It was a joke, a comment thrown out during the existentially strange aftermath on the night Claire watched her brother—her last remaining relative—die of old age, surrounded by his family; she’d pretended to be a relation of herself in order to say goodbye at his bedside.
Drinking the equivalent of a liquor store had seemed like a really good idea at the time. Even when he’d shown up—as he always seemed to do, just when she was ready to throw it all in and shove a sharp object through the back of her head—and joined her, tried (again, as he always seemed to do) to get her into bed.
“I’ll make,” she’d said, her words slurring and her brain foggy, “you a deal.” And thank God she’d finally found the amount of alcohol that would allow her to get drunk, soften the edges of reality. “When the world ends.”
“When the world ends, Claire?”
“Come find me then.”
At the time, it had seemed laughable, impossible. The world ending? The world was a lot like her. Like him. But end it did. With no rhyme, no reason, no warning. She just woke up one morning, years and years later, to an empty city. She found some people, dotted throughout the country, holed up together, wondering what happened and looking desperately for messages from loved ones, words of comfort from a no-longer-existing government.
Standing on a balcony in an empty hotel overlooking the long, lonely stretch of highway, she contemplated flinging herself, head first, onto one of the pointed, wrought iron rails on the fence below her.
Then he was there.
“Hello, Claire.” His voice was in her ear, just as soft and beguiling as it had been the night she was left alone in the world; his fingers gripped her hip. “Don’t forget your promise.”
Notes: Just a little, gratuitous scene between the boys sometime post-movie. I just needed to write something in fandom. This was the first thing finished.
Funerals make people want to fuck, he’d once heard.
As Peter shoves him against the bedroom wall, Charley thinks the same must be true for near death experiences. (Or near un-death experiences.) Being so close to death makes you crave a taste of life: a warm body, damp skin, the tang of sweat and come on your tongue.
Peter mouths over Charley’s pulse, sucks at the skin as if he could suck the heartbeat right into his mouth. (And maybe there’s a part of him that wants to.)
“That’s the idea, Charley,” Peter says. “A long…hard…fuck.” Peter curls his tongue around Charley’s ear, blows air along the sensitive skin.
Peter slips a thigh between Charley’s legs and pushes up until the boy’s bare toes are scraping for purchase. Not for the first time, Charley’s bemused at the amount of strength in Peter’s lanky frame, his domineering touch.
Peter gets like this when things go out of his control. The drunken insecurity is swapped for a hard-edged, often foul mouthed, bravado. You can see it with the way he deals with his manager, the orders he snaps at his stage crew when they blow a piece of the show. In the way he likes to fuck Charley when they’ve nearly lost one another.
This time, it was Charley who was nearly turned. Trapped underground, in a windowless room off the basement of what was once a buzzing hotel. Chained to the wall by steel manacles around his wrists as the vampire they’d been stalking knelt between his legs, tore through denim, bit into the soft flesh of his inner thigh.
The pierce of fangs and pull of blood left him reeling. For a moment, he wasn’t certain he’d ever see the sun again and then there was Peter all fire and sober rage, sending a bolt through the vampire’s neck and driving the blessed stake through its heart as it flailed like an injured, bloated tick.
And here Charley is now, watching the sun sinking toward the horizon as Peter licks a wet swathe across his neck and bites down on his shoulder.
The burn of pleasure shoots straight to his crotch and Peter is there to catch it, one hot hand cupping Charley through the fabric of his underwear. Charley’s not sure when his jeans went missing. But with a flick of Peter’s wrist, he watches the underwear receive the same treatment.
Peter’s mouth is like magic, warm and wet and pulling all of Charley’s focus to a single, bright pinpoint of pleasure that goes suddenly nova, turns the blackness behind Charley’s eyelids to white. With a gasp that’s half moan, half choked off scream, he comes into Peter’s mouth.
“Oh, you beautiful boy,” Peter rasps a moment later, leaning his forehead against Charley’s hip, long magician’s fingers stroking the bandaged wound on his thigh. “I’m never letting you out of my sight again.”
