[ISS] The Election (Ash 1.7, Mar 1.6, Our 1.5, Tab 1.9)

edited March 2016 in ISS Tsiolkovsky

Instructor Malcolm appears exact after an hour has passed.

Tabitha, where did you and Zola end up for her speech? Standing at the front of the class, or somewhere else?

Ourania, where did you and Rys set up? Rys wants to stand far away from you, do you let him?

Mark and Ashlee, how are the students arranged? Are they still in a semi-circle like some voting block, or did everyone return to their seats?

image "Alright class, your candidates, Zola and Ourania, have both had an hour to create their platform and prepare to vie for your votes. We will look for a simple majority here, with open voting. We will use Ashlee's Navi for the voting tabulation." He looks over everyone. "Mark, how did the class decide to arrange the process for the candidates?"


  • image
    I look around the classroom once before I reply. We're all back in our seats. No one suggested that, it just happened. Force of habit, probably.

    "We'd like to hear the candidates lay out their policies first. Then we'll have some individual questions for them."

    Open voting is going to skew the results. I make up my mind to vote last if I can.
  • image

    We're right at the front of the class, where there is the most space for standing and talking, being seen. I gaze around the room, it's interesting to see people the way Malcolm might, read their faces as they read mine.

    I wonder what our policies will end up being? I think I have one. Medical appeals. And more inclusion in shipwide news, how the council makes decisions. Who makes them.
  • image

    Ourania, Zola looks over at you, waiting for you to go first. Do you, or do you "offer it to her"?
  • edited April 2016
    While everyone's shuffling around the issue of who talks first, I start to fill in the reg form for Pax, so she'll be down as part of the speedball squad by the time the end of class rolls around.

    Name: Cressida Redmond Display name: PAX Squad number:

    Squad number. Three is vacant.
    I had number three for all of about a minute, before Gwen insisted we swap.

    Number four symbolizes death, she said.

    Squad number: 6

    That'll do for now. I tag Pax's ID to the form and hit send.
  • image
    I'm doing my best to let Mark handle everything, when Drokking Malcolm again puts it on me.

    "Fine..." I relent and get my Navi online to tabulate notes. I set up a couple of columns and ready to make tallies. "Ok... ok everyone send your votes to my Navi..."

    I basically avoid looking at Zola and Mark and end up kind of watching Tabitha more than anything.
  • edited March 2016


    I make an “after you” motion to Zola. Zola doesn’t strike me as the sort of person to study psycology, but it is essential to a Commissar. Going later is an advantage. We get to see what they come up with and adapt to it, plus the audience responds better to the later offer.

  • image Zola nods to you, Ourania, then starts speaking. She paces a little, uses her hands to talk, "Listen, we need an actual voice here, right? Not some whispering, backbiting voice. Not some jackbooted thug's voice, an actual voice who will speak up for our pod, for our class." She pauses, lets that sink in. Rys doesn't flinch, he's at attention, eyes forward.
    Zola continues, "If you elect me, you're gonna get someone who isn't afraid to speak her mind, who isn't afraid of the... grown-ups. I'll fight for appeals on doctors, because we've got a nice Med Bay, but the drokkers who work there suck! We should be part of decisions that affect the ship. They keep us here, in the dark, and we're supposed to inherit this place or whatever. What are we even getting? We need a voice. An actual voice. That's what I'm offering. We vote on what's most important, then I represent that to Instructor Malcolm, or the Council, or whoever-whatever they decide to throw at me."

    Zola gives the class a slow, turn of her head, looking at everyone in the eye. Even you, Ashlee. She looks over at you, Ourania, adds a little sneer. Then finally at you, Tabitha. Do you see something in her eyes, Tabitha, maybe a desire for approval?

    Once she's done, she turns her wrist and points to you, Ourania, gives a little sneer like, "here you go".
  • image
    Relieved to have the attention off me, I nervously tap-tap my Navi while Zola speechifies. Like she's going to represent everyone... me? Lucas? No mention of Priscilla either... not like I can really talk about that though. I'm the worst.

