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 Learning to Love

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sun Dec 06, 2009 1:29 pm

Joey blinked. He'd half-assumed he would wind up covering the bill, mostly because it had been his suggestion to go here. He shrugged to himself and set out another four dollars from his slightly-beaten black wallet. "Then I guess that means we're off," he said, and started for the front door of the diner.

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sun Dec 06, 2009 4:22 pm

Artemis placed a ten dollar bill down, his meal having been higher priced, and exited with the others, unlocking his car and sitting in it, cranking the engine.
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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sun Dec 06, 2009 7:06 pm

Michelle followed, hopping into the passenger seat with a grin.
"How far is the park?" She asked.

(Bah. short post. Dx)

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sun Dec 06, 2009 7:19 pm

((Heh, it's okay. We all do them sometimes.))

Joey, meanwhile, headed back out to his motorcycle. He paused for a moment before putting on his helmet. Today was an odd day for him. Since when did he ever decide to so randomly go out with friends --whom, in all actuality, he barely even knew-- without making plans? Not that it was bad, he confessed to himself; he was finding himself somewhat fond of these two. But that didn't excuse how strange this turn in his social life was.

He shook his head and put his helmet back on to head out to the nearby park. It was better not to question it.

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Mon Dec 07, 2009 3:41 pm

(We're here because we write well, not large. Wink.)

Artemis stretched as he relaxed into the driver's seat. Turning out of the parking lot and following Joey again, he turned his eyes to Michelle briefly before putting them back on the road. "Not far. About 4 and a half miles from here."
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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Mon Dec 07, 2009 7:40 pm

Michelle smiled, glad that it wasn't far. That meant that on a good day, she could walk there. They arrived before long, and Michelle could hardly keep from jumping right out of the car. She waited for a little bit though, not wanting to seem overly anxious. She opened her door slowly as she saw Artemis do the same.

She stretched out her limbs in the fresh air, and took a deep breath. It really was a beautiful day.

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Mon Dec 07, 2009 9:02 pm

Joey ruffled out his hair after parking his motorcycle yet again, looking out toward the park. How long had it been since he'd been here? Years at least. He wasn't sure.

"Been awhile," he remarked lightly to the other two, glancing between them and the park that stretched out ahead.

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Tue Dec 08, 2009 7:56 pm

Artemis stretched and yawned. "I think the last time I was here was about a month ago." He scratched his chin, then looked over the picnic tables, monkey bars, swing sets, and all the other neat structures around the area. "It's nice and warm, today."
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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Thu Dec 10, 2009 5:18 pm

Michelle nodded happily. It was beautiful out! She looked up, using her hand to cast a protective shadow over her eyes. There was hardly a cloud in the sky. She looked back to her two companions, suddenly feeling a bit awkward. This had been her suggestion, but now that they were actually here, she had no idea what to do. She shrugged that feeling off, and ran over to the play set. They were the only ones in the park, so she didn't have to worry about scaring off any kids. She climbed half way up the slide, using her hands to keep from sliding back down, and looked to see if Artemis and Joey would come join her. She cast them a playful grin.

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Thu Dec 10, 2009 5:25 pm

Joey made no immediate move to do anything, other than smirk a little at Michelle. He walked over in her direction, looking more amused than anything. "I'm waiting for you to fall," he remarked. "I think this is the first time I've seen a teenager bolt up a slide like that. Think you'll have any more luck staying up now than you would have ten years ago?"

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Thu Dec 10, 2009 5:33 pm

Artemis soon followed, cracking up a little as Michelle climbed the slide from the slick end. He chuckled and quickly bounded up the stairs of the slide, sitting at the top and looking to Michelle quietly. "Ya know, I could so push you right now. But then you'd get hurt, and I don't think I'd like that."

[Anybody up for a general "Bully scene"? Ya know, a couple of punks try to pick a fight with the three of them? I don't know why, but right now seems like a really good moment. Then again, my head is swimming in the Soup of Dizzy, so meh.]
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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Thu Dec 10, 2009 8:09 pm

Michelle simply stuck her tongue out at Joey. Being back in a park was bringing out the kid in her, it seemed. She looked up at Artemis, with a sly smile on her face.
"If you push me, Arty, I'll pull you down with me." She climbed up slightly higher, as if she was about to do just that.

