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JAIMIE MALACK
Posted: Jun 16 2012, 04:23 PM


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Joined: 28-November 11




Set a couple of weeks in the future,
In the mall.

It was ironic really, when she took a moment to think about it. Her entire adult life, thus far, had been spent trying to avoid living out the rest of her days in a prison cell but now all she seemed to do was move from one prison to the next. First there had been Sam’s club and now there was the mall. Admittedly, she’d traded up and this cell was a lot bigger than the last, but it was still a prison none the less. Jaimie was smart enough to know she couldn’t just up and leave, no matter how appealing the thought of getting away from a certain, overly smug FBI agent was. She needed a new plan, new people that she could convince to help her – though she doubted there were many in the mall who would want to help her after she had lied to the man who had brought her to the mall, a man who had only been trying to help her. It was a difficult predicament and while she figured it out, Jaimie had been trying to keep herself busy. Well, ok, perhaps busy was not exactly an appropriate word – busy made it sound like she was doing something helpful, when, really, she wasn’t. In fact, if there was a word for what she was doing, it was probably vandalism. Though she refused to think of it in such terms.

Yes, admittedly, painting a large version of Franz Marc’s Blue Horses on a storefront window with acrylics (not her first choice in paints, but the best she could find with minimal effort) probably didn’t class as a socially acceptable act, but then neither did wasting batteries loudly playing classical music. And then there was the champagne – another not to clever idea, but she’d had a rough couple of weeks and, as far as she was concerned, she had every right to have a drink. But all of that was neither here nor there, the very fact of the matter was that it helped her think and, despite how others viewed it or her, the faster she came up with a solution, the faster she would be out of the mall and hopefully Houston. It was all Parkers fault, the thought seemed stuck on repeat inside her head, things would have been so much easier if he had died. It wasn’t a very nice thought but, honestly, at that moment Jaimie wasn’t in a very nice mood.

Finishing her masterpiece, she put the brush and pallet down and took a seat, her back resting against a rather well placed pillar. Admiring her work, she decided that it made the little art shop she had chosen to live in look infinitely more appealing. Paint spattered hands were wiped clean on her jeans before reaching for the bottle again. It went against almost every fibre of her being to drink from the bottle but looking for champagne flutes that matched her particular expectations would have been too lengthy a process. The thought made her long for home – New York, that is – and the apartment that she had managed to keep their right under the noses of the FBI. Jaimie wasn’t quite ready to start contemplating the idea that she’d never see it again – she’d gone through far to much to get it, she couldn’t simply give it up so easily. But that all took her back to her original problem; getting out of the mall and living long enough to tell the tale. She lifted the bottle to her lips, taking a sip before setting the bottle back down again and glimpsing at her watch. It was only three thirty in the afternoon. “God, this place is boring.” She muttered to herself as the music changed to Vivaldi. She was going to lose her mind if she had to stay their much longer, that much was certain. At the sound of footsteps on the tiled floor, Jaimie let out a sigh, automatically assuming that Parker had come to harass her. “Go away, Parker. I don’t want to play today.

But, it wasn’t Parker, oh no, it was someone else entirely...

[[ I SUCK AT STARTING THREADS XDD ]]

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PIERCE O'DONNELL
Posted: Jun 17 2012, 10:07 PM


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Pierce didn't really like to venture into the real world terribly often-- meaning, the rest of the Mall. He was able to come and go from the Neiman Marcus at the end of the mall as he pleased due to the doors found at the end of the department store that lead into a barren and (mostly) zombieless parking lot. The man preferred to do most of his haggling and trading in town, with people he wasn't forced to "live" with. That was the problem living in the mall. People knew who he was. And while he and some acquaintances, perhaps even a friend or two, most wished Piece would shove off and die. And Pierce was fine with that, really he was-- it just made trading inside the mall difficult. And, well. Walking around in general.

But today, his feet itched to move and Pierce didn't have anything to trade so he found himself wandering the empty halls of the mall. Every once and a while he had this urge, this feeling... something inside that told him he had to move or run or something. Pierce didn't like the feeling-- it made him feel out of control and hinted at the many psychoses that his therapist had told him he had. But the only way to make the feeling go away was to give in for just a little bit, so Pierce pulled on his big boy pants, put on his dress-shoes and fashionable skinny, navy tie, and ventured out. Pierce shoved his hands in his slack's pockets, keeping a wary eye out for any passerby and sticking to the shadows for the same reason. But suddenly-- music, lilting and true, came wafting towards him. Pierce felt himself smile. The only music he heard was when he, himself, decided to sing. This was a nice change.

Like a bloodhound with a scent, the man felt himself tugged in the direction of the music. It echoed off of the crumbling walls, so it took him a while to find the source, but eventually he found himself near the source-- an art store. Pierce recognized the tune-- it was Vivaldi-- and he found himself oddly calmed. The tiger was tamed by the music. It was odd, considering the conversation he had had with Ghoul upon first meeting him regarding the pointlessness of music in a post-apocalyptic society. But this was-- nice.

“Go away, Parker. I don’t want to play today.”

Pierce cocked his head to one side, smiled, and stepped forward to reveal himself to an attractive blonde who was seated at the base of a pillar. He grinned at the site of her, all paint splattered and annoyed-- charm on full volume. "Vivaldi. Nice choice. A bit of class in a classless world-- I dig it." He strode languidly towards her, hitching one thumb through the button-hole of his suit vest. "And no. Not Parker. Name's Pierce." Like he owned the place, Pierce moved towards what looked like a freshly painted mural on the front window of the store. Huh. Interesting. Turning, he focused his baby blues back on the female. "Why don't you want to play, sweetheart? And why is this-- Parker-- so unlucky to have found himself in your bad graces?" Pierce leaned against a column opposite the female and looked down at her.

Well. This was a fun change of pace. The day was looking up.
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JAIMIE MALACK
Posted: Jun 18 2012, 10:28 AM


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No, Jaimie wasn’t in the mood to put up with Parker or his stupid shit-eating grin, she was enjoying her quiet time far too much to trade it for yet another argument with the other zealous FBI agent. But it wasn’t Parker, it was someone new and that piqued her curiosity somewhat – despite being spectacularly deceptive by nature, Jaimie had always enjoyed meeting new people, working out what made them tick and finding ways she could exploit them for her own benefit. Casually, her eyes scanned him from head to toe, taking in every little detail from the way he was dress to the way he held himself. Cold reading men had become specialty during the course of her adult life – before the end of the world it had been used to cheat wealthy and stupid men out of anything she wanted but now it was simply an act of survival. His clothes indicated that he either thought a lot about himself or he wanted people to think that he did. Suits always told a lot about a man, some would wear them to separate themselves, to look important, while others saw them as a uniform, a means to blend in. From the way this guy held himself, Jaimie was inclined to believe it was the former, if only because literally no one else was bothered about suiting-up anymore. There was a slight smile on her lips as she looked at him, eyes blinking twice, eyelashes fluttering.

