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I love this show and what I want most from any fill for this prompt is just more interactions between the characters. From the tags I chose, yes I do want to see a hurt Trevor having to rely on Adrian and Sypha in some way. He spends the whole show so determined to prove to everyone that he doesn't care or need anyone....so obviously I would love to see him in a position where he does.
- Trevor is injured badly enough that it will take months to recover (if recovery is even possible) and he ends up residing in Adrian's castle coming to grips with what his life means now that he isn't a hunter anymore
This is ony of my all-time favorite video game series so basically all flavors are welcome. Given a choice I would prefer something Female Hawke/Varric centric but if the other listed pairings are more your speed I say go for it. It can take place in-game or after the events of the canon story. For Hawke I always preferred a cross between the saint/joker routes, basically Hawke will put her life on the line for someone in a heartbeat but she's going to be a sassy little shit about it.
- I don't really have any prompt ideas, just keep it somewhat in-character and I'll love you forever.
One of my favorite shows of all time. I do definitely want it to be Hardison/Parker/Eliot centric, but beyond that anything goes.
Words: Seraphic, Sly, Betrayal
Isabeau leaned against the railing, eyes closed against the brisk wind that carried the hint of salt. She ignored the way the wind combed through her hair and turned it into a tousled mess against the back of her neck and in her face. Once in a while she brushed it aside, or tried to, until giving up and letting the wind push it around some more.
With night having long since fallen it was almost brutally cold up on deck. Without her cloak she would have been freezing, and even with it her hands felt numb where she gripped the railing. It was better than the stifling confines of the berth she’d been given. Everything was too close, the walls, her memories. It was better to up on the deck where there was only the cold, and sea wind to keep her company.
She looked down at the dark waters where they lapped against the side of the ship and her shiver had nothing to do with the cold.
It hurt, a yawning ache between her ribs to realize she’d been lied to her whole life. She had so many answers now to questions she didn’t even know to ask. Why her mother had feared the ocean and why she...hadn’t.
She was still having trouble believing it. The whole mess was just too far-fetched when laid out beneath the hard light of day. An ancient pact, a sea-monster bound by magic, a prince determined to save his child from the duty passed through his blood. It should have been a fairytale, something to stay up reading until the candle burned itself out. None of the revelations from the previous day had any place in real life.
Isabeau wanted to deny it, but...even now she can feel...something.
Ever since she was first brought on board she had an awareness of the sea that didn’t seem strange at first. She’d never even seen the ocean before how could she have known.
There was something terrifying about how close she had come to falling into the trap. Three weeks at sea and two sea battles. She’d even fallen into the water during that last battle trying to repair the rigging. If her blood had touched the ocean water...the magic lying dormant would awaken a creature so terrible that even the legends themselves had tried to erase it.
If she had any common sense she would be hiding in the middle of the ship and doing her best to avoid so much as catching a splinter. Isabeau should be feeling vulnerable and frightened, but right now all she felt was a fury that left her almost breathless beneath the weight of it. Had her mother ever intended to tell her? To explain the invisible weight that had always sat heavy across her shoulders and why she would dream of an ocean she had never seen.
It had been a shock to recognize something she knew, she knew, she had never seen.
If there was anything this blasted war had taught her, it was that ignorance was no excuse. Her mother might have hoped to save her by refusing to tell her the truth, but in the end it had just placed her in more peril.
“So this is where you retreated to.”
Isabeau startled as Captain Eliza joined her at the railing. She immediately felt the fool for taking such a drastic risk with everyone’s safety by lingering by the water.
Her immediate apologies were waved away as the captain leaned on the railing, resting her weight on her elbows. “Don’t apologize. Considering what we learned yesterday I don’t think you could avoid the ocean even if you tried.” She eyed Isabeau sidelong. “That does explain things at least.”
Isabeau pressed her lips together to hold back the tirade that tried to pour out of her. Instead it sat on her tongue, heavy and bitter.
“So what are you out here brooding over?”
Isabeau stared outright in surprise. “Captain?”
The Captain’s smile was soft, not the usual sly curve of her lips. It was the look in her eyes that made Isabeau swallow hard and look back out over the water. * “Your world was basically turned upside down yesterday and judging from your reaction you had no idea it was coming. That kind of thing can cut your feet out from under you faster than any wave.” She looked out over the night-dark ocean. “It might help to talk about it.”
“I don’t think it will,” Isabeau said, the words falling sharp and furious. “My mother lied to me. She risked my life because she was afraid and let me stumble into this,” Isabeau gestured at herself and the ocean as if that was explanation enough, “without any warning. She could have given me answers any time but instead she stayed quiet even when I was -”. Biting back the words Isabeau swallowed hard. She imagined the words were an actual physical weight in the back of her throat.
“When you were what?” the captain pressed. If she had turned to look at Isabeau she would have brushed her off. But her gaze was still on the endless ocean with its churning black waves gilded in moonlight. It was as much privacy as Isabeau could expect on the ship and receiving it from the captain now gave her the courage to continue.
“I’ve always dreamed of the ocean,” she admitted, speaking barely above a whisper. Just a touch louder than the quiet shush of the waves beneath them. “When we would visit the nearby lake I could never figure out why I always felt so strange in the water. As if it was close to what I wanted, but not enough.” She remembered crying once, only the once, not even sure why. Her mother had held her close and wiped her tears away saying, it was okay, it would fade with time.
It hurt to realize what her mother meant now. “I don’t know if she was ever going to tell me. Maybe she was going to wait until whatever magic lived in me...died.”
“But then you ended up on the ocean.”
Isabeau nodded and looked down at her hands where she gripped the railing. The water danced back and forth on the edge of her vision. It was frightening to realize that a part of her belonged down there.
“I saw a Mer once.” Before Isabeau could pepper her with questions the captain continued, “It was a long time ago, back when I first started sailing. It was in the middle of a storm and the captain had me up on the mast to help tighten the sails.” She laughed, shaking her head. “It was a wonder I survived the attempt. I’m pretty sure the captain had done it hoping I would get swept away.” The captain’s smile was deliberately sweet, seraphic as the one gracing the lips of the Lady fashioned on the prow of the ship. “He didn’t like having a girl onboard. Thought it would bring bad luck. But unfortunately for him I knew what I was doing. I was fighting to keep my grip beneath the wind and driving rain and suddenly lightning slashed across the sky.”
