hear me out: hana teaching junkrat to play video games
“okay, so,” hana says, “the main thing to remember is that clicking the left means shoot and moving the mouse around changes where you’re aiming.”
junkrat frowns at the screen and jerks the mouse right. the screen violently changes scenes - in the same area, facing a different direction. wow, he thinks, weird, his stomach doing a bit of a flip, and then he asks, “so what’s the point?”
hana shrugs. “you shoot stuff. shoot enough stuff and shoot it well enough and you move onto the next level.”
“just the same old shit over and over again?”
“yeah, pretty much.”
junkrat blinks, processing this. “you get paid for this?”
“yep. turns out that if you get really good, people like to watch you.” she shrugs again at his incredulous look. “i do not make the rules. are you going to try it or not?”
junkrat looks back to the screen and nods, hesitantly placing his free hand onto the keyboard. hana had made him scrub his fingers clean before he could even think about touching her setup, and he can see why, now; the whole thing is mostly pink and white, easily smudged if he isn’t careful. “how do i move again?”
“these four keys,” hana says, reaching out to move his fingers to the proper place. “up, down, left, right. pretty simple. hardest part is coordinating both hands.”
“seems dumb, doin’ stuff like this,” junkrat says as he gently moves his character forward. all he can see of the actual player is their hands and a gun of some kind, darting through some kind of forest, and he takes a few experimental shots. the firearm lets out a few pathetic coughs as it sprays some ammo; a flimsy, weak weapon, in his opinion - he’d trade it for a grenade launcher any day of the week. “what’s the point, if it ain’t gonna get you things?”
there’s a short silence. “dunno,” hana says.
“why not? you do this shit all the time.”
“yeah,” hana says.
“so?” junkrat prods.
“dunno,” hana says again, and then elaborates, “i get paid for it. and i like it, i guess. and i drive my mech because of it.” an enemy pops up on the screen - he’s so taken off-guard that the first few shots go wide, and his character grunts as a few bullets from the enemy hit him. “just something to do.”
junkrat hums thoughtfully. a few seconds later and he gets a headshot, and the enemy falls. nothing too exciting, and he keeps moving forward. “that’s it?”
“sometimes it is easier to just pretend you are not living your life, you know?” hana says, and the way she says it makes junkrat look away from the screen. she’s expressionless, as if knowing his eyes are on her. “an escape. that is all it is.”
he doesn’t really get it, mostly. his whole life has orbited survival. there was never time to relax or do much of anything that didn’t relate to that. but hana seems to enjoy video games, and she’d made an effort to find him a game that had minimal reading required, and he likes to think he and hana are friends, kind of, so he doesn’t say what first comes to mind. hog would be proud, if he was here.
“you are getting killed,” hana says eventually. junkrat looks back at the screen just as his character lets out an agonized screen and falls; GAME OVER flashes in red letters and hana says, “sorry. i know this probably does not interest you at all.”
“s’fine,” junkrat says, waving a hand. “i’ll give it another go. think i could get around to liking this, eventually.”
“yeah?” hana says, and there’s a tiny smile on her face. “cool. just hit the second button there.”
junkrat does. he dies again thirty seconds later, but hana’s laughing and that’s ten more seconds than last time, so he’ll take what little victories he can get.