Well, hello there, Pierce.” She responded as he introduced himself, deliberately keeping her own name to herself until he chose to ask for it. Eyes followed him as he moved, glancing at her work and coming to a stop, casually leaning against the adjacent pillar. A slight giggle left her lips as he asked who Parker was, biting slightly at her lower lip, Jaimie smiled again before answering. “Parker is many things – a lot of them being things that a lady really shouldn’t say in polite conversation – let’s just say he’s not much fun. And he's even less fun to talk about.” She gave shrug and a pout. Understatement of the year – spending time with Alec Parker was about as much fun as an evening at a wine and anthrax party. “What about you, Pierce?” Jaimie asked. “Are you any fun?” Her tone was playful as her head cocked to the side slightly, eyes narrowing on the man as if she was actually trying to work out if he was fun just by looking at him.

Eyes moved from the man too the bottle and back again, her smile widening becoming a little more devious, a little more dangerous. “Would you care to join me for a drink? It’s no Dom Perignon ’66 but it’s passable.” There was method and reason behind everything she said or did – he had mentioned class, giving the impression that it was something he cared about, so that was what she would show him. Despite living the first seventeen years of her life in a trailer in middle of no-where Nebraska, she had developed a taste for the finer things in life the moment she started to earn any real money. From then on her life had been fancy parties and the jet-set, all while avoiding capture and certain FBI agents. She gave Pierce another smile before lifting the bottle back to her lips, sending him another little silent lie. She wanted him to think that she was sad, lonely and helpless, she wanted him to think he was in control of the situation, that she was vulnerable. “I hate drinking alone, it’s so boring. Besides, you’re clearly a man with taste unlike most of the men around here – the fact that you even know who Vivaldi is puts you miles ahead of any of them.” Playing vulnerable check. Establishing common interests, check. Acting borderline flirtatious, work in progress.

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PIERCE O'DONNELL
Posted: Jun 18 2012, 11:30 AM


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“Parker is many things – a lot of them being things that a lady really shouldn’t say in polite conversation – let’s just say he’s not much fun. And he's even less fun to talk about.”

"So you're a lady-- good to know, good to know--" he murmured as he removed himself and placed his attention back on the mural on the window. She was giggling. Biting her lower lip (yes, he noticed that-- it was a move that Pierce found quite tantalizing in a woman), and he couldn't help but suddenly feel very pleased with himself. It had been ages since his looks and charm were able to just be and do. Not to mention most women that said looks and charm had any effect on were dirty, drunk, and disease-ridden. This woman looked none of the above and that was pleasant. Pierce rubbed his chin idly, stubble scratching the pads of his fingers. Still at the painting, Pierce spoke over his shoulder. "Spurned lover, I assume. But-- who did the spurning?" he asked, almost to himself. Pierce knew the story. Besides, if he had a dollar for how many women out there considered him a spurned lover-- well-- he'd be. Um. Richer than he already was. Or used to be.

“What about you, Pierce?” Jaimie asked. “Are you any fun?”

Pierce's brows lofted into his hairline momentarily in pleasant surprise before returning to Earth as he quickly composed himself. My. She was sassy. This was enjoyable. Pierce spun around on one heel, placed his hands firmly in his pants pockets, and shrugged his broad shoulders, smiling. "Oh, I've been called 'fun' on more than one occasion--" He took a few steps towards the blonde, paused, and continued again, "-- among many, many other things." He let himself peer down at the girl, trying to figure out what she was about. Jeans. Watch on the wrist. And-- oh, a bottle of champagne. Spurned lover indeed. Nailed it. The man strolled around the pillar and found himself standing behind, and directly above the woman.

“Would you care to join me for a drink? It’s no Dom Perignon ’66 but it’s passable.”

He saw that smile. That smile she gave him. That smile, that made his baby-blues, for just a moment, turn steely gray. Pierce wasn't a cruel man, but he really had no predilection for committed relationships and just, for lack of a better term, fucking? It kept the demons out. It was numbing. Shit therapists told him so and all. This woman was sending him all the signs, but-- wait. Eyes clear again, he gazed down at the bottle. Some Jack would have been more his style, but-- she knew Dom Perignon? She knew Vivaldi? And she knew how to paint? This girl was good. Very good. Very... very good. It suddenly piqued his curiosity that this wasn't maybe just another hook, line, and sinker, but something else. But-- alas, the lure of the female sex was something he couldn't do much about. "I have very few rules in my life. But one of them, in fact, is never turn down a free drink." With a crooked grin, he knelt next to her and planted his bum on the floor, leaned back on his hands, and stretched his legs out in front of him, one crossed over the other.

“I hate drinking alone, it’s so boring. Besides, you’re clearly a man with taste unlike most of the men around here – the fact that you even know who Vivaldi is puts you miles ahead of any of them.”

"Well. I consider myself lucky, then--" he said with a smile. Cocking his own head to the side, he appraised the woman for a moment before deciding to change tactics. He motioned to the painting. "You paint. It's good." He rubbed his chin again-- a habit, it seems. "Looks familiar--" Pierce added idly. Pierce wasn't so much one for painting-- he liked music, theatre, the more visceral, I can experience you live sort of art. But he was still cultured and he knew he had seen something like this before-- which was interesting. It meant something, but he didn't know what. "So you're an artist? Was that your thing before-- well, this?" He asked, referencing the shit they sat in. It was her time to share a bit. Warm her up, make sure she wasn't bat-shit crazy, finish the bottle, and get to knockin' boots. Hopefully.
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JAIMIE MALACK
Posted: Jun 20 2012, 03:51 PM


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There were many reasons why, despite not particularly trusting them on any level at all, Jaimie found men more agreeable than women. Sometimes it was simply an issue of using her assets to her advantage but, mostly, it was because she found they were easier to suss out. Their urges and instincts were usually clearer – though she imagined males of her particular profession were likewise inclined towards women for similar reasons. There was also the tiny part of her that liked the game, enjoyed the flirting, safe in the knowledge that it was only to get what she wanted and, when things started to get too complicated, she could just cut and run. She couldn’t be in a relationship, she couldn’t even stand the idea of a man so much as touching her unless she was certain it would serve some purpose, that she would get something from it. What Pierce had that she could possibly want, Jaimie didn’t yet know, first she needed to get to know who he was before she could decide what she wanted from him. So she played the part of the overly friendly blonde, her comments borderline flirtatious though not quite completely throwing herself at him. All things considered, he wasn’t bad looking, which made things infinitely easier, and even she had to admit he had style and in this day and age, that counted for a lot.

