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Sabotage

Scott Emerson Nicholas Laslow

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#1 Scott Emerson

Scott Emerson

Posted 27 June 2016 - 03:15 AM

Scott couldn't make sense of any of it.

 

Time-- that should have given him some semblance of clarity, some understanding of what was happening to him. But instead it just made it worse. Every minute that passed between him walking through the threshold of her apartment and now was another minute of emotional confusion. Weed or music couldn't chase it away. Even composition didn't help, despite that being a constant in the past, a way for him to chart his emotions and get them out.

 

Yet that was part of the problem. He knew it was silly to feel so much so quickly, to need to compose over something as simple as a drunken kiss outside her apartment. But it'd been more than that before she leaned in for that kiss. It'd been more than that since they played that fucking song in the elevator. It'd been more than that when he first heard her laugh filtering through Booker's doorway, since he saw her smile, since-- he couldn't even pinpoint when it began.

 

It was too fast. They didn't even know each other all that well and he was aware of it. So what was his fucking problem? Why were these feelings so intense that they overwhelmed him? Was this normal, or was he having some sort of medical issue that caused him to form such a quick attachment to her? Perhaps these were questions that deserved no answer; her smile made his heart lock in his throat, plain and simple, and he wasn't sure if he was worthy of seeing it. That was the problem.

 

She hadn't shown up to practice that afternoon. Scott had every intention of confronting Laslow, but when she wasn't there, he didn't have the energy to do much of anything. He'd been scattered throughout practice, forgetting pieces they needed to look over, eventually ending the whole thing early, because what was the point of it without her there? Not just in the sense of the ensemble being whole and complete, but because he couldn't focus. Because he was worthless with or without her.

 

Laslow's looks and gloats hadn't gone unnoticed. Neither were they returned. He deserved it. He packed up silently, hardly sparing a glance up.


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#2 Nicholas Laslow

Nicholas Laslow

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Posted 27 June 2016 - 03:31 AM

So he had failed at endeavor A, point number one. His mission had been carried out to fruitition and had fallen flat at his feet. A lot of that was simply because of circumstances; Teagan wasn't some giggly party girl and he figured that out immediately. Seeing her drunk, uncomfortable and scared and nervous had tipped him off of that. And while he would have had absolutely no issue taking advantage of that little tidbit had it swung in his favor, it hadn't. She was as wide-eyed as a deer in headlights and every advance he made, every sweet, charming quip had gone either unnoticed or ignored. It was a little bit frustrating if he were to be honest, though that wasn't even the worst of it. Things could have been recovered eventually, he could have still found a work around had they not been interrupted.

And hell yeah, he'd been mad about it. He hadn't expected Scott Emerson, of all people, to be as protective and possessive as he had been. He had swooped in and saved her, her veritable knight in shining armor, and she had fell for it, just like that. It had seemed like a failure at the time, too, like everything he'd worked for the past few days had been for naught, a plan dreamed up and busted all in the span of a few minutes. He was fully intended to confront the guy over it, too, right in front of Teagan if he had to. He could spin it in a way that shone light in his favor, that made Scott look like the bad guy. He was a master at stuff like that, goddamn good with those lies of his.

But that wasn't ever even necessary. He never even had the chance for such a beautiful confrontation. No, about five minutes passed time for them to start, he realized something wonderful, something great. Teagan wasn't coming. Teagan wasn't there and Scott was awkward, forgetful, entirely unfocused. He'd been around the guy enough to know that the behavior was anything but typical. Despite being the fuckhead stoner he was, he was serious about his music. Forgettings things, fucking up, it wasn't like him which meant that something happened. Something happened and it was bad enough that one of the participants opted out entirely and the other was all but broken.

Oh yeah, he could work that angle. It was perfect. He still had a chance at his goal and now he had the glorious opportunity to rub it in Scott's face, too, partially because he was still pissed about the party and partially because he hated competition, or rather, serious competition. He wasn't stupid. He'd caught their argument last practice, he'd seen them bickering the time before that. As well versed with intimacy as he was, he knew tensions ran high and high tensions meant a lot of things. He wasn't blind.

As practice ended and Scott all but hurriedly attempted to collect his things, Nich couldn't even try to hide his arrogance. It was threaded in his gait, it made him walk ten times more confidently than he usually did. His grin was bright, a thousand watts as he peered down at the taller guy, arms crossed as he leaned back against a nearby stand. "Fucked everything up, did you? Figures. Hand you over an easy bag and you screw it up. I gotta say, man, I at least expected you to be able to figure out something so basic. I am impressed, though. Tell me, how do you fuck it up with a wasted girl? How do you fuck it up so bad that she doesn't show up to an ensemble she's so serious about? Y'gotta tell me, man, I'm dying to know. You know, for educational purposes so I know what not to do when I go after her again."

