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Tech

"Savouring the world"

0 · 324 views · located in America

a character in “Touch”, as played by Legendel

Description

Image
Image


27 || Male || Outside || Scavenger - Engineer - Cannibal





Personality: “It could’ve Image been a friend, heck even a relative, food was short these days and it wasn’t pretty. He kept ripping at the body like the next meal wasn’t coming; I stuck my blades through his neck, guess it wasn’t”.
The events ensuing after the outbreak left Tech’s mind fractured. It’s sometimes difficult to picture what he’s actually thinking, if he’s even thinking at all. Jittery would be a good word, though it’s often not nerves that give him pause more like the thoughts are leaking out as he tries to grasp what’s going on. Whatever it is he doesn’t seem to be burdened by the social conflicts he may have once shouldered and though most other tasks may elude him the one thing that keeps him focused is creating & maintaining, not that there is too much to occupy him when survival is a struggle. It might seem wrong to a previous population, but cannibalism to Tech came to be a slight bonus to the worlds end, when he can find “unspoiled” people.




Likes: Image
Joy rides
Goggles
Human flesh
Mechanical things
Groups
Direction
Staring

Dislikes:
Fire "Its a need/hate thing"
The touched
Isolation
Birds “Too bony”
Recreational technology




Strengths: The inability to remember his past hasn’t inhibited his previous talents, he seems to fluidly switch from the mess of a human he is to the engineering manic he may once have proudly been. It’s the only real thing that survived the pandemic, and is most likely the only reason he wasn’t excluded and killed long ago.

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Weaknesses: To Tech, fire takes on a whole sentience of its own. He can’t remember anything of what transpired but the event still has great hold over him. At sight he will bolt, dropping or leaving anything/anyone. Small fires don't pose him great pause as long as they are controlled, he dislikes it but it is important and his fear has lead to little understanding of it's nature. Large fires at close proximity will paralyse him, possibly even finish what it failed to do before. Being a cannibal, though may be considered normal by the warped populous, still leaves him on the outside of the remnant civilisation. His motives thus remain questionable and his trust is yours, at your peril.




History: There isn't a previous history for Tech, he suffered a tremendous injury in a building fire that started when "touched" carriers invaded his work. Before then Tech had been an engineer however he can no longer remember that to be able to profess. Added to the list of lost to Tech are his family and friends; the liberation of such attributes blind self-preservation and diminished morals.

Tech was pulled from the burning wreckage by who he assumed was a colleague, though there wasn't any evidence to support this. The presumed colleague spoke to Tech as if they knew each other and discussed the deteriorating state of the town. It didn't take the colleague long to realise Tech had been damaged more ways than just bruised ribs and a banged head. He hoisted Tech up and they went to seek aid. When the first visible person was in sight the colleague dropped Tech down asking him to hold on. Tech watched as his former colleague was touched by the stranger. The colleagues mannerisms changed within seconds and he bolted towards Tech as the stranger collapsed. There was a rifle shot and Tech saw his friend fall; two men appeared in a pickup, saving Tech.

Much time from then on was fitting in with the others and their numbers bolstered. Together they raided houses for supplies. Tech seemed extremely versed with mechanics, disabling mansion security systems with ease, mending the various vehicles acquired, and thus "Tech" was born. One raid turned for the worst when they were attacked by "touched" victims, Tech's growing insanity pushed him to grab a guitar of all things and repeatedly smash one person to death which turned out to be one of the bandits. Tech has since added knives to the end of the remnants of the guitar neck, often trailing it along road as he walks. Not weeks later had they run short on food growing ever more desperate. The bandit gang praised their luck when they came across a survivor. Nat shot the survivor and they all enjoyed their first Human ham.

The bandit crew and Tech discovered stairs descending down in one mansion and found catacombs leading out towards the next town and they counted their blessings after finding a large group of survivors down there. It has been their lair and home since.

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Family: He doesn’t have a clue.




Lyrics:
I am a circus freak
Caught in a cage, caught in a cage
Staring without a blink
Swallow me whole, swallow me whole

I am a circus freak
Cut out my heart, cut out my heart
Loveless and watch me bleed
Tear me apart, tear my apart
Yeah!

I've lost myself in make-believe
I don't wanna go, I don't want to go, make me
Over and over I've deceived
I don't wanna go, I don't want to go
You want the form? I can't conform
Cause I can't take any more of your tainted bliss cause
I've lost myself in make-believe
You can't break me

I am a circus freak
So many scars, so many scars
I'm just the common creep
Something to watch, something to watch
Oh, you know you can't break me

I've lost myself in make-believe
I don't wanna go, I don't want to go, make me
Over and over I've deceived
I don't wanna go, I don't want to go
You want the form? I can't conform
Cause I can't take any more of your tainted bliss cause
I've lost myself in make-believe
You can't break me

"Crumble and crumble
Step up for the one and it's own lonely
Circus freak!"

[x2]
You'll never break me
You'll never change me, no
La, da, da, da, da
La, da, da, da

I've waited 10 long years just to look in the mirror
And to find just what I'm staring at
I've waited 10 long years just to tell you I'm fearless
You don't understand, I've become who I am!
Oh!
You know you can't break me

I've lost myself in make-believe
I don't wanna go, I don't want to go, make me
Over and over I've deceived
I don't wanna go, I don't want to go
You want the form? I can't conform
Cause I can't take any more of your tainted bliss cause
I've lost myself in make-believe
You can't break me




Sample Post:
That greasy haired goon shot him. So why didn’t I care? It seemed like something should be wrong with this picture, but none of it seemed to bother me. Heck, I didn’t remember him anyway. My head hurts. Blood dripped down from the poorly dressed wound on my head. Interesting. I zoned out for a short while… or was it a long while? I don’t know, but the greasy one is shouting in my direction. The chubby one, driving, threw open the pickups door, guess that was an invitation. Stay or go then? Can’t say there’s a lot going on here. I got walked over not looking back at the corpses, and got in.

It felt like it was in bad condition, my prognosis, it’s life hadn’t long to go at this rate. Strange, where’d that come from? The truck stopped outside a pretty looking suburban house. I think they were saying something about supplies, but something else was irritating me. Hopping out I made for the garage.

“Good thinking, cover all bases”, the greasy one said I think they chubby one was calling him Nat or something My pace increased and grabbed a few pieces and tools, the others starting to draw confusion on their faces.

The chubby one Biscuit? chimed in, “What are you doing?” I found the hood of the truck and started the melody. “Hey! Hey! Not my ride!” Biscuit was angry, and Nat was only just catching up with the peculiar scene.

Ahh, now this, this was right. Everything fits. It was like my hands knew how to cure the sick machine. A gun cocked. “Step away from the truck Mr”, Nat stared at me.

It’s all fine, it was done. “Try it now”, encouraged shakily Strange, I can’t seem to stop twitching. Biscuit turned the key cautiously not sure what to expect. Purrr, ahh. It was a beautiful sound.I bounced back into the passenger seat Live long my steed

“Guess we found yer use then”, smiled Nat “we got us a Tech” hmm, Tech

So begins...

Tech's Story

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Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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[...continuing from sample]

There wasn't time for perfection, though haphazard was Bostons flavour to heavy situations, he reacted to his surrounded position. Hands still bound he loosed Tech's instrument to floor; what appeared defeat actually diverted the bandits attention enough for Boston to smack his fists into one man's skull and yank him in front of his own body in time for Nat, (or Gun as he attempted to claim) to fire a round into Bostons new meat shield.

"You shot Biscuit!" Cried the assailant in angered shock towards Nat. Boston exploited the man's confusion chucking the injured bandit onto him and lifting up Techs instrument again.
There was twang suddenly as the weapon was wrenched from Bostons grasp, Nat had fired again and time disappeared as Boston ducked behind the cart narrowly missing a spray of bullets. "Grrr, I'm having you!" Nat fired furiously but there was a click. There was another click. "Darn it!" Nat smacked at his rifle, which appeared to be jammed.

"Only give promises you know you can keep!" Retorted Boston, who had since used the metal jagged pipe from the second bandit to release the blood stained ropes that had been coveting his wrists and in that moment lifted himself up to fully launch the bludgeon at Nat. There was yet another click, this time of the barrel kicking out a defective bullet. Nat's eyes met Bostons milliseconds before the pipe penetrated Nat's mouth, leaving him draining out, toothless and pretty much without a good portion of lips; the rifle fired off the last couple of rounds on the floor by Nat's twitching fingers.

The squashed bandit, still trapped beneath Biscuit came to in time for his own weapon, a long sickle, to be driven into his head. That just left Tech to deal with. "Argh!" Boston suddenly fell sharply to a knee, only then realizing the gash above his hip. He sat back against the cart, and stared at his wound deciding against applying a blood soaked, sweat drenched cloth. There was no "good" solider, Boston knew that. It was luck pure and simple, every time. This time he'd just not been as lucky and he'd have to pay for that. Bostons eyes anchored and the flickering lights above began to dim. Now the adrenaline was leaving Boston wounds encumbered him, passing out.

