Also this is the creepiest Epsilon song ever and if anyone can find me a creepier Epsilon song I will give you 500 dollars and by dollars I mean words which I will string together to complete a fanfic of your choice or maybe i will just write punctuation marks like five hundred parentheses or commas or interrobangs.
I am very tired okay?
Things that didn’t used to matter now do. Like friggin’ EPSILON sending me E-MAILS!!!
WELCOME TO THE FANDOM! Where Greek letters become horrifying and you can make all sorts of terrible innuendo about the Empire State Building. =D
[I found a lot of RvB stuff I’d written a few months ago, figured I’d post some of it here.]
York is pouring coffee, again, or maybe for the first time today but it feels like he just had some a minute ago. Minutes and hours are getting all mixed up now, have been since the AI integration, which was – a day ago? He frowns but pours his coffee with a steady hand, and the clock on the coffeemaker says two but it could be afternoon or it could be morning. When time collapses it falls thick and full of debris, clouting him across the skull but not quite shaking him; he doesn’t need any help with that, really, not with Delta here murmuring
three-point-four percent chance of sleep within the next four to five hours if caffeine consumption continues at a consistent rate
And York grips the handle of his coffee mug tight and he shakes his head, slowly, not like he wants to dislodge the guy but just because – because he
I apologize, Agent New York; I am
because he’s just
But it’s okay because everyone is, right now, and
side-effects of AI integration are temporary, and include dizziness and moderate to severe confusion
and it’s only temporary so it’s going to be okay, or at least it – it’s sort of going to –
He turns and forgets that he’s standing up and almost trips. Wash is there, looking questioning and slightly ill, shoulders dipping under the immeasurable weight of a fading blue light.
Epsilon, says Delta.
“Wash,” York corrects. Wash has lost a lot of sleep and a lot of whatever confidence he’d had and he doesn’t need to lose his name too.
I loved her, whispers Epsilon as Wash watches Tex move – quick and hard and unstoppable – on the training room floor. A group of soldiers, lower-ranked, have made the mistake of agreeing to train with her. She fights heavier than Carolina, with more force than necessary, like all these soldiers are just one big door she’s trying to beat down. Wash loses track of her motion; his vision blurs and she’s just a shadow –
Nonononono she’s real I loved her I remember she’s real
– and he starts to feel dizzy and sick to his stomach because in his head there are
pictures, pictures David, David, let me show you pictures
“No,” mumbles Wash, running his hands through his hair in agitation. He tries to focus on the fight but Epsilon is throwing up tattered bits of photographs, slowly forming a woman’s face –
look let me show you I remember she smiled sometimes she used to smile sometimes, David
“Wash,” he corrects. “Don’t call me…” He’s cut off by the lurch of his stomach as he watches Tex take a misstep –
she was smiling when she died I remember she was smiling
– but she’s back up again in no time at all and Wash is relieved, he was worried, because she smiled sometimes and he loved it when she smiled, he wants to see her smile again, because he lov—no, no, no, that isn’t, that’s not…that’s not right…
David look let me show you
“No,” he says, and the room’s shifting beneath his feet, he’s the one taking missteps now – his knees hit metal and Epsilon is happy to have brought him down, happy to have his full attention now. He says, let me show you pictures, and again Wash says, “No,” but the pictures come anyway and Wash can’t see anything else but her, can’t hear anything but Epsilon, murmuring,
I remember, I remember the blood ran from her mouth while she smiled
One day York carries a cat into Maine and Wash’s room. It’s scrawny and scruffed up and purring pretty loud, like a miniature Warthog motor. Maine watches as York hands it to Wash, who takes it on reflex because that’s what you do when York hands you something, even if it might be a bomb.
The cat is not a bomb. Wash had been hunched over reading a moment before (he reads all the manuals and then he explains them to Maine because Maine didn’t like to read things before and Sigma makes it even worse now). But now he is sitting straight up, and though the blue Epsilon-light is rolling over his shoulders, Wash’s eyes are clear and his voice is solid as he informs York, “This is against protocol.”
York shrugs and Delta, glowing quiet-green, rises and falls with his shoulders. “He jumped into the Falcon. Figured he deserves some respect for that.” He reaches over and scratches the cat behind the ears.
Maine watches as Sigma takes the cat’s curved tail and turns the image into spirals that loop endlessly in on themselves, and whispers weird almost-words, things-that-try-to-be-words, and they loop endlessly too. (Later, Sigma gets a better handle on words. Sigma is the one who carves, “WE ARE THE META.” Sigma knows Greek so he thinks it’s funny, but nobody else really gets the joke.)
Suddenly Maine feels lonely. There aren’t enough people in the room. (Almost, Sigma corrects, there are almost enough, but they don’t have all the pieces yet for the fourth. And Maine doesn’t answer because he doesn’t really get it; he just knows that Sigma likes to put things together.) York is still there, responding mildly as Wash tries to argue with him and the cat curls up in Wash’s lap and Wash’s voice sort of falls flat as his hands go stroking across gray-striped fur. Epsilon flickers a little.
“You can keep him in here, if you guys want,” York says. “North helped me make a litterbox.” He doesn’t look at Maine, just Wash, because everyone’s looking at Wash lately, because Wash lately is weird and doesn’t make sense when he talks and Wash never doesn’t make sense when he talks. Wash explains the manuals.
“Cats,” says Epsilon suddenly, musingly. Maine waits for the torrent of words-wrapped-around-words that is supposed to come now, but Epsilon stays quiet. Sigma does not; Sigma lists other words for ‘cat’ and then says, Tiger, and then, burning bright. And then he is making up words again and Maine can barely hear Wash, who is talking back to Epsilon and sounding kind of desperate like he does when a mission’s going bad.
“What, did you have one?” Wash asks.
“Cats,” replies Epsilon. “No. There were never any cats.”
Wash looks stunned by the resulting silence and York smiles like he’s won something. York is always winning things. Except he lost his eye, but Maine’s pretty sure that was just Tex. Everybody lost something to Tex. Like their numbers, on the board. Sigma doesn’t always know what to do with numbers, so sometimes Maine just counts things. Now he counts the footsteps coming down the hall toward the door to his room.
“York,” says a voice when the footsteps stop and Maine has to find another thing to count. The voice is Carolina, he thinks, but it’s hard to hear through the fuzziness of Sigma stacking sounds on top of sounds, because he’s making up a song, or something. “York, where is it? I told you, you can’t keep animals on the ship.”
York looks at Wash, who’s petting the cat with a look of confused wonder on his face, and then he reluctantly steps outside the door and then Sigma gets curious so he goes a little quiet, and Maine listens as Carolina starts to argue with him. York never really argues back to anybody.
“If the Director finds out, you’ll –”
“Carolina,” says York steadily. “Come look at him.”
Maine doesn’t see what looking at the cat is going to do. Carolina doesn’t get ruffled by normal girl stuff like cute animals, and besides the cat looks ugly and mangy anyway. But when Carolina comes into the room and looks at Wash petting the cat, the angry lines on her face kind of relax.
“Pet therapy,” says York, quietly. And Sigma is inspired again. Maine listens as he begins to invent new animals.