Portrait: Winston Fields Character Portrait: Caleb Smith Character Portrait: Gert Thaddäus Character Portrait: Edmund Lucian Character Portrait: James Williams Character Portrait: Hazel Luden
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New York, New York


As the city taken apart by the third world war progresses, factions build, relationships crumble, and being silenced is a constant fear. Each faction vies for the chance to be in charge, to be heard. In order to do so, the highest ups are put into situations where they must make decisions that can change themselves and the world. The people of New York City know something is coming and they know if they aren't careful, they can be caught in the crossfire.

The city's electricity is scarce, found only by the wealthiest who can afford the gasoline needed to run their generators. Everyone else is forced to use precious batteries and candles in order to see at night. Radios are a common form of communication because of the ability to use batteries, clothing and needed items are scavenged in the abandoned stores that occasionally line side streets of NYC. Money is hard to come by unless one has a job. Clothing stores no longer receive shipments as all gasoline for cars/trucks has been forbidden by most factions in order to save it for the electricity provides though of course, there are the few who bend the rules.

Though WW3 ravages the outside world, New York City has it's own problems to fear as it works out a dangerous battle of power, done by the three most prominent factions, the Youngbloods, Maniacs, and Phoenixes. Those who are extremely dedicated risk everything and in the end, blood can't help but be spilled.


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ares Bennett Character Portrait: Arabella Fields Character Portrait: Katrina Lyons Character Portrait: James Williams
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She still couldn't believe this was the life she was living.

Katrina ran her hand through her hair, to get it out of her face, as she's done a million times now. She was sitting on the subway train that stood still on it's track, as there was no electricity anymore. She doesn't know why, but she kept her Iphone, instead of breaking it, or throwing it away like everyone else. It was like her one little artifact of proof, that this world they lived in now, used to be alive. The world now.. made her a Maniac.

She wondered briefly where Ares had disappeared off to, and wondered if this meant she'd been left in charge of whatever it was he was actually in charge of. In fact, where were the Maniacs today? She knew they were known for being the people in the shadows, but.. it was silly not to be seen by their own kind.

Her mind seemed to start slowly dwindle along, as she involuntarily opened her mouth, and stretched her whole body, in a yawn. Her body was tired physically, but mentally, she never slept. She didn't seem to sleep most nights, and ran purely on adrenaline when causing havoc with the others.

Seeing a piece of pipe nearby, she guessed from the inside of the subway car somewhere or other, she went to one of the train doors, and clinged it between two handrails inside the train. "Meeting! Now!" She yelled through the train, and hoped that was enough to wake up her little Maniacs, and get everyone's adrenaline flowing properly, for an excellent day of causing havoc throughout the deserted New York City.


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ares Bennett Character Portrait: Arabella Fields Character Portrait: Katrina Lyons Character Portrait: James Williams
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James sat in the room he had grown used to over the past... he wasn't quite sure. Six walls, one door. He was growing sick to his stomach from sitting in there without having anything to do really. He was tapping his fingers like crazy on his knees, the floor, his head when he felt the need to touch his hair, which was more often than anything else. He wasn't as beat up as he thought he might be if he was ever taken, but that wasn't to say he was in perfect condition. He sat in the corner, rarely getting up to do anything but grab food or get a change in view of the cell that didn't really have a real change in view...

Footsteps echoed down the corridor of the subway station as Ares moved towards the cell in which James sat. The beauty of the six-walled cell was that it was nearly impossible to discern one's true location from within. It hardly looked like something one would find on a morning commute. His black boots, polished to a sheen, made a tap, tap as he moved along, hands in the front pockets of his skinny jeans. Ares came to a stop just before James's cell. Following a nod from him to one of the guards, the door was promptly unlocked long enough to allow the Maniac to pass into the small space. The mundane space was enough to drive anyone insane. He might have pitied the man...but he really didn't.

Ares consistently stood taller than James, but now the difference was even more noticeable with the long-haired prisoner sitting on the floor. Still, James was roughly thirty pounds of muscle heavier than he. With guards outside, however, it worried him little. "You planning on talking now about where you were heading, pretty boy?" he sneered, scuffing the toe of one boot against the cement floor as he spoke. "Or am I going to have to get someone to beat it out of you?"