    She meets my eye, huh? I stare back, insulated for once by the situation. Not like she can come over here and beat on me in the middle of class.

    That day goes through my head, how she showed me up and beat me down. Why couldn't I take it from her? My eyes narrow as I stare...

    I'm faster than you, Zola. I'm drokkin' faster than you...
  • edited March 2016

    Zola is, um. Unpolished. But I agree with what she's saying. She gets my approval, a look and a nod. It's much more engagement from her than I was expecting, I like it.

    Not because I like the assignment, or school. Because I like the opportunity to speak, even if I'm not suited for it.

    I watch curiously as Ashlee stares down my running mate.
  • image

    I step up and look at my classmates in turn. Tabitha's changing her gaze between Ashlee and Zora. Mark doing something on his Navi, probably speedball related. Nadja busy watching Mark.

    "You do deserve a voice. An actual voice. A voice that can get things done. But that voice is not Zola's."

    I pause. I raise my chin a little.

    "I'm not ignorant of how most of you feel about me. But this isn't about electing who you like. This is about electing the person that can do the job you need done. It's about electing who you think the adults will listen to."

    I look at Mark.

    "We do need better information. Pris was put into a medical coma last night, because of..." My throat catches, and I look down a minute, then back up at them all. "because of how sick she is. Look, You deserve better information about what's going on. You deserve to know what's being done about the plague. You deserve not to live in fear of dying before... seeing your family again..." I shudder a little. I can feel the tear run down my cheek. I pause again to get a grip, wiping at my eyes in the thick silence of the room and look up again avoiding Rys' eyes. That was off message. I didn't expect to get all emo over Pris. I clear my throat and bull onward.

    "You also deserve some space. Space to be yourself without fear. If elected, I will advocate for a restoration of our rights to privacy in the ship. No more cameras in the rooms, except in emergencies. Truly private, encrypted messaging and private encrypted partitions on our Navis and desk terminals."

    "If you elect me, you will get someone who knows what they're doing... Someone with real connections to the leadership of the ship... I look at Zola. Then back at the rest of them. "...not someone the adults will ignore. Thank you.

  • edited March 2016
    At the words 'medical coma' my mouth and throat go dry. I look down at my desk. Eyes unfocused.

    My heart kicks at my rib cage.

    I can't look up. All I can think about is the door to Pris's room, ajar. A patch of dim light against the wall. She was just out of sight.

    And now you'll never speak to her again.

    Saliva wells at the back of my teeth. My jaw itches. I think I'm going to be sick.

    The patch of light on the wall. The flicker of a shadow over the corner of the door, before Ourania closed it. Opened just a little further, for a moment, I might have caught... a glimpse of her hair. A look from her, at least. Perhaps a word.

    But now. The door is ajar. Pris is just out of sight in a darkened room.
  • image

    When Ourania reveals the fate of Priscilla, the class reacts in a number of different ways.
    - Bea gasps, bringing her hand to cover her mouth. She mumbles something quietly, and Tabitha, you see tears roll over her cheeks before she lowers her head.
    - Jace looks to his sister Mi Sun, who looks right back at him. They seem to silently communicate, both showing surprise, a bit of concern, but otherwise guarded.
    - Zola looks right at you, Tabitha, her face hard around the edges, her eyes worried.
    - Nadja's reaction is tight, but she blinks a few times, wipes at her cheek, then sniffs, looking away. There's a sullen attempt to hide anything, and she may be reacting to memories more than now.
    - Aiden mutters a curse, looks down at his Navi. Mark, was he jealous of you and her?
    - Lucas's mouth drops open, and he stares off at the door out of here.
    - Pax sighs and leans back in her seat, not meeting anyone's eyes.
  • edited March 2016
    I guess Aiden was jealous of us. Everybody else was.
    We were the perfect couple.

    Everything was perfect.

