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Warmth in the Darkness

Discussion in 'Pandora, Year 1 - 7' started by Tanaquil, Jan 3, 2018.

  1. Tanaquil

    Tanaquil The Unicorn Series

    Posts:
    687
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Tinker Sorceress
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Vampire
    Age:
    19
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Good
    December 15, Year 7, Night
    @Jason Todd

    After what had happened some days ago- the reveal of her vampiric nature, and Jason's somewhat vague telling of his own secrets- things had been a bit.. Interesting. Very nice, in recollection, what with the realization of mutual feelings, with kisses exchanged and things approaching promises spoken to one another. It was a very good, very unexpected example of surprising things turning out well. And honestly, it was about time too, with how many times things went pear-shaped.

    What she hadn't expected was that Jason's next text would be so obviously drunk, distraught and sweet in equal measure. Considering the amount of effort he'd put into being vague about where he was and explaining exactly what was going through his extraordinarily clever mind she'd been a bit chilled herself. Silly as it was, she did care, and she did worry, even knowing that he was far too stubborn and strong to fall easily- but that was the essence of it, wasn't it. He could survive nearly anything, but she didn't just want him to survive in pain and cold and what seemed to be a whole lot of lonely sorrow.

    There was no way under the messed up skies of this place she was going to let him do that alone. No. Darkness was improved by having company in it. So she took her hoverbike to one of the side residential streets in Westcourt, locked it, and started to walk toward the apartment complex in question. If there was one good thing about her new state, it was the perks and tricks. At first she'd wondered if she should leave her phone on the bike, just in case transformation powers and technology didn't mix, but decided to risk it. After all, she could fix the silly thing, couldn't she.

    And fortunately that hadn't been needed either. Flight was- interesting, to say the least, and rather fun. Not like a spaceship, but illuminating and wonderful, and fortunately with a raven's sharp eyes she found the place quite easily. She could even see past the glass on the windows, so finding Jason's particular window was easy enough. Though no doubt his shock would be rather spectacular. Perching precariously on the window sill she tapped on the glass with her beak, watching and waiting to see if he noticed, then tapping again and hopping away from the point where the window opened so she could come in.
     
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  2. Jason Todd

    Jason Todd DC Universe

    Posts:
    508
    Race:
    human
    Age:
    22
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Neutral
    He was quietly cursing himself, what had possessed him to message Tanaquil? She had enough to deal with without having to deal with his pathetic ass, yet knowing she was on her way there had briefly warmed his heart, pushing aside the darkness which clung to him. He had drunkenly started attempting to tidy up his room, though he kept his glass of vodka in his hand at all times taking sips from it as at the fringes of his mind the darkness that had woken him poked and prodded in an attempt to remind him of what he was inside. In his drunken state he didn't notice that he only had loungers on and his torso's bare skin was showing, usually he would've just because he hated for anyone to see the scars upon his back.

    Even as he drunkenly stumbled around frantically attempting to tidy he was mulling over Tanaquil's last message, wondering how she was going to get up to his window, did she have some acrobatic talent like his family? But soon his questions were answered by the tapping at his window, blearily he peered towards it wondering for a moment if the alcohol had finally done it and pushed him over the edge. For a moment he stared at the bird, before taking another swig of vodka and stumbling over to the window muttering to himself"Oh, what the hell... It's not like your life isn't weird enough already Jason..."

    Upon reaching the window he wrenched it open before sinking to sit under it as a wave of drunkenness hit him though even as he shifted to sit he was speaking in a drunken confusion"Tanaquil? That you or am I going crazy? You know in folklore and legends its witches who can turn into ravens... Your kind it was always bats..." Even as he spoke the darkness was attempting to claw its way into his head again and so he took yet another swig of vodka, hoping to numb it at least for a moment.

    Though even as he did this he was bitterly thinking Why did I message her? She deserves better than this.... For a moment his gaze lowered and then he was looking up with a lopsided smile upon his drunken face as he spoke in a sudden bright voice"Well, no worrying now.... You see me... I'm fine, if a little drunk..."
     
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  3. Tanaquil

    Tanaquil The Unicorn Series

    Posts:
    687
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Tinker Sorceress
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Vampire
    Age:
    19
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Good
    As he stared for a second she wondered if he was going to actually open the window, or if he'd fall out if he did, considering his current state- but fortunately it was a moot question. She'd hopped back enough in her bird form that she could jump off and glide into the window, flapping her wings to slow her approach so she didn't crash into the opposite wall, and landed instead on the edge of his bed. He'd tried to clean, or he was the neatest drunk she'd ever seen in her life. Neither would have been too terribly surprising.

    From here she could see him, and her vampiric eyes took it all in. He was fine, no blood, no broken bones- and yet, she knew he wasn't, not really. Some things weren't of the body, and looking could only show you their reflection. She needed to be herself again, so she knew better. Ravens had fantastic senses, but they were terrible at retorts, intent looks, smiles or hugs. And right now, those were the tools for this job. So said mending magic, and so said her common sense, and it was confirmed by her care for him.

