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07.21.2012 , 09:46 AM |
What Dreams May Come
some general Scourge-story spoilers, Chap. 3 JK spoilers [had to edit this in, sorry if anyone got spoiled!] continuing the Esma/Scourge thing
Large calloused hands slid down along her legs. Esma grinned up at Scourge, enjoying the way his red eyes burned as she ran her nails down his chest. His dark chuckle filled the room. He grasped her thighs and....
Esma blinked, jerked up. Dang it, she'd dozed off again. She ran her hand down her cheek - yep, there were ridges imprinted in her skin from the datapad on the desk. That dream.... the lower level of the ship and its red inhabitant had been invading her thoughts for days. Since their last trip to Corellia, Scourge seemed to have taken up permanent residence in her head; today he was just more persistent than normal. And with as tense and exhausted as she'd been lately, it was hardly surprising that the soft lights and silence in her room had lulled her to sleep.
She stood, stretched, and sighed. She was going to have to talk to him, no point ignoring her instincts at this point in her life. Esma squared her shoulders and headed for the stairs to the lower level. She'd reached the last step when she heard a faint groan from the cargo hold. She peeked around the edge of the door - Scourge was propped against the back wall, shaking in silent pain.
"What's wrong?" she demanded, running to his side.
He took short shallow breaths, his muscles tight as he nearly bent in half. "Nothing."
"Liar." Her stomach bottomed out as she watched him struggle to breathe. "I'm getting Doc," she said, ignoring his protests as she took off at a run.
"Doc!" she yelled, Force leaping the stairs, "We have a problem!"
"What's up?" her ex asked as he emerged from the conference room where he'd been consulting with an Outer Rim physician.
"It's Scourge, there's something wrong with him," she said, knowing her panic was showing.
"Well, that covers a lot of territory," Doc muttered as he ran down the stairs after her.
"Whoa," he said as he caught sight of the Sith, "you weren't kidding." He immediately went into medic mode, efficiently checking vital signs, and running a slew of diagnostic tests over Scourge's protests. He checked the read-outs, frowned, and then checked them again.
"What is it?" Esma asked from where she knelt next to Scourge, worriedly watching his face.
Doc rubbed his hand through his hair, "I don't know what to say. He's in perfect health."
Esma looked at him in disbelief.
Doc threw up his hands in frustration. "According to every piece of equipment I have on this ship...and I have a lot...he's fine. Except that he's clearly not."
"As I told you, there is nothing your medicines can do for me," Scourge said tightly with his eyes closed.
"I'm going to check the spectrometer again," Doc muttered, leaving the room.
Esma watched Scourge's jaw tighten, the tendons in his neck prominent. "You know what this is," she said quietly, her stomach tightening.
Scourge opened his eyes, meeting her gaze. He nodded.
"My senses have returned," he said flatly, "and along with them, my pain."
"Can you stop it? Block it out again?"
"I am not certain. It took months to dull my senses the first time, and then I had a purpose," he spat out, turning his head away.
"A purpose? What are you talking about?"
"The Emperor is dead. What is my purpose?" he snarled, "To lie here, weak as a newborn, or to continue on, dead inside, longing for what I cannot have? I am nothing but a weak fool. I must end this; it is time to be done."
Esma reached out and touched his face, willing him to look at her again. "Don't you dare, you proud idiot. Who else is going to keep me on my toes? Challenge me? I need you with me."
He turned his head, looking deep into her eyes. "I refuse to become an object of pity, and I cannot be with you, not as a man should be."
Esma sucked in a breath, her heart beating fast. "Then we fix this. We find a way."
His body folded on itself, convulsing. He coughed, sucked in air, and pushed himself back against the wall, breathing heavily, his eyes steady on hers.
His voice was raspy when he finally spoke, each word delibrate and heavy. "You are as willful as a Sith and as naive as a Jedi. You drive me mad, but I love you." He paused, coughed. "I love you, but there is no fix for this."
"I love you too," she whispered fiercely, "And I will find one."
Esma stepped into the cargo hold, her heart contracting at how ravaged Scourge had become over the past few days. Twisted and cramped, his muscles strained against the pain that had taken control of his body. His face was drawn, his cheeks hollow. He'd given her only three weeks to find a solution. Time was slipping by quickly, and although they'd tried many cures, nothing so far had worked.
The days had been a whirlwind of activity everywhere on the ship but the cargo hold-made-sickroom. Doc had spent nearly every waking moment researching or talking to contacts from all over the galaxy, and while he pursued medical options, Kira unbent enough in her dislike of Scourge to delve into some fairly arcane elements of the Force looking for solutions, one of which had led to their current orbit around Ilum. Rusk had been put in charge of getting them to where they needed to go, and T7 was on watch when exhaustion or some lead took Esma away from the cargo hold.
