"We’re at dustbowl, not ta far from the RED base in fact." Al said, guestering behind her. "Me and a few other REDs are currently positioned there. I’m just out ‘ere for a walk and ta get away from the team for a bit; it’s gettin’ a bit ta ‘etic for my likin’." She explained.
The woman’s gesture brought Arcade’s glance up, taking an even better look around the area. Dustbowl didn’t really answer his question overly much - he knew the general meaning behind that but it could be anywhere in the long run and… and he was thinking too much again. "So… RED and BLU?" A pause. "Are… whoever.. you are called after colors for a particular reason? Are they acronyms, or..?” Valid enough questions.
"Arcade I....I need help with something..." She looked at him with worry in her eyes.
"Like…he’s a very human like robot, but he’s a robot…android." She whimpered. "He says he’s not programmed for free thought, that it’s a malfunction but…it’s in the programming. He can think for himself without inhibitors placed on him and I just…I wonder if it was right…"
"What is it Dalton?" A pause, concern etched across his face. "What’s wrong?"
"What does he say on the matter? Just that? People who have undergone brainwashing could say much the same." A pause, before Arcade offered another grimace. "I mean… you know. Without the whole programming bit. Although one could argue that people suffering from Stockholm syndrome and the like are programmed, in a way..”
Dear god Dalton stop him before he started rambling..
Help? Yes, that’s why he came back to this place. He nodded slowly, “First safe place.” He answered finally. Nervously, he twisted the loose fabric of Arcade’s pant leg in his hands as he swallowed, throat dry. He was exhausted from wandering between settlements, always worried about anything hostile coming at him. He was tired of eating random desert plants and whatever meat he could find. He wanted to bathe, and sleep, and drink more water than his body could handle.
"Will you at least give me your name this time?" Arcade inquired as he half-smirked, wiggling his fingers to make the stranger’s attempts a little more difficult. "And are you enjoying yourself?" He couldn’t see much of a problem over this unless the other man decided to take things too far.
Very slowly he pulled his hands away from Arcade’s leg before he unwrapped the thick scrap of fabric away from his left arm. He thrust the appendage forward, a wound trying to heal but some small shrapnel keeping a minor infection in his skin, “Does this look infected to you?”
First safe place… even that at times was something of a questionable fact for safety was but a fond illusion, a wishful dream, in the long run anymore. Arcade did not correct the other man however - allowing him whatever he needed to maintain some sort of peace of mind. A critical blue eye studied Tazim before he reached, snagging an unopened bottle of water off the desk close by where several books also rested before he offered it gently over towards him.
"Drink." A soft suggestion before his gaze dipped downwards, a faint grimace darting across his features towards the injury. "It’s not serious from the look of it, but I cannot give a definitive answer until it’s better cleaned up. Wait here and rest.. I’ll go get what is needed to tend to it."
The moment the man spoke, the jaguar was gone and Acanthus was left almost wide-eyed and staring at where it had been. Moments later it registered that the doctor had touched him and spoken, and he turned to look at him, trying to shake the thoughts of the jaguar. “Ah…” He struggled to find words, reaching for them through the heavy layer of fog that seemed to have settled into his brain.
"Invasive..?" That was an unpleasant thought, but he noted that he could not ‘take it easy’ with his arm, as it was vital to fighting, and his job inevitably led him to conflict. That and Aerius was ever eager to tear him to shreds, and he needed to be able to protect himself. "H-how long would it take to heal?" That was really vital, though he wasn’t sure he would understand the man’s words well in his current state.
Damn the gods for meddling with his thoughts and reasoning. Without knowledge of shock or any real modern medicine, his thoughts were immediately that the gods were doing this- making him stupid and slow. It was their punishment to him for his weakness, making him look a fool in the midst of a mission.
"In layman’s terms it means that I’m going to have to cut your arm open in order to remove the bullet." Well Arcade had certainly at least attempted to go about with not directly saying it - but it seemed in this case bluntness was what was most necessary. He studied the stranger’s gaze for a moment, noting the subtle dilations and once more considered chems as a factor to keep in mind. "Healing will depend on how much internal damage has been caused and how much I’ll have to try to repair while I’m in there if you choose to go that route."
A pause, deliberate and pointed as he squared his shoulders and stared down the younger man solidly. "If you choose the second option I need for you to tell me what chems you might be on. I do not want you to go into shock or have any other adverse reactions in the middle of the procedure because of something I can treat beforehand."
Hm. Unexpected, and he hoped this newcomer wasn’t squeamish. "Cover your ears." because no one really wants to listen to a man screaming in agony as he runs around on fire like a headless chicken. If anything, Rory had to give the man credit. He was still moving.
Perhaps luckily in this case but Arcade was far from a squeamish man, although the appearance of distaste at the screaming man was certainly evident. He was by far no pacifist, knowing very well at times the unwanted necessity of violence to be the solution to a problem, but there were… kinder, quicker ways of doing so.
His hand drifted downwards to land on his plasma defender, almost as if contemplating a mercy kill, but it was too late anyway as the man crumbled to the ground in a lifeless heap. Blue eyes closed for a moment with a sigh and a little shake of his head before he murmured. "I’m going to assume that was necessary.” The scent of burning human flesh wasn’t an unfamiliar one but it was as revolting as it was every other time he’d breathed it.
A whimper escaped Liam, he was so abashed when the word reached his ears. He was eager, far too eager for a man his age. Pawing and such, his hands dutifully remained anchored when they found themselves on Arcade’s shoulders. It wasn’t hard to follow the silent encouragement through the building, a step here, a kiss there.
The only betrayal of his composed personal was the shudder and whimper as fingers pulled his tucked shirt loose. And fingers slid along the bare skin of his back. So warm.
There is a bizarre familiarity to the land as he makes his way through the ramshackle settlement, and it isn’t just the desert climate which is really the culprit. It’s something he senses deep inside his core, and even in his Core, as if perhaps this place is related to his own home in a way that he simply can’t fix explanation to. Sensing a presence behind him, the djinn turns towards them, eyes trending brighter as his senses sharpen. “Greetings,” he rasps, his sibilant voice thick with accent.
Was it a ghoul?
The figure had captured the traveling Follower’s attention enough that he paused, finally changing his direction to one that would bring himself closer to the… person. A hand settled comfortably on his plasma defender - not in an overt show of hostility but one of defensive properties… if he found himself immediately attacked he’d be able to cover his own ass.
"Hello." His tone was wary but not aggressive, but there were some visible signs of calming from the other’s speech. If it was a ghoul of some undefined sort it was not feral - not yet at least. "Are you lost?"
It has been over a week since I posted the winner of my flash giveaway for one of Moth’s amazing chibi icons and I’ve yet to receive a reply back to either of the messages I sent regarding it. While I’m going to give it another couple days just in case would anyone be overly irritated if I ended up picking a second winner for it? Especially considering I’ve left the artist waiting for information this long already.