    She'd picked up some of Raphael's knack for transformations, and it only took her a couple of minutes to shift back into her regular form, with everything as it had been just before she'd changed into the bird, fortunately for her. Leaving things behind would have been quite a pain. "It is me, but you might still be going mad. You're fine now, but if you leave that window open you'll freeze, dear Jason," she told him with a bit of a winsome smile. "And I'd bet you'd be far less charming as a sherbet stick." With that, she rose and walked over to the window, standing next to where he was sitting and closing it securely before turning around and sitting beside him.

    So warm, even now, and she could smell the alcohol clearly, as much as himself and his blood. Fortunately these days she fed better and the temptation was much less, especially knowing how drunk he seemed, and how sad. "Now I've got less reason to worry," she told him, then turned her head and looked him in the eye, absolutely bemused but grateful he wasn't as bad as what she'd pictured. "Fine and drunk, that we can work with. The cold, the dark- that's another story. And why I'm here." And with that she brought one of her hands to rest on his. "If you're inclined to help me when I'm in the dark, I'm doing the same for you."
     
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  4. Jason Todd

    Jason Todd DC Universe

    Posts:
    508
    Race:
    human
    Age:
    22
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Neutral
    Her words about him maybe going mad led to a bitter laugh escaping, she wouldn't know why it was funny to him but nor did he in that moment really care, the alcohol took away the need to care for his own secrets and inner pain. She was speaking about closing the window, preventing him from freezing, mentioning how he'd be less charming as a sherbet stick and he let out another bark of laughter as she shut his window before saying"Maybe less charming, but at least I'd be better tasting..." As she sunk to sit beside him he added a wink to his statement before continuing on"Or am I sweet enough already?"

    But even as he made the flirty comment the darkness bit him, he didn't deserve her, she deserved better and his gaze dropped from her as he tried to hide the way his smile faded from his face. She was speaking again, saying she had less reason to worry and he raised a brow at that, looking in her direction as she turned to look at him. As she brought up the cold and dark, he silently scolded himself for messaging her. She did not need to deal with this, with him, she had plenty of her own troubles to deal with without his. Again he felt the guilt that he had claimed her as his girlfriend, he didn't deserve her and she did not deserve the suffering he would bring her. She mentioned how he was there through her darkness so she was here through his and he looked away, taking another gulp from the glass in his hand.

    For a moment he was silent before he was pointing to the bed in the room saying"That blanket there... Its got space on it... I got given it for my birthday... It reminds me of space and adventure... But its so warm... Yet it is not warm." He pouted in a thoughtful fashion before asking"What does it feel like to be a crow and fly? I've flown but not like that... He never let us take the planes that often.... But we still flew occasionally... My friend Kori could fly, she would pick us up like we were nothing but rag dolls and carry us off... Roy would complain..." He took another sip from the glass before saying"I didn't deserve them as I don't deserve you...."
     
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  5. Tanaquil

    Tanaquil The Unicorn Series

    Posts:
    687
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Tinker Sorceress
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Vampire
    Age:
    19
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Good
    "Oh, I've always favored slightly sour, somewhat spicy and vaguely bitter sweets- and especially when they're sweet as you. I'm a glutton for dangerous complexities," she replied to his first part, winsome smile crossing her face and a faintly knowing glint in her eyes. She was well aware of her own interests and tastes, and of the double entendre evident in them- as well as how they seemed to match the situation. How fond I am of this balance between us.

    Still, that was not the topic of the evening, especially when he was looking away and his smile faded, and the glass decreased in its volume again. A strong smell of alcohol there, pungent and sharp, and while she was far from the one who should be telling others what they were allowed to drink she still hated that stuff. It was his right, and yet it was terrible for his mind and his spirit in the long run. Past experiences with drunks told her that it was a bad idea to go into a fret or a rage and try to snatch it though. The time would come for that.

    For a moment she considered scolding him for what it seemed he was about to do- shut her out, or himself in, or go silent and talk to his booze as his friend when she was right here- but he started to speak again and she glanced over where he gestured. Warm but not warm, that was an idea she knew well and a feeling she recalled clearly. Such a hollow thing. And yet she was learning so much. Space, and flight, things she adored, and he fancied them too. To love speed and driving was one thing, and there was no crime in stopping there. But he wanted to fly. Jason, he's like a sparrowhawk, or a falcon.

    She was about to answer, but it was wiser to let him continue until he drank again and so she did. For a moment she was half affonted for his sake, and half hurt. "Well it's too late now, you'll have to put up with me either way," she told him pertly, then smiled and scooted a hair closer before continuing. "So someone else flew you. And you've flown planes. Hmm, interesting, but not the same as being a raven. Unless you got a lot of windshear on your planes. It's free, and frightening, and fragile- all hollow bones and the wind trying to trick you." And it was all of that, certainly. "Do you want to be a bird then? Because that's a little beyond vodka."
     
