Posts tagged south.
For AJ! RvB: Extraction
When I have a moment, I will write you something more because it’s your birthday so you need more fics. But for now, here’s that one we collaborated on a long time ago that I found and finished this morning as a small, timely gift (to come before the belated one) :P
“I don’t see why we have a random trooper on this mission,” Wyoming said, staring at the offending man in plain, unenhanced armor.
“It is the mission. Protecting a civilian,” South said and the malice was obvious in her voice. Wyoming and Connie laughed.
“Come on, guys,” York said with an easy shrug. “Just give the guy a chance, it won’t kill us to learn how to play nice with others.”
“Surprise, surprise,” Maine growled.
“Hey, we could all use a little more teamwork.”
The new guy laughed, and betrayed that “he” was actually a “she”.
“You’re not helping my case,” York muttered and the girl raised her hands in defense and defeat.
“You can carry your own weight?” Carolina demanded, speaking for the first time since the Pelican took off. “We’re two minutes from drop point.”
“Yeah, no sweat,” she said and that seemed enough for Carolina.
“If I had known we were going to babysit, I would’ve brought my gold stars to give you for doing a good job at not dying,” South muttered with a smile.
“Who would ever let you within a mile of their kids?” York retorted. North’s small, instinctive laugh came over the radio and died just as suddenly as South’s head whipped around to face him.
“She used to babysit all the time,” North said, suddenly very interested in defending his sister’s credibility to watch over children. “Tons of people in our neighborhood would hire her, all the kids were scared shi—-loved her. Loved her, yes.”
“I’ll have to make due without that validation, then,” the girl said, her voice smothered in sarcasm.
“I see why you stuck up for her, York,” Wash chimed in from across the soldier. “She’s got your terrible, obvious sense of humor.”
“Hey, I have a fucking awesome sense of humor,” both of them said at the same time, and Wash sat back smugly with his arms across his chest, his point sufficiently proven.
“Get ready,” Carolina said firmly, cutting the other replies from the agents short. “Showtime.”
“Really?” York snickered and Carolina’s helmet turned to glare at him. “Sorry, sorry, I just…really?”
The doors opened before anything else could be said, and the agents rushed out, a surly Carolina behind them.
“Are you mad you didn’t get to have the last word,” York asked, head tilted towards the leader in an oddly apologetic stance.
“No,” she growled simply.
“Right, because that would be silly.”
York nodded. “Sorry.”
She looked at him for a moment, her expression softening slightly under the helmet, and then - “You know, I could’ve sworn you were taller.”
“Must be how I’m standing or something. We ready to go?”
She gave him an odd look- as she normally did -before shaking her head and jumping out. The cement cratered under Carolina’s feet, knees nearly touching the ground. The others had taken up observational cover around her and she was momentarily caught in the revelation that their guest, crouched between the twins, had to be taller than South. The thought was jarred out of her head when York hit the ground hard, stringing together curses as he got to his feet and- was he limping? -moved to cover next to Maine. Carolina just shook her head and barked out, “What’ve we got?” She’d long since come to terms with the fact that, so long as he wasn’t hampering the mission, York just did whatever York did.
“Looks like a full house,” North said, scoping the place out on his sniper rifle. “Couple of guards and a lot of traffic in the halls.”
Carolina took in the building and surroundings, forming and discarding plans until she said, “Alright, we’ll go for the tried and true method. Maine, you and South make a nice big diversion on the east end. I saw some fuel tanks there and possibly a generator on the drop in. I want you drawing as many to you as you can. North and Wyoming will scope out sniper positions and cover you. The rest of us will head into the base. Connie, we’ll leave you at the data center to get our secondary objective. Wash, watch her back. York and I will get out guest here through to our primary objective. We’ll move once North and Wyoming are in position. Everyone clear?”
They all nodded, “Got it.”
“Get to it, people!”
The Freelancers split up and as Carolina led hers close to the building entrance, she heard York whispering to the newcomer: “She sounds like some cheesey action movie.”
The newcomer whispered right back, “Hey- everyone’s got their kicks.”
“That doesn’t make it any less ridiculous.”
“Hey,” Carolina snapped at them. “We’ve got a mission to focus on.” They held up their hands in almost identical apologetic shrugs.
By Carolina’s elbow, Connie snickered. “What’s wrong, Carolina? Jealous that York’s got a new banter buddy?”