James looked up from where he was tapping something absently at the floor upon hearing the door opening. James looked up, pulling his legs in to rest his arms on his knees, at Ares with a blank expression, then smiled slightly at the threat. "What, can't do it yourself?" He asks, knowing it probably wasn't the best thing to do in his situation, but really not caring at this point. He had to be careful, silence wasn't something that he expected to be accepted with the Maniacs. Witty and smartass remarks weren't likely to elicit a good response either, but at least it made James feel better when he was sitting around, hating life because of where he was. However, hearing a threat about sending someone else to beat him up seemed far off and empty to him because it did require other people. If he threatened someone, he did it himself.

James felt his heart race but schooled his features, loosing the smile as easily as he had allowed it to grow. "Do I plan on telling you where I was going? Well, let's see, I don't like you, you don't like me, you threatened me and keep me locked up in here, why would I want to, or plan to, talk to you about anything that could possibly help you? But let me do you a favor, I'll make your life a little easier because I am a nice person. I was heading out to meet a dealer for some ammo. Those guns I was carrying, I was in need of some more ammo when you idiots interupted." The lie flew out of James's mouth as if he just confessed to being out with Stella, which was really what happened. He had just barely gotten her through the door back to Phoenix headquarters before he took off again to avoid the Maniacs from finding their base, knowing he might not make it back that night.

He wondered if Ares would even believe him considering he had held over three magazines for each of his four guns. He tapped his fingers again, this time on his knees. He realized what he was doing and stopped, thinking he was picking up Caleb's habit. His face fell slightly as he thought of his friend, worried about him, but schooled his features yet again to avoid the attention he was sure Ares would give him.

Ares smirked and even gave a slight chuckle as though he were having fun with a friend. "I'd rather not dirty my hands with your blood," he sneered, knowing, as James did, that should the prisoner lay a hand upon the questioner, guards would be all over him in seconds. He nearly threw a kick at James, but Ares decided against it. Not because he didn't want to "dirty himself", but because he was, for a moment at least, genuinely concerned about James's strength.

"Well, do you think you would tell me anything if I let you walk off scot-free?" he replied. Ares didn't expect a reponse, and he truly didn't want one. James's sarcasm was already beginning to piss him off. He wanted to call bullshit on James's story, but frankly, he couldn't. It made sense to him, unfortunately, for he had wanted something more exciting. "Who's the dealer? I want to verify your alibi."

James wondered how long it would take him to choke the life out of Ares. Or better yet, whether or not the older guy had a gun on him, James could handle a gun much better than he could handle hand to hand fights. He did have a weight advantage though he was shorter. James didn't fear Ares, he feared the pain the guards outside would put him through. They would beat him until Ares was satisfied, possibly until he was dead. He had to get out without dying, if not for him, then those he knew. James tapped his fingers again in his anxiety, breathing deeply.

He nodded when Ares asked another question but noticed the anger coursing through the older guy. He was treading dangerous, extremely dangerous, ground. One step over line, fracturing Ares calm, he'd regret it, he wasn't an idiot. James watched Ares, smiling inwardly at the man being convinced. "Some guy named Damien. I've known him about two weeks. He got me three magazines and I started going to him. He's left lower manhattan. He's probably in upper manhattan or hanging out in the shanties set up in Central Park. Now do I get to walk out of here? Or how about some piece of sanity and give me something to do?" James asks, not expecting to get anything, but feeling like he should ask in case someone eventually asked himself whether his captors were hospitable. He could answer with a no, but some people would require evidence, and this was clearly that.

Ares nodded slowly, and he removed one hand from his pockets to adjust the scarlet armband that wrapped around his bicep and around the white, short sleeve of his shirt. He wanted to beat the truth out of James. It killed him that he couldn't. Perhaps he was telling the truth, in which case, he had no right to beat anything out of him. It would do him no good, for a dead man meant little. "Stay here," he said mockingly, smirking to himself as he exited the room, hoping to check if his alibi was valid.

Time passed. Perhaps it was fifteen minutes, perhaps it was an hour. Either way, the sound of Ares's boots on the tile floor sounded again, and the lanky male reappeared in the cell. It was obvious that he was not happy.

"How far do you think lying will get you here?" he snarled even before the door had shut behind him. His lips curled almost animalistically as he leaned down to shout in the prisoner's face. His fists clenched at his sides, making him look almost childish. "You underestimate us. I'll make life miserable for you...your family, your..." He knew little about James's personal life, but he had little doubt that a man such as he would have trouble with ladies, "...girlfriend."


