Keith’s arms are pumping at his side as he sprints up and down the length of the training room. He finds it important to run daily to maintain his stamina because he never knows when he’s going to be put in a position where he’s left to flee without Red’s assistance.
Plus, he likes running. It feels like a release, like he’s loosening tight limbs after a fitful night of sleep. Sleep has never come easy for him, and it seems to only be getting worse while in space. His circadian rhythm is gone, and he can’t find it not matter how hard he tries. Time just moves differently in space, but he’s okay. He’s learning to adapt with little sleep; it’s not like it’s a new concept to him.
When he goes to cut a sharp turn to start back down the length of the room, he stumbles and falls to his knee. Nothing new, he’s fallen before. Only, this time it’s different. He hears a faint cracking sound that’s followed by a sharp, piercing pain that shoots all across his knee.
Gasping, he rolls onto his side, clutching his throbbing knee with both hands as his vision wavers in and out of focus. His heart is thumping loudly in his ears, making the string of curses slipping from his tongue sound muffled and distant.
In a brief bout of panic, Coran’s words from a few days ago slip across his mind.
“Everyone try not to get hurt, okay? The pods are due for a heavy maintenance check due to faulty codes running back to our systems.”
I haven’t done Steven Universe inspired make ups in a while and I wanted to make the Diamonds, so I played around with palettes yesterday and ended up with these two. Surprisingly enough, as a dual make up, they work pretty well. I had this theory that if I could balance out the heavy top liner from Yellow Diamond with the lower liner for Blue Diamond, it could even out as a dual make up, even though I purposefully made Yellow more of a sharp edge look and Blue more of a smokey round one. Anyway, my full face result is under the cut, which isn’t the best thing I’ve done but I thought it deserved to be included for a general idea.
Hera: Ivory cloth, draped over the shoulders of marble statues in estate gardens. Gardens of shaped hedges, a swift figure moving among them out of the corner of your eye. A ghostly watcher, uninvited and unseen, haunting the corners of marriage ceremonies, smiling as she turns away just as the final “I do” is spoken. A nurse, handing a woman’s newborn baby to her for the first time, quietly cherishing the tired, overwhelmed smile of the new mother.
Athena: The piercing cramps of a hand that has written for far too long. Leg muscles, strong and fierce, yet incredibly elegant, walking into battle without stumbling. A warrior, clad in blood-stained, golden armor, taking off her helmet as she walks away, revealing thick waves of brunette hair. The bags under the eyes of artists, writers, thinkers, their minds weary and exhausted from hours of work. The shadow of an owl as it flies over freshly-fallen snow.
Aphrodite: Love letters crumpled on the floor beneath a high-heeled foot, joining a floor of stomped dollar bills and colorless gardenia petals. Mulberry nail polish decorating sharpened nails, used for clawing through crowds, tearing out hearts. Broken perfume bottles, leaking their sweet scent into the fresh white carpet. Wine-colored lip prints, smudged onto her knuckles right before they make impact.
Artemis: Fine-tuned shoulder blades, refined and sharp, painted with rose-colored scrapes and tears. The imprints of feet in woodland trails, bending blades of grass and crumbling fallen leaves. Untamed, wild hair, following the trails of cool, dry wind. Paintball masks, smattered with colorful dots, hiding a face ready to strike an unknowing opponent. The quick glimpse of a deer’s tail as it darts off into the endless unknown.
Persephone: Ombred hair falling loosely across cracked skin, starting out the pastel color of pink pearls and slowly fading into an ebony abyss. Deep, chocolate cupcakes with pomegranate frosting, lined up one by one on a tainted silver plate. Lover’s hands intertwined, a dark secret held within them unbeknownst to their onlookers. The quite longing for a mother’s arms when the pale torments of untouched fields haunt your memories.
Hestia: The warm auburn glow of a room lit only by a fireplace after the power has gone out and the clouds have drawn away all of the certainty of sunlight. Fleeting sunrises that reach out to sleeping eyes, quietly whispering like a sweet mother for their child to wake. Kind hands as they pour their bit of change into the homeless woman’s jar or as they spoon the hot, sweet soup into the hungry mouth. A quiet coffee shop, opening its soft, warm arms to you as you enter to escape the cruel hands of winter.
