It was 36 degrees outside — literally human body temperature — and the air was so thick with humidity Dan was pretty sure he could take a bite out of it. Yet here he was, sat in a full suit and tie in a room where the only relief from the sweltering heat came from the half-assed breeze that occasionally drifted through the open windows. His shirt was plastered to his back with sweat, and he was pretty sure it was going to have to be surgically removed later on. The vinyl couch he sat on felt like it was made of lava.
Tribute and follow-up ficlet to sparklight’s chapter forty
in her marvelous “In Which Our Intrepid Hero Doesn’t Escape” series.
(Fiercely-protective Mommy Vader wasn’t something I understood I desperately
needed until I encountered it! And I love genderbent “Luca” as well. ^_^)
If you’re wondering about the title, it’s a reference to a beautiful
French poem known as El Deschidado,
which references an “Aquitaine prince with a destroyed tower.” Technically Luca
would be a princess (though I’m not certain how comfortable she’d be with the
title), hence the change.
Trigger warning for a panic attack. I don’t feel Luca is any
less badass than Luke, but you’ve got to keep in mind that the poor kid’s in a
seriously traumatizing situation. (Let’s hope there are some Imperial
therapists available in the ranks.)
L & V are being a bit more emotional than normal, mainly
because I think genderbent Luke and Vader might be a little more in-tune with
their emotions (albeit Vader a smidgen more
Thanks again to the very-excellent sparklight, whom is an
angel, saint, and a bag of chips!
I am the Dark One, – the Widower, – the Unconsoled
The Aquitaine Prince whose Tower is destroyed:
My only star is dead,- and my constellated lute
Bears the black Sun of Melancholia.
In the night of the Tomb, You who comforted me,
Give me back Mount Posillipo and the Italian
The flower that my afflicted heart liked so much
And the treillised vineyard where the grapevine
unites with the rose.
—Excerpt from El Deschidado
“… what do you want?” Luca asked, quiet and shamefully soft, even
as her back was almost painfully stiff. The hand around her wrist tightened,
making the metal of the cuff dig in a little, and the other gloved hand finally
rose up, not quite touching her cheek.
Foreboding gathered in her gut as she watched those starkly
yellow eyes wash out into bright blue again, watched the harsh twist to Vader’s
mouth soften a shade.
Luca had flinched at that. Partially because her stomach had
rolled sickeningly and she had to take deep, shuddering breaths to keep the
remaining contents of her stomach from heaving their way up. She braced a
glistening palm against the wall, nearly slipping.
The hand poised over her face slowly fell. She wondered
wordlessly why Vader bothered if she couldn’t actually bring herself to touch
her affectionately, but the hand had hesitantly reached for Luca, as if of its
Dimly, Luca felt the writhing flare—something like a
supernova—of Vader’s wintry force presence hardening, crackling as it rapidly
frosted over into a pernicious arctic armor. And suddenly it seemed to be much
farther away, as if Luca were looking at it through the wrong end of
binoculars, though Vader’s hand still clutched her wrist so tightly she was
rapidly losing feeling in it.
Luca immediately felt
a hot rush of shame as she gazed up at over-bright eyes, starkly-blue embers hovering
in the dark, unblinkingly watching her. Did Vader sense her revulsion?
Her next thought stepped on her question mark: Why should
she care if she hurt Vader’s
feelings? Insanity, it seemed was catching.
Her free hand drew itself into a shaking fist, nails sinking
in her palm. Uncle Owen had lied about her mother, and while she could maybe,
albeit begrudgingly, understand why he
had, she couldn’t help resenting him even if the feeling came with a maelstrom
And when he and Beru had been murdered, the only person whom
saved her from being crippled with grief was Ben, whom gave her what she’d
wanted her whole life: The knowledge that she was meant to do something special—albeit more so than she ever
could’ve guessed—and that her mother had been, too. She bit the inside of her
mouth hard, and something metallic and hot flooded her mouth. Vader snapped
something she heard, but didn’t understand.
