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May. 29th, 2011


The Meeting (OPEN)

A new round of posters and fliers came out days prior to the event, if just to serve as a friendly reminder or perhaps another purpose entirely.

Mrs. Coulter paced about the room with folded arms, wearing a capped sleeve forest green pencil dress. Time and time she would turn away and try to look at the venue with fresh eyes.

A carpeted meeting room good for 50 persons, rented from the The City Convention Center. Inside the room were curved rows of wooden cushioned chairs. A microphone stand situated at the middle. The arrangement was too functional than aesthetic. It seemed to promise hours of boredom, she herself would step out of it if she would. But she liked to believe that people would come, not because they had nothing else to do or for the free food. They would come because they would be curious. They would come because they needed to know once and for all, she told herself. Anyhow, the lights were bright, the air was cool and the chairs seemed comfortable enough to be sat on for a long period of time should it come to that.

The thought of losing her first venue still disappointed her. She still preferred it, a more calming and familiar space, one that would be conducive to discussions. Yet she had expected to be prevented of its use. By who and what, it was plainly obvious. Nothing else would outgrow that pitiful garden with such speed and only weeks before her convention. Mrs. Coulter shrugged it off, she was prepared with her fall back plans no matter how regretful they'd end up to be. She would have her society come together, even in a broom closet. Her organization, one that she named in the true spirit of her world: the Society for Metropolitan Studies.

Meanwhile, the golden monkey was more interested with the long table behind the room, which contained what the invitation promised: tea cups, tea pitchers, and layers of cakes, biscuits, among other pastry snacks. It had caught Eames’s attention, too. As he nudged the biscuits back into neat circles with the bourbon cream he’d pilfered, he flashed the monkey a quick and cheeky smile.

“Mr. Eames,” Mrs. Coulter’s silky voice echoed across the room, a reflective hand upon her chin, “I honestly do not feel like talking to a voice transmitter device. Do you think my voice is loud enough? I’d rather speak without aid.” She mused while her daemon growled at Eames.

"A microphone," corrected Eames. "And if you can fill this many seats-- well, I'll be surprised."

“Whatever,” Mrs. Coulter waved off. It was not the time for Eames’ vocabulary wars. Those things never end. “If it's only Chiba or whoever she thinks of parading around, so be it. I’m simply not used to settling for anything less.”

Apr. 8th, 2011


let's go, hero!

Who: Atsuko Chiba + Nigihayami Kohaku Nishi
What: A meeting and a great adventure to boot!
When: Backdated to after Valentine's Day-ish.
Where: Bookstore then library.
Rating/status: ~PG/finished.

Are you actually alive? )

Jan. 23rd, 2011


give me liberty or give me a phone [Open to Mrs. Coulter + Anyone!]

The road was wide, paved, quiet and lonely. Half a day was about to go by and yet this placed they called "The City" still assumed a lazy atmosphere that reminded her of an early weekend morning. Or maybe it was just this side of "The City", she thought.

But wherever it was, whatever it was called, Atsuko hadn't the foggiest of a clue. One thing was for sure, though: this was no longer Japan if the cab style was any indication.

"If you head straight and turn right at the second corner, you'll find an apartment building."

"Thank you. That's helpful," Atsuko said plainly to her good driver as she pushed the door open and stepped out. He must have caught her thoughts, she figured: she wanted a bath, a change of clothes, a chair to prop her feet up and a quiet place to think about her random circumstance.

Clutching the folder of papers she had been given for her release (at least she was still sane. Suddenly, that was a relief to know), she stepped onto the sidewalk as the cab drove off and turned the corner to her right. After its disappearance, she popped open her purse bag, slung comfortably over her left shoulder and sorted through it. Her vanity kit was there, so were her glasses, her ID tag, her handkerchief, her breath mints and her flattened wallet.

A sigh slipped out of Atsuko's nostrils as she went through her personal belongings for the third time that hour. "They didn't give me back my phone, either." She closed her bag. No money, no phone -- how was she going to start?

Well, at least they left her license and her credit card alone...

A vehicle honked in the distance as she turned around her heels and looked up to the wide window that served as her background, tinted black with the name of a pawnshop pasted against it. As she read the name, she found herself looking into her reflection.

The brunette stared back at her and blinked with her.

Not Paprika, but Atsuko, she thought to herself as she stood straighter, squared her shoulders and lifted her chin a little, her reflection doing the same. This was one strange dream...or reality? Really, it's been hard to tell between these two this late...

The bell rang as she stepped into the ample, dim space behind the window, the walls covered partly by mirrors and glass shelves and barricaded by separate counters of display. The shop owner was an aging man with a happy smile and a pair of thick glasses on his nose and he received the doctor right when she stepped into his humble store. "What can I do for you?" he asked.

Atsuko had already formed her inquiry in her mind and had moaned out the first half-syllable of it but she caught herself before she spilled the rest and conscious of the folder she held, she lowered it away from his gaze and rethought about her question. Where is this place? she wanted to ask -- but who in the right mind in a very well-respected costume would suddenly forget the name of the place she was in? She worried that it might suggest to the curious owner a defect in thinking, so she clammed up.

Instead, she asked him, "Where is the nearest phone shop?" Now that sounds like a "sane" question to her.

Jan. 18th, 2011


What now? (Open)

There had been a couple bouts of alarms going off. It made Jennifer very uneasy. The alarms triggered something deep in her psyche. Something that told her she should be doing something more with her life. Something that made her feel protective. But of what? She didn't really have much authority here. She was a patient. She had to follow the rules. She was good at following the rules, too. Rules were there to make sure that nobody got hurt, and that nobody hurt anybody else. When somebody did hurt somebody else, Jennifer always found herself glad to see the authority of the orderlies take them away.

But those alarms.

Alarms meant bad things were happening. Alarms meant that somebody should do something, and do it quick so that nobody got seriously injured, or killed. That the somebody that should do something should be somebody with the know how to do it, lest they be the ones to be harmed or killed. Ordinary citizens should never be the ones to jump in because they never knew what they were doing. Ever.

The first one hadn't rattled her so badly. Just sort of jumpstarted her brain. But then... then there had been more.

The other thing was that people were disappearing. People were walking right out the front door with papers in hand, sometimes. Other times, they just wouldn't be where she usually saw them. Even if she'd never talked to them, their faces had been something she could rely on day to day. She didn't like that they were leaving and she was left alone here. Alone. That wasn't entirely true, was it. She wasn't alone. There were lots of people around. It was just the missing ones that bothered her.

And of course, the alarms.

Jennifer sat on the couch, her feet curled under her, and chewed on her nails.

Jan. 17th, 2011


and other drugs (narrative)

In the beginning, there was nothing.

A sea of black, both opaque and velvety. No light, no shine, no breath of life.

Until a hand dared protest and it grunted as it slapped itself onto the absent floor and heaved its body up. With a gasp for breath, Paprika tossed her head up and grabbed onto the floor with a second grip. She felt as if her legs were fluid, as though a heavy wind or an inky sea was moving them and tugging her away from the black rocks.

But she pulled herself up and grunting again, she forced her upper body onto the surface and crawled forward. And when she could feel her legs, she pushed her knees onto the ground and forced herself up.

When she looked up, a slam echoed into the darkness, and she gasped as she hurried forward, crying, "Wait, wait!!" making a dash towards oblivion. She mustn't have ran for a long time, she knew, but dreams were strange places with a bizarre time pace. Before she knew it, the wall was upon her, and she slammed onto it with an audible thud but she didn't give up. Raising her fist, she slammed it against the surface in front of her. Open up! I said, open up-- )