One Last Meal

October 16, 2016:

Preparing to follow the breadcrumbs left by a dead boyfriend, Darcy finds a rose and one last meal.

Darcy's Apartment

Darcy's Apartment, New York City

Characters

NPCs: None.

Mentions: Scarlet Witch

Plot:

Mood Music: [*\# None.]


Fade In…

Long days. Short nights. Darcy was unhappy.

No. That's misleading. Darcy was pissed.

The name 'Apocalypse' led her into myth and history and cults and politics of the like she thought she'd never seen after finishing her thesis. With her memo to Agent May filed, Darcy has returned to her apartment with every intention of packing. There are a few sights around the world with this En Sabah Nur's marking on it that she wants to see for herself, and with some creative filings over the past work day and a half, Darcy has herself a world-wind tour.

She pushes her way into her apartment, flipping on the lights, and kicking the door shut behind her. Fatigued but running on chutzpah, the human SHIELD agent tosses her keys on the table by the two red roses and walks right on by. Like she didn't see them. Like they weren't there. Until she gets out of the fastest 3 minute shower of her life, and walks past as she towels her hair on the way to the kitchen for a protein shake. There's been no time to cook. The protein shakes are from the Mess at work. She controls inventory. No one's going to notice.

She stops by the table, to peer down at the flowers. Two of them. Her eyes close. She's tired. It'd feel so wonderful to just take those roses, lay down in head, and fall asleep to the memory of his smile and his laugh and his endless ranbling… Darcy opens her eyes, the flowers blurry since she's left the glasses on the bathroom as she's want to do after a shower, and she starts to turn away, biting the tip of her tongue. Big girls don't cry, and this ancient alien cult-leader god-wanna-be is going down so hard that Jupiter's going to feel it.

-

Pietro Maximoff, the Pietro from before, at least, has always been known for reinventing himself. Leaving two roses on the same table guaranteed she would see them, but the third one? It must be a surprise.

Death cannot change everything. Some things are meant to always be.

"Big girls don't cry."

He knows her well.

And, this time, his voice is not a thunderous salute, but a soft whisper. With time, he has learned to control the unleashed power he acquired from Apocalypse. It is still a work in progress, but this proves he has made progress.

The glasses are not where Darcy left them. Now, they are hidden. As if he didn't want her to look at the new Pietro. To look at Death. Yes, she saw him before… But tonight everything is different.

-

It's the rose in the place of her glasses that throws her. Darcy had assumed he got in and out before she arrived, and not that he would still be here. The soft sound of his voice has her turning to the doorway, looking up at the blur that is shaped so much like her boyfriend. Her eyes fill, making the blur worse, and she sniffs once before blinking the tears to clear away (they spill, but she has no fucks to give to that).

"Hey," she starts.

-

One would think Death's heart cannot be broken. But it has. Many times, since he became a monster. First, when he revealed himself to Darcy. Then, when he faced and later confronted his own sister. And now… How could he endure this?

A contradictory thought crosses his mind. This was not the plan. Yes, she lives, and Apocalypse has kept his promise. En Sabah Nur took Quicksilver in exchange for her safety, and the speedster has closely verified the fulfillment of such deal. He, as well, has… He has done what he was asked to.

He should be satisfied. But… somehow… she is crying. Was it part of the deal? Is it what he signed for? Is it?

"Scarlet Witch." He refers coldly to his sister. It looks like his memories are, somehow, back. At least for now. "She used her magic… She saw something. Something deep inside of me. But I don't know what it is." A step ahead occurs. And then another. "Her power is… so strong. I… I did something horrible to my sister." So, he remembers. And he regrets. Another step, now very close to his girlfriend. "Maybe, just as she got inside my mind… She can do… More. You should use her power, Darcy." A heartbeat. "If you want to, of course."

What happened to him? What shocked him so hard?

Of course.

Her tears are softly cleaned.

-

Darcy takes in a shuddering breath, leaning into that soft touch.

"Got it," she says simply, now unable to stop her eyes from watering.

"I know you're an impatient son-of-a-bitch but I'm a slow-ass in comparison, so you've got to just hang on and not do anything stupid," she adds, wanting to just lean into him for hours, sleep in his arms for hours, but she's got a very early flight - red-eye - and packing to do. She'll nap on the plane. She rests her cheek on his chest, closing her eyes and resting there.

-

Death's power is immense, much more powerful than his former self, but it is wild. He blurs in and out without thinking, he has created speed mirages, residual copies of himself, unconsciously before… Staying still at will is something he has not managed to do. Until now.

"Nothing stupid." He murmurs, receiving Darcy. He wouldn't harm her. It is the whole point of this, after all. "Please be careful. The change will be violent, and many places around the globe will be attacked… You are strong, much stronger than I… But still, Darcy… Please be careful…" Is it Death still speaking? How could it be? "I won't rush you. Even if you asked me to remain here until the end of the world, you know I would. But… I have something else for you."

Her arms come up when Death holds still for her, and Darcy clings to his sides with her eyes closed. Hearing that many places around the globe are to be targeted has her strengthening that resolve and making a mental note to add to her memo, another email, before she leaves the country.

"What is it?" she asks, her voice feeling tiny for all that she wants to be so strong right now. He's asked her to be, like those whines and frightened barks and meows from teh pet store in Puerte Antigua. She'll get him out. Somehow.

-

Once upon a time, Pietro Maximoff, a young mutant starting a new life in New York, found himself lost in the streets, hungry as always and eager to find a good place to get a good coffee. Why wouldn't he just go to a regular place? One of the shops he already visited frequently? Why shouldn't he trust the safety of the already known good, and instead wandered senselessly around uncharted territory, full of new and strange faces and possibilities?

Because, of course, this is how good stories start.

Death's arms hold Darcy tight. He embraces her strongly, not so strong that it would hurt her, but strong enough to feel he would never let her go. He presses his face against her hair, catching her scent, leaving a kiss, bringing back memories, everything at the same time. Her voice, fragile, is not what it should be. He may not know many things, but he knows this for sure. A whisper is left, too, at some point he wouldn't determine. It doesn't matter. It just happens. What really matters is that she is there. With him. A moment that could last forever… somehow, in his heart, it will.

When the moment is over, Death will disappear in the shadows. Just as he always does. He has a mission to fulfill, and his life will be, once more, at risk. Perhaps more than any other time before… But Darcy doesn't need to know that. What she does need to know, though, was already said. A whisper. A soft whisper. "Bon appetit."

If the SHIELD agent looks in her kitchen, there's tonight's rose to be found. And a dinner she is familiar with. A dinner they had a night of Pink Floyd playlists at this very apartment. A night he will never forget.

Protein shake is not enough. It lacks something. It lacks love. And not even Death can change some things. Some things are meant to always be.

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