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 Pumpkin King, Open Thread
Foxtrot Parmenter
 Posted: Nov 28 2017, 03:18 PM
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player: Logan
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Sitting cross-legged on the floor of the common room, the dark haired young man was deep in his element. Foundlings sat around him, wide-eyed and leaning in to listen to the story he was telling. It was a scary story his father had once told him and his siblings when they were children. He was bright eyes, using his hands to draw them in. Despite not being able to read or write he was a fantastic story-teller. His mother had always delighted in that, wishing he'd become a Scribe like her rather than a Ranger. The way he was telling stories was where she wished he was still.

There were less young children this year, and Foxtrot found himself wondering if the population decrease was only going to get worse. As far as he knew there was no way to fix the sterility issue so he could only guess at the impact it would start to have on the way things were run. Shaking off those thoughts he mingled among the other residents, sure to greet those he knew, and even some he didn't. Those he did, usually Rangers, he would exchange stories with. It was the perfect opportunity to bond further with some of the pawns he trained, let them see him outside of their duties as it were. Overall, his favorite holiday.

Taking time to speak with his mother he had joined the little circle of older women and ended up in the midst of their asking him about love, his future, and children. It took him much longer than he would have liked to extract himself. Eventually he found himself sitting with a group of foundlings, tell stories to them. His father had known quite a few from his father, and his father, and so on. It was something of a tradition to pass down. Without children of his own, however, he stuck to the little foundlings they had. As the story started he realized he'd gained himself quick a little gathering, not all of them, by any means, but quite a few.

"And the monster, laughing, reached out-" Both of his hands reaching for the kids, getting a couple to shriek at the movement. "And dragged them under the bed!" Pulling on one of the foundlings outstretched legs, causing them to giggle and try to get away. With the story concluded however, they began to wander away, after more treats and stories most likely. Happy that he'd managed to distract them for so long he got to his feet and stretched. His favorite part about holidays was a forced time for rest, and the movies. He loved to sit and watch a story unfold that would take him away from the reality they lived in.

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Chaucer Madison
 Posted: Dec 2 2017, 10:25 AM
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player: Ren
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The last week had been a flurry of activity in the gardens, nearly everything had to be pulled in preparation of the harvest feast that accompanied the holiday. They'd made it through, another year down and they were still here, still in this bunker. Keeping busy kept that pressing thought at bay, but every so often it decided to remind him that he was likely never going to set foot outside. Generations before him had never ventured outside, and the likelihood of this generation being different wasn't very good. Still, one pressed on, didn't they?

Ever since he was young, Chaucer had a lack of fulfillment in their living situation. He loved his family, his friends, there was very little actually wrong with his life, but for some reason he'd always had a strong desire to venture beyond the bunker. He couldn't be the only one who felt the same why, so he didn't mention it often, after all there was little that could be accomplished by continuing to talk about what one couldn't have. But any mention of opening the doors, Chaucer listened to with a rapt attention, but nothing had come of a lot of talk yet. Stretching out his arms, trying to loosen up the tension that had settled there while he was stooped at the garden bed. Bracing his hands on the edge of the metal container, Chaucer hauled himself to his feet with an ease of years of practice. His part of the feast preparations was over now, everything that was going to be was harvested successfully and delivered along to the kitchens. Now he was ready to kick back and enjoy the holiday.

Brushing the dirt on his hands off on his pants, Chaucer cracked a crick in his neck and headed out into the hallways, heading to the media room, curious what movie they were in the middle of. This was one of his favorite parts of the early part of the holiday, was any and everyone sitting down and watching themed movies that just kept running all throughout the day. There were favorites, staples year after year as well as a few that were only shown once or twice depending on crowd reactions. The sound of running feet behind him as he approached the media room caused Chaucer to move to the side and let the small knot of Foundlings run passed him into the room to likely claim the best places on the floor in front of the screens. A lot fewer this year... Something needed to change. They were okay right now, it could be a lot worse, but if they kept on this path, that wouldn't be the case much longer...

Once he wasn't going to be slowing down Foundlings in the pursuit of holiday entertainment, the Scribe limped his way into the main entertainment room, mildly surprised to find that the kids who'd run passed him had ignored the television in favor of throwing themselves down in front of one of the Rangers, all sitting around at his feet. Curious, Chaucer leaned his shoulder against the wall and crossed his arms, joining in to listen to whatever was so interesting.