James knew the instant Ares left the room the lie would fall to pieces. He had sat in his cell, tapping, humming, probably looking crazy if the Maniacs still had working cameras. Upon being told to "stay here" though, James couldn't help but roll his eyes. Yes, he was going to take a walk before Ares got back, he couldn't even move around in his small cell comfortably yet this guy was telling him not to leave?

James waited, knowing Ares was coming back. James wasn't sure if it was smart to send out the lie of Damien. Damien was the name of his uncle. At least he hadn't used Caleb's name, Caleb was still alive. James knew right away he was in trouble when Ares entered. The guy must have really believed that lie through and through... the idiot. James shrugged in response to the question, looking at a corner of the cell closest to him, trying to stay calm and not freak. James felt his heartbeat increase as Ares yelled at him, too close for James to be happy.

James was about to make a comment about how his life already was miserable when Ares began the threats towards James's loved ones. His real family was dead. He had those back with the phoenixes that he considered family, but that was it. That was still an empty threat. James heard Ares threaten Stella and lost control. Rage and fear ripped through him. He'd die before this b*st*rd touched her. James moved faster than he had in a long time, faster than he ever had in this cell. Ares was so close, it wasn't difficult for James's fist to make contact with Ares's jaw. James kicked out in the small room, hoping to get a rib or two cracked in the idiot. James couldn't help himself, he felt blinded by the rage. Nobody touched his girlfriend, nobody threatened her.

Ares had goaded him into being so stupid, but James didn't care. In the small room, James braced his hands on the wall and shoved off to allow him to slide towards Ares, hoping to make contact with something that would hurt, a rib, a liver, his groin of it was a possible target. James just wanted Ares to hurt. He hated this side of himself, the overprotective side that would do anything to protect loved ones. It didn't matter what happened to him though, Ares wouldn't touch his loved ones. Maybe it was because the Maniacs had gotten too close to getting Stella too that James had freaked and lost his cool. He would regret it later, but it felt good then to let off some steam.

The fist to his jaw sent Ares backwards and upwards as he staggered away. Something made a soft crunch beneath James's fist, and Ares suddenly held a hand up to his jaw, trying to tell it something was broken. Before he could tell, a swift kick met his ribcage. His legs buckled, and he fell to his knees. The taller man gripped for James's hair as the shorter man sent another attack which connected with Ares's naval and, therefore, the flesh protecting his innards. He doubled over with a cry, hopefully pulling James down with him if he had gotten a grip on the long, dark locks.

James's face held no satisfction as he connected with Ares's body. When Ares grabbed his hair, it was all James could do to keep from automatticaly slapping at Ares's hand. He knew it would only make it worse. James went to the ground with Ares. One hand held onto the locks Ares held, trying to keep it from pulling while the other reached for Ares's throat. James brought his knee up to try and knee Ares in the liver with the leg not touching the grimy ground. "I will kill you if you ever threaten me like that again," James growls, anger in his entire frame. He hadn't lost control like this in years...

Ares, beginning to grow more aware of James's fighting style, suddenly kicked up a leg and pushed back at the prisoner's knee, stalling him until the guards came in. "I'll...kill you now," he shot back, making empty threats but hoping they would make some sort of impact. Salvation came soon in the form of black-garbed men and women who hoisted James off of Ares's body promptly. The long-haired male was pushed up against the wall and restrained by at least four of them.

Ares hefted himself up, refusing to grab the hand of a guard and appear weak. His jaw throbbed, his stomach ached, and his ribs burned. "Who the hell taught you it was a good idea to attack your captors?" he snarled. His usually well-groomed hair was now ruffled messily. Ares took a step forward, hoping that now he could redeem himself with the guards hoping James back, but then he heard the sound of a pipe rattling against something metal. Katrina was summoning a meeting.

"Leave him, Ares?" one of the guards asked. Ares paused, still rubbing his jaw slowly. "No...bring him with me. We'll make an example out of him." The guard who spoke nodded, and the group of them hoisted James up and out of the cell, restraining his arms and legs as Ares led the way towards the meeting. "Good morning, Katrina!" he cried with fake enthusiasm as the guards once more pinned James down, though they pinned him to the ground this time.

