DAMNED || LANDEL'S INSTITUTE

A Multifandom Asylum RPG


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DAY 45: Sun Room (Second Shift)
grouchy in stunning technicolor
violent_varmint wrote in damned
There was something fishy going on in the Institute today. All over the bulletin board, people were talking about having "woken up", having been "cured"... and it seemed as though ZEX was one of them. Tanaka wouldn't have recognized the note at all if it hadn't been signed - his wording, his handwriting, even his name had changed - and a part of him still wondered if it had been an imposter, trying to pull the wool over the Captain's allies.

But it'd be easy enough to find out the truth. Whoever it was had agreed to meet him, and Tanaka was waiting for him just outside the cafeteria doors, ready to catch him as he came from breakfast. If "Max" was an imposter, then he'd discover the identity of a hidden enemy. And if he was really ZEX...

...well, he'd have a whole new set of things to worry about.

[for a spoiled rich brat brainwashed Admiral]

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Telling off Lugnut had been...surprisingly anticlimactic. He'd expected some big humorous explosion and all he'd gotten was a vague feeling of guilt. The guy obviously had it pretty bad, whatever he had, and Joshua couldn't help hoping he found a new robot friend to hang out with. Maybe Depth Charge.

He found himself a spare couch and stretched out, hands folding up behind his head. But he really did need to separate himself from people like him, crazy people, controlling people.

Joshua closed his eyes and tried to remember all those little pamphlets Levi kept leaving in his locker. Stuff about removing yourself from areas and people associated with the addiction (or the crazy), not associating it with good things, finding replacement habits, support networks--not likely to find a support network anywhere around here, everyone but the nurses seemed to be just fine with their little delusions. And he wasn't much fond of the nurses either, they kept talking down to everyone and now they were censoring the bulletin board of all places. It didn't seem to make sense.

Still. He needed to think about him now, not what everyone else thought of him or what he needed to do to play with the cool kids. Just himself and getting better. Everything else would come later.

[Free? I think?]

[Guess again. ;P]

Knowing that there were a good number of other folks looking for a way to the third floor was a promising thought the Scarecrow carried with him as the nurses ushered people from the Cafeteria into what appeared to be a book-keeping room. The smell of room full of tomes was interesting, albeit a little difficult to describe. He turned to ask his nurse a quick question, only to find her gone to some area unknown. He snapped his fingers- she was good at that. He'd have to think faster if he wanted to ask her anything.

He looked around the room, his mind traveling to the note he'd seen on the bulletin board the other day. There was a book on Oz somewhere in this place. He wanted to find it, but wasn't sure how. There were so many books! His quick glance around the room took his mind off finding the Oz book- he spotted the man from the bus ride. Excellent timing! It'd be good to get in contact with other nonhumans to try to work out a plan.

"Scourge!" he said a little loudly for the room as he approached the former robot. He stopped, feeling sheepish as a couple of visible nurses glared at him disapprovingly. "Boy, am I glad to see you," he continued in a lower tone.

[Pst. They're in the sun room, not the library.]

"Hm?" Joshua's eyes flicked open as someone called what used to be his name. It was the guy from the bus to Doyleton, the 'Scarecrow' who thought his nickname literal. "Oh, you. What do you want?"

He sat up, looking far less eager to see the Scarecrow than the other man was to see him. The guy wasn't a bad sort, just...weird. He thought he didn't have a brain. Joshua still had no idea how he reconciled that with the fact that he'd managed to be crazy in spite of it.

[Bother, this is what I get for having both threads open in tabs. I clearly can't read- my bad! D:]

More than happy to escape the nurse's eyes in the hushed library, the Scarecrow continued his way into the adjacent Sun Room, bee-lining for the couch. "It's good to see you're okay, after what happened in town and all." There were a number of people he'd not seen since the trip- his former roommate included. He sure hoped he was okay, wherever he'd gone.

He took a seat on the floor next to the couch. "How are you holding up?"

[Nice save, though. :D]

Oh, geeze. "I'm fine. Better than fine, really." Scourge flipped around and stretched out sideways across the couch. He looked almost embarrassed, although he wasn't sure for who. "Look, about that? I wasn't really myself right then, you should probably ignore everything I said. I'm not a robot from space and I'm not out fighting zombies, I'm just some stupid strung-out crazy guy with weird coping mechanisms." He shrugged awkwardly, long fingernails worrying at one of the seams in the couch. This was probably a talk he was going to have to do with a lot of people after this, especially given how many had believed him right off the bat. To anyone sane enough not to...eh. They probably wouldn't want to hang out with him anyway.

Joshua held out his hand to Scarecrow. "Wanna start over? I'm Josh. Local bearded junkie, no batteries included."


The Scarecrow eyed the offered hand. This was certainly strange behavior for a man who so vehemently insisted he'd been made of metal and machinery just a few days ago, and that a man made of straw wasn't capable of having thoughts. Maybe he was the fickle sort, though being fickle about one's identity seemed unlikely.

Then again, it was something the strawman himself had been worrying about since that visit from Dorothy.

"Okay," he said plainly, the confusing evident on his face. "I'm still the Scarecrow, last time I checked." He shook Scourge's hand carefully.

"Don't be so hard on yourself," Joshua joked, his smile fading as he realized the other man probably wouldn't have a clue what he was talking about. Funny how he accepted "Scourge" changing his mind so readily, maybe the straw-brain just took everything at face value.

"You do know you're not actually a scarecrow, right? That sort of Wizard of Oz stuff ain't real." And if he had some Judy Garland fetish he seriously did not want to know about it. Ever, at all.

Okay, he was definitely acting strangely. Maybe it was possible for humans to not have working brains. He wasn't sure how to respond, but he was sure this 'Josh' didn't sound like the guy he'd met on the trip.

"Well, it's pretty obvious I'm not a scarecrow anymore," he said with a tentative smile. "But as for the Wizard, I know he's real! I've seen him with my own eyes! Well, not these particular eyes, but my eyes as a scarecrow, which I'm sure were just as good, if not better."

"Did you happen to be stuffed with substances other than straw at the time?" Joshua asked, amused at how much he sounded like somebody's therapist. "And were you sitting in front of a TV?"

He'd seen the Wizard of Oz when he was a kid and that movie was messed up enough as it was. Combine crazy, drugs, or some mixture of both with watching it and he could see where that would mess up someone's brain.

"No, it was just plain old straw," the Scarecrow said, missing the tone entirely. He crossed his arms, still puzzling over the man's strange change in attitude. "And I'm not really sure what a TV is, but I'm just going to guess it's some sort-- "

He stopped suddenly, his attention drawn to a corner of the room as he saw something just on the edge of his vision. Dark, tangled hair, broken shape- that dreadful witch from the second floor! His eyes widened as soon as he turned to look, just to be sure she was there, but she was gone in the blink of an eye. He felt a tingling sensation make its way through his body. No one else seemed to have noticed her- everyone in the room went about their business.

He cleared his throat, wondering if she would attack during the daylight hours. "... Some sort of robot something," he said, finishing his thought.

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