"I spoke to Master G'ahmf again," Esma said, walking across the room to the pallet they had rigged for Scourge, "She's still adamant in her refusal to treat you."
"Why should she?" he growled, "Naive little Jedi."
"She's better at shielding than any other living Jedi, and she knows a technique that can block pain. I managed to convince her to teach it to me. I'm not as good, but she said I picked it up quickly."
He grimaced, "Shielding is dangerous. You could be drained, damaged. I will not have you take the risk. It took nearly an hour to break you out of the healing trance you learned from that Miraluka."
"Let me try," she said quietly, "if this works...."
He was silent for a moment. "Promise me you will stop if there are problems," he demanded, "Promise me."
Esma nodded, fully intending to do whatever it took, and settled next to him. Centering herself fully, she placed one hand on Scourge's chest, feeling the rise and fall of his labored breathing and the strong pulse of his heart.
Reaching out with the Force, she began to search for the source of his pain. The darkness that infused his very being rose up to meet its opposite, whispering to her of power and glory, sliding along her skin like velvet. Finally, in his center, she found the source of the pain - a dark mass of Force energy that pulsed with its own life. Nearing it was like walking through a rainstorm of needles, and yet Esma knew the biting pain was nothing compared to what Scourge had been living with.
Pausing a moment to gather her strength, Esma began to form a coil of light side energy. She spiraled it around the energy mass, encasing it. The stinging became burning as she built the shield, pulling energy from her very core to feed it. She could feel herself beginning to fade, burned away by the dark Force battering at her and faint from lack of energy. Vaguely, she could feel Scourge's resistance as he realized she was losing strength. Gathering all of her will, she focused on sealing the last crack and then let herself go.
"You little fool." The faint whisper echoed in her head. She hurt all over, inside and out, but that whisper, she loved that dark whisper.
She opened her eyes. Scourge's face hovered above hers. She was held tight in his arms, snuggled in his lap. His heart pounded in his chest.
"Do not ever do that again," he growled.
"Did it work?" she asked, her mind fuzzy.
"It nearly killed you," he said starkly.
"But it worked."
He sighed in frustration. "Yes, it worked. The pain is faint, as though it were a long way off."
"Good," she said, closing her eyes again, snuggling her head against his chest, listening to his heart beat.
She felt one of Scourge's fingers stroke her cheek, continuing down her neck. "Your skin is so soft." She shivered and looked up into his eyes.
"This gift, temporary or not, is more than I could have hoped for," he said, his voice tense with restrained emotion.
"Temporary? Why would it be temporary?" Esma asked, frowning at him.
"I can feel your shield being slowly eaten away, even as we speak. The Dark will not allow the Light to remain."
"Then we rebuild it," Esma said, struggling up so she was sitting rather than laying in his lap.
"No," he said, shaking his head and wrapping his arms more securely around her, "I will not allow you to endanger yourself again."
Esma frowned at him. "If my choice is going through a shielding ritual every so often or having you go back to a life of pain, there is no choice."
Scourge shook his head at the stubborn look on her face. "Do not argue with me."
She placed one finger on his lips, her eyes blazing red. "Don't make me go through this life without you at my side," she said quietly, "Don't you dare."
He was silent; she could feel the indecision inside him. "I'm already recovered, and I know what to do now," she said firmly, "Besides, reinforcing the shield will take less than building it from scratch."
"Little fool," he growled, but she knew she had won.
"Perhaps with time you'll get used to having some Light inside you." A small smile played on her lips.
"We will make this work."
"Are you certain this is what you want?" he asked, his eyes searching her face.
"I love you," she said steadily.
"Good," he said, brushing his lips across hers.
His kiss was reverent, sweet, and knocked any thought out of Esma's head. She wrapped her arms around his neck as he bent over her, deepening the kiss into something fiery.
When he lifted his head, his eyes blazed. "I can feel the passion inside you. Very un-Jedi like."
She grinned, "And what would you know about that?"
"Perhaps I should show you what true passion is," he said with a slow smile as he laid her back on the pallet.
"Perhaps you should," she said, reaching to pull him down to her. Dreams did come true, she thought, dreams did come true.
I'm a bit nervous about this one, but I hope you enjoyed it. I typically try to stay within the established storyline of swtor, but well, it was Scourge, lol. I'm hoping that there's some solution out there for him, whether something like this one or something else.
aren't you a little short for a stormtrooper?
My Name is Solomon Crae
The Man in the Box