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Jocelyn,

06/03/2020 11:38 PM 

owes list.

↞I owe you ↠Jaxson - starter - 3rd June.  ↞You owe me↠    Discussing with,Last updated; 3rd June @ 16:43 GMT.

Alex Smith

06/03/2020 08:46 PM 

A Word from the Future. [ft. Thirteen]

So... apparently I have a repuation for tearing out hearts with my writing. As much as that flatters me, I wanted to try my hand at a much softer, warmer and funnier approach to my character - show that he isn't all about doom and gloom. A few feels crop up, but there was no getting round it because it was necessary for the overall story. Even if you chuckle once while reading this, then I've accomplished my goal. This piece also contains an excellent guest spot from Thirteen Skadoo, who very kindly agreed to write a small section (and subsequently made me cry with it) - it made the piece rounder and fuller and I'm so thankful she wrote it. The time teen crept toward the door of his father's closet like a thief on jewel heist. He'd successfully dodged the laser beams, the complicated lock system, the night-vision cameras and the holographic three-headed dog and finally his prize was ahead of him. A closet packed with jackets that the Doctor had managed to hide away from Alex before he and his trusty spray can of bleach could get to them. Not so much hidden away now, were they? "As brilliant as Dad is, he can sometimes be bone-dead stupid," he thought to himself. Alex reached out a hand and gently opened the door of the walk-in closet, bracing himself for more booby traps on the other side. What would it be this time? A paint-can on a string? A sea of plugs lying with the prongs upwards, ready to cause his feet a great deal of pain? The Master in a bikini? But there was nothing. Just an empty closet... and a treasure trove of jackets, all of different colours and sizes. Red, TARDIS blue, black, lilac, even one in golden brown. This time teen was going to have a field day bleaching all of these.Surveying the scene around him, Alex approached one of the racks and pulled out a very attractive-looking red velvet with shiny black buttons. "Hmm, this could do with a little re-styling," Alex muttered, pulling the can of bleach out of his pocket and shaking it so that it would spray properly onto the material, stripping it of all colour and texture. Gently, he laid the hangar holding it on the floor and spread the lapels and sleeves out so he could get a good, clear shot at it with the bleach.But before he could finally start spraying, he heard a rustle from somewhere on the other side of the closet. Alex froze, the bleach can held aloft, his finger just about to press on the pressure mechanism. It sounded like... something scuttling about. A bug? A mouse? An Adipose? Stuffing the can back into his pocket, Alex turned around and approached the back wall of the closet, jackets and clothes surrounding him on all sides.There, one of the jackets had twitched in the dim light! He saw the material rippling! There was something in here with him, but whether that something was good or bad remained to be seen. Alex reached out a hand to snatch the jacket - it was a nice-looking one too, it could die a noble death with the other one - and sure enough, the material twitched again. "Gotcha," Alex said to himself and pulled the jacket aside.Before he knew what was happening, long swatches of thin material, looking a lot like never-ending coat sleeves, had knocked him off his feet and he landed on the ground hard. In his desperate attempt to get up and escape, they had wrapped themselves around his legs and were pulling him from the floor, quickly turning him so he was hanging upside down. The jackets were alive, and they were starting a mutiny!Alex struggled frantically, trying to pull the living material free from his legs, but they held on way too tightly. Looking ahead, he saw a jacket uncurl itself from one of the hangers and approach him, looking a lot like his father... except he was invisible."Stop hitting yourself!" the jacket shouted, a sleeve slapping Alex in the face. "Stop hitting yourself! Stop hitting yourself!"About five times did this happen before he was yanked backwards and pinned to the wall. The jackets descended on him, wrapping themselves around his entire body. He was trapped! The jacket mutiny was in full swing!Suddenly, the room was filled with the sounds of electrical beeps and whirs. A formal female voice called out, "Incoming Transmission! Incoming Transmission!"A woman fizzed in from the Tardis holographic matrix. She wore short blue trousers with yellow braces and a black shirt with a rainbow graphic across the chest. She had short blonde hair that tucked behind her ear that