Demeter: Hands, callused and torn from hours of fieldwork, complimented by a sunburned face. A mother, tears filling her eyes as she watches her child walk off into the college dorm for the first time, knowing that things will never be the same. Freshly squeezed orange juice and bread warm from the oven resting upon the table as a smiling family sits down to enjoy the feast, pushing aside the pain for a day for mother’s sake. Mother-daughter road trips that slowly fade into trips made by mother alone, wondering how things changed so fast.
Jared lightly knocks on her door, pushing it open and
quietly peeking his head in. She’s still sound asleep, half hanging off her
bed, drooling, hair an absolute mess. He chuckles and pulls out his phone,
making sure its on silent before he snaps a picture. He puts his phone back in
his pocket and gently tugs her body fully onto the bed, brushing the hair out
of her eyes.
“Rise and shine, babe. Your dad made breakfast
and there’s a whole pot of coffee with your name on it down there,” he whispers
to her, rubbing her back and arms, trying to rouse her.
She moans, flips him off, and tries and fails
to throw a pillow at him. “You have got to stop letting me drink tequila,” she
whines, still not lifting her head from the bed.
laughs. “Hey, I don’t ‘let’ you do anything, you’re your own woman,” he defends
himself. Come on, now,” he pulls her out of bed and into his arms and carries
her into the adjoining bathroom, setting her on the counter. He keeps one arm
stretched towards her, worried she’ll lose her balance as he leans into the
shower to turn the water on. Jared pulls her shirt over her head, she must have
kicked off her pants and underwear sometime last night because she’s now naked
and shivers as the cool air hits her body. He checks the temperature of the
shower, almost warmed up, and then returns to standing between her open legs.
flops her head against his chest and weakly wraps her legs around him. “I’m
sorry,” she mumbles into his shirt.
Kary, you and me. Let's form a club. Wrecc Genos Club 2k16.
YES LET’S DO IT!!! Genos tied up in painful-looking positions, gag in his mouth and drool escaping from the corners, tears rolling down his cheeks, eyes glassy and desperate, face flushed, thighs trembling from being in the same position for a long time, ass lubed and plugged–
Fandom/Character(s): Avengers - Bucky Barnes/Winter Soldier, feat. Steve Rogers/Captain America
Original Idea: I was watching Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides with my parents and this just sorta wrote itself…
Notes: (Masterlist)(About Me) This one is kinda long with little easter eggs from Civil War if you haven’t seen it, but nothing that quite amounts to spoilers (I don’t think. Read at your own risk I guess). I actually had a lot of fun writing this one.
I stood on the opposite
side of the river from the Triskellion, eyes wide and mouth gaping. My jacket and
bag hung limply on my shoulders as I pushed some of my hair out of my face.
The three floating ships
were destroying each other only minutes after they’d risen.
One of them drifted over
the river, falling apart after the first two had crashed—leaving a massive
wreck. I watched the one that remained in the air carefully, eyes scanning the
descending debris for bodies—survivors hopefully.
Then I saw one.
He seemed to fall in slow
motion, and he wasn’t moving. No flailing limbs or attempts to break the water.
He must have been unconscious—or otherwise too weak to move. I gasped and
striped off my jacket, rushing towards the water as I kicked off my shoes and
dropped my bag. If that man wasn’t awake, he could drown. I couldn’t let that
happen. I watched as his back broke the water and saw him start to sink as I
waded into the river.
As my waist entered the
water and the ends of my hair started to drift behind me, another figure jumped
from the flying ship—awake and heading right for the other falling man. He
broke his fall with his feet and also started to go under.
I dove in myself—feeling
my legs start to bind.
He couldn’t do it. His
silver arm was holding the blond man by the shoulder strap of his colorful
uniform and his legs were struggling to kick back to the surface. But the sheer
weight of his leather uniform, heavy combat boots, metal arm, and unconscious, deadweight passenger were dragging him
down—coupled by the downward momentum of jumping from the helicarrier. His broken
right arm was completely useless and his long hair drifted around his face as
his legs kicked. He could barely see in the dark water of the river and was
running out of air—still he made little headway towards the surface. He looked
up towards the shimmering sunlight in hopes that seeing it would help him reach
Suddenly the weight of the
blond man under him greatly lessened. His head turned down curiously, wondering
why the pressure in his Vibranium hand had all but disappeared.
