by MArk B.
He doesn't consider the name an insult. I recommend you don't either.
|The character Toad is patterned muchly after Monday from http://deadwinter.cc. but not nearly as mean or dark. He's a knight. He's calm, cool and takes his job seriously.
Seven various youths sat around on couches, chairs and whatnot. An old kung fu movie playing on the screen situated near the end of the warehouse like structure. The lights through the blinds of the offices a few feet away adding a bit of warmth. The rest of the building disappearing into the darkness. A pair cuddling just a bit too closely leaving one or two of the others without their own partners feeling a bit squeamish. Except for Josh. Josh just stared.
A new arrival sat on the end of the couch. He held himself a bit differently if you watched for it. A bit tense through feigned relaxation. Too alert to the little of what was going on around him. He fiddled with the empty can as it sat on the end table to his right eventually positioning it with intent. Reaching into his inner pocket of his jacket in what he hoped was a deft and smooth move he pulled a pack of cigarettes. A couple of moments spent in the personal rituals a smoker develops after a time in the habit when the lighter came up in his hand from his front pants pocket. He wasn't going to be happy.
Trayvon had watched the new guy closely much of the day. He'd been tasked with it. Positioning himself around the screen so he could take in how the guy was behaving without being to noticeable.
When someone was being considered for bringing into the fold, a team of peers were assigned to evaluate him, or her, or neither as the case may be, and help them figure out what was expected of them. He didn't like this new guy. He acted like a bully that was trying to hold himself back. Being too polite when you could tell it irked him somehow. At least that was how he was going to report it at the meeting in the morning.
The old steam-punk style lighter wasn't producing sparks though the new guy was stroking it repeatedly, his frustration building. Trayvon smiled as he transferred the heat of the friction into Dave's drink. Dave wouldn't like that but he owed him one. You weren't supposed to smoke in the warehouse. Mark didn't like the smell or what it did to you. Everyone enforced Marks rules. That's what you did here. That's how you paid him back.
"God dammit!" "What the hell is wrong with this thing?". He said as he continued stroking the lighter. It sounded right. It felt right. It had flint. It just didn't spark. Terrie lifted her head from Chris's neck and said, "You're not supposed to smoke in here." "I need a smoke and I'll smoke here if I want. I do what I want." New kid snapped. "One of you morphs is using your stinking magic on my lighter aren't you?" Terrie's voice tightened as she informed New Kid, "We don't like being called morphs and it's not magic. Maybe", her voice trailing off at the end.
New Kid raised his voice, "I don't give a shit if it's morph magic or smurf magic. Someone give me a fucking light." "We don't smoke in here. No one smokes in here. It's a simple rule. It's respect. Go outside if you feel the need.", interjected Dave.
Trayvon could see the tension building in New Kid. Moving "I do what I want when I want freak." "Said the freak." quipped Chris.
The obligatory shadow moves in the background.
A weapon is pulled but the motion of attach is stopped by a skilled and strong hand. Moments later New Kid is on the floor. No lighter. No weapon. Not much dignity either.
It's about respect.
At the end, Dave drinks the warm drink and yells at Tryvon.
Mark tells Dave to go out and invite New Kid back. "Let him get a smoke then bring him back.", "Toad, can you get him a patch? And an ice pack." "As you wish", was the slightly sarcastic reply.
Taking Trayvon aside Mark explains a couple of things to him. "He's not a great fit for our group right now." blah blah, he sucks says Trayvon. "The reason we want him is because that if he's not on our side he'll go bad." "He can be turned." Trayvon- "Isn't that risking what we've got? The harmony and all that?". Mark - "Your right. It's a risk. Maybe he doesn't join the pack but we've got to keep him from turning on us."
Scene with Dave: Dave hands New Kid his lighter and cigarettes. "Mark want's you to come back." "We haven't eaten yet." "It's beef stew. Real beef too." Most of us owe you an apology. We're going to pay for it too. I'm sure Toad is working something up. Dave gets off the bike and walks it back to the warehouse with New Kid.