had a shimmering silver chain that dangled around it and warm friendly hazel eyes. A broad smile across her face as her eyebrows shot up, “Hi!” she said with enthusiasm. “I wouldn’t do that if I were you. He won’t thank you for it.” She takes a step closer to him, “Oh my god just look at you.” The smile slipped from her face, “Sorry I can’t actually see you, but was it convincing?” She thought for a moment, “Never mind, best not to talk back. I’m just a recording, after all.”His eyes widened as he realized that this was a future incarnation of the Doctor, his father... in female form but still undeniably his father. "Dad... I can't breathe!" he called out as the jackets started to wind their way towards his mouth. "Let me out of here!"“Alex, I know, I know. Just let me talk. It me your dad…or your mum.” She pursed her lips for a moment thinking about, “Well, right now in your Tardis I’m your dad. I had a bit of an upgrade. Anyways,” she said as she started to pace the space with her hands on her hips, “Things haven’t been really great between you and me.” She looks down stopping her pace and then suddenly she looks into his eyes, “I want to tell you I’m so so sorry for that. Right now, I’m having a really hard time communicating my feelings.” She gave a slight smirk, “Guitar strings sing me better right now than words. But that not helpful for a time teen who just needs his dad, yeah?”Her hologram shimmers as she steps closer to him, she looked as though she was studying his face through time. “Son you can’t keep doing this.” She said pointing to the pile of jackets, “I mean they are just things, easily replaceable. But, it a choice, and that single choice is an echo through time. Like a pebble being tossed into the lake, it ripples.” She said gesturing with her hands an expanding circle. “This want of destruction it is going to build and bubble until destroying jackets aren’t enough. Where will it end? You are a Time Lord you are one of the most powerful beings in the universe, and you don’t even know it. You could destroy a whole civilization with one intention, one action, or even the wrong word.” She says her brow furrowed and her eyes pleading.Alex looked past the hologram of the Doctor and spotted the jackets lying on the floor, spread out. He was going to destroy them... but what was he hoping to achieve by doing that? The Doctor, the Doctor he knew right now, to shower him with loving affection and give him anything he asked for - whether that was a hug or a trip somewhere? What if jackets became people? What if jackets turned into something he could seriously cause harm to if he really wanted to? He felt the guilt and shame rise up in him as he heard her words.“I know you, son. You are a beautiful soul that has the potential for so much good and kindness. But it comes down to a choice. Right here, right now. Because right now it more than what do I do to get ol’ dad’s attention isn’t it? It about becoming the Time Lord you were meant to be.” Her gaze drifts to the floor before looking back into his eyes, “I will always love you, no matter what.” She nods to him, “Make me proud, yeah?”A tear slid down Alex's cheek as he looked back on how things had been recently with the Doctor. Not the best, no. There were days where he felt loved and appreciated and listened to, and some days where he felt like the Doctor would rather anyone else in the world but him for a son and that he was the biggest waste of space in the entire universe. "But what do I do?" he pleaded. "Why doesn't he like me?"Suddenly the words “Exterminate.” come through the recording. The Doctor spins around and then looks back at Alex, her eyes are wide with fear. She grabs a light blue raincoat with rainbow trim slinging it over her shoulders, “Sorry son can’t stay and chat. Got get a shift on.” Her hologram fizzles away as she sprits away her coattails fluttering behind her.As soon as the hologram vanished, the jackets immediately released their hold on Alex and he went sprawling to the floor. Scrabbling to his feet, he looked at the jackets he had been planning to bleach and immediately, without even thinking, he picked them up, replaced them neatly on their hangers and put them back. The future Doctor's words still swirling in his brain, he crossed to the door and opened it.The Doctor... his Doctor... was on the other side, shades on and coffee mug in his hand."Enjoy yourself?" he asked him, looking over his glasses at him.But Alex didn't say anything. Shaking slightly, he passed the Doctor and ran out of the room. The Doctor turned to watch him go, smiling slightly."Nice job, future me," he said softly, taking a sip from the coffee mug. "Although I hope my coffee skills get better."

