“Our existence is a horror story told from the monsters perspective”

Ode to 11010201 AU ficlet (2018-11-12)

A/N: Continues from here.

“We destroy that which threatens our existence,” the stranger says, after she pulls Zim and, belatedly, Kevin to their feet. She is far more reluctant in healing Kevin, or perhaps the curse had dug itself into him more thoroughly, the uprooting all the more hollowing for it, because he hardly speaks on their long trudge back to Doc Kaiza’s clinic.

“What does that have to do with–”

“But that’s so subjective, don’t you think, octant?” the stranger interrupts Zim, easily guiding them through the trees towards civilization, almost familiar with the forest trails, though he’s sure he’s never seen her in town before. “Our existence as in our lives or our lifestyles? Threatens as in physical danger or mental stress or even financial threat? All this subjectivity, and yet never do we interpret destroy as anything but kill.”

Zim doesn’t understand, stays nearly as quiet as Kevin whose arm is warm and pliant over his shoulders, footsteps stumbling in Zim’s own.

The stranger looks at him, at them–Zim and Kevin, stumbling and covered in dirt and leaves–with a smile on her face. “You nearly killed yourself today, octant. Over some normal human.”

At those words, Zim can feel irritation flare, his grip on Kevin tightening, protective. “Kevin’s not just some normal human, he’s my best friend! I had to save him. I had to!”

Her smile grows wider, “He has no magic. He’s as normal a human can get,” she says, “But I’m not criticizing you, octant. It’s good that you went so far to save him. It’s good that you found a way to purge the curse without killing your friend…”

His temper cools, though he still keeps his grip on Kevin’s arm steady.

“It’s good that my sister raised you away from the clan,” she concludes, before shrugging and walking ahead, trees giving way to the roads on the outskirts of town, ignoring the informational bomb she dropped behind her.

“Y-your sister?” Zim asks with barely concealed hope, rushing to catch up to her and dragging Kevin along with him.

The stranger–or, perhaps something, someone else–glances back at him before turning ahead once more. If there is emotion in her voice, he can’t hear it, but maybe there is something to be read in the line of her shoulders, her stance, her pace. “Yes,” the stranger says, a sigh and a pause, “Your mother.”

~

A/N: Very belated and very short response to what might be a misinterpretation of your prompt, @wildtabbykat. Sorry!

But I am going to try to get back to writing because goodness knows I’ve not been in practice. I did write a script for the Bindlestiff’s Valentine’s show, but I’ve not heard anything back so it’s likely it wasn’t chosen. Which is… disappointing but not surprising as I didn’t really think it was my best work anyway :/

Anyway, I STILL have three remaining prompts from the ask box things you said event (which has been going on for LITERAL MONTHS) which I will hopefully fill and then do a different ask box event or soooomething so as to get that good good writing exercise.

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Other POV : Shikako’s kidnapped by Danzo in the Jashin mission.Others, thought she’s dead,didnt react well.Years later,they killed Danzo and found Shikako,but now broken and quiet because she was in the black all the time to protect her friend’s information. Shikako had with a fake smile on her face and scars covered half of her face. Plz? I really want to see the others (including 12 friends, her parents and her teachers) reaction from her fake death to her broken state and try to fix her.

Hey matchamilkgirl, thanks for the… prompt? Ask box ficlet? It’s an interesting idea for sure, but if this is a prompt I’m going to respectfully decline. Partially because at this time I’m not really taking prompts–I still have a few from the things you said ask box event even though it’s been MONTHS and I’m really sorry about taking so long–but mostly because this seems like you have a very specific ficlet in mind, and if so I think it would be better for you to bring it into the world yourself?

The best thing about being part of the DoS fandom is how many of us are involved and contributing, how many readers and artists and writers there are, and how the different voices add more to the world. Maybe you’ve sent this to me because you like my (figurative) voice and for that thank you. But–and I don’t know where you are in your personal creative journey–it seems to me that this is your story, not mine.

Stars Also Dream, Santa, Things you said in the spur of the moment

Stars Also Dream, 56) things you said in the spur of the moment

“One day, I’m gonna fly,” he says, full of conviction, eyes trained upwards at a flock of birds soaring through the sky. He’s not there yet, but he will be.

Kyougi throws a piece of rubble at him, Santa yelps in over exaggerated pain. “Your feet are on the ground, which is where your eyes should be too. The faster we get this done, the better.”

