Well, I think I can say that this has been the absolute worst Thanksgiving ever.
Before we start, let me say that I've got a lot to talk about. This might be a bit belated or get split into multiple parts.
Jacob decided that he'd prepare us a Thanksgiving meal. I don't know why the hell he thought it was a good idea, but he insisted, and hey, free food. Not like we can usually afford to eat like kings. I think I've lost about twenty pounds in the last half a year or however long it's been.
I think I would have preferred leftovers. Wouldn't have been as good, but it would have been better than what we usually get and we wouldn't have had to socialize. Getting about forty people with varying levels of sociopathy together (Around fifteen "agents" and twenty-five "hollowed" or "broken" or whatever you want to call them) is probably not a good idea.
Yeah, there's about forty of us that Jacob funds. We all fit in the rich bastard's house pretty well. Talked to a few people, and it sounds like half of the total funds go to this man named Eddie. He's...I think the term he used was a "Caretaker." Basically, he's responsible for overseeing the...the ones that can't take care of themselves. I still never know what to call them. Apparently, Eddie has a job similar to the one Andrew had. I think he's probably the most "normal" of anyone I've met who's here of their own accord. It's obviously hard on him, though. He has very hard eyes. That's the only way I know how to describe them. Eyes that look like he's seen so much that nothing bothers him anymore, and if it does, he can't outwardly emote. Things I'm thankful for, #1: my job isn't nearly as stressful as Eddie's.
Didn't get to talk to Eddie that much. I only saw him for a few minutes with everyone else, then he went to a separate area of the house to keep an eye on the ones he's supposed to keep an eye on. Visited him there for a few minutes to ask about his job, but it didn't last very long. He kicked me out pretty quickly. He didn't seem too happy I was there (even though I told him I was just curious about his job and his...charges, I guess), but I convinced him to give me his contact information. Might go talk to him again later. Don't think he likes me, but he seemed to want to talk to Poe some. Curious as to how things were going. She seemed more intent on avoiding him.
Anyway, that left about fourteen of us, plus Jacob and Eternity, sitting around and eating and...doing other Thanksgivingy stuff, I guess. Eternity's not funded by Jacob (pretty sure he's on some higher level of funding) but showed up anyway for some reason. Maybe we were the only group who had a Thanksgiving gathering, maybe he gets along well with Jacob, or maybe he just wants to fuck with me or something, but for whatever reason, he was there. Gave me that same patronizing routine, so I tried to avoid him as much as I could.
Watched the game with some others for a while before eating. Eternity and Theta both watch football, apparently. Theta's kind of strange about it, though. Just sits there and stares at the screen. Doesn't talk. Doesn't cheer. I have no clue which team he was going for, or if he even had a preference. Gave up on watching after finding out that Eternity's a Packers fan (wasn't going to give him the satisfaction of knowing then that we were going for the same team), and decided to use the opportunity to talk to some other people more. Besides, Poe refused to leave my side, and I have the feeling she wasn't exactly enjoying the game.
Glasses came up to me at one point. Turns out he calls himself Muad'Dib (and I only know how to spell that incredibly stupid name because of Poe). Anyway, Muad'Dib comes up and starts talking to me. Says he recognizes me and that I'm a friend of Nee-chan's, right? I can't really say that Nee-chan's a "friend," exactly, but I nod. He starts sighing and talking about how cute she is and how lucky I am to be so close to her. Asks if I think he has a chance. I'm not sure this guy remembers the night he and Ginger had to pin her down (speaking of Ginger, didn't get the chance to talk to him at all and ask for his name. He mostly stood off to the side the entire night, with what looked like a grimace on his face). I reminded him of how unstable Nee-chan is, and how he should know that, having experienced it firsthand. The kid must be a dumbass, because he looks at me and says this, verbatim:
"Well, yeah, but look at her. I mean, she's probably all sorts of kinky. She's gotta be a freak in bed."
I may be wrong, but something tells me neither of those kids has gotten laid in their life.
Muad'Dib started talking to Poe some then. I caught a few things from their conversation. Apparently the kid's a pilot (I'd ask why the hell we need a pilot, but then I'd have to ask why the hell we need a hacker), and he's flown Poe around when they need to do more hands-on field tracking. Apparently she's got an assignment coming up soon. Speaking of which, Poe, would have been nice if you had mentioned that earlier. Or, you know, at all. But anyway, Muad'Dib takes a deep breath and heads over to talk to Nee-chan. Don't know how it went, because I didn't stick around, but I guess I also don't really care. If he has a chance with her, good for him.
I talked to a few other people, but I didn't have enough time to hold any sort of meaningful conversation or gauge them before the meal started. I have no clue how exactly Jacob figured out the seating, but I could tell he was being pretty deliberate. He put Nee-chan between Poe and Screwtape, for example, probably to keep Poe and Screwtape fairly close, but separated in a way that doesn't require them to look at each other. I ended up between Poe and Muad'Dib. Clearly, Jacob had gone out of his way to try to avoid conflicts.
A shame that it didn't work.
We ate in silence for a while. Everything was fine. And then Jacob said something about how he was hoping this could be an experience to bring us all closer together and how he'd like it if we at least tried to talk to each other. That's when things sort of went to hell.
There were a few murmurs of conversation. Couldn't catch most of it, but it sounded relatively normal. Then things exploded. As great as Jacob is, he clearly doesn't spend enough time around us. Getting us all together is one thing. Getting us all together and forcing us into conversation is going a bit too far. You absolutely cannot get people like us together and expect the conversation to be anywhere near healthy. You know that uncle who always makes family gatherings awkward because he's vocal about views no one else in the family holds, or something along those lines? Well, imagine a big family where everyone's that uncle.
Screwtape started talking to Poe, telling her how happy she must be to see Eddie again after all this time. Eternity started asking me how Kyle was. Nee-chan brought up Morningstar, and apparently opinions on this new guy and his predecessor are pretty mixed.
Jacob decided to remove all the knives from the table pretty quickly.
Anyway, the whole thing degenerated into shouting matches until Eternity stood up and yelled something about us being a family and that we should be simply enjoying each other's company. You can't tell from the syntax I used, but he used second person plural, not first person plural. Bastard made a big show about caring about how much we get along, but didn't even include himself as "one of us."
After that, everyone pretty much stopped talking and just ate. Except for one couple (didn't get their names or anything), and they didn't even talk. Just acted all flirty with each other. Fun facts about eating: Theta's apparently a huge eater, Screwtape eats very simply (he apparently only drinks water, didn't eat anything particularly sweet, and didn't add any additional seasonings), Nee-chan's kind of a picky eater, and apparently Ginger's a vegetarian. After we finished eating, we took off. Some said goodbye to others, some thanked Jacob as they went. Others (Theta was the one I remember, but there were a few others) just stood up and left the table without a word. The whole thing was just...really awkward, like no one really wanted to be there. Easily worse than any family gathering I've been to.
Let's hope that I don't have another thanksgiving like this for a long time.
-Don't Shoot The Messenger-