Log:Shooting Ducks

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Shooting Ducks
Characters  •   Devereux Jaden Marchant  •  Felicity Bloomquist  •  Spear Thistle  •
Location  •  Las Vegas
Date  •  2019-10-24
Summary  •  The denouement for our survivors, a few of whom have gone to Vegas to celebrate their survival.

Circus Circus is grazy. It's like an indoor circus. There are fairway games, a carosel, and arcade. There are clowns, as well as scantily clad cocktail waitresses. In this area, they aren't serving alcohol, but there are other beverages to be had. Jade is holding Spear's hand as he leads him toward the carosel. "Later, they're going to have motorcycles in a big ball. It'll be cool."

Spear is shooting his gaze at the cocktail waitresses a little. He is taken, not blind. He beams, and some of his sunny demeanour has returned. Right now he is wearing black pants with suspenders and a white shirt covered in a huge sunflower. He holds Jade's hand right back, and he says "It sounds dangerous. And cool." He grins good naturedly, and then he says to Jade "I hope the girls are alright. Everything is super gross right now, isn't it? I mean, not Vegas. Vegas is great."

Jade is in jeans and a black t-shirt for a band called Crowded House. Didn't they do that 'hey now hey now' song in the 80s? "I told them to page me if they need anything," Jade says. He smiles at Spear. He stands in line at the carousel, giving the cocktail waitresses a glance. Their costuming is amazing. Then his attention turns to Spear, and his features soften. "I needed some time with my man. How are you doing, babe? Feeling okay?"

"Better than Felicity is," says Spear, a little sadly "I feel a bit weirded out, and sad. Hector - I didn't really know him _that_ well, but I'd known Cash my whole life. I loved Hector, he was my brother, and, well. I was still weird about Cash. I'm okay. Like you're okay. We're both okay. But neither of us are _great_, right? We will get there. In our own time. Grief is a funny thing, man. And I feel weird because I'm so fuckin' relieved too. You're alive. I'm alive." He glances up, then brightens "Want the spotty horse?"

Jade hugs Spear close, kisses his forehead, and says, "You can have the spotty horse. I'll have the unicorn next to it. Unless you want the unicorn." Then he leads Spear onto the carousel so horses can be claimed. "I really liked Hector, and Cash and I were close once. We were getting there again. I feel so awful for Felicity. I mean, I'm glad we're alive, and I don't know what I would've done if anything had happened to you, but man. She really paid the cost."

"She did. Like, way too much too," says Spear "I did suggest we ask Chen about professional therapists who know about vampires. That might help? I mean, the thing is, we can't talk to normal people, can we?" He sits up on the grey spotty horse, and he pops his sunflower between it's wooden ears, and then he says "I don't know either, man. I mean. It was pretty bad sensing Hector? It was like I was still working out if I could feel him, and then Cash died, and he was _gone_."

"I'm glad I didn't feel any of it," Jade says. He perches sidesaddle on his unicorn, mostly so he can sit facing Spear. The music starts up, and around and around they go. "I want to think they're in Heaven now," he says. "They died fighting to save others. That's got to count for something, right? They're okay now. That's what I tell myself. And they know. They know we won. They know we saved everyone because of them, and it's okay." He smiles a little. "They have to know."

Spear and Jade enjoy a turn on the carousel in the belly of Circus Circus. Once their sappy moment comes to an end, Spear goes off to take care of something real quick, leaving Jade standing beside one of the midway games, one that involves rolling a bowling ball on a track and landing it in a specific place to win a prize. There are stuffed bears of various sizes to be won. Jade considers the game idly.

Felicity has apparently decided that maybe games would... well, perhaps not cheer her up, but distract her. She wanders up, considering the various games and eventually fetches up next to Jade. "I was never very good at that one. Takes too much precision and patience. I mean, I do okay, but it gets away from me."

Jade perks up when he sees Felicity, and he holds out his arms in an offer of a hug. "Hey, there. I'm glad to see you out of the room." He glances at the game. "This one's my jam. I was going to play it when Spear gets back so I can show off for him, maybe win him a bear."

Felicity accepts the hug and ends up sort of leaning against Jade. Not very hard, but touch seems to be something she craves. "Absolutely. He deserves someone to show off for him. I kind of fear what he may end up doing with the bear, but it will likely be weirdly glorious."

Jade gives good hugs. He doesn't hold back. He hugs Felicity close and is in no hurry for her to stop leaning against him. Even though there are people all around them, it's like there's no one else in the world. "He'll make it better," he says with confidence. He gives her a final squeeze when the hug reaches its natural conclusion, then draws back enough to study her face. "How's today treating you?"

