Archive | January 4, 2016

!AU! The Hawk Comes to Doomsday !AU!

This came out of Education and Collars and is entirely in an alternate universe(henceforth AU). For one, the bet made would not come out with Luke losing. For another… Meep. WWIV.

(The assumption here is that Regine, for some reason, skewed the data, probably by using a very specific subset of years, to show that Cya’s former Kept had a slightly LOWER survival rate than their classmates. About the only way this could happen.)

Luke had vacation time coming, and Regine had no reason to deny him a sabbatical, unlike the last time he’d asked – times, every year from 2011 through 2025. He got one of his surviving former students to cover his classes for a year, worked with his current students to place them with new mentors, and elicited a promise from Mike to not come looking for him for at least a year.

Then he flew to Cloverleaf and presented himself to Cynara Red Doomsday, in possibly the most awkward situation he had found himself in since he was a teenager, centuries and worlds ago.

The dictator of a small nation was knitting on her front porch when he arrived. He dropped down to one knee and lowered his head, which meant that he didn’t need to watch her expression, which looked amused.

“I had a deal with Apollo.”

“You did.” She didn’t sound amused at all.

“So, for the next year, Cya Red Doomsday, I Belong to you.”

“For the next year, Luca Hunting Hawk, you belong to me.” She set her hands on his shoulders. “Is your crew going to kill me?”

“They don’t know.” His head was swimming. He stayed still and focused on keeping his wings as motionless as possible.

“You didn’t tell them, you mean.”

“I made Mike promise not to come looking for me.”

“Then they know something is up. I repeat: are they going to kill me?”

“They can’t.” Something caught in his throat. He made himself look at her and found her face solemn. “You have me.”

“I’m sure it occurred to you that you have just made Boom utterly unstoppable for the next year.”

He cleared his throat. “Yes. It had occurred to me.”

Her hands dropped to her sides. “Please stand up.”

She might have said please, but Luke found himself jerked to his feet like a marionette nonetheless. He mantled, regaining his balance. She didn’t seem to notice.

She looked him in the eye. Like most women of her generation, she had no trouble doing so. “All right. This isn’t about Boom Keeping Addergoole. This is about a bet you made with a teenage kid I was Keeping.”

She paused. Luke didn’t know whether to be relieved or more worried, so he waited.

“I don’t normally Keep grown men. Men, yes, adults, but 20 year olds, not to put too fine a point on it, are not you, Luke. But this was about you being able to stand what you set Apollo up for so that, my dear, is what we’re going to do.”

Luke blinked at her. He hadn’t been sure what to expect. He’d been more than a bit worried. He hadn’t had any space in his mind for what do I do when being called ‘dear’ by Cya Doomsday feels good?

This was going to be an interesting year.

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/1039754.html. You can comment here or there.

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And your Little Friends Too

Written to [personal profile] rix_scaedu‘s prompt

Callis had finally gotten the last of the babies to sleep when someone knocked on the door.

He didn’t so much sigh as slump with his entire body, and even that he only indulged in for a half a breath. He gestured to Mike, nearly as old as he was, and to Candace, who might only be twelve but was murder with a rifle. Odile would have to watch the babies, and then they’d have to go through the whole process of getting them to sleep again. But that was later. Right now, there was the threat at the door.

Callis leaned his body over from the side to peek out the view port. They’d learned that the hard way, in their last hide-out. They’d learned a lot of things the hard way.

A man was standing in front of the peephole, his hands up and empty. “Callis Avondale? I’m just here to talk.”

Callis looked back at Mike and Candace. They were frowning, worried. The babies were stirring. Colby, the youngest, had started crying. If he stood here and shouted through the door, the kids were just going to get worked up. “Stand back and keep your hands where I can see him.”

Candace stepped up into position. Callis might not survive this, but their attacker would last about three seconds after his first strike. He took a breath and another breath and steeled himself, then pushed the door open.

The man standing on the other side was shorter than Callis, but muscular like he’d never missed a meal. His t-shirt was clean and his jeans didn’t have any holes, and neither did his sneakers.

“Callis?”

“That’s me.” His skin was itching just standing here, looking at this clean guy with his perfect shoes.

“My name’s Luke Hunting-Hawk. We have a place for you in a school, a safe place with food and water.” His gaze clearly took in Callis’ ripped clothes.

“All of us?”

