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 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)

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ConfusedShipper123

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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Wed Aug 22, 2012 9:59 am

((THIS A LEGITIMATELY A SKILL. MY LORD. PLEASE, PUT THIS ON YOUR RESUME, DIANA. PLEASE. And Ditte. D': Ditte and Allan are my favorites of yours. ^^'))

The siblings both responded to his acknowledgements of at least one of their assumptions; Kameran tensed, but quickly suppressed any indication that she may have ever assumed that about the man. Lane just seemed unimpressed, even angry, at the suggestion, but it was obvious he hadn't been quite expecting what Max had said.

Lane shot the man a look near as harsh as his sister's toward him as the man continued to speak, realizing his intentions. And Kameran's involvement. A gang leader had recruited her to help him recruit their neighbor. Their alcoholic, medication-addicted, apparently recently fired, extremely emotionally vulnerable neighbor. He blamed the other man entirely, but he was sure he would be thinking of this later that night. He should have figured things had reached this far.

"...You wouldn't like to wake up one day due to a nasty smell coming from next door only to find out that your neighbor's been dead for five days."

Kameran heard the covert threat in the man's voice and began to acknowledge the power he held, the manner in which he held himself. He would not hesitate to go through with his word. What had made him stare in the hallway, on the staircase? What was his weakness? She had to know it. She refused to allow him to have that sort of power over her. Whatever he did, if she was ever remotely afraid of him, she could not show it.

That would be a simple task for her, but her brother? Damir? The guy wasn't really afraid of dying; he'd said enough, done enough, to imply some part of him wanted it. But he probably didn't expect to be killed, at least, not the way Max was likely implying.

Lane froze at the man's words. It wasn't hard to tell, that he was a man of his word, at least in some regard. As he started to walk past him, he tried to meet his sister's gaze, reached for her shoulder, stopped her only momentarily.

What are you doing, Kameran?

Her glare grew milder, and he knew that she was probably thinking that this was more than she'd ever bargained for. Or perhaps that was what he hoped. As much as he wanted to pull her from this, from the metaphysical grasp of the gangs and this leader, from the color and the drug dealings, take her hand and sit her down at an unburned kitchen table, to homework and friends and laughter and stability, he knew that there were some things that were simply out of his power.

He swallowed as she followed the man into Damir's bedroom. What had he done, to make her do this? What had made her so destructive? He felt a sudden pang in his chest, his mind wandering to that which had been lost seemingly so long ago. When Kameran was that child in his mind, and when the adolescent social struggle was the worst possible situation for him. How had things come this far? But he knew exactly how.
---
Damir was under his blanket again, nearly asleep, whatever conversation going on in the next room seemingly miles away, in a half-dream that seemed better than the ones he usually had.

But such an assumption was interrupted, quite rudely, when Kameran and another person entered his room, an incredibly pale man with red eyes. Had he seen him before? No...

"Mm... what are you d... who are you?"

With that, Kameran approached him, pulling off the blanket and taking his wrists, pulling him from the mattress.

"What are you doing? I... Is this some sort of... Are you here to kill me? Something else? Come on, I was almost..."

"We're leaving."

"What do you mean w_"

Kameran grew more aggressive, forcing him to his feet. He'd once heard that the girl had violently assaulted a boy her age; he complied with her hands still on his wrists. Whatever this was, it didn't seem like something that could be avoided.

"He'll probably explain it better than I will. Let me start with saying that you have just been given an exclusive employment opportunity."
---
((EMILIA. EMILIA,NO.B*TCH,NO.DON'TCALLTHEPRISMA.))

Amira stared straight at the men attempting to enter her friend's car. She barely noticed when the girl took her phone from her lap, and pressed her fingers on the keypad.

When she heard "prisma", she froze, her anger rising like a Mono's might have. She fully understood the reasoning behind their bitter enmity, and she refused to let her friend continue to perpetrate that brutality.

"Emilia, put the phone away and drive. That's all you have to do. You're in a car, they're on foot, they look a little out of it. You'll be fine if you just drive. No need to bring the prisma into this."
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Wed Aug 22, 2012 10:35 am

((WONDER TYPER OF THE AMAZON.))

Gale watched silently as Allan looked around in his meager stores for water. How was this place even livable for him? He couldn't help but notice the young man's thin and fragile frame as he moved about. It dawned on him that it never had been. Gale removed his cap and combed his fingers through his dark, unruly hair. "It's okay, man." He thought about his own situation in his apartment.

How he had sacrificed his opportunities for his younger sisters, because his parents had never been well off and would only be able to afford to send them to college. How he had known about Chrom and Mono. How he wanted more than anything to keep Taryn and Mahri to stay out of this city. Go to school anywhere else. And that couldn't happen if he stayed at home. Especially because after his father died, his mother struggled with two jobs just to keep food on the table. Taryn managed to balance an internship and a job to help pay her tuition. Her time was otherwise consumed with scholarship applications. None of them wanted little Mahri to have to work before it was time. Her focus was establishing herself as impressive in primary school. Gale was smart, too, but not as bright as the girls. He was the oldest, the most independent and he knew that his family was struggling.

So, he left. Gave up his major in mechanical engineering to fix cars. And as long as the garages were small, the pay was decent. He was good at his job. Understood the inner workings of a machine the way that a cardiologist understood the chambers of a heart. Once he heard that Taryn had gotten a full ride scholarship to some school overseas, he began sending home checks to support his mother and Mahri.

But he never told anyone that. He never talked about his family. Put up a wall whenever anyone tried.

Allan's curse jolted Gale out of his reflections. He saw the blood staining Allan's nails. Noticed the wound with slowly congealing blood on the back of his friend's neck. His hand somehow found its way over his mouth in disbelief, muffling the sound of, "Christ, Allan. What have you... Here!" He walked swiftly over to Allan, pulling a black handkerchief out of his breast pocket. He laid it gently over the wound before applying pressure to stop it from bleeding.

"Allan," he murmured, "You know you can talk to me. About anything. I want to help you."

---

Peris hesitated for a moment, but then replied, "Sure. Sounds great." It had been a while since she had gone out and forced herself to be a social creature. She needed to continue to practice, or she'd rust up. And creak every time she tried to have a conversation.

A forgotten and obsolete automaton.
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Wed Aug 22, 2012 5:21 pm

((TARYNANDMAHRIYESSS.))

John met her eyes before placing his books in the canvas bag he had purchased from Kiva business owner a month ago, and prepared to leave.

"I'll see you then."

He hoped his friend would be alright when he left; está viendo do a su amiga él fuí preocupado por ella su amiga (quién es su amiga. no es la novia o la amiga con beneficios es solamente una amiga.). She seemed a little out of sorts. Regardless, he looked forward to their meeting on Friday. If he had time, he would stop in again to visit later.
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Thu Aug 23, 2012 6:23 am

((Early morning phone type.))

Max greeted his sleepy employee with open arms, almost as fine was welcoming a new person into his family. "Good news, sleepy head," he placed two hands on Damir's shoulders and gently shook him awake. "You have a new job. With the Red Eye. Isn't it exciting?" Damir was confused and lost. Obviously that was due to the lack of sleep. Max wondered how much he had spent on that bottle of Amber, though. Even in his own establishments, a single cup of this thing was enough to empty your wallet but not get you wasted enough. If he wanted to get drunk until he forgot his name, he could've gone for Absinthe. It was a green-ish product that was slightly cheaper and it would just f*ck you up in the first three shots. 

At this point, Damir wasn't showing any outward signs of being happy or sad for his new job. Max was looking for some sort of reaction but deemed the poor guy unable to even form words. He rolled his eyes and took one of Damir's arms, leading him outside the bedroom. "Listen, kid, from now on you won't have to worry about any bills or anything of the sort, you hear me? We'll make sure to keep those Dunes away from you." For once, Max was being honest. That was one of the perks of working for one of the gangs: they offered protection in a place where it's needed. He turned to Kameran and nodded towards Damir. "Help me take him out, please."

---

Emilia took a deep, shaky breath and nodded at her friend's words. She was right. There was no need to overreact. Emilia released the phone from her deadly grip and with trembling hands she lowered the device onto her lap. Her panic only became deeper and out of control when she found out that her car was not responding to her commands. They were stuck. 

"Amira..." she whispered at first. "Amira!" And without thinking, the Sunshiner took the cellphone back into her hands and typed the three emergency numbers into the keyboard. In a few moments the Prismas would be here and it will be over. At this point, Emilia's mascara was melting down her face, drying up and getting worse the more the young lady cried. She wasn't meant to deal with stressful situations at all. She really should've brought Nicholas with them, John or not. 

---

Allan hissed as he felt the pressure of a hand settling on his back. He closed his eyes and ignored his mind's screams about the hygienic state of said piece of cloth. He didn't care. Few were the times when Gale would actually touch him; or rather, that Allan would allow him to do so. He could not remember when it had begun, but he remembers waking up one day and feeling that being Gale's friend just wasn't enough to make him happy anymore. He wanted more. And he was certain that was only in his case, therefore he never bothered to talk about it. But Allan's avoidance of the subject only served to damage their friendship. Now, the wouldn't talk about certain things because Allan wouldn't allow himself to be open about the subject and he was sure Gale felt the same way about other topics. Physical contact such as this one became something that only existed in Allan's dreams... Or a lack-there-of. 

He heard Gale's almost whisper close to his ear. It was so quiet that Allan's nervous breaths were almost loud enough to muffle the sound of Gale's voice. He could feel his friend's eyes examining the swelling on his face, the split lip, the bleeding ear. His back slash was a minor offense to his body compared to what was hiding underneath his pants. Allan wondered why he didn't throw on a shirt before letting Gale enter. But that false promise of comfort, of presence. You can talk to me. About anything. That was enough to make Allan's mind skate around his brain and make him want to lose control over himself. He felt like telling Gale everything. The truth. What was going on. He wanted to tell him about Ginou, and the others; about his clients, the good and the bad ones; about his pay, so miserable even for a prostitute. But at the same time he was scared.

That last word terrified him to no ends. A prostitute. He had spent his adolescent life making fun of those miserable souls, forced to violate the temple of their bodies only to be able to pay a few bills. Life had a funny way of showing him how rude it was to make such comments. 

I want to help you.

Allan turned around to face his guest. He took the black handkerchief from his hand and pressed it against the open wound himself, no longer knowing how long he could take the feeling of Gale's hands on his body. With light brown eyes avoiding to meet the gray ones in front of them, Allan replied with the words that had been hanging in his mind for a long time. "You can't help me, Gale. Trust me. This time I'm in big, big trouble." Allan felt his eyes tear up but he would not cave in just yet. Not with Gale in the apartment. Allan's eyes fell on the sink by the T.V and found the perfect way to change the subject. He stepped away from Gale and took a small plastic cup from the kitchen with his free hand. He then walked to the sink and opened the tap, filling the small cup with water. "Good thing I remembered to pay the water bill." The young man didn't really remember how to tells a joke, though. "Here you go." He forced the gray cup into Gale's hand and stood there before him, staring at the floor, suddenly completely terrified about Gale's presence in his apartment.
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Thu Aug 23, 2012 10:24 am

Damir tried to blink away sleep and drunkeness, still struggling to fully grasp the situation. Red Eye? What did they want with him? He stayed out of the gangs beyond the occasional purchase, and that was when he was active in at least three places of employment. When the man offered protection from the Dunes, his immediate thought went to the bruises on his back, his head, the cracks he knew he'd hear if he hadn't gotten away in time. He wasn't sure who they were, but no one liked the Prisma in Mono, not even the Dunes, with their strong grasp over this part of the "Grey Scheme".