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  6. Jason Todd

    Jason Todd DC Universe

    Posts:
    508
    Race:
    human
    Age:
    22
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Neutral
    His drunken mind was fast picking up that she was a good listener, he just wished he had happy stories to tell her, rather than the darkness that followed him everywhere. He wished he could make her smile, or even laugh but he seemed only capable at bringing her misery. The self loathing was climbing high alongside the darkness and the alcohol in his hand was becoming more sought after, he wanted to forget. But then she was answering his words, telling him it was to late to shake her off now and he managed a small smile at that as he responded"I don't want too loose you... I don't put up with you... I want you around... You're my best friend... More than that... I love you.." But even as he was quietly responding, she was speaking and his voice faded out as she went on telling him what it was like to be a bird. The concept of flying like a bird sounded fascinating to his drunk mind, he almost wanted to try it for himself, but he was not a stupid drunk as much as he sometimes acted like it.

    But then her question came and a bitter, bark like laugh escaped him before he responded"I've been a bird already... It didn't end well... I still see it... Especially with his return... And so getting beyond vodka is lost on me..." Then he was continuing on in a casual conversational tone"I've been a mythical creature as well, though mythical creatures encourage the unleashing of your inner darkness.." He paused a moment before shifting his gaze to his drink, eyeing the trickle of vodka left in the bottom of the glass as he went on "That didn't end well either... It's like whomever is upstairs is telling me to stay away from all animals mythical or real..."With that he downed the trickle, he desired more and so he was reaching for the windowsill above them, using it to pull himself to his feet.

    Where he stood swaying slightly for a moment lit up by the moonlight outside dying his skin a silvery white. It was like he'd forgotten why he had stood, as he glanced down at Tanaquil and spoke"I'm sorry... I'm not good to be around when I'm like this... I'm fine, just not warm... Cold always cold.... You should go before I say something that will take your smile away forever..." He was distracted by the sight of the vodka bottle on the other side of the room which he now ambled towards on wobbly feet.
     
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  7. Tanaquil

    Tanaquil The Unicorn Series

    Posts:
    687
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Tinker Sorceress
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Vampire
    Age:
    19
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Good
    Perhaps she hadn't left him a gap to answer that, at least not a sufficient one- honestly she hadn't been sure he was even going to say anything at all- but she could still hear him. If she could hear the heartbeats of mice in the rafters and the footsteps of rabbits in a snow-covered forest she could certainly a muffled whisper near her. Her only regret was that she hadn't let it be clearer, so he could hear it for himself. But then, maybe that hadn't been the point. Her heart raced a little with it, even as pragmatism set in. Drunk people were honest, but not always coherent. She was still going to hold it in her heart like a pearl though, at least for now, since it matched so well her own feelings.

    But he was speaking of other things, and his laugh was dark, replacing the softness of before. That held a seed of cold, of fear and pain, the night that had no stars was in the words, and her mending tickled at her, though she ignored them for now. Broken or not, that did not matter. She was caring for him as she saw fit, not as the magic did, and it could be damned. The way he was talking reminded her of the story of the grave he'd told her in the shop that fateful night of shared secrets. It was a lot of vagaries and suppositions but she knew enough hints to eventually start fitting them together. "Perhaps you were meant to be another kind of bird. It does happen."

    Then he was rising and she looked at him in surprising, standing up after he did and glancing at his glass. He was nearly falling down as it was and alcohol poisoning was very much a thing. Even if he was resistant to things like that, as he had been with the venom, there was still a risk. In a couple short, quick steps she was in front of him and smiling winsomely, reaching over to rest her hand on his hand, and the glass in it. "Well, this mythological creature is suggesting you go get that star blanket so I can see it, and I'll fill this up for you. Please?" she asked him with a little bit of a playful wheedling in her tone.

    Here was hoping he wasn't about to get entirely too stubborn on her.
     
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  8. Jason Todd

    Jason Todd DC Universe

    Posts:
    508
    Race:
    human
    Age:
    22
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Neutral
    Her words about being another type of bird filled him with some kind of sadness and he chose not to respond, the world was already a confusing place within his drunk mind, he didn't need to confuse himself further with this conversation. He was on his feet now, he didn't notice the concern she had for him as he wobbled nor did he notice how quickly she came after him as he started to amble across the room, if he was sober he would of noticed with his detective like gaze. Her hand was on is now, fingers around his glass, despite how cold she was he felt warm beneath her touch and then she was speaking, his mind was sluggish as his gaze rose from their hands to her face.

    He saw her smile, he heard her words and in a moment of child like innocence he gave a small nod. Letting her take the glass from him, his hand falling away from both the glass and her hand as she took it from him, the tiniest of smiles on his face. His ice, blue gaze ran over her face, he trusted her, he loved her, yet she deserved so much better than him, a darkness entered his ice, blue gaze and the childlike innocence was gone. He shifted, turning away and moved towards the bed as if trying to do as she had suggested, to show her the blanket. But his mind was somewhere else and with his wobbly footsteps he took longer than usual to get to the bed. Reaching it he bent over as if to get the blanket, his body still keen to do as Tanaquil asked even if his mind was sinking under the grip of his self loathing.

