[DVFP] Shine on, You Crazy (M 3.1 and 3.3, S 3.2)

edited January 4 in aw2e-dvfp
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Motley,

First off, let's see how things with Ziggy went down. You were trying to exact revenge on her for the crue you lost, but hoping not to incite war with The Fat Man, right? Roll+Hard. On a 10+, you and the crue marched into the the guard barracks and capped her with impunity. The Fat Man was disappointed with her pitifully short "stewadrship" and will be looking for someone new to hold the territory. On a 7-9, choose one:
- The Fat Man declares Ziggy is his to discipline, but he offers you 10 barter in exchange for your losses
- You took care of Ziggy, but The Fat Man isn't happy, and you better steer clear of Depot and Truk Stop until you make amends
On a miss, the Fat Man's not happy and Ziggy is still kicking. You had to ride out of Depot with a gang hot on your heels.

Last and her Zons, even Brace Win, have ridden off to Depot while you took the crue to The Irons. It's morning, still cool and barely light when you ride in. Dokken gets a few working on bikes and settling out trade with what barter you have, securing food and water, all the regular stuff a second-in-command does. All the things Sis did. The ride past the scorched hulk of the van where you burned Sis's body wasn't easy. Tendrils of smoke still drift up from the charred metal and rubber pyre.

As you head down the main shaft towards Diamond, there are a dozen eyes of miners who've stopped working. The borax is no longer a prize worth digging up, and now they watch you and yours with hungry eyes. A runner comes up from Diamond to tell you breathlessly that Esco's out today, but anything you need will be handled by JD or Sierra.

What do you do?
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    (Rolled: 2d6+2. Rolls: 4, 5. Total: 11)
  • edited December 2016
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    I look to Dokken, "Take care of where the crue will crash for the night, then meet up with me. I am going to find Sierra and see if she might know where I could find Preen. That little chum is going to squirm." I start to walk away but then stop and turn back, "Dokken, thanks for picking up the slack with Sis gone. It has been rough but you done good."
    I also flag down Riot, "I need you and Tesla to come with me as I meet Sierra, I may need someone to help me look for Preen afterwards, you up for it?"
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    Dokken gives you a slow nod, the left corner of his mouth curling into a bit of a smirk. Then he turns back to bellow at Winger again, slapping his choppah sword, "Wing! Get yer fuggin ass in gear an' come o'er here! That is not how you hitch a kickstand, you wastoid!"

    "Ready steady, Mot!" Quiet Riot says as she hops down from the ladder of Box Truck. She runs her hand along the door and closes it, her affection for box truck obvious. She gives a whistle to get attention, then hollers, "Tesla! Get over here!" She motions like she's throwing some invisible rope and hook and "reels him in", which makes Tesla chuckle and come along.

    You march the rest of the trek into Diamond and see a host of pretty ladies and men arrayed as you, QR and Tesla come in. JD gives you a nod of greeting, but stays behind the bar. Marigold waves from her place in line, eyes only for you.

    What do you do?
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    Motley, you ask JD about Preen and he tells you that he's working security for the miners and he hasn't seen him in a bit. Quiet Riot walks right up to one of the "pretty boys" standing there waiting with the others, and puts her hand, well, on his "package", and laughs when he jumps a little. Tesla stays near you, but he's distracted by the girls a little.

    You have a quick drink with JD before heading out to find Preen, and Sierra walks in from the outside, some tattooed guy wearing a prosthetic leg ambles in behind her.

    Sierra,
    You come into Diamond to see Motley at the bar with JD. Some guy with a katana strapped to his back is standing by Mot watching things, and that loudmouth girl Quiet Riot is fondling the merchandise. What happened during your last run-in with QR, Sierra?

    What do you do?
  • edited December 2016
    [deleted by poster]
  • edited December 2016
    Quiet Riot was a part of the group that got a bit too rowdy that one time, looks like things haven't really changed. I frown at her and lock my eyes on Motley. I thought we had an agreement on how his crew was to treat the workers.

    "Riot, hands off. Unless you're paying. You got a question about their, ah, attributes, ask nice. They ain't shy, but they aren't pieces of meat either."

    As I get closer to the bar, I address Mott personally, "Mot, good to see you, but I thought we had an arrangement about your Cru."
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    I nod at JD, then wave and wave back at Marigold with the hint of a smile. Then I hear her, Sierra, griping at Riot. I sigh at the thought of Riot getting into trouble again.
    My smile completely gone, I turn to Sierra, "Sorry 'bout that. I wouldn't have brought her, but with everything that's gone on, it slipped my mind. I promise..." I raise my voice a bit so Riot can hear, "she WILL behave herself."

    There is a bit of an awkward pause as I transition into the reason I came, "We won't be here long anyways. I am looking for one of Ziggy's little goons, Preen. Have you seen him?"
  • I nod and sigh. "I have and I was actually hoping I could talk to you about that." I bite my lip. I'm not, I mean, I'm not a negotiator, not like Esco, I don't have anything to offer. So, I don't know how this is gonna go...

    "Could you, come up to the office for a second?" I'd really rather have this conversation off the feed.
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    Quiet Riot frowns, but removes her hand after you admonish her, Motley. She pulls out a Depot Dollar and offers it up to the guy, then smiles at you like "See? I can play nice!" Tesla comes over and breaks them up, reminding her to stay sharp and look for Preen.
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    "Sure, give me half a sec." I walk to Riot, "We have sights on our target and we will head out soon...so don't get too involved." I smile at Riot, "I'm gonna talk with Sierra, she seems to know something as well. Be back in a bit." I walk back over to Sierra, "Ok Lead the way."
  • edited December 2016
    Sights. Hoolies, I may not be able to salvage this for Preen. I take a deep breath and nod, pointing to the stairs. "Just this way."