Chinatsu, far more dutiful, gives a soft chuckle at her teammates’ antics nonetheless. The disapproving tongue click that their sensei gives is less fond.

Properly scolded, Santa turns his gaze downward, resuming his share of their D-rank. “One day, I’m gonna rescue a princess,” Santa mutters, as he sorts through the debris. If he can keep him and his team distracted maybe they won’t have to think about what they’re doing. He knows it’s not something he should be complaining about–rebuilding in the weeks after the Kyuubi Attack is important, sure, that doesn’t mean he can’t wish for a more exciting mission.

Or at least one that isn’t so depressing.

“As if,” Kyougi says, rolling her eyes, but still playing along, “We’re going to be stuck with smugglers or farmers all through our career.”

“Hey! Don’t besmirch farmers! Your clan head’s wife is a farmer!” he points out.

“No, Yoshino-sama is a shinobi. Her parents were farmers. As are a good percentage of all of our clans,” Kyougi argues, logically and methodically.

“Yeah! Exactly!” Santa agrees, before pausing, thinking, then, “Wait, what?”

“There aren’t a lot of princesses to be rescued,” Kyougi continues, “And I doubt we’ll ever be chosen to go on a mission to do the rescuing.”

“Not with that attitude,” Santa snipes back.

Tokumei-sensei clicks his tongue again, before pointing at a fallen wall, aiming them wordlessly as if they were simple beasts of burden. Still, he and Kyougi fall silent once more as they and Chinatsu head in that direction.

Chinatsu lifts up the wall while he and Kyougi reach underneath. Grimly, they pull the body out, another black ringed scroll to be sorted through later and returned to any next of kin.

They’re quiet for a while after. Miserable and quiet, which is probably what their sensei prefers.

Chinatsu is the one to break the silence, “I’d like to fly someday, too.“ 

~

A/N: A bit of a prologue to Stars Also Dream in which these three genin have no idea what’s in store for them. The spreadsheet of DoS timeline and OCs was very helpful–and given how long it took me to address this prompt even with such a short fill, I really needed as much help as I could get! O_O

Kyougi Nara is an SQ original. Chinatsu Akimichi is dona’s. And their awful Hyuuga sensei is Pepperdoken’s. 

Jiraiya and Naruto, #47, any AU

Remember to Sleep, 47) things you said in a hotel room

Jiraiya’s at the hotel bar–and, yeah, maybe it’s a little early in the day for a drink or three, but who’s checking?–when he sees it: the briefest glimpse of all too familiar blonde hair.

He shakes his head, mutters to himself, “Don’t get your hopes up,” and goes back to his drink. It’s impossible, what he’s thinking, and besides, there’s a pair of beautiful young ladies who look like they might appreciate some excellent company.

He signals for the bartender to send over some complimentary drinks (mimosas, apparently, not like the princess who would appreciate harder liquor) and gets ready to put on some moves.

Fifteen minutes and a double dousing of socially acceptable daytime drinks in his face later, he spots it again: bright and messy, even through the champagne and orange juice in his eyes. This is a sign, no doubt, destiny telling him to follow–why else would those lovely ladies reject his advances?

The bartender, unimpressed but dutiful, passes Jiraiya a towel to wipe his face. Taking the opportunity, he asks, “What’s going on in the ballroom?”

The bartender shrugs, “Some kind of science convention. Not too sure. I’m hoping it’s medical–doctors really know how to drink.”

Jiraiya rolls his eyes, “You’re telling me.” But that’s a sob story for a different bartender, maybe, and he’s got an entirely different blonde to chase down.

According to the signs, it is indeed ‘some kind of science convention’. More specifically, one for cybernetic augmentations and enhancements. It is, unfortunately, hauntingly familiar stomping grounds for him.

Most of the names listed for panels are old or uninteresting–one of the main reasons he’s stopped coming to these things, even if they do offer all expenses paid. How this is supposed to be about innovations when it’s the same people rehashing the same tech is beyond him–except one of the smaller rooms, practically in fine print at the bottom of the itinerary, has a name he’s never seen before.

Not new to him entirely (Nara is common enough, almost a household name given the reach of their pharmaceuticals and the fact that practically everyone is medicated these days) but definitely new to this particular arena. Cautious branching out, maybe? That would explain why they have a small room instead of space in the main ballroom.