Alex Smith

06/03/2020 08:45 PM 

Never Be Mine.

I'm probably being a stuck record with this one cause this is the nine millionth angsty drabble I've written, but I have a lot of feelings tonight and I wanted to get them out. A massive part of this drabble is inspired by the song "Never Be Mine" by Kate Bush, a song that's a bit of a loneliness anthem for Alex. A funnier, light-hearted drabble is coming soon, but for now, bear with me as I work this one out.This is what I wantThis is where I want to beThis is what I needThis is where I want to beThis is what I wantBut I know that this will never be mine... Alex trudged into the TARDIS on the heels of his father, who didn't really bother to turn to look at him. The time teen dragged his feet begrudgingly, not really wanting to leave the location they were in. Not until you've talked to me, Alex thought as he forced himself through the electric blue doors and into the warm white light of the console room."We're not seriously leaving, are we?" Alex said, standing in the way of the doors. "I mean, really? We're just going?"The Doctor took one look at him and pulled the door mechanism lever hard. The doors swung shut with a harsh bang behind Alex, almost hitting him in the back, making him stagger across the ramp towards the console. "It wasn't even that big of a deal. I only implied that Jim Morrison wouldn't be around for much longer, I didn't outright say "You're going to die in seven days", did I? That's not exactly breaking every law of time and space."Still no words. Not even a pensive upwards glance at him. "Come on, let's just go back and say we had a bit too much to drink or something," Alex said, approaching the console and resting quivering hands on it, fiddling with a switch but not pressing it. "Then we can... I dunno... go see the concert. I've been looking forward to it all week."Nothing. He was tapping co-ordinates into one of the monitors and double-checking the time rotor, ensuring the ship was ready to leave. "You promised me," Alex said, looking up at the Doctor. "You promised me you'd take me to see them one day, and now that day has come, I accidentally make a mistake and you pull the plug on the whole thing? Come on, Dad, that's a bit over the top now, isn't it?"Nothing. And with that, that familiar wheezing and grinding could be heard echoing from the bowels of the console and Alex could feel the ship dematerializing from the shabby Los Angeles back-alley they had landed in only an hour beforehand. The concert had only been a good two hours or so away. He was going to suggest they get some food - some of those classic Los Angeles hamburgers served by waitresses on rollarskates - but he'd said something a little too loosely and without a word, the Doctor had marched him out of there and back to the TARDIS. This was his "special time" ruined, and he couldn't believe it."Will you at least answer me?" Alex said, his patience starting to wear thin. "You seem to have an answer for everything, then tell me why you've suddenly decided to promise me something and then snatch it away from me. Does it make you feel big? Does picking on me make you feel like you're doing a good job, because I've got news for you, it doesn't!"Nothing. Except maybe a flash of the angry eyes, but it had come as the Doctor had moved behind the central column on the console and the light was a little too blinding for Alex to make out exactly what he'd seen. A flash of anger. Or was it a smirk? Was he enjoying doing this to him? Was he enjoying making his life a living misery?"I bet Rose would have got to see them," Alex said, a note of bitterness coming into his voice. "I bet you're going to take me all the way back to the university and then it'll be 'Bill! Nardole! To the TARDIS, we've got a concert to go to!' and I'll be left to mark your stupid essays;"Nothing. He was trying to do that parent thing of ignoring your child when they started seeking attention negatively. Ignore it and it'll go away. Well, not this time, he thought angrily. I'll never back down after this. You don't get to do this to me and pretend it's nothing. I'm not some boring ordinary Earth-kid in some self-obsessed book for people who couldn't use common sense. I'm Alex Smith, the Doctor's son and I want to see the Doors and my stupid father is making sure that I never get the chance."Seriously, what is with you treating your companions like royalty? They all dump or die on you in the end," Alex said, circling