KH-Vids Royale

Discussion in 'Archives' started by Mari, Oct 1, 2006.

  1. no-reality_allowed ¢ℓαιяνσуαηт ℓσνєкιℓℓ

    162
    at first you look at the pictures and think "hey, this place looks pretty nice".......then you remember KHVR takes place here and you start to imagine all the dead bodies and blood everywhere and think ">.O"
     
  2. Nice chapter 6 Mish! No really, You do better at paint than I do!
     
  3. Axel Chaser

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    Partying, making tags and Staring at the Sun.
    33
    Good idea showing this. Helps understand the story somewhat too.
     
  4. DarknessKingdom The Kingpin of the TV

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2006
    31
    Yeah, it really does. Makes it easier to visualise the events of the killings in KHVR too.
     
  5. cloudfinalfantasy3 Twilight Town Denizen

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    im right up your....OH CRAP THE COPS.
    5
    202
    Um soku your being rude i think she should take her time now.
     
  6. Darkandroid Gets it Together

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    240
    I think he was really complainting her, not being rude.
     
  7. cloudfinalfantasy3 Twilight Town Denizen

    Joined:
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    Location:
    im right up your....OH CRAP THE COPS.
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    202
    Well theres no chapter 6 see... duh.
     
  8. Soushirei 運命の欠片

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    80
    Haha, I absolutely loved everything thus far. I actually burst out laughing at the part: "Isn't genocide like a disease or an STD or something?"

    I also really like your art, it's very simple but complimenting.
     
  9. Darkandroid Gets it Together

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    Male
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    England
    240
    It's been a while since the last chapter, so for now I will unsticky the thread.

    Any objections please tell me via PM, but I think it's been a sticky for a good amount of time now.

    [Unstickified]
     
  10. Starboy Destiny Islands Resident

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    Location:
    Michigan
    1
    79
    I don't imagine this place with blood, because I've been to Mackinac Island when I was like 4.
     
  11. Zexion of the Twilight The conflicts within my priorities....

    28
    o_0 Does Roxas live in San Fran?
     
  12. Roxas OG

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2006
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Cin's basement
    188
    KH-Vids Royale: Chapter 47 + Epilogue

    Chapter 47 is all new, but I may have posted the epilogue. This ties up all the ends of KH-Vids Royale.

    Enjoy these two final chapters. I will be deleting the current KHVR thread and replacing it with a brand new one that is complete, not only up to chapter 38 or something.

    ---

    47

    “You know, girl, I never would have expected you to win. Of all the people on the island, you were probably the least expected to come out of the Royale alive. It wasn’t my choice though, it was yours, and it looks like you won. Then again, it was sort of Arc’s choice. He killed himself and there was nothing you could do about it, especially with the instantaneous way he did it. Luckily, my soldiers and I jumped in before you killed yourself. Who knows what you would have done if we hadn’t have been there. What is it, Sara? What would you have done if we hadn’t been there? Would you have picked up the gun and blasted your own head off just like Arc did?â€
    “Yes, I would have. I would have taken the gun from his hand and killed myself. You’d find us both together, dead, gone, forever destroyed. That is the way I had wanted it to be, at least…â€
    The water shimmered a brilliant blue, the clouds were dispersed and wispy, and Alpha-A801’s blades whirred in the air as it flew towards land. Deathspank, Sara, and two helicopter pilots were making their way back to Michigan. The helicopter had left in the early dawn, taking the four up into the air and out over Lake Michigan. They had been traveling for over two hours already. Their destination was the Detroit Metro Airport, where Sara would be flown back to her home state of Maine.
    “Arc killed himself to save you, Sara. Isn’t that what you wanted? Would you have honestly killed yourself to save him?â€
    “Yes, I would have!†Sara screamed in reply. “I loved him, Deathspank! He was so pure to me; I knew he was the one! You have gone and taken this all away from me! It was all you and this stupid Royale! Deathspank, you could never know true love. True love is to you is getting laid behind some backwater bar!â€
    “Yes, you’re probably right,†chuckled Deathspank. “But don’t you think that that is a good thing? Don’t you think that it is better that I have avoided love? Right now, I’m beaming and happy. You’re sad, dismal, depressed, downright shocked, and all because of love, correct? So which is better, love, or being loveless?â€
    Sara was still recovering from the evening before. Tears remained on the edges of her eyes, and she found herself stiffening the occasional sob.
    “Deathspank,†she sobbed. “The better option…â€
    Sara whipped her hand behind her back and grabbed the helicopter’s fire extinguisher.
    “Is LOVE!!!†she roared. Sara brought her arms over her head, the fire extinguisher clasped between her hands.
    “What are you-?!â€
    The fire extinguisher slammed into Deathspank’s face. Crimson rain splattered against the helicopter’s windows. Bone ripped through the soft skin covering his face, chunks of skin meeting the blood pasted against the windshield.
    “You, don’t, know, anything!†Sara screamed, smashing his face with the blunt object again, and again, and again. A pink paste oozed from Deathspank’s ripped skin, his eyes bugging from his head. His cheek bones stabbed into his blood vessels, blood spewing from his mouth like a hose. Violent epilepsy caused him to vomit as he fell face down.
    Sara clenched her fists, breathing hard as Deathspank lay on the floor. The helicopter pilot scrambled to find a weapon, but had to continue flying.
    “What are you doing?†Deathspank managed to squeeze through coughs of blood.
    “Avenging Arc,†Sara grinned. She began to laugh as she looked at Deathspank’s bloody mess of a face. Bending down, she raised her thumbs above his eyes.
    “You never deserve to see my face again,†she smiled, stabbing her thumbs into his eyes. Black blood leaked from the sides of her thumbs. She pulled them away as yellow pus began to spurt from Deathspank’s mangled eye sockets. Sara grabbed the fire extinguisher and slammed it into Deathspank’s mouth, shattering his teeth and ripping his gums.
    “I win,†Sara laughed, “and I’m taking you down with me.â€

    She jumped from the helicopter with Deathspank’s body in hand. Her body hit the calm fresh water of Lake Michigan, and the helicopter driver never saw her again.

    Epilogue

    An old man, wearing overalls and a pin striped shirt, was smoking a pipe as he sat in a road side grill. He was somewhere in South America, and the white whiskers around his mouth were an odd contrast to his darkly tanned face. The grill was called ‘El Chupacabra Roadside’ which meant something along the lines of ‘The Beast’s Hidden Grill.’ But the old man didn’t care what it translated to in English. He couldn’t speak English anyway. If he could, he’d be the happiest man in the world. He could leave behind his red sand and cactus life for a new one in the big cities of America. Everyone dreamed of going to the United States. The money was easy, there was a strong middle class, and the government was effectively working to help the nation in every way possible. That was just not life where he was living.
    A Latino woman in a blue dress and white apron walked up to the man. Red lipstick covered her mouth, her eyes with dark mascara circled around them. Her long black hair was bundled up behind her head in a large bun. She collected his menu and asked him in Spanish, “What would you like to eat sir? Have you taken a look at our special soups or meals of the day yet? Today’s soup is Chili Rice, mixed with mint herbs. It also comes with extra crackers. Unfortunately, we don’t have a special meal today.â€
    The man replied, also in Spanish, “I’d just like a cheeseburger with fries please, and could you please use a bun with no sesame seeds on it? I don’t want to turn out positive during drug tests or anything like that.â€
    “Ci,†the woman walked off toward the counter, where you could see overweight chefs cooking what would be a greasy and fattening (yet delicious) meal. The place itself was plain grimy, from the seats to the tables to the floors. Everything had an aura of sickness about it. The man was scared he would catch a disease in the rotten place. Some black liquid was on the floor to his left. Several pickles were stuck to the bottom of a table, and where he was sitting a layer of muck covered the eating surface placed in front of him. It was truly disgusting.
    “NEWS ALERT!†screamed the television hanging in the top right corner of the grill. There were television sets all around the room, but the easiest for the man to see was the one on the far wall of the restaurant. Several other heads turned to look at the screen, along with others in the restaurant looking at different TVs, all hanging from a steel ceiling, along with steel walls and large oval windows.
    The channel itself was broadcasting in English, but Spanish subtitles scrolled along the bottom of the screen as the man spoke. They were small and white, and would change quickly. The man, though, was literate in Spanish, and found it easy to read them. It was the ‘Fox’ (Fox 2 to be exact) channel, but the old man had no clue what that meant as the waitress set a large glass cup of chilled coke in front of him. The only television channels he knew were one; which was the local news, and three; which was the channel his mother would watch. As a farmer, he himself did not own a TV, and enjoyed watching them whenever he could.
    The cup was misty, and the old man felt joy to feel the moisture spread through his mouth as he took a long sip. His taste buds were happy - for the moment, so he tuned back in to the news report. Watching the television was a relief, he’d been watering his crops all day (a dry spell had recently come through) and one of his pigs had given birth to two new piglets. As proud as he was, it felt great to be able to sit back and take a drink.
    There was a picture on the television screen of an island, and charred buildings were shown. There was a room that had been completely destroyed in an explosion. Bullet holes were seen in the wall of a building. Blood was dripping from a sharp wire that hung in a door way. Two men in black jackets that read ‘FBI’ on the back in big yellow letters were hauling a body onto a truck large truck. Other bodies seemed to be stacked on top of each other in a big pile, all located in the big compartment of the automobile. The two men then walked off to grab what looked like another body, but the old farmer was unable to see for sure as the camera switched to a news reporter in his mid 40s, folding papers.
    “This is where the ‘game’ as they called it, was held. To try and eradicate the juvenile delinquents of the world, the US of A held the battle where they pitted 30 members of an online community against each other. This was no ordinary battle, this was a fight to the death, and until one remained. But the plan backfired,†said a white reporter, his hair parted in a perfect 5:3 ratio. The subtitles that were just on the screen disappeared as he paused to shuffle the papers in front of him. Behind him in a smaller box was the image of a girl lying face down on the road, blood surrounding her head in a pool. The large red words ‘US Scandal’ were written across the bottom of the screen. Of course, the old man in the seat never read this, as he was illiterate in English - but he was able to read the disturbing subtitles.
    “The government dumped the youths on this island located somewhere in the Mackinac Straights. The exact name of the island was disclosed, but whatever the US was thinking they weren’t thinking straight. They obviously hadn’t gone that extra mile with security features, because something happened in that game,†said the man, swiveling in his chair to face the camera as a new angle was set. His face was completely serious, even more so than the normal news reporter would be whilst giving news.
    “The winner of the game decided to take it all the way. Sara (kh-vids.net administrator, kh-vids.net forum, kh-vids.net, Girl No. 2), one of the participants, ended up winning the massive duel. Supposedly, while traveling on a boat to get home, she killed the crew and the forum leader Deathspank before steering the boat on a crash course. Deathspank was the leader of the ‘game’, called the Impertinent Youths Annihilation Act, IYAP, although now foreign countries have started to adopt this new system and the name is being changed to ‘International Youths Removal System’, IYRS. IYRS has been adopted by more than 40 countries already, all which are setting up ‘games’. But after what has happened with this one, must new steps be made to protect the world from delinquents?â€
    Now behind the reporter was a boat that had been crashed on some rocks. More men with black jackets that read ‘FBI’ on them were walking around the boat, examining it from many various angles. Wooden planks littered the area, and the boat was on its side. The men were wading through water, grabbing pieces of debris. A body was washed up on the beach, laying there without anyone going near it.
    The man put down his cheeseburger and started watching intently. Others around the roadside restaurant mimicked him. All heads were turned to the TVs, including the chefs, waiters and waitresses’
    “Sara (the TV then showed a picture of a girl with long black hair. She looked miserable as if she was in a mug shot. The words ‘winner’ were pasted in yellow under her face) has yet to be found. It is rumored that she has traveled to South America and is planning on fleeing across seas. But that’s not all. Many countries are outraged with what the U.S.A. has done, and many countries have launched war on them. With 192 countries in the world, and only 40 countries adopting the new system, it is bound to be that all these countries will eventually be destroyed. World masterminds that have not adopted the IRYS system are Russia, all of South America, and all of Europe. India and China have also not adopted the system. Countries like Japan, Iran, Iraq, most Middle Eastern countries and a few 3rd world African countries have adopted the terrible system. Is this the spark for a World War 3? Sara is at large with charges of Federal Misconduct, Breaking and Entering, and First Degree and Second Degree murder.†The camera returned to the reporter with the 5:3 ratio hair, and zoomed up on his face. “If you have seen this girl, please call the police immediately. There is a reward for those who find her. She is deemed armed and dangerous, and wanting to kill. If you have any information, then call the police immediately.â€
    The man looked around the restaurant. Everyone else had their eyes glued to the TV except for one person. Whoever they were, they were wearing an overly large coat and had a blue cap pulled down over their eyes. Long black hair streamed from the back of the hat. Something triggered in the back of the old man’s head. There was something about this girl that didn’t seem right. She was too white, and looked like she hadn’t been in the South American area for long at all. And there was something else weird about her - under the faint hood he saw her lips form into a small smile. The old man realized he had found that girl; Sara was the name he had heard many times.
    Knowing what must be done; he got up and hobbled toward the counter where a pay phone was located. It had free phone calls to the police, so he quickly dialed the familiar number. The black phone, bolted to a thick metal cord, vibrated softly as the police telephone line ran once, twice, and then a lady’s voice was heard. She spoke politely and loudly.
    “Hello, this is the SA protection and services police hotline, how may I help you?†said the lady. The man could hear more phones ringing in the background and the shuffling of papers.
    “I believe I have some information on this escapee girl called Sara,†said the farmer. His voice was hoarse and raspy - he smoked too much. But it wasn’t his fault. Scientists say that it takes a full three weeks to develop a habit, but the old farmer felt like it had been mere days to become hooked on nicotine. This wasn’t a bother to him though, but sometimes he would get annoyed when his peers couldn’t understand what he was saying due to the quiet, soft tones he would make with his voice.
    “You have some information?†began the lady, her tone changed from happy to serious immediately. “Please give us all you’ve got. Anything would be helpful at the moment.â€
    “Well,†started the old man. “I’m at the El Chupacabra Roadside restaurant, the one on the main road through the desert. There’s a gas station and car repair garage outside of it. Well, I think the girl is here, although I’m not sure.â€
    “What does she look like?†asked the police operator.
    “She had long black hair. It falls down her back. Her face seems kind of pale, although it’s hard to see because she’s wearing a blue cap down over her face. There’s also a gray hoodie draped around her shoulders, but she isn’t wearing it. Around her torso is a blue shirt that says some English words on it. Does this sound like her?â€
    “Just a moment!†said the woman in a hurry. The old man listened to the bustle of feet on the other end of the phone. There was shouting and then some loud footsteps echoed through the phone receiver. More voices, loud and gruff, grunted some Spanish words. Something smashed and then the lady was back on the phone.
    “Thank you for your information, sir, we have police on the way right now,†said the woman. Then the phone clicked and went dead.
    The old man made stiff strides toward his mucky table, until he sat down and took a sip of his delicious drink. He looked over at the girl, who was looking back at him. Her eyes searched him - prying at him and delving into his deepest secrets. He felt intimidated, but turned away from her to look out the window. Was this really the girl? If it was, maybe he’d get a handsome reward. He could finally move out of this god forsaken country.
    Looking out the perfectly clear window, he saw other Mexican people loading their cars with gas. One child was helping his mother hold the gas pump. A man in a business suit was fumbling with his coins whilst trying to insert them into the machine. Another drove out of the small area, leaving a path of dust in his wake. Behind that was a picturesque scene - dark red and tan colored sand with cactus plants growing in random spots. In the distance were the outlines of some mountains, jagged like the edge of a broken piece of glass. These were dark red, and above was an extremely bright golden sun. It was the typical hot weather of the lower continent.
    The old man faintly smiled as he looked at the scene. His country really was quite beautiful, and he had such strong pride in his country too. But his smile grew even wider as he heard the soft sound of a police siren in the distance. Looking at the girl in the corner, he saw her eyes grow wide. He knew she had realized who was coming. The police; and they were coming for her. The old man lit up as he felt the cash bills in his hands, hundreds of them. That’s when she made her move.
    Jumping up from the table, she charged for the glass entrance door with a sign that read ‘open’ on it. The old man didn’t want this prey to get loose, so he jumped at her with all his might. She turned to see him and pulled out a small knife. Her arm moved in a wide arc and thrust toward him. It cut into his hand, and he felt his middle and index fingers become detached from his body. Blood flew into the air from the open wounds, and his fingers fell to the grimy floor. The man landed on the floor with a loud crash and felt something in his waist crack. He watched as the girl turned to look at him before storming out the door.
    In her eye was a look of pity, a look of sorrow. But there was also hatred in her eyes, and a hidden fear. The old man burned the image of her eyes into his mind, realizing his fault. By calling the police he had made a mistake. Because in those girl’s eyes he had seen so many emotions and feeling, from lust to excitement to determination; he had realized what the most dominant feeling in her eyes was. It was the look of innocence.
    People rushed from their seats and picked up the old man. He didn’t feel any of their grabbing hands as his gazed was transfixed on the girl charging across the gas station parking lot and jumping into a top down car. He no longer felt the pain of his bleeding knuckles, with amputated fingers laying on the floor next to him, or the shattered bone in his hip that was a cause of osteoporosis. He had made the biggest mistake of his life by calling the police; and he was going to pay the price. The man shed a single tear.

    Sara burst out of the roadside grill to feel fresh air on her face. ‘That place was pretty dirty,’ she thought to herself. ‘Note to self; never, ever go back there.’ The sounds of sirens grew closer. Dust showered from her moving feet as she pounded towards her top down car, which she’d stolen from a local dealer.
    People all around - from the gas station to the auto parts garage - were staring at her. Many were pointing and whispering, but Sara no longer cared about their remarks. She had to escape… or else she would probably be killed - or at least captured and sent back to horrible America. The America that had killed her Arc.
    She leaped into the front seat of the car and jammed the keys into the slot. Turning on the car, the engine leaped to life as vibrations emanated throughout the automobile. Her foot stomped the pedal, and the car slid and squealed before firing out of the sand parking lot like a bullet out of a cannon. It shot into the main road, and she gave a sharp right and drifted into position. Looking back, police cars were right behind her.
    The day would have been so beautiful if not for the crazy car chase. The sun was shining beautifully, everything was a lovely color and it was hot but not unbearable. ‘This is the perfect weather to get a tan in,’ thought Sara. ‘But that’s kind of a stupid thought considering the situation I’m in.’
    Sara heard the pop of a gun, and the windshield in front of her shattered. ‘Damn,’ she thought, ‘These guys are seriously out to kill me.’ There was another gunshot and her right rearview mirror shattered. Sara opened the front compartment of the car and pulled out a pistol. She’d robbed it from a weapon’s dealer back in southern Mexico. But now it was hers, and she was out for the hunt.
    Holding the wheel with one hand, she turned around and started firing the pistol. The road in front of her was straight, so all she had to do was hold her hand firm and she’d be fine. A policeman popped out of the window, and she fired the pistol in his direction. The bullet soared toward him and she heard the sound of squelching grass. She saw his body recoil from the bullet, and blood sprayed from his chest. His body hung limp out of the window and blood dripped from the open wound in his torso.
    She then realized that the driver of the car had a machine gun. He fired it at her wildly, shattering glass and denting metal. Sara ducked down in her seat and felt bullets whizzing though the air above her hair. The gunfire stopped, and she looked up to see the car she was driving was careening of the main road. She quickly got herself back on track (‘I need to drive more carefully!’ she thought), and looked back to see the police cop reloading his large machine gun.
    Two sweeping shots were fired from Sara’s pistol, which shattered the windshield of the police car. The policeman driving swerved off the road and crashed into a cactus, destroying it completely. The dead cop that was hanging out of the window next to him flew from the car, landing in the desert in a huge dust cloud. The driver immediately put the car back on the main road, and pointed the gun out of the windshield. More bullets spat out of the machine gun and Sara heard a tire on her car pop. Realizing the true danger she was in, her action was swift, but she pointed the pistol at the driver in the car and pulled the trigger. She heard a pop and looked to see the man in the car with a hole through his head. Blood spurted from the open wound. The bullet that had torn through his head went next through the headrest and shattered the back windshield. The police car, now with no drivers, swerved into the desert and down a sandy hill. That was the last time Sara ever saw it. She was looking ahead now.
    As she sat on her own in this small dumpy car, a thought suddenly occurred to her. The bullets, the speeding cars, her killing two police officers, this all receded from her mind as she was thinking of this one thought.
    She was lying on a sandy beach, in a blue bikini, and Arc was next to her. He looked at her and smiled. The sun was shining brightly and there was no one else on the beach with her. Waves lapped on the shore, and time seemed to stop as everyone else on the beach completely disappeared. It was just her and Arc… the one who had died for her. And she would never forget.
    As he smiled, she smiled back. Then he got up and walked towards the ocean. She simply watched as he walked, and when he reached the edge of the ocean, the figures of all the other forum members who had died only three months ago appeared with him. There was Roxas, Cin, Sora, Boris, Deathspank, Roxas-chan, Ris, Kairi, General Grievous, Angel, Xehsin, Vivi, Reien, Element, Riku, Mish, Darkwatch, Misty, Xekvin and everyone who was killed on that island. Whether they were good or evil, they were all smiling at her. Some were waving, some were clapping. Others just stood there looking at her. But tears streamed from her eyes as she saw them all, so real. She felt like she could reach out and touch them all - that they were truly there. That all the events on Mackinac Island were just a dream and here she was during the real part of that ‘week long’ vacation Deathspank had planned for them all. She wished with all her heart that the ‘game’ had all been a dream. But, she was not able to. She remembered it all - from Arc killing himself to let her win the game from watching Mish get railed by Boris from the steeple she had been hiding in. But even seeing Boris now, smiling, all friendly, even with Deathspank, she put it all behind her and became filled with joy.
    So she smiled back.
    Waving and smiling back, they all slowly disintegrated into sand; while still smiling. She watched as the sand of their bodies joined the sand of the beach. The last to go was Arc, and as his face disappeared she felt a part of her heart disappear too.
    ‘A million grains of sand for one soul,’ she thought. ‘One soul shouldn’t equal a million grains of sand. Each soul is worthless, but as I travel to fight this government that has done this to me… I will avenge them all.’
    Then the blowing of the wind in her hair came rushing back. Now the sun was shining, but there was no ocean, just an endless sea of cactuses. Her hair blew wildly as the glass of the recently shattered windshield blew backward behind her.
    She smiled, because she knew that for now she was safe.
    Turning to the passenger seat, she could imagine Arc with her.
    And he, like at the beach just seconds ago, was smiling.
    ‘I’m on the run, that’s for sure,’ she thought.
    ‘But this government’s going down, I can tell you that.’
    Right on.
    This time we’re on - all of us forum members.
    And we won’t stop till we’ve won.
    [/COLOR
    “1 forum member remaining,â€
    But now she is a part of you.

    ---

    That's it, the end. The end of KHVR I.

    But KHVR II is indeed coming. And when it does, it'll be unlike anything ever read on this forum.

     
  13. Roxas OG

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2006
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Cin's basement
    188
    KH-Vids Royale: Final Mix

    Written by Alex Trimmer
    BR Logo Copyright Koushun Takami/WOWOW Entertainment Ltd.

    Boys Girls
    1 - Angel (1winged_angel) 1 - Roxas-chan
    2 - Cin 2 - Sara
    3 - General Grievous 3 -Ris (Roxas_is_hot)
    4 - Xehsin 4 - Kairi (Kairi’)
    5 - FF Fanatic 5 - ...
    6 - Boris the Blade 6 - Reien
    7 - Arc 7 - Element
    8 - Vivi (vivi’s dark side) 8 - Riku
    9 - Darkwatch 9 - Claryssa
    10 - Shiomi 10 - Mish
    11 - Roxas 11 - Laydee (xLaydee)
    12 - Da Freak 12 - KHAngel
    13 - Sora (*Sora*) 13 - Xigbar (Freeshooter Xigbar)
    14 - zSoraz 14 - Yukai
    15 - Xekvin 15 - Live Forever (liveforever552)

    “To walk into a place and feel tension in the air, to feel hatred and deception - that is the feeling of mistrust.â€

    - Anonymous

    “Guilt - that horrible feeling you get when you know in your heart that if you had tried, you could have done it.â€

    - Anonymous

    Introduction - KH-Vids Royale is the epic story of 30 members of KH-Vids pit against each other. As you read, you may find yourself rooting for your character. Whatever you do, no matter what you do, don’t stop reading even when your character is ‘out’. I’m sure you all want to find out who the winner is, anyway…

    1

    Arc (Boy No. 7, KH-Vids administrator, kh-vids.net forum, kh-vids.net) put down his silver knife and fork and looked around the gigantic ballroom in which he sat. The high walls were a soft golden brown, reflecting a bright beautiful light from brass lamps that hung about the large room. Other knives and forks clattered and scraped against delicate china plates as he folded his white cloth napkin gently before wiping his mouth. Across from him sat Angel (1winged_angel, Boy No. 1) who was just finishing up his delicious pork and rice. To Arc’s left was his girlfriend Sara (Girl No. 2), another administrator at the forum they all so frequently visited.
    It had been Deathspank (the creator of kh-vids, administrator) who had come up with the astonishing idea; for as many people on the kh-vids forum to meet as possible. He had organized this huge event where (if they had the money) forum members could fly out to sunny California and for one week hang out with other members of the growing message board. Coincidentally, 15 girls and 15 boys had shown up to the hosted event - all using money out of their own pockets to fly down and meet each other. It seemed like only the most dedicated members had shown up, and some not so known ones appeared on the scene as well.
    Deathspank sat to the left of Arc. He had barely touched his cooked meal as he was deep in conversation with Boris the Blade (Boy No. 6). Boris had turned up out of the blue (to the dismay of some) after he had been banned from the forum. Seeing as he was out in California, and had obviously paid a large sum to come here, he was welcomed to the members only party - after all, they couldn’t just send him back the way he came. The table Arc sat at seemed to be full of staff members from the website. Sora (*Sora*, Boy No. 13) was sitting next to Angel and was looking around at some of the other members who had shown up for the festivities. Their table was one of many which hosted about 6 people. Deathspank had done a grand job - the tables were nice, the china, cutlery and waiters were all perfect, it really was more than Arc deserved. But he decided that while he was on vacation he would enjoy it as much as possible.
    Looking across the room, he saw a table that sat all girls. He was only able to see the back of Yukai (Girl No. 14) who was deep in conversation with Claryssa (Girl No. 9) and Mish (Girl No. 10). It looked like they were done with their meals, as the hushed conversation was fast and low spoken. Roxas-chan (Girl No. 1) and Riku (Girl No. 8) were holding a whispered conversation as well. ‘Girls will be girls,’ though Arc, giving off a slight smile. He followed their eyes to a table that sat only two people.
    The Indian one, Xehsin (Boy No. 4) sat talking to Cin (Boy No. 2). They seemed to be close friends on the forum, and it was for sure that they were both into this entire GFX signature making stuff (which Arc knew nothing about). Xehsin was a member with a hazy past but was now a mod and did his job well. Cin was the designated ‘Site Helper’ who always seemed really attached to the staff members. Arc knew that he wanted to become a staff member one day, and it would probably come true at the rate he was going. It seemed as if the two had finished their meals and were simply chatting. He had no clue what they were talking about, but it may have had to do with conflict with another member, Roxas (Boy No. 11).
    Roxas, with long blonde hair, long baggy jeans, a baggy blink 182 T-Shirt and lots of wristbands didn’t look like he belonged there. Everyone else had dressed up for the nice occasion, but he just seemed to stroll around in his casual, messy clothes as if nothing was wrong. He was currently laughing loudly at something another forum member had said. For all Arc knew; it could have been anything. Roxas was quite the playful jokester, who, for some reason, liked to have fun taking the mickey out of some of the helpful moderators. He still managed to cling onto his probation though, and Arc had no real problem with him.
    Sitting next to him was Vivi (vivi’s dark side, Boy No. 8) who was grinning about something that Arc couldn’t here. Vivi was the easy-going forum member that always followed the rules but wasn’t afraid to loosely abode them either. He was heavily into the anime Naruto, and his profile was littered with various allusions to the show. Roxas and he shared similar tastes in music, which may have led them to become quick friends on the forum. They both played guitar too, but Arc was unable to figure out what truly brought them so close.
    Roxas and Vivi were talking mostly to themselves, but General Grievous (Boy No. 3) and Darkwatch (Boy No. 9) also sat with them. The two were talking in a casual tone, not whispering or bombastic, and seemed to be enjoying themselves on this rare occasion. Next to them was Shiomi (Boy No. 10) who was busy eating his meal. Shiomi filled out the table, which seemed to be enjoying itself as a whole.
    “Ahem,†Arc looked to his left to see that Deathspank had stood up and was addressing the whole banquet hall.
    “Hello, everyone,†he said. Ris (Roxas_is_hot, Girl No. 3) and ... (Girl No. 5) cheered at this. Although it was loud and unneeded, Deathspank laughed at their jubilancy.
    “I’d like to start by saying welcome to all you forum members who were able to come. Thanks for making this possible,†he said. At this point all eyes were glued on him. Arc found himself looking at Deathspank too; who seemed to have a commanding voice that would echo throughout the great room.
    “We started out as a small forum. On my first day I only had a handful of new members, two of which are here,†he then pointed at Roxas and Riku. “Others soon joined,†he pointed at Sora. “And now our forum has become what it is today.â€
    Some kids clapped and cheered. ‘I don’t think the clapping and cheering is actually necessary,’ thought Arc. The voice in his head said it comically as Arc was enjoying every moment of the party.
    Deathspank continued, “My website and the forum has had its ups and downs, but seeming as we’re all together and united - let’s make this the best week of our lives!â€
    Arc clapped along with everyone else as Deathspank sat back down in his leather coated chair. Arc turned to him with a grin.
    “Nice speech,†he said.
    “Thanks Arc,†said Deathspank. “Well, I really have to go to the bathroom so I’ll be right back.†Arc watched as Deathspank rose and walked across the carpeted floor, which was smothered with multi-color diamond and triangle patterns; each which were either an olive green or gold.
    “Arc, this is something I would never have expected to happen,†said Sara. Arc turned to face her as he heard her voice. Sara was smiling - she was truly happy. “Seeing so many members,†she continued, “It seems like a surreal dream. I guess we should enjoy this vacation as much as we can.â€
    Arc replied, “Yeah, this is great. I also can’t believe that we’re here either. It’s going to be awesome talking to all the other dedicated members for the first time.â€
    A loud splintering sound came from across the hall. The size of the room magnified the sound and Arc looked to see Xekvin (Boy No. 15) staring at a shattered plate in front of his feet. Xekvin looked up to see the rest of the forum members staring at him.
    “Oops.â€
    Everyone cracked up as two waiters cleaned up the mess. Arc decided he would take this time to have everyone introduce themselves.
    Standing up, he began, “Hey everyone. I’m Arc, and I’m sure I don’t need to introduce myself. I was wondering if anyone else would like to give a more formal introduction.â€
    The first to raise their hand was Misty. She was wildly smiling as she stood up to introduce herself. “Well, hey, guys. I’m a mod at kh-vids… uh, and you all know me as .... I’m really glad to be here and really excited too. I’m sure we’ll all get to know each other a little more over this next week, and it’ll bring the forum closer together. Um… go Macleods!â€
    A few other members cheered at the sound of this.
    Arc stood up, “Would anyone else like to introduce themselves?â€
    Ris was next to go. “Hey everyone, I’m the Roxas_is_hot girl who you all know. I’m also the biggest Roxas fan girl in this room.â€
    Screech!
    Across the room, Kairi (Kairi’, Girl No. 4) was standing and looking straight at Ris.
    “You’re wrong,†she said. “I’m the biggest Roxas fan girl.â€
    “And who are you?†asked Arc.
    “I’m Kairi, nice to meet everyone!†She then waved her arms frantically before pointing them in Ris’s direction. “Now, let me get it through to you Ris, I am the biggest Roxas fan girl in this room!†she exclaimed.
    “None of you are!†this time it was KHAngel (Girl No. 12) standing. “I am the biggest Roxas fan girl!â€
    Ris replied, “You all know I’m the best, you’re just jealous!â€
    “Jealous!†screamed KHAngel, “Who would be jealous of you?â€
    “Look who’s talking!†said Kairi.
    “I’m glad my name is Roxas. This makes me feel special,†commented Roxas out of nowhere.
    “Enough!†said Arc, almost doubling over with laughter. “The battle of the fan girls will begin after the banquet, deal?†The three nodded firmly in agreement. ‘They’re a little… too serious,’ thought Arc. ‘I mean come on; he’s a CG video game character for Christ sakes!’
    When Arc asked for any more introductions, no one said anything. Everyone must have been acquainted with each other just before the banquet started.
    He sat down and looked across the table to see Angel and Sora with their eyes closed. Their chins were resting on their shoulders and their mouths were half open.
    “Guys?†he asked. They made no response.
    “Are you guys asleep?â€
    Yet again, there was no response. Arc looked to his left to see Boris with his head on the oak table, breathing gently. Sara was doing the same. Then Arc began to feel drowsy as well. An inescapable haziness overwhelmed him, swallowing him like a thick curtain. All zeal he once felt was veiled behind dark gray fog and his mind was swimming. His brain was commanding his blue eyes to close. Arc noticed that other members of the forum were succumbing to sleep too, or were spiraling dangerously towards it. A misty wall flattened all his remaining senses, and with one small nod he was fast asleep.

    The bald waiters who had been serving food entered the banquet hall. They were all wearing gas masks. The one who had cleaned up Xekvin’s shattered plate looked at them with pity. Deathspank also entered and looked upon them with contempt.

    Their bodies were collected and loaded onto a bus. The bus took them to the California International Airport, which then flew them across the country to the Detroit Metro Airport. From here they were taken by another bus to Mackinac City, located at the top of Michigan’s Lower Peninsula. Their unconscious bodies were hauled onto a boat which made a 27 minute trip to Mackinac Island. At this point, there was no hope for the poor souls as they landed on the docks of the once populated land mass. It was night; a dark black night, and one which perfectly suited their arrival.

    30 students remaining

    2

    Roxas moaned and shuffled his large feet. The floor was hard - not nicely carpeted like before. He looked down to see glazed wooden beams laid in perfect patterns. The room he was in was covered with complete darkness. It was much, much smaller than the banquet hall he had been in only 5 minutes ago.
    ‘Wait,’ he thought. ‘Was it 5 minutes, a half an hour or maybe a whole hour?’ Looking round the room, he observed no clocks. He observed some other things though. He was sitting in a classroom that was littered with various wooden desks. Other forum members were slumped in these desks, some were sitting against the gray wall and others were lying on the cold floor. The distinction between Roxas and the rest of them was that they were all sleeping soundly. A large black board covered a wall near the small doorway (there was only a single door in and out) and looking up Roxas saw dingy lights hanging from the black ceiling. They were turned off, of course, but he still knew what they were.
    Someone groaned, and Roxas looked around to see the rest of his fellow members slowly waking up. Some yawned and others stretched. Something in that banquet hall had happened; they hadn’t magically appeared here out of the thin air.
    A feeling of claustrophobia fell over Roxas as he felt clamminess around his neck. Reaching up, his hands clasped some sort of cold necklace or collar. It was made of thin metal, and as he felt around it there seemed to be no way to take it off. The metal was cold, and chilled his neck to a point of annoyance.
    “Where are we?†asked Da Freak (Boy No. 12). Others also asked their own questions as they awoke.
    “What’s going on?â€
    “Why is it so dark?â€
    “Can you see me in here?â€
    “Where’s my new handbag?â€
    Roxas was the only one who heard the noise through the chatter, but it was a small fluttering of wings - almost like propellers. The propellers were moving rapidly, and Roxas couldn’t exactly place his finger on what the sound was. A light appeared, dimmed by the curtains at the windows. The other students then noticed the noise and looked over to see what it was.
    Reien (Girl No. 6) made the foolish move of pulling open the cotton curtains. Bright light streamed into the room and everyone momentarily lost their vision. The noise was ever louder, and as vision was regained people squinted through the brightness to see a helicopter touching down outside. Several men ran up to the helicopter door and opened it. Out walked a very familiar face, although Roxas couldn’t tell who through the billowing dust cloud brought on by the helicopter’s blades.
    Clomp, clomp, clomp.
    The feet made noises as if they were wearing steel boots.
    A steady marching was coming from outside the dark room. Everybody turned to face the small doorway across from them. The marching suddenly stopped and Roxas heard a faint, “You first.â€
    The door slammed open and Deathspank, followed by several armed soldiers, walked into the room. They turned on the lights, and everyone had their first view of their surroundings. The members were indeed in a classroom - it wasn’t a modern day room, either. Everything had an antique look to it and seemed generally old fashioned. There were no computers or massive file cabinets that you would see in a general classroom today. The only sign of modern day life was a 22†television, connected to a VCR and sitting on a stand in the corner of the room (which Roxas could immediately tell had been placed there from the beginning).
    Deathspank stopped behind the large oak desk at the front of the room. Two soldiers, armed with automatic machine guns, stood at his side. Other soldiers filed into the classroom and spread out, surrounding the forum members until there were about 20 of them spanning the walls in total.
    “Hello,†said Deathspank. “I’m sure you’re wondering what’s going on and I’ll be able to explain it in a few minutes. First off, let me just show you something.†At this point he turned around to face the black board. He picked up some white chalk and began to write on the board, dust particles flying in his wake. Roxas turned to look behind him. Boris was sitting on the flat portion of the desk, looking straight at Deathspank while tapping his foot. He looked very casual compared to his fellow forum members. Arc was in front of him, holding Sara’s hand and shivering. Other members were shivering like Arc, and Roxas realized it was quite cold - he even had goose bumps.
    “Do you know this?â€
    Roxas refocused his thoughts on Deathspank and ignored the cold.
    On the board was the word ‘genocide’. Nobody said anything, and he repeated the question:
    “Do you know this?â€
    “Um,†muttered zSoraz (Boy No. 14), “Isn’t genocide like a disease or an STD or something?â€
    “Exactly,†replied Deathspank. “Although you could have said it more formally, that is exactly what it is.†Then Deathspank slammed the chalk on the word genocide, causing everyone to jump. A look of anger filled his eyes.
    “You’re exactly wrong!†he shouted. zSoraz was shocked at the sudden outburst. “This is what the government means. Genocide is the mass execution of a group of peoples. But you, 14 to 24 year olds, can not even understand such a simple thing? That is why the government has ordered the eradication of all un-orderly youths. All you do is sit in front of the computer all day, chatting away mindlessly! You should be worrying about your educations! But the beautiful U.S. of A. government has decided something needs to be done!†He said the final line so spitefully that some students jumped. A vein throbbed in his temple and his eyes were narrowed.
    “E-Eradication?†stuttered Sora.
    “Eradication is precisely what I said,†said Deathspank. “It’s not my fault that this is going to happen. It’s all your faults for being so simply foolish and wasting away in front of the computer, getting fatter and fatter and stupider and stupider. Ever here of a sport? A god damn after-school club? That’s why the lovely government is placing you in this test game.â€
    “But what is going to happen?†said Arc. He, along with Sara, all the staff and just about everyone in the room (not including Boris) looked scared.
    “Oh, yes, of course, I better explain what’s going on,†began Deathspank. “It would be cruel and unfair for me to simply leave you wondering what is going to happen, especially when you’re in the situation you’re in.â€
    He left this last line hanging - clearly to be ironic. No one found it funny.
    Mish interrupted, “Deathspank, cut to the chase… what the hell is going on?!â€
    Deathspank frowned and stared at her for a few seconds. Mish stared back, but there was something about Deathspank’s cold demeanor that forced her to look away.
    “Since you really have to know ‘what the hell is going on’, I’ll tell you.â€
    He paused.
    “Today’s forum thread - you will all kill each other till one is remaining.â€

    30 members remaining

    3

    Everyone stood gaping at their ‘administrator’. A fly twittered in the back of the room, making a sounder louder than what would normally be heard. A broken light flickered and buzzed above the forum members’ heads.
    “Kill?†said Angel.
    “Do I have to explain it any more than I just did?†smiled Deathspank. “How much info do you stupid kids need before you realize that when I say ‘you will all kill each other till one is remaining’ I mean it?â€
    “How are we stupid? You march in with a bunch of soldiers and then tell us we have to kill each other till one is left. Isn’t it normal that we would ask questions about what the hell is going on?†asked General Grievous (Boy No. 3).
    “This is a joke, right?†asked Misty, not waiting for the answer to General’s question. “Some sort of fun thing we’re doing while we’re all on vacation?†Some other kids nervously agreed.
    Arc stared at Deathspank with a cold eye. He knew that he was serious; he’d already heard rumors of the government planning to wipe out ‘uncouth juveniles’. But he had never thought he would have fallen under that category.
    “It’s no joke, I hate jokes,†said Deathspank. “If anything is a joke-â€
    Brr-rr-Brt!
    Deathspank turned to look at Da Freak, who was standing between a crossfire of stares, trying to look serious. Everyone around him immediately pulled their shirts up around their noses.
    “Oh my god, that smells like crap Da Freak!†exclaimed Xekvin, among many of the various insults that were sent in his direction.
    “Did you seriously just fart?†asked Deathspank.
    “Um… maybe?†said Da Freak nervously.
    Deathspank looked as if he was going to explode before throwing up his arms and screaming.
    “That will not be tolerated!†exclaimed Deathspank. His arm moved like a whip to his back pocket. It then shot up within seconds of moving back. Arc watched as a small silver object shot across the room. It stabbed into the wall not a centimeter away from the side of Da Freak’s head.
    “Oh my god!†screamed Da Freak, running away.
    A small, silver knife was stuck into the wall. It had just barely missed Da Freak’s head. If he was anything right now then it was lucky. Deathspank slowly walked out from behind the glossy oak desk and swiftly moved towards the wall. He grabbed the handle of the knife and pulled it out of the wall, turning towards Da Freak. Da Freak gasped and hunched his shoulders, putting up his hands in a defensive position.
    Pointing the knife at Da Freak with every syllable, Deathspank said, “Like I said, immature behavior like that will not be tolerated again. If anything like that happens one more time, this goes through your head and not the wall.â€
    Da Freak winced as Deathspank made his way back to the desk.
    “Anyway,†he began. “Let’s get to business, and quickly too. Just watch this video and you’ll understand everything.â€
    Deathspank picked up a small remote and pointed at the television in the musty corner of the room. He clicked at once, and the screen flickered to life. There was a woman on the screen who had pigtails. She was quite beautiful, with blonde hair and a skimpy skirt and long sleeved shirt. Arc looked around to notice all the girls in the room were wearing the exact same clothes - a short black skirt, black shoes and a long-sleeved white top. The boys were all wearing white polo shirts and black jeans along with the same black shoes. The same feeling of claustrophobia came over Arc then as it had Roxas not minutes ago; he looked at Sara’ neck to see a metal collar. It circled the entire circumference of her neck and there was a small black area on the front that looked like an LCD screen, but nothing was displayed. Reaching up, he realized the same collar was around his neck, and just about everybody else’s in the room (the only ones not wearing collars were Deathspank and the soldiers). Nudging Sara with his elbow, he grabbed his collar. He pointed at it to let her know it was there, and then she reached her hands up to her neck and gave him a look of terror and surprise when she felt her own.
    The girl with the blonde pigtails and skimpy outfit was smiling at the forum members via live broadcast on the television screen.
    “Hello, KH-Vids Forum members!†she exclaimed, just a little too happily. “My name is Sammy Dwyer, and I’ll be helping you learn the ups and downs of this game, so you can fight with strength and gusto!†She pumped her fist and gave a huge smile when she said this, showing off her bright, sparkling white teeth. The over zealous woman was as irritating as an itch on your back that you’re unable to reach. She had a whiney voice and was way too happy. Imagine a kindergarten teacher. Now imagine a hot kindergarten teacher. Sammy Dwyer was like that.
    “I’m sure you’re all wondering where we are and all, especially since it’s the middle of the night!†she gave a big smile and spread her arms. Behind Sammy appeared a satellite view of what seemed to be an island. It was dark, as it was night (as she had just said), but Arc noticed old city streets and a large fortress. ‘It’s probably one of those ones left over from the American-Indian War or something,’ he thought.
    Sammy continued, “We’re all currently on this island! Don’t worry, we evacuated all the people - it’s completely deserted. Not to say you won’t find the occasional animal, of course, but there will be no people except us here and you out there.â€
    ‘But where exactly was ‘there’,’ thought Arc.
    Sammy wasn’t able to continue before Roxas interrupted her live broadcast.
    “So this is where you decide to put us?†he said with his eyes closed, leaning against the wall with his arms folded “Mackinac Island?â€
    Deathspank was slumped against the desk with his arms crossed, but slowly turned to face Roxas as he said this.
    “Yes,†replied Deathspank. “The official name of this island is Mackinac Island. It has a huge historical importance, so please don’t try to go road rage and destroy everything you see.â€
    “Well,†said Roxas, “Don’t you think it’s unfair for these kids? I’ve been to Mackinac Island more than 5 times before. I’ll know all the nooks and crannies of the island. If this isn’t all a joke, then I’ll be able to kill everyone easily.â€
    Deathspank pulled up his shirt to reveal a Colt .369 pistol, aiming it at Roxas.
    “Well maybe I should just kill you now to even the odds?†he asked. Roxas was staring at the barrel of the gun that wasn’t even 10 yards away from him.
    He put his hands out and made a backing off motion, “Wow, man, I didn’t mean it like that or anything, um, boy pride, y’know?â€
    “Of course,†said Deathspank. “Boy pride.â€
    He returned the pistol to its holster and said to the members, “Back to the video.â€
    All heads turned to the television and Sammy continued:
    “Like I said,†spoke Sammy Dwyer, “You’re all on your own on this island, it’s completely deserted. You can’t escape by water either. We have 12 guard ships all positioned half a kilometer away from each other around the island. They have the order to shoot to kill. The island itself is about 6 kilometers lengthwise and 3 kilometers tall, if you were looking at it from above. But there’s another reason why you can’t escape by water.â€
    ‘Another reason?’ thought Arc. ‘What’s next, we all have to wear funny hats?’
    “Now, about the collars you’re wearing.â€
    As Sammy said this, most forum members who hadn’t yet noticed they were wearing collars reached up to their necks and felt them. There were some gasps in the crowd and one kid moaned - he may have been claustrophobic. Arc and Sara just looked at each other, and the T.V. - which showed a picture of the exact collar they were wearing located behind Sammy. It was spinning slowly as she explained the various uses the collar had:
    “These collars can track your positions. We’ll know where you are at all times. But they can do some other cool stuff. Let’s say you try to escape. We can send a signal to your collar. The electromagnetic waves can’t be stopped either, so hiding in a well won’t do you any good. The waves then trigger the collar, which starts to beep… and BOOM!â€
    When she said this, Darkwatch (Boy No. 9) shouted, “No way?!â€
    “Calm down, kid,†said Deathspank. “These collars are explosively lethal. The force of the explosion will be just enough to rip your jugular, but usually you’ll get your head blown off. You’ll die an extremely painful death. There are a few more rules to the collars, which I’ll explain.â€
    He continued, “Every day - four times a day - at 12 and 6, AM and PM, I will announce two things. The first is the people who have died since the last announcement. We know this because the collars also track you pulse, indicating whether you’re alive… or not. The second are the ‘Danger Zones.’â€
    He paused for some sort of dramatic effect, which didn’t go down too well with the scared members.
    ‘Danger zones - I’m sure they’re completely harmless,’ thought Arc sarcastically. Another voice in his head said, “You idiot! This isn’t the time to be making jokes!â€
    He ignored it as Deathspank continued his lecture on danger zones:
    “The island has been divided up into grids,†at this point Deathspank drew a shape that looked vaguely like Mackinac Island on the board. He then put lines through it in a grid like pattern. He labeled the grid by writing A, B, C, D, etc. vertically down the side to the left of the island, and 1, 2, 3, 4, etc. horizontally above it.
    “When I announce the Danger Zones, I will say something like ‘C-3.’†He knocked the C-3 square on the board. “This becomes a Danger Zone. If you are in a Danger Zone at the time it becomes one, then your collar will explode.â€
    He let his final sentence hang over the room.
    “Walking into a Danger Zone after it has become one will also mean instant death,†he added with a grin.
    ‘That’s right,’ thought Arc, ‘Treat us like cattle. Forcing us to move around like that, huh? Then we won’t stay in groups - or maybe even move right into the trap of someone willing to play this game.’
    Then a thought occurred to Arc:
    Who was willing to play this game?
    He observed his fellow forum members. It was obvious he could never really trust any of them as he had never met any of them (bar Sara) in real life. But judging by their personalities…
    There was Boris the Blade, and he definitely had distaste for the forum. He might play the game. Then there was Cin. Arc was almost positive that he wouldn’t play. Most of the girls would probably avoid playing too. Roxas was one who might play; he had been to this place before. It gave him a slight advantage over some of the other forum members. Then there were all his fellow staff members…
    ‘Stop,’ thought Arc, halting the whirlwind of thoughts in his head. ‘They want me to think like this. I’m falling into the government’s trap. I’m sure if we got enough people together, a big enough group, then we could somehow break in here and destroy this horrible game.’
    “By the way,†said Deathspank, “Once you leave this school, it will immediately become a danger zone.â€
    ‘Crap,’ thought Arc. ‘That just stole our last wild card.’
    “Seeming as I’ve told you all you need to know about the collars, lets get back to the video,†said Deathspank. All heads turned towards Sammy.
    “So, um, that is exactly what the collars will do,†said Sammy. “Another thing - if you try to rip the collar off, it’ll also explode. Anything to try and get these collars off will instead have your head blown off.†A few kids took their hands away from their necks.
    “Now,†she smiled brightly, “What are you going to fight with?†She bent over and lifted up a bag. The camera backed up to reveal a table, which she placed the green burlap bag on. It seemed odd; things were jutting out of it at random places.
    “You each get a day pack, which has several items in it. First is food and water (she pulled out bread and three bottles of water), which I’m sure you’ll all use sparingly! Second you’ll get a map, pen, and compass that will be especially helpful on your travels around the island. Just like Deathspank drew, the map is labeled with an A-1, A-2, B-1 style format. There are important objects, such as the Clinic and Mackinac Fort labeled on the map too, so you should know where you are at all times. And lastly is your weapon (she pulled a small knife out of the bag). Each weapon is totally random! That way, the boys won’t have an advantage over the girls or vice versa. Looks like I got a knife in this one!â€
    ‘So this is it,’ thought Arc. ‘This is no horrible joke. It’s all real; they’re really going to have us kill each other. But how… how could I kill someone? I’ve never shot a gun in my life… but I may have to… to protect Sara.’
    “I forgot to mention one slight detail,†said Deathspank. “If no one dies for 24 hours, then guess what? All of your collars will explode.â€
    Arc could have sworn he heard the word ‘dammit’ from the back of the classroom, but he was too stunned at Deathspank’s words to even care. This was all real, and they would make sure someone would kill. It’s all too obvious. Even if everyone got in a big group, if they weren’t able to do anything for 24 hours one person would crack and start killing others. It made it all too impossible to escape.
    “And that’s not the last collar rule,†said Deathspank. “There’s a 3 day time limit. If one person isn’t left after 3 days then everyone’s collar will explode.â€
    Arc’s eye twitched. Anger boiled from his stomach, rising up to his mouth. He wanted to scream at Deathspank, torture him, kill him in the most horrible and unruly ways. This game was happening, and only one could live.
    If there was one presiding emotion then it would be terror. They’d dropped the final bomb. Everyone in here knew that they would die sometime in the next 72 hours. Everyone was anxiously looking around, looking to see who would actually play the game.
    And that’s when someone took a valiant stand.
    “I hate you!†screamed Live Forever (liveforever552, Girl No. 15). She charged at Deathspank, her hair flailing behind her. As she jumped up on the desk which he stood behind two soldiers pushed her to the floor. She landed on her back which made a sick crunching sound.
    Deathspank walked up to her with a small remote. “You know,†he said, “You should really learn to take anger management. Stuff like that could get you killed in some places.â€
    And then Deathspank gave the most horrible grin Arc had ever seen. Deathspank’s teeth were bared, his nostrils were like slits, and his eyes narrowed at Live Forever.
    “This is one of those places.â€
    He hit a button on the remote. Live Forever’s collar gave off a small beep, followed by another small beep.
    She immediately got up. “What’s happening?!?†she screamed.
    Arc observed the collar. With each beeping noise, a small red light flashed on the LCD screen. The beeps were getting faster, building in tempo, and the red light kept up in speed with it.
    “Someone help me!†she screamed. She was running around the room frantically, screaming swear words.
    “Someone stop this!†she said as she ran into various members, who simply pushed her away from them. Arc looked away as he realized there was nothing they could do. At this point the beeping was so fast he couldn’t count it.
    Someone shrieked as the beeping momentarily stopped.
    Without warning the beep turned into one long continuous ring, and the LCD panel on the collar lit up red. Live Forever screamed as loud as she could and charged at Deathspank. She jumped up on the desk; put her foot back to kick him in the head, and the collar exploded.

