[Big Maul] Shave and a Haircut (C 2.1, H 2.1, P 2.2)

edited May 2014 in Big Maul

After checking out the tech shop, Rache told you there was more equipment up in the cutting room, suggested you check that out to log all the gear for the AMC. What piece of theater tech did she casually mention that got you nearly salivating to get ahold of (for tech, or, you know, personal reasons)?

The stairs to the second floor are covered with graffiti, some old, most of it recent. The VKs tagged this place pretty good last night, the paint is still fresh. Whatever dust up that happened last night is most certainly not over. You know the VKs, once they've proven superiority over somebody, they just loooove rubbing faces in it. Maybe somebody can talk to Sweet N Sour, calm things down. For now, just another simmering threat, right?

The door to the cutting room is slightly ajar when you come up. A gentle push and the door opens to reveal Cache sitting with some out-Mauler, a rough-looking bearded guy in his fifties, named Eddie Bauer. They're sitting together, but the power dynamic looks off, something about the way Eddie is reacting to Cache even though he's twice as big as zir.

Cache knows you're there. What do you do?


Mari took Crocs into the adjoining room to cue up something on the projector, leaving you with Eddie Bauer. Seems like he's following your commands, or at least not fighting anything yet. Yet. He's looking you over, not saying anything, but you feel his revulsion. He's not into you, but he fears you.

The projector in the other room sparks to life, throwing a movie onto the screen just outside your small black window. It's a dark movie, never did well in theaters before everything went to hell, then survived that for some unknown reason. What is it?

The door opens and Hottopic is there. She sees you and Eddie on the mattress.

What do you do?


  • The movie playing is American Mary. Enough blood, pain, gore, and rape to entertain the more jaded Maulers, and one of my favorites. I've always had a taste for gruesome tales, but ever since I took a walk outside, I've had a particular taste for horror. I'm sitting with my legs crossed... sort of. My limbs don't move in the same straight lines anymore, so my left leg is tucked up way under my ass, and my right crosses over it, ankle to thigh, almost straight up and down. I'm still nude, head tilted to the side, to Eddie, I whisper, <<Bring me my coat.>>

    As Hotty enters, I stand. It appears for all the world like I simply straighten my legs and rise up, like my limbs are made of vertibrae.
  • I'm practically hopping up the stairs. Rache said that there's had a a bunch of DMX equipment for lighting control that they never really got working. If it's even mostly intact, that sort of digital multiplexing architecture could have a million uses, both in the theater and out. Seems to me that it should be pretty fragile, though. I've never seen anything that complex that was still viable these days.

    When I get to the door, see Cache and Eddie, I pause. For some reason, I expected the room to be empty. Then Cache unfolds, and I see zir in all zir glory.

    "Ummm..." I don't walk away, but I do stop in the doorway.
  • ((Now realizing after a bit of re-reading that I have this information...))

    Esco told me through... whatever... that it was Cache that broke her. "Esco's at Walgreen's. Heard you might have taken her there. What's the story? I'd hate to lose someone that moves like that..."
  • Head tilts to the right.

    Hot Topic. Here. Too easy to be luck. She must have a reason. I whisper to Eddie, <<Eyes on the door. Need the coat.>>.

    To Hotty, eyes narrow, Greeny says she stroked. Brain went a little fizzle. What could I have to do with that? She didn't fix with me. Never touched her taste. Found her in the act, Mari'll say same.

    I'm thinking that Eddie needs to hurry with my fucking armor and blades. I don't like people smiffing my crotch unless I invite it.

  • ((Going to Read a Person on HT))
  • edited May 2014
    ((Doing that Read... ))

    "Whoa, Cache... Just asked what you knew, right? Not accusing ."

    Read a person XP +1
  • (Rolled: 2d6+1. Rolls: 3, 1. Total: 5)
  • (Rolled: 2d6+0. Rolls: 2, 2. Total: 4)
  • edited May 2014
    Eddie rolls off the mattress, stands up, then hustles over to grab Cache's coat.

    Hottopic, Kay-Bee calls out from its perch, "The Brainer is lying, Hottopic. It willed Esco's stroke. Also of note, it can call The Breeze. The Brainer is very dangerous. Recommend termination."

    Cache, you heard one of Hottopic's toys, one she's carrying in her bag, say all that.

    What do you do?
  • edited May 2014
    Head snaps to Kay-Bee, and I Direct In-Brain Whisper, <<Shut off, now>>. Eyes still on Kay-Bee, I hiss through clenched teeth, "I didn't will a fucking thing. I tried to talk to her, but her brain was too full of holes!"
  • Sure, Cache, let's see how that goes down. Roll them bones.
  • (Rolled: 2d6+3. Rolls: 5, 4. Total: 12)
  • Sorry it wasn't clear, Cache, but the robot that is speaking is Kay-Bee. Furby, which Hottopic has been calling Muzak, is back at her shop.

