DAMNED || LANDEL'S INSTITUTE

A Multifandom Asylum RPG


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Day 55: Cafeteria
Stop talking. Forever.
bodhiandspirit wrote in damned
Though five days without bathing was hardly unusual for Rita, she was actually looking forward to showering today. To her, the last shift had been somewhat enjoyable, if only because it allowed her an opportunity to be alone with her thoughts for a bit. Of course, she couldn't be completely alone in the communal showers, but no one was rude enough to disturb her in there, which was good enough for her.

Once the shift was over, she re-applied the bandages on her leg and knee, dressed herself, and made her way to the cafeteria. The pain in her knee seemed to lessen as the day progressed, and her slight limp became less noticeable to herself. Hopefully it wouldn't impede her much come nightfall.

Upon entering the cafeteria, however, Rita found that she had more immediate problems to deal with. What was that slop they were serving?

Deaf to her complaints, a soldier quickly ushered her into the line for the pink gruel. While waiting, Rita became aware of a section in the room where edible food was being served... but apparently only to selected patients. Whose butt did they have to kiss to get that treatment?

After receiving her "meal" (using the word very loosely), Rita found an empty area to sit in. There, she made no move for her utensils, but instead glared at the plate of mush as if the food itself had somehow wronged her.

[For Woody]

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A whole half day had passed, and Snow was still fidgeting in his new clothes. He kept pulling on the collar trying to get it away from his neck, which earned him looks from every soldier around him every time he did it. He couldn't help it though. Unlike most people, he couldn't just forget he was wearing it. The whole thing made him feel so self-conscious and he couldn't stop thinking about the fact that he was wearing a military uniform. He hated uniforms. He hated the military. He hated guns being shoved in his face. He hated people being used as slaves to clean up everyone's mess. He hated being led around like some kind of sheep. He hated people barking orders at him. And most of all, he hated being unable to do anything about ANY of it.

But despite all this, Snow was actually being pretty damn compliant for him. He hadn't ripped open his shirt or thrown his hat (or thrown a punch, actually). He only scoffed when he was gathered up and led into the cafeteria, following along without a word. Yeah, he was being uncharacteristically obedient so far. The guns probably had something to do with it. As did the hunger and the memories of what happened yesterday. But now happy time was over and Snow was getting pissed all over again.

Why? Because it looked like the soldiers were upping the ante and were going to pull the usual kind of crap they did to lower level soldiers. Now they wanted him to be a good little doggie and jump through hoops on command. Or do jumping jacks in front of everyone as was the case right then. Snow just crossed his arms and looked away from them like he hadn't heard that, even though everything on his face indicated he had. They tried yelling at him to get him to do it, but that just made him snap and yell at them right back. Cause no way, no way, was he going to do anything they wanted upon command. Especially something like that. It felt too much like submission. It felt too much like he was letting them win. He wasn't anyone's damn lacky! He wasn't going to bark on command and he wasn't going to let them think he'd do something just because they ordered him to!

His escort put his hands on his hips and looked up at Snow, thoroughly unimpressed by the display. Nothing in him looked even slightly intimidated. "You don't want to do your punishment? Fine." The guy turned to another soldier standing nearby. "You. That kid. Bring him over here."

Snow turned to look at the soldier then at the kid his escort had pointed out. Wha...? He turned back to him. "What are you doing?"

"You want to be a baby, Davidson, then he'll do your punishment for you. Either way, I'm getting 200 jumping jacks right now. You can stand there and watch him do them for you." The guy made a hand gesture to the other soldier like he was telling him to hurry and fetch the kid already.

Now Snow looked panicked. It was bad enough they'd punished all those people this morning when they hadn't even done anything, but now this? There was no way! He wasn't going to make some kid do something like that because of him! He held his hand out to stop the other soldier from leaving completely. "Wha? Wait! Hold on!" He glared at his escort. "Fine. I'll do it. Just leave 'im alone, alright?"

The guy didn't confirm a yes or no to that. He just looked at him, waiting impatiently for him to get started. Snow clenched his fists and looked down at the ground for a second. Then after giving one last glance at the kid they'd been about to use cause of him, he got started.

[For Edgar!]

Edited at 2011-03-18 12:16 am (UTC)

While the quiet shift outside had given Edgar plenty of time to observe how Aguilar's soldiers would handle the patients, there were more surprises waiting when the lunch shift began. As if the menial labor in place of breakfast wasn't enough punishment, it now appeared that the menu would consist of gruel and water... only gruel and water. There were other patients with more familiar meals, but it seemed the previous choices were reserved for a select few. No doubt they were the higher-ranking classes. He spied a few of the other rankings on the tags of patients around him: B and D, while one A-rank was led away from the gruel line. How one rose in the ranks was something he had yet to discover.