    29 members remaining

    4

    Arc had already turned away before the collar erupted, but he heard something large crash to the floor followed by the splattering sound of liquid. He was too afraid to open his eyes, too afraid to sniff the air that had been tainted with the very crimson of someone he had been standing next to just a few seconds ago. Someone gagged in the back of the room, and he heard the sound of vomit splashing against the floor. A girl screamed and several people ran to the back of the room. The shuffling of feet seemed distant - the shock of Live Forever’s death was just too much. Arc heard the sound of liquid steadily pouring onto the hard wood floor.
    “Well that’s not good,†said Deathspank. “I’m not allowed to kill before the game has even started yet. Oh well.â€
    With the explosion of Live Forever’s collar, the game had officially begun.
    “So,†began Deathspank, “seeing as a girl has died, it kinda makes it unfair doesn’t it? There are more boys than girls…†Several soldiers ran into the room and grabbed the chunk of Live Forever’s head that was leaking blood on the other end of the room. They stuffed it into a black bag and exited the room.
    Deathspank took the pistol out from its holster and pointed it once again at Roxas.
    “You wanted to die, didn’t you?†he said.
    Roxas glared at him. Then he charged. His footsteps echoed loudly in the cramped room as he sprinted towards Deathspank’s strong figure.
    “I’m gonna kill you, you *******!â€
    Arc watched as a figure leaped across the room and stopped in front of Roxas. It was Cin, and he put his arms in front of Roxas. Roxas screeched to a halt before knocking Cin to the ground.
    “He’ll kill you too,†Cin said.
    Roxas replied, “I won’t let him get away with this.â€
    “He’ll kill you,†repeated Cin. Roxas’ facial expression changed to dismay and then to understanding as he stared at Cin.
    “He just killed her,†he said.
    “He may have killed her,†began Cin, “but he hasn’t killed you. Don’t let him do that, Roxas. Don’t give him an excuse to kill someone else.â€
    Cin grabbed Roxas’s arm and pulled him away. The two walked to the back of the room. Roxas turned and glared at Deathspank one more time.
    “Well,†said Deathspank, “Unless any girl objects, I won’t kill a boy.â€
    No one objected.
    “Now please, watch the video,†he yawned, as if all the blood and destruction were boring him.
    Sammy Dwyer continued, “I’m going to call your names one by one, every two minutes. You’ll then grab a daypack off the rack and head outside. We’re in a school, which is marked on the grid in the map you will all receive in your bags. Twenty minutes after the last person leaves the school it becomes a danger zone. So no loitering!â€
    At this point, the small door opened and several soldiers walked in with a wheelie cart. It was loaded with the same daypacks that were in the video. They stopped near the doorway and stood with their arms at their sides on either side of the cart.
    “Angel, Boy No. 1,†said Sammy. Angel didn’t move.
    “On the double!†shouted Deathspank. Angel slowly made his way to the front of the classroom. Everyone watched him as he grabbed a daypack off the top of the big pile. His last move was to turn back and look at all of them. His face was completely white. He gave a slight smile and then he ran off out the doorway.
    “There goes our first loser,†smirked Deathspank.
    Two minutes past, and Roxas-chan was called. She strode up to the front of the classroom, her hair bouncing on her shoulders. The large-rimmed glasses she had perched on her nose were off balance. She took a daypack and waved at the group before running down the hall.
    “Boy No .2, Cin.â€
    Cin strode to the front of the classroom and grabbed a daypack. He didn’t turn around and look at the group, or do anything of the sort. He just simply strode out the door. Arc could see that he was shaking. You’d have to be crazy to not be shaking.
    “Girl No. 2, Sara.â€
    Arc looked at Sara. She was completely terrified, and her eyes began to well up with tears.
    “Go,†he said.
    “Arc… I’m scared,†she said in a small voice, knowing that there was nothing she could really do.
    Arc put his head on her shoulder and whispered to her, “I’ll meet up with you Sara, some how, some way.â€
    She nodded ran towards the front of the classroom. Arc felt her hand slip out of his.
    Is this the last time I see you, Sara?
    Sara looked back at him once before she left the room. He could have sworn she gave him the faintest smile, but it was probably his imagination playing tricks on him.
    “Boy No. 3, General Grievous.â€
    Grievous walked to the front of the room, his short black hair spiked in all directions. He definitely had a good chance; he looked well built and fit. Giving a small wave, he grabbed a green bag and sprinted out the door. Arc heard his footsteps get farther and farther away as he ran out of the school.
    “Girl No. 3, Roxas_is_hot.â€
    Ris was definitely a small girl, one who currently had her brown hair bundled in a pony tail. She staggered to the front of the room and grabbed a daypack. Small tears were dripping from her eyes, and she did a good job to not let anyone see them.
    “Come on girl, don’t cry,†said Deathspank. “You never know - games can be fun.†Unfortunately, she didn’t do a very good job hiding them from Deathspank.
    Arc sighed at the horrible comment. He never knew someone could be so cruel.
    Ris ran out of the room with her bag on her shoulder. Just like Grievous, her footsteps slowly faded away as she ran away from the cramped classroom. Two minutes dragged past.
    “Boy No. 4, Xehsin.â€
    Xehsin moved his arms widely as he strode to the front of the classroom. He seemed to be trying to act cool - which was a foolish mistake. Anybody could tell he was scared stiff. Anybody could tell because ‘anybody’ was in the same boat. ‘Anybody’ was on an island forced to kill each other till one was left. ‘Anybody’ was the forum members.
    Xehsin grabbed the bag and turned to look at the group.
    “Let me tell you all one thing,†he said. “If you think any of us are going to play, then you’ve already lost.â€
    When Arc first heard this, he thought that Xehsin was talking to the soldiers and Deathspank - telling them we weren’t going to play. But then he realized Xehsin was talking to the forum. He was right, if you think others are going to play then you’ve already fallen into the government’s trap. Playing the game would be ridiculous - no one would do it. Xehsin made the right choice in telling everyone this before he exited the room. Arc only hoped that the other members would catch on to what he was saying.
    The ticking clock in the back of the room counted to 120, and the next name was called.
    “Girl No. 4, Kairi.â€
    “Here!†she shouted, raising her hand. Then she half ran, half stumbled to the front of the room and grabbed a bag. She took off at lightning speed and Arc heard her trip and fall before getting up to carry on with her mad dash.
    “Boy No. 5, FF Fanatic.â€
    Fanatic trembled as he grabbed his bag.
    “Don’t be so scared!†said Deathspank. “If everyone listens to Xehsin then no one will play. That just means you’ll have to wait for 24 hours before your head gets blown off!â€
    ‘Dammit,’ thought Arc. ‘He knows that under the pressure of the 24 hour limit, someone will end up killing. This is as much a psychological game as it is physical strength!’
    “Girl No. 5, ....â€
    Misty walked up to the front, trying to pull her skirt down. She looked extremely uncomfortable. Grabbing a bag she ran from the classroom; just as many before her had also done.
    “Boy No. 6, Boris the Blade.â€
    ‘So Boris is number 6…’ thought Arc. Boris, with a muscular build and dark blue hair, spat on the floor before walking up and grabbing a bag.
    He turned to Deathspank, “Thanks a lot.â€
    He had a deep voice. Then he casually walked out the door. Arc wasn’t paying attention as Reien (Girl No. 6) was called and walked up to get her bag. He didn’t care if he was falling into the government’s trap - Boris looked like he was here to play. Boris was boy number 6, which meant Boy No. 7 was coming out soon. But which number was he?
    “Boy No. 7, Arc.â€
    Arc looked up at the sound of his name, and then realized he was being called. His legs felt like jelly as he walked up to grab a bag. The handle was nice and soft, and the green bag was made of burlap. Looking back at his classmates, he shook his head with a straight mouth. Only 3 yards away was the face up body of Live Forever. The foul stench of blood hit his nostrils like a wall as he looked at the young girl. A pool of red liquid spilled from the gaping hole in her face, running onto the smooth wooden floorboards before gathering in a small puddle. Skin flapped off the sides of the collar wound and he could see pearly bone jutting from the top of her forehead. Her face tipped backwards towards the remaining forum members, and her mouth was in an ‘O’ shape as if the shock of the collar had blown it open. Black blood dripped from her open eyes and nostrils, and her neck was torn straight at the windpipe. Wanting to get away from the horrible sight, he turned and left.
    The hallway he was in was deserted, and he began to walk towards the door at the far end. There were doors to his left and right, and looking inside them he saw soldiers sitting at desks and chairs. They were all heavily armed. Another room gave him a view of several computers and other assorted high-tech equipment. A radar portrayed various red dots on what looked like a map of the island. The radar stretched the entire section of a wall, and each red dot had a number in it. He could see dots of people numbers one through six moving away from the school, and in the square marked ‘school’ was his number, seven. In one section of the square were a bunch of numbers and red dots grouped together - presumably the other members who had yet to leave.
    Arc turned and continued to walk through the school’s hallway. Another room showed him several girls sitting on a bed together. ‘Wonder what’s going on in there,’ he thought.
    Not stopping, he reached the door to the outdoors relatively quickly. As soon as he stepped out of the door, the game would begin. Someone could be there with a gun right now. And this wasn’t a silly video game. He couldn’t collect coins to have more lives. He couldn’t level up to the next level and regain all his strength. No… this was a different type of game.
    He opened the door and entered the Royale.

    Life is a game. So fight for survival, and see if you’re worth it.

    29 members remaining

    5

    “Girl No. 7, Element.â€
    Xekvin watched as yet another girl ran out the door. When would it be his turn to be called?
    “Boy No. 8, vivi’s dark side.â€
    Vivi walked up to the front and grabbed a bag. He walked out the room with stiff legs. Xekvin’s stomach rumbled. He was hungry - and what time was it - 1 AM?
    Girl No. 9, Claryssa, Boy No. 10, Shiomi, and Girl No. 10 Mish all left in a steady stream. Then Boy No. 11 was called.
    “Boy No. 11, Roxas.â€
    Roxas casually walked to the front of the room and literally ripped a bag from the rack. Then he turned to Deathspank.
    “You better watch your back, Deathspank. I’m coming for you.â€
    Deathspank simply laughed, “You? Come for me? This will be a danger zone twenty minutes after the last person leaves. There are soldiers all over the place - and in this room too.â€
    “Yeah,†said Roxas, “But what if I was to walk into that hallway, open my pack, find a gun and then walk in here and shoot you? The government wouldn’t care. To them you’re just as dispensable as we are.â€
    Deathspank’s face tightened up. He said slowly, “Get out of this room now, or I’ll blow your head off.â€
    “Not got a better response?†Roxas laughed.
    “Get out!†roared Deathspank, grabbing the remote as a makeshift threat. Roxas just shrugged and walked out the door.
    “Girl No. 11, xLaydee.â€
    Laydee ran up and grabbed a bag. She threw it at Deathspank and ran out the door. “That was… unexpected,†he said, rolling his eyes.
    Without notice she stormed back in and grabbed another daypack off the rack, looking rather embarrassed.
    “I’ll, uh, just take this one,†she stuttered before turning and running out of the door again.
    “Boy No. 12, Da Freak.â€
    When Da Freak grabbed his bag, Deathspank said, “Don’t fart out there. Some people might just want to kill you for it.â€
    Da Freak just ran off.
    “Girl No. 12, KHAngel.â€
    Xekvin heard KHAngel mutter ‘for you Roxas, my greatest love’ before grabbing her bag and exiting through the small doorway. She didn’t mean the Roxas at the forum, but the Roxas she obsessively fawned over in the video game Kingdom Hearts. He found it a bit weird that she was in love with a CGI character.
    As she walked out of the door, he knew he must be one of the few last people to leave. There were only a few people left standing in the room, six to be exact, and he was either Boy 13, 14, or 15.
    “Boy No. 13, Sora,†said Sammy Dwyer.
    Sora walked up and grabbed a bag. He gave a spiteful look at Deathspank before leaving.
    “Girl No. 13, Freeshooter Xigbar.â€
    Xigbar walked up and grabbed her bag - the once large pile of daypacks had been diminished to just a few left. Xekvin knew then that if he wasn’t Boy No. 14, he’d be the last or second to last person to leave the room. Possibly the last to get a daypack, and he hoped the last to die, even if it meant killing others. That’s right - Xekvin knew then he’d play the game to win. He had to kill… he had to see his parents. He was smart, he’d go to a good college, have ten kids with the most beautiful woman ever…
    zSoraz (Boy No. 14) was called up, but Xekvin didn’t notice as he was consumed by evil thoughts. He was going through only the first stage of spiraling into the darkness of ‘the game.’ It was part of the government’s trap, first scaring you, then herding you before finally turning you insane and forcing you to play the game.
    ‘They’ll kill me all,’ thought Xekvin. ‘If I don’t kill them first, they’ll come for me. I just know it, for sure. I just know it. There’s no doubt, they’ll all go for me, all! Everyone one of them, every single one!’
    “Boy No. 15, Xekvin.â€
    Xekvin looked around to see he was the only one left in the room. He must have completely missed the leaving of Girl No. 14, which he presumed was Yukai. Running up he grabbed a bag and ran into the hall. He could see a door. He ran up to it and grabbed the brass doorknob. Opening it he breathed his first fresh air in hours.
    He was standing on a rural street. It was lined with shops with large glass display cases. The stores ranged in color from pink to yellow to light blue. Lamps shone bright light, which small flies buzzed around, illuminating the black sky.
    “Go to hell.â€
    Xekvin didn’t hear the whooshing sound, but felt the blow against his head. He fell forward onto his front with a loud grunt. His day pack flew from his hand and landed only a few feet away. He coughed and blood came pouring from his mouth, making a frothy pile on the pavement in front of him.
    Turning around he saw Vivi standing tall and holding a cricket bat.
    “Hello,†said Vivi. Xekvin stared in horror at him. Vivi was out to kill him! No, everyone! He could see their faces now, all closing in on him and beating his brains out. That’s right… he had to kill… his daypack! Xekvin reached for his daypack and ripped it open. But a blow against his elbow stopped him short. Pain seared up his arm as he looked to see his elbow bending in the completely wrong direction. Warm liquid matted his hair from the blow to his head, and he felt like he was losing blood at a fast rate. White bone that shone in the light of the lamp was protruding from his skin.
    “I got this cricket bat,†said Vivi. “At first I thought it was a piece of crap, but it looks like it’s done me some good.â€
    Xekvin felt another blow to his head and found himself facing up. The sky was pitch black… or maybe he had his eyes closed. Then Vivi filled his vision - he knew it wasn’t his eyelids.
    ‘Is this a dream?’ he thought. ‘Am I going to wake up all of a sudden and find out everything’s okay?’
    His head was lying in a warm liquid. He knew what it was, but was more preoccupied with the psycho with the cricket bat over his head.
    Vivi raised the blunt weapon above his head; poised to smash in Xekvin’s face.
    “No,†choked Xekvin.
    “What was that?†asked Vivi.
    “No…â€
    “Sorry, I don’t speak idiot.â€
    Xekvin had always wished that his last thoughts would be of his family - maybe a favorite memory of them. It could have been Christmas when he opened his presents and found a PS2 inside. It could have been when he had his first kiss in a school dance during 7th grade. There were other things, spending time with his pets - anything.
    But none of these things were his last thoughts. He watched as Vivi brought the cricket bat down. He heard it smash his face, but that was his last he heard. The last feeling he felt was incredible pain and his eyes went black.
    But his last thought, of all the things he could have been thinking of at the time, was ‘oops.’

    28 members remaining



    6

    Cin walked out of the school to find a street that looked like it belonged in the 1800s. An empty horse wagon lay to his right, and various antique shops were spaced apart down the length of the road. Turning around, he found himself staring out at a dark mass of water. There were lights in the distance - presumably the light of the lower peninsula of Michigan. ‘No escaping to there,’ he thought as he saw the looming shadow of a guard boat silhouetted across the mainland lights.
    “Cin?” the voice was barely audible as the wind picked up speed and made a loud whistling noise. He looked to see Roxas-chan, her daypack slung over her shoulder, come out of the shadows of a light pink building.
    “Roxas-chan!” he said. She ran up to him and hugged him.
    “I’m so scared,” she moaned. “I feel like I’m going to wake up from a horrible nightmare.”
    “This is no nightmare,” said Cin. “Let’s get out of here.”
    He sprinted down the street, holding her hand. Going right, he found himself passing a grassy field with a big stone statue of a man in the center of it. A fortress of mammoth proportions was up on the hillside. He kept running, past more homes and what looked to be a ‘butterfly museum.’ The lack of activity - plus the darkness - made the island even more eerie as the pair rounded a bend.
    They passed a mini-golf course and the ‘Mission Point’ hotel. Across the road from the hotel was a clutter of trees, which Cin dragged Roxas-chan into.
    They both put their daypacks on the dirt floor.
    “This can’t be real,” said Roxas-chan. Her face was an unhealthy shade of white.
    “It’s real; all of it,” said Cin. “Let’s check out our weapons.”
    Cin unzipped Roxas-chan’s daypack. He pulled out a map, compass and pen - plus a list of all the forum members. The map was incredibly detailed, with popular tourist locations noted and the like. Next was some bread and water. Cin nibbled the bread. It was stale and tasted like crap. No surprise.
    Roxas-chan’s weapon was a sickle. It gleamed in the moonlight as Cin examined it. The blade was clean - the weapon was brand new.
    “This is probably a lucky weapon to get,” he claimed.
    “I don’t want it,” said Roxas-chan.
    “What?” asked Cin.
    “I don’t want it. I don’t want to play this game.”
    “So if you get attacked, you’ll simply let yourself die? You won’t fight for your own life, even if it’s someone who you’ve had a grudge against for ages?”
    “Well, no, but… I would never feel comfortable having that on me.”
    “You have to take it Roxas-chan; you have to take it so you have some sort of self defense. You can’t wander around this island without some sort of weapon.”
    Roxas-chan, hearing Cin’s words of advice, took the weapon and stuck the handle down the back of her skirt.
    “Let’s see what you got,” she said. Cin picked up his bag and unzipped it. He took out the map and water, the familiar stale hard bread, and finally, his weapon.
    “Damn.”
    Cin was holding a Smith & Wesson pistol. The handle was made of metal, as well as the chamber. A clip of twelve bullets was inside his bag as well. He immediately put them in the gun.
    “Well, I can say for sure that this one’s lucky.”
    The way he said it was almost comical.
    “We’ve only got 12 bullets,” said Roxas-chan. “Which obviously means only twelve shots. Hopefully we won’t have to kill anyone with them.” But as she said this, she had the feeling that they’d be using the gun for killing. It was the way of the game.
    “I wonder who else has come out?” asked Cin to no one in particular. He reckoned he’d run for about ten minutes and they’d been there for about five. So at least up to boy number 7 had exited the school building. He wondered who they were… and what their weapon was.
    There was a rustling behind him.
    Cin’s hands went numb as he pulled back on the pistol and pointed it left and right. Roxas-chan had her hand on the handle of the sickle.
    “Did you hear that?” asked Cin.
    “Yeah,” said Roxas-chan.
    The rustling was heard again.
    Meow.
    A small black cat with wide yellow eyes came out of the bushes, shaking off its fur.
    “Oh,” said Roxas-chan. “It’s just a cute cat. Come here, kitty!”
    The small cat hopped into Roxas-chan’s arms and she began to pet him. Cin watched as she touched noses with the kitten and giggled.
    They say the speed of a bullet coming out of a gun is faster than the speed of sound. Cin learned this was true as dirt sprayed up around him and Roxas-chan. Milliseconds later they heard the chilling sound of a typewriter’s keys rattling at an intense speed.
    “Run!” shouted Cin. He picked up Roxas-chan and the two ran out of the grove. A shadowy figure burst out of the tree line. He was holding a sub-automatic pistol; the same thing as an uzi. The chilling typewriter like sound fell over the serene island again as more bullets pelted the road Cin and Roxas-chan were running down.
    Cin turned and fired his gun once. He saw the shadowy figure duck and then continue running.
    ‘Crap,’ he thought. ‘Who the hell is that? I don’t want to die here!’
    He turned a sharp corner and found himself running up a concrete driveway toward the entrance of the Mission Point hotel. Then an idea occurred to him.
    “Get ready,” he said to Roxas-chan.
    He fired the pistol twice, two bullets into the huge glass windows of the hotel. Glass splintered and went in different directions as the bullets pierced the frame of the window. With Roxas-chan not far behind, Cin leaped through the broken frame and landed inside the hotel.

    The game of life and death


    The two found themselves in a giant lobby, made of mostly wood. Furniture was set nicely around the room, and a beautiful fire burned in an oriental fireplace. But the beautiful scene was shattered as fluff flew from the pillows of the chairs and a gas lamp exploded above Cin’s head (sending glass and oil everywhere) as nine millimeter bullets showered the massive lobby. One of the chairs lit on fire, and like dominoes the whole lobby started up in flames. Fire burned the walls of the brilliant room and spread to the carpet.

    The game lost by time


    ‘Crap,’ thought Cin. ‘If I stay here, I’m going to be killed before people finish leaving the school. This whole place is going up in flames!’
    He and Roxas-chan ran down a hallway. He could hear the pounding footsteps of his pursuer not far behind him. More bullets shattered the very air itself. Wood and plaster flew from the walls and doors of various hotel rooms.
    ‘Who is this insane guy?!?’
    They found themselves in a white hallway, with doors than said ‘101, 102, 103’ emblazoned in gold. Looking to the left, he saw some stairs that led up to the second floor. He charged up these and found two more branching hallways. They both looked the same - which was no surprise to Cin. He took the right one.

    The safety of trust and alliance


    Roxas-chan was glad she had the comfort of Cin with her. Plus, he had a gun (she really hoped she wouldn’t have to use the sickle. She hoped she’d never have to see someone in the game be killed… but it may be inevitable). She looked back but Cin instantly turned a corner before she was able to see their pursuer. The uzi he was holding came into her sight before she was yanked away. They carried on down a long hallway until they hit another area. There were some carpeted stairs leading down to the blazing first floor and another long hallway to their left.

    No longer exist


    “Go down there,” said Cin, pointing towards the stairs. “Take the gun, and I’ll take the sickle. I should be able to distract him long enough for you to get away.” Roxas-chan gave him the sickle and took the gun - she really hoped she didn’t have to use it. But to kill this murderous freak that was chasing after them; maybe it wasn’t such a bad idea after all. She quickly dismissed the thought.
    “I’ll go,” she said firmly. With Cin around, she was starting to gain more confidence.
    Running down the stairs, she saw that almost the whole first floor was up in flames. A wooden barrier fell from the ceiling and crashed to the floor sending flames billowing over ornaments and furniture. Sparks erupted from the carpet and several tables lit on fire. She ran, covering her eyes from the smoke as she went towards the nearest doors. She burst outside and kept running until she was at least twenty yards away. Turning back, she saw flames licking from the open windows of the first floor. Smoke curled in tendons from the windows and she felt worried for Cin’s safety.

    The blood bath of the Royale


    Cin ran down the long hall and turned to see the fearless assailant at the end of the hallway. The machine gun rattled and Cin felt pain cut through his leg. A small metal object, presumably a bullet, was sticking out from his calf. Blood leaked from the excruciatingly painful wound, and he used the sickle from Roxas-chan’s daypack in one clean swipe to knock the bullet out of his calf muscle. A bit of bloody flesh went with it, but it was no matter to him now. Escaping was the main deal. More chilling rattling noise echoed through the hotel and the assailant was upon him once again.

    1 killer
    29 broken spirits


    Cin took this moment to view his assailant. At the end of the hallway, he saw a muscular figure loading a new magazine into the uzi. Cin was shocked to see who it was, standing there with massive forearms and knit eyebrows.
    “No.”
    It was Boris the Blade.
    Cin coughed and he realized black smoke was curling up from under the carpet. ‘The fire!’ crossed his mind and he knew he had to get out fast, so he turned and ran.

    How do you live in a place of instinct?


    The white hallway abruptly ended at a balcony overlooking some stairs. Cin contemplated his options. He could run down the long stairs and take an extra amount of time - possibly letting Boris catch him and plug his brains out with the uzi - or he could take the risk of jumping down the balcony and get a heads up on Boris. He decided to take the latter, and landed with a painful grunt. Pain stabbed through his wounded leg. His legs crumpled on the ground as he landed, but he paid no mind to the searing pain in his calf muscle as he saw flames enveloping the whole area in front of him. It was an area that led to the lobby, and the intense heat made him instinctively shut his eyes. A corridor to his right was untouched by flame, so he ran down it.

    Driven by hatred


    Boris saw Cin go over the railing of the balcony.
    ‘Smart kid,’ he thought. ‘But I’m not stupid. I can do sweet secret agent moves too.’ Boris ran up to the balcony and jumped. His feet planted against the far wall and he pushed off, firing himself towards the bottom of the stairs. He rolled as he hit the ground and looked to see Cin rushing down a corridor. Unlike Cin, he felt no pain as he did this - completely driven by hatred. A wall of flames was in front of him, and he ignored them as he fired over 250 bullets a minute at Cin. He didn’t make contact, but wood chips shredded and flew all over the place as he hit the walls.

    Or the will to live on
    Living


    Cin realized he was back in the main lobby, which gave off a sweltering and unbearable heat. He had to get outside.
    “Hello.”
    Cin turned, sweating dripping from his face in buckets, to see Boris standing with the uzi pointed straight at him.
    Cin was too stunned to speak, but managed to give a small squeak.
    “You know,” said Boris. “I have the ability to win this game.”
    Cin just stared at him. It was true; he was at the beck and call of Boris right now. The amazing gun was pointed straight at him, and Cin’s pistol was limp at his side.
    “So now I shall decide… do I play?” smiled Boris.
    Cin watched as Boris pulled the water bottle out of his bag. He squeezed it as hard as he could until it burst open, sending water everywhere. Cin was stunned at Boris’s upper body strength.
    “So I flipped a coin. Heads; I play this game. Tails; I fight back against Deathspank.”
    Cin already knew the answer.
    “It was heads.”
    As Boris was about to pull the trigger, a loud explosion sounded from above him.

    Brings only the pain
    That you have destroyed


    A large wooden beam fell from the ceiling, showering sparks and splinters throughout the lobby. Cin observed as if he was watching an action movie. It was one of those parts where it goes into slow motion and something crazy happens. In this case, the crazy part was a wooden beam landing right next to Boris. Sparks flew into his eyes, blinding him. Cin took the opportunity to run.

    The only thing
    That is important now


    Cin knew his priorities, and his main focus now was to get the hell out of there. He peered around to see two large wooden doors, which he immediately ran to. There was a gold metal push bar on the front, which burnt his hands as he grabbed it. Taking off his white polo shirt that all the boys were wearing, he wrapped it round his hands and opened the door. There was a small room beyond it, and then more double doors. He burst through these to breath in fresh air; a long sought after feeling.

    is Life

    Cin was knocked to the pavement as an explosion shook the ground. He turned around to see a horrific sight; a humongous fireball that lit up the sky. The massive explosion engulfed the whole hotel. He cleared his eyes and went onto his hands and knees. In front of him was a massive wall of flame. Scared out of his mind, he turned and charged away from the inferno. Running, he saw Roxas-chan moving toward the exit of the hotel. The two met up and ran off, Cin pulling on his shirt. The fireball made the island seem as if it was in daylight for only a few moments. But Cin was too preoccupied with getting out of the hotel’s general vicinity.
    The hotel was a gleaming ball of light and fire in the sky, and it could be seen from anywhere on the island. Cin didn’t know if Boris was dead or not, but it was obvious that the fireball should have killed him, easily. But he had learned that Boris was a moving powerhouse with all parts working and well-oiled.
    Back at the hotel, a figure, covered in soot, rose from the flaming debris. Holding an uzi, his figure was just a silhouette against the bright flames.
    Boris the Blade spat to the side and cursed. Cin had got away, and taken a whole hotel with him. Boris only sighed; if he was the only one playing this game, then so be it.
    It was time to hunt more members.

    28 members remaining


    7

    Sara (Girl No. 2) had left the school and immediately went to Mackinac Fort, which was only about 400 yards away. She climbed the steep slope to its massive wooden doors and walked inside. The fort was full of old wooden buildings, and 12 meter walls made of stone encircled the entire area. Across the fort was a building with a steeple, and Sara noticed a little opening at the top; perfect for sitting in and observing the game.
    She’d always been good at rock climbing; it was one of her favorite hobbies. But as she slung her daypack over her shoulder and set her sights on the alcove, she knew she was in for something huge. Hand over hand; she pulled herself up using loose bricks and holes in the wall.
    Ratatatata.
    The noise had come from outside the fort. Sara slipped and fell a few feet but managed to grab onto a brick. Rocks tumbled down from the steeple, bouncing off her head and falling to the ground. ‘That was a close one,’ she thought. There was more of the speedy, shrill noise, and then one loud ‘bang’. Sara realized she was hearing the sounds of guns being shot. The game had officially begun. Fear tightened in her mind as she realized these gunshots could mean some of her friends were dying. More gunfire was heard and she decided it would be best to live in the present - at least while she was playing this game.
    She managed to reach the small alcove before the real action started. Sitting in the alcove, she opened her bag to see food, water, a map and compass and finally a pair of binoculars.
    “Binoculars?” she asked herself. “I guess this can be handy…”
    Then she realized that the binoculars didn’t come in everyone’s daypack. This was her ‘random’ weapon. ‘You must be kidding me?’ she thought. ‘What am I supposed to do with these stupid binoculars, strangle someone with the attached string? Beat someone to death with them? These are utter pieces of crap!’
    There was more shrill machine gun fire and she peered through her binoculars in the direction of the noise. The binoculars were amazing - she could see a figure dart into a building. Checking her map, she realized this was the ‘Mission Point’ hotel.
    An orange glow emanated from the windows of the hotel’s first floor. Sara watched as flames began to exit the windows, curling into the sky like the tongues of demons. The night itself was pitch black - she could have fallen asleep with her eyes open and the night would act as her eyelids. But the flames gave off a glow which lit up the area.
    For sure there were 2 people in there, one who had gone in first and the other that had followed him. She wasn’t sure who else there was until she saw a small girl in the familiar skirt and top standing outside the hotel.
    “Get out of there!” screamed Sara.
    Then there was a loud crash, and not 10 seconds after the sky that could have once been your eyelids whilst sleeping turned into a vivid canvas of red and orange. Sara gaped as for about 3 seconds, it was daylight. She could see everything on the island - the mysterious Grand Hotel, some streets down by the school, fudge shoppes, looming buildings; everything. The sky was as light as day, but with more of a twilight effect.
    Darkness came again as Sara watched a massive fireball extend at least 40 meters into the sky. From her high, cramped perch, the fireball even rose above Sara’s head. (Keep in mind she was in the steeple of a building in Mackinac Fort, which was on top of a massive hill.)
    The gigantic raging ball seemed to lick the air itself and grew bigger and bigger. Eventually it dispersed, and sparks began to rain from the sky.
    Sara felt a choking in her throat - she thought she was about to cry. As far as her guesswork went, someone must have died in that fireball. It was ridiculously huge - words couldn’t even explain how large it was. Tears welled in her eyelids and she felt one slowly slide down her cheek. She thought of Arc - it may have been him in there.
    But as far as her hopes went, Arc would also come to this massive fort. Then the two could band together and try and figure out something to do. She loved him enough that she would die for him. ‘If Arc was in that inferno, I might as well kill myself now,’ she thought. Her mind snapped back to the dangers of the game. Focus was the key; without it she would die. When daylight came, her perch in the church’s steeple would no longer become a very safe place to be. With simple math she figured that if she was to sit there for all three days, the top of the fort would eventually become a danger zone. And if that was to happen…
    She fingered the collar strapped around her neck and began to lose hope.
    They were trapped in this horrible game. And there was no way out. Even if she sat for hours trying to formulate a plan, she doubted she’d come up with anything useful. The crap eating government had covered everything, whether it be escaping by water or blowing up the school.
    Sara would sit all night, until the moon set and the sun rose, just so she could be there in the morning. She hoped to observe something from up here, and hopefully it wouldn’t be picked as a danger zone any time soon, so she fell asleep.

    28 members remaining

    8

    Element (element575, Girl No. 7) exited the school to immediately set down her pack and take out her map. It was time to use logical thinking - she guessed most people would head toward the Fort, so she would instead go left toward the ‘Grand Hotel.’ (The largest hotel in the world.)
    She picked up her pack and hurried left to find a yellow house with its front door wide open. She decided she could hide in there, but first she’d check her bag.
    Her random weapon seemed to be razorwire - an extremely thin and sharp wire that could make easy clean cuts with the gentlest pressure. It was an extremely deadly weapon if used in the right way. Element decided that she’d use it in that ‘right way.’
    Walking into the house, she strung the wire across the doorway at about neck height. That way, if someone tried to get into the house they would walk right into the wire and hopefully die. It was her only way of knowing true safety while she was in the house. The wire was so thin that the person (‘hopefully,’ she thought) wouldn’t notice it, and it would (‘hopefully’) cut their neck open as they walked through. It would be an instant death.
    After stringing up the wire she moved to the kitchen. She set her bag on the table, and viewed her map. The island was full of odd tourist attractions, such as the Butterfly Museum and Arch Rock, and home to the largest hotel in the world. Mackinac Fortress lay on top of a massive hill not too far away (‘I bet there’ll be a lot of fighting going on there,’ thought Element).
    “Hey, who’s there?”
    Element went into freak out mode and started screaming. She waved her arms wildly and ran around the room. Someone else was already in the house.
    “Shut up!” said the voice. But as much as the voice said it Element kept screaming.

    FF Fanatic (Boy No. 5) was hiding in a kitchen cabinet when he heard footsteps echoing in the kitchen. At first he was petrified - but his supplied weapon was a vicious Colt .348, which came with 10 bullets. He gained confidence immediately at his awesome weapon.
    His favorite song was playing in his head; ‘Anthem Pt. II’ by blink 182. He had memorized all the lyrics, and they all seemed to ring in his head as he sat there; the lyrics almost represented his position.
    Everything has fallen to pieces, earth is dying; help me Jesus. We need guidance, we’ve been misled. Young and hostile; but not stupid. Let this train-wreck burn more slowly. Kids are victims in this story. Drown the youth with useless warnings. Teenage rules, they’re ****ed and boring.
    Everything has fallen to pieces, everything has fallen to pieces, everything has fallen to pieces, everything has fallen to…
    We really need to, see this through. We never wanted - to be abused. We’ll never give up, it’s no use. If we’re ****ed up you’re to blame.
    That’s right… what Deathspank was doing was outrageous and ridiculous. He wouldn’t play this game; he’d find some way to find a way out of it. But it was when he heard the footsteps and whispered, “Hey, who’s there?” that he had made his first mistake.
    There are three types of mistakes, a - the mistakes you make on tests, b - the mistakes you make when you ask a girl to homecoming, c - a very tremendous, unique kind of mistake; one you do not ever want to make.

    Type A: Sweat rolled off of Jimmy’s brow as he sat in a metal chair. It was missing a little knob on the back right leg, and the chair would tip to the side as he moved around. He was staring at the final exam of his biology class. One question in particular was bothering him. The question read:

    23. A population is…
    A. The amount of money a government makes each year
    B. Many biological communities rolled into one ecosystem
    C. The amount of people killed in the Rwandan genocide
    D. A large dog

    Jimmy was unable to answer the question. Sitting next to him was Becca, the smartest girl in class. He knew that she would manage to get 100% on the exam, so he decided to look at her paper. As soon as his eyes slid in her paper’s direction, the teacher walked up to him and ripped up his exam.
    “No cheating!” screamed the teacher. “You get an F on the exam, and in this class!”
    Jimmy cried himself to sleep that night.

    Type B: Matt wasn’t really all that popular in school, he was one of those kids who got good grades but didn’t play any sports. He wasn’t at all popular with the ladies; in fact, he had no game at all. But for some reason he decided to ask the hottest girl in school - Emma - to the huge school dance; homecoming.
    He approached her as she was standing with her main group of friends (they called themselves the Cat Clique).
    “Can I talk to you, Emma?” he asked in a quiet, shy voice. Emma turned to him and gave him a queer look.
    “Okay…” she said, wondering why this loser was even standing in her vicinity, let alone approaching her and talking to her. She walked over and they moved to the side of the hall.
    “Will you go to homecoming with me?” asked Matt. Emma burst into laughter.
    “You, go with me? You must be joking!” she cackled. Her friends asked her what was going on and she explained that Matt had asked her to homecoming. Everything moved in slow motion for Matt. He hung his head as everyone pointed and laughed at him.
    Matt cried himself to sleep that night.

    Type C: Element ripped open the cupboards to see FF Fanatic sitting in a cramped position. He had a gun. Element became freaked out and threw a pot at him. It bruised Fanatic’s arm, but he was able to ignore it. He came out of the cupboard to see Element armed with a large cooking pot.
    “Element, are you going insane?” asked Fanatic.
    “Me, insane! You’re the one with the gun!” she retaliated.
    She then swung the pot, but Fanatic was able to duck and dodge. He ran out of the kitchen and up some stairs. The second floor was two rooms big, and he went in the left room. Element followed him in. He was trapped.
    “Look, Element, calm down, I’m not going to hurt you,” pleaded Fanatic.
    A massive explosion rocked the very foundations of the house, causing Element to fall over. The sky outside flashed several times. Fanatic ran and leaped over Element’s fallen body. His momentum caused him to smash into the wall, but he quickly rounded the doorway and started charging down the stairs down two at a time. He took a right (the kitchen was on the left) and saw the door to the bathroom. Running inside, he locked the door behind him and sat on the toilet, taking a deep breath.
    ‘What the hell was that humongous explosion?’ he thought, looking around at the bathroom. Everything seemed to be a pastel white, from the toilet to the walls. The wallpaper had little pink flowers on it. The delicate touch seemed out of place in this horrible game.
    Fanatic cried himself to sleep that- no, wait, he didn’t.

    Three types of mistakes, slightly different consequences.
    Fanatic soon learned that his trouble was not over as a knife stabbed through the door.
    “I’m gonna kill you!” screamed Element from the other side. She stabbed the knife into the door again, ripping a large hole. Wood splintered everywhere and Fanatic backed against the wall - he could see Element’s face. Her teeth were gritted and her face was completely red. Her eyes were squinted and her nose was contorted; she looked like a horrible monster. After smashing a big enough hole she reached her arm through it and grabbed the doorknob, unlocking the door.
    It burst open and Fanatic saw Element holding up the knife. Her face twisted with rage and she charged at him.
    Raising the pistol, Fanatic fired a shot. The bullet pierced Element, and she fell back almost immediately. She was clutching her side, and the knife slipped out of her hand. The hand clutching her side was soaked in blood and it seeped through her fingers, dripping onto the floor. She gasped for air, but was still living. He had only pierced the very left side of her body, and the damage he had caused was probably nothing extreme.
    Fanatic was shocked. He had shot someone, someone who was most likely going to die because of what he had done. His mind went black and his feet took over.
    He ran around Element and took a right out of the bathroom. He continued for several feet until he found himself in the living room; and there was the front door. The fresh air from outside filtered into his nostrils. It was his freedom, and he rushed at it with a smile on his face.
    “I’m out of he-”
    Fanatic’s last view was of him looking up at the moon. Blood ran down his neck and into his shirt. He clasped his hands around the opening but more blood spilled out through the cracks in his fingers. His body tilted forward, hanging from the razorwire, and blood poured onto the ground.
    Element crawled into the room. Holding her side, she pulled off her top and wrapped it around her bleeding belly. She lay there for ages, listening to the trickle of liquid that was Fanatic’s blood. Her body, depleted and tired, eventually fell to sleep.

    27 members remaining

    9

    Roxas charged through the woods, barreling through branches and anything that got in his way. He didn’t care if someone was following him, he’d be glad. He had to find someone. So far he’d heard the sound of machine gun fire, a pistol, a massive explosion and shortly after a dulled pistol shot - that sounded like it had come from inside of a building or something. But his mind was swimming as he found himself at Arch’s Rock.
    The rock jutted out from one edge of a cliff and connected to another end. It was one of the biggest tourist attractions of the island, and Roxas had been there many times himself.
    But he was never going to play this game.
    He dropped his daypack to the ground, it didn’t matter what was in it. He was never going to play, no matter what the cost.
    And the only way to make sure he didn’t fall into Deathspank’s trap… was to kill himself.
    Arch Rock was at least 30 meters above a rocky yet grassy hillside. Whether you were to die instantly or break your bones and die of blood loss, the fact of the matter was that he would die if he was to jump down.
    He walked along the usual tourist platform and up onto the rock. It was covered in small tufts of grass and was about 2 feet wide. A breeze made him lose his balance, but he managed to stay on the giant arch. The fall looked dangerous, and he was near the edge of Lake Michigan. But he had made his mind up long ago.
    Taking a deep breath, he readied himself to jump. The drop looked massive, but if he was going to kill himself he wanted to make sure it was instant. ‘One,’ he counted in his head. ‘Two… three!’ He swung his arms and was about to jump but stopped abruptly when he heard a cry from behind him.
    “Stop!” cried a voice from behind him.
    He turned around to see one of his best forum buddies - Cin - standing there with Roxas-chan. Cin had a gun. At this single moment, hundreds of thoughts crossed Roxas’s mind from ‘quick, jump!’ to ‘you’ve found a friend, now band together!’
    “Don’t shoot me!” shouted Roxas bagging on complete instinct.
    “I’m not gonna shoot you!” said Cin, “If you come down from that massive rock.”
    Roxas immediately came down and walked over to Cin.
    “I never thought I would see you two,” he grinned. “I think I’m gonna have to thank you. I was just about to… jump.”
    “I noticed,” smiled Cin. “But you’re with us now, and you aren’t going anywhere.”
    Roxas breathed a sigh of relief, there were some people he really trusted standing in front of him. He picked up his bag and started walking off, Cin and Roxas-chan staying in line.
    “Did you hear that huge explosion?” asked Roxas.
    “Did I?” asked Cin. Roxas-chan frowned.
    “Well, we were kinda the cause of it,” she said.
    “Huh?” grunted Roxas.
    “Yeah,” said Cin. “Boris has an Uzi. He tried to kill us so we ran to the hotel. Then he lit it on fire and… kaboom.”
    “Damn,” breathed Roxas. “It was so huge; I could see the flames through the trees.”
    “It was ridiculously enormous,” noted Cin.
    “And you said it was Boris?” asked Roxas.
    “Yeah, it was Boris…” said Roxas-chan. “By the way, have you taken a look at the list of forum members in your daypack yet? It has all out names and numbers.”
    “Actually,” replied Roxas, “I haven’t even looked in my daypack yet.”
    Cin sat down, “Well let’s look at it, then!”
    Roxas took the daypack off his shoulder and put it on the ground. There was some hard bread and three bottles of water.
    “Not much water,” said Cin. “But I’m sure that if this game ended up lasting for 3 days it’d be enough. There must be wells around here somewhere.”
    The moon was still in the sky, although it was getting low. Roxas reckoned it was about 4:30 A.M., and Deathspank had said the first announcement was at 6 A.M. It would be daylight by then. Cin was sitting cross-legged, Roxas-chan was on her knees and he was just sort of sitting.
    Next was a map, which he quickly examined to check its credibility.
    “This is a really good map,” he said. “I definitely suggest keeping this map with you at all times… it’s just so helpful. It even marks a bunch of popular locations. Look, here are us.” He pointed to the symbol for ‘Arch Rock’ and the map.
    “Sweet,” said Cin, “Although we must be a little farther away than that… considering we can’t even see the rock anymore.” Cin was right; the rock was now hidden by a deep canopy of trees.
    Roxas then examined the compass, which he determined was in fine working condition judging it pointed in the right direction (at least according to the map). A list of the members followed, and he quickly skimmed it.
    “Boris was number 6,” he said to Cin.
    “Yeah,” Cin replied, “I can understand how he snuck up on us like that.”
    “Was it long before you took off after you left the school?” asked Roxas.
    “Nah,” replied Roxas-chan. “Maybe a minute at the most, but Boris looked like he was at peak and prime in his physical condition. It’s honestly no wonder that he caught up to us in the end. Or it could be a coincidence we met…”
    “Well, I guess only my random weapon is left,” said Roxas.
    He reached in and pulled out a small black handle with a tiny switch on it.
    “What the hell is that?” asked Cin. Roxas clicked the switch and a blade swung up and out of the black metal handle.
    “A switchblade!” beamed Roxas, excitement filling his blue eyes. “Oh yeah, you guys never told me what your weapons were.”
    Cin and Roxas-chan both held up their weapons. In Cin’s hand seemed to be a Smith & Wesson pistol. Roxas-chan was holding a sickle.
    “I guess we all got lucky!” said Roxas, brightly. (Of course, no matter how brightly, happily or joyously anybody spoke; nothing could lighten the mood during such horrible, horrible times. That was the way of the game.)
    “Or maybe not,” said Roxas-chan. “For all we know someone could have a sniper rifle or a rocket launcher in their bag.”
    Cin gave her a quizzical look, “Do you really think they could fit a working bazooka into one of these daypacks?” Roxas wasn’t so sure… the daypacks all did vary in size. But good things do come in small packages…
    Looking up, he noticed that Cin’s leg was bleeding.
    “What happened to your leg?” he asked.
    “I was shot in the leg by Boris,” said Cin. “It wasn’t too bad; I was able to ignore the pain. But I’m sure it’ll come back to bite me if I don’t do something about it.”
    Roxas peered at his map. Down by the school (all the area around it was now a forbidden zone; the school lay at the bottom of a huge hill. The hill wasn’t in the school’s danger zone vicinity) was a clinic. It wasn’t a danger zone… he thought they could reach it.
    “I have an idea,” said Roxas. “When the sun rises at about 5: 30, we should be able to get to the clinic in the town around Deathspank’s 6 AM announcement - in which we will also find out about our… dead classmates.”
    Roxas-chan shuffled her feet. Then she asked;
    “Roxas, what do you think of this game?”
    Roxas just scoffed, “I don’t know why we keep calling it a game. Games are usually fun and bring joy. They’re meant to take of stress and relax the body and mind. This counters everything we know as a ‘game.’ So maybe we should come up with a new name for it?”
    The three sat on the earthen wooded floor, thinking of a new name.
    “How about ‘The Game of Which Has No Point’?” smiled Cin.
    Roxas-chan gave a little laugh and Roxas leaned back against a giant oak tree.
    “Fine,” he said. “I quite like that name. But to answer your question on what I think of this game…” at this point Roxas exhaled deeply.
    “There must be some way to escape; there must be some sort of loophole in the system. These collars, there must be some way to get them off without them exploding. I know that the three of us, banded together, can come up with some kind of way to take down the system.”
    “But if we wanted to take down the system, what would we do?” asked Cin.
    “The school,” grinned Roxas. Cin’s eyes lit up.
    “Are you saying we shoot at the school?” asked Roxas-chan.
    “Actually,” said Roxas, “I haven’t even thought about it. I was kind of just coming up with stuff on the spot right there.”
    Cin laughed, “But if we could find some supplies to build a bomb…”
    Roxas immediately sat up.
    “That’s brilliant,” he said to Cin.
    “Um,” muttered Cin, “I kinda just said it on a whim.”
    “No, think about it,” began Roxas. “We could find some supplies at the clinic and build some sort of rolling bomb. Then we could push it down the hill… and boom.”
    Roxas-chan also sat up off of her knees at this, “Wow, good thinking! It would probably work too!”
    “We’d have to get lucky,” said Cin. “First we’d have to find loads of supplies which are probably scattered over the island. By the time we have the bomb built; it’ll probably be well into the second day.”
    “It’s worth a shot!” said Roxas-chan, pumping her fist.
    “Calm down!” said Roxas. “For all we know, this island might not even have the basic supplies we need to build a bomb.”
    “He’s right,” said Cin. “We’re risking everything with this. Plus, who the hell knows how to build a bomb?”
    “Now, let me ask you a question. What do you think about this game?” Roxas asked out of the blue.
    “Well,” started Roxas-chan, touching her nose. She took off her glasses and put them in her daypack. Her hair fell over her face, and the moon behind her gave her a beautiful contrast to the dark night sky. “If you want me honest opinion, I don’t think I could fight in such a game. Most people are probably like me.”
    “Not Boris,” said Cin interrupting her. She looked at him and he said, “Carry on.”
    “Anyway,” continued Roxas-chan, “I’m sure that I could kill only to save a best friends life or my own. But it would just be so… horrible. I’d prefer not to even think about it. And it looks like we all got good weapons.”
    “And let me ask you a question,” Roxas said, this time looking at Cin. “How do I know that you’re not going to kill me and Roxas-chan the next chance you get?”
    The mild happy feeling in the air immediately switched to tension as Roxas said this. Cin just looked at him, bewilderment all over his face.
    “What makes you think I would do that?”
    “It would only be right to be suspicious of you, Cin.”
    “But why me? What makes me so suspicious?”
    “I don’t just mean you. I mean that you should be suspicious of everyone.”
    “But then how would you be on a team with someone?”
    “You wouldn’t be on a team with anyone.”
    “But we’re in a team right now!”
    “That’s why I’m asking you, Cin, how do I not know that the three of us will gang up together and then when it’s only our trio remaining you’ll kill us both and be able to go home and see your family again?”
    “Roxas, that’s insane! Why would you say such a thing?”
    “Why? Because it’s the simple truth; that’s why.”
    Thoughts were swirling in Roxas-chan’s head. In this case, Roxas was right. How could you really trust anyone? It was sort of like those crazy wrestling matches she watched at home. They were called ‘Battle Royale’ and it would pit over 10 wrestlers against each other in one ring. You could team up with enemies, friends, foes, anyone, but the person who you thought was your friend one second could be knocking you out the next. Then there were always those moments when two long time tag team partners would have to go against each other in the end. The Battle Royales were insane matches, and definitely the most popular matches of any.
    “I think I’ve come up with a name for the game,” squeaked Roxas-chan, interrupting Roxas and Cin’s argument. The two looked at her, waiting for her idea.
    “It’s kinda like this wrestling I watch,” she started. “I think we should call it ‘The Battle Royale.”
    “What’s a Battle Royale?” asked Cin.
    “It’s when they pit loads of wrestlers against each other in the ring until one is left, it’s just like the predicament we’re in,” said Roxas-chan.
    “Nah,” began Roxas, “The Battle Royale just isn’t right.”
    “I think it should be the KH-Vids Royale.”
    Roxas-chan heard Cin breath “Yeah…” but then there was a short silence.
    “It’s getting really late,” said Roxas. “How about you two go to sleep and I’ll keep watch until Deathspank’s announcement?”
    “But how can I trust you?” asked Cin.
    “I think you’re getting the point,” smiled Roxas. Cin smiled too.
    Cin handed Roxas the gun and put his head on his daypack. “Goodnight,” he said to Roxas-chan. “Goodnight,” said Roxas-chan back to him. Then the two fell asleep.
    Roxas was with people he could trust, and they had a plan. His little speech about trust to Cin was really nothing, because as he sat against a large oak tree and looked at the moon as it was just about to set he thought, ‘It’s good to have people I can trust.’
    Trust; a risk, but also a blessing. Would it be right to trust his comrades and have them turn on him later, or should he believe that they are here to help?

    “It’s good to have people I can trust.”

    27 members remaining

    10

    Element awoke to the sounds of horns blaring over speakers. She was lying face up in someone’s living room. But what was she doing here?
    Sitting up, she felt an intense pain in her side. She looked down to see only her bra. Her top was wrapped round her belly, soaked dark crimson. Everything came flooding back to her - Deathspank, the game, and last night. ‘Actually,’ she thought, ‘it was kind of last morning. Or… this morning? Ah, my head hurts so much…’
    The horns stopped sounding and a scratchy, metallic voice came over some loudspeakers. It was clearly echoing all over the island, and was coming from giant speakers which must have caused the static tone.
    “Rise and shine, it’s time for breakfast!” said a voice, which Element quickly related to Deathspank. It was him all right, in all his twisted, evil glory.
    “How was your first night out? It only gets downhill from here, kids, so get used to it.”
    As he said this he said like the annoying Sammy Dwyer from the video.
    “First I’ll announce the student deaths and then the danger zones… and remember that this is just the first of many short announcements I’m gonna give out every 6 hours, so always be ready for them. I suggest taking out your maps to mark danger zones and maybe even your forum members list so you can cross out your dead friends. Of course, I’m sure they’re more than just friends to you sentimental twerps.”
    Element held her breath; it was time for the student deaths.
    “We have had a few students die throughout the night… I’ll list them now. In the order they died, first was Live Forever, girl fifteen, and for boys it was Xekvin, coincidentally boy fifteen and then FF Fanatic, boy number five. As for the danger zones, in 10 minutes it’ll be G-3, that’s G-3. Then at 9 A.M. will be A-1, and finally at 11 A.M. in C-6. Don’t forget, kiddies, 9 A.M. is A-1 and 11 A.M. is C-6. Remember, in ten minutes it’s gonna be G-3. Have a good day, my happy warriors, and fight well! By the way, you guys that blew up the hotel last night destroyed a good piece of historical history! Thanks a lot you stupid little fighters of mine!”
    Element heard the sound of the microphone click off, but was too transfixed at the site of Fanatic lying face up at the door way of the living room she was in. Blood was caked onto his neck and white polo shirt. His eyes were still open as he lay there looking at the ceiling. Element followed an invisible line up to a thin wire, which was stained red.
    ‘No,’ she thought. ‘I can’t remember what happened in the house, but I know I strung up that wire, and now Fanatic is dead.’ She slowly crawled towards him, inching along. She had to do something to compensate for what she did. Looking over his head, she used her forefinger and thumb to close his eyelids. He looked much more peaceful than before, despite the horrendous amount of blood that was all over the place. Element felt a burden lift from her shoulders, although the fact that she was a murderer, even if it was by accident, didn’t change this at all. Holding her side, she leaned back against a bloodstained couch and looked outside. It was about 6 AM, if Deathspank had come on at the correct time. The sun was not fully up, but it was still a little more than done rising. The beautiful streets of the island were lit up and she could see pretty colors and flowers. But it was all ruined by the sickening and disturbing stench of blood.
    She recalled the danger zones Deathspank had announced… in 10 minutes, G-3. ‘I’m probably not in G-3, but I’ll check anyway. Using her arms, she managed to stand up and used her body to carry herself into the kitchen, using the wall as her companion to help her reach the eating room. Her daypack lay on the table, and she took it in her hands and unzipped it. Inside was her map. When she tried to open it, she dropped it; wasting precious time. Then she opened the map.
    The map fell to the floor once again as her mouth was agape. According to the map… she was smack in the middle of sector G-3. ‘Oh my god,’ she thought, ‘I’ve got to get out of here.’ She looked at her watch - it read 6:09.
    Element screamed and ran to the front door. She ducked under the razorwire and ran down the road. According to the map, Joann’s Fudge Shoppe was the barrier at which the danger zone ended. She could see it in her sights.
    Have you ever had that feeling where time seems to go on forever? For example, if you’re in the basement of your house and a tornado goes right through it then the 30 seconds the tornado is above your head will feel like a whole day. Element had the same type of feeling - the candy shop was barely any distance away, yet she felt like she had to run a mile to reach it.
    Running, running, running, her heart pounded in her throat. The Shoppe was only 25 yards away. Then it was twenty yards, fifteen, ten, she could almost jump to reach it. She felt as if she could straighten her fingers as hard as she could and reach over the line. And her watch turned to 6:10.
    Joann’s Fudge Shoppe had its windows splattered with blood. The slow beeping of the collar that was made every time it exploded slowly died in the wind. Element was standing rigid as a board. As she fell to the ground she was already dead - anyone with half a head would be dead.
    And as she fell, her pointed finger touched the edge of the safe zone. But it no longer mattered.

    26 members remaining

    11

    Ris was washing her face in a small sink. She had exited the school to immediately head to an abandoned house in the residential area. Shattering a window, she had entered the house and gone upstairs. She’d been lying on the bed ever since then,
    Listening to Deathspank’s announcements, she was glad to see that the house she was hiding in was not going to be a danger zone. The chances of anyone finding her here were very unlikely.
    Her random weapon was disappointingly food poisoning, which is why she was hiding in a house right now. There was no way she could take anybody on with some cyanide… it just wasn’t possible. What was she gonna do, throw the bottle at them? But she was over relaxed as she lay on the bed.
    There was a small noise downstairs, but Ris didn’t hear it. It was the sound of a footstep on a hard floor. Someone else was in the house. Ris was in a daze, tired and sleepy due to the late night she had just been through. There had been massive explosions and loads of gun fire throughout the night, but she was extremely surprised to hear that only 3 people had died - one of which had died in the classroom.
    She also felt bad just sitting in this house. Someone with an own life, their own family; had lived here. And it was being used for some horrible game that involved students killing each other till only one remained.
    Ris felt anger boil up to her head. Deathspank was obviously a volunteer in this horrible, twisted game. Not only that, but he seemed to think of everything as a joke, joyously saying the names of her dead forum friends and the new danger zones. It disgusted her, and she pulled out a piece of bread from her bag.
    The bread was stale, and as she bit into it she felt as if she had to crunch the outer edges with her teeth. It was disgustingly chewy as well, which rubbed salt in her wounds as her stomach rumbled. ‘Might as well go downstairs and look in the cupboards for something to eat,’ she thought.
    Taking the stairs two at a time, she walked into the kitchen to see someone standing there.
    It was Kairi, and she looked at Ris and gave a slight gasp.
    “Stay back!” she said, holding her weapon in front of her. It was a drumstick, chipped all around the edges. Ris laughed.
    “You’re going to fight me with a drumstick?” she giggled. “You’re such a poser Roxas fan girl, Kairi.”
    “Take that back,” said Kairi slowly.
    “And why should I take it back little girl?”
    “You know you’ll never be as big a Roxas fan as me.”
    “What makes you think that? If Roxas was here right now, I’m sure he’d love to have sex with me first! In fact, he wouldn’t do it with you at all!”
    “You wish,” screamed Kairi. “Roxas would never even look at slime like you!”
    “How dare you say that, you total weenie?”
    “Wow, Ris, no one says weenie anymore if, you failed to notice…”
    “Well you know what? I can say whatever I damn well want to!”
    “Stop shouting at me just because you’re jealous of my Roxas loving skills!”
    The small argument had gone from bad to worse.
    “Don’t think I won’t beat you with this!” steamed Kairi.
    “You couldn’t harm a fly with that piece of crap weapon!” retaliated Ris.
    “Yes I could, and Roxas would be quite impressed!”
    “No he wouldn’t. He’d be too busy staring at my beautiful body.”
    “You’re so full of yourself; Roxas would never go with you. I am a much more luscious woman, I mean just look at these thighs.”
    Kairi slapped her thighs for Ris to see.
    “That’s just… disturbing,” blinked Ris, astounded.
    “Well I bet you don’t have a limited edition Roxas plushie?!”
    “Who needs that, he’s at home in my bed right now!”
    “You perverted freak of a girl!”
    “I am not a freak you freak!”
    “You suck at comebacks if all you can do is say what I said!”
    “Well you’re a fat loser!” screamed Ris. And this set off the fuse in Kairi. She charged at Ris and slammed the drumstick into her arm. A sick thump was made, but no bones were broken.
    “Now you’re really going to get it!” screamed Ris. She ran to a drawer and opened it, pulling out a fork.
    Kairi backed off, but still remained brave, “You would never stab me with that!”
    “We’ll see about that!” said Ris, charging at Kairi. They traded blows with each other, swiftness and strength fueled only by the determination to be the biggest Roxas fan girl ever. It was quite sad, really.
    Ris ended up getting a scratch on Kairi’s arm with the pointy edges of the fork.
    “Ouch!” exclaimed Kairi, rubbing her forearm. “You really don’t think you’re going to get away with that, do you?”
    “I wasn’t planning on getting away with it, girl!” screamed Roxas-chan.
    “On guard!” screamed Kairi, raising the drumstick. More blows were parried before the two finally fell back, breathing in deeply.
    A crashing noise came from the living room on the other side of the house, and the two precariously wandered over. Stepping through a shattered window was none other than KHAngel.
    “You two?” she exclaimed upon seeing Ris and Kairi. In her hands was a smooth wooden plank. “I thought this wooden plank was a bad weapon, but looks like you guys got worse.”
    “This isn’t my supplied weapon,” said Ris through gritted teeth, holding up the fork.
    The three were standing in a triangle formation, their feet planted on glass splinters.
    “Like Arc said,” began Kairi. “Let the battle of the fan girls begin.”
    And the three attacked.