Captain Eliza shook her head and shared a commiserating look with Isabeau. “I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. A Mer in the water several yards off the portside. It was looking right at me.”
Enraptured by the story Isabeau whispered, “What did you do?”
“I was frozen until a crack of thunder right overhead nearly made my lose my grip. By the time I had righted myself and was no longer in danger of falling the Mer was gone.” Captain Eliza’s nails tapped against the railing, her chin braced on the heel of one hand. “I could be imagining things, but I almost think the Mer was waiting to see if I was going to fall.” Another short laugh. “Hopefully they meant to rescue me, but I don’t know. It’s been a long time since they bothered to speak with us. In fact, I think it was almost two hundred years since any have bothered to speak with the royal family.”
Isabeau pressed her lips together. “That would fit with when my supposed ancestor took his family and fled the ocean.”
Captain Eliza hummed in agreement. “That would make them a bit salty about us land-lubbers huh?”
Isabeau blinked and then looked at the captain askance. “Did you just…?”
The captain’s response wasn’t so much a laugh as an actual cackle. Isabeau was pretty sure she’d heard seagulls make the same noise. “It did the job didn’t it. Aren’t brooding anymore are you?”
“If it weren’t too dangerous now I think I would be tempted to throw myself overboard,” Isabeau muttered.
Captain elbowed Isabeau in the side, ignoring Isabeau’s yelp of complaint. “You talk big. One of the reasons I like you.” The captain didn’t move away but instead slung her arm around Isabeau’s neck. “One more thing before I leave you to your hopefully much lighter thoughts.”
Feeling a change in the air, Isabeau carefully nodded.
“What your mother did hurt you and only you can decide if you will ever forgive her for it.” Isabeau tensed but didn’t try to pull away, aware that she wouldn’t be able to escape the captain’s hold. “But if you learn anything from this, I want it to be that even the people you care about will betray you if they think they are doing it for the right reasons.”
Even with the cloak on Isabeau felt suddenly so cold. “Captain…”
Letting go, Captain Riley carefully turned her until they were standing face to face. She put both hands on Isabeau’s shoulders and leaned in, continuing just above a whisper. “Be careful, Isabeau. Whatever protection your mother tried to give you is gone now. If it were only my crew who knew what you are I could try to buy you more time, but unfortunately I wasn’t the only captain at that encounter.” She pressed her lips together hard enough to drive the blood out of them before continuing. “We are at war and there will be those who will look at you and see the key to an ancient power. They won’t stop to wonder if they can control it, or what it might do to you in the process.”
Isabeau knew the captain was right, but it hurt to hear it spoken out loud. This wasn’t something she could hide from.
Words: Prophecy, Dusk, Ribbon
“What do you want?”
Ignoring the growled out question Seyon dropped into the empty seat by the fire. He lifted his hands so the dancing flames could warm the chill out of his fingers. Behind him he could hear the rest of the camp moving about, soft conversations and the occasional thump and rustle as supplies were dispersed or unpacked. Occasionally he felt the pressure of eyes on him, a there and gone flick of awareness that he felt like invisible fingers on his back.
Wyvern sighed when he didn’t receive a response and threw another stick on the fire. There was a burst of sparks and the dancing tongues of flame quickly licked over the dry wood. The black stain of char flowed as smooth and slow as water, devouring with insatiable hunger.
“I need you to take me somewhere.” Seyon said. When he glanced out of the corner of his eye he could see the wary tension spring to life beneath Wyvern’s all encompassing cloak. “And the other’s can’t know where we’re going.”
Wyvern coughed out a laugh. “I’m not going anywhere with you.”
Seyon nodded but continued, “If you don’t help me I’ll go by myself. And I doubt I’ll be able to get where I’m going without you.”
“Considering I’ve tried to kill you several times I don’t see why this is supposed to bother me.” One dark eye peeked out from the cover of his cloak. “You’re just making it easy for me at this rate.”
Smirking outright Seyon said, “I’m about to make it even easier than you think. I’m trying to get to the Darkause Ruins.”
Any amusement Wyvern had found in the situation vanished like smoke. Seyon saw the twitch of his cloak and imagined the other man was clenching his hands into fists. There was a betraying rustle where the cloak draped over the back of the log he was seated on. As if he couldn’t keep the scaled length of his tail still. “No one goes there,” Wyvern ground out. “After fighting this hard to live why would you guarantee yourself a death sentence?”
“Would it be?” Seyon asked. Lifting his hands he studied the marks on his wrists with a hard won reserve. A single band as black as pitch encircled each wrist. Beneath the firelight it shone as if it were a mere satin ribbon laying against his skin, but it was as much a part of him as any of his limbs. “I have my doubts about that.”
Surging to his feet Wyvern turned towards the dark line of trees in the distance where the forest ended and the camp began. No doubt to disappear until sunrise as was his usual routine. Seyon gestured and Wyvern froze in place, falling unnaturally still. It dug at something inside Seyon to do it, as if some vast pressure were coming to bear from the skin out but he had come too far and lost too much to stop now. The line had been crossed and there was only one way to go now.
“I am going to release you.” It took effort for Seyon to keep his voice even. The longer he brought his will to bear on Wyvern the greater the pressure grew. Seyon flicked his eyes down to the marks on his wrists and saw miniscule tendrils begin to break up the perfect edges, as if putting down roots. “When I do, you will sit down and hear me out. After I’m done then you can leave.” His mouth curled up into a smile he never thought he could make. “If you still want to.”
With a twist of will he released the hold he had and sagged forward. He barely had the energy to lift his head to see Wyvern take one threatening step toward him before stopping. The shifter’s eyes raked over the rest of the camp and all the watching eyes. Seyon could see the struggle in him, the debate on wondering what would happen if he tried to take Seyon out again. Would he be fast enough to do it considering what Seyon had already proven he could do? Would he be able to get away afterwards? Would it be worth it even if he couldn’t?
