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@Jasper19Edited. Sorry, friend.


The little space between bodies within the bus was occupied by the dense humidity, leaving little air for the lungs to steal for themselves. Rivulets of sweat went unmanaged and soaked through the occupants clothing, attaching the fabric to their frames. The undeniable scent of body odor had begun as a faint undertone, but was steadily growing to a more offensive level with each raise of an arm or shift in a seat. The seemingly permanent curl of Bonnie Carter’s upper lip was enough to show her strong discontent with the situation.

The heat and humidity? She could handle that without issue. Louisiana would laugh at this heat index and her hair was a mess with or without it. The cramped seats? She had lived in a van with her family that a sardine would feel cramped in. But this smell. Her eyes flickered occasionally to the men surrounding her, as if accusing them, before landing again on the rust spot near where her right shoulder was pressed against the wall. She had been picking meticulously at the area for a majority of the ride, her vividly red fingernail lifting the textured edges of the corrosion until it became flush with the unaffected metal. She had curled her legs beneath her small frame and had forced her small pack deep into the space below between the seats. The bag was light enough, as its contents were only those that had been deemed absolutely essential to a through-hiker, but even its minor presence on the young woman’s lap had grown to be a discomfort. She had attempted to position her head comfortably in every imaginable way, but the neverending jolting and jostling of the vehicle made rest impossible. Not to mention the guy two seats ahead that had made it his mission to share his life story with the entire lot of them.

Bonnie was one of the last to step down from the bus and therefore found herself lifting up onto the tips of her toes in an effort to peer above the mess of people that had already congregated in front of her. Clean shaven heads, trimmed edges, gelled side parts. She spotted them all, but no hair styles that were definitely or stereotypically feminine. It had been ingrained in since she was a child that should she be in need of help, she should find a woman. Should she be lost or uncomfortable, she should find a woman. A drunk night at a bar in San Marcos and a woman bought her a cab home. A woman paid for her groceries when that month’s paycheck fell short. Perhaps it was wrong, perhaps it was falling in line with a corrupt societal expectation, but still Bonnie searched for a ponytail or bun in that moment.

Joe’s voice was clear even from the back of the crowd and his direct instructions were appreciated. His subtle reassurance that he would offer a level of protection to the campers also provided Bonnie with something of a comfort. Bonnie filed slowly forward as others cleared, not understanding the rush that surged forward as the counselor stepped aside. She took that free moment of waiting to scan what she could see of the area, deciding quickly that the environment they were in was entirely foreign to her. The density of the surrounding forests left Washington state cowering.

Bonnie smacked at her neck and raked her nails across what she knew to be a new mosquito bite. “Do we get to leave if we contract Malaria?" She muttered just below her breath as she scanned the bulletin board for her tent assignment.



“Someone claim her and get her home or I’m gonna keep her!”

Roz had stationed herself behind the bar and was lifting herself up onto her toes in an attempt to shout across the crowd that only seemed to be growing thicker. She had originally returned behind the bar in a frenzied chase after Temp to inquire about her tardiness, her impeccable entrance only drawing the attention of anyone with ears, but the child resting on a stool in front of her had demanded a far higher level of regard.

Rosalyn was able to catch most of Temp’s interaction with the two guests and she could hardly fault her employee’s bitter tone as he further demanded a nonalcoholic lemonade from the bartender.

“You her Pop?” Roz had inquired of the man, but her natural softspokeness never lent itself well to the constant buzz of conversation within the bar. Her words seemed to be unable to compete and fell flat.

“I like to think that we’re not all terribly pinheaded here,” Roz protested a bit louder as she looked down her nose at the man, though she shot a reaffirming wink in the direction of Temp. She offered her best customer service smile, but the acidity laced within the turn of her lips negated anything positive within the action. The discourse that had already occurred had put the woman on edge, but the man’s audacity to indirectly accuse them of serving the girl was enough to sour her attitude. She knew these feelings would be mutual.