    26 members remaining

    12

    Sara, like a few others, had woken up at the sound of Deathspank’s voice over the speakers. She was still high atop the steeple; no one could see her where she was. She checked off the danger zones on her map and was glad to find out the fort wasn’t one of them. As she was about to put a line through Xekvin’s name, she decided it would be more polite to put little checks by their numbers. She stuffed the goodies back in her pack and sat there.
    It was now 9 A.M., so A-1 must have become a danger zone. She doubted that anyone had died there - the zone was only a tiny portion of the north western side of the island, most likely just a small section of beach. It was then that she noticed a figure on the wall above the doors of the fort. It was a girl with long blonde hair, a very pretty face and a cute petite body. Sara instantly recognized her as Mish, who according to the member list was girl number 10. She could see without the binoculars that Sara was holding a megaphone in her hand.
    ‘No,’ thought Sara. ‘She’s not going to…’
    “Everyone, come here!” Mish’s voice could be heard from anywhere on the island from where she was standing. The megaphone was an amazing one to be exact, and her voice probably carried beyond the island itself.
    “Everyone, come to the Fort on the big hill! We can all band together and try and beat the system!”
    ‘It’s not going to work,’ thought Sara. ‘You must get out of there.’ As much as Sara feared for her, she wanted to keep her own life more and stayed put.

    Roxas woke Cin and Roxas-chan when he heard Mish’s voice. He had decided against waking them up at Deathspank’s announcement, and that they deserved more rest for saving his life. Cin wiped his groggy eyes and yawned, and Roxas-chan immediately got up and started stretching her legs.
    “Listen,” said Roxas, stopping them in their tracks. Then they heard the voice again. It was scratchy as if it was coming from some sort of microphone, but it was different from Deathspank’s announcement. Roxas guessed it was a megaphone.
    “It’s coming from the direction of the fort,” noted Cin.
    “Yeah,” said Roxas, “And since we have to go to the Clinic, let’s head in that direction anyway.” The three got up and began the long walk towards the fort.

    Vivi was crouched behind a group of trees. ‘If only I had a gun,’ he thought anxiously. He was maybe 20 yards away from Mish, although he was outside of the fort, propped in the dense forest directly on the steep hillside in front of the fort. Xekvin’s random weapon had been completely useless - it was a piece of fake dog poo. Vivi had looked at it with distaste before putting it back in Xekvin’s daypack. He’d taken the bread and three bottles of water though - they would definitely come in handy.

    “Everybody, meet me in the fort!” screamed Mish through the megaphone. Misty just sighed as she peered at the girl on top of the fort’s front wall. She was putting herself in complete danger for the sake of everyone else. It was obvious that people were going to play the game - Misty had heard the gunfire last night and seen the charred remains of the Mission Point hotel. ‘Not much of a hotel anymore,’ thought Misty.
    “What’s going on?” Xehsin wandered out of the group of trees behind Misty. He was zipping up his fly and Misty sheepishly guessed he had been taking a leak.
    “I think it’s Mish up there. She’s asking for everyone to come meet her,” explained Misty. “I think it’s a death trap.”
    “I agree,” said Xehsin. Misty, being Girl No. 5, had found Xehsin who was Boy No. 4 inside a store shortly after exiting the school. The two had decided to band together, thinking it would be better to stick in numbers. At least for now, they were correct.

    Sara sat looking at the poor girl who was putting herself in complete view for the whole island to see.
    “Come on up here!” she screamed.
    And then the shadow attacked.
    The sound of machine gun fire echoed throughout the whole island as it was projected through the megaphone. Sara watched as Mish’s body spun around in a circle, red flying in all directions. She screamed and her wail was heard by the whole island. Sara was shocked to see her fall to the ground.
    Boris walked out from behind a pillar located on the wall. Lax in his hand was an uzi, smoke rising from the barrel. He walked up to Mish’s squirming body and put the microphone to her mouth.
    “Say your farewells,” he whispered to her.
    As he pulled the trigger of the gun, Mish’s powerful scream of pain was heard by the whole island as it projected through the megaphone. The insides of her stomach were turned into a trash bin at a sausage factory.

    Roxas, Cin, and Roxas-chan were just rounding the corner when they heard the familiar gunfire echoing across the air. A girl with long blonde hair fell from the view, and they watched as the muscular figure of Boris stepped out of the shadows.
    “There he is,” breathed Cin. They all stood there, too stunned to move.
    It was no typical horror movie death scene. The assailant wasn’t a deformed monster man, and it wasn’t night. The assailant was a friend from a forum, and the sun shone brightly as it was nearing the middle of the sky. There were no clouds in the sky and it was a bright blue.
    Then an ear-splitting scream echoed over the island, accompanied with the shrill sound of typewriter keys being rapidly pressed. The island fell silent.

    Vivi heard the gunfire and saw Mish fall. Then he instantly freaked out. He ran back through the trees the way he had come. It was then that he made the decision to put as much distance between him and the machine-gun wielding maniac as he could.

    Misty and Xehsin watched from the group of bushes they were hiding behind in horror.
    “Did she just get… killed?” asked Xehsin, already knowing the answer.
    “Do I need to answer that?” replied Misty, also asking a question at the same time.
    “This is getting worse every minute,” said Xehsin. Then the scream with accompanying machine gun bullet music flooded the sound waves that moments before were of birds chirping and the distant sound of a train honking its horn.
    “Oh my god!” exclaimed Misty. She began to leave the bushes to do something.
    “Don’t go you idiot!” screamed Xehsin. “He’ll see you and then he’ll come down here and kill both of us!”
    “Wait, who’s he?” asked Misty.
    Xehsin replied slowly, “It’s… Boris.”

    Sara watched the horrible scene all from close range, and began crying at the site of a young girl of 16 brutally murdered. What made her cry most was Boris’s finishing move - shooting her from point blank in the stomach. It was like a balloon full of ketchup had exploded. But Sara knocked these thoughts from her head as she saw Arc walking up to the back of the fort…

    25 students remaining


    13

    Arc had been awake all night, fingering the sword he had found in his pack. Deathspank’s 6 A.M. announcement had made him decide to start walking around the island, looking for other forum members. According to his watch, it was 9 A.M. The sun shone brightly in the sky and birds chirped in the trees.
    “Everybody, get over here!”
    When Arc had first heard the voice he decided it was best to go investigate. So he traveled along the island, heading towards the voice. Most of the island was forest, although he did notice a residential area and a huge old mill. After traveling some time, he heard the sound of a machine gun. He’d heard it the night before - so he ran toward the noise.
    Breaking through the lime green tree line, he found himself outside of Mackinac Fort. He was at the back, and instantly barreled through the huge doors to see Boris the Blade shoot Mish in the stomach from point blank. Not wanting to be soon, he ran and ducked behind a nearby barrel.
    Boris picked up the megaphone and smashed it on the cement. The scene made Arc want to stab an ice pick through his eyes. The forum admin was one willing to play, and he was ruthless and cruel. Arc had no doubt that others were willing to play, but it was then that he got his first glimpse of action.
    The sword he received in his daypack was long and slender. It gleamed in the morning sun as it waited to slice someone’s arm off. Arc shuddered, ‘Ugh, what a thought.’
    Boris jumped down some stairs and was no at ground level with Arc. His small beady eyes criss-crossed the entire area, searching for something. And then his small beady eyes found Arc.
    The barrel in front of him exploded and liquid flew everywhere. Arc jumped back as he heard the rat tat tat of the uzi being fired. He turned and darted behind a huge house and then towards a well, diving behind it. Boris steamed round the corner, headed straight at him. Arc was trapped, there was no hope… he would be killed.
    BANG! The shot sounded from across the fort. zSoraz stood with his legs apart on the eastern wall, a smoking pistol clutched in his hands. Boris was hit and spun to the ground. Arc took the opportunity to run, but instead of running towards zSoraz he ran in the opposite direction. It was monkey in the middle.
    Boris got up off his knees and dusted them off. He looked at his gun.
    “Dammit,” he said. “The stupid kid shot my gun.” The plated metal of the uzi now had a dent in it, but Boris assumed it still worked, firing into the air before pointing it at zSoraz.
    “Put down the gun, Boris!” screamed zSoraz in a valiant effort. He was trembling as he slowly started walking down the stairs. Boris kept watching him with his eyes, not daring to look away.
    POW!
    The 3 fighters looked to the left to see Sora standing on a hill with a massive double barrel shotgun. He had fired it into the air and was no cocking it again.
    “Everybody put their guns down!” he ordered.
    No one put down their weapon.
    Sora commanded again, “Everyone put down your freaking guns!” Sweat was pouring down his face and Arc realized how hot the weather was. For now he was safe, so he slowly crept away and into a tourist building… and noticed a glint up on a tower of a house.

    Sara was examining the scene with horror through her binoculars. The sun caught them and they flashed white in her view. She squinted and blinked to get back her vision but was unable to for several minutes. When she opened them, there was someone behind her.
    “What are you doing here?”
    She instinctively turned to defend herself, but found that it was Arc. She kissed him and hugged him, feeling tears form in her eyes.
    “Arc, it’s so horrible… Mish,” she sobbed. Arc held her.
    “I know, Sara, it’s tough to take it all in. It’s tough for all of us to take it all on. But let’s go before Boris sees us.”
    The two slowly made their way down the steeple and were facing the back doors of the fort. POW! The shotgun was heard again, and then plenty of machine gun fire and screaming. Then there was more shooting and the pounding of footsteps. Arc took one quick glance back to see zSoraz escaping out of the fort, while Boris stood there with a smoking gun.
    “Wait here,” he said to Sara. He slowly crept along the wall of the fort until he could see Sora’s body. It was pasted to the hill side, and the green grass had turned red. Sora had been killed.
    Running back, Arc grabbed Sara’s hand and pulled her toward the exit. They charged through brush and trees, branches whipping their faces and cutting their arms. Breaking the tree line, they found themselves on the face of a large hill, but weren’t able to stop themselves before tumbling down.
    Green grass and weeds were a blur in Arc’s vision as he rolled full steam ahead down the steep hill before slamming into the bottom. Sara landed headfirst not only 5 yards away. Looking up, Arc realized he’d never be able to climb that massive hill.
    “Crap,” he thought, “I left my sword in the fort.”
    It was true, not only had he left his sword in the fort but his daypack as well.
    And someone was coming out of the bushes.

    24 members remaining

    14

    The bell rang and students bustled to and fro to get to class. Alex was one of the later ones, but for one simple reason. The teacher didn’t believe his excuse, nor did the peer mediators or principal listen to his pleads. No one listened to Alex.
    It was a Friday, and Alex was heading to his last hour before going home. The day couldn’t have been better; and he had an awesome cross country meet against the top high school in the league after school. He looked around and admired the various artsy drawings and signs that littered the halls. The familiar ‘brown & gold’ colors that represented his school were painted on the walls.
    Some large kids walked up to him and shoved him into a corner. They were large cal deans, and a few of them instantly pulled knives on him.
    “You got the dope, you little runt?” said the one with all the gold chains hanging from his neck. He had an extremely deep and gruff voice. Alex looked around to see no one else in the hallway. He was in a deserted part of the school and no one would come for help.
    Alex had always sold dope to the miscreants who wanted it. He made a fortune off it, but found today that he had none on him.
    “I don’t know what you’re talking about?” asked Alex.
    “Don’t be stupid with us kid,” said another one - who also had lots of chains and a very deep voice. Did I mention he had a deep voice?
    “Look - I don’t have any on me,” he stuttered, looking around worried.
    “Then we gonna mess wit ya head kid,” said one, who yet again wore gold chains and had a knife. But unlike the others, this one’s voice was a little bit deep. More on the rumbling belly side.
    “Look, I swear I’ve got nothing on me,” stuttered Alex. A fist flew from the right and slammed into his jaw, flattening him against the wall. He was kicked repeatedly in the stomach and dropped to his knees. A boot came up and slammed his nose, and he felt blood leak from his lips as he landed face down. Slowly getting up, someone slammed his head back to the floor.
    Another bully grabbed his hand and slapped it onto the wall. Alex peeked and looked to see them with a steel baseball bat. ‘No,’ he thought, as the older kid swung the baseball bat and crushed it into the wall of the school. Bones cracked and his hand became a disfigured ball of white.
    They were grabbing his other hand now, and placing it on the wall. He took in a deep breath and awaited the pain when he heard a door open behind him. Coming out was Roxas (Boy No. 11). He looked around at the scene.
    “What are you doing?” he asked.
    “Kid, who do you think you are?” shouted a cal dean.
    “My name’s Roxas and I’m trying to take a make up quiz. Could you please quiet down or something out there?” he replied.
    “We gonna kill you to boy!” the bullies approached him. Alex watched with a blur as Roxas kicked the one with the baseball bat in the crotch and stealing it. He took the bat and slammed the back of the kid’s head with it. The others charged at him and he swung the bat, connecting with the jaw of one unlucky person. They flew back into the wall and slammed their head before groaning and falling to the floor. There were two more, and Roxas ran through them and they turned to face him.
    “We the strongest, boy,” said one. This obviously wasn’t apparent as Roxas swung the bat at the left one, breaking his arm down the middle. He screamed in pain and fell to the floor, grabbing his arm as red soaked through. Then Roxas spun and jabbed the end of the bat into the other one’s mouth, shattering all his teeth and cracking his jaw. The four shook themselves off.
    “You a freak kid,” said the one whose arm was broken.
    They turned and ran through some doors. Roxas offered Alex his hand, which he took graciously.
    “Are you the kid who sells all the pot?” asked Roxas.
    “Yeah,” replied Alex.
    “Well, you should stop doing that,” he replied before turning and walking back into the classroom, leaving the baseball bat leaning against the wall soaked in blood. That was the last time Alex ever saw Roxas.

    24 members remaining

    15

    KHAngel, Ris and Kari all in bounded on each other, weapons clattering together. The wooden plank KHAngel held was covered with various splinters. A mere scratch could infect your whole body. The weapon was as dangerous as the fork Ris was holding, which could easily penetrate the surface of the skin.
    Kairi jumped back and ran into the kitchen, leaving Ris and KHAngel in a stand-off duel. The carpet was covered in glass splinters which cut into Ris’s feet, leaving bloody footprints where she jumped. Ducking, she avoided a nasty blow from KHAngel’s plank - leaving her belly exposed. Ris dived toward it and stabbed the fork in.
    KHAngel grunted and brought the plank down on Ris’s head.
    “I knew we’d all meet up, I just felt it,” said KHAngel. “I guess there really will be a battle of the fan girls; I just never expected it to be like this. Now it’s time for Roxas to realize how strong I am and fall in love with me.”
    The two collided in yet another epic match, forcing and dodging blows while managing to stay on their feet. Blood literally soaked patches of the carpet. Kairi ran back in and jumped on KHAngel’s back, pulling at her hair. KHAngel screamed and turned, whacking Kairi in the arm. It cut her arm open and she slammed into the wall. KHAngel advanced on her, but not before Ris punched her in the jaw. She fell to the ground with blood leaking from her chin.
    “Don’t make me angry you total idiot!” screamed KHAngel. She got up and turned to face the two. Her chin had a large gash in it and she was breathing deeply.
    “You started this!” screamed Ris. Realizing what she’d done, she was crying as she said this. It’s impossible to teach aggression to someone, or at least they say so, and Ris felt as if she had just taught it to herself.
    But KHAngel was trying to kill her.
    Ris scrambled her confidence and ran into the kitchen. Charging up the stairs, she ran into her room to see her daypack. And then there was the cyanide. Discarding both, she ran into the closet and pulled out a golf bag. ‘Yes,’ she thought. ‘Thank god they left this in the house.’ Pulling out a 5 iron, she returned downstairs to see KHAngel and Kairi fiercely dueling.
    “I’ll kill you before you kill me!” said Kairi fighting with the drumstick. KHAngel was using the thick, massive weapon to strike at Kairi, whose injured arm dangled at her side. Then KHAngel tripped and fell toward a glass door that led to someone’s deck.
    Ris watched the scene in horror as KHAngel smashed through the glass and fell backwards off the deck and into a pool. The water turned red and KHAngel lay face down, lifeless.
    Kairi and Ris slowly approached the body, careful not to make any disturbances. It bobbed in the pool like a floating apple. The sun was shining brilliantly and the heat hit Ris like a train. But all her thoughts were concentrated on if KHAngel was dead or not.
    Kairi was the first to walk through the shattered glass door. It looked as if some sort of cabinet had gone through the windshield, the hole was that big. Now even more glass shards lay on the carpet where KHAngel and Ris had been fighting not long ago.
    The deck which lay in front of the pool was smothered with its own nice set of glass, even more than in the room. Massive chunks of it lay in pieces all over the dark wooden area meant for relaxing. Some pieces were stuck into lawn chairs that would have once served a much different purpose. Blood also spotted in the ground in tiny bits, but most of it was in the pool were KHAngel lay.
    Ris followed Kairi out of the massive hole and looked toward the pool.
    “Oh my god,” breathed Kairi. “Is she dead?”
    “Are we murderers?” asked Ris. Kairi looked at her.
    “Don’t call me a murderer, you’re the one who kicked her!” she replied.
    “Wait, I didn’t lay a finger on her before she fell in the pool! You were the one fighting!” screamed Ris.
    “And I care why? You killed her and you know it!” shouted Kairi back at her. Then she swung the drumstick back to strike Ris. But her arm didn’t budge. There was a sickly sweet sound from behind her.
    Ris had a look of shock on her face, and Kairi turned around to see the drumstick she had just moments ago swung back lodged in the throat of KHAngel.
    Her eyes looked around wildly, and then she fell forward. The drumstick had gone completely through her neck and out the back. It was smeared with blood. Her body slammed to the wooden floor of the dark with a sick crunch. The crimson stained drumstick stuck up in the air like a flag pole. Except it wasn’t flying a flag, it was flying a chunk of gray something.
    Kairi and KHAngel stared at each other. Both their mouths hung open, both looking from the mutilated body to each other.
    Ris broke the silence, “What have we done?”
    It took Kairi awhile to answer, moving her mouth slowly whilst no words came out. Then she pulled in the air and was finally able to say, “Nothing happened.”
    Ris stared at her, “What do you mean nothing happened? She’s dead.”
    Kairi looked back, “Shut up! Let’s walk away and pretend nothing happened!” Her whole body was shaking. Then she went into shock and fell to the floor, convulsing and vomiting all over herself. Ris screamed in horror at the sight and ran away. Kairi watched as she ran out of the gate located in the back garden and disappeared. Her body was moving uncontrollably and she was unable to do anything. Tears were streaming from her eyes as she gasped for breath.
    ‘Am I going to die here?’ she thought. ‘I can’t die here, no I can’t. I… I just don’t want to die yet. I can’t die yet…’
    Thoughts of her siblings at home crossed her mind, and images of her parents smiling.
    Everyone’s been through it - their parents don’t let them do something they want, their parents ground them for failing a test, etc. It happens to everyone who’s a child. At some point, they mutter under their breath ‘I hate you.’
    But Kairi fought through tears as she thought of her parents. It was then she realized that through all the hardships, all the tears and fights, she loved her parents more than anything in the world. She could see them smiling now, when she received loving gifts from them, when her mum made her the best meal she could ever have. Then it was the time’s that her dad would still listen to her and play with her even when he came home late from work.
    And that night; when she was lying in bed after a huge argument with her dad. She couldn’t remember what it was about, but she knew it was huge. She was lying in bed, the tears slowly letting up, when the door opened. Light streamed into the room like a river of gold, but she pretended she was still asleep, still clenching her eyes shut. She recognized the heavy footsteps of her dad in her room. He stopped walking and there was silence for a long time. Then he moved again, and there was a small clatter on her bedside table. More footsteps and the room returned to darkness. Kairi opened her eyes to make sure he was gone and looked at her dresser.
    Through the shadows she saw the most beautiful necklace she had ever seen. On it was a light blue butterfly, and the chain was so silver it easily penetrated the wall of darkness that coated her room.
    As she clenched it tightly in her hand, more tears fell from her eyes. As much as she fought with her dad, he still loved her. He still cared about her with all his heart. And she held the beautiful necklace all night.
    Here she was, on her hands and knees, coughing up vomit, when she saw the necklace dangling from her neck. Her parents weren’t gone, she thought. ‘They’re here with me right now.’
    Fighting shock, she stood up and took one last look at KHAngel. She bent down and turned over her body, so that she was face. The drumstick made a squelching noise as she pulled it from the face of KHAngel. Blood dripped onto her face, but she wiped it off with her thumb.
    Kairi stood up and clasped the drumstick. With one quick throw, she chucked it into the pool. It made a small splash and bobbed once before sinking to the bottom of the pool. Kairi stood there watching it slowly sink to the bottom. ‘How long will it rest there?’ she thought. ‘Hopefully, hopefully, it will rest there forever.’
    Then she turned toward KHAngel again. Bending over, she used her thumb and forefinger to close her eyes.
    “I’m sorry,” she said, and one of her tears fell onto KHAngel’s face.
    Kairi turned and walked out of the yard, leaving behind a trail of tears.
    Every second moved slowly.

    23 members remaining

    16

    Roxas, Cin, and Roxas-chan ran past the fort where just seconds ago Boris the Blade had shot Mish to a pulp. They ran past the familiar trees and into the familiar town, Roxas lifting his map.
    “We have to head left,” he said, pointing with his finger. Cin and Roxas-chan looked left to see a large hill going up the side of the fort.
    “We should be real careful,” said Cin, “Who knows where Boris is.”
    They were lucky as they ran up the hill, for they did not encounter Boris or anyone on the way. There was the Clinic at the top of the large hill.
    “Let’s get in there quick,” said Roxas-chan. They listened, quickly running into the Clinic.
    “Are there any bandages?”
    Roxas didn’t like the scenery one bit while he was on the way to the Clinic. He’d seen the completely demolished ruins of the Mission Point hotel - a place he had stayed in over 4 times. It was the charred remains of something once beautiful, a pile of wood and metal maybe 10 feet high at its upper most point. Then there were bullet holes in the cement too… which made him wonder what else could be going on as he sat here in this building. He could have sworn he’d seen a body lying somewhere far away down the road on the way here, but it was in a danger zone and for all he knew it could have been some sort of log or pile of dung - which horses seemed to leave for visitors to the island every 3 to 4 feet.
    “Are there any bandages?”
    Seeing Mish, a beautiful blonde girl of 16, get brutally murdered by Boris made anger rise in Roxas to the top. He knew she would get killed as soon as she tried to summon everyone to the fort, but she had died bravely and with good intentions. He hoped that she would have died quickly, but this thought was banished as he remembered the ear-splitting scream that you would have to be deaf not to have heard. The megaphone literally made her voice echo across the whole island, which in truth was really not that huge. But still, she had died horribly and in such a sickening way that he knew everyone who saw the event would want to just rip out Boris’s teeth, punch him in the mouth till it bled and stick him on a pole to hang until the crows ate him. ‘Whoa,’ thought Roxas. ‘That may be going a little far. Or maybe not (he remembered the scream) but whether it is or is not, I want to kill him myself.’ Maybe he’d get the chance too? Whether it was him or not, he’d be glad just to have Boris dead.
    “Are there any bandages?”
    The clinic was small, two rooms large. They were sitting in the main room, which was lined with cupboards and shelves, all holding various bottles and medical oddities. The walls were a drab gray, but Roxas decided that a clinic didn’t need to be stylish. It was a clinic, for Christ sakes. The second room was a kitchen, which Roxas didn’t know what edibles it held. Roxas-chan was nosing around inside, opening various draws and cupboards, pulling out various paper plates and cups. There was also a refrigerator, which Roxas assumed had old moldy food in it by now.
    “Are there any bandages?”
    Roxas turned to see Cin ask him the question.
    “Yeah, let me just go look,” he replied, rising from his kneeling position.
    “It took you long enough to answer!” shouted Cin as he rifled through cupboards to eventually pull out some thin roll. It was indeed bandages, and he began to unravel them as he walked towards Cin.
    “You said you removed the bullet, right?” asked Roxas.
    “Yeah, I chipped it out with the scythe while Boris was chasing me,” he answered. Roxas nodded and began going through more cupboards until he pulled out some disinfectant.
    “I’m sorry, Cin, but I’m gonna have to use this.”
    Cin looked in horror at the evil substance. It was the substance that any kid, any one person, hated the most. Pouring it on wounds, it would burn like the fires of hell and sting like a thousand needles piercing your eye. Cin knew not if it helped or not, but it didn’t seem to do much except cause extreme pain. ‘How much more do I have to endure before I can settle down?’ thought Cin.
    Roxas unscrewed the cap and poured some onto his finger. He licked it once and said, “This is definitely disinfectant. Get in here Roxas-chan!”
    Roxas-chan walked into the room, “Yes?”
    “I’m going to pour disinfectant, well, rubbing alcohol, onto Cin’s bullet wound. I’m going to need you to hold his mouth closed while I do it.”
    Roxas-chan cringed and then nodded, getting down behind Cin’s head.
    “Now,” began Roxas. “This is going to hurt like hell, Cin. This wound you have goes deep, and so will this. Your first urge will be to scream and then grab the wound. I’m going to prevent this.” Roxas then grabbed some wire from a cupboard which he’d obviously spotted earlier and began wrapping it round Cin.
    “Can you move?” he asked, as Cin tried to get out.
    “I can barely budge my left pinky,” said Cin. “I’m more stuck to this table than when Sticky the Stick Bug got stuck on an extra sticky Sticky Bun.”
    Roxas just looked at him, “Yeah, well that’s great. Let’s get this over with.” He then proceeded by grabbing some towel and putting it into a ball.
    “Are you ready?” he asked Cin. Cin nodded. Then Roxas stuffed the paper wad into Cin’s mouth. He could still breathe, but was unable to talk.
    Then he explained to Roxas-chan, “Now, what I need you to do is clasp your hand firmly but gently over his mouth so he can’t speak.”
    “But he can’t speak anyway. There’s a paper wad stuck in his mouth,” she said.
    “Yeah, but he could still spit it out,” explained Roxas. “Anyway, try and hold his head against your chest as still as you can. You don’t want him going to crazy when this happens.” Then he raised the open bottle above Cin’s wound. The familiar smell fell over the room as Cin was shaking.
    “Are you ready?” he asked Cin for the second time. Of course, Cin never got to answer as Roxas poured the liquid into the wound.
    It was like pulling a trigger, as soon as the steaming antibacterial hit the wound, Cin sat off. He writhed under the wire, his face straining. Roxas gently dabbed the wound with more paper towel, which was hard to do as Cin’s leg flailed as much as it could under the pressure of the wire. His face was beet red and screwed up in total pain. Roxas-chan tried to hold his head still, but he was moving about too much. Roxas kept doing his doctor treatments as he tightly wrapped a bandage around Cin’s leg. Then he taped it up and wiped his hands together, “All done.”
    Roxas-chan released her hands and removed the paper wadding from Cin’s mouth. He breathed deeply before slowly calming down. The red from his face returned to a shade of peach, and Roxas untied the wire. Red already began to stain the bandage where Cin had been shot, but at least, for now, it wouldn’t get infected.
    “You’ll be glad we did that,” said Roxas. “When we aren’t amputating it tonight.”
    Cin tried to laugh at this, but he coughed and choked like a dying car engine instead.
    “Get him some water,” ordered Roxas. Roxas-chan came hurrying in with a glass of water, which she gently placed on Cin’s lips. He drank and then wiped his lip with his forearm.
    “Let’s get down to business,” he said, sitting up. “We need to list all the supplies we can if we want to build a bomb.”
    “Well,” began Roxas, “Obviously some gas - which we can find in some cars around the island I’m shore. We’ll also need lots of gun powder, which I’m sure we can find in the fort - they shoot guns off in their all the time. We’ll also need sulfur or coal; either will do, that way, if for example we push it off a cliff it’ll explode upon impact. Finally, I’d say we need some sort of trolley or cart to put it all in when it’s done being built.”
    “I’m starting to get tired,” said Roxas-chan. “I think that we should just call it a night and do all this crap tomorrow.”
    “Roxas-chan,” said Cin blatantly. “It’s 12 PM!”
    Beep! The crackly voice came over the loudspeakers.
    “Speaking of 12,” said Roxas, “time for another one of Deathspank’s happy go lucky announcements.” He sat back against the wall and rolled his eyes.
    “Hello my children of the corn! Seems like we have quite a bit of new for you guys… including some deaths! And of course those danger zones to top it all off. Now, without further ado… First the deaths. The first one to die since I announced the danger zones was Element. The poor girl, she seemed like she had such talent too. Then it was Mish, Sora, and finally KHAngel. Seems as if we have 23 of you remaining (“this sickens me,” muttered Roxas-chan) and the pace seems good too! Finally your danger zones, they’re always important and whatnot… Yeah, at like 1 PM we’re totally having C-3 be a danger zone. Then at 4 it’s gonna be B-2. That’s all till my next announcement guys and girls… so till then keep mutilating each others bodies!”
    Click.
    “That *******!” screamed Cin, lowering his map. “The Clinic is gonna be a danger zone all too soon. I’m so pissed; I can barely walk right now.”
    “Well, we have till 4 PM,” said Roxas. “I think we can hold out till 3 and gather supplies and food from here till then.”
    The three sat awaiting the time of 4, bustling around and gathering food and water and bomb supplies. Cin stretched his leg, trying to make it feel better, although it hurt like a mother. They were eventually able to pack up their bags with supplies and try to find a spot for the night to sleep. They walked out the door.

    23 members remaining

    17

    Arc, Sara and Ris sat together. It was dark, and Arc’s glow watch read 9: 23 PM. Deathspank had been angry in his 6 PM, saying that no one had died since noon. But this didn’t matter to Arc. Deathspank had even said himself that the 2nd day was almost upon them. If this was true, then Arc had at the most 50 hours left of his life. Unless he won the game. But he banished the sickening thought as he looked at Sara.
    Ris had come barreling out of the bushes at a fast pace, bouncing into Sara and falling to the ground. She looked hysterical, and informed them that Kairi was out to kill, that she had already gotten her grubby hands on KHAngel. This was soon confirmed when Deathspank announced the death of KHAngel, and Cin grimaced at the thought. She had been with them ever since, too afraid to go leave their pack (although Sara insisted that them traveling as one big group was not a good idea at all).
    Arc thought of the last 24 hours as the day waned. It seemed like it was all only a surreal dream he’d woken up from but 5 minutes ago. But he knew, as he pinched himself, that he was here in the flesh. He’d told himself this multiple times, but sometimes just failed to truly realize it. The simple thought of what was going on… it was just too ridiculous. He wondered if the news of this would filter to other countries. This could be worse than the holocaust, bigger than 9/11, maybe even worse than genocide.
    “Do you know what genocide is?”
    Arc remembered when Deathspank had asked this back in the classroom. What was going on wasn’t genocide, it wasn’t mass murder… but it was murder nonetheless, and Arc sat helpless without even a weapon. ‘Why didn’t I remember my sword?’ he thought. ‘That’s a weapon I think would be helpful. But there’s nothing I can do now.’
    It was true; there was absolutely nothing he could do at this point. Not to get his sword, not to escape the island, not to shout for help. He was trapped.
    “I really think there’s nothing we can do, we can’t escape, we can’t run and there’s no hiding from them with these collars,” he said.
    “There must be some way to get out of here,” said Sara.
    Ris sat with her legs pressed against her chest, not sating anything as the moon became visible over the tree tops.
    “I honestly think they’ve done everything possible to erase any way of us escaping. They’ve taken every possible idea and massacred it,” said Arc.
    “I agree,” said Sara. “But maybe for now we should just keep traveling and avoid the dangers of those willing to play. Maybe another member will come up with something to do.”
    “I’m just so pissed,” moaned Arc. “I really though I’d get to know the forum members, y’know? Now some of them are dying, and quickly too.”
    “Like KHAngel,” said Ris, from the shadows.
    “Tell us more about it,” said Sara. “We really want to know what happened.”
    “I’ll tell you the whole story,” said Ris. Arc and Sara nodded.
    “I was sitting in a house all on my own. There was a noise from outside, and I turned to see Kairi creeping up on KHAngel. Sensing the danger, I tried to open my window and warn her, but it was too late. Kairi cut her throat. Then Kairi saw me and entered the house. Instinct told me to get out of there quick, so I did. She chased me for ages, saying that if I didn’t slow down she’d cut my wrists. Eventually, I lost her. I was so glad but I kept running. Then I found you guys.”
    “That’s quite a story,” said Arc.
    “We’ll have to keep that in mind if we see Kairi,” mentioned Sara, which Arc hastily agreed to.

    The game is full of death, destruction and hatred. But the one thing you must try to achieve is trust.
    Ris had betrayed them all.

    23 members remaining

    18

    “So can you count on me?”
    It was 8 AM, the sun was shining brightly, and Xehsin and Misty stood behind a large house inside the fort. People must have been resting, for there were no deaths throughout the night, although at 12 PM Deathspank had announced some new danger zones that weren’t even close to their location.
    KHAngel had been killed before noon, as well as Mish, Sora, and Element. Xehsin had watched in awe as zSoraz managed to escape Boris by jumping of the wall of the fort. All he’d seen was zSoraz fall into a patch of trees and disappear from view. He wasn’t dead, either, but Xehsin had no clue where he was.
    Misty and he were both looking at a sword lying in a complete open area in the middle of the fort. The sunlight created beautiful patterns as light glanced in all directions from the mirrored object.
    “So what do you think it’s doing there?” asked Misty.
    “I dunno,” replied Xehsin. “But I know you and me are thinking the exact same thing right now.”
    “And what is that?” asked Misty.
    “Who the hell would want a sword as their weapon?!”
    Misty laughed at this, then stated, “I can’t believe I just laughed when almost 24 hours ago I witnessed Mish get slaughtered.” She looked up to see the body of Mish on top of the wall of the fort. Blood dripped down the edge facing them. It was sickening.
    “Here’s the plan,” said Xehsin.
    “Come on, we’ve already gone over the plan like 5 times!” exclaimed Misty.
    “Yeah, but you can never be too sure,” he replied.
    “Fine, say it one more time,” she rolled her eyes.
    “Okay, first we count to three. Then I run and grab the sword while you run and close Mish’s eyelids. From there we both meet at Sora’s body and grab the gun he had. Then we get out of here. Good enough?”
    “Of course,” replied Misty.
    “Well then, go!”
    Xehsin ran across grass and dirt. The sword was maybe 30 yards in front of him, which he reached quickly. There were detailed patterns on the handle, and he picked it up with ease.
    Meanwhile, Misty was on top of the wall. Mish was laying face up, little holes all over her body. The white top that all the girls were wearing was more like a red top and her eyes were closed tightly. Mish pulled her body behind a small turret and smiled at her.
    “Rest in peace,” she said.
    Then she looked to see Xehsin also moving swiftly toward Sora’s body, so she did too.
    The sight that greeted them was horrible. But it wasn’t just the blood and the stench, but it was something else.
    This ‘something else’ was a note that was tacked to Sora’s face. The tack had a nice red handle, and poked into Sora’s forehead perfectly straight.
    “Oh my god,” breathed Xehsin. The sight was horrible.
    But it was on the note that shocked them the most, for it said:

    Thanks for the gun, Sora.

    - Boris the Blade

    P.S. You need a tan. All the relaxing
    you’ll be doing should get you one.

    “That is sickening…” said Misty, open-mouthed. They knew Boris was horrible, but not… not this horrible. Xehsin proceeded to remove the tack and crumple up the note. He threw it off to the side and kneeled down to close Sora’s eyelids.
    “I hope you have fun relaxing,” he said gently. “I’m sure… I’m sure that what you’re doing right now is much better than this.”
    He got up and turned away.
    “Let’s go,” he said. “We shouldn’t stay in this place for too long.”
    Misty nodded, and the two set off.
    It was true, Sora would be doing a lot of relaxing. But Xehsin realized that he would truly rather be dead than playing the game.
    ‘Anyone would rather be dead than playing this horrible game,’ he thought. ‘In fact, I really should just kill myself.’
    “I heard what you said,” mentioned Misty. “I hope you’re not planning on killing yourself or something. We must try and get out of this.”
    “I know, I don’t mean to kill myself,” lied Xehsin. ‘Well,’ he thought. ‘Maybe I should stay and help Misty, just for the sake of helping her…’ And then he thought of the note he would right to Sora.

    Dear Sora,

    Wherever you are, it must be better than here. If you’re watching us now, then somehow send us a way to get out of here. We need your help. Everyone who’s not willing to play this horrible game needs your help.

    Xehsin

    P.S. I’m sure the tan will make you look nicer wherever you are.

    As he thought these words, he began to cry. Tears ran down his face, and he looked at Misty to see her smiling at him.
    “It’s ok to cry,” she said. “But never forget that he is somewhere better than this right now.”
    And with that thought the two walked off.

    But as most people would tell you, Sora wasn’t any place better. He wasn’t any place at all. During the game, no matter what your religious beliefs, once you died you were an empty lifeless carcass. There was no heaven for those included in the game. And there was no hell. There was just nothing. And that’s where Sora was at that moment. He was nothing.

    23 members remaining

    19

    Riku (Girl No. 2) sat twiddling her thumbs in the giant ballroom of the Grand Hotel. There was a vast stage on the far side of the room. A tiled dancing floor took up a quarter of the whole floor. Riku was sitting in a chair at a silk covered table, her daypack laid in front of her.
    She had gathered some supplies from storage room as she came. They were random things she had collected - scotch tape, rope, extra water, some towels; anything she would need if she was to try and survive. Sitting here was boring, but she had decided long ago that it was better than going out into the depths of the island. Only death could possibly await her, or she’d fall into someone’s horrible trap.
    Shuddering, she looked to the left of these valuable objects to see two hand grenades set next to each other. They were dark and shiny, and made Riku quiver at the sight of them. ‘I’ll use them eventually,’ she thought. For she had also decided that if anyone were to intrude upon her she wouldn’t hold back… she’d kill. It was all about saving herself, and she hoped her location wasn’t eventually called as a danger zone.
    Crash! Riku looked quickly toward the double doors of the gigantic room to see them shaking violently. They finally opened, and Reien (Girl No. 6) walked into the room holding a Swiss Army Knife. Riku had the grenades in her pocket at the sight of her and stood up.
    “Reien, is that you?” she asked. Reien turned to her and jumped, but settled down after realizing it was only Riku.
    “Yeah, it’s me,” she replied, walking toward Riku without any worries at all. She seemed like she was in her own little world.
    “What are you doing here?” asked Riku.
    “Well, this game is just freaking me out, so I decided I’d stop off somewhere,” she explained. “I was actually looking for someone in fact. What do you think of this horrible game?”
    “Well,” began Riku, “I don’t think I’d ever play… it just seems too horrible for me. Why would you want to kill someone? Even if you barely know them, it’s still murder and it’s still completely horrible. I really hope some other people out there realize this before something too bad happens. You never know what happens during this game.”
    “And I’m guessing you’ve heard the deaths so far,” said Reien.
    “Yeah, it’s pretty shocking just hearing the names of the people I was talking to only a few days ago being named ‘dead.’”
    “I agree with you,” said Reien. “If you want my honest opinion, this whole thing is one big mess.”
    “Indeed it is,” said Riku.
    “Seeing as this isn’t a danger zone, can I stay here with you?” inquired Reien.
    Riku thought this over slowly, ‘Well, I could say yes… and then kill her later? Or I could use her as a shield… I think if I say yes I’ll be able to get at her soon, so I guess that’s what I’ll say…’
    “Yeah, sure,” said Riku, smiling as best she could. Reien was glad she smiled. Riku, on the other hand, was smiling because she knew death would be quick and swift upon Reien, so clumsily looking around without even sensing the hands of death creep upon her. Riku fingered the deadly grenades in her pocket, round like peaches, but more deadly than a gun. She’d have to be quick - or the grenade shrapnel would slice through her skin like a hot knife through butter. Or she could do it an easier way…
    “I have to go to the bathroom,” said Riku. “I’ll be right back, just wait here.”
    Then she got up and walked in the direction of Reien. Reien was looking around, innocently staring at pictures of old framers that littered the high walls. Without and notice, Riku grabbed Reien and pulled her neck back, instantly stunning her.
    She then proceeded to pick up Reien’s flailing limp body and shove her to the ground. Reien got her senses back, and stood up to face Riku.
    “What are you doing?” she screamed.
    “I’m going to kill you,” smiled Riku.
    Riku then hopped over a table and kicked Reien squarely in the chest. Reien flew back like a rag doll into a table, slamming against it and falling to the ground. Slowly getting up, as if she had no time to waste, she wiped the blood from her lip and stared at Riku.
    “How can you play the game?” she asked.
    Riku replied, “Choosing to play the game is not the matter here. The matter is that in a battle I will win. I have concluded that this game is a simple survival of the fittest. Deathspank made it quite clear, didn’t he? He said that we are the dregs of society. By winning this game I can prove that I am not one of you urchins. When I’m finished today, I’ll be wiping you off the bottom of my shoe.”
    Reien looked stunned, “But Riku, you must surely be joking? You must know that it’s possible for us to beat the system. There must be a way to do it without failure. Why kill me when we could band together, maybe with others, and possibly beat Deathspank, the soldiers and then the government itself?”
    “And what ideas do you have right now? The school is a danger zone, even someone as foolish as you must realize this. So what do you plan to do, throw rabid raccoons at it until one of them gets in and bites Deathspank to bits?” Riku shouted.
    Reien started getting desperate. She felt like she was losing a battle here, nor did she know what weapon Riku had. Her weapon, a Swiss Army Knife, was lying on a table on the other side of Riku. It was impossible to get it.
    Then Riku jumped and struck Reien across the head. The blow hit hard, and Reien felt her body lapse in time as it struck the hard floor. Looking up, she saw Riku appear in front of her. Her foot lifted into the air and struck down hard on Reien’s tummy. She was winded, and tears streamed from her eyes.
    Riku grabbed her and lifted her onto a table. She quickly grabbed some ropes and wrapped them around Reien’s body and the table, effectively tying her down.
    Reien watched in horror as the scene continued but was winded and unable to move. When her stomach got back some air, she realized that she was tied too tightly to the table and couldn’t budge an inch.
    “You were a fool to come here, Reien,” said Riku. “And now you shall pay the price.”
    Riku then pulled out a grenade from her back pocket. Reien watched in horror as she fingered it slowly, moving it around in her hand.
    “This is such a small object, yet it can be so deadly,” said Riku. “I think I shall use it for my own doing. As in; now.” Riku looked at her watch to see exactly what ‘now’ was. It read 8: 42 A.M. It was the 2nd day, too. Time for her first kill.
    Grabbing the tape behind her, she shoved one of the grenades into Reien’s mouth. The pin was sticking up and out of Reien’s lips, toward the ceiling. Riku then proceeded to tape her mouth closed. She put more tape over Reien’s eyes so she couldn’t see, and then said the last words Reien would ever hear.
    “Maybe if it had been someone cooler, like a mod or admin that had walked through those doors then I would have been happier. But it was just a dumb newbie like you; someone for which I prefer not to waste my time. So now I suggest you say your goodbyes to your friends and family in your heart.”
    Then she grabbed the pin and pulled it out of the grenade - and ran.

    Riku was just closing the double doors of the gigantic ballroom when a huge explosion rocked the foundations of the hotel. The two doors shook violently but did not break. Eventually, everything settled down.
    Riku turned around to open the doors, and just as she was about to pull them open she decided not to. Turning away, she grinned and walked down the hallway. She had her first kill, the first dead person of one. She pulled the other grenade out of her pocket and flipped it into the air once.
    “I’ll have to use you another time,” she laughed.
    “How about now?”
    Riku’s death was quick and painless, as bullets from a rattling machine gun managed to make contact with the grenade. Her body, of course, was blown to bloody chunks, but they were too small and all over the place to really care. At least not to Boris the Blade, who stood holding a smoking Uzi. A shotgun was strapped round his back too.
    “Never hold a grenade out at gunpoint,” laughed Boris. His laugh was a hearty one, loud and clear.
    “Never hold your body out in the open.”
    This voiced wasn’t from Boris, though. He slowly turned to see Da Freak standing with a mini pistol. It was pointed straight at Boris.
    “You horrible dirty *******,” said Da Freak.

    21 students remaining

    20

    Alex was again returning to school, as he had the day before. It was only last week that Roxas had saved him from the bullies - he hadn’t been bothered since. But today was different… today; Roxas was gone on some sort of vacation to a forum meeting or something. He had no backup plan.
    Walking into class, he noticed that everyone was already seated in their desks, looking intently at their teacher. When he walked up to the teacher, all the heads turned towards him.
    “Hello, Mrs. Stabenow,” he said.
    “Please sit down,” she said flatly.
    Sensing something was amiss; Alex quickly walked to his seat and sat down. All the heads, including his friends, enemies and the like turned back to the teacher.
    “I’m sure you’ve all been informed of this ordeal by your parents,” began the teacher.
    Then Alex interrupted, “What is going on, Mrs. Stabenow?” The teacher looked at him gravely. She turned and wrote a few words on the board. They all said ‘impertinent youths annihilation program’.
    “Alex, if I asked you to tell me what this means… then could you?”
    “Well,” he began, “Impertinent I guess in this case is saying lacking or bad, doesn’t follow the rules and stuff like that. Maybe like not sufficient enough? Anyway, youths obviously means kids like us. Annihilation as to destroy-”
    His words ended at this, and his face turned an unhealthy shade of white.
    “What’s going on?”
    “I’m sure you all know of a student named Roxas,” said Mrs. Stabenow. Everyone nodded - everyone knew him. “Well, he is part of a group… a group that I’m sure all of you know about by now. Except, maybe, Alex, but I’m going to hand out a sheet to learn more about it.”
    Alex received his sheet.
    “Please read it now,” said Mrs. Stabenow. Alex read.

    The Impertinent Youths Annihilation Program (or Act), known more commonly as the IYAP System, has been set in full motion by the United States Government, amended to the Constitution of the United States, Amendment XXVIII, Impertinent Youths Annihilation Act, amended in the year 2006, and ratified and fully supported by at least one Senator from each of the 50 states of the United States of America. Signed by the CEO - George W. Bush, the President of the United States of America, as of August 18th, 2006, the Impertinent Youths Annihilation Program insures domestic tranquility and a new light of hope for our uncooperative youths. The idea was given by Japanese Ambassador Koushun Takami, winner of Outstanding Achiever Awards for three years without fail, executed by George W. Bush, the President of the United States of America, and finally put into effect with several undisclosed youths.
    The IYAP serves a single purpose - to help the eradication of uncouth juveniles wasting away their lives, leaving only spin and span children to continue living. If chosen for the IYAP, you will be forced to play a game. If you can win the game, then you can go home - for you have proven your worth. If unable to complete the game, punishment will be dictated depending on whether you tried hard or not.
    IYAP is a dedicated service providing Americans with a sense of relief. The American Youth Association, AYA, is sure that this new Act will effectively help our children grow up better, and hopefully inspire other countries to do the same.
    All IYAP take place in an undisclosed location.
    Alex put down the sheet and raised his hand. He was only halfway down with it.
    “Teacher, what does this have to do with Roxas?” he asked.
    “Keep reading, child, and you will discover more.”

    An undisclosed location therefore replies a true sense of security in providing IYAP participants the easiest way of playing the game. The game is simple by rules but hard by play. Participants will be dropped off at a single area, where the rules will be explained. The rules are as follows:

    1. Participants will not be able to leave the game without due punishment.
    2. All participants must eventually lose or win the game.
    3. Not all youths will participate in the game,

    The American Congress, made up of the House of Representatives and the Senate, had decided that 50 games will take place each year, all using disrespectful juveniles. Such games will have only one winner. For undisclosed reasons, that winner is the only person that will return home.
    The IYAP Association Board has chosen to avoid any other elements.

    The American Government

    “That’s… odd,” said Alex. “What kind of game?”
    Alex was told what kind of game. And he was shocked.
    ‘No,’ he thought. ‘The only person who ever helped me could be dead right now.’
    His body shook and went rigid. Most others in the class were too.
    ‘Am I going to be picked next?’ he thought. ‘But even with 50 games, what are the chances of me getting picked?’
    The chances were in fact quite low, juvenile delinquent or not. There were just so many children in so many schools that you had just as much a chance of pulling a joker out of a deck of 1000 cards. Simple facts were never enough, and all the children in that class were worried.
    Someone they had personally known for the past 1-8 years could be dead right now.
    ‘I’m rooting for you,’ thought Alex. ‘I’m rooting for you, Roxas.’
    ‘I’m sure you can win it.’
    Alex’s day was a miserable one.

    “The only person who ever helped me could be dead right now.”
    21 members remaining

    21

    Boris looked up to see Da Freak holding a mini gun, standing with his arms out and legs apart.
    “Did you just blow her up?”
    His voice was all trembling and scared, which it should be, as he was staring straight into the face of Boris the Blade (Boy No. 6).
    “Well, I shot a grenade she was holding,” replied Boris. “And now I shall shoot you.”
    He fired the machine gun, causing Da Freak to flip over backwards and land in a somersault position.
    “You were the one who told me to never leave my body in gunpoint,” said Boris. “Yet you yourself have done so.”
    He grabbed the mini gun, which he stuck in his pocket, and spat on Da Freak’s face. Then he turned and left.

    20 members remaining

    22

    Roxas and Cin both lugged heavy loads of gasoline onto a small cart. It had barriers all around it, stopping the contents inside from falling out.
    Inside were; two bags of charcoal, three full tanks of gasoline, four buckets of gunpowder, along with gunpowder scattered all over the inside of the cart and the other objects, small buckets of sulfur, and matches, hundreds of matches, littered all around.
    The plan was to pull the huge cart to the other side of the island, where the school was. A hill was there, which they would push down the hill. If a match was thrown into the cart by the time it started rolling, when it hit the school it would cause a massive explosion, effectively blowing up the school.
    It would be a long day for the three as they lugged the cart up a small grassy knoll. The green grass shined brightly as a beautiful sun shined over the whole island. It was a beautiful day, one which should be spent relaxing and drinking lemonade. Not pushing bombs across islands.
    “So do you think it’ll work?” asked Roxas-chan, pushing at the back. Cin was next to her, also pushing along. He said:
    “I definitely think that it’ll work. Just look at all this stuff.”
    Roxas, at the front pulling a long handle, said, “I’m sure it’ll work too. Once it gets rolling down the hill and hits that school this will all be over.” Roxas-chan said:
    “I hope so. I just want… to go home.”
    “Our first job is getting this to the school,” said Cin. “At the rate we’re going, it’ll be nightfall by the time we get there.”
    “Maybe it will be nightfall, but at least we can know it will be our last night on this god forsaken island. I’m never coming back here again. Even for school band field trips, as… fun… as they are. And they aren’t fun at all,” smiled Roxas.
    There wasn’t a cloud in the sky, and it was a deep blue colour. It wasn’t too windy, either. The trees moved from a small breeze, but it wasn’t gusting. The day was perfect - the perfect day for the trio to try and destroy the game itself.




    City of the Dead

    Boys

    Boy Number 5 - FF Fanatic, killed by Element. He was running away from her and tried to exit the house. In doing so, he ran into some razorwire and had his throat slit. It was purely an accident, but he was killed by Element nonetheless.

    Boy Number 12 - Da Freak, killed by Boris the Blade. After seeing him kill Riku, he decided to valiantly take a stand. He was killed by Boris’s Uzi when this happened, eventually having his mini gun stolen.

    Boy Number 13 - Sora, killed by Boris the Blade. Inside Mackinac Fort, he tried to stop the fighting with a shotgun he had found in his daypack. zSoraz was there too, who eventually escaped. Sora, on the other hand, was shot down by Boris’s Uzi when he stood up for zSoraz. His shotgun was taken, too.

    Boy Number 15 - Xekvin, killed by Vivi. When exiting the school, his first feeling was being bludgeoned in the head. Almost killed then, he tried to attack Vivi with a knife, but his face was smashed in before he even got a chance to grab it.

    Girls

    Girl Number 6 - Reien, killed by Riku. She was tied to a table with ropes after getting winded. Riku then proceeded to stick a grenade in her mouth and duck tape it closed. She then pulled the pin out of Reien’s mouth and ran. Reien was killed instantly.

    Girl Number 7 - Element, killed by Deathspank. After accidentally killing Boy Number 5, FF Fanatic, she found herself stuck in a danger zone. She almost escaped in time, but the collar around her neck exploded seconds away from safety.

    Girl Number 8 - Riku, killed by Boris the Blade. Riku had just killed Reien, and was joyously celebrating her first kill when Boris came and shot the grenade in her hand; effectively blowing her to pieces. She probably didn’t feel any pain after the instant explosion.

    Girl Number 10 - Mish, killed by Boris the Blade. Mish was trying to call for peace when Boris interrupted her. Showering her with bullets from his trademark Uzi, he then proceeded to take the megaphone she was holding and put it into her mouth before ripping her stomach apart, causing her to scream in agony. The whole island heard her pain, and most saw. This was not long before he killed Sora.

    Girl Number 12 - KHAngel, killed by Kairi. After tripping through a glass door and falling into a pool, KHAngel decided to do a quick strike on Kairi. When she attempted this, she was shocked as Kairi stuck the drumstick back. It went through her eye and into her head, killing her instantly.
    Girl Number 15 - Live Forever, killed by Deathspank. As Deathspank was explaining the rules of the game, Live Forever lost her top and attacked, eventually having her collar explode before kicking in Deathspank’s face. Like Element, the attached collar detonated with possible safety in mind. Everybody witnessed her death.

    As Roxas strained his muscles, continuing to pull the cart up the knoll, he thought of all these names. He, of course, did not know how most of them had died, for he had not witnessed most of them. But he remembered all their names in Deathspank’s announcements (except for Riku, Reien and Da Freak.)
    The trio was close to completing a long sought after goal. The time was nearing.
    Would they be able to make it?

