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She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

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She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Guest on Thu Jun 16, 2011 10:41 pm

Hazel watched as a boy tried to slam-dunk a basketball, only to miss the hoop by several inches. Hazel’s face looked as stony as ever, but inside she giggled to herself. The boy was horrible at this game, but he looked like he was having a lot of fun with his friends.

Hazel wondered about the people she had meet over the last few weeks. Would any of them become her friends? Hazel didn’t know, but she assumed this question would only dredge up fear and false hope and as a result Hazel tried to squash all this thinking down to the deepest part of her heart. Trying to avoid these feelings was also the reason Hazel was out here by the game courts.

After trying to hide Hazel had only managed to find people. So Hazel was attempting to use a new tactic, hiding in plain sight. She might have looked odd sitting on a hill watching others playing games, but Hazel didn’t want to take any chances. She hadn’t planned on watching the games honestly. Hazel was going to find a nice spot to write up a story in her notebook, but she had forgotten her journal on her bed and didn’t want to go back for it. This means that Hazel was now sitting with her arms encircling her knees, watching kids having fun. She looked like a little ball with a compassionless face or so she hoped.

Hazel continued to watch the sports, but her mind keep slipping back to her roommates, Mary, and Jackson. ‘Where are they? What are they doing now? Are they having fun with their own friends? Does Jackson play basketball? I don’t think so after all he said he likes movies. Maybe he is more of a homebody than a sports kinda guy.’ Her face blushed a little as she was thinking. Hazel was far enough away from the crowd that they couldn’t see her cheeks turn pink and she was glad for the distance as she interrogated herself. ‘Why am I thinking about Jackson? Is it because the people playing basketball are mostly boys? He was nice, but I tried so hard to forget about my crush on him. A crush would only lead to trouble and trouble is one thing I don’t need. Then again he is the only boy who hasn’t teased me yet. Is he different from others? It would be nice even if we can just be friends.’ Her eyes took on a distant look as she became entangled in her thoughts wondering about her future.

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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Jackson Nez on Fri Jun 17, 2011 1:53 pm

Sometimes, Jackson had nightmares. They didn't come every night or even every week, but they attacked from absolutely nowhere and left him sleepless for nights afterward with the fear that they would return. They always started with the words, 'get on your knees.' The voice was low and threatening and came from a blurry face behind a very non-blurry shotgun. In the dream, Jackson felt as if he were moving through molasses...his limbs were heavy, the air viscous. Dream-him looked at dream-Kasey, whose face was blurry too; the blur shook back and forth. Telling him not to.

Everything suddenly went wild with blurring colors. Dream-Jackson slogged forward, his weighty arms fighting for something and nothing, for the right to live. It seemed like a long time he fought two other blurs, unable to tell them apart, unable to see what he was really doing, unsure if he was moving at all...and then BLAM! Jackson would wake up scrabbling at his face, trying to wipe away the blood that he could still feel there, warm and terrible.

Last night had been one of the nightmare nights, and it had not left him in a good mood. He'd only slept for approximately two hours, and he had a pounding headache; even the thought that those dreams would make a killer short film was not making him feel better. Hair in a ponytail, wearing a jacket even though it was relatively warm, he was wandering, head down, hands in his pockets, walking faster than he usually did despite the exhaustion and the headache. There were things to escape this time, and if he walked fast enough and thought as little as possible he knew he could do it. He was sweating a little, walking so fast and wearing a jacket, but he didn't want to take it off. Only on his bravest or his most apathetic days did he want to show the world the scars on his arms. Not that anyone was really looking; it just didn't feel right.

Jackson tried to think of happy things, but found himself thinking instead, 'what happy things'? What about this was happy? What about his life thus far had been at all happy? You met a nice girl, he thought, and it sounded like Kasey's voice in his head, that voice that usually accompanied a suggestive eyebrow raise and a creepy wink. That made his lip twitch upward a little. Yes, the creepy wink, but mostly the memory of his conversation with Hazel. She was nice, and she was quirky, and strangely, he really wanted to get to know her better. Jackson could could count the people he wanted to know better on one hand.

Suddenly, he stopped and looked up. Where the fuck was he? By the basketball courts, evidently, because there they were. People playing basketball. Jackson had never been into sports, but he was pretty sure he could pull it off if he had to; throwing a ball around didn't seem all that hard. Of course, most of his adolescence had been a miniature UFC, so nothing really seemed all that hard. He was about to move on when he saw someone watching the guys playing basketball; it seemed strange, so he looked closer. It was Hazel.

Should he go over? Should he pretend like he hadn't seen her? Should he walk that direction and let her see him first? Jackson had no idea what to do. The first time, it had been easy -- she was in a tree, she asked him to come up, he had. Then again...he had kind of promised to see her again, only 'kind of' because she ran away before he could say anything. Frankly, Jackson was tired of thinking -- his head hurt, the world seemed kind of spinny, and he just wanted everything to be easy. So he walked toward the girl sitting and watching basketball. When he was close enough, he said,

"Hey. Um...what's up?" Brilliant, chastised a sarcastic inner voice, but he quieted it and tried to smile.
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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Guest on Sat Jun 18, 2011 4:37 am

Hazel jumped when she heard someone speak to her. She really wasn’t used to people trying to talk to her and the voice really was a shock. She even recognized this voice. When she looked up to check a smile almost escaped her lips. It was Jackson. It seemed just like the stories when you think about someone they magically appear. While Hazel’s plan to stay away from people hadn’t worked she was actually happy to see Jackson. Her fear of his animosity wasn’t nearly as strong when she saw him a second time. In response to Jackson’s question Hazel pointed up and whispered “The Sky,” making a geeky joke. ‘What’s up? The sky. Get it?’ She thought to herself.