Stories, he should have guessed. You'd be hard-pressed to find someone in all of the bunker, Scribe, Ranger or Foundling, who didn't enjoy even just the occasional story. It helped time pass by, it helped to transport you elsewhere whether with knowledge or fantasy. But it was nice to see a Ranger out of their element, these little moments where their system blended just enough to bring harmony without allowing it to crumble and fall. It helped to bridge the divide even while the two groups still existed on two very different cliffs. Needing definitely another minute before he moved off of the wall, Chaucer caught the eye of the other man and gave him a greeting nod with a small raise of his fingers even around loosely crossed arms.

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Foxtrot Parmenter
 Posted: Dec 3 2017, 10:20 AM
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player: Logan
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Unaware that his audience had expanded to an older audience he initially didn't notice the slightly taller man leaning on the wall. The story, and the children, had left him more vulnerable than he usually allowed himself to be. When he did notice him he smiled though, meeting his eyes easily. Foxtrot knew everyone here in the bunker, living so close for so long there was hardly the means to be a stranger to anyone. Where there was a gap between Rangers and Scribes, he himself didn't let his chosen work alienate him from others. With his love of stories he liked to be near those who could tell good ones.

"Mister Madison." Raising one hand in greeting to reciprocate the raised fingers greeting. Knowing he'd likely been listened in on made him feel a bit shy. He wasn't nearly the storyteller that his father had been, and he didn't remember all of the story details that were missing. There was to much of his Ranger training that had taken the place of some of the details for that. Once upon a time he had been young enough to pester adults for stories, whether it was his parents or other members of the community. The Scribes, he had quickly found, were the ones with the best.

"How are the greenhouses today?" He'd been busy himself getting things squared away for the festivities so he hadn't been able to visit his favorite place. Not in quite awhile, in fact. Teaching new Pawns had become a task he'd delved into with both feet. Some days he missed the free time to explore the bunker, to play pretend as he had as a child. Then he saw the foundlings, like today, and he felt a surge of pride that he had chosen the path of protector. With everything going on in their lives down here, it gave him a sort of comfort to see the children carefree.

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Whiskey Van Rensselaer
 Posted: Dec 14 2017, 02:17 AM
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Knight of the Rangers
player: Jess
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Whiskey Van Rensselaer never fit in. Maybe it was the fact that the twin sister always made sure to be within arms reach of her brother for most of their lives. Where Charlie seemed to be able to socialize with other people extremely well, she never really got the hang of it. Her jokes were never really funny, her presence always put people on edge like she was some kind of feral rad cat that snuck it’s way into the bunker. So why then should she waste her energy trying when all of them never really cared to be social with her? And that was before they started calling her Kingslayer… No; there wasn’t anyone in the NAV-Con bunker who thought she was innocent or worth the air she stole from the algae farms except for maybe her brother and her tree. Byron was her anomaly, try as she might to be left alone that now behemoth of a scribe had decided that she was his eradiated feral cat and that was that. It made some days less lonely when Charlie was busy being Rex. That is whenever Byron wasn’t needed in Medical.

It’s why she picked up sewing in the first place. The tailor scribes refused to repair any of her standard op unis anymore. It was subtle at first, the apologies and confusion with assurances hers must be at the bottom of the basket. That was until they started coming back with extra holes, ink stains, what she hoped was spit… Desperation drove her to those rickety machines and boxes of pins and needles. She had traded a lot of personal cred for them but it made her life easier if she could just repair for herself. And eventually, she had come to like it. Necessity was the mother of hobbies and invention it seemed. It’s why whenever Halloween came around she always tried to make something interesting. After all, for some reason people at least kept their loathing of her to a minimum on the holidays.

This year it was pictures in a book Byron had shown her that inspired her. He was quiet that day, almost as if he knew how important it was to her to do this but thankfully never said anything about it. The thing was easy enough to break down into shapes and math was thankfully the only language she knew. The undergarments were certainly a pain to craft but she requisitioned away a small piece of scrap every week until she had enough. The fabric was second hand like everything they owned down here; at some point they had been a well-to-do scribe’s sheets based on the elegance and thread count. But they were hers now, at least for tonight. Who knew if she had to recycle it one day for someone else? It was the hair that took forever. Sleeping in coiled pin curls was commonplace enough down here, the vintage aesthetic was as strong as the nostalgia factor. It was how she ratted and teased it that made it different. And while the side shave that she had been growing out for a couple weeks wasn’t truly “long” she could hide it with some carefully applied pomade she traded for too many media rations to the apothecary. She knew he overcharged her but this was important; at least it was important to her.