    20 students remaining

    23

    General Grievous (Boy No. 3) was sitting in a grove of trees below the entrance to the Mackinac Fort. He had been there for quite a long time, ever since zSoraz had crashed through the treetops and landed in front of him, amid a pile of sticks and leaves. Grievous, at this point, had watched Boris kill Mish but had looked away - and was extremely surprised when zSoraz came out of nowhere and practically landed on top of him.
    “So, what was your weapon?” asked Grievous.
    zSoraz replied, “An automatic pistol,” holding it up, “What’s yours?”
    Grievous held up a small radar like object. It had a digital map on it, a map of Mackinac Island. There were red dots all over it, and Grievous clicked some buttons and it zoomed in on two red dots. Their names were on these dots, which read ‘General Grievous’ and ‘zSoraz’. Both were located next to the fort.
    “That’s amazing,” breathed zSoraz. “A digital tracker that can show you where everyone on the island is.”
    “It truly is amazing,” said Grievous. “Look.”
    He zoomed out, and then moved left to three dots next to each other. Zooming in, the dots read Roxas, Cin and Roxas-chan, all moving extremely slowly northeastern.
    “I can see where everyone on the island is,” said Grievous.
    “And what are these big patches?” said zSoraz, pointing to large red square boxes that littered the island.
    “Those are danger zones, so I will know if I’m walking into one or not,” said Grievous. “In my opinion, this is handier than a weapon, and I couldn’t be more thankful for that.”
    “So who do you think will win?” asked zSoraz.
    “Me, well, I’d say Boris,” said Grievous. “He just… seemed ruthless just then. And I wonder who else he has killed?”
    Crack!
    “Hello, forum members, its Deathspank, coming in for your noon announcement.”
    Grievous rolled his eyes, “Again? All this guy does is get on my nerves.”
    “So… who would like to here about some dead kiddies? I’m sure you all do…”
    “New dead ones are Reien and Riku, those poor young souls. Oh, well! Then Da Freak was killed too. So sad, isn’t it? I think not.”
    “What a loser,” said zSoraz. “He has no life.”
    “What a stupid thing to say, considering we’re in the middle of a life and death situation,” Grievous said to zSoraz, who just shrugged. Deathspank continued:
    “New danger zone, at 2 I’m gonna go with G-9 and at 4 F-4, but that’s all, so don’t worry too much young ones.”
    “Young ones? Arc is fricking twenty,” muttered Grievous.
    “And Sara is like 24 or something,” said zSoraz.
    Deathspank said, “I don’t want to interrupt you from your fighting, so go back to doing whatever you please. Including building large bombs to try and blow up the school. That’s right, we’re listening.”
    Click.
    Grievous sat there, thinking about what he had just heard. They were listening… so then the collars had mics in them.
    “I don’t feel very private anymore,” he said.
    “What do you mean?” asked zSoraz.
    “Deathspank just said that they were listening. These collars we’re wearing must have microphones in them so that they can hear us. And someone is obviously building a bomb to try and blow up the school, and they’re saying their plan will be pointless.”
    “That’s not good,” said zSoraz.
    “It isn’t good at all,” agreed Grievous.
    “Anyway,” began zSoraz, “I think we should make a move. Maybe we can find a food shop to grab some food at, considering it’s nearing lunch time. I don’t know about you, bro, but I’m starving.”
    “I understand, I’m hungry too. If we’re going to head into the town then we need to be really careful or we’ll get ourselves massacred,” said Grievous.
    “Then we’ll be wary like sneaky ninjas,” said zSoraz. Grievous just looked at him.

    Meanwhile, on the other side of the island, Roxas, Cin and Roxas-chan were all staring at each other in disbelief. Their little plan to blow up the school had been realized.
    “What should we do?” asked Cin.
    “I dunno,” said Roxas. Roxas-chan said:
    “We’ve come this far, we can’t just stop now!”
    Both Roxas and Cin looked at her and nodded.
    “I agree, let’s get out of here and go try and blow up that school,” said Cin firmly.
    So the trio kept going, despite what had happened just moments ago.

    20 members remaining

    24

    Vivi was tromping through some woods, not long after hearing Deathspank’s noon announcement. He was talking to himself like a madman, beckoning himself along.
    “You can do it, Vivi, you know you can.”
    “Don’t give up Vivi; it’s never over till it’s over.”
    “They want to kill you Vivi, especially Boris. You have to kill Boris.”
    “If you try your hardest you’ll be able to win this horrible game for sure.”
    “Watch your back, there could be someone behind you.”
    He said each of these in a whisper, always moving his eyes in every direction to try and find the next evil person for him to kill.
    That’s when he wandered upon Claryssa (Girl No. 9). She stood, her back facing him, holding a crossbow in her right hand. This perked Vivi’s interest.
    Ever since he was a child he had been learning to use the bow and arrow, and had gained an amazing accuracy and skill with it. As he looked upon a crossbow right in front of him, he knew that it must be his. No matter what the cost of getting it was.
    Claryssa was looking around, but never behind. Vivi crept up slowly, using light steps to avoid too much noise. And that was when his foot stepped on a twig.
    Snap!
    Claryssa turned around immediately to face Vivi. Several seconds passed, and then she spoke:
    “What are you trying to do?”
    Thoughts rushed through Vivi’s head. He’d have top come up with something quick, or he might as well leave now.
    “Well,” he began - starting to play the part of the deception, “I’ve been looking for somebody to ally with for ages now. I saw you and decided you would be perfect.”
    “Why would I be perfect?” she asked.
    “Dammit,’ thought Vivi. ‘That was going a little too far.’
    “Can I see that crossbow?” asked Vivi. He definitely wasn’t too good at playing or acting in other roles; because Claryssa immediately grew suspicious at his sudden outbursts.
    “Why do you want to see it?” she asked, narrowing her eyes.
    “Well, I’ve always been fascinated with bows. Now can I please see it?” he replied sharply. His tone was cold, and Claryssa knew she was dealing with something else.
    “You can’t have it,” said Claryssa. “It’s my weapon. Now leave me alone.”
    She took note that he was holding a cricket bat, but it wasn’t too long until she saw him grab at her arm. Snapping it back, she said:
    “What are you trying to do?”
    “Give me it,” said Vivi through clenched teeth. Then he swung the bat in a wide arc, but Claryssa jumped back and dodged it. He charged at her again, slamming into her stomach and knocking her into the ground. She was facing the blue sky.
    “Give me the crossbow!” he barked.
    “Never!” she screamed. Pulling the trigger on the wooden beam, she shot an arrow point-blank into his right forearm. Vivi screamed and dropped the bat as the arrow pierced his sensitive skin.
    “You stupid girl!” he screamed. Sucking in huge amounts of air, he ripped the arrow from his arm. A trail of blood soared behind it, and he narrowed his eyes as the wound opened up more.
    “I’m going to kill you!” he screamed.
    Jumping at her, he stabbed the arrow at her stomach. Driving it downward, it lodged inside and she screamed in pain.
    “How do you like it now?”
    Claryssa coughed blood and sputtered her words out, “Vivi… I’m… not dead yet!”
    She shot another arrow, which sailed straight into Vivi’s shoulder. He flew back screaming, writhing in pain on the forest floor.
    Claryssa stood up and shot another arrow, which stuck into his shin. He looked like a struggling animals with two arrows poking out of it, trying to rip them out and escape. Claryssa’s bow was out of ammo, and as she pulled the arrow from her stomach she loaded it into the crossbow. Vivi lifted his head up and stared straight at her.
    “You… are…” he began, breathing heavily.
    “What am I? Come on, tell me!” she screamed. He simply looked at her.
    “You are a total bitc-” but he never needed to finish the sentence. For Claryssa’s eyes turned into the back of her head and she fell to the ground.
    Behind her was Darkwatch (Boy No. 9) holding a small hand-axe. Vivi’s eyes followed the handle to the blade, which was lodged in the back of Claryssa’s head. Darkwatch ripped it from her skull. A sickening noise accompanied this move, and Darkwatch said:
    “She almost killed you.”
    “Yeah,” said Vivi. “Almost…”

    19 members remaining

    25

    Xehsin and Misty were walking through the dense forests at a steady pace. With really nowhere to go, Xehsin was armed with a sword and Misty with a Beretta M92F. The sun was shining beautifully, and the trees and leaves of various plants were a bright green.
    “So, what do we do next?” asked Xehsin.
    “I dunno,” said Misty. “For all I know, we could be walking into a danger zone right now. But that’s beside the point, we need to come up with some kind of plan before we try and do anything too stupid.”
    “Agreed,” said Xehsin. “Around any corner could be an enemy… or a friend.”
    According to Xehsin’s watch, the time was 1:23 P.M. on the second day. There was no cool afternoon breeze, but it was a beautiful day nonetheless.
    “I hope we can find an ally soon,” said Misty.
    “But you’ve got me, remember?” smiled Xehsin. “I’ll be the most protective and helpful ally you could find on the island. Especially with this hefty sword.”
    He fingered the dangerous weapon, which he had found in the fortress outside Mackinac Fort. Of course, to him, it was more than just a sword. It was an item which could have been dropped by someone who was killed. Someone who was killed… in this horrible game.
    “I guess I’ll say you’re a good ally if it pleases you,” laughed Misty.
    “It surprises me that no matter what the situation we’re in, we still manage to laugh about things and make jokes. Honestly, it’s just… so odd.”
    “Yeah,” said Misty. “Even after seeing Mish get killed yesterday morning.”
    They broke through the trees to find themselves in a beautiful grassy plain, looking upon three people.
    Roxas, Cin, and Roxas-chan stood looking at them with dumbfounded expressions on their faces.
    The five looked at each other, and then Xehsin and Misty looked at the huge cart they were carrying, then back to the three faces.
    In seconds, all arms were up.
    Xehsin was pointing his sword at Roxas. Roxas in turn was pointing a switchblade at Misty, who was pointing her gun at Cin. Cin was pointing his gun at Misty too, and Roxas-chan had her sickle at Xehsin’s throat.
    “Hello, mates,” said Roxas. All the weapons were still up, everybody with tense faces.
    “What are you doing?” asked Xehsin.
    “Not killing you,” said Roxas-chan.
    “How can we guarantee that?” asked Misty.
    To guarantee it, Roxas lowered his weapon and nodded to Cin and Roxas-chan. They, to, lowered their weapons.
    “Can you guarantee it if you’re the ones holding guns and swords at us?” smirked Roxas.
    Misty looked at him for awhile and then smiled, “What are we doing? Holding guns at each other isn’t going to solve anything.” She lowered her weapon and Xehsin soon followed.
    “So what are you guys doing with that thing?” asked Xehsin whilst pointing to the cart loaded with bomb materials.
    “We built a bomb,” answered Cin. “We’re planning on blowing up the school with it.”
    “Don’t say that!” said Misty. “They can hear us!”
    “They can’t,” said Roxas. “It’s all just a joke to try and get us to stop doing things in case we actually are. He has no clue what we’re saying; we even checked the collars for microphones and found none. They have no clue what we’re saying.”
    Misty let out a small breath and said, “So you’re planning on blowing up the school?
    With this thing right here?”
    Roxas-chan answered, “There’s a huge hill by the school. We’re planning on pushing this cart down the hill. When it hits the school… boom.”
    Xehsin’s eyes lit up, “And then I’m guessing we all escape from the island.”
    “Yeah, that’s basically what we’re gonna do,” said Cin.
    Misty then asked, “Can I come. Please?” She was jumping up and down in excitement. Before Cin had a chance to answer, Xehsin did.
    “No, we’re not going with them.”
    Misty stared at him.
    “We’re not going,” he said again. “It’s too dangerous for us. I wouldn’t want you to be killed, or myself.”
    He then looked into the sky and then back at the trio with the bomb.
    “Good luck you guys,” he said.
    Cin nodded firmly. “Xehsin,” he said. Xehsin looked at him:
    “Yes?”
    Cin said, “I’ll see you back on Michigan.”
    Xehsin just smiled as he walked away with Misty.

    19 members remaining

    26

    Arc was munching on some of the disgusting bread that had come in his daypack. Lunchtime was a pathetic bread roll and some water. That was it.
    Ris came running through the trees at full speed and skidded to a stop in front of Arc and Sara.
    “Guys!” she screamed. “I just saw Boris coming. What do we do?”
    Arc and Sara went into full-alert mode.
    “What direction?” asked Arc. Ris pointed into a grove of trees not far away.
    “Dammit,” said Sara under her breath, “Let’s get out of here. Now.”
    They all grabbed their bags and trotted in the opposite direction. Sara was the first in line, with Ris in the middle and Arc at the end.
    “Are you sure it was him?” asked Arc.
    “I know it was him!” said Ris.
    “How do you know?” asked Sara.
    “Because I have eyes!” she replied.
    Sara and Arc looked at each other but kept on jogging.
    “Was he running or walking?” asked Arc.
    “He was walking,” replied Ris.
    “Did he look like he knew you were there?” asked Sara.
    “I don’t think so,” said Ris. “He may have seen me.”
    “Let’s hope he didn’t,” said Arc.
    “Did you catch his weapons?” said Sara.
    “He had loads!” exclaimed Ris. “In his hand was a little Uzi, and then he had a shotgun strapped to his back and a small pistol strapped by his right pocket. I was so scared.”
    “That’s a lot of weapons,” said Arc.
    “And what else?” asked Sara.
    “What do you mean?” Ris inquired.
    “Was there anything suspicious about him?” explained Sara.
    “Oh,” said Ris. “Well, he-”
    Dirt exploded around Ris and bullets pelted her body. She spun in the air and fell to the ground. Her conscience was gone before she even hit.
    “Holy crap!” screamed Sara.
    Boris the Blade (Boy No. 6) hopped form a branch above them, landing in front of Arc and Sara.
    “Here I am,” he grinned, doing a full body twirl. Arc and Sara said nothing.
    “I’m sure, as you all know, I’ve been doing quite a lot of killing,” he said. “Did you ever think that it may have been in self defense?”
    “Was killing Ris fall under self defense?” said Sara. Her eyes were wide yet squinting at the same time.
    “Well, that was for a more dramatic entrance,” said Boris. “Nothing other than that, though.”
    “So you’re going to kill us then?” asked Arc.
    “On one condition, I’ll let you both live.”
    Arc asked, “What condition?”
    “Oh, I doubt you’ll agree.”
    “Just tell me Boris, what is the condition?”
    “You may hate me for it.”
    This was all a game to him.
    “I hate you already.”
    “Then I’ll tell you.”
    “Go ahead you jerk.”
    “I’ll let you live… if you give me Sara.”
    The mood swung dramatically as Arc felt all the muscles in his body tighten up.
    “Take Sara?” he managed to inch through his gritted teeth.
    “Basically,” said Boris. “What else?”
    Sara was just standing there shocked.
    “You’re not going to take her,” said Arc.
    “Fine then,” said Boris, pointing the gun at Arc. “I guess you’ll just have to die.”
    “No!” said Sara. “Arc, I’ll go with him.”
    “You can’t go,” said Arc. “I’ll never let you go.”
    “Then you want to die?” asked Boris.
    “Look,” said Sara. “If you say no he’ll kill you and take me still. If you agree then you’ll live and I’ll still be taken. Please, I want you to live, just let me go…”
    Tears were streaming from her eyes at this point. Arc hadn’t cried in awhile since this game started. But as he finally realized the desperation of the situation, tears slid from his eyes.
    “Go if you wish,” he said to Sara. “But this may be the last time I ever see you.”
    Sara didn’t say anything for awhile. Finally she said:
    “Goodbye.”
    And Boris grabbed her and ran off, his footsteps fading into the distance.
    Arc was standing alone, in the middle of nowhere, with no weapon and no food. And no one to protect. The stench of Ris’s blood began to get to him.
    ‘I’ll rescue you,’ he thought. ‘If it’s the last thing I’ll do.’
    The game had just taken a huge turn.

    18 members remaining

    27

    “Got it memorized?”
    Blood dripped from Scotty’s mouth as he looked up to see a boy, dubbed Cin, standing against the sun.
    “I don’t want any more crap from you anymore,” said Cin. In his right hand was a bloody knife, and in his left a steel baseball bat. Next to him were four other guys, all buddies of Cin, and in the gang entitled ‘Cash Money Fellas.’
    Scotty himself was a part of the ‘Deville Boyz’. The two rival gangs fought on the streets of New York frequently, usually in the abandoned subways of the Bronx. But today they were fighting in a wide, litter-ridden ally that was down a side-street.
    Scotty slowly rose to his feet and stared at Cin, “I won’t give up!”
    He flicked his switchblade open once again and ran at Cin. Thrusting his arm forward, he watched as Cin sucked his belly inward, dodging the blow. This kid was just too good.
    “I’m better than you,” said Cin. “Memorize it.”
    Then Cin sliced the knife toward Scotty’s ear. He felt blood rush to his head as a searing pain shot by the left of his head. Reaching up he felt only a stub of skin - a small reminder of what used to be his left ear.
    “God dammit!” he screamed.
    “No one has ever beaten me,” said Cin. “And I don’t think a pathetic rich boy like you is going to do it.”
    Cin’s cronies laughed and they walked away from Scotty’s writhing body.
    “That was good, boss,” said Graeme, a bulky fellow he was part of the Cash Money Fellas.
    “Did I say you could talk?” said Cin plainly. A look of remorse crossed Graeme’s face.
    “So what are we going to do next, boss?” asked Weed, a small skinny fellow who had a high-pitched nasally voice and lanky arms and legs.
    “I’m gonna split, you fellas just go jack off or something,” laughed Cin. The crew laughed, and the walked away. Cin turned in the other direction and began walking into he found himself outside of the alleyway and on a bustling street. Wiping the blood of his shirt, he turned to see a familiar brand name to his left; Starbucks Coffee.
    ‘That sounds nice,’ thought Cin.
    Opening the door, various smells greeted him. There was the strong, familiar smell of fresh coffee. He could hear the sound of smoke splashing from something just dropped into a frying pan. Fresh floors, gleaming from the neon lights that hung around the store felt slippery against his shoes plated with Vans skate shoes.
    Walking up to the counter, he emptied his pockets to find that he had only 35 cents. The woman at the counter was a blonde, petite girl, maybe 16. Cin stared her up and down.
    ‘I’d like to have a bit of her,’ he thought.
    “Welcome to Starbucks, what would you like?” asked the woman.
    “What can I get with 35 cents?” he asked back.
    “Well, I guess I could give you a small cup of coffee.”
    “No,” interrupted Cin, “I mean, what can I get for 35 cents?” When he said this, he made the finger motion of something being sucked in his mouth.
    “You’re disgusting, you know?” the girl replied arrogantly. “I’m not a whore, so don’t treat me like one.” She thrust a cup of coffee into his hands. “Take this.”
    Cin grabbed the cup and left, and it wasn’t long before he was back in his own home. His mom was there, and when she greeted him with a friendly “hi” he just replied, “Shut up.”
    Walking into his dark room, he jumped face down on his bed.
    ‘Life sucks,’ he thought. ‘My gang sucks, and I hate being in a gang anyway. What is wrong with me? My grades suffer and nothing is fun. I’ve even begun to lost interest in beating people up.’
    Sitting up, he grabbed his laptop and logged on to his favorite website, kh-vids.net. There was a topic posted by the forum leader, Deathspank, saying “See you all tomorrow.”
    That’s right; tomorrow would be a great day. Cin would be heading all the way to the other side of the states to hang out with his fellow forum members.
    “I can’t wait,” he sighed, his energy depleted. “To be able to get away from the gang life, I just want to settle down and live a little.”
    Ever since Cin had witnessed someone get killed by a gun, he had changed. His angry gang demeanors were now slowly being replaced with thoughts of having a happy relationship. He got about 5 girls a day, but they were all whores, and he felt like he was starting to want someone he loved.
    He had to get away. He had to got o California, and have the time of his life. But mostly, he had to get away from his gang.
    “Is life better out there?” he said, staring out his window at the Empire State Building. “Can anyone guarantee that I can just get away from all this mayhem?”
    Cin was starting to become a new man, starting to change. It was only time before he could change completely.
    But, as you know, he would never get the chance…

    18 members remaining

    28

    Angel (Boy No. 1) was still amazed that his random weapon was a fork and knife. The exact type of fork and knife you would eat with at the dinner table.
    “This piece of junk,” he mumbled, tapping it on the forest floor. It made a small tapping noise against the root of a large tree he was leaning against. In front of him were the charred remains of the Mission Pointe Hotel.
    “What the hell happened here?” he asked himself. For the past 1 and a half days, he had been doing a lot of talking to himself. There was really nothing else he could do.
    “I hope someone comes soon,” he said. “Someone friendly.”
    He looked around to see no one in site.
    “I hope I’m not cannon fodder,” he said.
    If it is true that people who talk to themselves are crazy, then Angel was definitely going crazy. He had always had social problems, but this was something totally different. This was his problem mixed with the fear of death at any second. He didn’t like it one bit.
    “Hello?”
    The voice came behind Angel, and, startled, he whirled around to see Shiomi (Boy No. 5) standing alone.
    “What are you doing here?” barked Angel quickly.
    Shiomi put his hands up, “I don’t mean any harm!” he said, shocked.
    “What’s your weapon then?” commanded Angel. Shiomi turned around and pulled out of his daypack a small rubber deck. It had blue eyes, an orange beak and bright yellow body.
    “This utter piece of crap,” said Shiomi, drop-kicking it away.
    “That is crap,” agreed Angel. “Why did you come for me?”
    “I was looking for someone to ally with,” said Shiomi. “I’ve been searching for so long now, and I’m glad I finally found someone.”
    Suspicious, Angel began:
    “How can I trust you? I was just minding my own business and then you come out of nowhere and tell me you want to ally with me? This sounds really suspicious.”
    “Look, I’m sorry if it sounds suspicious,” said Shiomi. “But I honestly mean you no harm.”
    Angel turned on his self-defense trigger. He sensed danger.
    “I don’t trust you,” he said in a frustrated way. “Stay away from me Shiomi!”
    Shiomi walked towards him, “I’m sorry-”
    But when Angel saw Shiomi move towards him, his alarm went off and he ran at Shiomi. He chased him round the tree and out into the road. The two ran, Angel slowly gaining on Shiomi. Within distance, he leaped onto Shiomi’s back and tackled him to the ground.
    “You tried to kill me!” he screamed straight into Shiomi’s face.
    “No I didn’t!” shouted Shiomi back.
    As Angel began to say something else, his words were stopped by two small beeping noises. Looking at Shiomi’s collar, he saw it beeping. And he could hear his beeping.
    “Are we in a danger zone?” asked Shiomi.
    “Oh, god fuc-”
    Angel’s head exploded off his body as Shiomi watched in horror. He screamed as loud as he could, but it wasn’t enough noise to cover the noise of the explosion as his own head was blown off his body.
    Two bloody corpses lay in the middle of the road, in Danger Zone F-5.
    And that was the end of that.

    16 members remaining

    29

    Cin looked up from his watch, which currently read ‘5:58.’ It wouldn’t be long before Deathspank made his afternoon announcement.
    “We’re only an hour away from victory, judging by this map,” said Roxas. Roxas-chan smiled and said:
    “I just know we’re going to escape.”
    “I know it too,” said Cin. “I don’t know what could stop us now.”
    Beep! Deathspank came over the announcements and his cheerful voice echoed over the island once again.
    “Hello, my happy campers! Enjoy your lunch? I sure did. It was delicious chicken roasted in an almond sauce, with roast potatoes on the side. There was also a chilled cup of Coke, which helped wash down the orgasmic food. But enough about me. Your new dead friends are… let’s see here… Angel, Shiomi, and Ris. There are only 16 left! This means your lagging - I know you don’t want to all die if no one wins by the 3 day mark!”
    Cin grabbed his map, ready to mark off the danger zones.
    “Now time for those infamous danger zones,” laughed Deathspank. “Now come on, who uses the word infamous anymore? Anyway, let me take a look at this here computer. “Alright, the computer says your new danger zones are…”
    There was a pause.
    At 7 P.M., F-2.
    Cin dropped his map.
    “This can’t be?”
    Roxas and Roxas-chan tuned out of Deathspank’s announcement to listen to Cin.
    “What is it?” asked Roxas.
    “The hill, where we were going to push the cart down… is a danger zone,” he said gently.
    Roxas looked at Roxas-chan and then back at Cin.
    “Are you serious?!?”
    “Yeah,” replied Cin. “At exactly 7.”
    Roxas sighed and leaned back. “Well,” he began, “I can only think of two things to counter this.”
    “And what are those?” asked Cin. The mood had gone from hope to dismay.
    “Well, the first one is that we disband this idea completely. We can just leave the bomb here and try and think of something else we can do to escape off the island.”
    Cin kept listening for the second one.
    “The second one is much more dangerous. We’d risk our lives doing it,” said Roxas.
    “What is it?” asked Roxas-chan.
    “Well, what we do is carry on with our plan. By the time we push the cart to the hill, it’ll be about 7. Then we push it down the hill while our collars are beeping. The cart will blow up the school and our collars will be turned off. Then we can all go home.”
    Cin and Roxas-chan gave funny looks, but neither said anything at first. Cin broke the silence:
    “I say we go for it,” he said bravely. His feared look was now one of determination. “If we die trying, then that’s okay. Because we’ll probably die not going through with the plan anyway.”
    Roxas sat up at this, “I like your thinking,” he smiled. “I say we go for it.” Roxas-chan looked at him meekly. “Roxas-chan, you don’t have to do it if you don’t want to.”
    She didn’t say anything, but just kept staring at the ground.
    “You okay?” asked Cin.
    “I- I- I’ll do it!” she said. Her eyes lit up with excitement.
    “The let’s go!” said Roxas, more excited than ever.
    “We’re walking into the jaws of death,” smiled Cin. “But I never knew it could feel this good.”
    “Let’s get moving before we run out of time,” said Roxas, grabbing one end of the cart. “We’ve got to be as quick as we can.”
    The three smiled at each other.
    The time was one hour away.
    Would they escape?
    Or would they die trying to save everyone?

    “We’re walking into the jaws of death, but I never knew it could feel this good.”

    16 members remaining




    30

    Arc tripped and stumbled as he wan through the woods. It was 6:30, and he would usually be eating dinner at this time. Instead he was doing something he didn’t do on an everyday basis; and this was the search for his damsel in distress.
    “Sara!” he screamed. “SARA!”
    No voices came back at him, so he kept running. “Somebody! ANYONE! SARA?!?”
    As he rand wildly he tripped on a small root and fell face down. Losing all his energy, he began to cry.
    “No…” he said. “Why do I have to be in this? Was this my fate? Was this her fate? Did I have to be dragged into this horrible game?” As he spoke, tears leaked from his closed eyes.
    “I just want to go home,” he sobbed. “I just want to see Sara again. I don’t want her to be killed.”
    Only a miracle could save Sara now, and Arc realized this as he rose to his feet and leaned against a tree. She had been taken captive by Boris, and not only that, but he had no weapon. He could be killed at any moment by any angry forum member - or worse - someone willing to play the game.
    “God dammit, SARA!” he screamed.
    “Hello?” came a meek voice from behind him.
    Spinning around, he found himself facing Yukai (Girl Number 14). Relaxing a little, he wiped the water away from his red eyes and said:
    “Yukai, what are you doing?”
    “I’m scared,” she said. In her hand was a steel knife, extremely sharp with a jagged end. “I want to go home.”
    Arc comforted her, “I want to go home too. But I don’t think that’s possible.”
    Yukai started crying and dropped the steel knife.
    “What do I do?” she moaned. Tears were now streaming from her eyes, not Arc’s.
    “How about ya suck on this?” came a voice from the trees. A small axe came flying from the trees and lodged itself in Yukai’s left temple. She dropped to the forest floor, and at the same time Vivi and Darkwatch walked out from behind some trees. Vivi was soaked with blood, and Darkwatch walked behind him.
    “How is it going?” asked Darkwatch.
    Arc stared at him in disbelief. “Darkwatch?” he said. “Did you just?”
    “Yeah, I did, I killed someone,” said Darkwatch. Vivi nodded behind him. “That’s my second kill too, got a problem?”
    “You’re killing people!” screamed Arc.
    “I know I am,” said Darkwatch. “Like I said, that was my second kill.”
    “You can’t just kill people!” said Arc.
    “This is a game about killing!” barked Darkwatch. “And I can do what I want!” He then grabbed the hatchet in Yukai’s head and ripped it out. Whipping it to the side, a small amount of blood splattered against some bright green plants. Darkwatch advanced on Arc.
    “I just wrote a poem,” he said.
    “It goes like this”:

    Take an axe and throw it strong
    With good aim you’ll kill someone
    If you miss you’ll hit tree bark
    If you don’t you’ll hit dumb Arc.

    “Quite professional, is it not?” asked Darkwatch. Arc just stared at him in disbelief.
    There was no talk, but Darkwatch chucked the axe at Arc. He dodged to the side and peering round, saw it lodged in a nearby tree trunk. That’s when he made his move. He grabbed the axe from the trees and turned to Darkwatch.
    “You won’t beat me,” he said. “I won’t let you.”
    “Yes you will,” said Vivi. Arc looked to see a crossbow pointing straight between his eyes. It was Vivi, and he was holding it centimeters away from Arc’s face.
    “Why are you two doing this?” he asked.
    “Because we’re bored,” said Vivi. “Now put down the hatchet.”
    Arc had no intention of putting the weapon down. He knew that no matter what move he made, he’d be killed anyway. So instead, he swung the Arc toward Vivi’s right wrist, which was holding the trigger of the crossbow.
    There was a sickening squelching sound, and what followed was something heavy bouncing on the ground. Arc felt a warm liquid spray on to his face, and when he opened his eyes he saw Vivi clutching a stub of his arm. His hand was a bloody blob on the floor, and Vivi began to flip out.
    “I’m gonna die!” he screamed. “I’m gonna-”
    Vivi stepped on the crossbow, which pressed hard on the trigger. The arrow shot upwards and straight into Vivi’s crotch.
    “Ow,” he moaned.
    It was the last thing he ever said. Vivi killed himself.
    His body fell onto the ground, several blood spots coating his body, a bloody stump where his hand belonged, and a large arrow sticking out of his pants.
    “Holy mother,” said Darkwatch.
    “I’ll kill you too!” said Arc. “Stay away!”
    “I’m not going anywhere near you!” said Darkwatch, his eyes wide. He turned and ran away, knocking branches out of his way.
    Arc bent down and looked at the crossbow. Vivi had broken it when he stepped on it, so it was unusable.
    “I guess I’m a murderer,” said Arc. But it didn’t bother him. His mind was too pressed on rescuing Sara.
    His clock read 6:41.

    14 members remaining

    31

    Roxas-chan struggled to hold back her tears as she looked at a small piece of paper. To most in the classroom, it wasn’t a big deal what was written on it. Most could care less. But grades were a huge thing to Roxas-chan.

    Chapter 7 Test

    F 23%

    Roxas-chan just could not believe she would do so badly on a test. She had studied her brains out for 3 days straight, all leading up to the Chapter 7 test, yet she just couldn’t believe the grade she was looking at. Around her, others were slapping high fives and cheering as they got their tests - even some of the stupider ones.
    ‘It’s like rubbing salt into my wounds,’ she though bitterly, gritting her teeth.
    Grabbing her blue backpack, decorated with little chibi anime stickers, she walked up to the front of the classroom and stepped in front of her teacher.
    “Mr. Kanswich,” she said in a small voice, barely audible, yet Mr. Kanswich heard it anyway.
    “What is it?” he asked her.
    “Look at my test,” replied Roxas-chan. “I’m sure you must have made a mistake. There’s no way I could get 23% on a test!”
    “Maybe this will teach you a little bit about study habits,” said Mr. Kanswich, “Because I can guarantee you that the grade you got was not my own mistake during grading, but your mistake by not trying to do your best. Look at the others in this room.”
    He pointed to several other students in the room, many who didn’t get good grades, but were now cheering jubilantly at their amazing test scores.
    “I’m sure these kids studied their brains out,” he explained. “It looks like you must have slacked off for this test.”
    Roxas-chan gritted her teeth as hard as she could. She had not slacked off for this test at all, and Mr. Kanswich could suck it before she would accept this F. But, quite anticlimactically, she said:
    “I have to go to the bathroom.”
    Striding from the room, test in hand; she turned to the right out of her classroom. Down the hall was the women’s restroom, which she entered. There were the familiar toilets, but she avoided these as she went to the sink and washed her face.
    The door creaked open behind her, and she heard two voices.
    “Tommy is just so good in bed.”
    “I doubt he’s as good as Steve.”
    Roxas-chan tightened up immediately. These were the voices of Sammy and Kristen, the two most popular, filthy, ****tish girls in the whole school. Turning around, she made eye contact with the two, and cold rushed down her spine.
    “What are you doing here?” said Sammy in her usual snotty accent.
    Roxas-chan said, “Um, I’m just…”
    “Oh, what’s this!” interrupted Kristen, grabbing the test from the sink.
    “No!” said Roxas-chan.
    “Look what it is,” said Kristen, putting her finger to her mouth. Using a babyish voice, she said, “Looks like you got an F on a test.”
    “Give it back!” screamed Roxas-chan.
    “Why would we give you this back? We’re gonna post it on the school announcement board so everyone can see!” laughed Sammy.
    “NO” shouted Roxas-chan, lunging at the evil pair.
    When they saw her do this, they jumped back, letting Roxas-chan fall onto the floor of the bathroom.
    “You little *****,” said Kristen, taking the test and ripping it in two.
    “Think we should teach her a lesson?” asked Sammy.
    “I think so,” agreed Kristen. “After all, she just tried to hurt us. And if a girl tries to hurt us, we should hurt back, should we not?”
    Kristen then raised her foot and stomped it on Roxas-chan’s back.
    “Let’s do our work,” said Sammy. Roxas-chan tried to push herself off the floor, but Sammy slammed her hard back down onto the hard tile. Roxas-chan felt several of her teeth shatter, and warm liquid swept over her gums. She was then flipped over and was looking straight into Sammy’s face.
    “Look’s like you got a little boo-boo,” grinned Sammy.
    “What did I ever do to you?” said Roxas-chan, which ended up coming out as ‘Wharble di I evu?’ due to the blood coating the inside of her mouth.
    “I don’t know what you just said,” stated Sammy, “but I bet it’s worthy of this!”
    She pulled back her fist and slammed it down hard on Roxas-chan’s nose. Blood slipped from her nostrils.
    “How could you do this?” she asked, now with less blood in her mouth.
    “Some people just don’t deserve things,” smiled Kristen. “You’re just one of those people.”
    Roxas-chan’s mind was spinning. She had to find some way to get out of this horrible torture, so she screamed as loud as she could. She screamed so loud that Sammy and Kristen looked at each other and ran off. Her scream was so loud that two teachers, one a male, came running into the bathroom. One of them grabbed Sammy and Kristen’s wrists, the other grabbed Roxas-chan.
    The room was emptied, and the bathroom returned to its normal, restful state. Red blood lay in a small pool where Roxas-chan’s head had been. To the right of this was a small piece of paper. At that point, it had been soaked in blood and was barely legible, but the small letter ‘F’ could be made out in the top left corner.

    “Some people just don’t deserve things. You’re one of these people.”

    14 members remaining

    32

    Sara was sitting in a small alcove of trees. Wooden planks were set around her in a circle, but it was very rudimentary. Sitting on a branch across from her was Boris, stroking his Uzi whilst holding the trigger.
    “Why are you doing this?” asked Sara. She had been strapped to the wooden boards, and looked upon him with vengeful eyes.
    “There are many reasons I captured you,” said Boris. “There are so many, you could probably separate them into different categories. Not that I’m a person who cares about his categories too much. They’re just a term of phrase, not a real physical thing anyways. But after much inner debate, I have decided that I really don’t want to tell you why I captured you. The reasons are my own, and they will stay that way.”
    Sara looked at her watch, which read 6:48. There were about 5 hours left of the second day, and after that, only one day remained for someone to win this twisted game.
    “So,” she said, looking at Boris, “You say you don’t want to tell me why you captured me because the reasons are your own? Honestly, I would think that someone as despicable as you wouldn’t care what anybody else cared about them. I for one do care, and I want you to tell me why I’m here right now, in your care!”
    Boris let out a hearty, laugh, deep from the diaphragm. “Can I tell you a joke?” he asked. Sara nodded, wanting to hear what kind of stupid jokes Boris would have to tell. It could humor him, despite, and maybe lead to her discovering why he was holding her captive.
    “Why did the girl fall off the bike?” asked Boris. Sara thought about a considerable answer. Maybe if she could get it right, he would tell her. But there one many reasons why a girl would fall off a bike, and just as many that were funny. After lots of thought, Sara decided she would go with one answer.
    “Because the bike lost a wheel?” she asked, hoping it was the correct answer.
    Boris just looked at her, and then let out another deep laugh.
    “You’re wrong,” he said. “The reason the girl fell off the bike is… because she had no legs!” When he said this he burst out laughing. Sara just stared at him in disbelief.
    “Want to here another one?” asked Boris.
    “As long as it isn’t another stupid one like that?” said Sara.
    “Alright,” said Boris, “Why did the plane fall out of the sky?” Sara again had to think about the answer, which was equally as ridiculous as before. Following the theme Boris had set with the last joke, she replied:
    “Because he had no arms?” Boris just stared at her.
    “Wrong,” he said. “The real reason the plane fell out of the sky was because… the pilot was a loaf of bread!” He burst into another fit of giggles. Sara just turned away.
    “Now tell me the reason,” she said grimly. Boris just sighed.
    “It’s hard for me to explain,” he said. “That’s the problem… there’s this feeling in me I can’t explain.” Sara perked up at this.
    “It’s clawing at me…” he said. “I think… I’m… in love.”
    “In love?!?” exclaimed Sara, turning towards him.
    “Love,” said Boris, looking toward the sky, almost black but with orange and pink streaks criss-crossing throughout.
    “And is it me you’re in love with?” asked Sara.
    “It is,” began Boris. “Ever since I first spoke to you, you just captured my attention. I wanted to be with you, hold you, and smother you with my undying love.”
    “This is a little creepy,” said Sara.
    “Look, Sara, I’m in love with you no matter what,” he said. “That is the way of things, and that is the way things shall be until I die. I want to tell you that I love you and I want to hold you, and now I can, so I’m going to take that opportunity.”
    Sara was shell shocked. Boris the Blade, in love? With her? The thought seemed almost impossible. He had met her simply on an on-line forum. How could he fall in love with her?
    “It’s the truth,” said Boris. “Love is truly the most wonderful thing in the world.”
    Sara looked at him. She looked into his eyes. She tried to discover his secrets, everything about him. He was like clockwork, always changing, yet always going in a circle. One second, the clock would be at the 1, and then when you checked later it would be at a 9, and then back at the 1 again; always going in a circle. In this case, Boris was a lover one second and a lying beast the next. Sara just could not understand him.
    “Why do you love me?” she asked.
    Boris replied, “Sara, you’re so smart, and so dignified. It just turns me on.”
    “Turns you on?” asked Sara, a little shocked to here him say that. Boris jumped off his perch and landed softly. He began to walk towards her, speaking:
    “I just want to kiss you, hold you, and maybe even go a little bit further.” Sara tried to undo the straps, but she was stuck. “Love is not a simple thing,” said Boris. “I’ve thought of doing everything with you. And now, finally, I have the chance.”
    Sara’s eyes grew wide as she realized what he was going on about.
    With a shaky voice, she muttered, “You’re not going to… to rape… no.”
    Boris gave an evil grin.
    His watch read 6:56.

    14 members remaining

    33

    Roxas looked at his watch.
    “Dammit,” he muttered. “It’s 6: 59. It looks like, within the next minute, we either live forever… or die.”
    He looked at his comrades and said, “Any last words?”
    Cin spoke first:
    “You two, you guys have been amazing. Ever since we met, three days ago, I knew that we would have an adventurous week. It seems as if it’s more of an adventure than I thought.” At this he laughed.
    The three were standing with their bomb cart at the top of a large, clear hill. It had no bumps, and was covered with slick grass. It was perfect to roll the cart down. At the bottom of the hill was the school, and if their plan worked, when the bomb hit the school it would explode. But they were taking a big risk. If the bomb didn’t get to the school, they’d be killed. For they were standing in a danger zone (at least it would be at 7). If they were lucky, the plan would work and the school would blow up, deactivating their collars. If not, then their collars would explode. And that meant death.
    Cin continued, “And here we are now, the 3 of us simple folks. I’m glad we could work together, especially coming up with this plan.” Cin was leaning against a tree, one foot up against it and his arms crossed. His head was down, and he looked scared yet confident at the same time.
    “I really hope these aren’t my last words,” he added.
    “How about you, Roxas-chan?” asked Roxas.
    “Well,” said Roxas-chan, “My life has been hell. It has been, and after this game it always will be. All of ours will be. But I feel brave right now, knowing I could be saving other people’s lives if our plan works. And I know it will work.”
    Roxas smiled, “That’s the spirit, Roxas-chan.”
    “Do you have any ‘last’ words?” asked Cin, moving his middle and index fingers when he said the word last.
    “Me?” said Roxas. “I don’t have any last words. Do you wanna know why?”
    Cin and Roxas-chan nodded.
    “Because no matter what I say now, these won’t be my last words.”
    He smiled at the two, and they smiled back.
    “Are you ready?” said Roxas.
    “I’m ready,” said Cin.
    “I’m ready,” said Roxas-chan.
    “Then let it begin,” Roxas said, and turned to face the hill. The two others walked up to him, and they all placed their hands on the cart.
    Then their collars started to beep.
    “Guys,” said Roxas. “If this doesn’t work, you’ve all been amazing friends. Even… even if I’ve only known you for this long.” A tear slid down his face while he spoke these words. The three collars beeped in unison, their little red lights on the LCD panel moving together. More tears slid down his face, and he looked upon the other to see them crying too.
    “I’m ready,” said Cin.
    “I’m ready,” said Roxas-chan.
    “One,” said Roxas.
    “Two,” said Cin.
    “Three…”
    As they all said ‘three’, they shoved the cart down the hill.
    “This is it,” said Roxas-chan.
    “This… this… this is the end,” said Cin.

    “This is the end.”
    The end of KH-Vids Royale… is now…

    14 members remaining

    34

    The serene island was lit up by bright moonlight on that day. Owl’s hooted in the trees, looking for prey to catch for an evening meal. Animals skittered to and fro, some in the ruins of forgotten buildings. Flies swarmed the bodies of dead human beings.
    Black and charred, the ruins of a small hotel were lit up by the light. It was a mass of broken wood and glass. No flames burnt here anymore, for the fire had long been distinguished.
    On the other side of the island was another hotel. This one had a giant ballroom. But the ballroom no longer existed, and in its place was a gigantic crater. Blood was scattered over the blackened remains of the ballroom, and the walls had collapsed inward.
    One house, with a fenced in back garden, had a large pool. The pool had long turned red from the blood of an unlucky forum member. Shattered glass also lay splintered across the wooden beams of the deck. The family would never return to this house, though. They wouldn’t want to, either, especially since the government was giving out free mansions to all that had lived on the island.
    A thin, bloody wire was hung across a doorway, a weapon which had been used to kill an unlucky fellow. Several bodies lay littered in the area too, one with a missing head.

    Life is a game. So fight for survival, and see if you’re worth it.

    “It’s good to have people I can trust.”

    “The only person who ever helped me could be dead right now.”

    “We’re walking into the jaws of death, but I never knew it could feel this good.”

    “Some people just don’t deserve things. You’re one of these people.”

    “This is the end.”
    The end of KH-Vids Royale… is now…

    I step away, just to find myself. The door is open; I’m the only one left. This storm has broken me… my only friend. In this river all shall fade to black. In this river ain’t no coming back. In this river all shall fade to black. And there’s no coming back.

    The island, once a beautiful tourist attraction, had been diminished into nothing. Simply nothing.
    And a cart rolled down a hill.

    “This is the end.”
    The end of KH-Vids Royale… is now…

    14 members remaining

    35

    Cin, Roxas, and Roxas-chan held their breaths as they watched the cart roll down the hill. It slowly picked up speed, gaining with the tempo of the collars round their necks.
    “I think it’s going to make it!” said Cin.

    Fate is quite a fickle thing. It can change at any time. Some don’t believe fate exists, but if it does, then some fates must be joyous, and others not.
    But for these 30 poor souls, fate was not on their side, for they had been chosen to participate in this horrible game.
    And they finally had a chance to escape.
    “It’s going to make it!” said Roxas-chan.
    The cart was madly rushing down the hill now, within at least 60 yards of the school. Then, like the almighty blow from god, the cart hit something in the dirt and flipped. That was it… the cart just flipped.
    Roxas, Cin, and Roxas-chan watched, shocked, unable to speak, as the cart fell onto its side and exploded. The explosion was mighty, but not enough to even get close to the school. Their plan, which they had worked so hard on… had failed.
    Their collars were now picking up even more speed as they watched the explosion. It finally settled down, and Roxas looked at Cin and Roxas-chan. It occurred to them all that they had lost the game.
    “We’re… going to die.”
    They stared at each other.
    “No!” said Cin. “How could this happen?” He started running and grabbed Roxas.
    “What do we do?” he said.
    Roxas looked into his eyes. Tears were streaming from Cin’s face, as well as Roxas-chan’s. Roxas was crying too.
    He looked deeply at Cin. So deeply that Cin opened his mouth a little. He felt something welling up inside of him.
    “There’s nothing we can do, is there?” asked Cin.
    “No,” replied Roxas, tears now gushing from his eyes.
    Roxas sat down and stared at a blade of grass in front of him. It was a perfect blade of grass, untouched, green, and fully grown.
    “Guys…” said Roxas. He paused and looked at them. And then he smiled.
    “Thanks for being there.”
    Roxas was killed instantly. His collar exploded, blood spraying from his throat. His head was ripped from his neck, and it flew about 20 yards before landing on the grass. Blood showered over Cin. It went in his eyes, in his mouth, but he stood there in disbelief.
    He turned, now filled with such sadness and rage, and pointed at the school. ‘I bet Deathspank is watching this,’ he thought. ‘I bet he’s looking at me right now.’
    And he said:
    “Deathspank… you can go to hell you ****ed up *******!”
    Cin’s head was blown to pieces by his collar, and his lifeless body fell backwards. Blood soaked the grass which Roxas-chan sat upon, tears now streaming from her face.
    “We had a chance,” she wept. “We had a chance to do something different. And we have failed. I guess, for me… this is… the end.”
    Roxas-chan was the last to die.

    The three lifeless corpses lay face down on the grass.
    They had failed. Their plan had not succeeded, and they were gone forever.

    But now they are a part of you.

    11 members remaining


    36

    Xigbar (Freeshooter Xigbar, Girl No.13) stepped out from a grove of trees to look at 3 dead bodies. There was barely any blood in the area. Most of it had run down the hill close to her. This was due to rain, which lightly spat on Xigbar’s face as she pondered what to do.
    Upon closer inspection, the 3 bodies were those of Cin, Roxas, and Roxas-chan. These bodies had no heads. Xigbar felt vomit come from her mouth, and a burning sensation ripped through her throat. The collars must have done this.
    Of course, Xigbar was holding a large telescope. If she was anywhere near to the bodies of Cin, Roxas, and Roxas-chan, she’d be dead. The telescope was perfect, and from the grove of trees up on the hillside Xigbar could see anywhere around the school. There was a black sky, and the lights were turned on in the school. She’d see the occasional shadow of a soldier bustling by in the windows, but other than that the school wasn’t very active.
    Xigbar slunk back into the grove of trees to get away from her own vomit, and sat down on a pile of woodchips. She had no bread or water left, and cupped here hands to let the rain accumulate in them. The rain slipped through the cracks in her fingers, and she sighed as she realized she wouldn’t have any more water for the time being.
    “It doesn’t matter,” she muttered to herself. “There are massive lakes surrounding this whole island.”
    “I’d say it matters,” said a voice behind her. She turned to see Darkwatch. He was grinning like a Wildman, and holding an axe in his right hand.
    “Darkwatch!” exclaimed Xigbar in surprise.
    “Yes, that’s my name,” grinned Darkwatch. “Don’t wear it out.” He raised his right arm, putting the axe above his head
    “What are you doing with that?” asked Xigbar.
    “What do you think?” laughed Darkwatch.
    Without notice, he charged at Xigbar, slashing at her neck. She ducked and felt the wind on her hair as the axe came inches away from the top of her head.
    “Why are you attacking me?!?” shrieked Xigbar
    “Ever since spilt blood… I’ve always wanted to spill more,” he laughed. A small spot of drool dribbled from his mouth.
    “You must be joking?” asked Xigbar, with fear plated clearly across her face. She started to slowly walk backwards, one step after the other.
    “If I just swung at your head, do you really think I’d be joking?” laughed Darkwatch. “Honestly, woman, give me a real question that I can really answer. You must think I’m some sort of stupid idiot if those are the types of question you’re gonna ask me.” He swung at her again, and she ducked as his axe stuck into the bark of a tree.
    “Darkwatch, snap out of it!” she screamed. “You’re falling into Deathspank’s trap. This is what he wanted to happen to us all along! And the game’s even winding down, there’s only about half of us left! Why do you want to do this?”
    “I want to win the game,” said Darkwatch. “You think you’re the only one who’s scared? Well you’re wrong. That fact is; we’re all scared. All of us. Even I’m scared of what could happen if I don’t look over my shoulder every few minutes. But you must seem like you’re different - that you’re in a different boat than everyone else. Well, sorry to burst your bubble, but you’re completely wrong missy.”
    At this he ripped the axe from the tree. He continued:
    “To be able to win this game would be one of the top honors of the planet. I, Darkwatch, plan to win, and claim this title for my own!”
    He struck out again, and his axe went straight into Xigbar’s arm. The axe kept, and her arm was lodged into the tree; compliments of the axe. Xigbar tried to tug free, but the axe in her arm kept her pinned.
    “Darkwatch, what are you going to do?!?” screamed Xigbar.
    “If I told you, it would ruin the surprise,” he said. He bent down and picked up a rock off the floor.
    “In 9th grade I took a class on the brain and psychology. It turns out that the most sensitive part of the skull is right behind the ear, but just a little bit up.”
    Darkwatch moved closer to Xigbar, tossing the rock up and down in his right hand.
    “A strong blow could knock someone cold for hours. Even harder and they could be killed.”
    Xigbar gasped as she realized what he was about to do. She pleaded:
    “Darkwatch, I’m begging you, please don’t kill me. We can work together to escape this game. I’ll do anything, anything!”
    “Anything?” inquired Darkwatch.
    Xigbar thought for a little, and then said, “Yes.”
    Darkwatch pointed to his crotch and said again, “Anything?”
    Xigbar gulped. She knew exactly what he was talking about. “Yes.”
    Everything happened in a blur, but Xigbar watched as Darkwatch moved his hand towards his pants.
    “Wait, no!” she screamed. Darkwatch stopped and started tossing the rock again.
    “What was that?” he asked.
    “I may have my life on the line, but I’ll never be your little whor-”
    Everything went black as Darkwatch swung his hand toward her head.

    10 members remaining

    37

    Sara gasped as Boris stepped back on to the tree. What had just happened to her, what Boris had just done… she would never forget. She gasped for more air, spitting from her mouth, trying to get everything that had just happened to her out of her mind.
    Thoughts were racing through her head. Bad things had happened to her before, but nothing like that.
    ‘I should have been able to stop him,’ she thought.
    ‘But I was all tied up!’ said the other voice in her head.
    ‘But to let such a horrible person do that to you!’ retaliated the other voice.
    Sara banished both voices and thought on the present. She had been violated in the worst possible way, one which she would never forget.
    “So, how did you like that?” asked Boris.
    “Don’t talk to me!” she screamed. The taste was still in her mouth, and she tried to get it about but couldn’t. Even the rain on her tongue wouldn’t take away the horrible sense.
    Her mouth wasn’t the only thing that had been used. Her whole body had. Sara looked at Boris with extreme contempt. What he had done to her was the worst thing possible. And the Royale didn’t help matters.
    “Why… did you do that?” she asked, stuttering as she spoke.
    “I thought you didn’t want to talk to me,” laughed Boris. “After that, I’d think you would be all giggles!”
    “Shut UP!” screamed Sara. She kicked and writhed as hard as she could, but nothing happened. The ropes were too tight.
    Boris just laughed, “Sorry, Sara, but there’s no way you’re gonna get out of those ropes. I tied them so tightly, you’d be lucky to ever find the name of the knot I used. Not that it matters. After I’m done with you, you’re going to have a slow and painful death.”
    “Done with me?” asked Sara curiously.
    “Oh!” exclaimed Boris. “If you think what I just did was bad, you just wait and see till later.”
    “I hate you!” screamed Sara.
    “Good,” said Boris. “That’s what I intended. Next time, don’t bite okay?”
    Sara burst into tears as he finished this. She was at the complete mercy of this horrible man, who had just sexually assaulted her, and there was nothing she could do to fight the pain inside of her.
    “I just want to die,” she muttered.
    “Oh, you’ll die,” said Boris. “As soon as you and I are the last ones left on the island!”
    In a typical film, the villain would have given an evil laugh after he said this. He would have cackled in a ‘muhaha’ type of fashion, and maybe held up the latest item in his evil plot. But not Boris; because Boris wasn’t that type of villain. Instead, he sat down against the trunk of a tree and stared at Sara.
    He stared at her for hours, the rain patting all around him, until she couldn’t bear to look at him no more.
    It was psychological torture, and it worked. Sara burst into tears, which mixed with the rain before entering the soil. The soil where much blood had been spilt over the past 2 days…

    10 members remaining

    38

    Xehsin and Misty huddled under some trees. The midnight announcement was about to begin. If Deathspank was to come over the announcement, it would mean that Roxas, Cin, and Roxas-chan had failed and were presumably dead. If there was no announcement, then they would be safe. And then they would be able to escape. So the two sat and prayed silently, hoping for the best. Their watches read 11:59.
    “Do you think they did it? Do you think they made it out alive?” asked Misty.
    Xehsin replied, “I hope to god that they succeeded, and that we can go home. I can’t bring home to you enough how I feel right now. To have hope snatched away from us here, of all places, would be the most terrible thing that could possible happen…”
    Misty nodded, “I think they managed to make it. I don’t know what it is, but something inside of me is telling me that they executed the plan. I’ve never had a ‘sixth-sense’ type of feeling before, but this is just too much to ignore. Xehsin, I think we’re going to be free.”
    “It won’t be long till we find out,” smiled Xehsin, looking at his watch.
    Misty looked at hers too, “Well, it’s going to be within 5 seconds. All his announcements have been on the dot.”
    Their watches turned to 12:00. There was no voice.
    “Oh my god…” breathed Misty.
    “Wait,” said Xehsin. “Don’t get your hopes up too much, he might just be late.”
    Xehsin was right, for about 3 seconds later; Deathspank’s voice came over the speakers.
    He began with a yawn, “God, am I tired. Two nights without sleep, all these caffeine pills are starting to go to my head.”
    Misty’s heart sank.
    “They… didn’t… make it,” she stuttered. “I was so sure they would. If they weren’t successful against Deathspank, then they must be…”
    “Dead,” finished Xehsin. He looked at Misty, and tears were brought to both of their eyes. They quickly embraced.
    “How could this happen?” wept Misty. “We should have gone with them! We could have helped them all along! Why didn’t we go Xehsin, why?!”
    “Misty,” he cried, “There was nothing we could do for them, as much as we wish. We would be dead now if we had gone with them. But, I just can’t believe this would happen! I don’t even want to be here anymore!”
    Deathspank came back over the speaker:
    “Anyway, let’s see. There are some new dead people. Lots, I guess. There’s Claryssa, Ris, Vivi, Roxas, thank god, Cin, thank god, and Roxas-chan, thank god again. There’s also Yukai, and Freeshooter Xigbar. What do you all say to that? Anyway, continue enjoying yourselves as usual. There’s not gonna be any danger zones this time, so you guys are lucky. The more feisty players may want to take advantage of this.”
    Click.
    Xehsin’s worst fears were confirmed. Cin’s plan had failed, and Cin had died. His friend, Cin, dead. Nothing more. Just a lifeless corpse.
    He was fueled with anger, and grabbed the gun beside him. Standing up, he turned to Misty.
    “I can’t go on anymore!” screamed Xehsin. “This game is too much, and I hate it! Why did we have to get picked, huh? Why us, of all people? I’m not gonna take my friends dying anymore!”
    “Xehsin, what are you going to do?” asked Misty. She was starting to become frantic; worried that Xehsin would do something rash.
    “Misty…” began Xehsin. He paused.
    “Yes?” asked Misty.
    “I’m really sorry about this, but it’s something I’m going to have to do,” said Xehsin.
    He twirled the pistol in his finger and pointed it toward his head.
    “Good luck,” he said.
    “No, Xehsin!” screamed Misty.
    But it was too late. Xehsin had the gun in his mouth and had already pulled the trigger.