Hazel took a closer look at Jackson. He seemed almost … zombified. Sure he wasn’t eating brains or anything, but he looked really tired. His eyes were dull and he even wore a coat when it was pretty hot outside. Hazel could see the little sweat beads forming on his forehead. She wasn’t trying to be creepy, but years of observation had taught her to notice the little things. Maybe he was sick with a fever and chills, but then why would he be walking out here in the first place? Hazel hoped something bad didn’t happen to Jackson, he seemed too nice for bad things to rule over him.

“Do you need some water?” she asked concerned, not that Hazel had any water. She was never one to prepare for things before hand, other than avoiding people. Never preparing probably amounted to ninety percent of Hazel’s awkwardness, because her immediate improvised reactions were usually weird by societal standards. For example why would you ask someone if they need water, when you don’t have any? This thought dawned on Hazel a moment after the question left her mouth and she immediately tried to compensate for it. “I mean … are you ok?” Her face showed no hint of worry, but her eyes slightly softened in concern.

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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Jackson Nez on Sun Jun 19, 2011 12:02 pm

It was a really geeky joke, not to mention overused, but it was cute, and so he smiled. It was pretty obvious that Hazel wasn't really someone who made jokes a lot, but Jackson wasn't, either. His sense of humor tended to be a little morbid; he usually just kept it to himself. Otherwise, people would start giving him edgy looks and moving away -- well, at least here no-one knew him from television like they did in most of New Mexico.

"Sorry if I...scared you," he said, referring to the way she had jumped when he spoke to her. It reminded him vaguely of something, and he wondered idly if anyone had ever beat Hazel; maybe it was just because she was a nervous person. Jackson hoped so. Her concern was nice; it felt a little weird to have someone concerned about his well-being. Being concerned about him was kind of like trying to be concerned for a wall, and people had stopped trying a long time ago. Walls aren't very cuddly. Although she obviously didn't have any water -- what is she going to do, go find a well? -- the offer was much appreciated. Luckily, he wasn't currently dying of thirst.

"I'm fine," he said, sitting down beside her and pulling his jacket around himself protectively. "Just...kind of tired. How've you been?" It was an awkward attempt to divert attention from himself, but he also really wanted to know; Jackson was becoming weirdly comfortable with this girl. She was so strange; it was hard to tell what she was feeling or what she would do next. He doubted even she knew. On the contrary, he was pretty boring and predictable. It was a nice off-setting of characteristics, exactly like the ones they made in movies. Boring guy meets unpredictable girl, beaches, flowers and music montages follow. He listened, but he didn't hear any Taylor Swift being piped in, which was probably a good thing; auditory hallucinations are never a sign of recovery.
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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Guest on Sun Jun 19, 2011 1:59 pm

Hazel would have run away again if she heard Jackson’s thoughts. Being beaten … no Hazel had never been beaten in a traditional sense, but she was emotionally hit all the time. That was just one more thing that made her abnormal (at least so she thinks) and talking about her pain would just make her want to hide away.

For most of her life her parents had neglected Hazel emotionally. One time when she was around three years old, Hazel had tried to scream her ears off in her room, just to get her parents to come see her. Her parents waited for a good two minutes, but when it became clear that Hazel wasn’t going to stop, her father turned the TV up to full volume and her mother went out shopping. They never even checked why she was screaming, they just assumed it would eventually stop.

Hazel had tried to find some solace at school, but she was an outcast. She was different and strange, she didn’t know how to properly act around people, so all Hazel could do was react based on her instincts. This made her a prime target for bullies. At school boys and girls alike would tease her, pull her hair, and push her around, luckily though no one right out punched her. As she got older kids would make a game of becoming her friend to find something to disgrace or humiliate her with. Either way Hazel had learned that being alone was lonely, but safe.

Her reason for jumping … well who knows, but it was probably from the surprise attacks students would play on her at school combined with the fact that she had never had anyone really try to talk with her before. After all if you are never familiarized with people how do you learn to react to them? At least movies had taught her the basics. She had spent many hours watching everything from documentaries to cartoons since she was often alone in her room. Her father being a movie addict had a huge collection and Hazel would sit for hours on end watching them until she became bored. Then she would turn to her mother’s hobby … books. Like her father’s collection, her mother had boxes of books that Hazel would go through and read for hours. Somehow learning life lessons through literature and film has made Hazel well … Hazel, a little odd thing who cannot figure out how to fit into the physical world.