Kameran pulled him further from the bed, practically dragging him toward the door, pausing only to permit the slipping on of shoes.

"Damir, this is probably the best thing that's happened to you in the past several years. I'm not saying you have to be enthusiastic," she said, as she pulled the man into the hallway. "But, I'm sure you'll wake up by the time we get where we're going."
---
((*edited for initial lack of understanding.))

Amira still held her breath while the girl placed her hands on the wheel, but finding its lack of response, and the tears that had begun, she tried to reach the phone before Emilia, but she was too late. The numbers were dialed. The Prismas were coming.

She wasn't the only one to see the phone. Not the only one to notice the girl's pathetic tears.

The men closed in on the driver's side. It would be cruel to leave her, but her frustration with her friend had already ignited. She wasn't sure how to keep them from coming any closer, from attempting whatever they would. There was no way to avoid the fate, inside or outside the vehicle. She pulled up her lock, careful to press it back down before stepping out capable of full contact with the men; their gazes were unabashedly hungry for something neither her nor her friend would be willing to offer.

Inside, she knew there was nothing that would give her authority, her clothes just a little too bright, her makeup, while far from the scarlet tinge of Emilia's lips, was very different from anyone from Gray Scheme. And coming out of the enormous vehicle didn't help her credibility either.

"Look..." she began. "We all witnessed what she just did."

A few surrounded Amira on the passenger side, while the first man and two others remained by the driver's window.

Negotiation was a long shot; as much as she trusted most Grey Scheme residents, there was legitimate danger, a few desperate people or those with dying consciences. One could find such individuals anywhere in Chrom. But as the men came closer, and her heart began to beat almost audibly, her muscles tensed.

"The Prisma are coming, and your best interests would likely be in getting out of here as quickly as possible."

"Who do you think you are?"

She found the building with the fire just beyond them.

"This was an undercover delivery, the girl's new, clueless, company crashed in Sunshine and now she's with me. I'll make sure she learns about the Prisma soon enough, but if you wouldn't mind letting us go for a while."

"So where are you taking her?"

"That's classified information," she said, turning toward the window as the man in the center consumed the space she would have used to punch, to knee, to run.

"What about you?"

"I'm going with her."

"I'm sure the other 'client' can wait."

"No. It can't."

She started to move from the triangular trap of the men, but the left closed in as well. The right did the same.

"We're ready to pay. It would be quick," the one to the right said.

"Are you with the Dunes?" she started, choked.

"Maybe. It shouldn't matter, right?"

"Well, but, the Prisma..."

The men on either side, grabbed her arms and began to pull her away from the car. Down the sidewalk, she struggled furiously and erratically. The elementary school track from the speakers said there was no shame, they could talk, it could happen to anyone.

Liam stood several feet away, reaching toward her, but unable to help, as they pulled her along, now directly across the street from the building burning in spray paint.

Three figures exited across the street, and sirens rang in the distance.
---
Damir remained somewhat dazed as they took the familiar ride on the elevator to the ground floor. There was some sort of closure, in paying off medical bills, some sort of satisfaction in keeping his apartment in-tact, but he had yet to determine the worthiness of gang involvement. There were positives--reducing the risk of any sort of beating seemed high on the list. Potential access to the drugs Kameran offered, perhaps at a lower price than the ones she gave.

It wasn't quite the time to weigh risks and benefits. One of the risks was getting caught, beaten by Prisma, getting into conflict with the Black Dunes or Blue Ivy's, or within the gang. Whatever problems this would give him would be inevitable, impossible to avoid. And whatever part of him feared such things was buried below the one that simply didn't care. Maybe this would be some twisted sort of improvement in his life.

Or maybe it would kill him.

The clouds were covering the sky, but beyond them, the sun was preparing to set.

Across the street, a woman's voice, three men, nearly keeping her from view. She wore a long dress, pale firelily in hue, her flimsy shoes abandoned in her struggle.

Amira.

Ash-tinted cars and tall public transit vehicles swept the street at speeds guaranteeing, at least moderate bodily injury if crossed. He tried to find an opening, releasing himself from Kameran's grasp.

"Hey, what the hell are you doing?" she shouted, as he stepped near the curb.

She found the scene across the street as well, and crossed her arms, glanced at Max. She usually didn't ask permission for these sorts of situations--she wouldn't stand by and let something like this happen. But Damir might not have had as well a chance of stopping the men as she or the other man could.

At least two of them looked Dune-affiliated as well.

And sirens screeched in the distance, the look of alternating colored lights approaching. Mono's favorite visitors.
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Abeiya



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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:28 am

((I'm thoroughly impresseddd~))

Peris smiled and waved to John as he left, "Give me a call. I'll see you then! And say hello to everyone for me." When he left the store, she locked the door behind him. She shuffled through the process of turning off all the lights on the lower level and then retreated up to the loft again.

---

Gale furrowed his brow, accepting the cup of water. He looked down into the slightly clouded liquid, its appearance sealing his decision to avoid drinking it at all costs. This building was absolute shit. The pipes were in such a state of disrepair that the water that flowed out from the water plant in the center of Chrom went from crystal clear to filmy and slightly grey.

His fingers gently brushed Allan’s as he took the cup and as they did, he noticed moisture gathering in the other man’s eyes as they avoided his gaze. He pursed his lips, the motion subtly making his expression somber. He was unsure of what to do. Gale had known Allan since he had moved into Mono six years prior. Had watched him change and go from a happy youth to a painfully thin, increasingly troubled adult. And he never knew how to help. And it never failed to drown him in guilt. The only thing that he had done was refrain from troubling Allan with his own daily hiccups. Allan had much more to worry about. And Gale had always known that he was hiding something, but he never asked. Why? ...Was I afraid of what I might hear? Gale had always feared Allan’s fragility, somehow afraid that if he got too close, the young man would shatter.

It was time to stop it. There were plenty of walls all over the city keeping people isolated and no more were needed. Gale stared at the bruises on Allan’s face. The raised skin. The blackening patches. The cracked mouth. He raised his hand, about to trace a bruise on the smaller man’s cheek, but settled for lightly resting it on Allan’s shoulder instead. “Hey,” his voice was still a soft murmur, taking on “Allan, look at me. I can help you. At least, I-- Just...” He swallowed, “Just please let me try.”
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Fri Aug 24, 2012 1:29 am

Allan closed his eyes as he felt Gale's hand descend on his shoulder. His breath caught in his throat and he was certain that he would not be able to hold back his tears any longer. He was so angry at himself for being so weak. He knew that if he said a word about his occupation, the Dunes would eventually find out and kill him. Or worse, they'd decide to go for Gale, as they couldn't afford to lose any merchandise. The lump in Allan's throat became increasingly tighter at the mere thought of Gale being murdered just because he couldn't keep his mouth close. He didn't want to imagine his friend, his best friend, the love of his life to be away from him. While keeping his own distance, Allan was certain that Gale was the only thing keeping him on his feet right now. And to think--

The young man let a sob escape this mouth, despite his constant attempt to drown it. Soon after, a cascade of tears followed the sound and Allan was no longer able to stop himself. He walked away from Gale, neglecting the handkerchief on the floor to use both hands to dry his tears. Allan bit down his lower lip in an attempt to stop himself from whimpering, but it only served to make the whimpers louder. And to make matters worse, Allan was beginning to taste the pouring of a metallic flavored liquid he already knew so well. With both hands, trembling, wiping the unstoppable tears away as he walked around his small apartment, crouching as he did so, Allan couldn't help but feel like a kid again. Like the sad, neglected kid that he used to be, swore to forget and he was seemingly turning into again. He took a deep breath at the same time his body let out a sob making it sound as if he was resurfacing from the ocean, after being so close to drown. 

"I c-c-can't! I just... I just can't tell you! I can't! You can't help me, you won't understand! I'm so sorry, I'm sorry, I just can't tell you. D-Don't you think that if I... If I could talk about it, I would?" That was more than he was allowed to say anyway. He just hoped, prayed, that Gale would be smart enough to stop asking questions. The thought of the man lying on the floor, immobile, surrounded by a pool of blood, invaded Allan's mind again. It was like poison; it just served to break Allan's psyche further. He gasped for air again. "I'm tired, I'm hungry and e-everything within me is just rotten. I am far too broken to be fixed. I can't. I can't be fixed. You-- There is no 'try', Gale, I am done for. I can't anymore. Just please, please..."

Please what? What else do you want from him, Allan?

Allan fell onto his knees in the middle of the leaving room, his tears refusing to subside. He didn't want to say it. He knew what he needed to say, but he wouldn't say it. He was not about to ask Gale to go away and leave him alone. No. He still needed Gale to be there. But he needed him to keep his distance. He needed him to stop being his best friend. His words came out as a quiet whispers, almost inaudible, incomprehensible through his pathetic sobs. 

"Please, stop being you..."

---

In a split second, Max was able to tell apart what was the commotion in the street about. Bright yellow car with a pretty young lady inside, her friend being attacked by three Monos. One of them probably being a Dune member. The black and white streets suddenly acquired a red and blue coloring accompanied by the sound of screaming justice, or in this case, abuse that was completely uncalled for. Max watched impassively as Damir ran to the other side of the street, ready to fight the men with whatever strength he had left within himself that wasn't going to be applied on self-harming activities. He was drunk out of his mind, after all. He wouldn't feel a thing until tomorrow morning. 

However, Max knew something had to be done. The Prismas were probably the worst kind of people you could dare to call over in Mono. They saw guilt in absolutely everyone who dared to wear black, white and gray toned clothes. Long ago innocent Mono residents gave up on calling the authorities expecting protection from them. What would begin as a call to denounce stolen property ended in the findings of illegal colored items. That was years ago, though. Back when Max was only a little kid. Now everyone had at least two illegal colored items thanks to the Red Eyes. Gangs appealing to the general public instead of suppressing it. That was the main difference between Red Eye and Black Dunes. Blue Ivy stayed comfortably in the middle, leaning a little towards the Red side. 

"Follow me," he said to Kameran without addressing her with his face. He simply began to walk his way to the other side of the street where the fight had broken out. Max could see the girl inside the car clasping her hands over her ears, weeping helplessly. He couldn't help but roll his eyes. From there he could see the bright red lipstick she was wearing. She had to be a Sunshiner. Only they could be so ignorant of the world around them. Max was almost reaching the other side of the street when the Prismas were parking their cars only a few feet away from them. This was about to get really ugly. He only hoped that Kameran was following right behind him because he surely wasn't about to look back. 