Felicity smiles a little. "It's... been a couple hours since I was crying uncontrolably? I think that's as good as we're getting at the moment, but it's still better than a couple days ago." She looks around. "I wonder if they have a shooting game. Not that I think I'll do particularly well at it, but... shooting things seems like something I'd like. Or maybe whack-a-mole."

"Yeah, they have lots of shooting games," Jade says. "There's one I can never do where you shoot water into a clown's mouth to blow up a balloon." He smiles faintly and sweeps back a strand of Felicity's hair. "Sounds like progress. We were going to catch a motorcycle show soon, if you wanted to join us. Or we could do something else. We're basically just relaxing today."

Felicity nods and closes her eyes. "Motorcycle show sounds fun. Or at least distracting. And relaxing is good. I miss them. It's only been four months since I got back. How can I miss them this much?" She swallows hard and then breathes in and out and opens her eyes again.

Jade can't help himself, he gives Felicity another hug. "I miss them, too," he murmurs. "You loved them, and they loved you. That's timeless." His voice catches as he says, "I think they're okay now, though. I think so. And they still love you. They're probably looking down going 'what are those goobers crying about? It's all gonna be okay.'"

Felicity hugs back, sniffling. "I... hope so. I... have a hard time believing it, but I hope so. I just..." And one of her hands starts waving around for a while before eventually she gives up and goes back to hugging. "Too much. No words."

"I'll believe it for us both," Jade murmurs against Felicity's hair. "The way I figure, if there's real evil in the world, there's got to be real good. They did real good that night." The game is forgotten for the moment in favor of hugging. If people glance, Jade pays them no attention. "It's a lot," he says. "Too much, this shouldn't have come down on you."

Felicity has never really been shy about PDAs of any kind, much to Jade's previous annoyance, so it's no surprise that she's perfectly fine with the hugging, too. "I'm mad at them. Mostly Cash, but both of them." It's a tiny little whisper. "I shouldn't be mad. I shouldn't be, but I am. Or maybe I'm just mad at fate or... the universe. I don't know."

"Hell yeah you should be mad," Jade says. "They fucking left you. Even if they had a reason, even if they had a good reason, they left you." Onlookers might assume a romantic interest, the way he keeps hugging her. There's intimacy in it, even if it isn't sexual. "It sucks, Felicity. It sucks so hard. It's okay to be mad. Doesn't mean you love them any less."

Felicity nods into Jade's shoulder and shudders a little, just hugging. After a few moments she pulls herself away slight and stands up straighter with a sniffle. "Okay. Shooting game." Pause. "Maybe not the clown. Do they have the one with the ducks or the little target thingies that aren't something's mouth?"

Jade draws back and smiles at Felicity. "Yeah, let's go do that one with the ducks. The clown one's weird. I think it's down this way." He gestures in the direction of the shooting games. "I'll admire while you ice those quacking bastards." With a laugh, he adds, "We should just go around winning stuffed animals for Spear. Just rain them down on him."

Felicity smiles and it almost has a bit of her usual sparkle. I mean, she's still sniffly and teary, but there's a hint like the sparkle might some back someday. "Yeah. I mean, we'll see how I do, but yeah. As many as we can." She heads off looking for the duckies and then hands over money.

ROLL: Felicity rolls finesse for: [2]: x2 (Pair) [6]: x1 [8]: x1 -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 2 8 2 6 -- d8)

Jade follows after, and he glances back to keep an eye out for Spear. He takes up a lean to watch Felicity, folding his arms over his chest. "We have til he gets back, so let's do this thing." He squints at the duckies, all dangerous-like. "Okay, you guys are going down."

Well, some of the duckies are going down, at least. I mean, not a lot of the duckies, but enough to get a prize, albeit a small one. Fortunately, the guns are air rifles and thus don't sound much like a real firearm. Felicity considers. "Are you taking a turn or should I go again?"

ROLL: Jade rolls finesse for: [1]: x2 (Pair) [5]: x1 [6]: x1 -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 6 1 5 1 -- d6)

Jade steps up and says, "Yeah, I'll give it a try." He pays his money, and the first few shots he takes miss. The thing about Jade, though, is he's adaptable. He self-corrects, and he improves on his mistakes. So duckies go down. Not many, but enough for a small stuffed ostrich. Which he shows to Felicity proudly. "Do you love it, or do you love it?"

Felicity sniffle-smiles. "I love it. Okay, more shooting duckies? Or some other game? And do we want to trade two small prizes for a medium prize or just shower him in small ones?" Her own choice was a pink and purple teddybear with a star on it's belly, like a knock-off carebear. She looks around for other good game options.