Still, she’d never been the sort to go giddy or weak at the knees just because a pretty man deigned to talk to her. Another laugh left her lips as he asked if Parker was a spurned lover. Oh, if only he knew how funny that was – but she wouldn’t do to explain it to him, no, that would involve revealing who, or rather what, she was. And, as friendly as he seemed the moment she batted her eyelashes at him, Jaimie sincerely doubted he’d be as interested in her if he knew she was a con artist. He was still looking at her painting and that gave her a slightly better idea of him. She could tell a lot about a person based on the way they responded to art – whether that was from the artist in her or the con woman, she didn’t quite know. Possibly a bit of both. While forging painting sometimes paid the bills, her art was one of the few things she allowed herself to truly care about. “Some men don’t know how to take no for an answer – just because you enjoy their company some of the time, doesn’t mean you want to be around them all of the time.” She responded with a shrug, adding a slight hint of frustration to the persona she was rapidly building. His question remained unanswered, leaving him to jump to whichever conclusion made him happiest.

Her next question was designed to give him pause, it was both a challenge and a test of his character and he really didn’t disappoint. The smile on her lips grew and an eyebrow rose slightly as he replied. “Oh my, that sounds rather scandalous.” Her smile quickly became a grin. Jaimie craned her neck slightly, to look at him now standing behind her. In that moment it seemed to her that Pierce was just as interested in sussing her out as she was him. It didn’t bother her in the slightest, truth be told she was wrapped in so many layers of bullshit, it would take him a whole year and an industrial digger before he even started to scratch the surface. She offered him a drink in the hopes of securing his attention long enough for her to decide if he could be of any use to her, a devious smile playing across her lips as she did. He seemed to pause for a moment before lowering himself to join her on the tiled floor. “I’ll drink to that.” Jaimie replied, taking another sip from the bottle and offering it to Pierce. “I didn’t bring any glasses, I hope you don’t mind slumming it with me for a while?” He could take what he wanted from that.

The conversation moved on and Pierce seemed to want to take control for the moment, so she let him – after all, he seemed like the sort of man who liked to do things on his terms. “Thank you.” She responded when he complimented the painting. The first genuine thing she had said to him since he first appeared. “It’s a copy of one of Franz Marc’s Blue Horse pieces.” She told him, still smiling. “I guess you could say I dabbled before this all happened. I studied art in college but, well, it’s not like there’s a lot of money in it.” Jaimie gave a shrug. “I owned a couple of galleries, one in New York and another in Chicago, I was actually in Houston to sign the paperwork to buy a third but, well, end of the world and I get stuck here of all places.” Crossing her legs, she propped her chin with a hand while her elbow rested on a knee, eyes narrowing on the man for a moment before asking; “What about you, Pierce, what did you used to be – no, wait! Let me guess!” That devious smile was back and, again, she bit her lower lip – not a lot, but just enough. “Teacher? No, wait, you’re too, uh,” dramatic pause for effect and a not so casual breaking of eye contact before she let out a slight huff of laughter before shaking her head and narrowing her eyes on him again “you don’t look like a teacher. An agent maybe, not sports but maybe actors? No, I give. You’ll have to tell me.” And now he was the focus of the conversation again.

[[ This seems to have gotten a little on the long side, don't feel like you have to try and match xD ]]


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PIERCE O'DONNELL
Posted: Jun 22 2012, 12:47 PM


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“Some men don’t know how to take no for an answer – just because you enjoy their company some of the time, doesn’t mean you want to be around them all of the time.”

"I hear you there--" Pierce murmured. That was the story of his life. No connections, no relationships. He tried, once in his life. Oh, he tried. But after a string of failed girlfriends and the sudden realization that the woman he looked up to the most-- his mother, for fuck's sake-- had been cheating on his father for all the years they had been married? Well. Fuck that, was his motto. There wasn't anything good in a long term thing. Marriage wasn't about love. It was just a promise that you wouldn't screw over your lover-- or screw someone else, for that matter. And that wasn't even true anymore. No promises kept. All lies. So what was the fucking point? Fuck that. Fuck all of it. Yeah, it made some nights lonely-- but-- and Pierce would vouch for this-- it made those unlonely nights that much more sweet.

“Oh my, that sounds rather scandalous.”

Pierce grinned in her direction. "Bingo, blondie. I'm nothing but lecherous fool with exquisite taste in music--" he noted, canting his head at the Vivaldi. "-- and food. And wine. Sometimes art. Sometimes women." He feigned interest in the painting before him in order to let his sideways comment land. It could be seen as an insult. But in this woman's case, Pierce was more than sure she'd take it as a compliment. Besides, he was sitting on the ground. The ground was dirty. Pierce didn't do dirty. But for free alcohol and the promise of some play, he'd do more then sit on the ground... he's done much more. He jilted his feet in time to the music, appreciating the sudden reprieve from all the zombies, guns, blood-- that sort of thing. This game-- he'd play it out. Cat and mouse was so much fun.

“I’ll drink to that.”

"Chin chin."

“I didn’t bring any glasses, I hope you don’t mind slumming it with me for a while?”

"Slumming? With you?" Pierce took ahold of the bottle-- lukewarm, pity-- and tipped it in her direction as a way of thanks. "Never." He took a swig and savored the dry taste of it. Pierce couldn't remember the last time he had champagne-- as aforementioned, he stuck to the hard stuff that fell generally in the Bourbon or Armagnac persuasion-- but this. This made him grin. Because it was bringing back memories of before. And when Pierce partook in champagne. And with whom. Champagne was a woman's drink. And Champagne was what Pierce would buy the women he would invite back to his place, or his hotel room-- or wherever it was he met his conquests. He couldn't help but smiling-- taste (And smell) were some of the most powerful tools to force one to relapse into memory-- and his memories were good.

“It’s a copy of one of Franz Marc’s Blue Horse pieces.”

Pierce nodded, the name striking a thought. "German. Expressionist? Right." He peered back at the painting. It was a very good copy. Interesting.

“I guess you could say I dabbled before this all happened. I studied art in college but, well, it’s not like there’s a lot of money in it [...] I owned a couple of galleries, one in New York and another in Chicago, I was actually in Houston to sign the paperwork to buy a third but, well, end of the world and I get stuck here of all places.”