That being said, she usually couldn’t figure people out. She noticed the details and tried to put pieces together, but she was never certain if she was correct. Jackson definitely wasn’t predictable to her. She could tell he was shy like her and today he seemed hurt, but she didn’t know why. He was Jackson and unlike most people he seemed to want to talk to her which surprised Hazel even more. If, anything he was the most unpredictable person Hazel had met so far. So she was trying to take their conversation slowly, trying not to make any mistakes that would send Jackson running for the hills, because as much as she tried to deny it, she truly did like Jackson.

“Ok.” Hazel started unsure of what to say next to Jackson. It was only an ok day nothing special happened until Jackson arrived. She looked at her feet, still not brave enough to look into Jackson’s face. “St. Christina is different,” she added honestly. She wondered why Jackson was tired, but decided not to pry and asked a safer question instead. “What do you think of this place?”

(OOC: Sorry for so much Hazel History. I just couldn’t stop once I started.)

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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Jackson Nez on Mon Jun 20, 2011 3:19 am

[OOC: It's fine. I do that all the time; I ranted about Jackson's dreams for like two paragraphs. xD]

"I think...I mean, it's definitely different," Jackson agreed, looking at his shoes too. If she didn't want to make eye contact, neither did he; it wasn't something you could force. "It's not as bad...as it could be, but. You know. It's not freedom."

Even as he said it, he was thinking that he didn't know what he'd do if he did have freedom. They'd probably send him back to Charlotte, which was a death sentence at this point. He had realized, with a little twinge of regret, that things would likely go back to the way they had been. He would stop taking his medication. Sit around and watch movies all day, avoiding thought, occasionally taking a walk down the street, watching the sidewalk. Eating when Charlotte made him, sleeping whenever he could. Finally coming to that point when there was nothing he wanted more than to die. It seemed hopeless and pathetic now, but he still wasn't sure how to change it. What to do differently. Why he couldn't quite stomach reality. That's why he was at St. Christina's; he was supposed to be learning how to change himself.

"I'm...not complaining," he said, shrugging. He was giving his usual non-commital answers, the non-offensive nothings that he had learned to use for his stepmother and his teachers. "But then...there's really no-where else for me, I guess. Um, so, do you like it here?" He almost asked her if everyone was being nice to her, but decided to save that for later. It was a little soon to be offering to kick anyone's ass for her. In Jackson's opinion, St. Christina's was as good a place as any to be crazy. Here, at least they felt it appropriate to let him out on the weekends; apparently, they thought that they were doing such wonders for him that he wouldn't drown himself in the ocean. Which he hadn't, but that was because he wasn't feeling particularly suicidal. It was far from 'good', but it was a start.

Biting his lip, Jackson risked a glance up. She was still looking at her shoes, so he quickly looked back down. What was he supposed to do now? He really wished he could talk to Kasey, who, despite being insanely hyperactive and mildly creepy, was good with girls. God knew how he did it, but he did, and Jackson was completly lost when it came to this sort of thing. The only thing he knew was that he liked Hazel, and he didn't want her to think that he didn't because he couldn't figure out how to express it the right way. He definitely could not touch her; that would make her jump out of her skin, and he just couldn't. Not that he didn't want to; he just couldn't. Touching meant pain, it meant fear, and distance was much, much safer. For both of them, because he couldn't shake the fear that he was just like his father. It made his skin crawl. Even from the grave, Eli Nez had managed to ruin Jackson's love life.
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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Guest on Mon Jun 20, 2011 12:02 pm

Freedom. Hazel wasn’t sure what the word meant to her. Being locked up in a room all day didn’t sound like freedom, but it’s what Hazel preferred. So what was freedom? Was it different for everyone? She wondered what Jackson pictured as he said it. Maybe they were both trying to find the meaning of that word.

Hazel shifted and felt the cool grass underneath her on this warm day. When Jackson asked her if she liked St. Christinas she thought for a few minutes. She was a little worried that Jackson might get bored and leave Hazel sitting alone once again, but this was truly a hard question for Hazel to answer. While Hazel had moved around a lot as a kid, all that had seemed to change were the colors of her walls. Now it seemed as if Hazel was a fish taken from her small guarded fish tank and thrown into the vast ocean. She had to sink or swim to survive and she wasn’t quite sure if she was swimming. Everything was still too new, still too uncertain.

Hazel started to reply slowly, “Some people are nice … it’s hard to disappear here. I don’t know if that’s bad.” Hazel held tighter to her legs feeling her insides knot up. She felt as if she had just let go of precious information. Could Jackson blackmail her with what she had said? She wanted to believe he would never do such a thing, but a voice nagged at her that once again she had left herself much too vulnerable. She tried to think of other things. Jackson had mentioned that besides St Christinas he had nowhere else to go. She wondered if he was an only child like herself. Was he an orphan? Hazel’s parents were both alive, but in some of her darkest dreams she imagined that being an orphan would have been better than her own life. She didn’t know and it was only when Hazel was truly in a dark place that these thoughts wondered into her head.

Feeling alright at the moment Hazel was daydreaming of being in a rogue orphan gang with Jackson as the mysterious, but always astonishing leader, Hazel’s hand slipped from her leg. Her fingers lightly grazed Jackson’s own. Feeling soft skin touch her, Hazel’s hand was instantly curled up in her lap hidden from view, as if a moment longer and a knife would have chopped off her hand in punishment. Her face became blood red as she began a string of apologies. “I…I’m sorry … I really … I didn’t mean too … sorry.” Hazel’s head knelt in shame her hair loosely covering her face. Hazel had never even held hands with another human being and she didn’t know if their momentary touch was ok, so she apologized profusely hoping she hadn’t just ended their strange but growing relationship.