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Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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Sore light soaked through into Bostons eyes as they licked open. "Argh!" Boston yelped, startled as a crude liquid was poured over his stomach; the liquid logically contained alcohol but it could easily have been paint stripper. "Wasn't the plan NOT to wake me again?" Boston complained as he clutched his wound, realizing Tech was tending to him.

"Now now, lets not jump the gun," Tech jittered, "I'm not really a fighter, you may have noticed. I need you now as much as you need me." The goggled man unveiled bright white cloth from his persons and attempted to wrap it around Boston.

"I'm not you're boyfriend, I can dress my wounds myself," Boston exclaimed flicking Tech's fidgety fingers away. "I won't be easy to eat on my feet, so if you're trying to save me for later I'd think of something else." muttered Boston after lashing the cloth quite rough around his waist. "And which unfortunate did you eat and "acquire" this off?" indicating to his new dress wound which was now quite firmly in place. Tech ignored the stab at him instead chose to sit next to dead Biscuit. "Are you...?" Boston began as Tech lowered his scarf and bit into Biscuits arm. He had to admire the "waste not" attitude instilled in the cannibal but that was where the admiration started and stopped.

Reaching out to the left, Boston grabbed the bottle Tech had used previously to disinfect his side tear with and poured a gentle stream over each wrist. The liquid stung and left a burning sensation behind; looking at the bottle Boston saw that it actually was paint stripper. Tech had meanwhile had his fill of Biscuit and was proceeding to cut up parts and package them in a pack he'd taken from the cart. Ignoring Tech, Boston gingerly lifted himself against the cart and saw that his jacket and Beethoven were there. It was time to move on Boston thought.

"You're not in a mountain," Tech absently spoke as he'd finished ravaging the four other bandits. "No, we're beneath some town... catacombs, that's what they call them," Tech was rambling more than trying to inform. Boston vaguely recollected reaching a wooden paneled house but his head still pulsed from the altercation earlier. He figured these tunnels must adjoin a good few houses.

"Well if you're done looting, parts and otherwise, we'll part ways." Boston said jolting as he snapped his nose back into place. A life for a life seemed fair.

"You can't...That is, please don't leave me," Tech pleaded, "I was in a bad place with those guys but I can be better." Tech lifted his glasses up revealing a blue and a green eye. "I'm useful too, they don't call me Tech for grins, it's not a funny name" Tech babbled nervously working up a case for himself. It was a disgusting thing, to see a man fall so low; cannibalism was something Boston hadn't advocated but he knew a lot risked it in the pandemic as food was short, he couldn't however stand a guy falling to pieces like that.

"Look, understand I'm not your babysitter," Boston began already regretting the compassion he was bestowing on Tech, "You try killing anyone who isn't killing us - you and I will have problems.. Yes your bandit friends are fine to eat." Boston shook his head, why was this a good idea? Clearly it wasn't but there'd been enough death today already.
Both men continued past the cart and along the catacomb, Beethoven strapped to Bostons back. Boston began humming Louis Armstong's "You Rascal You" (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9jM9Q4LNVdk) as they walked, descending past the flickering orange and yellow gas lights into darkness.

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Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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Charlie stood at the bottom of the highway, staring at it, terrified it might collapse at any moment. Charlie had made a run to the grocery store before he had left. He wasn't that stupid to leave unprepared. He mainly had been in the camping section, getting a very nice back-pack, a rope, shoe-laces, a water bottle, medicine, a bag of cheesy popcorn, an Exact-O-Knife (made for cutting cardboard, not stabbing), and most importantly a flashlight.

Charlie made sure the helmet to his suit was screwed on tightly before he gingerly tapped his foot onto the highway. It didn't make a sound or a move, so he pressed his weight down. Still nothing, so he slowly stepped onto it fully, and when he was sure it seemed safe, he began to slowly walk up the road.

About 45 minutes passed by until he reached his problem. There was a section of the highway that had broken off, leaving about a five foot gap between this part of the highway and the next. Charlie bit his lip. "I think I can jump," he reassured himself, backing up. He took off with a running start and leaped across, slamming into the next part of the highway, causing the elevated road to shake just a bit. "Holy crap," he whispered, terrified. But, the bridge-like highway quickly stilled, sending him carefully on his way.

An hour or so later, Charlie saw a sign saying the exit was just up ahead, the second one he had seen that day. He quickly crossed over into the exiting lane and walked down the ramp that curved down onto a road. The road stretched out past his line of sight, along it a few fast food places, restaurants, and gas stations, but mainly houses. It seemed like a ghost town- no one was there. Charlie stopped and crossed his arms. It wasn't like he had expected a big sign reading "CATACOMBS HERE, CHARLIE!", but a the old Loonie could have been more specific. Grumpily, he began making his way down the street, for he had come too far to turn back, plus the fact he was terrified of the highway.

Charlie wasn't very far down the road when he noticed a house that looked like it had just recently been broken into, for the lights were on in one of the rooms. Charlie got a horrible feeling that this was his "CATACOMBS HERE, CHARLIE!" sign. He bit his lip, conflicted. He could go in, listen to the man who was possibly insane, or run back to the grocery store. He hated to even think it was possible, but what if the guy was sane and he really was trying to save Charlie?

"Darn it, Charlie," he cursed himself as he headed onto the porch of the house. Very quietly, he grabbed the handle of the door, which he found was unlocked, and turned it, giving the door a gentle nudge that made a squeaking sound. He bit his lip. If anyone was in the house, Charlie was pretty much dead. But, no one attacked him, so he curiously looked around. It looked like whoever had robbed the house wasn't after supplies, because when he searched the kitchen pantries were full of food. But, Charlie was, so he stuffed a bag of cookies, some almonds, and some honey into his bag. He pulled out a fork and a butterknife from the drawer for self defense, but he still rather had the Exact-O-Knife for a weapon than those, so he put them back. Then, a bright idea hit him as he quietly tiptoed upstairs into the master bedroom. He searched the room, desperately, but his searched turned up empty. There were no guns in the house and he was almost sure of it. Why would there be? The family living here would have taken it, if not the looters.

Before Charlie went downstairs, he nabbed some deodorant, shampoo, and body wash from the bathroom. He couldn't remember the last time he was able to take a shower, so if he found some way to relieve himself of stench, he would willingly.

Hurrying back downstairs, his search for some sort of catacombs a failure, he was about to leave. He was walking down the hallway to the door, when he tripped on a loose floor board. On further observation, the board was downright out of place, overlapping another. He wedged his fingers under the loose board and pulled, a small hole in the floor revealed to him. It was pitch black, so Charlie pulled out his new flashlight and shone it down into the dark, revealing it was about a six foot drop. He gulped. The catacombs were real. He had been praying they weren't, but here they were. Charlie remembered the tales of catacombs in the ancient city Paris, skulls hung everywhere like they were decorations. They were practically homes for the dead. And if any child believes in monsters in their closets and under their beds, this would have been their worst nightmare.

"You're an idiot," he told himself, about two seconds before he leaped down into the hole, crashing into the darkness.

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Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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The catacombs had been twisting and branching in many directions; visible light had ended a fair while back. "Do you even know where we're going? I'm sure this isn't the way back," Boston questioned reaching out with his left arm to tunnels wall. (THAT doesn't feel like a wall...)

"I call that one tasty," Tech said jovially as Boston withdrew his hand from wall.

"It's a skeleton, isn't it?" Boston dryly replied. Tech nodded, unphased. Boston could see Tech was far more interested in the divergence ahead. Tech's mind was busy contemplating which road led where and Boston could see he had an idea of where he wanted to go, he was just struggling. "You know this safe spot can wait, I hardly doubt we'll run into anyone down here, understand?" Boston reasoned slowing his pace but Tech shook his head.

"No it's not far, I'm pretty sure," Tech assured, disappearing left.

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Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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The catacombs were almost completely silent, the only noises being drips of water and the almost silent squishes of Charlie's wet shoes. The catacombs were a bit wet, Charlie guessing it had finally decided to rain above.

Charlie's flashlight did it's best to illuminate the path in front of him, but Charlie wasn't sure he even wanted to see it. Bones and skulls decorated the tunnels like it was Christmas. Some of the bones were full skeletons, expressions of horror on their decayed faces. Some of the skeletons even still had some skin on them, obviously having been dead for not too long. After his experience in the shoe stores, he almost expected one to reach out and grab him. This is why his Exact-O-Knife was so tightly gripped in his left hand, his flashlight in his right.

All of a sudden, a noise came from down the tunnel. Charlie stopped in his tracks, going completely silent. He quickly realized they were voices. He quickly shut off his flashlight and shuffled into a corner, his whole body beginning to shake in terror. The voices seemed to get louder. They were coming towards him.

"It's a skeleton, isn't it?" he heard, his heart almost skipping a beat. The voice continued. "You know this safe spot can wait, I hardly doubt we'll run into anyone down here, understand?" He wished that was true.

A voice replied, but Charlie wasn't paying attention anymore. He was racking his brain, trying to imagine what to do. He figured he would wait until they passed, hoping they didn't have a flashlight to spot him with, and he would continue the other way once they had gone by. Charlie figured it was the best plan, but he couldn't control his shaky hands, making the batteries in the flashlight shake, causing a very subtle chattering noise. He needed to put it in his pack, for if he was heard who knew how many times over he would be dead. He, slowly began to stuff his flashlight in a side pocket in the bag, but his grip loosened and the flashlight slipped from his hand.