    This is the thing that spoke to Hottopic, that you're currently attacking:


    To Both:

    Cache glares at Kay-Bee, and out of nowhere it shoots a couple sparks, then becomes inert. Hottopic, you smell melted plastic, the poor guy is fried.

    What do you do?
  • Sometimes, most of the time even, when a thing breaks Hottopic can fix it, or someone can. Sometimes when a thing breaks, it's gone... scrap or trash. Sometimes when a thing breaks it's dangerous - you have to shut it down, take it apart, make sure no one can turn it back on. Hottopic used to think Cache was the first kind of broken. Clearly that was a mistake.

    So, Cache just fried Kay-Bee with a stare. That's bad. I'm saying words that anyone would expect from me, but my eyes and tone of voice would probably surprise even the people that know me best. Cold, jagged, harsh.

    My mouth says, "Cache, I don't know what's going on, why you're acting like this. You're destroying things, destroying people. You just killed something I care about, and you took Esco's dance away, her beautiful freedom and lightness. I want to know why, what you think you're accomplishing. Is there a point, or are you just fucking with things because you can?"

    My eyes say fuckyoufuckyoufuckyoufuckyoufuckyou
  • Eyes snap to Hotty, eyes narrow, "Talking machines telling me my mind makes me nervous. I just asked it to stop, it refused. Not my fault."

    To Eddie, I whisper,<<I need that coat, please.>>

    My expression becomes pleading, tears welling, but voice is flat-affect,
    "Hot Topic, Esco was sick. Brain sick. I didn't know. This... thing... happening to me... it's new. Sometimes... I flex the muscle and sometimes it's too much for weak brains... I didn't mean to hurt anyone. Help me."
  • Eddie brings your coat, puts it over your shoulders, Cache. He stands behind you, ready to defend you from Hottopic if it comes to that, but not really getting in her way.
  • I look right at you, Cache, and my stare is like I'm doing math in my head. Because I am.

    Hottopic once read in the safety section of one of Servo's books that it really only requires 7 milliamps of current, delivered to the heart for 3 seconds, to make the heart go crazy and then shut down. She thinks about that, about how much resistance Cache's skin and bones and organs might provide, how she might overcome it.,

    "You fucking scare me, Cache. I don't believe you want my help. I think you just want me to leave so you can keep doing... whatever... you were doing when I walked in. But you know what, Cache? I'm going to help you, or at least do what I can. Because the alternative to helping you get it under control is... not the way I do things."
  • edited May 2014
    My torso stays stationary, as my arms unfold and slide into the coat sleeves. I'm strapping up as I say, "Hotty, there's nothing to be afraid of. I haven't hurt any people on purpose. I told you, Esco was an accident. I meant it when I said I didn't will anything. Mari, Eddie here and Croc have all been alone with me, and they're all fine.

    I'm stepping to the bed, fixing the sheets, eyes still on HT, "As for your machine, it did just call for my 'termination'. Head cocks to the right, attempting to look incredulous, mostly just twisting my face, "What would you have done?"
  • Outside the door, you hear some people talking, sharp tones, like alarm.

    Then the door is shoved open, and Playboy and a little red toy car come in, followed by GNC.
  • Eye on the Door The back service stairs.
  • I look to Hottopic. "Your small monster said you were in danger."
  • Playboy,

    You come into the Cutting Room, which is a wide space with concrete floors, lots of metal storage racks with spools of old and ruined film. There's a window out to a theater and you see something is playing.

    In the middle of the floor is an old mattress, and Cache is standing near it, getting dressed. Some out-Mauler, an older guy with a bit of a gut but hard eyes is standing behind Cache, and they're both facing Hottopic, who does not look to be in any danger.
  • edited May 2014
    Unfazed by Playboy's entrance or the monster reference, "My monsters sometimes overreact, Playboy. Cache was just telling me how it was okay that ze broke Esco because ze didn't mean to, and that it was okay that ze destroyed something that belongs to me because it said something mean. Apparently ze and No Sliding make the same arguments when they screw stuff up."

    A pause, considering Playboy and the situation.

    Still addressing Playboy, not even making eye contact with Cache. "Cache asked me for help, and I'm just waiting for zir to tell me what ze wants me to do. I'm sorry you had to go out of your way to find me... I don't think ze's ready to try and hurt me yet."
  • I stand.
  • Eye on the Door The back service stairs.
    Roll it.
  • (Rolled: 2d6+2. Rolls: 2, 2. Total: 6)
  • Cache,

    You spot the back service stairs, and start to head that way. Eddie heads past you, to clear the way, and heads on down the stairs. But the door closes behind him, a stout fire door slamming home.

