Awkward conversations between various people and Fletcher that probably happened due to Fletcher's relatively recent introduction to magic.
  • Fletcher: I's probably a good thing your body was burned, then?
  • Skulduggery: *silence*
  • Fletcher: I mean in retrospect....otherwise now you'd be all...
  • Skulduggery: *silence intensifies*
  • Fletcher: y'know...
  • Fletcher: .....gross.....
  • Fletcher: ......and.....flaky.....
  • ~~~~~~~~~~~~
  • Fletcher: *staring intently at Shudder's chest*
  • Fletcher: (quietly) hi
  • Shudder: Yes? Hello?
  • Fletcher: Oh um no...I was talking to your um....
  • Shudder: ????
  • Fletcher: the ghost thing
  • ~~~~~~~~~~~~
  • Saracen: *reading*
  • Fletcher: (internally) Saracen knows things? What if he knows what I'm thinking?
  • Saracen: *continues to read*
  • Fletcher: (internally) Hmmm doesn't seem to be reacting...
  • Saracen: *sneezes*
  • Fletcher: (internally) fuck fUCK he knows
  • Fletcher: *running out of the room screaming* GET OUT OF MY HEAD
  • Saracen: the fuck is wrong with this kid
What’s it like after the war?

It was a question Valkyrie asked a lot. One that no one ever really answered.

For Skulduggery, it’s chasing after those of Mevolent’s followers who managed to slip away. It’s nearly getting his ribs blown off after throwing a bundle of dynamite at the Baron. It’s shattered mirrors and holes in the wall as he struggles to keep his wrath under control. It’s pretending Serpine isn’t sitting cosily in his castle, sipping red wine from a long-necked glass. It’s ignoring the ugly twist he feels when he sees another man with his wife and child.

For Ghastly, it’s spending copious amounts of money on new fabrics and tailoring equipment, and holing himself up in his shop for over a year. It’s taking on every client who comes to him, and finding ways to make their clothes into an extra layer of defence, despite the war being over, there is no need for them. It’s splitting punching bags and trying not to smash the face of whoever makes the mistake of approaching him from behind. It’s taking in two cats, one with a red coat and the other with amber eyes. It’s buying a spice rack and spending the next few months hesitating whenever he reaches for it because there are so many choices and he isn’t used to such a thing as choice.

For Anton, it’s wiping away his existence. It’s going from one continent to the next, and searching for something, somewhere. He doesn’t know what it is he’s looking for, but he knows he’ll figure it out.  It’s scribbling ideas of what it could be on scraps of paper and leaving them to rot in his pocket. It’s lurking in bars and never ordering more than one drink, watching the other tenants and trying to forget amber eyes and a single candle.

For Dexter, it’s going into bars alone and coming out with a girl or two hanging from his arm. It’s never spending more than one night in the same bed, revisiting old war zones in an attempt to stop thinking of them as war zones. It’s buying an expensive new car and driving it all across America, trying not to imagine what would have happened to all the mortals he sees had they lost. It’s seeing kids with their parents and trying not to envy them.

For Saracen, it’s reliving every death, every near miss, every mistake. It’s trying to forget all the ‘what ifs’ and all the ‘I could have done’s. It’s stepping out of the line of sight of the people he calls friends, just in time for them to blink and believe they’re imagining seeing him. It’s bar fights and hookers and nights in the drunk tank. It’s mornings where he contemplates just giving up magic altogether and just becoming mortal. It’s going to school and learning science, because maybe he can make sense of his power.

For Erskine, it’s waking up in a cold sweat, screams dying in his throat and tears streaking down his face. It’s freezing up whenever the phone rings and trying not to jump to the conclusion that someone else has died. It’s going days without a decent meal because cooking the meals had always gone to Ghastly, or Anton, or Saracen. It’s nearly burning his apartment building down because he forgot he’d been cooking himself something. It’s spending a month helping Skulduggery and stopping after nearly killing a man who looks just a little bit too familiar. It’s drowning himself in alcohol and spending money on shallow, frivolous women because it’s the only way he won’t be alone, at least for a little while. It’s staying up all night second-guessing everything.