Most adults still dressed up in costume but it wasn’t as big of a deal to the Rangers as it was the Scribes. Foundlings would be in all sorts of DIY treasures, at best the Rangers usually painted their faces into whimsical or horrifying creatures. But Whiskey always figured since they had the night off it was a tradition she wanted to keep alive. And it made her happier than she could rightly remember. They already had plenty to talk about when it came to her, more even to judge her by. At this point, if they were guaranteed to talk she would give them something to talk about. It took her about an hour to get herself into her costume; a struggle by herself but as always Charlie had business to attend to. She had finished her harvest shift early, the excitement for the evening pushing her to work quickly. It was her favorite holiday to celebrate by herself and no one was going to ruin it.

She made her way, isolated through the halls. No one spit ‘Kingslayer’ at her as the old antique shoes her mother passed down to her clicked deliberately in the halls. They probably shouldn’t be worn for long and truth be told she had a pair of ballet flats in a small bag that hung from her wrists. But it felt nice to wear her ancestor’s delicate ankle boots for a little while. She could pretend she was far away from here in some great city with friends and family who she belonged to. Head held high she slipped into the media room to find her usual place by herself against the back wall. Everyone avoided it, partially because of the fungus that usually crept along the shadows of the corner. In the faint glow Whiskey let herself pretend most people were thinking of the pods growing out of the walls and not her with that particular analogy. With as much grace as she could manage, she settled in and squinted slightly to try and see the screen on the opposite wall that played Halloween themed movies that she dared not get closer to.

She supposed she should expect it when the group of foundlings left the story Foxtrot was telling to come hover on the outside of her personal space. The Rook was a good egg; he had never been outwardly cruel to her which meant that her, Charlie and Byron really liked having him around. And he was an almost infectious kind of happy that this place needed. It was a good day when he became a Ranger and Whiskey knew he was going places. If only one of those places would have been teaching the now circle gaggle of prepubescent maschismo what constituted manners. The ringleader, drunk on scary stories and bravado, sauntered up in front of her, demanding to know ‘what the hell would a murderer dress up as anyway…’ before reaching out to snatch her fascinator from her head. Without any effort Whiskey caught the young boy’s wrist in her hands, staring him down as her hand tightened just barely before remembering herself and that she was in public. She dropped him as if she was burned, and they fled quickly as they came, all their jeers and laughter replaced with squealing fear and threats to tell her brother she abused them.

”… Peggy Schuyler.”


She murmured mostly to herself, her voice it's usual barely above a whisper. Leaning down she quickly unbuckled the ancient shoes before replacing them with her own and stashing the antiques back into her bag. She would probably be asked to leave and she didn’t want to risk someone starting a fight and her being off balance because of her stupid desire to play at being normal. As she finished changing her footwear, she looked up at both Chaucer and Foxtrot guilty. To be fair most of the people around had seen the exchange between her and the kids but she hated being humiliated in front of someone she was a CO for and the person everyone accused her of stealing the destiny of. ”…I should…” Her voice was small as she gestured with her hands that she should leave, and she wasn’t entirely sure if she was talking to herself or them before she swept up onto her feet to go. It broke her heart to miss her favorite holiday or the free media but it was probably better if she left. After all, without the shield of her brother or the security blanket of her tree friend she was at a strict disadvantage. Even Chaucer could tell her the odds were most assuredly not in her favor…





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scríobhaífirst post for whiskey, trying to find her voice still

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ina dhiaidh sinchaucer, foxtrot

A D e l r i o u s D e s i g n by Jess

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Foxtrot Parmenter
 Posted: Dec 14 2017, 12:00 PM
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player: Logan
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For a moment Foxtrot hadn't even realized that the released hellions had gone anywhere but to watch the movie. He certainly didn't notice Whiskey at first, not until he heard one of the foundlings talking about a 'murderer'. Startled he peered in the direction the conflict was coming from and felt a personal responsibility to help. It was a holiday and he had hoped people would respect the need for everyone to relax and just have a break from the everyday. Of course he needn't have worried, she had seemingly grabbed the boy and released him just as quickly. Well, at least he wouldn't have to get in between that. The foundlings were out of line but he wasn't in charge of any that weren't pawns.

"Sorry Mister Madison, I'll be right back." Smiling apologetically and moving toward the Knight. As a fellow Ranger he didn't have any animosity toward her. Whatever had happened for people to say what they did was none of his business. Frankly no one should be holding a grudge if they couldn't prove anything. Watching her take off the shoes she was wearing and put on flats he approached quietly. He didn't want to startle her by getting to close without her knowing. He knew how disconcerting it could be for someone to just appear next to you after all. Besides she seemed out of place enough that he really didn't want her on edge either.