I thought I saw a glimmer of hope,
I thought I saw a glimmer of hope
~ Lily Holbrook, “Better Left Unsaid”
Gob was used to ridicule. Cruel names. Crueler stares.
After so many years, you either grew a thicker skin—there was a saying that never failed to amuse him—or you went off the deep end and took as many staring, epithet snarling Smoothskins with you as you could.
He’d like to think he’d “grown a thicker skin” over the last thirty years, able to stand whatever got his thrown his way. And then she walked into Moriarty’s.
Fresh out of the Vault she was. No doubt about it. Even if he hadn’t already seen one vault dweller today, and even if she hadn’t been wearing the jumpsuit, he’d have known it. Beneath the spatter of blood and the fresh wasteland dirt on her cheeks, she was pale and perfect, untouched by the harsh winds and the scorching sun.
Her hands, he saw as she laid them on the bar, were well cared for; fingernails smoothed and buffed, skin soft. And—just for a second, really, less than the space of his heart beat—he wondered what it’d be like to touch her.
When he finally met her eyes, the look she gave him struck something in the back of his throat and his “What do you want?” came out gruffer than he’d expected.
She blinked, opened her mouth and stuttered, “…look—looking for my father. Have you seen him?”
“Think he passed through here…,” he muttered. Of course, her father had definitely passed through; you didn’t randomly get two vaulties in one day.
“Where is he?”
Gob hauled another glass toward him, opened his mouth, closed it, and glared at a smudge on the side that looked an awful lot like Moriarty’s fist coming at him. “Look, kid. I’d like to help. Really. But Mr. Moriarty’s in charge around here. You need to talk to him. He’s in back taking care of some business.” He nodded at the tables in the front of the room. “You can wait.”
Nodding, she slid onto a bar stool. Stared at him.
“What’s the matter,” he said, setting the newly polished glass down, “ain’t you ever seen a Ghoul before?”
Of course she hasn’t, you idiot.
“A ghoul?” she frowned. “Is…that what you are? How did—“
“Radiation. Lots of it. And then time. All the time in the world for things to start falling apart.”
He dropped his rag on the bar, rested his elbows on top of it.
“Oh,” she said, biting the inside of her cheek. She was looking closely now. Following the line of exposed muscle down his face and neck, over his arm.
That, he expected.
What he did not expect was for her to reach out and lay one of those fine, soft fingers on his wrist, at the edge of torn, tattered skin and smooth muscle. And he shuddered under her touch.
“Do—does it hurt?”
Ohh. And fuck him. She sounded genuinely concerned.
He swallowed. Opened eyes he didn’t remember closing.
“Just my pride.” Shifting uncomfortably, he moved closer to the bar to keep everything from the waist down out of sight.
Among other things.
Title: "On the Sea"
Characters/Pairing: Alice, Tarrant
Songs: Crazy For You and Ray of Light – Madonna
Notes: Music Meme drabbles. These two came out linked.
You're so close but still a world away
She’s come to know well the early hours of morning. Those dark hours where it seems you are the only person left in the world. On the sea. Hours that make you feel small, as if you’ve drank much too much Pishsalver.
Sleep has had trouble finding her, since her return from Underland nearly a year ago. She blames it on her never-still location, the incessant rocking of the ship that drives her from her bed to sit before the mirror affixed to her cabin wall, staring into it as if it might hold the answer to her sleepless nights.
And perhaps, she thinks, blinking as she watches the image unfold before her, the Hatter’s hands moving deftly over a bolt of blue silk—thimbled fingers carefully marking, measuring, cutting and stitching—it does.
For the call of thunder threatens everyone
They are not two evenings from the last port when the storm hits them.
She has never seen a storm such as this. It eclipses the moon, disappears the stars, makes the world go black.
The last thing she hears before the waves cover her head is a thundering crash, the unmistakable pistol-crack of breaking wood and the captain’s voice shouting over the din.
When she surfaces, the sea has swallowed everyone. And she is alone, floating on the back of what was once the captain’s cabin door, the rain beating down on her head, stinging her eyes. But that doesn’t matter, because she can’t see anyway.