    Normal, happy childhood back on course There's an old song going round and round in my head now. Batteries not included It was playing the day of the airlock malfunction. Life is unfair The last thing I heard before I blacked out. Kill yourself or get over it
  • image
    Medical coma? I knew she was sick, I knew it was... bad but I didn't know it was so bad. So soon. My chest feels tight, I notice how Mark is staggered, pale... how near everyone seems shocked. How Lucas looks, again, like he wants to run away from it all. I don't blame him.

    The news takes thoughts of Zola and speedball out of my head, at least for a while. I stare down at my Navi, the little pointless screen I've set up with a space for votes on two sides. Does it really matter? Maybe we are all dead and just don't know it.

    It's hard to pay attention to the words after that... but Ourania actually makes some sense. I'm surprised to find myself almost in agreement.

    She probably catches me nodding a time or two.
  • image "Alright class, your candidates, Zola and Ourania, have both delivered their concise platforms. If any of you have questions to ask the candidates, please do so now." He looks across the room and the quiet whir of his cameras indicate the movement of his field of vision. "Don't be shy, children. This is part of the process."
    Nobody speaks up, either lost in their thoughts or hesitant. He looks to you, Ashlee, "Ashlee, what were the top areas of concern of the class?"
  • image

    I slump against the wall behind me. I can't hold Zola's gaze, and I realize it's because I have no hope for Pris, let alone myself. I don't have anyone to reconnect with on the other side.
  • image
    Really? Malcolm, now you choose me?

    I can't think with everyone watching and just blurt out, "I think everyone's concerned... concerned about Priscilla... Malc... Sir."

    A glance around at my classmates, elephant in the room, maybe. But it had to be said.
  • image

    Ashlee, it sounds like maybe you're trying to Manipulate Instructor Malcolm here. Let's see how that goes.
  • Manipulate Malcolm into addressing Priscilla: Hot -1
    (Rolled: 2d6-1. Rolls: 1, 1. Total: 1)
  • image

    Instructor Malcolm breaks eye contact, looking down at an unseen console. Rys tenses, then steps forward.

    image "That's a demerit, Ashlee. Speaking out of turn. Instructor Malcolm has released all official information." Corporal Rys barks out suddenly. He realizes that Ourania said more, it's obvious in the tightness in his voice. He pauses, listening to something you can't hear, his jaw tightens, and he starts for the door, "Come on, Ashlee, we need to have a conversation." He walks out the door, assuming you'll follow.

    what do you do?
  • image
    My head snaps to look at Rys, then back to the screen. Like it's not obvious what just happened.

    "What?" I slam my hands loudly on my desk, "that's B.S!" Sometimes my temper gets the best of me and I forget everything else. "I don't care about your stupid demerits! What are you gonna do?" I shout back at the screen.

    Rys walks out and I seethe there silently for a few seconds, probably a side of me that doesn't show too often here in class. I start to feel everyone watching again and take a halting breath.

    I slam the desk again, "fine! Whatever!"

    In frustration I sweep the contents of my desk to the floor and stalk out the door after the Drokking corporal.
  • image

    Lucas almost gets up when this happens, but by the time Ashlee storms out, he's done nothing but flinch. He relaxes down into his chair, slumps, defeated.

    Ashlee leaves the room, as does your running-mate, Ourania. Instructor Malcolm urges the class to return to the debate.

    What do you do?
  • image

    Ashlee, please go here.

  • image

    I'm looking out towards the hallway, body still towards the class. I should leave that alone. Slowly, I turn back to the class, turn back the last few seconds in my mind, to what I had been thinking before I was focused on Pris and her bright hair.

    "Our opponent talked about. Transparency. I think that connects well to Zola's questioning what we're going to inherit in the future. Outside of reputations, in this contest we seem. To want the same things."