    9 members remaining

    39

    General Grievous and zSoraz heard a gunshot from the distance, a faint echo compared to the pounding torrent of rain that soaked the island. The rain was so thick; it was like someone was ringing out a wash cloth. Buckets of water poured down on them, drenching them to the bone. Apparently, General didn’t mind, but zSoraz wasn’t too big a fan of the wet conditions. He shivered from the cold, holding his arms to his sides.
    “Can we please get inside? I don’t care where it is, as long as it’s anywhere,” said zSoraz. General continued to stare at the sky. It was blacker than the darkest dark possible. There wasn’t a single light in it, bar the full moon of course.
    “You know,” started General, “According to that last announcement, there should only be ten of us left. Counting that gunshot, that means nine. The game is really starting to wind down…”
    zSoraz’s teeth chattered as he spoke, “You’re right. We are two of the lucky few left alive.”
    “Lucky?” inquired General. “You would say that being taken from your home, and put on an island with people you just met, then everyone gets random weapons and has to kill each other till one’s left is lucky? You need to seriously rethink there.”
    “I’d be able to think better if I was dry,” chattered zSoraz.
    “Fine,” said General, “We’ll look for a place indoors now.”
    It didn’t take long for the two to find a nice house on the side of the winding, cobblestone road. The lights weren’t on inside, but the door was open a crack.
    “Do you see that?” asked General, pointing at the crack in the door.
    “Where?” asked zSoraz.
    “Right there, the crack in the door,” replied General.
    “Oh!” exclaimed zSoraz, “Wait… does that mean someone else could be in there?”
    “Let’s find out,” said General. The two shuffled into the door and looked around. There were chairs on the floor, and cutlery strewn all about.
    “What the hell happened here?” asked zSoraz.
    “I dunno,” said General, “But whatever it was, there was some kind of rush.”
    The ‘darkest dark possible’ suddenly turned to a raging fire as sparks flew from all sides of the room. A loud boom sound followed dirt being tossed into the air.
    As the dust cleared, General looked around the debris. There was nothing left of the house, and rain began to hit him on the cheek. To his left was the torso of zSoraz, with no head or legs.
    General leaned to the side and let out a gush of vomit. He couldn’t feel his legs, and peered down to see them missing.
    “Crap,” he muttered, and began crawling in one direction.
    A foot slammed in front of him.
    “You aren’t going anywhere.”
    General slowly looked up to see Laydee (Girl No. 11) peering down at him.
    “My weapon was a landmine, but I guess someone was really stupid enough to take the bait,” she grinned. She raised her hands, and illuminated by the flames that licked the night he saw a large stone.
    ‘She’s going to kill me,’ he thought. ‘She’s actually going to crush my head in with a rock.’
    “I don’t know if you’ve guessed yet,” she laughed, “But this rock is meant for your head!” She exclaimed the final part before thrusting the rock toward General.
    ‘It’s now or never,’ he thought.
    Heroes are remembered, but legends never die. And that night, General became a legend.
    As Laydee slammed the rock toward General’s face, he used his amazing upper body strength to launch himself out of the way, toward zSoraz’s flame engulfed body. He fumbled around in zSoraz’s body and brought out a small pistol, with one bullet.
    Amidst the flames, rain, and dust, Laydee and General stood facing each other; General (lying on the ground with no legs) with a gun and one bullet, and Laydee with a sharp rock.
    “Laydee,” began General. “When you planted that land mine you made the first mistake.”
    “What do you mean?” she protested.
    “You see,” said General, “There are many things in life, many values and many lessons. One of the most important and obvious values is to not kill, is it not?”
    Laydee looked around as if someone was watching them, as if this was some sort of reality show and she was in the hot seat.
    “Uh, yeah, I’d say it’s important,” she said. She was letting her guard down, and the rock slowly began moving toward the ground with her arms.
    “And what have you done?” asked General. He was so focused that the pain from his legs was all but gone. He knew that these were his dying moments - his dying words, so why not make the best of ‘em, right?
    “I’ve killed,” said Laydee. She began sobbing violently and dropped the rock.
    “I’ve… killed…” she said to herself, and fell to her knees. She clutched her hands into her face and began crying.
    General had planned this ever since he grabbed the gun. He had distracted her from killing him, and now it was his turn.
    “Laydee,” he said softly.
    “Yes?” she said, looking up from her hands. Her eyes were red and she looked like a complete train wreck of a person.
    General was still holding out the gun, but this time his aim was steadier than ever before. He looked at Laydee for a few seconds and then spoke one simple, yet meaningful word:
    “Die.”
    The gun popped and Laydee fell backwards. General had killed her - his plan had not failed. With no remaining strength, he fell back onto the torso of zSoraz and looked into the sky. At the tips of the flames he could see the moon, bright and beautiful in contrast to the night.
    “It’s so beautiful…” he said, looking up.
    The rain pattered on his face, and he knew death was imminent.
    “These are my last moments,” he muttered. “Guess I might as well make a few shout-outs.”
    He laughed at this, but it turned into a hacking cough and blood splattered onto his shirt.
    “Dang,” he said. “I guess these really are my last moments.”
    General was lucky, for his last moments were relaxed, a euphoria of joy and sadness, and he kept smiling as he looked into the sky.
    “If this was some sort of sitcom,” he coughed, “I guess I’d be the one who dies in the arms of his girl. But I guess this ain’t true.”
    He was silent for a moment. Then he turned to the torso of zSoraz.
    “It’s been a good one, bro.”
    General’s head slowly fell onto the body of zSoraz, and he died alongside his only comrade throughout the hell of the Royale. General was right; if this was a sitcom he would have died in the arms of his woman, and the camera would have slowly panned up to show a beautiful scene of fire and a bright moon.
    And for a split second, although no one was watching, the moon winked.

    6 members remaining

    40

    Quick Recap:

    Still Alive

    Boys
    6 - Boris the Blade
    7 - Arc
    9 - Darkwatch

    Girls
    2 - Sara
    4 - Kairi
    5 - MistMighty82

    It was the morning, 9 A.M. to be exact. Deathspank’s latest announcement had left only 6 in the game. The island was quiet. The final day of the Royale was also upon them. They had to have one remaining in the next 15 hours or they were all dead.
    Rain was still pouring from the night before. Large puddles had begun to well up in the roads. No place was safe to walk. In fact, no place on the island was safe, for there were two killers out there, one of which had a thirst for blood, the other simply sitting by idly. This chapter joins us with the lazy one; Boris.
    Sara was still tied to a log, and Boris was still sitting in the tree, holding his Uzi while tapping it against his thigh and whistling. The sky was cloudy and gray in the night, and the whole setting was relatively dismal. This was not only accompanied by the fact that there were three other innocent people on the island, all alone and scared.
    Boris had stopped his little staring match, and Sara looked at the ground. Her hair was wet and she shivered from her soaked clothes. Boris stopped his tapping and turned to face her:
    “So, what do you wanna talk about?”
    Sara looked up at him, bewildered, “You actually think I want to talk to you?”
    “Well, it must be boring, sitting down there strapped to that log. Wouldn’t you just love to get off it?” he grinned.
    “Why would you ask me such a stupid question,” she replied, turning to look at the ground to her side. Boris laughed.
    “What defines a stupid question?” he asked her, and she turned again to look at him.
    He continued, “Would ‘When is Arc going to come save me?’ be a stupid question? Hmm?”
    “Just shut up!” screamed Sara.
    “You, of all people, have no right to tell me that,” said Boris.
    “I can say to you whatever I want,” said Sara.
    “Whatever you want,” said Boris. “It doesn’t matter to me. By midnight tonight everyone will be dead except you and me. And then a festival will begin.”
    “A festival?” asked Sara.
    “Yeah, a festival, that’s it,” he replied, looking at the gray clouds. “What, you’ve never heard of a festival before?”
    “Of course I know what a festival is,” she said. “You know what? I can’t believe I’m talking to you. You’re just a dirty scumbag who wants to wind me up, and I’m answering your stupid questions.”
    “Oh, that’s it!” said Boris, pointing his finger up. “So that’s what describes a stupid question; a question from Boris! Well, why didn’t you tell me that when I asked you before?”
    “Because…” began Sara, but she chose not to continue.
    “Because what?” said Boris. He was more interested than usual.
    “Because of what?” he repeated.
    “Because you have the un,” muttered Sara.
    “Oh, well that makes completely sense,” heckled Boris in a high-pitched voice, trying to imitate Sara. “He has the gun, so I better be careful of him. He could blow my brains out at any second, but since I don’t care I’ll just say he has stupid questions and blow him off whenever he asks me anything!”
    Sara felt like crying, but she held back her tears. Boris continued:
    “I’m Sara, I’m the admin of KH-Vids, and I’m so special!”
    “No you’re not!” screamed a voice behind him.
    Boris turned suddenly to see Kairi standing there, with her hands on her hips. She pulled a bloody drumstick out of her back pocket and said:
    “Boris, you’re going to die!”

    6 members remaining




    41

    Darkwatch stumbled through the forest. Jagged roots stabbed into his ankles as he wandered aimlessly, with no one to seek. He constantly glanced at his map, looking, thinking, contemplating whether he was near a danger zone or not. Several times he realized that he had almost walked into one but quickly retreated.
    “That’s right,” he laughed. “These roots can cut me up as much as they want. I’m going to win, and I mean it when I say it. I have to win, I have to see my family again, all of them, heh, and all I need to do is kill a bare minimum of people.”
    His hair was matted over his forehead, and streaks of blood ran down his face left from the rain that cascaded through the branches of the trees. The petals were soaked with water, absorbing it into their systems, using it to live. Darkwatch knew that he would only have to absorb a few more souls, and he, too, would live. But the going was getting tough. Danger zones surrounded him. If he wasn’t careful, he could become trapped in a ring of danger zones. Without any help from anyone at this point of the game, he would be left to die.
    Darkwatch’s mind was tainted with the scene of killing Xigbar. It wasn’t the fact that he had killed her that replayed in his mind, more the fact that he hadn’t had any food to eat. Then, there, coming to him in some sort of miracle form, was Xigbar. And in his mind Xigbar was a food source.
    He had started with her hand, chewing the skin off before devouring the small amount of meat on the inside. From there he ate her arms and feet. In his left hand was Xigbar’s head, held by long stringy hairs died red from her own blood. He brought it with him just in case he wanted a snack. It was often that he felt quite peckish, so why not bring a head along, right?
    The head was no problem in terms of ‘extra load’. Darkwatch was easily able to carry it round and possibly use on anyone who was scared of him. He could shove it at them and fend them off, scare them beyond belief, and maybe get a kill and a new snack at that. Darkwatch had drooped to the lowest level possible in terms of eating habits. But he did what he had to do to get by, even if that meant eating a fellow forum member.
    The time was nearing noon, when Deathspank would make his second to last announcement. If it was necessary, his last announcement would be at six P.M. At midnight, they would all be dead. Darkwatch bent down slowly and sat against the trunk of a tree. He hadn’t had much rest since the Royale began, and the cool rain water on his back made him feel all the much better. A small shrubbery was to his left, and he ripped the leaves from it and drank water off of them. Puddles were collecting in the dirt, but Darkwatch didn’t want the dirty water. He made for another shrubbery, but was interrupted as Deathspank began the noon announcement.
    “Hello to the few of you remaining.”
    His voice no longer sounded as excited and happy as it had in the first days of the Royale. It had diminished to a long drawl, dragged out and low as if he hadn’t slept for awhile. Which, of course, he hadn’t, as he was too absorbed in the frenzy of the game.
    “We have no new dead people this time around. What are you all doing? You’ve only got 12 hours left before you all get your heads blown off. You have nothing to lose, so you might as well go for the win. Why have you all die when at least one could live, right?”
    Darkwatch laughed at this. Deathspank was giving them advice that Darkwatch had thought up moments after leaving the school building. Speaking of the school building, all the memories of it seemed a blur. He was tired at the time - it was, of course, one in the morning - and couldn’t remember much. There were snapshots of some hyperactive girl and him getting his bag, which included his all handy weapon. But most of it was just snippets of blurry scenes from the moment.
    Even before that was when he was in the ballroom, eating his gourmet meal. He never expected this would happen.
    Some villains never really get over what they have done. Others do, and at this moment Darkwatch snapped. He realized the ridiculous position he was in, how helpless it was, the weapon he had received, and everything else to do with the Royale. He snapped and discovered only when thing - he had killed. Not only one person, but more than that, as if one wasn’t enough. Tears streamed from his eyes and mixed with the puddles in the dirt as he crouched in a ball. His sobs came erratically, and he coughed until he barfed.
    He thought of killing Yukai, of attempting to rape Freeshooter Xigbar and then killing and eating her. It all seemed so ridiculous, and Darkwatch wondered how he could ever do such a thing.
    He had returned to the boy he was before he even wondered upon KH-vids.net. It was the normal boy, the one who had been so happy at the holidays, and never would have thought to having killed his friends.
    And now he had, and his breakdown began to get even worse.
    “It’s not my fault!” he screamed through sobs and gritted teeth. He was curled up in a ball, lying on his side in the dirt. Soil was pasted across his cheek facing the ground, and drops of rain ran down his face. His eyes were squeezed shut and he was at the point of rocking back and forth.
    “It’s not my fault!” he said again, this time louder than before. “Deathspank made me do this! He drove me to this point of insanity! I would never do such a thing as this! None of it is my fault! He made me kill Yukai and Xigbar; he made me do all the horrible things I have done! NONE OF IT IS MY FAULT!”
    He jumped up and grabbed the hand axe, throwing it as far as he could away from him. His glasses flew fro his face and landed in the mud. Instantly, he crumpled to his knees and whimpered:
    “It’s not… my… fault.”
    The tears were genuine. The heartless killer that had been there minutes before had shriveled up in the rain that overshadowed the island. What was left was the real Darkwatch, the inner shell of his being that so yearned to shine through.
    His eyes grew red from crying so much, and he buried his head in his knees.
    “Someone help me,” he said. “I just wanna get off this island. I’m so scared. Someone is coming to kill me, I just know it. I don’t want to do. Please, lord, let me go.”
    He looked to the sky to see only gray clouds. Rain soon clouded his vision and he looked back down.
    But in his vision was Misty, holding a silver pistol in her hand, and it was pointed straight at Darkwatch.
    “Misty?” he said softly. His glasses were deep in a thick layer of mud. Everything looked blurred and distorted without them.
    “Misty?” he said again, this time louder than before. “Misty, is that you?”
    “Yes,” said the voice. The blurred figure got closer. Darkwatch saw something silver in her hand, but he couldn’t make out what it was.
    “Misty, have you come to help me?” he asked. He felt like he sounded like a ******ed person, but he was scared and alone. Everyone on this island was scared and alone.
    “I don’t know if I should help you,” said Misty. Darkwatch watched as she bent down and pulled something out of the mud. She then walked over to him and said, here.
    He grabbed the item in his hands and asked, “What is it?”
    “Your glasses,” she replied. Darkwatch wiped them on his shirt and put them on. Everything bloomed into focus, and he saw that it was indeed Misty, and the silver object in her hand was indeed a gun.
    “You have a gun!” he exclaimed.
    “Yeah, but don’t worry, I don’t plan on using it on you,” she said. She bent down and smiled at him. But as soon as the smile came across her face, it fled to one of a frown.
    “What’s this?” she said, moving behind Darkwatch. She bent down to look at the odd object and screamed.
    “That’s Freeshooter Xigbar’s head!” she screamed, jabbing her finger towards the decapitated cranium. Her eyes bugged out of her head and her frayed her bobbed wildly.
    “I have… done wrong,” said Darkwatch, looking towards the ground.
    “I’m getting out of here!” she said, and began to run off.
    “No!” said Darkwatch, and ran after her. He launched himself towards her and grabbed her skirt. Misty screamed and tried to bat him off.
    “Get off me!” she commanded, but to no avail. Darkwatch clamped his hands firmly on her skirt.
    “Please don’t leave me!” he cried. “I don’t want to be alone! You won’t leave me on my own, will you Misty?” He began to hold on even tighter.
    “I said get off me!” said Misty, and kicked Darkwatch in the face. There was a sick cracking sound as the boot connected with Darkwatch’s nose and he fell back. Misty pointed the gun at his face.
    “I said,” she began, “Stay… away… from me.” She took deep breaths between each word.
    “Misty… don’t leave me…” moaned Darkwatch.
    “I’m going,” she stated, and twirled to leave.
    “No, Misty!” shouted Darkwatch and ran for her. But it was too late, for Misty turned around and saw him coming towards her. Even if she had known that Darkwatch was on her side, and that he had succumbed to his sins, it wouldn’t have mattered. Her natural instinct took over and she fired the gun. The first bullet hit Darkwatch in the stomach. The second bullet hit him in the chest.
    He fell to his knees and landed face first in the mud. Smoke drifted away from the nozzle of the pistol Misty held in her hands. She swallowed massive amounts of air and stared at Darkwatch.
    Realizing what she had done, she dropped to her knees and rolled over Darkwatch before picking him up. She held his head and torso in her arms like you would hold a baby. It was just like a scene from a crap romance film - the boy/girl holds the boyfriend/girlfriend in his/her arms during the other’s dying moments.
    “Misty… don’t leave me,” said Darkwatch, repeating what he had said many times before.
    “I won’t leave you,” said Misty. She felt her eyes well up, but forced herself not to cry. Xehsin was too much, but now she had killed herself, and it was someone innocent, alone, and scared.
    “Please… don’t leave me Misty,” he coughed, and blood splattered all over his chest. Misty removed his shirt to see two bloody holes in his chest. One was where his stomach would be, and the other was located at the top of his rib cage on the left side of his body.
    “I won’t leave you,” she said again, and a single tear leaked form her left eye.
    “Misty, I can’t let you leave,” he said again.
    “I know, I know, I won’t leave you,” she wept. “I couldn’t leave you…”
    “Please, don’t leave, not now…” he said. Misty’s tears dropped onto his face and ran down his cheeks. She used her thumb to wipe the blood of his chin.
    “Please don’t leave…”
    Darkwatch’s head fell to the side.
    “I’ll… never leave you,” said Misty before bursting into tears. She rocked back and forth, cradling the one she had killed in her arms. The rain didn’t stop, even as another member became a statistic in the ruthless game.
    Misty sat with Darkwatch until she was tired of crying. She slowly rose to her feet and put the gun in her pocket.
    She then knelt back down and brushed the hair out of Darkwatch’s face. She leaned her head down and planted a soft kiss on his forehead.
    “Goodbye,” she whispered.
    That was the last time anyone would ever see Darkwatch.

    5 members remaining

    42

    Sara sat with her hands placed firmly in her lap. Her hair was combed straight down the sides of her head, wispy at the bottom, and she gave a slight bow as the portly woman sat down across from her.
    “So, you want a job here?” asked the woman, in a loud voice. She seemed as if she’d rather be anywhere than here.
    “I am looking for a job, ma’am,” said Sara, smiling. Her mind was focused on giving this woman the best impression she could. She had been searching for a job for months. This could be her prominent shot at acquire a labor heavy job, but also a well-paying one.
    The portly woman scanned the resume. She finished it once, and immediately jumped up to the top of the page and began reading again.
    “This is a very unimpressive resume.”
    Sara winced at this, because the woman was right. Since high school she had never had much luck getting a job. This made her resume seem like crap with ‘High School Diploma’, ‘McDonalds, 2 years’, and ‘Arby’s 1 year,’ written on it.
    “I know it is, but I promise to try my hardest,” said Sara.
    “How long have you been looking for a job?” asked the portly woman.
    “Oh, very long,” replied Sara.
    “How long?”
    “Well, I’m not sure-”
    “Then get sure.”
    “About 8 months now.”
    “Do you have a home?”
    “I have a small apartment in bad condition.”
    “Can you get by with what you’ve got?”
    “Not if I don’t get a job.”
    The woman let out a great sigh. She stacked the papers neatly before placing them on the desk in front of her. She then put her hands down and looked up at Sara.
    “Look, I’ll give you the job, but I don’t want you to make many mistakes or you’ll be gone in a heartbeat.”
    “I promise to do my best!” said Sara, putting her hand near her heart.
    “Don’t promise me, go do your job and show me,” said the woman.
    Sara ran down the hall way and into the lady’s room. She jumped up in the air and let out a slight, “Yes!”
    “Don’t get your hopes up,” came a voice from a stall about 10 yards away. “Most people who get their job lose it within a week.”
    “Hello?” said Sara. A toilet flushed and then a massive woman stepped out of the stall.
    “Round these parts, newbies won’t be able to keep their jobs if they make a single mistake. You have to be careful. Boss is watching over you with a careful eye, making sure everything you do is correct.”
    This woman crept Sara out, and with good reason.
    “Uh…” stared Sara.
    The boisterous woman laughed before saying, “You don’t have to take my advice. I’ve been working here for 34 years!” She laughed again before waddling out of the restroom without washing her hands.
    Sara realized this and said, “Ew,” before going to the bathroom herself. Several minutes later her cell-phone rang.
    “Hello?” she said. Her bum was planted on the rim of a toilet seat as she spoke.
    “Sara!”
    It was Arc, her boyfriend. Evidently he sounded excited.
    “What?” she asked, intrigued.
    “Bizz bozzle blip blop!”
    “…”
    “Just kidding, Sara, but on a more serious note; I have some huge news!”
    “What is it?”
    “Well, Deathspank from KH-Vids called. He organized some huge meeting in California. As many KH-Vids members as possible are meeting there for a week. We’ll be able to see the other members in real life!”
    “Are you serious?”
    “Yeah, he just announced it. So, do you think we should go?”
    “We are admins; I think it’s necessary that we make an appearance.”
    “By the way, if we go then we’ll be leaving tomorrow.”
    “…”
    “Sara?”
    “Tomorrow?!?”
    “Yeah, tomorrow, but still, isn’t it awesome?”
    “Arc, I just got a new job! Do I quit now? You know how hard I’ve been searching for a job.”
    “Do you lie to her again?”
    “It depends on what you mean by ‘lie’.”
    “Well, did you tell her you lived in a half-assed apartment?”
    “Yes.”
    “Even though we live in a two-story house with a basement?”
    “…Yep.”
    “Oh, well…”
    “But I got the job, Arc! So should I quit?”
    “I wouldn’t even quit, just come home now and we can buy our plane tickets.”
    “Alright, I’m coming home!”
    Sara closed her cell phone and flushed the toilet. She did the usual assortment of things you do when you finish going to the toilet, including wiping your private areas massaging your - no wait, washing your hands.
    She then walked out the door to bump into the portly woman who had interviewed her. Papers flew in all different directions as the woman fell to the ground.
    “*****,” said Sara, before running at the door. She entered a metallic jungle, one filled with skyscrapers and taxis. She was in downtown New York.
    She first ran to a Starbucks Coffee.
    As soon as she walked in the door she got in line, and there seemed to be a sort of argument at the front of the line.
    “Welcome to Starbucks, what would you like?” asked the woman.
    “What can I get with 35 cents?” the boy at the front asked back.
    “Well, I guess I could give you a small cup of coffee,” replied the woman at the cashier. She was a nice young girl, some one very pretty - someone Sara desired to be.
    “No,” interrupted the boy, “I mean, what can I get for 35 cents?” When he said this, he made the finger motion of something being sucked in his mouth. Sara was shocked that he would do such a thing.
    “You’re disgusting, you know?” the girl replied arrogantly. “I’m not a whore, so don’t treat me like one.” She thrust a cup of coffee into the rude boy’s hands. “Take this.”
    Sara watched the boy walk over to his seat and pull out a laptop from his pack.
    ‘What a jerk,’ she thought. ‘I’d never even talk to someone like him.’
    She waited for her turn, in which she got a large coffee. The woman at the cashier seemed annoyed and said:
    “That dirty brat over there was giving me loads of crap.”
    “It’s ok,” said Sara, “He’s just some losers who’s trying to wind you up. Take it with a grain of salt.”
    The cashier woman smiled, “Thanks. This coffee’s on me.”
    “Thanks!” exclaimed Sara, and smiled back at her. She then retreated outside and got into a taxi.
    “Groves High School?” she asked, and the taxi pulled off. The ride wasn’t very long, and she soon arrived at her former high school. She wanted to say high to an old teacher, Mr. Kanswich, who had always been nice to her despite what other kids said.
    The familiar sites of the high school warmed her heart, but what she saw as she turned a corner did not. Some kid was beating up a load of others with a baseball bat, slamming them against walls. Another child that looked about his age was crouched on the ground behind him.
    ‘What a loser,’ she thought. ‘I hope some school officials come and get him.’
    Deciding not to have a run in with the baseball bat wielding crazed maniac, she continued forward to get to Mr. Kanswich’s class. It wasn’t long before she turned into the door, but a small girl holding a test stormed out with gritted teeth as she entered.
    “Hello,” she smiled and waved at Mr. Kanswich.
    “Sara!” he exclaimed. “It’s been all too long. How have things been going?”
    “I’ve been getting a lot better, especially with coping with everything that’s happened to me. I’ve got a nice boyfriend now, and we live together.”
    “That’s nice,” said Mr. Kanswich. “I would ask you to stay, but I’ve got a huge lesson to teach. Do you think you could come back tomorrow?”
    “Actually, I think I’m going on vacation tomorrow,” she said, and began to explain about how Arc had killed her and surprised her with a vacation to California.
    “Will you promise to visit me as soon as you get back?” he asked, grinning.
    “Of course I will,” she said. With a final wave she turned out the door and walked back down the hall.
    The kid with the baseball bat was now gone. Sara thought he was a loser, but she’d be seeing him again very soon.
    Same with the boy in Starbucks, and the one who stormed out of Mr. Kanswich’s room.
    But she did not get to talk to them once, as much as she wanted to.
    They were long gone, long gone to a world where Sara wished she could be as the rain poured down on her forehead and dribbled into her eyes. She watched as Boris and Kairi duked it out. Kairi had a simple drumstick and Boris was using the sharp sword-stick thing he had whittled.
    The time was 2:00 P.M. It wasn’t long before the game was over. Someone would have to win eventually.
    But who would it be? Would Darkwatch come from the woods and kill them all? What about Misty? Would Arc save her and then kill the others and even her? Would anger take her over and cause her to kill everyone else?
    The questions whizzed about her head but no answers came. The battle in front of her unfolded and Sara prayed that Arc would come.
    Boris was going to kill her. She knew that there was nothing she could do to stop him.
    But she could pray that Arc would see her again.
    And that’s when the bullets sprayed from the trees.

    5 members remaining

    43

    Arc had been sitting in the rain for hours. He knew the Royale was coming to a close, that over 20 brave people, each who had their own lives and stories, were dead. The twisted game had brought out who people truly were, especially if they were evil, horrible people. Some had tried to stop others, like Mish. They didn’t deserve to die. They didn’t ask to die. But the ones that were willing to play were the ones that suffered most of all. Even if they won, how would they be greeted with open arms back at home? No mother would want to hug their child who had shed blood at the hands of a cruel government’s game. No parent would want to raise a child that had been in a game full of death. Whoever won this game would eventually go insane. Some, like Vivi, Darkwatch, and Boris had already gone insane. The scene of Yukai being struck by the hatchet replayed in Arc’s head; the blood spilling from the opening in her forehead. He had managed to escape from that, but if Darkwatch attacked him now then he would be dead meat. Even the crossbow he had was useless, as it had broken when he slipped on a rock wet with rain.
    But what pressed on his mind even more was the thought of Sara being in the hands of Boris. All the vile, horrible things he could have done to her played in his mind, horrifying him. He was unable to think up a way to save her. Boris had several dangerous guns, including the Uzi that seemed to have limitless ammo. He has seen it kill *Sora*, Mish, Ris - it only made him wonder who would be killed by the deadly firearm next.
    “What do I do?”
    The rain was loud, but the spray of bullets that he heard over the tops of the trees was even louder. Birds flew from the braches of trees, squawking and chirping as they drifted away.
    The bullets sounded close, but sound warped around objects on the island. Arc decided that the best he could do was walk in the direction of the bullets. Pulling out his map, he glanced down to check where the danger zones were. After her got his bearings, he decided that it was time to head off.
    The sky was gloomy and shadows danced across the trees. The long summer days were nice, but the dismal weather that showered upon the island was one exception. Several hundred yards of nonstop walking and Arc checked his map again. He had absolutely no idea where he was, or where the gunshots had come from. He was the needle in a haystack, and without more noise he would never be able to know where he was going.
    It was dismal, Sara was gone, and to top it all off Arc was wearing a shirt with an annoying tag at the back. Nothing could have been worse.
    Nothing?
    Arc wandered upon a crossroad.
    “God damn,” he said. “Now where am I supposed to go?”
    He had a left and a right path to choose from. It was a complete guess as to which way he should go.
    Arc put his hand on his chin and looked at the crossroads for sometime. After several minutes, he got up and walked off.
    He didn’t take the right road. He didn’t take the left road.
    Instead, Arc trampled through the weeds and ferns down the middle path. His walk turned into a run. He didn’t think about Sara, he didn’t think about danger zones, he just thought about running.
    “Kairi!”
    The voice came to his left, and he snapped his head in that direction.
    “NO!”
    More voices echoed through the trees.
    “Jackpot,” smiled Arc.

    5 members remaining

    44

    Wood splintered over Kairi’s head as she ducked. Boris moved with profound grace, slicing at her with his large stick. The end was still sharp; no matter how many times Boris stabbed stone or dirt.
    “You’re not getting away!” he said, lunging at her. She moved down and whacked him across the head with her drumstick. His eyes tilted back momentarily before he resumed his chase. Kairi ran forward before tripping on a stone. She turned to see Boris staring over her.
    “This is like a perfect horror movie scene,” he began, tilting his head. “The poor mistress runs for her dear life before tripping on some random object and falling to the ground. Then the evil villain who no one likes proceeds to kill her.” Boris lifted the massive stick above his head. “I guess this is the part where I kill you.”
    The dirt exploded around the pair and shots echoed throughout the small alcove.
    “What the ****?”
    Boris darted to the left. Kairi took her chance and ran to his right. Someone was shooting from the trees, and whoever they were they had the intent to kill.
    “Who is that?!?” screamed Boris. He ran low to the ground, using agile leaps to get round trees. The hail of bullets continued and finally stopped. Kairi looked to Boris and he looked back. Then she looked at Sara, strapped to a log 50 yards away. Her gaze went back to Boris.
    Out from the trees stepped Misty. She was reloading a weapon (Kairi noted that this was a simple pistol) while staring at Boris.
    Kairi looked at the ground around her. There was the stone she had recently tripped on, some random sticks, lots of mud and puddles, and an Uzi.
    Uzi.
    She ran for the weapon, and Boris followed suit. Luckily for her, the weapon was not 10 yards away, and she picked it up with ease. Turning to her left she pointed it straight at Boris.
    “Don’t move!” she commanded, her voice nervous and unsteady. She strived for the appearance of a daring cop but ended up with nervous schoolgirl. Misty ran up to Boris and also pointed her gun at him.
    “Don’t move!” she said, dittoing Kairi. Boris stood in-between the two. They had him in a pincer. Kairi was on the right and Misty was on the left - with poor old Boris stuck in the middle.
    “Who have you killed?” asked Misty.
    “Quite a few,” laughed Boris, calm in this unnerving situation. Although surrounded by angry girls with guns, he answered her question as if it was casual conversation. “Mish was my first, and quite a good kill too. If only I could have had some of that body before she went down.” Boris licked his lips and smiled. “After that I went with a bit of Sora, Ris was another. Of course I’m just generalizing here. They may not have been the only ones I killed.”
    The two kept up their weapons, their gazes never faltering, and the rain continued to pour down. The interrogation continued.
    “Boris…” gasped Kairi. “What the hell is wrong with you?”
    “Well, that’s not a very nice question, is it?” asked Boris. He was grinning, his eyes twitching back and forth. The girls were unsettled by his incautious approach.
    “Why is Sara tied up?” shouted Misty. All eyes turned toward Sara, still tied to the log and still drenched in rain. She was looking at them with terror in her eyes.
    “Oh, that,” said Boris. “I thought I’d spice up the game a little… you know, kidnap a member, torture her… the whole get-up-and-go. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about.”
    Misty said slowly, “Who… did you kidnap her from?” Boris burst into laughter at this.
    “Oh, I kidnapped her from her boyfriend, of course! You should have seen the look on his face! He was sort of like ‘Oh, ****, she’s being taken’ and ‘Oh, damn, I can’t do anything ‘cause I’m too stupid to fight Boris.’ It was hilarious!” Boris cackled, his stick - still sharp on both ends - swinging to and fro.
    Misty held the pistol at Boris. Kairi held the Uzi at Boris. He was surrounded, with nowhere to run. Kairi decided to let him know this.
    “You’re surrounded, Boris,” she said. “You can’t get out of this.”
    “That’s where you’re wrong,” said Boris, smiling and raising his eyebrows. He relaxed his body and let the stick hang loose. “See, you’re two girls holding guns that you have no clue how to use. You also have no clue how to pull the trigger and how much the gun is going to recoil when you pull it. You have no clue if the gun will shoot up or down when you fire it. I, on the other hand, know all of these things, because I’m smarter than everyone left on this island. I may sound like a despicable, vile villain, but I am surely correct. And you, my friends, will surely die.”
    Boris chucked the stick at Kairi’s stomach. It flew through the air like a giant spear before slamming into her gut. Blood spurt from the opening and the stick went right through her body. It lodged about halfway in, blood dribbling down her back and front. Red liquid poured from her open mouth. She was completely stunned.
    “I also have the element of surprise,” said Boris. With one final smile he grabbed the stick out of Kairi’s body and shoved it through her head. Her skull collapsed inward and the stick completely annihilated her brains. She was killed instantly.
    Boris turned on Misty and said, “You’re turn.” He picked up the stick and lunged his body at her. She pulled the trigger but he ducked and the bullet blew off Kairi’s arm. Her body still swung from the end of the stick, to the left and to the right, in violent motions - generally, it went all over the place. Blood flew from her body as it moved, and no matter how much Boris moved her body still managed to hang from the end of the wooden pole.
    Boris stabbed at Misty with the other end of the stick. It went right through her neck and she dropped her gun. Boris held her up in front of him.
    “That is how weak you are,” he said spitefully. She coughed up crimson and gurgled as she tried to speak, but nothing came out. “Are you to afraid to speak?” he smiled.
    He grabbed the Uzi from Kairi’s hand and put it to Misty’s forehead, between the eyes.
    “I could let you die painfully, with a massive stick lodged through your neck, or I could kill you now. Since I’m a merciful man, I’ll do away with you.”
    Boris pulled the trigger of the Uzi and Misty’s head exploded from the sheer force of the bullets. The eerie typewriter rattling sound fell over the island again. Misty was dead. Kairi was dead. They had the chance to kill Boris but failed.
    Boris had yet another victory under his belt. He turned to see Sara, shivering in the cold, her eyes wide with fright.
    “You’re next,” he grinned.

    3 members remaining

    45

    Sara watched in shock as Boris held up the stick. The two girls - Misty and Kairi - were hanging from both ends of the stick. Blood dripped down their bodies and off the red shoes.
    “Wow, this is like a big weight,” said Boris, moving it up and down as if he was lifting a real weight bar. “Misty is the 100 pound bell and Kairi is the 400!” He laughed at his cruel joke.
    “You’re horrible,” screamed Sara. She stared at him and he looked back. He dropped the girls and the stick and ran right up to Sara and looked her in the face.
    “What did you say to me?” he said through gritted teeth.
    “You’re. Horrible.”

    “You’ll pay for that, *****.”
    “Will I, Boris? And what will you do?”
    You see, Sara was standing up to Boris for only one reason. As the fight had progressed, from Misty firing from the trees to Boris killing them both, Sara had been using a sharp rock to untie the ropes binding her to the log. Now, in plain view, Boris was in front of her. All she had to do was swing her arm and hit him in the back of the head. And hopefully he’d be dead.
    ‘I’ll talk to him for a bit,’ she thought. ‘It’s risky, but I want to know more about him.’
    “Why did you rape me?” she asked.
    “Oh, that’s quite simple,” began Boris. “You see, what would my victory be worth if I couldn’t go back home and tell my friends about my rapage of a damsel in distress? Now I can tell them that I killed some hot *** and, well… got some hot ***. I may sound like an evil man here, but it’s the way I work. Kill, eat, sex, kill… you could say it’s my own little strategy for winning this game.”
    “Funny,” said Sara. “I’m sure you got a real kick out of killing all those people.”
    “Oh, you should experience it!” he said. “To kill is just fabulous! The rush and the feeling you get when you blow someone’s head off! Like when I just killed Misty. I loved the taste if the blood that flew on my face. In fact, if it wasn’t time for me to kill you I’d be drinking from her face right now.”
    “Do you realize how utterly disgusting that is?” asked Sara.
    “I am a disgusting person,” said Boris.
    “At least we both agree on something,” said Sara.
    “I’m sure we both agree on lots of things!” said Boris.
    “Like what?” asked Sara, curious.
    “Oh, that I was a great admin. Roxas told me that you always admired me.”
    ‘Roxas,’ thought Sara. ‘He’s dead now.’
    “We agree on that for sure; I do think I’m a great admin. And we also agree that Deathspank is crazy for putting us in this game. The only difference is that you hate him for it and I thank him.”
    “Deathspank was always stupid,” said Sara. “I would never have seen something like this coming, but I guarantee you he’s the type of person to pull something like this off.”
    “See, that’s three things we agree on!” laughed Boris.
    “And it ends there,” said Sara.
    “Well,” sighed Boris. “I guess it’s about time I kill you. How do you want to go? I can either kill you slowly by gouging out your eyes with my fingernails or shooting you in the stomach, or I could make it quick by sticking nails up your nostrils and cutting off your legs.”
    “None of those are very quick,” said Sara, rather bluntly.
    “Exactly!” laughed Boris. “Anyway, time to die!”
    Boris pulled out a pistol and clicked it on, ready to shoot.
    “Boris,” started Sara, “I’d just like to say one thing before I die.”
    “And what would that be, my princess?”
    The rain pattered on the grass and mud. Lightning flashed in the distance. It was pitch black, the time nearing 6 P.M. Sara sat against a wet log, her hands behind her back. Boris was crouched in front of her, holding a pistol at point blank.
    Sara smiled, and said her final words to Boris:
    “Dude, you are one mentally ******ed ****ed up person. And I hate you.”
    Her arm moved like a cannon and the sharp stone in her hand found direct contact with Boris’s head. The stone hit his left temple, and the bone immediately cracked. His left eye flew from its socket and a slimy trail of brain followed. The bone splintered into his brain, stabbing him and destroying his brain cells.
    Boris felt only a second of pain before he was killed, a very unfitting end for such a horrible person. His body slumped forward and the gun dropped from his limp hand. Sara got up on her feet for the first time in ages. She stretched her legs and watched as Boris’s body splashed into the slushy mud. His head sloshed to the right in a very crooked manner and his eyes went into the back of his head.
    Sara pulled her hair back with her hand. Her fringe had grown rather unruly as the days had gone on. And she smelt like mud and crap.
    “Wow…” she breathed. She took another look at Boris’s dead body. Everything had happened so fast. Then again - it was better that way. There weren’t any risks for her. And she had had the chance to delve into the mind of a psychopath before she had killed him.
    “Sara!”
    She looked up to see Arc bound through the underbrush.
    “Arc!” she said.
    The two ran up to each other and embraced. They held each other as the rain poured. There were no threats, and the 6 o’clock announcement was about to begin. They didn’t know they were the only two left, but it didn’t matter to them. They were together.

    2 members remaining
    46

    “Sara, I thought you were dead for sure!”
    The rain poured through the tops of the trees. Thunder echoed in the distance. Hundreds of stars were out, unable to be seen through the vicious storm. Arc held Sara in his arms. Tears fell from his eyes, landing in a puddle made from someone’s footprint.
    “Sara… I thought I’d lost you. I thought Boris had you.”
    “He’s dead. I killed him, Arc.”
    The two spoke hurriedly, rushing their words in angst and fear, as if there was anything for them to be worried about.
    “I’m so glad I’ve found you,” said Arc. Sara’s head was on his shoulder, and she was sobbing as he held her.
    “Arc, I was worried I’d never see you again,” cried Sara. “I was worried that you’d been killed. I was… worried that I’d be killed.”
    Arc looked deep into Sara’s eyes.
    “I’ve found you,” he said. “I have finally found you. There’s nothing for you to worry about.” After saying this, Arc looked around. He looked at Boris’s dead body; at the girls lying dead on the floor. Their bodies were soaked in mud.
    Arc bent down and snatched the gun from Boris’s hand.
    “Just in case,” said Arc.
    “Arc, what do we do?” asked Sara. She was still crying, and she buried her head into his chest. He held her close again.
    “I don’t know,” said Arc. “We wait, I guess.” Sara’s sobs didn’t settle.
    “Arc… what happened to you?”
    “I searched for you until I found you,” said Arc. “I needed to find you, and I have. If only to see you one last time, to hold you… that’s what I wanted. And if I die now, I’ll die with you in my arms, knowing that I have seen you once more.”
    “Me too,” said Sara half-heartedly, somewhere amiss a smile. “Arc, you risked your life for me. You ran to me while Boris was fighting Sora. You even fought for me after he had killed Ris. Why?”
    Arc looked at the ground. He shifted the gun in his hand and tried not to look at Sara.
    “I love you,” he said.
    The sound of thunder was soft. The rain had lessened to a small clip. It pattered on the leaves, the mud, the bodies of the dead, the buildings of Mackinac Island, the Fort, and Arc and Sara. Sara looked into Arc’s eyes and said softly, slowly:
    “I love you too.”
    Their hug was everlasting, interrupted only by a short beep. A weary, tired voice, identifiable only as Deathspank, said slowly the names of those who had died, the danger zones, and finally it sounded off with a small bye. The 6 PM announcement had ended.
    “No,” said Sara. She fell back from Arc.
    “No,” she repeated, this time louder.
    “…” Arc was speechless. He looked to the night sky and back down at Sara.
    “We’re… the only two left,” said Sara, confirming the impending nightmare. “There’s… no one else but us left alive on the whole island.”
    “You’re right,” said Arc.
    “Come here,” Sara said with her arms open. Arc hugged her once again as tears slipped from both of their eyes. The rain had completely stopped. Birds began to sing in the trees and bright moonlight illuminated the small cove.
    “Sara…” gasped Arc. “There can only be one winner.”
    Arc stepped back from Sara.
    “I know,” agreed Sara. “I guess we’re going to die together.”
    “Die together…” repeated Arc. “Or…”
    “Or what?” Sara shouted quickly.
    “Sara,” said Arc. “Only one of us can live. You know this. It’s the first thing we were told about this game.”
    “Today’s forum thread - you will all kill each other till one is remaining.”
    “That’s what Deathspank had told us…”
    “Arc, what are you saying?!?”
    “Sara…” Arc tilted the gun and looked at its side.
    “Arc!” cried Sara.
    “Only one of us can live,” said Arc again. “What would be the point in us both dying when one could continue to survive?”
    “Arc, don’t!” screamed Sara.
    “I have to do it!” said Arc. “I have to do it… for you. So that you can continue to live and have a future!” His face was covered with his own tears. They had completely washed away the rain left on his face. “Sara, I want you to carry on! I want you to live and love another person. I’ll never see you again, but I want you to be happy!”
    “How am I supposed to be happy if you’re not with me?!?” screamed Sara. “You say it like I’ll be fine! How could you?!?”
    Sara charged at Arc. She grabbed for the gun but Arc swiftly moved around her.
    “If one of us has to die…” Arc began, “Then it’ll be me.”
    Her eyes were blurry with tears. Arc looked at her with sadness in his eyes, an almost longing to stay with her. But she knew now that he couldn’t. He wouldn’t let her die, even if she tried to persuade him. It was time for her to give up all hope.
    Arc fell to his knees, the mud swallowing them instantly. Rain picked up again, getting heavier and heavier as Sara walked over to Arc. Heaviness set in her heart as she bent down in front of him. She grabbed him by the shoulders and kissed him.
    “I love you, Arc.”
    “I love you too, Sara. I always will.”
    Arc raised the gun to his chin. Sara stared into his eyes as he looked at her through his. Tears were pouring from his eyes but he made no sobbing noises or motions.
    “Goodbye.”
    Sara closed her eyes and heard the gunshot. She heard something splash into the mud. As she opened her eyes she saw Arc falling back, his eyes showing no emotion. The gun was lying on its side under his body. He fell back and splashed into the mud. The rain picked up its pace and splattered onto his dead body. Puddles of dirty, muddy water turned red in the moonlight.
    Sara fell to her knees and broke down in sobs. She bent over Arc’s body and held his hand. The tears came and didn’t stop. Arc’s eyes were fixed skyward. His face showed no emotion.
    “Arc!” screamed Sara. “ARC!”
    A river of light poured from the trees. Soldiers with helmets in black gear stormed in on the scene. Flashlights were strapped to their large automatic machine guns. One grabbed Sara by the arm and pulled her away from Arc.
    “ARC!” she screamed. She grasped for him as she was pulled through the mud. His lifeless eyes didn’t follow her as she was pulled away. The bodies of soldiers crowded around his body, and he was hidden from view.
    “NO!” screamed Sara. She dug her nails into the arm of the soldier pulling her away. He flinched and let go of her arm. Sara got up and ran for Arc.
    “Stop her!” said the soldier. The ones surrounding Arc turned around and stopped her. She writhed and contorted to get away from them but they held on.
    “I hate you all!” shouted Sara, crying and screaming.
    “Let me go!” The soldiers held on tight.
    “Calm her,” said the soldier she had ripped free from.
    A massive, black club swung through the air and slammed into the back of Sara’s head. She was knocked unconscious immediately, and all thought was lost.
    “Good job, men,” said a voice from the trees. Out stepped Deathspank, donning a yellow umbrella to keep off the now torrential rain. Unlike his, Sara’s hair was stuck together and matted, as were the soldiers’. Deathspank didn’t have a drop of rain on him.
    “Move her to the school. Deactivate her collar first.”
    He walked up to Boris’s body and kicked it.
    “Too bad he’s dead.” He looked at the dead bodies of Misty and Kairi.
    “Looks like he got these two pretty badly.” His final stop was at the body of Arc.
    “Such a pity,” he said, looking down. “You could have killed Sara and won the game. Too bad you love her.” He bent down and closed Arc’s eyelids with his thumb and finger.
    “Good job, buddy,” he said. Deathspank immediately stood up and turned to the soldiers.
    “Get the dead bodies. Burn them. Then take this girl to the school. Keep her locked up. We leave the island at dawn.”
    No more gunshots were fired on Mackinac Island. For once, peace and quiet roamed free. The dead bodies of those who had participated were collected and burned. Weapons were destroyed in a machine. The blood was cleaned off of the buildings and stone.
    Twenty-nine members of a small community message board had been killed over the past 72 hours. Whether it was by gun, suicide, or a well placed trap, they all died mad. They were mad for one reason - the government - for the government had twisted their minds into thinking that playing game was their only chance. Some had fought back; some had tried different methods other than killing, but most of the forum members had gone crazy by the time they walked out of the school building.
    Only one of those members had made it out alive. Only one girl, by the name of Sara, had survived the ruthless game. Deathspank stood in the rain, swinging the gun Arc had used to kill himself and looking at the bodies of the dead around him being burned in a massive bonfire, their stench filling his nostrils. Only then, as he looked at the bloodstained gun in his hand, did Deathspank finally burst into tears.

    1 student remaining - Game Over - Report from Mackinac Island, Unit Leader Deathspank, Confirmed by KH-Vids Royale Headquarters Tracking System


    47

    “You know, girl, I never would have expected you to win. Of all the people on the island, you were probably the least expected to come out of the Royale alive. It wasn’t my choice though, it was yours, and it looks like you won. Then again, it was sort of Arc’s choice. He killed himself and there was nothing you could do about it, especially with the instantaneous way he did it. Luckily, my soldiers and I jumped in before you killed yourself. Who knows what you would have done if we hadn’t have been there. What is it, Sara? What would you have done if we hadn’t been there? Would you have picked up the gun and blasted your own head off just like Arc did?”
    “Yes, I would have. I would have taken the gun from his hand and killed myself. You’d find us both together, dead, gone, forever destroyed. That is the way I had wanted it to be, at least…”
    The water shimmered a brilliant blue, the clouds were dispersed and wispy, and Alpha-A801’s blades whirred in the air as it flew towards land. Deathspank, Sara, and two helicopter pilots were making their way back to Michigan. The helicopter had left in the early dawn, taking the four up into the air and out over Lake Michigan. They had been traveling for over two hours already. Their destination was the Detroit Metro Airport, where Sara would be flown back to her home state of Maine.
    “Arc killed himself to save you, Sara. Isn’t that what you wanted? Would you have honestly killed yourself to save him?”
    “Yes, I would have!” Sara screamed in reply. “I loved him, Deathspank! He was so pure to me; I knew he was the one! You have gone and taken this all away from me! It was all you and this stupid Royale! Deathspank, you could never know true love. True love is to you is getting laid behind some backwater bar!”
    “Yes, you’re probably right,” chuckled Deathspank. “But don’t you think that that is a good thing? Don’t you think that it is better that I have avoided love? Right now, I’m beaming and happy. You’re sad, dismal, depressed, downright shocked, and all because of love, correct? So which is better, love, or being loveless?”
    Sara was still recovering from the evening before. Tears remained on the edges of her eyes, and she found herself stiffening the occasional sob.
    “Deathspank,” she sobbed. “The better option…”
    Sara whipped her hand behind her back and grabbed the helicopter’s fire extinguisher.
    “Is LOVE!!!” she roared. Sara brought her arms over her head, the fire extinguisher clasped between her hands.
    “What are you-?!”
    The fire extinguisher slammed into Deathspank’s face. Crimson rain splattered against the helicopter’s windows. Bone ripped through the soft skin covering his face, chunks of skin meeting the blood pasted against the windshield.
    “You, don’t, know, anything!” Sara screamed, smashing his face with the blunt object again, and again, and again. A pink paste oozed from Deathspank’s ripped skin, his eyes bugging from his head. His cheek bones stabbed into his blood vessels, blood spewing from his mouth like a hose. Violent epilepsy caused him to vomit as he fell face down.
    Sara clenched her fists, breathing hard as Deathspank lay on the floor. The helicopter pilot scrambled to find a weapon, but had to continue flying.
    “What are you doing?” Deathspank managed to squeeze through coughs of blood.
    “Avenging Arc,” Sara grinned. She began to laugh as she looked at Deathspank’s bloody mess of a face. Bending down, she raised her thumbs above his eyes.
    “You never deserve to see my face again,” she smiled, stabbing her thumbs into his eyes. Black blood leaked from the sides of her thumbs. She pulled them away as yellow pus began to spurt from Deathspank’s mangled eye sockets. Sara grabbed the fire extinguisher and slammed it into Deathspank’s mouth, shattering his teeth and ripping his gums.
    “I win,” Sara laughed, “and I’m taking you down with me.”

    She jumped from the helicopter with Deathspank’s body in hand. Her body hit the calm fresh water of Lake Michigan, and the helicopter driver never saw her again.