“Try keeping up this time, Connecticut.”
Connie just shook her head and laughed which was not the reaction Carolina was going for but at least she didn’t say anything again. In the end, that was fine by Carolina because, even though she’d never admit it out loud, she thought this was pretty useless training mission. Get their special guest party member to the center of the facility to gain access to some prototype only she knew the codes for. Carolina didn’t know why she couldn’t just explain how the Freelancers could get it on their own but the Director had decided and she wasn’t about to question him about it. He already shot down Connie’s attempts to ask, anyway.
“It’s kind of metallic. I don’t like saying it.”
[Agent South Dakota, that does not follow. A spoken word cannot resemble a metal in any way other than being the name of one.]
“Well, we’re going to have this conversation without fucking using it because I don’t like the taste of it.”
[…I am unfamiliar with the concept of taste. I was under the impression that only consumed food and drink had taste. Words like “treason” are vocal experiences and do not involve any of the other senses.]
“It tastes like iron, Delta, and I’m not saying it so move the fuck on.”
“I said move on, Delta. That’s an order.”
[Very well, Agent South Dakota, moving on.]
((Based off of this post. I like the concept but I need to play around more with the execution.))
freelancer-south-dakota asked: South
South was always the one who protected her brother in primary school. She was quicker to lash out where North was so nice that the other kids would take advantage. It made the gradual power switch when they entered high school so much tougher to bear - because she knew North was doing it out of a sense of debt and love and loyalty, but part of her resented that she didn’t need to protect her big brother anymore and that he now felt that she was the one who needed protecting.
When people ask why she joined the army with North if she’s so bent on being an individual, she always responds that North thought himself a hero, and she wasn’t going to have him become a martyr on her watch. North always thought it was a lie, but didn’t care because the lie still betrayed that she cared enough to say something uncharacteristically sweet and sentimental about him. In truth she wanted the chance to prove herself the protector, to take back the feeling she had when they were younger and to be there for her big brother.
As the competition between all of the freelancers took over, the rift between her and North that began to form took on a quality of “if I can’t protect him, then he shouldn’t worry about protecting me because I’m just as good”, which eventually grew the seeds of resentment and anger and, finally, self-serving death.
In the last few months leading up to North’s death, South never even thought about those primary school days. Every day after she saw him die, it was all she could remember of their childhood.
havefuncarolina asked: Here, have a random prompt because it's Saturday. :) And you didn't mean to do it/So I don't have to believe it/If you didn't really mean it/Then magical thinking gets us by
“It wasn’t her,” he bleated out, a haze of drugs distracting from the slow flow of blood. South looked at York for something, a sign, a lead, a word of comfort that she wasn’t sure how to give. But North, predictably, was the one holding the bandage over the gunshot, helping the health pack keeping Wash alive, and it was he who answered.
“We all saw it, Wash. It was CT.”
Wash’s eyes focused, eyelids half closed, as he said with determination, “Connie wouldn’t do that. She didn’t mean to. She can’t have…”
South said, quietly, in a voice so unlike her usual, “Connie wouldn’t…but CT might.”
Wash shook his head in disagreement, but didn’t offer more. They rode back to the ship and to the medical bay in silence.
RvB Drabble: Doors
Going into it, South had thought she’d locked away so many things. Feelings she deemed useless. A weakness. Thoughts she knew she couldn’t have, not at this stage in the game.
Coming out of it, it was so easy to blame Delta. As the AI infused itself, she sat back and let it poke around, make a nest, cautiously start to integrate in that secondhand way that it was doomed to exist in. She let it open doors.
She felt again.
It was regret that struck first. An emotion she’d sealed for its lack of use, for its lack of motivation, for its ability to render her confused and speechless and scared. She’d forgotten how scared.
Then guilt. Guilt had been such a foreign concept to her by now. Every screw up and responsibility was blamed and thrown on everyone but herself. She had no need for guilt. She had North.
Grief. She never even expected to keep that, but there it was. Grief and grieving and she let her breath catch angrily as memories of her childhood flew by while she held back tears so she can prove to herself how strong she was.
All she proved to herself was childishness.
“Stop it,” she said angrily. Delta manifested in a soft green glow next to her.
“Stop what, Agent South? I am not currently performing any tasks.”
“Just fucking stop it, ok?”