“All… Your friends?”

“The kids. I’m not going to leave them. They’re just kids. They’ll die out here.”

Luke raised his eyebrows. “You want to bring your friends with you.”

“What, is this sort of exclusive bunker?”

Luke shifted a bit and coughed, looking embarrassed. “You could say that. It’s a school. But I can come up with a safe place for all your friends.”
“But not in the school.” Callis frowned. “That doesn’t seem fair. Who’s going to teach the kids to read and write and hot-wire a car and all the other useful stuff?”

He thought the man might be getting a little exasperated, until his slightly twisted expression settled into a chuckle. “All right. I’ll get your friends set up with a full education, hotwiring included, full meals – and help finding their own place when and if they’re ready to go out on their own, or when you graduate school. In the meantime, would you settle for someplace warm and safe for them while I get you settled in school and make arrangements for them?”

“Just like that?” Callis took a step back. “What’s the catch?”

“The catch is, the school wants you to attend. There’s been a spot reserved for you for a long time. So you come to Addergoole, and your friends are warm and safe.”

Callis huffed quietly. “How do I know I can trust you?”

“I can’t give you any guarantees. But I give you my word that I will help your friends as best as I can, and that you’ll be free to visit them at least, say, once a month.”

The food supply was running low and one of the babies had a bad cough. Callis sighed. “All right. But the ones old enough to understand get to make up their own minds, all right?”

Luke smiled gently. “Of course. There’s a couple thermoses of soup in the van and some blankets; we can get started as soon as you’re ready.”

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/1039345.html. You can comment here or there.

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Trouble in Paradise, a further continuation

A Change in Routine
[personal profile] inventrix‘s Let’s Pretend
Class is in Session
A Brief Reunion
[personal profile] inventrix‘s Unexpected Visitor
Lessons in the Dojo
[personal profile] inventrix‘s from RP logs
Education and Collars
Much offscreen RP lies between that last post and this one. Summary: It’s been a long time since Cya handled an unwilling Kept, and Apollo reminds her far too much of her crewmates when they were young and stupid reckless. Also, she didn’t used to be running a school and a city. Leo can see how it’s stressing her out and has offered to take Apollo off her hands.

Re. Olindo and Adeen; Olindo is a cy’Linden crewmate of Apollo’s who, being as stupidly headstrong as Apollo, had managed to get himself caught by unsavory people of a handwavey sort. Adeen is their stabilizing force, but she’s still in Addergoole.

Apollo looked both thoughtful and nervous as he walked back into Cya’s house, a combination of expressions that made her nervous and told her he’d probably been talking to Leo.

She was mending a pair of pants – the hard way, because unutu had never been one of her good words – so she let him pace and hem and haw nervously for a few minutes before looking up. “Yes?”

“What do you want?” he demanded, and then winced and sat down with a thump on the floor. “I mean… I don’t know what I’m supposed to do. I didn’t know I was making you miserable -“

“Didn’t care, you mean.”

“Didn’t know! But I didn’t really care at first, either.” He coughed and looked away. “Until we found Olindo. Then I started to get the point, I guess.”

Nothing like a well-placed object lesson to hammer things into thick skulls. If only that had worked with Leo.

Leo had been insane. This kid was just young.

And very plaintive. “And I don’t want to be Kept. I really… I still don’t think I need a babysitter. But I don’t want to be making you mad all year, either.”

“That’s the bond.” Hell of a time for it to finally kick in.

“I mean, I’ve been Kept, I went to Addergoole. But if I’ve got to be Kept, I don’t want to be a burden. And I don’t know what you want!”

She studied him, hands up in frustration, tears unshed in his eyes. “I want…” Careful, careful. Phrasing was everything with a Kept. “What I’m hoping for is that you can take this opportunity to grow up a bit, and to look at life more carefully, so that when you leave here, you and Olindo and Adeen don’t dive headlong into trouble.” Which she would probably get them out of, if she noticed in time. But no need to let him know they had a safety net.

“But it’s not like you can see me thinking! I.. You… You’re just… unhappy with me all the time!”

Shit. Cya took a deep breath. She set down the pants she’d been mending and walked across the room so she could pet Apollo, carefully, mindful of his crown of horns. “I think it’s time we go talk to Leo.”

This entry was originally posted at http://aldersprig.dreamwidth.org/1038670.html. You can comment here or there.

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