zouzounaki: (Default)
[personal profile] zouzounaki
All of these were written for From Beyond the Grave, the brainchild of [personal profile] moetushie:

Title: The Watcher
Fandom: DCU
Author: Ghani Starkiller
Prompt: anything Gotham - ghosts of things that have never been. (forever sad about the DCnU)

The Clock Tower is old, dilapidated, neglected; the roof has fallen in, and the boards are dusty, old, broken. Its pale face looks out over the city impassively, the hands caught permanently at 5 and 7 in an apathetic frown as it watches. As she watches. The nights have turned cool, the leaves in the park are brown and orange and falling to the ground, where the grass has turned a sickly, autumnal yellow. She peers out at it all, a wan phantom in a rusty chair, hands folded in her lap. Her name used to mean prophet, harbinger, herald, augur; it no longer exists, the Ghost of Things Never to Come. Her heart used to break, to hear the girl with her face and her name call herself a cripple, a girl she never was, but will now forever be, pushing Dick away, careless, reckless, stupid.

But her heart has hardened. She was alone at first, but others joined her in phantasmagorical frustration and lamentation: the Raggedy Girl, in her black stocking costume, covering every inch of her, the stitches thick, seaming her body like a doll; the Torn Boy, in the iconic costume now in tatters, holding the crowbar that made the scars and bruises he still and will forever sport; the Angry Princess, all of her vengeance, mercilessness, her cry for blood, unfulfilled and building to a crescendo in its fruitlessness. And other--yes, others. They are a team now. And they have a terrible, dread hunger.

She waits for the one night of the year when the veil between the living and the dead is thinnest, when the harvest moon is full and pregnant, hanging heavily near the horizon, its color a chillingly premonitory shade of orange, like rust, or red, like blood. They believe that Arkham is haunted, but the asylum is haunted merely by the living. They have yet to contend with the dead, the Have-Never-Been, stillborn and raging. She sends her team forth, this Watcher--for that is all she is now, her life, her power taken by the usurper. They shamble forward into the city, their faces a rictus of the same expression of terrifying joy, her abortive, carrion ghouls. They go in search of blood, to take back what was theirs.

Title: Tender
Fandom: Little Red Riding Hood (fairy tales)
Author: Ghani Starkiller
Prompt: Those sharp teeth; the furry face; the shining black eyes; it wasn't the wolf dressed up as Grandma.
It was Grandma.

The youngest meat is the most tender. It's why the old, eccentric woman they all call Grandma asks Red to bring her sweets and wine and bread every week, and they sit together in the wild meadowsweet of the garden and picnic, soaking in the rays of the apple cider sunshine. The buttery cookies leave enticing crumbs on Red's blouse, and she plucks at them absently, with no idea at the hunger she is awakening as the wolf moon approaches. After being assured that it will be their secret, Red sips at the red wine, and it stains her lips; Grandma thinks of another red liquor she licks from her whiskers once a month. Her tummy begins to rumble with her forbidden thirst. "Just gas," she tells Red, though, as she grins, it seems as if her teeth are whiter than usual, glistening, sharper. Fattening a child as gullible as Red is never difficult.

Grandma's fugues are legend, and Red can't understand when mother forbids her to return, as Grandma has requested, to nurse her to health when she is bed-ridden. "The woods aren't safe by night," mother tells her cagily, and speaks no more of it. And so Red sneaks out the window by the light of the full moon, and no one even notices that she is gone. And there is no one to hear the screaming that begins after she pushes open the door to the cottage, and lasts an unseemly long time. Unspeakable hungers are sated again and again, until, at last, silence.

The Huntsman waits until morning, when Grandma has shed her brutal countenance and is bathed in virginal blood, picking her teeth lazily with a finger bone. "Well, that's done, then," he says, grunting as he looks to the mess on the floor. There isn't much left of poor little Red; she must have been very tender indeed, barely any gristle. "You've done with her. What now?"

Grandma stops and thinks for a moment. "Well," she replies, "I've got a sister whose been complaining about this pesky brother and sister. Something-or-other and Gretel..." She waves her bone toothpick vaguely in the air, belches and then grins. "Sounds tasty. I always did like German food. French is a little too rich for me."

Title: Children Shouldn't Play With Dead Things
Fandom: Mary Poppins
Author: Ghani Starkiller
Prompt: You shouldn't trust things that blow in on the wind.

The children's eyes light up when they hear the slight scratching at the chimney; they shake each other awake, their eyes glistening excitedly in the darkness, the harvest moon their only light as it trickled in through the lace curtains. The slightly hunched figure rises in the shadows of the hearth, its breathing ragged, harsh.

"She's come back!" the girl cries with childish glee, clasping her hands, all innocence and youthful excitement. "Oh, John! Look, Mary's come back! She's come back to play with us!"

"Yes," croaks a voice from the grate, that hoarse respiration increasing in the ensuing silence, and from the gloom, two darting red eyes appear. The children falter. And then the screams begin.