Delta stood there, silent, unsure what to do in the face of anger. In the face of this foreign emotion directed at him by his new host. “Alright,” he finally said, because it seemed appropriate. That’s what York used to say when Carolina would snap at him, when she would blame him for things he logically had no fault over. So Delta applied it here, where the situation fit. It seemed to calm and relax his host, so he added it to his memory banks as a preferred response.
South leaned her head back with a soft smile and slowly, surely, doors closed and locked again.
It wasn’t guilt because it wasn’t her fault she was feeling these things, it was Delta’s.
It wasn’t grief because it wasn’t her memories coming back out of sentiment, it was Delta viewing them for the first time, perfectly normal.
It wasn’t regret over killing North. It was regret over taking Delta, over letting him into her brain.
She wasn’t scared.
By the next morning, she’d even started to believe it herself.
the word tasted like iron in her mouth
written on a face of shock
on a face of “why, sister?”
written in a language she can read
but doesn’t want to
it tastes like iron in her mouth.
“Come on, man,” York said, four beers and an amicable smile deep. “Why’d you join?”
North looked at him over the top of his own bottle. “Alright, alright. You want the one I tell the officers, or the real reason?”
“Deal was both,” Wash said, grinning at this new game they’d thought of. Everything seemed to make him smile at this point, though, and he suspected it was that expert way that Maine made sure everyone’s hands were always holding something - cards, alcohol, or, usually, both.
They always talked over poker games, but they usually weren’t so truthful about it.
Wash blamed the alcohol. York thanked it.
“Fine,” North said with a grin. “When I signed up and they asked, right, I said, right, get this, I told them that I wanted the opportunity to serve my country.” Wyoming let out a low chuckle and South just scoffed into her glass. “Standard, right? Don’t mean-doesn’t mean it’s not true, it’s just… it wasn’t a reason, right?”
“So what was?” Connie asked, her swaying attention holding remarkably steady on his face.
“I wanted to be Steve,” North answered.
“Your first name is Steve?” York’s brows furrowed in slight confusion.
“No, no, but, Steve. Steve Rogers. The Captain, man. Captain America! I’d been reading him since I was little, right? And he started out as just a soldier so, y’know, I thought I could too. Y’know?”
York nodded his agreement and drank his beer in celebration of a role model. “I could see, I mean, I do, I see what you see in him, North.”
“Yeah, well,” North said, pointing the neck of his bottle at the next victim. “How about it, Connie?”
RvB: Equipment Testing
As they landed for their weekly training mission planet-side, Carolina looked around at her troops and said over the radio, “did that ride seem a little…bumpy to you?”
Connie laughed from across the airplane. Carolina’s helmet snapped towards her with a warning, and South just shrugged and said, “who cares, we’re here.” Carolina sighed and didn’t pursue it.
“Alright, it’s a simple scout and recovery mission in an enemy base,” Carolina said, standing up and leading by example as she lined up at the door, waiting for it to open. “Standard teams, standard practice. Maine, you’re with me and York.”
“Growl. Woof,” Maine said, and Carolina stared at him, hard.
“I think he’s got a cold,” York said next to her in explanation and she shrugged it off as just one more weird thing to her day so far.
“Right. Whatever, you’re good for this mission?” Maine nodded, tersely like he always does, and she sighed. It’s a wonder anything goes smoothly with this team. Ever.
RvB: Not Fade Away
She didn’t expect a ceremony. Or even a funeral. The only one who would’ve come to that would’ve been North himself, and he was long gone by then. She didn’t even expect Wash to be sentimental, not since Epsilon, not since everything that happened with the Meta and Delta. She didn’t expect much. South had gone her whole life not having people expect much of her. She supposed that after a certain point, a threshold of overexposure, such specific apathy and low standards became contagious.
She also didn’t expect to be blown up. She didn’t expect him to shoot her where she couldn’t move anymore, to kill her so she couldn’t talk. She didn’t expect him to leave nothing of her. Not that there was anyone to send anything that was left to.
She didn’t expect Wash to be sentimental, not really. But she didn’t expect him to be cruel, either.
She supposed she deserved the lack of ceremony, of compassion, of a thoughtful word or proper burial, because she’d killed the only one who knew what her wishes would have been. What the last thing she wanted to hear was. She’d made a pact with her brother when they joined the army together, that if one of them is dying, the other has to do something. Has to make sure the last moments, the last things their sibling hears is something they’d find comfort in.