    When we get to the office I don't sit behind the desk. That just, it feels like Esco's place. Instead I sit at the edge and motion for Mot to take a seat in front of me.

    "So, you aren't going to like this, but, I don't suppose I could convince you to spare Tay...Preen." This is not, my strong suit, and I feel it in my bones. I sound more like I am begging than negotiating.
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    I stare at her for a moment, taken back by the request. 'Why did she have to ask THIS one thing. Anything else but this.' I open my mouth once then close it and look away.

    "Sierra, I...You do know that because Preen felt all self important at the blockcade, he started pushing the boundaries, not honoring his promises. I warned him if he did this then he would pay. 'Sis and Guns died and Rose left out of grief by the time the bullets were spent. He weaseled away. So no I do NOT like this request.

    On the other hand, your the one askin and I got a lot of respect for you. Why? Why does he get spared?"
  • I flinch when Mot mentions Guns and Sis. Sis, I really did like her. She was always so warm.

    "I'm so sorry about Sis and Guns. Honest, I am. Sis, especially, she was always very kind to me." I take a breath. "And I appreciate you hearing me out. And Mot, that's all I ask, if you feel you still need your pound of flesh, then I won't stop you."

    I bite my lip, thinking about how best to put all this history out there. "You know how they make people forget things? Their lives. I don't want to get into it - but I remember mine. All of it. And Preen, before he was here he was Tayt. He worked in the same House I did. Our mistress, she, well, she used her influence to get him placed in here to cover her own embarrassment..."

    I hold up my hands. "He's been a servant all his life, he got here and, Mot they just handed him from one failed gig to another. They sent him on this one to die. That's what he told us. The Fat Man knew we'd take out Ziggy and her crew. And either way, he knew they were expendable. He gave us intelligence on the Fat Man and his plans for the Irons and Esco and I - and we didn't know about your Cru then we swear - Esco and I we said he could stay here, work security, get some foundation under his feet."

    I place my hands on the table again and use it to kick off, standing straight. "You don't have my history with him, and hoolies Mot, he doesn't even really understand or remember our history. But, where we came from, it was cold Mot. He's just looking for someplace to call home. He'd even swear himself to you, if you wanted to take him on, 'stead of killing him."

    I sigh, "And really, she sent him here to die. He should have died. We both should have died by now. But somehow he's made it. And our Lady, she's a Sub-Warden here, I just want her to see that we aren't just cannon fodder - you know?"


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    Sierra, I think you've established a bit of leverage here, playing on Motley's trust in you. Let's see you roll to Manipulate him.
  • OOC: Rolling Manip

    (Rolled: 2d6+3. Rolls: 4, 3. Total: 10)
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    I look at her confused by what she is saying, The feed? cold where they came from?
    "Sierra, It's rough were we all come from. I lost my Mom & Pop so early I barely remember them, all of my Crue are in the same sitch. Life in Death Valley has been hard on all of us. But we have stuck together as a family and that gives us strength. Then that weasel trying acting bigger than he should got my family killed. He comes scampering over here, knowing I'm tailgating him, and makes some deal to give him safety. Thinking he has beat the system again. I can't..." I pinch the bridge of my nose in frustration. Esco has been good to us with the deals, and Sierra's always bee nice. "I'm sorry to step on the deal Esco and you made, but I can't let this stand. And their aint no way my crue is gonna see Preen and not take him out. He is the last of Ziggy's band still standin' and needin' justice." I turn to walk away but stop, back turned to Sierra, "I truly am sorry."

    If Sierra says nothing else, I leave.
  • I nod, sadly. "We... I guess some of us are destined to never get a chance, huh?" I move to the door. "Thanks for listening. He's hiding, in the mines, I don't know where. But I don't want you or your cru giving the miners any trouble. If you want Preen, for Sis and Guns, fine. But I don't want any additional bloodshed. Savvy?"

    It feels terrible, just letting this happen, but Mot's crew well out numbers me. And then there is Sis...

    I open the door for Mot, holding open the door. If he doesn't say anything more about Preen, I lean against the door and look at him. "One more thing..."
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    Without turning back, I can't look into her eyes right now, "I will keep it clean, as clean as the crue can. No sense in hurtin' more than need to. Preen needs to, the others don't."

    I stand at the opened door, not wanting to meet her gaze, not before this is done, yet not wanting to leave. "Anything else?"
  • I notice that he's not meeting my eyes and sigh. It wouldn't do to have this conversation now, not with him distracted by "what he needs to do."

    Gorrem, Fracking Gloriana. I can feel water welling up in the corners of my eyes, and you know, it might not be a good time for me either.

    "Not now, but once this business is over. I would like to talk to you about your intentions with Marigold. She like, what I might imagine a sister to be, to me."
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    I look at her one more time, I just nod. I then turn around and walk away to meet up with Tesla and Riot
  • edited January 2
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    Sierra, you watch Motley leave and Reese watches, showing the disappointment you feel. Do you follow him to Diamond, or go somewhere else?

    Motley, you come back into Diamond and Tesla is there at the bar, while QR's standing by that same guy, except the guy's doing push-ups. The girls around him are watching with mild interest and QR's counting them off in a sing-song voice.

    What do you do?
  • edited January 2
    I follow Mot back to Diamond and go sit by the bar, nodding to JD. "Hey, I did my best, but looks like there isn't much I can do for Preen." I give JD a sad look but shrug, if what Mot said is true, it's not like he had a gun to his head forcing him to go after the cru. "Can you pour me something, I need it."
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    I take a look and smile in spite of what is going on, walking over and putting a hand on Tesla's shoulder, then whistle to get Riot's attention. "Riot, time to go."