Thump.

Charlie closed his eyes. Darn it, he thought.

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Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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[[OCC: Use the posts on Rowan as a compainion to this post]]
My ribs stung. Is this what it feels like to be run over? What happ- ah dinner was playing hard to get. I looked around and the sight probably should've surprised me or atleast stirred some kind of emotion. My stomach rumbled. He didn't come out too far worse, I noted seeing what was supposed to be my next meal bleeding in a pile.

It didn't take much time to realise what I was going to do and easily started to grab stuff off the bodies not completely aware of the process. It seemed to jostle dinner when I poured the contents of the tin on him. "Wasn't the plan NOT to wake me again?", he complained, clutching his wound.

That was, I briefly thought, but now it wasn't "Now now, lets not jump the gun," I stumbled, "I'm not really a fighter, you may have noticed. I need you now as much as you need me". Shaking again, still so strange. I unwrapped a cloth that I was wearing and attempted to wrap it around dinner.

"I'm not you're boyfriend, I can dress my wounds myself," he exclaimed flicking my fingers away. "I won't be easy to eat on my feet, so if you're trying to save me for later I'd think of something else", he muttered, after lashing the cloth roughly around his waist. "And which unfortunate did you eat and "acquire" this off?", indicating to his new dress wound which was now quite firmly in place.

I wasn't really listening to the suvivor. one job done, next and more importantly. Hello my chubby friend. "Are you...?", the suvivor began as I sat next to biscuit and lowering my scarf and biting into Biscuits arm. Be the shame of armies to let you waste. Blood trickled down my cheeks. Think I'll keep you, 'buddy'. My hands gingerly portioning my once comrade into edible sizes for later.

Finshing unburdening the rest of the deceased crew I absently started towards the survivor, "You're not in mountain. No, we're beneath some town... catacombs, that's what they call them". I think we can make it to her. I paused

"Well if you're done looting, parts and otherwise, we'll part ways", the suvivor stated.

He's planning to leave me! This may take some work. "You can't...That is, please don't leave me", I pleaded, "I was in a bad place with those guys but I can be better." I lifted my green glasses up revealing a blue and a green eye. "I'm useful too, they don't call me Tech for grins, it's not a funny name", I explained as I involentarily shook, Twitching, think that it's my body responding because I don't feel like panicking.

"Look, understand I'm not your babysitter," The suvivor began already agreeing, "You try killing anyone who isn't killing us - you and I will have problems.. Yes your bandit friends are fine to eat." he shook his head. We continued past the cart and along the catacomb, that strange saw strapped to Bostons? he talked alot back, and he began to hum a bizzare song as we walked, descending past the flickering orange and yellow gas lights into darkness.



The catacombs had been twisting and branching in many directions; visible light had ended a fair while back but I knew where we where, I won't forget again. "Do you even know where we're going? I'm sure this isn't the way back," Boston questioned reaching out with his left arm to tunnels wall.

"I call that one tasty," I said jovially as Boston withdrew his hand from wall. It's nice to see friends getting along.

"It's a skeleton, isn't it?" Boston dryly replied. I nodded, unphased. We had reach the fork, Left is a good option, Right almost equally so, it depends but I really think its time to do that. I ramble even in my head sometimes. "You know this safe spot can wait, I hardly doubt we'll run into anyone down here, understand?" Boston was mumbling to himself again and slowing his pace. Can't get good help these days.

"No it's not far, I'm pretty sure," Tech assured, disappearing left. The lair had more salt, I'll need more.



Turning the corner I stopped. This isn't the way I reassessed my thoughts but came up empty, what had gone wrong? Insted of being on track for the lair, ahead was that beauty of a buggy, abanonded and in disrepair. Strange. Still this would've been my second choice. I had been saving pieces up for a while now and jerked up to Johnny, the skeleton wearing a pack. Thanks for the a-ssist. Huh, Boston was gone. A frown almost crossed my face but I continued onto the dirlect buggy, dragging Johnny behind leaving a small cloud of dust trailing behind. It's play time. I unzipped the bag dropping much of the supplies on the floor and started working, Johnny was smiling.

Setting

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Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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Thump.

Definitely not rats Boston summarized as options raced through his head. I could yell out to Tech but there's no guarantee Tech would hear or side with me, no telling how many of his "pals" remained. Besides... that'd expose my position. Boston pressed to the wall, annoyed with his loosely aligned companion. Slowly Boston raised his hand over his shoulder stirring Beethoven from its sleep.

The problem that plagued Boston was direction, ahead or behind? Tech was liable to be more a hindrance than help, though Boston half mused the idea of using him as bait. To bad he's ghosted on me. Boston lowered himself Beethoven still to hand, the buzz axe hadn't much action of late. With his left hand he felt the floor beneath, stopping when they met a smallish stone. Throwing the stone low towards Tech Boston stepped quietly closer to the source of the disturbance; adrenaline alerting his senses.

Boston stopped. Laboured breathing? The situation wasn't adding up in Bostons mind, and a bead of sweat dripped down his forehead. Bandits don't stalk and when they chance upon strangers, they attack, not withdraw... Boston lowered his weapon, loosening his grip on the wound fabric handle. "Hey! Not foe," Boston cleared raising himself up, "Not a Bandit."

What are you doing!? Boston thought to himself. The soldier in him hated his decision but it resigned, Boston never was a good solider.

Stillness ensued followed by retreating movement. Boston lent back against the the wall. "It's over," he sighed repelling himself from the wall when he realized he'd been leaning against "Tasty" again. Boston shivered and rotated towards the tunnel Tech had disappeared down, "Creepy cannibals, speaking of..." Now where'd Tech g... Boston's mind cut off when felt something sharp against his back. It was too late. His hand clenched around Beethoven's pommel but it was still lowered to his side, it was no use.

It was no use.

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Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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"Hey! Not foe," one called, probably to the others. He felt relief that they had probably figured he wasn't going to attack. "Not a Bandit." Charlie didn't speak, not even knowing what to do. He was to terrified. "Creepy cannibals, speaking of..."

Charlie felt worse. Cannibals? He was in tunnels with cannibals? He could feel his grip on the Exact-O-Knife tighten. He was in catacombs with Loonies who ate other people. That stupid old man, sending him here, promising it would save him. That man really had sent him to his death. He decided he had to act or else he'd be just like the skeletons, left to die, possibly eaten alive. He slowly and silently pulled off his shoes, their squishing noise in the wet of the catacombs too loud. He silently walked through the tunnel, a small figure with his back turned to him catching his eye. This was his time to act, if any. He crept up, and stuck the Exact-O-Knife to the figure's back. He didn't dare touch whoever it was, fearing they could have... it... But what was he planning to do? Hurt him? Charlie knew he didn't have the guts to do that. But, he had tipped over a shelf on a man, crushing him. Maybe he was underestimating himself.

"Who are you?" he asked, his voice quivering, obviously sounding scared. "What are you doing down here- are you alone?"

Charlie pushed the knife closer to his back, the tip of it coming as close as it could get to pressing into the man's skin. If it had been lighter, the guy would have noticed the knife was small and puny, not capable of doing any real damage, but in the dark he hoped it was deceiving. Either way, he was probably dead unless he hit him upside the head with his flashlight, which he had left on the ground. Yep... he was in a very sticky situation.

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Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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Gulp.

"Easy," Boston exclaimed, dropping Beethoven and raising his arms, "I'm Boston." There really wasn't a reason why he was down here, except of course to be a meal. "Now lets think about this..." Boston began but he was interrupted by a clash of light and bursting glass; exploiting the momentary confusion Boston leapt forward impulsively rolling sideways after he hit the floor. Boston started laughing.

"A pen knife!" A tear rolled down Bostons cheek, "I was almost diced by a safety knife?!" The stranger looked paralyzed at first but a smirk soon grew across his face and he chuckled. Boston sat smattered in dirt, hunched and smiling. He held himself with an arm wrapped around his stomach, his stunt had caused his wound to reopen in part but he did have more pressing matters.

It looked as though in this part of the tunnel old electrics were in place, though damp had set in and the complete circuit had blown. The pieces of wire left shot out low light infrequently and Boston saw his would-be assassin for the first time. Bold Boston thought, attacking with a bluff. But the true surprise was that the assailant wasn't a man, just a gaunt boy... whose longish brown waves stuck against his face. Boston was surprised to say the least, Was he in a haz-mat suit?

"You deserve to know I'm not alone" Boston confided, "Though he's a passage or so away." Boston didn't know what would happen if Tech was introduced. Tech wasn't the outward aggressor but he did seem the opportunist and that was what plagued Boston. "He's not the "normal" type, just to warn you."

Boston no longer felt in immanent danger, "So tell me about yourself kid, what's your name? And how on earth did you get in these godforsaken tunnels?"

