In the dream someone was speaking to you. But it faded as the dream crashed rumbling down. You closed your ears as well as eyes.
You were going to kill Strider!
It was not so surprising that was your first thought of waking up. Your head hurt more than the pull-back of spoor used to do. At least that disappeared after a while, right now your skull was pounding like heartbeats and were probably bleeding. Shortly said, the landing hadn’t been easy, and you blamed it all on Strider. (You knew fully and clear that the space sis was the one handling… well space. But you just couldn’t put the blame on such a sweet girl, and it was a good way to relief some repressed blackroom).
Your eyesight was blurry, but slowly started to return, and it was with relief you looked up into a black sky. The constallions were familiar and nostalgic, safe and sad as you knew them well after sitting and waiting for Goatdad long, long ago. Your surroundings were a bit more concerning, as you didn’t recognize the forest around you. The trees were thicker than the ones you had at your Hive, which probably meant you were far from sea.
Meeting a sea dweller the first thing you do, might not have been that pleasurable, but on the other hand you now had no idea where you were, what animals that lived here, or how to survive. Nepeta would probably knew what to do, you’d have to ask her later… if she decided to answer you. You weren’t surprised she was still cautious around you (she was right to be).
With your eyesight now fully-clear, and the pounding in your head subsiding, you started to look around after your friends. For a horrible moment you got the feeling that you had landed alone, but then you made out a shape further away.
Tavros lay further away, seemingly unconscious but hopefully breathing. Looking around more you also spotted Terezi way back, the teal-blood not moving either but didn’t seem hurt. But then there was no one more. Where was Karkat? You started to stand up all too sudden, making your head swim again, and forcing you to get back again.
Of course all of you hadn’t expected everything to go perfect, but couldn’t you at least have stayed together? But at least you weren’t alone. You managed to rise when your head wasn’t spinning anymore and started to walk over to Tavros. With the new clearity you also started to hear things. A rustle too clumsy to be animal, a whisper to loud to be just a breeze. You tensed up.
You were very much not alone.
Carefully you slipped out Karkat’s sickles, and walked faster towards Tavros. It would be hard to protect them both alone… but if you brought them together it might be easier. Still with all concentration out in the woods you bent down to pick up Tavros.
Instantly a spear shot by and missed you precisely and you crouched, protecting Tavros’s still unconscious body. Whoever they were you could probably take them on if only not… you stopped that train of thought as you saw your attackers come out from hiding. Two rusts, a yellowblood, and a lighter green. They were all adults.
For a moment everything went blank in your mind, as it searched for a reason. They could only be deserters… if not you hadn't landed on Alternia but on a nearby planet instead. It was something you should have given more attention too, but as the yellowblood feched his spear the rustblood woman got to close to Tavros.
With a swipe of the sickles and a growl you got them away but the limeblood was already way too close to Terezi. You threw one of the sickles, but missed your target as he moved subconsciously. You felt your chances fade, these were not only adults, but fully capable warriors.
“Subdue him!” Mr. Yellow screamed, and the two rusts appeared in front of you. Too late you noticed them being distractions and Limey grabbed you in a headlock from behind. His arm pushed at your windpipe and you trashed to get away, feeling your body scream about muscles needing oxygen.
As a last card you summoned the chucklevoodoo and concentrated them on the attacker behind. Only for a moment he stilled, but that was enough to throw him out of balance and you tumbled to the ground, holding you sickles to his neck and maybe if you just cut his throat he would stop moving and maybe you could be fast and kill the others before Tavros and Terezi woke up they wouldn’t like this but it would be so easy so fun and….
“Stop.” Somehow, the grownups stopped, looking at the newcomer, and even stranger so did you. It wasn’t like when Karkat talked to you, not needing to raise his voice, as it split through every Melody of the Messiahs or someone else’s useless chatter. This voice was calm and collected, a bit sad maybe, and was miles away from shouting. Undeniable though, it was still Karkat’s voice.
The adults backed off, turning to the newcomer, whose face was still clouded by his hood. Only the hood gave even more convincing, as it was embroidered with the same red as Karkat’s blood. (Sure, Karkat hid his blood colour well, but as his morail you had seen him cry at close distance).
Even while fighting your instincts you felt yourself relax, immediately remembering the soothing feeling Karkat always gave you. It was like the eye of a storm, not hiding the mess outside but giving you a place to stay for a moment. This one was different. He didn’t give you a so much “moraily-feel” but leaderlier, or like a lusus were supposed to be.
“Are these trolls your friends or quadrants?” The adult asked you, motioning for his followers to pick Terezi and Tavros up. Now when you looked more carefully you could see how they handled them both with carefulness and mercy that an enemy would never show. All of them were on the lower half of the spectrum so counting that way; you were the one in most danger. In continuity, they could be in danger for being your friends…. so you never gave an answer.
