Tooth And Nail


elle4_icon.gif jaiden_icon.gif keagan_icon.gif ygraine_icon.gif

Scene Title Tooth And Nail
Synopsis Desperate times call for desperate measures and with each day in the dome and as more people stop caring about others and more about themselves they also start to defend that which they have claimed as theirs. But how far will they go, and what lines will others cross, to get what others have claimed.
Date February 16, 2011

queens - Gristede's Supermarket

Little by little, beneath the gentle arc of the dome, things are becoming 'mine' not 'ours'. Every man for himself or at least every man for himself and his real friends. The ones who don't turn on you.

But it's been 16 days and counting, oh everyone is counting. Be it in their heads, on a piece of paper, notches on a wall or into some wood. 16 days since that fateful afternoon when the world was cut off with just a slight push in the pressure.

It's been 16 days of terror, horror, living day to day and hoping that you make it another so that you can see the dome lift. Dissipate. Disappear. Fall. Something and breath the more fresher air than what's within the dome and what's being forced in by the government in the hopes that it will help.

The rumors run rampant too throughout the dome. Humanis First, linging up evolveds, shooting them hoping that with the death of the one responsible, that it'll lift. Or just shooting them as a way to vent their anger that this genetic garbage was responsible for this and hoping to kill as many as possible before they themselves are killed.

The government is responsible, it's been spray painted everywhere. That they're responsible for the dome coming down, and the moments it's lifted, they are going to enter and slaughter everyone. Makes sense doens't it? Nearly half of roosevelt Islands was trapped under the dome and it was a safe haven for evolveds.

There's many other rumors that filter around, not pinning responsibility for the dome, but talking about what's happening in other area's. That people from Roosevelt overrode the tunnel between Roosevelt and Queens, slaughtering anyone who tried to stop them. Without regard. Some say you can't blame them, given what is also rumored to have happened.

Someone hears something, and someone else hears another something and it's hard to understand what's real, what's exaggeration and what's completely false. What is known is this.

There's a gristede's, a supermarket. And when the dome went down, they got smart. Windows got boarded over, they heavily rationed what was being sold. Until a small gang of people, bearing weapons, baseball bats and the will to do it, stormed in and took over sealed all but one of the exits.

A lone standing building, cement sidewalks, a small parkinglot and a red awning over the side windows proclaiming that this is the Gristede's supermarket. Over the six days that they have occupied this market the supposed cache of food inside, they've fortified the place.

Abandoned vehicles, have been moved to form a barrier and shield around the store. Rebar wedged here and there to make it more foreboding to those who would think twice about approaching. Oil drums burn, belching out their oily smoke here and there behind the barrier to keep the unknown amount of people behind the 'walls' and in the store warm, cook their food. They've gone out and collected weapons as well too, like others inside, all the better to protect what is theirs.

But people are getting desperate, and food only lasts so long and one of these last bastions of nourishment on this side of queens has been getting a lot more attention. For two days people have been trying to go in, to ask for food. Each time they've been turned away and the last group of four that tried, one of their count got a bullet in his thigh for the effort.

And so desperation, despair, need and the very same sense of 'mine', fairness and justice is what brings this gathering group of people from many groups who have banded together and are moving down the street with one intent under the foreboding bloody moon.

Get the food.

Keagan has been a thief as long as he can remember. He doesn't steal because he needs things. He steals because he likes to steal. It was a sport. It's an addiction. Some addictions die hard, this being one of them. Especially when he's hungry. With all of the Humanis First pressure, he's been loathe to present his registration card. It's in his shoe, beneath the sole where no one will stumble upon it. He stands across the street, eyeing the barricade. No problem to him. He hasn't approached. He hasn't even shown himself. He sits in an alley, staring at the store. The twilight helps to conceal him. He's met new friends, or at least acquaintances, who have rescued him. They also kill people, causing him to doubt whether they are the best company to keep. Still, in this situation, one has to do with what they have. So food is on the list of things to get today.

From somewhere in the distance in the west, from where the buildings are a little more stable, a trio of somebodies approach - a man and two women. The man, dressed in jeans and a t-shirt with a backpack swinging loosely over his shoulders walks toward where the rumored grocery store is, drinking from a half-full bottle of water. The way he gestures as he walks indicates that he's having an animated conversation with one of them, and if one has very good hearing, the conversation, or bits of it, at least, can be heard.

