Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

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Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Noise on Wed Aug 15, 2012 11:51 am

It was a couple hours after noon – perhaps around three, with the sun beginning to descend – with more than enough time to reach or find shelter before nightfall. The shadows of trees surrounding the small grove of oaks provided decent cover from the summer heat, and it was at the edge of these shadows where Riley sat, cross-legged.

The teen had finished a small job earlier in the day had rewarded himself by buying a loaf of bread. Well, “loaf” might be over exaggerating – a bun would be more accurate. He had eaten most of it, the remaining bit quickly being diminished as he tore small crumbs from it, tossing it in a semi-circle in front of him. A dozen or so birds – mostly small songbirds, though two pigeons had joined as well – crowded around, eager to get an easy meal.

Riley smiled, gently wrapping what was left of the bread in a napkin and stowing it away in a pocket. If he came across more birds on the way home, it would become their dinner for the night. He pulled down the edges of his bandana to uncover his ears, hesitating just for a moment before uncovering the rest of his face. The air was relatively clear and fresh, so at least his breathing wasn’t acting up – more than usual, that is.

He cocked his head, listening to the birds and picking out the tune of one of the songbirds. He closed his eyes, focusing on the sound for nearly a minute before carefully repeating it. The song was more complex than his standard fare – pigeons, crows, sparrows. Finding it to his liking, he leaned back, propping himself up with his hands and watching the birds finish their feast, continuing the replicate the song to familiarize himself with it, “singing” it louder than most birds usually would.


Last edited by Noise on Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:13 pm; edited 1 time in total


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Shade on Wed Aug 15, 2012 12:17 pm

Shade grunted softly as she lowered herself onto a bench, stretching her leg out in front of her. It was healing fine after that psychopathic bitch got to her, but it wasn't healing as fast as she wanted it to. It didn't help that she kept forgetting about the damn thing and ended up walking on it longer than she should have been. Today being a fine point. How the hell she had ended up in the Western suburbs was beyond her - especially since she hadn't planned on going any further than the Emberwheat Bakery - but here she was.

Sighing as she settled back, she took a look around, happy that she was out of the sun on this bright day. She just watched people move about in the distance, walking and playing, laughing and talking.

Reaching down, Shade rubbed her thigh with a light grimace of pain. Fuck that hurt. Maybe she should have grabbed some aspirin or something? She frowned lightly and cocked her head, hearing something odd. Were birds usually that loud? Turning to look at the trees behind her, she caught sight of someone sitting at the edge of a copse of oaks, birds arrayed in front of him.

Huh. Was that him?

Shade hesitated before hefting herself to her feet again, ignoring the shock of pain that shot up her leg. She was curious and she'd be damned if she'd let a small scratch (never mind it had needed stitches) stop her. Limping along rather quietly, all things considered, she approached the other teen. The grass in those shadows looked pretty comfortable to lay on. Maybe she'd do that.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Noise on Wed Aug 15, 2012 12:53 pm

The birds fluttered away nervously as she neared Riley – and, as a result, closer to them as well. They didn’t stray far; some were brave enough to dart in and grab another crumb before hopping away again.

It was the change in their behavior that alerted Riley, though, and not any footsteps – they were quite soft, especially compared to bird chirps and his rendition of their chirping. He stopped singing, blinking a few times at the birds before twisting around in his seat, spotting the person that no doubt frightened the animals.

Okay, the person – she? – was kind of frightening. She definitely looked like the type that would stab him if they weren’t in broad daylight. Then again, I probably look like a crime waiting to happen, wearing a bandana all the time. The thought made him reach for said piece of cloth, touching the fabric and almost tempted to cover his face again. If it didn’t seem incredibly rude, he probably would have.

As he did so, he shifted to face her without awkwardly bending around, changing from being cross-legged to sitting with one knee bent and foot on the ground, just to make it easier for him to spring to his feet and flee if the situation came down to that. Riley looked at the girl, hyperaware of his rather obviously harbinger-style eyes. Cue awkward pause – on his part, though. What was he even supposed to say? Please don’t hurt me?

“I…er, hello there. Can I help you?”


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Shade on Wed Aug 15, 2012 1:16 pm

Stopping when the birdsong did, Shade frowned softly. It had been rather pleasant to listen to, and quite relaxing too. Maybe she should get a recording of nature sounds to help her to sleep. It might even help with the nightmares and flashbacks she'd been having recently.

