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Author Topic: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]  (Read 113 times)

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Offline Marakai2.0

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Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« on: September 13, 2017, 02:23:01 PM »
It was cloudy as shit and hotter than hell, not a breeze to be found in the dusty valley. Quiet, save for the breathing of two figures hunkered down amidst the rocks.

Vaas was glad at that point he was a pyro - it didn't take too much effort for him to suppress the heat for him and his partner, though it was still far from comfortable. They'd picked a wonderful day for target practice, naturally - some wager or another about who was better, and Vaas being Vaas had, naturally, jumped right on it.

Probably should have checked the conditions before they went out, but, whatever. They were here now, and Vaas was damned if he wasn't gonna win his credits. He'd show her who was better. Any day, heat or no, was perfect for a bit of friendly rivalry.

"Y'know..." he started, reaching up to unseal and remove his mask, "yer fuckin' goin' down this time. Ain't anyone beat me in practice before, and ain't anyone gonna do it now."

He pulled the mask away to uncover his face, black tresses of long hair falling free, framing a tanned face and steely eyes set in a permanent glare. Despite the hard look in his eyes, he found himself smiling as he placed a cigarette between his lips. On the thumb and middle finger of his flight suits right glove were two metal studs that, when struck together, produced a spark.

From this spark grew a flame, fueled purely by his mind, and with this he lit the end of his cigarette, inhaled a breathful of acrid smoke, and exhaled.

"Hope ya brought enough ammo fer that fuckin' rifle a yers. Gonna take awhile fer ya ta hit anything, so ya might need the shells." He chuckled a bit and unholstered his pistol, a damn handcannon if anyone had seen one. 12.77 mm shells, both slugs as well as incindiery, though now loaded with slugs. On the barrel was engraved the word 'Widowmaker.' He could put softball sized holes in most anything with the thing.

"Now....ya wanna go first? Or, ya wanna pick out a target for me, Bird Brain?" His gaze slid to the feminine form beside him. Damn if she didn't make even a flight suit look good.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2017, 02:26:48 PM by Marakai2.0 »

Offline Blink

Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #1 on: September 14, 2017, 10:41:52 AM »
With an audible sigh, Sparrow unsealed her own mask, pulling it off and clipping it to her belt. Long strands of brown fell around her shoulders for only a few short moments before she was pulling them back, tying it all in a band.

At first she let him go on, only flicking her eyes over to him from time to time as she loaded one of the magazines to her assault rifle. After completing one she moved on to another, clicking in each round until it was full and clipping it to her belt alongside her mask. With the last *click* she smirked at his comment about her weapon choice.

"Big and flashy" she murmured as she checked the sites. "That damn pistol is going to have you blowin' your arm off one of these days."

Whipping around she grabbed a full magazine and slammed it into the bottom of her rifle before turning back to the opening and taking aim.

"How about you worry less about me picking a target for you and worry more about how you are going to keep up." She pulled her eyes from the line of sight for a second to send him a wink and a click of her tongue before shooting her attention forwards again.

Two seconds, that was all it took for her to re-aim and pull the trigger causing a few 'pops' to escape the barrell of her gun. The muscles in her shoulders flexed as she pushed against the recoil, keeping her stance vertually flawless as the gun kicked back three seperate times.

"There is some kind of metal construct a few hundred meters out. Shoot that."

Sparrow set down her weapon and took a step towards Vaas. Reaching out she took his cigarette before taking in a long drag off of it. Nicely she handed it back, well if nicely means flicking it at him.

"You're up asswipe." Despite her tone, Sparrow was actually smiling. "If you miss I'm telling Grisham."

Offline Marakai2.0

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Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #2 on: September 14, 2017, 12:38:15 PM »
"'Ey. I like ol' Widowmaker, here. An' yeah, she kicks like a mule, but I ain't a pansy bitch, either. Takes some oomph ta fire a beauty like this'un. Bet you can't keep a handle on it." He grinned as she slammed a mag in and took aim.

"I'll keep up, dontcha worry yerself 'bout that. You jus' worry 'bout-" too late, as she had at that point fired her rifle, the barrel flashing three times in succession. He noted her stance, the way she leaned into the recoil as she fired. He whistled admirably, somehow managing so with that cigarette hanging from one corner of his mouth.

Whether it was at her precision, or the manner in which she held herself, was hard to tell. Perhaps a bit of both.

"Not bad, feather head. Color me impressed." He winked at her, mirroring her action from just a moment before. He watched her as she moved toward him, and swiped his smoke straight from his mouth.

He grinned when she put it to her lips and took a drag. Things like this seemed like a rather common occurrence, and he'd long ago stopped offering her her own. She always just took his, it seemed.