"….because I needed to make a goodwill gesture. Those caches could be used to get some people on our side, and the more we have, the better. But c'mon…you know me. I've got a few backups, just in case…." His voice is distinctly Australian, and as they draw closer, the sound of impending conflict can be heard - like the rumbling of thunder on the horizon. "Bloody hell…." He glances to Elle, then Ygraine. "I forsee difficulty at our chosen arrival point."

Carrying her pack in one hand - with her helmet still stashed inside, though probably not for long - Ygraine sighs wearily. "Here's hoping that we can bargain near-infinite clean water for access to their stores. Not that there's been much sign of them being willing to even negotiate with anyone, from what I've heard in the past few days…."

Elle shrugs. "I hope so. I mean, helping people out is all fine and dandy, but…I don't really want to go hungry." Especially when //she/ helped to build some of that stockpile they have hidden. Blue eyes turn toward the sound of impending conflict, and Elle scoots just a little closer to Jaiden, frowning. "Dammit…just what we need."


That's the sound of a bullet, a rifle barrel over the back of a trucks flatbed, the projectile ricocheting off the ground near Elle's feet before it embeds in a wall skipping the former electrokinetic completely and harmlessly

Another bullet from another weapon whines into the ground before the other group of people when it looks like they're coming in the direction of the fire barrel burning, barricaded grocery store.Keagen seems to be unseen so far, hiding in the alley and watching in case there might be a way to squirrel in and get some food. But they've built it up very well. Trucks, cars, all forming a wall.

"Don't come any closer or we'll shoot. You're a bunch of fucking idiots if you're coming like that last group looking for any food. You better go find another store, because this one is ours assholes"

Keagan is about to move when he hears the incoming people. Clean water? That sounds good. He peeks out of the alleyway. "Psst, c'mere," he whispers, motioning for the trio to join him. He sure hopes that he can get their attention without gathering further attention from the guys at the door. "I can get you all the food you want if you can get me water, sound fair?" he asks. Sounds like a bold claim. But hey, this type of thing is a walk in the park. The barricade means nothing to him. He stays in the shadows, not wanting to be seen by the men across the street.

Ygraine's plans of politely and calmly negotiating seem to have been put somewhat on hold, a yelp escaping her as the bullet ricochets away into the dark. "Hey! We can trade!", she calls out, while hurrying for Keagan's alleyway. "Clean water for food!" Even if they respond favourably, taking cover seems like a sensible precaution.

As the bullet rocochets way too close for comfort, Elle lets out a squeak, ducking behind…Jaiden. Yes, Jaiden, you are apparently a meat shield. At least, until she ducks behind a car, frowning. "God dammit, this is just great, I—" She's interrupted in her bitching by Keagan's interjection, brows raising. Water for food? That's easy enough, with Jaiden around. She glances over to Jaiden for a moment, before she quickly scrambles over to the Alleyway.

Broadcasting that they have water may not be the best thing in the world, what with a crowd of thirsty, hungry, and most of all desperate people between here and their ultimate goal - which is the people inside the grocery store. The worst - the absolute worst thing that could happen - is the people inside feel trapped and decide that if they can't have the food, no-one will, and that's the thing that Jaiden most of all wants to avoid. The offer of water for food was what they were going to offer the guys in the store, but here's a street guy in an alleyway offering the same deal. It may sound shady, but not being in the line of fire is always a good thing. Ducking behind Elle's car and giving her a look, Jaiden darts into the alleyway after checking to see if anyone else is in there.

And when Jaiden is in the alley, he watches to see if anyone has noticed them before passing Keegan a bottle of water. "See, we've got water."

The problem with Keagan ducking his head out to call people over is that the trio were already noticed by the handful of people, manning the barricade. That Ygraine is calling out, offering up a trade of clean water with food, it draws attention from a two of the people behind the vehicular barricade. That there was someone in the alley that they didn't see means that there's the swivel of a rifle, a trigger pulled even as Jaiden, Ygraine and Elle join up with the teenager.