Shifting her weight slightly when he turned and shifted how he was sitting, she winced and her hand twitched as she forced it not to grab her complaining leg. He was in a good position to charge at her and if he decided to, she doubted she'd be able to move in time. So, attempting to talk nicely it was.

"I heard the birds and was curious," she said, gesturing at the birds who were moving toward the crumbs again. She blinked when his eyes registered with her. That was interesting. So many different ways for a harbinger's eyes to look - that was probably the only thing she liked about being one. Though, she was getting more comfortable with the rest of it.

Smiling lightly, Shade indicated the grass. "That looks comfortable. Mind if I join you?"


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Noise on Wed Aug 15, 2012 2:15 pm

He nodded slightly at her statement, flicking his gaze away from her – a habit he had picked up as to not bother others with his eye color. Thinking back to what he was doing, it had been a risky move for him to use his power so openly, though he hadn’t expected anyone to notice enough to care. Obviously, he wasn’t so lucky in that regard.

“…Mind if I join you?” Riley looked back at the girl, taking a second to take in the request before nodding again. She didn’t seem hostile, at least. Maybe even friendly, for a non-harbinger (at least he couldn't tell if she was one or not; defaulting to the latter seemed easier). He gestured at a spot next to him, half turning to face the birds again, though too wary to put his back fully to her, especially when she was standing. Instead, he would wait for her to sit before he would finish turning, as to keep her on his side and not behind him.

He still sat as though he was poised to flee, though, one leg bent and the other curved beneath the triangle his leg made with the ground, and arms propping him up just slightly behind him.

Riley cleared his throat quietly, glancing at her briefly though otherwise seemed content with watching the birds. “So…what’s your name?” Maybe if he returned the friendliness – or, well, attempted to – this encounter would go a bit smoother, and no one would end up dead. Especially him.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Shade on Wed Aug 15, 2012 3:50 pm

"Thanks." Shade carefully lowered herself to the grass, doing what she could not to bend her leg and looking rather awkward in the process. Sighing softly when she was seated, she looked at the boy, absently rubbing her thigh. He didn't look much more than a year younger than her and a couple inches taller, though that was a little hard to tell since he was still sitting.

She looked at him when he cleared his throat. She tilted her head at his request then shrugged. It's not like it would really hurt anything, especially considering the number of people she had met the past couple of weeks. "Shade. You?" She glanced at the birds again and added on before he could answer, "And was that you I heard?" She shot a teasing smile at him. "You the bird whisperer or something?" She was asking simply because of the number of birds in front of them, not because it might or might not be his power - but she could see where talking to birds could be helpful. If it wasn't though, she wondered what was. Not that she'd ask. She didn't like discussing her own power so she wouldn't make anyone else do so.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Noise on Wed Aug 15, 2012 6:10 pm

“And was that you I heard?”

He hesitated, but it didn’t seem it would be bad for him to answer truthfully. “I’m Riley, and yeah, it was.” As if to prove it, he opened his mouth just a fraction and replicated a portion of the birdsong, mimicking it near perfectly – he’d need to practice more, but he doubted that most people could tell the difference between him and the actual bird. Er, sound-wise, of course. After a couple of seconds he stopped and shrugged. “I don’t have any supernatural connection to birds. I like them and they like me. Probably because I feed them.” He smiled slightly, partially to seem like less of a cold hearted jerk (you’re paranoid, Riley, not a sociopath or something) and partially to remind himself that he didn’t need to be so tense. Not yet, at least. There were no knives or guns or fists in the face involved with this meeting.

He shifted slightly in his spot to get more comfortable, watching Shade out of the corner of his eyes, this time with some curiosity rather than pure wariness.

“…what about you? Do you happen to be able to tame birds or some other animal, or maybe something else?”


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Shade on Wed Aug 15, 2012 6:45 pm

Shade nodded, blinking in surprise as Riley opened his mouth to show her. She smiled with an odd child-like delight. "That's cool! I didn't even know harbinger powers could tend toward sounds like that." And that wasn't so surprising all things considered. Her uncle was a little more interested in determining origins and, from there, potential military benefits if the mutation could somehow be replicated so the only tidbits she had learned from him were about combat applicable powers. Not that he had ever finished with origins.

Closing her eyes, she shook off the thought of her uncle before she smiled and tilted her head back to enjoy the light breeze. She wasn't there anymore and would never go back if she could help it.

“…what about you? Do you happen to be able to tame birds or some other animal, or maybe something else?”