    But in his drunk state bending over was the wrong move as he fell forwards into his bed, hitting the mattress face first, dramatically he clung to the bed to prevent the momentum of his fall from sending him rolling to the floor. After a moment of this he erupted into drunken giggling, before saying, his voice muffled by the mattress"Ah, the real me emerges... A total klutz... Fool..." Then he was raising his head from the bed, eyes sweeping the room for Tanaquil"Hey Tana... Tana.. Did you see that?" Laughter was erupting from him again, the darkness for the moment forgotten as he went on"Don't tell my brother's... They don't need more ammunition to use against me..."
     
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  9. Tanaquil

    Tanaquil The Unicorn Series

    Posts:
    687
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Tinker Sorceress
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Vampire
    Age:
    19
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Good
    Sorrow was one of those things that could be so pervasive that its absence was almost a loneliness, especially when your mind was reeling. She'd seen that enough before, been frustrated by it to the point of fuming when it was someone she cared for, back before she'd learned patience with the world's bitterness. Even now there was a small, petulant part of her that wanted to shake his shoulders and tell him that dwelling helped nothing, that the alcohol would never fill that void- but she knew better. There was an art to reasoning with this situation and slyness was always far easier than screaming into the void.

    Stubborn as he was though, he looked into her eyes and smiled, even if it was small, and let her take the glass. Thank the stars and constellations he wasn't getting all possessive of his alcohol delivery system or she might well have to watch him get worse and worse, or do something drastic. Glad as she was though she couldn't help a faint sigh as his expression shifted to something dark again and he turned away. Well, at least he was still trying; once the fight was out of him, she'd worry more, but for now he was holding on. As he trudged that way she moved toward his dresser, setting the glass down there and filling it with water as quick as a flash. Vampiric reflexes really were nice, weren't they-

    Glancing back at him just to see if he'd even noticed she saw him falling and went to his side, resting the glass-free hand on him to keep him from rolling off of the bed again. "Handsome klutz, don't forget that," she reminded him, gently scolding as she sat down on the edge of the bed. Well at least he was laughing a little and she set the glass down before meeting his gaze and smiling. "I did see, and look at that, even managed your drink, aren't you lucky. Your secret is safe with me though, as always. No silly siblings will know that you once, long ago, stumbled into bed like a drunken camel. I'll keep that ammunition for myself." Now that she was here she could at least see the blanket, and she smiled. Stars indeed.
     
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  10. Jason Todd

    Jason Todd DC Universe

    Posts:
    508
    Race:
    human
    Age:
    22
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Neutral
    He felt her hand steadying him, keeping him upon the bed and only laughed harder, it was weird laughing so soon after sadness, it felt almost empty. He heard her teasing reminder, she thought him handsome, his ice blue gaze dropped from her to the blanket on his bed. She was still teasing him, mentioning she saw him flailing about like the fool he was and managed to keep him from breaking his face on the floor while also balancing his drink. He noticed she had put it upon the bedside table, his gaze going longingly to it as she went on mentioning keeping this ammunition for herself and he managed a chuckle, rolling onto his back, head upon the starry blanket.

    He gazed up at her from where he now lay, for a moment there was silence, but then he murmured"You're beautiful..." His ice, blue gaze could not leave he face, it was fixed upon it, taking in every hint of beauty from the perfect white skin, to the perfectly shaped nose, the stubborn jut of her chin, the fierce blue eyes sheltered behind the just as poignant eyebrows and then there was her lips, often so devilishly shaped in a wicked grin. He wanted to kiss that mouth, he wanted to cover her whole face in kisses, he wanted to make her understand how beautiful she was, how perfect she was, how like an angel she was and yet as he admired her features the bitter darkness was crawling up his insides, he did not deserve her.

    Shifting slightly he raised his torso on a wobbly elbow as he reached a hand towards her face, he couldn't quite reach but nor did he really care, he indicated it as he spoke in a soft voice"So beautiful... So perfect, how did a guy like me end up with a woman such as you.... I am undeserving..." He flopped back, his gaze no longer on Tanaquil but rather on the ceiling over there heads as he went on, voice now gaining a sad lilt to it "I've killed people Tanaquil, both before coming to Pandora and since... Not all of them deserved it, some were innocent... I still hear the screams, even now.... But I had no choice... I saw no way out.... Yet the blood on my hands still haunts me."Unbidden a tear managed to escape his watery eyes to create a watery track down his right cheek.
     
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  11. Tanaquil

    Tanaquil The Unicorn Series

    Posts:
    687
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Tinker Sorceress
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Vampire
    Age:
    19
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Good
    Drunken sincerity was often discounted as insincerity, and when a person's inhibitions and vision were both blurry she could see why- but she wanted to believe that he meant is, so she let herself, and glanced down, ducking her head slightly, and glancing to the side to take the place of the blush she couldn't show. Perhaps it was a blessing that she couldn't or he'd be entirely aware of how bad she really was at taking compliments, especially when they felt undeserved. She'd done so little to earn love like that and had no idea how to make herself otherwise, except by being herself, and making sure he understood how much she adored who he was too.

