The Short Fic Weekly Challenge Thread!
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08.25.2012 , 03:16 PM |
Quote: Originally Posted by
Week of 8/24/12
- Last week we wrote about what life would be like if major events didn't happen. This week, we're writing about major events that DID happen. Pick a particularly important moment for your character, one that solidified their path. Write about what they did and why that moment was crucial.
(Featuring my Sith Warrior, Esiri Vae- Pureblood- and Vette. Cameo by Quinn.)
This story is a bit long, partly because I wanted to get it just right from the scene in my head, and also partly to make up for having missed out lately on updates and posts for the latest prompts.
“You will be still, or this will hurt you more than it will help you,” Malavai Quinn’s voice is curt and crisp, his accent hardening his words rather than softening them.
When Vette glances at his face, twisted in concentration as he applies the antiseptic to her arm, she tries not to recoil at the calm façade he wears. The military man is, without a doubt, obscenely attractive physically- that the Twi’lek has no problem admitting to herself.
Personality wise, however…
Vette has seen melting glaciers show more emotion.
A slight sting races up her arm once the antiseptic hits the open wound, and Vette flinches despite Quinn’s prior words. Her emerald green eyes flicker to Quinn’s face for only a moment, before she turns away.
The man looks up at her, his ice blue eyes unreadable. While his face stays almost politely impassive, Vette gets the strongest inkling that deep inside he is probably internally scolding her.
Fortunately the strict social etiquette that’s probably been beaten in to him all his life is too far ingrained for Quinn to uncharacteristically explode in anger, or any other type of demonstrative expression really, at her. He must surely be close to losing patience with Vette’s stubbornness and her inability to actually heed instructions.
She’s surprised he hasn’t lost his decorum with her hardheaded tenacity, and wonders why he even continues trying to get her to listen.
As if he isn’t aware that the only person Vette shows any semblance of loyalty or respect to is his Sith Lord, Esiri Vae.
Speaking of the devil, where
Vette thinks, trying to tune out the smells and noises of the medicine Quinn smoothly begins applying to her various wounds and bruises. She never does like getting into a middle of a large fight between Republic and Imperial soldiers, but seeing as she has been traveling with the Pureblood Sith for quite some time now, injuries and death defying moments are becoming far too normal for her liking.
Both she and the Pureblood had returned to the ship, each tallying their own orchestra of injuries from the onslaught that had been Tatooine. The mission had been impressively brutal, and even Vae- despite her usual efficiency and her unusual habits of not killing when it isn’t absolutely necessary – had her fair share of bumps and bruises to attest to their difficult experience.
Though, now that Vette has a moment to think about it, during their return to the ship Vae had been uncharacteristically distant and formal with her during the trek back to the station, and the shuttle ride as well. Unsettling formal; going as far as to silence Vette’s inquisitive questions of concern for the Pureblood’s welfare with a steady look from her intense orange-gold gaze.
Vette, having grown so accustomed to many of Vae’s behaviors and tell-tale signs that she could usually ignore many of Vae’s words and know she was okay, had no choice but to swallow the rest of what she’d been intent on saying. The look in Vae’s eyes had not been threatening- in fact, Vette cannot remember if Vae had
actually intentionally frightened her, besides their first meeting when Vette assumed the worst. But the intent in them was so stifling and almost searing, that Vette had shifted uncomfortably and turned her gaze to the shuttle window, not being determined enough to meet Vae’s eyes with her own.
Vette knows something is up with Vae, from how the Pureblood has acted. And, for an outsider viewing on the pair, seeing a Sith sitting frigidly next to a Twi’lek is not something strange or unusual in and of itself.
But for Vette- who has gotten to know the Sith well beyond her initial reservations and disdain for everything she stands for –can honestly call Vae a friend, and has gotten well-adjusted to the quiet, unnamed bond that has been growing between them lately.
Well- Vette considers her a friend without having to actually tell anyone or claim it in any way. As much as Vette likes to think Vae has some fondness for her company, she knows others would not take lightly for the alien considering herself any kind of equal with a Pureblood.
Vette lets out a hiss, and her thoughts scatter, as Quinn indelicately slaps on a patch of gel, before wrapping it in a small bandage that he states she is to keep on for at least three hours to help her wound heal without leaving any scars.
Vette just glares at him.
“Ya know, as a part time Healer, your bedside manners are severely lacking.” She promptly tells him.
Quinn lifts a dark eyebrow, conveying all the contempt he holds for her in that one movement, before moving away from the bio-bed to clean up all of the supplies he’d used.
He remains silent in his work, and Vette slightly slumps down on the bed, a pout tugging at her lips. She knows he only puts up with her because Vae has made it abundantly clear that there is to be no altercations between any of her crewmates without her authorization first.
With a shake of her head that makes her lekku swing behind her, Vette hops down from the bio-bed and makes her way to the door.