James gave Ares a look of hatred, his breath coming in short gasps. He hadn't had such physical activity for days. His head hurt from getting slammed against the wall, it had made a somewhat sickening crack when it connected, probably louder for him than anyone else. James knew Ares couldn't kill him, not when the Maniac leader knew James knew more about the Phoenixes than any spy could figure out. If only Ares knew James was one of the leaders, he'd be livid. James let the guards grab him, not fighting as much because he knew it wouldn't do much. Upon being shoved against the wall, James went limp. These guards could hold him and why should he exert energy making their lives easier?

James would have laughed that he needed four guards to hold him, but he was still livid. James saw a bruise forming on Ares and could even feel one for himself forming on his shoulder. He felt the pain now. He had landed on it wrong, very wrong. "Who the hell taught you to threaten someone better than you?" James shouts right back, straining agains this holders for a moment. James saw the punches coming and took a deep breath, ready for them to come.

He heard something that he never expected to save him. A ringing out of something metal on metal. Something was going on. James wished they'd leave him, but of course Ares was a mindreader and wanted to do whatever James didn't. James allowed himself to be carried from his cell. He watched where he was led, trying to figure a way out should he get a chance to leave his cell again. James felt like he was being paraded around like a prize. He hated it. Upon seeing an open door, James caught sight of a subway station. He was in the subway. He knew the subway from before the blackout. James got himself ready, he was getting out of here in He was pinned on the ground again. He wanted to groan but managed to keep it inside. He wasn't getting out of here for a while. James wondered if the floors had ever been cleaned with his face so close to it. He knew they hadn't. He kept quite as he watched Ares, wanting to borrow the bar Katrina held to hit him upside the head.

James watched Katrina, wondering how she would respond to seeing him and Ares, Ares a little worse for wear than him. James refused to make eye contact with those around him who watched him, but stared right at Ares and Katrina. He wasn't scared of them, he was scared of what they could do, he had told himself this for what... a week? Two?


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ares Bennett Character Portrait: Jackson Wilkins Character Portrait: Eliza Dallen Character Portrait: Winston Fields Character Portrait: Hazel Luden
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Outfit || Theme Song
’This is fucking stupid.’ Hazel Luden thought to herself, kicking one of boots across the floor. It’s not like she actually needed to wear them right now. She was stuck in this stupid prison. As far as she could tell, she was never getting out. Why did they even want her here? Sure, she wasn’t on their side but she didn’t do anything against them. It’s not her fault that the Maniacs were… not the most easy going group. She wasn’t even a part of their ‘inner circle’; unless you count sleeping with one of the leader’s on the inside. They didn’t exactly pillow talk. Most of the time she either fell asleep afterwards of he got up to go do something.

She sighed, walking to the opposite side of the room from the cot, towards the huge window. Was she on the top floor? She was high; she could tell that much as she pressed herself up against the window and tried to peek at the ground. That was an impossibility. She loved heights but she preferred to be outside, somewhere up high. Not caged like a bird. Rolling her eyes, she slid to the ground, scooting over to rest her back against the wall. The room was basically empty except for a glass of water and a half eaten tray of food. The only other thing in there was the cot that was anything but comfortable. She didn’t get much sleep on it.

’How long have I been here?’ She wondered silently. She tried to remember but everything blurred together. She slipped off her leather jacket and tossed it onto the bed. The chill she had felt that morning was gone. She took a quick sniff of her underarms and groaned. She wanted a shower- no a bubble bath Jacuzzi. Now that would feel amazing. She would love some new clothes besides her uncomfortable leather pants that were starting to chafe her. That wasn’t to say that she didn’t love her clothes, she really did. She was just used to fresh clothes, that she could launder. Well, if they wanted to keep her prisoner the least she could do was give them a headache.

Hazel stood up and stomped over to the door. ”I know you’re out there!” She shouted, beating her tiny fist against the door. ”I want to speak to the leader or someone important right now!” She continued, not backing down. Ares always said she looked so nice and innocent, even dressing in a punkish manor. But he had never seen anyone go from a sweet little pixie to a little hellion so fast.

”You took me because you wanna know something about me right? Well, fucking ask! Don’t just sit there and make me wait! You’re just fucking cowardly pussies!” She shouted, giving the door another pound. She stood back, her hands on her hips, glaring at the door. Oh they were there. She knew it. They could hear. She didn’t doubt that there was some sort of camera in this room watching her every move.