    She glanced back and saw the darkness in his eyes and her brow furrowed slightly in concern. Self-loathing was something she knew well enough, in herself and others, but how to defeat it- well, that was a break that even her magic could struggle to fix. He'd told her this before, though he might not remember it in this state. It was on his mind obviously, and likely always was, and no wonder, considering how he loathed darkness and carried it at the same time. No wonder he was so tired he couldn't sleep. And despite what he was thinking, she knew very well that the alcohol wasn't helping, both by instinct and experience.

    As a tear fell from his eyes she brought her hand up to his cheek to brush it away, then kissed where it had fallen before shifting on the bed to lie down beside him, taking one of his hands at the same time. Nothing untoward was in that gesture, not even a little, even as she rested sideways next to him, head resting on the same blanket as she looked at his face in profile. So handsome, and so pained, and what could she do? I can try, that's what, because that's the start. "Oh Jason, you have always deserved better than what you have gotten," she said softly, bringing his hand clasped in hers up to her cheek and brushing it there before kissing the back lightly and lowering it again. So many things on his mind that needed saying, that needed to be brought out of the dark and into the light- or the less dark. That is, if he would let them. "The world is cruel and unfair, and I'm so sorry for that. But you're not alone in the dark if it's shared. I'm here, let me walk in the dark with you. Tell me what you need to say. Please?" She wasn't sure if he'd say yes or not, but she gave him a sincere, concerned pleading look.
     
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  12. Jason Todd

    Jason Todd DC Universe

    Posts:
    508
    Race:
    human
    Age:
    22
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Neutral
    With his gaze on the ceiling he did not know she reached for him until her hand was on his cheek, wiping the tear away and he looked at her surprised, which turned to astonishment when she kissed where the tear had been. He didn't deserve her gentle, tender care and his ice, blue eyes watched as she lay on the bed beside him. Her eyes were on him, examining him and after a moment he was looking away back towards the ceiling, the thoughts he'd been having before her touch to his face crawling back out of the darkness. But a light cut through his drunken darkness as she spoke, telling him he deserved more than he had gotten and he smirked at that, but the smile lacked warmth, it was bitter, cold. She was moving the hand clasped in hers and slowly he looked towards her as he felt her lips brush across the back of his hand.

    It was because of this touch that his ice blue gaze was upon Tanaquil when she spoke next telling him he did not have to be alone in the darkness, that if he let her in perhaps he would not be so alone, overwhelmed by the dark. He eyed her in silence following her statement, wondering at what he'd done to deserve such a kind, caring partner and then he was looking away, up at the ceiling. He kept his silence before softly he spoke"Do you remember when we first met? How I went for you without thinking? I told everyone that I had expected the guard or the thugs from the bar.... But truth was I was expecting someone worse... I had this image in my head, I couldn't shake it... The image of how my actions, my burdens lead to someone else being hurt, someone I cared about... Maybe even loved..." His gaze shifted to Tanaquil as he went on"I can't let it happen again... Tanaquil, my burdens are for me to carry... If I involve you, you will only suffer too and I could not bare it if I was the one to cause you to suffer, you deserve better than that."
     
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  13. Tanaquil

    Tanaquil The Unicorn Series

    Posts:
    687
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Tinker Sorceress
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Vampire
    Age:
    19
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Good
    Not being a mind reader she had to wait, if with secret impatience, for him to decide whether or not he was willing to speak or not- and if he didn't, well, that wouldn't be so unusual anyway, would it. Secrets were a part of life, and she couldn't say that was entirely a bad thing either. It left people unique, singular, and free, after a fashion- and yet, why bother with that? It was so rare to come across someone that could understand, and who things could be shared with, that to not want to say because you were worried they were delicate, in pure contrariness to all evidence, was just- funny. Not amusingly, perhaps, but ironically, bemusedly, a little frustratingly even.

    So as he stared at the ceiling she was glad that she didn't have to breathe for the moment or the sigh that crept out might have been a little more like a huff. Blessing in disguise, that. Besides, he was talking, and she wasn't about to give him any excuse to say he was 'interrupted'. The more he said, the more she started to understand, and while she couldn't say she agreed with it, she still sympathized. How odd his memory was, or how oddly they placed different weight on memories! "I remember how, swinging or not, it was me who laid you on the pavement," she retorted quietly, but went silent after that.

    Losing people- that she knew. Protecting yourself from loss by pushing people away, a common tactic, but ever so successful if you kept at it with the right level of dedication. There was one thing she knew needed saying though. "I'm sorry someone was lost to you, and I understand how that makes for fear," she said with sincerity, brow furrowed slightly as she glanced aside for a moment, squeezing his hand gently. "If you think I'm not worried about that same thing all of those times you show up, covered in bruises and wounds, you're mad. I know it's somehow necessary to you- saving people, fixing things, I feel that too. That doesn't make things easy. It's why we need to help each other with it, not just worry. The only way to prevent misfortune is to fight it. I deserve a chance to fight for what I want in my life, don't I?"

    A tick, a tingle, a thought in the back of her head, broken fragments of things coming together. A mend in sight perhaps? Something about helping..
     