the console menacingly. The name Clara flashed through his mind and it almost came spilling from his lips to hang like a noose in the room but he thought better of it. He often forgot that all memory and recollection of Clara had been erased from his mind and under no circumstances could he be reminded of it. Similar as to what happened to Donna, except this time he definitely wanted to cause some damage now."You know, out of all the years I've been with you, I've never asked for anything," Alex said, getting more and more frustrated. "Not one thing, not even 50p to buy sweets. And the first thing I ask for, you take all the right steps to screw it up, as usual. Yet when some mongrel from Earth shows up, you're swanning around like Thelma and Louise. Seriously, Dad, screw you!"He aimed a kick at the base of the console. The ship gave a nasty hissing sound and finally the Doctor looked at him, but it wasn't the doting, complying father he was trying to bring out. It was the angry, I've had enough of you father that liked to shout. "Take me back!" Alex said. "Take. This. Thing. BACK!" He kicked the console again and this time he felt a pulse of electricity rush up the console.His angry cry echoed around the console room, bouncing off the hundreds of bookshelves lining the balconies. You could probably have heard it all the way from the rainforest towards the centre of the ship.And with that, the tantrum started. With frantic precision, Alex aimed a series of kicks and punches to the console. Sparks and debris sprayed from its panels like fireworks. The ship protested by making a high-pitched buzzing sound and then a pained sort of wail as Alex rained blows and kicks down on her. When he'd had enough, he spotted his father's guitar propped up against one of the metal jumpseats and stomped toward it. Tearing it from its stand, he threw it down the staircase that led underneath the console. He could hear the strings twanging as they caught on every step; he thought he even heard one of them snap. He crossed to the chalkboard and kicked it over, stamping on the wood until it splintered under his foot. Grunting with exertion, tears spilling from his eyes, he kept kicking the chalkboard until a scream erupted from his lips. "I HATE YOU!" he shouted, turning to look with wild eyes back at the Doctor.He was just standing there, arms folded with the "you're the one being an idiot here" he nodded toward the door and Alex noticed the ship had stopped moving. He looked at the doors and though he could hear... music. The intro to "Light My Fire" was playing, and it wasn't what he'd been so used to hearing on the album he'd played to death. Shaking his head, the Doctor once again crossed to the console and pulled the lever again. The ship moved again and Alex's hearts sank as his dream concert faded away with every moment."Room. Now," the Doctor said bluntly.Feeling deflated and upset, Alex rushed to the Doctor. "Dad, I'm sorry. Please, I didn't mean it, really I didn't. Why didn't you tell me? Please, let's go back and have a nice time, what do you say?""Room," the Doctor said."Dad, I'm sorry," Alex said, more tears spilling from his eyes. "I'll fix everything, I promise."ROOM!" the Doctor shouted, rounding on Alex. "Stay there."Trembling, Alex rushed down the stairs, seeing the thrown guitar lying on the ground. He bent down to examine it. Several of the strings had broken and the neck had cracked in several places. He went to pick it up but he heard a stifled "GO!" from above him and the time teen ran. Down corridor after corridor, feeling the ship lurch and jostle as she made it clear she was not happy with him. Finding the door to his room, he wrenched open the door and slammed it shut.Several long tearful hours later, he came back up to the console room. The Doctor wasn't there, but Nardole was."Where's Dad?" he heard himself ask."Out," said Nardole bluntly. "A little bird told me you had a little... outburst earlier. Caused quite a bit of damage.""It was an accident, but never mind that, where has Dad gone?""Bill needs help moving into her new house so your Dad went along to help. Tea?" he said, holding up a teapot that seemed to come out of nowhere."No," Alex said, sinking into a chair. "No, thank you.""It's for your own good, you know," Nardole said. "Maybe if that destructive streak of yours was curbed a bit, then maybe your Dad would be a bit less hard on you, hmm?"But looking back over my shoulderYou're happy without me...