Seyon knew what the answer would be before Wyvern dropped back into his seat. “Get talking then. The sooner you get this over with the quicker I can get out of here.”
“It’s not like you’ll go far,” Seyon couldn’t help but point out. “Not while I’m still alive anyway.”
“Without you there is no prophecy,” Wyvern snapped. “If you die everyone else is safe.”
Laughter bubbled out of Seyon, surprising him and judging from the look on Wyvern’s face, him as well. “How noble of you,” Seyon said, still laughing. “You should have said something before. Then I might have let you stab me the last three times you tried.”
If Seyon hadn’t already proven that he could keep Wyvern in place no doubt he would have already stomped his way back to the forest. Off to brood and plot more murder attempts no doubt.
“I’ll admit the prophecy does make things seem somewhat dire.” The understatement almost made Seyon start laughing all over again. A gate from which the demons would descend upon their world and feast to their heart’s content, and he was the key. Or so the prophecy claimed. “But I’m starting to wonder if that’s what it’s actually saying.”
Seyon had never seen Wyvern dumbfounded so he did his best to commit the expression to memory. “What madness is this?” Then his expression cleared into the murderous one that Seyon was more familiar with. “No, I will not let your cowardice doom our world. You are the key and if you die, then the prophecy cannot be completed.”
“That’s why I need to go to Darkause ruins. That’s where the prophecy was first stated, and I need to know what happened there.”
“The entire castle was murdered by demons. What more do you need to know?” Wyvern’s claws sank into the log he was sitting on. Seyon wasn’t sure he even knew he was doing it.
It was on the tip of his tongue to explain, to mention the letters he had found. They were from Nicola, the first Demon Bound, to her sister but Seyon held his tongue. It was unlikely that Wyvern would believe him if he explained that the demons were the first victims in what seemed to be an endless war. Summoned from their realm and bound with chains of magic and will, they had never had a choice. They were enslaved and used, passed down from one mage to another until they faded into nothing more than violent wraiths. It was difficult to wrap his head around, so much of his country’s history based on a lie, but he had to know for himself.
“I recently discovered something that makes me doubt the way the prophecy has been interpreted.” It was a poor explanation and Seyon knew he deserved the contemptuous look Wyvern threw at him. “I’ll make a bargain with you,” Seyon said, leaning forward. “You take me to Darkause and if you still think I need to die, I’ll let you kill me.”
“You’re lying.” Wyvern snorted, unimpressed. “After how hard you’ve fought and everything you’ve done up to this point there’s no way you’d just let me kill you.”
Which was true, to a point. “It will be just me and you,” Seyon said. “Considering how close you’ve gotten so far, I think you’re chances are good if there isn’t anyone else around to stop you.”
There was a growl and Wyvern lunged toward him only to stop at the last moment. Seyon held up a hand when he heard a shout behind him. “I’m fine,” he yelled. “He isn’t going to hurt me.”
“That confident are you?” Wyvern’s fangs were visible, an obvious sign that his control was slipping. It probably shouldn’t have made Seyon more confident. “Why shouldn’t I kill you right here and now?”
Seyon ‘reached’ and gripped Wyvern once again. He knew it was a stupid thing to do before he did it, but there was that throbbing anger that had been stewing in his gut since he first found that letter and he was tired. TIred of being fed lies and having everyone look at the black marks on his wrist first and who he actually was and did second. “Because you can’t. I’m offering you a choice. Help me find out the truth, the actual truth, and maybe we can stop a war.” He ‘squeezed’ a little tighter and heard Wyvern grunt. “Unless you think you can’t take me by yourself?”
“You think I’ll risk my life to help you?” Wyvern scoffed. “No one goes to Darkhause and comes out alive.”
“But you did,” Seyon said. He didn’t look away as the blood drained away from Wyvern’s face and there was a dull crunch as his claws bit into the log Seyon was sitting on. “Yes, I know you have been there. And I need you to take me back. So, how badly do you want to kill me? Obviously you’ll have a chance to kill me on the way there. Are you going to pass that up?”
“I’ll take you,” Wyvern ground out. The fury laced in every syllable was almost impressive. “Once we get to Darkause I won’t need to lift a finger to kill you.” He snarled in a flash of fangs followed by a snake-like hiss. “That cursed place will do it for me.”
“We’ll see.” Not an inspiring comeback but it was all Seyon had to say. Anything else would reveal the shaky relief that against all odds Wyvern had agreed. Seyon honestly hadn’t thought the shifter would. “What time do we leave?”
Wyvern stepped back and if there was a brief shudder when he was able to move away Seyon chose to ignore it. “Not tonight. We need to make sure we have supplies. And a plan to deal with your ‘friends’.” Wyvern ground his jaw hard enough Seyon could almost hear the teeth grinding together. “Be ready two days from now, dusk.”
Seyon wasn’t given a chance to respond. Wyvern hightailed it away from the campfire and the camp itself as if the demons of old were after him. Seyon couldn’t exactly blame him. So he sat and stared into the dancing, flickering flames until he had the energy to move. When he glanced at his arms the strange black marks had returned to the same satin smooth finish and clear cut lines.
Hopefully he would have his answer soon.
Jazmin knows the way the room has begun to waver at the edges of her vision has very little to do with the corset cinched just this side of uncomfortable, and everything to do with the panic that has been her constant companion since the ill-fated request to join her uncle in his office a fortnight ago. In fact, the corset might be the reason she’s managed to cling to her composure for as long as she has during the course of the evening. Focusing on every breath and the corresponding ache in her ribs and spine has been a wonderful distraction from the reason for said gown.
Knowing she cannot afford to step out onto one of the balconies for a breath of fresh air, it would all too easily be seen as a form of retreat, she instead takes up a position near one of the wide open doors. Close enough to stay in plain view of most of the hall and still enjoy the cool air from outside.
“Would the lady prefer a glass of wine?”
“No, I think not,” Jazmin demurs, knowing that wine will only make everything so much worse. The small brown squares nestled in delicate paper bowls draws her eye and she gestures. “What are these?”