"Knight Whiskey, ma'am?"This was one of the rare days that the entertainment wasn't regulated and he knew everyone enjoyed that. It wasn't fair that they would try and isolate her from the festivities. In retrospect speaking to her seemed daunting. Not because of what people said, but because he had nothing but respect and admiration for both her and her brother. "There's a good movie on...I'd be glad to sit with you if you'd like." Rangers had to stick together in his mind. His loyalty definitely dictated that he bring his fellow Ranger in and not abandon her. Even if everyone else did that's not what he, in good conscience, could allow. "I really like your costume too."

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Chaucer Madison
 Posted: Dec 18 2017, 07:53 PM
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player: Ren
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"Empty." The beginnings of a teasing smirk accompanied the answer to the inquiry after the greenhouses. Obviously they weren't completely barren, but much of their crops had been harvested, many of them to feed their holiday feast in just a few hours. Come the next morning, hangovers in place or not, they would start the next round of their 'winter' crops, rotating the planters and fertilizing the soil in an effort to keep things as plentiful as they were able to. They didn't have a lot down here in their bunker but, as his Mama was always fond of saying, they had enough.

But sometimes 'enough' felt almost as frustrating as 'lacking'. Lacking, you just assumed that things weren't going to work out, you didn't have to hope and be disappointed. It seemed stupid when there were so many more important things that he should be worried about, but Chaucer still hoped that one day they'd be able to open the doors to the bunker, to try to rebuild their lives Outside and maybe, just maybe, they'd be able to learn what Plenty felt like.

"I'm right behind you..."The commotion that drew Foxtrot's attention had caught Chaucer's as well, but the Ranger could obviously move much faster. It had taken several years and a lot of training in other areas to get rid of the stab of jealousy that came when he used to watch the prospective Rangers run off to be involved. But he'd gotten over it quickly, just as he tried to calm his heart when he spied Whiskey Van Rensselaer. There was a layer of curiosity, of almost apprehension when it came to the Knight given the whispers that surrounded her. Everyone was so certain of what she'd done, no one paused to ask themselves why.

Chaucer had known her at least in passing when they were Foundlings together and it lead to the question of just why. But he dared never ask her, better to not bring attention to it, better to try and stay on her good side and hope that if the day were to come that she may snap again, he would not be the focus or target of that break. The blue shade of her gown combined with the cut and most of the bunker's population's fondness for history gave Chaucer a pretty decent guess as to who the Knight had chosen for her costume this evening, so he figured he'd take a stab:

"Some children aren't worth risking an ax to the head." Chaucer let his words carry faster and further than his steps would, jaw set as he watched the retreating backs of the Foundlings, marking faces in case they decided to cause any more trouble. It wasn't that he didn't understand their cruelty, he was pretty sure that a sense of guilt didn't really set in in children until they were well into their teens, sometimes even later than that. Combine that with the poison that they were being fed on a daily basis, Chaucer was quite surprised that he'd not yet been witness to a witch hunt right here within their very walls.

If they didn't learn to curb their hate, they were going to end up no better than those who dropped the bombs that drove their ancestors into this bunker. And there was no deeper bunker to save them from the fallout this time.

When he finally reached them, Chaucer had already seen the obvious work and sacrifice that had likely gone into the gown. The amount of tickets given up to get fabric and feathers, trading with others who more than likely gave her hell if not ripped her off completely. Reaching very carefully and deliberately into one of the pockets of his vest, he pulled out a fresh bar of chocolate that he'd snagged out of the kitchens, wrapped in paper. Holding it out to her, he gave that same half smile,

"Trick or Treat."

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Whiskey Van Rensselaer
 Posted: Jan 2 2018, 04:22 PM
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Knight of the Rangers
player: Jess
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She supposed that she deserved it. Whiskey never really seemed to get the hint that most of the bunker hated her, or more to the point of it she tried desperately to ignore it. Days like today usually made it easier than others. That is until the foundlings put her back into her place. For all her thirty-five years, Whiskey still just didn’t know how to feel in her own skin and it was like blood in the water for the more ambitious residents that sparked their animosity to a powder keg of confrontation. Let them call her murderer; she wouldn’t rebuke the title. And as the executioner for any capital crimes within the bunker it was equal parts job as they assumed past time.