    Unconsciously, I stand at attention. "Please, any questions you have.."
  • edited March 2016

    I frown, watching Rys lead Ashlee from the room. Yes I think she's worthless, but punishing her for speaking out of turn and not addressing it with me is simply not fair. After a moment I speak up, interrupting Tabitha

    "Sir, I said as much as Ashlee. I insist that I receive the same punishment as she."
  • image
    Instructor Malcolm shakes his head "no", pauses for a second like he's figuring out how to phrase something, his lips pursed before speech. "Ourania, I admire your courage. You misunderstand, though. I, ah, I didn't call for her punishment. It's best that you continue with your assignment." He pauses, then adds, "Please."

    What do you do?
  • image

    I don't like to be interrupted, but..

    Ourania impresses me and I feel..disgusted with myself. Then twice as disgusted with Malcolm. I look around at the class. Does anyone agree with this man?

    With Rys gone I could say what I want and at least have a running start. Malcolm is either a coward who can't protect children, or a liar. "Explain it to us."
  • image
    The edge in Tabitha's voice makes me smile, despite myself.
    What would happen if we all refused to go along? Panic, out of sight behind the monitors, perhaps. Sanctions. They control everything. Lights, food. Oxygen.
    But how many of them are there? How many actually watching, at least. Haladay, Malcolm. Ryan is just a voice on the speakers. How many others?

    Murmurs all around the room. There's a growing unity of feeling, discontent.
    They might all go on strike.

    Altogether too harmonious, Mark. You can do better than that.

    On the other hand, it wouldn't take much to split the room.
  • image Instructor Malcolm turns to regard you, Tabitha, muttering, ""Ioa... Tabitha, that's... that's not for me to say. He shifts a little, nerves setting in. He's never been challenged by you before, Tabitha, has he?
    "Mark," he stammers. "I need to report in. Please continue the election. I will return shortly. I expect the voting to be completed." He winks. out.

    What do you do?
  • image
    Slowly, I stand up. I stab open the tab on my Navi, which takes me two tries because my hand is shaking.

    "Let's... let's get this done," I say, carefully. "Post votes now, or ask them questions first, if you have any."

    I'm not really looking at anyone, or anything.

    The sooner this is over, the better.
  • Hold Steady:
    The worst thing right now would be for me to turn against Ourania in front of everybody

    (Rolled: 2d6+1. Rolls: 2, 2. Total: 5)

    (+1 xp)
  • image
    I take a deep breath and get ready to sit down again. and then I look at Ourania.

    Look at her. Surveying the room with that self-satisfied little martinet expression on her face.

    I came into class this morning intending to apologize to her. In front of everyone, if necessary.

    But now my gorge rises and the idea is unthinkable. Who the hell does she think she is? Now, now she's the one standing up for us? She's not us. She is them. Them.

    I take a deep breath.

    "Why the sudden solidarity, Ourania? Trying to make up for something you did?"

    I try to make it sound casual. It doesn't.
  • image

    No, I've never challenged Malcolm. I've stayed quiet in class unless I needed to speak. The temperature in the room is changing too fast for me to keep track of it. I'm still staring at the blank screen when Mark lays down his threat. Question.

    The words assemble for me. This is interesting but the warning hairs on my arms are standing up, why?
  • image "Yeah, Ourania," Nadja says, smiling from the back row of the class. "Priscilla got sick, you got a nomination for an award, but you hid it. How come? Didn't want us to know what you did? Couldn't stand that everyone loved her?" Nadja's tone is biting, she's feeding off Mark, lashing out.

  • image "Whoah, guys, let's hold on a minute," Bea butts in, which is uncharacteristic for the meek first-row top student. "Pris has been sick for like, a while. And well, I saw Ourania taking her to the Med Bay. Corporal Rys came up and ordered her to go back to quarters, and Ourania, she almost got in a fight with him over it. She was trying to help Priscilla, I saw it myself!"

    image Lucas stands up, looks around at everyone, "Hey. Are we like, going to let Rys hurt Ashlee, for real? She just asked a drokking question, and he drug her out! I saw what he did to Olivar, it wasn't right. But Ollie's a dink, sure. Ashlee's, she sweet. I'm gonna. I'm gonna go out there and do something. You should come with me, Mark... Jace, you, too."
  • image
    I snort.