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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Jackson Nez on Mon Jun 20, 2011 6:26 pm

Disappearing. Something Jackson had wanted to do for as long as he could remember. Poof. Vanish and have no-one remember. Evaporate into some safe, quiet void. He hadn't been able to manage the feat of disappearing in plain sight since before Hadley, since before Artesia. In Gallup, he was just another Native American kid, and one who didn't talk at that. No-one gave him a second glance. His reputation preceeded him in Artesia; It's The Kid Who Killed His Dad, Better Stay Away. Everywhere else, his silence was pretty much taken as some sort of affront, and people stared at him suspiciously. In short, there was no longer any place where he could vanish. That was what Jackson was thinking when Hazel said that it was hard to disappear -- that it was hard.

He was about to voice this agreement when he felt her touch his hand, then quickly retract, apologizing. This was a Hollywood moment, and he knew what he had to do. He knew what the fictional audience viewing his fictional life-movie would expect. Slowly, hesitatingly, he reached over and tucked the hair hiding her face behind her ear, saying,

"It's okay."

Quickly, he looked down at his feet again, hands back in his lap. Was it a mistake? Maybe. But this seemed like the kind of day that was rife with mistakes. His head pounded painfully in tandem with his heart. He felt miles away from himself. Who was he, anymore? The Jackson that he knew, that he'd always been, would never have done anything like that. Maybe he was changing, more so than he thought. Growing farther and farther away from where he'd been. Maybe he wasn't at all like his father, because, frankly, the thought of hurting Hazel seemed ridiculous.

"Tell me about...I want to know more about you," Jackson said sincerely, his voice even more quiet than usual. He wasn't confident that she wasn't going to smack him or just get up and leave, but it was time for a leap of faith. It was time to actually change something in his life. It may have had something to do with being essentially sleepless, or something to do with the vague fear that nothing was ever going to change, but he was determined. He was, in Kasey's words, 'making his move'.
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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Guest on Sat Jun 25, 2011 3:37 am

Hazel flinched when Jackson pushed her hair away. She had seen this a hundred times in movies and books, but she was afraid. No one had cared for her before and she feared pain and dismissal in the end like people always seemed to do. Yet, at the same time this immense fear welled inside her, she felt the soothing words of Jackson’s voice.

"It's okay."

‘It’s okay’ she repeated the words over and over to herself feeling a calm wash over her body. Hazel couldn’t figure out how two words can make a difference. Truly alone those two words didn’t matter. Yet, Hazel trusted Jackson, in some small way she had allowed herself to befriend this shy boy and so when Jackson spoke those two words, she believed him. That belief is what made the difference.

Was this really a stereotypical thing that happened to everyone? Hazel didn’t believe most people were this scared. So she turned and gave Jackson a small smile. She wanted Jackson to know that she believed his words and that he didn’t hurt her (after all why else would someone flinch). Then he said something that made Hazel very happy.

"Tell me about...I want to know more about you.”

“Let’s … let’s make a deal. I’ll tell you something then you have to tell me something. A trade … a trade of trust.” Hazel wasn’t very self-assured, but she wanted to prove to Jackson that he could trust her. She wanted to learn about him too so she could provide Jackson with care. She felt like she was standing on ice that was melting and she just had to have belief that Jackson really did care for her and wouldn’t hurt her. It was risky and something that would bring happiness to both of them. An hour ago Hazel would have said that anything with a risk was a stupid idea. Maybe it was, but she hoped with all of her heart that Jackson could prove her wrong.

Hazel started taking one step on that melted ice, having faith. "My favorite color is dark forest green and I … I think your cute.” An urge to run hit her like a ninety mile per hour truck. She held her hands tightly so that her knuckles where white and made sure she stayed planted on the ground.

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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Jackson Nez on Mon Jun 27, 2011 2:14 am

She flinched, and that was all it took. Jackson was going to keep his hands to himself; really, maybe what he'd been afraid of all along was himself. Not Hazel, not being disliked...but himself, and what, exactly, he was capable of. He thought of the girl on the plane, and how good it felt to let out just one iota of the anger that he'd bottled up for years and years. How could he even think of touching anyone now? He was a murderer, for God's sake, and who knew what he'd do next? Jackson had not anticipated this particular facet to being social; he had not expected to be more afraid of himself than of everyone else. Hazel smiled at him, but he still said,

"I'm sorry. I shouldn't...I'm sorry."

Trusting someone would be a feat of epic proportions for Jackson. The only person he had ever trusted was Kasey, and that was a trust twisted to allow for so many things that it was hardly intact anymore. Everyone in his life had betrayed his trust in some way, and so he simply did not involve himself with those sort of things. When Hazel mentioned the word, he had an ugly realization; trust was an inevitable part of this relationship. Suddenly, he wondered whether he could do this -- if he did, it would be both incredibly painful and incredibly selfish. There were dark, murky places inside of him, places that he didn't want to go, places he knew that he shouldn't drag Hazel along with him. But what could be so wrong about telling her his favorite color or astrological sign or something equally as benign?