Anakin Skywalker was a Jedi knight, a paradigm of strength
and goodness, whom also had her life cut short by Vader. If Luca hadn’t already
wanted vengeance for Beru and Owen, now it became a purpose, which had been the
only thing sustaining her all this time, her friends aside. A lump rose from
her chest and lodged itself in her throat.
Her grief for her
mother had vapidly skyrocketed, something she hadn’t even thought possible. But
Vader wasn’t anything she
anticipated, the demon she’d needed him to be, and she felt pity for him—her—before Luca remembered and her
contempt washed it away.
But Vader was her mother, there was no use in not accepting
it, the force had no feelings and resonated the affirmation over and over
Vader was urgently saying something else, her hand still
bracing Luca’s back. Luca stared blankly at Vader’s rapidly-yellowing eyes.
Ben had to have
known Darth Vader was her mother and he’d lied, just like everyone else in the
galaxy so desperate to turn her into a pawn, he’d lied when Luca had no one and
nothing left, not even a home. Ben wanted her to kill her mother—she shrank back from the thought as if burned, it
felt traitorous. But it was true.
Now she could never trust even Ben’s memory ever again. The
only person she could understand innately wasn’t
lying was her mother. Her mother was alive, the sweetest and most secret hope
Luca had ever cherished, but it’d devolved into a nightmare. Vader was a
genocidal and vicious maniac. Nothing short of evil.
Luca probably imagined the faint tremor in Vader’s hand
still clutching her wrist. Vader, whom for all Luca’s training, for all her
giving everything and then some, had
stolen her away as easily like a cat would a kitten, regardless of her
She let out a noise that came out both a strangled laugh and
a sob. Vader was the only person whom she could innately understand wasn’t lying, and yet she in all
likelihood wanted to use Luca too, her own child. Both Obi-Won and Anakin
Skywalker died second deaths in that moment.
Her lungs plunged rapidly for air, seeming to end only at
the base of her neck, not drawing nearly enough oxygen, regardless of how much
she gulped for it.
Her mother’s hands grasped her shoulders as Luca’s vision
blurred orange, bled red. Her mind churned in a near-indecipherable blur of
terror and hysteria. Her ears rang and someone must’ve been screaming while her
throat burned as if it were filling up with blood. She thrashed hopelessly in
Vader’s hold, too panicked to care that there was no escape on the ship, that her
wrist at this point had become a distant, stinging star of pain as the manacle
dug into her skin. Why not, why not, what
did it matter she didn’t care nothing mattered anymore—
Vader’s ear-splitting roar sliced through the air and the
force; Luca’s eyes widened, freezing as Vader seized her in a too-tight hold,
pinning both her arms to her sides. Still Luca struggled, and in Vader’s
now-palpable concern, her icy barriers thawed and Vader’s force presence rushed
to meet hers. Luca fell limp at that, and if Vader hadn’t been clutching her
upright she would’ve certainly tumbled to the floor.
At first it was worse, because Vader’s mercurial force
presence loomed like an enormous, blackish-red tidal wave over Luca’s, reaching
for her like so many hands. Barriers flew up in Luca’s mind as she frantically
retreated deeper into herself, but Vader had been using the force longer than
Luca had been alive, and when she pursued the blockades were carelessly knocked
A second later Vader’s mind immobilized her own in a perfectly-implacable
grip, rippling with furious dark energy—the first icy jolt upon being badly
burned. Luca would’ve cried out if she could’ve, bracing herself for a certain
mental assault and the agony certain to go with it.
gently brushed against Luca’s petrified subconscious, the lightest of touches.
Stunned, Luca tried to speak, but a cool energy glided over her feverish and distressed
thoughts, plunging them into white background noise.
Shaking like mad, her head tilted and fell against Vader’s
There was a quiet hum coming from the gentle energy flowing
into her. It did not quite make her
calm, her heart was beating too quickly for that—but it hushed the frantic,
blind energy that would’ve sent her battering herself against the ship walls.
Luca’s eyes slipped shut. It wasn’t quite unlike the time she’d been slipped
inside a bacta tank.
Another light caress, albeit still uncertainly so, as if
Vader were frightened of her, which was absurd to the point of being hilarious.