With his free hand, he snagged the then flying cigarette between his thumb and forefinger in midair, and replaced it in his mouth. "Y'know, one day yer gonna put my eye out'r somethin', playin' like that. An' yer gon' feel all kinda bad about it. Wouldn't tha' jus' show ya?"

He smirked, and turned his back to her, standing sidelong as he raised that cannon of his to sight it, holding the grip in only one hand, arm straight. A big gun like that, most would use two hands to compensate for the recoil, but not him.

"Boom..." he muttered, and squeezed the trigger. The gunshot was a roar, echoing loudly off the stone walls of their little impromptu shooting range. One could see the thick muscle of his arm tensing only momentarily, the big pistols barrel raising just barely as he forced it back down.

He squeezed two more times, three shots of his own for all three of hers, and three large shell casings ejected from the slide to land, smoking, at his feet.

"Beat that, feather brain. Let's go check out shots, eh?" He turned to her with a grin - it'd been impossible to miss the marks he made, three large craters in the steel that he could see from here. "I'm thinkin' Grish ain' gonna hear about this."

Offline Blink

Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #3 on: September 14, 2017, 05:06:41 PM »
Taking a step back Sparrow crossed her arms while she watched Vaas take aim and fire. Her expression was firm, not faltering once as he released three separate shots into the same target in the distance.

"Okay..." she paused, reaching down to pick up her gun and sling the strap across her torso. "I'll just tell him you still lock your elbows when shooting that thing."

Sparrow reached out and patted his shoulder before walking past him, stopping just before exiting the safety of the rocks and walking out into the open.

"You take point. I'll cover from behind. I don't want that fucking beast being shot behind me and taking a chunk out of my shoulder. The last thing we need is a wounded pilot stranded out here in the wastes or something."


Offline Marakai2.0

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Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #4 on: September 14, 2017, 05:34:47 PM »
"But I- what? Th' hell, Sparrow. No lockin' the elbow, I get hurt enough jammin' my arms inta the fuckin' engine compartments of jets. Not that fuckin' stupid." He exhaled a heavy breath before pulling the spent cigarette out of mouth.

Vaas stared at that burning ember for a moment, before watching as it lit up brighter. The butt burned down to nothing, filter and all, before he turned to follow her

"Yeah, as if I'd take th' risk of hittin' ya. An' besides tha', if you get hit by anythin', ya know I gotcher back. Even if ya are bein' particularly hateful tanight." He stepped past her with his gun still drawn, winking at her as he took point.

"Jus' don't put a couple of those 5.56's inta my back, eh? Fair's fair, if yer not trustin' me ta do the same, yeah?"

Offline Blink

Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2017, 06:03:56 PM »
"What I meant is that it's just smarter for myself and my small longer range bullets to be in the back, you idiot."

Sparrow stared at his shoulders as he walked in front of her, weapon drawn. She stopped when he mentioned her not trusting him.

"You trying to insult me Vaas?" All jokes aside Sparrow took the topic of trust very seriously. Every single member of her squad held her trust and it was insulting whether they were joking or not when they questioned it.

The quelling anger building inside was quickly diminished when Sparrow caught something out of the corner of her eye up ahead.

"Movement ahead" She was already pulling her rifle site to her eye, trying to get a closer look at what it could be. "Raiders..." she whispered, pulling her eye to look at Vaas. Then, a smile formed at the corner of her lips.

"Target practice just got a hell of a lot more fun." Letting out a laugh she stepped up beside him, pressing the butt of her gun into the placement against her shoulder. Sparrow wasn't afraid in the slightest. Even at a disadvantage with being out in the open like this, she knew that between herself and Vaas, these cocksuckers didn't stand a fucking chance.

"Looks like there is only two. I'll be nice and share." Then just as she had done before Sparrow quickly took aim and let off a 'pop' causing one of the targets ahead to drop.

"Hell yeah!"

Offline Marakai2.0

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Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2017, 07:00:04 PM »
"I was jokin', bird brain. 'Bout every topic. You oughta know that by now. Ain' been mad atcha since tha' first night at Ralleigh's, when ya sucker punched me over a fuckin' hoodie. 'Course I know ya trust me. An' I trust you, with jus' about everything." There were a great many things he trusted her with, too. Secrets that only the two of them shared, a link forged of absolute trust shielding those secrets.

He glanced over his shoulder at her with an expression of hurt. "An' I dunno how you'd think differently, no matter what I say."

He huffed as he turned back to face front, stepping fully out into the open and seeing the targets just as she pointed them out.

