The night had not been kind to poor Starlequin. He'd spent much of the evening from midnight till the wee hours scribbling aimlessly in his room, and by the time his head hit the pillow he'd felt physically ill from reading his own words. Ragged plots, sloppy dialogue, and descriptive prose that Stephanie Meyer would have been proud of -- it was enough to make him want to jab the pen up his nose and see if the words would come through better if he dug a hole in his brain! A restless night saw him tossing and turning fitfully beneath the lush blankets, and he'd never been so happy to see the horrible day star as morning broke.
He shuffled lazily downstairs to breakfast and nodded sleepily to the others already assembled, and snored through the room as his nose led him inexorably toward the coffeepot. "*Mrph, rvrvhdh," (*Translation: "Morning, everybody,") he mumbled as his hands worked on autopilot to pour a cup of sacred java. Just as the brew touched his lips, however, he heard the news of poor Ryven's condition, and...well. It was a good thing there was no one in front of him.
"Wha-wha-what?!" The now fully-awake Starlequin managed to gasp as the last drops of his spluttered coffee dripped down the wall where he'd spat it in shock. "Ryven...got took to the boobie hatch?" Star leaned back against the counter and stared down at his coffee, watching the fading steam rise from the cup's rim. "I knew it, I just knew this retreat thing was gonna be a bad idea; it reminds me of a train ride I went on once," he said. Star looked carefully around at the other writers and squinted thoughtfully. Who to trust? Or more importantly, who to distrust?
"Hey...where is Aiden, anyway? Sleeping in after a long night of psychologically torturing his fellow scribes, no doubt!"