Holding up her hand, the pink haired girl flipped off the camera she knew was there. ”Come and get me! Either do something about me or kill me! I’m tired of this shit!”


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ares Bennett Character Portrait: Arabella Fields Character Portrait: Katrina Lyons Character Portrait: James Williams
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Arabella looked into James’ rich chestnut coloured eyes, filled with love for her. She was sitting cross-legged on the grass opposite him, the warm sun beating down on them and illuminating his pretty tanned skin. James smiled at her, his lips parting slightly to show his perfect teeth. Arabella reached a hand towards his face, running her fingers through his lovely, slightly tousled black hair, continuing down to stroke his soft cheek. He lifted his own hand to her cheek, brushing a lose strand of light blonde hair from her face, the two a mirror image of each other. Then he slipped his big, strong hand round the back of her head, pulling her face close to his. Then he kissed her, his soft lips melting into hers, like they were born to fit together. He tasted like maple syrup and happiness and love.

“I love you,” she said breathlessly, pulling back, her eyes locked intensely with his.

“I love you too, Bells,” James responded, his eyes full of sincerity and warmth.

Bella leant in to kiss him again. But something felt wrong. When her lips met his, they felt light, like they were barely there, and ice cold. She pulled back, shocked. When she looked at him, he was pale, like all the colour had been sucked from his image. The brown of his eyes, the grey of his shirt, the pink of his lips. He was fading.

“James?” she said fearfully. “What’s wrong?”

“Bella! Help!” he cried.

“James!” As he faded he was beginning to get further and further from her, as though the space between them was being stretched. She tried to run towards him, but no matter how hard she tried, she didn’t seem to get any closer.

“Bella!” he shouted “Bella help m-“

And then he was gone.

“James!” Arabella screamed again.


“Ja-“ Arabella’s eyes flew open and she stopped, mid-screaming his name, her voice dying in her throat.

Fuck, Bella thought, quickly turning over in bed, expecting to see Ares’ furious face. But instead, she was met with the sight of an empty side of the bed. Thank god, was Bella’s second conscious thought, if he had heard that, there would have been a lot of questions. She would have almost certainly been cast from the Maniacs, and knowing Ares’ temperamental nature, she may also have lost her life, had he been in the right mood. She knew she was only Ares’ casual fuck, when he was bored and needed entertainment. She was of no great value to him, and certainly not anyone he cared for. Yes, sleeping with him provided Ares with an incentive to keep her here, and prevented others from trying to get rid of her, for fear of angering one of their leaders, but she was certain that one slip would result in the end of her time as a Maniac, and possibly alive.

But it was still not enough risk to deter Arabella from being here. Nothing would sway her from that choice. No matter how much she was afraid, and missed her brother and the luxury and power of her life as a Youngblood, Arabella wouldn’t leave this place without winning back the love of her life and taking him back with her to live happily together again. Her brother and everyone in the Youngbloods would be proud of her for surviving as a Maniac and bringing back their secrets to help take them down. She would finally be as good as her brother and with her perfect James by her side. Or at least, that was the dream. But she was sure it would come true. James would fall in love with her again after seeing her save him, she was sure. Stella would be a thought of the past, just a fling, until he remembered who his true love was. They were happy once, just like in her dream, and they could be again, Arabella was sure. She just had to keep Ares sweet, as not to blow her cover.

Arabella swung her legs over the side of the bed. She went over to Ares’ dresser, opening a draw and pulling out a matching set of hot pink lacy underwear. She had begun keeping clean underwear in Ares’ room, since there were few mornings when she woke up in her own. She’d only been with the Maniacs a little over a week, but she had already learnt quickly. Besides, Ares seemed to like her keeping her things in his room. Perhaps it was a possession thing? With this in mind, she took one of Ares’ black t-shirts and pulling it over her head. It smelt slightly of smoke; the smell of Ares, and it had a tiny burn on the edge of one sleeve. Due to him being so skinny, it didn’t completely envelop her small frame, but due to his height it fell long enough to be decent, just. She pulled on a pair of her signature ripped black tights before turning to face the mirror. Here, she pulled her fingers through her hair to arrange her bleached locks. Arabella didn’t use hair brushes anymore; messy was definitely better in the Maniacs. Having learnt to keep makeup here too, she applied some red lipstick and re-darkened her eyes, blending in the smudges left over from the night before. A quick dusting of powder to her skin and she was done.