"Only fuckin' two of 'em. Not much fun when we got da drop on 'em." He didn't even aim his pistol this time, raising that cannon just as Sparrow fired her rifle. "Center mass," he mumbled, calling his shot an instant before squeezing the trigger.

Just as the first raider dropped, a spout of blood erupted in the others chest as the massive slug crashed through his rib cage, pulverizing bone and muscle and organ tissue.

He fell just as dead as the first, collapsing into the dust.

"Only fuckin' two of 'em. They're either very stupid, very desperate, or there's a camp nearby."

Offline Blink

Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2017, 09:25:52 PM »
With the amount of concentration, she placed on her own target Sparrow practically jumped when she heard the loud backlash ring out from Vaas's pistol. Instinctively she reached out and shoved Vaas's shoulder.

"You ass! Maybe a little warning!" She flicked her attention to the now two raiders a few hundred yards in front of them. "Good shot though..."

Lowering her weapon Sparrow began pushing forwards. "Let's hope stupid and desperate. We don't have the ammo or manpower to take out an entire camp. Maybe something more worthy than just scrap metal up ahead around that construct."

It didn't take long for her to reach the two bodies, well body... and a half, that were laying in the dirt. Reacting as if she were examining a round target Sparrow smiled again when she saw she hit her raider right between the eyes.

"Fuck yeah!" she yelled as she dug out her Com. "Here hold this," Sparrow then shoved her rifle towards Vaas.

Kneeling down Sparrow extended her arm out to point the camera on her Com towards her. She then stuck out her tongue and flashed a peace sign with the other hand snapping the picture of herself.

"Gotta show Commander..." she mumbled as she typed in his name and sent him the picture. "Want a picture with yours? We could take them to Ralleigh's tonight and maybe get some free drinks or something." She bit her bottom lip and flashed Vaas a smile at that. "Nothing hotter than a pilot taking out some stupid Raiders."

Offline Marakai2.0

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Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2017, 05:08:43 AM »
Vaas stepped with her shove, only moving a single step before rebalancing himself; he was keeping his attention more on their surroundings, staying alert to the possible presence of other targets. Only after he was positive there wasn't any in the immediate vicinity did he glance at her again.

"Ya think you got it bad, try bein' the one behind th' gun. 'Sides that, yer th' one that thought it was smart ta stand right beside me." He grinned as he followed after her, and his eyes again began sweeping their environs for danger.

When the whole world was trying to kill you, there wasn't room for carelessness, but he knew better than to remind Sparrow of that. So he'd watch her back for her. Luckily, everything still seemed clear.

"Yeah, if there does happen ta be a camp, though, we oughta find it so we can let Grish know. We're awful close ta th' dome, and somethin' like tha' doesn't need ta stay around." He hummed as he followed her to the fallen raiders, and grinned when she pointed out her marksmanship.

"Good on ya, bird brain. Nice shot," he started, just as she shoved her rifle into his chest. He grabbed it by the stock, and held it loosely in one hand, barrel pointed away from the both of them.

"A pic? Nah, somehow I don' think they'd appreciate tha' gory mess posted up on th' wall. Wouldn't mind showin' Grisham, though. If'n we see any more stragglers, ya should trade me guns so th' next'un don't have a fuckin' crater in his chest."

Offline Blink

Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2017, 09:14:31 PM »
With a laugh, Sparrow reached out and grabbed her rifle. "No thanks. I would like to keep my arms."

Her eyes then moved towards the metal construct they were shooting at before the raiders made their appearance. "Looks like the top of an old building maybe?" She began walking towards it again, lifting her rifle to a defensive posture while scanning their surroundings.

"Let me see if this shows up on the latest scans."

She wouldn't move ahead without his input. If this was indeed an old building who knew how far down it went. Or better yet, what was beneath the surface that they couldn't see.

Com still in hand Sparrow pulled up the map they had available for the area. With scans and patrols being done on the regular the building should already have been scoped and researched.

Turns out she was right, the construct did show up on the map. "Nevermind... false alarm" her eyes still on her Com she read the info available to her. "Only goes down about ten feet or so. Tweedle Dumb Raiders One and Two were probably just camping here for the time being."

Taking a few steps forwards she held her posture, rounding the structure ready to pull the trigger just in case. It was very anticlimactic as nothing out of the ordinary was behind it that could be seen to the untrained eye, however, Sparrow's eyes were anything but untrained. Taking a deep breath she lowered her rifle and looped the strap over her shoulder.

"Well guess we should head back... I'm bored." Sparrow's tone had fallen flat as she said it, her eyes searching for Vaas's.