All around her is dark. Dark swells. Dark clouds. Not even a flash of lightning to brighten the way.
Her fingers, chilled to the bone, lose their grip on the cabin door and she slips beneath the waves. The dark grows deeper. Her head feels strange, too big and too small all at once.
She opens her eyes; they blur and sting with the brine. But! There is something there. Just in front of her. A smear of a glow, like flame behind oily glass. And it’s coming closer.
She reaches out; her fingers brush smooth glass, find a wooden frame of worked roses and vines. The mirror from her cabin.
What fortune that she should just so happen to find it here in the depths of all things dark and ending. And she hopes it is not merely her mind playing tricks on her when her arm slips through the glass, up to her elbow, and warm fingers tangle around her own, gripping…grasping…tugging.
Title: "Keep Calm and Carry On"
Characters/Pairing: Lone Wanderer
Rating: PG to R-ish
Notes: The first in a series of vignettes chronicling the adventures of my LW and the goings on in the D.C. area.
Look around you find the ground
Is not so far from where you are
But don´t be too wise
For down below they never grow
They're always tired and charms are hired
From out of their eyes
Never surprise. – Nick Drake, “Things Behind the Sun”
Faith imagined this was what the end of the world must have been like.
Hot stinging air rolled over her skin and light, brighter than anything she’d ever seen in the Vault, blotted out the world. Even when she closed her eyes at the pain, the white seared through her lids.
Stumbling, she brought one hand up to shade her closed eyes and smeared something thick and wet and warm across her temple. The smell of gun oil mingled with copper and salt, invaded her nose, settled on the back of her tongue and she gagged.
She was burning from the inside out, stomach twisting. Bile scorched her throat and she fell, hard, to her knees and vomited until dry heaves left her shaking and weak.
Sinking back on her heels, she wiped her mouth with her arm. Her skin was still hot but the light was no longer pulsing against her eyes and, slowly, she opened them.
A tear slipped down her face, followed by another. She sniffed, slapped them away. They were the after effects of light blindness. That was all.
They had nothing to do with the sight of this place stretched out before her. This ripped up and jagged landscape where spires of wood and steel rose out of the ground like strange growths; where small dust devils formed up and down a broken road, spinning half heartedly before dissipating.
This place with no sound.
No trail of breadcrumbs for her to follow.
She might very well have sat there on her heels, staring out past the remnants of the pre-war world, waiting for something to happen—for the night to fall and bring out whatever creatures hunted in the dark; for the sun to scorch the flesh from her bones and leave nothing but a bleached skeleton—but for one thing.
Since the appearance of Amata’s face over her bed this morning, Faith’s mind had been flashing little snippets from her life. A lot like an old movie reel—her 10th birthday party, playing sick from Mr. Brotch’s class, fighting with Butch—and now, it froze on the broad face of Wally Mack.
Wally Mack who, several weeks ago had pinned her to the wall down near the Reactor Core. Who’d broken the zipper on her vault suit and shoved his hands down her pants and expected her to go along with. Not to scream. Not to fight.
If she had, that would have been it. She’d have been Mrs. Wally Mack just as soon as he’d gotten word out to his daddy and the Overseer.
And, Faith thought, Mrs. Wally Mack wouldn’t have woken up in the early hours of this morning to sirens and shouts and guards trying to kill her because her dad had some kind of fucked up idea to escape the vault.
Mrs. Wally Mack wouldn’t be in this situation.
But, Mrs. Wally Mack would wake up every morning to see that smug, snub nosed visage as he rolled on top of her to do his civic duty.
It had been that thought that had given her the courage to drag her nails down Wally’s face, to thrust out with the flat of her palm—just like Officer Gomez had shown her—when he jerked away from the pain. To drive her foot into his crotch while he cradled his broken nose.
And it’s those thoughts she uses to pull herself to her feet and move towards the sign advertising a “Scenic Overlook.”
The overlook is scenic. Spread before it is a world torn apart. Grizzled. Decayed.
