Word Prompts (K5): Kiss

Edmundo leans back, away from their kiss. It is reluctant, yes, but still a retreat. Their faces are still close enough that they can share breaths, but the distance means no contact. No heat.

“You’re one of those heroes now,” he says in the scant space between them, near to a whisper, though it’s hardly needed. Beyond the thin walls of the office space, the garage is in operation, the sounds of machines and their mechanics echoing back and forth.

She shrugs in response, tips her hand back and forth. Hero-adjacent would be a pithy, but accurate, response; she’s just not sure it would come out right.

“It’s different than what you were doing before,” he says, leaning even further back which isn’t what she wants at all! But he takes her hands in his and that’s an okay consolation prize, she supposes. “Protecting your block from pendejos is one thing, but you’re on the news now. You’re in bright spandex and everything.”

She crinkles her nose in protest: she doesn’t wear spandex. She just wears normal clothes. It’s not her fault her powers manifests as flowing green lights.

“No, no, you’re right. I’m getting off track,” he says, smoothing his thumbs over the back of her hands. It’s rough and a patch of black smears across her skin, but it’s warm. She likes it.

From the way she thinks this conversation is going, she’s going to miss it.

“You’ll always have a home here,” Edmundo says, and when he leans in, he presses his forehead to hers in a deliberately chaste way, “But you’re outgrowing us, and I can’t keep you chained down.”

She can’t say he’s wrong.

She doesn’t try to kiss him again–they’ve already had their final goodbye kiss, even if she didn’t know it for what it was at the time. But if she tightens her return grip, hoping to press the shape of her hands into his, well. He doesn’t say anything about that, at least.

She kisses Maya because she loves her and, also, Tetsuki might very well never see her again–either because they will be separated on opposite sides of an inter planar barrier or Tetsuki will be dead.

Maya kisses back because she loves Tetsuki, too… but perhaps isn’t sure in what way she loves Tetsuki and thinks that kissing might help her figure it out. And also because, even though Tetsuki isn’t saying it out loud, Maya is more than aware that her best friend may very well die and she doesn’t want to be a last regret in any way.

It is a lot of emotions and concepts for their first, hesitant kiss to convey.

Luckily, it is not also a last and only kiss, and they greatly improve their communication via kisses in the future.

There is no kissing between them. For many reasons, really.

Mainly because intimacy and vulnerability are not luxuries either of them can afford.

Tetsuki has been experimenting with wearing hound-snake venom atop wax coated lips. Azula can literally breathe fire.

And depending on which timeline they’re in, they may be trying to kill each other.

So, no. No kissing for them.

The first kiss of Team Two actually happens between Naruto and Komadori.

Tetsuki does’t understand what’s so embarrassing about it but, then again, as mentioned, she wasn’t actually involved so…

She promises to talk about that mission only once a year at most.

Tetsuki is dripping with river water, mildly concussed, and high off the wave of endorphins that is surviving an apocalyptic, dystopian future when she kisses Kusakabe-senpai for the first time.

Unsurprisingly, this doesn’t scare him off.

~

A/N: A sort of reverse tag of this ficlet.

Advertisements

Trailblazers (2017-12-24)

Their romance is nothing like a fairy tale–too steeped in the violence of their work–but it’s real and true and everything Tetsuki wants.

She marries a good man, solid and stable, who makes her feel like she can be a good woman, too, if she just wills it.

Every kiss from Tetsuya makes her feel like the heroine of her very own story.

She loves Komadori, but not the way he hopes for–still, he is dear to her, and her to him, and it is difficult to be vulnerable in a world of war.

She reaches out, accepting his touch, and lets the intimacy speak for her.

He is a good man; it’s unfortunate Tetsuki isn’t the right woman.

Their’s is a lost connection, a hypothetical disaster in the making.

Azula would as soon kiss her as she would gouge her eyes out–they would surely destroy each other.

Maybe, in another life, Tetsuki would even let her try.

Love is soft and sweet again, no longer the clawing desperate creature, thread-like bonds gentle yet firm:

Tetsuki doesn’t need to say how important Maya is when her actions have already done so, words have never been how she communicates with Hiei, and it’s mostly a joke when she threatens to shave off the fox’s hair.