Surprisingly the Karkat-clone smiled. “I get it.” Then he rose up a bit, looking at Tavros and Terezi and then around at the group around you. “They look hurt, so we’ll take them back to the base.” He ordered and you started a complaint, but another came before.
“B-but Signless!” The yellowblood interrupted, still clinging to his weapon and stepping in between. “You cannot trust these, even if they are children! Especially this indigo! They are dangerous, and should be subdued as quickly before they alert someone!” The one called signless (and true, he didn’t have the sign of cancer that Karkat wore) pushed the weapon down from the aggressive troll (very much like Karkat as he calmed Kanaya and Terezi) before walking around him to you.
He put a hand on your head, and smiled softly. You didn’t move as he walked around you, cautious but as calm you could be. It was stupid to trust someone only by judging appearance and acts, but you couldn’t really help it. (What did you have for other options anyway?)
“Look” The signless said a hand ruffled your hair, nestling out small knots as they passed by and it was all so wrong because this wasn’t Karkat and you shouldn’t relax like this. But everything about this adult whispered harmlessness, and for the first time you noticed he didn’t carry more weapons than a small knife. “He is only scared. Right now, we are the attackers and he’s trying to protect his friends.”
Once again the yellowblood tried to interfere, but the higher rust stepped forward and stopped him, looking at you with what might have been an apologizing expression, if it were not a bit smug. “The Signless is correct, we were at fault here. I’m sorry we frightened you, little highblood-wriggler.”
It wasn’t a long walk to their base, but you made sure to remember the way correctly. Terezi groaned in her sleep and scrunched her nose, at something you probably couldn’t smell. It was hidden in a hive, or more correctly under it, as tunnels expanded much further than you would have guessed. Most of the trolls looked at you, some accusingly but mostly confused and guarded. The whole way the Signless kept close to you and in a way, protected you.
He really saw you as a wriggler, careful and informing about everything he did, and that was probably why you accepted one wrist being chained. “You make them uncomfortable and scared. It’s safer this way.” He left after that, surprisingly not taking your speicibus, and you were alone with some poor guy who you supposed were your guard.
Of course, if you wanted to, you could probably find a way out of this. Most of them were adults, or at least 9 or 10 sweeps old at youngest. You didn’t really know how strong and how much you could use your chucklevoodoo, but you could probably scare someone enough to help you or simply find something from your sylladex. That… was a bit weird actually. You hadn’t thought about it too much, but why hadn’t they taken your weapons if they were so scared. And why were adults here? You had accepted in the middle of panic and fighting that they were simply on another planet of the Alternian Empire… but what if…
Slowly, pieces started to fit together one after one. How they probably didn’t even know about the sylladex, why they were so desperate to kill you, why they were so scared of you, The Indigo Capricorn. This was not the wrong place, but the wrong time, and that man was Karkat’s ancestor. Leaning back against the wall, you growled, the guard shifting uncomfortably. You closed your eyes and thought of the only one responsible for this.
You were going to kill Strider.
You heard voices call for you, but you didn’t listen, didn’t want to listen. This is not how it was supposed to be.
Someone was shaking you. In reaction you groaned and rolled over, as to get away from the annoying character. Seriously? You could finally have a decent day’s sleep and this bastard was all whining and pushing. You snapped something tiredly, and the intrusion stopped for a while, before intelligently realizing you were not going to go up. Congratulations asshole. The pushes were harder now, and a voice started to break through the haze. The thing that penetrated your dream state was that the voice was sounding desperate, and scared.
“For glubbing… Kar, get up, you can’t sleep here, Kar! That much for a glorious leader alright… this is hopeless!” No doubt about it, that was Eridan’s voice. Maybe he would go away if you continued to pretend to sleep, but then he made a yelp and became unusually quiet for a moment before the voice came back again, whispering. “Please wake up…! Coddamn bastard…”
Finally you opened your eyes begrudgingly and glared up at him, almost missing the slight smile of relief on his face that disappeared when you opened your mouth. “Good night to you too fishfreak. Thank you oh so godly much for not letting me sleep five minutes more dear lus--.” Suddenly his hand were in your face, muffling whatever tired rambling you were about to barf up.
“Oh shut up.” Eridan hushed angrily, and shot a look out from what you now noticed was a hiding place. “If they find us, they won’t even care if fifty present of us are seadwellers, they will kill us anyway.” Before you had the chance to snarl something back, Eridan simply pointed to the place beyond the rock they hid behind, and any complaint died in your mouth.
All air went out of you, and you looked where he had pointed before hurryingly pulling back. You had seen enough. White faces, uniforms that would have make you laugh if not for the fact that they terrified you, indigoes mixed with low seadwellers and very high blues. Subjugglators.
Apparently paradox space decided to play one last, “you’re screwed” on your sorry ass. You sank back on his knees, slowly, knowing the luck that they hadn’t been found yet was a miracle soon to end.
“You gotta be fucking with me.”