I totally get the sentiment going around that people don’t want Percy to be a god’s champion just because everybody’s doing it, particularly because he’s got such a rough relationship with gods.
But I think that’s because he sought out the Raven Queen first, and the Raven Queen and Percy don’t understand each other. The Raven Queen is fatalistic. In her eyes, humans begin their lives imperfect, march toward their fates, and perhaps they achieve greatness, but they all end the same way: they go to meet her. Percy just doesn’t think in those dimensions. He altered the course of humanity with his invention, and blaming that on fate would be to shirk responsibility. He has seen people defy and defile death time and again. When he pleads with the Raven Queen for a way to fix what he’s done to the world, he is thinking of redemption but also that he lives as long as Whitestone lives, and that the impact of his weakness will matter, will change lives and end them, long after he is gone. The Raven Queen comforts him by saying humanity can achieve great things, but that is no comfort to Percy, whose greatest achievement is arguably the very weapon that killed him.
If there is a god who would understand him it would be Ioun. She’s a goddess of knowledge, an inventor, and like Percy she was betrayed and wounded in the course of invention. Ioun is blinded; Percy’s soul is in tatters thanks to Orthax. She lives in a place of uncomfortable paradox, where all knowledge should be shared for the sake of progress, and secrets are blasphemous, even if that knowledge can hurt or break or kill - but even then, even she has secrets she can’t afford to share. We haven’t seen much of Ioun, but I think she would think like Percy. Not along the threads of fate, like the Raven Queen and her champion, but in an impersonal chemical chain of combination and creation, knowing well the unforeseen impacts of discovery. She despises the aspiring god who took Percy’s family. Her domain is profoundly controversial and unsure. Percy asked his questions of the Raven Queen, and she answered the wrong questions. Ioun has probably asked Percy’s questions a hundred times about herself.
And of course there’s something delightful about the fact that Percy could earn the favour of the goddess that Pelor is protecting.
It’s likely that any number of entities will be fighting over my soul when I die, he says. I know, says the Champion of Pelor, I’ll be one of them.
Pike tilts her head back, enjoying Vax’s cool fingers in her hair, combing and shaping it. It’s so soothing - makes her feel like she’s underwater, or drifting through spring-evening air. The little knife that brings her back to reality is the thought (which she doesn’t allow to become too concrete): how much longer?
Vex is seized with the urge to sneak up behind her brother and yank his hair like she was six or hug him ‘til he chokes. Just, you know, to touch him. But she doesn’t, because to do it, to give in to the need to make sure he’s still there, would be to admit that she doesn’t know how much longer.
Percy works on an arrow. Vax cleans dust from the seams of his armor. The silence between them is, at last, after all the mistakes and jaggedness, companionable and warm. Percy notices that Vax steals glances, and he steals not a few in return, hoping that Vax’s sharp eyes won’t see that he can’t help himself, that he doesn’t want to make the calculations but that they come unbidden, telling him: not much longer.
Keyleth gives Vax flowers and feathers, bones and stones and interesting fragments of wood. She draws pictures in the sky, makes water dance, shapes boulders into birds. It’s her way of planning, of drawing up designs to banish that question permanently. She’ll smash it, burn it out of their reality. But still she hasn’t thought of anything, has to wonder: how? how much longer?
Grog wakes up with a start, in darkness. His room is empty. He’s covered in something sticky. “Vax,” he mutters, the word so thick with vengeance that the pleased chuckle that escapes just after is almost concealed. Not like anyone is around to hear. Except maybe Vax. Oh, revenge will be sweet; another battle in the war that will last – how much longer?
Scanlan pretends to play cards with Vax, gets drunk with Vax, notices that somehow Vax is more fun to be around, regrets his time away because he wasn’t aware there was some sort of deadline on this (even though it was needed, it was needed), inspires Vax, laughs at Vax, talks and talks and talks with Vax, sucking up the time because sometime you just have to admit that you don’t know, you never know, how much longer.
listen, though. of all of them to go early, of all of them to first cross that threshold, to see their families and their absent dead, I’m glad it was vax, cause like. vax loves all of them so fucking much and he just. he’s the right one to sit down with Johanna and Fredrick and Julius and Vesper and Whitney and Oliver and Ludwig and tell them of how much Percy and Cass have grown, how Whitestone is flourishing, how proud they should be of their family. he’s the right one to sit with Juniper and tell her stories about Scanlan, about the man he became, about how he’s happily in love with a wonderful gnome and a good father. he’s the right one to sit down with Vilya and talk for hours and hours about Keyleth, about how wonderful she is, how strong, how wise, how caring, how proud a mother ought to be to have a daughter like her. he’s the right one to sit with Elaina and talk about Vex, his best friend and better half, about everything they did together and everything she will still do, because she’s Vex, and she will just keep rising and rising like the star she is, chosen of the sun god and bright as ever.
just. if one of them had to go. I’m glad it was the one who loves them with the whole of his heart, so that he can tell their families, your children have done you proud, and they send their love and they will see you again but not for a long time still. not for a long time.
honestly it’s baffling to me how the entire party can be So Bad at reading vex outside of percy and pike (if she’s there) like even vax is extremely hit or miss on saying what vex wants or needs to hear and as a whole vm just. likes to dismiss a lot of vex’s more serious feelings as jokes.
