Murphy had a tendency to hang out in the most secluded parts of Camp Jaha, which was nice when you wanted nothing more to get away from the swarm of black-clad, trigger-happy guardsmen, but a challenge when it actually came to finding him.
Today you were lucky, getting tipped off begrudgingly by Harper as to where you could find him. With your daily rations in hand, you slid down next to him in a seated position against the wall, hearing the echo of far away clunking footsteps that bounced off the metal floors.
When you glanced up, Murphy was staring at you.
“What?” you asked, popping a bite into your mouth. It was terrible, probably stale, but your hunger made you forget about taste. With all the talk Clarke gave when you first landed on the ground, you thought meals might be a little bit better when the people of the ark came down to join the party. Now food was as tight as ever.
“Don’t you have friends?” Murphy asked. Your faced turned ashen with embarrassment.
you muttered, “I can go.”
“Don’t,” he said, “That’s not what I meant. I just don’t get it. Why put up with me every day when there are plenty of other people in this camp?”
“This might surprise you Murphy,” you said, the color returning to your cheeks, a little too much color, “but I do actually enjoy spending time with you.” He let out a sharp laugh to your words.
“Give yourself some credit,” you continued. “You’re not that bad.” He didn’t say anything this time, just shook his head and let the silence fill the space between you, until you finally broke it, this time with a much quieter voice.
“They stare,” you said finally. “They stare and yet half of them can’t even look me in the eye. They think I’m some sort of monster because I ki– because I did what I had to in order to survive. We all did. But I don’t need to be reminded of it every time I eat my goddamn lunch.”
A beat passed, and you started to regret every word. Should have kept your mouth shut, shouldn’t have let your emotions get the best of you. The cold feeling nudged it’s way up your sleeves and crawled around inside your jacket, burrowing itself into your stomach.
Murphy leaned in towards you, his voice low as if he was passing on a secret.
“Sorry to break it to you, sweetheart, but I think I might have you beat for the least favorite person in this camp. But if it makes you feel better, we can share the title.” He broke out into rough and bitter laugh, one that you joined in on, letting your head fall onto Murphy’s shoulder.
Fuck this shit universe filled with festering blackness, and swarming with shallow, single-minded humans focused on crystallizing aspects of the material universe and putting it into their bank accounts, transmuting real experience into imaginary numbers, which then they ascribe to how good they’re doing, like some evil satanic score.
artynerd23. I am sorry it’s so late! And I changed the original request slightly. I felt this fit the situation better.
I moved my body, feeling my legs get caught in the swarms of black blankets on my bed. Even through my bliss, I felt an odd lack of heat to my side. I swung one my hands out in that direction, but was only met with an empty half of the bed.
“Cisco.” I mumbled, sitting up. I brought one of my hands up to my eyes, attempting the wipe the haze of sleep from my orbs. I turned my head towards my boyfriend’s usual side of the bed, and my gaze fell upon his clock.
“5:30? Cisco what the hell?” I asked myself, rising from the bed. My movements were stiff as I marched to the bedroom door. A soft light glowed from underneath the large piece of wood, tempting me to open it. After a moment of decision, I flung the door open, and made my way out into the hall. I soon determined the light was originating from the living room, and I moved to stand in the doorway.
Sitting on the couch, was Cisco, swaddled in a blanket, and watching an episode of Star Trek The Next Generation. I moved quietly to stand behind the couch, before reaching my arms out, enveloping Cisco in a hug from behind.
“Princess? Why are you up?”
“I would like to ask you the same thing.” I moved around the couch to sit next to him. I laid my head against his shoulder, as he brought the blanket around me.
“You’ve been doing this for the past few days Cisco. Are you alright?” My voice was laced with concern, as I stole a glance at Cisco’s face. His features conveyed a sense of calm and peace. It would have fooled me also, if it weren’t for his eyes. They were glassy, clouded over with some kind of weakness I couldn’t describe.
“I am fine (Y/N). I’m actually gonna go into S.T.A.R. Labs early today. I want you to sleep in though. This whole Zoom situation has taken its toll on you.” He said softly, placing a kiss on my forehead. I felt his chest spasm slightly under my weight, but I foolishly paid no attention as he helped me to my feet.
He didn’t speak as he guided me back to our bedroom. At the door, he tugged me into a quick yet soft kiss, before turning and rushing out of the house without a single word.
As soon as Cisco made it outside, he erupted into fits of coughing, hunching over to try and calm his lungs. A slew of Spanish curse words escaped the man’s lips as he stumbled out to his blue smart car, a fog of sickness clouding his movements.
“God this is getting worse than I thought.”