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  14. Jason Todd

    Jason Todd DC Universe

    Posts:
    508
    Race:
    human
    Age:
    22
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Neutral
    Her words about the day they met were true, she had managed to put him on the floor not intentionally of course, but it had still happened. In his drunken mind he was suddenly back on that night, the white flash of light so vivid before his eyes. He had to blink a few times to clear the image from his drunken haze and as he did so Tanaquil was speaking again saying she was sorry he lost someone even as she gave him a reassuring squeeze on his hand. For a moment he was lost, disconnected until he raised their joined hands and stared at them while she continued on, he could almost feel a warmth between their joined hands even though she no longer produced warmth or did she? His drunken mind wondered at what his sober mind usually knew without a second thought. Her words meanwhile were spoken truly and he could feel the wisdom dripping off her, so wise, so pretty and somehow mine.... His thought as his gaze shifted from their joined hands to her face as she finished.

    Jason's ice, blue gaze ran over her face as he answered"You deserve the chance to fight for what you want... what you need... You deserve the world..." Then softly he murmured"Helping each other.." He raised their joined hands into his line of sight as he added softly"Together we are stronger, alone we break...." Then he was lowering their hands and sitting up, his body wobbling slightly, the world spinning before his eyes, the drunken smile briefly reappeared as a giddiness flooded him. When the world settled back in place though the smile shrunk and he spoke"Tanaquil, I burn with what I have done... Day... Night.... I burn, just beneath the skin..."

    He was staring into a corner of the room, as slowly he started to detach from himself as he went on with a bitter smile"Huh, burning... Fire always seems like such fun until you get to close to it..." He swallowed, the bitter smile fading and as it did the sickly look came upon his face, a sweat even began to gather as he went on"Remember when you offered me a blow torch? How I overreacted.... I was afraid, if I had taken it would I have done it again? Or would I just be forced to see? But I'm already forced to see.... Just like with my death... Every night made to live that moment, I didn't know who the girl was Tanaquil... All I knew was she was innocent... She had been in the wrong place at the wrong time... I didn't want to do it, but I had too... I needed to make him accept me... The smell, the screams... Their not something one can forget, but all I remember thinking was that I was glad it wasn't someone I knew..."

    The sheen of sweat was spreading, the screaming was growing louder, the stench of burning flesh stronger and his hands started shaking, he needed the alcohol now, he needed to forget but instead he was speaking again"And that was only the beginning... Mostly I did weapons gathering but there were other parts.... Darker parts... I took part in shootings... Bombings... Assassinations.. Torture... All to maintain my cover... And the worst thing is, a part of me enjoyed it... My boss saw that and took a special interest in me..."

    He paused his free hand clenching upon the blanket as he forced himself to say the words"As much as I hated him for what he made me do in my initiation, I also liked him... He was like me, dumped and replaced by those who should love you unconditionally... He had a sense of humour too.. He was almost likeable... And he worked with me to unleash the man the Joker had created... It made me realise that I was in way too deep, I was turning into the monster my father claimed me to be..." He was breathing hard now, his whole body trembling as he murmured so softly that a normal person wouldn't have heard it, but Tanaquil likely did "But I enjoyed it... And that part of me is still there.."
     
  15. Tanaquil

    Tanaquil The Unicorn Series

    Posts:
    687
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Tinker Sorceress
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Vampire
    Age:
    19
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Good
    His eyes ran over her and she let them, keeping her hand in his and watching him right back as a certain sort of acceptance and understanding moved over him, and he spoke the truth soon after- they fit together, rough edge and to rough edge, like gears in a perfect machine that couldn't work in anything else. It still didn't seem to make him smile, or the darkness abate from his eyes and soul though, and she waited and listened, sitting up as he sat up and shifting slightly to rest against the wall, but not releasing his hand. It was a point of contact and support for him, and a pleasure for her, and she wasn't about to give it up.

    The talk turned them to fire, and for a moment she wondered if it was as metaphorical as his darkness- but no, it seemed far, far more literal. His story started, and she was glad he was comfortable enough to tell it to her. He mentioned that old altercation and she nodded but still said nothing, pushing back some hair, and as he told all of his story she listened intently, expression faintly pinched in pain for him and in frustration- not at him, but at this world they lived in and the things it made people into sometimes. He'd chosen this path, but for good intentions- and been lost in it, and the usefulness someone saw in that. Now he felt all the Hells and their black flames in consequence for it.

    She hurt for him. Oh, she also hurt for the poor victims, because she had her soul still left to her, but if she let every life taken draw her down she would never move forward- especially as what she was now. Perhaps that was her own darkness too, waiting quietly for her to realize it, but it didn't matter. She'd gladly sit in this darkness with him, just as she promised, to carry that pain alongside and try to fix it. His last whisper left him, and hear it she did, and she raised her free hand to his face, brushing some hair behind his ear before she leaned over to get his glass from the nightstand and offer it to him. He seemed to need it, what with the trembling.