Edgar's mind turned to the bulletin board as he waited to be served. There was no answer from Locke yet- a bad sign. He had considered leaving one for Natalia as well, given that he'd not seen her since the morning after her healing session- since the shadows attacked them. It would be worth making sure she was still around: after all, her abilities not only made her a fantastic ally, but she was a treat for the eyes, as well.

Once given his serving of water and a mush that had roughly the consistency of a Flan, Edgar headed for a table, astounded their seating wasn't being dictated as well. A few of the prisoners were being forced to do exercises in what he guessed was continued fallout from the riot. One exchange in particular caught his interest: a certain patient he'd eyed a few times- oh what was his name again? No wait, their conversation in the library had been cut short by a nurse- was being blackmailed into his punishment, lest some bystander be made to do it in his place.

It was beyond cruelty at this point. It was a deliberate move to break the man, to use the promise they wouldn't punish others as an incentive for his obedience. The carrot was a double-edged sword: if he argued with the soldier's demands, someone else would be forced into a punishment they hadn't earned, sending a message about his moral fibre to the rest of the patient body; if he complied, it was proof he could be pushed into such a position again. It was a sickening predicament, but one Edgar understood well.

Edgar waited for the soldier to leave before having a seat near where the punished patient was indeed performing his jumping jacks. His protective nature was a constant reminder of Sabin. "I'm surprised how well you're handling this," Edgar admitted. "Though seeing that exchange made even my blood boil."

It was a good thing Snow wasn't at all the blushing type because this was so freaking embarrassing. He felt so mortified, doing jumping jacks on command in front of everyone like this. He almost would have rather risked taking the bullet than submit and degrade himself like this. If his friends back home saw him now, he could only imagine what they'd say. Unfortunately, he was just going to have to deal with it for now. Just had to tell himself he was doing it so someone else wouldn't have to. They'd left the kid alone, so he had to go and fulfill his end of the bargain. But that didn't mean he had to like it. So as Snow did his stupid jumping jacks, he was shooting a lethal glare at the bastard down the aisle who was apparently watching and counting to make sure he did them all.

He probably would have stayed glaring holes through the guy the whole shift if someone hadn't grabbed a seat nearby and started talking to him. Snow turned his attention to the guy, wincing slightly at the fact that there was... actually someone right here watching this. He wasn't sure if it was a good or bad thing that it was someone he recognized. It was that guy from the room with the books. He hadn't caught the guy's name, but he remembered him all the same.

Well, either way, Snow was going to try hard not to look or act as embarrassed as he was feeling. He wasn't very good at lying but it helped that he was really mad to begin with. As he continued his stupid jumping jacks, he scoffed. He was only up to about thirty or so, so he wasn't anywhere close to out of breath. He could talk while doing this. No problem. "Yeah, well... All they're good for is talk. Buncha bullies with overpriced toys, is all. Think they can just push us around and we'll aaall fall in line eventually."

He tried his best to grin despite the ridiculous activity. "They got the upper hand now, but they won't for too long. Just gotta wait for a chance. Not like they can just keep us in here forever, right?"

Edited at 2011-03-19 02:24 am (UTC)

"True, though the same has been said about Landel," Edgar remarked, leaning on the table with his hands before his face. Despite his hunger, he wasn't willing to test any meal served by the military just yet. The effects of the night before had been gone since the morning, but that made more room for experimentation later. Would Aguilar run every night shift the same way, tainting the food and watching his prisoners run, evaluating their actions?

Or perhaps he had something even worse up his sleeve. If the calendar was right, the night would bring a few patients being selected for the sleep studies. They were already infamous for their torture, disguised as medical procedures performed on sick minds. It was no joy to imagine how much worse they could be when run by a military faction.

Edgar sighed. The gruel's appearance was enough to make him lose his appetite. While he didn't expect the menu to improve any by dinner, he figured he could get by on the minimal amounts for now, at least until the next day. If the routine for the weekly Doyleton trip hadn't been changed, there would be at least one chance for a decent meal while there. And if it had been altered, or they weren't going at all... well, hunger worked wonders, making even travel rations seem like delicacies.

"Or had been, at any rate," Edgar finished, prodding the sludge with his spoon. "With what changes we've seen already, it looks like this General is more likely to actually use what he has rather than throw empty threats at us. At least the nurses, though patronizing, didn't threaten us outright or use punishments to push us against one another." Edgar had to admit that he was curious as to where Aguilar was headed with the manipulation tactic. The notion that he was looking to thin the numbers by weeding out the weaker patients wasn't entirely out of the question yet, but what purpose did that serve? And what would become of those who remained? Aguilar's work was less subtle than Landel's methods thus far, but his true aim was no clearer.

"It's Edgar, by the way. I don't believe we were properly introduced, though I've seen you around a few times... usually getting into some sort of trouble." He smiled genuinely on that last comment. It was still refreshing to see someone willing to fight so openly, no matter how they tried to quell him.

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