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#3 Scott Emerson

Scott Emerson

Posted 27 June 2016 - 04:24 AM

Any other situation and Scott would've been quick to turn on his heel and give Laslow a verbal run for his money. But his energy was already depleted, already so low that he couldn't even do what he loved most. Couldn't even play a fucking song without thinking about her, without her lurking in every corner of his thoughts. Her lack of presence was glaringly obvious, worse than it would've been with her sitting right next to him. At least then he would've had the chance to talk to her, to possibly apologize for having run off like he did, but as it was he was left scrambling, left in the dark.

 

He was left without her.

 

So Nich's words weren't well-received. While before he might have been able to brush it off, laugh it off, anything, now he felt his emotions quickly channelling into pure and simple rage. An easy bag? Not once over the course of his night did he think of taking advantage of Teagan in such a way; hell, he wasn't even comfortable kissing her, to the point that he ended it even when she initiated.

 

Yet there was a part of him that felt guilty even for that. What if that was part of why she skipped? Maybe she remembered that in great detail-- how he was practically begging for it, in her face more than a few times, flirting, buying her meal, carrying her twice over the course of the evening-- it wasn't as if he was innocent. Maybe he hadn't initiated the kiss, but he'd done everything in his power to ensure it happened. Should he have prevented her from doing so? Was he wrong in allowing her to kiss him, even if only for a few moments?

 

He had no answer to any of these questions. It infuriated him even more, and the more Laslow spoke, the more his rage was stacked on his already emotionally fragile state. It was no surprise, then, when Scott stood, whipped around, and pinned the guy against the wall in one swift motion, his arm pressed hard against his neck. Enough to scare him, but not quite choke him.

 

"You know nothing about her," he growled, teeth gritted, eyes flashing red. "If you go after her again I will fuck you up. Mark my goddamn words, Laslow. She's better than whatever fucked up game you're trying to play with her. You're fucking disgusting."


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#4 Nicholas Laslow

Nicholas Laslow

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Posted 27 June 2016 - 04:44 AM

Battling an easy prey was boring, lifeless. If Scott decided to lay down and take this, admit defeat and slink away, well, where was the fun in that? Half the fun in doing this was pissing off other people, was getting under the skin of people that had otherwise been trying so hard. That was half the reason he picked Teagan in the first place. He'd noticed Scott's interest in her right off the bat, his failure, his shortcomings, and he decided to take from under him what he couldn't get. It was a challenge, sure, but it was also a deeply dark and extremely immoral thing. He had done it all his life, too, not just with girls but with things Mickey wanted. Part of why Mickey had turned out the way he had was because Nicholas never let the kid have anything. Attention, friends, toys, anything. It was how he made up for all of his shortcomings, how he dealt with what ruin his parents had laid between them.

And he was doing that now with Scott. He had no real interest in Teagan. Not as a person, not as a lay, not as anything. He wanted the accomplishment, he wanted the gloating rights, and more than anything he wanted to see Scott's reactions. He wanted to watch Scott react to him doing what Scott had been trying so effortlessly. It would have been amazing.

Needless to say, as soon as Scott's temper flared, as soon as he flipped around and met him face to face, Nicholas' grin went from arrogant and outright despicable to something like amusement. He'd revealed his weaknesses, played his cards too fast, and Nicholas had swept in like a bird of prey and taken all of them to heart. This would be easy. There was still a chance that he could not only steal the object of affection out from under him but he could absolutely devastate what was probably his rival in the process.

A hand lifted to tap his own cheek, his head tilting almost playfully as he acted shocked at Scott's rebuttal. "So you... didn't snatch a drunk girl right from under me? One that you clearly have some kind of attraction to? Odd! I remember it a little differently. Are you acting like you didn't do anything at all during the entire night you had her? Now I'm really impressed. I didn't think anyone could be quite that stupid but you have managed to amaze me again, Emerson! Good fuckin' job!" The laugh that followed was far darker than it should have been, his grin spreading from ear to ear as he shifted again. "What I'm actually hearing, and what I gathered from meeting up with ol' girl earlier was that you fucked up, my friend."

He didn't know the details of that fuck up, and he didn't want to elaborate on a lie that would only end up being the complete opposite of what happened. He was arrogant but he wasn't stupid. This had to be treaded carefully. Each brick in this disaster had to be placed gently and with caution. "I mean, why else would she not be here, right? She's certainly not avoiding me, and I'd be willing to bet money that she's not avoiding nameless over there, either. But that's cute! That's so adorable that you think I'll let your failure or your silly threats stop me. You see, unlike you, I'm not a fuckin' coward. I'll get what I want because I'm not scared."

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#5 Scott Emerson

Scott Emerson

Posted 27 June 2016 - 05:19 AM

Scott was raging, eyes flashing red, grip tightening as he pushed Nich further against the wall. How the guy had the nerve to smile when he had him pinned like this was something that sent him for a loop, bothered him more than he cared to admit. Yet again this guy had swooped in right in the middle of his emotional vulnerability, going straight for the kill, riling him up in ways he wasn't sure he'd ever experienced. 

 

There was the obvious anger, which he was acting mostly on at the moment. But there was insecurity, too, self-doubt that just propelled his anger further, that directed some of that at himself. Then there was jealousy, white-hot and popping into his brain so quickly that it made him feel out of sorts for a second. Laslow had seen her? Laslow had spoken to her? His expression shifted abruptly, from angry to surprised, and he blinked at the guy for a few times, running every possible scenario through his mind.