“Thanks,” she calls over her shoulder. Quinn ignores her. As the door swishes open and she steps into the slightly cooler corridor, Vette adds under her breath, “For
The door closes behind her, and Vette is left blessedly alone. Rolling her aching shoulders, she makes her way down the corridor, wandering if she is actually hungry enough to stop and eat before going to a shower and assaulting it.
Her mind isn’t quite made up for certain when she passes by the small counsel room, where Vae would sometimes use the console to let the others know when she wished for them to gather together for a briefing.
Peering in through the threshold, Vette makes out Vae’s long, slender form slightly hunched over the briefing desk, both her hands planted on the hard surface to keep her frame upright. The Sith has apparently taken off her traveling robes and armor from their mission, currently wearing only black pants, black knee-high boots and an off-white blouse, with the sleeves rolled up to bunch at her elbows.
Even her long, inky black hair has been pulled from its pinup, spilling down the Pureblood’s lean back in a messy tumble of thick curls and waves.
The vibrant, rich red skin of her forearms are almost sacrilegiously blotched and darkened by bruises. A makeshift bandage is wrapped around her left wrist, where a severe blaster bolt had caught her; it is slightly rumpled and awkward enough for Vette to gather Vae has treated herself rather than see Quinn for better treatment.
That thought alone that makes Vette’s heart twinge, and before she is aware of it her feet are making its way into the room and towards the Sith.
Vae doesn’t look up from her steady gaze on the table’s surface, even as Vette’s loud footsteps have surely reached her ears. For a moment the two women stand silently in the room, and Vette shifts her weight, not sure why she suddenly feels like the air is growing hotter and thicker.
Finally, after what seems like an eternity unto itself, Vae pushes off the desk and stands to her full height. Even in her slightly less formal wear, the Pureblood’s presence is dominating and powerful, and she appears to command respect even as Vette sees that her waist is empty of her lightsabre hilts.
For some unknown reason to Vette, Vae has never taken to wearing her weapons on her ship, despite knowing that not all of the crewmembers get along so well with one another.
Vae regards Vette quietly, making no move to speak first.
Vette clears her throat, wishing she wasn’t feeling quite so awkward all of a sudden. She’s never had problems striking up conversations- and maintaining them –around the Sith before.
There should be absolutely no reason for her to start now.
“… So. What a day, huh?” Vette says with a nervous chuckle, bringing her hands together to wring the fingers in between one another. It is a nervous habit she’s has since she was a child, and unfortunately she has never grown out of it.
Vae tilts her head slightly, her face giving away nothing. A chill runs up Vette’s spine, but she ignores it.
“Are you… um, okay? From earlier, I mean.” Vette waves a hand in the direction of Vae’s arms, and the Pureblood takes a look at the bruises as if she is first discovering them. “They look painful.,” she adds.
Then she winces as she internally scolds herself for saying something so stupid.
They look painful?
Of course they are, you stupid girl.
Trust her to babble off the most obvious. Vae meets her eyes, and slowly, some semblance of emotion comes back to her face, softening the sharp edges and bringing warmth back to her eyes.
Vette lets out a breath she did not even realize she was holding.
“My injuries are of no consequence,” Vae says simply with a one-armed shrug. Her voice is low, rich and slightly husky, and no matter how much Vette can listen to her talk, it never ceases to make Vette feel…
Some thoughts are best left alone.
And it is as Vette’s eyes move from anxiety that she catches just the barest hint of a bruise tainting the skin at Vae’s neck, barely peeking over the collar of the Pureblood’s blouse. The bruise is garish enough to make Vette’s stomach turn, and just for a moment, corrosive anger overtakes her on the Pureblood’s behalf.
Vae’s eyes narrow, and the Twi’lek loses her anger, watching the Sith take in the bandages and bruises on her own form. The Pureblood’s lips close tight, and even from the distance between them Vette sees her jaws clenching. Vette also notices Vae’s hands clenching and unclenching at her sides, almost as if in reflex. Being the subject of such an unwavering stare is unsettling as it is flattering, and Vette feels her skin growing hot despite her efforts to remain unaffected.
“Your injuries are taken care of,” Vae says, her voice making it bluntly known she is stating, not asking. As if Vette should know it is not an option that she have her injuries treated after a mission.
“Yeah, Mr. Military did a thorough job, and he was quick too,” Vette pauses, wandering if she is going too far with her next words. “He’s free now… if you want to have him check you over, i-if you want to..”
Vae shakes her head.
“I’m fine,” she says. And then her next words make Vette freeze. “Thanks to you, of course.”
“You saved me,” Vae says, and though her voice doesn’t harbor any ill will, her face has become stormy with some unnamed emotion. And Vette is suddenly thinking back to how the pair of them had been swarmed upon by a multitude of Republic soldiers, and while Vae’s blades had been swirls of swipes and parries, she’d had her back uncovered.