But there’s something about it—from the skeletal structures of what looks like a burnt out town to that hulk of twisted metal rising in the distance—that makes her tingle, from head to toe, as if nuka cola was fizzing in her veins.
That’s a feeling she so rarely got in the Vault that she can identify the first and last time she felt it: when her dad finally let her sew sutures on Stanley (with the man’s permission, of course; he was always such a good sport…).
It’s the feeling of new opportunity.
And even the acidic shuddering of her stomach as she eyed the path she would walk, and the shaking of her hands as she loaded her only other magazine into the 10mm, couldn’t stamp down that feeling. Or prevent the surge of light headed excitement at the realization that she was fully free to seek it.
Genre: Somewhere in Season 2
How can you say
I go about things the wrong way
I am a human and i need to be loved
Just like everybody else does
One of the things he loves about Mohinder is the man’s incessant surety.
“Do you honestly think this is going to work?” Mohinder spits from his chair. “That I would actually come to you? Willingly?”
“Willingly, Mohinder?” Sylar smiles and the feel of it stretching across his face is strange, as though he hasn’t done it in quite some time; a by-product of spending so much time under faces that are not his own. “Yes. I do think you’ll come to me willingly.”
He presses his fingertips to the mirror. And there appears the image of Molly, sweet Molly, reading alone in her bedroom and growing smaller, like a camera is moving out frame by frame…to the front of the house, the street, the neighborhood, and then the great mass of the continent that Mohinder had hoped would keep Molly hidden.
“Because the alternative?” Sylar says. “Is so much worse.”
Her sunglasses and the scarf she’d bought off a trader back at the Outpost give her some protection from the glass-shard sands striking her skin. But the acrid smell of old rubber burning, the scorch of sulfur, and a rancid musk slip right through the thin cotton and settle on the back of her tongue.
Years ago, she’d traveled with her father on one of his many trips from their shop in McDermitt to New Reno. He usually overnighted in Love Lock to resupply and catch up on the trade-route news, but miles outside the town, they were stopped by an NCR blockade. The people in Love Lock had caught a deadly and highly contagious virus. The order was quarantine. And containment.
As her father ushered her to the detour road that wound up a small plateau, she’d caught sight of a masked soldier carrying a long, wrapped package that he tossed on a fire at the edge of town.
Her father’d gone grey in the face when she asked him about it. But then, as always, he was honest with her.
The thick, sickly-sweet stench of bodies on fire had followed Isa for the rest of the trip.
In 16 years, she still hasn't gotten the memory of burning human flesh out of her nose.
And that's what she smells now; faint and lingering like a bad dream.
Series: Dispatches from New Vegas
Characters: In this snippet: Isabelle (Isa) Reyes, also known as: The Courier.
AN: Just a little sliver of something being (sporadically) worked on.... This comes from a piece that's a bit of an outlier currently, as it doesn't fit in with the other vignettes in terms of POV (and possibly tense; though at this point, it's possible that all the vignettes will vary somewhat in tense).
You’re standing outside of Caesar’s tent, waiting for the escort Caesar is supposed to send once the meeting he called is finished, and watching the to-and-fro of the crowd below: the stooped women and men hauling firewood, hauling water, and several children, just old enough to begin schooling, being run through armed drills and mock battles.
For a moment, you wonder about those children who are just babies when they fall into the Legion’s hand. Are they taken under wing or are they left out on the side of a cliff to die?
You put your back to the camp—the one display of disapproval you aren’t too concerned about making while companionless...weaponless—and glance at the entrance of Caesar’s tent, willing it to open, because the sun is edging toward the horizon and it’s a long barge trip back to Cottonwood Cove and an even longer walk to a hospitable overnight stop.
Your leather armor sticks to your neck, is sucking wet around your breasts and hips, the bends of your knees; your hair keeps escaping the confines of the twist you’d thrown it into as you’d left the arena.
And it feels like someone’s taken a rebar club to your body; there’s not a piece of you that doesn’t ache.