    Outside you hear Crocs and GNC in a shoving match, and Mari has come inside and is running over to you, hoping she can help. Or something.

    Playboy and Hottopic,

    Cache starts to just take off, zir friend leading the way. But he leaves Cache behind and the door shuts in zir face. GNC and Crocs are still arguing / fighting in the hall, Mari has come inside the room, moved past Playboy to Cache.

    What do you do?
  • "Cache, who are you going to hurt? What's going on?" I have mixed feelings about this situation -- yanked around, incompatible loyalty, fuck I hate people.
  • "Look, I'm not hurting anyone. I didn't say what happened to Esco was OK, I said that I didn't fucking will it to happen. The toy over there threatened my life, so it, I fried." I turn, and whisper to Mari, <<Back me up here, I haven't hurt you or Crocs. I'm not bad or dangerous!>>
  • Mari looks at you, Hottopic, then you, Playboy, "Cache isn't hurting me. I love zir. Crocs and Eddie are friends, too. It's like... a crazy family. We're good, okay?" She stands slightly in front of Cache, leans back into zir, touching zir thigh with her right hand, a little possessively.

    Outside, GNC evidently gets Crocs to back off, and he comes in, "Hotty, you alright?" He sees you're alright, of course. Then red toy car converts into that robot again, and comes up to you, Hottopic.

    "This is some bullshit." Hood growls.

    What do you do?
  • "What do you think, Hood? Where do we take this?"
  • I'm asking Hood's advice, so here's my roll: (Rolled: 2d6+1. Rolls: 2, 5. Total: 8)
  • Oh, and xp+1 (and my first advance)
  • edited May 2014

    Hood grumbles angrily, "We leave this fucking asylum and their shitty family. Make Hottopic tell you about Muzak."
  • "Fine, Cache, fine. I wasn't in here to find you, I don't really want to be here."

    I look around. The fucken DMX stuff is in a corner, a shambles. One glance tells me that it's beyond even salvaging, except for maybe a few wires and shit. Figures.

    "When you really want help, you know where to find me. This probably goes without saying, but I'll say it anyway: Me and mine are off-limits for your games, and I'm the one that defines what's mine."

    I turn and walk for the door, just assuming that GNC and the little robot are following.
  • GNC falls in line with you, Hottopic, and the car zips behind in your wake. Where are you headed?
  • For the moment, I'm heading... away from here. I'll walk through AMC, making sure to give Rache the nod, let her know I'll check back soon. I'm not avoiding conversation with Playboy, but I'd really like to get some steps between me and that shit-show before I talk anything serious.

    At some point, I realize I'm heading to Sears, to check in with the Cabal. Fucken weirdos, but they somehow get good jingle to pay for some strange stuff. Should be amusing, at least, and I could use some of that.
  • Hottopic and Playboy, please go here.
  • "Fuck. Them."

    I lock the doors, sprawl out on the mattress. The exhaustion of the last day is crushing down on me. My body hurts more than normal. Hot Topic's robot said I can call the Breeze. I know I've tried, but I'm not entirely convinced I was actually why it came that last time. I need to try again. I need to know for sure. The little storm inside me broils, rolling through my vision like time-lapsed lava. Always spirals.
  • Mari hovers nearby, looking down at you lying there, unsure what she should do. Crocs heads over to sit down on the table and complains about the bruises he took fighting GNC. After a few minutes, Eddie comes back up the stairs and through the door, sheepishly returning. He heads out to the hallway to probably stand guard.

    Mari heads off to pour a glass of water, brings it over and sits cross-legged beside you, handing the glass to you, waiting for you to take it, "You didn't... mean to break Esco's mind?" Her tone is curious, not accusatory.
  • Take the water, drink it down like my throat was hollow, hand her the glass. Without entirely realizing it, I'm whispering, <<No, I didn't. I was trying to... whisper... to her. She couldn't handle it. She must have been weak to begin with. I didn't push any harder than I did with you lot.>>

    Close my eyes. Let myself melt into the mattress, hand up toward Mari, <<Come here.>>
  • Without further hesitation, accepting your explanation and your hand, she takes the glass and sets it on the floor while moving down to lie beside you. She nestles her head on your chest and makes a nonverbal sound of pleasure at the touch. "Cache... is it okay if I love you?"
  • Completely relaxed into the mattress. Eyes closed. The most natural-looking I've appeared in months. The word falls out of my mouth like an alien thing. Like I'm already becoming unaccustomed to speaking. I'm growing used to the Breeze carrying my words through the world, "Yes."
  • edited May 2014
    Mari gives a soft sigh in response, then relaxes into sleep beside you.

    --END SCENE--
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