    I begin walking out of the Diamond not wanting to meet anyones eyes, why does this feel spiteful now? Why did Sierra say those things as if we have a choice on how life plays out. We do t have much, life dealt us crap and we gots to make to most of it. I continue to walk outside hoping Dokken is easy to find.
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    Sierra,
    JD pours you a nice, smooth Jack and Cola with two cubes of ice. He relaxes when Quiet Riot leaves, "You did what you could, that's all you can do, Sierra. That Riot girl. She makes my eyes twitch." He gestures for the girls to head back to their rooms or whatever work they were doing before.
    Marigold comes over to slide onto a stool beside you. What do you do?

    Motley, they head out of Diamond behind you, Quiet Riot pauses for a moment to grin at push-up guy before she jogs up behind you.
    "Mot, let's not cause too much ruckus. That guy back there," She points, like you didn't know. "I like 'im! He's cheap, too! Girls don't get their rocks off at Diamond, it seems. I want him to do push-ups.. on TOP OF ME! hahahaha" she elbows Tesla and he shakes his head at her antics, like most of the crue does.
    You find Dokken heading your way, he hasn't found Preen, and none of the miners are forthcoming "without motivation".

    You could bribe some fuggers to turn him over, or get violent, since these sods don't have much in the way of protection here. As in, none. What do you do?
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    I don't want to make things worse for Esco...or Sierra. "Let's play nice for now. Spread some jingle quickly and quietly to see who will fess up. This is Esco's turf, I want to respect that and his people so no bustin' heads, got it." I look to Riot and Dokken specifically.

    Spend 1 barter. (last one)
  • edited January 2
    I look at JD, "I gave Preen some jingle so the miners would hide him, I don't want any blood shed on their part though. But I don't just want to serve Preen on a platter." I sigh taking a long pull on my drink. "What do you think we should do?"
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    Motley, please go here.
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    Sierra,
    "The way Tesla explained it, Sierra, Preen made the bed he's about to lie in." JD explains as he pours himself a water, no ice, and leans against the bar to talk with you. "I will miss your music. You, too, of course. But that piano's going to be awfully lonely without someone to tickle her like you did." He takes a sip.
  • edited January 2
    I can't hide my surprise, so I take another sip of my drink instead. "Hoolies, and here I thought I was being all quiet. Who told you?"
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    The corner of JD's mouth quirks up with a self-satisfied grin, "Lucky guess." He takes another sip of water, motions for Reese to take a seat, too, which he does. "I'm a bartender, I read people. You're... expressive, Sierra. All the time." He raises his glass of water, "A tip from me to you, never play poker."
    Reese chuckles.
  • edited January 2
    I smile. I'm going to miss JD. "I thought Poker was also about distraction - I have it on good authority I can be that." It's basically been my only useful trait since showing up at the Irons. I finish my drink and smile sadly. "I'll play you whatever you want tonight. I'm not leaving till I talk to Esco any how, I figure I owe him that much. And you, I owe you an apology as well. I haven't made your life easy since I showed up here."

    I look over to Marigold and take her hand. "Maybe I'll see you out there?"
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    "Hate to put you to work on your last night," JD says as he finishes his water, refills his glass, then pours something for Marigold. "If you're so inclined, I won't turn it down." He offers up a toast, "To music, new friends, and the hope for future reunions."


    Marigold takes her glass of moonshine and holds it up, "To a very short tour!" She gulps it down greedily.
  • I smile at JD and nod, I could use some extra jingle before hitting the road anyway. "music, new friends, future reunions... and new beginnings." I add at the end and shoot back the rest of my drink.

    "You've never asked for a song before - any of you. If you got requests, tell me now. I want... I want to try out a few new ones as well."
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    JD and Reese ponder for a few moments, but Marigold pipes up with.

    "There's a song called Closer. It's about someone coming into town. Ever heard it? Can you play it?" Marigold asks after she takes a drink.
  • I hum a little bit of what I think she might be talking about and start to sing the hook:
    "I know it breaks your heart
    Moved to the city in a broke down car
    And four years, no call
    Now I'm looking pretty in a hotel bar"


    I let the song trail off. "Is that the one?"
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    JD and Reese ponder for a few moments, but Marigold pipes up with.

    She nods enthusiastically, "Yes, yes! That's the one. I heard it on a shiny and I love it so much. It was scratched... I dunno, a few years ago and I only have part of a verse in my head. It's so pretty."
  • I stand up and go over the to keys. Really, I could use something to keep my mind busy. I don't like thinking about what could be happening in the mines. Somehow, it feels like every death in this place is my fault. I hate to admit it, but I'll be happy to take a breather from the place.

    "How about I play for you now? A private..." I look around, there are a few customers here, but not many. "ish show."

    I play a few chords and start up the song. Humming into the intro like before.




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    You feel all eyes drawn to you, Sierra. You are the shining star again. This time you're in control, you bring it to be. Girls and guys come from their rooms to take seats and soak in the music. Miners filter in from outside, and by the end of the song, the place is half full.

    The last notes ring out against the saloon walls and when you're done, there's only a hush from the couple dozen folks here. They are enraptured with what you've brought to them. Marigold squeals with excitement to break the silence and jumps up, clapping with glee.
  • I laugh with Marigold, delighted in her joy. "Any other requests?"
  • edited January 4
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    Nobody pipes up right away, like they're afraid to ask for the wrong song, or trying to remember the name of the best one.

    Reese speaks up, clearing his throat. "It's no Misty Mountain, but I heard you practice that one song I'm A Ruin. It was pretty."
  • edited January 4
    I nod at Reese, "You got it handsome."