Jade sucks his teeth and says, "I do like this ostrich, and the bear is awesome. Let's shower him with little ones unless we win big. "Let's blast more ducks. If we double up on bears or ostriches we'll trade for something bigger." He glances around again just in case Spear is coming. He has faith he'll see Spear's hair in a crowd.

ROLL: Felicity rolls finesse for: [2]: x1 [3]: x1 [8]: x2 (Pair) -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 8 3 8 2 -- d8)

Another round of duckie shooting, another... middling success. I mean, Felicity gets a small prize again, at least. This time she considers her options and spots a bright blue narwhal with a rainbow horn, choosing that. Look, she's sometimes a girl and it's not like they have math or physics themed ones.

ROLL: Jade rolls finesse for: [2]: x1 [4]: x2 (Pair) [5]: x1 -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 4 5 2 4 -- d6)

Jade claps his hands and says, "Yes! Oh my gosh, I love it! That's the most Spear thing I've ever seen." He takes his turn at the ducks, and he flattens a few of them. Then he looks over the assortment of small prizes "Um... um..." There is a blue frog, about the same size as the ostrich, and he says, "That one."

ROLL: Felicity rolls finesse for: [4]: x1 [5]: x2 (Pair) [7]: x1 -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 5 7 4 5 -- d8)

More duckies down. Poor little duckies. Of course, then pop back up for the next round. It's the good thing about fake duckies, really. "The dayglow yellow lizard, please!" Oh god. It is eye-searing. There are small green spots. It may actually fluoresce.

"Oh my God," Jade says with a laugh. "Okay, that one's blinding me." He sounds like he approves, though. "Let's try this one over here." He gestures to a game where one uses an air rifle to shoot pop up cowboy theme things like bandits and varmints. "That one takes some serious hand-eye coordination. You lose points if you shoot the sheriff or bystanders."

Felicity nods and follows him over. "oooh, yeah, that'll make it harder. Especially since the ducks were on tracks so you knew where they'd be. Still. Seems fun. You go first!" She hugs the little lizard, though. Well, not really hugs, they're kind small, but sort of. "We'll need a bag, soon."

ROLL: Jade rolls finesse for: [1]: x1 [2]: x1 [3]: x1 [5]: x1 -- Match Value: 0 (Raw: 1 3 2 5 -- d6)

Jade has gotten cocky. He's got an ostrich and a frog that tell him he's hot shit. The problem though, when he hands over his money and gets to shooting, isn't that he's a bad shot, it's that he blows away innocent people. "Oh shit," he says with a laugh. Then, "Fuck! I shot the saloon girl." Pow pow! He gets a bandit in there, but it's not enough to save him, point-wise.

ROLL: Jade rolls brains for: [1]: x1 [2]: x1 [4]: x1 [5]: x1 -- Match Value: 0 (Raw: 2 4 1 5 -- d8)

ROLL: Felicity rolls brains for: [3]: x1 [4]: x2 (Pair) [5]: x1 -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 4 3 5 4 -- d6)

ROLL: Felicity rolls finesse for: [3]: x1 [5]: x2 (Pair) [8]: x1 -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 3 8 5 5 -- d8)

Having watched this, Felicity is a little more careful about her shots. I mean, she does accidentally shoot the sherrif, but at least she doesn't shoot the deputy. Or the saloon girl. And she takes out a few of the bandits, though a few get away. Still, she actually gets a medium prize this time. She looks up, studying the options. "Okay... I think he needs the cactus." Why is there a stuffed cactus? Well, I suppose it's in theme. It's wearing a felt sombrero and is about twice the size of the little prizes.

"We all need that cactus," Jade says. Then he looks around. "You want to do the one with basketballs? Or the one where you throw the little balls in the little holes? Or darts. We could pop balloons."

After the carousel, Spear had to go take care of something, and Jade was waiting in the fairway, and, well, he and Felicity haven't wandered far. They're standing in front of a shooting game holding stuffed animals. "Though I kind of want one more shot at the saloon girl. I think she was shady."

Spear has wandered back now. He _did_ go off somewhere. He really did. And now he is back, and he beams at Jade, and then gives Felicity a smile too. And while joyous behaviour might be on the nose, he seems very determined that she be having a...good time. As often as possible. "Ooh, we're doing the whole Midway thing?!"

Felicity nods to Jade. "You take one more shot here and then if Spear's not back, we'll toss pingpong balls." She's holding a medium sized plush cactus with a felt sombrero, a small bright blue narwhal, a small blue and purple teddybear with a star on its belly, and a terrifyingly day-glo yellow lizard with green spots. Fear the cheep prizes. "Spear! We won you stuff!" She holds her treasures out to him.