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Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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"Easy, I'm Boston. Now lets think about this..."the man said, right before an explosion of light filled the tunnels. Charlie held his arm up, the sudden illumination momentary blinding him. The man rolled away, and Charlie knew he should probably panic, but he was discombobulated. It took until his eyes were adjusted for him to realize the man was facing him now, laughing. Why was he laughing?! Charlie was almost angry, more terrified, but he understood once the man spoke. "A pen knife! I was almost diced by a safety knife?!" He stood, frozen, but finally smirked. Maybe he really should have gone with the fork.

Charlie finally got to look at the man he attacked, and the man seemed to be observing him too. This guy was tall and muscular. Charlie liked it better in the dark when he hadn't seen how small that Charlie was compared to him. He liked it better when he could have been the bigger person.

"You deserve to know I'm not alone, though he's a passage or so away. He's not the 'normal' type, just to warn you." Charlie nodded, although he was still quite afraid. The guy, Boston's, companion was what he assumed was the cannibal. Lovely. "So tell me about yourself, kid, what's your name? And how on earth did you get in these godforsaken tunnels?" Charlie cleared his throat, although he didn't feel quite safe around the man.

"I'm Charlie," he said, not adding anything else, ignoring the man's other question. He didn't feel like talking about the old man who had instructed him to find the catacombs. He realized he still had his knife gripped in his hand. On another occasion, he would have put it back in his pack, but he kept it in his hand. "So how do I know you and your buddy aren't gonna eat me or something like that?" he said, deciding now to let the man know he had heard the part about cannibals.

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The boy responded "I'm Charlie," but left the questions hanging. Defiant eyes locked Bostons, "So how do I know you and your buddy aren't gonna eat me or something like that?" Though the words came out shaky.

"Astute, I have to say," Boston tilted his head, "Not much slips past you." Boston hadn't made any inclination he was about to move and he hadn't even glanced towards Beethoven, who had been abandoned a foot or so from Charlie's feet. "These catacombs are a bandits nest from what I can figure," Boston explained thinking it through, "I was captured... some time recently, but I fought." He looked down at his stomach, the bleeding had slowed. "I wasn't fast enough apparently," Boston breathed.

Don't, not there, that's "tasty". Boston saw the kid lean back against the wall. The kid must have noticed Bostons expression because he turned, saw and shot away stumbling. "The bandits were... are cannibals, I didn't actually mange to kill them all - one survived when I succumbed to my wounds." It was quite a lot to re-tell Boston sat thinking but he did need to make this kid feel at comfortable enough to at least break off his love affair with the toy weapon.

Charlie pulled himself up, sitting a fair distance from Boston and still clasping the flimsy Exact-O-Knife. "Do you always go into a fight with THAT equipped?" Boston questioned sarcastically, "It's better than nothing I'll grant you but you must have stumbled across a variety of different weapons enroute? Ones that could actually DO damage."

"Anyway..." Boston moved on, "This one bandit - who is the cannibal I mentioned when you were ease dropping by the way - chose to aid me instead of exacting his revenge; I can't say why but something tells me this guy cares more about his next meal than camaraderie." Boston let the words sink in. He clicked his neck. "He's called Tech. He'd probably want to eat you, but then he thought I was dinner to begin with too... in fact I'm sure that hasn't changed." There was a lot said there and so Boston gave Charlie a minute to process.

I'll have to credit him on his reluctance to trust, it goes along way when surviving

Boston leant forward and pushed against his knees, propping himself up, "I don't think Tech should be left to his own devises for too long in any case, it's been long enough as it is," Boston resigned but then his eyebrow lifted, "Wanna meet a cannibal?"

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Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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The guy had to be what Charlie called a "Loonie". His story was almost believable, but Charlie was still uncomfortable, especially with his last phrase. Plus the fact he had made fun of the Exact-O-Knife. What did he have to fight with, his bare han-

Clink.

Charlie looked town to see his sock covered foot nudge the handle of a giant ax. Oh gosh, how had he not noticed that? He looked up at Boston. "Is this yours?" he asked. He couldn't help but smile. "If you like my weapon so much, how about we trade 'cause your sure looks nice too." No, Charlie wasn't going to take his weapon. He wouldn't know how to use it. But, he picked it up anyway, his body being yanked down at the weight, sending him staggering forward, his socks landing in a puddle and getting soaked. He stuck his knife in the pocket to his suit and positioned it so that it was resting on the ground, but Charlie still had a firm grip on it.

"I'll make you a deal," he said. "Since I don't know you aren't making all of this crap up and aren't going to have my face for an evening snack, I'll keep this until you make sure you and your friend are going to leave me alone." Heck, why was he even agreeing to go with him in the first place. But, Charlie knew he couldn't carry the ax and Boston probably could, considering it was his. Boston could follow him if he tried to leave and kill him. Charlie wasn't sure he was prepared for escape yet. Especially not after he had just got word that the catacombs were infested with cannibals.

"Do we have a deal?"

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Character Portrait: Tech
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The buggy looked out of place amongst the filth and skulls, like it was from another planet. Purr for me my beautiful alien I sat in the driver’s seat my spirits soaring, then dropped my face rag Time to party. The old buggy had been restored and modified, I wasn't even sure to how far I had gone with it, I kind of got carried away but it was a work of art. Parts of an ancient game boy were worked into the bumper. Now it'll play my games. Throttling, I punched through the wall of the catacomb, it's architecture as different from the rest of the place as the buggy was. We landed into some kind of dilapidated racing circuit. She's home, but she doesn't want to stay any longer. I took the buggy for a lap avoiding the various hazards and then headed for the way out: a spiralling ramp leading to a rusted iron grate. She can handle it, you'll not keep her caged!. I was lost, the vehicle seemed to be driving me. Charging we punched through the confinement and straight through a blurring warehouse and then out onto a decaying road. We're free Johnny There was a kind of goofy smiled attached to my face as the crazy endeavour wore off and the adrenaline might've faded yet in the distance shone a light. Look, food. As we drove over the uneven road the skeleton seemed to nod, I took that as agreement.

[[OCC: An idea of the buggy.]]
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Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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"I'll make you a deal," he said. "Since I don't know you aren't making all of this crap up and aren't going to have my face for an evening snack, I'll keep this until you make sure you and your friend are going to leave me alone." Charlie stated unused to Beethoven's weight, "Do we have a deal?"

Boston patted his dress wound down fastening it with greater pressure, it stung but he felt more mobile. Boston raised his head at the question, "Ha, I have to say your proposal is more a relief than imposition, be careful though, Beethoven's a fickle creature," Boston indicated to the blade; he sighed circling, Now where was Tech?

Boston made his way haltingly left, and down the passage; it was longer than he anticipated. The wall on his right was caved slightly inwards, and drag marks left a trail. What's that bandit up to? Boston thought, conscious that Charlie was following close behind and liable to see the same signs.

"Just to make things clear, I am not this guys keeper," Boston mentioned, failing to face Charlie who was trailing behind. Boston lowered his head shaking, though still moving. It's truly not been my week Boston reflected, and I need to acquire an iron, this wound cripples me...

A roar could be heard close by, and carbon fumes tainted the air. "That is NOT good kid," Boston remarked, hobbling faster to lighter, nosier opening. Boston froze. The opening was a room full of all sorts mechanical parts and scavengable trinkets; though the word "safe" did not describe the place. The back opened out further into what looked like underground racer tracks.

The worst part, the part that stunned Boston, was the rattling raging buggy, shooting off into the distance. It was clearly Tech. "-------," Boston breathed, just as Charlie appeared; both gazing at the dot being devoured by darkness.

A cool breeze penetrated the chamber; the opening was obviously Tech's doing. A rag fluttered by, greasy and bloodied.

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Beethoven

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Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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Charlie watched as Boston got up. Where was he going? Boston vanished down the tunnel. He gulped. If Charlie had ever had an escape chance, it was now, but he was curious. Dragging the ax, what had been referred to as "Beethoven", he followed the direction and quickly caught up with him. He was staring at the wall, and Charlie quickly realized they were drag marks. He hoped they had been made a long time ago and were just permanent scars to the wall, not the cannibal that they had been lost, but what Boston said next quickly sent that hope running for their money.

"Just to make things clear, I am not this guys keeper," Boston said, turning to face Charlie.

"Then why do you keep him around if you don't agree with... eating people?" Charlie asked, but was drowned out by a roar from deeper in the tunnel. Boston said something, but Charlie wasn't paying attention. Where had that roar came from?

Boston quickly hobbled further out of Charlie's view and he began to drag Beethoven again, but eventually dropped the ax. He hurried to find Boston. Charlie noticed a small dot getting smaller and smaller. Was it some type of flying car? They had those a lot before the Touch.

"How do you get one of... those down here?" he thought aloud, watching until the small dot of light vanished. He looked over at Boston, who looked quite frustrated. Charlie crossed his arms, assuming this was quite a problem. "Just a wild guess, but I assume that was your cannibal, right?"

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Character Portrait: [NPC] Bartender Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: October Sinnet Character Portrait: Viola Marius Character Portrait: Torex Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: William Walker Character Portrait: Tech
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Before the girl had a chance to answer, all the lights suddenly snapped off in The Dome, leaving everyone in the dark. The roar that had once been busy streets went silent. Everyone was confused. Luckily, back up generators kicked on, street lamps giving the dark a small bit of illumination.