    Hitting the cord I begin...




    I finish with a flourish. "This song is an original, and... well... let me know what you think."



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    Sierra,
    Their attention is as solid as the places where Gloriana made you perform in front of thousands, live and virtual, but there's something more real here, this is so precious to them. As you hit the second verse of "I Wanna Know", Motley comes back into the Diamond, his face is tight, he looks upset.

    Motley, you and the crue come in to hear Sierra singing. Even Quiet Riot hushes for this moment.
  • I get to the end of the song and stop playing. I'm instead looking Mot straight in the eyes. Waiting for him to approach.
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    I listen to the beauty of the song until Sierra finishes and meets my eyes. I nod my head towards Esco's office indicating I want a little privacy. Then walks towards the room just to get away from some of the noise.

    IF Sierra comes over,
    I start a bit, "Well it is done, but not as cleanly as I had wanted. I ....I should have handled it myself. Preen took Norvell hostage, she was killed during the fight". My words stop then with effort I continue "I'm sorry it didn't go like I wanted, I will take myself and mine and leave." I focus on my breathing unsure why words are so difficult to speak right now "I did mean right by Marigold. But I can understand if I my world is too violent to bring her into it." Nothing else I can say, I go silent and begging to turn to go but stop in motion unable to move.
  • I smile at the crowd, "I'll be back in a second, folks." and follow Mot up to Esco's office. Giving a quick nod to JD and Marigold.

    Killed Norvell? He had a wife? I'm not sure about that, but I'll have to figure it out one way or another now. I sure hope they didn't have kids, to lose both parents in a week...

    I bite my lip, my hands heavy on the desk. "This was not well done, Mot. For revenge you've killed someone - someone's friend, lover, family. Someone innocent. What if their people come to me now, and tell me, We deserve revenge on Mot and his crew?" I hate this. I hate all of it. All this blood that never seems to stop running. I know I was isolated in my old life, but I don't want this for me. If I make a life for myself, it won't be this way...

    "Revenge is a disease, it breeds itself." I hold up my hands, unsure if this would even matter to someone like Mot. "Where does it end?"

    I look sadly at Mot, "I am not Marigold's keeper. But, if you do plan on taking her, on making her a part of your Cru, then I want you to be honest with her about how you do business."
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    "I didn't mean to bring more trouble onto you and yours. If any want blood or jingle or even just rage for what was done, I will pay it, myself with no retribution. It WILL END with this. This want contained like it should have been, maybe it never is but I don't want it spreading further."
    "I can't change who I am, who the crue are. They have had the rough end of this life. None of us asked for this, all of my crue where born into the rot that is this place and I try my best to limit the destruction and violence they cause but it's all they have ever known. There is no better life, not for us....I will make sure Marigold understands that before she commits."
    I try not to let my face show the fear and hopelessness I feel, I don't know how well I do. "You have such a beautiful voice in this place of pain and suffering. It is an amazing gift. I am sorry to bring this disease here. We will leave."

    (If nothing more from Sierra)
    I walk out to find Marigold...
  • edited January 4
    "Like you said before, Mot. All our lives have been hard. None of us came here easy. I don't want anything more from you, No harm was done to me. I know I seem niave, but I understand that blood and death is how people deal in the DVFP. Don't be shy to come around, Esco wouldn't want me to be the reason you never show up here again. Anyway, I won't be here for much longer."

    I lick my lips, "One last thing, Mot. Talk to Marigold, but - stay for my next song. I wrote it, it... it's about letting go." I nod at him and leave the office, not waiting to see if he follows me.

    I walk back out to the crowd, a little more sober than I was before. "I hope you all will indulge me in another original piece. This one," I look out above their heads. To where the camera angles are, "this one I'd like to dedicate - to someone who has had a large impact on my life - this goes out to Gloriana."

    I take a breath. Play the pads of my fingers over the keys for a moment and begin. This song, it's my plea. If, if Pellet started telling the world the truth, they'll see it that way... maybe, maybe the feed will pick it up. Maybe I can sway opinion in my favor.





    Dig up her bones but leave the soul alone
    Girl with a broken soul
    Heart with a gaping hole
    Dark twisted fantasy turned to reality
    Kissing death and losing my breath
    Midnight hours cobble street passages
    Forgotten savages, forgotten savages

    Dig up her bones but leave the soul alone
    Let me find a way to a better place
    Broken dreams and silent screams
    Empty churches with soulless curses
    I will find a way to escape the day

    Dig up her bones but leave the soul alone
    Lost in the pages of self made cages
    Life slips away and the ghosts come to play
    These are hard times
    These are hard times for dreamers
    And love lost believers


    There are lines in here for everyone, and those were for Esco. Who I did not give enough credit to. Whose soul is softer than I think he even knows.

    Dig up her bones but leave the soul alone
    Let me find a way to a better place
    Broken dreams and silent screams
    Empty churches with soulless curses
    I'll find a way to escape the day


    I'm already exhausted, emotionally this song takes a lot out of me. Glad for the bridge I bring the tempo down.