As a gang leader, Max had to be trained well in both physical and armed combat. He wasn't particularly good at the former, mind you. He preferred to carry a handgun with him at all times in case situations like these broke out. Sadly, the only thing he was planning to do that day was eat at 'Grape' and recruit a few people. He was not counting on this disaster of the preestablished order. With one hand, he took one of the men from Damir's back, dragging him away by the collar and forcing him against the wall of the closest building. Max looked at him dead in the eye before turning to address the others. 

"I hope you idiots know who you're fighting against."

---

Emilia didn't dare to open her eyes and see what was happening. She hated herself for beig such a coward and freezing in terror when her friend needed her the most. She was already imagining the worst while Amira was screaming for help when she heard the footsteps of few others approaching. Only the sound of the sirens were keeping her from absolutely losing her mind and running out of there. She heard a few punches that made contact with a couple of faces and Amira stopped screaming. Maybe the Prismas were here or perhaps someone decided to have a heart and help them. Either way, Emilia's relief didn't last long. Soon enough the unsound hero was tackled and defeated, only to be joined by another one who'd surely meet the same fate. 

I hope you idiots know who you're fighting against.

He sounded serious, Emilia could tell. She adventured a peak out of the window to see that indeed the Prismas had arrived. She felt a lot safer now. Emilia decided that it was time to get out from underneath the driving board to denounce these men to the police as her duty called. She took a few seconds to clean off the smeared makeup from her face, but not too much in order to keep the evidence of her tears. She fixed the artificially yellow wig, tweaked it to make it remain in its place and stepped out of the vehicle. 

As soon as she was outside, she made sure to hold her head high, showing off an air of indignation and pride. A Prisma quickly approached her, recognizing her as a resident of The Sunshine Medley, and asked her questions about what had happened. While Emilia answered, her voice trembly and nasal as ever, she was able to hear the pale man from a few seconds ago speak to the Prismas as well in a low, manipulative tone. Emilia immediately knew what he was doing. Apparently this mysterious, red-eyed man was talking them out of properly dealing with these burglars. She raised a hand to stop the officer from finishing the question he was about to ask her and turned to face Max. She knew enough that no man with red eye contacts was from around here. 

"Hey, what are you doing? Why are you defending these Monos?! You saw what they were doing to us, let the police do their job!"

The man laughed. "And you are?"

"I am Emilia Bonaire! Heiress of the Bonaire empire? You're wearing clothes made with the fabric that Daddy's company makes."

The man gave Emilia what seemed to be a polite smiles, but the look in his eyes, the intensity of the red hue of his contacts made the smile seem like a mockery of empathy. "Well, Miss Bonaire. This is Mono. No one here gives a shit about your daddy or you. I suggest you take your car to a mechanic and leave this side of town before you regret it, alright? You really lucked out of this one. Especially when wearing that pretty red lipstick."
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Fri Aug 24, 2012 10:23 am

Gale swallowed as Allan walked away from him. Watched as he fell to his knees, crumbling. His posture made Gale feel protective. He wanted stop whoever these people were from hurting him. Even though he knew just who those people might have been. Even in knowing that, he was not afraid. Mono had made him feel a lot of things over the years, but fear was never one of them. But the words that came from those pale, trembling lips came close. And by some miracle, he happened to catch those few. Part of him wanted to let those words succeed in pushing him away. But another part knew that Allan still needed him. That he didn’t have another person in the world who could be there for him.

He could see Allan beaten within an inch of his life, his painfully thin frame lying contorted on the ground at the scene of some gang shootout. Or his corpse framed by blood and riddled with bullets. And he would not allow for it to happen.

The last thing he could let Allan be was alone.

So he found himself walking to the man on his knees. The sobs caused physical pain in his chest. It was like watching a helpless child suffer. Gale knelt by Allan, leaning back on his legs to sink to eye level. He looked into hopeless brown eyes and they reminded him of when one of his sisters would cry. The brother reflex kicked in and his wrapped his arms around his closest friend, his arms creating a strong cage against the outside world for a moment.

“Okay,” he whispered, “I’ll just.. I’ll leave if you want me to. Whatever you need, Allan. I just... hate watching this happen to you.”
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Fri Aug 24, 2012 10:42 am

((OHYEAH. That's right, Emilia. Get the %#$@ out.))

Kameran followed swiftly and directly behind Max as they followed the freed recruit as he flung himself into yet another situation outside of his control. She watched as he tried with great effort to take down the men, but his close combat skills were rather... lacking. His punches were passionate, but unsteady, easily blocked. He was easily being overtaken by the men with significantly greater experience. Still one was trying to push himself upon the girl, having her nearly on the ground. This was the situation she'd like to intervene. She began to edge closer, but Max stepped in front of her, pulling a man from Damir.

But those sirens and the lights were close just as well. They weren't going to help so much as make the scene more obvious. Her hand fell into her pocket, grasping a small, rectangular object, feeling the smooth metal and its full ability to end all of these people. She started by kicking the man strategically, aiming to make him fall away from the woman.

He nearly did, yet his turn toward her was nothing short of a threat. She pulled out another mechanism from concealment, flipping out a blade.

She wanted to save her lighter fluid for a more worthy cause.
---
Fists connected to his face making sounds like thunder in his ears, slate-tinted lightning in his eyes. He still attempted to fight back, but he scarcely realized the ineffectiveness of his motions. There was a little pain caused for the men, but it was nothing compared to what they were apparently doing to him. He only saw the grey floor with the red dripping from an indeterminate someone and he saw himself fighting pathetically, his defenses weaker than he could have imagined. And the dress, the girl, now a few feet away.

He aimed for one man's gut, another's jaw, as they did the same and worse to him, it seemed they were trying to get him out of their way, one man poised to even throw him to the street.

But the man suddenly disappeared, and in the corner of dizzying vision, he saw the Red Eye man press him against a wall.

"I hope you idiots know who you're fighting against."

At that moment, blue and red flooded the streets along with the piercing sound of the Prisma's arrival.

When they approached the men, he stumbled out of their way, to a wall, unsteadier than before they'd crossed the street.

The brightly colored uniforms pulled the Monos from the girl, from the crimson-eyed man and the youngest party, and subsequently began to essentially bludgeon the former assailants into an illegal mess on the ground. Now there were multiple reasons for their arrest...
---
The woman could feel the bricks of the wall scraping her back as the man pressed against her, attempting to bring her nearer to the ground. She still struggled, kicked, kneed, screamed when she could, never pausing. She strained to make her wrists free, bit the man's shoulder, headbutted into his chest, kneed him again, but he was not giving up.

The sound of others, beyond the Prisma's apparent approach. A man's voice. The others suddenly distracted. She couldn't permit herself to be just as distracted, although she was growing tired; she could not give in.

Someone spoke. The man was strong, likely powerful in some respect. She continued fighting, the world once more becoming only the man and his horrifying advances.

He momentarily lost his balance, and she prepared to run, as he turned; his hands still pressing her to the wall; she took whatever she could, still struggling, fiercer than before.

A youth, perhaps twelve, stood before each of them, drawing a knife. She swallowed, as the man let go momentarily. With this, she pulled her other arm from him, attempting to shove him away. Again, he found his concentration.

Then the lights swept the scene, the antifreeze-tinted uniforms pulling the man from her before she could even realize what was happening. And the sound of their thrashing, their pummeling of the men even more violent than the men had shown themselves to be.

Straining to catch her breath, feet and back not moving from their place, like ice to metal in the winter, she took in the entire scene. The man with crimson eyes, the girl with her hands in her pockets, and another man, a familiar one, somewhat battered, leaning heavily against the wall across from her.

She was stricken by the feeling of a hand upon hers, stinging her scraped, bruised knuckles. There was no other hand, and the boy who took it was long gone. The sorrow of his eyes was not genuine; those eyes were forever closed.

All there was to do was watch the men's severe punishment, their subsequent dragging into the Prisma's blinking cars.

When it was over, she still stood, the wall becoming her spine, the concrete stained illegally her feet. The conversation between the Prisma and her friend was made thousands of feet below the sea. Its continuation, the scathing criticism of the girl scarcely grazing her ears.

"Amira..." the most familiar voice said. She turned toward the street.

"I'm... sorry... Do... do you want... help getting home?"

His face was bruised, his eyes red, face flushed, hunched down toward the ground even as he leaned against the wall. He was with those two before her, and he'd very well lost his own fight against the men.

"I... I'll be fine, Damir."

The boy grasped her hand tighter and she suppressed the urge to snatch it away.

"Are you sure?"

She swallowed, straining to send away her own tears, the overwhelming sense of this environment's terrifying potential, still not yet feeling her wounds.

"Yes," she said. How would she get home?

The red-eyed man was right about her friend. And she did not want to set foot in anything owned by a Bonaire ever again. She hadn't noticed the shaking until she dug out her own cellphone, and the trembling of her hands as she attempted to press the speed dial for her next available means of transportation. Even her breathing seemed to tremble. She stayed out of the sight of the Prisma, as they occupied themselves otherwise.

As the dialing sounded through the speaker of her cell on her ear, she watched the boy step in front of her, still grasping her hand.

"Hi, Amira! How's it going, are you still with Emilia?"

That voice. His voice, piercing through her grey and crimson reality. The tears came beyond her control, the distress, the fighting, and that voice, so familiar, so carefree and so caring, broke down all the past minutes' defenses..

"Amira, what's going on?... Where are you?"

"Mono," she replied, her voice still strained with tears. "W-Where the Dunes..."

"I'll be right there."

Pressing the end button, she pulled her hand from her brother and wrapped her arms around herself.

"I... I'm sorry," the whisper came from the young, drunk man across from her. She didn't want whatever he would try to do, whatever comfort he might attempt to extend. It was a stunningly awful time to run into each other again.

"I... I have... John's coming... to get me, okay? You can... you can go... with your friends, please, I just..."

"Okay. I'm sorry. I tried to_"

"I know. Just... please, Damir."

"Okay."

There were others in Mono, like the men that were taken away by the Prisma. But she wouldn't leave the spot she stood in, until she knew she was going home.

((GALLAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAN :'( ))
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Sun Aug 26, 2012 7:17 am

((MOFO MASTER PHONE TYPE BEFORE I LOSE MYSELF TO SKYRIM AGAIN))

Allan cried into Gale's shoulder until there was nothing left inside of him. His words long ago muted by Allan's own thick walls, that or his friend finally stopped talking, the only reassurance of Gale's presence being his arms warped around Allan's shoulders. The smaller man was trembling, either from cold or fear, he was not sure. He had cried on Gale's arms for what felt like an eternity and he was rapidly growing tired. He hadn't slept last night at all, he knew that much. Or the night before. Or the night before that one. Allan couldn't remember the last time he had a good sleep. He felt that now would be a good time to claim it, his tears temporarily distracting him from his empty stomach. 

With exhausted arms, Allan slowly removed Gale's arms from around his torso, his face dirty and sticky with dried tears. He still didn't dare to look at his friend in the face. Allan could feel in his bones that Gale knew what was happening but was simply giving Allan a chance for him to explain himself. He didn't want to think about it anymore. It pained him to do it. The years that had taken them to build their friendship were quickly overruled by 7 months of Allan's silence. It has only been seven months since he became Ginou. And it only took seven months for her to destroy Allan inside out in order to replace him for another person; a person Allan didn't want to be. 