"What's going on?" people cried. Sobs echoed through the streets. Everyone knew something horrible was happening. Torex looked around. He knew this wasn't supposed to happen.

"Do not panic," a woman's voice over a loudspeaker system that was wired into The Dome said. "Do not panic. Do not panic. Do not panic." She repeated it over and over on some kind of endless loop. What was this?

Suddenly a bang came from above everyone. The Dome had to be broken, because they could see a person on top of it, banging on the glass with their fist. They had many attacks before, but why was this one doing so much damage? A scream came as his answer, from far away in The Dome but his robotic hearing senses could make it out.

"They're getting in!"

The "Do not panic" loop stopped. People began to wonder if it was over. They began to exhale again, feeling safe.

"Panic. Panic. Panic." The loop restarted, but differently, sending people screaming and running. The people on the outside were getting IN.

Torex looked down at the girl once again. "So, do you know where the Robot Preservation and Defense Center is?" he asked once again, hardly sounding panicked. He was a robot. It felt like the apocalypse, but he wasn't in danger of dying. He wasn't afraid for himself in the least bit.

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Character Portrait: Viola Marius Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: William Walker Character Portrait: Tech
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[[OCC: Catching up from where I left off]]

I wiped the blood from my jaw with a kitchen towel and stuffed it into the pocket of a balding man slumped over the table. "Nice talking with you Jack", I grinned, turning my eyes away from his lifeless posterior and to the female, her blood still pooling on the tables surface. I grabbed her arm and waved it in circles, "No! Please! I have children.. eat them first", I mocked with a smile, letting it coldly splash into the collecting pool. So kind to offer me their hospitality.

I left the table having finished my meal It's only good manners, and proceeded to follow the smears of blood decorating the hallway. I caught a glimpse of Johnny, still riding shotgun, glaring in jealousy And you said they would be no fun. The stairs remembered my visit, squelching involuntarily and creaked with distaste; the landing told a similar story, but I ignored its loathing. I found the children asleep where I had "tucked them in"; a "split" style room, blue and boyish one side, neon pink the other. Hate to split a family up Bringing a cleaver down onto the boy's leg, I began to refill my depleted supplies.

I was almost done when the front door erupted, a wild voice rang out for the family and quickly realised the deteriorating state. "Oh my goodness", the stranger gasped accompanied by what sounded like a gun cocking. Last time I trust Johnny with lookout.

I had devoured the family with little effort; starved of company, they let me in without even noticing the wreck of a person I was travelling with. I'm sure Johnny wouldn't have received the same level of hospitality anyway. Still, it seems the reason they survived that long has returned. An idea crossed my mind, but the odds seemed to be against me I suppose the family need someone to cheer them up, best leave him to them.

I relocated to the previous bedroom overlooking the stairs leaving the barely identifiable brother and sister in pieces Don't worry, part of you will always be with me, the flesh wept. The man clumsily climbed the stairs and seemed to lose his voice when he reached the children's bedroom hearing an audible thud. I slipped out and down the stairs smoothly Catch you next time.

Turning the engine on, I began to reverse out; a madness stared straight at me from one of the windows That's right I was grinning but that faded as the gun shots painted the buggy with holes. "Are you crazy?!", I screamed, I had just fixed this beautiful beast up! Another shot and I came to my senses, making my escape.




[[OCC: A bit later on]]

I felt bad for Johnny, he wasn't looking so good. The bullet holes made him look upset, "Next time don't be a hero", I lectured, he never listened but he seemed to almost pout. The sun was high, highlighting my blood stained my clothing, it was hard to tell it had come from different people, harder to see still was mine slowly darkening one of the sleeves. The bullet had gone straight through and the wound was already starting to heal, but I felt drowsy.

I noticed a mansion up ahead, it seemed good enough for a kip. I got out and disabled the security system on the gate. Steering up the winding driveway I parked past cars and round the side near what looked like the kitchen Let's see what's cooking. I was just about done with the electronic lock when I heard the front doors go and the sound of two women giddily talking to each other. I stopped to peer round the corner as they got into one of the cars and drove rapidly away. Johnny was laughing at me "We're done", I coldly state, pinning Johnny against the wall, "You are dead weight and terrible friend". I push Johnny away from me unable to bear his company, I hear a "crack", but enter the mansion without sparing him a thought.

I made my way through the elaborate rooms paying them little attention and was about to head upstairs when I heard a low moan. I paced the stairs to find no door but the moan turned to familiar mumbling. I pressed my face up against the panels and a cold draft caressed my face. Someone's hiding I wasn't in the mood for food but I couldn't rest while there was people around. My arm sent me dizzying signals; I'm gonna need a hand for this I shook my head and headed for the buggy.

The boards came free with little encouragement, Johnny's arm beginning in fray from the strain It's nice he could lend me a hand, even though we're not on speaking terms. The skeletal arm finally splintered as I levered the concealed trap door out of its decades of dust Think he’ll forgive me?. A cast iron spiral staircase posed for me as I scratched my back with Johnny’s arm, the sharp edge slicing me Ow, guess he doesn’t. The mutterings continued, and continued also to elude my memory so I proceeded down, eager to jog it.

I’m not the hero type so my presence is mixed luck, but I suppose on this occasion any luck is better than none. The spoilt was leaning over Boston and I was about to watch him suffer the slow death, however I didn’t stop. I’m not one to engage death, survival is a strong instinct but before I knew what I was doing the bone I was holding flew out of my hand and into the wounded creature. As it fell back a few steps gurgling at the bone sticking out of its neck, I grabbed Boston and began hauling him up the staircase.

I piled the boards over the trap door, barring it firmly in place. It wasn’t an easy climb but the spoilt seemed to have trouble climbing due to its various wounds. “Not you”, Boston smirked painfully.

“Yeah, well. See… I was in the neighbourhood… and I’m in the market for a new driving buddy”, I explained as Boston passed out.

I managed to get him into one of the bedrooms upstairs and I almost collapsed on the notebook covered floor next to him, myself feeling weak now the adrenaline was wearing off. I curled around noticing the sun wasn’t bringing warmth to the compensating mansion and that little hairs on my blood caked arms were starting to raise. I set about gathering the papers from the floor and was delighted to find a compartment just lying open, revealing a store of notebooks, it was as if the mansion wanted me to be warm; and I lit the papers.

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Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: Tech
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Charlie was lost- mentally and physically. He seemed oblivious to all of his surroundings, but luckily had gained some composure and could walk straight. He guessed he had a concussion or something along those lines, for he couldn't hardly remember his name, nor what the heck was going on. As he walked, he noticed the gates to a very large mansion open, the security somehow disabled. Charlie noticed some cars inside- could he drive? He couldn't remember if he ever had before, but it might be a faster way to get around. So, he quietly pulled the unlocked gate open, listening as it made a horrible rusty squeaking noise the more he moved it. When it was enough for him to enter, he stepped through and slowly pulled it back into place. He hurried to the cars, examining them, but noticed a giant buggy. It was much bigger than the other cars. It might be of use... For some reason Charlie felt like it was supposed to ring a bell, but he didn't remember it, so he eagerly pulled the car open, finding it was unlocked. He was quite lucky. He hopped in and shut the door. The key wasn't in the ignition.

"Do you know how to hot-wire a car, Chuckie?" he asked himself, as if he was going to answer himself. "Wait, I think it's Charlie. Charlie, Chuckie, same difference." He shrugged it off, as if not knowing his own name was normal. He slid down into the bottom of the buggy and grabbed his Exact-O-Knife. He pushed the knife between the wheel and the column, then pushed the locking pin away from the wheel. He quickly put the knife against the metal spokes and the engine roared the life. He smiled. "Chuckie, you're a genius, even if you can't remember a single stinkin' thing."

Charlie quickly drove away in the buggy, crashing through the unlocked gate and driving toward the chaos around The Dome. His headache had reduced a lot, so he finally was coming to his senses, although he still must have taken some blow to the head. He didn't even notice that somewhere along the way he had lost the helmet to his hazmat suit. He was a wreck, but at least he was a wreck with a ride.

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Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: William Walker Character Portrait: Tech
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The passage blurred a tinge and the figure neared, arms outstretching."What ever happened to courting?" Boston sighed his mind employing some grand rescue scene where the occupants above save his life in the eleventh hour. I'm starting to hear my delusions now. The ceiling above exploded; beams lit up and Boston shielded himself, lifting his arms in front of his eyes.

The monster relented its pursuit, it had - Is that hand? - something sticking out of her neck. Boston's arm was tugged at, he was helped up the stairs. It can't be... "Not... you..." Boston smirked, looking at the human meat machine Tech, manning the rescue. Tech's words faded incoherently as Boston passed out, exhausted.

.

A tight gasp brought Boston to, spluttering. His eyes were watering in clouds of dark ash and breathing was near impossible. It was night out but the house was alight. The whole place is going up Boston realized, Curtains pirouetted to ash, desks crumbled, bookshelves and their contents incinerated. Rolling down and out Boston crawled; a wooden beam fell, breaking the bed he previously occupied.

