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 Post subject: Jazz and Gin
PostPosted: Mon Nov 16, 2015 8:41 am 
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There was a cold atmosphere this evening among the Castaluccio household. Even though most of their neighbors had since left or well, been infected... they tried to remain a sort of normality whilst at home. Carla was helping her mother prepare the dinner, and seeing as there wasn't much in the way of food, they had to grow and prepare most things themselves. Her mother muttered something under her breath, but Carla couldn't quite work it out what it was. The house was cold, and that's how it was, now that the fall had begun there was going to be a lack of heating throughout the winter. It had been that way since the Iron Fence went up. Bringing her thoughts back to the kitchen where they were preparing a vegetable stew, the highlight of what they had for dinner most nights. It was quick and gave them as much vitamins as they were going to get these days.
They were lucky, none of them had contracted the virus, that had taken so many lives. Carla never forgot that, they were luckier than most.
"This town's really gone to hell" Frankie mentioned as he looked out of the window and saw the infected milling about, most of their windows were boarded up to prevent any deteriorated from breaking through the glass during the night, and for the most it managed to do it's job. There was always one of them on guard, their father was taking shift tonight and was going to be sleeping until dinner was prepared so he'd be awake through the night. It wasn't the best way to live, but it kept them from becoming zombie food.
Frankie took a deep breath, and brushed his hair one more time before heading into the kitchen.
"Ma' how long is dinner going to be?" He questioned, he was pretty hungry but wouldn't ever disrespect his mother or sister by pointing that out. His mother just looked at him as though to say, it'll be ready when it's ready, and to not mention the idea again. Carla just rolled her eyes.

---

Daisy had been working all day, even though there was infected people wandering around, and sometimes you had to scarper from a deteriorated, most days she was able to get to work and back without much incident. Even though for most the virus meant they had no jobs, the one thing people still wanted was someone cleaning their house. You didn't get paid in money though, there wasn't much need for it, it was more of a trade and exchange system now. The one upside to working for the elite and posh, meant Daisy was a lot better off than some of the others. She would usually ask for food, or linen that she could trade in the market for clothes or other basic items. The one thing she disliked about where she worked, was crossing through the valley of ashes, it was a dark and depressing place. So named, because beforehand, all the ashes from the coal being used in the main city was dumped there and now that most didn't work there, it had become a dumping ground for the dead. The smell alone was enough to make anyone sick. Of course Daisy never went outside without her mask on, which was a simple piece of material that helped filter some of the toxic air out and what she thanked for not having contracted the virus that had sent New York into a wasteland for the most part. The rich stayed virus free because they could afford cleaners, even beforehand and well... didn't really mix with the lower classes.
Daisy got back into her small little apartment, some time after 7, and apart from a few who had tried to coax her into going with them, she'd managed to get there without incident, which she was always thankful for.

_________________
Three rings for the Elven-Kings under the sky,
Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone,
Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die,
One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.
One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.


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 Post subject: Re: Jazz and Gin
PostPosted: Mon Nov 16, 2015 9:44 pm 

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'Crack!'... Alex always loved hearing that sound when he'd swing for the fences. Although, the feeling of it now was more like a bad memory. With the weather getting colder, due to it being fall, "Fall Ball" should have been picking up and getting all the local ball players out on the field, but now, with all of the infections/infected going around, the field was like a ghost town. With the exception Alex and Will, Uncle Tony's son, who have been best-friends forever and the Johnson boys who would do anything to get away from home. "Last one!" said Alex "its getting dark, moms going to be **** if I'm late for dinner. Again." One final pitch, a had full swing of the bat, and 'CRACK'. A long high drive sending the ball over the fence. Having a smile going from ear to ear, Alex gathers all four of the boys together and says "Now comes the fun part, the eight block run home." Followed by the usual grumbles, everyone grabs their bats, and prepares for the dangerous trip home.


"Another round? Mr. Gates" Asks Lee. Standing in his oh so familiar spot behind the bar."Fill her up Lee, now the Jean is gone, I have no where else to go." Mr. Gates claims with his head down and shoulders slumped. This isn't the first person Lee has seen this way since the beginning of the outbreak, in truth, it was becoming a more common site than he wished to admit. Lee pours another drink, "This ones on me, Jean was a wonderful lady." Mr. Gate has a tear fall down his cheek "She sure was!" claimed Mr. Gates choking back sobs. Lee has developed a sixth sense over the years as to the intentions of a man whose turned to the drink, and with things going rough for Mr. Gates as well as being rough on everybody, he can see where this is going. 'Loss leads to more loss.' So, he says "Take your time on that one, we close in a little over an hour, and I'll walk you home." As he is wiping down the bar.