A slender, pale arm had
wrapped around the man’s chest. He could faintly see a cloud of brown floating
around a face clashing with the green of the river, but couldn’t make out any
details. The only other thing he could see was a quick flash of silver—not unlike
his own arm.
Someone was holding the
man—the captain—and pushing him back towards the surface.
The other pale arm
wrapped around his own leather-clad chest, aiding him upwards as well. He felt
something slippery brush against his legs and boots—but he didn’t lash out or
resist. He had the strength and his instincts were screaming at him to—but he
knew that without the assistance he would drown. He couldn’t make it back to
the air with the sheer weight of his clothing.
His hand was still
clutching the shoulder strap of the captain’s red-white-and blue uniform as the
slim but strong arm tightened around his chest and the pressure of the water
rapidly decreased—making his ears pop.
His head broke the
surface, dark hair falling to cover his eyes. He shook it out of his way and
looked over his shoulder for his rescuer—who was still holding onto him and
pulling him and the captain towards the shallows near the bank. A young girl
with glossy brown hair a few shades lighter than his own and eyes green as the
river wasn’t even looking at him as she swam—so quick and powerful it didn’t seem
right. She didn’t look like she had the strength for her speed.
His feet hit the bottom
and his head was still above the surface. His grip tightened around the man—the
captain’s—shoulder strap. The girl did not join him in standing.
She drifted away from
him, eyes finally meeting his. She gave him the ghost of a grin before lurching
backward, her entire body leaving the water.
The silver flash he’d
seen was the fish-like tail she had in place of legs.
The fluke of the tail
landed with a slap on the surface and
the girl—the mermaid—was gone.
He turned back towards
the bank of the river, dragging the captain out of the water and depositing him
on dry land. For a moment he stared at the blond man—until the captain coughed
water out of his lungs half-heartedly. He straightened, dark hair dripping onto
his leather uniform, and started to walk away, carefully holding his broken arm
so he wouldn’t jostle the injury.
I recognized the eyes immediately.
I’d seen them near the bottom of the Potomac River nearly two years ago. They were
a brilliant and frankly beautiful shade of blue—with so many emotions running
through them so fast they were almost
emotionless. I took a step back
instinctively, out of both shock and confusion. I hadn’t expected to see those
eyes ever again—particularly not so far away from where I’d seen them the first
He recognized me too,
apparently. Before I could make some sort of getaway he’d crossed the road and
grabbed my upper arm in his gloved hand. I felt an unnaturally powerful grip
underneath the leather—and it felt like metal, not skin. Strongly but
remarkably gently he pushed me backwards until we were in an alleyway between
buildings—out of sight.
“You,” he breathed
quietly, letting his hold on my arm go, staring at my eyes searchingly.
“You,” I replied, not quite
He looked down at my
legs. “You saved my life. And his.”
I looked down at my
shoes. “I just… I had to help.”
“I didn’t deserve to be
saved,” he muttered, eyes still turned down.
I looked up at his face. “You
can’t mean that,” I retorted, keeping my voice down. This guy was obviously
trying not to attract attention.
“I was—am—not exactly a good person.”
“I don’t believe that.” I
glanced at what was in his other hand—a brown paper bag with a few plums in it.
“Plums huh?” I asked. “They’re supposed to be good for memory.” He looked down
and twisted his hand so the bag was hidden behind his leg. “Try chocolate bars
as well,” I suggested. “They’re good for memory too.” His eyes flashed to mine
and he stared at me—like he wasn’t expecting me to offer help—or even be kind. I
shrugged slightly and gave him a small grin.
“How do you know that?”
“You know what I am. I get
around. I hear things.” Instantly I wished I hadn’t used the phrase I get around because the Beach Boys
started singing in my head.
He gave me a curious
look, eyes narrowing. “How did something like you end up here? Landlocked?” he
I shrugged again. “A lot
of rivers open into the ocean. A lot of big cities are built around rivers.”
“What are you doing here?”
“Same thing as you. Running.