At the stairs Boston sat momentarily, spying a book as its cover and pages curled to the whims of the heat and many more already mistress to the flames. The downstairs was as damned as the the floors above. This is beyond hell's control.

A smell of melting flesh rancified the air. Well I didn't save myself... Boston exclaimed to himself and honed into the sickly burning fumes. A leg stuck out of the room Boston had previously just crawled out of, crisping intensely. How could I have missed that?, he thought and flung his jacket over the leg. Pulling the unconscious cannibal down stairs, Boston made it to the door. He is going to have one killer headache when he awakes, Boston mused... "That's twice you've almost killed me for no reason!"

The handle was hot and the rooms were filling up with black smoke, Boston booted down door and it unhinged, already half-melted. Lifting Tech up Boston escaped, not a moment after the house spat out waves of fire and glass, breaking in on itself as the fire consumed it all.

Boston sat down after laying Tech out. It seems only his leg was burnt but it was quite bad there wasn't much Boston could do. I'm going to regret this, Boston closed his eyes removing his sprite. The can hissed and popped as he punctured the top and the contents fizzed up attempting a breakout. Boston poured it on Tech's wound, stopping momentarily to have sip before emptying the rest on Tech. Tech twitched. "I hope you aren't dreaming of leg right now... that'd be seriously messed up," Boston mocked and a smile grew on Tech's injured face. "You can be real creepy at times, Halloween creepy..." Boston exhaled coughing a little, and lying back on the grass to enjoy the bonfire.

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The new order had come in. Glued to my worktop I started assembling it, modifying it, piece by piece. There was a strange satisfaction as the tools and components I required all found themselves to be within my reach, it’s like it was meant to be. My finished work lay under a tarp as celebrating suits entered, though it felt as if I’d only just started. “You’ve done it this time”, the finest dressed of them all announced “This model will render all others obsolete”. It’s unique.

We stepped through the workshop entrance where they had come from, still in high moods, directly into a restaurant. This was an extremely fancy place, tactful floating lights with spacious booths; we climbed onto our beds gingerly and the others seemed to dissolve away. My order arrived on an automated silver platter and I drew the seductive smell towards me, laying down I lifted the dish to reveal my own leg.

I snapped awake, my dreams fleeing from my head. For a moment I was lost, I didn’t remember how I got here. Boston, fire. I sat up and upon doing so realised the pain Ahhhhhhhhh. I was screaming in my head and I’m sure I was twitching to match. “Easy there easy bake”, a calm voice pandered “Who taught you how to play with fire anyway?”.

It took a few minutes for my breathing to slowly draw closer its regular rhythm, and Boston continued to use his words to no effect, the pain wasn’t lessening but I was getting used to it. I didn’t remember falling asleep, though I had similarly fallen asleep working on other projects before. I stared at my leg, it didn’t look like mine anymore I wonder what it tastes like. The clothing had been completely destroyed just past the knee and the revealed skin looked deep red and crispy, I wasn’t about to attempt getting up. My foot in comparison looked promising, the thick boots I was wearing seemed to have protected at least that much, though the area where it joined the clothing looked challenging.

Seeing as I was in no hurry to move I relaxed a bit, my eyes eventually reaching the mansion. Well I mean the rubble. What used to be an enormous and stately building was now left a piled of charred beams, ankle high brickwork and glowing embers; the warmth was actually quite cosy. I scanned around for my buggy, my mind already preparing for the worst, when I encountered the empty space. Well to say it was empty was a misdirection, it had plenty of burning ashes there, but nothing reminiscing the salvaged beauty.

“Did you move it”, I questioned Boston, still staring at the vacant space.

I felt his eyes on me, “Huh? You? Of course, your welcome”, he proclaimed boldly.

“My buggy”, I replied dryly, motioning towards where it used to be with an arm wincing at the stab of pain from both my leg and shoulder I’d forgotten about you too.

“No idea, nothing there when I carried you out”, I replied. He continued talking but I wasn’t listening again.

The absence of my ride gave me purpose and I lifted myself up, much to the protests of Boston... and to my own roaring regret, but I was standing. Bending my knee had delivered a new degree of pain and yet my resolve didn’t budge. I was a survivor, I needed supplies. I think Boston was helping me, I couldn’t really tell through the pain, but I hobbled towards the gate; away from the empty parking spaces.

It took a great deal of time, trying not to use my handicapped leg and keeping it straight. The pain wasn’t subsiding and I was beginning to struggle under the stress of moving. I’m sure Boston was still talking but I couldn’t hear him over my own thoughts, he probably wanted to give me a break but I couldn’t stop. We reached the overbearing gate and made our way out and to the nearest vehicle. Not the latest model but the Travillion Alpha X4 could move… I limped to the vehicle reaching for its front, the side glowed a slight blue and slid away leaving me to tinker shortly if its restrictor is removed; I tossed it on the ground .

The rear door dissolved away as I climbed in and I painfully manoeuvred in, resting on the seats as it folded back into a more mattress like shape. “Let’s get out of here”, I told Boston, though I wasn’t even looking in his direction.

“I think you won’t be going anywhere”, a tortured voice shrieked as I heard him cock his gun. I tilted my head back to see the crazy guy from that wonderfully hospitable home the other day. I kinda deserve this I grinned.

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Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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Boston sat lazily in the grass as the morning sun rose. The sizzled lump beside him stirred."Easy there, easy bake," Boston pandered calmly, "Who taught you how to play with fire anyway?"

Tech spent a moment separating his mind from the physical pain; Boston had noticed Tech had zoned out to his attempt to convey the situation, "So, you're burnt, luckily it's not a game changer but still it'll take time before movement is advisable. The gates will protect us for a while no doubt if we can get the security running; which has your deviance written all over it..." Boston continued.

“Did you move it?” Tech questioned, looking dazed at an empty space.

Boston stared at Tech, Is he referring to himself in the third person AND objectifying.. “Huh? You? Of course, your welcome," Boston remarked assuming Tech was just being senile.

“My buggy," was Tech's mono-toned response, holding his arm up back to the space.

“No idea, nothing there when I carried you out”, Boston answered, "But a little gratitude goes a long way, why I'm hauling ass for you..." Boston complained. Tech began shuffling into a stand. "What? So now the fire's burnt your ears too? You're three quarters of a kebab!" But either Tech was ignoring or it just didn't register. Boston saw the blue perch sitting not far, "You think you can get that working? With out a print por.....t," he trailed off, halting. Movement. One block down. A shadow blurred

Boston left Tech ambling, and ducked down crawling along the perimeter. The verge kept him hidden, though it's branches latched on clawing. I need a shirt... The stranger pushed against the rattling gate, 2-barrel hanging down in his hand.

Boston had slowly raised himself out and behind a trunk. The stranger looked fixated on the mess, ripping out car parts. It was the first moment Boston truly missed having a large sickle to hand, Beethoven...

Tech managed to penetrate the cars holo door, Boston was impressed to see, We're not staying then Boston thought exactly when he heard , “Let’s get out of here," being lazily tossed by Tech. He's distracted, he doesn't see. Boston had since crept round, silently pressing his feet against the grass.

“I think you won’t be going anywhere”, the stranger shrieked as he pulled up his gun cocking it. Is Tech grinning? Boston stood firmly behind and thrust out grabbing the man's head. It was over in a snap, the lifeless body dropping to floor. Tech was still grinning.

"I guess I didn't deserve it," Tech quibbed.

"It's not your first encounter with him...was it?" Boston frowned. Looking at the heap.

"No, I had dinner with his family; stocked up." Tech smirked, before a stabbing pain flared and distracted him.

"I ought to have left you to him..." I shook, disgusted at Tech. Is there anything human in there... besides what he's eaten. Boston stood, closing his eyes.

"There's a nice shirt there," Tech offered and Boston's eyes snapped open looking down. The dead man did have a nice shirt.

"We better roll," Boston shot a look at Tech throwing in the shotgun to him and straddling the drivers seat. "This time. I'm the driver, and no... you can't eat him." Boston grimaced, "The embers will deal with him, fairly." The engine roared. This model was meant to be uncrackable...

Reversing out of the drive was smooth and as Boston swerved the car around out into the road; the pile of rubble and fire back at the house flared a little, the man being devoured. "It should have been you; this isn't happening again, Tech." Boston spoke seriously, focused on the flames. Boston stepped on the pedal, moving the stick into second, third then fourth, speeding away; Gears... Boston reveled. A blast ruined the moment, jostling the car. "TECH!" Boston shouted, ears temporarily deafened and fully enraged.

The car now held a gaping hole in its roof, courtesy of Tech's fidgeting hap-hazard trigger fingers. "Sunroof. Accident" Tech replied wide eyed and covered in a powderized form of the roof. It's going to be a long ride...

Boston moved the car into fifth, the seemingly raring to life. "No restrictor..." Boston breathed as the car reached past 100mph and raising. Tech hoisted himself up through his home made sunroof.

"Floating and fired!" Tech bellowed, resisting the air. At this point it's hard to tell if he's talking about the hover car or himself...