Pierce watched her speak. For a moment, he mused, appreciating her openness and her story. But something still felt-- perhaps it was her name. Pierce realized she had danced around most topics with ease and grace, but still hadn't told him her name. In Pierce's experiences, this meant something-- prostitutes didn't give names often (yes, yes. He hired hookers. Was it really so much of a surprise?). The other thing Pierce's mind flitted to-- and not to say this had anything to do with the woman in front of him-- but confidential informants. Pierce had had many confidential informants in his day as a lawyer-- that's the sort of thing you had to get yourself into if you wanted to be good at your job. If you wanted wins by any means possible. Many of his confidential informants either had aliases, or simply didn't give up a name-- because they were criminals. They wanted to keep a low profile. Brain working on overdrive, he took a swig of the champagne and turned back to the blonde. Yes. He was sussing her out. It was what he had been paid to do, and it was what he was good at. But she was still a nice piece of ass-- so he grinned. "You owned galleries? Very nice." He handed the bottle back to her. "In New York you say? I had an apartment there, in Manhattan. What was your gallery called? I might have been." Subtly and flattery went far in his books.

“What about you, Pierce, what did you used to be – no, wait! Let me guess! [...] Teacher? No, wait, you’re too, uh [...] you don’t look like a teacher. An agent maybe, not sports but maybe actors? No, I give. You’ll have to tell me."

Pierce watched her struggle, watched her bite her lip, watched her laugh, entranced. About to open his mouth and tell her the truth, he hesitated-- no. He was playing a hunch. This was poker, and he felt like he held two aces. The upper hand. He leaned forward for dramatic effect and placed his face very, very, oh-so-tantalizingly close to hers, a breath-whisper away."If I told you-- I'd have to kill you. Drugs. Thievery. Espionage. You name it." He watched her face, looking for a reaction, his own set in a seductive smile. Lying for sake of lying was fun sometimes... besides, this woman seemed like a steel fortress-- and she kept biting her lip. He wanted to bite that lip.
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JAIMIE MALACK
Posted: Jun 24 2012, 04:20 AM


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First appearance were everything – that first moment of acquaintance was usually the first and only flash of honest a person would give you before they started to put up the walls and become the person that they thought people wanted them to be rather than expose who they really were. Pierce seemed, well, actually he seemed a lot like Jaimie – guarded from the off – but that didn’t make her want to trust him anymore than she’d allow herself to trust anyone else. She watched his back, looking him up and down, still trying to determine if he cold be of any use to her. He didn’t look like a zombie-slaying bad ass and she hadn’t really seen him around any of the other inhabitants of the mall so, pretty quickly, she came to the conclusion that there probably wasn’t anyway he could help her. So then, why was se even doing it, why go through the effort of being friendly and nice? Lately she’d found herself, uncharacteristically, asking questions like this and, as of yet, she hadn’t really been able to come up with anything even close to an answer. Why play along with him, why act the part of little miss lonely drunk (the most pathetic of all the Little Miss characters)? Because she enjoyed the game and because, on some shallow and pathetic level, she was bored and lonely. She wanted a distraction, attention, company – in short everything Pierce seeming willing and able to give. Jaimie wanted a new toy, someone who didn’t yet know what she had done or what she was capable of – she wanted an afternoon of being anyone but herself.

At age seventeen she had changed her name, created a new identity for herself and with very good reason. Not only had she accidentally killed her abusive father, she had also grown tired of the person she was – a doormat, a timid little punch bag. So she became someone else, she became Jaimie Malack, a woman who demanded respect an could command the attention of any and all she met. But, over the years, she had even started to grow weary of this persona. That was the one good thing about the world coming to an end – she could change again. Jaimie could tell people that she was whoever she wanted to be and there were few who could contradict her. Unfortunately, in coming to the mall she had managed to pick the one place where there was someone left living who knew almost everything. Parker. Pierce agreed with her sentiments, though they were mostly founded in lie. It was good to know, if nothing else, that it was highly unlikely that this man would form any particular attachment to her. He grinned at her next question and for a moment she let herself believe that perhaps she had found a kindred spirit, though the idea was quickly dismissed – there was scandal and then there was what she did. “Well, at least you have the decency to be honest about it.” She gave a definite nod and a laugh. “Besides, what more does a person need in life? Art, food wine, music and... well, not women in my case – unless you want to count that one semester during my first year of college...” Another sneaky little smile there, just for added effect.

The words ‘never turn down a free drink’ echoed in her mind for a moment while she pondered what he meant by it. Was it simply some innocuous comment, or was it hinting at something deeper? Having grown up living in a small trailer with a drunk, Jaimie was always somewhat wary of men who seemed overly fond of alcohol. But, still she remained nothing but smiles and politeness as she lifted the bottle to her lips and took a drink before passing it to him. There was smile on his face that she couldn’t quite decipher – something that, usually, might make her cautious, nervous even, but she forced the feeling to the back of her mind, a part of her no longer really caring of became of her. This train of thought was, more of less forgotten as he revealed that he knew who Franz Marc was. Honestly, in that moment, she was torn between feeling shocked and happy – it had been a very long time since she’d spoken to anyone who knew anything at all about art. Yes, she quickly decided, Pierce would make for a very good new toy. “Very good.” She said, giving him a pointed look before taking another drink and offering the bottle back to him.

Next came the usual line of questioning, the ‘who were you before all this’ talk. This was the part she love the most, it was the part she got to concoct a whole back story for whatever character she was playing. At Sam’s Club she had chosen art teacher, as it had given her some emotional leverage over certain people. But this time she wanted something fun, something more free spirited and sexy. Gallery owner. “La Galerie D’Art, in Brooklyn.” Jaimie quickly answered. She’d used said gallery as a cover before and had even fenced a few stole Hockney’s through it. It was small and not particularly well known which made it perfect for such a scam. “It’s only little – well, was. You lived in Manhattan?” Oh Manhattan, one of her favourite places in all the world. “I had an apartment on the upper east side – not that I got to stay there much.” Oddly enough, this fact was true, though there was no paperwork in existence anywhere that would prove it – though really, that was the problem with trying to live your life under the FBI’s radar. “Pity, really, that we both got stuck in Houston of all places...” And then it was his turn to answer some similar questions, though instead of giving her a straight answer he adopted a much more playful approach.

Jaimie gave him a playful shove on the shoulder. “No fair!” She laughed. “If I’d known you were going to turn out to be some sort of James Bond-esque secret agent, I’d have come up with a sexy alter-ego with a crude sex-pun name rather than being little old boring me.” He was smiling and, again, she had to admit he wasn’t half bad to look at. Oh yes, this was definitely going to be fun.

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PIERCE O'DONNELL
Posted: Jun 24 2012, 12:51 PM


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“Well, at least you have the decency to be honest about it.” She gave a definite nod and a laugh. “Besides, what more does a person need in life? Art, food wine, music and... well, not women in my case – unless you want to count that one semester during my first year of college...”