Alex Smith

06/03/2020 08:45 PM 

And how do you feel about that? (CS)

Character study prompt questions, answered IC. I've tried to make some things as detailed as I can, but there were a few things I probably keep repeating so sorry if it gets a bit tedious. Still had a blast picking apart my character's brain though; definitely a lot of possible directions you can take here though.The time teen found himself being manhandled into the therapist's room by the tight hand of the his father. "Dad, I don't wanna do this," he groaned. "What's wrong with a pint of cider and a chat?""A lot if you're involved," he said sternly. "I'll be back in an hour." And with a swish of his velvet coat, he was gone."Alex Smith?" the man with horn-rimmed glasses said. Groaning, Alex dragged his feet to the stereotypical long red leather couch and threw himself down on it. "Yeah yeah yeah, you're here to work on my feelings; constructive rather than destructive; my father's jackets symbolize the lack of attention I feel I'm getting from him. I've met Freud, you know, and I can tell you that a lot of his practices were questionable at best.""I'm just here to ask you a few questions, Alex," he said, looking over his notepad at him. "There's no judgement going on here, you know. You can say and feel however you want. Your father won't know about it unless I feel it poses a risk to yourself and others."Thinking that he might as well get comfortable if he was going to be here for an hour, Alex rolled onto his back on the couch and stretched himself out. "Go on. Shoot," he said with a bored tone, his eyes concentrating on the ceiling.Describe your first love."First love? In what way?""In any way you want it to mean, Alex. It doesn't necessarily have to be romantic.""Well, I guess my first love was chocolate. Dad wanted to shut me up? Just shove a massive bar of Galaxy in my hand and I'd be preoccupied for hours. Always had a sweet tooth. But if we're talking about people, then I suppose you could say my father. I've been with him a long time now and even though we don't see eye to eye... that man is extraordinary. Brilliant. Sensitive. Kind. Brave. A little bit bonkers. I guess it's a lot of pressure to grow up in his shadow when there's so many people around him all the time; but I've always loved him, even if I've almost torn myself apart trying to show him that."What frightens you?I suppose it's the thought of being alone. And I don't just mean without people around me; people are like trains. You miss one and there'll be another in a few minutes. No, I mean genuine loneliness. It's just you and your thoughts and there's no one there to let them out to, and they keep building and building until it's one massive hurricane of disaster. That and being forgotten about; no one likes being forgotten about, but when you're a Time Lord with nothing but time on your side, then you don't want to spend your existence in this universe with no one remembering you. It's awful.How do you communicate in a relationship?By bleaching their jackets and making fun of their hair.What was your childhood like?Hard, let's just say that. Hard because I was spending my time maturing around people who weren't my kind and I knew I didn't fit in. I was often doing and saying weird stuff that made me stick out like a sore thumb, which didn't help. I didn't really have any of my family around, so that also didn't help. Even when Dad found me, it was rough-going. I just saw all these people coming and going and being left behind was the worst part; I wanted to see the universe, I wanted to make something of myself, but it was always Jackie's kitchen and her terrible kitchen. I know it was to keep me safe, but at the time, it felt like a slight.What is your character's favourite treat to themselves?Ever heard of a little Earth-born TV show called The Golden Girls? I have every episode stashed in my cupboards in my room on the TARDIS. Makes perfect viewing when I need a few insults to add to my repertoire.How does you handle stress?Ask Dad. He's got a closet-full of proof.Describe something you are reluctant for others to know.That I secretly saved the TARDIS manual when Dad disagreed with it and threw it into a black hole. I know Dad knows the ship better than anyone who has ever flown her, even River, and she knows exactly how to please her -- but you never know what secrets she'd hiding. There's a few tricks I intend on trying out with her.DeDescribe something you are passionate about.Fair play. Acceptance. Kindness. Not being afraid to speak.What do you find comfort in?The piano. It sounds ridiculous, but whenever Dad and I have a really bad argument and our personalities are clashing, I work it out on the piano. May have written three concerto's and an opera, but I don't like to brag. You could say that's what I should be focusing my energies on all the time, but whatever.What kind of music do you like?Oh, now we're talking! Music is my absolute lifeblood. If there's something Dad and I share a very common bond with, it's music. Rock and roll and punk rock is what I've been into lately, but I can get down to some showtunes and a bit of R&B, I'm really not picky.Quickest way to anger you.Ignore me. Try it, I dare you.What was the best thing in your life?Freedom. Was and always is the best thing I've ever had and the best thing my family ever gave me.What would you give your life for?My family, in a hearts' double beat.What seemingly insignificant memories stick with you?Accidentally turning myself into a baby and having to watch Dad turn into a gooey mess every time he saw me. It was nice to re-live that part of my life again, even if that cheered him up for a little while. I'd never go back though. Those diapers itched.Do you have a nickname? If so, how did you get it?Son. I got it just by existing, I suppsoe.Who do you consider a role-model?If I said Dad, it would be too obvious and I don't think he'd like it. So I'm going to say Martha Jones, probably one of my favourite people Dad ever travelled with. She had so many feelings and so many insecurities, but she dealt with them and rose up stronger than ever. She was also not afraid to put people in their place. That's something I wish I had the confidence to do more.What is your hobby?Time-Lord-and-demon terrorizing.Describe your worst enemy.Time. It's a bitch.What do you do when you wake up?Brush my teeth. Pee. Eat a croissant. Pee. Ask Dad complicated questions about the universe. Pee. Ask Dad complicated questions about the universe. Eat. Ask Dad complicated questions about the universe. Bleach some more jackets. Pee.A memory you wish you could erase.The look on Dad's face when I let him down again.