Ygraine feels it, a bullet searing a path into her upper arm, then out to hit the wall in the alley. The other bullet hits the bottle in Jaiden's hand, a hole pierced neatly through the plastic and in it's wake, water is leaking out.

The crowd of ten people is faring no better, as a round of gunshots bark out, the previous warning seeming to be the only warning that anyone is going to get. Two people in the crowd go down, no sense of whether they were fatal shots or not, but the remaining eight pause, stop in their tracks and try like Ygraine, a pleading from one of the two women in that group, for the people in the store to please, at least give them some food. Trying negotiation before going for brute force.

Keagan was about to reach for the bottle when the bullet passes through it. He jumps, ducking back out of sight…really out of sight. He hits the ground behind a trash can. Hardly a bullet proof defense. What might be clear to those closer though, is that he sinks straight into the alley and is gone from sight. The sight of the water was good enough for him, but he doesn't have time to discuss the matter further. He slinks through the road, moving closer to the doorway. He can't do too much right now to help in the fight without giving himself away, so he's making a bee line for the building.

Being shot feels very much like punched or kicked, Ygraine has heard. Indeed, what first impinges on her consciousness, as she staggers, is a blunt-feeling thump to her bicep, one that part-spins her as she runs, leaving her staggering into a wall as she struggles for balance.

"Ow!", is her first comment, before her confused peering registers that a leak has sprung in her leathers. A gulp, and she peers more closely, pale features draining rapidly of what little colour they had. "They're using armour-piercing rounds", she announces matter-of-factly, the analytical portion of her mind firing off even as it starts to slip into shock. "These leathers are kevlar reinforced to cope with road-burn at high speeds. The bullet's gone through two sets of material. And me. I can't feel some of my arm. This… this isn't good. Can someone…? Oh dear. This isn't like crashing."

As the bullets fly, Elle ducks down, covering her head. As she watches Ygraine get hit, Elle gets angry. Sure, Ygraine is the reason for her having a broken arm a few months back. It still pisses her off that people are firing at each other. With a sneer on her face, Elle promptly darts forward, pressing up against the wall that shelters them from the gunshots, and peeking around the corner.

Then, her hand darts out from behind the alleyway, sending a blast of that lovely particle beam toward the gun-toting fellow's chest. Jackass.

Combat is never a fun thing. It's not fun to be shot or to shoot at, and seeing someone that he quite enjoys spending a quiet afternoon over a pot of tea with makes Jaiden like combat even less than his already poor opinion of it. The bottle is blasted out of his hand, sending a stream of water spiraling into the darkness of the street as he dives without really aiming for anything, landing in the alleyway without breaking anything or impaling himself on any kind of junk. Scrambling to his feet, he catches Ygraine before she falls, rummaging around in his backpack for something…anything…to stop the bleeding. A red shop rag works just fine, and the colour hides the blood rather well, too.

Drawing on his experiences, Jaiden immediately assesses the wound…"Does it feel broken?" he's very gentle, casting looks over his shoulder to get ready to haul ass if necessary. "It looks like it just got meat, not bone….so that's good." He doesn't mention pain, or infection, or anything like that. Thank god for the 750ml of whisky he has in his pack.

The meat of her arm, is where Ygraine was hit. For all that she's babbling about armor piercing rounds, in truth and to the trained eye, they're not and would easily pass through where it hit her.

Elle's newly acquired ability is one that while impressive and quite deadly, when it has to go through a car to get to the rifle weilding man, gives them at least time to move out of the way. It punches a hole through the bed of the truck, and into the wall of the grocery store even as a bullet sings just shy of Elle's hair, sawing off a few strands and a warning shot to stop.

Keagan's ability carries him through the ground, under those vehicles that have been repurposed and to the door. It takes so little effot and within a heartbeat, he's inside, in the back stockroom of the store. A quick look shows no movement, no other person back here and there's shelve upon shelf of canned goods, bags of rice, boxes of non-perisheble food and jugs of clean water, beer, soda. There's two cots, blankets and pillows. A chain rests around back double doors as well as bags of dog food, meant to barricade the door and provide a secondary means of fortification.

A veritable gold mine that he's standing in.

