Who can it be now? – BC.

Scene setting – The Peach Cafe : BC.

co-written with Gene.

Gene:  

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Armed robbery leads to murder of cop . The title of the article had been stamped onto the page, its black font taking up at least ¼ of the page. To someone like Ava, it was certainly eye catching. Who didn’t love reading articles regarding murder and theft? Upon viewing the front page, which had too much exposure regarding a woman’s body, she instantly turned the paper – with some difficulty due to the size – and settled her eyes upon the crime-related article. There was plenty of gossip in the papers which were delivered to the Vestro District and not enough reality. Her attention fixated on the first paragraph, reading it then proceeding to re-read it, to let the contents sink in. Thankfully, the article was written in a neutral tone; the amount of bias in some newspapers was truly horrifying. Ava was entirely oblivious to her surroundings, though she occasionally took a sip of her drink.

“You’d find much more interesting reading material at the library, Miss.”

Her head raised upon hearing the man speak. She hadn’t anticipated that anyone would talk to her. Ava turned, looking for the one who spoke; however, he was already walking away to his booth. She opened her mouth to say something, but froze. As the man sat down, Ava peered at his features. It popped into her mind, that she knew him. From where? Ava was still figuring that part out. The man was attractive, but it was clear he was too old for Ava – not that she’d attempt anything anyway. Upon realizing she was being way too obvious as she observed the man, Ava quickly turned and looked back to her newspaper.

As if her mind were a cemetery, and the man a ghost, the fact that he was recognizable continued to haunt her mind. It was rare times like these, when Ava couldn’t place her finger on something, which she hated. Though, the state of mind only ever occurred to Ava when she was trying to remember a spell.

He was a teacher at her school. Her eyelids came together, and the sudden blackness obscuring her view was enough for her to recall the past. Martin, his name was, however Ava would have to refer to him as Mr Martin. Even though Ava wasn’t in any of his classes, nonetheless she remembered seeing him around school and hearing some chatter about him; all teachers were talked about at her school, something Ava never really liked to divulge in. Whenever hearing gossip or inadvertently being present whilst one was going on, she never liked to participate; it was clear if people could gossip about anyone, they’d certainly gossip about you.

Should she go say hi? Ava was unsure whether the teacher recognized her, or not. It was always peculiar to see teachers out of school; what was one meant to say? Address them as Sir/Miss or call them by their first names? What would you talk about? All these questions shrouded her mind. After around 5 minutes of debating what to do, Ava finally gained the courage and left her seat. As she headed over to the booth, nerves prickled her skin, yet her expression remained calm. Whilst it would have been a few seconds until Ava reached the booth, it felt as if minutes had gone by.

“I just wanted to say hi,” Ava smiled, her voice not betraying her jitters. “May I sit?” If the man said yes, Ava would proceed to slide into the booth, opposite him. However, if he said no, Ava would turn away and walk back to her seat, her cheeks reddening with embarrassment. If she had been granted permission, Ava would say, “I go to the Acalo school; I’m not sure if you know me,”

Razorbackwriter:  

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The background sounds merged into a light gaggle of chatting voices, with the hiss of the coffee machine and the steady beat of popular music that filtered through the wall mounted sound system. It was enough to make it easy to mull over the days events. Joel had been searching for the book in his possession for some time, and now that he had the opportunity in the privacy of the cafe booth, he planned to start his studies, over a quiet coffee and muffin. The script on the opened pages was one that he had learnt back in his youth. A kindly old man who lived above his parent’s apartment often gave him private lessons to help bolster his studies. Joel’s mind was cast back to the dimly lit room that smelt strongly of tobacco and mould.

“Persistence in your studies will lead you on a path to great wisdom.” The voice was now a ghost that often spoke to Joel in his dreams. Amazing how this man’s teachings had a profound affect upon Joel and now the day had come where he would use this knowledge to help him unlock what had been up until now a mystery. Joel wet his lips in anticipation, as he took out a small black leather book that was bound with a red ribbon. He picked at the fray edges and started to untie it – only to be interrupted by the clink of a coffee cup in a saucer, that was being set down on his table.

“Your coffee and muffin, Sir.” The young fresh face barista set down his cup and the small plate which had a warm muffin on top. This mild interruption had Joel pause, whilst the girl waited to see if there was anything else that Joel wanted.“Thank you.” His reply was curt, eyes narrowing as he waited for the girl to leave the table. He hated people that hovered over him. Unbeknownst to Joel, the girl found him attractive. She teetered on the spot and then smoothed out her frilly skirt with her hands. “Heh.” A little giggle escaping her lips. Perhaps she was used to being told how pretty she was. There was no mistaking that she was, but Joel wasn’t in the least bit attracted – or in the mood. Rolling his eyes, he reached for the UNO card and then handed it to the girl with a gruff rumble in his voice.

“Thank you.” Maybe now she got the message. The young waitress blinked back to reality. He really wasn’t interested in her. A small pout appeared and she turned on her toes and sped back to the counter – her cheeks aflame.