    "Here, you could use this, after a telling like that," she told him softly, settling back in her spot and cocking her head to look at him. Oh, her so flawed but wonderfully strong-willed love, he learned his lessons so painfully, and kept scratching at the wound, and her eyes went back to him again. "We're all creatures of an imperfect world, and can never be as good or as wonderful as we believe we must be. You're not a monster, because why would a thing of evil need to be scared of the darkness?"
     
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  16. Jason Todd

    Jason Todd DC Universe

    Posts:
    508
    Race:
    human
    Age:
    22
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Neutral
    There was a moment of quiet after his tale had seemed to come to a close, if he had been sober his eyes would not of been able to fix on Tanaquil but having drunk enough to leave him drunk he had a kind of liquid courage which left his ice, blue eyes shifting from the ceiling to fix on Tanaquil. A darkness was within his gaze, there was pain too and a spark brought on by the alcohol. But then Tanaquil was speaking, reaching for his glass where she had put it on the nightstand and slowly he shifted, sitting up so he could drink. The world spun slightly as he sat up and he seemed to sway, his hands shook as he took the drink, sipping at it. Somewhere in his mind something told him this was not vodka but he felt to numb for a moment to care and she was back lying on his bed watching him.

    For a moment the room was still, quiet and almost peaceful, then Tanaquil was speaking, her words softly spoken though he could hear a comforting edge to them and his ice blue eyes fixed on the red headed woman, suddenly appearing so focused. He swallowed before murmuring"You can be evil and afraid... Its not so black and white just like everything..." He swallowed before muttering"I enjoy the darkness Tanaquil, that's why its so frightening to me.... Because how can a good man enjoy doing those things? Hurting people... Killing people... I am a part of the darkness waiting to be swallowed whole." He shook his head ignoring how the world spun before his eyes as he whispered"They were all right about me.... Joker, Bruce... Ward..."

    He made himself take a big gulp from the glass in his hand before he found his voice again"The day we met, I thought you were Hydra... Ward... come to kidnap me and take me away, in my head I could hear guns and boots against pavement... I was afraid, not because of what they might do to me if they got me and trust me, what they would do to me if they got their hands on me would be bad... But because of what they might make me become and I know... I know I would become that monster if I went back there... I would not be able to stop it."

    His grip on the glass was so tight his knuckles had gone white and then suddenly he was shifting to face Tanaquil completely, he reached out with a shaking hand to take her hand in his and then he spoke"Tanaquil, promise me... Whatever happens you will not willingly let me go down that path, if I lose control and start to descend please.... Either stop me somehow... Or end me... I can't... I can't be the reason innocent people get hurt again... I can't.. It feels like I am aflame, all the time my skin burns... Please Tanaquil..." His voice was soft, but oh so serious as he spoke, his ice, blue gaze had gained a level of intensity brought on by raw emotion.
     
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  17. Tanaquil

    Tanaquil The Unicorn Series

    Posts:
    687
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Tinker Sorceress
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Vampire
    Age:
    19
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Good
    She knew what he meant, but that wasn't the point. Getting him to say it aloud, to name the Beast, was important. To mend something, you had to know the root of the problem, not the details. Was this the broken lynchpin of the thing? It angered her, either way, not that she would show it- because it wasn't something he needed to see, or that was directed at all in his direction. As soon as he pronounced that the great and infamous 'they' were right, though, she shook her head quickly. She would have answered him then, but he was intent to continue, and she wasn't of a mind to interrupt.

    Sometimes it was as hard to listen as it was to speak, and just as important. He didn't speak about his darkness much, even when it was obvious how much pain he was in because of it, or how its influence haunted him. Once, she might have been glad to pretend and dissemble about it, maintaining that there was no need to light a candle against the night if you didn't have a window to notice it through. Now she knew that 'not looking' couldn't work forever. So she nodded and listened, and let the story come. At least it functioned to explain a few things, not that she needed the answer anyway. That time was long past.

    "Firstly, they were, perhaps, right in the appraisal of a detail that most people possess- and most do, if they have seen enough to have any personality at all. But that does not make them right about your value, or the value of anything," she protested stubbornly as he took her hand. When he made his request her eyes narrowed for a moment, brows briefly furrowing. What a request to make- but she understood it, even as she hated it. Did he mean it, or was it a drunken desperation that made him ask? Either way, she'd answer honestly. "It's your life, you get to choose what you do with it," she finally told him, with an almost nonchalant ease to cover her sorrow for him. "But, of course, I reserve the right to ask you the same thing in return. If I end up being that stupid, violent kind of blood-drinker, you have to do the same thing for me. That's the contract." She looked back at him with utter sincerity, calm and steady.

    Let's see what he said to that.
     
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  18. Jason Todd

    Jason Todd DC Universe

    Posts:
    508
    Race:
    human
    Age:
    22
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Neutral
    For a drunk man he listened to her words almost attentively, though his mind was a jumbled mess, he needed more alcohol, he needed to forget. But he let her protest stand, not feeling the need to attempt to break it or agree with it but simply keep his silence to show he was listening. The issue would be if he remembered this night in the morning, now though she held his hand, she almost looked distressed at his request. But then she was answering him, her gaze was focused her tone easy, it was like they were talking about the weather rather than requesting for the other to go so far as murder if they lost control. He heard her request and his hand tightened on hers, her words hurt his heart and yet he understood where they were coming from.