Vader’s force presence was infinitely larger than Luca’s, could’ve crushed hers
into dust. But while the idea was baffling, it felt like Vader’s mind was
actually cradling hers.
More likely, Luca had somehow sustained head trauma when
she’d been electrocuted earlier.
Her breathing was still shuddery, but slower and deeper.
Awareness returning, Luca sharply inhaled as she sensed a ring surrounding her,
comprised of a black, thrashing maw of blazing toxic energy.
Alarmed, wishing desperately for hers—Vader’s—saber, Luca
was shocked by the sheer fury and hatred these flames emitted, something
she could dimly understand had been kindled by raw despair.
This force energy jabbed violently out, like so many knives
and so much broken glass and while Luca had once scoffed at the word bloodcurdling, she could not do so now. Approaching
them would be suicidal. She redoubled her efforts to be free, and Vader had
only tightened her mental grip the way she had Luca’s wrist.
While unharmed by the barrier, Luca desperately wanted to
shy away; the flames were comprised from malevolence, lashing out and seeking
so many targets; possibly the whole galaxy. And yet, oddly enough, not at the
girl they surrounded.
But the force defense was more than pure anger; there was a
staggering amount of possession and protection radiating off them in waves,
something near-feral in intensity and if Vader meant to harm her all along
(though Luca didn’t think so) why couldn’t she get it over with?
Vader’s voice within the force struck a rich, deep alto. No
rasping, no staccato breathing, no intermittent noises from her support. Luca’s
eyes flew open, startled.
You are safe.
The voice began hissing the beautiful words over and over
again, and the comforting cool energy coming from Vader increased, lulling.
Eyes flickering once again, Luca sagged in the gloved hold, fighting to stay
Her brow furrowed, bewildered as to why this seemed dimly
Sometimes when Luca
slept she remembered something, or at least upon waking she dimly remembered
recalling something, from a very, very long time ago. Before she’d been born.
In a night without
stars, she was a nebulous being whom didn’t think in words. Her nascent mind
wandered, eventually approaching a much larger presence than her own self.
Innately she understood
without understanding how whom it
was, and brushed against it curiously. At first it started in
blinding-white-shock, iron-defenses shooting up before they crumbled into an
intense tenderness, something tremulous. It recognized her.
The awestricken luminosity softly pressed back, with something akin to
playfulness. It’d wrapped around her so tenderly and tightly she’d been happy,
a profound sense of contentment and rightfulness stealing over her in their burgeoning force connection. The other used
it to send peaceful waves passing over her, both of them basking in mutual
That had been the
first time Luca’s consciousness encountered Anakin Skywalker’s, but it hadn’t
been the last.
When Luca came back to herself, there were tears streaming
silently down her face. Vader held her in a not-quite an embrace, pinning her
arms, which was it was confining as much as it was comforting.
At last by unspoken agreement Luca tugged back and Vader
slowly released her. The former turned to look determinedly at the wall while
rubbing her face.
And she prayed that Vader couldn’t understand that her
earlier revulsion was not least because a little girl from trillions and
trillions of light-years miles away (but not far enough) had looked up at the
dark lord’s words, was scrubbing her dirty face and scrambling to her feet, staring
expectantly at the sky.
The silence between them was every part as uncomfortable as
the shouting. Luca’s face burned and she couldn’t quite bring herself to look
However dire the situation, it was the most profoundly
awkward one Luca had ever encountered. Vader seemed to feel the same,
considering just how quiet she was, save for the intermittent breathing on the
It was childish, but Luca couldn’t help but reach out with
the force towards Vader again, and for her credit was firmly pushed away. The
latter’s force presence was rapidly resealing itself in its fortress.
“Will you be still now?” Vader said at last, sounding as
weary as Luca felt. “Can I trust you not to harm yourself?”
Luca just nodded wearily, still wiping her eyes. Thankfully Vader
didn’t see, or pretended not to. The two remained chained together, though both
were looking in opposite directions of the dilapidated old ship, lost in her
Anakin Skywalker was
still alive. Anakin Skywalker was still alive.
She mopped her face once again, took a few deep breaths.