"Thank you," was all Allan could mutter after hours of silence. He was not going to ask Gale to leave. No. He had become too dependent on his presence to just let him go. Allan knew that it wasn't healthy, but then again, he was aware of his problems more than he sometimes gave himself credit for. He just wasn't aware of all of them yet. Allan knew that at some point of his life there was a breaking point. Perhaps it was around his father's death. Or his mother's. Or his sisters'. Or maybe they all contributed. But that breaking point was so clear in Allan's head, so decisive; it's as if there were two Allan's.

Allan stood up from the floor with a grace and swiftness that has been forced into him since he was a toddler. He walled the few steps it took to reach the front door--one, two, three, four, five--and opened it, standing next to it like a doorman. Something in Allan was completely shut off as he spoke to Gale. "You should better go. Now it's not a good time. I'm tired, obviously, so maybe tomorrow we can do something. Something fun. Is that alright?" 

It was as if nothing had happened before. No tears, no pain, no nothing. Another case of Allan changing the subject perhaps. 

---

Emilia glared at the red eyed man with the same hatred she looked at the other Monos. How did he dare to speak to her that way about her family? Emilia knew that arguing with this man--this Mono--would he a waste of time; it's not like those poor bastards could afford proper schools to teach their children logical thinking. Emilia waited outside until the Prismas took off with the Monos that almost attacked her and her friend. Amira. For a minute there--for several minutes, actually--, Emilia had forgotten completely about Amira's presence. She turned around to see if she was still there. 

The Sunshiner frowned at the sight of her friend frightened and crying against the wall. Amira was usually so brigt and so strong. Seeing her like this made Emilia's heart shrink. She walked up to Amira, pushed Damir aside (certain that he was only making her cry more) and immediately gave her what Emilia felt was an uninvited hug. "I was so scared for you," she said, and she meant it. "Come on, then. The Prismas are giving us a ride back home. You can stay with me if you want to, alright? John can pick you up there. We'll be fine."

---

Max shook his head as the Meddler pushed past Damir to get to her friend. Every time this happened, Max knew the next days would be difficult for the people in Mono. Once the Prismas came in to save a poor, lost, ignorant Meddler, everyone in Mono suddenly looked guilty of something and people would have to struggle for weeks to get things like food or coffee or even water. It was all so fucking unfair. They should make a law where hey forbid Meddlers to come into Mono, just as they forbade them to get into the Sunshine Medley. Why not just start a fucking Apartheid already? 

He took Damir's shoulder in one strong grip of his hand and pulled him away from Amira, almost shoving him into a bus that was heading towards the beginning of the immigrant side of Mono, which was known as the Little Palette. He didn't do as much as grunt as he did so. Max was pissed. Meeting with Meddlers always got him in a bad mood. Not once in his entire life had he seen a Meddler that actually meant to do good, and he knew he should stop expecting for someone different to come along. The bus was empty this time around. Damir had time to snap out of his lethargy and obvious drunken state to talk to Kameran and she seemed to be in a good enough mood to follow the conversation. Max smirked to himself. That girl could fight. She looked like a little boy, but she was able to kick your ass like a grown woman. She just needed the heels with poisoned tips and she was about done. He knew it would be right to recruit her. Tonight, at the bar, all the new recruits would have a taste of what their life was going to be from now on. First the good. And later, the bad. 

Max wasn't stupid. He knew that people didn't want to get mixed in with any of the gangs. That's why baiting was necessary. Damir was easy, though. Show him alcohol and a bottle of pills and he'd do anything for you. Kameran was immature and naive enough to jump into the idea without testing the waters first. And she already said yes. There was no turning back now. Max smiled at the thought of getting to the bar, La Rue, it was called. He owned it, yes, but that wasn't the reason why it was his favorite place in the entire city. He just loved the ambient. Plus, he absolute loved the sight of the red haired waitress that had worked there since the very beginning. And the singer. That woman truly had talent and he was so thankful that he had found Ditte. She was not only beautiful, but she also had a mother with talent that had a lot to help with in Red Eye. She was such a loving woman, that Juliette, or as she liked to call herself, Aria.

Max turned to look at Damir having a pleasant conversation with his new future partner in crime. Aria would be a great guardian for the guy. They had only known each other for a few hours, in fact, Max was sure that Damir didn't know what his name was, but the gang leader could tell that the alcoholic was a good person. You know, in spite of the obvious flaws. 

---

Ditte wiped her forehead with her hand as she finished rearranging the tables and chairs. Tonight was going to be for the new recruits, so everything had to look good and clean. The first task she had put on herself to accomplish that day was to organize the alcohol bottles by alcohol percentage, color, and bottle shape. The shelves were looking good and she was proud. She cleaned the counters and all the glasses and blenders, which reminded her that she had to go buy fruit from the underground market for the cocktails. Ditte frowned as she swept the floor one last time before mopping it. These people were all ready to get drunk and would mess up the place she had worked on so hard to keep clean. 

"Maxie!" Ditte rolled her eyes as she heard her mother's voice coming from the back stairs. "Maxie! Is that you?" Ditte took the mop from a corner of the room and started to focus in the task at hand, determined to swallow all the terrible comments that were flowing to her mind at the moment. The older woman was on the base of the stairs and her face was clouded with a more than obvious disappointment at the sight of her daughter. "Je pensais avoir atteint, Max."

Ditte kept her gaze on the floor as she continued mopping. "Non. Sorry to disappoint you. Hey, can you not step on the floor? I'm cleaning it. You can wait. In fact, move. Get out of the middle and go back to your room and get ready. Maximillian will be here anytime and you have to get ready for tonight." 

As Ditte predicted, Aria's face relaxed into a smile at the thought of singing in front of a screaming crowd tonight. The new recruits were the woman's favorite crowd; they were new at all the red sighting and all the singing. Aria felt as if she was 17 again. The door opened behind her, and Ditte turned around to see who was dumb enough to enter a Red Eye owned bar without the leader's permission. It was indeed the leader and Ditte could not contain a groan of disdain as she saw he wasn't alone. Aria waved at Max with an enthusiasm Ditte never saw or experienced first-hand. 

"Maxie!" Aria squeaked in her heavy--even heavier than her daughter's--French accent. Max waved back with a nondescript smile on his face, as always. Aria ran all the way from the stairs to Max's arms, stepping on Ditte's newly cleaned floor. "Hey!" she protested, but it obviously fell on deaf ears. "Maman! Maman! Get back to your room and get ready, I'm working!" 

Ditte left the mop resting against the counter and took Aria by the shoulders, dragging her away from their boss and into the staircase, nagging at her in their native language all the while. "And do not come down until you are ready, okay?" Those were the last words Ditte said to her mother before pushing her up the stairs and into her apartment. Once she returned, she saw Max behind the counter, talking to his new employees and serving the older man a drink. Ditte shook her head. 

"Hey. Hey, Papier! Stop messing around with my shelves! And what are you doing serving him another cup, I can smell from here that he's already drunk." Ditte walked up to Max and snatched the bottle of Amber from his hand, doing the same with the new recruit's recently filled cup. She emptied the cup down the drainer of the sink and placed the bottle of Amber back on its spot on the shelf. She knew that Max was staring at her, amused. Ogling, is a better word. But she was used to it enough to not let it bug her. 

"Guys, this is Ditte Coco. She is the manager of this place and your new supervisor." Ditte cringed at the word supervisor. She didn't have time for that. "Ditte, these are Kameran and Damir. Kameran's a girl and she's 14, don't worry. And Damir, well, he needs the job."

"If they're working for you, of course they need the job." Max chuckled. Ditte turned to face both Damir and Kameran and looked at them dead in the eye. "Listen you two. This is not a game. You could die. You have until tomorrow to make a choice: take it or leave it. Either way it will end bad for you. Choose the one that will cause less damage. And think about it. Also, no alcohol for either of you from now in. You are fourteen and you are an alcoholic. You also need a bath."
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Sun Aug 26, 2012 12:56 pm

((SOMUCHLOVE. SO MUCH. YOU ARE A MASTER. I BOW TO YOUR MASTERDOM OF PHONE-TYPING AND WRITING BEAUTIFUL BEAUTY OH MY GAWWWWD.))

Amira slunk further into herself as she fused further into the wall. She couldn't entirely perceive any of Damir's further clumsy attempts to comfort her, drunkenly stumbling over his words, and she was far from that other wall regardless, the seven-foot gap between them a canyon.

Yet when arms came around her, alabaster-clear and feminine, her trembling ceased and she felt coated in sleet. The ignorant girl's words immediately melted the ice in a fury of lava bursting from within her.

And her own arms shot out at the girl, shoving her away with all the strength she thought she'd lost in the last few moments. Just as surprisingly, her voice rose to an unthinkable height.

"I will not ride with those corrupt bastards((Prismainsultword;Litmus?)) and I will not stay with you! I cannot believe you or those other Meddler assholes. I don't care if a million Monos approach me now, I'm waiting here. You're a privileged, clueless, airheaded little girl and I am sick of your ignorance. You ride home with your Litmus-wearing sadists. I hope their cars are clean enough for you."

She stepped out of the alley, her stomach churning at the sight of the stained ground and her disgust with the girl in her expensive colors.
---
Damir strained to tell Amira absolutely anything that would comfort her, but he knew there really weren't any words that would improve it. He saw the firelily tint of her dress, the saltwater running down her face, the bruises forming on her shoulders. He wanted to take these horrific things from her, but something beyond even the seven feet of ground between them and his unkempt grey clothes kept him from coming any closer.

He couldn't determine his actual coherence when he spoke or what he could do beyond standing against the wall. Before he could say another word, move another half-inch in her direction, the red-eyed man peeled him from the wall, nearly shoving him, somewhat painfully, toward incoming bus. They boarded, just in time to hear the girl's voice rise. He was stricken by the sheer anger in that voice, in the few words he manged to catch before the driver started again, eager to leave the treacherous streets of Mono.

"Hey... Mimi. You going to be okay?"

He closed his eyes, leaning his face against the window, attempting to cool his new injuries; it was challenging, without the usual materials. He didn't trust Kameran enough to pull out the pills regardless.

"You kind of just got your ass kicked by a few Dunes. I mean, nice effort, but..."

"Why... are you... and your brother so... obsessed. With talking."

"I'm not. Really. But um, that seemed a little intense for you."

For me...

"Yeah."

The ride was uncomfortable, as both road and vehicle were not kept well.

"A little... personal?"

Another knock of the window against his head made him change his posture, but he still refused to look at the girl beside him.

"Kameran, I'm tired, just give me... a few minutes, please..."

"That was the girl. Wow. The one who kicked you out."

"It wasn't her house... and... I... can we not... talk about this?"

"God, this place is f-cked up."

He leaned closer to the wall of the seat, satisfied with the subject change but still unwilling to give into any sort of discussion. The horror of Mono and every facet of its existence, including its brutal external and internal conflicts, rivalries, were not his usual pick. He felt another piece of the gray backdrop, a minimal figure in the background of its massive landscape, hidden behind black curtains and dimly lit refrigerators, cupboards, bathroom medicine cabinets. He was aware of the awful circumstances of those around him, and every so often, reaching out to them was possible. Yet most of the time, he found himself in his own pebble rolling down the steep slope of Mono, of Chrom, half-asleep, about to be crushed by the avalanche he'd broken from in the first place.