A soldier had tried to move it with a shot, but Vette had managed to jump in the way at the last moment, the bolt slamming into her arm and forcing her to collide with Vae’s back. When the Sith had turned and saw what had happened, it only took- literally –three seconds for her to finish off the soldier who’s done it.
“Um… you’re welcome?” Vette hedges, unsure of how to properly respond. Why does Vae sound so surprised? As if Vae hasn’t, at one time or another, saved Vette’s life as well. “We’re partners, right? I’m supposed to put my life on the line for you. That’s how it works,”
The last part Vette says with a grin, trying to lift the mood.
It does the exact opposite.
Moving so fast that when Vette blinks she is suddenly aware only of the fact that the Sith has moved, Vette is being pressed back against the counsel desk. The edge of the desk presses into her thighs, and Vae steps in closer until the Twi’lek has to partially bend backwards, planting her hands on the desk to help with balance, in order to keep some personal space between them.
The look in Vae’s eyes make Vette’s knees weak, and she suddenly finds her throat impossibly dry.
how it works,” Vae says softly, the firm steel in her voice making it certain Vette is not to argue. She looms even closer, until their faces are mere inches away, and the air is warm between them as their breaths mingle together. “We work as a team, yes. Throwing ourselves into situations that can get us killed? No.”
For one insane moment, impulsiveness overtakes Vette before her caution can.
“Don’t be a hypocrite,” she snaps, and Vae starts in surprise at the sudden venom in the Twi’lek’s voice. “You throw yourself into dangerous situations all the time, and if I had a credit for every time you’ve place yourself in harm’s way for me I’d have enough to disappear from the Empire for good. So don’t you
tell me I can’t do the same! Even if you are a Sith, you can’t be so self-righteous as to think I can’t try and help you-”
Vette’s rant is violently interrupted when Vae reaches out and clamps both hands on her shoulders, pulling the Twi’lek forward. For one impossible moment that stretches into forever, Vette thinks,
Is she going to kiss me?
, and has no time to process if the thought terrifies her- or does something else; even as she licks her own lips on impulse.
But it is all for not because at the last moment, Vae tilts her head down so that their foreheads press together instead, keeping their mouths safely separated. The Sith’s skin is impossibly warm and soft, and her nose bump’s Vette’s so awkwardly that despite her reservations of this sudden display of intimacy, Vette cannot help it when her lips twitch in a grin.
But then the humor disappears and the heaviness of the moment comes back, making Vette feel twitchy and far too warm in her own skin. Her heart thuds heavily in her chest, and she wonders if she feels lightheaded because she cannot get enough air through to her lungs.
Feeling daring, Vette lifts one shaking hand and slowly lets it fall to the back of Vae’s neck, feeling the silky black tresses of her hair tickling her fingers. Without warning, a warm surge of protectiveness and passion so strong and impulsive overwhelms the Twi’lek, and her hand squeezes impossibly tight on Vae’s neck, wishing to convey to the Sith that Vette is
and that she isn’t going anywhere.
A breathy moan slips from Vae’s throat, and her hands slip from Vette’s shoulders down to her waist, where they slip to her back to fully wrap around the Twi’lek’s slim form. Vette lets out a surprised squeak when Vae pulls her body flush against her own, and she feels the Pureblood lower her head until she can turn her face and place it between the crook of Vette’s jawline and collar bone.
The fluttering of Vae’s long lashes against the skin of her neck feels like a butterfly’s kiss, and a sigh of content escapes Vette. As much as the moment is far too intimate and uncharacteristic of Vae, it feels so right and the Twi’lek isn’t sure if she wants it to end.
Time is suspended as the two women stand in such a tight embrace, and then slowly Vae pulls away.
Vette opens her moth to say something, but stops when Vae does something else entirely uncharacteristic.
She reaches out to cup Vette’s jaw in her hand, her thumb stroking along Vette’s chin. When Vette raises her brow in question, Vae shakes her head.
She lets her hand drop.
“You should get something to eat and find rest. Baras will be contacting us soon,” Vae says, her voice back to its usual calm and collected timbre.
“I…” Vette stops herself. She tries again. “I will do that,” she says instead.
Vae nods, before turning and briskly walking out of the room as if nothing has happened.
And if it isn’t for the way Vette’s skin still feels too warm, her heart still pounds so heavily, and her chin tingles pleasantly from the gentle touch, she could convince herself as much.
But she cannot do so.
Instead, she smiles to herself and leaves to search out some much needed food, replaying the feel of Vae’s body so close and warm against her own.
Uh... yeah. So I can see this as a turning point for something more between my SW and Vette, at least.
I hope the length didn't put you guys off, and I hope you enjoyed it!
"Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend..."
"Only a life lived for others is a life worth living for..."