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Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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[[OCC: Sorry for the wait]]

The man’s head lay twisted in horror, I couldn’t help but continue to grin at his expression. "I guess I didn't deserve it”, I quipped, admiring Boston’s handiwork.

"It's not your first encounter with him...was it?" Boston frowned. Looking at the pile of meat.

"No, I had dinner with his family; stocked up", I smirked. Pain flared up and my face mocked the failed agent of vengeance for a moment. Grawrrrr.

"I ought to have left you to him...", Boston threatened, throwing a disgusted look in my direction.

"There's a nice shirt there," I offered, changing the subject. Boston looked down thoughtfully and paused before acquiring a new shirt. He seemed to calm down after that.

"We better roll," Boston announced throwing the shotgun to me as he took the driver’s seat. I started for the failed assassin, but Boston intercepted my plans. "This time I’m the driver, and no... you can't eat him." Boston lead. The engine roared. You’re not shy, I smiled at the new vehicle.

Boston seemed like a virgin, handling the car cautiously, but I wasn’t in any state to take over. My mind drifted as my hands found something metallic, I twitched. The next thing I realise the sun is beaming down onto my face with a spray of what seemed to be… blue glitter? "Wreck!", Boston yelled... I think?

"Sunroof. Accident", I mused, still dazed from the effects and covered in a thin layer of snow like roof. The car lurched forward gaining speed as Boston began to talk to himself, or me, but I wasn’t paying attention, I was climbing up through my new gun hatch. "Floating and fired!", I shouted, the air meeting my will.

We were cruising away from the larger houses now and the older ones started to come into view. I couldn’t see if there were people about so I just imagined they were there. Like shooting ducks on a freeway. The shotgun clicked empty as the previous shots fell behind, I was about to drop it down through the hole but we swerved and it flew out of my hands, it was gone.

He could’ve been shouting at me but it was hard to hear anything with the wind in my ears. I banged the roof above his head and slid down. “Light on ahead”, I pointed eagerly

“Hold on a minute where’s the shotgun?”, he glared.

“There, light”, I repeated deflecting the question.

He gave up with the shotgun, it was obviously better out of my hands. “What? The museum?”, Boston looked doubtful, yet he slowed down, “What would be in there but skeletons and dust?”. He must have noticed the light then because he started to head for the entrance.

I sprang for the car door but it held firm… for a sec and then I found myself eating pavement. arrgfhfgfhd. I had forgotten about my seared leg and it wouldn’t bend as I kept attempting to stand. Boston casually lifted himself out of the car, turned four steps and lifted me up like I was made of cardboard. “Easy there crispy”, he mocked but his eyes betrayed the light-hearted tone. It seemed I didn’t quite understand my casualty and the pain just another annoying voice fighting for attention.

I hobbled up the steps one step at a time as Boston glided up, he was already scanning more distant windows as I reached the door. “Care to take a crack at the security system”, He asked, “I could easily break in but let’s be nice”. I like it, kill them quietly. I mused for a second then turned towards the keypad. I shook and barely managed to stay standing as my other leg almost buckled, the strain starting to take effect. I griped the wall with one hand and began searching my pouches for tools Quiet leg, I need think.

The door slid open automatically as the frayed panel dangled, exposed. Boston held his palm out and I stood confused. He seemed to think I knew what he wanted as he crept through the lobby and surveyed the area. 21st century perseveration hall. I didn’t recall what century it was, but I guess it was after that. “What are you doing?”, Boston whispered violently, “I told you to wait!”. So that’s what he meant. I decided responding was too much effort and I slumped down to the floor, against the reception desk.

He had that look again, but before I could place it he moved off behind the desk and began rummaging. A green shiny case with a pale glowing cross slid across the floor, open and empty. He huffed with dissapointment and turned around to discover a woman standing across from him on the marble like steps, wielding something bizarre. It appeared silver, but was streaked with neon green and started to make a noise. It’s charging I noted as I drifted off into sweet nothing.

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Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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Crash

Glass dispersed as Boston leapt through a display, and shards sank into each of his crossed forearms. Grounded, he etched up a glance, speeding down a darkened hallway; his heart charging his body. The hall echoed with the thunder of destruction following and he turned his head briefly to see Amelia's worn emeralds staring back; she was keeping pace but her breathing sharpened, No time.

The door was ahead, a faint glow revealed the valve lock and in moments Bostons hands were enveloping the handle and turning. Quicker. Quicker. Amelia pried at the edge of the door with a hands, whilst her shouldered briefcase slapped against the opening. "Get in!" Boston shouted, "Unless you prefer being human toast!"

The passage ways roared as a barrage of heat blasted through the museum, incinerating relics and melting glass cabinets. The overhead lights burst as Boston eyed the pursing furnace and he grimaced, sweat steaming off his clothes. "Rowan!" Amelia shouted. Melting, and all I can think of is "after sun" lotion...

The flames devoured the front side.

[Previously...]

"Tech! I swear if you don't get inside the car I'm driving towards a low bridge!" Boston yelled, but Tech was outstretched enjoying the wind battling his body. The old town had long since been swept behind and a "new" - in terms of exploration - settlement had began to appear. It looked smaller, like a village or a hamlet and Boston slowed so that the buildings looked less like smears at the speed they had been traversing at.

The sun had clearly burnt this area of town and dust kicked up everywhere, buildings look vacant. Safety, Boston's first thought was. "Light..." came a muffled banging from above. Boston arched his head forward again and noticed the grand building ahead. No safety... Boston sighed.

Boston turned back to see Tech had slid back to his position, attempting to lick his wound. "Hold on a... where's the shotgun?" Boston glared.

“There, light”, Tech repeated. It was hard to tell if he was deflecting or completely incoherently distractable. Boston turned away, stupid hick probably threw it out during the drive...

Boston pulled up to the buildings entrance, "What? The museum? Boston scanned, "What would be in there by skeletons and dust?" But he hesitated spotting a small illumination. The car door vaporized and Boston stepped out, wary. Tech had managed to fumble out but with his injury ended up eating concrete. Rescuing him from his disjointed obscenities Boston lifted Tech to his feet, "Easy there crispy," he chuckled but Boston's eye caught a shadow move across the inside of building.

“Care to take a crack at the security system”, Boston asked in a hushed voice, “I could easily break in but let’s be nice." Tech seemed to understand the caution and nodded, turning around to face the keypad. Boston hugged the wall and peered into the building, it looked deserted bar the faint illumination from the left. In his peripherals, Boston could make out Tech stealing through his tool pouch, struggling at his feet. He's going to be a liability...

A small bleep activated the door and it gracefully slid open. Boston pushed his hand out, Wait, and entered, lowering himself as he crept. "What are you doing?" Boston whispered aggressively as he saw Tech trudge in, "I told you to wait!" Tech stopped and realization flooded his face as if the penny had finally dropped and slouched down against the reception desk, resigned.

Tap

A nearing step. No doubt lingered in Boston, there was some one else in here and he shifted but a desk halted him. Gah! I'm choosing to be selfish for a cannibal...? He scrapped open the lower drawer and sure enough a first aid kit sat. Opening it Boston revealed it's contents. No! He discarded the box angrily, sliding it across the floor. Bad move, he saw turning and exposed to find a woman standing across the room brandishing what appeared to be a defibrillator... Boston glanced at Tech, his head hung sideways, Either unconscious or playing unconscious, neither helps.

"State your business!" The woman demanded, "We have snipers trained on you." Boston looked about the hall, the stairs were vacant and there hadn't been any noticeable movement else where. The woman looked alarmed but cross.

"Your snipers aren't good if they even do exist, all the major positions are empty," Boston commented, and he could see her defiant stance recoil slightly. "Look, we're not here for trouble, though the one on the floor is a nuisance at the best of times. He's just injured and we're doing our best to survive, that's all." Boston moved closer to her, slowly.

"Stop! You'll leave. Then I won't take action." The woman exclaimed lifting her implement, strands of her long brown hair fluttered at the reaction. Boston slowed his approach further but didn't halt.

"It's important he gets medical attention, I'm sure you can appreciate the condition he's in... Doctor?" Boston guessed. The woman was stunned.

"H-how did you know?" She questioned, lowering the device.

"You have a medical tool and your still wearing a lab coat, it wasn't the greatest leap. Please help." Boston requested now lifting his hands to hers and removing the charged defrib from her grasp. She looked up at him and then shook her head focusing and retracting.

"Bring him into the room adjacent the one after this, I have suitable supplies there," and with that she walked off. Carrying the passed out lump wasn't easy for Boston, he kept twitching and the smell, ugh...

The room was Boston entered was an entire living quarter, in one corner books and a couch with pillows and blankets; in the other a table now brandishing a plastic sheet. Boston lifted Tech on to it. The other corners hosted cans and food supplies and assortments of medical equipment. "Long stay?" Boston quibbed noticing the littered food containers.

"The longest," She retorted, "Now move that cabinet here," she demanded pointing at a white cart. The procedure was fast, a couple of needles and cream, coupled with bandages and the wound looked considerably better. "That'll hold him," she sighed standing back. "I'm sorry for earlier, common courtesies seem so foreign now..." she drifted of slightly.