The servant promptly offers her one. “This is chocolate, my lady. My lord had it brought over from across the Sea of Storms.”
Jazmin almost draws her hand back but conquers the impulse and accepts the small piece of chocolate. “My lord Darius is generous. Thank you, that will be all.”
With the servant sent away Jazmin takes a moment to study the small treat. It is common knowledge that King Rutherford wants nothing more than to forge some kind of connection with the realms across the Sea of Storms. But the waters are treacherous, filled with ancient beasts of a bygone era and magical storms that would smash the hardiest ship to splinters.
That Lord Darius is not only capable of crossing the Sea of Storms but has crafted some manner of trade negotiation is the reason Jazmin is here now.
Jazmin’s gloved fingers twitch and she conquers the urge to crush the small chocolate. Instead she forces herself to take as deep a breath as she can manage in the rigid embrace of the corset, and slowly lets it out. It is painful to think about, how much things have changed in the space of a fortnight. If everything were as it should be, she would be in her rooms back at the University pouring over her books in one last review before class the next day. Tomorrow Master Virina is going to begin the coursework on the ancient city of Oepos, where history claims Rune-work was first created and Jazmin had spent most of the year looking forward to it….
Except she is no longer enrolled at the University. No more classes or late night study sessions where she and the others have a few too many drinks and try to Divine the exam answers, only for Herad to inevitably set something on fire. No more tentative plans to visit the Great Desert where the last remnants of Naming magic still linger and it is said their mages are nameless for fear of attracting demons. Every dream and goal she held for herself has been wrenched away in the space of a fortnight, and so here she is, clutching a piece of chocolate and focusing on each breath as she struggles not to succumb to the panic that will send her magic crashing out of her like thunder.
Eventually curiosity manages to usurp the panic enough that she succumbs and eats the small square in one bite. At once her mouth is filled with the rich flavor, smooth and warm where it melts across her tongue. It is delicious and Jazmin is forced to take another steadying breath when the back of her eyes begin to prickle.
She has barely mastered the impulse when a woman dressed in the livery of a House servant approaches her through the crowd. “Lady Jazmin, my lord has expressed the desire to speak with you.”
It was a request in everything but intent. Jazmin knows she can no more refuse than she can fly. Jazmin smiles and with a slight gesture encourages the servant to start walking. “It is my pleasure to indulge the Lord Darius.”
Jazmin follows the servant through the crowd and does not imagine the way the crowd parts, the slither of silk and faint whispers following in her wake. She can feel the pressure of dozens of eyes following her and it takes everything she has to keep her expression in place, her brow smooth and the faintest smile curling the corners of her mouth. She is being given the highest honor and she is grateful for this chance to serve her country and her family, or so she must appear.
They reach the dais at the far end of the room and Jazmin swallows hard to see that Lord Darius has abandoned his seat at the top to meet her on the first step. This is the closest she has ever been to the man and she seizes the moment to study him. Golden eyes with slit pupils follow her approach and as she gets closer she can make out the faint pattern of scales across his face and down his exposed throat. Jazmin would not call him handsome, there is a coarseness to his features that denies him that, but she would not be remiss in thinking him compelling.
“My lady.” He offers his hand and Jazmin can see that the scale pattern covers the back of his hand as well. From the position of his hand, she can also see the curved points of his claws.
She does not hesitate, she cannot afford to not with everything that has led her here, and allows him to guide her up the steps. There are two chairs atop the dais, thrones in everything but appearance for everyone from King Rutherford to the lowest peasant knows that Lord Darius is beholden to no one.
Jazmin takes her seat and looks out at the sea of gowns and suits and the way everyone is staring without actually looking at her. She clenches her hands into fists, and is startled when she realizes she is still holding the small paper bowl the chocolate had come in.
Lord Darius follows her startled look and makes a small sound of satisfaction. He takes his seat and says, “How did you like the chocolate, my lady?”
She can still taste the chocolate where it coats her tongue, rich and strong. “It was delicious, my lord. Like nothing I have ever experienced before.”
He nods and Jazmin does not know whether to be relieved or concerned that he is not looking at her, but rather at the rest of the nobles as they dance and socialize, the music overlaying it all in a bright tangle of noise. She is trying to come up with something to say when he breaks the heavy silence that has settled between them.
“I am aware of the circumstances that have brought you here, Lady Jazmin.”
Cold washes through Jazmin and it is only the corset and her refusal to jeopardize an already fragile situation that allows her to keep her composure and not immediately panic. Of course he was aware. Everyone knew about how her cousin abandoned her family and years of negotiations regarding her betrothal to Lord Darius to elope with Lord Heath’s second son. Both had been cast out and rumor was they had fled the country entirely, but the damage had been done.
It might have led to war, if her uncle had not seized upon the notion that Jazmin might not have been raised with the proper education of an heiress, but she too was a powerful mage and more than capable of fulfilling her cousin’s side of the negotiations.
For King Rutherford wanted an alliance with Lord Darius and access to his connections across the Sea of Storms, and what better way to do that than to offer him a wife from one of the noble families. Even more important, a wife who was also a mage, and would be able to carry a dragonborn child to term.
“I wish to commend you on your honor and your courage.”
Jazmin freezes and this time cannot control her expression. She stares at Lord Darius with wide eyes and he turns to meet her gaze. It is a hard face, for there is nothing soft in a creature rumor says was born from the bones of the earth, but Jazmin does not think she is imagining the flicker of regret that passes through his strange gold eyes.
“I am aware that you were studying at the University before agreeing to be my wife and I wish to assure you that if you desire it, I will do whatever I can to assist you in finishing your studies.”
“Why?” The question escapes her before Jazmin can swallow it back, but once she has voiced it she finds she desperately needs to know. Her cousin had risked everyone by her betrayal. There were stories of the kind of destruction a dragon’s fury could bring about and Jazmin had known what she was being asked to risk by taking her cousin’s place. “My family humiliated you. You would be well within your rights to take retribution -”
His hand closes over hers and Jazmin stops, feeling the prick of his claws through the thin satin of her glove. “I do not blame you for your cousin’s actions.” Lord Darius’ voice is a deep rumble, carrying the hint of a growl. “Were I a younger drake I would no doubt let my rage carry me into some manner of vengeance, but I am not. Instead I see a woman who is determined to uphold the honor of her house, and a partner I believe I can respect.”
