Dave closed his eyes.
Then opened them.
Everything was just as it had been before in the small slice of unknown wild world of which they’d been chucked on upon completion of The Game. Same shifting trees; same green grass; same blue sky. Everything was as it should be. Nothing had changed, but how would he know? He didn't know this planet; this universe at all.
So he closed his eyes again;
Then opened them.
A crow had landed in one of the nearby trees, pecking curiously at a hole in the wood. At least he thought it was a crow? It looked like one, but anything was possible here it seemed. Dave trained his gaze on it; unable to look away nor even blink. Then he did.
He closed his eyes;
The crow-like thing had moved. It now stood on the grass a little bit away from Dave: Well out of his reach but well within his sight. So he stared; the crow stared back.
Then he closed his eyes.
When Dave opened them once again the crow had disappeared. Everything was as normal as this world could be once again.
Rose stood before him, staring just as intensely at him as he had done with the crow.
“You've been out here for hours, dear brother.” She stated, because God bless the day that anything she said sound like a honest to god question. “Would you like to explain?” See?
“Nothin’ to stress about, oh sister mine. Just sittin’ under this here tree,” At this he leaned back pointedly, despite the feeling of rough bark cutting into his back. “Admirin’ this here sunset.” Gesturing grandly towards the sky above them, which was in fact still as bright blue as the mid-day sky would allow: Which was very. Rose nodded sagely, humoring him.
“Yes, of course. Who would not take the luxurious opportunity to observe the setting of the sun in all its magnificent glory.” Dave shot Rose a smirk.
“Only a pleb would, that’s who.” Rose smiled back. Gracefully she took at seat on the ground beside her brother, bringing her legs up beside her; for as cat graceful as she was, she didn't seem to mind the thought of getting dirty in the, well, dirt. “What’cha doing out here Rosie? Or did you just come to see this fine slice of Strider?”
“Well, as we are practically out in the middle of no where with a severe lack of anything to do, I suppose travelling here to see my incest obsessed brother might have been the original intent.” Her faux friendly look turned sly. “Although, the marvelous sunset you so graciously pointed out may have changed my priorities.” Dave gasped, clutching at his heart in dismay.
“How dare! I thought we were friends Rose! Brothers in arms! Practically the same person!” He pretended to sway as well as he could with his butt still firmly planted on the ground; before promptly draping himself on his sister’s lap. “That’s it. I can’t go on any longer. Tell Egderp he can inherit all my music shit and Karkat can have Sweet Bro ‘n’ Hella Jeff. He’s gotta read all of it, through.” Rose’s smirk melted into something sweet once again as she brushed Dave’s fringe back tenderly.
“But of course Brother Dearest. In fact, I will tie him to a chair and play the entirety of your comic in a slide show format, with horribly inappropriate sound effects to enhance the experience.” She carefully slid his shades off of his face. “I do believe that’s how you would have wanted it, correct?”
“Oh yeeeah.” He grinned, “Wouldn't want it any other way Rosie.”
They sat there for a while in the shade of the tree; in silence. Rose continued to brush her fingers through Dave’s hair and Dave continued his exercise in staring; this time with Rose as his subject of interest.
“Ready to tell me the real reason you’re out here?”
Rose was looking down at him, just as he was looking up at her. He stared at her, had been since she’d taken off his shades; since he’d laid down in her lap; since she’d entered his view.
He closed his eyes to her staring at him,
And when he opened them she hadn't moved an inch. She was still there. Unchanged. But she had, she had changed.
They all had.
“Everything’s changed.” He murmured, “Bro’s dead, so’s your Mum. John and Jade aren't the ones we started with. We’re friends with a bunch of aliens and our dead slash not-dead guardians who’re now a couple decades younger than we remember. ‘N’ we all live on a brand spanking new planet in a brand spanking new universe where we’re a bunch of teenaged gods.” Dave dragged a hand over his face, leaving little trails of dirt in his wake. “We’re gods, Rose. A bunch of unsupervised, underage, undeveloped, unneeded gods.”
“Everything’s changed, Rose.”
“Yes… It has.” She brushed away the dirt threatening to fall into her brother’s eye. “But does it have to be such a bad thing?” Dave was still staring at her as she leaned down, closer to his face. He could smell smoke on her breath. “We've changed. We have grown and matured in order to deal with the trauma that The Game threw at us so callously. Our circle of friends has quintupled and our relationships have persevered. We have created an entire universe in which anything we say goes, in which we are to do as we wish with no limitations. The world is quite literally,” She placed a soft fleeting kiss upon his forehead. “Our oyster.”
Dave could hear the ruffling of feathers nearby, followed by a shrill cawing sound. Past Rose’s head and through the thicket of tree branches, he could make out the shape of a bird, the crow, making its way through the blue sky. How poetic; shame he forgot to bring his camera… Also damn the fact he didn't want to ruin the moment.