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10 days ago
Gym is open again. Back in the House of Gainz.
26 days ago
There may be a circle of life, but the family tree looks like a telephone pole.
1 like
1 mo ago
Peaky Blinders
2 likes
2 mos ago
Took the top off my Jeep today.
3 likes
2 mos ago
I wanted horror so I watched the '96 Monaco GP. If you know, you know.

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@MST3K 4ever

That's no problem. You had a really good character and you are welcome to bring her back, but i would caution you that we are really close to the conclusion of this chapter, it might be hard to get anything established, but if you just want to have some fun, go ahead and update her profile and resubmit it here.
Joel Nicolosi


Joel gave a slight smirk seeing the reaction in Elise that he expected. When he was full time into fixing cars, her exact expression was one that he had come to recognize often in women and men. Over the course of several years, he typically found women more receptive and easier to deal with when relaying what was often bad news. Men’s egos and pitiful attempts to best his automotive knowledge usually only led to further frustration. He gave a light shrug at her comment asking if he would take a card. The money he was being paid to drive professionally vastly eclipsed some of his best weeks while in the trade. He wasn’t making a living on it any more and couldn’t take her money in good conscience. It would just have to be her lucky day and she could chalk it up to being in the right place at the right time. She was cute. Maybe in a different timeline, he would have turned some game, but the thought was just a passing musing. He finished off his beer with another long drink and examined the War Chest for another. “Zero,” He said, referring to the cost. “I don’t have a timing belt here anyway.” Setting the prop down into position, he let the hood drop and lock with an affirmative thud. “Like I told Iron Chef over here,” He motioned with his bottle towards Ryan, “Just take it easy for a couple days and come back by here and I’ll pop it on real quick.”

Seeing the trio that arrived, his eyes narrowed slightly past them for a moment at the distinctive front air-dam of what he knew, even in the shadows of night, was an M3. The rare electric blue color under the streetlights instantly reminded him of Siobhan’s story of the blonde, Paige, having to pay out of her own pocket to fix after it had been keyed by none other than Victoria. He winced a little at the thought, knowing the cost, even for a small scar, had probably been in the hundreds, if not cresting a thousand at the BMW dealer. He gave a nod to the group, not sure of the third girl they had brought along, but satisfied that the women outnumbered the men. Nobody liked a sausagefest. He wiped his hands with a rag as they came to the main door. “What’s up?” He greeted. “Still plenty to eat, feel free to grab something from the War Chest.”

@Infinite Cosmos
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Joel Nicolosi


Joel carefully stepped Elise’s Hyundai up onto the pad next to Ryan’s Mustang, the front tires groaning softly as they rotated over the concrete. He handled it gently as if it were just as valuable as any of the other vehicles around the shop. His hand searched momentarily for the hood release beneath the dash as he saw another car pull up; giving the handle a firm pull and hearing the mechanism release with a subtle thud. He took another long drink from his beer as he walked around the nose giving a wave to the newcomers before his fingertips slid under the lip of the hood and found the tab to allow it to rise. He set the bottle casually on top of a fuse box and set the prop as Elise came up to study what he was doing. If she was truly clueless about it, he was more sure of his immediate assessment just listening to it as he moved it. “These things have an interference engine…” He said taking the bottle in hand again and finishing it off. “If you don’t replace the timing belt, the valves and the pistons will start to touch.” His hands demonstrated pushing the top of the bottle into his open palm. “Bad things happen then.” He said with a small smirk, looking to see if she was following at all. “It’s a regular thing on these cars, yours is just starting to do it. Pretty easy fix, just a couple hours.”

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Paige Kennedy


Paige glanced back quizzically, but before she could speak, Mio kindly informed them that he had thrown his phone in the river, intentionally. Her eyes narrowed slightly at him causally settling himself into the backseat. Part of her was not surprised at all; having known him for many years, it was not unexpected and the way the words came out of his mouth, throwing one’s phone into the water was a perfectly acceptable recourse for whatever had occurred. It was just the resulting inconvenience that would be a pain in the ass for a few days that put her off slightly. She put the car in reverse, thinking briefly on what might have set him off: some project that he would have to rework or some chunk of metal that was not being agreeable. “What the hell happened?”

