A warehouse and feelings.
After about nine hours of driving, the four teenagers were exhausted. It was around 3:30 AM, and each one was sure that they had gotten quite far ahead of any person/Draculiod who might be tracking them. They had been driving on a paved road for some time, and on either side of the road was a field of withering grass. Nitro had suggested that they all drive a-ways from the road, into the grass, and sleep there for the time being. Everyone was ready to sleep, but Ghoul wanted to drive on.
"Just a little further guys. That sign back there said there'd be a town in a couple miles. I dunno about you, but I'd like to sleep where there's food nearby," he said with a shrug, leaning on his motorcycle.
"That does sound reasonable. Besides, we'd get a little farther from those Dracs or whatever," Party agreed with a nod. He wasn't so keen on sleeping outside in the first place; towns were full of houses and stores, so he guessed that they could sleep inside somewhere.
Nitro and Étaín agreed tiredly, not in the mood to put up any sort of argument. And so, driving on for another half-hour on the same road, they reached their destination; a town named Fremont. At a first thought, there was no town. The only thing that was to be seen was a drive that turned right off of the main road, and even that seemed to disappear after a stretch across the field. But, that street seemed promising, and so the four kids turned onto it and drove on until they reached the end of it's paved path.
At the end, where tar and dirt met, Party was the first to spot out a building in the distance. It didn't seem too far away, and it wasn't white like the BL/ind. buildings that they had seen across California. Seeing this near speck of a building gave the quartet a sense of hope and relief; they would be able to rest somewhat comfortably soon. So still they drove for several more minutes, until they were within a few yards of the building.
The structure was actually more like a warehouse, or a mega-factory of 88 football fields. The sign placed on the top of the front of the factory read "New United Motor
Manufacturing (NUMMI)", leading Étaín to guess that it was a car assembling company (she assumed correctly).
"Well...should somebody, like, go check it out? To make sure that it's safe?" Nitro asked.
"Gee, way to volunteer yourself. I'll go check," Étaín stated. She parked her motorcycle and began quickly walking towards the warehouse , her tote on her shoulder and her raygun in her right hand. The other three stayed behind to monitor the road behind them, leaving a little time to kill.
Nitro immediately confronted Fun Ghoul.
"What do you think of Étaín?"
"Wh-what? What're you talking about?" Ghoul looked at Nitro with a confused expression, his eyebrows creating a crease between themselves.
"Do you think she's pretty?" Nitro asked in a mocking tone, flipping her hair with her hand and batting her eyelashes. When Ghoul didn't respond, she got somewhat defensive. "Cause she is, ya know."
"I...I don't know..." Ghoul stammered as he began to blush. He wished at that exact moment that he had a paper bag over his head.
"I think he likes her," Party said, crossing his arms and nearing Fun Ghoul with raised eyebrows. Ghoul was beginning to feel under pressure, especially with Party joining Nitro's side.
"Well...well...I think you like Nitro!" Ghoul exclaimed with a pointed finger to Party Poison.
"Don't try to change the subject," Nitro said, glancing up to see Étaín walking back from the building. "We're onto you," she warned, narrowing her eyes to slits and wiggling her eyebrows in an odd fashion. Party nodded in agreement with a smile to Fun Ghoul, who punched him lightly on the arm.
Étaín was now among the trio at this point.
"Nothing's in there. Everything's kind of dirty and it smells weird, but whatever."
Fun Ghoul was thankful for this interruption, and so he began to walk over to the building after stabilizing his motorcycle, ahead of everyone else. Étaín trails not too far behind him; Nitro and Party walk together after exchanging a knowing look that means that they both know that Fun Ghoul has a crush on Étaín.
As everyone files into the factory, Étaín flips a light switch that turns on the first row of lights closest to them. The inside is completely empty, as if there had been nothing
inside ever before. The only things that were around were the leaves and cobwebs that had been collected over the years of abandonment.
"It smells like somebody pissed in here, ugh..." Nitro complained. Party Poison laughs and agrees light-heartedly.
"Well, it'll have to do, since Mr. Prince over here didn't want to sleep outside," Ghoul joked.