He tried to not react but
I caught the recoil. Coolly, he gave me a skeptical look. “And what makes you
think I’m running?”
I returned his look. “Like
you said, you don’t think you’re a very good person. You’re trying not to
attract attention. Wearing muted colors, hiding your face as much as you can
under a ball cap, covering that interesting metal appendage of yours with long
sleeves, layers, and a glove. I’ve done my fair share of running for someone
like us. I know the look in your eyes. You practically panicked when you
recognized me and realized I recognized you.” When I said like us his eyebrows furrowed—like he was confused that I threw my
lot in with his. His bright blue eyes flicked back to my skinny-jean-clad legs—probably
thinking back on the last time he’d seen me.
He sighed but was silent
for a long time. “Thank you,” he finally said quietly, closing his eyes. “For
“Not you?” I challenged.
“Not sure yet.”
I dug my hand into my bag—and
noticed him tense up and suck in a breath. “Relax,” I soothed as I rifled
around the abyss that was my bag for a moment. “I don’t carry any weapons on
me. Ever.” My fingers brushed what I was looking for and I pulled it out. “Here.
This is the good kind.” I offered him the chocolate bar that I usually kept
with me in case my blood sugar dropped too low from swimming or I just got a
random sweet tooth while I was out.
He took it with his
gloved hand, eyes flicking between it and my face. “Th-thank you,” he mumbled,
I smiled. I wasn’t sure
what it was about him, but he just seemed like he needed someone to be kind to
him—if only to give him a candy bar and a few nice words. Even if some of those
words were sarcastic or too lighthearted. I wanted to give him a hug as well,
but at the same time I didn’t want him to lash out. He didn’t seem like the
So instead I grabbed his
right arm in a friendly, loose grip so I didn’t seem threatening. “You’re welcome,”
I replied genuinely with a grin. I gave his powerful bicep a pat and moved to
leave the alleyway for the main road. “Maybe I’ll see you around.”
Finally I got a smile
from him—the close-lipped ghost of a wistful one, but still a smile. “Doubt it,”
I chuckled, walking
backwards so I could still see him. “Well, maybe that’s okay too. You ever see
me again, don’t hesitate to come and say hi. I don’t trust a lot of people—but people
like us always need a friend.” I gave him something of a cheeky wink before
throwing one of my silver scales at him. “Keep that,” I instructed as he deftly
caught it. “It’ll let you know if I’m ever anywhere near.” He looked down at it
and back up at me.
“You’re quite the
interesting mermaid,” he remarked.
I bounced my eyebrows,
nearly out of the alley. “And you’re quite the interesting soldier, Mr. Barnes,”
He flinched, but I was
out of the alley and had already melted back into the crowds, smiling to
myself, eyes cast downwards with one hand holding onto my bag strap so no one
would try to snatch it. I didn’t trust Europe. I didn’t trust anywhere—except the
Note: My very late submission for NaLu week day four… But it will be worth it! I’m planning on using day four, five, and seven prompts to do a tiny ficlette set in a post-apocolypse AU. Kudos to anyone who knows what band/album the name is taken from ;D
Day Four: Smoke
Lucy choked as the smoke assaulted her lungs.
She tripped on the uneven ground, losing a white shoe to the
harsh terrain. But she had to keep going, to keep running. She kicked off the
other heel, which allowed her to put on a burst of speed. Why hadn’t she done
that sooner? Running in heels is stupid.
Her hair streamed behind her, the white dress billowing
around her legs. Her eyes took in the desolate terrain. The ground was dusty
and dry, the trees nothing more than bare skeletons trying to stretch to the
sky. The sun burned red as it descended over the horizon.
What had happened to the world?
She was too young to remember how the world used to be, back
when clean rain fell from the sky and people farmed the land. But she had read
it in books. Now, all the rain was poisoned with chemicals and the water needed
to be purified. She assumed that her home was the closest thing to the old
world that existed now. Though there was no green on the ground, ‘grass,’ she
recalled, it was landscaped with colorful rocks and statues. Now, she knew that
it was all chemically dyed. Her father’s wealth had surrounded her in false,
fake beauty. She longed to see the world as it once was, as she had read in
Outside her property, she found the moment she crawled under
the barbed wire fence, the world was desolate. It needed to be loved, to be
nurtured back to life. It needed some true light.