It was when she looked up from under her plumage and coiffure that her eyes caught Foxtrot and it took every ounce of her training not to yelp in surprise. Usually after one of these episodes people avoided her like the plague; the company was far from unwelcome, on the contrary it was a nice surprise she was worried would sour. ”What do you need, Foxtrot?” Her voice was the usual soft-spoken calm she always schooled it to be. It wasn’t quite her teacher voice; she saved that for her Ethics and Advanced Practical Combat classes. But it was warmer than the empty default she gave most people. Whiskey was impressed with the young Rook. He was going places and he had a good heart. And Lord knows those were in short supply lately. At his offer even Whiskey couldn’t keep the owlish shock off her face as her bluebell eyes widened. Once she wrangled her features, a bit of the pristine porcelain mask of control cracked and the smallest smile pulled at her lips. ”I would really appreciate that.” There it was; the rest of the warm honey of life that her voice only usually held when speaking to Byron or Charlie. And when he complimented her costume the laugh that pealed out of her was bell like; sharp and bright with a mirth that rarely shown. It was like what the movies showed of the sun peaking out behind from behind the clouds and it brought a lot of the hardness of her features that the half-shaved tattooed demeanor tried to enforce down.

The look that washed over her face when Chaucer spoke was not born of sudden shock or even disbelief. It was abject awe and eager joy that continued to liven up her features in a way her usual standard op greys washed out and hid. ”Great-great-great-grandma was something else wasn’t she? Armed to the teeth and they were terrified of a tiny blonde woman with a disarming smile.” There was such a sense of pride in her voice when she spoke of her ancestor. It was something that her and Charlie shared that went soul deep. They were direct descendants of revolutionary heroes and that was a legacy that they not only wanted to earn but honor every single day. ”Besides, I bet I could dodge it.” It was only a moment, but there was a spark of the old Foundling Whiskey that rose just barely to the surface. The just this side of overconfident daredevil willing to fling herself into danger just to prove herself. It’s how she became the bunker’s Executioner after all; when the last had passed away when she was sixteen she didn’t hesitate before volunteering as tribute. It gave her purpose, it gave her a place, it gave her meaning. Even if that meaning was at it’s core sanctioned murder.

The moment the chocolate was offered out to her, Whiskey froze. Again her eyes widened almost imperceivable and the hand that came out to retrieve the gift trembled just so that it could have been a trick of the light. ”…thank you…” Once more her voice returned to the soft-spoken quiet, though her lips were quirked in a half-smirk that warmed up her features despite how sheepish she suddenly felt. Looking up to the screen as Jack bemoaned to the sky how he felt empty and disconnected to the glowing moon, Whiskey decisively snapped the bar into three equal pieces before offering it to the pair of men who showed her more kindness in the last few minutes she had known in years without a word.



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scríobhaísorry this is so late guys; the anniversary of losing dad, christmas and my birthday took over my life and i tried to not go on an away this year which ended up making me behind anyway. so let’s get this halloween show on the road!

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ina dhiaidh sinchaucer, foxtrot

A D e l r i o u s D e s i g n by Jess

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Foxtrot Parmenter
 Posted: Jan 11 2018, 02:45 PM
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player: Logan
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It was a relief to hear he wouldn't be the only one going to help the Knight. Foxtrot might be a Ranger but there was still a lot of people who viewed him as to young to have any sort of authority. To have to assert any today might end badly, and he really just wanted everyone to get along for the holiday. No one deserved to be left out of one of the only days they could let loose. As she looked up at him he wasn't quite sure if she was surprised at his presence or not, certainly it seemed she hadn't expected him. It angered him that anyone could be so out of place in their own home that they didn't expect kindness.

However his offer to sit with her for the movie did get him a reaction, and he smiled faintly at her shock. Ridiculous that such a small act could garner that look on her face. The smile he saw made him glad he'd been here to stop her just leaving. Those kids wouldn't try anything again, nor anyone else for that matter. The laugh is what startled him, but managed to grin happily that he'd turned her mood around at least. For the life of him he couldn't think of a time he'd seen her either shocked, or laughing. It was good, and he was glad to see it.

When Chaucer said what he assumed was something to do with the costume he found himself at a loss. Unable to read he mostly relied on hearinf stories to be aware of history. He did like listening when people read out loud, or in cases like this. He could understand, however, the reference being something to do with her costume as Whiskey went on to explain her long removed grandmother. Oh, so it was more than a costume, it was likely something worn way back when? That made it all the more amazing, and he couldn't help but look over it again.

"Thank you." Foxtrot managed as the chocolate was handed to him, not one to refuse the sweet. Besides she had offered and he wasn't about to turn it down. Taking a small bite of it he looked between them and then to the movie playing. It was one of his favorites, sure some others had real people in them, but this animated film was just amazing. A glance back to older times when things like this had been possible. "Mr. Madison, would you like to sit and watch with us?" Turning his attention to the two, and not about to be rude and not at least ask. There were plenty of open seats after all, and it made for better watching.

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