It takes an act of will Jazmin did not know she was capable of to hold back the tears that burn behind her eyes. Instead she looks at the man who would be her husband with clear eyes and feels the panic that has been clawing at her slowly fade. She slowly twists her hand in his grip so that she can hold it in return and takes some satisfaction at the way his strange eyes widen.
With the taste of chocolate in her mouth, rich and warm and sweet, and the first stirrings of hope in her heart, Jazmin manages the first real smile in a fortnight.
First off thank you so much for fulfilling one of my prompts. I’m already excited to see what you come up with.
Horizon: Zero Dawn
I truly adore this game and the biggest reason for that is Aloy. One of the aspects of her character that strike me the most is her refusal to let anyone tell her “her place”. She grew up in a tribe that refused to acknowledge her very existence, was shunned for as long as she could remember. Yet in the end she managed to not only make them eat their words/beliefs (and god that scene was so satisfying) but through her deeds and accomplishments she is now famous. Whatever you choose to write, I want it touch on her reaction to a world that now reveres her, when she grew up being told her very existence was a mistake of the gods.
The Dragon Prince
This show was great from start to finish but my favorite character by far was Amaya. Fierce and determined, a woman who makes herself heard even though she cannot speak. And then I saw Gren, so adorable and awkward, and I desperately needed to know how they met, or how Amaya came to trust him to act as her voice.
Books of the Raksura
These books are one of my go-to’s. I love Moon and how he made a place for himself with IndigoCloud, and the growth he achieves through the books is one of the reasons I love Martha Wells so much. One aspect I would love to see is him being possessive of his new family, be it Jade, Chime, or Stone. After living for so long on the run, always moving on before he can truly settle, I would like to see him startle himself with his own jealousy/possessive behavior. (Extra points for having him be possessive of Stone. That would be hilarious)
Best movie ever. Full stop. I love every character and all the different interactions they have. One thing I would love to see though is what would have happened if Rick had been one of the Medjai during the events of the first film. How would things have changed or been different?
I love Saiyuki, but Gaiden will always have a special place in my heart, seeing where those four lunatics got their start. Anything involving Konzen and Tenpou will make me happy be it romantic, sexual, platonic, etc.
Character Death, Illness, Tragedy, Animal Harm
Prompt: "Torches" by X Ambassadors [link]
Vasha does not fight when she is forced to her knees before the throne. She hisses in pain when her knees hit the marble floor and only just catches herself before her face can follow. The manacles around her wrists were removed but the ache lingers, the skin raw and aching. With one last bone bruising squeeze to her shoulder the guard who had forced her down releases his hold and takes a step back. Vasha ignores him, only having eyes for the man seated on the throne.
“So one of the Old Blood yet lives.” The king’s fingers tap against the armrest of his throne, soft taps that seem to break through the heavy silence that had descended in the audience chamber once she was brought forward. “Now what am I to do with you?”
There is a faint murmur of surprise and dismay amongst the gathered nobles. Vasha can smell the acrid stench of their fear as the king’s words spread, stones casting ripples into the water. No one is foolish enough to try and leave, not with their king watching, waiting for the first sign of treachery. They fear him and the power he has gathered here, in this dark mountain with a heart of ancient power. Like moths to a flame they cannot resist the draw, and can only pray they are not taken by the flames.
She laughs. It is soft at first. Everything aches, from her eyes to her toes, and here she is slumped before her greatest enemy. Beaten and alone, her allies too far to reach her in time, her greatest secret given life in only a few words. She is cursed, her blood heavy with the power that had once ruled this realm before treachery brought down an empire. Everything she has endured, everything she has lost, to end up here on her knees with blood in her teeth and her enemy victorious.
The king’s eyes narrow and he makes a short gesture. Her only warning is the creak of armor behind her and then pain explodes across her back as haft of a heavy spear is slammed into her back. She ends up sprawled across the cold marble floors with their delicate mosaics detailing the fall of the Old Blood, the Black Empress herself thrown down from her dark mountain and all her blood with her, from her eldest son to the babe still learning to walk.
Her hand covers the image of the infant moments before the sword comes down and Vasha continues to laugh even as pain leaves her breath coming short. She doesn’t fight when she is hauld back up and this time the king is staring her down with dark, furious eyes.
“Do you find your death that amusing?” The king leans forward on his throne, a gilded thing of polished wood and gold inlay. “Do you wish to join the rest of your kind that badly?”
“They are afraid of you,” Vasha says once she has the breath. “Everyone is afraid of you. They whisper of your cruelty and your lust for blood. They play court to you in the hopes that you will spare them or in the hopes they might feed your wrath with their enemies.” There is a shift amongst the nobility at her words, and she turns to smile at them. “Three hundred years ago your ancestors rose up against the Black Empress and the power she wielded, but look at you all now. Serving this wretch who has found power and thinks he knows how to wield it.”
The king’s face has grown dark with fury and his eyes sweep the assembled court long enough to ensure the flurry of whispers die before he looks back to Vasha. He smiles down at her, a sharp slash that reveals the pointed teeth and too red lips. “Do you think to convince them to turn on me? I am not a fool, not like her. They know what will happen if I am not here to hold the Mountain.”
Again, Vasha laughs and when the guard once again brings the butt of his spear down on her lower back, this time she will not yield to the pain. She stays upright and when she can draw breath she looks up at him with her own sharp smile. “You do not hold the Mountain.”
Confusion flits amongst the nobles, but she is staring at the king and his narrow face and she smiles when she sees it, the fear. “You are king but you are not Master. You have the Blood, that is true. But you don’t have enough. Not enough to hold the Mountain in truth. Instead you have forced it to sleep.”
Where only moments before the king had stared at her with dark fury, now the fear is growing. It blooms across his face in a slow awareness that is truly glorious. “I am the King,” he says and Vasha smiles with her teeth covered in blood. “You are pretender.”