Except when Jiraiya gets to the room listed, it’s packed. Overflowing, practically. If he weren’t who he was, and the staff at the door hadn’t recognized him, he might not have gotten in–as is, it’s a tight squeeze. Which he wouldn’t mind if it were a crowd of buxom beauties, but, alas, he is surrounded by sweaty nerds. But why is such a popular panel in such a tiny room?

Or, maybe, he should be wondering: why is this Nara panel so popular?

Except once he gets to the front–“it’s such an honor that you’re here, sir, and also a surprise. We weren’t told you’d be here, but of course you’re more than welcome. Such an honor, please, there’s VIP seating,”–even that question flees from his mind.

Because sitting just next to that (surprisingly young and pretty, nothing like that stony-faced punk Shikaku) newcomer Nara is Minato…

… but not.

That’s definitely Minato’s god-awful hair, and damned too blue eyes, but it’s in a face more like Kushina’s. That’s definitely her smile on that brat’s face, aimed with laser accuracy at the Nara girl beside him.

“What the hell is going on?”

Never Lookin’ To Come Back, shikako/kiba, 34) things you said in your sleep

Never Lookin’ To Come Back, 34) things you said in your sleep

Kiba doesn’t dream. Not in the literal sense, at least.

He’s heard other people talk about their dreams–their unconscious adventures or whatever–but he’s never been able to do the same. Usually he’s just out like a light. Maybe he wakes up in a mood, emotions filtering through as he sleeps, but nothing concrete or detailed enough to count as a dream.

He doesn’t think it’s much of a loss, really. What’s the point in having adventures in your sleep when you can have them in reality?

And, well, no dreams no nightmares.

Given what he’s seen, ain’t he lucky?

Too bad the same can’t be said for the captain.

They’re on a job–an easy delivery to some barely named pebble of a moon turned into a whole production. A miserly bastard exploiting a bunch of honest people who just needed a little help from the Shuumatsu’s ragtag team of heroes in order to find courage to stand up for themselves… the usual, really.

If he were one for business cards, Kiba would probably change his to say Big Damn Hero.

Right now it’s the evening before the final showdown. They’re taking turns on watch, because this isn’t their first rodeo that’s for sure–he wouldn’t be all that surprised if the bastard sent some muscle their way in the middle of the night–but they’re not all that worried. Kiba and Akamaru have this.

The captain murmurs in her sleep and Kiba, ears always tuned in to what she says, listens.

“… retreat… prince…”

Just those two words are enough to place when Shikako is in her mind, but the last is what makes Kiba’s blood chill.

“… Sai…”

Kiba doesn’t dream in the literal sense. Not so much in the figurative sense, either. Not anymore. He’s content with living on the bucket of bolts that is the Shuumatsu, making sure the captain has back up for her crazy schemes.

Because having a dream means getting your hopes up. Means getting invested. Means making your soft spots out in the open.

Having a dream means that you can be betrayed.

And failing your dream means reality becomes a nightmare.

Gambling Away the Past, 12!

Gambling Away The Past (part 10/?), 12) things you said when you thought I was asleep

Today is their last in the relative safety of Sangaku Outpost and, by unspoken agreement, all of Team Kakashi have decided to spend the day on separate ventures. Soon enough it’ll be back to being just their squad–best to get their fill of other company while they can.

Not that other company necessarily equates to better company, of course, especially given the way some of those stationed at the outpost still look at Kakashi with barbed, pointed glares, but there are a few people Shikako, at least, wouldn’t mind meeting with again in the future and she knows her teammates feel the same. At the very least, Kakashi certainly doesn’t mind the opportunity to summon his ninken in a more peaceful situation than he’d get to once they’re back on duty.

And so the team spends their last day at the outpost apart, helping out where they can or getting in some last minute training, before returning to their tent for the evening. They’ll leave at dawn, back to the camp that Ikoma-san runs and which Minato-san generally considers home base, before being sent out on their next mission.

And so Shikako isn’t surprised about being the first one back to the tent, late afternoon, nor does she feel at all bad about flopping onto her bedroll and immediately passing out. Exhausted after one last grueling training session for her and Wakakusa beneath Heijomaru’s steely hooves, Sembei-obaasan making less than helpful comments from the side.

A few hours later, she surfaces from the depths of unconsciousness at the proximity of other chakra signatures, but decides not to fully wake up when she recognizes her teammates. Still, their conversation filters down to her in her dozing state, words hushed but no less heated.

“–can’t believe you still think that! After everything she’s done?” Obito’s voice, the magma of his volcano bubbling ominously.