Milo chuckled, "Well you would never believe it, but this mermaid popped out of the water and looked me dead in the eyes, she was beautiful, like nothing I'd ever seen. She told me about a city under water that she could take me to, all I had to do was give her tree fiddy." He knew this was gonna get a rise. "And I yell get out of here you loch ness monstah...." He chuckled a bit then continued, "Ana called while I was fishing, turns out I can't catch a fish hold a phone and light a cigarette at the same time, just happens that all I saved was the smokes."

Paige immediately rolled her eyes as soon as she recognized his bullshit tone, she didn’t even need to hear the rest of the story, however relented some when he said that Ana had called. “Glad you decided to save what’s important.” She said, shaking her head. Ana had never succeeded in getting Milo to quit smoking, but Paige resolved to pick up the reigns, confident that she would win eventually.

Coming down Southside Boulevard, the cityscape turned much more utilitarian though nothing beyond what she’d ever been around before: mostly aged single-story businesses, railroad tracks and weather-worn streetlights that hung over cracked pavement; some simply swung on cables stretched over road bobbing lightly with an evening breeze. Being terrible with directions, she kept an eye on the GPS in the middle of the dash set with the address from Siobhan. After a few turns off Southside, they rounded a bend as the evening was settling in and she could make out the round taillights of Siobhan’s Corvette, a red Jeep, and the brake lights of another car being moved next to another in front of a large garage door. “This is it,” She said, slightly peeved at the lack of parking and scanning around for a spot before carefully tucking up behind Sio on the curb.

Paige paused as she stepped up on the sidewalk and looked at the business sign above her for as she waited for Milo to walk up with her. Apex Designs with a flourish around the A a small phone number and SOL CITY underneath. Chatter could be heard and music played from inside while the evening streetlamps began to buzz on; a few had burned out long ago and were neglected for replacement. An unexpected, though slightly familiar feeling came over her as she looked at the slightly-less worn logo, the same as when she crossed the bridge earlier. Not truly a feeling of boredom or disdain, just of seemingly impending finality, like they didnt have much time left. She looked at Milo without a word. He wasn’t nearly the sentimentalist she could be, but there was no doubt he could sense what she was thinking.

Joel’s Shop Radio


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Joel Nicolosi


Joel snickered a bit at Siobhan’s mildly formal introductions giving a comically large shrug as he continued to balance his plate on his knees. The food was damn good and he didn't particularly want to stop eating, but they were quickly running out of chairs and still had more company on the way. He was not at all surprised to have his hunch about Elise’ car problems confirmed as he stood up and maneuvered around Ryan to sit his plate on top of a rolling toolbox. The girl’s enthusiasm was cute and her car knowledge was a little unexpected, he feigned injury with a smirk rubbing his arm after she shook his hand vigorously. “Here,” He said, offering her his seat between Ryan and Siobhan with a small wave. “Might as well have a seat. I gotta get more chairs from upstairs anyway.” He said maneuvering around the group with cautious steps between the cars and the guests. There was a big beach-cooler on the floor, aged from years of regular usage with the words WAR CHEST scribbled ungracefully across the white top. He opened it with his foot and retrieved another beer though it’s contents were a wide variety of brews, liquors and a plethora of Rebellion energy drinks. “Whatever you want to drink, we got all kinds of stuff.” He twisted the top off with his shirttail and leaned for a glance outside past Ryan’s Mustang and the other cars outside looking for whatever Elise was driving; feeling the coolness of the evening beginning to settle while taking a long drink.

The cool air and the pleasant vibes combined with the growing number of cars outside were making things very nostalgic for Joel and he could sense the greatness of an unplanned party approaching. “That your little Hyundai out there?” He said examining the car from the bay door, not looking back at first, but then glancing over his shoulder at Elise with a pause once he saw he had her attention back from Siobhan. “If it’s running rough and you can hear it, it probably needs a timing belt.” He took another drink, thinking briefly how to rearrange the cars again so that Sio’s friends would still have enough room to park. There was just enough space for two side by side on the concrete pad out front. It was very reminiscent of the very old days: He could have three big dollar projects inside and two quick fixes going on the curbside followed by whatever insane party that flowed through the night. “You got the key?” He said with a hand open for her to toss them over. “We’ll bring it over here and have a look.”