Tetsuki gets used to poison kisses, everything growing green around her; she’s lightheaded from giddiness as much as the toxins, luxuriating in the sensation.

Or maybe it’s the sound of machinery, oil streaked across her skin; or the view of the stars from outside the atmosphere, breathless but not suffocating.

Now she’s a heroine in more than just feeling.

~

A/N: Or, some quick three sentence fic about Tetsuki being in love?

Check out the Ask Box Advent Calendar!

“Hibiscus”. Poison Ivy/Tetsuki, Deuteranomaly!verse a few years down the road.

A/N: Oh generic-name-goes-here, you always prompt the sweetest things that make me blush. (ノ*゜▽゜*)

I actually think I’m gonna write a ficlet for this instead of the event-typical fake fic summary, so I hope you enjoy!

Ivy’s children are far smarter than anyone else gives them credit for–only recently do mainstream scientists even consider that plants feel pain when damaged, one of the most basic traits of living things–but even they have their limitations.

Her warning bell flowers call out to her late on a night so cold and quiet, a night like many other in Gotham, and yet she wonders.

The figure on the edge of her territory is familiar yet not. It’s been years since that first night, months since she last saw her, and yet those eyes haven’t changed at all.

The newest bearer of the Green Lantern title waits on the outskirts of Robinson Park, waiting for permission to enter Poison Ivy’s realm.

///

The first time Tetsuki leaves Gotham is not entirely by choice.

It’s not as if The Bat had run her out–though she’s heard how awful he is about people with abilities beyond the human norm–but being eagerly shepherded to the west coast by his eldest bird wasn’t exactly at the top of her to do list.

She does not regret it whatsoever: she learns so much from the Titans–more about how to be a teenager and the vigilante lifestyle than than how to use her abilities–and she, perhaps stereotypically, loiters around Japantown whenever possible.

She enjoys the ambient noise of conversations she can understand without conscious effort. The nice couple who run the taiyaki stand give her freebies whenever they see her, as thanks for stopping a robbery early in her stint as an honorary Titan.

It’s fun, and she does enjoy the missions… but it’s not home.

///

The woman who sits in Ivy’s garden now is not the same girl who first had the honor, but the guardian venus flytraps butt their heads against her in playful recognition and the air plants reach out their tendrils to her.

If Ivy were one for embarrassment and blushing, she would do so now, but as it is she turns her face away.

Tetsuki smiles, distributing pats to the flytraps and reaching back to let the tendrils wrap around her fingers, her hair. She has more control now, doesn’t worry about damaging them by accident, and that confidence carries itself in her shoulders.

She’s no longer that little girl dragging chains in her bloody footsteps, seeking sanctuary desperately. Now she’s a vigilante, a protector if not a hero, and she’s not going to let herself be afraid.

///

During an earlier night, when they still communicated mostly through gestures and short, stuttering fragments, Tetsuki awoke from a nightmare, screaming, and slightly on fire.

Luckily for her, the only casualties were the sleeves of her borrowed clothes, otherwise she might have been forcibly ejected from her hostess’ home.

But the woman, despite the near disaster, was kind, gentle. She had held Tetsuki’s tear-ridden face between her hands as if she were precious, dear, as much as the delicate flowers and the angry chomping things standing guard, both.

Tetsuki followed the sound of her voice, soothing and undecipherable, then, back into peaceful sleep: green no longer seemed so frightening.

~

Ask Box Event Now Open!

Deuteranomaly (2017-10-01)

Communication is dreadful at first.

There isn’t much of a Japanese presence in Gotham–not with New York so close and their prevalence on the west coast instead–and although she finds herself fluent in Italian, bewilderingly enough, she has powerful suspicions of how she ended up in this damned city to begin with.

The reigning mafia family recently had a major shipment disrupted… by a figure in glowing green.

One guess on what the shipment was; none for who the figure is.

Needless to say, Tetsuki is reluctant to follow that avenue.

She’d much rather make do with her minimal English and stammering, questioning translations between Romance languages and, when all that fails, complex charades that ends in futility more than success anyway.