It is the work of a moment to [reach] and it is just like she remembers, the pulsing heart of power that lies in the center of the mountain. The warp and weft of her realm, the shadow to every step she took within it’s borders. It had screamed in power and shaking earth the day she had been cast down, when her blood had soaked the earth and the air filled with the cries of her children. With her dying breath she had crafted one last working, and in its grief the Mountain had reached back and caught her soul before it too could pass on.
Even forced into slumber it had guarded what remained of her life until one was born who could carry the burden of her memories, and her purpose. Until she could return and once more claim her place as Black Empress of the Mountain.
Vasha gets to her feet as the very mountain trembles, a giant waking from its slumber. The assembled nobles cry out as there is a crack, and the king tumbles forward, his gilded throne split into two. Where it once stood the marble floor begins to tremble, and steadily a shape begins to rise up out of stone that has gone soft and malleable. A new throne born of stone and power gradually takes shape and eventually hardens with one last shifting crack.
It is stark lines and stone that shines like black glass beneath the spirit lights that adorn the high sconces. Ragged and aching, Vasha climbs the steps and stands before the dark throne before turning. She surveys the nobles in their silken finery and the palpable cloud of fear that covers them, as well as the frozen pretender who even now gets to his feet as if he has the right. One glance from her and the stone softens beneath his feet until he sinks up to his knees. His shout of outrage is cut off when she lets the full weight of her fury touch the air. The very air hums with it, and she imagines she can hear the click of his teeth as he shuts his mouth.
Vasha looks once more to the men and women who controlled the realm with their money and their connections, all of them descendents of traitors. “You were afraid of him,” she says, smiling down at where the king was trapped in stone. She turns to smile at them and takes a deep breath and lets it out as the Mountain reaches for her. The great doors of the hall grind shut and as they slowly realize that they are well and truly trapped, Vasha sits on her throne.
“I will show you what true fear looks like.”
Prompt: Link to Picture
The magic that binds him has begun to fade.
He can feel it in those brief moments of between, when day merges into night and night begins to brighten into day. Thick and clinging as spider silk where the spell was worked into flesh and bone, and spun soft and vicious across the the surface of his mind. He does not know how many seasons he has lost beneath the weight of it, but now that the spell has begun to weaken he can feel the distant echo of lost memories.
He cannot always remember that he is enspelled, that this monstrous form is the result of the greatest cruelty, twisting him into something obscene and other. Yet now in the twilight years of magic it has faded enough that he can wrest his mind from the spell’s clutches for whole days before inevitably slipping back under its hold. He does not know which is worse, those knife sharp hours of knowing he is enspelled, or the haze that descends and he no longer recognizes his body as the prison it has become.
With the spell losing it’s hold his body has begun to take back it’s true shape. His mind still lingers in the trap of the spell’s making, false memories and vile instincts rolling over him at a moment’s notice, but his body has at last begun to reflect the truth. Caught in-between he is forced to linger in the wild, feral places where man and monster fear to tread. Better to fight tooth and nail in the darkest wilds than warn those who crafted the spell that their pet was close to freedom.
And he is so close. The spell has begun to give way in stops and starts, and it is only in the wild places of the world that he can conceal the festering magic that has begun to emanate from him in a near invisible shimmer. The butterflies alone would mark him as magic-touched. They are drawn to it like moth to a flame and he is never free of them now. Every new flicker of dark wings is a promise that soon he will be free.
He dreams of what he will do when the last shreds of the spell finally give way. He cannot help but smile, sharp and furious and hungry for vengeance. So he waits, patiently haunting the feral edges of the world while the spell gradually unravels thread by thread, and when it does….
A dragon will once again rain fire from the sky.
Words: Conscription, Survival, Light
The ocean had seemed so much smaller in her mother’s stories.
No longer able to endure the crowded hold she and her fellow conscripts had been shoved into Isabeau had secured a spot against the ship railing. Well out of the way of the sailors as they went about their duties, and their wandering hands, but still in sight in case anyone came looking for her. Considering the foul temper Lieutenant Herain had been riding for the past week, she thought it best not to risk it turning in her direction.
Endless waves spun out from the hard line of the horizon to slap at the hull of the ship, the sun glittering and dancing across the shifting waters. White froth crowned each wave and was carried into the air when a strong gust of wind skimmed by, cold and stinging across her skin where the salt water had left it chafed. Isabeau licked her dry lips to taste the now familiar quick burn of salt on her tongue.
It was soothing, the strange push and pull of the ship caught amongst the waves. She felt none of the nausea that had sent poor Edon nearly over the side from heaving. Instead, the longer she stared at the water, the more she wondered what it would feel like. She had swam in a lake once, but those placid waters were a world away from the waves that bubbled and thrashed beneath her feet.
“There you are.” Adali stepped up beside her. She was trying to fashion her hair back into the series of braids she’d had earlier with little luck. By the time she had finished binding them back in place the wind had already tugged several dark wisps free. “Blast it all, why do I bother?”
“Because you refuse to be sensible and cut it.” Isabeau rolled her eyes. Her own dark hair was pulled back into a short tail. She’d cut it shortly after it became obvious her small town would not avoid the Call of Conscription. Better to do it herself than have someone make her do it.
Adali snorted but didn’t rise to the bait. She leaned against the railing close enough their arms brushed. Isabeau didn’t begrudge her the intimacy. Standing half a head taller than Isabeau, Adali made a perfect barrier against the sea-touched winds. And it wasn’t in Isabeau to deny herself or Adali the comfort of touch. After what happened with Ysandra they were all a little shook up.
Together they watched the white clouds gather in the distance, fluffy and harmless for the time being. “Were you tempted to run?” Adali asked, just loud enough to be heard over the rush of the waves below.
Isabeau shook her head. “No. As scared as I am and I am scared,” she admitted, “I can’t risk them making good on their threat and going back for my brother. One person from each family, that’s the law. If I make a run for it they’ll expect him to take my place.” She didn’t think she would ever forget the look in her mother’s eyes as Isabeau was led away by the soldiers, the terror that had turned her mother’s face milk-pale and clutch at Calin as if he too were going to be taken away to fight in the Mad-King’s war.