    Epilogue

    An old man, wearing overalls and a pin striped shirt, was smoking a pipe as he sat in a road side grill. He was somewhere in South America, and the white whiskers around his mouth were an odd contrast to his darkly tanned face. The grill was called ‘El Chupacabra Roadside’ which meant something along the lines of ‘The Beast’s Hidden Grill.’ But the old man didn’t care what it translated to in English. He couldn’t speak English anyway. If he could, he’d be the happiest man in the world. He could leave behind his red sand and cactus life for a new one in the big cities of America. Everyone dreamed of going to the United States. The money was easy, there was a strong middle class, and the government was effectively working to help the nation in every way possible. That was just not life where he was living.
    A Latino woman in a blue dress and white apron walked up to the man. Red lipstick covered her mouth, her eyes with dark mascara circled around them. Her long black hair was bundled up behind her head in a large bun. She collected his menu and asked him in Spanish, “What would you like to eat sir? Have you taken a look at our special soups or meals of the day yet? Today’s soup is Chili Rice, mixed with mint herbs. It also comes with extra crackers. Unfortunately, we don’t have a special meal today.”
    The man replied, also in Spanish, “I’d just like a cheeseburger with fries please, and could you please use a bun with no sesame seeds on it? I don’t want to turn out positive during drug tests or anything like that.”
    “Ci,” the woman walked off toward the counter, where you could see overweight chefs cooking what would be a greasy and fattening (yet delicious) meal. The place itself was plain grimy, from the seats to the tables to the floors. Everything had an aura of sickness about it. The man was scared he would catch a disease in the rotten place. Some black liquid was on the floor to his left. Several pickles were stuck to the bottom of a table, and where he was sitting a layer of muck covered the eating surface placed in front of him. It was truly disgusting.
    “NEWS ALERT!” screamed the television hanging in the top right corner of the grill. There were television sets all around the room, but the easiest for the man to see was the one on the far wall of the restaurant. Several other heads turned to look at the screen, along with others in the restaurant looking at different TVs, all hanging from a steel ceiling, along with steel walls and large oval windows.
    The channel itself was broadcasting in English, but Spanish subtitles scrolled along the bottom of the screen as the man spoke. They were small and white, and would change quickly. The man, though, was literate in Spanish, and found it easy to read them. It was the ‘Fox’ (Fox 2 to be exact) channel, but the old man had no clue what that meant as the waitress set a large glass cup of chilled coke in front of him. The only television channels he knew were one; which was the local news, and three; which was the channel his mother would watch. As a farmer, he himself did not own a TV, and enjoyed watching them whenever he could.
    The cup was misty, and the old man felt joy to feel the moisture spread through his mouth as he took a long sip. His taste buds were happy - for the moment, so he tuned back in to the news report. Watching the television was a relief, he’d been watering his crops all day (a dry spell had recently come through) and one of his pigs had given birth to two new piglets. As proud as he was, it felt great to be able to sit back and take a drink.
    There was a picture on the television screen of an island, and charred buildings were shown. There was a room that had been completely destroyed in an explosion. Bullet holes were seen in the wall of a building. Blood was dripping from a sharp wire that hung in a door way. Two men in black jackets that read ‘FBI’ on the back in big yellow letters were hauling a body onto a truck large truck. Other bodies seemed to be stacked on top of each other in a big pile, all located in the big compartment of the automobile. The two men then walked off to grab what looked like another body, but the old farmer was unable to see for sure as the camera switched to a news reporter in his mid 40s, folding papers.
    “This is where the ‘game’ as they called it, was held. To try and eradicate the juvenile delinquents of the world, the US of A held the battle where they pitted 30 members of an online community against each other. This was no ordinary battle, this was a fight to the death, and until one remained. But the plan backfired,” said a white reporter, his hair parted in a perfect 5:3 ratio. The subtitles that were just on the screen disappeared as he paused to shuffle the papers in front of him. Behind him in a smaller box was the image of a girl lying face down on the road, blood surrounding her head in a pool. The large red words ‘US Scandal’ were written across the bottom of the screen. Of course, the old man in the seat never read this, as he was illiterate in English - but he was able to read the disturbing subtitles.
    “The government dumped the youths on this island located somewhere in the Mackinac Straights. The exact name of the island was disclosed, but whatever the US was thinking they weren’t thinking straight. They obviously hadn’t gone that extra mile with security features, because something happened in that game,” said the man, swiveling in his chair to face the camera as a new angle was set. His face was completely serious, even more so than the normal news reporter would be whilst giving news.
    “The winner of the game decided to take it all the way. Sara (kh-vids.net administrator, kh-vids.net forum, kh-vids.net, Girl No. 2), one of the participants, ended up winning the massive duel. Supposedly, while traveling on a boat to get home, she killed the crew and the forum leader Deathspank before steering the boat on a crash course. Deathspank was the leader of the ‘game’, called the Impertinent Youths Annihilation Act, IYAP, although now foreign countries have started to adopt this new system and the name is being changed to ‘International Youths Removal System’, IYRS. IYRS has been adopted by more than 40 countries already, all which are setting up ‘games’. But after what has happened with this one, must new steps be made to protect the world from delinquents?”
    Now behind the reporter was a boat that had been crashed on some rocks. More men with black jackets that read ‘FBI’ on them were walking around the boat, examining it from many various angles. Wooden planks littered the area, and the boat was on its side. The men were wading through water, grabbing pieces of debris. A body was washed up on the beach, laying there without anyone going near it.
    The man put down his cheeseburger and started watching intently. Others around the roadside restaurant mimicked him. All heads were turned to the TVs, including the chefs, waiters and waitresses’
    “Sara (the TV then showed a picture of a girl with long black hair. She looked miserable as if she was in a mug shot. The words ‘winner’ were pasted in yellow under her face) has yet to be found. It is rumored that she has traveled to South America and is planning on fleeing across seas. But that’s not all. Many countries are outraged with what the U.S.A. has done, and many countries have launched war on them. With 192 countries in the world, and only 40 countries adopting the new system, it is bound to be that all these countries will eventually be destroyed. World masterminds that have not adopted the IRYS system are Russia, all of South America, and all of Europe. India and China have also not adopted the system. Countries like Japan, Iran, Iraq, most Middle Eastern countries and a few 3rd world African countries have adopted the terrible system. Is this the spark for a World War 3? Sara is at large with charges of Federal Misconduct, Breaking and Entering, and First Degree and Second Degree murder.” The camera returned to the reporter with the 5:3 ratio hair, and zoomed up on his face. “If you have seen this girl, please call the police immediately. There is a reward for those who find her. She is deemed armed and dangerous, and wanting to kill. If you have any information, then call the police immediately.”
    The man looked around the restaurant. Everyone else had their eyes glued to the TV except for one person. Whoever they were, they were wearing an overly large coat and had a blue cap pulled down over their eyes. Long black hair streamed from the back of the hat. Something triggered in the back of the old man’s head. There was something about this girl that didn’t seem right. She was too white, and looked like she hadn’t been in the South American area for long at all. And there was something else weird about her - under the faint hood he saw her lips form into a small smile. The old man realized he had found that girl; Sara was the name he had heard many times.
    Knowing what must be done; he got up and hobbled toward the counter where a pay phone was located. It had free phone calls to the police, so he quickly dialed the familiar number. The black phone, bolted to a thick metal cord, vibrated softly as the police telephone line ran once, twice, and then a lady’s voice was heard. She spoke politely and loudly.
    “Hello, this is the SA protection and services police hotline, how may I help you?” said the lady. The man could hear more phones ringing in the background and the shuffling of papers.
    “I believe I have some information on this escapee girl called Sara,” said the farmer. His voice was hoarse and raspy - he smoked too much. But it wasn’t his fault. Scientists say that it takes a full three weeks to develop a habit, but the old farmer felt like it had been mere days to become hooked on nicotine. This wasn’t a bother to him though, but sometimes he would get annoyed when his peers couldn’t understand what he was saying due to the quiet, soft tones he would make with his voice.
    “You have some information?” began the lady, her tone changed from happy to serious immediately. “Please give us all you’ve got. Anything would be helpful at the moment.”
    “Well,” started the old man. “I’m at the El Chupacabra Roadside restaurant, the one on the main road through the desert. There’s a gas station and car repair garage outside of it. Well, I think the girl is here, although I’m not sure.”
    “What does she look like?” asked the police operator.
    “She had long black hair. It falls down her back. Her face seems kind of pale, although it’s hard to see because she’s wearing a blue cap down over her face. There’s also a gray hoodie draped around her shoulders, but she isn’t wearing it. Around her torso is a blue shirt that says some English words on it. Does this sound like her?”
    “Just a moment!” said the woman in a hurry. The old man listened to the bustle of feet on the other end of the phone. There was shouting and then some loud footsteps echoed through the phone receiver. More voices, loud and gruff, grunted some Spanish words. Something smashed and then the lady was back on the phone.
    “Thank you for your information, sir, we have police on the way right now,” said the woman. Then the phone clicked and went dead.
    The old man made stiff strides toward his mucky table, until he sat down and took a sip of his delicious drink. He looked over at the girl, who was looking back at him. Her eyes searched him - prying at him and delving into his deepest secrets. He felt intimidated, but turned away from her to look out the window. Was this really the girl? If it was, maybe he’d get a handsome reward. He could finally move out of this god forsaken country.
    Looking out the perfectly clear window, he saw other Mexican people loading their cars with gas. One child was helping his mother hold the gas pump. A man in a business suit was fumbling with his coins whilst trying to insert them into the machine. Another drove out of the small area, leaving a path of dust in his wake. Behind that was a picturesque scene - dark red and tan colored sand with cactus plants growing in random spots. In the distance were the outlines of some mountains, jagged like the edge of a broken piece of glass. These were dark red, and above was an extremely bright golden sun. It was the typical hot weather of the lower continent.
    The old man faintly smiled as he looked at the scene. His country really was quite beautiful, and he had such strong pride in his country too. But his smile grew even wider as he heard the soft sound of a police siren in the distance. Looking at the girl in the corner, he saw her eyes grow wide. He knew she had realized who was coming. The police; and they were coming for her. The old man lit up as he felt the cash bills in his hands, hundreds of them. That’s when she made her move.
    Jumping up from the table, she charged for the glass entrance door with a sign that read ‘open’ on it. The old man didn’t want this prey to get loose, so he jumped at her with all his might. She turned to see him and pulled out a small knife. Her arm moved in a wide arc and thrust toward him. It cut into his hand, and he felt his middle and index fingers become detached from his body. Blood flew into the air from the open wounds, and his fingers fell to the grimy floor. The man landed on the floor with a loud crash and felt something in his waist crack. He watched as the girl turned to look at him before storming out the door.
    In her eye was a look of pity, a look of sorrow. But there was also hatred in her eyes, and a hidden fear. The old man burned the image of her eyes into his mind, realizing his fault. By calling the police he had made a mistake. Because in those girl’s eyes he had seen so many emotions and feeling, from lust to excitement to determination; he had realized what the most dominant feeling in her eyes was. It was the look of innocence.
    People rushed from their seats and picked up the old man. He didn’t feel any of their grabbing hands as his gazed was transfixed on the girl charging across the gas station parking lot and jumping into a top down car. He no longer felt the pain of his bleeding knuckles, with amputated fingers laying on the floor next to him, or the shattered bone in his hip that was a cause of osteoporosis. He had made the biggest mistake of his life by calling the police; and he was going to pay the price. The man shed a single tear.

    Sara burst out of the roadside grill to feel fresh air on her face. ‘That place was pretty dirty,’ she thought to herself. ‘Note to self; never, ever go back there.’ The sounds of sirens grew closer. Dust showered from her moving feet as she pounded towards her top down car, which she’d stolen from a local dealer.
    People all around - from the gas station to the auto parts garage - were staring at her. Many were pointing and whispering, but Sara no longer cared about their remarks. She had to escape… or else she would probably be killed - or at least captured and sent back to horrible America. The America that had killed her Arc.
    She leaped into the front seat of the car and jammed the keys into the slot. Turning on the car, the engine leaped to life as vibrations emanated throughout the automobile. Her foot stomped the pedal, and the car slid and squealed before firing out of the sand parking lot like a bullet out of a cannon. It shot into the main road, and she gave a sharp right and drifted into position. Looking back, police cars were right behind her.
    The day would have been so beautiful if not for the crazy car chase. The sun was shining beautifully, everything was a lovely color and it was hot but not unbearable. ‘This is the perfect weather to get a tan in,’ thought Sara. ‘But that’s kind of a stupid thought considering the situation I’m in.’
    Sara heard the pop of a gun, and the windshield in front of her shattered. ‘Damn,’ she thought, ‘These guys are seriously out to kill me.’ There was another gunshot and her right rearview mirror shattered. Sara opened the front compartment of the car and pulled out a pistol. She’d robbed it from a weapon’s dealer back in southern Mexico. But now it was hers, and she was out for the hunt.
    Holding the wheel with one hand, she turned around and started firing the pistol. The road in front of her was straight, so all she had to do was hold her hand firm and she’d be fine. A policeman popped out of the window, and she fired the pistol in his direction. The bullet soared toward him and she heard the sound of squelching grass. She saw his body recoil from the bullet, and blood sprayed from his chest. His body hung limp out of the window and blood dripped from the open wound in his torso.
    She then realized that the driver of the car had a machine gun. He fired it at her wildly, shattering glass and denting metal. Sara ducked down in her seat and felt bullets whizzing though the air above her hair. The gunfire stopped, and she looked up to see the car she was driving was careening of the main road. She quickly got herself back on track (‘I need to drive more carefully!’ she thought), and looked back to see the police cop reloading his large machine gun.
    Two sweeping shots were fired from Sara’s pistol, which shattered the windshield of the police car. The policeman driving swerved off the road and crashed into a cactus, destroying it completely. The dead cop that was hanging out of the window next to him flew from the car, landing in the desert in a huge dust cloud. The driver immediately put the car back on the main road, and pointed the gun out of the windshield. More bullets spat out of the machine gun and Sara heard a tire on her car pop. Realizing the true danger she was in, her action was swift, but she pointed the pistol at the driver in the car and pulled the trigger. She heard a pop and looked to see the man in the car with a hole through his head. Blood spurted from the open wound. The bullet that had torn through his head went next through the headrest and shattered the back windshield. The police car, now with no drivers, swerved into the desert and down a sandy hill. That was the last time Sara ever saw it. She was looking ahead now.
    As she sat on her own in this small dumpy car, a thought suddenly occurred to her. The bullets, the speeding cars, her killing two police officers, this all receded from her mind as she was thinking of this one thought.
    She was lying on a sandy beach, in a blue bikini, and Arc was next to her. He looked at her and smiled. The sun was shining brightly and there was no one else on the beach with her. Waves lapped on the shore, and time seemed to stop as everyone else on the beach completely disappeared. It was just her and Arc… the one who had died for her. And she would never forget.
    As he smiled, she smiled back. Then he got up and walked towards the ocean. She simply watched as he walked, and when he reached the edge of the ocean, the figures of all the other forum members who had died only three months ago appeared with him. There was Roxas, Cin, Sora, Boris, Deathspank, Roxas-chan, Ris, Kairi, General Grievous, Angel, Xehsin, Vivi, Reien, Element, Riku, Mish, Darkwatch, Misty, Xekvin and everyone who was killed on that island. Whether they were good or evil, they were all smiling at her. Some were waving, some were clapping. Others just stood there looking at her. But tears streamed from her eyes as she saw them all, so real. She felt like she could reach out and touch them all - that they were truly there. That all the events on Mackinac Island were just a dream and here she was during the real part of that ‘week long’ vacation Deathspank had planned for them all. She wished with all her heart that the ‘game’ had all been a dream. But, she was not able to. She remembered it all - from Arc killing himself to let her win the game from watching Mish get railed by Boris from the steeple she had been hiding in. But even seeing Boris now, smiling, all friendly, even with Deathspank, she put it all behind her and became filled with joy.
    So she smiled back.
    Waving and smiling back, they all slowly disintegrated into sand; while still smiling. She watched as the sand of their bodies joined the sand of the beach. The last to go was Arc, and as his face disappeared she felt a part of her heart disappear too.
    ‘A million grains of sand for one soul,’ she thought. ‘One soul shouldn’t equal a million grains of sand. Each soul is worthless, but as I travel to fight this government that has done this to me… I will avenge them all.’
    Then the blowing of the wind in her hair came rushing back. Now the sun was shining, but there was no ocean, just an endless sea of cactuses. Her hair blew wildly as the glass of the recently shattered windshield blew backward behind her.
    She smiled, because she knew that for now she was safe.
    Turning to the passenger seat, she could imagine Arc with her.
    And he, like at the beach just seconds ago, was smiling.
    ‘I’m on the run, that’s for sure,’ she thought.
    ‘But this government’s going down, I can tell you that.’
    Right on.
    This time we’re on - all of us forum members.
    And we won’t stop till we’ve won.

    “1 forum member remaining,”
    But now she is a part of you.



     
  14. Roxas OG

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2006
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Cin's basement
    188
    40

    Quick Recap:

    Still Alive

    Boys
    6 - Boris the Blade
    7 - Arc
    9 - Darkwatch

    Girls
    2 - Sara
    4 - Kairi
    5 - MistMighty82

    It was the morning, 9 A.M. to be exact. Deathspank’s latest announcement had left only 6 in the game. The island was quiet. The final day of the Royale was also upon them. They had to have one remaining in the next 15 hours or they were all dead.
    Rain was still pouring from the night before. Large puddles had begun to well up in the roads. No place was safe to walk. In fact, no place on the island was safe, for there were two killers out there, one of which had a thirst for blood, the other simply sitting by idly. This chapter joins us with the lazy one; Boris.
    Sara was still tied to a log, and Boris was still sitting in the tree, holding his Uzi while tapping it against his thigh and whistling. The sky was cloudy and gray in the night, and the whole setting was relatively dismal. This was not only accompanied by the fact that there were three other innocent people on the island, all alone and scared.
    Boris had stopped his little staring match, and Sara looked at the ground. Her hair was wet and she shivered from her soaked clothes. Boris stopped his tapping and turned to face her:
    “So, what do you wanna talk about?”
    Sara looked up at him, bewildered, “You actually think I want to talk to you?”
    “Well, it must be boring, sitting down there strapped to that log. Wouldn’t you just love to get off it?” he grinned.
    “Why would you ask me such a stupid question,” she replied, turning to look at the ground to her side. Boris laughed.
    “What defines a stupid question?” he asked her, and she turned again to look at him.
    He continued, “Would ‘When is Arc going to come save me?’ be a stupid question? Hmm?”
    “Just shut up!” screamed Sara.
    “You, of all people, have no right to tell me that,” said Boris.
    “I can say to you whatever I want,” said Sara.
    “Whatever you want,” said Boris. “It doesn’t matter to me. By midnight tonight everyone will be dead except you and me. And then a festival will begin.”
    “A festival?” asked Sara.
    “Yeah, a festival, that’s it,” he replied, looking at the gray clouds. “What, you’ve never heard of a festival before?”
    “Of course I know what a festival is,” she said. “You know what? I can’t believe I’m talking to you. You’re just a dirty scumbag who wants to wind me up, and I’m answering your stupid questions.”
    “Oh, that’s it!” said Boris, pointing his finger up. “So that’s what describes a stupid question; a question from Boris! Well, why didn’t you tell me that when I asked you before?”
    “Because…” began Sara, but she chose not to continue.
    “Because what?” said Boris. He was more interested than usual.
    “Because of what?” he repeated.
    “Because you have the un,” muttered Sara.
    “Oh, well that makes completely sense,” heckled Boris in a high-pitched voice, trying to imitate Sara. “He has the gun, so I better be careful of him. He could blow my brains out at any second, but since I don’t care I’ll just say he has stupid questions and blow him off whenever he asks me anything!”
    Sara felt like crying, but she held back her tears. Boris continued:
    “I’m Sara, I’m the admin of KH-Vids, and I’m so special!”
    “No you’re not!” screamed a voice behind him.
    Boris turned suddenly to see Kairi standing there, with her hands on her hips. She pulled a bloody drumstick out of her back pocket and said:
    “Boris, you’re going to die!”

    6 members remaining




    41

    Darkwatch stumbled through the forest. Jagged roots stabbed into his ankles as he wandered aimlessly, with no one to seek. He constantly glanced at his map, looking, thinking, contemplating whether he was near a danger zone or not. Several times he realized that he had almost walked into one but quickly retreated.
    “That’s right,” he laughed. “These roots can cut me up as much as they want. I’m going to win, and I mean it when I say it. I have to win, I have to see my family again, all of them, heh, and all I need to do is kill a bare minimum of people.”
    His hair was matted over his forehead, and streaks of blood ran down his face left from the rain that cascaded through the branches of the trees. The petals were soaked with water, absorbing it into their systems, using it to live. Darkwatch knew that he would only have to absorb a few more souls, and he, too, would live. But the going was getting tough. Danger zones surrounded him. If he wasn’t careful, he could become trapped in a ring of danger zones. Without any help from anyone at this point of the game, he would be left to die.
    Darkwatch’s mind was tainted with the scene of killing Xigbar. It wasn’t the fact that he had killed her that replayed in his mind, more the fact that he hadn’t had any food to eat. Then, there, coming to him in some sort of miracle form, was Xigbar. And in his mind Xigbar was a food source.
    He had started with her hand, chewing the skin off before devouring the small amount of meat on the inside. From there he ate her arms and feet. In his left hand was Xigbar’s head, held by long stringy hairs died red from her own blood. He brought it with him just in case he wanted a snack. It was often that he felt quite peckish, so why not bring a head along, right?
    The head was no problem in terms of ‘extra load’. Darkwatch was easily able to carry it round and possibly use on anyone who was scared of him. He could shove it at them and fend them off, scare them beyond belief, and maybe get a kill and a new snack at that. Darkwatch had drooped to the lowest level possible in terms of eating habits. But he did what he had to do to get by, even if that meant eating a fellow forum member.
    The time was nearing noon, when Deathspank would make his second to last announcement. If it was necessary, his last announcement would be at six P.M. At midnight, they would all be dead. Darkwatch bent down slowly and sat against the trunk of a tree. He hadn’t had much rest since the Royale began, and the cool rain water on his back made him feel all the much better. A small shrubbery was to his left, and he ripped the leaves from it and drank water off of them. Puddles were collecting in the dirt, but Darkwatch didn’t want the dirty water. He made for another shrubbery, but was interrupted as Deathspank began the noon announcement.
    “Hello to the few of you remaining.”
    His voice no longer sounded as excited and happy as it had in the first days of the Royale. It had diminished to a long drawl, dragged out and low as if he hadn’t slept for awhile. Which, of course, he hadn’t, as he was too absorbed in the frenzy of the game.
    “We have no new dead people this time around. What are you all doing? You’ve only got 12 hours left before you all get your heads blown off. You have nothing to lose, so you might as well go for the win. Why have you all die when at least one could live, right?”
    Darkwatch laughed at this. Deathspank was giving them advice that Darkwatch had thought up moments after leaving the school building. Speaking of the school building, all the memories of it seemed a blur. He was tired at the time - it was, of course, one in the morning - and couldn’t remember much. There were snapshots of some hyperactive girl and him getting his bag, which included his all handy weapon. But most of it was just snippets of blurry scenes from the moment.
    Even before that was when he was in the ballroom, eating his gourmet meal. He never expected this would happen.
    Some villains never really get over what they have done. Others do, and at this moment Darkwatch snapped. He realized the ridiculous position he was in, how helpless it was, the weapon he had received, and everything else to do with the Royale. He snapped and discovered only when thing - he had killed. Not only one person, but more than that, as if one wasn’t enough. Tears streamed from his eyes and mixed with the puddles in the dirt as he crouched in a ball. His sobs came erratically, and he coughed until he barfed.
    He thought of killing Yukai, of attempting to rape Freeshooter Xigbar and then killing and eating her. It all seemed so ridiculous, and Darkwatch wondered how he could ever do such a thing.
    He had returned to the boy he was before he even wondered upon KH-vids.net. It was the normal boy, the one who had been so happy at the holidays, and never would have thought to having killed his friends.
    And now he had, and his breakdown began to get even worse.
    “It’s not my fault!” he screamed through sobs and gritted teeth. He was curled up in a ball, lying on his side in the dirt. Soil was pasted across his cheek facing the ground, and drops of rain ran down his face. His eyes were squeezed shut and he was at the point of rocking back and forth.
    “It’s not my fault!” he said again, this time louder than before. “Deathspank made me do this! He drove me to this point of insanity! I would never do such a thing as this! None of it is my fault! He made me kill Yukai and Xigbar; he made me do all the horrible things I have done! NONE OF IT IS MY FAULT!”
    He jumped up and grabbed the hand axe, throwing it as far as he could away from him. His glasses flew fro his face and landed in the mud. Instantly, he crumpled to his knees and whimpered:
    “It’s not… my… fault.”
    The tears were genuine. The heartless killer that had been there minutes before had shriveled up in the rain that overshadowed the island. What was left was the real Darkwatch, the inner shell of his being that so yearned to shine through.
    His eyes grew red from crying so much, and he buried his head in his knees.
    “Someone help me,” he said. “I just wanna get off this island. I’m so scared. Someone is coming to kill me, I just know it. I don’t want to do. Please, lord, let me go.”
    He looked to the sky to see only gray clouds. Rain soon clouded his vision and he looked back down.
    But in his vision was Misty, holding a silver pistol in her hand, and it was pointed straight at Darkwatch.
    “Misty?” he said softly. His glasses were deep in a thick layer of mud. Everything looked blurred and distorted without them.
    “Misty?” he said again, this time louder than before. “Misty, is that you?”
    “Yes,” said the voice. The blurred figure got closer. Darkwatch saw something silver in her hand, but he couldn’t make out what it was.
    “Misty, have you come to help me?” he asked. He felt like he sounded like a ******ed person, but he was scared and alone. Everyone on this island was scared and alone.
    “I don’t know if I should help you,” said Misty. Darkwatch watched as she bent down and pulled something out of the mud. She then walked over to him and said, here.
    He grabbed the item in his hands and asked, “What is it?”
    “Your glasses,” she replied. Darkwatch wiped them on his shirt and put them on. Everything bloomed into focus, and he saw that it was indeed Misty, and the silver object in her hand was indeed a gun.
    “You have a gun!” he exclaimed.
    “Yeah, but don’t worry, I don’t plan on using it on you,” she said. She bent down and smiled at him. But as soon as the smile came across her face, it fled to one of a frown.
    “What’s this?” she said, moving behind Darkwatch. She bent down to look at the odd object and screamed.
    “That’s Freeshooter Xigbar’s head!” she screamed, jabbing her finger towards the decapitated cranium. Her eyes bugged out of her head and her frayed her bobbed wildly.
    “I have… done wrong,” said Darkwatch, looking towards the ground.
    “I’m getting out of here!” she said, and began to run off.
    “No!” said Darkwatch, and ran after her. He launched himself towards her and grabbed her skirt. Misty screamed and tried to bat him off.
    “Get off me!” she commanded, but to no avail. Darkwatch clamped his hands firmly on her skirt.
    “Please don’t leave me!” he cried. “I don’t want to be alone! You won’t leave me on my own, will you Misty?” He began to hold on even tighter.
    “I said get off me!” said Misty, and kicked Darkwatch in the face. There was a sick cracking sound as the boot connected with Darkwatch’s nose and he fell back. Misty pointed the gun at his face.
    “I said,” she began, “Stay… away… from me.” She took deep breaths between each word.
    “Misty… don’t leave me…” moaned Darkwatch.
    “I’m going,” she stated, and twirled to leave.
    “No, Misty!” shouted Darkwatch and ran for her. But it was too late, for Misty turned around and saw him coming towards her. Even if she had known that Darkwatch was on her side, and that he had succumbed to his sins, it wouldn’t have mattered. Her natural instinct took over and she fired the gun. The first bullet hit Darkwatch in the stomach. The second bullet hit him in the chest.
    He fell to his knees and landed face first in the mud. Smoke drifted away from the nozzle of the pistol Misty held in her hands. She swallowed massive amounts of air and stared at Darkwatch.
    Realizing what she had done, she dropped to her knees and rolled over Darkwatch before picking him up. She held his head and torso in her arms like you would hold a baby. It was just like a scene from a crap romance film - the boy/girl holds the boyfriend/girlfriend in his/her arms during the other’s dying moments.
    “Misty… don’t leave me,” said Darkwatch, repeating what he had said many times before.
    “I won’t leave you,” said Misty. She felt her eyes well up, but forced herself not to cry. Xehsin was too much, but now she had killed herself, and it was someone innocent, alone, and scared.
    “Please… don’t leave me Misty,” he coughed, and blood splattered all over his chest. Misty removed his shirt to see two bloody holes in his chest. One was where his stomach would be, and the other was located at the top of his rib cage on the left side of his body.
    “I won’t leave you,” she said again, and a single tear leaked form her left eye.
    “Misty, I can’t let you leave,” he said again.
    “I know, I know, I won’t leave you,” she wept. “I couldn’t leave you…”
    “Please, don’t leave, not now…” he said. Misty’s tears dropped onto his face and ran down his cheeks. She used her thumb to wipe the blood of his chin.
    “Please don’t leave…”
    Darkwatch’s head fell to the side.
    “I’ll… never leave you,” said Misty before bursting into tears. She rocked back and forth, cradling the one she had killed in her arms. The rain didn’t stop, even as another member became a statistic in the ruthless game.
    Misty sat with Darkwatch until she was tired of crying. She slowly rose to her feet and put the gun in her pocket.
    She then knelt back down and brushed the hair out of Darkwatch’s face. She leaned her head down and planted a soft kiss on his forehead.
    “Goodbye,” she whispered.
    That was the last time anyone would ever see Darkwatch.

    5 members remaining

    42

    Sara sat with her hands placed firmly in her lap. Her hair was combed straight down the sides of her head, wispy at the bottom, and she gave a slight bow as the portly woman sat down across from her.
    “So, you want a job here?” asked the woman, in a loud voice. She seemed as if she’d rather be anywhere than here.
    “I am looking for a job, ma’am,” said Sara, smiling. Her mind was focused on giving this woman the best impression she could. She had been searching for a job for months. This could be her prominent shot at acquire a labor heavy job, but also a well-paying one.
    The portly woman scanned the resume. She finished it once, and immediately jumped up to the top of the page and began reading again.
    “This is a very unimpressive resume.”
    Sara winced at this, because the woman was right. Since high school she had never had much luck getting a job. This made her resume seem like crap with ‘High School Diploma’, ‘McDonalds, 2 years’, and ‘Arby’s 1 year,’ written on it.
    “I know it is, but I promise to try my hardest,” said Sara.
    “How long have you been looking for a job?” asked the portly woman.
    “Oh, very long,” replied Sara.
    “How long?”
    “Well, I’m not sure-”
    “Then get sure.”
    “About 8 months now.”
    “Do you have a home?”
    “I have a small apartment in bad condition.”
    “Can you get by with what you’ve got?”
    “Not if I don’t get a job.”
    The woman let out a great sigh. She stacked the papers neatly before placing them on the desk in front of her. She then put her hands down and looked up at Sara.
    “Look, I’ll give you the job, but I don’t want you to make many mistakes or you’ll be gone in a heartbeat.”
    “I promise to do my best!” said Sara, putting her hand near her heart.
    “Don’t promise me, go do your job and show me,” said the woman.
    Sara ran down the hall way and into the lady’s room. She jumped up in the air and let out a slight, “Yes!”
    “Don’t get your hopes up,” came a voice from a stall about 10 yards away. “Most people who get their job lose it within a week.”
    “Hello?” said Sara. A toilet flushed and then a massive woman stepped out of the stall.
    “Round these parts, newbies won’t be able to keep their jobs if they make a single mistake. You have to be careful. Boss is watching over you with a careful eye, making sure everything you do is correct.”
    This woman crept Sara out, and with good reason.
    “Uh…” stared Sara.
    The boisterous woman laughed before saying, “You don’t have to take my advice. I’ve been working here for 34 years!” She laughed again before waddling out of the restroom without washing her hands.
    Sara realized this and said, “Ew,” before going to the bathroom herself. Several minutes later her cell-phone rang.
    “Hello?” she said. Her bum was planted on the rim of a toilet seat as she spoke.
    “Sara!”
    It was Arc, her boyfriend. Evidently he sounded excited.
    “What?” she asked, intrigued.
    “Bizz bozzle blip blop!”
    “…”
    “Just kidding, Sara, but on a more serious note; I have some huge news!”
    “What is it?”
    “Well, Deathspank from KH-Vids called. He organized some huge meeting in California. As many KH-Vids members as possible are meeting there for a week. We’ll be able to see the other members in real life!”
    “Are you serious?”
    “Yeah, he just announced it. So, do you think we should go?”
    “We are admins; I think it’s necessary that we make an appearance.”
    “By the way, if we go then we’ll be leaving tomorrow.”
    “…”
    “Sara?”
    “Tomorrow?!?”
    “Yeah, tomorrow, but still, isn’t it awesome?”
    “Arc, I just got a new job! Do I quit now? You know how hard I’ve been searching for a job.”
    “Do you lie to her again?”
    “It depends on what you mean by ‘lie’.”
    “Well, did you tell her you lived in a half-assed apartment?”
    “Yes.”
    “Even though we live in a two-story house with a basement?”
    “…Yep.”
    “Oh, well…”
    “But I got the job, Arc! So should I quit?”
    “I wouldn’t even quit, just come home now and we can buy our plane tickets.”
    “Alright, I’m coming home!”
    Sara closed her cell phone and flushed the toilet. She did the usual assortment of things you do when you finish going to the toilet, including wiping your private areas massaging your - no wait, washing your hands.
    She then walked out the door to bump into the portly woman who had interviewed her. Papers flew in all different directions as the woman fell to the ground.
    “*****,” said Sara, before running at the door. She entered a metallic jungle, one filled with skyscrapers and taxis. She was in downtown New York.
    She first ran to a Starbucks Coffee.
    As soon as she walked in the door she got in line, and there seemed to be a sort of argument at the front of the line.
    “Welcome to Starbucks, what would you like?” asked the woman.
    “What can I get with 35 cents?” the boy at the front asked back.
    “Well, I guess I could give you a small cup of coffee,” replied the woman at the cashier. She was a nice young girl, some one very pretty - someone Sara desired to be.
    “No,” interrupted the boy, “I mean, what can I get for 35 cents?” When he said this, he made the finger motion of something being sucked in his mouth. Sara was shocked that he would do such a thing.
    “You’re disgusting, you know?” the girl replied arrogantly. “I’m not a whore, so don’t treat me like one.” She thrust a cup of coffee into the rude boy’s hands. “Take this.”
    Sara watched the boy walk over to his seat and pull out a laptop from his pack.
    ‘What a jerk,’ she thought. ‘I’d never even talk to someone like him.’
    She waited for her turn, in which she got a large coffee. The woman at the cashier seemed annoyed and said:
    “That dirty brat over there was giving me loads of crap.”
    “It’s ok,” said Sara, “He’s just some losers who’s trying to wind you up. Take it with a grain of salt.”
    The cashier woman smiled, “Thanks. This coffee’s on me.”
    “Thanks!” exclaimed Sara, and smiled back at her. She then retreated outside and got into a taxi.
    “Groves High School?” she asked, and the taxi pulled off. The ride wasn’t very long, and she soon arrived at her former high school. She wanted to say high to an old teacher, Mr. Kanswich, who had always been nice to her despite what other kids said.
    The familiar sites of the high school warmed her heart, but what she saw as she turned a corner did not. Some kid was beating up a load of others with a baseball bat, slamming them against walls. Another child that looked about his age was crouched on the ground behind him.
    ‘What a loser,’ she thought. ‘I hope some school officials come and get him.’
    Deciding not to have a run in with the baseball bat wielding crazed maniac, she continued forward to get to Mr. Kanswich’s class. It wasn’t long before she turned into the door, but a small girl holding a test stormed out with gritted teeth as she entered.
    “Hello,” she smiled and waved at Mr. Kanswich.
    “Sara!” he exclaimed. “It’s been all too long. How have things been going?”
    “I’ve been getting a lot better, especially with coping with everything that’s happened to me. I’ve got a nice boyfriend now, and we live together.”
    “That’s nice,” said Mr. Kanswich. “I would ask you to stay, but I’ve got a huge lesson to teach. Do you think you could come back tomorrow?”
    “Actually, I think I’m going on vacation tomorrow,” she said, and began to explain about how Arc had killed her and surprised her with a vacation to California.
    “Will you promise to visit me as soon as you get back?” he asked, grinning.
    “Of course I will,” she said. With a final wave she turned out the door and walked back down the hall.
    The kid with the baseball bat was now gone. Sara thought he was a loser, but she’d be seeing him again very soon.
    Same with the boy in Starbucks, and the one who stormed out of Mr. Kanswich’s room.
    But she did not get to talk to them once, as much as she wanted to.
    They were long gone, long gone to a world where Sara wished she could be as the rain poured down on her forehead and dribbled into her eyes. She watched as Boris and Kairi duked it out. Kairi had a simple drumstick and Boris was using the sharp sword-stick thing he had whittled.
    The time was 2:00 P.M. It wasn’t long before the game was over. Someone would have to win eventually.
    But who would it be? Would Darkwatch come from the woods and kill them all? What about Misty? Would Arc save her and then kill the others and even her? Would anger take her over and cause her to kill everyone else?
    The questions whizzed about her head but no answers came. The battle in front of her unfolded and Sara prayed that Arc would come.
    Boris was going to kill her. She knew that there was nothing she could do to stop him.
    But she could pray that Arc would see her again.
    And that’s when the bullets sprayed from the trees.

    5 members remaining

    43

    Arc had been sitting in the rain for hours. He knew the Royale was coming to a close, that over 20 brave people, each who had their own lives and stories, were dead. The twisted game had brought out who people truly were, especially if they were evil, horrible people. Some had tried to stop others, like Mish. They didn’t deserve to die. They didn’t ask to die. But the ones that were willing to play were the ones that suffered most of all. Even if they won, how would they be greeted with open arms back at home? No mother would want to hug their child who had shed blood at the hands of a cruel government’s game. No parent would want to raise a child that had been in a game full of death. Whoever won this game would eventually go insane. Some, like Vivi, Darkwatch, and Boris had already gone insane. The scene of Yukai being struck by the hatchet replayed in Arc’s head; the blood spilling from the opening in her forehead. He had managed to escape from that, but if Darkwatch attacked him now then he would be dead meat. Even the crossbow he had was useless, as it had broken when he slipped on a rock wet with rain.
    But what pressed on his mind even more was the thought of Sara being in the hands of Boris. All the vile, horrible things he could have done to her played in his mind, horrifying him. He was unable to think up a way to save her. Boris had several dangerous guns, including the Uzi that seemed to have limitless ammo. He has seen it kill *Sora*, Mish, Ris - it only made him wonder who would be killed by the deadly firearm next.
    “What do I do?”
    The rain was loud, but the spray of bullets that he heard over the tops of the trees was even louder. Birds flew from the braches of trees, squawking and chirping as they drifted away.
    The bullets sounded close, but sound warped around objects on the island. Arc decided that the best he could do was walk in the direction of the bullets. Pulling out his map, he glanced down to check where the danger zones were. After her got his bearings, he decided that it was time to head off.
    The sky was gloomy and shadows danced across the trees. The long summer days were nice, but the dismal weather that showered upon the island was one exception. Several hundred yards of nonstop walking and Arc checked his map again. He had absolutely no idea where he was, or where the gunshots had come from. He was the needle in a haystack, and without more noise he would never be able to know where he was going.
    It was dismal, Sara was gone, and to top it all off Arc was wearing a shirt with an annoying tag at the back. Nothing could have been worse.
    Nothing?
    Arc wandered upon a crossroad.
    “God damn,” he said. “Now where am I supposed to go?”
    He had a left and a right path to choose from. It was a complete guess as to which way he should go.
    Arc put his hand on his chin and looked at the crossroads for sometime. After several minutes, he got up and walked off.
    He didn’t take the right road. He didn’t take the left road.
    Instead, Arc trampled through the weeds and ferns down the middle path. His walk turned into a run. He didn’t think about Sara, he didn’t think about danger zones, he just thought about running.
    “Kairi!”
    The voice came to his left, and he snapped his head in that direction.
    “NO!”
    More voices echoed through the trees.
    “Jackpot,” smiled Arc.

    5 members remaining

    44

    Wood splintered over Kairi’s head as she ducked. Boris moved with profound grace, slicing at her with his large stick. The end was still sharp; no matter how many times Boris stabbed stone or dirt.
    “You’re not getting away!” he said, lunging at her. She moved down and whacked him across the head with her drumstick. His eyes tilted back momentarily before he resumed his chase. Kairi ran forward before tripping on a stone. She turned to see Boris staring over her.
    “This is like a perfect horror movie scene,” he began, tilting his head. “The poor mistress runs for her dear life before tripping on some random object and falling to the ground. Then the evil villain who no one likes proceeds to kill her.” Boris lifted the massive stick above his head. “I guess this is the part where I kill you.”
    The dirt exploded around the pair and shots echoed throughout the small alcove.
    “What the ****?”
    Boris darted to the left. Kairi took her chance and ran to his right. Someone was shooting from the trees, and whoever they were they had the intent to kill.
    “Who is that?!?” screamed Boris. He ran low to the ground, using agile leaps to get round trees. The hail of bullets continued and finally stopped. Kairi looked to Boris and he looked back. Then she looked at Sara, strapped to a log 50 yards away. Her gaze went back to Boris.
    Out from the trees stepped Misty. She was reloading a weapon (Kairi noted that this was a simple pistol) while staring at Boris.
    Kairi looked at the ground around her. There was the stone she had recently tripped on, some random sticks, lots of mud and puddles, and an Uzi.
    Uzi.
    She ran for the weapon, and Boris followed suit. Luckily for her, the weapon was not 10 yards away, and she picked it up with ease. Turning to her left she pointed it straight at Boris.
    “Don’t move!” she commanded, her voice nervous and unsteady. She strived for the appearance of a daring cop but ended up with nervous schoolgirl. Misty ran up to Boris and also pointed her gun at him.
    “Don’t move!” she said, dittoing Kairi. Boris stood in-between the two. They had him in a pincer. Kairi was on the right and Misty was on the left - with poor old Boris stuck in the middle.
    “Who have you killed?” asked Misty.
    “Quite a few,” laughed Boris, calm in this unnerving situation. Although surrounded by angry girls with guns, he answered her question as if it was casual conversation. “Mish was my first, and quite a good kill too. If only I could have had some of that body before she went down.” Boris licked his lips and smiled. “After that I went with a bit of Sora, Ris was another. Of course I’m just generalizing here. They may not have been the only ones I killed.”
    The two kept up their weapons, their gazes never faltering, and the rain continued to pour down. The interrogation continued.
    “Boris…” gasped Kairi. “What the hell is wrong with you?”
    “Well, that’s not a very nice question, is it?” asked Boris. He was grinning, his eyes twitching back and forth. The girls were unsettled by his incautious approach.
    “Why is Sara tied up?” shouted Misty. All eyes turned toward Sara, still tied to the log and still drenched in rain. She was looking at them with terror in her eyes.
    “Oh, that,” said Boris. “I thought I’d spice up the game a little… you know, kidnap a member, torture her… the whole get-up-and-go. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about.”
    Misty said slowly, “Who… did you kidnap her from?” Boris burst into laughter at this.
    “Oh, I kidnapped her from her boyfriend, of course! You should have seen the look on his face! He was sort of like ‘Oh, ****, she’s being taken’ and ‘Oh, damn, I can’t do anything ‘cause I’m too stupid to fight Boris.’ It was hilarious!” Boris cackled, his stick - still sharp on both ends - swinging to and fro.
    Misty held the pistol at Boris. Kairi held the Uzi at Boris. He was surrounded, with nowhere to run. Kairi decided to let him know this.
    “You’re surrounded, Boris,” she said. “You can’t get out of this.”
    “That’s where you’re wrong,” said Boris, smiling and raising his eyebrows. He relaxed his body and let the stick hang loose. “See, you’re two girls holding guns that you have no clue how to use. You also have no clue how to pull the trigger and how much the gun is going to recoil when you pull it. You have no clue if the gun will shoot up or down when you fire it. I, on the other hand, know all of these things, because I’m smarter than everyone left on this island. I may sound like a despicable, vile villain, but I am surely correct. And you, my friends, will surely die.”
    Boris chucked the stick at Kairi’s stomach. It flew through the air like a giant spear before slamming into her gut. Blood spurt from the opening and the stick went right through her body. It lodged about halfway in, blood dribbling down her back and front. Red liquid poured from her open mouth. She was completely stunned.
    “I also have the element of surprise,” said Boris. With one final smile he grabbed the stick out of Kairi’s body and shoved it through her head. Her skull collapsed inward and the stick completely annihilated her brains. She was killed instantly.
    Boris turned on Misty and said, “You’re turn.” He picked up the stick and lunged his body at her. She pulled the trigger but he ducked and the bullet blew off Kairi’s arm. Her body still swung from the end of the stick, to the left and to the right, in violent motions - generally, it went all over the place. Blood flew from her body as it moved, and no matter how much Boris moved her body still managed to hang from the end of the wooden pole.
    Boris stabbed at Misty with the other end of the stick. It went right through her neck and she dropped her gun. Boris held her up in front of him.
    “That is how weak you are,” he said spitefully. She coughed up crimson and gurgled as she tried to speak, but nothing came out. “Are you to afraid to speak?” he smiled.
    He grabbed the Uzi from Kairi’s hand and put it to Misty’s forehead, between the eyes.
    “I could let you die painfully, with a massive stick lodged through your neck, or I could kill you now. Since I’m a merciful man, I’ll do away with you.”
    Boris pulled the trigger of the Uzi and Misty’s head exploded from the sheer force of the bullets. The eerie typewriter rattling sound fell over the island again. Misty was dead. Kairi was dead. They had the chance to kill Boris but failed.
    Boris had yet another victory under his belt. He turned to see Sara, shivering in the cold, her eyes wide with fright.
    “You’re next,” he grinned.

    3 members remaining

    45

    Sara watched in shock as Boris held up the stick. The two girls - Misty and Kairi - were hanging from both ends of the stick. Blood dripped down their bodies and off the red shoes.
    “Wow, this is like a big weight,” said Boris, moving it up and down as if he was lifting a real weight bar. “Misty is the 100 pound bell and Kairi is the 400!” He laughed at his cruel joke.
    “You’re horrible,” screamed Sara. She stared at him and he looked back. He dropped the girls and the stick and ran right up to Sara and looked her in the face.
    “What did you say to me?” he said through gritted teeth.
    “You’re. Horrible.”

    “You’ll pay for that, *****.”
    “Will I, Boris? And what will you do?”
    You see, Sara was standing up to Boris for only one reason. As the fight had progressed, from Misty firing from the trees to Boris killing them both, Sara had been using a sharp rock to untie the ropes binding her to the log. Now, in plain view, Boris was in front of her. All she had to do was swing her arm and hit him in the back of the head. And hopefully he’d be dead.
    ‘I’ll talk to him for a bit,’ she thought. ‘It’s risky, but I want to know more about him.’
    “Why did you rape me?” she asked.
    “Oh, that’s quite simple,” began Boris. “You see, what would my victory be worth if I couldn’t go back home and tell my friends about my rapage of a damsel in distress? Now I can tell them that I killed some hot *** and, well… got some hot ***. I may sound like an evil man here, but it’s the way I work. Kill, eat, sex, kill… you could say it’s my own little strategy for winning this game.”
    “Funny,” said Sara. “I’m sure you got a real kick out of killing all those people.”
    “Oh, you should experience it!” he said. “To kill is just fabulous! The rush and the feeling you get when you blow someone’s head off! Like when I just killed Misty. I loved the taste if the blood that flew on my face. In fact, if it wasn’t time for me to kill you I’d be drinking from her face right now.”
    “Do you realize how utterly disgusting that is?” asked Sara.
    “I am a disgusting person,” said Boris.
    “At least we both agree on something,” said Sara.
    “I’m sure we both agree on lots of things!” said Boris.
    “Like what?” asked Sara, curious.
    “Oh, that I was a great admin. Roxas told me that you always admired me.”
    ‘Roxas,’ thought Sara. ‘He’s dead now.’
    “We agree on that for sure; I do think I’m a great admin. And we also agree that Deathspank is crazy for putting us in this game. The only difference is that you hate him for it and I thank him.”
    “Deathspank was always stupid,” said Sara. “I would never have seen something like this coming, but I guarantee you he’s the type of person to pull something like this off.”
    “See, that’s three things we agree on!” laughed Boris.
    “And it ends there,” said Sara.
    “Well,” sighed Boris. “I guess it’s about time I kill you. How do you want to go? I can either kill you slowly by gouging out your eyes with my fingernails or shooting you in the stomach, or I could make it quick by sticking nails up your nostrils and cutting off your legs.”
    “None of those are very quick,” said Sara, rather bluntly.
    “Exactly!” laughed Boris. “Anyway, time to die!”
    Boris pulled out a pistol and clicked it on, ready to shoot.
    “Boris,” started Sara, “I’d just like to say one thing before I die.”
    “And what would that be, my princess?”
    The rain pattered on the grass and mud. Lightning flashed in the distance. It was pitch black, the time nearing 6 P.M. Sara sat against a wet log, her hands behind her back. Boris was crouched in front of her, holding a pistol at point blank.
    Sara smiled, and said her final words to Boris:
    “Dude, you are one mentally ******ed ****ed up person. And I hate you.”
    Her arm moved like a cannon and the sharp stone in her hand found direct contact with Boris’s head. The stone hit his left temple, and the bone immediately cracked. His left eye flew from its socket and a slimy trail of brain followed. The bone splintered into his brain, stabbing him and destroying his brain cells.
    Boris felt only a second of pain before he was killed, a very unfitting end for such a horrible person. His body slumped forward and the gun dropped from his limp hand. Sara got up on her feet for the first time in ages. She stretched her legs and watched as Boris’s body splashed into the slushy mud. His head sloshed to the right in a very crooked manner and his eyes went into the back of his head.
    Sara pulled her hair back with her hand. Her fringe had grown rather unruly as the days had gone on. And she smelt like mud and crap.
    “Wow…” she breathed. She took another look at Boris’s dead body. Everything had happened so fast. Then again - it was better that way. There weren’t any risks for her. And she had had the chance to delve into the mind of a psychopath before she had killed him.
    “Sara!”
    She looked up to see Arc bound through the underbrush.
    “Arc!” she said.
    The two ran up to each other and embraced. They held each other as the rain poured. There were no threats, and the 6 o’clock announcement was about to begin. They didn’t know they were the only two left, but it didn’t matter to them. They were together.

    2 members remaining
    46

    “Sara, I thought you were dead for sure!”
    The rain poured through the tops of the trees. Thunder echoed in the distance. Hundreds of stars were out, unable to be seen through the vicious storm. Arc held Sara in his arms. Tears fell from his eyes, landing in a puddle made from someone’s footprint.
    “Sara… I thought I’d lost you. I thought Boris had you.”
    “He’s dead. I killed him, Arc.”
    The two spoke hurriedly, rushing their words in angst and fear, as if there was anything for them to be worried about.
    “I’m so glad I’ve found you,” said Arc. Sara’s head was on his shoulder, and she was sobbing as he held her.
    “Arc, I was worried I’d never see you again,” cried Sara. “I was worried that you’d been killed. I was… worried that I’d be killed.”
    Arc looked deep into Sara’s eyes.
    “I’ve found you,” he said. “I have finally found you. There’s nothing for you to worry about.” After saying this, Arc looked around. He looked at Boris’s dead body; at the girls lying dead on the floor. Their bodies were soaked in mud.
    Arc bent down and snatched the gun from Boris’s hand.
    “Just in case,” said Arc.
    “Arc, what do we do?” asked Sara. She was still crying, and she buried her head into his chest. He held her close again.
    “I don’t know,” said Arc. “We wait, I guess.” Sara’s sobs didn’t settle.
    “Arc… what happened to you?”
    “I searched for you until I found you,” said Arc. “I needed to find you, and I have. If only to see you one last time, to hold you… that’s what I wanted. And if I die now, I’ll die with you in my arms, knowing that I have seen you once more.”
    “Me too,” said Sara half-heartedly, somewhere amiss a smile. “Arc, you risked your life for me. You ran to me while Boris was fighting Sora. You even fought for me after he had killed Ris. Why?”
    Arc looked at the ground. He shifted the gun in his hand and tried not to look at Sara.
    “I love you,” he said.
    The sound of thunder was soft. The rain had lessened to a small clip. It pattered on the leaves, the mud, the bodies of the dead, the buildings of Mackinac Island, the Fort, and Arc and Sara. Sara looked into Arc’s eyes and said softly, slowly:
    “I love you too.”
    Their hug was everlasting, interrupted only by a short beep. A weary, tired voice, identifiable only as Deathspank, said slowly the names of those who had died, the danger zones, and finally it sounded off with a small bye. The 6 PM announcement had ended.
    “No,” said Sara. She fell back from Arc.
    “No,” she repeated, this time louder.
    “…” Arc was speechless. He looked to the night sky and back down at Sara.
    “We’re… the only two left,” said Sara, confirming the impending nightmare. “There’s… no one else but us left alive on the whole island.”
    “You’re right,” said Arc.
    “Come here,” Sara said with her arms open. Arc hugged her once again as tears slipped from both of their eyes. The rain had completely stopped. Birds began to sing in the trees and bright moonlight illuminated the small cove.
    “Sara…” gasped Arc. “There can only be one winner.”
    Arc stepped back from Sara.
    “I know,” agreed Sara. “I guess we’re going to die together.”
    “Die together…” repeated Arc. “Or…”
    “Or what?” Sara shouted quickly.
    “Sara,” said Arc. “Only one of us can live. You know this. It’s the first thing we were told about this game.”
    “Today’s forum thread - you will all kill each other till one is remaining.”
    “That’s what Deathspank had told us…”
    “Arc, what are you saying?!?”
    “Sara…” Arc tilted the gun and looked at its side.
    “Arc!” cried Sara.
    “Only one of us can live,” said Arc again. “What would be the point in us both dying when one could continue to survive?”
    “Arc, don’t!” screamed Sara.
    “I have to do it!” said Arc. “I have to do it… for you. So that you can continue to live and have a future!” His face was covered with his own tears. They had completely washed away the rain left on his face. “Sara, I want you to carry on! I want you to live and love another person. I’ll never see you again, but I want you to be happy!”
    “How am I supposed to be happy if you’re not with me?!?” screamed Sara. “You say it like I’ll be fine! How could you?!?”
    Sara charged at Arc. She grabbed for the gun but Arc swiftly moved around her.
    “If one of us has to die…” Arc began, “Then it’ll be me.”
    Her eyes were blurry with tears. Arc looked at her with sadness in his eyes, an almost longing to stay with her. But she knew now that he couldn’t. He wouldn’t let her die, even if she tried to persuade him. It was time for her to give up all hope.
    Arc fell to his knees, the mud swallowing them instantly. Rain picked up again, getting heavier and heavier as Sara walked over to Arc. Heaviness set in her heart as she bent down in front of him. She grabbed him by the shoulders and kissed him.
    “I love you, Arc.”
    “I love you too, Sara. I always will.”
    Arc raised the gun to his chin. Sara stared into his eyes as he looked at her through his. Tears were pouring from his eyes but he made no sobbing noises or motions.
    “Goodbye.”
    Sara closed her eyes and heard the gunshot. She heard something splash into the mud. As she opened her eyes she saw Arc falling back, his eyes showing no emotion. The gun was lying on its side under his body. He fell back and splashed into the mud. The rain picked up its pace and splattered onto his dead body. Puddles of dirty, muddy water turned red in the moonlight.
    Sara fell to her knees and broke down in sobs. She bent over Arc’s body and held his hand. The tears came and didn’t stop. Arc’s eyes were fixed skyward. His face showed no emotion.
    “Arc!” screamed Sara. “ARC!”
    A river of light poured from the trees. Soldiers with helmets in black gear stormed in on the scene. Flashlights were strapped to their large automatic machine guns. One grabbed Sara by the arm and pulled her away from Arc.
    “ARC!” she screamed. She grasped for him as she was pulled through the mud. His lifeless eyes didn’t follow her as she was pulled away. The bodies of soldiers crowded around his body, and he was hidden from view.
    “NO!” screamed Sara. She dug her nails into the arm of the soldier pulling her away. He flinched and let go of her arm. Sara got up and ran for Arc.
    “Stop her!” said the soldier. The ones surrounding Arc turned around and stopped her. She writhed and contorted to get away from them but they held on.
    “I hate you all!” shouted Sara, crying and screaming.
    “Let me go!” The soldiers held on tight.
    “Calm her,” said the soldier she had ripped free from.
    A massive, black club swung through the air and slammed into the back of Sara’s head. She was knocked unconscious immediately, and all thought was lost.
    “Good job, men,” said a voice from the trees. Out stepped Deathspank, donning a yellow umbrella to keep off the now torrential rain. Unlike his, Sara’s hair was stuck together and matted, as were the soldiers’. Deathspank didn’t have a drop of rain on him.
    “Move her to the school. Deactivate her collar first.”
    He walked up to Boris’s body and kicked it.
    “Too bad he’s dead.” He looked at the dead bodies of Misty and Kairi.
    “Looks like he got these two pretty badly.” His final stop was at the body of Arc.
    “Such a pity,” he said, looking down. “You could have killed Sara and won the game. Too bad you love her.” He bent down and closed Arc’s eyelids with his thumb and finger.
    “Good job, buddy,” he said. Deathspank immediately stood up and turned to the soldiers.
    “Get the dead bodies. Burn them. Then take this girl to the school. Keep her locked up. We leave the island at dawn.”
    No more gunshots were fired on Mackinac Island. For once, peace and quiet roamed free. The dead bodies of those who had participated were collected and burned. Weapons were destroyed in a machine. The blood was cleaned off of the buildings and stone.
    Twenty-nine members of a small community message board had been killed over the past 72 hours. Whether it was by gun, suicide, or a well placed trap, they all died mad. They were mad for one reason - the government - for the government had twisted their minds into thinking that playing game was their only chance. Some had fought back; some had tried different methods other than killing, but most of the forum members had gone crazy by the time they walked out of the school building.
    Only one of those members had made it out alive. Only one girl, by the name of Sara, had survived the ruthless game. Deathspank stood in the rain, swinging the gun Arc had used to kill himself and looking at the bodies of the dead around him being burned in a massive bonfire, their stench filling his nostrils. Only then, as he looked at the bloodstained gun in his hand, did Deathspank finally burst into tears.