    Candy bar creep show
    My highs hit a new low
    Marinate in misery
    Like a girl of only eleven
    Man made madness
    And the romance of sadness
    Beautiful dance that happened by chance
    Happened by chance, happened by chance

    Dig up her bones but leave the soul alone
    Let her find a way to a home.
    Broken dreams and silent screams
    Empty churches with soulless curses
    We found a way to escape the day


    Then it's over.
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    'Wont't be here for much longer' I wonder what is meant by that. I don't return to my crue just yet, they may be outside of the mines beating each other senseless for all I know. I don't look for Marigold, I don't know if I can face her yet. I stand there, leaning against the back wall near Esco's office listening to Sierra's song.
    I don't know when the tears started but when Sierra's sing is finished I quickly try to wipe them away. "I hope you find your better place, if you do maybe there is a chance for the rest of us."
    I run my face dry then I begin to seek out Marigold. 'It's time to try and do something right.'
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    Motley,
    You find Marigold at the bar, sitting by that guy Reese, who has a new fake leg. He gives you a "guy nod", but he's mostly watching Sierra.
    Marigold lets you come up to her, she doesn't want to interrupt crue business. When it's obvious you're here for her, she moves up to you, slipping an arm around you and smiling. "Hey Motley." she coos lightly. "You got time for me? Really wanna talk with you."
  • edited January 4
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    Sierra, Beckett comes striding into Diamond and heads up to the bar. She gives a fist bump to JD, then puts a hand on Reese's shoulder. Reese pulls her aside, then motions with his head over to you. Beckett looks over and smiles your way.

    But you're still feeling the crowd, right? I think you've opened your Brain to the Feed here. Why don't you roll + Weird?
  • OOC: Here we go...

    (Rolled: 2d6. Rolls: 6, 6. Total: 12)
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    Sierra,
    You feel the crowd, these twenty folks here, listening to the music, enthralled by your words and your art. But more, you feel The Feed, those cameras you knew were here, all of them focused solely on you, no reaction shots from the crowd, they don't matter. Only you. Shining Star. Sierra.

    Across the world the song is trending. Tweets, blerps, pushes and reblogs by the tens of thousands. Posts of #dove and #lamb bubble up, necroed from "the incident". The world is distracted from their normal distractions and like a lumbering beast that hears the din-din bell ring, they look up from their plodding existences to take note. To hear. To dream wistfully.

    It reaches Gloriana, of course it does. She dismisses Pellet and Kettle and her court of sycophants and retires to pore of every moment, scribbling with her Apple pencil every last lyric to study and to consume. She's smiling, Sierra. You feel it and see it.

    She thinks you want to come home.
  • I come out from my connection to the feed and look up at the cameras. Idiot. I think, Gloriana, after all these years, how can you not understand me.

    "Fracking Floop." I say under my breath, too quiet for anyone to hear.

    I look up at the crowd and smile. Moving to the bar, looking for a drink. Which, really, I desperately need. When I remember Beckett.

    I smile as I sidle up next to her. "Thanks for taking the call."
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    I smile at Marigold, "Yeah, I got time for you. I wanted to talk with you too." I quickly scan the room and try to find a corner or less crowded place to be able to talk, "Let's head over here. What's up?" I remain silent letting her take charge and say what she wants to say.
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    Sierra,
    "Heya songbird. Nice song there, I caught the tail end of it on my way in. You sure have a way with these no accounts and gadabouts." Beckett says with a grin, her words harsh, but her tone affectionate. "Reesie, what's a long period of time filled with great music?"


    Reese's brows furrow as he tries to figure that riddle out. He opens his mouth to answer, "Is it... no. Wait, is it...?"

    "It's a SEE ERA, Reesie!" Beckett says and pats your shoulder, Sierra. She chuckles, Reese shakes his head at the joke, and she brags, "Thought that up on the way over. One of my shinies was scratched and I didn't want to tempt fate. Hey Sierra, I'll give you the fresh water if you sing for us on the trip, what with shiny scratching and all. You ready to go yet?"


    Motley,
    Marigold looks in your eyes like she was all ready to share something, but then she smiles, holding back, "Are you okay? Looked like the chat with Sierra wasn't so great. She tell you she's goin? It's real sad, I know." She puts a hand on your arm, trying to comfort you.
  • I smile and Beckett and giggle at her joke. I was hoping Reese had told her we are sticking around for a bit, but I guess he hadn't gotten to it yet.
    "Of course I'll sing for you Beck's - I still owe you for that first ride after all. But, uh - I was hoping we could stick around for a few more hours at least, maybe even till tomorrow morning? I want to see if I can catch Esco, explain myself. I don't just want to run off in the night, so to speak."
    I look at JD and smile down at him, motioning for another drink, "Please?"
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    Sierra, JD pours you a fresh drink, some new mix you haven't had before. It's smooth, but there's a chase to it that numbs your tongue for a moment.
    "Spend the night?" Beckett asks, looking around. "I've slept in worse places. Can you cover me for a place to crash?" She takes a glass of something JD slides to her and downs it.
  • "Of course, you can stay at mine. I'll stay in one of Diamond's rooms." Or you could track down Fleece again, my mind supplies unhelpfully.

    I take a long sip of the drink to keep my blush under control. Frack it's delicious. I am going to miss JD's skills. Speaking of, "JD, thought of a song yet?"

    Honestly, I know he's thinking he's taking advantage, but the extra jingle of a good nights work will help quite a bit when I am out there.
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    Sierra,
    Jd, who was watching how you took that drink with some interest, stands up a bit straighter. He's not used to being the focus of anybody's attention. He wipes at the bar, then asks quietly, almost unsure, "There's this century-old tune I kinda like. Piano Man. I know you aren't, well, a man, but the song's real good. I have the lyrics written down, uhm, in a book if you don't know them."
  • image


    I smile at her concern and nod at the news of Sierra, "I heard, and if she leaves I will miss her but everyone deserves a chance to be free of this place...." My words drift off and I hesitate at my next words. I mock my hesitation, the alpha of a nasty group of orphans in DVFP and I struggle to get my words out.
    "Marigold, I will be fine but I did want to talk to you. I get the feeling you would like to travel with the crue, with me. And I would enjoy that too but I want to you to understand what life with the crue is like before you make any kind of commitment. We are a violent group of people. There are things done, people hurt or killed by our own doings. You will see a lot of blood some of it ours. Don't get me wrong we are a family, tightest one I have known, only one I have ever known. But you will see a lot of ugly things along with that good...."
    I look into her eyes intently not blinking, I reach out to hold her hands, feeling like a schoolboy but not caring, "but if you are willing to be in that world, I would love to have you by my side."
  • I smile at JD, I've performed that a hundred times, not since I was young, but... I definitely know it. Hoolies, JD, that's an oldie - but what is the old saying? No school, like the old school? " I wink at him. "I'm going to need your help singing though..."