Isabeau gripped the railing hard enough to bleach her knuckles white. “Calin...he’s too young to fight. They would find another use for him.” Just beginning his sixth year, Calin was still small. There was no doubt in her mind they would would throw him in the gold mines where some enterprising soul had determined a child could reach where an adult could not. Only one in five of those children ever came back and more often than not illness claimed them not long after.
The quiet lay between them, only broken by the waves dancing below. It was oddly relaxing and strangely familiar. It itched at her, the strange impression that she should know the sound.
“I have three older sisters,” Adali admitted. “It nearly killed my parents to let me go, but we all knew out of the four of us, I was the most likely to survive.” She gestured, taking in the way she loomed over Isabeau as well as the broad span of her shoulders. “Once they saw me it was a done deal.”
Behind her, as if to break the melancholy mood, there was a rush of footsteps and then the ragged sound of someone being sick over the side. There was a soft moan that marked the victim as Edon. Out of all of the conscripts he was the one taking to sea travel the hardest. Isabeau tried to sympathize but after the fourth time she’d had to step out of the way or be splattered with Edon’s last attempt at a meal, she was growing short on patience.
The solemn moment was broken as Edon’s miserable retching was followed by a sailor’s frustrated cursing and the two young women broke into simultaneous laughter. “I’d be surprised if that one could take a bath without succumbing to the sea-sickness,” Adali admitted as her chuckles trailed away. “It took a couple outings before I discovered my sea legs. Did you live off the coast as well?”
Isabeau frowned at Adali and shook her head. “No, I’d never seen the ocean until they brought us to Pasima.” One of the largest coastal cities in Maerid, Pasima was often considered the Ocean Jewel. Upon their arrival Isabeau had been dazzled by the infinite stretch of the ocean into the hard line of the horizon, a glittering backdrop against the looming shape of the Summer Palace. Lieutenant Herain had threatened to have her whipped if she didn’t stop dawdling.
Adali scoffed. “I’d believe that if I hadn’t seen you walk across the deck our first day on board. You’d have to be born on a ship to - “
“Sails off the portside! No colors flying!”
Isabeau saw Adali’s face drain of all color before the ship turned into a maelstrom of organized chaos. Sailors erupted from below decks where they had been off-duty and began running too and fro. Isabeau could only do her best to stay out of their way with no idea how to help. Captain Eliza strode out of her cabin and began shouting orders. On her heels was Lieutenant Herain. “Captain! What is happening?”
The captain barely spared him a glance. “If we’re lucky just another bastard the Mad-King has over a barrel.” Isabeau had been present when Captain Eliza had been informed that her ship was being seized in order to transport supplies and conscripts to the frontlines. It hadn’t mattered that all merchants who hadn’t been quick to get their ships out of port before the proclamation went out were all in the same boat, as it were. “If we’re not, you’re going to get the chance to blood your little conscripts early.”
“Pirates in these waters? That’s impossible.” The lieutenant had to scramble out of the way when Captain Eliza strode up to the railing with an eyeglass in hand. “What are we going to do?”
“We’ll pile on the sails and see if we can outrun them.”
Lieutenant Herein gaped at her. “And if that doesn’t work?”
The captain bared her teeth at him in the grim parody of a smile, “Like I said, you’ll get to see what your little recruits are made of.” Her gaze landed on Isabeau and Adali where they were doing their best to stay out of the way. Isabeau didn’t think it was pity that softened the captain’s expression, as much as resignation. As if she were already writing them off as potential victims.
Adali stepped away from the railing, her chin lifted in challenge. She had also recognized the look on the captain’s face. “Do you have anything we can use as weapons?” she asked. “I think I can figure out which end of the sword to grab if I’m motivated enough.”
Isabeau hesitated, then moved up to stand beside her. “I know the basic forms for a spear if you have them. Or a long stave will do.”
Lieutenant Herein bristled behind the captain’s shoulder. “You aren’t seriously going to give them weapons? They haven’t been cleared yet.”
Captain Eliza laughed. “Yes, I imagine you would be hesitant to give your would-be cannon fodder weapons after dragging them from their homes. What would you have them do? Stand aside and hope the pirates are feeling merciful today?”
“We don’t know that they are pirates!”
As if waiting for the opportune moment to embarrass him, the lookout sang out, “Ship approaching. Cannon ports are open!”
At the captain’s shout a whip-thin man with dark skin trotted up. He shoved a heavy coil of rope at a passing sailor, “Store this before someone trips over it. Captain, we’re distributing the weaponry now. Herris is readying the harpoon.”
The captain nodded. “Good, make sure all the conscripts are armed even if it’s with a table knife.” When Lieutenant Herain started blustering she cut him off. “If you want to deliver corpses instead of conscripts for your Mad-King’s army you chose the wrong boat. Now get out of my way before I have you confined. If we have any chance of surviving this we’re going to need all hands on deck, including you and your lot.” Without waiting for a response the captain swept away, still shouting orders as she passed her spyglass off to her second-mate.
Not wanting to make herself a target for Lieutenant Herain’s frustration Isabeau followed Eames’ gesture to follow after him. Close on her heels, Adali said, “Do you think we have a chance?”
Isabeau glanced over her shoulder where she could see the approaching ship. At this distance she could just make out the movements of the other crew, the wavering echoes of their own call to arms reflected off the water. “I think we have a better chance now than we did before.”
Words: Ethereal, Sun, Glitch
“This is simply astonishing. I wouldn’t believe it if I weren’t seeing this with my own eyes.”
Shan hummed in absent-minded response, most of her attention focused on the task at hand rather than Professor Xi’ns’ excited rambling. With careful sweeps of her brush she gently swept aside layer after layer of coarse sand, fingers stained a dull red where sweat and sand met. At a guess she would say she was uncovering some kind of mural that had been built into some manner of stone floor but that was all she had, a guess. The last survey team hadn’t been able to turn up anything from the natives about what civilization might be responsible.
Which was rather strange, in Shan’s opinion. From the scope of her current project and the small hill over that way where crumbling stone had defied time and the elements to remain perched on top like a broken crown, she would readily support the theory this had been a building at one point. Possibly a temple of some sorts.