"And that Meddler's lipstick. Did you see her? What an idiot."

"Did you... with the kni_"

"I imagine you saw what was happening. Hence, the street-crossing. But you're probably pretty drunk so, you know."

"Did they..."

"The Litmus bastards caused way more second-degree color violations than I did. I was going to pull it on them, but then again."

The girl lowered her voice.

"I couldn't possibly compromise a fantastic opportunity like this."

"Kameran... who is..."

"I'm sure you'll find out in due time."

He sighed, and opened his eyes, seeing the neighbor beside him, a smothered anger in her gaze veiled lightly by her usual self-satisfaction. Drowsiness had taken over him and threatened to conclude his brief escape.
---
Kameran gazed upon the decrepit building and inhaled its signature monochrome colorization. She had seen a lot of Chrom in her young years, a lot more of it than anyone she knew her age, but this building was stunning. It was the palest, sandy gainsboro, with all the appearance of a structure falling apart.

Yet they passed through the entrance, and they gave their names, and the the lights, the stage, the colors of the bottles on the shelves. She was not usually impressed by displays like this, but here, knowing who owned this place. After what she'd already done to get here, this seemed like some sort of progress.

((edittobedone))


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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Sun Aug 26, 2012 10:27 pm

((You are absolutely amazing, Sifu Diana! Teach me the ways of the phone type.))

Gale merely nodded upon hearing Allan thank him. He was a little surprised to see how the smaller man seemed to pull himself together in a matter of seconds. He watched that thin frame rise off the ground and take a few nimble steps to his door. And then it asked him to leave. It was as if it wasn't even Allan anymore.

But this wasn't the first time Gale had seen him do this. It had a occurred on and off for the last few months. He didn't even let it shock him this time. He just took it in stride.

He stood up and brushed off the legs of his pants. He left his handkerchief on Allan's counter and made his way to the door. "All right, then," he said. He cracked a crooked smile and fixed the newsboy cap on his head again. "That sounds good to me." He playfully ruffled Allan's hair, "I'll be at my place if you need me. See y'around, kid." And with that, he was off down the hallway, ready to take the three flights of stairs up to his apartment.

---

Callan had waited and waited. It had been over an hour. This was not the first time Ares had gotten completely smashed and hurt her. And then cried. She knew it was wrong to stay with him. Wrong to just take it, but she still loved him. And she hated herself for it. It made her feel weak. He made her feel alone. And she knew that no one could help her. She never spoke to anyone, so why would anyone even try?

But the moment had finally come. Ares had cried himself to sleep in her arms. She had positioned him on the bed, helping him onto his side of the mattress, whispering to him all the while that everything was all right. That she forgave him. It was all only half true, but it was enough to pacify him. She sat there with his head resting on her thigh. The last few sobs escaped his lips, lowering in intensity every time she combed her fingers through his thick, dark hair. His breaths became deeper and slower and he slipped away into unconsciousness. She stayed for a few minutes to ensure that he was really asleep and then she slowly and carefully replaced her leg with a pillow for his head.

His face lost its anger and ferocity when he slept. He looked like the way he did when he decided to grace her with his kindness. She knew that he was terrible when his rage consumed him, but when he was tender and devoted, when he loved her he was a human being without whom she could not picture her life. He had become her everything and she was obligated to take him all the time, for better or for worse. She hoped that maybe one day he would decide to let all of his jealousy and choler go, and all that would be left was the warmhearted man she lived for. And then nothing would be wrong about what they had. And she could be happy.

She kissed his forehead and whispered, "I love you," then made her to the bathroom. She tossed three painkillers into her mouth, two too many, and swallowed them without any water. Her throat felt thick as they struggled down her esophagus. She rummaged quietly through her dresser drawers, finding new clothes. Black wide-cut pants and a black long-sleeved shirt with a red satin collar. Just as she draped the garments over her arm, she heard her cell phone vibrate. The caller ID read Ginny. There was no way she could talk to Ginevra right now. No way. She let it go to voicemail.

The yellow heels made no noise on the floor as she softly placed them in the bottom of a spacious closet in the bedroom. She stripped down to her undergarments and donned her fresh, mostly black ensemble. The red collar was really just to intimidate. She knew what people could get like where she was about to go. She plucked a pair of black knee-high boots with thick, square heels a few inches high from the closet and carried them downstairs after switching off the lights. Her socked feet padded silently downstairs. When she reached the lower level, she painted her eyes with dark colors that brought out the gold in her irises and tinted her lips a darker color.

It was time for little adventure by herself. She snuck out of the large apartment and onto the sidewalk. She got herself into the subway and took the train out to the lower part of Chrom. Toward her previous home in Sunshine Medley. But she would stop short in Mono for a little darkness and comfort in liquid courage.

Callan knew this part of town better than any girl of her upbringing should have. She steeled her eyes and squared her shoulders as she walked to make herself look intimidating. Her expression was almost hostile and her walk was almost a strut.

She recalled her first run-in with the Grey Scheme. Callan had grown up with enough money to get whatever she wanted and then some. And her parents were raising her to be as wealthy as they were. She was to marry a childhood friend of hers when she was old enough. His family was also extravagantly well-off. And he was like her brother. And she resented the fact that he was fine with his fate being decided by their families. And she resented her mother and father for forcing her into a lifestyle she had no interest in.

She began to study sociology and psychology. With these studies came an interest in gang activities in Chrom, particularly in Mono. She wanted to go into the city and see all of it for herself. Maybe help some young people find their own ways. Better ways than putting themselves at risk all the time. Her parents threatened to cut her off if she went through with her plans and she left anyway. Her perfect sister, Ginevra, could do more than fulfill their expectations. She didn’t need them if they didn’t want her the way she was. She had finished her secondary schooling early and had plenty of time to apply to universities. She needed a new home and a job. So she left when she was sixteen years old and milled around Mono, not wanting to squander the money she had saved on a nice place to live. It was for college.

After a while, she got a job as a waitress at a little hole-in-the-wall restaurant. It paid the bills and barely covered food, but that didn’t matter. She got by with as little as possible. And she ran into gangs every once in a while. And on more than one occasion, she had been offered a place in a gang. She always declined as politely as possible, but managed to make a few friends here and there that were gang members. She was happier eking out her living this way. She had had enough striving for color. The monochrome was a beautiful and inviting change. But after a while she met someone who was involved with the gangs who just seemed... intriguing. Something else. He was older. He lived dealing colors between gangs and on occasion indulging himself with Sepia. He was handsome, kind and successful. He didn’t ask much of her, only that she be there for him when he needed her. And he did the same in return.

She learned that dealing wasn’t his only game. That he was also trying his hand at advertising, but he didn’t dedicate a lot of time to it. They learned about one another. Spent time together. Fell in love. But Callan didn’t want any part in the gangs from Mono. She wanted to live quietly. He wanted to live with her. Said he wanted to give up dealing, but he needed S. She helped him get clean. Held his desperate convulsing frame as his every molecule begged for a fix. Dabbed his sweating forehead. Took care of him until it was all out of his system. Helped him stop going near where he might find it. Put him back on his feet. He dealt less and worked more. Got money.

He escaped Mono and took her with him. They built a life together. Ares bought them a big apartment in the Bloom district. Started buying her a lot of nice things and she felt guilty not accepting them. The only thing she refused to let him pay for was her schooling. She was determined to pay that for herself. And save up as much as she could to start helping him pay for the apartment. And she did. But in the last year, he had become jealous and possessive. And she had let him. She needed him and, though he didn’t always show it, he needed her, too. They checked one another.

And so she made her way to a dilapidated apartment complex where Ares had taken her before. The singer's voice might just take her away and the drinks might just try to drown her in the music. And that would be fine. Just fine. She knocked on the door to enter. "Name?"

"Cal Kanicus." The man behind the door opened it.

She walked in and took a seat at the bar. When the bartender noticed her, she ordered a shot of tequila to start.
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Mon Aug 27, 2012 11:16 pm

Kameran hadn't seen this much color, beyond dealings, for at least two years. It was a welcome change; she thought of the markers she kept stashed at the bottom of her little-used backpack, the only colored belonging she refused to sell.

She watched as an elegant woman lose all her composure, throwing herself enthusiastically at the gang leader; she suppressed a snicker, surprised that anyone, let alone this colorful Frenchwoman. A younger woman with a mop, her features reflecting the more appealing of her elder, pulled the overeager "Maxie"-greeting woman toward the stairs, grumbling all the way up. They thoroughly interested her, and she couldn't help but smirk a little at the inkling of whatever relationship she saw between Max and the older woman.

With little deliberation she approached the bar with the two men in her company, curious and enthused at whatever discoveries she'd certainly make about Red Eye and their mysterious leader tonight, half-prepared to order a drink herself.
---
Damir had satiated his neighbor with whatever details he felt he could expose to her about himself and the young woman in the alley across from their apartments. Just barely grazing the surface of everything he could have possibly exposed. The way she'd spoken to him the last time he'd seen her. When she took him to the garden she kept Her and her brother had more in common than either of them would ever care to admit, at least from his experience.

When they arrived at the headquarters, he tried to alert himself further, open his eyes wider, keep pace with Kameran and the man from Red Eye, keep the images just ahead of him from wobbling ever-so-slightly. When they entered La Rue, he blinked in the illumination reflecting off the plethora of hues among and around and behind the bar. The scent of soap from the floor and the liquid about to flow drew him partly from his stupor.

By the staircase in the corner of the room, he spotted the one holding the source of the soap. A young woman, mopping up, probably preparing for a mess. Her hair was the brightest red he had ever seen and the scowl on her face, even from across the room, did nothing to detract from her attractiveness.

Her image was suddenly replaced by a blur of another woman who leaped into the arms of the man just beside him. His reverie restored, he nearly fell at the force of their particularly one-sided embrace. Maxie... he thought. Was that really his name? The other woman's voice now rang out, lower with a milder accent than Maxie's friend. Only a couple of seconds passed before he found Max and Kameran urging him toward the bar; he willingly padded alongside them, viewing the well-stocked shelves thirstily. The moments it took for the man to sneak behind the counter and begin to pour a glass seemed eons longer than it actually could have been.

He received the glass as if it were the first drink of anything he'd had in weeks, the girl's voice overcome by a film of anticipation, but the feeling was soon stolen as the glass was snatched from his hand by the angry girl. He looked like his inner goddess had just had her ice cream taken away. Oh, and alcohol. He would have looked at her again, but his gaze just met the dampened floor.

"Guys, this is Ditte Coco. She is the manager of this place and your new supervisor..."

Ditte Coco. Finally, he ventured to look at her again. Her hair was even brighter up close, her eyes the shade of a night sky in Ocean Scheme. I think of these things even when I'm drunk. That's what I do. I'm Damir. I also think all the metaphors in Sunlight when I look at my life and look at my choices. He didn't notice that he wasn't the only one looking. She was the manager. Their supervisor. In Red Eye.