"Movement behind the yellow and faded red flap three yards to my left. I saw a boot. Blow a hole in that motherfucker." Sparrow using the psychic bond she shared with Vaas to deliver the message.

While her tone was flat she was still smiling, clearly having fun with this little game of cat and mouse.

"Probably thinks we are a bunch of fucking idiots" she smirked as her eyes locked with his once more.

Offline Marakai2.0

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Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2017, 03:04:36 AM »
While she moved toward the twisted metal piece, Vaas' steely eyes slid upwards to study it. What has appeared originally to them as a bent and twisted chunk of metal turned out to be a large and meaningfully shaped humanoid, most of its features erased by time, sand, rust, and bullets. Apparently this spot had been used for gunplay by more than just these two hardened Pilots.

As he followed her, he again kept a lookout, gaze sweeping side to side for hostiles, only occasionally coming back to linger on her. When they drew close, he again looked up at the metal figure, and realized a lump of metal attached to the end of its arm was in the shape of a...

"Izzat a fuckin' burger it's holdin'?" Vaas chuckled a bit as he came to stand behind her, and looked over her shoulder as she pulled up the information on this particular building.

Single story, complete sweep, empty. Interior intact, few items of use, possible raider encampment in the future.

She moved away from him just as he was ready to suggest a sweep anyway, just to be safe; he didn't want a couple of uglies sneaking up on them when they went to rendezvous with their dragons.

He followed her a little ways behind the half buried structure, noting a splash of color in the otherwise dreary world, noting the thick sheet of ancient red and yellow plastic covering the doorway.

She turned to him again and spoke, and his gaze slid up to meet hers, sensing that there was something more here than what she had let on. The voice in his head confirmed this, her words plain and clear within his mind.

"Well, then, let's head back. I could use a drink anyway."

At the exact time, despite his voiced speech, he replied to her psychic message, the words of his mind clear and strong.

"Well, 'e won't be thinkin' nothin' here in a minute. Guns gonna roar, fair warnin'.

He smirked and winked at her, before raising that big pistol of his to draw aim, taking an estimate as to where the fuckers chest would be.

The guns report echoed loudly, and a ragged hole appeared in the plastic as the round tore through it. Just over the ringing in his ears, Vaas could hear a muffled thud as a body fell.

"Fuckin' idiot. Ya got feet that goddamn big, don' letcher toes stick out an' give ya away." He huffed and holstered his pistol with a smirk, and looked to Sparrow again.

"Think tha's it? If there's more, an' they're as stupid as that guy, they'll come runnin'. I got four shots left in this clip, an another two preloaded fer twenty-two shots 'fore I gotta handload clips. Oh, an' fire. Lots an' lotsa fire."


Offline Blink

Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2017, 06:24:08 PM »
There was only a little jump when Vaas released another round into the unsuspecting raider. At least this time she had some kind of heads up.

"It doesn't matter how many shots or how much fire you have if they surprise us. We should head back and report. Come back with a bigger group next time or let it be someone else's problem."

She looked over her shoulder one last time at the raider Vaas just dropped before heading back in the direction they came in.

"Ya know, I bet that raider would have at least gotten one good hit in on you if I hadn't seen him. Lucky you our heads are connected."

Motioning with her free hand Sparrow tapped her forehead and then pointed at him, sticking her tongue out in the process. "Matter of fact I bet you just love being able to get into my head whenever you want."

Offline Marakai2.0

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Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #12 on: September 17, 2017, 06:48:09 PM »
Vaas crossed his arms over his broad chest, drumming his fingers over his forearm. "Little place like that, there can't be more'n three, four more dumbasses inside. I don' think yer givin' us enough credit, Bird Brain." He chuckled lightly, turning his head to follow her with his gaze.

"An' yeah, lucky me. Lucky you, too, from time ta time. Y'know bein' connected like this has...more'n a few good perks." He winked at her, trying to catch her eye while she was still looking at the raider. She knew what he meant, he was sure. "Though, I don't really think I couldn'ta gotten through withoutcha."

His next line, however, came over their private link, shielded completely and utterly by a mind far more powerful than its owner let on.

"Though, I gotta admit....I wish I didn't hafta be in your head all the time. Things'd be a helluva lot easier.[/i]"

Offline Blink

Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #13 on: September 17, 2017, 06:56:14 PM »
She was smiling, even laughing a bit at him. However, unlike Vaas, Sparrow wasn't exactly known for keeping her true emotions in check.

When he spoke through their private link her smile quickly turned into a firm line and her eyes lost a small amount of glimmer.

"And we both know why that can't happen." A painful fact Sparrow had to remind herself of often.

"Maybe if it's such a problem you should just sever the link now. Save us both the trouble."