Her smile froze and turned somewhat brittle at that. She let out a slow breath - he wasn't asking out of malice or anything, and he was a harbinger too. For all she knew, he didn't really know anyone like them. "Something else."


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Noise on Wed Aug 15, 2012 7:46 pm

Her amusement from his power made him smile just a bit more. It was a rarity – for him, at least – to see someone accept the fact he was a harbinger so easily. It was a relief, really; the “normal” people could be really terrible towards his kind. He’d experienced said discrimination once or twice, but most of it he had seen from simply watching the world around him.

Shade’s answer, though, made him falter just a bit. At first he was confused by her reaction, the way she seemed…bothered, by his question. He had just been asking if she had any talents or whatever –

Though now that he thought about it, his statement could’ve been interpreted as “what’s your harbinger power?”. Not that he knew she was like him or something, though now he was doubting the original conclusion he had come to. It would at least explain the goggles.

“Sorry, I didn’t mean to upset you.” He switched to a cross-legged position, as though the posture would somehow make her feel better. Well, at least it made it seem like he wasn’t about to run away on a whim. “Are you from this area?" he asked in an attempt to change the subject. "I haven’t seen you around before.” As though he knew everyone in the district, which he most definitely didn’t.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Shade on Wed Aug 15, 2012 9:09 pm

When Riley apologized, she glanced over at him. A soft sigh and she shook her head. "No, it's fine. Some of us are just more sensitive than others. You didn't know that I'm one of them." She leaned back on one hand herself, watching as he shifted positions.

“Are you from this area? I haven’t seen you around before.”

Shade shook her head again. "No. I'm from East District. I didn't mean to end up out here," she replied, relaxing some with the change of topic.

Realizing that she was rubbing her leg again, she pulled her hand back sharply. Hoping to prevent him from asking about it, she nodded at the birds. "Do you do this often? They seem pretty comfortable with you," she noted, attention going to the birds hopping closer, one even being so bold as to jump onto her outstretched foot. She couldn't help but smile and laugh at that.

While coming here might have been an accident, she was happy she had. She needed something to get her mind of the darkness of last week.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Noise on Wed Aug 15, 2012 10:13 pm

“Did you walk all the way here?” That...would be quite a daunting journey. He’d never even left his District when he could help it. He turned toward her slightly, catching the way she was treating her leg before she stopped. Did she walk all the way here injured? He wasn’t sure if he would admire her for it or sigh in exasperation at the notion. Not that he would actually do both; he just met this girl.

“I guess I do, whenever I find the time to do so, or if I just need to relax.” He rubbed the back of his neck, before returning to his previous pose, definitely calmer than he was several minutes ago. Perhaps not completely relaxed, but decent enough for social interaction. Glancing at the bird on her foot, he smiled slightly and sang a short, soft tune he had learned from the creature – or, well, a bird of the same species. He really shouldn’t be showing off his power, but she seemed to like it, and when other people were happy bad things were less likely to happen.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Shade on Wed Aug 15, 2012 10:44 pm

She huffed out a sheepish laugh. "Yeah, but I didn't mean to. I was going to this bakery I like and know the owner of." Shade tilted her head back and forth, as if she wasn't certain of something. "Not sure if I can call him a friend just yet, but I'm hoping so." She shrugged. "I just kind of started walking and got lost in thought and ended up here."

Glancing at him, she smiled slightly in response to his smile. She hesitated, debating, before deciding to speak up. The worst he could was... Well, there was a lot of things that could be pretty bad. "If you don't mind my asking, is it only certain birds you can sound like or...?"

And, yeah, this would open her up to some questions about her power, but she knew she needed to quit being so sensitive about it. It's not like things would change any time soon. Plus, she was already better than she had been a couple of months ago and the only way she'd get any better was if she worked at it.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Noise on Wed Aug 15, 2012 11:47 pm

Riley listened to what she had to say, nodding slightly. He cocked her head at her question though, trying to decide if he should say or not.

Oh hell, she knew his name now, she could look him in in the Index if she wanted to so she may as well hear it from the source. “My power isn’t limited to just birds; any sound that I can hear and focus on is fair game. For example…hm.” He took a moment to remember what sounds he’d catalogued that wasn’t inappropriate for the situation. Gunshots, alarms, and screams were all out of course. He concentrated on a memory of wind chimes that had been hanging in someone’s backyard, and cautiously parted his lips, the sound of chimes sounding from his throat. He only showed a short sample though before ending it and shrugging. “It’s nothing special, really.” And it really wasn’t. It was better than communing with plants or riding a unicycle or something silly like that, but it was less useful in protecting himself compared to, say, setting someone on fire.