Title: Trigger Warning
Fandom: MCU (The Avengers)
Author: Ghani Starkiller
Prompt: Being attacked by The Hulk can sure stick with you

The little boy looked up at her with a skeptical expression on his painted face, his puffy green hoodie pulled tightly around him, the strings of the hood secured under his chin in a bow. She had no idea whose kid it was, hadn't even remembered it was Halloween until she saw the plastic pail in his hand. He was wearing eggplant-colored sweatpants and sneakers. She put her fists on her curved hips and cocked an eyebrow. "What are you supposed to be--a green Smurf?"

"I'm the Hulk!" he answered her in that razzing way kids had, and, involuntarily, she felt her stomach plummet downwards.

Natasha didn't have nightmares. She had killed a man before she had seen her first horror movie. She was trained not to linger on her fears--hell, she was trained not to have fears. Control, that was what she had been taught. And that was why the Hulk had terrified her. She could remember being curled up against that wall, shaking, crying, probably, waiting for it to come, the killing stroke. And his eyes--perhaps one last, small stroke of recognition. Was that scarier? The idea that he knew who she was and might still murder her, rip her apart with those very capable hands,

And she was a little girl again, maybe for the first time. Small, vulnerable, unsure of anything and everything around her. She didn't have nightmares, but she dreamt of that moment, and more often than not, awoke with a spine-tingling feeling that those eyes were still watching her. Bruce's eyes, soft and dark, turned large and menacing set deeply into that twisted green visage. She turned over once, taking the covers with her, and nearly yelped aloud when she saw the reflection of that face in the window. When she blinked, it was gone--from her vision, at least; it remained in her mind.

The dreams were blurring into reality. Clint had tried to talk to her about it, but she had shut him down. She didn't keep much from him, but this was something she had to deal with on her own. She didn't look well, with dark circles under her eyes--which darted now, constantly to the spaces just outside of her vision, as if he were there, lurking--and a drawn countenance. But then, everyone was dealing with something of their own after New York. She'd always known the threat was on the outside--invading countries our invading planets, it was all the same to her. It was the threat from within that had to be dealt with. Did it make it worse that she was beginning to enjoy this inner conflict? This releasing of her own secret id?

"So, are you gonna give me candy?" the kid asked, the same impertinent expression on his face.

"Don't have any," she replied tersely.

"You suck," he threw back at her. "What are you supposed to be, anyways?"

"A killer," she muttered, and something in her glare finally made the kid back off. She smirked, and touched the knife in her waistband, hidden beneath her leather jacket. It was time to pay Bruce a little visit.

Title: A Bed of Hands and Teeth
Fandom: The Hunger Games
Author: Ghani Starkiller
Prompt: That year the setting was a zombie apocalypse

It wasn't the water that scared Annie Cresta, nor the earthquake that had loosened the dam and unloosed the deluge, the rush of the flood making the world tremble more dramatically and in a more primal fashion than the quake could ever have. She was a strong swimmer, even for someone from District 4, stronger maybe even than Finnick.

Drowning isn't, despite popular belief, a slow process, and she has listened, for the past two hours, as far as she could tell from the movement of the sun, to her fellow tributes dying. Going under, coming back up, and going under once more, their screams, their cries for help becoming watery, more desperate. She keeps paddling along, her arms and legs growing dreadfully tired, leaden, but she never thinks for a moment of stopping. Because it isn't just the water she has to fear.

Unlike the other tributes, the creatures don't drown. They don't swim, either; as far as Annie can tell, they're not capable of much aside from inflicting terrible death. Some float, if they are still enough, while she feels the bony hands of others grab at her ankles; sometimes, she feels as if their dessicated jaws are brushing her feet, trying to bite down, and then another swell will rush over the broken lip of the dam and rise her higher into the air, and she's safe. Somewhat. Their bones make a strange and eerie clacking sound, hollow, and the wind has a way of finding the places in their rotting skulls to blow through that will make it sound like a moan, or a laugh.

As Caesar Flickerman debates the possibility of there being no victor this year on air, and the tributes sink into their deathly silence, Annie struggles not to tire, and not to head to the bottom again, the street that is now a riverbed of hands and teeth. There are worse things than drowning. She's seen them. She's seen those clacking teeth, the putrescent skin pulled back in a permanent sneer, sink into flesh, she's seen the spray of red. She's seen hands pull, with one purpose, with so little strength but a single-mindedness that makes them relentless.

She's laughing and screaming at the same time as one comes surfing towards her, the water pouring through its open, unhinged jaw like saliva. She paddles away, using the last of her strength as her legs begin to go slack. She stares up at the sun, wondering if they'll leave her here to die because if hadn't gone the way they had wanted it to, when something blocks out the sun and she's being lifted. She looks down and she sees them all in the water, where it has turned red from their feasting. She's sick right before she looses consciousness, and her last thought is that they'll either edit that out or show her in close-up.


zouzounaki: (Default)
Jean: A Legend In My Own Mind

March 2017

   1 23 4

Most Popular Tags

Style Credit

Expand Cut Tags

No cut tags
Page generated Sep. 21st, 2017 05:43 pm
Powered by Dreamwidth Studios