Maybe 15 minutes later, Cisco stumbled into the laboratories a wheezy, sickly mess. He was able to make it into the cortex, before he collapsed against one of the chairs. Barry was the first to spot him, rushing over to catch Cisco before he hit the floor.
Caitlin rushed over, urging Barry to carry the engineer over to her medical station on the right side of the cortex. Barry laid Cisco in a bed, against his protests.
“Guys, I’m fine. Really. Just a little cold, that’s all.”
“Cisco, this is no cold. I think you have developed pneumonia. How long have you been like this?” Caitlin asked, rushing around to check the man’s vitals. Finally giving into his friends requests, he relaxed against the pillow, allowing his mind to focus on when the symptoms started.
“Maybe a week or so ago.” He responded, a harsh cough following close after. Barry used his speed to retrieve Cisco a glass of water, while Harry stood in the doorway. Caitlin’s shocked expression made Cisco wince slightly, not wanting to meet his friends gaze.
“A week?! Cisco, that’s very dangerous! What were you thinking?” She said, finally moving to grab some medication.
“I didn’t want to make you guys or (Y/N) worry. I didn’t want to lessen our progress with Zoom.” He said, staring up at the ceiling.
“Well, (Y/N) is going to be pissed.” Harry finally butted in, pulling out his phone and putting it up to his ear. Cisco sat up instantly, panic crossing his features.
It was too late. Harry was already greeting the girl, but explaining the situation. Cisco heard the yell of anger through the phone all the way from his bed, and knew that his girlfriend was pissed. Harry lifted his head from his phone, and nodded at Barry, before he raced out of the cortex. A few minutes later, Barry stood at the entrance of the medical ward, a very pissed (Y/N) at his side.
“Shut it Ramon.”
Now Cisco knew he was in a lot of trouble, she only ever called him Ramon when she was angry. She crossed the room quickly to smack her boyfriend upside the head, and begin her rant.
“Pneumonia! Seriously Cisco! You put off a cold to the point of pneumonia! What were you thinking?!” She shouted, earning a ‘That’s what I said!’ from Caitlin.
Cisco just hung his head, taking every scream that escaped his girlfriends lips. At a point, she just stopped, and flopped onto the bed next to him. She pressed her head against his shoulder, letting out an exasperated sigh.
“You said you were okay.”
“Princess, I’m sorry.” Cisco started, pulling his girlfriend down to lay her head in his lap. He ran one of his hands through his hair, trying to find the words to use.
“I didn’t want to make you worry. We were so close to figuring out a new technique for stopping Zoom, and I didn’t want to burden you all with a stupid illness.”
“Well, it’s too bad, cause after Caitlin finds some medication, you are coming home with me.” (Y/N) said, a sudden glint of determination flashing through the woman’s eyes. Cisco adored that gaze of hers, and if his eyes changed, they’d be in the shape of hearts.
The next morning, Cisco was a sneezing, coughing mess. (Y/N) got up early that morning to make him soup, and stayed by his side the entire day, just watching movies and cuddling her sickly boyfriend.
“Your nose is red.”
“It’s cute. You look like Rudolph”
“One, you are a Christmas addict. And two, you find me being sick cute?”
It was winter, although it didn’t really feel like it here. The wind carried with it a refreshing chill, one that offset the coast’s unseasonal warmth. The beach was quiet for that reason, but also because duties called for many during the day. They had for Mireya Dunn once, too. Part time work, coursework, exams, a demon…
The same demon her brown eyes currently rested on, watching from a fair distance. Everything at that moment felt miraculous. She vividly remembered dying: a swarm of black-eyed brutes, armed with knives and whatever else they could get their hands on. At some point in their attempt to kidnap her, they had lost their cool and brutally gutted her instead. Mireya remembered the fear, remembered not wanting to die by herself. She had, though. Dante had been there somewhere, trying, but not fast enough. If he had come to her side, it was only after she had passed on.
Could the monster sense her now? Her feet were bare, the bottom of her jeans rolled up from the sand, the same spring top she died in now clean of any blood. Once upon a time, Mireya would have tried running for miles, but now she approached instead. Walking felt strange and foreign. It had been so long, like an extended hibernation or sleep. There was noone else to believe her situation but the beast, though.
Unsure of how to approach, Mireya stopped a few careful feet from him, and called out the demon’s chosen name. Hopefully he wouldn’t flip out and kill her again, that’d be a waste.
Three of The Swarm are black; top is Bonnie, my first (and only direct) ‘foster failure’, then there’s Boo, aka Booregard J. Mimblesqueak, who likes to sit on my shoulders (which was cute when he was a kitten but now he’s 14lb.), and the two bottom pix are Stella the Impossible to Photograph Well (with a bonus pic of her as a small kitten cutely obstructing my computer usage).