The fact that she thought he was cute sort of baffled Jackson...he'd never really thought about what he looked like. Girls had never exactly swooned when he walked into the room, and he'd always just assumed that he was unattractive as well as strange. It never really bothered him. The more he looked at Hazel, the more he thought that she was really pretty. Maybe it was just because he liked her, and maybe it was because he'd never been around females in general, but he was becoming genuinely attracted to her.

"My favorite color is...um, blue, I guess. And...you're, um, the kind of girl that I'd like to put in a movie someday," he replied, half-realizing that that was kind of a crazy thing to say. Oh, well -- it was true. If he ever got around to procuring a camera, he would make a movie with Hazel as the star. That is, if she wanted to be...but who didn't want to be in a movie about them? Maybe she could write him a script, seeing as she was a writer and he decidedly wasn't. They could make an awesome team.
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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Guest on Wed Jun 29, 2011 11:48 am

If Hazel had been conscious of her body actions she would have tried her hardest not to flinch. She really wanted to be close to Jackson, but she was too scared. Maybe the day would come when she wouldn’t fear people (although Hazel doubted that day would ever arrive) or maybe just Jackson. Yet she did flinch and Jackson was apologizing for touching her. How could she convey that it was ok. She truly didn’t mind, because he seemed so sweet and nice. The truth is Hazel didn’t have the words or the bravery to convey her feelings and so she kept silent.

When Jackson mentioned the color blue, thoughts of the sky came into Hazel’s head. Their favorite colors green color of the Earth and blue color of the Sky. Maybe Hazel and Jackson were distanced, but could still be connected and see each other like the sky and earth. Hazel wished that she had her notebook with her so she could write all of her thoughts down. Writing down her ideas and emotions helped Hazel stay calm too.

Blushing, Hazel started to play with the grass by her feet as she contemplated the words Jackson had spoken. She liked the fact that Jackson wanted to put her in a movie. She bet all girls wanted to be in a movie … well unless it was America’s Most Wanted, but that was TV anyway. She never wanted to be the star of the show though, they were so predictable and everyone watched them every second of the show. No, Hazel wanted to be a side kick, someone who did everything in the background. Sidekicks always did the things that assured victory for the hero of a show. Even if they didn’t get as much recognition, without sidekick heroes wouldn’t be so cool. Hazel’s response was much simpler than her thoughts “A movie would be fun,” after all she didn’t want to make demands on Jackson for an imaginary movie.

“Would you be in the movie too?” she asked sincerely, wondering if Jackson wanted to be a movie star? Clearing her throat she brought her mind back to the confidant information the two had started to share. It wasn’t much but it was a place to start, “and do you have brothers or sisters?”


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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Jackson Nez on Thu Jun 30, 2011 2:48 am

"No...definitely no. I'd be, um, filming," Jackson said, letting out a small laugh. If he was put in front of a camera, he'd likely freeze up and stutter incoherently for minutes on end like he'd done every other time he'd been put on the spot. Think a whole court room staring at a kid stuttering like Porky the Pig. Who'd ever heard of an actor with a stutter, anyway? It was just a big no, all of it. However, he did want to capture the way she looked at the ground and blushed, and if he had to get in the shot to do that, then fine. It was particularly cute, and he thought that it would look great in black and white.

"I have a half-brother. Same dad," Jackson replied, feeling a small amount of nostalgia. He hadn't seen Kasey in a long time. "I miss him." He paused, looking at the grass, thinking of how he should probably write his brother a letter -- he hadn't been feeling up to it until now. The medicine at Hadley had fucked him up pretty badly, which was just another reason not to trust drugs or hospitals. When he looked up again after a long moment of thought, he blinked a little, trying to clear his pounding head, and said,

"So, um, what about you? Siblings? And...what's your favorite, um...what's your favorite...icecream flavor?" It was a dumb question, but it was all he could think of. Actually, he didn't care what her favorite icecream flavor was, and furthermore, he didn't even know what his own was; Jackson made a mental note to come up with better questions beforehand next time. If he thought things out before he said and/or did them, his life would be easier in general, and this conversation would most definitely be easier. But he wasn't currently capable of thinking much about anything...going to sleep forever sounded like a good idea. As soon as the thought had finished wending its was through his brain, Jackson was angry at himself. Wasn't he supposed to be getting better? Weren't those thoughts supposed to stop? He looked down at the grass again and suppressed a sigh. This was going to be harder than he thought.
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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Guest on Thu Jul 07, 2011 9:59 am

“It’s cool that you have a brother,” Hazel said quietly. “I’m an only child.” Hazel had dreamt of having a little sister or brother all her life. Every night before she went to sleep she would imagine someone lying next to her. A brother or sister she could tell anything and everything too. They would share secrets and go on adventures and neither of them would ever be alone. However, Hazel was never graced with a sibling so until now she felt alone.