“Sensei thinks so, too,” Kakashi’s voice, a weak defense, barely any crackle in the ozone, “He said to watch her.”

“Because he thinks she’s some kind of secret fuinjutsu prodigy, not because she’s a spy!” retorts Obito.

Rin, as always, tries to break the tension, “Ikoma-san wouldn’t put her on our team if she were, and Minato-sensei approved it. He wouldn’t do that to us,” she reasons.

There is a moment of silence, Kakashi acknowledging and accepting her point, before he says, “Her story is inconsistent–what little of it she does tell us, anyway. How’d she end up near where our mission was? What happened to her previous team?”

The silence that follows this time is much longer.

Not because the answer is hard to think of, but because one particular answer comes to mind too quickly. Shikako can almost pinpoint the moment when each of her teammates stumble upon it: Obito’s volcano going dormant once more, temper doused immediately. Rin’s breath hitching, dual fire and water flickering and rippling in distress. Kakashi’s electricity flattening out the way it does when he knows he’s said something awful, but can’t apologize for it.

They are at war. There is one simple explanation for how a shinobi could end up all alone in enemy territory without any back up.

It’s morbid to think of as such, but how lucky for her that they’ve all come to the obvious, but wrong conclusion.

~

A/N: It takes significantly less time to break a good practice than to stop a bad one and that is no excuse. I’ll have to reform my daily writing behavior from scratch it seems :/

Sorry for the delay, @to-someplace-else!

33 (things you said at the back of the theatre) makes me think of ‘Primadonna girl (says no thank you)’

Primadonna Girl (Says No Thank You), 33) things you said at the back of the theatre

“Not bad, Sparky,” Kankurou says once the most devoted fans have left, giggling to themselves and satisfied. Some of them glance his way curiously, but most are too focused on the autographed paraphernalia clutched in their hands.

She blinks at him, overly polite and practiced smile still pasted on her face. Best actress of their generation his ass. “Would you like me to sign something for you, Kazekage-sama?” she asks, gesturing with the marker still in her hand. “There might be some posters left over if you didn’t bring anything with you.”

Kankurou raises a brow at her, “And would that be as Kako Heijo or Shikako Nara?”

Her smile drops, replaced with a displeased wrinkling of her nose. Finally a real emotion from her.

“What do you want?” she asks, finally leaving the roped off section at the theater’s back exit. A flimsy cage for one of the continent’s most powerful shinobi, but somehow the only one that she deigns to be contained within. 

“I like to consider myself a patron of the arts,” he answers with a shrug, before walking into step beside her. There are a few paparazzi lingering at the end of the alleyway, ready to pounce, but one look at Kako Heijo’s current conversation partner makes them turn their cameras away.

Suna still has a harsh reputation, after all, no matter what attempts were made to ameliorate that. And it doesn’t help that Kankurou’s own ascension to the hat was particularly bloody. None of it by his hand or command, of course, but sometimes the truth can be the less believable explanation.

Sparky scoffs at his response, but doesn’t do anything to escape from his presence.

The silence as they go from theater to hotel isn’t comfortable by any means, but neither is it fraught or tense. The issues between them have long ago been settled, if unfortunately, and now there is nothing but the ruins of their shared ties.

If asked twenty years ago, he would not have guessed correctly on which of the two of them would be an internationally acclaimed performer and which would be a kage, but here they are.

Both of them trapped in roles neither of them wanted.

At the hotel, Sparky’s manager flutters in her direction, immediately jabbering about bodyguards and scheduling and exposure while carefully trying not to get too close to Kankurou. For that, he grins and enjoys the way the civilian flinches back.

“Don’t be a bully,” Sparky berates, distinctly ignoring all of her manager’s own admonishments.

“Leaf nin, always so soft hearted,” Kankurou responds, never mind that they both know it to be anything but true.

After all, shinobi and actors don’t deal in the truth.

~

A/N: … well this was a fucking weird return from my hiatus… uh… yeah.

I’ll be honest, some of my delay is the QAF show, but a lot of is was that I didn’t really know how to fill this and then… this happened?

Some kind of dark future fic in which, Kankurou ends up Kazekage and Shikako becomes world renowned actress Kako Heijo.

I have a sort of backstory for this world/how these roles came about if anyone’s interested?

Uh, sorry for the VERY BLEAK and VERY BELATED fill anon. Also sort of for that other anon who asked for theater kid Kankurou headcanons even though I’m not really doing a headcanon event at this time…