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 Post subject: Re: Jazz and Gin
PostPosted: Tue Nov 17, 2015 9:38 pm 

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Jack Simmons sighed as he looked around his club. Before the wall went up, his speakeasy had been a booming business. Jack and his brother, Jimmy Sawyer, had been making more money then what Jack could have made if he had been able to make in the Yankees. People had not like the Prohibition and Jack had made an effort to make it a classy place. It had music and good drinks. The people of New York said to come to Jack's club for a good time. Business was down now, not everyone was willing to risk being around the infected to get a beer. There were still some people who could not resist the spirits but business wasn't as good as it once was and money did not flow as easily. Jack wiped down the bar as he listened to Maggie Adler, his girlfriend, sing. There was only a handful of people watching her. Jimmy set a small basket of eggs in front of him. Jimmy and Jack were born to an interracial couple and while full blooded brothers, Jimmy had darker skin, like their mother. Not many knew their bond. They assumed Jimmy was Jack's employee and nothing more.

"Jones paid us with eggs, again. His old lady gots a few chickens in their apartment."

"At least we get to eat."

Jack replied grimly, but he was getting tired of always eating eggs. The money they had made before the virus hit didn't do them much good inside the walls. Maggie was able to keep a little garden going in their own place but vegetables and eggs were so boring, especially when it was just about all the three of them ate every meal.

"Yeah, but one of these days I'd like one of her chickens."

"Me too."

Jack said with a nod. He understood, as did Jimmy, why Jones' old lady wouldn't let anyone eat the chickens. At least she had a source of food in this crazy town but eggs was getting old. So, was being stuck inside these walls. It wasn't right of the government to keep them trapped in here with the infected. They weren't animals.

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 Post subject: Re: Jazz and Gin
PostPosted: Mon Nov 23, 2015 9:35 pm 
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After the Castaluccio household had finished up their dinner, Frankie left. He often did in the evenings, no one really knew what he would be getting up to, but there wasn't much he wouldn't do for a bit of extra supplies. He knew his mother and sister worked hard for everything they had and it was not right for the men to shy away from work. His father had grown old and wasn't able to run as fast as he once could, so for the most part Frankie told him that he would run his errands. Which sometimes involved doing unpleasant things, but it kept his family alive. It was a little after 7, when Frankie left the house, and instead of doing what he should have been doing, he fancied going on down to the speakeasy and see what was happening in the town. He could normally get a drink of a kind, be filled in with information and there was usually a lovely lady singing as well. As he made his way down into the heart of it all, he knew things were dangerous, but using the breathing mask his mother had acquired for them all, meant an infection was less likely to over take him... and had done the job so far. She'd gotten them from one of the cleaners whom had cleaned out a few big posh houses out the way. Frankie pushed open the door of the speakeasy and waltzed in. Tipping his hat slightly at the two men whom were behind the bar.
"Business is slow the day 'ey old sport" Frankie mentioned to Jack. "I'll take a drink, what's one of those going to set one back these days?" He asked, in an almost condescending tone. It wasn't that he was rude, nor thought he was better than the others, he just simply was that way.

Carla sighed as she watched her brother leave the house, although he claimed it was for errands, she knew he'd find himself down in a bar somewhere and pass out till the morning. She knew it agitated her mother so, but of course they both knew their place and they were not to question their father nor Frankie as to what they were doing or to stop it. She wished sometimes she could go out and see what things were like, but her mother kept her inside once it went dark, and only during daylight hours to run to the marketplace where they exchanged things for other things. Normally they traded herbs and vegetables for other food items, or clothing or blankets. It was a simple system, and seemed to cause less of a ruckus than the monetary system they'd had before they'd been cut off from the world. Carla sometimes dreamed of what the outside world was like now, and whether things had completely changed.

----

Daisy was tired and would be up early the next morning to clean more houses and do more odd end jobs for people. She didn't mind but sometimes she wondered what it would be like to go on holiday, break the pace. Of course, no one could leave the city and there was no where you'd want to go for an extended period of time here. Home was the best place for you, as long as you had a few precautionary measures, it wasn't too bad. A lot of the completely deteriorated were hunted down by anonymous groups, and you were usually kind of safe. She ate her soup that she'd cooked the other day, simply just reheating, and then got into her bed to warm herself in among the blankets, and before long she was fast asleep. Dreams filled with ideas of holidays and life beyond the Iron Fence.

_________________
Three rings for the Elven-Kings under the sky,
Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone,
Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die,
One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.
One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.


