redshifted: (my old friends; we were so different the)
LEA。 ([personal profile] redshifted) wrote in [community profile] herobox2016-05-12 11:38 pm

steven universe au who cares

[ He hates reforming. When he used to be whole, it was annoying but not so bad, and it wasn't like he got poofed all that often. Friendly fights that went a step too far, falling off a high ledge by being an idiot, that kind of thing. L--xxxx-hhis self-image was always strong, he never messed around with his hair length or his face shape or whatever, letting his internal structure dictate a form leonine, hair that swept into points, a grin as sharp as it was warm, and eyes that were a startling green that was at odds with the triangular red pyrope between them.

But it hurts, ever since he was broken; he has a sense that there have been parts missing for years that he might never recover. He thinks a name that splinters every time, always coalescing back into 'Axel,' a name that tastes like glass in his throat every time he says it, every time he hears someone else say it. A broken name for a broken gem. It takes 'Axel' at least a day or two to reform after a grievous wound; it took him half a day at most back when he was whole.

This time there is no time, and 'Axel' reforms himself - bones creaking like stressed bamboo, sinews chewing over them like razorwire, skin scabbing over muscles that still remember bruises they took before disintegrating - in three hours. ]

He opens his eyes.

Three hours might be too late.

Axel doesn't even check to see if his limbs are the right length (he always feels like he makes them an inch too long all around) before slamming through the closest door and blinking at the sudden disorienting brightness of the Organization's meeting room. Where was his gem being kept? Never mind - Saix is in here, for some reason, and Axel breathlessly blurts, "Where did he go?" before remembering that the gem he had stumbled into the Castle that Never Was with had belonged to Xion. (He had gripped it so hard it cut into the backside of his knuckles.) He cannot explain why he knows that Roxas - no, Xion had reformed herself - no, himself within minutes and that they - they? - were in trouble - are in trouble - are trouble.

Saix stares at him as though he sees a ghost, and opens his mouth to ask something (probably why he's up) just as Axel says, "Ah, dammit, never mind," and rips a portal open beneath his feet.

(He can explain himself to Saix later.)

The kids have a one-track mind; Axel knows exactly where they've gone.

His portal opens up at the top of the clock tower at Twilight Town, but somewhat surprisingly, Xion - er, Roxas - uh... them? They're not on top of the tower.

Axel can see a hooded figure in the square a hundred feet below.
theotherpromise: (pic#6207598)

[personal profile] theotherpromise 2016-05-13 09:49 pm (UTC)(link)
Saïx's gem had bounced and clinked and clattered to the ground of the Addled Impasse, catching and blinking light from the half-formed Kingdom Hearts shining through its windowed wall. Roxas, victorious, had brought himself to the waiting stone in slow, heavy steps, turning his Keyblade in his hand. He brought the point, facing downward, into position above the dead center of the Gem; a single thrust downward might have scattered the shards irreparably, and Roxas held in his white-knuckled fist all of his unforgiving anger, caused by a single stone, the golden shards embedded in its center glistening like fire.

Roxas hesitated. As he turned towards the exit of the Impasse, the Keyblade vanished in his hand in a sear of bubbled light. His decision to keep Saïx's gem in tact had been the only action which transcended the fury and frustration built in his bones. If the Organization, Xemnas, had the ability and knew the chemistry to create mutant gems, the shards of Saïx's gem might have only reformed him into something more sinister than he was.

His anger had directed him out of the Castle, brought him to the center of the city that cradled it. With his body exhausted from his escape, Roxas's anger had extinguished, if only slightly; he retreated to other worlds, searching for Xion. He had only come to the Tower briefly at the beginning of his search in hopes that she might be waiting for them there. It wasn't until some odd hours later, after fruitless searching, that he returned to the Tower in his defeat. No doubt being there was dangerous. Axel, if he had any inclination in searching for him, would have checked the Tower first and foremost. Still, not only was Roxas directionless in his search for Xion, he himself had no other place to go.

Xion's sudden appearance had split and dissolved his guard. When she had come to sit at his side, her mouth drawn in a smile beneath her hood, Roxas's mouth had been gaping, all of his words trapped in his throat. He had rehearsed their reunion in his mind continually since his escape: all of his apologies, how he might dodge her inclinations to attack him, how he would explain that she had been right all along in running away, he should have gone with her- Instead, he only says her name dumbly, and when she offers him ice cream, all other words and gestures melt away but the sad and appreciative look in his eyes and a warm, "Thank you."