Hazel mentioned to Jackson, “maybe your brother would even come to visit you.” She had no idea what Jackson’s brother was like, but she hoped that if Jackson missed him than the two shared a bond. Based on her own experiences, Hazel believed you couldn’t trust parents to help you when you needed it, but maybe you could trust brothers. ‘I mean if you can’t trust your brothers … or your parents … or people, then who can you trust?’ The thought passed through her mind as she prayed with all her heart that someone in the world was trustworthy. ‘Maybe … maybe Jackson is trustworthy.’ Before she could push the emotion back a blush came to her face again. Hazel tried to quickly change the topic hoping to hide her embarrassment.

“Ice cream … I like coffee. … I mean … I mean I like coffee ice cream.” Hazel had been drinking coffee since she was four. Her parents lived off coffee and microwave food and so Hazel did too. It just so happened that coffee had attracted her like bees to honey. Coffee was her favorite ice cream, desert, and comfort drink all wrapped up into one flavor. Hot or cold Hazel could drink it anytime. That being said she wondered if they were allowed coffee at St. Christina; after all the caffeine could affect their medication right? She heard Jackson sigh and immediately said what she was thinking, “Do you think we can drink coffee here? Wait that’s not my next question … I mean.” Taking a second Hazel blurted out her question hoping she wasn’t making a complete fool of herself.

“What’s your favorite day and … why?” Adding in the question why might be cheating a little bit and asking two questions, but Hazel wanted details. Without asking why, Hazel had a feeling Jackson would only give simple answers like Hazel herself preferred when it was her turn. Yes it might be a double standard, but maybe if Jackson answered with details Hazel would open up too.

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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Jackson Nez on Sun Jul 10, 2011 1:14 am

"Yeah, maybe...maybe he would," replied Jackson thoughtfully. Kasey would probably be kicked off of Green Ridge within the hour, but it would be an entertaining hour, at least. He felt bad for Hazel; being an only child had to be lonely. If he had been an only child, Jackson mused, he would have been simultaneously better and worse off; he'd thought about it for a long time, and, ultimately, he was glad that he had a brother. He noticed her blushing again, and wondered why. Maybe just thinking embarassing things made her turn red. For a moment, he wished he knew what she was thinking, but then felt bad; after all, he definitely wouldn't want her inside his head. She'd run screaming.

"Um...I mean...decaf, maybe," Jackson responded to the odd question about coffee, smiling. "My favorite day...um...wow...I really like Halloween, for some reason. I mean...I never got to, um, dress up or anything...but I liked watching the other kids. Always seemed...otherwordly or something." Now Hazel probably thought that he was some weirdo who sat at his window and watched small children run around in costumes. God. This was not a fun game, and one that painted him in an increasingly unflattering light.

"My question is...what's your....umm...earliest memory?" he asked. On second thought, maybe that was a bit personal, but what was this conversation about but getting a bit personal? It was a bit of a double standard, he admitted to himself, but Hazel's first memory was probably of going to the zoo or something, anyway. His earliest childhood memory involved his mother crying and packing her clothes into a small suitcase. He couldn't remember her face, and he couldn't remember her voice, but he remembered the sound of her crying and the back of her head, her long black hair in a ponytail, shaking as she cried. Jackson had only been four, but he remembered it pretty well, even though the voices sounded like they were underwater and the faces were blurred.
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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Guest on Wed Jul 13, 2011 10:14 pm

Hazel was surprised Jackson chose Halloween, more so because she had meant a day of the week rather than a Holiday. It was funny how people could interpret words and Hazel was wondering if she could figure out what Jackson was thinking by the way he answered her questions. Anyway, she liked that he had chosen Halloween, because that was far more interesting then *I like Saturday because I like to party*.

On Halloween Hazel always dressed up and received a lot of candy, but it was usually from her parents. After the age of five they had been too lazy to take her out to go trick-or-treating and opted for appeasing Hazel by just buying candy instead. When she was little Hazel was really upset by the fact that she couldn’t go out with the other kids, but as she got older she liked avoiding the ritual of asking strangers for candy. Even without the joys of socially knocking on random doors to ask for food, Hazel did love to dress up. For one night you could be anyone or anything in the entire world and you could do anything you wanted. Hazel never played the obvious characters like a princess, but she always dressed up as the pirate from Bluebeard’s crew, a dark angel of the stars, or the leaf fairy of the fall. She couldn’t believe Jackson had never dressed up before. Even if you were all alone it was fun to step into someone else’s shoes. She would have to try and convince him to dress up, just for fun this Halloween.

"My question is...what's your....umm...earliest memory?"

Her earliest memory. For a moment Hazel didn’t want to answer. It wasn’t fun or spectacular. Her first memory was the same one that she had every day for 14 years of her life. It was boring, it was lame, and it was Hazel’s existence. “I was … I was watching TV alone in my house.” Hazel didn’t go into more detail, because she couldn’t remember much else. She just remembered being really little way before school had started and she wanted her mom. She searched and searched, but nobody was in the house and so she went back to watch TV (her unofficial babysitter). Alright so she didn’t tell Jackson the details, but he didn’t want to know about that stuff anyway right?

She didn’t want to think about it so she was sure Jackson didn’t want to know. Without waiting she went straight into her next question for Jackson. … Maybe she shouldn’t but she was curious ... “How come you’re at St. Christina?” her voice was an innocent whisper. She hoped Jackson wasn’t angry that she asked such a personal question. For Hazel, she asked for the sake of curiosity not of judgment and she didn’t realize how personal that question could truly be.