Pierce retrieved the bottle from her outstretched hand and took another swig. He desperately wanted to feel the buzz the champagne's taste promised, but the sweet alcohol would unlikely give him anything more then a want for more. He wasn't an alcoholic, per se-- because being an alcoholic meant he had some sort of dependency to the stuff, right? Pierce wasn't an addict to alcohol, as so much an addict to anything that kept him from feeling... well, feeling anything. The booze, the women, the occasional drug trip-- it was all a very cleverly calculated game he played with himself. But who would win the game?-- it wasn't an answer Pierce had. He took a swill of the champagne and grinned at her, eyes sparkling. "Oh, so you were one of those coeds..." he murmured, chuckling. The comment was paired with a particularly naughty image that Pierce was unable to shake from his mind's eye. Not that he really wanted to, for that matter.

“Very good.”

"Why, thank you."

“La Galerie D’Art, in Brooklyn.” Pierce had never heard of it, so he merely nodded. “It’s only little – well, was. You lived in Manhattan? [...] I had an apartment on the upper east side – not that I got to stay there much.”

Pierce shook his head as he passed her the bottle. "No, I didn't live there. But I did a lot of business in New York, and what can I say? I liked having a place I could escape to." Pierce had, for quite some time before Z-Day, pictured himself moving to New York to his rather swanky loft in Manhattan. Houston was alright, but there was something about the energy of New York City, the nitty gritty almost underworldly aspect that appealed to him. You could do anything in New York, and the next day, who would know? The vastness appealed to him, and besides-- he was the best at his offices in Houston. Lord knows what corporate in New York would have done to get their hands on him. "Fuck knows what the state of it is now, though--" he murmured as an afterthought. He didn't like the thought of vagrants using his loft as a home. Pierce wondered if he'd ever get back.

“Pity, really, that we both got stuck in Houston of all places...”

"Yes, well-- this place has its' days--" he said, winking in her general direction (who said subtly was the best policy)?

“No fair!” She laughed. “If I’d known you were going to turn out to be some sort of James Bond-esque secret agent, I’d have come up with a sexy alter-ego with a crude sex-pun name rather than being little old boring me.”

Pierce laughed as she shoved him backwards, the physical contact all he needed to continue his conquest-- she had placed hands on him first, and that was enough of a signal to him to move forward. He leaned up, still reclining on his elbows. "Boring? Not on your worst day," he said lowly, smiling all the way. "You paint..." He slowly began to sit up, "You know your music..." He slowly closed the space between them, "You drink champagne from the bottle..." Pierce was close again, close enough to touch her, close enough to kiss her, "And you are very, very beautiful. Boring?" He shook his head, lips forming a crooked grin. Lifting his right hand, he moved to softly touch a tendril of her blonde hair, very softly, almost feather-like-- would she run? Pierce didn't think she would. He had his charm turned on max and his libido was off the charts-- this one was in the bag. "Never boring, And I don't even know your name." he murmured again.
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JAIMIE MALACK
Posted: Jun 25 2012, 09:51 AM


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Had she the ability, she might have blushed but nothing really embarrassed her anymore – at least not anything she was likely to encounter in her day to day existence. Instead she took the other route, a playful grin and raised eyebrows. “What can I say, my high school boyfriend kind of put me off men for a little while.” Jaimie shrugged, still grinning. “Anyway, when you’re a kid you’re meant to fool around and experiment, right?” Honestly, she wasn’t expecting a response, at least not a vocal one – she was simply trying to build the character, to give him the impression that she was a particular sort of person. “And I’ve always had a thing for dark hair.” Now she was just teasing the poor man. The conversation continued moving through what she did- the lie given was quick and easy, something she had used many times before. Talking about New York, though, was actually slightly more painful than she imagined it would be, despite half of what she was saying being purely fictitious. She loved the city almost as much as she loved Paris – though that was yet another painful memory for her. Jaimie loved big cities, places where she could be anyone she wanted to be. Taking the bottle back from him, she took another drink. “Business?” She repeated his choice of words, still trying to figure out exactly what it was the man used to do. He gave her a wink and she knew she was really starting to get to him. “You’re the first remotely interesting person I’ve met in Houston.” She said with a shrug. When she finally asked him what he did, the answer given was less than helpful. But she took it in her stride, deciding that her little game wouldn’t be quite so fun if he made things easy on her. So she shoved him, taking her playfulness to the next level, her words intended to draw compliments from Pierce and they didn’t fail.

She knew exactly what he wanted, she’d seen that look a thousand times from all sorts of men the world over. But, while Jaimie was still struggling with what she wanted, she was pretty certain it wasn’t that. Sex for her was the ultimate power play, something to be kept in reserve for when it was needed – it wasn’t something she tended to engage in light-heartedly. There had to be a reason, a damned good one at that, for her to let anyone get that close and put her in such a compromising position – she needed to either know she was in complete control or be able to trust the other person completely. The latter was entirely out of the question and the former, well, she wasn’t quite sure about that one yet either. But still, he was handsome and she was lonely. Her eyes seemed drawn to his lips, her own bottom lip caught between her teeth again. Jaimie shifted, moving herself ever so slightly closer to him, finally noticing something she wanted from him – the gun in the back of his pants. Yes, she could do with a gun of her own. “Flattery will get you everywhere.” She replied in little more than a whisper, but didn’t move. No, if he wanted that kiss, he’d have to claim it himself. A hand moved towards her and fear told her to move, but she didn’t – he wasn’t going to hurt her. No, he just wanted to fuck her. Had she been an average woman, the move would have sealed the deal, would have made her swoon and fall forward to meet his lips. But she wasn’t average, not in the slightest, she was playing him just as much as he was trying to play her, the only difference was that she knew exactly what was going on.

Finally he brought up the fact that he still didn’t know her name – how chivalrous, he wanted to know who she was before trying to get in her pants. Of course, she would oblige him, give him a name, now that she had a purpose, a reason to continue this little game. “It’s Lily.” She spoke almost breathlessly, eyes locked on his in an attempt to give just the right signal. Jaimie moved slightly, bracing herself against the tiled floor with an arm that casually inched behind his back. She was going to get that gun but, first, she might as well have a little fun. “So, Pierce, how are you enjoying slumming it with me so far?

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PIERCE O'DONNELL
Posted: Jun 25 2012, 02:37 PM


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“What can I say, my high school boyfriend kind of put me off men for a little while.”

Blah blah teenage heartbreak. Pierce didn't say anything-- he didn't have anything to say on that subject.

“Anyway, when you’re a kid you’re meant to fool around and experiment, right?”