Perhaps it was the heaviness of the conversation that caused her mood to go south so fast. Or maybe it was just the reminder of something she could never have. Either way that smile of hers wasn't coming back anytime soon.

Offline Marakai2.0

  • Look at me when I scream at your soul! You loud sacks of filth and sour cream can hit me with your pain pinatas all day, but you'll never take the jellied fantasies of my wasted youth! My stomach is clear and my mind is full of bacon!
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Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #14 on: September 17, 2017, 07:20:49 PM »
Vaas had continued following her with his gaze with a time, perhaps watching her a little too closely while at the same time leaving enough distance to keep an eye on their surroundings.

But when she replied to him, his grin fell a little. They'd had this conversation before, and he regretted bringing it up every time...but he couldn't help bringing it up. So many things left unsaid, undone, he was tired of having to sneak around all the time.

"Yeah, we know why. But knowing it doesn't make it any easier, you know." More serious, his words were enunciated clearly, almost all trace of his odd accent gone from his mental voice.

"You know what...? Maybe you're right. All it does is hurt and piss us off, anyway. Fine. If that's the way you want it, you won't be hearing me in your head anymore.

He didn't know why, didn't care why, but hearing it from her pissed him off. This was a sore subject for him, one that he could never talk about with someone else to alleviate some of the stress it put on him, and any time it got brought up they argued about it in some fashion.

But to cut her off? Well, that would take care of that issue real quick. No more problem, maybe a night of heavy drinking for them both to get the hell over it and move on.

When he cut the link, his face tensed up for the barest of moments, as if in pain. It was as if he had a line growing from his mind and his heart, a living, breathing part of him, and he willingly, forcefully tore it out. He felt the loss immediately, the sensation of  wrongness, an emptiness in his mind that had previously been filled with her constant presence.

He screwed up his face, hid his hurt, and brush past her with a grunt.

"Let's just go. I need a fucking drink." His words were sharp and clipped, his tone a little harsh as anger covered up sadness.

Offline Blink

Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #15 on: September 17, 2017, 07:34:58 PM »
It was painful, far more painful than she ever thought it would be. She wanted to pretend like she was joking, but now that it was done it was too late for that.

"Screw you Vaas", she mumbled before unlatching her mask from her belt.

Quickly she slid it on, the tint in the shade hiding her eyes from him and hiding how she truly felt about it. In the distance she could feel Tyasja picking up on her sudden change in demeanor. If anything it made her more upset, knowing she could never tell anyone what she was feeling right now.

The entire walk back to their dragons Sparrow didn't say a word, only breath sounds escaping from behind the mask.

"Need me to hold your hand on the way home or can I just go? I suddenly have the urge to get as far away from you as possible... now that I'm free and all."

Offline Marakai2.0

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Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #16 on: September 17, 2017, 07:53:28 PM »
Vaas very nearly didn't respond to her words, although he heard them quite clearly. Though, still, he had to keep up appearances, with something much bigger than him always listening in.

"Ain' gonna fuckin' happen. Let's jus' get the hell back to Adstreia, an'...call it a day." Those last four words came out more like a strangled grunt, and he was glad to be in front of her so she couldn't see his face.

After a moment, he pulled out another cigarette, this time not even bothering to form a flame from a spark. He needed something to focus on to keep from wanting to tear his own hair out and reestablish the link, and a little mental strain would do nicely.

It took only a second, nearly his whole hand wreathed in flame, and he was glad for the heat and the slight pain from having that fire so near his skin. He lit his cigarette and shook the fire out, taking a long, shuddering drag off of it, smoking as they walked in silence.

When she finally spoke up, he barely glanced at her as he flicked the cigarette out into the dust. He simply slid his mask back on, blinking at the change in the light as the HUD reactivated. The motion tracker showed her, a little ways behind him, and marked Raijin's location a little ways off, some distance away from Sparrows own Dragon partner.

"Doesn't matter. I don't care what the fuck you do."

With that, he took his own path separate from her, heading towards Raijin. Away from her.

Offline Blink

Re: Yeah, this is Totally Target Practice.... [Blink!]
« Reply #17 on: September 18, 2017, 09:10:57 AM »
His words hurt. So much, in fact, it caused Sparrow to stop for a moment just to process them.

'I don't care what the fuck you do'

Well, guess she had no way of knowing if he really meant that or not.

"Fine! I don't care what the fuck you do either!" she yelled back, clenching fists at her sides as the two parted ways.  Honestly, she wished she had meant it, then things would just be so much easier.

Tyasja was clearly curious about what had just happened but wouldn't ask, that would require pretending like she actually cared what happened in Sparrow's life.