She almost got blasted by one of the natural hot-geysers,
caused by the chemicals that had ruined the land, bringing her back into the
present. She coughed, the smoke filling her pure lungs. This was hell, but it
was better than the hell her father had her in.
Her pure white dress was stained by the smoke and the dust in
the air, causing patches of it to turn grey. All the better; she hated
everything white stood for.
She used to think that it was pure and innocent, believing
that everything her dad, as one of the leaders of the government, stood for.
They told her that white was the color of a clean start,
like the world was getting. They would use the white canvas to paint a new life
What a load of bullshit.
All they were doing is trying to quell the rebellion that
The Runaways, as they called themselves, donned the color
black, hiding their faces with bandanas that had a skull painted on in white.
She hadn’t seen any of them, only heard of their deeds. She
had secretly read enough of her Father’s reports in his study to know exactly
what was happening.
The government was corrupt. They were using what they owned
for their own purpose. They were going to paint a new world, but a world where
the few choice people ruled over all. There was to be no individuality, no uniqueness.
Everyone would follow orders.
There was even talk of a new chemical that would be injected
into a person that would take away their inhabitations to think for themselves.
They would be machines.
Lucy knew this was wrong. She couldn’t just stand there and
watch as the world fell apart. She had to do something.
When she tried to talk to her father, he had hit her,
telling her she wasn’t allowed to think for herself. She was just a piece of
That had been the last straw.
She would find the Runaways.
She wanted to be no part of the corrupt government who had
donned white. She wanted to be black.
For black was now the color of humanity, of individuality.
So she relished in the smoke that stained her dress grey,
for it was one step closer.
Natsu kicked a little rock that was at his feet, it
clattering away. The sound rang out in the silence of the night.
He hated patrol duty.
Nothing ever exciting happened! The government was too prissy
to dirty their hands in the darkness of the night. They already ruled the
world, so they could do it in the light of day and not worry.
Besides, darkness was the Runaways’ time.
Natsu huffed, figuring he was just upset because he was
missing the impromptu party they were throwing. Gildarts, a father-figure to
Natsu, had just returned safely from infiltrating the government. He had spent
all afternoon in Makarov’s tent, telling the master of all the things he had
And then there was a party.
But Natsu was stuck watching the boundaries of the camp. He
huffed, looking up at the tall walls of rock that towered over him. It’s not
like anyone could get into their camp without them knowing anyways. The only
way in was through the split in the tall rock wall. The tiny, natural valley
provided them protection and hid their camp.
Besides, that’s if anyone even wanted to storm across the
natural hot-geysers. Those things were dangerous! Only those who knew them
well, who understood the timing and the signs that occurred before they blew, were
able to make it unscathed.
It only required a few people on patrol. Natsu didn’t even get
to do the fun part! He was stuck watching the entrance to the crack, while Gray
got to scale the wall and watch from the top of the rock monument.
And so he sulked.
It was going to be a boring night…
He looked down at the ground, allowing his well-trained ears
to do the work. He would hear something before he saw anything in this
pitch-black anyways. The moon had been covered by the smog that surrounded
their world in a haze for the past few nights. Even at its brightest, it only
provided a little bit of light.
And don’t even talk about the stars. Those were rarely seen
Natsu stood there, his arms across his chest, his lip
hanging down in a pout for a while.
His head suddenly shot up. He had heard something, a clutter
of a rock not far off. He tucked his ever present bandanna over his mouth and
nose. If there was going to be trouble, he had to be prepared to fight in the
smoke of the geysers.
Then he heard it; the hiss of a geyser and the scream of a
He heard Gray, above him whistle twice, signifying that the
commotion was to the east. Natsu ran a hand over the edge of his coat, his belt,
and his thigh. All his throwing stars and knives were in place.
Then he took off.
In a burst of speed, he darted out of the ravine and into
the hot wasteland. The smoke filled his already –covered nose, but he was used
to the feeling. After all, this was his turf. He had been tearing across these hot-geysers
since he was a kid.
