Percy / Jupiter | they/them or ve/vir/vis | 18 | I'll post about whatever I'm into here! | currently into the mobile game A3!
[603 words. warning for mention of kidnapping]
Araceli breaks her stride too easily, emotions snapped in half as she freezes in place. Ry is too quiet, after what they just said, almost as if they hadn't said it at all. If Araceli ignored this and let it evaporate into the air, Ry probably wouldn't even say anything.
"What?" Araceli says, and it's too loud in the abandoned park.
"I remember when Storm saved your life," Ry repeats dutifully. "Mother Nature made Tempest and I out of the remnants of Storm's essence," they turn around, spinning in place in the middle of the light snowfall, the white flakes standing out from their black hair, "so it only makes sense that I remember their memories, too."
Ry sighs with frosted breath, twirling again. They're dancing, like some sort of ballerina. Araceli has no idea why or where they learned this. "I know, I know."
"No, you don't," Araceli shakes her head. Ry's eyes stay stuck on her, yellow and burning. Yellow like Storm's but so much kinder on Ry's face. "Ry... You're not Storm. You have never been the God of Storms, and you never will be."
Ry's face falls. They stop moving their feet, sliding lightly on the powdered snow. "But you were so afraid. You were so..."
"It isn't your memory to keep," Araceli snaps, then bites her tongue. She doesn't want to do this to Ry. She doesn't want to hurt them, but reminding her of Storm is just reopening an old wound. "Storm was awful. A monster. I remember enough to know that much, to know that Storm is and always has been trying to hurt me. They never saved my life. They only hurt me."
Ry steps closer to Araceli. Their hands are warm to the point of feeling burning against her bare arms. "When you were kidnapped," they lick their lips, "Storm followed you when you were gone for too long. And they brought you back."
Araceli remembers being kidnapped. It causes something to feel caught in her throat. The darkness was too much, the weather shifting, her heart beating, beating, beating too fast, too hard to control even with all her godly power. Her chest is tight even now, even as the memories of escaping have faded with the decades and centuries between then and now.
"...And what will you do with these memories?" Araceli asks quietly. "Will you use them to remind me of pain?"
Ry looks away. There's silence between them, but Ry tightens their grip on her. "Well, no. I don't want to. That was just... something I thought you'd rather remember."
They're wrong, but how can Araceli say that when faced with their sad yellow eyes.
Ry hugs Araceli, then. It's sudden, but their grip is loose. "I won't tell you, then. I just thought I needed to find something good in the memories, because the rest of it is so..." They rest their head against her shoulder. "So..."
"You don't need to finish that sentence," Araceli says, hugging them back, hand on the back of their head. She brushes snowflakes from their hair. "They're awful, aren't they? But you're not. You're different from those memories, even if you have them. I trust that if I ever get hurt like that again, that you'll save me in a way that Storm never would."
She can feel Ry laugh shakily against her shoulder. "I'll make sure of it."
How to Become a Godtimeskip -
OC writing with experimental writing style; Storm's backstory told in the second person future tense (yes, really.) 2072 words.
Step by step, you will rise towards godhood.
You will be nothing. You will not know who you are, but you will feel the heat on your skin as you are created. Your Mother is not kind, this you will know—but she is warm and abstract, colorful and powerful. She is not doing this for you; she will be creating you for the sake of the universe. That will be okay.
Your identity will be solidified by Fate, forged in the fire of your heart. You will destroy everything, then be remade.
You will be created with recycled parts, bits of stardust melting together until you are a person, real and truly, like all of the gods that came before you. You will be able to walk on the Earth with the humans even though you are so different, and you will be able to destroy them. There are inevitabilities that come with being god, and your Mother will ingrain you with every one of them.
You will not know how you feel.
The humans will worship you, because you are a god, and because you shape them and their world with your own hands. And you will wonder, in some portion of your warped mind, if this is really what you want.
You will sit on the top of the pedestal, and you will know that you are perfect, and good, and correct. This is the burden that will be given to you in godhood; flowing robes you don’t want but suffer through for the sake of being a god, and the warm water on the beach, and the storm clouds that follow you around, the ones that the other humans, the ones who don’t follow you, fear and call evil. You will not be evil.