Arabella exited the room that Ares had commanded as his own, perhaps an old control room of some sorts in the subway, though she wasn’t sure. She’d never actually ridden the subway in her old life while it was in operation. Far too dangerous, her parents thought, and certainly beneath them. She hadn’t got far along the small corridor outside the room when she heard a sharp ring of metal. She wasn’t perfect on all the signals of the Maniacs yet, but she knew this one well enough. They were being summoned.

Arabella wasn’t entirely sure quite how to get back to where she knew the sound had resounded from. It was so confusing down here, and most nights she just followed Ares back, stopping at various points to be thrown or throw him against the wall to kiss him, her mind usually wrapped in a pleasant haze of alcohol. But as she joined one of what was obviously the main walkways, she saw a few others hurrying along it and followed them, eventually finding where they had been called to. As she entered the room where quite a little crowd was already beginning to form, she scanned the scene for Ares. She liked to take her place beside him, have him make some remark about the way she looked, or put a possessive hand on her back. Sometimes he would even take her hand and kiss it, in some big romantic gesture. Ares could play quite the romantic, as a tease, or as part of his image, Arabella thought. She felt safe beside him, none of the other Maniacs who didn’t like her for who she had been in the Youngbloods, or just didn’t trust her, couldn’t hurt her. And it gave her a sense of the power she’d felt back at home, stood beside her brother, bathing in his glow. But, as she scanned the crowds, her eyes fell on something else.

Bella stopped dead.

Hunched over, face almost to the floor, was a man. The back of his head was slightly bloodied, his hair messy and unwashed, his clothes torn and filthy. But he was still unmistakable. It was him. It was James.


Characters Present

Character Portrait: Ares Bennett Character Portrait: Arabella Fields Character Portrait: Katrina Lyons Character Portrait: Gert Thaddäus Character Portrait: James Williams
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Katrina looked at the sudden arrival of Ares, and.. a prisoner? Someone must've brought him in lately. She looked in the prisoner's eyes, and saw the hurt, yet anger he probably felt towards the two of them. Katrina snapped her head at Ares as he told her good morning. She, on the inside, shuddered as she heard the prisoner's head hit the ground of the disgusting subway train. "Why, good morning to you as well, Ares." She matched his fakeness, and smiled, teasingly. "What do we have here this morning?" She walked to Ares side, and wrapped her lanky arm around his shoulder, as if they were old highschool friends, just hanging around.

Katrina saw the pain in his face, as the prisoner seemed to stare at her and Ares. She bit her lip to hide her emotions, as she remembered her own pain. There was the dreadful memories of her past, family, and... lost love. She wondered if perhaps the prisoner knew of her lost love, a Youngblood who used to be a Maniac. They'd run around causing mayhem as best friends, until... he left. He'd left the night they'd confessed their feelings, and he'd even kissed her, her first real kiss. But, he was never to return, and she didn't tell anyone, besides those that already knew. That whole part of her life, she preferred to keep as secret as she could. It made her seem weak, and petite. Katrina would much rather be seen as Ares's right hand woman, and do the dirty work.

Ares hardly flinched as James smacked the floor. Years in seriously unqualified foster homes resulted in years of hearing gunshots or screaming on a daily basis. Sounds failed to shock him anymore. He returned the sardonic smile, and the corners of his mouth quirked upward in a sickeningly sweet manner. Instinctively, his arm curled about her waist. Their actions were heavily laced with sarcasm, and it seems to permeate through the air.

”How are you on this fine day?” he asked before looking back down at James in a condescending manner. ”This prisoner of yours is a tough one. Too big for his britches if you ask me.” He dropped his arm from around Katrina as he started to move towards James again. Another presence, however, stopped him short.

Arabella had stopped on the edge of the gathering crowd, staring wide-eyed at James. Perhaps the sight of the bloodied man was far too much for her. Ares left the center of the group to move towards her. His long legs covered the space between them, and as he stopped by her side, he picked up one of her hands in his. ”Good morning, beautiful,” he said softly, brushing his lips along hers. Holding her hand still, he walked back to where he had been standing, pulling Arabella closer to the bloodied James. "Hey!" he spat. When James looked up, he made a show of wrapping his arm about Bella's waist. "You wanna know why she's safe? Because I have enough sense to pick my fucking battles."