    1 student remaining - Game Over - Report from Mackinac Island, Unit Leader Deathspank, Confirmed by KH-Vids Royale Headquarters Tracking System


    47

    “You know, girl, I never would have expected you to win. Of all the people on the island, you were probably the least expected to come out of the Royale alive. It wasn’t my choice though, it was yours, and it looks like you won. Then again, it was sort of Arc’s choice. He killed himself and there was nothing you could do about it, especially with the instantaneous way he did it. Luckily, my soldiers and I jumped in before you killed yourself. Who knows what you would have done if we hadn’t have been there. What is it, Sara? What would you have done if we hadn’t been there? Would you have picked up the gun and blasted your own head off just like Arc did?”
    “Yes, I would have. I would have taken the gun from his hand and killed myself. You’d find us both together, dead, gone, forever destroyed. That is the way I had wanted it to be, at least…”
    The water shimmered a brilliant blue, the clouds were dispersed and wispy, and Alpha-A801’s blades whirred in the air as it flew towards land. Deathspank, Sara, and two helicopter pilots were making their way back to Michigan. The helicopter had left in the early dawn, taking the four up into the air and out over Lake Michigan. They had been traveling for over two hours already. Their destination was the Detroit Metro Airport, where Sara would be flown back to her home state of Maine.
    “Arc killed himself to save you, Sara. Isn’t that what you wanted? Would you have honestly killed yourself to save him?”
    “Yes, I would have!” Sara screamed in reply. “I loved him, Deathspank! He was so pure to me; I knew he was the one! You have gone and taken this all away from me! It was all you and this stupid Royale! Deathspank, you could never know true love. True love is to you is getting laid behind some backwater bar!”
    “Yes, you’re probably right,” chuckled Deathspank. “But don’t you think that that is a good thing? Don’t you think that it is better that I have avoided love? Right now, I’m beaming and happy. You’re sad, dismal, depressed, downright shocked, and all because of love, correct? So which is better, love, or being loveless?”
    Sara was still recovering from the evening before. Tears remained on the edges of her eyes, and she found herself stiffening the occasional sob.
    “Deathspank,” she sobbed. “The better option…”
    Sara whipped her hand behind her back and grabbed the helicopter’s fire extinguisher.
    “Is LOVE!!!” she roared. Sara brought her arms over her head, the fire extinguisher clasped between her hands.
    “What are you-?!”
    The fire extinguisher slammed into Deathspank’s face. Crimson rain splattered against the helicopter’s windows. Bone ripped through the soft skin covering his face, chunks of skin meeting the blood pasted against the windshield.
    “You, don’t, know, anything!” Sara screamed, smashing his face with the blunt object again, and again, and again. A pink paste oozed from Deathspank’s ripped skin, his eyes bugging from his head. His cheek bones stabbed into his blood vessels, blood spewing from his mouth like a hose. Violent epilepsy caused him to vomit as he fell face down.
    Sara clenched her fists, breathing hard as Deathspank lay on the floor. The helicopter pilot scrambled to find a weapon, but had to continue flying.
    “What are you doing?” Deathspank managed to squeeze through coughs of blood.
    “Avenging Arc,” Sara grinned. She began to laugh as she looked at Deathspank’s bloody mess of a face. Bending down, she raised her thumbs above his eyes.
    “You never deserve to see my face again,” she smiled, stabbing her thumbs into his eyes. Black blood leaked from the sides of her thumbs. She pulled them away as yellow pus began to spurt from Deathspank’s mangled eye sockets. Sara grabbed the fire extinguisher and slammed it into Deathspank’s mouth, shattering his teeth and ripping his gums.
    “I win,” Sara laughed, “and I’m taking you down with me.”

    She jumped from the helicopter with Deathspank’s body in hand. Her body hit the calm fresh water of Lake Michigan, and the helicopter driver never saw her again.

    Epilogue

    An old man, wearing overalls and a pin striped shirt, was smoking a pipe as he sat in a road side grill. He was somewhere in South America, and the white whiskers around his mouth were an odd contrast to his darkly tanned face. The grill was called ‘El Chupacabra Roadside’ which meant something along the lines of ‘The Beast’s Hidden Grill.’ But the old man didn’t care what it translated to in English. He couldn’t speak English anyway. If he could, he’d be the happiest man in the world. He could leave behind his red sand and cactus life for a new one in the big cities of America. Everyone dreamed of going to the United States. The money was easy, there was a strong middle class, and the government was effectively working to help the nation in every way possible. That was just not life where he was living.
    A Latino woman in a blue dress and white apron walked up to the man. Red lipstick covered her mouth, her eyes with dark mascara circled around them. Her long black hair was bundled up behind her head in a large bun. She collected his menu and asked him in Spanish, “What would you like to eat sir? Have you taken a look at our special soups or meals of the day yet? Today’s soup is Chili Rice, mixed with mint herbs. It also comes with extra crackers. Unfortunately, we don’t have a special meal today.”
    The man replied, also in Spanish, “I’d just like a cheeseburger with fries please, and could you please use a bun with no sesame seeds on it? I don’t want to turn out positive during drug tests or anything like that.”
    “Ci,” the woman walked off toward the counter, where you could see overweight chefs cooking what would be a greasy and fattening (yet delicious) meal. The place itself was plain grimy, from the seats to the tables to the floors. Everything had an aura of sickness about it. The man was scared he would catch a disease in the rotten place. Some black liquid was on the floor to his left. Several pickles were stuck to the bottom of a table, and where he was sitting a layer of muck covered the eating surface placed in front of him. It was truly disgusting.
    “NEWS ALERT!” screamed the television hanging in the top right corner of the grill. There were television sets all around the room, but the easiest for the man to see was the one on the far wall of the restaurant. Several other heads turned to look at the screen, along with others in the restaurant looking at different TVs, all hanging from a steel ceiling, along with steel walls and large oval windows.
    The channel itself was broadcasting in English, but Spanish subtitles scrolled along the bottom of the screen as the man spoke. They were small and white, and would change quickly. The man, though, was literate in Spanish, and found it easy to read them. It was the ‘Fox’ (Fox 2 to be exact) channel, but the old man had no clue what that meant as the waitress set a large glass cup of chilled coke in front of him. The only television channels he knew were one; which was the local news, and three; which was the channel his mother would watch. As a farmer, he himself did not own a TV, and enjoyed watching them whenever he could.
    The cup was misty, and the old man felt joy to feel the moisture spread through his mouth as he took a long sip. His taste buds were happy - for the moment, so he tuned back in to the news report. Watching the television was a relief, he’d been watering his crops all day (a dry spell had recently come through) and one of his pigs had given birth to two new piglets. As proud as he was, it felt great to be able to sit back and take a drink.
    There was a picture on the television screen of an island, and charred buildings were shown. There was a room that had been completely destroyed in an explosion. Bullet holes were seen in the wall of a building. Blood was dripping from a sharp wire that hung in a door way. Two men in black jackets that read ‘FBI’ on the back in big yellow letters were hauling a body onto a truck large truck. Other bodies seemed to be stacked on top of each other in a big pile, all located in the big compartment of the automobile. The two men then walked off to grab what looked like another body, but the old farmer was unable to see for sure as the camera switched to a news reporter in his mid 40s, folding papers.
    “This is where the ‘game’ as they called it, was held. To try and eradicate the juvenile delinquents of the world, the US of A held the battle where they pitted 30 members of an online community against each other. This was no ordinary battle, this was a fight to the death, and until one remained. But the plan backfired,” said a white reporter, his hair parted in a perfect 5:3 ratio. The subtitles that were just on the screen disappeared as he paused to shuffle the papers in front of him. Behind him in a smaller box was the image of a girl lying face down on the road, blood surrounding her head in a pool. The large red words ‘US Scandal’ were written across the bottom of the screen. Of course, the old man in the seat never read this, as he was illiterate in English - but he was able to read the disturbing subtitles.
    “The government dumped the youths on this island located somewhere in the Mackinac Straights. The exact name of the island was disclosed, but whatever the US was thinking they weren’t thinking straight. They obviously hadn’t gone that extra mile with security features, because something happened in that game,” said the man, swiveling in his chair to face the camera as a new angle was set. His face was completely serious, even more so than the normal news reporter would be whilst giving news.
    “The winner of the game decided to take it all the way. Sara (kh-vids.net administrator, kh-vids.net forum, kh-vids.net, Girl No. 2), one of the participants, ended up winning the massive duel. Supposedly, while traveling on a boat to get home, she killed the crew and the forum leader Deathspank before steering the boat on a crash course. Deathspank was the leader of the ‘game’, called the Impertinent Youths Annihilation Act, IYAP, although now foreign countries have started to adopt this new system and the name is being changed to ‘International Youths Removal System’, IYRS. IYRS has been adopted by more than 40 countries already, all which are setting up ‘games’. But after what has happened with this one, must new steps be made to protect the world from delinquents?”
    Now behind the reporter was a boat that had been crashed on some rocks. More men with black jackets that read ‘FBI’ on them were walking around the boat, examining it from many various angles. Wooden planks littered the area, and the boat was on its side. The men were wading through water, grabbing pieces of debris. A body was washed up on the beach, laying there without anyone going near it.
    The man put down his cheeseburger and started watching intently. Others around the roadside restaurant mimicked him. All heads were turned to the TVs, including the chefs, waiters and waitresses’
    “Sara (the TV then showed a picture of a girl with long black hair. She looked miserable as if she was in a mug shot. The words ‘winner’ were pasted in yellow under her face) has yet to be found. It is rumored that she has traveled to South America and is planning on fleeing across seas. But that’s not all. Many countries are outraged with what the U.S.A. has done, and many countries have launched war on them. With 192 countries in the world, and only 40 countries adopting the new system, it is bound to be that all these countries will eventually be destroyed. World masterminds that have not adopted the IRYS system are Russia, all of South America, and all of Europe. India and China have also not adopted the system. Countries like Japan, Iran, Iraq, most Middle Eastern countries and a few 3rd world African countries have adopted the terrible system. Is this the spark for a World War 3? Sara is at large with charges of Federal Misconduct, Breaking and Entering, and First Degree and Second Degree murder.” The camera returned to the reporter with the 5:3 ratio hair, and zoomed up on his face. “If you have seen this girl, please call the police immediately. There is a reward for those who find her. She is deemed armed and dangerous, and wanting to kill. If you have any information, then call the police immediately.”
    The man looked around the restaurant. Everyone else had their eyes glued to the TV except for one person. Whoever they were, they were wearing an overly large coat and had a blue cap pulled down over their eyes. Long black hair streamed from the back of the hat. Something triggered in the back of the old man’s head. There was something about this girl that didn’t seem right. She was too white, and looked like she hadn’t been in the South American area for long at all. And there was something else weird about her - under the faint hood he saw her lips form into a small smile. The old man realized he had found that girl; Sara was the name he had heard many times.
    Knowing what must be done; he got up and hobbled toward the counter where a pay phone was located. It had free phone calls to the police, so he quickly dialed the familiar number. The black phone, bolted to a thick metal cord, vibrated softly as the police telephone line ran once, twice, and then a lady’s voice was heard. She spoke politely and loudly.
    “Hello, this is the SA protection and services police hotline, how may I help you?” said the lady. The man could hear more phones ringing in the background and the shuffling of papers.
    “I believe I have some information on this escapee girl called Sara,” said the farmer. His voice was hoarse and raspy - he smoked too much. But it wasn’t his fault. Scientists say that it takes a full three weeks to develop a habit, but the old farmer felt like it had been mere days to become hooked on nicotine. This wasn’t a bother to him though, but sometimes he would get annoyed when his peers couldn’t understand what he was saying due to the quiet, soft tones he would make with his voice.
    “You have some information?” began the lady, her tone changed from happy to serious immediately. “Please give us all you’ve got. Anything would be helpful at the moment.”
    “Well,” started the old man. “I’m at the El Chupacabra Roadside restaurant, the one on the main road through the desert. There’s a gas station and car repair garage outside of it. Well, I think the girl is here, although I’m not sure.”
    “What does she look like?” asked the police operator.
    “She had long black hair. It falls down her back. Her face seems kind of pale, although it’s hard to see because she’s wearing a blue cap down over her face. There’s also a gray hoodie draped around her shoulders, but she isn’t wearing it. Around her torso is a blue shirt that says some English words on it. Does this sound like her?”
    “Just a moment!” said the woman in a hurry. The old man listened to the bustle of feet on the other end of the phone. There was shouting and then some loud footsteps echoed through the phone receiver. More voices, loud and gruff, grunted some Spanish words. Something smashed and then the lady was back on the phone.
    “Thank you for your information, sir, we have police on the way right now,” said the woman. Then the phone clicked and went dead.
    The old man made stiff strides toward his mucky table, until he sat down and took a sip of his delicious drink. He looked over at the girl, who was looking back at him. Her eyes searched him - prying at him and delving into his deepest secrets. He felt intimidated, but turned away from her to look out the window. Was this really the girl? If it was, maybe he’d get a handsome reward. He could finally move out of this god forsaken country.
    Looking out the perfectly clear window, he saw other Mexican people loading their cars with gas. One child was helping his mother hold the gas pump. A man in a business suit was fumbling with his coins whilst trying to insert them into the machine. Another drove out of the small area, leaving a path of dust in his wake. Behind that was a picturesque scene - dark red and tan colored sand with cactus plants growing in random spots. In the distance were the outlines of some mountains, jagged like the edge of a broken piece of glass. These were dark red, and above was an extremely bright golden sun. It was the typical hot weather of the lower continent.
    The old man faintly smiled as he looked at the scene. His country really was quite beautiful, and he had such strong pride in his country too. But his smile grew even wider as he heard the soft sound of a police siren in the distance. Looking at the girl in the corner, he saw her eyes grow wide. He knew she had realized who was coming. The police; and they were coming for her. The old man lit up as he felt the cash bills in his hands, hundreds of them. That’s when she made her move.
    Jumping up from the table, she charged for the glass entrance door with a sign that read ‘open’ on it. The old man didn’t want this prey to get loose, so he jumped at her with all his might. She turned to see him and pulled out a small knife. Her arm moved in a wide arc and thrust toward him. It cut into his hand, and he felt his middle and index fingers become detached from his body. Blood flew into the air from the open wounds, and his fingers fell to the grimy floor. The man landed on the floor with a loud crash and felt something in his waist crack. He watched as the girl turned to look at him before storming out the door.
    In her eye was a look of pity, a look of sorrow. But there was also hatred in her eyes, and a hidden fear. The old man burned the image of her eyes into his mind, realizing his fault. By calling the police he had made a mistake. Because in those girl’s eyes he had seen so many emotions and feeling, from lust to excitement to determination; he had realized what the most dominant feeling in her eyes was. It was the look of innocence.
    People rushed from their seats and picked up the old man. He didn’t feel any of their grabbing hands as his gazed was transfixed on the girl charging across the gas station parking lot and jumping into a top down car. He no longer felt the pain of his bleeding knuckles, with amputated fingers laying on the floor next to him, or the shattered bone in his hip that was a cause of osteoporosis. He had made the biggest mistake of his life by calling the police; and he was going to pay the price. The man shed a single tear.

    Sara burst out of the roadside grill to feel fresh air on her face. ‘That place was pretty dirty,’ she thought to herself. ‘Note to self; never, ever go back there.’ The sounds of sirens grew closer. Dust showered from her moving feet as she pounded towards her top down car, which she’d stolen from a local dealer.
    People all around - from the gas station to the auto parts garage - were staring at her. Many were pointing and whispering, but Sara no longer cared about their remarks. She had to escape… or else she would probably be killed - or at least captured and sent back to horrible America. The America that had killed her Arc.
    She leaped into the front seat of the car and jammed the keys into the slot. Turning on the car, the engine leaped to life as vibrations emanated throughout the automobile. Her foot stomped the pedal, and the car slid and squealed before firing out of the sand parking lot like a bullet out of a cannon. It shot into the main road, and she gave a sharp right and drifted into position. Looking back, police cars were right behind her.
    The day would have been so beautiful if not for the crazy car chase. The sun was shining beautifully, everything was a lovely color and it was hot but not unbearable. ‘This is the perfect weather to get a tan in,’ thought Sara. ‘But that’s kind of a stupid thought considering the situation I’m in.’
    Sara heard the pop of a gun, and the windshield in front of her shattered. ‘Damn,’ she thought, ‘These guys are seriously out to kill me.’ There was another gunshot and her right rearview mirror shattered. Sara opened the front compartment of the car and pulled out a pistol. She’d robbed it from a weapon’s dealer back in southern Mexico. But now it was hers, and she was out for the hunt.
    Holding the wheel with one hand, she turned around and started firing the pistol. The road in front of her was straight, so all she had to do was hold her hand firm and she’d be fine. A policeman popped out of the window, and she fired the pistol in his direction. The bullet soared toward him and she heard the sound of squelching grass. She saw his body recoil from the bullet, and blood sprayed from his chest. His body hung limp out of the window and blood dripped from the open wound in his torso.
    She then realized that the driver of the car had a machine gun. He fired it at her wildly, shattering glass and denting metal. Sara ducked down in her seat and felt bullets whizzing though the air above her hair. The gunfire stopped, and she looked up to see the car she was driving was careening of the main road. She quickly got herself back on track (‘I need to drive more carefully!’ she thought), and looked back to see the police cop reloading his large machine gun.
    Two sweeping shots were fired from Sara’s pistol, which shattered the windshield of the police car. The policeman driving swerved off the road and crashed into a cactus, destroying it completely. The dead cop that was hanging out of the window next to him flew from the car, landing in the desert in a huge dust cloud. The driver immediately put the car back on the main road, and pointed the gun out of the windshield. More bullets spat out of the machine gun and Sara heard a tire on her car pop. Realizing the true danger she was in, her action was swift, but she pointed the pistol at the driver in the car and pulled the trigger. She heard a pop and looked to see the man in the car with a hole through his head. Blood spurted from the open wound. The bullet that had torn through his head went next through the headrest and shattered the back windshield. The police car, now with no drivers, swerved into the desert and down a sandy hill. That was the last time Sara ever saw it. She was looking ahead now.
    As she sat on her own in this small dumpy car, a thought suddenly occurred to her. The bullets, the speeding cars, her killing two police officers, this all receded from her mind as she was thinking of this one thought.
    She was lying on a sandy beach, in a blue bikini, and Arc was next to her. He looked at her and smiled. The sun was shining brightly and there was no one else on the beach with her. Waves lapped on the shore, and time seemed to stop as everyone else on the beach completely disappeared. It was just her and Arc… the one who had died for her. And she would never forget.
    As he smiled, she smiled back. Then he got up and walked towards the ocean. She simply watched as he walked, and when he reached the edge of the ocean, the figures of all the other forum members who had died only three months ago appeared with him. There was Roxas, Cin, Sora, Boris, Deathspank, Roxas-chan, Ris, Kairi, General Grievous, Angel, Xehsin, Vivi, Reien, Element, Riku, Mish, Darkwatch, Misty, Xekvin and everyone who was killed on that island. Whether they were good or evil, they were all smiling at her. Some were waving, some were clapping. Others just stood there looking at her. But tears streamed from her eyes as she saw them all, so real. She felt like she could reach out and touch them all - that they were truly there. That all the events on Mackinac Island were just a dream and here she was during the real part of that ‘week long’ vacation Deathspank had planned for them all. She wished with all her heart that the ‘game’ had all been a dream. But, she was not able to. She remembered it all - from Arc killing himself to let her win the game from watching Mish get railed by Boris from the steeple she had been hiding in. But even seeing Boris now, smiling, all friendly, even with Deathspank, she put it all behind her and became filled with joy.
    So she smiled back.
    Waving and smiling back, they all slowly disintegrated into sand; while still smiling. She watched as the sand of their bodies joined the sand of the beach. The last to go was Arc, and as his face disappeared she felt a part of her heart disappear too.
    ‘A million grains of sand for one soul,’ she thought. ‘One soul shouldn’t equal a million grains of sand. Each soul is worthless, but as I travel to fight this government that has done this to me… I will avenge them all.’
    Then the blowing of the wind in her hair came rushing back. Now the sun was shining, but there was no ocean, just an endless sea of cactuses. Her hair blew wildly as the glass of the recently shattered windshield blew backward behind her.
    She smiled, because she knew that for now she was safe.
    Turning to the passenger seat, she could imagine Arc with her.
    And he, like at the beach just seconds ago, was smiling.
    ‘I’m on the run, that’s for sure,’ she thought.
    ‘But this government’s going down, I can tell you that.’
    Right on.
    This time we’re on - all of us forum members.
    And we won’t stop till we’ve won.

    “1 forum member remaining,”
    But now she is a part of you.



     
  15. Mish smiley day!

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2006
    Gender:
    gal
    Location:
    Nuke York.
    983
    Wow, I think Deathspank's might have been the most violent and descriptive death. D: eep.
     
  16. Roxas- PARTYMAN MORE LIKE HOMOVAN 73M SUCK MY B****!

    16
    950
    wow, I have read the whole ending in one big session now! Thnx a lot Roxas!



    P.S: Feel free to delete this post this time.
     
  17. Roxas OG

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2006
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Cin's basement
    188
    KH-Vids Royale II [9th Chapter!]

    WARNING: The following story is extremely graphic and not intended for young audiences. Don't complain if you get disturbed by some imagery in this story, as this message is clearly forewarning you of what to come.

    ---

    The KH-Vids Royale II Fandom:
    A collection of stories, videos, poems, and drawings from fans of KH-Vids Royale 1 and 2. This stuff is probably best read and watched after you've read the story.


    Artwork
    KHVRII Galleria by Alice
    Rem Concept Art by Alice​

    Fan-Fictions
    The Story of Matt by Cin​

    ---​

    KH-Vids Royale II

    Boys
    1. Xaldin
    2. libregkd (Breg)
    3. Darkandroid
    4. rat
    5. Zexion of the Twilight (Zexion)
    6. Fayth
    7. Soushirei
    8. Darkness Kingdom (Darkness)
    9. RoxasvsRiku (Rorik)
    10. cloudfinalfantasy (CFF)
    11. sweqsora222 (Sweq)
    12. /D/J/_!DaNgEr_*MOU5E* (Mouse)
    13. no_reality_allowed (NRA)
    14. riku sora kairi own (Risk)
    15. Lithium

    Girls
    1. Alice
    2. Anniexo
    3. Hissora
    4. Jade Rhade
    5. kitty_mckechnie (Kitty)
    6. hikki_kairi (Hikki)
    7. Guxas
    8. Rufus
    9. 2Foxxie4U (Foxxie)

    Previously in the KH-Vids Royale saga:

    Deathspank, the former owner of kh-vids.net invited the forum to meet in California for fun and games. Fifteen boys and fifteen girls showed up to the event, but were drugged during a meal and hoarded on planes that flew to Michigan. From here they flew to Mackinac Island, located between the Northern and Southern Peninsulas of Michigan. The members awoke in a small classroom, dazed and confused. Deathspank marched in to tell them that they were the guinea pigs in a new neo-aged game. Each member would be given a random weapon, food, and water, and would be sent out on the island. Once outside, they’d have three days to kill each other until only one was remaining. If you tried to escape, a collar around your neck would explode. If the three day period ended without a winner, every collar would explode.
    Several members were brutally killed near the beginning of the game. Cin and Roxas-chan fought Boris the Blade at the Mission Pointe hotel, which ultimately led to its demise. Boris the Blade continued to mercilessly kill people, his next target being Mish who attempted to ban the players together.
    Sara and Arc ran away from the gory scene to find themselves lost. Later, Boris the Blade kidnapped Sara and raped her. Arc began a frantic search for Sara amid the island’s forests as members began to die in their own fights. Friendships were formed, but each ended brutally.
    Meanwhile, Roxas, Cin, and Roxas-chan started to build a bomb that they would crash into the school where Deathspank was located. Their mission was to deactivate the collars by blowing up the school, leading to the escape of many members. After building the mobile bomb, their attempts at destroying the school failed. Their collars exploded and the three died.
    Two members attacked Boris, who held Sara captive, but failed. This led to Sara, Boris, and Arc being the only three left in the game. Sara’s bonds were cut during the battle with Boris and after the dust settled she managed to kill Boris.
    With only minutes remaining on the three day time limit, Arc shot himself in the head to allow Sara to win. Crowned the Royale champion, Sara desperately tried to stay with Arc as she was pulled away from him.
    Deathspank and his fellow soldiers burned the bodies of the dead and left the island. In a helicopter on the way back to the Michigan mainland, Sara killed Deathspank and jumped into the lake with his body. The United States Government labeled the game as a failure, and the subject has not been touched upon since.

    1: Ace

    Silently, patiently, I yearn, I wait
    This boiling anger turns into hate
    She says as if I won’t understand
    “I can’t be with you because I love him.”

    A splattering of applause met the end of Xaldin’s (Boy No. 1, new kh-vids.net administrator & owner, kh-vids.net) poem as he returned to his seat. Speaking in front of the class had never been his specialty, and he was glad to see that most of the students had already fallen asleep out of boredom. His life was mundane at best, a twisted road of typical days and dreamless nights. All he hoped for was a bit of excitement, something to spark his imagination and get his adrenaline pumping. For years he had lived on the Bermudian Islands. He knew the names of everyone on the island (as did all the other islanders) and hadn’t met a new person in eight months.
    “Thank you,” the teacher said before going back to her crossword. Another bored, frowning student shuffled his way up to the front of the room to read his poem.

    I am a poet
    And I don’t know it.

    He hobbled back to his seat and began to snore once again.
    “Thank you,” said the teacher, her eyes pasted to the puzzle in front of her. Obviously she hadn’t noticed the awful poem that had just been read and a few of the students that were still awake giggled at this. Xaldin crossed his arms on his desk and nestled his chin on his elbows.
    When does this routine end? he asked himself. His mind came up blank, so he made up an answer to please his curiosity.
    Tonight! Something amazing will happen that will switch the boring with the exciting!
    Xaldin closed his eyes and drifted to sleep, unaware of the helicopters that were touching down outside the school.


    ---



    A tall, blonde woman sat by a window on the 47th floor of the Trefalgar Building in New York City. The window overlooked the devastating ruins of what had once been the Empire State Building. Smoke still wafted from sections of charred, twisted metal. Bodies were found daily amid the wreckage. Sara sat with a sniper rifle laid across her lap. The window was open just enough to get a clean shot at the President of the United States. Today marked the 1st anniversary of when she and the terrorist group Wild Seven destroyed the Empire State Building. It also marked the 8th anniversary of the first ever “game” run by the government to kill worthless youths. President Bush III would be reading a speech to “honor the lives lost” or “continue to fight for freedom” (Sara laughed at the ridiculous things said by the President, who hadn’t the slightest grasp on the terror of fighting for freedom).
    She only had one bullet to kill the president, the words “Wild Seven” engraved into its outer shell. The one bullet was all she needed to blow out his brains, and when she did she’d change her clothes and run outside to join in the gathering crowds.
    The sound of drums slowly began to filter through the glass. Far down the street, a parade of golden instruments, silver flutes, and flying drumsticks approached the ruins of the building. Behind them was a black limo surrounded by police cars and motorcycles. Flags spun and twirled behind the car as the President approached the stage overlooking hundreds of New York citizens.
    It wasn’t long before he was standing behind the stage’s podium, smiling and waving at the clapping drones that filled the expanse in front of him.
    “Citizens of New York, and people of America… I stand before you today in front of this horrible sight today to give you a message of peace. It has been a year since the horrific incident where terrorists attacked the Empire State Building, and since then, many more attacks have followed. But because of these attacks, America has united as one. We have taken grand steps to rebuild this shattered city, and…”
    Sara removed the President’s excited voice from her head, focusing the sniper’s scope on his forehead. She didn’t move, she didn’t breathe; every muscle focused on the President’s moving head. Her finger wrapped round the trigger, and she smoothed it across its comfortable edge. ‘The world is better if without him,’ she thought. ‘His reign ends…’
    Sara pulled the trigger. ‘…now.’
    There was a small thud, and the bullet spiraled from the sniper’s barrel. It spun through the hole in the window and down toward the President.
    The President’s words ended with a sickening crack as the top half of his head exploded behind him. Red waves splashed across the white wall encompassing the stage .This mixed with a gooey, black sponge that ran down his cheeks like tears. One eye hung from its socket as the President fell forward and into the crowd. The word “peace” on the wall behind him now said “ace”, the “pe” covered in thick, red liquid.
    ‘Ace,’ Sara thought, smiling, ‘how funny. I guess I have quite the ace shot.’
    Policemen rushed to the President’s body. Half of his gray, gooey brains hung from the microphone he was previously speaking in to.
    Sara stood up and turned away from the chaos. Her smile never left her lips as she exited the building to watch the people scream and run in terror. A black car drove up in front of her, and she opened the door and stepped in without another word.


    ---



    Darkandroid (Boy No. 3, kh-vids.net moderator) dropped his cup of ramen and fork. They clattered to the floor, but he took no notice as he gaped at the television in front of him. The President had just been shot in the head. Blood and brains had splattered all over the stage he had been presenting on.
    The rest of his family sat in silence, shocked at the events that were unfolding on the screen. The channel flicked to a message saying “We are temporarily off-line.”
    “W-W-What?” stuttered his mother.
    “I can’t believe it,” frowned his father. “Did the President really just get shot?”
    Darkandroid wasn’t even American, and had never been a fan of the Bush family, but he had just witnessed the assassination of a historic, political figure. The scene replayed in his mind endlessly, the flash that ended with the President’s head exploding in a mass of blood.
    “I’m sorry you had to see that, son,” his father sympathized. “That’s nothing anyone should see. I bet it’s that Wild Seven terrorist group…” His words ended softly, speculating things no one would ever know.
    An unfamiliar whir of blades began to grow louder and louder, droning out the news reporter who kept repeating “we are temporarily off-line” on the television. The trees outside the living room whipped wildly as a helicopter touched down in Darkandroid’s back garden. Soldiers charged from the copter, smashing through Darkandroid’s door and charging into the room.
    “All of you, hands up!” screamed one of the soldiers.
    Darkandroid, his mother, and his father all put their hands up in unison. The soldiers parted as a man wearing a camouflage suit, an army beret, and an eye patch walked through them.
    “We’ve only come for the young one,” he said gruffly.
    He handed a sheet to Darkandroid’s father, who stared at it before reading it aloud.

    If this sheet is being read, then the President of the United States of America is dead. His last orders were to obtain anybody related to Sara, the leader of the Wild Seven terrorist unit and winner of the first Reformation Act. The only group with the power to do this would be Wild Seven, and if the President has been assassinated then dual punishment should be inflicted upon anyone related to Sara.
    This includes children.

    Darkandroid’s father looked up.
    “What does this mean?” he asked the official-looking soldier.
    “Your son used to be in contact with Sara,” he grinned. “We’re taking him. Now.” The soldier waved his hand and several soldiers rushed forward and grabbed Darkandroid.
    “Son!” screamed his father.
    “Shut up!” a soldier commanded, smashing his father’s face with the butt of his gun.
    “Dad, I don’t know what they’re talking about!” Darkandroid pleaded. “Help me! Help me!!!”
    One of the soldiers carrying him smashed across the head, shutting him up.
    “Dear! Where are you taking him?!” pleaded his mother. She too was knocked to the ground.
    “I’m not with Sara!” Darkandroid shouted. “I don’t know where she is! I don’t know her!”


    ---



    Sara drove in the car with her partner, Matt. Not her “love” partner (she still remembered Arc, and loved him with all her heart), but her partner in the Wild Seven. Anti-government songs blasted through the car’s speakers as they shot through New York.

    Ladies and gentlemen of the underclass…
    the President, of the United States of America,
    is dead.
    I don’t believe in the politics
    Atrocious fools and hypocrites
    We walk a line that treads so fine
    Is this what glory had in mind?
    Oh, here we go,
    this is a revolution
    No one knows, who leads this revolution.

    The song “The Wild Seven” was being played. Sara laughed at the lyrics. The President truly was dead. It was almost as if the song was a news announcement.
    Sara wasn’t truly sure what had brought her to create the Wild Seven. All her questions led to the image of Arc, smiling, grinning, but also crying, and the night when he shot himself in the head to save Sara. She had brutally murdered Deathspank as retribution of sorts, escaping into Lake Michigan.
    Eight years later she was the most wanted woman in the country. It was her belief that all the blame went to the government, and that she was the good guy - the world’s savior. But the world thought differently, fearing her. Driving around in a car in the middle of New York City wasn’t her best idea, but she didn’t suspect that anything would go wrong.
    As if on cue, police cars jammed the cross roads in front of them.
    “****!” Matt forced between his teeth, slamming on the brake. He slammed on the brake and the car spun, its tires screeching and burning rubber.
    “How the hell did this happen?” Sara asked furiously, leaning over the dashboard. Up in the sky, a helicopter flew towards them.
    “This is bad,” Matt grinned, “but it’s nothing I can’t handle.”
    Another police car came at them from the front, but Matt swerved to his right and avoided it. He dodged more oncoming cars and took a right onto some back-alley road. Two policemen on motorcycles entered from the other side of the alley.
    “****, do they want to die!” Matt shouted. He slammed on the accelerator, speeding toward the cops on motorcycles. The two policemen fired up their cycles and pulled their throttles, gunning it for the hood of Matt’s car.
    “This can’t be happening,” said Sara. “Do they not realize what they’re doing?”
    The car filled up almost the entire alleyway; there was absolutely no room for the two motorcycles to make their way through or past the car. They grew closer and closer, seconds away from exploding on impact.
    Without warning, gunfire exploded from the front of the motorcycles. Matt’s car’s windshield shattered in the blazing fury created by the bullets. Blood spewed from his arm and glass shards peppered his face.
    “Dammit! I can’t see!” he said angrily.
    “Watch out!” Sara screamed, trying to grab the wheel, but it was no use. The two motorcycles in front of them collided into the car. One of the riders flew forward and impaled himself on a massive shard of glass jutting out from the car. Blood leaked onto Sara’s lap as she scrambled to regain control of the car. The other rider flew to the side and screamed as his body was crushed between the brick wall of the building and the car’s side. Sara heard the sick sound of crunching bones as the man was ripped in half. His intestines squashed against the window, and the stench filled Matt and Sara’s nostrils as they sped down the final stretch of the alleyway.
    “Almost there!”
    The darkness of the alleyway ebbed into a brilliant light as they soared out of the alleyway.
    And into a nest of police cars and helicopters.
    “Both of you put your hands up!” screamed a man over a microphone.
    “We’re ****ed,” Matt said, slumping into his seat. He smashed his hands against the steering wheel.
    “Dammit,” gritted Sara. “We’re going to be killed!”
    “There’s nothing we can do…” Matt replied in denial.
    The police ripped open the car doors, pulling and handcuffing the two before putting them in a solitary car, gassing it until they were unconscious.
    “They’re out cold,” a soldier reported through a crackling phone.
    “Bring them,” was the reply.
    They were put on a plane and shipped to San Francisco. There, their bodies were taken by boat to Alcatraz, the most renowned prison in the world. It had been abandoned for years since.
    Upon entrance, the other five members of Wild Seven sat, waiting for them, blindfolds around their heads. The soldiers ripped off the blindfolds to reveal a wall that read:
    Welcome to hell.

    7 Wild Seven members remaining

    2: Monkey

    “Welcome,” quipped a man who stepped in front of the wall, smiling broadly. He was dripping with false enthusiasm, bowing and spreading his arms. “We’re currently on Alcatraz, but it’s only a temporary location. You’ve all been gathered here for a specific reason, and it’s not execution; at least not yet.”
    “Who are you?!” screamed Matt frantically.
    “I’m the one doing the interrogating!” growled the man, all enthusiasm dropped from his tone. “One of you may find my name familiar. It’s Monkey. I used to moderate at the forum Sara did but was knocked off my position. To be honest, I could care less now, but when I was contacted by the government I thought it’d be a fun little venture. Does anyone know the date? Anyone?” Monkey looked around to see blank faces.
    “Well, a week ago Sara shot the President dead, so it’s sometime in June. I don’t keep track of dates. Maybe I should use todaysdate.com more often. You should have seen the look on the face of the old lady the President fell on!”
    Monkey was strolling around the room, cracking jokes in front of soldiers and high-ranking officials without a second thought. The Wild Seven members were bound to their chairs by tight chains, unable to act on instinct with control of only their feet and arms.
    “You’re quite an organized group,” Monkey began, “killing the President, blowing up the Empire State Building, you all have a part in some sort of grand scheme to do what? Kill a President that will only be replaced by a more stupid one? Destroy a building full of innocent people to prove a silly point? You’re all pathetic.”
    “It wasn’t a ‘silly point’!” screamed one girl in outrage. She was the second member of Wild Seven to speak up in front of Monkey.
    “What’s your name?” Monkey asked, tilting his head. “You know what, scratch that; let’s start the presentation.” A white board fell from the ceiling, covering the words “welcome to hell” written on the wall. Behind the Wild Seven, a projector showed the image of a girl with long, silver hair. Her eyes were big, and she had a frown pasted across her face.
    “Acolyte, is it?” asked Monkey.
    “That’s right,” the girl, or Acolyte, answered.
    “Then what was your ‘silly point’?” Monkey grinned. “What did destroying the Empire State Building accomplish?”
    “We’re giving hope to the youth!” snapped a boy with short, blonde hair. He had a small scar on his cheek and his eyes squinted in anger as he spoke. The picture on the overhead projector flickered to a frame of the boy.
    “Zel,” smirked Monkey. “What a dumb code name. Let’s see who else is up here.”
    The picture changed to a child, 12 years old at most, wearing a sideways cap. He had short purple hair that jut out from his head.
    “Crum,” Monkey laughed. “Last year’s winner, huh? Just a boy, you were. And look at you now, all dressed in rags and loaded with guns. You could have used this rage for something else.”
    Sara’s picture came up next.
    “Our little Queen Bee,” taunted Monkey, swiveling round to face her. “We don’t need to talk about you. All you’ve done for the past eight years is put yourself in the spot-light, so let’s move on to another member of your group.”
    The picture of another girl appeared. She had shoulder length brown hair and hazelnut eyes, a steely stare, and a fringe that hung about her beautiful face.
    “Your name is Saint,” smiled Monkey. “I quite like that. ‘Saint.’ You don’t look that bad, either.” He put on his most creepy smile and turned to her, “If you don’t comply with what I’m about to tell you all, I’ll just have to take you out back and give you a saint’s blessing of my own.”
    Saint spat at him, but Monkey easily side-stepped the saliva.
    “You’re just inviting me to do so,” Monkey said flatly, narrowing his eyes. The next slide revealed Matt, who sat smiling.
    “Thought you’d be funny, did you?” asked Monkey. “Give the camera a smile, huh? I don’t think it’s funny. Sounds rather immature, if you want my honest opinion.” As he ended, Wild Seven burst out laughing.
    “What’s so funny?” he inquired.
    No one said a word.
    “Tell me!” roared Monkey, anger filtering into his eyes.
    “Your face!” shouted Acolyte. Wild Seven fell into another fit of giggles.
    “Monkey,” began Sara. “Most of us are just kids, like you; fighting for the freedom and energy this world needs to begin anew. Stop acting like you’re better than us. I know what’s going on. We all do. We’ve all been in the government’s “game”, and we’ve all won. I’m sure by now we’ve all realized that this is going to be another silly game or you would have killed us by now. And by stooping to this level, Monkey…” She paused.
    “…You have become just as bad as one of us.”
    Monkey’s eye twitched.
    “So,” Sara said. “Why don’t we hear about Rem? Enough talk of Monkey.”
    “Monkeys are hairy,” Crum said.
    Monkey, his face still splattered with a bizarre expression, turned to the board behind him. This time it showed a young girl, about 15 years old, with curly blonde hair and a cute, petite face. She had an unmarked, tan face and a smile that would infatuate any boy she laid eyes upon.
    “You’re rather nice as well,” Monkey noted. “I’ll be sure to watch you during the game. Oh, yeah! The game!” Monkey smacked himself on the forehead. “That’s why I brought you guys here!”
    “He’s a ****ing lunatic,” Matt whispered to Acolyte, who smiled.
    “I’m sure you’ve all noticed the collars around your necks,” Monkey said. “You know the drill, try to escape, they explode, try to take them off, ramble ramble done and done.” He was rattling off random speech in what seemed to be a very formal setting. “Anyway,” he continued, “this game is different. Your battle will take place in a desert; the Sahara desert, to be more precise. You can try and run away, but we’ll just blow up your collar. The Wild Seven will be located in a fortress atop a mountain…”
    A picture of a sandy desert appeared on the screen. Miles of ruins surrounded a large mountain of jagged rock, upon which sat a castle made out of shrewd pipes and boxes.
    “Is that the fort?” interrupted Crum with an incredulous look.
    “Yes,” replied Monkey. “It may not look the best, but inside you’ll find it’s rather nice. Now, onto the rules of this new game.”
    A sheet was handed to each of the Wild Seven members. It read:

    1. You will have a choice of weapon(s) during this game. The weapon you choose will be the only weapon you choose, so choose wisely. Once you have chosen your weapon, it is the only one you can take into the game with you. Discuss with your team mates who should take what.

    2. There is a three day time limit to complete the objective. The game leader will give you your objective shortly after explaining these rules.

    3. If you do not complete the objective within the time limit, the collars around your necks will explode. The time limit is 3 days.

    4. If the objective is completed within the time limit, you will be given new identities and will be allowed to roam the world under extreme surveillance for the rest of your lives. If you are involved in the slightest crime, you will be murdered. If you tell anyone who you truly are you will be murdered. It is a small punishment for the crimes you have committed against humanity. You will never be allowed to see your families again.

    When they had all finished reading the rules, Monkey began, “Any questions?” Zel raised his hand. “Yes?”
    “Uh… so, if we complete the objective, we can live under your jurisdiction?” he asked.
    “Precisely,” replied Monkey. “Live your lives with no freedom, but you will be allowed to live. Also, you can never see each other again.”
    “I don’t see any reason to want to win,” asked Rem.
    “You’d rather die?” grinned Monkey.
    “Well, I guess not…”
    The rest of Wild Seven nodded in agreement.
    “So what’s the objective?” Sara asked.
    “The objective is simple,” explained Monkey. “The objective is to live for 3 days!”
    Monkey stopped himself, rather pleased with his dramatic announcement of the objective.
    “Is that it?” someone said.
    “Dammit, I was trying to be exciting!” Monkey complained in a whiney voice. “Nevertheless, to answer your question, yeah, that’s it. There will be two teams, team L and team D. Let me rephrase that; team Light and team Dark. They will be coming at you from two sides, the front and back of the mountain. These teams of soldiers are fighting because if their team kills all of you… they go home. Team Light and team Dark are also technically fighting each other, so you have two warring teams trying to kill you, also trying to kill each other, being killed by you… it’s sort of confusing, but does anyone not understand?”
    Saint raised her hand.
    “Yes?”
    “So, team Light wants to kill team Dark so that team Dark won’t get to us first?”
    “Precisely!” answered Monkey. “If Light can eliminate Dark, or vice-versa, then Light won’t have to worry about Dark getting to you guys first. Then, Light just has to kill you guys and they can all go home! Don’t forget that Light and Dark could even temporarily team up to have more power against you.”
    “And if we kill all of team Light and all of team Dark, we’re done?” asked Matt.
    “Yeah,” Monkey said. “You’re done, finished, ‘cleansed’ as my grandfather used to say… Well, anyone have any more questions?”
    Wild Seven just sat there.
    “Then I guess it’s time to hand out weapons!” barked Monkey. A door behind them slammed open and soldiers marched in with racks of bags. “I’m sure these look familiar to you, as they’re the same type of daypacks you used in your previous games!”
    Monkey grabbed one and ripped it open.
    “This time it’s a bit different,” he began to explain. “You have the food, and the water, and the weapon…” as he said this, he pulled these things from the bag and laid them on the ground. “And here’s a new little accessory. It’s a tracking system that shows the whole playing field. It’s even got outlines of ruins. The gray dots on here are you. The white dots are team Light, and the black dots are team Dark. If you wander outside the boundaries presented on this PDA, your collar will explode. Thanks to this tool, you can track your position on relation to certain bases and other things, and you’ll also know when a team mate is in need of help.”
    Sara was thoroughly impressed by this little device. It would make it much easier for them to kill the attacking soldiers. She knew what they would do if they won; somehow, they’d find a way to contact each other and reunite to begin destroying other world figures who didn’t do anything about the games. With devices like these, there would be no way she or her friends could lose.
    “Now,” Monkey said, “choose your weapons. You have a choice between a sniper rifle, an automatic rifle, a shotgun, or two pistols.”
    Sara instinctively knew she’d take the sniper rifle.
    “Sniper rifle,” she said. A soldier threw a daypack at her feet.
    “Pistols,” said Rem.
    “Pistols,” Saint agreed.
    “Machine gun,” Crum grinned.
    “Me too,” Matt said. The soldiers threw the respective daypacks at their feet.
    “Uh… let’s see, I’m gonna go with machine gun too,” Acolyte said.
    Zel was left.
    “No one wants the shotgun?” he asked the group.
    “They’re so clumsy,” stated Rem.
    “Alright, pistols!” Zel roared.
    “Thanks for choosing,” said Monkey. “Now, we’re going to put the blindfolds back on your heads, and when you wake up, the game will have already begun.”
    .Sara felt a blindfold slip over her eyes. Everything went silent, and she felt her head go numb. She tried to move her lips, but they were too heavy. Her whole body moved in slow motion, and she felt herself fall asleep.


    ---



    “Sara, wake up!”
    Sara opened her eyes to see the blazing sun above her.
    “****!” she screamed, her retinas burning from the bright light. Everything around her seemed to be a shade of tan or brown. Matt was standing over her with a machine gun in his arms and a small headset clipped around his ear. The PDA tracking system was strapped onto his forearm so it could easily be seen.
    Sara looked down at her arm to see the same PDA strapped to it. A sniper rifle was lying on the sand next to her. She felt her ear and found a small headset. “Hello?” she asked into it.
    “Sara, you’re awake!” came the voice of Saint.
    “These things are awesome!” Matt said to her. “Anything we say will be heard by the rest of our team mates.”
    Sara sat up and brushed the sand off of her clothes. Next to the sniper was a box of ammo, which she instinctively opened. Inside was a note:

    If you are reading this, then the game has already begun. Fight with strength, and you will be the champion. Life is a game, so fight for survival and see if you’re worth it.

    - Monkey

    Sara looked at her PDA to see small white and black dots moving around, far off into the ruins.
    “Don’t worry,” said Matt, sensing her worry, “they’re still miles away. The desert battlefield is huge.”
    Sara got up and looked over the edge of the mountain. In all directions, all she could see were ruins and hills, broken sandy huts and twisted masses of iron.
    “Are you ready?” asked Matt.
    The two were in a tower jutting from the top of the fortress. In front of Sara was a massive window that gave her a view of one whole side of the mountain. She sat her sniper on the edge of the window, and turned to Matt:
    “Ready as I’ll ever be.”

    7 Wild Seven members remaining


    3: Light and Dark

    Xaldin felt his body being shaken back and forth. “Xaldin, wake up!” someone said, their voice filled with terror.
    He blinked open an eye to see a crowd of people he didn’t know pulling themselves off the floor. Half of them looked asleep. Some were being helped up by others.
    “How… do you know my name?” Xaldin croaked, rubbing the sleep from his eyes.
    “It’s on your nametag,” replied the mysterious boy. Xaldin lifted his head to see a boy leaning over him. He had long, brown hair that was brushed to the side before it hit his brow. On his shirt was a nametag, and typed onto it was the name ‘Darkandroid.’
    “Darkandroid?” piped Xaldin, instantly awake. He looked around the room to see more familiar names; Soushirei, Hissora, and libregkd.
    “Yes, that’s me,” replied Darkandroid. “Do you have any idea what’s going on?”
    Xaldin was stunned. He had fallen asleep in English class and woken up in some classroom in the middle of who-knows-where.
    “It’s Xaldin!” exclaimed a boy from the corner of the room. He looked slightly Hispanic, with short black hair. His nametag read “no_reality_allowed (NRA)”.
    NRA (Boy No. 13) rushed over to Xaldin, followed closely by Zexion of the Twilight (Zexion, Boy No. 5).
    “Do you know what’s going on?” asked Zexion.
    “I’ve been asked that twice,” moaned Xaldin.
    “Check your neck,” said Darkandroid, feeling his own. Xaldin noticed a thin, chrome collar with a red LCD panel on the front. He felt his own neck and there was, unsurprisingly, the same collar.
    “Well, if we want to know what’s going on, let’s ask that man,” suggested Xaldin, pointing at a man at the front of the room.
    “What the hell?” exclaimed Darkandroid upon seeing him. “He wasn’t there before! That’s the guy who took me away from my family!”
    “Me too!” said Zexion.
    At this point, the whole room’s attention was focused on the man with the green beret. He hadn’t had a shave in weeks, and smelt like onions. A large, toothless smile spread across his face. He stood with his legs spread, hands connected behind his back. On his arm was a tattoo of a giant snake breathing fire. Scars littered his body.
    “I put you all here,” said the man. “My name is Colonel Ray Bishop. You’re all here to play a game organized by Our Great Government. I’m sure you’ve heard of the reformation acts they fund.”
    Everybody nodded.
    “So,” the Colonel began, “You 24 members of kh-vids.net have been chosen to fight again. It was eight years ago that members of KH-Vids fought against each other. The winner was the woman we all know as Sara. She’s now the leader of Wild Seven. That’s where the game begins…”
    Xaldin looked around to see his fellow members staring at the man in disbelief.
    “You will each be given a daypack containing a random weapon, food, and water.”
    “We know!” screamed a girl from the back. She had long, brown hair, a round face, and black eyeliner. Her nametag said ‘Hissora’. “We are all aware of the awful game the government has put in motion.” Everyone agreed with her.
    “Well, in that case, I’ll get to the rules you don’t know,” Ray smiled. “The rules that are only going to be in effect for this game. You will be fighting in the Sahara Desert, amid many ruins of houses and buildings. Leave these ruins, and boom!” He threw up his hands as he said “boom”. “I’m sure you all know what I mean by ‘boom’. Those collars contain a lethal force powerful enough to blow off your head. But enough about the collars, as I’m approaching the first new rule of the game. The thing that separates this game from previous ones is that you may not have to kill each other until one is left.”
    The room broke into chatter.
    “Yes, you heard me right, for you see, you will be placed in two teams that must attack a single target; the base of Wild Seven.” The chatter instantly died.
    “There will be team Light, and team Dark. The first team to destroy Wild Seven and the other team can go home. You will pick a small ball from a bag, and if this ball is white, then you are on team L. If it’s black, you’re on team D. Also, if your ball has a skull on it then it means you’re the team leader. You can direct orders to your team with a handy headset. If Wild Seven manages to kill you all, they get to go home. It’s rather scary, isn’t it?”
    He laughed at this.
    “Well, I digress,” he chuckled. “There’s more to it than meets the eye. You’ll have two targets in your sights, so fight with honor and you will come out the victor! Are you ready for your teams?” The Colonel gave off his fakest, largest smile.
    “Faux for the win,” Darkandroid whispered to Xaldin.
    “Yeah,” he replied. “Hopefully, we’ll be on the same team. That way we can take down Wild Seven and go home together.”
    “You wouldn’t mind killing other members?” Darkandroid questioned.
    “I don’t truly know these people,” Xaldin said. “And we only have 3 days…”
    “Boy Number 1, Xaldin!” shouted the Colonel. Darkandroid gave him a pat on the back as he got up and made his way towards the bag at the front of the room. The Colonel held out a small, black bag. Xaldin reached his arm inside and grasped a small ball. He pulled it from the bag to see that it was the color white. A pattern of endless skulls encompassed the miniature marble.
    “Light team leader!” roared the Colonel. He pushed Xaldin into a separate room, but still visible from where they were standing. A soldier threw him a daypack as he entered the room. Xaldin heard the rumbling of an engine as he was pushed inside.
    “That’s the hold of a truck,” explained the Colonel. “As soon as you have been put into your teams and their respective trucks, you will be driven to your team starting point. When the truck’s back opens up, the game begins. Now, next, Girl Number 1, Alice.”
    An Asian girl with long hair and a black headband walked up to the Colonel. She reached into the bag and pulled out a black ball.
    “Team Dark,” barked the Colonel. She was thrown a daypack and shoved into the van not occupied by Xaldin. “Boy Number 2, libregkd.”
    Libregkd (Breg, Boy No. 2) slowly lumbered to the front of the room. His ball was white, and he was shuffled into the truck with Xaldin after receiving his daypack.
    “Girl Number 2, Anniexo!”
    Team Light.
    “Boy Number 3, Darkandroid!”
    Darkandroid gave Xaldin a smile as he walked up to the ball bag. He reached in his hand and pulled out a ball. The smile was wiped from his face immediately, his eyes moving back and forth between his hand and the bag as his bottom lip began to quiver.
    “Ah!” said the Colonel, “it seems like we have our Team Dark leader!” Darkandroid was thrown a bag before being pushed into the room with Alice. He looked at Xaldin, who simply looked at the floor.
    Hissora (Girl No. 3) wound up on team Dark. She didn’t know whether it was a bad or good thing; none of them knew each other’s strengths and weaknesses. Then again, they were all Kingdom Hearts fans. How good could any of them be?
    Rat (Boy No. 4) and Zexion of the Twilight (Boy No. 5) found themselves on team Light. Fayth (Boy No. 6), Jade Rhade (Jade, Girl No. 4) and kitty_mckechnie (Kitty, Girl No. 5) were placed on Team Dark. Hikki_kairi (Hikki, Girl No. 6) was placed on Light.
    Soushirei (Boy No. 7) was next. He walked to the front of the room and pulled a ball from the bag. It was the color gray. Several members gasped, and Soushirei asked, “What is this?”
    “The gray ball!” exclaimed the Colonel. “You, son, get to choose the team you would like to be on.”
    Soushirei peered round the room, examining the two teams.
    ‘Well,’ he thought, ‘Darkandroid is the oldest of the men, so he might know a bit about what he’s doing… Fayth looks good too. Plus, that team has more members. Alice seems to look like she could kill a man with her bare hands.’ His gaze was averted to team Light.
    ‘Xaldin, he’s composed very well. Both Zexion and Rat seem foolish but not bad. Anniexo is old, and if she chooses to fight them I’m sure she’d be a threat. And as for Breg, he just looks like he could take out a gun and shoot someone right now…’
    “Um…” Soushirei mumbled.
    “Hurry up!” ordered Colonel Ray, yawning in boredom.
    “I guess I’ll go with team Light,” decided Soushirei. He liked Breg’s demeanor, and the team had a charisma about it that Dark lacked.
    “Then take your daypack and go,” said the Colonel. He turned to Guxas (Girl No. 7) and pulled her over. She got a white ball. Darkness Kingdom (Darkness, Boy No. 8) also received a white ball,
    “Rather ironic…” he muttered, wandering into the truck with Xaldin and the others.
    Girl Number 8 was Rufus, who seemed disappointed to receive a dark ball. RoxasvsRiku (Rorik, Boy No. 9) was put on Dark, and 2Foxxie4U (Foxxie, Girl No. 9) joined him.
    “Well, looks like we’re out of girls. It’ll just be boys from now on,” stated the Colonel. “Next up, Boy Number 10, cloudfinalfantasy!”
    A small boy, 11 years old at most, wandered up to the bag. He pulled out a dark ball.
    “Team Dark!” he exclaimed.
    “Oh, lord,” Darkandroid rolled off his tongue. “I think I might kill myself now.”
    “Don’t be so mean!” cried CFF. Tears began to form in his eyes. “I just want a friend, that’s all!”
    “Alright, sorry,” apologized Darkandroid, who wasn’t in the mood for apologizing.
    “Next,” began the Colonel, “is sweqsora222 (Sweq, Boy No. 11).”
    “What?!” exclaimed the room in outrage.
    “Don’t be mean.i just want friends. please.be my friend,” he said.
    “He talks just like he posts!” laughed Hissora.
    “I’m just kidding; I don’t really speak like that,” Sweq said. “I may look like a small boy to you, but inside of me dwells Sora. Sora is in all of us today.”
    No one said a word. Everyone just prayed that he wouldn’t be on their team.
    Sweq reached into the bag and pulled out a white ball.
    “YES!!! The LIGHT!!!” he screamed, jumping up and down. Over in the truck, Xaldin sheepishly raised his hand.
    “Yes?” asked the Colonel.
    “Is it against the rules to kill our own team members?” Xaldin asked.
    “I… guess not,” replied the Colonel.
    “Yes!” said Xaldin, high-fiving Zexion and Rat.
    “You guys will realize that I am the best!” pouted Sweq, walking into the truck.
    /D/J/!DaNgEr_*MOU5E* (Mouse, Boy No. 12)shortly followed, finding himself on Team Dark. No_reality_allowed (NRA, Boy No. 13) was placed on Light.
    Colonel Ray called out the next person, “Boy Number 14, riku_sora_kairi_own. I’ll call you Risk. You’re up next. Whichever ball you pick, Lithium gets placed on the opposite team so that they are even. Choose now.”
    Risk grabbed a ball from the bag. It was white, and he screamed as if he’d been bitten by a snake.
    “No! But I’m emo! I want team DARK!!!”
    “Oh, shut up!” roared Colonel Ray, pushing him into the truck with Xaldin. Lithium walked into Darkandroid’s truck.
    “Are you ready to play?” asked the Colonel. “The game begins when these doors open. One last thing; have fun!” Soldiers walked in front of the trucks and closed their sliding doors. As the doors closed, the Colonel waved and smiled at the two teams.