ROLL: Jade rolls finesse for: [1]: x1 [2]: x1 [3]: x2 (Pair) -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 1 3 2 3 -- d6)

ROLL: Jade rolls brains for: [1]: x1 [3]: x1 [5]: x1 [7]: x1 -- Match Value: 0 (Raw: 3 1 7 5 -- d8)

Jade doesn't see Spear at first because he's taking up another air rifle. "All right, this time, I'm going to shoot fewer hookers." He really means that. He does. He has the best intentions, and he shoots mostly bad guys, but, well. His air bullets just love that saloon girl, and he hoses her down. "Fuuuuuuuck," he says. As Spear walks up, he's selecting a plush cowboy boot, complete with a spur. He glances over, perks up, and says, "Spear, baby. Look!" He holds up the boot, a small plush blue frog, and a plush ostrich. "For you!"

"Man, I love this stuff!" says Spear. Of _course_ he does. He reaches out for the narwhale, the lizard - the frog - basically. Everything. Arms are shortly completely full and he manages "...okay, basically, Jade has to sleep on the couch. There ain't gonna be room in bed."

Felicity snorts. "I suspect he'll manage. They're small. And it's a king-sized bed." Deep breath. "When's the motorcycle show? And do we want food?" Still Spear's happiness with the silly toys earns a smile from her. Still kind of a watery one, but a smile.

"It's a California King," Jade says in his defense. Then he slings an arm around Spear's shoulders. "Let's head toward the big metal ball-thingie and see. I think soon. We could get crappy circus food or actual real food after the show is over."

"Crappy circus food!" demands Spear, almost instantly "Candy apples! Popcorn. Come on!" Jade's arm is delightful, though it does make his armful of toys a bit hard to manage. Spear is a brilliant-grinning bastard right now. His pockets are full of other goodies of various kinds, and he seems to be honestly having fun. Apparently such things _can_ happen. Then he says to Felicity "It is, but you guys _are_ gonna win me _more_ toys right?" His eyes are wide as he blink-blinks. Jade cannot remember his Carnival's incarnation discovering Ouroboras' reaction to presents. Which is a shame, because this is _identical_. Spear is suddenly experiencing a very innocent sort of outright childish greed. He does add "Let's get those awful battered hot dogs. I hate those things."

Felicity actually laughs. It even almost sounds like a normal laugh, even if there's still a little bit of a hitch in it and the hint of a sniffle. "Corndogs and circus food it is. And apparently winning more toys. Though I may need to find a pink bear for Ashley." But Spear's happy and that has to count for something. So off towards the terrifying food options it is. "I bet they have funnel cake!"

"Crappy circus food," Jade says brightly. "Okay, let's get candy apples and popcorn." He walks past a complicated-looking game with a bowling ball on a track, and he says, "Oh wait, first, I'm going to win you a flamingo." He untangles his arm carefully and goes up to it. There's are an array of plush flamingos on display around this game, and Jade lays down his money. "I'm gonna keep playing til I lose," he says.

ROLL: Jade rolls finesse for: [1]: x2 (Pair) [5]: x1 [6]: x1 -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 1 6 5 1 -- d6)

ROLL: Jade rolls finesse for: [1]: x1 [3]: x2 (Pair) [6]: x1 -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 1 6 3 3 -- d6)

ROLL: Jade rolls finesse for: [2]: x1 [3]: x2 (Pair) [4]: x1 -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 2 4 3 3 -- d6)

ROLL: Jade rolls finesse for: [3]: x2 (Pair) [4]: x1 [6]: x1 -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 6 4 3 3 -- d6)

"We can get here a soft pink bear," says Spear, firmly. He has a soft spot for AShley right now. He says "That's right, funnel cake. The cake of doom, or so I hear." He shivers. So much sweets. Jade then steps up - and that bowling ball rolls...around. Up. And then plops straight through into the winner's basket "AHhhhHH!" Spear says excitedly as the flamingo is handed to Jade "How are you guys _doing_ that? I never win these things!"

ROLL: Felicity rolls spirit+1 for: [1]: x1 [2]: x1 [3]: x1 [5]: x2 (Pair) -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 5 5 3 1 2 -- d6)

Felicity snorts. "Luck... and maybe a little skill. And a tiny bit of being willing to look ridiculous." She applauds the bowling ball maneuvering. "Very good!" And then she looks around for one with pink bears and spots the pingpong ball toss. And she pays and throws, like not even really worrying about where she's throwing. The first one bounces right off the rim and away. The second one bounces around for a while and then falls into one of the prize cups. The third ball bounces around for a while and looks like it's going to fall in, but then rolls off between the cups. "Oh well. The little deep pink bear, with the daisies on it." she says to the guy running the booth.