▬DRAKANIA

06/03/2020 07:08 PM 

a mother's love.

A Mother's Love Until this night, the world had never known cold. It bit into bone. Snow fell in heaps, swallowing all sound save for the clangs and cries of battle. Until this relentless dark, the world had never known night. It tore into the soul, ripping all hope from the heart. It bore down on the shoulders and bowed the heads of even the great and the proud. It wore on and on. How long had it been? A day? A fortnight? Nigh on a year? Time held no meaning anymore when the sun did not rise.It would rise again, even if she did not live to see it. She knew it.The dead swarmed Drogon. They clambered up his tail, his sides, and his legs, scrabbling with boney fingers and staring up at her with unseeing eyes. They held fast to his wings, pinning them to the ground to deny him flight. He bellowed his rage and shook his great body, sending the scrabbling wights tumbling back into the snow, only to start their climb again. Her gloved hands tightened around his horns and clung with all of her strength. It was all she could do not to be flung off with them.They should never have landed, but even a dragon needed to rest weary wings.“Sōvētēs! Drogon! Now!” She urged, but not even the whip held sway over the stubborn beast, not when dozens of knives stabbed at his flesh, though they bent vainly against impenetrable scales.Not even the largest of her dragons could withstand such an onslaught for long. He would not budge. He would not take her airborne, knowing that to rid himself of his attackers would mean to send his mother hurtling to her death. There was only one way. The Gods had taken Drogo, Rhaego, Jorah, and only they knew how many others this endless night. They would not take Drogon. They would not have her children.Dany let go. She rolled down a leathery wing and into thickly packed snow with a jarring thud that forced the breath from her lungs. Her dragon’s wings flared, and he vaulted skyward, rising ever higher until the darkness swallowed him whole, leaving her alone in the unforgiving dark and pelting snow. For a moment, in the stillness, she lay on her back and stared after him, seeking the stars, but there none. Even their light had gone out.A quick, jerking movement in her periphery forced her to lower eyes full of dread from an endless black sky to an earth plagued by white winter. Piercing hues of crystalline blue, the eyes of nightmares, met her own. They glowed in the darkness, an unsettling contrast to the dreary lack of color that surrounded them. It reached for her. With a strangled cry, she scrambled backwards, frantic to escape its clutching hands. First, there was a feral, rumbling growl, and then a blur of white that barreled into the threat as if into a pool of water. Ghost was there, tearing the wight to pieces with fang and claw. Then there was the whir of steel.Jon. Jon was alive.Relief so fierce it would have brought her to her knees had she been standing bloomed at her breast, her tears freezing in place on her raw, red face.Jon and the direwolf were as one. They fought as one, moved as one. But they would not fight alone.Clambering to her feet, she waded through waist-deep snow to the half-buried corpse of a Northman. She stared into the stranger’s face as she rummaged about his person for his weapon, wrapping her fingers clumsily around the hilt of a dragonglass sword that he still held in a stiff, cold hand.I am Daenerys Stormborn, she told herself fiercely. I am of the blood and seed of Aegon the Conqueror and of his sister-queen Visenya, who wielded Dark Sister and rode the dragon Vhagar. Of the valiant Prince Rhaegar who died on the banks of the Trident. I will not die easily. I would not let the Gods have Drogon, and I will not let them have Jon either. .Jon was overcome. Just as his sword swept one away, another two lunged for him. One leapt on his back, wrapping arms with strips of frost-covered skin hanging from bones around his shoulders and nearly sending him toppling over, but Dany plunged her blade deep into its neck. It fell, lifeless, into the snow. For a heartbeat, soul met soul when her violet orbs found his gray, acceptance and agreement flashing wordlessly between them. Together, they laid waste to the wights in the small clearing with the weeping, bloody eyes of the Heart Tree watching over them.