watching the lights go down

other worlds through sunglasses


peace, water element
Rook the Librarian gisho
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Music-themed ficlet time!
Because I have often found the best way to get inspiration for something is to get an obligation to write something entirely different, and I have a challenge fic due on the 25th of April and no clue how to start.

I have 2265 music files on my computer right now. I just randomized the complete list in XMMS. Give me a number from 1 to 2265, and the name of a character or characters, and I will write a ficlet somehow related to the character and to the song inthat spot on my playlist.

(Original characters totally eligible - Lanthorn has been loud lately, and, ooh, I don't think I've even rambled to anyone at great length about Lian Liancourt and Ai Kanno, have I?)

Laurie -- 872

(Or -- because I can't help myself, dammit -- Adrian, 35. XD)

i would still be your shelter [1/2]

35 turned out to be "I Hope You Dance", so, uh, don't think I can pull it off. Sorry. XD

--

[Dead Can Dance - I Am Stretched On Your Grave]

Sandra Hollis is happy.

Laurie never knew Jon Osterman. She'd always told herself there wasn't a difference - told him there wasn't a difference, and for her, there wasn't. Sometimes things were that simple. Laurie lived in the concrete world, and lived in one moment at a time, and her world had never included Jon Osterman - only Dr. Manhattan, who she called Jon, who was no stranger to her than her own mother, Silk Spectre. When Laurie was ten she heard all about it on the news. The Superman exists, and he's American. Well, why shouldn't he be?

Sandra Hollis was never a costumed hero.

She wrote a little essay on it at school. Laurie never had friends at school. She had sycophants (and she knew what the word meant, even at ten, her mother had explained it to her at seven after an incident with a boy with freckles, a smaller boy with glasses, and several lunches worth of chocolate bars) and she had enemies (and she knew about them in her bones, with no explanation necessary). But Silk Spectre's daughter was a different kind of being from her classmates.

Sandra Hollis is on good terms with her neighbors. Not too close.

Laurie's teacher submitted the essay to a contest in the local newspaper. It almost won, but when the editors saw the name on it, they decided it wouldn't be appropriate to award her the prize. (She is Silk Spectre's daughter. It would seem like favoritism.) They askd her permission to run it alongside the winner, though, and her mother agreed on her behalf. "There is such a thing as bad publicity," she told her duaghter later, "but this ain't it." And she ruffled Laurie's hair, and cracked a grin, and Laurie grinned back and wondered if Dr. Manhattan would read it. She didn't say, in the essay, but she thinks he must be scared and lonely. She hopes she can make him feel better.

Sandra Hollis is vaugely liberal, but not too political. Proud to be American, though.

Jon never mentions being scared or lonely, years later, when they meet. He does mention that he no longer feels heat or cold. His skin tingles against hers as he tells her, and she does not feel heat or cold either, in that moment, only that tingling sensation. She is human, knows she is human, and that he is not. Laurie doesn't particularly care, though. Whoever he is, they're together, they're enjoying themselves, and Laurie does not see the past, the terrified man pounding on the door of the experimental chamber, Janey staring up at the returning vision, sunburn in November, the picture slipping from Jon's fingers into the sands of Mars. She sees the moment right now, and right now they are happy, and they are together.

Sandra Hollis has a husband, who she loves, and a daughter, who she loves, and no other family.

i would still be your shelter [2/2]


Laurie didn't have friends, growing up. Even her mother wasn't quite on her wavelength. Of the two of them Jon had the more normal childhood by far, which is a source of considerable amusement to Laurie once she realizes it. But they're neither of them normal now. The world looks at both of them and isn't sure whether to fawn or fear, and if Laurie is more human, still her association with Jon is enough to cover her in his refelected blue glow. She's seen it. The military men look at both of them sideways and wary. Laurie diesn't give a shit, though.

Sandra Hollis's daughter has friends, although they're the oddball friends, the Out Crowd. That's okay. They come over to her house and her husband makes them nachos and they sprawl on the couch together and play video games and Sandra sometimes joins in their jokes.

Jon became Laurie's whole world, eventually. She made little spaces for her mother, for Dan, for Hollis, and that was it. Without Silk Spectre, she didn't know what else to do. They moved into Rockefeller Base, and she spent a few days sorting out her things - she didn't have many - and making hideous gory jokes until the guards were more scared of her than Jon. Then he went to a meeting, and she found herself sitting on their bed, staring at the light blue wall and the designer furniture, and wondering how much of this was really for her benefit. Jon didn't need a bed. Jon didn't feel heat or cold, or need to eat, or see the world as it was. He saw the past and future. Laurie saw one moment at a time and what she saw right now was a gilded cage, a cenotaph. "Jon," she whispered, and it came to her to wonder if she had ever known him. She remembered what he had said of Janey, how she had never adjusted. Laurie had never needed to adjust. But reflected blue glow or not, she was still human, she was still a thing of this world, and she wonders why he ever loved her or if he ever did.

This is her world, now. She cries for a bit, and then she cleans herself up and goes to play ping-pong against the wall until Jon gets back, and then she bitches about the stupid brass on his behalf and then they talk about quarks, which at least make some kind of sense. She lvoes him anyway, whatever he is, whatever they are to each other.

Sandra Hollis has dreams, all the time. Her nights are filled with might-have-beens. She can't help it. But she does her damndest not to have regrets.

---

Re: i would still be your shelter [2/2]

35 turned out to be "I Hope You Dance", so, uh, don't think I can pull it off. Sorry. XD

Heh! Entirely understandable, I feel. ;)

Seriously though, this is awesome. It's so understated, and I love Laurie freaking out the guards with sick jokes and kind of... trying to be human on Jon's behalf. Ouch.

1412. :P and... miles and gregor from the vorkosigan saga.

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