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Avalon


The sound was familiar, though it had been a long time since she heard it: The subtle, mechanical creeping of his aura reaching out, dividing itself around her and covering the floor making her realize just how accustomed she had become to being without him for so long. She swallowed a lump in her throat as it crept through the wrecked building, purring in its rolling tone, beating with an electrical impulse that tickled her leg as it passed. The sound of the human’s assimilation was expected, like a body tossed into some great amalgamation of turning gears. She took in a breath and exhaled as they took their place beside her. It was a test. She didn’t need any help. They would only get in her way,.though she knew he only wanted to see if she would protest; to see how far she had separated herself from him. As soon as his new creations knelt, she stood up as commanded, looking at him and taking in the moment. Within his gaze, she could sense the connection between them returning as if the interference that existed between the worlds had dissipated. It was both welcome and wholly unsettling.

She considered her words, though the realization of his arrival was an undeniable wave that washed through her consciousness. It was the moment for which they had worked and waited, however, finally in his presence, she couldn’t help but feel shame, like he had come from a place and time that she had somehow begun to forget. Her face remained stoic at first as she spoke: ‘She was here, right in this place.” The tension within her relaxed some as the words came out knowing that he would indeed be on a very narrow timeline. She could be brief and accentuate the positive in the knowledge that he would be very pleased with the news, but also remembering the world that she had built alongside him and the rare feat she had achieved, influence. “The headmaster is still fading slowly, but I have been keeping him alive... None of them have any idea what’s happening.”
Joel Nicolosi


Joel did a poor job at attempting to hide his revulsion when Ryan referred to some heavier petting in relation to Victoria Olympus. He knew Siobhan would be warming up to go chapter and verse on the girl’s social credit score, so he decided to stick to what he knew and let the conversation fall where it may. “You won’t have to worry about a ticket.” He said referring to Ryan’s interest in coming to a rally with a small wave of his hand. “We’ll just get you a pass, you can come with the team.” He gave his shirt, a black long sleeve tee with an orange Rebellion “R” at the left chest that matched his other, regularly simple attire: cargo shorts and sneakers, a small pluck. “Whatever rally you want, New England will be the only one in the States and the closest, but we’ll be all over. Come to Germany and you can probably see Bruno again.” He said with a chuckle.

As Sio proceeded to give an unembellished recap of the last several months, it was hard for Joel not to smirk a little. The stories didn’t need embellishment. However, he did wince slightly at the car-keying story even though he’d heard it numerous times and shook his head. To Joel, that particular tale was as bad as any of the other stories of promiscuity, though watching the fire in Siobahn’s eyes as she told them was fairly satisfying. He was about to dig in to his own plate when he heard the wandering voice of another person, first thinking that it was Siobhan’s friend and glancing back casually to find a dark-haired girl who’d apparently missed them all sitting between the cars. He was pretty sure Sio’s friend was blonde and was supposed to be bringing another guy with her.

Interlopers around Southside were nothing uncommon. In the old days, people would walk up right off the street just to talk while he worked with the door open even if it was late at night or some unholy hour in the morning. Thinking about it briefly, never did a single person ever present any danger despite the thousands of dollars worth of tools set about and the high-end cars that came in and out of his baydoor. He’d never had a single thing stolen. Some of the stories of Southside were nothing more than urban legend, Uptown was where all the shit happened. Seeing their newest guest was a female, and fairly young, Joel knew from experience that she was either lost or her car was busted. Southside interlopers might have been harmless, but they were never young, attractive females. With the dinner plate in his lap, he gave the girl a friendly wave without getting up. “We’re over here.”

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Joel's Shop Radio:
Paige Kennedy


Everytime she crossed the Costa Bridge, Paige thought briefly how many more times she would have to drive across it. The sound of her front tires hitting the bridge joint and the hum of the lifeless concrete underneath her made the thought almost automatic. Not even a hint of aesthetic appeal, just worn lanes and boring signs. Strictly utilitarian. Likely named after some individual equally as unremarkable. Of all of Sol’s downtown structural architecture, she found the uncreative, gray expanse to be the most dull, almost a chore to drive over. With Manami in the passenger seat, she counted another trip. Not many more to go… She thought with only the slightest shake of her head and glanced over towards the lights of downtown. They were on their way to pick up Milo, then it was down south to meet Siobhan and her much heralded, race-driver boyfriend. Paige cared little about cars or celebrity, but she looked forward to seeing Siobhan. There wouldn't be many more of those opportunities either.