“Dany!” Drawing her near with one arm, he crushed her to his chest. She wrapped clinging arms around his middle, and breathed deep, dragging the scent of him into her lungs and holding it there. Her violet hues lowered to the sword at his side.Of a sudden, the world was awash with clarity. Of a sudden, she knew she could delay no longer. It was their only chance, their only hope. The only way.Mother of dragons, daughter of death, bride of fire, slayer of lies…, the voices of the undying ones had rasped in her ears.The visions they had sent her in their House of Undying were rife with riddles and nuances. They had ignored her pleas for explanations, and she had run, and run, and run, ever seeking the red door that would offer shelter. Home lay on the other side of it. It was the first thing she had ever wanted. The only thing she had ever truly wanted. She knew now it was never to be. She knew now it was time to stop searching, to stop running.Daenerys Stormborn was born to die."Mother!” they, her children, her people, had cried in her visions. "Mother, mother!" They were reaching for her, touching her, tugging at her cloak, the hem of her skirt, her foot, her leg, her breast. They wanted her, needed her, the fire, the life, and Dany had gasped and opened her arms to give herself to them . . .She would give herself to them. She was their mother. Mother to dragons, mother to her people, mother to all. Was it not a mother’s purpose to give life? To bring light to chase away the shadow? To give hope when there was none? To provide warmth in the heart of winter? Was it not a mother’s duty to die for her children?She brushed the pads of her fingers over the steel. Valyrian steel. It would be quick. It would be simple. Slowly, painstakingly, she freed herself from the last embrace that she would ever know. It was only fitting that it should be his. He was to be the last. The last Targaryen. Gripping the blade between her hands, heedless of the danger to her palms, she drew back one step, and then another, lifting it until the tip slid up over her belly and to her heart.Jon’s eyes went wide and wild, flooding with silent appeal.“No.” He near growled. “I can’t. I won’t.”“You must,” she whispered over the howling wind. “You don’t understand.”But he did understand. He had always understood, but together they had fought against it. They had denied it with all their hearts, cast away all thoughts of a future devoid of each other. It had not seemed worth the risk until now.“Dany, please.”The gray eyes that she loved so welled with tears. He reached for her, but she stood her ground. The sword pierced the thick fabric of her white coat, and the black of her tunic beneath it, until it pressed into her flesh. It should have been cold, but it was not. It seemed to hum, to vibrate, to come alive. To whisper, to beckon to her to give herself. To give it her fire.Her gaze remained steady on his as she tightened her grip on the blade, blood beading at her breast.“What did you see? When you died? Where did you go?”“Nothing,” he said desperately, his hand hovering in the air. “Nowhere. Dany, please. There’s nothing. You’ll be nothing.”“I have never been nothing. I am the blood of the dragon. Do not fear for me. It is you. It has always been you and you have always known.”Jon shook his head rapidly. With her free hand, she cradled his stricken face, just as he reached for hers again. This time, she let him. She titled her head into his palm, covered as it was with smooth leather, her gaze sweeping him and committing every inch to memory.“Now. For Winterfell. For the North. For your sisters. For all of our people. For the world. You must,” she commanded him, curiously calm.There was no choice but to surrender to inevitability before more lives were lost. Before the dead swept the Seven Kingdoms and destroyed all that was good, all that was living. The both knew it. There was no other way.“Now,” she said again, more gently. “Do it now.”With a hollow scream, Jon Snow plunged Longclaw into Daenerys Targaryen’s breast. She did not hear his wail, but his whispered declaration of love floated to her as if on a warm spring breeze. It was the first time he had ever said it. The first time and the last.There was no pain. There was only a cry of anguish and ecstasy as heat akin to a firestorm burned all that was Daenerys Targaryen away. It built and built until her chest was near bursting with it. She welcomed it. She embraced it. A world of vibrant color formed around her, a promise of what was to come. There was blinding sunlight and endless green. The scent of spring flowers was heavy in the air, mixing with that of the salty sea. The people sang. The people were safe.Blood filled her mouth. She felt it trickle over her chin and freeze as she looked down at the blade, gasping. Jon's fingers threaded in her pale, silver-gold hair. As the man she loved slowly withdrew it, the sword of heroes, with his eyes on her face, it blazed with fire hotter than even a dragon’s flame: it was that of a mother’s love. His face, framed by black sky, was the last face that she saw before her world was extinguished as the wind might snuff out a candle.There will come a day after a long summer when the stars bleed and the cold breath of darkness falls heavy on the world. In this dread hour a warrior shall draw from the fire a burning sword. And that sword shall be Lightbringer, the Red Sword of Heroes, and he who clasps it shall be Azor Ahai come again, and the darkness shall flee before him. He who clasps it shall be Azor Ahai come again, and the darkness shall flee before him. ( C ) ▬DRAKANIA




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