@decemberiste ‘s mercy & wake art reminded me that i started writing this months ago… i will probably never finish it but wow i love them. worst representatives possible of their respective civilizations
text under the cut
[Image text from under the cut:
The night before, Augustine had said:
“Wake’s a vicious little cockerel, but predictable — cunning at best, not intelligent by any means — and no poker face to speak of. If she decides to go for you, you’ll see it coming a mile away…” He paused to light a cigarette, apparently as punctuation. “You’ve got a lot in common, to be honest. I’m sure you’ll be best pals.”
Being angry with Augustine was almost (almost) comforting, in its familiarity; Mercy had been angry with Augustine for most of ten thousand years. She’d only been a traitor and a heretic for a handful of months. Instead of contemplating this, she leaned forward, plucked the cigarette from his hand, and took a steadying drag.
“That’s my girl.”
“Don’t be disgusting.”
They fell into uncharacteristic silence. Augustine gave up and lit another cigarette.
“Don’t get cold feet… if you botch this, Joy, I’ll turn your lungs inside out before John gets a chance.”
Which could have been a threat, or a reassurance; it was no longer worth trying to tell.
It should have been hard to get Wake to agree to a meeting. What enemy of the Empire would be stupid enough to walk into a room with a Lyctor?
They had underestimated the commander’s arrogance. When she met Mercy’s eyes across the room, it was clear as if it had been written on her forehead: Wake really believed she could take her. Incredible. Mercy could have cut all her tendons and left her flopping around on the floor. She reminded herself this was good.
Before Mercy could answer, she flipped a knife out of some recess of her coat — really very fast — and slid it across the table, then leaned back, crossing her arms.
“Prove it.” she said, her eyes dark and fixed. “That you are who you say you are.”
It was clear what she was asking. Wake’s might not know thanergy if it bit her head off, but she was a killer of necromancers: she had to know they were crippled on thalergenic planets. Except for the Lyctors. She was also probably a pervert who got off on this, but sacrifices had to be made. Mercy splayed her hand flat on the table and took up the knife.
/end image text.]