Finished just in time for Anime Weekend Atlanta. I’ve been working very slowly as a labor of love on this since early summer, before the Tarot deck was announced. The official deck is beautiful, but I decided to go ahead and finish this because I already had the composition, and because, to me, Vex fits the Sun more than any other character.
If you’re at AWA, come see me at booth 914 in Artist Alley!
i. girls your age - transviolet // ii. valley of the dolls - marina & the diamonds // iii. hunger of the pine - alt-j // iv. dazzle - oh wonder // v. victor - prinze george // vi. bravado - lorde // vii. beautiful, dirty, rich - lady gaga // viii. don’t be so hard on yourself - jess glynne // ix. cheap thrills - sia // x. love myself - hailee steinfeld
little possibilities about perc’ahlia’s secret engagement that i love so much omg
percy probably asked trinket’s permission secretly, or at least told him that he was planning on asking vex to marry him. like, in the rare few minutes or seconds that she doesn’t have her necklace on, like if she’s having a bath without him or they’re post-boink and she’s gone to fix them up some hot cocoa and she’s walking around nekkid in her own home because of course she does, he probably just very quickly popped Trinket out and was like “i know you can understand me, i don’t have a lot of time to talk about this, but i know you know that i love your mother very much - no, not THAT mother! vex, i mEAN VEX - i love her and i’m planning to ask her to marry me, and there’s absolutely NO GUARANTEE that she’ll say yes, so i’m not trying to worry you or anything, i just want you to know that that is a thing that’s going to happen, and it’s going to be a special occasion with flowers and dancing lights and stars, and i hope she says yes, and if she does please don’t hate me” and Trinket probably just goes [ADORABLE BEAR NOISES] and at first Percy thinks Trinket isn’t happy about it but then Trinket like nuzzles at him and it’s his way of saying good luck and then Trinket huffs a little and it’s a tiny warning to not hurt Vex or elseTRINKET WILL HURT THE BANG-BANG MAN
taryon might have known all along and stayed quiet. maybe it happened in vex’s home, like in the garden or sth, and taryon just happened to overhear, but didn’t say anything because neither of them were saying anything and he knew it wasn’t his place to bring it up in conversation so he just waited for them to say it but they never did, at least not while he was around. or one of them - probably Vex tbh - told him about it probably because they were a little too happy about it and had to tell someone or else they’d never be able to keep it a secret, and they asked him to keep it a secret, and so he did. (and if sam decides to make this a thing, that would make taryon’s “percy showed me the kind of man i would want to marry one day” even more signficant)
“PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN”-STYLE MID-BATTLE VOW EXCHANGE PRESIDED OVER BY PIKE OR VAX TBQFH
percy probably proposed with like an heirloom ring and vex loves it so much that she has left it in whitestone coz she doesn’t want it to get lost or stolen
percy probably was so friggin nervous abt the thing that cassandra had to bonk him upside the head a couple of times and sit him down and be like “LOOK, YOU SNOW-HAIRED BOBBLE-FACE, IF YOU DON’T DO IT SOON, YOU’RE NEVER GONNA DO IT”
cassandra was probably the second person vex told because Trinket was of course the first and cassandra acted like she didn’t know it was going to happen but of course vex is like [I N S I G H T] and cassandra was like “hey i didn’t want to kill your buzz by telling you i knew he was going to do it” but vex doesn’t cARE SHE’S JUST SO HAPPY and also she wants to know that cassandra approves or at least accepts it and cassandra’s like “i mean it’s not like i have any say in many of my brother’s choices, but even if i did, i’ve never thought you were a bad idea”
when vex tells Trinket, he just asks “do i call him Papa now” “awww that’s cute buddy!! sure why not!” “Papa Bang Bang Man”
Percy/Vex - High school teachers AU (both teachers)
1 - Percy is kinda a jack of all trades science teacher (he’s primarily physics but has also taught just about everything). Students either love him or hate his guts there is no middle ground. He’s full of science puns and frequent tangents, but is also fucking strict and his tests are notoriously hellish. He also runs the school’s Robotics Club. He loves that club and those kids adore him.
2 - Vex is a statistics and economics teacher and also the school’s Cheerleading coach (and a beloved one at that; her girls love her and the school’s team is award-winning). She’s hot af and teens of all genders will jump through any hoops to get into her classes only to learn that they are also REALLY HARD. She ain’t playing around and her homework load is immense.
3 - They’re not married, and they don’t confirm nor deny relationship claims - but everyone knows they’re a thing. Vex will stop by his class and ask him if he remembered to feed her dog. Percy will run out and get them both lunch. Shit like that. They ain’t subtle.
4 - Every freshmen who gets told “Ms. Vessar and Dr. de Rolo (Percy has a doctorate what is he doing teaching high school? We just don’t know) are a thing” are at first really incredulous because Vex is practically a model and Percy looks and dresses like a frumpy professor three times his actual age…
5 - … then they see the two of them, like, chaperoning the school’s homecoming and Dr. de Rolo cleans up really fucking well and they’re standing at the punch table flirting like, well, schoolchildren and Ms. Vessar is actually blushing(!!!) and oh my god they’re adorable wow.