“We’re not in the business of boozing up children. A little risky I’d say if I’d like to keep the deed in my name.” Rosalyn was shamelessly flaunting her ownership of the establishment and she found her upper lip curling subconsciously in annoyance as he offered the girl a view of a wanted poster, telling of some group of dangerous people as if recounting a ghost story. She found a level of humor in the idea of that describing half of the company situated in the saloon at that exact moment. She used this as an opportunity to try and verbally ruffle the man’s feathers in retaliation once more.“You’re gonna give the kid a nightmare, Pal. Leave her be or help me find her folks if-”

The rapid and undeniable sound of gunshots invaded the woman’s original thought and she found herself desperately turning to Temp for an action plan. Rosalyn’s instincts in the face of immediate danger were parallel to that of a trapped rabbit. She was capable of action only after formulating a plan and outline, but when things went to shit in a hurry, she found her logical thinking had a tendency to screech to a dead halt. Temp had proven to have a reaction time nearly as quick as her wit and was invaluable in situations such as the current.

Blood rose up into and warmed Rosalyn’s cheeks as she peered outward from behind the slated Saloon doors. Her throat constricted within itself, though she was grateful that perhaps it would block bile from rising into her mouth.

Dead bodies were strange.

Suddenly, vessels of life turned into empty containers. Glass bottles drained and discarded. Their skin instantly paled as the vascular system ceased its work and blood began following the rules of gravity. Her interaction with Leo had been brief at best, but she knew enough about the man to find herself reflecting on the impact of his sudden death. His errands would go uncompleted. He would never visit the general store. She wondered if his five dollar winnings were still tucked in his pocket. Someone would make it their own reward.

Roz hurried back to the bar at the first signs the crowd would be trickling back inside, but not before noting how quickly Temp’s legs were moving beneath her. She watched silently at the woman returned instantly to her work without a comment. Never had lemonade been poured with such ferocity, however.

Roz had begun scene control as soon as the man from earlier pushed through the door. She positioned herself between the two offending parties, one of them blatantly unaware of the tensions brewing as he called out yet another command. Perhaps he was wrong to have done what he did and perhaps not, but his type was all too familiar to Armadillo. A law enforcer, truly a general enforcer, of his own volition.

“The town is small enough. Perhaps you can go to the law yourself? Explain what happened and how you… stepped in.” Roz selected her words with attentiveness, careful to not place herself on a specific side of the line as she addressed the man.

"What?"

Rosalyn’s eyes widened as Temp nearly spat at the new customer and she instantly hooked her arm around the bartender. “I am so terribly sorry. I will be right back to help you, Ma’am,” she reassured the guest as she practically towed Temp along with her back into the kitchen.

“What in God’s name, Temp?!” Roz started in, “That girl out there looks like you might blow her out of her chair hollering at her like that! And look, I get it, the fella is a royal piece of work. A royal piece of it, okay? And you just saw something horrific. That was absolutely terrible, I know. I hope that the Sheriff handles it all appropriately. But you-”

Rosalyn’s brow furrowed as something stole her attention and she tentatively placed her finger to the cut above Temp’s brow. Her voice noticeably dropped a few octaves and softened significantly, “Who did that? Are you okay? That’s not new. When did that happen? Was that here? In town? Let me get you some ice. You should take a break. Get something to drink and relax for a bit.”

Rosalyn moved to gather a towel and ice, though her tone returned unphased to continue reprimanding, “-but you cannot be tossing yourself around out there in a fit like that! You’re gonna cost us customers and therefore money! Money that goes into everyone’s wages! That keeps the place as a whole up and running!”

@Sad Ogo and I are talking about what to do here. We could do a collaborative with the three characters or do individual responses in the IC thread that might turn R rated. You want to join us?

Of course! I'm up for whatever you guys decide on. Just let me know!



The day was falling swiftly, pulling the sun across the sky and towards the horizon with what seemed to be little difficulty. Roz sat atop the ledge of her open bedroom window, feet tucked beneath her body and glass of amber liquid held loosely between her slender fingers. The falling light draped a golden hue across the woman’s cheeks and reflected sharply against the lighter accents deep within the irises of her eyes. They were fixed outward and only flickered as the woman was yanked from her own thoughts.