“Where are you taking me?” She asked, not quite trusting her
“My ship.” said Vader shortly, after only a moment’s
hesitation. The woman’s eyes remained fixated on the windows ahead, reflecting
her ruined face stricken of any color, so badly burnt that hair refused to
grow. “You’ll be interned in quarters there.”
Luca felt a sharp spike of irritation. Exactly how well had
Vader thought this plan through before kidnapping her? “And what, you’re going
to lock me up forever, is that it?”
“Don’t tempt me,”
snarled Vader, pulling at their chain. “As it stands, the idea of having you
handcuffed to my person at all times has its merits.”
Luca went very hot and then very cold at that, because Vader
wasn’t someone whose bluff you wanted to call.
“Please,” she tried again, her voice again reaching that
painfully soft and embarrassing register. “You can’t just—“
Vader spun on her heel to face her, bluing eyes flashing.
“I can. You are safe with
me, not at the beck and call of a ragtag, hypocritical army of anarchists whom
will step on your throat the moment you become a liability.”
“The Alliance would never—“
“Yes, because they clearly had ‘Miss Vader’s kid’s,’ best
interests at heart,” Vader scoffed, and Luca nearly had the heart knocked out
It would’ve been one thing if Vader kept shouting lies in
her ears—annoying, but bearable because she knew otherwise. But the moment Luca
discovered her parentage the soldiers had closed in on her—
They wouldn’t have
hurt me. I didn’t know. I didn’t know.
“No, you did not. But your innocence would not save you; you
were culpable in being born my child.”
It sounded so awful spoken aloud, given shape. Luca had to
count to ten to avoid screaming.
“I can’t turn. I can’t be like you. You have to let me go.”
“I have to do no such thing. What I must do is my
obligation, which is to keep you from harm.”
Surprise flitted on Luca’s face and her breath caught. Vader
pointedly looked away, her force presence growing positively polar, an icy warning
to keep a safe distance.
It was a very strange dance. When Luca stepped forward, Vader
stepped back, and however much Luca had tried denying her parentage, Darth
Vader had only told her the truth over and over again.
Too exhausted to argue anymore, and knowing it was useless
in any case, Luca sank to a sitting position again and closed her eyes, so
emotionally drained she could scarcely move.
Vader had stolen yet another thing from her. She couldn’t
imagine harming her now.
Sometimes when Luca
was small, she woke up crying in the middle of the night. Aunt Beru would come
in and rub her back, assuring her that her nightmares were only ever just
And she did have
dreams of black, white-eyed creatures dragging her away and eating her (she
couldn’t scream, because they’d eat that too), but sometimes she didn’t dream
at all, but only woke up crying from a fissure so horribly hollow and hurting it
made her worry she might never stop.
When Luca came to, she awoke wrapped in a black cape, as
whomever was carrying her marched across a white bridge. A docking chamber.
Suddenly remembering and returning to hell, she warily
turned to gaze up at Vader—whom by now had her unholy black mask restored, eyes
shrouded in black. What color were they now, and what was she thinking?
Luca wearily shoved at Vader’s front so as to least have
some decency in walking, but she might as well as pushed a wall for all the
reaction Vader gave.
Luca pressed a hand against her eyes and was annoyed when it
came back wet; she’d been crying from the old place again, the one with bits of
her that had never grown up, not really. She hid her face upon wondering what the
imperial soldiers must’ve thought, to have seen the dark lord carrying a girl
draped in her cloak and crying as if her heart were on the verge of stopping.
Vader had turned grief into murderous, destructive power.
Luca could only let it turn into pain and something tenderer, infinitely more
vulnerable. Maybe that was why Vader turned—sheer fear of being torn apart by this
She sulked, hating the fact that she couldn’t hate Vader,
despite the enormity of her actions. The woman had razed entire civilizations and
now Luca needed her and that thought was so disturbing so she feebly tried
pushing against Vader again, wriggling in her hold and knowing the futility.
“I can’t stay here.”
“You can and must. At my side, you will be a princess.”
Luca’s mind wiped itself blank, faintly hearing Biggs laughing.