It felt in poor taste to simply leave Manami to her solitude after the confrontation they’d just had with her former stalker so she’d extended the invitation for her to come along and enjoy the evening. Normally, bringing extra guests to a party wasn’t a good look either, but she knew Sio wouldn’t mind and the rest of them could get over it. Manami wasn’t the type to be left alone after such an encounter and after the adrenaline wore off Paige could see the conflict all over her face. What they had done wasn’t by any stretch, “by the book” or even remotely legal, but it worked. She just needed to keep the young girl talking and thinking positive, not stewing in the right and wrong of the whole scenario. What was encouraging was that she could see Manami’s whole persona change within the short time they’d met. Taking care of Jerome seemed like the push she needed for a much larger spectrum of her life. There was less tension in her words and more confidence. The person who confronted her stalker and pummeled him unmercifully with a phonebook was completely different than the timid girl who called for help on Saturday night.

For Paige, it was the one of the best parts of her job. Other than ruining the day of some asshole, she had helped someone come into their own. “I’ve never met Siobhan’s boyfriend,” She said, referring to the gathering’s apparent host. “And I know you haven’t met any of them, but just try to relax and have fun. Sio’s my best friend here, you’ll like her, and you’re about the same age.” They dropped into the offramp towards Final Round Armoury and Paige tapped her phone screen still seeing no replies from Milo. No response wasn’t out of the ordinary for him, particularly if he was deep into some intricate project. She wriggled her lips a bit, slightly irritated. They’d be there in a few minutes.

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Joel Nicolosi


Ryan was so formal it was nearly comical to Joel. They couldn’t have been more opposite. Normally, a car spoke a lot about the person driving it. He’d seen it all over the years, however, he would never have matched Ryan to a big block Ford had he only seen the car and had to pick out the driver. Ultra-polite and soft-spoken didn’t tend to lend itself to rare muscle cars. “I would hold on to it for you, but I’m a little pressed for space at the moment.” He said motioning around in response to leaving the car at the shop. With one in the air and everything else tucked close nose-to-tail, he could still fit Sio’s Corvette inside by about an inch and he wasn’t going to leave her’s out on the street or behind the shop. “It will be fine to drive, trust me.” He said casually. “Just take it easy. I assume you have something else to drive?”

Siobhan’s cooking had filled the majority of the shop with a pleasant aroma of marinated spice and charcoal-grilled steaks that overcame the regular, pungent aroma of oil and race-tires. With the smoke from Joel’s small grill wafting up out of the large garage door, the scent would carry for several blocks. He gave her hand a firm squeeze and motioned for Ryan to go ahead and help himself to the food as their guest; listening as Sio continued the conversation. She was much better with people. Ryan was a perfectionist, which was relatable and how he managed his business was up to him to decide. He took a nice long pull at his beer to finish it off while his eyes watched a car pass by in front of the shop. If they were going to have more guests, he was going to have to move the Jeep to the back to leave another space on the curb.

What grabbed Joel’s attention more and caused him to narrow his glance slightly was Ryan’s words in relation to dealing with Victoria and what sounded like more of a problem in understanding his self-worth as a man. Gossip wasn’t really Joel’s forte, but if Ryan wanted an opinion, he would get one. Joel gave a small shrug, but he wasn’t any good at hiding his distaste in the subject. “I told you what I did, because you asked,” He said, swirling what was left in the bottle for a moment and searching for a little more tact. “Look, I know these people,” That car behind you has their name on the side. He said referring to the giant gear of Olympus sponsorship on the 300. “The granddad is a cool old guy and we get along well. I’m gonna drive for him again in the Fall, but the rest of them are just fucking nuts.” Tact abandoned. “I wasn’t going to say anything, because it’s not my business where you sleep, but since you wanted to know, I had to give you the truth.” He said. “And being mixed in with that freakshow that Aster runs is just gonna land you in a lot of fucking pain and suffering that you don’t need.”