    And I head back to the piano...


  • edited January 6
    image
    Motley,
    Marigold listens to your "pitch" with shining eyes, her gaze drifting between looking at your mouth and meeting your eyes. She slips a hand onto your hip, moving closer. "Motley, my ma was an Amazon. When she died, I rode with them till Foster decided she didn't like me, and I ended up here. I miss the open road, and I like riding with you." She leans in to brush her lips against yours and looks up, "I wanna ride with you. And if it doesn't work out, then I'll go. Fair?"

    Sierra,
    JD looks surprised for a moment, but then he bends down behind the bar and comes back up with a metal box, like a cash box, and opens it up. Inside with some random stuff (a cigar in plastic, a pair of metal dice, two bullets, and some letters), he pulls out a cloth bag, reaches inside, and produces a decent-looking harmonic. He flashes a grin and hops over the bar to walk over with you to the piano. He plays harmonica with you, singing a duo. He's not bad. Untrained, but naturally talented.
  • I smile, laughing into the song, happy to have a partner, making quick movements on the keys.
  • edited January 6
    image

    I smile, "Very fair." I finish leaning in and kiss her full on the lips. I forget the anguish of earlier, I forget the stress of my crue at each others throats. Right now, right here, Marigold is my only world. I envelope her and show her how much I want and need her by my side.
  • image
    Sierra, JD laughs at the end, breathing a sigh of relief to have finished it without messing up. The crowd's grown slightly larger, a few miners who probably can't even afford a drink have moved in to stand by the door and watch. Rufe stands by Winkle, they're holding hands and listening. Ivy, one of the newest girls, comes up to sing a duet with you, something a little saucy. What is it?

    When you take a small break, Pixel comes up to you, asking if she can speak with you privately. What do you do?

    Motley, Marigold returns the kiss with passion, pressing herself against you. She suggests heading back to "her room", while it's still hers. You'd be leaving the crue behind, on their own, so to speak. Do you go with her?
  • image

    I follow her to her room, I know that I am leaving my crue to their own mischief and mayhem but tonight is mine. For now I only have a crue of one
  • I wasn't taught bawdy songs, like, like what some of the other songs I've heard since coming to the Irons, but it's a song Gloriana used to have me play and well... let's just say I blushed through the entire performance. I still love the song though, it's got a, ah, great beat.





    I'm drinking another one of JD's new concoctions when Pixel comes out. I nod when she asks to talk to me. "There isn't a John somewhere with a gun is there?" I say mostly joking.
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    Sierra,
    Pixel raises her hands up, eyes full of worry, "No, no. I'm so sorry for that again. So sorry." She gestures towards her room, the one where Balls drew a gun on you. I assume you follow? When you get into the room, which is empty, she closes the door, but doesn't lock it.
    "I have heard you are leaving?"
  • I open my mouth in surprise. "I am. I have to - JD will follow the new rules." I look at her, straight in the eye so she sees I am serious, "I promise, I'll talk to him about it and Balls won't be allowed near you again."
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    Sierra,
    She nods, looking down at your feet, "That is... I am sorry you have to leave, Sierra." She opens her mouth to say more, but hesitates. You see her moving her arms to her sides, stand up slightly straighter, and look back up. "We were not close, but I felt close to you. You saw me, Sierra." She hesitates again, looks at your chin as if looking in your eyes is too difficult.
  • edited January 6
    I hesitate, but eventually reach out at gently move her chin up, so our eyes are meeting. "I do see you, Pixel." I smile at her kindly, "And if this isn't what you want to be doing - don't do it. Don't let anyone force you to do what you don't want to do. The one good thing about this place is that, for people like you and me, it gives us the one thing we never had before: choice."

    I put my hand down. "So, choose."
  • image
    Sierra,
    She doesn't stop you from touching her, but there's a bit of a tremor in her, you feel it. When you tell her to choose, she takes a moment before answering. "When I am working, when I can punish and hurt these men, it is... divine. I adore their pain, Sierra." Her voice grows slightly stronger, "When I am their mistress, and they beg me, it is... what I crave."
  • When she talks like that, about punishment and the divine, when she says my name, it's like a switch flips. I go suddenly still as if waiting to receive orders. It's... instinct.

    It takes a second to come out of that head space, but I am sure a second is more than Pixel needed to see my reaction. I breath, my face hot, coming back to myself. "If that's what you want..." I cough, trying to meet her eyes and not quite succeeding. "If that's what you want then charge more and specialize. A trained Mistress is rare here. You could even charge to teach."

    I meet her eyes for the next bit, it's business after all. "Do you want me to talk to JD about it?"
  • image
    Sierra,
    "JD knows. Esco brought me here for this." She senses your reaction, peers at you for a moment, then asks quietly, "Do you... want a session, Sierra? Do you want me to punish you?"
  • I swallow, not sure how to answer. Punishments before, sessions like that, they weren't at my request. That isn't to say I didn't enjoy them, sometimes, I even occasionally would do things to "force" Gloriana to punish me.