Wanting to get the attention off of his own abilities, he looked at her and asked, “So…are you a harbinger? Or a normal person that’s not as terribly discriminatory?” Awkward question, but it was important, especially if they ever met again. She could be a good ally in the future, and the more of those he had, the better.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Shade on Thu Aug 16, 2012 1:15 am

Laughing softly at the wind chimes, Shade couldn't help but smile. While it was easy enough to think of applications for his mutation in regards to stealth actions, she was happy at how he was using it in such an innocent way. Actually, because of this, because of how he was using his power, that made her wonder if hers could be used in more innocent ways. Creating a cube or a chair was simple enough and she only did that as a matter of practicality rather than for amusement.

"You might not think it's anything special, but I think it's neat." When he asked about her, she nodded. "Harbinger. My power is... Not quite as nice as yours." She smiled bitterly, remembering several things she'd much rather leave forgotten. "I think I'd prefer to have yours. I'd have fewer things to worry over," she said, laughing somewhat wryly. Without realizing it her hand had started to massage the her thigh again. She really had to think about carrying a bottle of aspirin with her, just as a general thing.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Noise on Thu Aug 16, 2012 2:04 am

Ah, so he did categorize her wrong. Well, it would’ve been nice to have a “normal person” friend, just to remind himself that not all of them were terrible. But hey, he was more inclined to trust harbingers anyways. After all, they were all in the same boat.

Riley shrugged again when Shade said that she’d rather have his ability. “It’s…not exactly something I can protect myself with, unfortunately. Would’ve been helpful to get something like that, especially – ” He caught himself just in time. No need to babble about his living situation to her. “Well, in general, as a Harbinger. I guess I’m just lucky to not live in the South District.”

And again she was nursing her leg. He glanced at it, though was hesitant about bringing it up; they were still relatively unknown to one another, and he didn’t want to pry too far, especially with how she seemed to dodge questions. Maybe that just pertained to what her ability was, though? Riley knew it’d be an underhanded move, but maybe he could look her up in the Index later, just out of curiosity.

(Needless to say, the attempt would prove to be fruitless, as Shade was not her real name, resulting in a somewhat put out Riley with the fact that the girl didn’t give her actual name, though he couldn’t blame her for it. People always had their reasons.)


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Shade on Thu Aug 16, 2012 3:08 am

Shade blinked, thinking on the lack of protection. She supposed she could see that, but at the same time, she could see the opposite as well. Shrugging, she decided not to get into a debate over his power, or what he had stopped himself from saying. That would just invite questions that she didn't want to be asked, much less have to think about answering. And he was entitled to his own secrets. She knew she had enough of them

"I'd take South over North," she muttered. Realizing that she was touching the wound again, she jerked her hand back as if it was burned. Her and her damn fidgeting. Why couldn't she be playing with her damn hood or goggles today? Because the wound wasn't that friggin' old and it itched as it healed most likely. She sighed, clenching her hands together in the hopes that it would help. It probably wouldn't.

She looked up at the leaves, realizing that they had been sitting and talking, silences included, for over an hour. Groaning softly, she started to push to her feet. "Sorry, but I should probably be going. I've got a walk ahead of me. It was nice meeting you, Riley."


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Noise on Thu Aug 16, 2012 4:04 am

He tilted his head slightly. South was generally considered more dangerous than the North, right? No large gang – at least in the size of Solstice – residing in the North if he rememberd correctly. He’d much rather accidentally cross the border into the latter than the former. Probably something personal, then. Not something he really had a right to ask about; he could sense that she had a lot of things to keep private, and well so did he.

Riley looked up as she stood, pausing for a moment but rising as well as she spoke. “Alright, then. It was a pleasure to meet you as well; perhaps we will meet again, eventually.” He knew the bakeries around the District; perhaps they’d bump into each other at one of them. She wasn’t all that bad of a person, after all, and he wouldn’t mind having a new…acquaintance? Friend might be stretching it at this point, but maybe one day. Of course, as long as no sudden attempts of murder are involved. “Take care on your journey back,” he said, letting a faint but friendly smile appear on his face.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Shade on Thu Aug 16, 2012 12:23 pm

Shade smiled and nodded, offering a hand to shake when he stood. She still wasn't quite sure what the point of doing this was, but she did know that it seemed to make most people relax.