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Paige Kennedy
&


Paige smirked a little as the man toppled over and very casually extended her foot behind him to help him in his ungraceful descent to the floor. Manami had done considerably better than she originally thought, but she knew from experience the next few moments were the most dangerous part. The man wasn’t knocked out cold and his survival instincts would soon take over and he would be acting on nothing but a sense of self-preservation and an attempt to escape the horror that he discovered. The surprise was over. He flailed wildly to roll over and get back on his feet still holding his gashed head with one hand the best he could, but not before Paige swiftly kicked him between the legs hard enough to retract his manhood for at least a month. He let out a guttural belch of spit and pain as the wave of shock passed over him. Gripping himself, he coughed and wailed in excruciation no longer able to concentrate on getting away from the two women standing over him.

Very deftly, Paige extended the rolled up phonebook to Manami in exchange for what looked like a golf trophy. She glanced at it quizzically, surprised by its weight and that Manami had managed to get such a good swing.

Manami briefly wondered if this was enough, after all he had a bleeding head and would probably have several other bruises for awhile. But then she decided no, it wasn't enough, she wanted this guy to realize that she wasn't playing and to never come near her again. Manami thought that he would just stay on the ground in pain but instead he got up again, before she could do anything though Paige gave him a quick kick in the nads. That attack pretty much left him immobilized, he was way too focused on his own pain than the two girls that were still standing there. Manami let of a breath that she didn't realize she'd been holding, looking to the blonde woman beside her.

She was a little confused when she gave her a phonebook and took her initial weapon of choice, she had figured that they would be done after this but apparently not. Part of her was horrified at such violence but another, much bigger part convinced herself that he deserved it. Clenching the heavy book in her hand, she gripped it tight and lifted it in the air. The creep still wasn't paying attention, and when she brought the heavy object down on his head he let out another pained grunt.

Paige continued to study the odd trophy briefly while Manami got in a few more good shots with the phonebook. She gingerly strolled over to the kitchen area and took a dish towel to polished off Jerome’s blood while her young apprentice continued to work him over thoroughly. She was still unsure as to what it belonged, other than that Manami mentioned it was a prop. Well whatever... She shrugged, looking to see that Manami seemed to be enjoying herself and not at all concerned with any further damage to their guest. It didn't take long before the young girl’s arms appeared to labor with each swing; adrenaline fueled rage could leave a person exhausted quickly and she walked back over motioning with a small wave for the beating to finally end.

Poor Jerome had assumed the fetal position and wept like a baby in a state of pain he had only just discovered within the last few moments. “I’m sorry, I’m sorry…” He sobbed pitifully holding his arms over his head where Manami had scored a few more direct hits to his face. Paige rolled him flat on his back with her foot and pushed his hand away from his face so he could look up at the both of them.

“We know you’re sorry and all Jerome,” She said, “But, I’m afraid that’s just not going to be good enough.” Paige reached behind her back and pulled her pistol out in clear view letting him look straight down the barrel.

“Oh GOD! JESUS, please don’t kill me!” He wailed seeing the dark center of the cylinder looking back at him and blazing green eyes on the other side of the sights. He covered his face again and bawled uncontrollably.

“Look here,” Paige snapped and kicked his hand away again. She cycled the action back ejecting a single bullet into her hand with a satisfying metallic clack. She leaned over him and tucked it into the front pocket of his blazer. “If you ever show your face here again the next one of these is gonna come a lot faster.” She growled. Turning her head she nodded for Manami to get the door. “Now get the hell outta here.”

She didn't stop until Paige motioned for her too, her arms twitched and shook from the effort of lifting and swinging the heavy phonebook repeatedly. Her breath was heavy but her mind was clear, looking down on this pathetic man curled into a ball made her feel powerful. That was something she had never felt before in her life and she was loving it, though was that a good thing? Manami took a few steps back to gain her composure, though when Paige brought out her gun she was a tad startled. That would definitely make this creep think twice about coming around here again. At the blonde's command she walked over to her front door and opened it, the whimpering fool on the floor saw his escape and took it. Without so much as a last glance he hobbled as best he could out of her apartment, shutting the door behind him she let out a long sigh and looked to the woman that had helped her.

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