    That was more at the beginning, when it was fun and new... towards the end almost all our sessions were around punishing me for her stress. My flesh became her stress release. Graks, I guess it always was.

    It's not that I don't want to, again, at some point, but I don't want it in the way that Pixel would offer it - without the intimacy that elevates a session.

    I take a deep breath in and smile, it's work, but I smile. "I am sure it would be absolutely groshing, but..." there is something in her dark stare that sounds like a whip and I have to swallow, "no thank you. What I meant, is that we'd make that your exclusive vocation. No Vanilla Johns. No misunderstandings."
  • edited January 6
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    Sierra,
    "Very well. If you decide otherwise, if you wish... I can be her for you. Help you to exorcise your demons." So saying, she withdraws herself from the offer, sliding into her meek stance but avoiding some of the servant tells. "Yes. No misunderstandings would be appreciated. Exclusive to domination. I would be... happy for this. Thank you, Sierra."
  • edited January 6
    No one could be her.

    Still there is something in the way that Pixel holds herself that tell me she would be good, very good, and I don't doubt it. I also don't want it. Not from her... maybe one day, from Flee...

    I don't let myself finish that thought and thankfully Pixel is falling into a less dom posture. Which really helps clear my head a bit. Gorrem, mother of floops, I need a drink.

    "Consider it done. And if there is anything else I can do for your Pixel, I will. I'm not sure when I will be back, but I do plan to return, eventually."
  • edited January 6
    image
    Sierra,
    Pixel thanks you again, then slips the door open so you can go. When you come out to the common room, Motley and Marigold are gone, as is Beckett, who is now sleeping in your room. Reese is still at the bar with JD, and the crowd's died down a bit. You made yourself a jingle entertaining tonight, Sierra. But it's late afternoon, hot outside, and you don't even have a room. What do you do?
  • I walk over to the bar and take what I have started thinking of as "my seat." I smile at JD, "You are pretty good, you know, you should think about doing some entertaining, I hear a space may be opening up." I smile, but it doesn't make my eyes. I wink at JD again and motion for another drink. "Do you know when Esco is expected back? Or if we have any open rooms? I seem to have given mine away, unless Beckett minds company." I say jokingly (kinda), withe a smile. Not about Beckett, she's cute, but, my mind is somewhere else, with someone else.

    Frack, I'm not in a sub headspace, but shit, I am revv'd up. I drum my hands on the bar, needing a drink in my hands. A distraction.
  • edited January 6
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    Sierra,
    JD gives you a grin as he mixes up a new drink for you, "Do you think that piano magically appeared here?" He pulls out a small chalkboard to look over the room situation. "Well, hate to say this, but your music got folks all happy and horny. We're full up."


    "Hey, See," Reese says from his perch at the bar. His voice is clear, he's not in the least bit drunk. "I bet nobody's taken my room yet..."

    "Welllll...." JD says, "The crue's here, and they needed places to bed down." Then he shrugs like "what ya gonna do". Then, he offers, "I'll be up until late-late if you want to nap in my place. Esco told me to keep folks off his bed. Or Ivy would be earning her keep there now. Say, Reese, you want to have some fun with Ivy?"

    "Nope." Reese says clearly, putting his glass down on the bar. "I'm ready to roll out, and she's a nice girl. Don't need any temptations. But thanks." He gives you a half smile, then taps his glass for a refill.
  • I grab a hold of the drink and take a long pull. Frack Pixel, putting these thoughts in my head. I've been skin sensitive since talking with Fleece and...

    No. I force myself from that line of thinking.

    I finish my drink, just shoot it back, and I can feel the alcohol fill my head.

    "What about Esco though, he heading back here today, or... we haven't been talking much, so I don't know where he went. I'd like to talk to him before heading out - try to talk some things out." I'm not quite meeting JD's eyes and I sound pathetic. I want to make things right with Esco. He didn't know what I was and it's not my fault he fell for it but... it's not his either.
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    Sierra,
    JD catches your glass, then runs a finger over the rim, "Esco's recruiting run was as much about stretching his legs." After a moment of deliberation, he pours you a new drink, but looks like there's more mix than alcohol in it, you'd guess. "Esco probably won't be back until tomorrow. I'm pretty sure he needs some time away, you know?"


    Motley, your Sex Move fires. Now, since the Chopper SM is about HX, I'm giving you one question to ask Marigold, anything she'd know.
  • edited January 6
    I turn to JD, attention fully on him. "He deserves that, I know." I try to say more, but I'm feeling a little light headed so I breath in try again. "JD, I didn't know he... he, I mean I knew he thought I was different, but I didn't think he felt differently about me."

    I look at Reese, sorry he has to hear about this. "I was trying to to keep them from hurting him, you know? I just wanted to keep anyone from getting hurt because of me. Now, I don't know what to do... what should I do JD?"
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    Sierra,
    JD nods, like he knew your intentions, like he gets it and doesn't like the implications. He wipes at the bar for a moment, then says, "You want to get away from the Fipper's eyes. Only places I know in DVFP where they don't snoop is the Fat Man's palace and out in the wastes with the sand snakes. Between the two, I'd recommend the palace. The Fat Man would... appreciate your ability to entertain his guests."
    Reese is watching you closely, intent on seeing how you take this.

    Eager to Know fires here.
  • I open my mouth and seethe out a breath. I knew about the Palace, of course I did. I also know that if I show up there I am essentially volunteering to walk back into slavery - and hoolies that wasn't what I meant. "Frack JD, and what, become a different kind of slave. And I was wondering what I should do with Esco..."

    I finish my drink, "Can I just get some water?"