“Miss Roz?” The sudden break of silence was hardly startling, as the voice transgressing was faint and airy. Rosalyn knew the source before her gaze shifted to it - a petite young woman in the doorway with her hands clasped together at her waist. “It’s just that you wanted me to warn you when things picked up downstairs,” she continued, quickly working to justify interrupting what she already knew to be a moment Roz held sacred. The woman was new to both Armadillo and the business, having only arrived days ago in a fit of desperation to escape a home life she would speak very little of. This was the narrative for nearly all of the girls who walked through the door, most with their chins tucked to their chests.“That’s alright, Love. I appreciate it. You managed to eat, yes?” Rosalyn had emptied her glass and unfurled her bare feet out from beneath her at the explanation, tugging on a pair of boots that brushed just above her ankles.

“Oh, I- well, no, I don’t suppose I have.”

Rosalyn started towards the younger woman, promptly rested her hands upon the woman's hips as she spoke, “There’s plenty downstairs. Some of the girls and I made a stew you’re welcome to. I’ll have you run to the general tomorrow to gather a few of your favorites. And loosen this-” Roz had wrapped her arms around the girl, suddenly yanking the knot of her corset free. “You’ve hardly left enough room for air, let alone a meal.”

Rosalyn stood at the landing overlooking the bar, her arms folded and resting on the banister. The unusual fullness of the bar space left a feeling of unease coiled around her stomach, tightening each time one of her girls approached a client or someone’s hand moved near their waistline. From her vantage point, she could make out a few of the cards grasped by the men settled around a table. Despite never having considered gambling to be a trade she would involve herself in, she made a mental note of this.

The flash of a weapon sent instinct into action at nearly the same pace as Rosalyn’s ability to process the scene, shamelessly hoisting her skirt to retrieve her own weapon from her thigh. The absolute ignorance of her actions was apparent before she could even remove the gun from its holster, however. She would undoubtedly have injured someone unintentionally, if not herself. She hastily flattened her skirt with a silent prayer of thanks that there had been a much larger distraction below before rushing down the stairs.

It became clear that she had missed much of the action when she finally pushed through the crowd, with the assistance of a few fierce words, just in time to see the bloodied man scramble out of the front door. Her attention was pulled next to the girls who had collected themselves behind the bar counter, just as instructed to do during situations such as this. Rosalyn spend a moment with each, ensuring they were okay to continue for the night. Most moved back out to the floor to resume the conversations that had been interrupted, while others silently escaped back upstairs to their rooms.

Roz shot a scowl to the bartender that had taken the payment from the gentlemen she had quickly learned were both at the source and the solution to the prior disturbance. She wrangled the key that hung from her neck out of her shirt and retrieved the money that had just been placed within the register before snagging a bottle of the bar’s moonshine from a lower shelf. She strode confidently towards the table that the two had settled at, slapping the change down hard on the surface between them. “Your kinda money is no good here,” Roz’s words were sharp and her expression was equally as aggressive as she glared down at the two of them.

Rosalyn couldn't even maintain her facade long enough to gather a reply from the men, her lips lifting into a wide smile. “I apologize, Fellas, sometimes I think I’m more amusing than I really am. Whiskey seems to be your choice, but I figured we could thank you both with a bottle of our own shine.” The bottle was placed beside the money and a gentle hand was rested on each of their shoulders. “A few of the girls would be happy to offer you company this evening as their own way of showing their appreciation as well, should ya have an interest.”
If we’re talking connections, then @Berlin temp could maybe be a bartender/person who throws out people causing a ruckus (while also kinda being a ruckus-causer herself lmao) at your saloon/brothel if you’re interested? No pressure if you had other plans, obviously! ^.^
Sold! Yes, please! That sounds rad. I have nothing set in stone at all in the way of plans and I would love to have PCs involved as much as possible.

Quite a few potential collaborations I see.
Maddie's endgame is to avenge her father, which will result in a number of deaths along the way, among other things. I can see her setting someone up so they take the fall instead of her, so if you wanna volunteer for the role, let me know. And don't worry, your guy/gal will get away with it anyway.
I totally volunteer Roz for you to utilize as ya please if you want!

Erik gives me Billy the Kid vibes, but if he was a good guy. I'm here for it.
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