But she barely needs to ask for help to get what she needs–she wonders if maybe she looks that pathetic or if, improbably, Gotham isn’t as heartless as she’d appear to be.

By the time she becomes comfortable with the languages of her new life, talking isn’t all that necessary.

Ivy is more than generous, sheltering and protecting and teaching with no payment needed, but there are some things she cannot provide which she says Tetsuki will need.

Especially if she ever wants to live a life outside of Robinson Park and the gifts of kindness Ivy bestows upon her.

But even in this, Ivy is kind, because she knows someone who can help.

Selina Kyle, perhaps the only Gotham Rogue who has never had a stint in Arkham, is also the best at maintaining her civilian life.

Tetsuki is in desperate need of that. She isn’t even sure if Tetsuki is her real name or just something she made up after being revived by glowing green light. The only clothes she has are some hand me downs from Edmundo’s near infinite sisters and the pair of boots she took from a would be mugger with conveniently small feet.

Tetsuki is basically a feral cat in human form.

Selina Kyle is well suited to this particular job.

Tetsuki becomes a pimp mostly by accident.

“Pimp” is perhaps the wrong word, but “madame” is even further. Bouncer would work if she were at a specific venue with consistent hours and pay, but as it is, she mostly just drops in and rains fiery green hell on any john who gets too violent and lets their would-be-victims play with her hair until their hands stop shaking.

She makes sure they get the money they earned and takes the rest for herself.

The workers get protection and payment, the Vasquez garage get an influx in cars, and Tetsuki figures out that she can electrocute people with her bare hands if she’s angry enough.

In a matter of weeks, Tetsuki’s nine block territory sees an increase in its night time population.

Deuteranomaly (2017-09-20)

It begins with rumors, as all things in Gotham do.

Unrelated anecdotes that don’t make sense until months and dedicated record-taking and a little bit of conspiracy theorizing correlate the incidents into a whole.

A ghost haunting the streets, the amalgamation of all the women who have died cruel and violent deaths (which is, in Gotham, a very high number indeed.)

A new gang of carjackers and muggers using glow sticks and neon lights to bewilder their victims (never mind that their victims tend to deserve that or worse.)

Alan Scott come again to reclaim his city, deeming Batman unworthy to be her guardian… and so on and so forth.

In a way, all of them are completely wrong…

In a way, all of them are partially right.

The little Asian chica that brings them cars every so often sometimes sleeps in the garage during particularly cold days, curled up by the radiator in the break room or under the office desk like one of his abuelita’s mangy, killer cats.

It’s not like it’s any hardship–hell, sometimes Edmundo spends a night on the break room couch, broken in and uncomfortable as it is, when he’s in the middle of a repair or mod that’s hours long and trickier than it should be (they’re a legitimate garage too, not just a chop shop)–and it’s not like it’s charity: she’s brought in enough cars that she’s almost an honorary member of sorts.

If anything, he kind of feels bad that she won’t let them do more to help.

Ivy’s in her Robinson Park oasis, about to put the few waifs that wander her way to bed, when she hears the call of her warning bell flowers bright in her head. They’re not the angry clamoring of whenever the bat or one of his confused birds fly her way–perhaps another lost child come late.

The girl she meets at the edge of her territory is too old to be a child, physically and mentally. Though most Gotham street kids have old eyes, life hard and cruel to those who deserve it the least, the girl’s are ancient in comparison…

… not unlike her own.

The girl is barefoot and barely clothed, feet dirty and cut up, shivering in the night air. There are manacles around her ankles and wrists, chains still dangling and dragging along.

“No metal,” the girl says when she spots Ivy, never mind that she shouldn’t be able to, blending into the trees, “No metal, please.”

~

A/N: I’m not sure what I’m going for here. I got a little mixed up in thinking about Tetsuki for Externality and some DCU stuff and so I came up with this idea in which, in one of Tetsuki’s later lives, she ends up in Gotham as a sort of… naturally occuring Green Lantern of sorts?

Not sure if I’m going to stick with this, but I’ve titled it anyway just in case…

¯_(ツ)_/¯