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 Post subject: Re: Jazz and Gin
PostPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2015 11:52 pm 

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The walk home after passing Wills turn was easy; one block down then one block over, bam! Home sweet home. But something seems off. The front light that mom always keeps on until I'm home is off. "Maybe she's mad since I'm late.. Again.." Making it to the front door, I take a deep breath in an attempt to brace myself for the verbal punishment mom is about to give me. It's always been verbal, well.. since I was eight. I remember her crying more than I did, and I was the one getting spanked. But that was mom. A heart of gold and a silver tongue.
I opened the door, "Ma, I'm home!" I holler. But there is no response. There are no lights on, but there is candle light coming from the kitchen. I walk that way still carrying my stuff so I can take it to my room. As I enter the kitchen I see my mom standing at the back window, motionless. "Hey mom." I say "I know I'm late, sorry! It was an accident." There is no response. Man she must be really ****. I try to approach her and that's when I see her reflection off the glass. Her eyes are blood shot an vacant, blood is slowly running out of her nose and mouth. I know what has happened but I can't believe it! Thinking back to this morning when I left she had a slight cough, but I had no idea! My mind goes blank. Then I hear the word "Mom" being screamed again and again. Finally realizing the scream is coming from me! That is when she begins to turn, the blood lust beginning to contort her face. That's when panic sets in...

--------------------------------

Mr. Gates isn't a large man, but as drunk as he was and with as much sorrow as he is carrying it was like waking home a 500lb baby. Some how (mostly me) we managed to make it to the Gates house. Walking him up the stairs to the front door was pushing me to my limit, but I've come this far there is no turning back now. Taking his keys and unlocking the door was as easy as you'd expect, not very, but none the less I got him inside and on his couch. I grab the trashcan out of his bathroom and place it next to him. Seeing the quilt on the back of the couch I toss it over him, finally, I sit in a chair and get a minute to catch my own breath. I deicide after about thirty minutes that its time for me to go. I grab a glass of water and set it on the table and head for the door. Once I am outside I hear a scream of pure terror coming from next door. Without thinking I head to the front door, grab the handle, and swing it open. What I see is unbelievable.

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 Post subject: Re: Jazz and Gin
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2015 4:56 pm 

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Jack wondered if it was possible to get over the Iron Fence, or even dig under it to freedom. He, Jimmy, and Maggie needed to the hell out of New York. All three had come here with big dreams. Maggie had wanted to be an actress, Jimmy had wanted to play jazz music, and Jack had wanted to play baseball for the Yankees. Only Jimmy's dream was sort of coming true. Although once the infection hit the city, the people listening to Jimmy was getting smaller and smaller. Some of their regular customers had got infected and died. Others decided that if they would eventually die, they had better things to do then spend their last days in a speakeasy.

Frankie Castuluccio was one of their regular customers. Jack and Jimmy nodded their heads in acknowledgement of Frankie's greeting. Jack sighed, Frankie was right. Business was slow. Gone were the awesome days when he and his brother had first opened this place. Tons of people, lots of money...Oh, those were good times.

"Unfortunately."

He replied grimly. Money wasn't worth much in city and he couldn't charge as much as he did before the Iron Fence had went up.

"Since it is you, Frankie boy, I'll charge you fifteen cents a glass tonight."

He used to be able to charge more, a lot more. But people didn't have that much money now and money didn't do much good in an infected city. Plus, Frankie was a regular, one of his best customers. Willing to risk take the risks to come here and Jack offered him a good price in return for the patronage.

"You want your usual?"

Jack asked as he reached under the bar to get a glass. Jimmy left them to get his saxophone. It was time for Maggie to take a break and for him to perform.

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 Post subject: Re: Jazz and Gin
PostPosted: Tue Dec 22, 2015 10:29 am 
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Frankie knew that they were cutting their prices even more these days, and even though money didn't really hold much value in an infected city it wasn't something he would usually be short of. He looked up at Jack and nodded.
"The usual sounds like choice" he mentioned as it turned to see Maggie finishing her singing... her voice was very beautiful as was she. But Frankie knew better than to try anything on with her, she was spoken for and not like a lot of the ladies here had once been like.
"Ey old sport, you never know, they might even be a business boom around the corner for you" He said, trying to lighten his friends dampened spirits. Although he didn't hold much hope for them, the world had seemingly forgotten about them, but they'd just simply continue as though life had never changed for them. It wasn't living but quite simply surviving. As Jack passed Frankie his drink he enjoyed the harsh fire that fled down his throat along with the sweet taste of whiskey. There was nothing Frankie liked more than a Whiskey on the Rocks.
"Jimmy's Jazz is definitely a lot better than I remember it being in the beginning, old sport" Frankie mentioned to Jack, who seemingly didn't mind the off tone that would occur once in a while.

_________________
Three rings for the Elven-Kings under the sky,
Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone,
Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die,
One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.
One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.