Now that he was alone once more, the young teacher picked up his coffee cup and proceeded to blow on the top of the froth. The heart shaped pattern started to blur, and Joel then took a small sip – only to hear another voice. What the hell was with women today? Joel’s eyebrows both piqued, his head turning slightly to see who it was.

“I just wanted to say hi,”

It was the young woman who had been reading the sad excuse for a newspaper. Joel set his coffee cup down in it’s saucer, and stared at the girl wordlessly. The pause was interrupted by the fair haired girl asking if she could sit. Joel would be the first to admit, that the girl was way too young for him. Horrid thoughts started to filter through his mind until her face jolted a memory from the Acalo school. SHE WAS A STUDENT. Joel’s eyes closed as he raised two fingers to pinch the bridge of his nose. He realized that this was of course his fault. He HAD to go and make that remark about the newspaper. Letting out a sigh of resignation, Joel gestured with his hand towards the empty seat in the booth. Again, his tendencies towards being a gentleman rose to the fore. Staring at the girl through pale blue lenses, he listened to the girl introduce herself – though not by name.

“I go to the Acalo school; I’m not sure if you know me,” The girl’s cheeks were now a deep shade of red. Joel took this as embarrassment at being so bold to approach a teacher in a public place. Slowly, Joel closed the weathered old book in front of him and then pushed it aside with the brush of his hand. He then reached for his small black book and dropped it back in his bag. The girl was known to him. From one of the more influential families. It was easy to tell by the way that she dressed, so unlike the girls where he lived. Amazing the differences in style to those that could afford it and those who couldn’t. Finally, Joel decided to speak.

“Of course, Miss Blackbane.” Yes, he did know her name. Joel’s glasses slid gently down the bridge of his nose allowing the haunting grey of his eyes to be seen. Dark pupils dilated momentarily as he observed the girl. She wasn’t just a pretty young thing, but she was exquisite. Unique in fact. “We have crossed paths on occasion at the school, but as yet you are in none of my classes.” The young teacher idly tore off a piece of his blueberry muffin and then popped it into his mouth. This whole scenario was unusual. A teacher having coffee with a student and one that he did not have in his class, would make gossip mongers salivate. Joel eased himself back into the leather of the booth seat and remained calm and in control. Now it was his turn to be inquisitive.

“I imagined a girl like you would travel in a pack.” Insinuating that she was the type of girl that had a close knit circle of friends. Odd how girls liked to do that. Joel had always been a loner often enjoying his own company. Joel’s lips carried the ghost of a smile as he waited to see how she would react. He absently drummed his long fingers on the wood of the table as he waited for her to speak.

~RB~

The Peach Cafe – BC.

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Location is displayed by the symbol: https://i0.wp.com/i62.tinypic.com/14nmcyq.png

The Peach Cafe is famous for many things: their milkshakes, drinks, and beautiful women who work for them. It is a great place to come and chat with your friends and usually ads are posted here (if you are looking for a job etc).

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Scene setting – The Peach Cafe : Blood City Series.

co-written with Gene.

Gene:

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Ever since her meeting with Hiram and Lilly ended, Ava had returned to the stalls and continued her little shopping spree. A few items caught her attention, but she was mainly proud with the necklace she wore. There was something appealing about it; it was simple, yet complex at the same time. It possessed the perfect kind of modesty, one that would go with any attire. She might have spent an hour or two zigzagging from stall to stall. Saturday was typically the market day and one of her favourite days. It wasn’t that she was looking for something to buy – although it’s obvious if she liked something, she’d definitely purchase it – but simply looking at the products each market had was interesting; Ava enjoyed asking the specifics about some of the products: where they came from, how were they transported, with what materials were they made? Indeed, they were odd questions to ask, however the owners didn’t seem to mind.

After her adventures in the market, Ava moved on to shops. She entered each store empty handed and left the same way; at home she had enough, so why would she have any need to buy more? Ava was more than content and so felt no need to buy unnecessary items, whilst others in the Vestro District were known to go overboard when they went shopping. There were shops in the Vestro District – this was so the upper class would have no need to enter the Inner City and mix with the lower classes – but they only sold what one might call ‘high classed items’. It was a bore to always see such glamorous items. Plus, at times Ava felt the need to escape the upper class.

Now, it was the afternoon. How long had it been since Ava entered the Inner City? A few hours. Maybe 3 or 4. Either way, she came to the Peach Cafe; it was busy as always, yet so calm at the same time. After ordering a warm drink, she took a seat near the window, reading a newspaper. In the Vestro District, newspapers were different; they never disclosed the amount of crime going on in the City, however there was plenty of gossip. Her eyes remained fixated on the newspaper, finding it deeply – and perhaps worryingly – interesting how un-perfect the City truly was.

Razorbackwriter:  

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Introduction of Joel Martin.