When she aimed her pointed gaze away from the girl beside him and then himself he couldn't force himself to look away. leaving. Dying. Damage. One of them, probably him, did need to bathe. He did look away then, thinking of the floor and the Amber she'd drained just moments ago; it was expensive, but there was clearly enough of it where they were.

"I'm not an alcoholic," he mumbled, mostly to himself, before sitting down at one of the tables away from the other three.
---
Kameran did not respond to Max's comment about her gender and age, which had always been what she'd considered a fortunate ambiguity that could have (but likely would not have) been an advantage for her here. Her obvious youth was rather aggravating most of the time, yet this was quickly becoming one of its more memorable incidences.

The serious subjects the woman mentioned were turned over carefully within the girl's head and she stored them away to consider when she was not attempting to have at least one drink. She wouldn't get wasted like her alcoholic neighbor, the way her brother expected her to handle alcohol. This was a somewhat unique occasion.

"I did practically everything anyone else did to get here, I expect the same treatment as any other recruit. And I guarantee you, I can definitely hold my liquor better than him," she said, gesturing to her withdrawing neighbor. She had to reserve some times to argue things that weren't arguing, to blow off the rest of her immaturity, to expel whatever youth that still remained in her. It didn't matter who Ditte was to her now, the impression she would leave. She would definitely leave a million other impressions in the duration of her interaction with Red Eye.
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Wed Aug 29, 2012 3:49 am

The tiny man shook his head as soon as Gale's hand stopped touching his hair. As the taller man walked past him and into the hallway, Allan made sure to give him a quick, slightly hypocritical smile. For some reason this kind of contact with Gale was not welcome. Not because he didn't appreciate it. He did, honestly. It just wasn't complete. It wasn't enough. Allan could count with one hand the times he and Gale had hugged, and even those times were completely impersonal or covered with a veil of friendship and false brotherhood. This moment, the one they had not an hour ago, was probably the most intimate thing they had done together. And boy, was it pathetic. Allan rolled his eyes and closed the door behind Gale, making sure to wave the man goodbye and remind him of their plans for tomorrow.

Allan turned around and went directly to his bedroom, were the mess from the morning was still prevalent. Blood on the white sheets--and shoes, much to his disay--, his clothes were laying sloppily in the corner, the mattress was ruined and he was sure he'd have to get another one (God forbid the Prismas make a surprise visit), and then there was his makeup scattered all over the floor next to the mirror. The man shook his head.

"Oh, Allan," he muttered to himself. "What are we gonna do with you, Allan?" He caught a glimpse of his body in the mirror, and the ghost of a satisfied smile crept its way across his face. He nodded at the reflection in approval. The shape of his body was just like he wanted it to be. Thin, slender, delicate. He didn't even mind being hungry anymore, Allan, however, would disagree. He had stopped that part of himself from buying food by keeping him busy.

The young man shuddered at his own thoughts. What was he doing talking about himself as if he were another person? No. No, no, no. It was worse than that. For a minute there he was certain he wasn't himself. Either way, Allan didn't feel like thinking about it too much. It scared him; the truth scared him. Something wasn't right in his brain, he knew that, but he wasn't too keen on finding out what was that loose screw. Another glance to the mirror and Allan no longer saw a thin, slender, delicate man. He saw the embodiment of misery and poverty. He had to go out and eat something.

Perhaps drink some coffee, get an energy drink from one of the gangs, anything to keep him awake through the day. He wasn't supposed to go to the Dunes' headquarters until next week, after all, so he might as well recover his previous sleep schedule. Allan promptly took the first gray tee shirt he found in his closet and threw it on. For a second he considered changing from his pajama sweatpants to something else, but then again, it's not like people in Mono gave a damn about others' outfits. A pair of black snickers, his backpack--he was sure he still had some money in there--and glasses would have to do. He didn't have time to find his contacts anyway, and the glasses were already lying on the night stand.

Allan ran out of his apartment, down the hall until he reached the emergency exit door. He gave a huge sigh of relief as he found that Gale was only on the top of the first staircase. He tried his best to fight the moist covering his eyes and swallow the lump in his throat. "Or... Or we can go now... I'm hungry. I am, and there's nothing to eat at home so... I mean, you don't have to come. I can go on my own, but I'd really like it if you could come with me, Gale. And maybe we can talk about things, yeah? We should... We should talk about things. We have many, many things to catch up on."

---

Max wasn't blind. Nor was he stupid. He knew very well that he and Ditte didn't have a chance. He has been interested in Ditte for such a long time, and their pseudo-friendship (as cracked as an old china) had earned her an important position within the organization. He trusted Ditte enough to let her call him "Papier", or "paper" in French. No one would be able to get away with that alive. But the relationship they held, including her mother, was something more of a small family than anything else. A small, extremely broken and twisted family, that is.

The young woman had made it very clear in the past; "I will not date you. Je ne t'aime pas." Plus, the relationship Max currently held with her mother wasn't about to help the situation. But still, Max was a man who knew his way around negative situations. He was certain that one day Ditte would come around and realize that he was, after all, her savior and that she owed her very comfortable lifestyle to him and him only. So when other men dared to stick their eyes on Max's employee, the gang leader took it a little more personal than he knew he should. He shook off Damir's stupid face as him simply being drunk, new and stupid.

"Well, either way, from now on you'll have to answer to her. Everything you exchange with other gangs or people will have to go through her. She's the one that will give you the merchandise, she's the one that will tell you everything you need to know and, basically, will also answer for you in case you screw up badly. Consider her your boss. Not even what I say to you weighs more than her word.

"Before you ask why," Max continued, "I have come to learn that delegating responsibilities to your employees is what makes a business successful. If it's too centered it falls apart. I trust Ditte and her mother with my life, and I expect all my employees to trust them too. You should be thankful that she is the one who'll be looking after you too, because it means I trust you." Max kept on with his speech about Red Eye's inner workings and was so lost into his words that he barely noticed the bell at the door ringing.

---

Ditte smirked. "The same treatment? As the others? If you had the same treatment as the others, little girl, you would not be sitting here, talking to me, or next to the blasted gang leader. You just heard him put you under my charge, and under it you will stay. And listen, boy, you are an alcoholic. You are eyeing those bottles as if they were water. That is unhealthy. And, Papier, I will not be working with these two pin heads if one is constantly drunk and the other one is going down the same road."

Ditte turned from the two new recruits, making sure to look as decided and indignant as possible while Max began with his speech. She began to wash already clean glasses only to keep herself from yelling at Max. She could not believe he had done that to her. She had told him several times before that she did not want to partake on any of the gang's business beyond managing La Rue and now he was leaving her in charge of two new good-for-nothing newbies that had no hopes in this organization beyond the first week. Perhaps the girl had a chance, Ditte thought. But that other guy? Damir? Ditte actually believed he had come here to just end his life. She was certain he would not survive past the first three days. But now it was on her shoulders to keep him alive. Ditte rolled her eyes as she silently prayed for the man to not have any family members that would miss him in any way.

The bell rang and the door opened and closed, but Max didn't say a word about it. Ditte left the glass she was cleaning on the drying pad and dried her hands with her apron. The woman standing on the doorway was not from Mono, she could tell. Fancy boots, nice red lace around the neck of her shirt, and even the cotton smelled expensive. "Bonaire" fabric all the way. Ditte raised an eyebrow and pursed her lips. Meddlers around these parts weren't really welcome, but this woman seemed to know her way around since she was able to find about La Rue. The young Frenchwoman walked her way to the newcomer and did not even bother to give her a smile. If there was something that waiting tables in France had taught her is that the client was always wrong.

"Excusez-moi, madame, mais il s'agit d'un événement privé. It is a private event. From a group living in La Petite Palette, the immigrant neighborhood. And Des Yeux Rouges... The Red Eye... You should leave, perhaps, oui, madame? Il est tard. Il est froid... It is dangerous to be here so late at night."
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Thu Aug 30, 2012 6:40 pm

Gale paused on the stairs, turning over his shoulder to look at Allan. He was surprised by the request, surprised that the Allan that he knew was back so soon. But he did not question it and tried to keep his thoughts from his expression. Tried to hide the relief that flooded his chest when he knew that Allan had come to his senses. And he allowed himself to hope that Allan might let him know what was going on. Perhaps he would discover what had caused his friend to change over the last few months.

He allowed an easy smile to grow across his face. He avoided reacting to the distress written all over Allan's face. The least he could do was pretend that the guy wasn't an open book.

"Yeah. Of course, sure," he said, walking down the stairs to stand by the smaller man on the landing. "Where would you like to go?"

---

Callan swirled the amber liquid in the shot glass as the tiny, fire-headed hostess spoke to her. Her mind easily picked through the French. She had taken French classes since the day she started her formal education as a five year-old in Sunshine Medley. Callan stared down into her small drink as she responded, her accent nearly perfect.

"Est-ce que vous pensez que j'ai peur?" she asked. The question was overlaid with the sound of her quiet, but somehow harsh and perhaps bitter laugh. "Because I'm not afraid. I found my way here and I have the money to pay for it. So, if you don't mind, I'd like to stay." She met the hostess' eyes, her gaze hard, only to see the judgement of a Monoite. She was just a Meddler to this woman, she supposed. But she would not be pushed around. Not in Mono, where she felt most at ease.

Callan raised her glass. "À votre santé," she muttered, "And thank you for your concern." She then knocked back the shot and placed the glass down on the bar, internally relishing in the burn as it slid down her throat.
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Thu Aug 30, 2012 11:14 pm