Outside, it's not looking good. The demand and request for food has been denied and as someone lifts a rifle to take another shot at someone who's darting forward, a bottle of something with a cloth haning out of it, being lit up, someone in the crowd lifts their own gun and fires a shot at one of the men behind the car barrier. Down he goes, a hole in his head and red blossoming on the wall behind him prompting a return of fire that clips many people. A riot is going to start. Not that it hasn't already.

Keagan continues in, and peeks carefully up, when he sees no one about, he grins internally. Jackpot. And what's this? A basement beneath? He unmerges, up into the room and gets to work. He grabs a few of the bags of rice, tucking in his shirt and stuffing them down into it. "I always liked rice… and millions of peaches, peaches for me. And for those people outside if they survive." He stuffs what he can into his shirt quickly and then dives back into the floor with it. He makes his way to the basement stairwell, trying to find an electrical line that might lead to a light switch. Let's see what's in here.

"Hahaha. Fuck. It didn't go crunch", Ygraine croaks, probably in answer to Jaiden's query, before hissing sharply between clunched teeth as reluctant tears squeeze out of her eyes. Forcing herself to focus on him, she gets something of a rein on her thoughts - at least briefly.

"I fear I might not be much immediate use, my dear old thing", she grits out in a weak attempt at a light-hearted display of a Britonnic stiff upper lip. "But no… I don't think they hit bone. And I'd be passing out now if they'd hit an artery directly. I hope. Fuck, this really…." Then she screws shut her eyes as her voice trails off into a stream of rapid-fire, hissed French, little save the bitter vitriol of her tone clear to those nearby. It certainly looks as if her assessment of her likely usefulness is accurate.

"Come on, dear. Keep calm and carry on. That's the thing you Brits do, isn't it?" Trying to bring levity to a horridly tense situation? Yep, that's Jaiden, most definitely. And as much as he'd like to get Ygraine drunk, this is not the exactly the situation he'd like to do it in. Still, out comes the whisky. "Here, Girly girl…take a swig. It'll dull the pain, what with your empty stomach." He grimaces, holding the cloth to her arm tightly, trying to stop the bleeding as best he can.

Jaiden's power, after a moment, goes to work, the water that's in the pipes, what little there is, snaking through, trying to find a break….trying to distract the crowd with water spurting from a crack in the street like a fountain.

Elle squeaks as the bullet narrowly misses her, ducking her head down a little bit. She waits, this time, until the men are distracted by the fellow who just shot his gun, and by Jaiden's water. Then, she's aiming a shot off at the car once again, trying to hit any one of the men this time. It's a good old-fashioned western shoot out. Except she's firing beams of accelerated particles and some other stuff like that. Something they probably never saw back in the old west.

There's no light when he flicks a switch, much like any other property in the dome that isn't the Suresh center or those who were prepared for the previous winter and kept their survival supplies, there's not a drop of electricity. There are canned peaches though, if he can see them. He's also still so very much alone and could get away with a great deal, if he's quick about it.

There's no fear of ygraine bleeidng out, not anytime soon, a clean shot, in and out. Maybe a dig around when the time comes for any shreds of clothing that she's wearing. But she'll be fine. A scar to make all the men swoon. Jaiden's efforts with what water remains in the pipes below is rewarded with said liquid coming up through a crack in the pavement, water forced out with his ability and spraying everywhere. Onto the three who are defending the store, wetting them down, the mist and spray making it hard to see. It wets down the approaching mob who reel back in shock at the water out of nowhere and the moltov is summarily dropped to the ground, unlit.

It distracts on of the guys who ducks down, hidden from sight and safe from elle's beam which is making holes in the vehicles and in the store when it punches through. Though they could shoot back, the water and the people are making this a bit more than they expected.

Figures. Keagan continues to move down the wall, and then back to the street with his shirt load of goodies. It's a start, but it'll take more than a couple of loads to get a significant amount. Then again, with the discovery of the basement, he can really go back any time he likes. As he returns to the street, he hears the gunshots and reacts. He starts toward the man behind the vehicles, raising a concrete arm up behind him and trying to drag him to the ground by the shirt collar. Hopefully that will give the others plenty of opportunity to come and take the position. If they notice.