He knew nothing of James's connection to Bella, but he wanted to spite the prisoner for his now-aching body. As quickly as he had busied himself with bothering James, he turned his attention back to Katrina. ”So, what are we meeting to discuss? Today’s mischief?”

It was him. Her beautiful James. Hurt and downtrodden, on the floor. This wasn't how it was meant to go. She was meant to have earned Ares' trust enough to be allowed down to see him alone, asked to check on him or something. And he would see her and his eyes would light up, recapturing the love he had once felt. And he would fall into her arms and kiss her, so grateful she was there to save him. That was how it was meant to happen. Not like this. Surrounded by strangers who didn't understand their love, with James hurt and no ability to tell him she was there for him now.

Suddenly, there was a hand taking hers. Arabella jumped, not having seen Ares coming outside of her tunnel vision, fixed on James. He greeted her, kissing her lips softly. She managed to gather herself enough to respond with a faint kiss of her own, before finding herself being pulled, pulled closer towards James.

No! He was going to see her and think she had betrayed him. He would think she was one of them. But there was nothing she could do. Ares was wrapping an arm around her, holding her there. And then he called to James, a vicious remark, and one that seemed to almost claim Bella as his. While Ares turned to Katrina, Bella remained transfixed, staring at James, just waiting for some sign of recognition. Waiting for his expression to shatter her whole world. Her hand tightened involuntarily around Ares', her whole body radiating tension.

James had stayed silent, trying to clear black dots from his vision. Had his shoulder ever hurt this much before? He couldn't feel where he had hit his head and figured it wasn't a good thing. When he heard Katrina speak, he was surprised. She was the more levelheaded of the two, yet here she was, wrapping her arms around the idiot who had basically just goaded James into a fight. James ignored Ares comment about being too big, and rolled his eyes in response. He tried to take the foot off his back by twisting a bit but found it useless after a second. He wanted to take a nap if he was going to be honest. He took in a deep breath, struggling under someone's foot.

James watched Katrina as Ares moved towards him, then away. His gaze fell on the older guy when he approached James again, this time with a girl. A girl with bleached blonde hair. James had seen her before, hundreds of times. He had held her when she was upset, she had consoled him when he was too. She was here, in the worst possible man's arms. James felt something crack. Sure he was with Stella, but it hurt to see someone you used to love with those who would kill you in a second.

James felt his stomach drop when Ares claimed Bella as his with his arms around her. "The guy who goaded the stronger one into a fight and needed guards to help him sure knows how to pick a fight, huh Ares?" James mutters loud enough for everyone to hear. He was pretty sure it wasn't too smart, but really didn't care at this point. His world felt like it was crashing down on him. He didn't show he recognized Bella to everyone, but said under his breath something only she would really understand. "Big brother ain't here to watch over, that idiot won't either," he muttered as Ares changed his attention. He knew she'd know he was referring to her brother, that she shouldn't be here, that he knew who she was. He wondered if all his feelings fit into the sentence, but couldn't really tell. He wasn't sure what he felt towards her, seeing Ares claim her like he did. What if Ares knew James and Bella were once a thing? One of them would probably be dead within the hour, and James was pretty sure he knew who Ares hated more.

Katrina didn't exactly know what her and Ares's relationship was. They seemed to be an odd pair, her hiding her sympathy to make herself 'a better leader' and he... Ares beating prisoners to a pulp. Almost like a.. mother and father partnership, except the father is drunk all the time. Katrina loved being sarcastic with Ares. However, she didn't enjoy Ares's latest toy, Arabella was it? Something just told her to watch her one day. To see how she really acted, because it was obvious to this.. mother, of sorts, that Arabella was hiding something.

Katrina studied Ares's movements towards Arabella, and sighed, running a hand through her thick hair as he brought her back with him, as if she was some trophy. Katrina snapped her head to Ares as he spoke. Upon which, she shrugged, as usual. "That's what I was hoping for, yes. To talk of today's mischief, and unruly things we need done around here." Katrina looked at the crowd that had formed upon her ringing that bar between the metal handles. A smile tugged at her lips, and she pursed them into a tighter grin, smiling to her people. The way they followed her and Ares so.. confidently. It gave Katrina's adrenaline a whirl, and her inner Maniac would show. "I suggest that you find your stations, Maniacs. I want this city crumbling by night fall tonight. " She paused, and turned to Ares for a brief moment, taking in his stance, before looking back at the crowd, as she stepped up on a subway seat, so they could see who they were hearing. "If you run into trouble, you know what to do. At least, I hope you do." Katrina snickered, then turned to Ares yet again. "Anything you want to add?" She raised her eyebrow in a seductive manner, and smiled wide, before meeting the prisoner's eyes again, and secretly feeling... awful.