Pierce grinned. That was true. If it wasn't for the fact that he was very smart, Pierce would have fucked up his college career just like your everyday Frat Bro. He partied, did drugs, had a different girl every weekend-- but he still managed to go to his classes. And even when he didn't, he still pulled straight As. The only class he got a B+ in was a Yoga class he took, merely so he could look at the girls in their tight outfits. He got deducted points for distracting fellow classmates-- and by distracting, Pierce meant flirting. But it's not like getting a B+ in Yoga meant anything in the long run. Even though he did buckle down a bit in grad school, he still fucked around. It was just what he did. Especially after his parents split up and he had nothing better to do.

“And I’ve always had a thing for dark hair.”

"What a coincidence. I've always had a thing for blondes." And redheads. And brunettes.

“Flattery will get you everywhere.”

"I do my best.

“It’s Lily [...] So, Pierce, how are you enjoying slumming it with me so far?”

The woman drew closer, her arm crossing over and behind his body. Biting her lip. Locking her eyes with his. And she didn't recoil when he reached out his hand. Pierce's blue eyes darkened, as they had done earlier, as he realized that the two of them were, in fact, on the same page (whether she was pretending or not was not even the faintest thought in his mind). "... we're just getting started," he murmured, and moved to close the distance between them. The hand that was on her hair traveled to the back of her head, fingers curling in the locks there as he pressed his lips against hers. It wasn't a passionate kiss-- it was a desperate, hungry one. Not that Jaimie (or Lily, for that matter) would be able to tell, but Pierce's actions were, as aforementioned, out of the need to keep moving, keep pushing, keep on keeping on. If he was still for too long, all the doubts and thoughts and sadness crept in and Pierce couldn't stand that.

Pierce pushed back on the woman, attempting to maneuver her back against the column she had been leaning against. His sitting position was a bit awkward, so he shifted his weight onto one hip as he rotate himself toward her. A possessive tongue would attempt to claim her mouth if she allowed it-- it was clear Pierce had no intention of taking things slow. This wasn't romantic. This wasn't healthy. It was only about the numbing. He forgot about where he was, what he was wearing even-- for god's sake-- who he was with. She was a body beneath his. He didn't really need to know her name.

And that was it.



[[ooc: excuse the bit of godmodding. i'd assume you'd be okay with it. SO FUCKED UP. ><]]
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JAIMIE MALACK
Posted: Jun 25 2012, 05:29 PM


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The moment he kissed her, she couldn’t help but feel anything but abject terror. The force behind the movement, the roughness, the urgency made her want to bolt. It took every ounce of self-restraint to reciprocate rather than pull away and flee. In her head there were a thousand voices screaming, half a dozen comparisons between this moment and the moments leading up to her fathers death – it was the same every time. Her heart pounded in her chest, a fast and steady beat of absolute panic. She had done this before, she reminded herself, she had overcome this fear before in order to get what she wanted and, in that moment, what she wanted was the gun. It would all be worth it in the end. It wouldn’t go to far. He wouldn’t be allowed to hurt her. Jaimie kept up the part she was playing, her face a perfect mask to match the character, while inside everything was going crazy. Then he was moving her, silently fighting to take control of the situation. She needed to get the gun quickly but couldn’t be too obvious, she couldn’t risk him figuring it out while she was still so close to him. Her hands pulled at his shirt, un-tucking it from his pants and, for a moment she allowed her hands to slide up his back.

Her lips parted slightly, continuing the kiss despite any and all panic in her mind. She needed to keep him occupied and to do that, she needed him to think he was getting exactly what he wanted from her – though at that point, regardless of how handsome he was, there was nothing more grotesque than the idea of his tongue in her mouth. Jaimie moved her hands to the front of his pants, first tugging slightly at the waistband before pulling at the button. Realistically, getting his pants undone was the best way of getting the gun without him noticing but it made everything else a little more dangerous, it meant that there was a lot less between them and that he was a lot closer to his goal and she just couldn’t allow that. Once she’d managed to get his pants undone came the difficult decision – to go for the gun then, or to wait it out and hope that he would move to a slightly better position. No, she quickly decided, the only position he wanted to be in was one that had her pinned to the ground and absolutely helpless.

With some small effort she moved her lips from his, shifting slightly as she did. A hand moved to his cheek, fingers playing in the mess of hair just above his ear while her lips moved to his neck. From over his shoulder she could see the gun, the prize, her reason for enduring this. Her free hand ran under his shirt again, mouth then moving to his ear. “You are fun.” Jaimie muttered, lips gently brushing against his earlobe as she spoke. The hand in his shirt travelled down his back slowly, fingernails tracing his spine as they went. She returned her lips to his kissing him with as much vigour as he had shown previously. In that moment she pulled the gun from his pants, let the kiss continue for a moment while she slowly lifted the gun, and pressed it to the side of his head. Breaking the kiss, the devious grin returned to her lips. “Easy tiger, I wouldn’t want anything to go off prematurely.” Shifting slightly she began to edge away from him cautiously. “I’m sorry about this, really I am. But I think it’d be best if we saw other people. This is a nice gun though, I think I’ll keep it as payment for you sticking your tongue I my mouth.” She continued to inch away, keeping the gun levelled at him – fortunately for her, he had no idea that she had very little experience with guns. “I’d say we should do this again, but I doubt you have anything else I want.” The smile was still on her face, though, really, she was getting very little enjoyment from any of this. “Now, I suggest you do your pants up and disappear back under whatever rock you crawled out from.

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PIERCE O'DONNELL
Posted: Jun 25 2012, 06:15 PM


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Pierce leaned into the kiss as suddenly the blonde began to suddenly take control of the situation. He liked that. Her hands on his back caused a low moan to rumble in the back of his throat and both hands raised to twist in her hair, in and around. One drifted low and wrapped around her small waist, the feel of her body beneath her clothing oddly erotic. This was what he needed. This, right here. Pierce lived in these moments, these moments were the ones when he truly felt alive. It was sad, it was sordid, but it was the truth. Suddenly her hands were on his waistband and he he had to stifle a gasp as he pulled away for a moment, glancing downwards and back at her face before moving in to claim her mouth again, desperate and needing. Lily, however, had abandoned his pants (damnit) and was now moving her hands back up under his shirt. He let her pull away as her lips trailed over his neck and to his ear.

“You are fun.”

Pierce moaned again quietly at the tickle of her breath on his ear, eyes slipping closed. 'Oh, you have no idea--" he growled, and as she moved to his lips again, he returned her kiss with equal vigor. This time, he allowed his hand to slip down the outside of her shirt and up the underside, feeling her smooth skin, eager fingers searching for a bra-clasp. he was completely and utterly sinking away into Lily. Pierce no longer existed. He was just another body in the world-- no problems, no troubles. Just facehairmouthtongue. Lily's hands slipped down his back, lower, lower-- and suddenly there was something cool being pressed against his temple. Pierce's eyes flickered open and shot to the side-- what the--

“Easy tiger, I wouldn’t want anything to go off prematurely.”