"Waste of whiskey", are the first words Ygraine says in English for a short while. "Don't even like the stuff." But she does use her free hand to put the bottle to her mouth and gulp down a shot or two. "Gyah. Fuck. I'm going to need seen to properly. There's probably leather fibre in the wound. And they're not exactly sterile. Bollocks. Can you tie me up? I… I think I should get out of the way of all this. If they get in, it'll turn into a riot. Bloody stupid waste. People trash more than they take, fighting over it. Knew I should've stuck to the roofs. No one looks up. 'm safe up there. Bloody stupid… God, this hurts." Then she closes her eyes, and settles back into letting off steam in French - something she seems capable of doing for some time.

Well, it might be a waste of whiskey, but the fact of the matter is Ygraine, if she's not hurting now, will DEFINATELY be hurting in the next few minutes, so anything to deal with the pain will help. Too bad Jaiden doesn't have his medicine kit - thoughtfully on the other side of the dome. He nods to Ygraine and pauses for the woman to prepare her for the pain, and then, well…ties the rag TIGHT around her arm, just above the bullet wound. Hopefully the water'll distract and/or deter them.

She's still quite happy to be attacking those assholes who are shooting at people who only want to get some food. She puts both hands into commission, promptly aiming shots toward the men hiding behind the cars with a scowl on her face. Stupid greedy jerks.

Jaiden's water douses gunmen and mob alike, sending the men moving, out of the water in the hopes of getting a better sight, yelling for their buddies. One man rushes around the corner and headlong into one of those beams, it slicing into his leg and sending him tumbling down.

Keagen is taking care of one too, bringing his arm down across the back of the guys head, surprising him, distracted by his comrade who's just been sliced by an evolved ability. Down he goes and the active number of those guarding goes from five to three in a heartbeat.

Then down to two as one guy is summarily dragged over the barricade of vehicles and the mob descends upon him. For all the bravado and agression that they were showing when people started showing up, the last two look like they might give a last ditch attempt before they move, fast, disappearing to inside the store, the main door left unlocked in their wake.

Keagan continues back toward the other three, coming out of the ground with his spoils. "There's tons of food in there," he announces, untucking his shirt. "I'm gonna go back and try to trip up those guys inside, so everybody can get the food they need." He's feeling rather good about this. His power can come in rather handy sometimes.

With that statement, Keagan dives back into the ground, heading back into the store with exactly that intention. After all, if he can knock them to the ground. The mob should be able to handle it from there. He slides through the concrete, back into the store, searching for the knuckleheads who thought they could really keep all the food to themselves.

There may be tons of food now, but after this? Not bloody likely. Jaiden grumbles and lifts Ygraine in his arms, watching the people swarm the store. They'll eat, they'll loot, they'll take everything that isn't nailed down and destroy almost as much of it.

Boom, boom, boom. Elle is sending more blasts, holding down the fort until food can be obtained— or until these assholes are all mowed down. Nonviolence her ass. When they're shooting at people for wanting to eat, all limits are off.

Keagan finds those last two who had been defending the store. If they'd been smart, they too would have set up on the roof. But they never did and inside, he sees them heading for the basement, intent on barricading themselves inside down there, safe with the food in the basement. But in the dark, and knowing where to move already, being able to sink through the surface beneath their feet and surprise them, it becomes a scene from some horror movie as they're knocked unconscious by the teenager and left to be eventually discovered and set upon by the mob that grows outside.

Elle's indiscriminate firing hits a few of the mob who are intent on bringing down the ones who dared to stockpile and hoard. There will be injuries that need being taken care of but it won't be until the store is secure, that they can start getting the food out, start dividing it up - some a little selfishly than others - that they'll be taken care of.

Jaiden, Elle and Ygraine though, have the advantage of Keagan and the basement stockpile that won't be discovered for at least half an hour, and till then, they'll be able to get some food away too, to be traded between them and the teen for some fresh water.

But there are other pockets, other places with food, with people armed as best they can, hoarding everything, certain that this is all they'll have to get them through till a solution can be found. If it can be found. And as people flee back, bearing bags and backpacks filled with food, the victor goes the spoils and as much as you can carry, they ask themselves.

Will it be enough?

Will the dome… ever lift.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License