    "Lucas squaring up to Rys. I'd like to see that."

    Seriously, I would. Even though I don't really know why. The prospect seems like something I'd enjoy. If I can just goad him into it.

    "But are you willing to not eat for a week afterwards? 'Cause that's what'll happen."

    There's the beginning of a smile at the corner of my mouth.
  • image

    Mark, I think you're pursuing a Hunger here, rather heedlessly. And trying to Manipulate Lucas into doing just what he said. Let's see some dice.
  • Manipulate an NPC
    (Rolled: 2d6+2. Rolls: 2, 2. Total: 6)

    (+xp for sating a Hunger)
  • edited March 2016

    image "Well, then, come on!" Lucas says as he walks for the door, which opens as he approaches. "What are they gonna do, vac us all?" He looks over the rest of the class. ""Tabitha, Zola, you want my vote? Come drokking stop Rys and you've got it! Jace, you owe Rys for what he did to Ollie. And Mi Sun, I know what he's said about you, to your face! That's stomm!" He heads out the open doorway.

    Mark, Nadja's looking at you from her seat, she hasn't moved a muscle. No matter what you do here, Lucas, if he survives, he's got a String on you.

    What do you do?
  • image

    That… that sort of buffer I have that keeps everyone at a distance? Yeah that completely collapses when Mark levels his accusation at me. The air is sucked out of the room and I’m almost gasping as Nadja follows up. What part I might have played in Pris’ death has haunted me since last night and Mark’s comment just cuts clean through to that and leaves me reeling.

    Lucas stands up and says something but I can’t hear it. It’s like that stupid cartoon that they show where you can’t understand any of the adults.

    The chaos in my head consolidates into somehting hot and violent. The meathead wants payback? Fine then. I suddenly charge from where I’ve been standing stone-faced, shoving desks aside and slapping that stupid handsome face as hard as I drokking can, making some kind of animal noise of fury.

    Then after barely a breath, I do it again.

  • image

    Orania , let's see how you Lash Out here.
  • image
    Rolling to lash out.
    (Rolled: 2d6-1. Rolls: 1, 4. Total: 4)
  • image

    Ourania, your first slap catches Mark by surprise. Mark, the slap hurts, as bad as a hard tackle in speedball. The second one is more than you intended Ourania, when Mark tries to move away from the slap, your nails catch his cheek, and you see a thin line of blood. (no Harm, but it's there, Mark, obvious as hell).

    Ourania, you’re too powerful to put up with their garbage any longer. You enter Darkest Self.

    Tabitha, Zola has no idea what just happened, but she actually steps in front of you, like she'd shield you from this sudden madness. Not that you need it.

    And yeah, Mark, that hurt, and it looks like she's not done. You hear Nadja scooting her chair out, she might be jumping in here. Jace is moving in to try and grab Ourania, trying to de-escalate this.

    What do you do?
  • image
    I laugh and back up a little. I wipe across my cheek with the back of my thumb and look at the blood for a second.

    "Looks like that hit a nerve. You sure ran out of things to say for yourself fast."

    I look up at one of the classroom cameras and shrug, asking whoever's watching if they're going to let this go on.

    "Guess I was more right last night than I thought. You did do something to Pris."

    Spending a String to give Ourania the condition "Sneak"
  • image

    Im still shaking with fury, stalking forward, closing in on him again. Staring him down. I can feel something hot swirling in my mind and my gut, something that wants out.

    “Yeah, I cared for her, unlike you, you meat headed, lying piece of stommm.” I growl at him. My voice rises. “You drokking penduma garsk narha broog! Farska carte banta narpori jun! E chu ta!”

    I’m screaming by the end, my eyes locked on his and tearing up with anger. I’m not even aware of when I started spouting babble with the venom befitting the vilest of insults. I feel the… the pressure fly out of me, right at him.