    I could wake up Beck and go. Just leave a note with JD and run, I could find a place to sleep, or I could... promok.
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    Sierra,
    You get something unexpected. A look of surprise from JD. "Oh. Esco. Sorry. I thought 'where do I go next?' was a higher priority." He leans back against the wall behind the bar. "Just go, Sierra. He's stuck in a rut with you. you both need a break. I'll tell him whatever you like, but I think it'll be easier to rip the bandage off, and go. I could keep trying to trick you to stay in hopes that Marigold or Pixel or... hell, even Fleece give you enough reasons to stick around. Gods know the Diamond could use you here for profits and you keep the girls happy. But those fippers will be coming back any day now."
  • I don't take my eyes off JD, but I hear the truth in his words. When he says Fleece, I am sure my eyes widen. Like he said, I'm too expressive.

    "You're right. I... I'll leave a note." I take out a few pages from my purse and start to scribble. I bought a few pieces, I'm going to be writing down all the important pieces of my story from here on out. Out of the Irons, cameras are literally everywhere.

    I finish my note and fold it, on the outside I write To Esco, Please Read in the Office. I slide it to JD. "Thanks JD, for... well... for everything."
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    Sierra,
    Sensing this is the real deal, JD takes the note, then moves around the bar, lifting his wooden plank of a gate to come around and give you a warm hug. He pats your back, then steps back, "It was an all too brief pleasure, Sierra. You're welcome back whenever." He gives a nod to Reese.
    Reese heads off to wake up Beckett, leaving you alone for a moment. That's when an un-smocked and unmasked Fleece walks through the doors of the Diamond, looking at the floor as she enters, heading for the bar. Then she looks up. And sees you. She stops, obviously surprised you're here, probably thinking you were long gone.

    What do you do?
  • I wrap my arms around JD's neck and squeeze. I can feel my eyes get a little wet. "I plan to come back, made a promise. We have to reprise our duet." My eyes may be a bit wet, but there is a real smile on my lips.

    I ask Reese to grab my bag and tell JD about Pixel, work done, threads tied, I turn to leave and that's when I see her. She never comes to the bar, not unmasked, never, not the entire time I have been here."Fleece..." I take two stuttering steps forward and then I make my way up to her. "What are you doing here?"
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    Sierra,
    She steps back a half step. "Oh... I was going to get certifiably trashed on cheap gin." She licks her lips, searching your eyes. "I thought you'd be long gone by now, Sierra. What's kept you? Everything alright?"
  • I pause when I see her move back. "I was just finishing a few things, Reese just left to get Beckett..." I lick my lips and smile at her. "Went through your stash already?" I whisper, biting my lip and looking into her soft brown eyes.

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    Sierra,
    Her face shifts from concern to share your smile. She brings a finger to her lips, "Shh. Stashes don't last if you dip into them too much. Plus, I figured everyone would be sad with you gone, and I could get some cheap drinks."
  • edited January 7
    I smile and reach out to touch her hair, "What about you, Ooma?" I run my fingers along her arm if she lets me, I'll walk her out of the Diamond, out of the range of the cameras there, to somewhere more secluded.

    I'm not sure if it's the alcohol making me brave or the knowledge that I really am leaving, but I back myself up again the outer wall of the Diamond and keep a hold of her hand. My skin is tingling where we touch and I just want her to touch me."I almost ran back to the clinic at least a dozen times since I left..."
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    Sierra,
    She lets you pull her outside, she smiles when you touch her hair, too. She doesn't move away when you step in closer. "That's what kept you here? Ooma, you know my door was open." She swallows, you see a flash across her eyes like maybe she realizes she said too much.
  • I bite my lip watching her neck swallow and trail my eyes back to hers. I run my fingers over her forearm, "Mostly, Ooma," I blush, suddenly coldly unsure of myself. I feel my fingers twitch on her skin, nervous. "I've been wondering if I was going to regret not having kissed you when I had the chance."
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    Sierra,
    Fleece's chest rises and falls as her pulse quickens. She still hasn't moved away, but neither has she touched you. "Sierra... ooma. You came to me earlier with the heartsick pain that everyone saw you as a desirable thing. What kind of friend am I if I become like all the others and desire you... too?" She's honestly asking, this is a question she hasn't answered for herself, a war of attraction and guilt within her.
  • edited January 7
    My breath is coming in spurts and stops. "You, Ooma, you don't see me as a thing. You don't want me because I'm what I am, you want me because of who I am. Or at least... I think you do."

    I trace my fingers down her arm, to hold her hand. "You know how I can tell? You asked yourself the question. You put me before your own desires. You want me to be my better self. But, do you want to know the real difference is?"

    I shrink back against the wall, feeling bare, dimly aware that my eyes are shining with water. I'm taking a leap here, because she hasn't said so, but... "I have feelings for you too."
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    Sierra,
    Fleece watches you with clear eyes, her focus intent. She squeezes your hand when you take it in hers, and doesn't let go, her thumb tracing lightly along that space between your thumb and forefinger.

    When you declare your feelings, guess that she shares them, Fleece doesn't deny it. Her voice is soft when she replies, "You're... leaving, Sierra. You need to go, we both know it." She moves a half-step closer to you, closing the paltry distance that you created when you moved against the wall.
  • My pulse quickens and my throat goes dry. I nod. "I do."

    Frack, she's so close, I can feel her body heat. But, she hasn't said anything. She hasn't drifted away from me, but she isn't kissing me... I run my forefinger along the inside of her palm, feel her well-earned callouses.

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    Sierra,
    She looks into your eyes, ger gaze bouncing from eye to eye, searching. "I should... we shouldn't. I..." She closes the distance even closer, "I don't want to tie you here, Sierra. When you need to go."
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