“I’m not a princess. I have it on good authority I am the opposite of a
princess. A princess told me that.”
“You were one before you were born, child. It is your
“Please. My friends
will come for me in any case.”
This was something Luca did and desperately did not want,
for Han, Leia, Threepio, Artoo and Chewie to appear. They’d be in mortal
danger, and yet Luca was already missing them.
“I will kill Palpatine for what he did,” said Vader coldly
as they stepped into yet another long white hallway. “He told me you had died,
and so I’ll burn him from existence. Here is another lesson, child. I’ll destroy anyone whom tries taking you from me.”
Luca’s jaw dropped, and despite the cloak draped around her
Thorin had returned to sit, brooding, on the throne while you lingered on the narrow walkway below the dais watching Balin, Dwalin, and Bilbo leave. When the trio had disappeared through the vast, arched doorway, you turned to him where he slumped, his eyes restless and constantly moving with his feverish thoughts.
“You’re not being reasonable, Thorin. How long will you test their loyalty?”
He glanced irritably at you before looking away over the cavernous chamber. “They owe me their loyalty.”
“And you owe them your trust, your patience,” you countered. “Have they not proved themselves time and time again, all of them?”
“You forget your place,” he warned, turning a dangerous gaze on you.
You opened your mouth to speak and closed it again, summoning all of your self-restraint to smother your simmering frustration, bite back the angry words that wanted to claw their way from your throat. “You are not the man you were,” you said finally, carefully. “You regard the ones who love you most with doubt and suspicion…you are consumed with the search for this accursed stone, and I fear for you, Thorin. I pity you.”
“You pity me?” He repeated your words incredulously, in a voice thick with contempt. “I am King under the Mountain. I have no need for the pity of a woodworker’s daughter.”
Anger flared in you again, threatened to burn what love remained between the two of you, frail and brittle as a fallen leaf, to ashes. “There was a time when you spoke of making a woodworker’s daughter your Queen,” you retorted, caring no more for self-restraint. “Or have you forgotten everything you said when you had me bare beneath you in Laketown?”
Even in his madness, Thorin looked stung, and still the words poured from your lips. “Was I only there to warm your bed?” you needled him. “Give you courage to face the dragon with my pretty words of love and faith?”
“Enough!” Thorin bellowed, rising to his feet with an almost convulsive movement,
his glittering armor and the mad gleam in his eye making him larger, frightening. “You forget. Your. Place.” He ground out the words through clenched teeth, and just as suddenly as it had flooded you, your fury drained away, leaving behind only a cold, empty regret that filled your eyes with tears.
“I have no place here,” you whispered, searching for a glimpse of the man you loved in the face of the capricious, grasping tyrant who stood before you and finding no such comfort. With a trembling exhale, you turned to begin the long walk to the doorway, leaving him glowering on the dais.
“Where are you going? I have not given you leave,” Thorin said indignantly, behind you.
Your footsteps were loud in the oppressive stillness.
“I am the King!” Petulance crept into his voice. “I am the King, and you will stay until I have finished speaking to you!”
Only the silence answered him, and your retreating form grew smaller.
“Go, then,” Thorin growled, his call echoing on the stone walls. “Go! But know this: if you walk through that door, do not presume to show me your face again.”
With that, you halted, standing frozen beneath the great stone arch before looking back over your shoulder to meet his demanding stare, far away across the chamber. His lips began to curl into a victorious smirk that quickly faded when, without a word, you turned and left the throne room.
Lips catch on teeth in a hurried kiss. Hungry, hungry eyes stare into his. Blunt nails bury themselves into his hips; a jean-clad leg pressing in between. A toned chest is pulled flush against his, molding him to the wall. His hands latch onto black leather and clutch so hand the knuckles turn white.
“Shh.” A finger slides over his lips. “Don’t say it. Tonight, we are nameless.”
He wants to argue, he wants to scream that it wouldn’t matter; by tomorrow, he would be nameless once again.
A feverish kiss stills his thoughts, soft lips stealing away what little control he had. They pull apart briefly and Icarus looks into Apollo’s eyes. Reality suddenly bites at his heart.