    Like him she had elements of instability which could drive her to harm others and deep in his gut he found it unsurprising that she turn the request to her own needs as well. But his facial expression was pained, a sadness burned in his eyes and he did not know if he would find his voice to answer. Jason's ice blue gaze was fixed on her face and ever so slightly his hand in hers shook, the grip on the water glass was tighter. Then slowly he shifted closer, leaning in his lips found her forehead and somewhat softly, tenderly for a drunk man he planted a kiss there before he moved to sit up saying softly"I will always do what needs to be done... Its my promise, in Gotham, Bludhaven, Pandora Town... With my family, friends... With you... I will do what needs to be done if the need arises..." His words hinted at something further, things he'd done in the past that he'd not enjoyed but done because he'd was the only one willing to do what was actually needed.

    His ice, blue eyes showed he meant his promise too, if the worst happened, he would handle it, it would break him to do so but he would sort it. But with the promise made on both their parts a weight lifted slightly from Jason's shoulders, with his next breath things suddenly seemed a little easier and then he was murmuring"I love you Tanaquil...." He felt tired, he knew he needed to sleep but he also knew he'd not drunk enough to stave off the nightmares and so he muttered"Water won't do... I need... Where'd my vodka go, did I drink it all?" He struggled in a wobbly fashion to climb off the bed, his eyes peering about the darkened room seeking out the vodka.
     
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  19. Tanaquil

    Tanaquil The Unicorn Series

    Posts:
    687
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Tinker Sorceress
    Location:
    Pandora Town
    Race:
    Vampire
    Age:
    19
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Good
    A kiss on the forehead, sweeter and darker than the touch of a unicorn's horn had once been given in the same spot- and more real, and appreciated, these days. The time of unicorn blessings was over and done with, but now she was lucky enough to have the miracle of his love and his promise to more than make up for it. Warm and soft as it was though she could see the sadness in his eyes and his demeanor, the regret of hating promises that made too much sense- or so she guessed. It was terrible to burden someone with responsibility when you shied away from it until there was no other choice and now they were both in that position. She almost regretted asking, save for the intimate honesty of the moment they were sharing.

    "I love you as well. If there's any way except the final one, expect me to try all of them rather than anything more drastic," she added with a squeeze of his hand, a bit of a wry smile at the corner of her mouth as she watched his shoulders ease and as he started to rise she loosened her grip on his hand, shifting to sit at the edge of the bed as he went back toward those bottles. Once she would have stormed and seethed, throwing them out the same window she'd come in, then left and waited for him to sober up and realize what he'd done. Now she was older and not nearly so biased, so instead she leaned up and looked over the cabinets. "I'm not sure. That bottle looked low. But if you drink the water first, you'll have an empty glass to pour your vodka into."

    There was no rancor in her tone, or impatience, just a sort of quiet curiosity as she looked over at his blanket and cocked her head, then back at him. "Or, if you wanted, I could try to help you sleep. There's a vampire trick. But if you'd rather not, I understand completely."
     
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  20. Jason Todd

    Jason Todd DC Universe

    Posts:
    508
    Race:
    human
    Age:
    22
    Alignment:
    Chaotic Neutral
    She was telling him she loved him and though it warmed him to hear it, it also made the words they'd both spoken much more weightier, crushing on his shoulders. She was speaking more painfully heartbreaking promises, which in his sober state he would of returned but the moment he had fixed on finding the vodka he found the best response he could give was a pause to look at her, to see she meant it. His hand squeezed hers a moment before she released her grip on him, allowing him to use both hands to help him off the bed. She was on the edge of the bed now as he found himself on wobbly feet, seeking out the bottle, his gaze found it now he was standing, seeing it on his desk even as Tanaquil answered him and slowly he nodded, reaching for the glass he'd left on the bed saying softly"I guess making space is a good idea..." He then drained the glass of water and ambled on unstable feet towards the vodka, noting that she was right about that too, it was low but he had more in the kitchen if he needed so he was not to concerned as he poured the last of it into his glass.

    It was as he raised the partially filled glass to his lips and drank about a fingers worth that he heard her next words. Lowering the glass and ignoring the burn of the alcohol he looked at her, meeting her gaze"Vampire trick to helping one sleep?" He was curious now, but with the finger he'd just drunk he was already finding it hard to focus on her as he stood by the desk with the glass swaying slightly before he was asking in an almost mischievous tone"Does it involve more of that kinky biting shit? Cos as nice as that normally is, I don't think I'm up for it tonight.." He raised the glass again, watching her over the rim as he drank another finger and then the glass was lowered again, he had about another finger left to drink before he'd need to get another bottle from the kitchen but if she had an answer which did not involve another bottle of vodka to knock him out he was down for hearing it because as much as the drinking helped he did not particularly enjoy it.
     
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