Someone wrote in [community profile] bucketlist 2012-02-13 08:36 pm (UTC)


((Anon, I'm so sorry, this is entirely too pale and full of feelings when I suspect you wanted hot porn. I don't even know what happened! And I hope somebody gives you a proper sexy fill for this. ;;))

You don't have your communication system up and running yet; you're out of contact with the red team, and for all that you'd generally prefer things that way (just thinking about those hooligans makes your skin prickle with distaste) you know it can't be permitted. You will need everyone's skills to defeat the challenge ahead, and that means cooperating with the uncouth lowbloods of the other team.

And, unfortunately, the uncouth lowbloods of your own team as well. "Captor," you say. He is responsible for the network, but he appears to be shirking his duties. You have found him in the engineering block, sitting slumped against the wall with his head in his hands. "You will return to your task."

"There'th no point," he says flatly.

"That is ludicrous," you say. "There is most certainly a point. I would have thought you would want to contact your...compatriots."

He tilts his head, staring at you over the rims of his bicolored glasses—presumably staring at you; the psionic discoloration of his eyes makes it impossible to be sure where he is looking. "Thith whole thing ith hopeleth," he tells you.

You grit your teeth, trying to keep calm. "This is your defect speaking, isn't it?"

"Fuck you," Captor says. He runs his fingers through his hair, tugging on it; the gesture speaks of a lonely, awkward misery that somehow disrupts the anger building within you. It's...pitiable, isn't it? For him to be so talented and yet so helpless to disrupt the harmful cycles of his brain. That's not a comfortable thought at all. His blood is yellow, for goodness' sake. You should have better control over your feelings.

"What do you need to rein this in?" you ask. Captor doesn't acknowledge the pun. He shrugs one bony shoulder, letting his head droop further. "Vantas assists you at times, does he not?"

"I gueth," Captor says.

This is not how trolls are supposed to behave. This is not how trolls are supposed to lead. But you are certain that Vantas will be coaxing cooperation out of the hopeless cases in his charge, and you will not allow yourself to be outdone. "What does he do with you, when you get like this?"

"He giveth me crap," Captor says bitterly. "He puth—pusheth me, fuck, it'th pointleth anyway. Jutht go away."

"I will not," you tell him, and you punctuate the statement by putting your fist into the wall beside you—gosh, you're trying to control yourself, but it's difficult and he's not rational in the least. "I will not go away, and I will not allow this to continue."

Captor winces, or perhaps it's intended to be a smile and he simply can't make it stick. "Clothe," he says. "You'd have to thay fuck a lot more to thound like him, though."

"I will not do that either," you say. "I refuse to believe that his vulgarity is an essential part of your treatment."

"Hehe," he says, not so much actual laughter as a gesture that stands in for the real thing. "Fine."

You concentrate on your breathing for a moment, giving yourself a moment to rein in your temper. "It is not fine," you say. "Nothing about this situation is fine. It cannot be permitted to continue. You will get up."

"Or you'll make me?" Captor asks.

He is trying to provoke you, you are nearly certain of it. "This foolishness borders on actively suicidal," you tell him; goading a highblood to rage has been classified as suicide in the courts, you are almost certain. Pyrope could confirm it if you were in contact with her. "But I am not interested in playing games with you. Yes, I will make you get up if I must."

Captor only stares at you blankly.

Your digestive sac roils, and the back of your neck prickles with sweat. He wants you to take control of him, to force him to function; that is the natural order of things. And yet circumstances demand that you do so in a completely unnatural manner, with concern for his well-being rather than simply displaying dominance. You wish there were someone qualified to tell you what to do. Even some rule of etiquette to govern this situation—anything to give you orders so you could be confident in your actions.

Carefully, exercising as much control as you can, you reach down to take hold of his shirt collar and pull him up. He weighs next to nothing, not even enough to tear his shirt (though your claws are certainly leaving it the worse for wear). He makes a choking, hissing noise as you drag him upright, and tiny sparks of red and blue race down his arms, but the attack—if that's what it would have been—ends before it begins.

"Disgraceful," you tell him. "And selfish. All of the others are counting on you, and you sit here feeling sorry for yourself." You dump him in the chair in front of his abandoned husktop. "Finish the network so the rest of us can get on with coordinating our parts in this game."

Captor glares weakly at you. His psionics prickle again but still do nothing of substance. "You're even more of a fuckath about thith than KK," he says.

"Your language is execrable," you tell him. "And I am only being practical. Would you even believe me if I claimed to be overcome with pity and attempted to coddle you?"

"Might have gotten a laugh out of it, at leatht," he says.

"Stop trying to antagonize me," you tell him gently. You turn his chair around for him so he's facing the screen. "Finish configuring the network, Captor." You force down your pride. "Please."

"Yeth, thir," Captor says, his tone bitter and sarcastic; you can't tell whether he's honestly irritated or trying to mask gratitude with sarcasm.

You stay with him, supervising, or perhaps reminding him that he is not alone. Once, his typing stalls, and you can see in the reflection of the screen how his teeth catch unhappily at his lip. You place one hand against his back as gently as you can. He still makes a noise like he's in pain, but when you try to remove the offending hand his psionics come to life, a crackle of light circling your wrist and holding on. You leave your hand where it is.

Captor works his way through the impossibilities of setting up a network through theoretical space, lisping quiet, furious curses. Apart from his appalling language, you are reminded of the difficulties you've had with some of your more complex robotics. Tentatively, you allow your thumb to stroke the back of his neck. He doesn't respond, but that means he isn't pushing you away.

"Okay," he says at last, and you pull your hand away as soon as he begins to move, so you don't do him accidental harm. "It'th done. Thatithfied?"

"I will be once I've ascertained that it functions completely, yes."

"Fuck you, you thweaty nookthtain," Captor says. "It'th better than anyone elthe could do." He lifts his chin defiantly, his lip curled in a sneer. "Tho don't tell me it'th not up to your thtandardth."

You like him better when he's pitiable than when he's detestable. "In that case," you say, "I can think of no compelling reason to endure your company."

He spits something else contemptuous after you as you leave, but you don't allow yourself to listen. It would only make you want to go back in there and do him harm. A proper leader directs his aggression at his opponents, not his own team.

You are the best qualified to lead the blue team; you are certain of that. But you wish rather fervently that you weren't.

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