You’re sure your back is bruised from where Benny sent you flying into one of the support beams of the arena and the machete graze on your head—that keeps dribbling blood into your eye—is likely to scar. At least this one will be covered by your hair. But you shouldn’t have gotten hit in the first place.
Still, the “battle” with Benny had been little more than a lead to the slaughter; the Chairman was all fast moving limbs and unfocused charges that were (mostly) easy to avoid and you’d put him down fairly fast. And with only a twinge of guilt…
Long ago, you’d learned to look after your own ass like nobody’s business which is what made the decision between giving Benny over to the Legion or killing him yourself such an easy—well, an easier—one.
That and the fact that you knew he’d abandon you as soon as you gave him room to maneuver…
You’d seen that in his eyes the moment you walked into Caesar’s tent. The way he shifted, the way he looked at the stealth boy on your belt then glanced at the Praetorians; you just knew he was measuring the distance and the obstacles between his location and the door.
But even then, you couldn’t just leave the prick to be tortured; not when you could end it all with a quick blow to his head or slice of his throat.
Even though he was the one who’d shot you, stolen from you, and then run half way across Nevada after you’d found him, dragging you directly into the Legion’s line of sight which, especially after the experience in Nipton, is exactly where you didn’t want to be thank-you-very-much and…fuck it.
He should be damned grateful you just killed his sorry ass.
Song: “Ring of Fire” – Dear Park Avenue (covering Social Distortion)
Characters/Pairing: Michael, T-Bag
Notes: Another drabble created with the music meme.
He was used to people looking at him, even before he got the tattoo. Used to quick, furtive side-eye glances—that most men wouldn’t catch—from women, the head turns and full body look-overs from men. The appraisal. The consideration. The lust.
Lincoln had always used to tease him about being “pretty as a girl.” (At 15, that was what first prompted him to shave his head. But the absence of glossy curls only seemed to draw people’s attention to his eyes, his lips…and he’d had more than one encounter with women—and men—wanting to touch the fine stubble on his scalp.)
( In his last months of freedom, he'd been drowning in a sea of black-ink blue prints... )
Song: “We Could Leave Right Now” – The Oysterband
Genre: Pre-Series, Gen, Drama
Summary: Drabbled spurred by the music meme, which basically says: write small, write fast. One look at the first rejection…
Word Count 543
Your rumors and regrets
All you need to do is walk away...
She is lying with her head on his lap, reading through a chapter in her Music in Western Civilization text and trying not to doze off as he runs his fingers through her hair, gently untangling the curls and fanning the length out across his thighs.
( Read the rest... )
Song: "Love Remains the Same" - Gavin Rossdale
Genre: Pre-series, Gen, Drabble
Author's Notes: Crafted using the music meme.
Truth is I am done pretending
Too much time, too long defending
You and I are done pretending
Lincoln liked to wake up early whenever she slept over.
It gave him a chance to watch her before she woke, to see her—what was the saying? “warts and all?”—without her noticing his stare and changing her behavior as she often did, so subtly altering the way she sat, took a sip of coffee, bit into a pancake.
Here, she just was.
One hand on her chest, the other flung over her head; fine shadow of dark hair along her underarm where she hadn’t shaved; mouth parted slightly, letting out a soft snore—that she would vehemently deny when she woke up.
And the sunlight came through the broken blinds, the gap in the curtain, and lit up all of the little distinctive features of her face—what she would call imperfections—the soft lines under her eyes; the freckle just under her chin; the pale, downy hair along her jaw line; the ghost of a scar on her lower lip.
He had them all memorized.
Characters/Pairing: Davy Jones & Elizabeth Swann
Genre: AU (Touching on all three movies, but veering off to the left.)
Author's Notes: This piece uses the prompts from 1sentence (though this isn't an official entry). I started this piece over two years ago and finally came back to it and—within a number of months, admittedly—finished the blasted thing. General plot spoilers if you haven't seen all three movies. Comments welcome. Any errors are mine alone.
#19 – Wind
The winds change direction and the Dutchman slows as its sails fill; looking down into the depths of the sea, the captain knows that somewhere, in the warmth of the Caribbean, a longing heart has fallen into the ocean.