She’d kept her end of the bargain. Well, sort of. She supposed there was some kind of unspoken clause that the cause of death wouldn’t be the same person administering this sacred honor.
But North had died hearing the words he wanted to hear.
She had died hearing bullets and explosions, arguments between people she didn’t know, nor did she care to. The worst of her character laid out for everyone to see by the stolen AI she never quite got along with.
It just didn’t seem fair.
Doesn’t everyone deserve a death? A proper one?
Perhaps, she thought, looking over her own body, at Wash scanning her for equipment. Perhaps people like me don’t deserve mourning. She thought of the words North would have said to her, had he been here. Had she not murdered him.
She’d found them in his book, in that journal he always wrote in and carried around, found the poem and read just that page obsessively. When she told him the words he needed to remember, he seemed surprised she would have thought of poetry. But of course she would have. She had wanted to be like her big brother, still so young, still so eager to gain the approval she never realized she didn’t have to work for.
Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there, I do not sleep.
She supposed it’d be more accurate, more meaningful, if there was a grave in question. If anyone was left to cry at all. If there was anything left of her.
Anything other than memories of disappointment and betrayal.
Do not stand at my grave and cry,
I am not there, I did not die.
RvB: Dying is Easy
She thought it’d be quick.
It was naive, really. She knew how little movies got right, and she’d shot people before. They went down, but it was a while before they stopped moving, stopped speaking, stopped twitching.
She wished more than anything he’d been shot in the head or the throat. She wished he had been rendered incapable of consciousness. She wished she couldn’t see him look at her, or hear him speak.
But there he was, her brother, lying and bleeding by her fault. Not that he knew it.
Or maybe he did.
South hoped he didn’t have time right now to figure it out.
It’s not like she didn’t feel remorse, she did. Or guilt, or anything. She’d been feeling them all for months now. It was that this, her brother’s head in her lap, his wheezing breaths, this felt so much different than how she imagined it.
He coughed and wheezed and, softly, whispered into the radio and she leaned closer to him as if to hear the words, even if it’d have no effect. A force of habit of an unarmed woman. A human thing to do.
It surprised her she could still do human things. Especially now. Especially here.
“Do you… remember… the poem?” he said between shaky breaths. She heard the wet cough and could only assume it was blood.
“What? What-which poem. The one that you wanted on…on your grave?”
He nodded, as if to preserve his voice, but the movement caused an even bigger coughing fit. “Beyond this place of wrath and tears,” he said, his breath short.
“Looms but the Horror of the shade,” South picked up and she could see through the visor that he smiled at her. She might have imagined it, but maybe the light was just right, maybe he actually did it. “And yet the menace of the years-”
“Finds and shall find me unafraid.” His arm gripped her armor tighter, she felt it press into her skin. She returned the pressure, eagerly, hungrily, telling herself she was just that good an actress, telling herself she’d be fine once he finally stopped talking.
Once he finally died.
“It matters not how straight the gate,” she went on softly into her microphone, to a chorus of tiny, weakening gestures of gratitude from her brother. “How charged with punishments the scroll.”
“I am the master of my fate,” he said, wheezing his blood up into his words again. “I-I am-am-”
“I am the captain of my soul,” she finished for him as he struggled with the last few vital signs of life.
South never thought herself a murderer. A killer, sure, but that was war.
This was planned. Premeditated. Predicted.
This was her fault, her desire, her idea. This was her death. Her killing. Her murder.
“I thank whatever gods may be,” she said, standing up and dusting herself off as she looked down at her brother’s body. She knew somewhere inside the recovery beacon was going off. She knew Theta was already with the Meta, knew Wash would be here soon, and knew she’d have to prepare herself to seem distraught. The last part was easier than she ever honestly thought it’d be.
“For my unconquerable soul.”
RvB Drabble: Hero Training (pre-s9)
“How come you get to be Captain America?”
North looked up at Wyoming with a sigh and a small smirk. “Well, for starters, I’m American.”
“That’s just my point,” Wyoming explained. “Where’s the irony?”
“Shut up, Spidey,” York called out while he was buckling in his helmet. “You’re supposed to be a snarky teenager, not a whiny one.” That shut Wyoming up and with a click, the final piece of York’s armor was on.
“Everyone ready?” he asked, as those around him nodded.
“Are you sure it’s not breaking protocol…” Wash started, quietly trailing off as everyone in the locker room turned to stare at him. “Nevermind,” he finally conceded, and followed everyone else to the practice field.