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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Jackson Nez on Fri Jul 15, 2011 8:46 pm

Hazel's first memory was more or less what Jackson had expected; sane and normal. It was a bit more boring than he'd thought, but maybe her childhood had been boring. He wished that his childhood had been boring; it definitely would have been preferable. For a moment, he thought she might have made it up, but then he reminded himself that he was now obliged to trust Hazel's integrity. It wasn't as if he thought she was liar -- it was just his experience that no-one told the truth.

She had asked the million dollar question; why was he here? Jackson had been waiting for it to come up, dreading it, and he wasn't sure he wanted to answer it. He wasn't sure he knew how to answer it. But, then, Hazel had a right to know what she was getting herself into... After a moment of internal debate that took too long, he decided to outline the barest bones of what had happened to him thus far. That was safe, right? Averting his eyes, he replied,

"Um...well, I guess it's mostly because I'm...depressed. My dad...used to beat me up. When I was a kid. He's dead now. They've told me that...that I have Major Depressive Disorder. I tried to, um, kill myself. More than once. And...that's frowned upon." That was the saddest attempt at a joke that he'd ever heard, and he mentally berated himself for not restraining his morbid humor. He couldn't decide whether or not to go on. On one hand, it might be profitable to just tell her now and get it over with. On the other, he desperately didn't want to. The latter side won. Instead of telling her the whole story, driven by a somewhat grotesque need to show someone, he shrugged off his jacket and extended his arm. Two long, thick pinkish-white scars ran along his forearm; there were three more on the other arm.

"See?" Jackson said, as if it wasn't apparent. Maybe he wanted to gross her out a little, or maybe he just wanted her to understand. Maybe he was sick of trying to hide the scars; maybe he was just really, really tired. But he felt strangely better now that she'd seen. He hoped that she wouldn't be too repulsed -- as ugly as they were, they were a part of him, and he could no longer imagine his arms without them. They were as much a testament to weakness as they were to will. People made assumptions about them, though, so he thought it best to keep them hidden as much as he could, as often as he could. Jackson hoped that Hazel might be different in this respect, although he didn't know why he felt that he could expect that of her -- it wasn't exactly proper courting technique to show off your suicide scars to a girl. Resting his arm on his leg, still turned scar-side up, looking at it thoughtfully, he said,

"I can't really...think of a question to top that one. So...why are you here?" Jackson didn't know what he expected to hear; he didn't know her well enough to make a guess. But he did know that nothing she came out with could be as weird as what he'd just come out with; he certainly didn't expect to be surprised.
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From the heart

Post by Guest on Tue Aug 02, 2011 9:31 pm

It had seemed like hours passed as Jackson and Hazel answered questions back and forth. The illusion of the delay of time seemed to arise from the teenagers’ shyness, because it took so dam long for them to even get close to each other. The questions had started out random and inconsequential. Slowly other more serious questions began to arise, and little by little Hazel was trying to piece together the puzzle that was Jackson Nez. She assumed he was piecing her together too and she hoped her pieces weren’t all disfigured or odd like she seemed to be. Especially now when the questions were getting harder, when all Hazel wanted to do was run, but she decided to stay. Yes especially now she didn’t want to be confusing, she wanted Jackson to figure her out and she wanted to be there to see all of Jackson. (All of his soul at least, because at the moment Hazel is too naive to think about that stuff.)

And then Jackson answered the big question. Hazel wasn’t being judgmental; she was just processing everything with a stony face, her emotion hidden like the blades of grass. Her question was out of pure curiosity and nothing Jackson said had made her cringe or think he was in anyway different from anyone else in the world. He had lived through different, harder things than most people, but he wasn’t painful like the things he went though. Admittedly the girl who has been self-isolated for nearly 14 years probably wasn’t the best judge on what was normal. But she knew telling all this stuff, telling his life was hard. She could see it in Jackson’s face and hear it in his stutter.

As his story unfolded several emotions ran though Hazel’s head, but she didn’t stop to explore any of them, because Jackson was showing her his scars, his suicide scars. Hazel felt so much when he removed his jacket that it was hard to sort out her feelings. She saw his scars without feeling grossed out like Jackson expected, but two strong emotions were ringing though her body loud a clear. Fear and respect. First she felt fear, fear that Jackson would commit suicide again and then he wouldn’t be in this world anymore. For all her hopes about reincarnation she truly wanted Jackson to stay right here. Hazel believed he was shy and nice and friendly in a shy way and he didn’t deserve what he got as a kid, but she didn’t want him to leave. His presence was too nice here. Maybe it was selfish to think this way, but she never wanted to see Jackson try to commit suicide and she swore somehow even if he ended up hating her she would make Jackson happy so he wouldn’t hurt anymore.

Second she felt respect. He was brave. He was brave enough that when things were horrible he had the guts to take his own life and maybe go somewhere better. Hazel had thought about suicide many times. Once she had even told her parents she would kill herself. Her parents pretended that their teenage daughter hadn’t said a word and their lives continued on as normal. And at that moment Hazel learned that she was a coward and could never actually kill herself whatever the reason. She had chosen suffering over peace and she was happy that Jackson could chose peace instead of suffering. Her promise to herself was that he would never have to make that choice again.