Kameran attempted to convey indifference toward the woman’s words. This was the least significant concern she could possibly bring to her new boss, yet she felt the strong urge to fight this evening. She glared straight at her stunning womanly face the entire time Max gave his speech. Delegation... Max hadn't seemed like the type to offer power to others when he had it. She hadn’t always followed the instructions of his orders to the very last detail, yet the disparity between the amount of money she made and the amount she returned to him had been realistic, at least. She couldn’t bring herself to entirely trust Max’s seemingly democratic enterprise nor his affections toward the woman’s mother and his attraction to the woman. The youth barely trusted herself; she nearly smirked at the thought of what the gang leader might find after a further extended, and official, professional relationship with her. Imperceptibly, her expression changed to a smirk, and she stood by the bar, just a few feet down from the woman and the two men, her hands in her pockets, one touching the handle of the just-wiped knife and the few goods she’d swept from her neighbor’s apartment before leaving, the other grazing the smooth surface of the tiny dispenser of flame.
The temptation of its ability had entered her mind yet again, but the spectrum of color surrounding her kept her from trying, at least for now. Instead, she pulled a cigarette from the pocket of swiped goods and exaggerated the time it took to light it again, not caring for the smell but again, the color of the light, the look of the smoke in exhalation. It would have to do for now.
---
Damir stared at the table, straining not to fixate upon the bar or the woman who tended the entire business, it seemed, perhaps more than even Maxie or Max or whoever the recruiting man was. There was no feeling of “trust” between himself and the people who would populate the bar. But he would do as they asked of him. As much as he might not have wanted to admit it, there was no possible way for him to deny his own inability to protect himself. He was certain that the prior afternoon had given him the last envelope he’d receive, that the walk home, the bottle and the pills he’d nearly finished off were all that he would need.
But now he was here. The woman, his boss now, was right—she’d probably been here for a long time. She’d probably seen sad sacks like himself lose their lives on their first nights attempting to do what was asked of them. He couldn’t really imagine what life here was like. The first other customer was dressed in black and red—and there was red, inside of the bar. The woman wearing it was too subtle to be a Meddler—they only wore black for particular occasions. They preferred white, even then. His entire world had been in and out of Mono’s black dilution in the previous years. The woman could have been from Bloom. He remembered Bloom quite distinctly; it was the subtlest of the colored districts, but only by the choice of its residents.
Closing his eyes, he knew the way the buildings looked as though they had been built years before Chrom had even existed; the silvers and the paler shades of salmon, lavender, rich violets and seafoam greens. The grass was literally the greenest in the city, even the rooftops were coated in it. Produce was grown in Bloom. Everything grew in Bloom.
Sunflowers sprung up in the center of parks, nestled comfortably among the trees; most trees were traditional broadleaves with strong, brown trunks. Only a few rainbow eucalyptus, planted sparingly. The benches in their parks were constructed entirely of recycled material.
He’d watched one of those sunflowers grow by a tree, holding the hand of its gardener. And he’d watched it climb the tree, reaching for the light. And as it grew neglected, as he began to visit the park on his own, he watched the flower stop its striving and begin to wither toward the ground. The last time he had been there, only a shadow, a thin, crackling stem, remained, its darkness standing out against the backdrop of what seemed to be bushes of marigolds beginning to grow.
Slowly, he removed himself from the seat, leaning against the table before pushing himself forward.
“Um… Ditte, right? I see that you’re busy, but… I… If you would just… just… one. I promise. I will not have anymore. The entire night.”
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Mon Sep 03, 2012 7:37 am

((f*ck yes I did it. On the phone. Again.))

The older man held Gale's gaze as he climbed down the stairs. Once they were standing before each other, Allan nodded towards the stairs and began to climb his way down, Gale following behind. "We could go to The Toucan. It's a pretty fancy place, but I have saved some money and I can afford it. I mean, it's on me. Seriously. And, yeah, I hope you don't mind."

The fifteen floor descent was completely traveled in silence. It was not an awkward silence, though. It wasn't filled with the anxiety of Allan's suffocating secret. This time he simply didn't care about it, he even felt comfortable enough to talk about. Except, obviously, he wouldn't. Allan held his backpack in place just in case someone had the awful idea of robbing them on their way there. It was already getting dark, and he could almost guarantee that there would be another shooting tonight. Hopefully, it wouldn't be in the 169th street. The whole way to "The Toucan" was an oddly calm one. The two friends talked to each other like they hadn't in months--and what really felt like years. Allan still made sure to steer the conversation away from his job or his bruises and tried to focus all the topics on Gale.

The two men reached their destination by the time the moon was high above in the sky. "The Toucan" was a very nice place to eat, very family friendly and... Very, very romantic. Allan's blood fled from his face as he realized where they were standing. This place was the number one dating spot of Mono. He knew that. Gale knew that. Everyone knew that. Why in the hell didn't he stop him then? Allan thought that it would be best to not mentally kick himself for the major Freudian slip he'd just had. 

"We can go somewhere else," he said suddenly. "I was just thinking about the food when I suggested this place. We really can just go anywhere else. Anywhere is fine, dude, trust me. I mean, I think Hula Tuxedo is around the corner. Their coffee isn't as good, but I can get around it, really."

---

Ditte pursed her lips at the woman's response. She wasn't sure how in the hell Max hadn't noticed her when she entered but he didn't. But she was certain this Meddler wouldn't be allowed there, especially not with Max around to impede it. Just when she was about to reply to the unwanted costumer, Ditte heard the door behind the bar open. "Wait just a moment."

The young immigrant walked her way to the back of the room trough a door next to the sink, with a sign that read "only authorized personnel allowed". Ditte smiled at the sight of her coworkers--about 9 to 12 according to tonight's schedule--leaving their personal belongings on their respective lockers, all ready to work and mix drinks. One of them smiled back. "Tonight is recruitment night, right?"

"Oui. And the first two recruits are out there." Ditte rolled her eyes. "Max put me in charge of them."

"I thought you said you didn't want to have anything to do with that?" Interjected another. 

"I did. He did not listen. Didn't expect him too either. Nikos, you're in charge of the blender tonight. Lulú, you are helping him. The rest of you, you know what to do. D'accord?"

Ditte was able to recognize that, yes, she was a very capable leader and perhaps that's why Max had her in charge of those two knuckleheads. Her coworkers took their places almost immediately, cleaning up the kitchen (the only thing Ditte swore to not clean) and taking out the fruit they would need for the cocktails that night. Ditte made her way back to the bar to find that Max had left the two newbies alone to talk to that Meddler woman, probably putting her in her place. 

The first thing that caught her attention was her name being called by the sleepy, alcoholic bag of tears. 

Um… Ditte, right? I see that you’re busy, but… I… If you would just… just… one. I promise. I will not have anymore. The entire night.

Ditte snorted. 

"Do you think I'm stupid? Listen, you are not the first one to come in here asking for just 'one more drink'. You will not have just 'one more drink'. If you're gonna do this, and I am sure you will, you need to be at your best. Aware of what is happening around you, not this drowsy piece of shit I see before me. And you need to think on your own too. Sleep. Eat. Find another job to use as a cover for this one. This isn't as easy as it looks." Ditte walked the seven steps it took to reach the spot where Kameran was smoking her cigarette, confident that Ditte wouldn't be able to catch her. As soon as the older woman reached the girl, she snatched the cigarette from her mouth, threw it on the floor and stepped on it, finally pointing at a sign in the back of the room that showed the black silhouette of a cigarette and a bright red line crossing it diagonally. 

"No smoking, little girl."

---

Max took notice of the newcomer only when Ditte left her spot to meet her at the other end of the bar. He watched carefully how the two women interacted, and from Ditte's actions alone he could tell that this woman wasn't from Mono and she just actually got here. He waited until Ditte disappeared to the back of the place to approach the woman with the red collar linen. Red collar? Who is she trying to fool with this?

A red token among black clothes was the symbol of the Red Eye. In Max's case he had his eyes. Ditte had her naturally red hair, same as her mother. And the rest of the gang usually had a pair of earrings, a bow, a pair of shoes, socks, a clock, anything. But it was meant to be the only thing to stand out, because that what the Red Eye was about. 

"Hello," he didn't bother to smile when he looked at the woman, his face betraying his emotions a little more than he intended to. "I see you're new here. See, I'm Maximillian Coel. Owner of this establishment, and I believe my friend already told you this was a private event. Are you waiting for someone?" 

Yet seeing her up this close, he couldn't shake the feeling that he had seen her before. 
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Mon Sep 03, 2012 3:18 pm

Damir sighed, nearly wincing at the truth of the woman's words. Since he'd moved into his apartment, since he'd lost his parents, his jobs, his livelihood, strangers and acquaintances seemed to sift their words through filters of "sensitivity" and "positivity". Things would get better. He would see them again, how encouraging, when he also died. Kameran sharpened her her language with her sarcasm, never really honest, but cutting in a way that only made him sink lower into the bed and the floor he never really liked to leave.

Ditte was completely unlike those people. Her honesty was genuine, hard-won. She seemed comfortable driving those in the environment around her. He wanted to listen to her. But there was a great deal he doubted himself capable of doing. He'd long ago stopped attempting to portray himself as "okay". Everytime he honestly spoke it alienated someone. They shifted before him and offered those empty words he'd grown so tired of hearing.

"I don't like sleeping," he replied, though she'd walked away already, snatching the cigarette from Kameran, who didn't try to hide her actions at all. He watched as the young girl gave the woman her blankest, most homicidal stare. This was the only company he kept, and unwillingly at that.

He followed the woman when she left the girl, and attempted speaking again.

"I'm sorry. I realize I sound like an idiot. And look like shit and don't appear to care, but I just... what should I do? Really. I'm already here. Where does anyone go from this point?"
----

((may edit the Damir portion, but I certainly will finish other characters when I return later.))
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Sun Sep 09, 2012 12:25 am

Gale enjoyed the time he spent with Allan as they walked to the Toucan. It was like old times again. Allan wasn't distant or uncomfortable. He was the warm, talkative person who seemed to have gone into hiding over the past year. As they talked and caught up, Gale's eyes travelled from Allan to any alleys or passersby. This scheme had long since ceased to set him on edge, but he was smart enough to know to be watchful. It was better to be safe than sorry.

He saw all of the blood drain from Allan's face, leaving his already pale countenance stark white when they reached the Toucan. The smaller man relented in embarrassment upon realizing that he had walked his friend to the most popular date spot in Mono. Gale, of course, had known this since Allan mentioned the name of the restaurant at the apartment. He had agreed to go out of politeness. Perhaps it had slipped Allan's mind. It was all right. He would not make a big deal of it.

"It's cool, man, it's cool. This is fine, but it's up to you. We can go to either place."

---

Callan kept her cringe completely internal as her gold eyes met the red ones of the man addressing her. She would show no signs of weakness. She realized her mistake, walking in here with the red collar. Her original plan was using the red to keep herself safe on the walk from the subway station. But she forgot about how much trouble it might get her into here.

Stupid.

She fought and managed to stay the thickness from her tongue. The drink had gone to her head quickly and her mental processes were slowing in its wake. But she still recognized the man in front of her as Maximillian Coel the Red Eye gang leader, someone she had seen Ares with in the past. And he probably knew exactly what she was playing at. But it appeared had hadn't quite recognized her. And that was the only thing in her favor at the moment.

"No, Mr. Coel," she said, keeping her voice even as she tried to keep the annoyance and disappointment from it, "I'm not. Would you like me to leave?"
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Thu Sep 20, 2012 12:04 pm

Max finally let a satisfied smile crack across his face and nodded as the woman gave him her answer. An answer he already knew. "Normally," he began, turning to face the woman. "This wouldn't be a problem. See, La Rue is an open space. Anyone from any Scheme can come, tonight it's a problem, though, we are busy with..." Max saw Ditte shake her head from the corner of his eye. That could only mean one thing; this woman was so high up in the color scale that she probably possessed the power to rat them out to the authorities, and tonight of all nights that couldn't be done. Max watched Ditte disappear from his peripheral view to talk to the rookie.

He looked at Callan once again, his face even more apprehensive than before and this time he wasn't even trying to hide it. "Any Scheme except Sunshine, that is." Max said, his voice poisoned with contempt as he stared into Callan's golden eyes. Max moved to open the entrance door, the little bell jingling as he did so and tapped the shoulder of the large man blocking the street view. "Kevin, what the f*ck? Why did you let her in?"

"Coco gave me instructions; she said anyone who gives a name and she gave me her name."

Max turned to glare at Ditte as the red haired woman pressed her palm against her face. This was, after all, on her shoulders now that her managing wasn't at its peak during the most important night of the organization. This was, after all, the first meetings of the future saviors of Chrom. 