Carolina, Connie and South were all waiting for them as they walked out. Every muscle in Carolina’s body hammered in the fact that her patience had long ago left, and what the hell were they doing in the locker room for that long anyway?
“You’re late,” she said.
“It’s a training simulation, Carolina. And you said we needed to be here fifteen minutes early. We’re late to being early. By three minutes.” York said this easily, like he said everything. Carolina’s stance didn’t change, but she didn’t chew him out like she would have if anyone else had said that to her.
“Right. Let’s go.”
They filed off, North jogging up to keep pace with his sister, Connie waiting out the line of people until she could walk next to Wash. “What took you guys so long?” she said.
Wash stumbled over his first word and Connie immediately knew that something was up. “We were changing, Connie, takes longer when it’s crowded.” He looked over at the team, at Wyoming and Maine, walking in silence. North and South, North making some kind of a joke and South completely ignoring it (Wash had grown accustomed to North’s humor hand gestures), York walking with a slightly out of place spring in his step behind the ever-serious Carolina. “Here we go,” he mumbled as the arena opened to them.
Three seconds in and York turned with a nod to North, and Wash knew the two freelancers would be grinning like kids in a candy store under their helmets. “Yo, Captain America,” York said, causing Carolina to snap her head and look at him. “Flank left with me behind that pillar.”
North was already moving. “Sure thing, Superman.”
“Super-Captain-what?” Carolina said, for a moment turning her head to follow their retreating bodies in confusion.
“Hulk,” Wyoming said with a nod to Maine. “Time to move.”
South’s voice came over the radio clearly with a disbelieving, “are you dorks actually using superhero code names?”
“What’s yours?” Connie quickly asked Wash.
“He’s got a code name already,” Carolina said, her impatience in her voice. “It’s Agent Washington.”
“Nightwing,” Wash said, and he felt Carolina’s stare on the back of his head as he rushed past her.
The three women stood, watching and providing cover as their radios chattered with commands barked at “Spiderman”, or “Hulk” and as the guys responded to these names just as quickly and easily as they took to “Wyoming” and “Maine”.
“Do you think I’d be Wonder Woman?” Connie said softly over her radio. South gave her a look through her helmet.
“Who the fuck is that?” she spat, turning her attention back to the simulation battle.
“I think you’d be Connie,” Carolina said firmly.
“Yeah, but,” she said, biting her lip, trying to stop herself from arguing with Carolina during a battle even if it was about something completely unrelated, even if she was carrying her weight just fine. She’d never hear the end of it.
North answered her question when he passed her at a run, closing in on a cluster of “enemy” soldiers, with an out of breath, “hey, Wonder Woman, you coming?”
She’d never tell Carolina or South about the smile on her face as she followed Captain America into battle.
unscpillarofautumn-deactivated2 asked: "Little sister / I'm here for you / If you ever need to talk to me / Not going to keep you / Just love to see you / Is there anyway they'll let you leave? " north and south
South knew her brother just wanted her happy, wanted her to succeed and be the best she could be so that she can live her own life her way, and he’d do anything to see that happen. When she said she wanted to go off the grid, he jumped at the chance to go with her, because for her, he’d do anything. Anything, it seemed, short of refusing an AI.
alexiorsay asked: Oh god these are just too good. You know how when you have a really good book you can't wait to get home from school to read another chapter? That's kind of what your blog has turned into for me. "You who I called brother/how could you have come to hate me so? Is this what you wanted?" :3
She didn’t know when it happened. Maybe it was when she rejoiced that Carolina had fallen in the ranks, and he had given her that glare, or when she criticized Wash for not being strong enough to deal with his AI, or maybe it was the look she had on her face when she rose to second place on the board as all the other freelancers reeled from having two brains thinking at once (everyone but Tex), because he never quite looked at her the same way after that. South didn’t know when North stopped seeing her as his sister, as someone to be protected, but she was glad because it made what she had to do easier.
Anonymous asked: Hmm, how about... "Seems that she dissapeared without a trace... Did she ever marry oh, whats his face? I made a point to burn all up the photographs, She went away and then I took a different path."
As much as Command wanted to hear something, anything, a whisper of South, she knew that if the freelancer ever saw what she’s become now (wings and flight forgotten), South wouldn’t look twice (which would be good because one look of disappointment on that face would be one too much).