    Hexing your ass with Ring of Lies

  • Rolling with Dark. (Rolled: 2d6+1. Rolls: 4, 5. Total: 10)

  • image

    Lucas is going to get demolished by Rys if he goes out there alone - if he gets a quarter of the class to follow him, though, I'm going to be down a teamie. If Zola goes, I don't know what will happen.

    But inside here, Ourania and Mark are losing their groddamn minds. Did something to Pris? I've never seen Ourania this mad ever, and I don't know what could make her stop. It's frightening; part of me wants to learn more about what she's like but the rest wants to run.

    I touch the small of Zola's back, between us where nobody can see. "I'll go. Make sure Rys doesn't kill Lucas. And nobody kills Rys."

    I separate from her and edge towards the door. It feels like something insane could happen in here any moment. "Keep them off each other."
  • image

    Ourania, Jace is moving up to you to try and wrap you up, keep you from lashing out any more. You're rather sure Nadja will sucker punch you once he does.

    Mark, you're seeing this and nobody is stopping this madness yet. What are you doing?
  • image

    I let out this harsh unhinged sounding laugh, feeling my face all stretched and tense, as I move sideways away from Jace, desks between me and him and keeping my facing both to Mark and Nadja as well as him. I shove a desk at him.

    "You want on my stomm-list too you drokker? You want this? Come on! See what happens!"
  • edited March 2016
    image"What's your damage, Ourania? Mark loves Pris, you're drokked! Jace says this as Mi Sun watches with worry. "No better than Rys!" He lunges past a desk to grab you.

    If you want to escape, run away. If you want to strike back, lash out. What do you do?
  • image

    Look, I'm not speedball, but I'm not squishy either. We all have to exercise to maintain musculature. The speedball kids... Well that pretty much takes care of it? Me on the other hand... Gymnastics and martial arts. Now I'm not great... I mean my teacher is over vid and there's only so much you can learn when they can't physically show you, but I'm not terrible.

    I sidestep the lunge, grabbing his arm, twisting my hips and pulling with his motion to unbalance him right into the next desk over.

    Lashing Out
  • (Rolled: 2d6-1. Rolls: 4, 1. Total: 4)
  • edited March 2016
    I'm just going to see how this plays out. Laying a hand on Ourania won't play well for the cameras, so I'm not going to put myself in between her and Jace.

    That weird babbling was... yeah, weird. Maybe she had a seizure or something. I think about maybe pushing the emergency call button.

    I look around for Rys. Typical. The one time you actually want a corp to be around and... he's nowhere to be seen. Kicking Ashlee's ass, presumably. Although maybe not, he does kind of have a thing for her.

    "Guys," I say, "this is getting out of hand."

  • image

    Ourania, you twist Jace, just like you planned, moving faster than he expected. He tries to compensate for it, putting a hand out as his momentum carries him into the desk. When he hits the desk, he goes over it and the desk crumples as his knee slams into it, and he falls, on his left side, hard.

    Everyone hears the snap, and Jace cries out in sudden pain. He rolls over, clutching his arm, which is very obviously broken. You see the bone in his forearm sticking out.

    Some of the kids see it and get sick (Aiden and Pax). Bea gapes in sheerer terror, and Mi Sun tries to get to her brother, panic setting in.

    What do you do?
  • image
    Bones sticking out are for sure a legit, no-demerits reason to press the medical emergency button under my desk, so I press it. And then the anti-tamper prompt pops up on my Navi and I key in the release code. And then I press the are-you-sure pop-up, and confirm that I understand the penalties for improper use of the emergency medical report system.

    I'd like to think that somewhere on a distant deck a klaxon is sounding. More likely someone just gets a pop-up notification on the edge of their field of vision.

    I put myself in between Jace and Ourania, crouching down over Jace. I mutter helpful/encouraging stuff in his ear, like how help is on its way and don't panic and so on.

    I look up over my shoulder at Ourania.
    "You psycho bitch! What is your drokking malfunction?"
  • image

    The lights in the room dim and small red and white flashers come on near the ceiling. The door opens and Corporal Rys enters at a run, nearly knocking over a desk, looking around, trying to figure out what's happening.