The tell-tale signs of a geyser caused him to dash slightly
to the left, avoiding a hot burst of flames. He smiled at the light of the
He kept his eyes peeled, listening for the girl again. He
had no idea if it was just her, or if there were others with her. He hadn’t
heard any other commotion, which told him it was the girl alone. If there were
others with her, they would surely be talking if the girl had gotten hurt, as
hinted by her scream.
Natsu stopped, holding his right fist in the air and baring
the reflective neon on his glove to the sky. He waited, listening for Gray to
give him more directions to where the geyser had gone off that had caused the
scream. He heard one whistle, signifying that it was north, and Natsu was off
He knew that Gray was standing ready with his crossbow,
waiting for Natsu’s signal that there was danger and he was to shoot.
Then, Natsu saw her.
A white patch on her dress reflected against the geyser that
shot off merely ten feet away.
White. The color of the government.
He almost turned around and left the girl on the hot wasteland.
She would surely be dead before morning.
But then he looked down at the innocent looking, grimy face.
Her dress was covered in filth, turning it almost grey. Her feet were bare and
bloodied. Her blonde hair looked almost grey from the smoke.
Her troubled face, screwed up in pain, pulled on his
He sighed, mad at himself for being a softy.
Natsu whistled three times, giving Gray the all clear. He
knelt down next to her, inspecting her for any bad injuries. Other than her
bloodied feet, which told him that she had been running barefoot for a long
time, the only thing he could see was a scorched arm. She must have been too
close to a geyser when it went off, but nothing too serious.
Honestly, he assumed that the pain of the burn had pushed
her past the point of pain and exhaustion. Her panting breath told him that she
was in a lot of pain.
His fingers gently touched her arm.
He was startled back, causing him to fall on his butt, his
hand flying to one of the many knives on his belt. Her eyes had flown open and
she had violently flinched.
She probably didn’t know that he was there, as the only
noise he had made was the whistles to Gray.
Her eyes stared at him, and he stared back as the girl
pulled herself up into a sitting position.
“Who…” her voice croaked, “Who are you?”
He was about to answer when he heard the hiss of the geyser
beside him. He threw himself at her, causing them to roll out of the way of the
fire that shot to the sky a few seconds later. He caged her in his arms, taking
the brunt of the hard ground.
As they laid there, her tucked into his arms, he could see
that her eyes were brown, a beautiful chocolate brown, that held kindness and
passion, in the light of the fire that shot to the sky.
And then they rolled back into her head, her eyelids
fluttering shut, as she lost consciousness.
“Shit,” Natsu cursed. Now he knew that the damage to her
body was probably more than what he could see in his brief examination in the
pitch black of the night. He would need to get her to Wendy.
He stood up, cradling the girl in his arms, and started
walking back to the crevice in the rocks. He whistled four times, to let Gray
know that he was returning.
He looked down at the girl, admiring her beauty beneath the
grime. She had been through a lot in the past few hours. And even though she
was from the government, she was obviously running from something.
Something that made her push through the pain of bloodied
feet and brave the hot-geysers.
And any enemy of the government was a friend of theirs.
Lucy awoke, attempting to peel her eyes open. After a couple
tries, she succeeded. Her eyes took in the top of a tent. She felt the throbbing
in her feet and an aching pain in her arm.
Where was she?
The memories came crashing back, images of a dark night,
fire shooting into the sky, and a man in all black with pink hair and dark eyes
She sat up with a start, causing something to fall off the
edge of her bed onto the floor.
A small “eep!” came from the other side of the tent,
startling her and causing her head to whip toward the source.
A small, blue haired girl was looking at her with wide eyes.
They softened, and then the girl smiled at Lucy. “You’re awake!” the girl
chirped, “Though, you startled me when you sat up so quickly.” The bluenette
moved across the tent to her bedside. “How does everything feel? Your main issue
was merely exhaustion, but your burn had to have hurt. It’s not bad though!”
Lucy stared at her in awe, taking in her tiny frame clothed
in a black dress, the bandanna tied around her neck but not covering her face.
Then her words sunk in and she turned to look down at her
bandaged arm and allowed herself to take inventory of her body. “I…” she
croaked out, then cleared her throat, “I feel fine. Much better, thank you.”