"The secret is to use the weight of the bowling ball to your advantage," Jade says. "Push too hard and it goes off the rails. Not hard enough and it falls in the little dip and won't go any further." This is his game. He told Felicity it was his jam, and by golly, he wasn't lying. After winning four times in a row, the barker stops him and just hands him the biggest flamingo there. It's absurd, and from feet to the top of its head, it's about four and a half feet tall. Jade beams, and he piles it carefully atop Spear's other stuffed animals. "Okay, now I'm sleeping on the couch."

"Heh heh heh," says Spear to Jade, and then a flamingo is bounced on top of him and he says "Holy moley!" He shoots his gaze over it at Felicity, and his eyes widen "Man. You guys are actually legitimately scary. How are you actually doin' this stuff?" The barkers are by now eyeing _both_ of this pair and wishing they would go on and stop losing them money. Spear says "On the couch - with Flappy here." Flappy flamingo, apparently. The toys are all going to get names "Okay! Circus!"

Felicity looks around. "Okay. the corn dogs and funnel cakes are that way, the popcorn and cotton candy and sodas are over there. Divide and conquer, I'll get the corn dog and funnel cake, you get the rest. Meet you at the motorcycle thing."

"Okay, we won't go in without you," Jade tells Felicity. True to his word, he waits outside of the motorcycle show. They've got a few minutes yet before they need to grab a seat for it. Jade gives Flappy a pat and says, "It's just you and me, man. Don't hog the blanket. If he gives us a blanket."

"Nope, no blankets," says Spear with a grin as he starts to juggle toys, trying to dip a hand into his pocket "Okay Fel!" he calls out. And then he says "Man. I am going to get that girl so much candied popcorn." Then he shoots Jade a side-on look, clears his throat, and says "Jade? We're both eighteen. And it's like, years of craziness ahead of us..." He hesitates "But I'd like to give you something as a part of a promise to support you." And he offers him - still juggling toys - a small velvet case. Inside is a man's ring of petrified wood, with a piece of jade set in the center.

Jade takes the box, and his eyes widen. "Spear!" he says. "Oh my God." He puts the ring on his right ring finger, since he's still got it in his head men can't marry (or is it because in Europe, some Catholics wear their wedding ring on the right side?). "Oh, wow. This is so much cooler than Flappy. Sorry, Flappy." He helps support the stuffed animals so they don't topple when he gives Spear a kiss. "I love it. And I love you."

And who knows what Spear _exactly_ means. But he says "This way, if we have to go apart, you'll still have me with you." And he leans in and he kisses Jade on the lips, despite the disapproving looks around them and the mutters. Spear straightens, and he laughs, and he says "I love you too. Is it okay? I don't know about. The future, and lots of long term things. But I can totally help and support you in New York. You'll come home to warm meals." Made by a taxidermist "And a clean room." Cleaned with formaldehyde. "And have someone always at your shows in the audience." In mortuary gear. Spear then shoulder-bumps Jade and he smiles at him "See? It'll all be great. I'm sorry everything recently's sucked - sorry for me, you - Felicity. Ashley. Lots of people. And I know they aren't ready to move yet. But I am. I'm always ready a bit earlier. You're a bright star, and I'm happy to have you."

Felicity wanders back up with six corn dogs and two funnel cakes all carefully balanced. "We'll have to share funnel cakes, but I never want a whole one anyway, they're really meant to be shar..." And then there's a big sniffle, but she's smiling. And crying, but smiling. "I think I recognize that slightly stunned look."

Jade tells Spear, "I want to be with you the rest of my life." In a way, he will be. "I'm ready to get out of here, to tell you the truth. Well, there-here. Vegas is great." He grins when Felicity comes back with snacks. "Here, let me grab some of those." Spear has his arms full of stuffed animals, so Jade does some schlepping. "You okay, Felicity? If we need to go back to the room, we can."

Felicity takes a deep breath. "No. No, I think watching motorcycles and eating fatty food is just about right. It's not like I have to follow and plot or I'm missing anything if I'm crying and we'll never notice the added salt. So... Motorcycle show. Let's go!"

"Me too. I'm ready to grow up," says Spear to Jade, and then he reaches out for the food "I wish this was easier for you," he says to Felicity "But. We'll take care of you. I promise. All of us from back there." And then he has his arms full of his brand new toys, and he heads off towards the motorcycle event with the other two, beaming at them. There's just a door to open. One door -