Whatever it had been, it had been important. From what she’d seen buried in the sand and from her earlier perusal of the small hill with its remnants, the stone had been fashioned with tools and was not indigenous to the surrounding area. Someone had brought it, shaped it, and then used it to build….something. Whoever these people had been they had been far more advanced than any of the locals they’d managed to communicate with. And yet none of them had any stories to tell?
The surveyors might not have gotten any stories of the builders themselves, but they had heard interesting tales about those who crossed into the Expanse. According to local myth, it tended to be a one way trip. Easy enough to dismiss, right up until all of their equipment went dead simultaneously.
They’d triple scanned the planet’s surface, and even that wasn’t necessarily required considering the survey teams were responsible for conducting a majority of the safety scans. Once they’d landed they had set their handhelds to scan continuously. It was going to be a nightmare to sort out all those scan records later but stars willing, she wasn’t going to be responsible for any of it. Everything had gone perfectly, right up until it didn’t.
Upon reaching the site Professor Xi’n had been horrified, quite vocally, about the state of their equipment. Small portable stations that should have already been prepped and pre-loaded with all manner of analyzing programs were very much dead. Not even a flicker of power could be coaxed (or beaten) out of them. Needless to say Shan had learned a few more words to add to her basic Raptik.
If Shan had an ounce less self control she would have been shedding sparks the moment they arrived. Everything had worked fine until they’d reached the dig-site and started to make camp. Hearing a 10,000 cred computer ‘fizzle’ had been enlightening to say the least.
The survey teams’ scans and the scan’s they’d taken from orbit indicated there was something here.
Shan huffed a sigh. She dragged the back of her hand across her forehead, resigned to the knowledge that she’d probably just spread the red stain to her face as well. So half the team was spooked and the security they’d been obligated to bring were stalking around like angry Terran wolves, just waiting for someone to point them (and their rifles) in the direction of something they could shoot.
There might be whispers of Professor X’ins’ grasp on sanity, but once they’d discovered the equipment was broken he had decided to head back to the ship. Only it turned out it wasn’t just their science equipment. It was everything. Their personal handhelds to the state of the art communicators the head of the security team had bragged about at the start of the mission. Nothing worked. Not even the universal translators embedded underneath everyone’s tongues. Shan shuddered to think how wrong that might have gone if one of the requirements for joining the “xeno-squad” hadn’t been mastering Standard.
If it had just been the equipment, Shan would have chalked it up to some kind of bizarre coding glitch, or even light sabotage from a rival team. Shan snorted. People acted as if the real drama happened in the ruling houses. Clearly they had never been involved in an inter-departmental meeting meant to hammer out ‘The Budget’.
The communicators though, that was what had Shan fighting not to start shedding sparks. The smart move would have been to retreat, and now they couldn’t even do that. Not that Professor Xi’n was heartbroken over it, hence the enthusiastic monologue happening to her right. Considered one of the top pioneers in the field of Xeno-archaeology as well as the winner of the Galaxius Prime not once, but twice, Shan was painfully aware it would take a super-nova to get him off this tech-forsaken rock now that he had gotten curious.
Which was why Shan was currently working with primitive brushes and had a headache that was spreading further and further beneath the curve of her skull with every hour spent beneath the blazing twin suns overhead. If she were Terran she would be cooking from the inside out.
Of course, the professor wasn’t the only one who was curious.
“No magnetic fields or any traces of heavy ore in the soil. As far as our rudimentary tests can confirm there is no viable reason for our equipment to have failed,” The professor said as he passed by on his continuous route through the site. He was suffused with an almost child-like glee, his long reptilian tail lashing back and forth across the red sand. The yellow scales that decorated the underside were almost orange where the sand had collected around the edges.
Shan didn’t begrudge the professor his enthusiasm, it was bound to last right up until he realized the state of his tail and feet. She made a note to make sure she got to her water ration once they called it a night. An irritable Raptik bent on ‘cleaning’ wasn’t going to hesitate to pilfer any water that hadn’t already been claimed.
Sitting back on her heels with a sigh Shan began flipping the brush back and forth between her fingers. It left smears of red across already stained skin and ended up dusting the cuff of her uniform.
She considered the amount of sand she’d managed to clear and came to the conclusion she would be doing this until the end of time. Swallowing back a groan she made to get to her feet, and stopped. In the distance the heat from the baking sand rose in a shimmering wave. Shan blinked in surprise, just able to make out the ethereal shape of what could have been a tower. Pure white it wavered between the harsh line of the horizon where red sand met the yellow-green sky.
Shan slowly got to her feet. “Professor, you might want to see this.”
|AU: SUPERNATURAL||POOR |
|POWER DYNAMICS||MEET THE|
|CELEBRATORY KISS||TIME TRAVEL||INDECENT |
|TENTACLE PORN||RITES OF PASSAGE/|
COMING OF AGE
|AU: MUNDANE||AGAINST |
|FREE SPACE||FRIENDS TO LOVER|
|IN VINO VERITAS/|
|BODY SWAP||LOSS OF|
HOURS TO LIVE
|AU: ALTERNATE |
|FLUFF||TRANSFORMATIONS||HUDDLE FOR WARMTH||TELEPATHY/|
|experiments by evil scientists||counseling||nervous breakdown||witch hunt||depression|
|ritualized pain / injury||hugs||substance addiction||betrayal||robots / androids / AIs|
|theft||dungeons||WILD CARD||unexpected consequences of planned soulbonding||confession in desperate situation|
|post-traumatic stress disorder||loss of identity||forbidden love||phobias||asphyxiation|
|au: band||telepathy / mindmeld||immortality / reincarnation||slavefic||au: daemons|
|time travel||au: circus||fake relationship||huddle for warmth||kiss to save the day|
|game night||forced to marry||FREE |
|secret child||rivals to lovers|
|sharing a bed||au: magic||de-aged||au: were / vamp / supernatural||curtainfic|
|cross-dressing||presumed dead||celebratory kiss||secret twin / doppelganger||genderswap|