"Boston. They call me Boston," Boston offered and she looked up inquisitively.

"Boston? That's a place not a name, who are you really?" she demanded. Boston smiled, mind racing. It's been so long...

"Rowan. Rowan Alder I was. Am," Boston corrected.

"Amelia. Dr Amelia Tyler." She responded, leaning on the make-shift operating table. "Would you like a drink?" Amelia shot up. "I have a fridge you see and it runs, complete with batteries I've modified from cars," and without a reply her head had disappeared into a white cabinet.

The lemonade was amazing, "How did you find this?" Boston question, now resting quite comfortably on Amelia's couch. "I had a sprite not long ago, but ended using the majority to slow Tech's burn, oh, that's the unconscious lump..." Boston's last words caught in his throat. "Where is he?" Tech had vanished.

Amelia and Boston both sprang to their feet and moved towards the next room. "No...." Amelia inhaled, "Not the reactor!" She raced ahead and Boston ran to keep pace. Barging through Boston and Amelia found Tech lying next to a huge mechanical device, dazzling the entire room.

"Tech! Stop" Boston yelled but noise of the generator drowned him out.

The computer beside Tech sirened and blared out "CRITICAL ERROR!"

"Grab him!" Amelia yelled, as she rushed to the computer. As she tapped at the keys, Boston picked up the flailing loon and shouldered him back to Amelia's room, dropping Tech onto the table.

"You don't understand!" Tech screeched but his protest was accompanied by a fist as Boston knocked him out. There's no time for this rubbish! Stop trying to kill us all. Boston was furious. Amelia came running back.

"It's too late, we have to get out. This whole place is going!" She panicked, grabbing a briefcase and throwing things in.

"Think, there has to somewhere that shield us?" Boston commanded, opening up the fridge and dashing its shelves and contents out across the floor.

"The safe could work... but it's too far," Amelia protested but Boston was already closing the fridge door, Tech stuffed inside. best I can do... darn it Tech. Grabbing Amelia's hand he pulled and they stumbled forward, the ground starting to shake. No time for questions. Just act.

Boston turned from the front hallway into a display area skidding, time was running out. The next room featured 21st century living, there were many home displays with models, one corner presented a kitchen - vacant a fridge. At the end of the large doming room a large glass wall stood, protecting a weapons display and an access door the other side... The safe will be behind there. "Hold on!" Boston turned, letting go of Amelia's hand and jumped forcefully at the glass.

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Character Portrait: Rowan "Boston" Alder Character Portrait: Tech
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"So what in god's earth was a fuel generator doing in a museum?!" Boston demanded, leaning back against the wall furthest from door, which was now fused shut. "It seems all I ever do is escape from being roasted," Boston gasped away from Amelia.
"It wasn't any generator, Rowan," Amelia sat huddling her legs on the floor, "It was direct power to the dome."

"Direct..." Boston hung on the word, "The dome is miles away!" Boston resolved, now looking down at Amelia. Amelia lifted her head.
"The dome runs on multiple battery generators across the state grid. One goes out, the others pick up the slack." Amelia explained, glancing towards what was once a door, "I thought your friend was sabotaging the machine, but no, if too many generators blow the strain on the remaining would cause a chain explosion..."
"...And so Tech was trying to shut the system down," Boston finished with full realization. That means either the attack on the dome did more damage than was expected or someones been systematically taking out generators. The moments silence was broken by part of the vaults wall giving way, the explosion had not only melted the front but weaken the integrity of the sides. Boston moved towards the edge kicking at the wall half a dozen times. "I don't feel like slow roasting anymore, how about you?" Boston asked as the wall finally caved in enough to crawl through.

The cold air stuck to Bostons saturated skin, it felt Arctic to him now that Hawaii was left behind. Reaching out an arm he pull Amelia up, noticing the same feelings now swept over her; the air had never tasted so sweet. He sighed.
Tech.
Scaling mounds of warm rubble Boston staggered over the building remains roughly where Amelia's quarters once were. Scorched beams and plasterboard were easy enough to lift or drag, the marble wasn't. "He has to be here!" Boston shouted exasperatedly putting his weight into a slab and pushing.
"There's no guarantee he survived the blast, you saw what the explosion did to the vault," Amelia responded sullenly looking at the remains of her life's work. Fire still crept around the remains, but Boston didn't falter, until there it was: a charred black and white fridge, slightly crushed and turned over. "Help me, the doors on the other side." Boston requested urgently, "There won't be copious amounts of air left and we don't know what condition Tech's in."
Together Amelia and Boston lifted the fridge, a little at first, then with more grip underneath, " Wait..." Boston exclaimed and forced the fridge over, "This isn't right." There was a hole in the door and nothing inside. There wasn't time to escape... He wasn't in any condition... Boston dropped to his knees, opening the door fully; there was only black ash.

"Argh!" Boston yelled upward, then fell to all fours. Amelia knelt beside him and curved her arms around.
"I'm sorry," she comforted. A single drop fell from Boston. Soldiers expect the worst. He told himself. I'm just not a solider anymore.
"Blast..." he said dispirited, then stood with the help of Amelia. "We have to leave, there's a lot happening... and we haven't time," Boston resolved shaking his head. "Check the car, it may still be usable," Boston sighed again, "I'll see to Tech.." But Boston dropped off before the end. Amelia hesitated staring at him, then left.

"We weren't meant to be friends you know. It was always going to end this way or similar, still. It doesn't feel time... and you were my friend. The most annoying destructive one I've ever had, but I'll believe you saw me as more than just dinner in the end." Boston blew the ash and it sprayed out of the fridge in a scatter. "I don't think a burial would suit you Tech, you saw them as buried treasure, not final resting places. And you didn't rest, never rested." The particles dropped around as the breeze died and some floated to where the fridge had been, descending into a small hole that a beam was partially sticking out, and into what Boston could only assume was left of the basement.
"Farewell, Tech."

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Character Portrait: Charlie Redmond Character Portrait: Tech
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Charlie had never liked nose bleeds. Not that he fully remembered, of course, but even without his memory having his blood gush out of his nose made him feel queasy. He ripped off a piece of his white haz-mat suit and stuffed it up his nostrils, even though it didn't seem to be working.

Although he didn't care to examine himself, he could almost feel his infection raging through his body, yet was determined not to let it slow him down. He had basically inhaled half of the cheese flavored popcorn and for once he felt a bit full. The feeling didn't last very long.

Charlie pulled his rabbit's foot necklace out from under his suit and studied it, turning it with his fingers. He remembered the old man had given it to him, saying that one day he would need it, but he didn't understand how it was helping him. He could remember that he had been touched. Luck had abandoned him. What good what it do for him if he would just die in the end?

Dropping the rabbit's foot and stuffing it into his suit, he stood up. He made a grab for his popcorn and stuffed it in his pack. His gun was still tightly gripped in his hand, but he figured waiting would only make him bored and anxious. The fire had died down and it looked safe to explore. How in the world could a building just implode?

Charlie pressed his foot down on the first of the few steps. The ashes seemed to crunch under his weight, but so far it was sturdy enough to hold him. So, he marched into the building and slammed his shoulder into the door. Unfortunately it was unlocked so he tumbled in and crashed into a table with a collection of colorful, dead butterflied in a case. The glass shattered when he landed on it, most of it scattering across his brown hair, but he shook most of it off and stood up. He looked around, finally realizing that the place was some sort of museum. Bones hung on the walls next to artwork. A poisoned tipped sword sat in a case and Charlie debated on breaking it out and using it, but he figured he'd end up hurting himself.

It didn't take long for him to find the staircase. It wasn't too far from the reception desk. The stairs didn't look super sturdy, so he raced up as fast as he could. The wood didn't crumple underneath him- maybe the lucky rabbit foot was finally working right. It still seemed more like rotten luck to Charlie, but he didn't have the heart to throw it away.

The upstairs didn't seem like much of a museum, more like a small, cluttered collection. A few wax figures stood, giving Charlie an evil looking glare, but he put a bullet through both of them, even if they weren't real. You can never be too safe. He figured the museum had been robbed a lot after the touch. Maybe they had been the pinnacle of all history before the apocalypse, but now it looked like a trashy yard sale.

Charlie quickly found bathrooms. He didn't even know if they worked, since the toilets were probably burnt into a pile of ashes, but at least he could... unload... somewhere better than the side of the road. The boy's room wouldn't budge so he used the ladies' restroom. He walked past the mirrors, getting a glimpse of himself. He looked horrible: he was so skinny his small suit seemed like it might fall off any second, his brown locks a wild mess, and he was covered in blood and dirt, a nasty, sticky mixture. Charlie shook it off. He had more important things to do than worry about his looks. So, he took a step toward the stalls, but his rabbit foot must have not been working because he fell straight through the floor, through the one on the first floor too, and landed in the basement.

As he landed, he heard his bones crunch and crack under him, all the air shoved out of him. How he survived the fall, he didn't know. All he knew was that he was in the cold, dark, basement, and was possibly dead. But, on a positive note, he didn't have to use the toilet anymore- he had already taken care of that as he fell down.