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2. "Golden Glass", Damian + Kyle

3. "Source Discovered", various

6: "This Ain't No Mystery Machine", Tsundere Titans

7. "Real Hot Shit", various - pornstars

golden glass

Date: 2013-03-26 01:45 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)

The bare bulb in the kitchen always yellowed within a week of being installed. Damian made a point to purchase clear lights when conducting his experiment, but it never altered the results: the light above Rayner’s chair at the table changed from white to yellow in a matter of days, within a few mealtimes of sharing breakfast and dinner with Damian and pretending their domestic arrangement was entirely normal.

“Did you finish your paper?” Rayner asked from his seat at the head of the table, and the bulb above him buzzed when he spoke. He didn’t seem to notice it, but Damian looked overhead and Rayner’s eyes thinned in suspicion as they followed Damian‘s gaze.

“Yes, Papi,” Damian said quickly, redirecting Rayner’s attention to himself. He shuffled his eggs with his fork and took a bite, forcing himself to swallow past the knot in his throat.

The hardness that seized Rayner’s features sometimes dissipated into his normal pleasant smile, and he stood to gather both of their plates and carry them to the sink. “I’ll see you after school. Have a good day, Damicito!” His hand brushed through Damian’s hair as he passed him on the way to the door, and the low buzz from the lightbulb seemed to flood Damian’s mind at the contact.

But his mind had been filled with static for five years now, since the night the dead air on the Watchtower feed had been broken by screams that Hal Jordan had been killed-- ripped apart, they’d said, legs in one room and arms in another and no one realized Damian had hacked into their channel, had listened with’ his limbs wrapped tight to his chest for fear of them being torn asunder-- and that Parallax had not been contained, repeat, Parallax is moving on an unknown trajectory at this time! Target unknown, target unknown, repeat, Parallax is moving on an unknown--

“I told you I’d come for you, Damicito.”

It was Rayner’s warm voice that issued from the gaping maw where his mouth should have been. Damian had never seen him enter his bedroom, but he was standing there at Damian’s nightstand and looking down upon him, not unkindly, really. He opened his arms and Damian had reached up for him, allowed Rayner to gather him close in his little dinosaur pajamas and carry him through the open French windows. The white gauze of the curtains blew across Damian’s face in the midnight breeze as they departed, and he never saw Wayne Manor or anyone who’d dwelled within it again.

He’d been frightened-- he was only a child, of course he was-- but he’d also been convinced Rayner wouldn’t hurt him, regardless of the entity that possessed him. Five years later, Damian still had no memories of Rayner hurting him. He did recall sometimes waking in bed late at night, lacerations on his arms and a gaping wound on his collarbone as if something had been siphoned from him, Rayner standing by his nightstand and looking down upon him as he’d done the night he took Damian from Wayne Manor. His mouth was always a little too wide to look natural now even when Parallax willed it into a human shape, and his teeth gleamed as he licked them clean of something dark and sticky. “Did you get into a fight? Ah, my Damicito.” He’d take Damian to the adjacent bathroom and sit the teenager on the edge of the bathtub to clean his wounds, asking him about schoolwork and telling him about a new sketchbook he’d bought for him and have you painted anything lately? We should go to the beach soon, Damicito, it’s warm and you love to swim. Damicito, you’re so quiet, is everything okay?

The answer to that question was yes. Damian knew that was the answer without Rayner having to prompt him aloud, through the same wordless channel that transmitted information like his captor expecting to be called “Papi” and that the field for his name on his schoolwork must always be completed with Damian Rayner. He’d written Damian Wayne once, by accident, his mind distracted and muscle memory drawing his hand across the paper in a familiar pattern. He didn’t realize his mistake until Rayner reviewed his test days later. He’d said nothing, just circled the offending surname with a pen and stuck it to the refrigerator with a magnet shaped like a smiling giraffe. “You got an A! Very good, Damicito,” he’d said, and he left the kitchen. The yellow bulb whined and flickered in the next moments, Damian watching it in dread that it might extinguish entirely.

It didn’t. Rayner never raised hand to him that Damian could remember, but the boy woke that night with teeth marks buried in his flesh, the punctures so deep he felt he’d been sapped from the marrow of his bones. Rayner stood there at the nightstand to ask again, “Did you get into a fight?”

But Damian didn’t get into fights, not anymore. Not after living with Rayner on the planet of H’rothi for a couple of years, many of its colonies settled by humans and offering lifestyles similar to those found on Earth, but far removed from the League’s jurisdiction. During the first year, Damian frequently wondered if anyone on Earth had the ability to reach such a remote planet in their search for him, or if Rayner had left anyone alive who might have tried. It’d been long enough now that the possibility only crossed his mind on rare occasions. Besides, Rayner always knew when Damian was thinking about things that displeased him. He always knew, and he never said anything about it. Damian suffered the lingering marks of someone’s vengeance in the deep indigo night, never memory of receiving them.

That’s how he recognized the day that Rayner finally died, whatever had been left of his spirit, and the shell of his body was fully claimed by Parallax at last.

It was night when Parallax came to Damian. It was always night. The early morning hours were heralded by lavender streaks blushing across the violet sky on Hroth’i, and Damian lie awake in bed, watching the transition that had become familiar over the last five years. He had difficulty sleeping for very long due to his fear of what he’d find when he awoke, but Rayner insisted he lie in bed for eight hours every night either way. Parallax had very basic notions of human child-rearing: school, meals at a table, putting the child to bed at night to rest before being tortured.