“Alright, then. It was a pleasure to meet you as well; perhaps we will meet again, eventually.”

Laughing softly, she nodded, pulling her hand back after he had shaken it. "I'm sure we will considering the way things have been going for me recently. And thank you. You be careful as well."

Rather cheerful, and effectively distracted from her dark thoughts of the morning, Shade turned and started away. Her limp was noticeable still, but not as bad as it had been. The bit of rest had done plenty to help her and the pain had faded to an ignorable level.

Pulling out her phone, she paused and turned back toward Riley. "Hey," she called back. "You do bounties?" It was clear that she was talking to him, but she was only half-looking at him, glancing down occasionally as she sent a text to someone.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Noise on Thu Aug 16, 2012 4:48 pm

Riley shook her hand, a little cautiously at first but relaxing after a moment. He nodded as she turned and walked…well, limped away. At least she could still walk, and she seemed as though she would do fine on the walk back home.

He had turned away to look out at the clearing; the birds had left to continue about their lives, though they could still be heard chirping and singing occasionally. At the sound of Shade’s voice, however, he looked back at her, surprised at the question.

“Well…no, not yet. I’ve been considering it, I suppose. It’s decent pay, but dangerous as well.” He did go on the Bulletin now and again, but he never really did much beyond read up on the various criminals. He could see the appeal, and had come close to going after targets himself when he was running low on credits, but something or the other stopped – or saved, one could say – him from doing so. “Why?” It seemed like an odd question, especially out of the blue like that.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Shade on Thu Aug 16, 2012 5:21 pm

Shade nodded. Most harbingers picked up a bounty here or there since it really was the best way for them get credits. Well, the best legal way. Especially considering the discrimination, fear, and hate they had to deal with on a daily basis and that made it difficult for them to get normal jobs.

"If you decide to and want some help - or need some help in general, you can give me a call." She tacked her number on after that before she looked at him expectantly, waiting to see if she needed to repeat it for him. He had been pretty nice, if even warier than she normally was, and it would be a pity if something happened to him. She was also hoping that she'd be able to hear him use his power again sometime. While she wasn't sure she could or would call him a friend just yet (most likely not since she still wasn't sure what the hell actually constituted friendship - Felix and Blanch notwithstanding since there was no way that that chain of events could be constituted normal... Not that anything from the past couple of weeks really could be either), that didn't mean she couldn't offer her help. She'd been doing that often enough recently anyway.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Noise on Thu Aug 16, 2012 6:22 pm

A handful of numbers was easy enough for a short period of time; if anything actually useful came from having his power, it was being able to remember things decently. Riley pulled out his phone – bought and paid for (as if to make up for the fact that the guy refused to do anything more to help him out, though at least it meant he had a way to contact people) by a “friend” – and added it to his fairly empty contact list, saving it under the name “Shade”.

Looking back up at her as he pocketed his cell phone, he smiled slightly. “Thanks, I’ll remember that.” So now, he supposed, they were allies of some sort, or at least future allies when the time comes. Maybe eventually he could learn a bit more about her, and maybe even be friends. “I’ll see you later, then. Have a good evening.” He realized that he needed to head back as well, if he wanted to make sure he had enough spare time on the walk home to account for any delays.


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

Post by Shade on Thu Aug 16, 2012 8:10 pm

Nodding again, Shade turned away with a short wave. Placing her feet carefully until she reached the pavement again. From there, she headed east, musing on the meeting with Riley.

It had been a nice change of pace since there wasn't any yelling or explosions or fights or weapons drawn or running or... Wow. A lot of crap had been happening in the past few weeks, huh?

Sighing softly, Shade tugged her hood a little further over her face to block out a little more of the sun's rays. Her skin was already uncomfortable, a good indicator that she had been out just a little too long. If she was right about where she was, then the Emberwheat Bakery shouldn't be too far. Maybe she should stop in like she had been thinking of earlier. Of course, Fye might yell at her for walking around so much on this leg - as much as he ever yelled that is - but the thought of some of his excellent food was too good to pass up. Maybe she'd just get a disappointed look, if he even reacted.

...Who was she kidding? He probably wouldn't care at all.

Huffing again, just with a differing emotion, she shrugged. She was hungry.


((end))


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Re: Definitely Not Poisoning Pigeons in the Park +(Riley and Shade)+ [COMPLETE]

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