A golden boy with the brilliance of the sun, gold-spun hair, and celestial blue eyes. How could a boy who dreams of flyings and wakes up with the sun in his mouth ever compare?
“You don’t want this.” Why does the words sound like death’s doors closing? He feels like falling.
“I-I do.” His voice quivers more than he would like, stutters as much as his traitorous heart does.
“Then, why do you look like you’re about to cry?”
“I-” The words are stuck in his throat, his tongue heavy with fear. He doesn’t want to say it, lest it becomes laden with anger and desperation. He doesn’t want to give in to the dangerous idea that Apollo meant something to him.
He runs a hand through his silky hair and Icarus’ fingers twitch with urges to card through them. “I’m not going to hurt you. So, please, tell me what’s wrong.” Apollo stares at Icarus with those intense blue eyes and he caves.
“I.. you said that tonight we would be nameless,” he murmurs. Icarus winces at how weak and disappointed his voice sounds, but continues anyways. He’s already off the deep end. It’s too late to take back his words. “But, I’m going to be nameless tomorrow and the next day and forever, aren’t I?”
Apollo freezes and Icarus looks away. He contemplates leaving when he realizes that he’s in his own house, his own room, and curses. Inviting Apollo had been a decision proved fatal.
“No.” The word is soft and lingers long in the air after Apollo’s voice dies away. Icarus’ head turns sharply to look at him, hope blossoming in his chest. He hates it; the fact that the hope would end up being crushed, that he would be disappointed again.
“You’re not nameless. You will never be nameless, Icarus,” Apollo says. His hand skirts through his hair once again and Icarus recognizes it as a nervous habit. “I shouldn’t have said that. I just thought.. I thought that if we didn’t say our names.. if you didn’t say my name, then I wouldn’t fall for you more. Then, it would hurt less when we act like strangers tomorrow.”
Icarus could feel his heart skip a beat as he looks at Apollo. His lips part in an attempt to speak, but no sound comes out.
“You don’t have to say anything. I’ll just.. I’ll just leave. This was supposed to be your night and I ruined it. I’m sorry.” Apollo stands up and turns to the door. Panic wells up in Icarus’ chest and he grabs Apollo’s wrist.
Apollo freezes at the touch, but remains facing the door. Icarus knows that he can easily break out of his weak grasp, but the golden boy is rooted in his tracks.
“P-please stay,” Icarus practically begs. He licks his dry lips, swallows the lump in his throat, and finds the courage to say, “I want you here.”
“You do?” The hesitance and the overwhelming hope in Apollo’s voice breaks his heart.
“I do,” he answers resolutely. He has never been more sure of anything. “I.. I’ve fallen for you, too.”
Apollo abruptly turns around and sits on the edge of his bed, hovering above Icarus. His form shakes, as does his voice. “You.. you have?”
Heat crosses his cheeks and Icarus knows that he’s blushing heavily. He nods, not trusting his voice to find the right words.
“Oh, thank god.” Apollo exhales heavily, his lips lift in a relieved smile. He becomes shy in the next instance, so different from the confident boy Icarus knows. “Can I hug you?”
“Yes, please.” The earnest reply brings forth Apollo’s sweet laughter and Icarus finds that it’s worth the embarrassment. He is pulled into Apollo’s embrace, strong arms wrapped around him, and his eyes flutter close.
Hesitantly, Icarus’ arms reach around to Apollo’s back and he rests his hands on the soft leather. It only takes a moment for them to tighten and suddenly, Icarus never wants to let go. His only reassurance is that Apollo feels the same way; if his snug embrace is any indication.
“This has to be a dream,” Icarus says, his voice barely above a whisper. He has the sun in his arms and his body feels light as if wings were attached to his back. He’s falling but he’s not alone. It has to be a dream. Reality isn’t so kind.
Apollo breaks apart from Icarus’ hold, arms still held possessively around his waist. He presses his forehead against Icarus’ and stares into his eyes. “It’s not a dream, Icarus. This is real. I’m real. And, I’m not going to disappear once you wake up.”