((I'm up for it if Syl is.))

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Thu Dec 10, 2009 8:20 pm

((I'm definitely up for it. Dramaaa~ And since at least Joey is the kinda guy to get a lot of jerks on him for no reason, there's at least a little base for it there.))

"Do I have to catch you?" Joey asked out loud. "Because if you take Artemis down with you, and I have to catch anyone, there's no guarantee I'll survive. Or even try, for that matter."

He glanced off to the side and noticed a small group of guys a small distance away on the street, coming closer. He paid them no mind for the moment, but mentally hoped that they wouldn't come near him or his friends. He was in too good a mood to deal with other people.

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Fri Dec 11, 2009 6:40 am

Artemis noticed these other guys, and shrugged. Turning to Michelle, he grabbed her arms and pulled her up to the small platform. "Hey, Joey, you gonna come join our little tea party, or just sit down there and wait for us to jump on ya?"

The group of boys was now entering the park. Artemis recognized them as kids from the same high school they were going at. Sitting up a little, he stuck his head out a little and looked to them. Three of them, and they all looked pretty bad. One had a chain on his belt, but that seemed the only differential feature between them.

Artemis climbed down the slide-stairs and walked over to them. "Can we help you?"
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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Fri Dec 11, 2009 8:41 am

Michelle gasped in surprise as Artemis pulled her up with him, and laughed as she nearly fell onto him. She righted herself just in time to see him climbing back down. What was he doing? She looked over to where he was walking, and her face paled slightly. She may have been new to the school, but she had already become very familiar with who to stay away from. She only recognized one of the boys, but she knew that he was trouble.

His name was Harold, although he insisted on being called Harry, and he had a reputation larger than Michelle cared to know about. She had only ran into him once, but that had been enough for her. She hugged herself tightly, remembering that time.

It had been in her first week in school. Harold - for she refused to call him by what he wanted - Had come up to her and offered to show her around. She had smiled at him, thinking for once that she would not have trouble making friends. After all, this one seemed nice. That was, until he pushed her up against a locker. The look he had had in his eyes still brought shivers down her spine. He had begun stroking her hair and. . . she shook her head. Luckily, a teacher had come by and broken it up. Since then, she had done her best to ignore him and his entire group. Why was Artemis going to talk to them?

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Fri Dec 11, 2009 5:14 pm

Joey couldn't help a scowl when the other boys came nearer. He disliked all three of them and would have liked nothing more than to break a bone or two in each--he knew the blond one felt the same about him, and he wouldn't have been surprised if the other two shared that feeling.

"What do you want?" he asked lightly, resisting the urge to grind his teeth. Artemis may have wanted to be polite, or at least feign it, but Joey was far from that kind of patience with these three. He glanced back at Michelle and noticed her frightened reaction, and made a mental note of it.

"Nothing much . . . " said the blond-haired of the boys slowly. He smiled, a falsely sweet expression, showing a missing tooth. Joey's lip curled in disgust.

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sat Dec 12, 2009 6:42 am

Artemis was neither feigning politeness, nor truly being it. His eyes alone were telling the boys to leave. "I suggest you get lost. I'm not in the mood to deal with you, Harry."

Ever since Artemis had moved here from Romania, he and Harry had butted heads on just about every subject. Folding his arms across his chest, Artemis merely glared at Harry and the other two, probably just new members he'd picked up for his little would-be "gang".
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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sat Dec 12, 2009 4:45 pm

Harry just grinned that stupid, obnoxious grin that he always did.
"What's th'matter, Artemis?" he asked in his cocky voice. "Last I checked, this was a public park. Mike, Sean and me, we just wanted ta play in the park too. Ain't that right, guys?" His friends grunted in agreement, obviously confident since they out powered Michelle and her friends.