 

He almost asked, too. Scott had never been too great with impulse control, after all, always speaking what was on his mind, asking questions that he likely should have left alone. The only thing that stopped him now was his jealousy, robbing him of any coherent thoughts or words or questions. But past that there was something else-- a strange protective instinct that he wasn't familiar with, that propelled him to come to that stupid fucking party in the first place. He felt it again now, pressing him further into rage the more this asshole spoke.

 

So he said nothing at first-- he just pressed his arm harder into the Nich's windpipe, hoping to inflict pain this time if only to get him to shut the fuck up. "Does this look like a silly fucking threat to you?" He held that position for a few moments before finally releasing him, but that wasn't enough-- he wasn't satisfied. He was still raging, pissed, seeing so much red that he couldn't see the consequences of his actions, particularly in assaulting a fellow ensemble member.

 

He reared back with his right fist and slammed it against Nich's smug ass face without another thought. Pain seared through his fist afterward but he almost savored it; physical pain made him feel alive, robbed a bit of that emotional pain he was going through just moments before. It was cathartic, relieving, one of the only things that had distracted him so far.


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#6 Nicholas Laslow

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Posted 27 June 2016 - 05:41 AM

There was a dangerous sort of disconnect that came with the brand of narcisism Nicholas flourished with. He was pinned against a wall, he was being threatened in a way that was being carried out in full right here, right now in the present, but it didn't scare him. Hell, it didn't even make him flinch. He had some sort of invisibility complex that came with feeling indestructible. Pair that with a good understanding of people and just what they were capable of doing and he could be outright dangerous at best, insufferable at least. That's what had him grinning so widely, so easily. This situation came with no adrenaline, no worry, no fear.

He could twist this in his favor.

Scott was a loner, a stoner, aggressive and rude for the most part and Nicholas near constantly played the part of an innocent gentlman. That didn't just stop with females, either; he was many professor's favorites for that very reason. If Scott decided to act on his little tantrum, if he actually took a swing or dared to press any harder, well, there might just be consequences.

And Scott followed through, too, not just with his elbow but eventually with his fist. The hit hurt, bad, but the pain was ignorable as he realized what all this situation could do for him, all the ways he could spin this in his favor. What were the punishments for assaulting a fellow classmate? Say, wouldn't this technically be assault and battery too? And gee, he wondered what little Teagan would think of this violent side to Scott, of what monster lurked beneath his dumbass exterior.

He was laughing by the time he managed to regain his composure, wiping at his now gushing nose as he straightened his posture. "Wow, so you actually can accomplish something, can't you? I'm downright fucking amazed. I mean, you couldn't fucking pull a drunk girl so I can't give you too much credit but you can at least throw a punch. Bravo Emerson. I do wonder, though, what would Teagan say knowing you did this? Hmm?"

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#7 Scott Emerson

Scott Emerson

Posted 27 June 2016 - 06:06 AM

Was this asshole still firing back? Was he masochistic or just plain stupid? Scott's blood boiled as he stared down at him, at this guy who had a talent in pressing every single one of his buttons. Somewhere in the back his mind, a siren went off. This kid was in his ensemble and he'd punched him. Not a light punch, either; the guy was bleeding, sure to have a nasty bruise come morning. Scott would have the evidence on his hand, himself, a reminder that he'd lost his temper to the point of violence over this whole situation. He could get in trouble for this.

 

This was absurd. This amount of emotional output wasn't typical of him; he typically glided through life without sparing a glance at emotionally intense situations, yet here he was, fighting the urge to break his nose, fighting the urge to square up and provoke him to fight back. It would've been distracting, cathartic; it would've felt good to get punched back, to get what he deserved in return. But the only thing Laslow had to offer were these shitty words that cut right to his insecurities.

 

Scott blinked once, twice, as he thought of Teagan's reaction to all of this. She'd seen his temper before. She'd seen him angry in the cafeteria and then again at practice, even for a moment or two in Booker's room when she ignored him. Never this angry, however; she'd never seen him violent, something he hadn't realized was in him until now. It scared him into complete submission, made him back away, his fists dropping to his sides as he shook his head.

 

Would she have been scared? The very reason he left was because he was afraid that she'd see sides of him that she wouldn't like. And here he was, unlocking sides of himself that even he didn't know because of the way he felt for her. It freaked him out, made him feel out of control. He'd been carefully recording his emotions over the years with his composition, but now it was too much. Now he couldn't even put that into song, and it was bleeding out in his words and now his fists.

 

He watched Nich for a few moments, letting that absorb. Letting himself realize just how far he'd gone in his outburst. The guy was deserving of it, to be sure, but that didn't matter. It was still something he didn't expect of himself. His every instinct to fight him was gone now, replaced instead by a strange numbness. "Fuck off, Laslow," he said weakly. With that he grabbed his cello case and was out the door, leaving this situation before he could cause any more damage.


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