"That's Mr. Prince Charming to you."
"Shut up, Party," Étaín said as she laughed. "Where does everyone feel like sleeping? I suggest somewhere near the door..."
"How about the cleanest corner?" Party scoffed.
Étaín rolled her eyes. "Obviously. We'll just sleep over there for now- I'm too tired to look around."
"Well, thank Satan, I brought this weird little blanket along," Nitro said, pulling out a tightly rolled burgundy blanket out of a black tote bag she had grabbed back at the white building.
" 'Thank Satan' ?" Party asked.
"Well, it's better than 'thank God' or some other stupid religious saying..." Nitro muttered, earning a laugh from Étaín.
"Hey, that's offensive, I'm Catholic!" Ghoul shouted.
"And when was the last time you went to church?" Étaín inquired.
"When I was baptized..."
Nitro snorted as she was laying down the blanket, which was much larger than it had seemed rolled up. They figured everyone could lay down on top and pull the corners over themselves. Laying down their totes/knapsacks on the right end of the blanket (against the wall), they decided to keep their shoes on and their rayguns at hand, just in case somebody tried to take them back.
Fun Ghoul lay down on the left end of the blanket, farthest from the corner. Étaín plopped down next to him, with nothing but sleep in mind. Ghoul blushed slightly and tried to cover his face with the blanket corner, glad that nobody paid notice to him. Party slid in next to Étaín, and Nitro was left with the right of the blanket.
"Get over here, Ghoul, I'm freezing."
Nitro and Party looked over to their left to see Étaín practically forcing Ghoul to cuddle with her. Nitro silently acknowledges herself to the fact that Fun Ghoul probably would accept the gesture if he wasn't so embarrassed from her questioning earlier.
Party looks back at Nitro and wraps one of his arms around her shoulders.
"Body warmth, yeah?" he says with a sly grin as he pulls her closer to himself and the others.
"Y-yeah..." Nitro stutters in agreement and blushes lightly.
Fun Ghoul overheard this small exchange of words and immediately sat up, dragging Étaín along with him.
"I TOLD YOU YOU LIKED HER!" he exclaimed, wildly thrashing his arms around in excitement.
"Shut up Ghoul, Étaín gets pissed when you wake her up," Nitro said, noticing that her friend had already fallen asleep, clutching to Fun Ghoul's shirt.
"What?" Ghoul asked before he looked down to see Étaín fast asleep. When he had sat up, she didn't let go of his shirt; Étaín still clung to the fabric as she slept. "Oh..."
"Yeah. If you even try to push her over, she'll pretty much kill you in her sleep. Trust me, it's happened before!" Nitro warned as she remembered the time she had tried to wake Étaín up at 10 AM once; Étaín had kicked Nitro in the stomach, punched her around the chest, and slapped her twice in the face. The only funny part was that Étaín had been completely asleep the whole time, and continued to sleep for another three hours afterwards.
Fun Ghoul sighed and sat back down, but not without a stern glance to Party that said quite a few different things.
"So I guess we'll all just get stuff like deodorant and clean underwear later...?"
"Dude, shut up already," Nitro told Party, who childishly stuck his tongue out in return.
Party Poison shifted around a little, trying not to disturb any of the others. Nitro was on her side, facing the wall, as was he. This way, nobody was able to see the few tears that ran down his pale cheeks.
He had left his little brother Mikey back in California.
As soon as he, Ghoul, Étaín, and Nitro began running down the flights of stairs back at the trainee building, Party had remembered that his twelve year old brother was probably abducted as he had been. He thought about stopping everyone to go back and search for Mikey, so that his sibling might also break out of the building. By the time he decided he would ask everyone to stop and search, they had all reached the end of the stairwell and Étaín was knocking out a foreign woman. That was when Party realized how dangerous it was to leave the facility. People would search for them, and hunt them down relentlessly. Satan knows why that Asian woman punched the red button next to her desk, or what the button was even for. Party didn't want his only sibling to be harmed; Mikey would be better off not risking his life.
And so Party Poison cried from the overwhelming loss of his family, not knowing that everyone else was crying for their losses too.