The small girl giggled slightly, “Good! I’m glad.” She
handed a glass that had been sitting on the table to Lucy, which she gladly
pressed to her lips and drank. The small girl watched her, a small smile on her
face. “My name is Wendy, what’s yours?”
Lucy tilted the glass down, trying not to guzzle the water. “Lucy.
Did you take care of me?”
Wendy grinned, “Yes, I’m the medic at our camp. I know I’m
little, but I’ve been trained by the best!”
Lucy smiled at her, “Well, if these bandages are any evidence,
then I would say you do a very good job.”
The girl beamed back at her, “Thank you!”
Lucy looked down and then raised her eyes once more, “Who
brought me here last night?”
A commotion outside interrupted Wendy’s answer. Shouts filled
the air, a sound of a smack resounded through the air, and then a man slid
through the opening of the tent on his back.
He sprung up from his back, using his hands to launch his
body back onto his feet, his pink hair flying through the air. “I’ll get you
for that Ice-breath!” he shouted, about to tear back through the tent opening
to the outside.
“Natsu, she’s awake,” Wendy said, causing the boy to whip
around. Dark green eyes met Lucy’s brown ones, causing her memory to awaken.
Pink hair, dark eyes; she could feel his body holding hers.
He was the one who had found her last night.
A grin split his face, and he took a couple steps to her bed.
He looked down at her with probing eyes. She felt as though he was staring into
her soul, evaluating her. Then his face split into a grin and he crouched down
next to her bed and cocked his head to the side. “I found ya outside our camp
last night. What were ya doing running through the hot-geysers at night, silly?
You coulda got yourself roasted.”
She tried to move back from his gaze, both playful and
calculating. He was testing her.
She huffed. No way was she dealing with this crap. “What,
don’t you like to go for runs through the geysers?”
Natsu’s laugh rang through the tent. “Yes, in fact, I do.
But I have been running through them since I was little. I know the signs of
the geysers, as you found out last night when I saved your ass.”
Wendy gasped and smacked him across the head, “Language,
Lucy recalled the man springing at her the night before,
caging her in his arms and rolling them away from a geyser.
Natsu sheepishly rubbed the back of his neck, “Sorry, Wendy.”
Lucy giggled a bit at the exchange, seeing the love the two
had for each other. Obviously, Wendy was dear to the man.
Natsu’s eyes flashed to her at the sound of her laugh. It
sounded like musical bells ringing through the tent and was the prettiest thing
he had ever heard.
She met his eyes and grinned at him, “Fair enough, thank you
for saving me last night.”
Natsu grinned back, his eyes meeting hers.
They both could feel it. This was the beginning of something
great; it was like light breaking through the smoke and darkness.
Hugh scanned the crowd again, muttering crossly into his beard. It took either incredibly bad luck or specific intent to lose him in a crowd, and yet here it seemed that Miriam had done exactly that. They’d hardly hit the outskirts of the throng of people gathered for the peculiar Rain Day Festival when they’d been separated. It wasn’t terribly surprising though, Hugh mused, in a place where in recognition of the way the clouds hid the sun during a storm, everyone wore grey clothing and a bright, colored mask to hide their faces. Some wore their own elaborate creations, but at each entrance to the large open space simpler, solid-colored masks which covered the eyes could be acquired, and then modified to suit the wearer’s taste once inside. Modifications or otherwise, it was still difficult to tell anyone apart unless you knew their mask well, and the only rule about mask-swapping was that you had to ask consent first. Hugh grumbled. They hadn’t even been able to set a meeting place in case of this very eventuality before he’d lost his companion. He had thought a good place would be out in the nearby town, away from this people magnet, maybe a cafe or grocery store or something out of the way of the stream of local citizens coming to see what was happening here. The festival had been advertised in their papers as a traveling attraction, and had promised a bounteous partnership with a few local breweries. Add to that the berry-wine makers who had flocked to this event from the other side of perception, and finding anyone would be nearly impossible in the debauched maelstrom, doubled in size by its pool of participants, mundane and otherwise. Hugh grumbled again and began to mince through the crowd, peering over top of them to try and spot the back of Miriam’s blonde head hopefully weaving distinctively through the press of festival-goers. He rose onto his tip-toes, squinting through the eyeholes of his simple navy mask, and teetered forward into somebody standing in his path.