They let their final moments rest in calm and quietude, overlooking the sunset. Xion is the first to speak, and when she stands and raises her arms and pulls the hood from her head, Roxas finally sees the deformation bubbling over her skin, brown spikes pushing from her scalp, a patch of tanned skin stretched like a dark swipe of paint over her cheek and nose, her right eye belonging to someone else. The speech she gives as she walks over the open air in front of the tower is scripted, explaining the chemical makeup of her gem all the formulas and algorithms that were funneled from his and Sora's gems and into her own, the processes of replication and crystal formations. It's all a language Roxas doesn't understand. He only knows that the way she looks at him, prepared to devour him, reminds him of Xemnas.

Roxas is swallowed in black; when Xion appears, she vanishes before Roxas can reach her. The blackness falls away to reveal Roxas suspended over the buildings of Twilight Town. When he turns to the Tower and sees Xion's true form, the battle begins.

He doesn't remember how he defeated her—if she, the dying Gem he held in his arms, had been the one he had been fighting, or even the person he had been looking for. She speaks to him like an old friend, telling him about how precious her memories with him are, ones that he doesn't remember sharing with her, and her voice begins to glitch. Her broken gem glows white inside of her body, her body deteriorating with it as it continues to snap and break like ice in warm water: first her fingers, then the lower half of her left leg, then her side and hip. The hand that touches his cheek is cold as ice and missing its thumb, but Roxas tips his head against it, watching this stranger's slow dissolution. She asks him for a favor: set free the gems she's broken, don't let Xemnas have his way, destroy Kingdom Hearts, don't forget.

Roxas remembers her too late. Tears film over his eyes as she loses consciousness. "Who else will I have ice cream with?" he begs, and he clasps her hand before it vanishes away. Her Gem shatters, her projection breaking into baubles of light, fizzling upward. Roxas is left with the shards of her in his fingers; they glow with the threat of rising away and disappearing to where Xemnas wants them most.

It's by the chemical makeup of Xion's gem with Roxas's combined emotional anguish and desperation that he forces the shards of her broken Gem into his own. The pain bolts through his body the moment the shards come into contact with the circular Gem cut into the back of his hand, his palm pressed flat against the floor of the square. He hammers the shards into his Gem with his fist, blood seeping from where the shard cuts through his glove, the bones of his palm breaking under his punches, but he doesn't care. The shards wouldn't reach Kingdom Hearts. Someone- She, my name is Xion, had told him not to let her vanish. He wouldn't let her vanish. I can't vanish. She just has to- They-

The pain roars through his body, all consciousness of where he was or what she had been doing tearing away, left with only the purpose of combining their Gems, escaping, combining, not vanishing, not going away- Roxas can only see through one of his eyes, can't recognize one of his hands, one of her sides wracked with agony as bones and tissue and sinew split and form another arm, another palm, another set of fingers with a gem glistening from the back of her hand. Dark hair falls over his face, growing in patches over the scalp beneath his hood. He grows taller, stronger—a fusion, but so much more broken and deformed, two arms bigger than the other two, one only half-grown and skinnier than the others. Finally, the pain is overwhelming enough for them to collapse onto their side, groaning and clutching their arms over his belly, limbs curling together as her body tries to accommodate too much in a form that can't hold all of them.

Their unholy fusion leaves them thus: a mesh of black and two different shades of blue, one from each of their projected forms. Their right leg is made from Xion's, wearing a heel, bulging at the thigh through ripped, black fabric. The left leg is Roxas's, too large, forced to be bent in order to keep a balanced height when they force themselves to stand. They groan in pain, their voices meshed together, cracked and eerie. Half of their face belongs to Roxas and the other to Xion; the mouth and right eye is Roxas's, the left eye and neck belonging to Xion, laid over their shared body like torn pieces of photographs. Roxas's hair sprouts mostly from the left side of their head, Xion's from the right, though their hair comes in patches through most of the back of their head. Their waist is small like Xion's, their shoulders and chest square like Roxas's. Roxas's arm comes from his right shoulder as always; the broken bones in his palm have healed, but the new arm that sprouts from his side, undoubtedly one of Xion's, has taken on its brokenness: its fingers shriveled, its muscles stretched thin, its bones half-grown. Xion's right arm grows just beneath Roxas's, one stacked over the other, fully formed. Their thoughts clash, some angry and some desperate, all of them confused. Roxas grasps his face with his hand, Xion grasps and pulls at her hair, they stumble and nearly fall forwards if not for their free, working arm catching them before they hit the ground. Axel will see them pushing themselves to their feet again on their knee and one elbow, trying desperately to fathom their swirling thoughts into a single motive. They don't know what to do or where to go now.