    What do you do?
  • edited March 2016


    A little part of me is horrified at Jace’s injury, but the bigger,louder part feels powerful. Rys barely registers as important.

    “It’s his own fault, I drokking warned him, meathead! He decided to drokk with me anyway.” I snarl back at Mark.

    I cross my arms, standing over them. “So is he right, meathead? Do you love Pris?”

    Go ahead, drokker, lie to me.

  • image
    I start to help Jace up from the floor, careful not to put any weight on the broken arm.

    "Someone help me get him to medbay."

    Rys can handle Ourania. And her newfound curiosity about love and other human emotions.
  • image

    Aiden wipes at his mouth with the back of his hand and comes up to try and help Jace.

    image Rys waves Aiden off and helps you, Mark. You both get Jace standing and he whimpers through clenched teeth. "Stow it, Ourania. You just ruined our speedball team. Come on, Mark, let's get this done." Rys puts Jace's good arm around his own neck and starts out the door.

    Mark, you're helping him, right?

    Ourania, the rest of the class is gaping at you. Well, not Bea, she's staring at the floor. Nadja's shaking her head like you're something awful. Mi Sun might be looking to hit you as soon as Rys leaves, hard to tell.
  • image
    I'm helping Rys, of course. I have to shove a few desks out of the way to make a clear path to the exit. Pax is near the doorway, underneath Malcolm's monitor. "Looks like you just made the starting five," I tell her.

  • image

    I watch them take Jace toward the door. I look down at the floor where he was laying and see the pool of blood from the arm. On some instinct I crouch and reach out to touch the blood with two fingers, then stand up looking at the red shiny fluid.

    I look around at the others... the hate in Mi Sun's face. The shock in the others. I narrow my eyes, glaring at them all, then I head for my room.

  • edited March 2016

    You head out of the classroom and in the hallway you see Ashlee, who looks like she was in a scrap, but maybe she liked it? Tabitha, who's still trying to figure out what's going on. And Lucas, who looks upset and confused, no idea what to do.

    Do you brush past them to your room or what?


    You come out to the hall and see Ashlee, Tabitha and Lucas. Rys sees them, but then he's moving on towards the Med Bay.

    image As you're moving down the corridor, a moaning, whimpering Jace in your arms, Corporal Rys asks, "Mark, what got into Ourania? I've never seen her lose her stomm or anything. What did Jace do? Was it about Pris or... hey man, what happened to your face?" He keeps moving, not pausing as he fires off questions. The Med Bay is just ahead.

    What do you do?
  • image
    I gesture with my free hand, palm down: not so fast. Rys is in too much of a hurry and the abrupt movement is hurting Jace, jerking him around.

    "Yeah, it was about Pris. Me and Ourania got into a thing and Jace stepped in."

    Stepped in to protect me. It's supposed to be the other way round, if anything. I didn't think Ourania would go this far. Might still be my fault anyway. For not getting Jace to back up out of it.

    "And it turns out the girl has claws. Hence the face. Didn't seem the right thing to hit her back but now I kinda wish I had."

    Not far to the medbay now. Jace will live. Might be back on court within the week. A break like that, though. It'll hurt and he'll remember it hurting.

    When Rys leaves me holding up Jace so he can open the medbay door, I speak quietly to him. "Sorry, buddy. You'll be OK."
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    I pause maybe a half second, taking them in, then push past to my room. It isn't until my room door shuts behind me that the tears start.

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    Tabitha doesn't come to your room, not for a while. The lockdown is in process, and children (that's you) are supposed to sequester themselves in the nearest shelter until notified they can move.


    You help Jace to the Med Bay, which is a safe space in lockdown. Dr. Haladay comes on screen and instructs you both on sedating and then resetting Jace's arm well enough to put him in the incubator where he can do the finer work. He sends you both away, and Rys urges you to head to your room, he'll clear everyone out of the classroom.

    End Session
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