"That's-- that's my gun," mumbled Pierce hoarsely, the sudden shift in the situation making him dizzy.

“I’m sorry about this, really I am. But I think it’d be best if we saw other people. This is a nice gun though, I think I’ll keep it as payment for you sticking your tongue in my mouth.”

Pierce's gaze remained darkened-- this time, thought, from sheer and utter rage. He began to realize what had just happened. How she had tricked him. Why this whole fucking thing, all along, had felt too perfect. Felt too easy. "That's my fucking gun," he stated again, this time, more venom in his words. He was still reeling. Lily was edging away from him, leveling the gun-- HIS gun-- directly at him. Pierce's lip curled upwards in a snarl-- he was pissed. Really, really pissed. Pierce didn't like being tricked, didn't like being made a fool, and he really didn't like any sort of situation where his vices made him look like a jackass. So yeah. This sucked dick.

“I’d say we should do this again, but I doubt you have anything else I want [...] Now, I suggest you do your pants up and disappear back under whatever rock you crawled out from.”

Despite every fiber in his being urging him not to obey her, he had no choice. Backing away and stumbling to his feet, he tugged up his pants and quickly buttoned them up, his shirt tails hanging haphazardly. "You bitch," he muttered under his breath as he awkwardly stood away from her. "You fucking bitch. You steal my gun? My fucking gun? I wasn't trying to hurt you! Jesus Christ," Pierce ran a hand through his thick mop of brown waves, trying to catch his breath. It was really hard to go from really aroused to super pissed in, like, three seconds flat. This was the side that people rarely saw-- the angry Pierce. The Pierce that people saw in cross-examination in the court room. The cutthroat, I'm-going-to-have-your-ass Pierce. "You fucking offered me champagne, and you steal my fucking gun. Nice. Really nice." He winged her a dirty glance and added "And I'll go back under my rock when and only when you do the same."

The gun still pointed at him, Pierce stood there, seething. He couldn't leave without his gun. He wouldn't. But he also knew he couldn't just run at her-- she'd shoot him. Probably. His eyes scanned his surroundings, looking for a way to get the upper hand on this-- this bitch. Suddenly, he was staring at the painting again. That giant, blue painting. Without a second thought, Pierce reached down, grabbed he bottle of champagne at his feet, and strode quickly to the window, pouring the champagne out over the tile as he went. There, he stood next to the window and the CD player at his feet. In one swift movement, he threw the bottle at the ground angrily where it shattered into a million tiny pieces. Glancing upwards, he held his arms out wide. "So. You have my gun. Fucking peachy. So tell me, Lily. What do you want me to break first? Your CD player or your window?" He laughed-- a mirthless, angry thing-- and shrugged. "I don't really give a fuck either way! Unless you give me my FUCKING GUN BACK."



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JAIMIE MALACK
Posted: Jun 26 2012, 06:16 AM


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No one would be able to tell it from looking at her, but her default setting was always somewhere between anxious and terrified. It went with the territory – what she did to people, sometimes it wasn’t nice and it wasn’t fair and, sometimes, people weren’t to happy about it. And now this situation was becoming eerily familiar, just like a afternoon with her not-so-dearly departed father. Rage and anger in others were not something she dealt with well – usually her schemes were more subtle and no one knew they’d been had until she was a very long way away. But this situation hadn’t allowed for that. Had he been after anything other than sex, Jaimie might have allowed herself to play along and let him leave thinking he’d gotten exactly what he wanted from her before realising that she’d taken the gun. That was how a good con was supposed to work, the mark was meant to leave thinking they’d won. But now this was less of a con and more an out and out robbery and she didn’t like that. Not only did this lack finesse and style – and she really hated that, her cons were as much of an artistic act as her painting on the window – it had also pissed off the mark while he was still near enough to try and do something about it.

She was backing away slowly, but she could already tell from the look in his eyes that he was far from impressed. In that moment there was a voice in her head, not his and certainly not hers, telling her that it had been a dumb move. Annoyingly, that voice belonged to Alec Parker and only made the situation a thousand times worse. With each word he uttered, Pierce sounded more annoyed, more pissed off and more likely to do something awful to her the moment he got the chance. Jaimie’s mind was still running comparisons between him and her father, which didn’t help matters for either of them. She was scared though she’d never show it and she knew that, if she had to, she would kill him – though, honestly, she didn’t want it to come to that. As much as her skin still crawled from his touch, she knew that was just as much her as it was him and, despite whatever the hundred voices in her head had been screaming at her, he hadn’t shown any indication of wanting to hurt her. Climbing to her feet, the gun was kept trained on him as he did likewise.

Wow, someone’s a sore loser.” The words left her lips before she had the chance to check herself – she’d always had that problem in these sorts of situations, saying the first unhelpful thing to come to mind. This wasn’t a game and it was stupid to think of it as one, but to her it was slightly better than the alternative. The alternative meant admitting that she was everything she had been told she was an more – life was a game and winning meant survival. “This is my rock.” She countered with a slight wave of the gun. “Go find your own.” Had she planned any of this in advance, the very first thing she would have changed was the location, having always been a firm believer in that old adage about shitting where you eat. But this hadn’t been planned and that, in and of itself, should have caused alarm bells to start ringing. She used to be so meticulous, so cautious but now it seemed she was stupidly taking each and every risk that came her way. Whether it was her base need to survive taking over or the fact that, on some level, she wanted to push her luck, knowing that she deserved anything awful that might happen to her, she didn’t know.

He moved and her eyes followed him, along with the gun, as he picked up the bottle and started to move towards the window – her window, leading to her home. Then he spoke, throwing down an ultimatum. “No!” The gasped word left her lips before she had time to check herself. In the grand scheme of things, neither the painting nor the CD player mattered, she knew that, but still she didn’t want to see either destroyed. Clearing her throat, Jaimie took a few very cautious steps towards him, though still kept her distance. “Look, I need this gun. People round here don’t trust me – and yes, before you say anything, it is obvious why.” God, was she really going to try to reason with him? What the fuck was wrong with her? Stupid question. Jaimie knew exactly what was wrong – she was slowly, but surely, starting to crack and this certainly hadn’t helped. “You can get another. I can’t.” No, if she went about trying to get a gun through normal channels she risked Parker finding out and sticking his nose even further into her business. “Look,” she started again, tone indicating that she was already getting tired of this entire situation, “you’ve got a choice, you can either man up and walk away from this with a shred of dignity intact or you can kick and scream like a bratty little kid.” She gave a shrug, though silently decided she would much prefer he took the former option.