Michelle herself stayed back, although she did hope down from the play set. She crossed her arms over her chest, and glared at the boys, doing her best not to show how intimidated she was.

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sat Dec 12, 2009 7:00 pm

"Somehow I doubt that," Joey remarked dryly. He subconsciously took a small step to the side, in front of Michelle. "I'm sure, then, that you can find some other corner of the park to inhabit, rather than bothering the rest of us."

The blond, dubbed Sean, laughed a little and shrugged his shoulders. "Maybe we like it here," he said, his suggestion carrying the weight of a threat.

"Yes, wanna-be gangsters playing on a slide is really threatening."

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sat Dec 12, 2009 9:07 pm

Artemis stepped back with Joey, forming a sort of wall with him to block the boys from Michelle. Simultaneously, he drew his left hand back and balled it into a fist while his right fist lay stretched at a downward 45 degree angle, ready to fight if necessary.

Mike, the red-haired boy, unhooked the chain on his belt loop and held it out, twirling part of it. "That a challenge, Artie?"

Artemis twitched. "I'd watch your tongue, Michael. I don't make challenges." He leaned slightly forward and down, as if in a lunging stance, prepared to strike a swift, if not painful, blow.
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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sun Dec 13, 2009 9:57 am

Michelle took a deep breath. This was getting out of hand fast, and she didn't want to see her new friends in a fight. Especially since they would be out numbered, since she would be just about useless. But she wasn't useless right now. After all, she had one weapon that Joey and Artemis couldn't use if they tried.

She put a hand on her friends' shoulders, and gently broke the wall they had formed to protect her. She walked towards the threatening group, putting on her sweetest smile. She put a slight swing to her hips, and fluttered her eyelids softly.

"Come on boys, it's such a beautiful day. Surely you just want to continue your walk, right?" She put one hand on Harold's chest, although touching him made her feel sick to her stomach.

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sun Dec 13, 2009 10:11 am

Joey watched Michelle with sheer disbelief and confusion across his features. Just what did she think she was doing? It was such a random break in character for her, as far as he could tell . . . not to mention that he doubted this was going to be a technique that would end well with these particular three. Watching her do this also made a certain anger tighten in his chest; unsure of what that was, he was silent, only knowing that he did not like her touching anyone else like that when he couldn't trust them.

"He-hey, look what we've got now," Sean laughed when Michelle came over, giving her an appreciative eye. He glanced over at Artemis and Joey, then looked back at Michelle. "Why don't you stay with us? I think we're a little more of what you're looking for than those two are." He made a suggestive nod of his head toward the other two and took a step closer to Michelle.

Joey was unaffected by the insult, but both his hands curled into tight fists when he saw Sean moving nearer. "You'd better not try anything," he growled darkly.

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sun Dec 13, 2009 6:47 pm

Artemis twitched angrily. "Don't you even think about it. If you dare touch her, you'll regret it." He stepped forward, that clenched fist reaching further back, as if on the end of a rubber band, about to snap and be let loose. "Michelle, it's best that you back up..."
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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sun Dec 13, 2009 7:05 pm

Michelle had begun to tremble, although she best to conceal it. She wouldn't be able to pacify the situation if her two friends continued to act so protective! She looked back at them, silently begging them to stop. After all, a fight was exactly what she was trying to avoid! She turned back to the sleazy group, plastering that smile back on her face.

"You know I'm not your type Sean," she giggled. "Move along now. If you do, I'll give you that Calculus help you've been trying to bully everyone into giving you. How's that sound?"

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PostSubject: Re: Learning to Love   Sun Dec 13, 2009 7:10 pm

Joey seethed but didn't move, his glare deadly. He wanted to avoid a fight too, but that group was quickly giving him more than one excuse. All he needed was for one of them to make the wrong move. One of them to throw the first punch, or to lay the wrong hand on Michelle . . . There was only so far he trusted her--or them.

Sean smirked and shook his head. "I think I'd rather have you than the math," he said, grasping Michelle by the arm. "I think anybody would." He glanced to his friends for support, not expecting any sort of denial.

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