bittytsun: (007)

[personal profile] bittytsun 2017-05-18 02:48 am (UTC)(link)
[ Everybody is afraid of it happening, and it finally does. Revivals stop. People die, and that's it - they have one life. One by one, they get picked off. And then it's just them. Just the two of them, like they promised. Royce and Alfie are afraid, but they're okay. Until they go for food at the school, and the ceiling caves in. Alfie gets caught in the rubble, and Royce is too small - he can't do anything. Alfie bleeds out on the floor of the cafeteria while Royce watches.

And then that's it. Royce is eight years old, and he is alone.

He loses track of time. He tries, at first, tells his tablet to put a line down in a notepad file every day at lockdown. After around 200 days, he stops. He stops because it doesn't matter, and nobody is coming for him. So he tries to get out on his own. He goes to the split tunnels - he's chased by a few anomalies that look like people he used to know, but he ignores them. He's going to get out, and he's going to go to London, and... and hope that Alfie remembers him. He'll figure it out when he gets there.

In the split tunnels, he's chased by a monster with a hatchet for an arm, with a wild, angry laugh that reminds him of being told to be polite, reminds him of the first time he watched Alfie die, and he's so distracted that he doesn't notice that the floor is about to give out. It does, and he lands with a crunch breaking his leg in two places, bone jutting out. The anomaly can't reach him, and Royce can't climb out of the hole. He has enough food to last him for a few days. In the end, he's not sure if infection or starvation gets him first.

And then he wakes up. He wakes up in a body bag, in the chapel, and he screams, because - because that wasn't the end. He's still here.

It'll be a shock, maybe, for Alfie to wake up in Norfinbury again. The town is dead silent. Even the network is silent - except for a few messages, peppered here and there, with no replies. The most notable ones seem to be every 365 days, on the same date. The date that Alfie surprised Royce with cupcakes and a knife of his own. Each of these messages are the same; all they say is, in lowercase letters: i wish i could go to london.

There are six of these messages on the network. ]
bittytsun: (001)

[personal profile] bittytsun 2017-05-18 03:03 am (UTC)(link)
[ There's no answer. Nothing at all, not even static, not breathing, not even an acknowledgement. He hasn't heard it. He won't until later, when he gets back to the house. ]
bittytsun: (016)

[personal profile] bittytsun 2017-05-18 03:16 am (UTC)(link)
[ Right around the corner into Royce's line of vision - and Royce looks different. Obviously he does, because it's been six years, but even more than that. He's fourteen, stretched out and a little gangly, his hair a wild mop in his eyes. His cloak is tattered at the ends, and he's skinny as always. Malnourished, maybe. He's hunched, jaw tense, circles deep and dark under his eyes, the look of someone who can't ever relax.

It might be obvious, it might not, but the look in his eyes is not quite right. He sees Alfie, and he doesn't see a human, he sees a threat. He sees an anomaly, something that really looks like what he remembers. He has pictures, and he looks at them often, and he thinks maybe he should delete those pictures because whatever it is that's still here fucking with him has pulled an almost perfect version of Alfie out into the snow to torment him. Any second now it's going to roar and chase him, and Royce is only shocked for a second.

He turns and takes off, running to the closest house he can see at top speed. ]
bittytsun: (026)

[personal profile] bittytsun 2017-05-18 03:22 am (UTC)(link)
[ No. No. No, he cannot handle the sound of that. It's not right, and it's chasing him, like he knew it would. It's too close to what he remembers and none of them have been like this before. The really real ones are usually dreams, or hallucinations sometimes, when he forgets to eat. But they're never real and he can never touch them. The ones outside are deformed and stitched together, with metal punched through their stomachs and ribcages, bleeding from the eyes and dripping static. This is nothing like that.

Royce thunders up the steps and slams the door to the house behind him, and immediately goes to start pushing the couch and chairs and whatever he can up against it. He might not be fast enough. ]

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bywolves: (broods)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-06-11 05:35 am (UTC)(link)
[ Royce doesn't let him walk, at first. He's stubborn and he doesn't want Alfie to hurt himself further. But - Alfie needs it. He needs just that ten or so minutes to not feel useless. So eventually, Royce allows it, just sometimes, walks carefully with his arm around Alfie's waist. He hates how frail Alfie is, and he wants to fix it, he just. Doesn't know how, other than to keep making sure he eats. Royce deals with it quietly, and with as much care as he can. He's not a little boy anymore, but it's clear that he still loves Alfie just as much as he did when he was eight.

This morning, Royce pulls Alfie up a little closer, colder than normal. He makes sure Alfie's wrapped warmly in blankets, and sets off. It's good, at least, how much Alfie seems to have recovered. There are still times where Royce has to snap him out of it, but for the most part, he's aware. Royce is relieved. He never knows exactly what to do when Alfie slips back into forgetting who they both are. ]


Ready. [ Royce murmurs. He walks, taking it slow - and when they reach the entrance to the tunnels, he takes a deep breath. ]

We're going to have to move a lot more slowly, here.
bywolves: (i didn't break that.)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-06-11 05:42 am (UTC)(link)
Mm. [ Royce stares into the tunnels, apprehensive. This is such a bad idea, but... they have to get through here. ] I'll figure out pathways. We'll make it.

There are going to be places where the sled can't go.
bywolves: (shadows.)

[personal profile] bywolves 2017-06-11 05:48 am (UTC)(link)
[ Royce doesn't like being out of Alfie's sight for too long. Not just because he doesn't want Alfie to think that Royce has vanished, but also because Royce doesn't want Alfie to hurt himself. Royce can't die on him again. Not ever. ]

I'm not leaving you anywhere on your own. [ Royce says, vaguely annoyed by the notion. A little more insistently, as he starts walking: ] I'll figure it out.

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