    ---



    Xaldin peered around at his comrades. They were all examining their weapons. His was a small pistol. He’d loaded it after putting his earpiece into his ear.
    “Does anyone have a battle plan?” he asked them. Everyone looked dismal.
    “I don’t want to die,” said Guxas.
    “I don’t want to kill,” said Soushirei.
    “I don’t want to be on team Light!” complained Risk.
    “Oh, shut up!” exclaimed Zexion. “Do you think your attitude is really helping us? We’re riding to our ****ing deaths and you’re complaining about shades of color.”
    The mood in the air was sickening. Something splashed against the floor, and Xaldin turned to see Anniexo doubled over, vomit lying in a puddle at her feet.
    “Why?” she croaked. “I’d never have thought that I’d be one to be put in this awful game. Why do we have to do this?!”
    Xaldin sighed. His team had broken down before the game had even begun.
    “Look,” he said. “We can all complain about death, or fight back against it. Do we really know each other? No, we don’t. So why not kill team Dark? And I’m up for killing the Wild Seven. They think they’re right, but no one likes them.”
    “Ditto,” agreed Breg. “We fight or die. It’s simple. Let’s fight back and destroy Wild Seven. I think they’ll be the main problem. Whether there are 2, or 7, of them, they’re trained to kill. We’re just kids from some internet forum.”
    “So was Sara,” NRA said. “At least, I heard she was. It’s been eight years since she was admin. Look how she turned out. Maybe we can be like her, and take down Wild Seven!”
    “I have one question that I think we can all share,” Soushirei said from the corner.
    “What’s that?” asked Rat.
    “Where will we be? Who will be there when we open the door? I mean, I know it’ll be the Sahara Desert but where? And what does that message on the door mean?”
    On the inside of the truck were the words Don’t leave the ruins.
    “I think I know what it means,” said Breg. “I think it means “don’t leave the ruins.””
    Soushirei rolled his eyes, “Oh, good call! But honestly, will we be fighting in ruins?”
    “I guess so,” guessed Xaldin. “We’ll see when we reach out destination.”
    The truck hit a bump in the road before screeching to a halt. The door slid open and sunlight streamed into the dark vehicle.
    “This is it,” said Zexion. “Life or death.”
    The team stepped onto the sand, looking around to see the ruins of hundreds of houses and buildings. A decayed church, its cross shattered at the mast, looked as if it had been caught in a fire. Chunks of clay houses lay cracked on the barren sand. Jagged spires soared above tangled masses of iron.
    “Life is a game,” crackled a voice through their earpieces. “So fight for survival, and see if you’re worth it.”
    There was a click and the voice stopped. Everyone stood facing the maze of destroyed ruins, awaiting the unknown to show itself.
    “Risk, are you coming?” asked Rat. The team turned to see Risk sitting inside the truck. His head was between his knees, and he rocked back and forth.
    “I hate this! I’m not going with you!” he screamed.
    “You might as well. You’ll probably just die if you don’t,” stated Soushirei.
    “I never will!” he screamed. The truck’s engine chugged to life and it began to move away from the team.
    “Say goodbye to him,” Guxas said.
    “You’ll see! Team Dark and I will storm you and kill you all! Go die you mother fuc-”
    His rant ended as the collar around his neck exploded. There was a brilliant flash that lit up the dark interior of the truck. Blood soared in all directions, coating the wall and the sand below. His body fell out of the truck with blood exploding like a fountain from his neck. He hit the ground and twitched. The body instantly started spazzing out as he lay face down. There was a small thud as his head landed next to him. His eyes were rolled into the back of his head, and blood trickled from his forehead.
    “And that, team,is why we fight,” Xaldin said with one eyebrow raised.
    “Heh,” stuttered Breg. “Let’s go…”
    Team Light turned and ran into the twisted ruins of the Sahara Desert.

    7 Wild Seven members remaining
    23 forum members remaining

    4: And Then There Were Six

    Wild Seven was crowded round a spot of sand on the inside of the fortress. The seven of them made a small circle, their weapons leaning against odd walls and precipices.
    “Do they have PDA’s, too?” asked Rem. She was making small piles of sand with her feet.
    “I hope not,” said Matt, the only one standing up. He paced around the outer edge of the circle, shaking his head. “If they do, then it’s going to be a lot harder than we first planned.”
    “What we need,” began Zel, “is a battle strategy. I think that we should all go our separate ways for now, picking off people on our own. Sara can watch from the tower or use her PDA and radio us their locations so we can spend less time studying our PDA’s and more time attacking team Light and Dark.”
    “Maybe it would be best if we were to just concentrate on one team at a time,” suggested Acolyte. “If we got rid of all of team Dark, it would make team Light’s job a lot harder. It would also get rid of the chance of them teaming up for double the power.”
    “If they were to team up, then it’d be 7 of us against 24 of them,” calculated Matt. “We can’t afford to let them do so. I’m with Acolyte on this one.”
    “But if that’s what we choose to do,” Sara said from the shadows, “then what if we get killed by team Dark? For all we know, they could be highly trained soldiers armed with grenade and rocket launchers.”
    “I’ll scout ahead,” Rem interrupted, standing up. The rest of Wild Seven stared at her. “So… I’m leaving,” she said with finality.
    “You’re just running out there?” asked Sara. “You could easily be killed.”
    “I’m going to probe myself,” Rem replied stubbornly. “Crum’s twelve and you’ve allowed him to do more than me! I’m going now, and I’m taking out all of team Dark with me!”
    “Rem…” sighed Acolyte. “You’ll be killed.”
    “No, I won’t. You’ll see,” said Rem, picking up her pistols. “I hope you’ll be here when I get back.” Rem stormed from the fortress.
    “Is anyone going to get her?” asked Matt after half a minute.
    “I will,” opted Acolyte.
    “No, you won’t,” said Sara. “If she wants to prove herself, the let her try. I doubt she’ll die. She has a fighting spirit and yearns to prove it runs her mind. Let’s let her attempt to do so…”


    ---



    Rem ran through meters of rubble. She was rapidly approaching team Dark, the black dots and her gray dot moving closer and closer. One of the dots was separated from the rest, so she thought she’d start her killing there.
    The black dots moved toward her, fairly close. She didn’t know if they could track her or not, so she winged it to the right, sweeping around the outside of the barrier. Team Dark didn’t turn around and attack her as she run past out of view, so she assumed that they couldn’t track her.
    “Sara,” she spoke into her earpiece. “They can’t track us. At least, if they can, they didn’t come for me.”
    “Excellent, Rem.”
    She slowly crept through the ruins until she saw a moving figure in a house near her. Ducking into a nearby building, she looked out of the window to see a shadow staring right back at her.
    Gasping, she ducked below the window. This wasn’t her time to die. She clenched the pistol’s handle and shot up, turning and pointing it out of the window.
    The shadow was gone.
    “Huh?” she said aloud. The shadow had been there seconds ago, but was gone now. She peered around, wondering if it had walked off.
    “Hello.”
    She screamed, turning to see a boy with long brown hair that was swept to the side before it hit his eyes. He wore a nametag that read ‘Darkandroid.’
    Rem’s first thought upon seeing Darkandroid was ‘kill him!’ Her second was ‘Wow, he is gorgeous!’
    “Rem, are you alright?” asked Sara over the microphone.
    “Tell her you’re alright,” said Darkandroid. He held a pistol to her forehead. “Oh, and drop your gun too.” Rem dropped the gun.
    “I’m fine, I got him,” she said.
    “That’s good, over and out,” Sara said.
    Darkandroid took the earpiece from her ear and ripped it out, chucking it to the ground. He stomped on it until small pieces of metal were simply a vestige to the communication device that had been lying there before.
    “Do you have any other weapons on you?” asked Darkandroid.
    “Um, uh…”
    “Why can’t you answer me? You do, don’t you. Take it off.”
    “What?!” screamed Rem incredulously.
    “Take off your shirt.”
    “I’m fifteen.”
    “I’m seventeen.”
    “Child molester.”
    “Take off the shirt, girl! I am not afraid to pull this trigger!”
    Rem reluctantly pulled off her shirt, her large breasts bouncing as he pulled it over her neck.
    “I’m sure you’re happy about this, you sadistic *******,” she spat.
    Darkandroid looked her up and down. She was absolutely beautiful. Her blonde hair fell in curls around a beautiful face, and she had very large boobs (‘a plus!’ thought Darkandroid). Rem was the perfect body size, and had smooth, unmarked skin.
    “Checking me out, are you?” she glared. Darkandroid almost fell over from the mental force of the evil look she gave him.
    “I’m just looking for any weapons,” he replied carefully. It wasn’t long before he noticed where she was hiding the weapon, but he was too afraid to reach for it.
    “Um, heh, found it,” he said, reaching up before snapping his hand back. With one quick motion, he grabbed the second pistol from between her boobs. “Got it.”
    “****,” spat Rem, stamping her foot. “Sara’s going to be so pissed at me, now!”
    “You’re from Wild Seven, huh?” asked Darkandroid, already knowing the answer.
    “No, you think?”
    “What’s your name?”
    “Call me Rem.”
    Darkandroid turned to look at the sun. It was as if god had cast an angel before him.
    “W-Well,” stuttered Darkandroid, “I’ve got to keep you with me, so let’s get moving.”
    He grabbed Rem and started pulling her along. She quickly slipped the PDA on her arm into her pocket before he saw it.
    “Can I at least put my shirt on?” she asked.
    “No,” said Darkandroid. “I mean, yes, yes, go ahead…”
    Rem scoffed and pulled on her shirt, allowing herself to be pulled by Darkandroid.
    “So what’s it like to be in Wild Seven?” Darkandroid asked her.
    “We do bad stuff,” said Rem.
    “No way?” laughed Darkandroid. Rem smiled.
    The two walked through the ruins, Darkandroid pointing the way to his teammates. They walked through a house and into a clearing, where the team was sat.
    “Holy ****!” exclaimed Fayth, shooting up from his seat. In his knife was a switchblade, his random weapon. Hissora was pouting in the corner, her weapon having been a can of Axe Body Spray (“At least you can spray the enemies in the eyes! I’m sure that would sting like hell!” Darkandroid has said).
    “Woah!” shouted Rorik. “Who’s she?”
    “She’s from Wild Seven,” explained Darkandroid. The team gaped at him.
    The Wild Seven?” Foxxie said incredulously. “Kill her! Let’s turn Wild Seven into Wild Six!”
    “Yeah,” agreed most of the group.
    “Are you kidding?!” laughed Lithium. “She is so freaking hot! Let’s all have a go at her!”
    All the boys cheered. Rem looked at Lithium and put her tongue between her teeth.
    “Don’t even joke about that,” said Darkandroid. “For now, we can use her as a hostage to hopefully coax out some of the members of the Wild Seven.”
    “I’ll be a good girl,” added Rem.
    “But for now, as team leader, I say we create a battle plan.”
    “I can’t argue against that,” said Mouse.
    “Alright, this is what we’ll do,” began Darkandroid. Alice, Hissora, and Fayth; you guys all received heavy duty weapons, well, not Hissora, but she can take one of these guns. I want you two to form a pack and make your way toward that huge mountain. That’s probably where the Wild Seven is located.” Darkandroid handed Hissora one of Rem’s guns.
    “Is that so?” Alice asked Rem.
    “Yeah,” said Rem. “But don’t think you’ll just be able to walk up there. I doubt you’ll get within a football field before being shot dead.”
    “I’m not too happy with that,” Hissora whined.
    “Oh, shut up and do as you’re told,” Alice said, smacking her.
    “Um, well, that’s good. Does everyone agree that we’ve got that much settled?” asked Darkandroid. The team nodded. Fayth, Alice, and Hissora waved to everyone before trudging off into the ruins.
    “Jade, Kitty, and Foxxie, I’d like you three to make your way around the right side of the mountain. Hopefully you’ll run into team Light and you should be able to take them out. Even if it’s a small pack, that’ll make it all the more easier. Just remember that if you have the chance to kill someone, take it.”
    The trio followed Darkandroid’s orders and charged into the ruins. He, Rem, Rufus, Mouse, CFF, Rorik, and Lithium were the only ones remaining in the clearing.
    “Mouse, I have direct orders for you,” Darkandroid smiled. “Find Xaldin. Got it?”
    “Got it,” saluted Mouse, who ran off.
    “Rufus and Rorik, make your way around the left side of the mountain. Don’t get romantic on me. Lithium, you go with them. Try not to rape Rufus or anything.”
    Rufus shuddered.
    “This could be goodbye, Darkandroid,” said Rorik.
    “Try not to die,” Darkandroid said, giving Rorik a comforting smile.
    Rorik and his teammates ran off, leaving Darkandroid and Rem staring at each other.
    ‘She’s so beautiful,’ thought Darkandroid. ‘I just want to… to… kiss her! Everything about her is just stunning. If only she’d let me get a little closer…’
    ‘He is the hottest guy I have ever seen!’ thought Rem. ‘Should I play it tough? Should I make it easy? Wait, I don’t want to come off as easy to get, but still-’
    Darkandroid grabbed her hand.
    “Let’s go,” he smiled.
    “What about me?!”
    Darkandroid and Rem’s picturesque moment was cut short as CFF started running around Darkandroid.
    “Oh, god, oh, um, yeah, well… CFF, I appoint you, uh… Charge Leader! You lead the charge on the Wild Seven base. Go! Charge! Now!”
    “I, am, POWER!!!” roared CFF, sprinting into the rubble.
    “He should be dead within a few minutes,” smiled Darkandroid.
    “That’s good,” said Rem. “Hopefully he won’t bother us.”
    An awkward silence fell upon the two.
    “Um, what should we do?” asked Rem.
    “Let’s just sit together and talk while I wait for my teammates to call in,” suggested Darkandroid.
    “Fine with me,” Rem grinned.
    The two sat, smiling and looking at the sun.
    “Hello? Hello? Can you hear me?”
    The voice came from the earpieces, crackling through static to reach them.
    “Uh, yes, this is Monkey, here to bring everyone my first announcement! First, I’ll start with the deaths; Risk died due to his team leaving him behind. He’s the only dead person so far.”
    “Oh, lord,” Darkandroid said, rather surprised. “I’m surprised Xaldin would leave behind someone on his own team.
    “Also,” Monkey continued, “I have some new information for you all.” He paused.
    “In these ruins are hidden two chests. One of these chests contains a walkie-talkie. When used, it will allow you to call in an air strike on any part of the field you want.”
    “Woah!” exclaimed Darkandroid. The head-honchos were pulling all the strings to make this the most exciting game yet.
    “Also,” Monkey said. “The other chest contains a bomb. When it is opened, it will explode and kill the person who opened it and anyone around them. The chests are very hard to find, and if you do find them, choose carefully whether to open it or not. I’ll see you all again in an hour.”


    ---



    “Rem?! Rem, come in!”
    Sara was screaming into her earpiece. Rem hadn’t answered for ages. She could see Rem’s dot on her PDA and next to her was a black dot of someone from team Dark. “Zel!” she called, and he wandered over. “Go get Rem. I believe she’s been kidnapped by someone on team Dark.”
    Zel grabbed his pistols and shoved the magazines into them with a loud click. He spun them on his fingers before stuffing them into his pockets.
    “Already done,” he grinned, and jumped out the window.

    7 Wild Seven members remaining
    23 forum members remaining

    5: Memories

    With you always in my sights,
    I can manage to breathe.
    And that ought to be enough for me.

    All I ever can do,
    is repeat old mistakes
    How much strength do I need
    before I don’t end up hurting anything?

    I will not stray from you,
    This love will carry far,
    and with it I’ll
    keep on living right.

    I’ll take these open wounds,
    and cleanse them with my heart.
    The ones that will not close
    I’ll squeeze tight.

    The two of us can never return,
    we’ll keep walking to the end.
    Even now, deep within my heart,
    I still feel this indelible sin, friend.

    Mr. Heath turned off his radio as he turned into the parking lot closest to the Empire State Building. Outside, he encountered the familiar hustle-and-bustle of the New York City morning. Men stomped about with their coffee and briefcases. Women marched to work with their cell-phones stapled to their ears.
    It wasn’t long before Mr. Heath found himself walking into the doors of the Empire State Building. He was greeted by the usual attractive secretary before getting into the elevator. Inside was a short Japanese woman, and as he reached to press the floor button she screamed at him, “Hey!”
    He jumped and turned to her. “Yes?”
    “Do not! I must go to my floor!”
    “Yes, but can’t I just-”
    “That is what my husband says to me last night! But I tell him, no, you may not. My spaghetti noodle vagine hair is for me, not him! He tell me, he says to me, no, it is for me to make children with. But I tell him that I am 78 years old and that his rods will crumple my skin.”
    Mr. Heath just stood there in stunned silence. The elevator made its typical ding! noise and the woman left. Before the door closed, she turned around and said to him, “Good job, man. You nice. I give you gift.”
    She handed him a crossword puzzle book.
    “Thanks!” he said, waving his hand. The door closed and he flipped open the crossword book to see that every puzzle was complete. “Oh…” he moaned.
    Finally, the elevator reached his floor and he stepped out to see a wide office building. Through an entrance to his left was the ‘Relax Room’, filled with workers drinking coffee and watching the television. Ornate desks littered the carpeted space that was encompassed by wall-high windows.
    “Hey, Heath!” a joyous man shouted, running up to him.
    “Hey, Ozar,” smiled Mr. Heath. “How’s your wife?”
    “Ever since she’s been pregnant it’s like Cupid had an army fire their arrows on me! I just want to grab her stomach and feel the baby and AHH!”
    “That’s great,” Mr. Heath laughed. “Would you like to come with me into the Relax Room?”
    “Sorry, but I’ve got loads of paperwork to file,” chuckled Ozar. “But I’ll get in there if I can.”
    Mr. Heath sat down in a big couch that was spread out in four sections. Women were busily talking about calories, and the men chatted about NASCAR. Mr. Heath was not a fan of NASCAR, nor did he worry about his current calorie intake. Ever since the year before, Sara had been in his thoughts and prayers. She hadn’t come to visit him; at least not yet. The government had given a list of the dead, and Sara was not among them. It had become general knowledge that she was wanted and hunted by bounty collectors. For all he knew, she was dead, but the nation was aware of how she had killed the ‘game’ leader and fled into the water.
    ‘Sara,’ he thought. ‘To just see you again, it would please me so much.’
    “What’s that!?” said a boisterous woman. She pointed at the screen, which had turned to static.
    “Just some bad frequency!” cajoled another large woman.
    “No, it can’t be, it’s happening on these screens too!” shouted a man from the work area. Every screen or monitor on their floor had turned to static. Mr. Heath looked out the window to see that a giant television on an equally giant building that normally displayed advertisements was now static, too.
    “It’s happening outside,” he announced. The women waddled over to see what he was talking about.
    The telephone rang, and Ozar picked it up.
    “Yes?”
    “Are you getting the static?”
    “Yeah, every screen and TV up here!”
    “They say it’s happening all over the world!”
    “The whole world? Are you serious?”
    “Yes, every screen in the world instantly turned to static. What do you think is going on?”
    “I dunno, but whatever it is-”
    The static stopped, and every screen in the world changed in unison.
    The sound quality was itchy at best, with random static flashes flaring up on the screen. A camera slowly panned along the words ‘Wild Seven’ that were written on a giant flag. The camera panned back, and in front of the flag were seven warriors. They all wore bandanas covering their faces, and weapons of all sorts. What caught Mr. Heath’s attention most, though, was the woman in the middle. It was his daughter, Sara. Unlike the others, her face was in full view, and she held an old Russian Draginov in both arms.
    “It has been one year since I lost my life to the game. My family, my lover, everything, shredded, torn away from me. I am physically alive, but to be dead would be an honorable sin.”
    Mr. Heath’s lip began to quiver. He dropped his coffee, which splashed on the ground. His daughter was live.
    “I escaped from that helicopter, able to take the life of the one who tore me apart. Victims of the Reformation Act have continued to increase, and now, war is inevitable…”
    Mr. Heath looked at the road below him. Every car had stopped. For miles, the only thing moving was Sara’s mouth on the screens.
    “This war was inevitable…”
    She paused, and the camera moved closer to her face.
    “And the dice was rolled. We… we cannot forgive the adults who made us kill each other. Let us get together, and let us fight together. From this time on, we declare war against all adults.”
    An explosion rocked the floor. The windows shattered and fire consumed the workplace. Glass splinters showered the workers’ as they ran from the gaping edges of the Empire State Building. One woman was sucked out by the air pressure. Mr. Heath watched in horror as she was tossed onto a massive pole jutting from a nearby building. The pole ripped through her body, sending a mass of blood gushing like rain to the road below. Her legs were ripped from her body, and they began to flip and spin towards pedestrians running on the sidewalk.
    Mr. Heath threw up on the floor and turned to see Ozar calling him.
    “Let’s go, Heath, we’ve got to get out of here!”
    Mr. Heath ran up to him, fire burning his skin. The intense heat forced him to close his eyes, and he covered his mouth with his hand to protect him from the black smoke that crept in from all corners. Ozar grabbed Mr. Heath by the arm and ran him into the nearest stairwell. Here, the smoke wasn’t as bad, so they began to talk as they ran down the steps.
    “Do you know what happened?” asked Mr. Heath.
    “Someone said they saw a missile slam into the building. I bet it was that Crazy Sevens group or something!”
    “Ozar, there’s something I must confide in you.”
    The two kept running, nearing the 13th floor.
    “Yes?”
    “Do you remember my daughter, Sara?”
    “The one who you said died in a car accident?”
    “Well, the thing is Ozar… she isn’t dead.”
    Ozar stopped. They had reached the 9th floor.
    “Why are you telling me this now?”
    “Keep going,” said Mr. Heath, and the two began to run again. “Well, you see, the reason I’m telling you this is because I lied to you. I shouldn’t have, but I had to hide my painful past. The memory of Sara still burns strongly in my mind, and when I saw that video just now, it burned even stronger. It was a year ago, when the government passed the Reformation Act. I’m sure you’re aware of it. The first group of participants was a group from an on-line website. My, daughter, Sara, was part of that website.”
    The floor rumbled and a piece of the ceiling crashed down behind Ozar as he ran.
    “The building’s collapsing, we’ve got to go faster!” he shouted.
    Mr. Heath continued without interruption, “She was part of the first Reformation Act. Ozar, my daughter, Sara, was the first winner of the Reformation Act. That girl from the terrorist group… that was Sara.”
    This time, Ozar stopped for good.
    “That… girl, she was your daughter?”
    “I’m afraid so, my friend.”
    Ozar stared at him. Mr. Heath stared back. There was a growl as a piece of stairway collapsed above them.
    “We’re on the 3rd floor, we can make it,” sighed Mr. Heath. “Let’s go.”
    The two ran to the second floor quickly. Mr. Heath spotted dead bodies crushed beneath rubble as he ran past. Dust began to pick up in the air. Mr. Heath spotted light a he entered the lobby of the enormous skyscraper.
    “That’s it,” said Ozar. “We’ve made it.”
    As if mocking him, a massive piece of ceiling collapsed and landed in front of him. A mass of dust swelled beneath them, rising into their nostrils and clogging their lungs.
    What followed was a horrific sound. It was a roar accompanied by the screech of twisting metal and screaming people. Ozar disappeared from sight as he was consumed by a wall of powder.
    “Sara…” gasped Mr. Heath, falling to his knees.
    The ceiling to his right hit the ground next to him. The roar above him grew louder and louder.
    “I knew that you were alive. I’m so happy to see your face again.”
    A picture of Sara in her childhood fell from his pocket onto the ground in front of him.

    Come on, let me hold you

    He gently picked up the picture, tears forming in his eyes. Sara had a massive grin pasted across her face. She was holding a baseball bat, and on her head was a ‘Happy Birthday’ hat. A tear fell onto picture, covering Sara’s face.

    Touch you, feel you

    “I never thought you’d be the death of me,” cried Mr. Heath. The floodwall containing his emotions burst, and he screamed at the ceiling. Tears poured from his eyes, lost in the swirling dust that whipped around him.

    Always

    His mind wrapped around the fact that Sara was a terrorist; a wanted terrorist who had blown up the Empire State Building. She had already killed people higher up in the building, and he was next. The roar was directly above him. The ground shook violently and he dropped the picture.

    Kiss you, taste you

    Ozar was dead. His wife was dead. For him, the world was dead too.

    All night

    The ceiling above him collapsed inward. He looked up to see a mass of steel falling towards him. Time stopped, and he was back at home with Sara.
    “Daddy?” she asked, her voice young and childish as he dimmed her lights.
    “Yes, sweetie?”
    “Where’s mommy?”
    He sighed, wondering how to explain to her that her mother was dead.
    “Sometimes…” he began, “People… make bad choices. Mommy has to go away for a little bit because of this, but we’ll see her again someday.”
    “That’s good. It’s kinda hard to love someone when you only see them in pictures.”

    I’ll miss your laugh, your smile

    He was at the park with Sara. She laughed as he pushed her on the swings, up and down, his arms tiring but her attitude only growing more ecstatic.
    “I’ve had enough!” he laughed, falling to his back. The sun loomed overhead.
    Sara dropped next to him, looking at the sky.
    “What’s the sun made out of? Oranges?”
    “No, honey,” he smiled, “It’s made out of lots of things you wouldn’t understand… gases and other complicated things that not even I know of!”
    “Oh…” she frowned, slightly disappointed. “Daddy, do we go there when we die?”
    “The sky?”
    “Yeah… some boy at school said when you die you go into the clouds.”
    “Maybe, if that’s what you want to believe…”
    “Is mommy in the clouds?”

    So here I am, I’m trying

    Sara was standing at home base, ready to hit the ball. The pitcher lobbed it at her, and she swung the bat with all her might.
    Mr. Heath screamed and jumped as he heard the bat crack on the ball.
    “YES, Sara!!!” He looked around to see that no one else was cheering. Most parents were reading their newspapers or on their cell-phones.
    “Daddy!” she called from the plate. “Daddy, I hit the ball!”
    “Yes, yes, Sara. Good job, now RUN!”
    She took off running, her stick legs and arms wildly spinning as she rounded first. The other children, unaware that she had hit the ball, stood around talking and picking grass. Sara sprinted around second, making her way to third.
    “Go!” screamed Mr. Heath.
    She whipped through third base and dashed for home. The final few feet ended in an awkward slide, but Mr. Heath took no notice as he screamed and jumped.

    So here I am, are you ready

    The world spun back to reality and Mr. Heath found himself back in the Empire State Building. Tears on his cheeks instantly melted under the burn of the fire that flared around him.
    “Sara…” he said one final time. The air turned to ash and his eardrums burst from the roar of the falling building.
    A smile spread across his face as he was crushed beneath the ceiling.

    Always

    6: Fighting Those Who We Protect

    Rat stumbled through a smashed wall. His weapon, some nun-chuks, clattered to the floor in front of him.
    “****,” he seethed, trying to be as quiet as possible. He couldn’t let Wild Seven see him as he snuck towards their fortress.
    In his pocket was a single grenade, which, according to Xaldin, could be used to psyche out Wild Seven if Rat was able to throw it into the tower on top of their hideout.
    ‘What am I doing?’ he thought. ‘I’m not going to make it out of here alive! But, wait, if I am stealthy enough then I should be able to get by this without a problem. There are plenty of buildings to hide in.’
    Rat decided to leave the nun-chuks behind. If Wild Seven was to get to him, they’d be useless anyway.
    He traveled through more buildings and came upon a glassy sheet of water. It lay on the sand, perfectly untouched by human hands.
    “Water!” he exclaimed, and bent down to sip it. His throat was parched and his head was getting dizzy from the heat. The water that ran through his dry mouth was a huge relief. They’d only been given 2 bottles of water in their daypacks; barely enough for one day, let alone three.
    Another way for them to kill us faster.
    He got up and looked towards the tower in front of him. It wasn’t too far away, and he’d been traveling for awhile. The earpiece crackled in his ear, and he recognized Soushirei’s voice.
    “Rat, are you holding up well?”
    “Yeah, I’m not dead yet,” he whispered.
    “Good, Xaldin told me to let you know that he’s surprising a plan attack around the perimeter of the fort as soon as you throw the grenade. Can you have it done by 3:00 PM?”
    Rat looked at his watch, which read 2:47. Soushirei’s request was perfect.
    “Yes, I can do it by then.”
    “Alright,” Soushirei began to explain, “After you throw the grenade, look for a red flag flying in the air. It’s just a piece of one of those daypacks. Run towards it and we’ll give you a better weapon to attack the fortress with.”
    “I’ve got it.”
    There was a slight pause before Soushirei spoke up again.
    “Be careful, Rat.”
    Click.
    Rat looked towards the fortress of Wild Seven. The tower he was attacking loomed above the rest of the battlefield. A small window was visible from where he stood. Something was off. The window was completely black, but something was sticking out of it. It was long and thing, and was pointed towards him.
    ‘****!’ he thought, diving to the ground. There was a flash at the top of the tower. A small pop rung out across the ruins and dirt sprayed up behind Rat.
    “Did you see that?!” he screamed.
    “Yeah,” said Soushirei. “How are you still alive?”
    “I saw it before it shot,” he replied.
    More dirt exploded from the ground as Rat crawled towards a wall.
    “How do I get in there?” he asked.
    “You should get back to us, or you’ll be killed,” warned Soushirei. Rat turned and looked over the top of the ruins to see a red flag billowing in the air.
    “I’ve got your position,” he said, turning to run back.
    He turned around and gasped. Behind him was a boy with short, blonde hair. His eyes were squinted in anger, and a scar crossed his face from eye to mouth. Two pistols were held in his hands, both pointed at Rat.
    “Don’t move a muscle,” said the boy.
    “Who are-?”
    “I said don’t move! My name is Zel. Pick up the nun-chuks and throw them towards me.”
    Rat bent down slowly and grabbed the nun-chuks, tossing them at Zel’s feet.
    “Do you have any other weapons on you?”
    Rat shook his head.
    “Then what’s that lump in your pocket?”
    Rat looked down at his pocket, where a large lump was clearly visible.
    “Oh…” he began, “That’s a grenade.”
    “Take it out!” commanded Zel. Rat slowly reached into his pocket and pulled out the grenade.
    “Soushirei,” he said. “You’ll never see me again, but you’ll only have to worry about six Wild Seven members now.”
    “Huh?” murmured Zel. In one swift motion, Rat ripped the grenade from his pocket, pulled out the pin, and chucked it at Zel.
    “****ing hell!”
    Zel jumped backwards and fired the pistols. One of the bullets connected with the grenade as it flew towards him. The grenade exploded, a wall of fire flying towards hid body. His body was turned into an indistinguishable flower of flesh and blood as he was torn apart by shrapnel.
    Rat turned away and felt his skin melt under the intense heat. He looked at his hand to see it turned to goop before a piece of grenade lodged into the back of his head. It flew through the bridge of his nose, and it was the last thing he saw as his brains erupted from his eyes.


    ---



    Xaldin stood up and looked at the explosion. A massive ball of fire tore above the tops of the ruins. Dust and rock flew in all directions.
    “Rat!” he screamed.
    “Get down, you idiot!” screamed Soushirei. “The sniper will kill you if you show your head!”
    Xaldin knelt back down, tears I his eyes.
    “That kid was just killed, Soush. He was a kid!”
    “It’s going to be okay, Xaldin. He gave me some good news before he died…”
    “Good news?!” Xaldin screamed. “How could him dying have anything to do with good news?!”
    “He took out a member of Wild Seven.”
    Xaldin stopped shouting. “Oh…” he said, “That’s good, I guess… He made a sacrifice for the team that I’ll never forget.”


    ---



    “Zel? ZEL?!”
    Sara screamed into her earpiece. There was no answer.
    “Have we lost him?” asked Matt.
    “**** this!” Sara screamed. “We’re stuck in this ****ing game and we just lost a member. ****, Matt, we’ve never lost a member in all of our existence! And to see ****ing kid? With a ****ty grenade!”
    “Calm down…” clamed Matt, stunned at Sara’s use of language. He’d never seen her more furious.
    “There’s something I’m angrier about, Matt, and something we need to figure out before we kill any more.”
    “What, Sara?”
    “Did you not hear me say kid?”
    “…Kid?”
    “Yes, Matt, the person I was shooting at was a kid. We’re fighting those who we’re trying to protect.”

    6 Wild Seven members remaining
    22 forum members remaining

    7: All Lies

    It was fifteen minutes after Zel had been killed, and Sara, Matt, Acolyte, Saint, and Crum sat in a circle round their weapons.
    “We have a problem,” said Sara. “Let’s recall why Wild Seven was formed. Acolyte, why did you join?”
    “Uh…” she stuttered. “Well, after the game I was put through, my mind was going wild. All my friends were dead. Unlike you, I was put into the game with the rest of my classmates. Having to kill them, and watch them be killed… it was awful, Sara. Then, after the game, I saw what you were doing. I saw what you were fighting for. You were fighting for children like me, and I knew that it was my duty to help you defend the honor of the youth around the world.”
    “Does anyone agree with her?” asked Sara. The rest of the group nodded. Sara turned to Crum, the youngest member at twelve years old, “Crum, what about you? Why did you join Wild Seven?”
    “In my game, I never actually killed anyone,” he said softly. “But I watched my friend walk into a danger zone. I saw them all get killed, most driven crazy by the three day time limit. It all happened in one night. Everyone banded together and slept in the woods. During the night, one boy took a sickle and slit everyone’s throats. Those who survived ran away. The boy with the sickle was shot by someone just before they fell into a danger zone. I didn’t deserve to win. I screamed and watched. When I got home, I had to have revenge. I think that’s why we’re all here; revenge.”
    “Revenge driven lunatics…” whispered Matt. “That’s all we are, isn’t it? I know now, without a doubt, why the government put is into this game. They don’t care if we kill these kids, or if these kids kill us. They want us to kill ourselves! Don’t you see it? The government wants us to fight against those who we are trying to protect!”
    “What’s he talking about?” asked Saint.
    “That’s why I gathered us here,” replied Sara. “Team Light and Dark, they’re, well… they’re all made up of children. The government is forcing us to fight children, guys. We need to decide whether we fight here today, or not.”
    “I’ve made a list of what will happen,” said Matt. “If we choose to fight, I’m sure we will defeat these kids. That’s all they are. We are trained warriors who have seen combat. I know that we’ll be able to win. Then, as you know, we can go home. But, it’s a completely different case if we choose not to fight them. They want to fight us, so I we choose to not fight, we’ll be killed. For all we know, they just want to go home. So do we, and I think that if we attempt to make negotiations they’ll just kill us. Also, we’d end up dying from the three-day time limit if they didn’t get to us first.”
    “We have to fight,” sighed Acolyte. “Fight or die. Even if we’re killing them, I’d rather live. And I don’t think that I’m being selfish by saying this, either.”
    “So, is it decided?” asked Sara, looking at the five.
    “We fight. Raise your hand if you agree.”
    All four of them raised an arm. Sara waited before raising hers.
    “It’s settled,” she said. “But before we begin this, there’s something we have to do. All five of us are going out on this mission. We have to rescue Rem. Right now, we have three machine guns, two pistols, and a sniper. Obviously, we won’t be taking the sniper rifle out onto the field. Crum, Matt, and Acolyte will take their machine guns. Saint and I will split the pistols. Are you guys cool with this plan?”
    The team nodded. Sara grabbed one of the pistols and through it at Saint. With the other, she began to trace a map into the ground.
    “Using our PDA’s, we can easily find Rem and avoid the enemy. Just to be safe, I’ll go with Crum. Acolyte, Saint, and Matt; you three will travel together. We’ll leave in ten minutes. Check your PDA’s at all times to make sure you’re not near Light or Dark. Kill the person with Rem as soon as you have a clear shot.”
    “Ready,” said Acolyte.
    “Then let’s go.”


    ---



    Rem moved her hand down Darkandroid’s chest. Her lips pressed against his, her tongue sliding over his own.
    “How… did this… happen?” mumbled Darkandroid between kisses.
    “I… don’t know, but… I love it.”
    Darkandroid felt his hand across her chest. He would never have believed that he’d be in his current situation during the game, or that it would be with such a beautiful girl.
    “Wow, that is disgusting.”
    Darkandroid looked up from Rem’s chest to see a silhouette standing in the sun. It held a large sword towards his chest.
    “What are you two up to?”
    The voice was extremely childish. It was as if a small boy was speaking to him.
    “Sora would never allow that kind of behavior.”
    “What?” spat Rem. “Who is this kid?”
    The silhouette stepped forward, and Darkandroid gasped in horror as he saw who it was.
    “It is I, Sweq, seeker of darkness.”
    “…”
    Darkandroid whipped around his hand and wisped up a pistol off of the sand. He pointed it at Sweq, who simply laughed.
    “Sora is in me today, and he will help team Light overcome Dark. You see, darkness can never prevail.”
    “How does he know words like ‘prevail’?” whispered Rem.
    Darkandroid prepared to pull the trigger, but a voice interrupted him.
    “Don’t do it,” said the voice. “Let me handle him.”
    From the shadows stepped CFF. In his hand was another sword, and he pointed it at Sweq. Sweq gasped and stepped backward.
    “I’ve come to save you, Darkandroid,” he said. “I knew that trouble would find its way up your skirt. Looks like I’ve gotten to the trouble before it’s gotten to you.”
    “Worst analogy ever, but kick his ***!” Darkandroid shouted. CFF charged at Sweq, he put his sword up on front of him.
    “Guard!” shouted Sweq. “That’s a move Sora uses to stop attacks!”
    “Oh, shut up!” cajoled CFF, swinging the sword at Sweq’s legs. Sweq jumped and hit the wall behind him. Using his legs as momentum, he launched himself at CFF. Their swords clashed and clanged as the two went at each other with all their might.
    “You can never win,” snarled CFF. “You’re just a stupid newbie!”
    “You’re one to talk,” laughed Darkandroid, watching the battle in amusement.
    Sweq turned and ran into the ruins, disappearing from sight.
    “That’s right!” taunted CFF, “run away like a baby!”
    “ROAR!”
    Sweq came out of the sky, thrusting his sword towards CFF. Without a second to spare, CFF raised his sword and defense and blocked Sweq’s attack.
    “Like I said, you can never win,” he repeated.
    “I won’t repeat myself when I say this,” grimaced Sweq. “But I am better than you.”
    “You’re what?”
    “Better than you.”
    “Ha, you repeated it! You said you’d never repeat yourself!”
    “NOOO!” screamed Sweq, raising his fists into the air.
    CFF took the chance to slice at Sweq. The sword pierced his stomach and intestines exploded out of his back. Blood splattered to the floor as Sweq screamed in pain. CFF ripped the sword from his body, sending more blood flying to the sand. He then reached a hand into Sweq’s body and ripped out his lower intestine.
    “Eat it, fatty!” he screamed, shoving it into Sweq’s throat.
    “Stop!” mumbled Sweq, feasting upon his own organs.
    CFF then took his thumbs and pressed them into Sweq’s eyes. He heard popping sounds as he pushed his thumbs in further. Black liquid spurted from Sweq’s eyes as he screamed in agony. His eyes popped like grapes beneath a shoe. CFF picked up his sword and stabbed it into Sweq’s throat. The back of the sword exited Sweq’s neck, his spinal cord instantly severed.
    “Pith,” laughed CFF. He then sliced open Sweq’s chest and ripped out his still beating heart. Sweq’s breaths grew slower and slower.
    “I doubt you can see it, but I hold your heart in my hand… the Kingdom Heart.”
    “No…” said Sweq weakly. His last words were, “Sora, I’ll… see you in heaven.” His head dropped limply before falling off his body and rolling on the sand.
    “Wow,” said Darkandroid, who began to clap. CFF stood in front of him covered in blood. “That, kid, was an amazing battle, and certainly a deserving death for Sweq.”
    CFF grinned, “I knew I was going to win from the beginning.”
    “Well, could you leave me alone, now?” asked Darkandroid, quite intent in getting back to Rem.
    “Yes, sir!” shouted CFF, who grabbed Sweq’s sword and ran off.
    Rem just stared at Darkandroid.
    “Do you honestly think we can keep doing this here, with that bloody corpse?” asked Rem.
    “True,” smiled Darkandroid. “Let’s move to a less smelly location.”
    The two got up, and began to walk off.
    “Don’t move.”
    Darkandroid froze. He turned around to see an unmistakable waft of hair, and a stare that could shatter your charisma.
    “Give us the girl.”
    It was Sara, and behind her was the rest of Wild Seven.
    “Give us the girl,” repeated Sara, “or you die.”
    Her request was very clear, but it wasn’t Darkandroid who was going to make the decision. Rem quickly ran over to Sara, topless, her breast bouncing as she ran. She hid them from the group and began to cry.
    “Sara…” she said. “He captured me and threatened to kill me. Then he said that he’d shoot me if I didn’t have sex with him. He’s just a horrible guy. I’m so glad you’re here to rescue me. I was almost forced to do something that I’d never have wanted to do.”
    Sara kept her eyes on Darkandroid as she listened to Rem. Matt twitched behind her, biting one of his fingernails in boredom.
    “Is this true?” Sara asked Darkandroid.
    He was lost for words. Rem had just been on his side, and as soon as Sara had shown up she attacked innocent and afraid. Whatever answer he gave Sara, she wouldn’t believe him. He decided to go along with Rem and see what she did next.
    “Yes, Sara, I did force her to do things with me.”
    Rem looked taken aback, but quickly regained her posture. Sara held a pistol at arms length, ready to shoot Darkandroid if he tried to escape.
    “Then you do realize that I’m going to have to kill you.”
    Darkandroid gulped.
    “Please, Sara, don’t kill me,” he begged. “You don’t have to kill me!”
    Sara snarled.
    “You’re dead, boy.”
    She pulled back the top of the pistol and smiled.

    6 Wild Seven members remaining
    21 forum members remaining

    8: In Private

    Colonel Ray and Monkey sat together back at the base, sharing a pack of Oreo’s.
    “What’s your favorite part of the Oreo, the crème middle or the cookie shell?” asked Monkey.
    “Good question,” replied the Colonel. “If you want to be honest, my favorite part is the crème, just because the cookie part would be so dry without it. It works both ways, really.”
    “The crème is definitely the best part,” agreed Monkey. “What about Uh-Oh Oreos? The chocolate flavor is the crème and the vanilla part is the cookie!”
    “I don’t think I’ve ever tried one of those ones,” said Colonel Ray sadly. “We’ll have to get a pack soon.”
    A soldier strode into the room.
    “Sir!” he shouted. “Someone else has died, Sir!”
    “Who is it?” asked the Colonel.
    “Boy No. 11, Sweq, Sir! He was brutally murdered by CFF!”
    “Thank you,” the Colonel smiled. He turned to Monkey and said, “Things are going very well, aren’t they?”
    “Definitely,” Monkey said. “In fact, we really couldn’t ask for better. One member of Wild Seven is already dead. I don’t care what happens to anyone else, as long as Wild Seven is defeated. We don’t want to have to call in an air-strike if they win.”
    “It’s about time to make the second announcement,” said the Colonel, handing Monkey the microphone. “Go ahead and tell them about the new deaths.”
    Monkey grabbed the microphone, flicking a small ‘ON’ switch.
    “Hello, boys, girls, and adults alike! We have some new deaths for you. Rat’s dead, as well as Sweq. Even better, Zel from the Wild Seven has been killed! Team Light and Dark, fight for your honor. There’re only six more people to take out before the fight gets easy, so fight with gusto!”
    He laughed and flicked the switch to ‘OFF’.
    “Interesting update,” quipped the Colonel. “I love the enthusiasm.”
    “You can’t bore them,” smiled Monkey. “I haven’t asked you yet; who do you think is going to win?”
    “Do you want my honest opinion?” sighed the Colonel. “It’s gotta be Wild Seven. They’ve lost one person, but it was a fluke. He was on his own. But they have the PDA’s, and they can now move us a team, sweeping the ruins and killing anyone who comes across their path. As far as odds go, Wild Seven can’t lose.”
    “And we know what happens then,” Monkey added. “We destroy the place. Whether Wild Seven thinks they’ve won or not, in the end, they’re going down in flames.”
    Monkey walked in front of several large computer screens. Manned by soldiers, they showed and aerial view of the battlefield, as well as a grid map featuring the locations of every player. The Colonel stepped up beside him, looking over the screens.
    “People are dying at a faster rate than I would have thought,” he said. “If this keeps up, we could be looking at a new world record.” The Colonel turned on one heel and began to walk off. He entered a dimly lit hallway, ridden with doors that led into small rooms crammed with soldiers. Some were sipping coffee and talking with each other. One room was full of soldiers playing a racing game on the television. The final room contained only one boy, who was reading a book entitled “Kingdom Hearts III: The Revival”.
    “Is it good?” asked the Colonel. The boy perked up, exchanging a quick glance with the Colonel. Realizing who it was, he straightened up and offered a salute.
    “Yes, sir,” he chanted. “What are your orders, sir?”
    “At ease, soldier,” grumbled the Colonel. The soldier slumped back into his chair. “I’ve come here with a troubling request. Upon viewing the screens, I realized that Team Dark’s leader has been captured. He is still alive, for now. But while he is in captivity, Wild Seven can use him as ransom against Dark. That’s where you come in, soldier.” He held up a picture of Darkandroid, and the soldier gasped.
    “Private Mark Ringer, does this man look familiar?”
    Mark looked at the picture of Darkandroid… and found himself looking straight back.
    “M-Me?” stuttered Mark.
    “No, of course not,” chuckled the Colonel. “But it’s fairly obvious that this boy, Darkandroid, looks almost identical to you. Just to make you feel better, we did a background check, and you guys are not related. But it is odd that he looks just like you, isn’t it? We’ve decided that we’re going to use this to our advantage.”
    “What do you mean?” inquired Mark, his voice eager yet disturbed.
    “You look so much like this boy that we’re going to put you out there,” the Colonel grinned, pointing out the hall. “And by that I mean the desert. And by that I mean the ruins. And, uh, by that, I mean the fake team Dark leader. And by that, I finished the explanation of what you’ll be doing.”
    “Huh?”
    “Look, you look so much like Darkandroid that we’re putting you out there in the field. The real Darkandroid is currently captured by Wild Seven-”
    “Sorry for interrupting, sir, but I’ve got that. Do you really want me to go out there and pretend to be this guy?”
    “Yes,” replied the Colonel. “You will pretend to be him so that team Light lives longer. I’ve got a bet with someone high-up, and if Light loses then his dogs will be ****ing me up the *** for a long time. And I don’t’ ‘want you to do it,’ kiddo, this is an order. Darkandroid had a pistol with him when he left team Dark. You’re going out there. You’re playing the game. As they say these days, Mark; life is a game. So fight for survival, and see if you’re worth it.”
    “But!” started Mark. “You can’t force me to play in the Reformation Act! I’m part of the army!”
    “Don’t talk back to me, private,” growled Colonel, lowering his head. “You can shout at me, hit me, and curse at me all you want, but you know damn well that you’re going out onto the playing field. We can’t let Dark go crazy and attack the Wild Seven for Darkandroid. They’ll be slaughtered! You’re the balance beam that’s keeping them from going insane. Are we understood, private?”
    Mark Ringer stared at the table, eyeing his new novel. It was a world he longed to escape back to, but a new world was ahead of him. The Colonel left him no choice but to accept the offer.
    “Understood, sir…”
    “Then follow me, please.”
    Mark and the Colonel strode from the room, turning right into the long hallway. The Colonel smiled at Monkey before walking down a set of stairs. He smashed open a door to reveal a small classroom littered with desks and two open walls.
    “Here,” said the Colonel, taking a pistol from his pocket and handing it to Mark. A soldier behind him outfitted Mark with a receiver set to team Dark. They also gave Mark a collar.
    “You know the rules of the collar, correct?” asked the Colonel.
    “Yes, sir, I’m very afraid, sir.”
    “Don’t be,” laughed the Colonel. “The rules don’t apply to that collar. You can try and run, but you’ll just die in the desert. Apart from those bottles of water, there isn’t any other liquid for miles! If, private, I hear you telling anyone on Light about your true disposition, I will blow it up before the last word even leaves your mouth.”
    “I understand, sir,” mumbled Mark. “Sir, what if team Dark finds out who I really am?”
    The Colonel replied gravely, “If that happens, Mark, then you’re dead.”
    Mark gulped, nodded, and began to cry.
    “Why are you crying?” asked Colonel, a bit of sternness in his voice.
    “I-I’m gonna die…”
    “You’re not going to die!” screamed the Colonel. “Look at me! Look at me!”
    The Colonel grabbed Mark’s chin and thrust his head upward.
    “Mark, survive for three days. That’s all I’m going to ask of you. It’s not that hard. Hide, for all I care! Just keep Dark believing that you’re the real Darkandroid.”
    Mark asked another question, “What if the real Darkandroid is rescued, released, or escapes?”
    “****, I didn’t think of that,” the Colonel said to himself. “If that happens, then exclaim you were sent in to help keep peace among the team. Hopefully, they won’t kill you. No worries, huh?”
    “The sarcasm isn’t great right now,” Mark choked, his face turning green.
    “You’ll be alright, out there, Mark. Why do you think I picked you?”
    “Because I look like that guy!”
    “Oh, yeah, I was going to say your skills, but it was Darkandroid, wasn’t it. And by the way, when you’re out there, your name isn’t ‘that guy’, alright? It’s Darkandroid, and you better learn to start calling yourself that.”
    The Colonel gave him a pat on the shoulder.
    “Step into that room,” said the Colonel. “And get ready for the game to begin. If you can survive long enough, and Wild Seven does enough damage to Light and Dark, then expect some backup in the form of Destruction and Creation. Got it?”
    “Yeah, Destruction and Creation,” repeated Mark.
    “Good luck, kid.”
    The Colonel closed the door to the truck. Its engine rumbled and the vehicle emanated a slow whine as it chugged off across the sand. The Colonel stared at the truck until it was out of sight.
    “Don’t let me down,” he said, before turning back and walking up the steps.
    Monkey was waiting for him back at the headquarters.
    “A new player appeared on the screen,” said Monkey. “Was it that Darkandroid look-alike?”
    “His name’s Mark, and yes,” the Colonel replied. “He should be a pivotal asset in turning this game in the teams’ favor. They need all the help they get, Monkey. That’s why I think we should gather the four of Creation and the four of Destruction, or at least ready soldiers to gather them if the need arises.”
    “Creation and Destruction, this early?” asked Monkey incredulously. “You’ve gotta be joking, Colonel. They’re last resorts. We’re not trying to destroy the whole youth of this website, are we? Plus, Wild Seven has already lost a member. It could happen again. Let’s keep things going the way they are, and save Creation and Destruction for a more dire time.”
    “Your reasoning is right, but is your judgment?” asked the Colonel, without another word.
    “I got you these,” Monkey said, handing something to the Colonel. He looked down to see a pack of Uh-Oh Oreos.

    6 Wild Seven members remaining
    21 forum members remaining

    9: Blood + Bread + Guns = Food

    “Get the **** down!” screamed Rorik, diving behind a pillar. They had walked for half a mile before coming upon a massive palace. It looked like something out of a Arabian film. Pale plants still grew outside its decayed walls, and they had walked inside without thinking twice. In the middle of the palace was a gigantic staircase that led up to the second floor. Without warning, machine-gun fire had opened up on them as they had entered the front door.
    The rock on the pillar shattered. Rorik turned to look at the balcony but saw no enemies. Across from him was another pillar, where he could get a better view of the action.
    “All or nothing,” he whispered, crossing his chest. He ran for the pillar, chunks of stone hitting the back of his neck as he ran. Rorik dove behind the pillar as a piece of tile beneath him shattered into an array of pieces.
    “You still good, buddy?” asked Lithium, who sat with a shattered beer bottle. Lord, thought Rorik, what on earth will he do with that beer bottle? Not exactly the weapon I would have hoped for.
    All three in his squad assigned by Darkandroid had received less than spectacular weapons. He held a butter knife, Lithium a shattered beer bottle, and Rufus a pick-axe. In the current situation, all their weapons were useless.
    “Do you know who’s up there?” asked Rufus. Rorik peered round the pillar to see Anniexo move from one wall to another.
    “Anniexo, I think,” he said. “But as far as we know, there’s more.”
    “I’ve got a plan,” Lithium interjected.
    “Let’s hear it,” Rufus said.
    “Alright,” began Lithium. “This plan is based on the hypothesis that Anniexo is (rock shattered behind him) the only one up there. She has a machine gun. We have close combat weapons. I will move straight at the staircase. Obviously, she’ll aim for me. That’s when you two move under her balcony and up the staircase that takes you behind her. Walk behind her, and stab her. Easy enough?”
    The earpieces were silent.
    “Are you sure you want to do this?” asked Rorik.
    “Trust me,” said Lithium. “I’ve got it covered. As soon as you see me run, move. Get ready.” Lithium sat waiting, listening, and trying to find any excuse to make a run for it. He peered through a bullet-sized hole in the pillar, watching Anniexo’s movements. The next time she disappeared behind a wall he’d make his move. She looked down the barrel of her gun, and inched it across the balcony ever so slightly.
    “Come on,” beckoned Lithium. “That passageway next to you looks inviting, doesn’t it? Just go for it, Anniexo. Run with all your might.”
    Anniexo turned and looked down the passageway Lithium was thinking of. Go for it! begged Lithium, just go for a quick jog and let me distract you.
    Anniexo turned and ran down the hallway. Not a moment passed before Lithium was on his feet, charging for the staircase. He peered at the balcony where Anniexo had just been. What?!
    She was back, and this time the gun was pointed at him. Sparks flew from the nozzle of the machine gun and he felt a blistering, hot pain tear up his right arm. He spun and fell to the ground, his shattered beer bottle breaking into a more indistinguishable mess than before. More bullets sprayed the ground around him.
    Hurry, guys, he thought, waiting for a bullet to sink into his brain and end his pitiful life. Blood poured out of his arm and onto the gray cement, staining it crimson in the afternoon sun. Another bullet hit his hand, and it was ripped from his body. Blood spewed from the end off his wrist and he screamed in pain.

    ---
    Anniexo screamed as she fired the bullets at Lithium.
    Team Dark just wants to kill me, she thought. At school, during college, even at work, all they ever did was make fun of me. That’s all they want to do here, too! I’ve got to kill them. All of them must be eradicated for the better of mankind and me. Life is full of pain, and they need to realize this.
    Anniexo was delirious; thoughts rushing through her head that she truly didn’t believe. It happened in every Royale. In 1997 it had been Vivi’s Dark Side that went mad and killed a boy with just a cricket bat. Her emotions burned and she was unable to control her desire to kill. She fired until all her bullets were depleted and the air in front of hair was full of smoke.
    “Ha,” she laughed. “Ha, ha… HA!”
    The smoke began to clear, and she prepared herself to see a bloody, twisted pulp of a human body in front of her.
    “Look what happens when I win,” she chanted insanely. Her eyes had become completely bloodshot, and her spiral into insanity was almost complete.