You will confess to your Overseer that you are unsure. Araceli will comfort you, like the Mother who never did, who could never. You will not know what it’s like to have a mother like Araceli, with a solid body and who didn’t create you for some grander sake. You will understand everything, eventually, that the sickness rising within you is uncertainty, and that you have walked too far already. But at that moment, you will take comfort in your friend; she is trying so hard to help you.
You will begin to understand that you love her, then.
This will not falter, even as you begin to realize the truth; this will come later, so for now you will continue to sift through your feelings with her by your side. She may be an Overseer, but you will think she’s kind, and she will forever continue to be, in your eyes. She will help you as you begin to understand your own importance.
You will find that humanity knows, that Araceli knows, and that even your Mother knows; you will be important, and perfect. You will be good. You will be correct.
Gods have buildings dedicated to them, and yours will be built with fragile walls unable to bear the storms that swirl at your fingertips. They will fall, and you will laugh in your destruction. The humans will cower from you, or maybe surround you, or maybe give you gifts, but either way, you will not be happy.
Laughter is a defence mechanism that you will find in these times. Electricity will adorn your robes, metal ringing your neck and fingers, too gaudy to be real. You will hate yourself for this, but you will also know that you deserve to be worshipped by humanity as a whole, because you are better than them. This is the inevitability ingrained within you, unable to be separated from yourself.
You will fall slowly into this; you will not crash into the water all at once, but instead dip your toes into self confidence, wading deeper until it consumes you.
Soon, you will think yourself royalty.
You will still feel the taste of fear and uncertainty. Something is wrong, and it will buzz in your veins like the powers you control, like your constant trips to Earth will tell you. You will search far and wide for a reason for this, reading again and again. You will have friends with you, many of them, gods of status and power, and gods with none. You will laugh with sharp teeth and welcome them with you in your pursuit of knowledge.
Araceli will tell you to be careful, and that gods never benefit from too much knowledge. You will understand this, but you will also ignore it, because she is too wounded from the past to truly be controlling, despite the way she carries herself. She will think of herself as your friend, and you will take advantage of this trust in you. This is the first fault in your relationship.
Things will crack with thunder when you meet Angel. They will be a human with a pale figure, who steals your robes and sits beside you to braid your hair. They will talk about legends about gods, about family and nonbelievers, about running away from home and finding you, and how they believe in you. They will talk about the older legends, passed down with secret books, the kind you so crave. They will confess that they don’t think they could do anything without you, in that cheeky way of theirs. They will only make you love yourself more. You will grin at them.
Angel will not change you inherently, but they will break you free. You are captured in the shell, and your Fate will sway with the storms until you break it. You, still, will not believe that your storms are evil.
You will begin to realize that you were never a god at all. You will begin your journey anew, as the perfect human, immortal and created by a Mother you will never trust again.
You will hurt Araceli.
You will continue to love her, even as you change yourself. Your world will shift to the side, with this change, and with the realization of everything around you that you hadn’t realized. You will understand your Fate, and you will recruit another god to follow you; this time, it will be Caelestis, who trusts you, who helped you search for this knowledge before.
You almost feel bad for using him, but you will find that your uncertainty has washed away like the waves on the beaches. Your thirst for knowledge will be answered, and Caelestis will follow you as you pursue a way to escape the world Fate has trapped you in. You may not be a god, but you must continue to search for it, and you will let danger snap at your heels, laughing as you run.
Laughing will never feel so freeing as those moments. Caelestis will follow you, the wind blowing behind you, and Araceli’s words, telling you to be careful, will echo in your mind. You will have already gone too far to look back, and caution means nothing to you anymore. The only thing on your mind will be to fix the world that has been broken, even if it’s under your Mother’s nose.
Araceli will be hurt by you, but you justify it to yourself; it will have to be done, because you are correct, and this will be the only thing you can do to change your own Fate, to make her face her own problems. She will never be good at facing herself unless you get close, until you comfort her like she once comforted you.