That was the first indication for alarm. Damian, not Damicito. Damian moved to sit up in his bed, his eyes fixed on Rayner standing in his doorway, but Rayner motioned for him to remain prone.

Rayner closed the distance between them, taking up his customary perch before Damian’s nightstand and staring down upon him, cold, unspeaking. “Papi?” Damian tried, and the corner of Rayner’s too-wide mouth curved with cruel amusement.

He pulled Damian’s blankets away from the boy’s body, and Damian shivered at the sudden rush of cold air as Rayner lifted his shirt to just under his arms, splaying icy fingers across his chest and stomach. Damian shuddered as those frigid hands traced patterns over the canvas of his skin, and he realized when Rayner flipped him over to examine his back that Parallax was looking for a patch of skin he’d not yet scarred.

Rayner’s weight settled upon him, and Damian thrashed as thick tentacles sucked tight to his arms and seeped poison through the raised skin, making him heavy and boneless and compliant. “Kyle,” he begged, and he screamed when circular rows of teeth drilled into the back of his neck. Not because it hurt-- and it did, it was agonizing-- but because he understood now that, all the times this had happened before, Rayner had just enough control left to make certain Damian wasn’t awake for it. Rayner had been there to soothe him in the aftermath, to speak his pet name with affection and make certain Damian wasn’t alone. But Rayner had finally been expelled from his own body and Damian was alone, alone with Parallax drinking deeply of something he found in the boy’s blood and bones.

More pain than the human body could endure finally resulted in oblivion, and Damian woke to the fire-orange sky of the H’rothian afternoon burning like flame outside the window. His bed linens were dark with spilled blood, and he felt the dried crust on his back crumble as he sat up.

“Kyle!” he cried through his raw throat, because Rayner had to be somewhere, didn’t he? And from the kitchen down the hall came an answer: “Damian, come here.” Rayner’s voice, Parallax’s words.

Damian held himself tall, stone-lipped as he limped into the kitchen, Rayner seated at the head of the table just like any other morning. “Sleep well, Damicito?” He’d made no effort today to disguise Parallax’s rasping maw, the long tongue licking stretched lips as the creature laughed around the endearment. The yellow bulb over his head was lurid now, casting the entire room in its sickly glow.

From his pocket, Damian withdrew a Green Lantern ring: small, made for the hand of a ten-year-old boy. Damian’s fingers were larger now, but it would do. Rayner stood suddenly, chair scraping the linoleum floor with a screech, and Damian slid the ring to his first knuckle, as far as it would go, without knowing what he intended to do. He only knew that there was no longer a risk of hurting Kyle, no longer the hope that staying alive might somehow restore the life of his friend.

A white wave rushed him as soon as the ring bonded to his finger, flooding every sense with energy that coursed through his body in a torrent of blinding clarity. He saw his bright reflection thrown against the burnt orange outside the windowpane, his clothes a blend of a Lantern’s sleek bodysuits and Batman’s scalloped cape; and white, scalding white from head to toe, pouring from hair and feet and fingertips. His eyes glowed with colorless radiance as he held Parallax in his sight, and someone spoke inside his head.

It’ll be okay now, Damicito. I promise this time.

Rayner’s voice, purified of the maddening buzz that stained it when Parallax borrowed it to convince Damian to do his bidding. No, Kyle was right there inside his head now, and Damian understood: each time Parallax had attached to him like a succubus, he’d been transferring Rayner to him with every drop of Damian he drained. Damian Rayner. Kyle had been trying to tell Damian the plan, and Parallax had been furious when he recognized it first.

The creature ripped itself from Rayner’s body, tearing flesh down the middle like rice paper and Damian reeled with his own revulsion as well as Kyle’s horror in watching his body split across the seams. You can stay with me, Damian assured the other presence in his mind, and he could feel Rayner’s smile somewhere around his chest, warm with amusement even now.

“Ion,” Parallax hissed around his thick, rubbery tongue.

It’ll be okay, Kyle told Damian again, and Damian relinquished control to him, to the white supernova that exploded around his core and razed him inside and out.

He was only aware of Ion and Parallax in the periphery of his consciousness as the kitchen was destroyed around them, the home where he’d grown from child to young man disintegrating along with its illusions of normalcy. Damian focused instead on the bare bulb that clung to the remnant of ceiling above him, flashing yellow and white as it swung back and forth, yellow and white, white and yellow--

It exploded in a shower of glass and clear sparks, and its jaundiced light was extinguished at last.

Re: golden glass

Date: 2013-03-26 08:08 am (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
not the OP but anon this is FANTASTIC

Re: golden glass

Date: 2013-03-26 04:25 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
Also not the OP but I am CHILLED by what you did with this prompt! The pervasive yellow and the idea of Damian biding his time for FIVE FUCKING YEARS, good god.

Re: golden glass

Date: 2013-03-27 09:51 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
also not the OP but I cried, I am crying right now, I'm going to think about this for a really long time, it's been burned into my brain as something I wish actually happened, but it's so gloriously beautiful and richly written as it is. wow, just WOW. wowwowow

Re: golden glass

Date: 2013-03-28 02:11 pm (UTC)
From: (Anonymous)
So many feels!



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