Acting purely on her instincts she reached over and put her hand on top of Jackson’s scars. She could feel the raise of skin along his arm like she was feeling a part of him. She was blushing, but in her own way she was also trying to comfort Jackson and let him know how she felt. Yet, her words seemed to fail and poetic comfort was not flowing off of her tongue. She began to answer the question while still looking at Jackson’s arms. “You are brave. … My mom and dad didn’t beat me … didn’t touch me … didn’t talk to me. I … I can’t be around people, cause I don’t know how. I had books and movies, but no people so … well so I stay alone. When people are near-by I always say and do the wrong stuff and I can’t help it. I get hurt when people are around … not (pauses awkwardly because Hazel believes her emotional pain was nowhere near the amount of true pain Jackson has suffered) not physically, but in my heart and I don’t want to be hurt and I don’t want to hurt anyone. So I’m here, because … I can’t function with people. I’m sorry if I ever hurt you I don’t mean it.”

For the first time in a long while Hazel was wearing her heart on her sleeve. Her face actually showed uncertainty. She didn’t know what Jackson would do and she wasn’t protecting herself from the emotional blow she expected to come. She felt every inch of her want to run, but she refused to move. Instead she let her emotions be shown so that she could protect Jackson. She didn’t know how, but she had made a promise and she was gonna keep it … she hoped.

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Re: She Shoots, SHE ... misses?

Post by Jackson Nez on Sun Aug 07, 2011 6:53 pm

That certainly wasn't the reaction that Jackson had been expecting; in fact, he almost jumped back when she touched his arm. His arm twitched, but he managed not to jump, thankfully. The scarred parts were permanently numb, but he hadn't lost feeling in the rest of his arm; Hazel's hand was warm, and it felt weird to have someone touch him at all, let alone touch his scars, which people usually avoided like they were contagious. Once his mother had left, physical contact that didn't hurt had become something rare and eventually something strange. He was starting to realize that he didn't really like being touched, but he certainly wasn't going to let Hazel know that; he wanted to like it. Mechanically, he reached over with his other hand and put it on top of hers; it felt small and smooth. To Jackson, this was possibly the strangest thing that had happened to him in a long time; it was the twist to the plot that no-one had expected. If someone had told him upon entering St. Christina's that he'd soon find himself exposing one of his more physical secrets to a girl he'd just met, he wouldn't have believed them, yet here he was, and there she was.

He listened to Hazel with his eyes on the ground; now didn't seem like a good time for eye contact. Jackson wasn't a psychologist, but he thought that lack of human contact sounded like something that would make a person go a little crazy, Tideland style. He felt lucky at least in the respect that he'd always had his brother to talk to, even if it was just when they were kicking the shit out of each other. Having someone to commiserate with made life a little more bearable, and he felt really bad for Hazel. Jackson usually didn't empathize much with people, partly because empathizing usually requires that you talk to people first. It wasn't that he didn't feel sympathetic towards humanity; it was just that he usually had problems of his own to think about. Now, he felt himself empathizing with this lonely girl.

"Well, um, I wouldn't say...brave," Jackson said in his awkward, hesitating way, looking up. He thought that there was a reason that people called suicide 'the easy way out'; it wasn't brave, it was cowardly. He didn't know how to communicate that, so he didn't try; it definitely would have come out wrong, and maybe it wouldn't have even come out at all. But he felt oddly guilty that she thought that he was brave when he wasn't. Everyone looked at you differently after you tried to kill yourself; they acted as if you were made of tissue paper, and the moment they said something even vaguely offensive you were going to dive off the tallest building available. Even years after, when people saw the scars, they became a little twitchy. But Hazel didn't seem to think that he was going to go back to his dorm room and try to hang himself with his sheets; she seemed to think that it was a once in-a-lifetime, clear cut, levelheaded decision that he'd made to liberate himself. Actually, it had been a desperate, messy, bloody, ugly catastrophe that featured Jackson doing a lot of crying and hesitating. Completely confusing and unclear and non-filmable. Maybe the worst thing was that he'd tried again and failed again...but there was no need to let that cat out of the bag. There were no physical marks left over from his confrontation with his homemade noose.

"Um...I...you've never hurt me. I...I really...can't imagine you hurting anyone, you're...really sweet," he continued. It was sort of ironic that she was afraid of hurting him when, at the same time, he was deathly afraid of hurting her; it was like they were mututally frozen in fear inches away from each other. He couldn't pretend to understand most of what she was talking about, but he could understand being socially awkward; maybe not to the extreme that Hazel was describing, but to an extent.

"I mean, it's...it's not like I'm exactly, well, functional. You don't have to...worry about being...you know, um, normal, or, or, about saying the right thing...because I really don't know what the right thing is." He smiled at her, a real smile; Jackson didn't smile at everyone. He'd hardly ever smiled at Charlotte in all the time that he'd lived with her, and sometimes even Kasey had to work to pry a smile out of him. He had a pretty good fake one nailed down, but it was fairly obvious that it was fake; this one was real. Jackson really hoped that her next words weren't going to be 'go away.' He'd come too far into this for that to be the outcome.
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