You got played, deal with it. Smashing things and throwing a hissy-fit isn’t going to get you anywhere.” Irony being, that was usually her way of dealing when things didn’t quite go her way. “I’m sure with all your... charms,” use of that particular word quickly reminded her of just where he’d had his tongue only a few minutes before, “you’ll be able to find yourself a nice new gun.

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PIERCE O'DONNELL
Posted: Jun 30 2012, 09:16 PM


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“Wow, someone’s a sore loser.”

"I don't lose," countered Pierce. "I merely bide my time until the other person makes a mistake." Every word, every syllable dripped with disdain. It wasn't so much that she had made a fool of him-- despite the fact that yes, that had damaged his ego pretty badly. But it was more that Pierce had been caught off guard, that he was now in danger of being shot, all because he had let his defenses down. As a rule, he never did that. Let his defenses down, that is. He was always on the watch, waiting, planning, devising. The fact that this-- this woman caught him so unawares was just-- fuck. Fuckity fuck fuck fuck FUCK.

This is my rock [...]Go find your own.”

"Wow. Dilapidated fucking art store. Pardon me, I didn't recognize luxury when I saw it."

“Look, I need this gun. People round here don’t trust me – and yes, before you say anything, it is obvious why [...] You can get another. I can’t.”

Pierce blinked. Once. Twice. Again. And then he doubled over laughing. He clutched the champagne bottle like it was his lifeline and struggled to stand straight again, eyes swimming with mirthless tears. "Holy fucking shit, you're delusional..." he murmured as he caught his break, resting the bottle against his shoulder like a double-edged sword. "Do you even know who I am? Bitch, I guarantee you if it came to a trusting contest, I'd come in dead-fucking last. You obviously haven't been around here lately, but let me enlighten you--" he leaned forward and lowered his voice, suddenly ruthless again, the attorney--masochist who had been crossed. "-- I'm the motherfucker who will fuck up your shit when I don't get my way. So what makes you think, for a split-fucking-second, that I don't need a mother-fucking gun to protect myself?!" He laughed, throwing his arms wide. "NOBODY cares about me. NOBODY gives a shit. AND THAT'S MY MOTHERFUCKING GUN." Pierce breathed after his long, long rant. FUCK. This bitch was getting him worked up.

HE JUST WANTED HIS GUN BACK.

“you’ve got a choice, you can either man up and walk away from this with a shred of dignity intact or you can kick and scream like a bratty little kid.”

"You know what?" Pierce paused, like he was thinking, then spoke. 'Nope. Fuck you. Say goodbye to Vivaldi."
<
“You got played, deal with it. Smashing things and throwing a hissy-fit isn’t going to get you anywhere [...] I’m sure with all your... charms [...] you’ll be able to find yourself a nice new gun.”

Pierce chuckled again, a scary, humorless thing. "Oh, ho-ho. You really don't know me, do you?" He scowled, running his free hand irritably through his hair. "I don't get played. I get even." With that, he lifted his foot like he was going to stomp the CD player. If she managed to physically stop him-- well, he might be stopped. But if she stood there, questioning, like she was-- well. Vivaldi would pass on to the afterlife, along with any other CD she had. Pierce was mad. And he really was going to get even until the playing field itself was even, too.
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JAIMIE MALACK
Posted: Jul 1 2012, 07:26 AM


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Jaimie rolled her eyes at the poorly veiled threat. Over the years she had conned much scarier people that Pierce and, thought she was still reeling and feeling somewhat nauseous and violated, she was well practiced in keeping her cool. Getting emotional and losing your temper were, to her, signs of conceding defeat. The guy might as well have pulled off his tighty-whiteys to use as a makeshift flag of surrender. The moment he started to shout and mouth of, was the moment he stopped thinking clearly – that made him dangerous but it also made him stupid. Gone was his previous eloquence replaced instead with the sort of talk she’d grown up listening to in the trailer park. “Well, I don’t make mistakes, so you’re in for a long wait.” She countered, giving a cocky shrug, gun still trained on him. But that wasn’t enough to make him leave and her patience was starting to wear thin. “No, it’s not luxury, but do you know what is? Having a nice gun of my very own.” That was more than he had, though perhaps further antagonising him was not the best course of action. So, instead she gave him, a rather charitable, chance to be reasonable.

He didn’t take it and she couldn’t help but roll her eyes at him once more. “Wow, melodramatic much?” Jaimie muttered aloud as he launched into a very self-important rant. Bye the end of it, she found that she couldn’t help but grin – she wanted to laugh but decided that might be a little too much given the tense situation. “If no one gives a shit about you, you don’t need a gun.” She replied after a moments pause. Common sense really, if no one gave a shit, they’d just ignore him until he went away – though judging from the way this was going, Pierce didn’t possess the basic level of decency required for such an act. “Though, you’re right, it’s pretty clear that no one trusts you – or even likes you – if no one has bothered to warn you about me or told you who I am.” This time she did laugh, though only a little. Unless Pierce went around killing babies and drinking their blood, there was very little chance people thought less of him than they did of her. The sordid tale had spread throughout the mall like wildfire the moment she’d confessed to it. Jaimie Malack, the liar, the one who had drugged and convinced poor Henry Serrano that they had slept together just to insure he looked out for her best interests. The woman who had then gone on to tell the married man that she was carrying his child just to get a lift from Sam’s Club to the mall.

She’d been dead on the money about him throwing a hissy-fit though. It was almost pathetic to see a grown man breaking down in such a way – but she had to cut him a little slack, she did seem to have that effect on people. It was obvious that he thought a lot of himself, enough that he thought his threats would have an effect. And to a certain extent they did but really, threatening someone to get them to hand over the only thing that was protecting them in that moment was almost laughable. She didn’t want her store trashed, but she wasn’t about to hand a gun back to a guy who clearly should be allowed to play with weapons.

There was only one way she knew of to deal with such a situation once words had failed and that was to run. It was her default course of action, something she had years of practice at. “Well, have fun with that.” She said, quickly starting to move. It was almost nostalgic as she turned and took off, reminding her of her younger years when she’d first arrived in New York. With no money, theft had been the only way she could survive and malls were perfect. Admittedly, empty malls were harder to disappear into but it wasn’t impossible. Malls were built like casinos, designed to draw you in and keep you there. But not Jaimie, no like any good thief she had come up with a variety of escape routes. Department stores were always best for losing people, so she quickly ducked into Neiman Marcus, made her way to the centre of the store and hid amongst the racks of clothes, in a way that he could walk right past her and not see her. If they were going to have a showdown, it was going to happen here, away from her store, if he chose to follow.

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