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Alone Together

Discussion in 'AU Board' started by Qrow Branwen, Jan 20, 2019.

  1. Qrow Branwen

    Professor at Schola Praeditos
    Neutral Good

    ~So break me down if it makes you feel right~
    ~And hate me now if it keeps you alright~
    ~I'm the one you can never trust~

    Qrow had no idea what the fuck 'Little Foot' was, and he didn't particularly care, though he began glancing around slowly for some kind of disk case that said 'Little Foot' on it. But the kid was at his side again, holding a tablet up to him, and he waited a second before taking it, glancing covertly at Toby from beneath the tips of his fallen bangs. he tilted it as he took it from her tiny outstretched hands, glancing at the stickers, but primarily focusing on what kind of ports it had, if it held personal identification or holographic capabilities. But it was certainly nothing as complex as a scroll.

    "Password, huh?" He mumbled, now truly focusing on the screen and beginning to whisk through his mind for ideas on what the password could possibly fucking be. He didn't want to stand there like an idiot thinking of all the wrong possibilities-- but there he was. Though the trap he'd strolled into didn't last long as a new one unfolded before him.

    His lungs stilled as if he were holding his breath underwater in a silently petrified balance. The photos... Perhaps what kept his attention first was the unexpected sight of himself, in casual clothes, smiling. Then of himself asleep, vulnerable and unsuspecting (he couldn't help but tense up at that)-- but he was with Gilly. Ruby had slept on his chest like that on occasion too, when she was that size.

    Next, he and Gilly posing outside at dusk, a bucket of candy in the kid's hands and a red cape on her shoulders, a longbow and quiver across his back and pride shining from his grin.

    Another selfie in a bathroom mirror, Gilly on his hip with colorful and sparkly bows, clips, and ribbon accessories dangling from both of their hair, a playful and shameless smirk on his face as he held his scroll up while Gilly pointed forward, caught mid-laugh.

    A shot from above, him lying on his back with one of his arms raised to hold the camera and the other curled around Gilly's snugly-blanketed body that hugged his side. His face was turned to kiss her sleeping head-- the locks of her hair tattered in perfect messy splay that was evidence of hard play before her exhaustion-- while he cast a side-long peaceful smile up at the camera.

    Qrow's face flushed, and his breath escaped shakily for a moment. Embarrassment, fearful surprise, and perhaps something else tugged at him, and he finally swiped a thumb across the screen to cease the slideshow.

    Whatever the fuck his twin had been doing here, he didn't want to see or know.

    But he had seen, and he did know.

    Qrow had been a part of a family. Again.

    He blinked and sighed slightly, looking around the room to try and focus upon something else. Anything else. To find something that would give him a clue to the password. Gods, knowing his luck, it was probably the word, 'family.' Fuck.

    He saw that the cape from the Halloween image was now tied around a large mechanical velociraptor's neck, a smaller toy stegosaurus dinosaur riding on its back and a larger stego standing close nearby the duo. He glanced quickly away, but everywhere he looked he saw with new eyes. This was Gilly's room. Where she played and laughed-- undoubtedly where he had previously played and laughed with her. Maybe even crafted that small blunted wooden sword for her. Or read her those books spilling out of her shelf. Fairy tales like the ones that little Ruby had adored listening to him read.

    He had to leave. Right now. If not the house, at least the room, and so before Qrow knew it, he was shoving the tablet into Toby's hands and closing the door to the master bedroom behind him, shutting everything out and banishing himself to be alone.


    He didn't know how long he stayed in the nearly empty bedroom, but it was long enough for him to regain control of his breath and feel the sweat from his skin dry and cool. He had stood with the edge of the dresser in his grip, warping and splintering the dark wood under his clenched fingers and thinking heavily through the meditation techniques Taiyang had taught him.

    He had no reason to feel whatever the fuck he felt. Pain, longing, fear, jealousy, anger, he couldn't even wrangle all of the possibilities together into one list. He had no reason to care about those images at all, they were not of him. He had no reason to hate the man in the photos for throwing what he had away.

    Finally (and still simmering,) he left the room, making his way through the remaining rooms of the house with a fueled focus and determination, scrutinizing everything with a heavy layer of guardedness to keep his mind off his thoughts. The internet modem had been unplugged and taken apart piece by piece with a small screwdriver. Any key he could find had been confiscated and the vehicles in the garage had their batteries removed and disassembled. Ridiculous, tedious, petty, and paranoid tasks, but they kept him busy and focused, and so he showed no mercy upon the luxurious details of the house.

    But he did clean up after himself. And he did leave the vegetables and fruit in the refrigerator untouched. Only to prolong the problem of replenishing them after their depletion, and for no other reason. The alcohol bottles, miraculously, were also left untouched, and replaced in the cabinet atop the fridge.

    Qrow did, however, end up cooking whatever meat they had in the icebox-- which he identified as some kind of bovine-- and he laid enough strips in the skillet for more than just himself as they sizzled and crackled from the heat of the stove top. Or perhaps his crimson eyes had just been bigger than his stomach, and he'd overestimated how much he'd be able to consume on his own.

    ~And yeah I could have tried and devoted my life to both of us~
    ~But what a waste of my time~

    @Toby Daye
    Toby Daye likes this.