But you will never comfort her. This you know—she will turn away from you, and you will love her too much to tell her your secrets. So you will bury that love, sand covering everything you were, smoothing it down until you are simply a statue of your old self, smooth and featureless. You will not hate yourself, this time, from on top of the pedestal. The new you will be better, and more knowledgeable.
You will believe yourself to be better than Araceli, because you will not be able to love her or comfort her, so you must find a way to fix things in some other way.
You will no longer be sick of everything; instead you will be free, with the other gods at your side. You will finally be happy, even as you make more enemies, push them away in your constant quest to change things—anything and anyone you can touch. You will be called evil as you do. This will not bother you.
You will be caught.
You are a child, and your Mother has discovered the trick. Your Fate will surge forward, capturing you like the chains you wish it wasn’t. You cannot break free. Your Mother will find you, then, and tell you without words that she’s disappointed in you. She will never have been disappointed in you before, but you played around too much in attempting to become a god, and you will, inevitably, face your punishment.
She will tell you that you were always a god, in color and in life, with your Fate bound to you forever. She will be careful not to break you, because—unlike the humans who surrounded you, unlike Angel who only lived for your sake, unlike Araceli who trusted you until you broke her, unlike Caelestis who followed you with hope for the future—you will be repurposed into something else. The essence of a god is different from the essence of a human, and your godhood will be distilled until your Fate is reworked, until your secrets will be buried under your skin, and you won’t be able to scratch them out.
You were created for the sake of the universe, and the universe—your Mother—has decided that you are a stain on it. Humanity wasn’t created for you, but the other way around; you were created for humanity, and you failed them. You will know this, as your Mother melts you down.
You were supposed to be perfect, the pedestal crumbling underneath you. But you will still love yourself, because there’s nothing else to love, and nobody is more wrong than your Mother. You have always wished to be free, and you would do anything to make it happen. You grasp desperately at your memories, at everything your life will have given you, at its end.
This will be the death of a god. Or, maybe, you will be an overconfident human turned to ashes.
The other gods will forget you existed. They will be trapped by Fate, or their own fading memories of your life. Or maybe they’ll refind themselves, and you will be dust at the bottom, wiped away by a loving Mother. You will not be remembered, as you were a faulty god. Your remains will be used for better means.
Your successors will be nothing at first. They will not know who they are, but they will feel the heat on their skin as they are created. Your Mother will create them for the sake of the universe; she will tell them that they were once parts of you, split apart in order to protect the universe. She will not be making them for the sake of themselves; they will be objects of the universe.
Their identities will be solidified by Fate, your Mother taking your memories and putting it into their heads so that they believe her lies when she tells them they were once you. This, too, will cause their destruction as they are remade.
They will not be created with recycled parts. They will someday come to find you, asleep, not truly gone at all. Until then, you will wait, storms curling around you. You will not think of yourself as evil for what you did, even as the years continue to pass without you there to see it. You Mother will have destroyed you, in some ways, but you continue to lie there, waiting. She will not be able to stop you from waiting.
After all, there are inevitabilities that come with being god, and your Mother ingrained you with every one of them.
You will wake up alive again. You will, at last, through the efforts of your successors, be a true god, in control of your own Fate.
You hope that this destiny is in the cards for you.
Retrospect - Timeskipped - Zero Escape (Video Games) [Archive of Our Own]
An Archive of Our Own, a project of the Organization for Transformative Works
In January 2029, with the Dcom experiment completely destroyed and his unconscious body found in the rubble, Junpei goes on a search for missing memories and a missing girl.
In January 2074, Junpei finds himself searching for both all over again.
Finally finished this fic! It's 13,000 words long, and I worked really hard on it!
Had an art project for school where we took poems and made art pieces based on them. As someone in the middle of a Bungou Stray Dogs phase, obviously I chose a poem by Nakahara Chuuya, a Japanese poet who was the basis for one bsd character! His name in Japanese is the text on the side.
I'm pretty proud of this, all things considered!
A couple close up pictures under the cut:
Repetition of certain lines to amplify emotional impact creates an anchor for plot and characters to bounce off of, tying them in a thematic way to the work and strengthening it.
I aspire to be able to do this effectively, in a way I've seen done before and always admired. I will continue to strive towards this goal!
my dream is to be reclaimed by nature like this 😏