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 Post subject: Re: Jazz and Gin
PostPosted: Fri Jan 22, 2016 12:00 am 

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Panic, Terror, Fear, these three words come to mind and consume it. I can't help myself. After all, my mom is all I have, well had.

Once we are face to face, I.. I.. I am unable to say anything besides "mom". So many things running through my mind, but I don't have the time to do anything about it. Looking into this blank expression fills me with dread and despair. I reach a hand out, trying to get her to focus, which works, but not in the way I hoped. Her head slightly cocks to the side and a long line of spit and blood begins to run out of her mouth, followed by a shriek or scream that is unworldly. At that moment I knew, I knew things would never be the same again. The scream acted like a trigger, she lunged at me from across the room. Still having the bat in my hands I press it against her chest to keep her body away from mine. Her arms flailing while her mouth searched for a piece of flesh to sink its teeth into.

Mom is a small woman, 5'3, 110lbs soaking wet. But this, disease, has made her rabid. She is easily pushing me back into a corner. As soon as I feel my back touch the wall I know I need to do something. But what? This is my mom, I can't bring myself to hurt her. So, with one solid shove I push with all I have and it sends her sailing across the room onto the floor. Unsure as to weather or not I have hurt her, I watch in awe as she picks her self back up. She looks at me with these cold dead eyes that break my heart even more, since it is such a contrast to the warmth and joy that filled them before. Then comes another shriek, followed by yet another attack. I go to brace myself for the impact, but find my footing unsteady as she crashes into me, causing me to fall over backward with her on top, with only the bat between us. The panic in me has increased ten fold, her teeth and mouth only inches away.

That is when a miracle happens. The front door opens and a strange black man comes rushing in. He sees the situation and approaches to help. As he gets closer I beg him to help me, but at the same time to not hurt her. It all happens so fast, he gives me a quick nod, grabs my mom from behind, as I push he pulls and with our combined effort we throw her across the table giving us both distance and time to get out of there.

He reaches down, grabs my hand, and says "Lets get the hell outta here!" I can't argue with that. So I grab my bag as we head for the front door, taking one last look at my mom as she stands and faces me with those eyes. I slam the door shut and exhale.



--------------------------

Opening the door was second nature to Lee. Seeing a small walker woman on-top of a struggling young man was not. However, the kid needed help or he was going to be food. My first instinct was to take out the walker and save the life, but as I approached the kid begged me not to kill it. That's when I realized that this wasn't some random walker, but rather family to the boy. So, the next best thing was to separate and save. Putting one hand under each arm allowed a good grip as well as provided some protection from bites. I pulled with all I had and tossed this poor woman away from both the boy and myself. Looking at the kid, I could tell his life had just "hit the fan", but he was still alive and I hoped to keep it that way. I extended my hand and said "Let's get the hell outta here!" I helped him to his feet and headed to the door taking myself outside to "safety" as much as it could be called that now a days. I waited on the boy making sure he got outside safe. Then the thought occurred to me, "What now?". I looked at the boy and he looked back at me. A silence fell between us but we were alive.

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TCollins


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 Post subject: Re: Jazz and Gin
PostPosted: Fri Jan 22, 2016 9:00 am 

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Jack nodded his head to Frankie and went to get his drink. He had to cut prices, it was the only way to get some business in here. Even if someone like Frankie would never hurt for money, others in the city weren't as lucky. Jack never used to hurt for money either, but alcohol still had to be paid for and his suppliers were running low. Thanks to the laws of supply and demand, they jacked up prices on him as their inventory began to dwindle. Eventually, unless he found out way out of the Iron Fence or a way to get the goods through it, he'd be out of business. When that happened, Jack had no idea what they would. Jack handed Frankie his drink and shook his head.

"I doubt that, unless the infected start to drink beer."

Jack watched Maggie finish her singing. She was beautiful and he was proud to say she was his girl. The one good thing that had happened to him since coming to New York. His baseball dreams died when the Yankees told him he was good but not good enough to be in the Big Leagues. He laughed when Frankie brought up Jimmy's music.

"Well, he gets lots of practice now. Maggie'd lose her voice if she sang all night."

His brother's dreams hadn't been any better here. Jimmy was good, but not great. Sometimes he missed his cue and played off key. Not that people who still came to their speakeasy seemed to mind. Fewer and fewer tables were be filled each week. Eventually even old man Jones would be gone and not bringing anymore of his wife's eggs to pay for his drinks.

Jack wiped down the bar as Maggie headed back stage.

"Someday, Frankie, we need to get the hell out of this city."

It was something he, his girl, and his brother had talked about a lot but none of them could come with a solid plan. The government made sure the patrol the border, keeping both the infected and the living, who were in the city when the walls went up, trapped.

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