"It's not the first time she comes here, though," Kevin continued. "She's come here with that guy you like. The one with the weird name."

"Ares?"

"That one."

And then it hit him like it did Raven whenever she had a vision. Of course Max had seen her before. He was the quiet, stuck up girl Ares always had under his arm whenever he brought her to the important events. In fact, Max wondered why Ares wasn't present. That rat would be interested in finding out what was going on tonight at La Rue and it would make it easier for him to choose a side once and for all. 

"So you are Ares' girl, then! Well no wonder you look familiar! Are you sure you're not expecting him to come here?"

---

Ditte turned her attention away from the woman to answer her new co-worker's question. She still eyed the scene as it unfolded with seeping suspicion. Sunshiners like this woman rarely ever came here to have actual fun and when they came, it was to see Max. So it was only natural for Ditte to worry when the man didn't know who they were dealing with. She then turned to look at Damir, up and down, with a semi-scowl on her face; as if she was judging him. 

"I'm sorry. I realize I sound like an idiot. And look like shit and don't appear to care, but I just... what should I do? Really. I'm already here. Where does anyone go from this point?"

Ditte sighed. Of course he was clueless about what he's gotten himself into. He was probably dragged out here by his obviously more talented and frightfully young friend. She wasn't very thrilled at her new assignment either. She had too much on her own shoulders to be taking care of two different sort of idiots: one that had no idea how to handle himself on the streets and another one who thought she ruled them. Ditte decided to just tell him the truth. 

"You decide where to go from this point. You'll learn everything you must learn tonight, yes? It will be nice. There will be music, speeches, you'll meet new people. There'll be drinking, but not for you. From now on, I need you completely clean." Ditte turned to Kameran. "And you're not drinking tonight either."

The red haired woman resumed cleaning the counter as he waited for both sides of the protest. 
---

Allan frowned as he looked ahead to the restaurant, the dim lights hitting his face as they tried to cover the colors with black curtains, only letting space for the light to shine out to attract the couples that walked in the moonlight. It was ridiculous, really, that Allan had decided to go there with Gale of all people. It was a rushed decision he quickly regretted. The smaller man shook his head as he turned on his heels to walk to the opposite direction. 

"Nah, man. It's better if we go to the Tuxedo." He didn't want Gale noticing how his face turned into a very illegal shade of crimson. He tried to hide his face from any possible walkers that would take him to the Prismas, but the streets were so oddly empty that night he didn't worry as much as he should've. "I mean, that place is always full and tonight is club night. So I bet it's super... Full." 

Allan stopped his tracks once he was sure his face was back to normal and turned to see if Gale was following. "Seriously, the Tuxedo is better."

---

A woman in her late sixties opened the gigantic front door of the Bonaire mansion. Emilia didn't even regard her presence, she simply tossed her jacket on the old woman's arms and threw the yellow wig on the floor, her high heels  clacking against the marble floor as she made her way towards the main stairs. "Eugene, please make me a chamomile tea and bring it to my room, okay?"

Emilia's lower lip was still quivering from previous years but now a whole new wave of them threatened to fall. She didn't deserve the treatment Amira had given her. It was unfair. She was just trying to help and that was the only way she knew. But in less then seven seconds of making an ignorant mistake, Amira showed her true colors. 

Emilia reached her bedroom, kicked off her red heels and slammed the door shut, all so she could scream her lungs our as she made her way to her bed. She was angry. She felt betrayed. She was sad. Tears refused to leave her eyes as a wave of hot fury invaded her body. She needed to talk to someone and most of her friends were out of the country for the summer. She took the phone from her bedside table and dialed the only number she knew would be available. 

Only a couple of rings later, Emilia heard her friend's voice greeting her. "Ginevra! Hi, I've missed you so, so much, you have no idea! How is everything?"
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Thu Sep 20, 2012 2:18 pm

Callan nodded, “Yes, I’m with Ares. And yes, I’m positive he won’t be coming here tonight.” She looked up into those red eyes and concluded that he was a weasel who would try to stir up trouble for her just for the sake of stirring up trouble. And he would tell Ares. Max was a man who liked to see everything that wasn’t important to him burn. She supposed that it was to be expected of a gang leader. He wanted control.

She noted that he told her that he was the leader of Red Eye and then hesitated about telling her that this was a gang event. He probably assumed that she was stupid enough not to connect the dots. And it was a valid assumption, seeing as she was a Meddler who had come into La Rue wearing black and red.

She watched his stark white weaselly face get smug upon the mention of Ares and immediately thought that he knew. He knew that Ares was going to hurt her as soon as he found out. Maybe badly this time, as she had taken advantage of him. He would hate that and he would get angry, and transform into a berserker. And that made Max no better than a Meddler. He wanted to let her suffer because of something that was out of her control: Where she was born. She had never thought herself any better than anyone from any other scheme. And she stayed quiet to prevent others from judging her Sunshine heritage, but unbeknownst to her, it was often interpreted as frigidity and self-importance.

For a few seconds, Callan could not conceal the panic on her face or in her voice, which shook slightly as she said, “I’m s-sorry for intruding, Mr. Coel, sorry to have caused you trouble.” Her hand trembled as she placed the necessary bills and a tip on the table. “I was unaware that this event was related to your private affairs.” He would know that she meant Red Eye business. She took a second to steady herself before she got up, stopping all her shaking. Shoving in a cork and bottling her fear. She walked slowly to the door and the large man let her out.

She walked to the edge of the sidewalk and to a streetlamp post and swallowed to keep from vomiting. She leaned against it to steady herself. Panic rose inside of her again. How was she going to get back like this?

Her clumsy fingers fumbled around for her cell phone and she dialed the number of the only person she thought would be willing to help her. Lane.

---

Gale noticed the way Allan turned his face and smiled to himself. Allan was so easily embarrassed. He was awkward and blushing, and Gale found that endearing. “Mhmn,” he said, almost laughing, “Must be really full. The Tuxedo sounds good to me. Let’s go.”

---

Ginevra laid on the red satin sheets of her bed. She laid on her stomach, propped up on her elbows reviewing a fashion magazine. Her lower legs curled upward and her legs swung absently back and forth. Her hair fell in large, neat curls over her shoulder, concealing both her shoulder and her right cheek.

She heard the tune of her ring tone and reached across the bed, answering her phone. "Emilia! It's been such a long time since we last spoke, I've missed you!"

"Ginevra! Hi, I've missed you so, so much, you have no idea! How is everything?"

"Everything is going well! How are you, dear? We really do need to get together to catch up."
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:32 pm

"You decide where to go from this point. You'll learn everything you must learn tonight, yes? It will be nice. There will be music, speeches, you'll meet new people. There'll be drinking, but not for you. From now on, I need you completely clean. And you're not drinking tonight either."

"Completely clean? I... I didn't ask for this. I just... They just... I was pretty much literally dragged here, and... I mean, you don't even know me. You are... making assumptions about me. That may be inaccurate."

Damir's obvious intoxication was no great indicator of the character he'd like to portray to the woman before him, but at this point, he felt as though he were indeed searching for some sort of life-sustaining sustenance. Of all the places he'd thought he'd wind up, Red Eye wasn't one of them. He'd noticed the affiliation on the few occasions necessitating the leaving of his apartment for anything other than work, but he'd always thought he fell short of some requirement of theirs. The outline of activities for this night sounded unbearable without additional alcohol. But if she was "his boss", as it had been stated, he supposed his only option was to do what she said.

Kameran sharpened the glare that she was already projecting upon the women, already irked from having her cigarette taken away.

"You see, I understand keeping him away from the drinks, but seriously. I won't ask for much, and significantly more illegal things have happened in this place. I can handle it. Really."

The girl did not expect the woman to back down, but looking closer at her, and recalling the way in which Max interacted with her initially, she attempted to formulate her next response.
---
John almost never drove anywhere, but he understood the cliche of desperate times and desperate measures--in certain regards. Amira being stranded in Mono after what sounded like something traumatic was one of those times. He did not often break the law, at least not in the way he was now. He couldn't even bring himself to look at his compact car's speedometer as he entered Mono, only scanning the road and the sidewalks for wherever Amira was. She hadn't given him any other indication of her location, and in his panic, he'd forgotten to ask. Or rather, had not given her enough time to answer.

Just as he began to reach for his phone, a flash of color arrived in his peripheral vision and he screeched to a stop, almost simultaneously putting the vehicle into park and unlocking the doors, and pulling out his keys, sprinting the five feet to meet her.

Amira swallowed, and wiped her face with the back of her arm before shuffling woodenly toward the passenger's side of the car.

The only sound within the tiny vehicle was the engine's smooth start and the quiet shift in motion at John's cautious u-turn.

"I'll be okay," she whispered when they passed out of Mono, into a gradient of slate and blue.

"What... what happened?"

Liam laid down behind them, staring at his sister, his hollow gaze far too convincing. She closed her eyes.

"I... I'll explain when we get home," she murmured; she began to feel the bruises on her arms, the ones forming on her back, the scratches of the brick wall.
---
The single light in their apartment often flickered, particularly at night, and Lane always tried to keep their only lamp and other devices requiring outlets off or limited their usage. He had the lamp on, his laptop on its last twenty minutes of battery power, and at a mid-level brightness. His notes were still unclear. And the digital text was no easier to perceive. There were quizzes in every one of his classes the following day, and he had a routine he couldn't mess up to keep things fresh and confirm his memorization.

It didn't help that he knew Kameran was out, likely participating in some sort of gang activity. Both her and Damir. However adept she was at what she did, it did not reassure him. There was danger everywhere in Chrom, everywhere in Mono. Many died where they were, daily, from fights, from other messes. And even if the gangs weren't violent, the Prismas were. Ten PM wasn't even a safe time to be out, at least not from his perspective. And there was that man they were with. His mind raced ahead to all the gory possibilities of what world he was bringing his sister into; it was illogical, for the most part, but the worst did happen, and often.

His monitor darkened again from lack of activity and he clicked. The blueish pages of his textbook had turned into foamy waves on the screen, a piercing sensation beginning in his head, and he shut of the lamp and pulled the cord from the wall. The screen gained no clarity, and his notes remained a mystery.

As soon as his phone's ringtone shot out across the table, he shoved the notebook aside and clumsily reached for the bulky grey device, flipping it open to answer.

"Hello? Kameran?" he said immediately.
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:49 pm

Callan fought to keep her feet under her. She tried to straighten her posture upon hearing the voice on the other line. "Lane?" her voice was thick and laden with relief. "Oh, Lane, n-no, this is Callan. I... I-I need help. Please..."
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:52 pm

Lane was briefly dismayed by the lack of Kameran's contact, but soon regained his concern when he heard the muffled, slurring voice of his classmate. Callan--and she needed help. And didn't sound sober.

"Okay... I'll... I'll do what I can, Callan, where are you?" he began.
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PostSubject: Re: 169 Shades of Grey(Abeiya, Toph13139, and CS123)   Thu Sep 20, 2012 11:02 pm

Callan looked around to see if she could get her bearings enough to let him know where she was. "I'm.. four blocks south o-of the Tungsten sh-shtop on the subway. On the corner of sh-shadow and graphite."
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