"Katrina, you're making a mistake," James managed, feeling like his ribs were being crushed since he still couldn't get up. He wasn't normally so easily claustrophobic, but he couldn't help it right then. "If New York falls, everyone all over Manhattan does too. That's millions still Katrina, there are families," James began, not even listening whether or not he was speaking over Ares.

He did not sense her apprehension, but Ares could feel Bella's hand tighten around his own. He returned the squeeze as he brought her hand up to his lips, pressing a kiss into the back of her hand with a smile gracing his lips. For just a moment, he was calm. She did have that effect on him at times. James, unfortunately, made the mistake of speaking just then, shattering whatever good mood Ares had been in. The older man dug his nails into his palm, trying to hold himself back from throwing a kick straight into James's jaw. He told himself Arabella would be taken aback by it, perhaps disgusted by it, and he forced his foot to remain planted on the ground. Though he took care not to squeeze the hand that held Arabella's hand, she would most certainly feel a slight clench, this one out of hatred for James rather than love for her, as his nails threatened to break skin in his other hand.

Slowly, carefully, as though moving too quickly would set him off, Ares dropped Bella's hand and moved forward. Restrained now, James was easier to deal with. The Maniac took a knee beside James and leaned over slightly so that his face hung over James's. "All the more proof that I can choose them," he said lowly, his voice on that edge between mellow and threatening. Still, it was obvious towards which side his voice leaned. "For I refuse to waste my time on a cause as helpless as yours." Ares rose then, turning to face Katrina before James spoke again, therefore missing what James said. He knew who she was related to, of course. Everyone did.

He once more reached for Arabella's hand, enjoying the effect it seemed to have on James. He assumed it came from the threat he had made earlier in regards to an unknown girlfriend of James, for he did not know better. Ares nodded along in agreement as Katrina spoke, outlining the same plans he would have given out. They were the same plans they had given out for at least a month now. Oh, they tried to make the city burn, but there were always peacekeepers, and they were always better equipped than the Maniacs could ever dream of being. "You seem to h-," he began after being prompted by Katrina, only to cut himself off as James began to speak.

James's words fell on deaf ears at least in Ares's case. Suddenly, bringing him out here began to turn into an awful idea. Ares pinched the bridge of his nose to keep himself from exploding in anger. It didn't help. "God damn it!" he cried. "Get him the fuck out of here. Lock him back up. I don't even want to know he exists right now, you hear me?!" A moment passed, then two, as he tried to pull himself together enough to address Katrina. "Ignore him. That rat would gladly watch us burn. He wants us to sit around idly while the Youngbloods try to take over Manhattan, and I refuse to give him satisfaction."

Honestly, she'd be lying if she said she didn't feel worse as the prisoner pleaded to her. She cringed, but tried to hide it, as Ares blew up."Of course, Ares." She nodded as he spoke to her. Then, she turned back to the crowd, that was still formed. They'd made the usual oooh's and aahhh's as Ares demonstrated, yet again, his utter 'strength'. Katrina raised her left arm, her hand the shape of a ball, with her fingers curled into a fist. "Maniacs, you hear your leaders. Let us reign terror on Manhattan together, and destroy this sad city!" She roared towards the end, her fist raised high into the air. "Maniacs, roar!" She cried, and smiled as she heard the crowd's yelling, screaming, and even waving about pipe, or some object they'd had on them. She turned to Ares yet again. "I believe they're ready to be released." She pursed her lips into a cocky smile at him.

Bella knew she had to act, or she'd lose her opportunity to talk to James for who even knew how long. Maybe forever. She had to put things right. His whisper had cut through her like a knife through butter. His hatred and contempt. She had to tell him the truth. He had to know. He had to love her again.

"I'll drop the prisoner off in his cell. I need to head back that way to get my jacket from your room anyway, Ares," Arabella said, offering Ares a flirtatious smile as she mentioned the location of her jacket. She gave Ares a quick wiggle of her fingers in a wave goodbye, slipping from his grasp and motioning to the guards to follow her. They hauled James of the floor and began to drag him away along behind her.