Icarus chokes back a sob as he closes his eyes. His mind still can’t wrap around the idea that Apollo is here, in his bed and in his arms. His heart, the wretched thing, has already accept it as truth. It would only take a bit longer before his mind believes it as well.
He opens his eyes and gasps softly at the pure unadulterated love in Apollo’s eyes. Aphrodite must have blessed him tonight because the love is so tangible he could taste it.
Apollo’s eyes are so blue that Icarus swears he stole the color from the sky. They’re clear and honest. Icarus couldn’t find the heart in him to question Apollo’s claims. He’s telling the truth; his soul practically resonates with it.
Icarus buries his head against Apollo’s chest, breathing in his scent. He becomes heady with the smell of sunlight and leather, soft sighs escaping his lips.
Apollo only pulls him closer, whispering sweet, sweet declarations of love in his ear. Icarus is crimson to the tips of his ears and Apollo merely chuckles. “You’re adorable.”
He’s not one to take compliments well and stumbles through his thanks. Apollo just smiles and presses soft kisses into his hair. “Happy birthday, Icarus.”
They spend the night in each other’s arms, kissing sweetly and spilling secrets they’ve been dying to tell. The heated desire from before thins out and a deeper intimacy brings them closer than hurried carnal pleasure ever could. They fall asleep tangled up together and doesn’t let go even in Morpheus’ realm.
When Icarus wakes up, he finds his head resting on a toned chest, strong arms wrapped around his body in a secure embrace. He flushes, but snuggles closer to Apollo and closes his eyes. Falling isn’t so bad after all.
I present to you the kylux whaler au that exactly 0 of you asked for. If I am lucky it will entertain more than myself.
1826, New Bedford. Johnathan Snoke’s First Fisheries are on the cusp of dominating the whaling trade. Benjamin “Renegade” Solo (”I hate that name. Call me Ren.”) is the relentless force in Snoke’s infinite fleet, leading them to deeper and richer seas. From the helm at port William Huxley (”That’s my father’s name. Call me Hux”) charts new hunting routes and oversees the buying and selling of their wares. When word of returning ships reaches him he is often found upon the widow’s walk, his trained eye on the horizon, and when sails appear on the waves he can be found at the docks, steadfast as the pier itself. His reunion with whaler Ren is fleeting; it is rare to see either of them milling about town for a good week after returning to port. If you are unlucky enough to spot either outside the safety of their warehouse on Main Street be sure to not comment on Hux’s stiff gait or the wobble in Ren’s step, or else be prepared to be on assignment in Antarctica for the next four years hunting penguins.
Inspiration from a feverish thought process some three weeks ago. I’d apologize for this hot mess but I’ve been frustrated with my art so it was time to get self indulgent, and I’m damn proud of the results. I am something of an old whaling nerd so if you have questions I will answer them with worrying enthusiasm.
(Also this is 10000% a long haul setup excuse to draw these two set to “Lowlands Away”)
Abby, the local Batter, was once a voice of mercy. Justice. As much as any other, at least. But he becomes more and more convinced by the day by the corruption eating away at the remains of his true self that, in fact, his condition - his failure - is only due to the events of… he can’t remember… A year…?
A year ago.
It is the clone’s fault. It must be. It’s not his fault, he knows that. And that any version of himself could enjoy the company of, fall in love with, and be intimate with such a thing is honestly sickening. It disturbs him to his core.
Something has to die. The duplicates Gnome creates for him are not enough. But he has an idea of what might be, for now. Something the other Batter in mind no longer has care for - not now, at any rate.
He now leans on the wall of the building opposite the residence the Clone-s call their home. But it isn’t theirs. It never was. This is his file. He was created for it. He has made it safe.
It belongs to him.
No higher purifier from an alternate file can judge him. It has no right.
Such are feverish thoughts - justifications - running through his head as he polishes the inhabitant blood from his bat, eyeballing several broken secretaries, recently destroyed, around him.
Omega has its doubts. The three have since the day they entered the other file.
Add-ons share a strong bond. But they are also loyal to their purifiers.
The Batter pushes himself off the the wall, nudging the visor of cap up with an expression of contempt.