#03 – Soft
Jones finds the dress wrapped ‘round the base of the mast when they surface; it is silk and lace, of the finest quality, something he’s not seen nor felt in more years than he cares to count; alone in his cabin, he lifts the sodden cloth to his cold cheek, imagines the smell of lavender clinging to warm skin.
#32 – Confusion
She hears the blistering crack of wood as the Kraken takes the Pearl and feels the longboat being pulled down, down, down into the whirlpool created by the sinking ship, splintering and casting the crew to the depths; she comes up on a piece of drift wood, clinging to it for dear life and looking for Gibbs, for Will, for anyone, but there is no one and nothing until the water a few feet from her bursts open and releases the Dutchman onto the surface of the sea.
( Read the rest... )
Characters/Pairing: Claire, Peter
Summary/Spoilers: Very mild, for “.07%”
But one day you'll end up like me
( The second time she saw her father, he was holding his dead brother in his arms. )
Song/Title:“Ocean Soul” – Nightwish
Summary/Spoilers: General Season 2 Nathan.
Between me and the sea
( He's not sure how he got here. )
Title/Song:“Cold” – Static X
Characters/Pairing: Sylar, Maya
Summary/Spoilers: On the way to New York...
( It's been a while. )
Characters/Pairing: Mohinder, Sylar
Summary: Post "Parasite," what I imagine could be a missing scene from ".07%." (I'm sure I've taken a little time line liberty.) I thought there would be more to this, but my muses tell me it's standing as is.
Rating: R for obsessional stuff.
Mohinder leaves the Petrellis’—leaves a mother to her grief—and finds himself at loose ends.
The thought of going back to his apartment clamps a freezing hand around his spinal chord. So he sits in his taxi, with the engine running, staring at the empty street through the rear view mirror.
Until the blood on the backseat catches his eye.
He spends the better part of an hour scrubbing the interior of the taxi clean at a rundown car wash in an equally run down neighborhood. And afterward, he holes up in the corner of a small café, its windows so caked by years of grime they gave the illusion of twilight. The thick, bitter coffee they serve tastes like penance.
( Venture on.... )
Notes: The 10-50 Meme: Pick a fandom. (Pick a pairing or character set, if you like.) Write 10 different categories of fic, each in 50 words or less.
1. First Time
( There's a first time for everything. )
2. Fluff (5 Years Gone Timeline)
( Unexpected proposals. )
( Rescued by the one you'd least expect. )
( On the road trip... )
5. Crossover (Heroes/Weiss Kreuz)
( Sylar, meet Schwarz )
6. Smut (Can be read as a follow up to “Fluff.”)
( The honeymoon's not over )
( If we change only one small thing... )
( We all bear scars, some of us more obviously than others... )
( Who's tying up whom? )
10. Wing Fic
( What if someone sprouted wings? )
Warnings: Consent issues. Alternate Universe. Just a snippet.
The afternoon sun cast long shadows through the open door.
The little room, in the motel just off of I-40 in Amarillo, smelled like smoke and sweat, the faintest musk of sex, and the lingering antiseptic sting of cleanser.
A faint heat crept up his spine as he maneuvered through the door with his bundles, catching his hip on the door jamb.
Guilt, he supposed it was, of a sort.
Mohinder deserved better than some pay-by-the-hour roach motel.
But it couldn’t be helped.
( Read the rest. )
Choose a subject and put your entire music collection on shuffle, hit play, and write. Write for as long as each song plays and move on to a different writing when the song switches (even if it's mid-sentence). Go for 5-10 songs.
Song: "I'm Sensitive" - Jewel
Characters/Pairing: Nathan, Peter, Angela
( “Nathan! Look at me. I can fly.” )
Title: Freedom Unbound
Song: "306" - Emilie Autumn
Genre: Post-Series (so, technically AU)
Warnings: Mentions of character death
( It’s been over a century since she should have died. )
Crossposted: heroes_fic, @fanfiction.net: The Spaces Between