Gently blowing smoke out from between his parted lips, Joel stood just outside the Peach cafe – finishing off the last of his cigarette as it was against policy to allow smoking in the coffee establishment. Joel closed his eyes and with a light tilt of his head, he took one last drag before pinching the remaining part of the cigarette and then letting it drop to the pavement; where he used the tip of his boot to crush the stub into nothing. He could of dropped it into the rubbish bin, but preferred this method. A light shake of his shoulders, and he pushed himself forward from the lamp post; his grey eyes cast now towards the entrance to the Cafe. Already there was quite a crowd, but it was not bustling – nor was there much of a line up to be served. With an almost bored expression, Joel sauntered towards the door – only stopping to open the door for an elderly woman who had made it to the entrance before him. He reached out and let his slender digits clasp the bronze handle, pulling the door back almost effortlessly. The woman, whose head scarf covered much of her hair and obscured her face thanked Joel with a gentle tone, to which Joel merely nodded his head. If there was one thing his father taught him it was to respect his elders. It cost nothing to be a gentleman in what was a changing world. Respect for the elders of the community was on a down turn, as the current generation were all too transfixed by technological devices to even pay attention to people that they dined with.

Once the elderly woman was safely through the door, Joel followed and allowed the door to close on its own as he surveyed the interior of the Peach cafe. The atmosphere had a warmth to it – be that from the scent of the roasted coffee beans, or the tender smiles of the waitresses. The manager always found good looking girls to serve his customers, and being served by a pretty face was welcoming. Not that Joel was really bothered about being overtly friendly with the waitresses. They were there to do a job – provide a service, which they did well.

Taking up a menu as he waited to be served, Joel happened to notice a fair haired woman seated by one of the window booths. In her hand she was reading the city newspaper. The young man tapped the menu against his left open palm, not even bothering to open it, while his ghost grey eyes locked onto the cover story on the front of the newspaper. Joel’s lips thinned as he noted that the news of the day was about some B grade celebrities buttocks. Really, couldn’t they put something actually considered news on the front page? Joel’s concentration was only broken by the sing song voice of the barista.

“Sir, would you like to order?”

A petite blonde girl with pink satin ties pulling up her hair into pig tails smiled brightly, as she clutched her pen in readiness. Joel exhaled sharply through his nostrils, placing back the menu in the stainless steel stand.

“Flat white in a mug, and a blueberry muffin please.”

The girl scribbled down the order and then tapped the keys on the register before announcing that Joel’s order came to nine dollars. Joel’s right brow crept up slowly – as he was somewhat surprised by the cost. Had prices gone up that much in recent weeks that you were paying nearly ten dollars just for a coffee and muffin. The young man smacked his lips together in indignation, and produced a ten dollar note; before telling the girl to keep the change as a tip. It wasn’t much of a tip, but the girl hid her disappointment well.

Taking his table number which was actually a UNO card, Joel strolled towards his favorite booth, but not before making a passing remark to the blonde haired woman that was reading the newspaper.

“You’d find much more interesting reading material at the library, Miss.”

Joel ran his fingers through his sandy locks which were unruly; much like the man himself. Without bothering to introduce himself, or even wait for her reply; Joel continued to his own booth. Sitting down, he took out his brown leather satchel and started to undo the flap. He slowly reached into the aging leather and withdrew an old book. Tattered and worn with yellowing pages. Joel tossed the satchel onto the booth seat beside him and then flipped open the cover to start to read as he waited for his coffee and muffin.

~RB~

We are one, but we are many.

 

Sadness.  That is what many Australians are feeling right now, after the terrible end to the Siege in Sydney.  Two innocent and brave people lost their lives, as well as the gunman.  It has left many shocked and deeply saddened, and I will admit that the images on television of the many floral tributes that are in Martin Place had me moved to tears.  The outcome was tragic, but it could have been much worse had it not been for the heroic actions of Tori Johnson.  The Lindt Cafe manager risked his life twice to save others, and the second time it ended in tragedy.  The other to lose their life was Katrina Dawson; Mother of three and a promising Lawyer with a bright future.  She shielded her pregnant friend, and sadly had a heart attack at the moment the police entered the cafe.

 

This is a trying time for many right across the community.  There are fears of reprisals or revenge attacks, though the mood of many is to seek unity and understanding.  Tolerance is important.  What we have to remember is that there are many in our community that are unbalanced and could do the unthinkable.  Take the Port Arthur Massacre.  One lone gunman killed 35 people and wounded another 23 in 1996.  There was no real reason for the attack, and people were going about their daily lives when it happened.  The same happened at the Lindt Cafe.  A lone gunman with a history of violence and mental instability took people hostage to get attention.  The news stations in conjunction with the Police agreed to block all information going to social media and the news reports, so as not to give into the gunman’s demands.

 

Religion is not to blame and no one group should be targeted in a backlash.  The whole community is grieving what happened, and I truly believe that we as Australians will be united in saying no to extremism.  The vile act of one person does not reflect on others, nor should it.

 

Australia is a multicultural nation, built upon a foundation of freedom and equality.  We are a virtual punch bowl of nationalities and religions.  It is what makes us who we are.  And no one….is going to change that.