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Heart Like A Stone (Flare spoilers, minor gore, minor PerfectWorldshipping)

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by Blackjack Gabbiani, Apr 24, 2014.

  1. Blackjack Gabbiani

    Blackjack Gabbiani Clearly we're great!

    It's said that, upon receiving terrible news, the heart sinks like a stone.

    But that's not how it is, is it? That feeling is delayed, put off by a sense of disbelief. The news isn't real, or the consequences of it haven't sunk in, and so on.

    It can happen even when you see it with your own eyes.

    When the message came over the Holo Caster, it didn't seem real. I knew Lysandre, and even with his connection to Team Flare--itself something that hardly seemed real, which my assistants accused me of underreacting to when they told me--he simply wasn't so fatalistic. It had to be something else.

    Of course, in hindsight, I could see that all the signs were there. He had practically laid out his plan for me many times. Was he trying to reach out to me? Did he want me to join him? Was he asking me to stop him? And yet all I'd been able to glean from it was that he had a stern view of the world, one I disagreed with. But what it turned out to be was...monstrous.

    And when my assistants told me about Geosenge, that the weapon from so long ago had been revived, at first I had no feeling about it. Oh, I left immediately to go there, to see the man I knew was at the heart of it all, but the idea that it was as big as it was simply hadn't occurred to me yet. It was as though my body was moving in anticipation of that realization.

    Partway there, what felt like an earthquake ripped through the land, and it was as though my mind was split into pieces. Logically, factually, I knew what it had to have been. I knew what the light that speared the sky a moment later was, and whose hand had summoned that power. Emotionally, the idea that my friend, the passionate noble who could speak entrancingly for hours on any subject under the sky, could have done something so horrible just didn't connect with anything. It was as though logic was a plug bashing against an ill-fitting socket.

    The relative smallness of the ruin affected this as well. Nothing past the border of Geosenge had been touched. Even the stones we only recently discovered to be graves marking the southerly path were unmoved, firm in their resolve to stand guard. It wasn't that bad, I thought. I'd have a talk with him and we could get to the bottom of this.

    Geosenge was a different story. The houses, built ages ago without foundations, had been knocked over, and both the Pokemon center and the hotel had suffered for the blast. Where once was a circle of trilithons in the center of town was now a pit of boulders, still settling and shaking. A flurry of red-uniformed Flare agents milled around in a panic, though most seemed to be fleeing the area. Some fought in vain with the rocks, attempting to shatter them or dig beneath them, frantically trying to get underground.

    It was a clear disaster area, and even the minute or so it took to sink in was a delay. I brought a hand to the shoulder of a fretting agent standing nervously by the side of the crater and asked her what had happened.

    She was a strange creature, her face covered by a display screen and her lipstick matching her hair. She was biting her nails furiously, mouth tight around them in anxiousness. Things had struck her right away. With a shaking voice, she told me that their boss was in there.

    Their boss, Lysandre.

    A pebble dropped, and I felt a rush of sickness.

    In a rush, I called out all of my pokémon to clear away the remnants of the trilithons. My shoulders were suddenly sore, a tingle up and down my back. It was a momentary rush, one that ran its course before leaving me with only the determination to get under there as fast as possible.

    Truth be told, I don't remember much about the process. Time passed but I wasn't sure how much. People talked to me but I couldn't say who or what about. Bodies living and dead were pulled from the wreck but they were just figures to me. Things faded away and it was just me, my pokémon, and the ruin, no time or feelings to get in the way.

    A black-clad hand was discovered, and it took a second to register. Though the ground was unsteady and the rocks shook with each step, I approached as fast as I could, lifting away a boulder to reveal the man underneath.

    I hadn't thought about the condition he would be in, but the boulder had miraculously missed his upper body, leaving his face intact. The thought that it had crushed his lower body hadn't reached my mind. He was bloodied and broken but he was alive, and let out a slow sigh that seemed in time with my own.

    I knelt down to him, brushing a hand through his hair and telling him everything would be all right, that we would get him out, that I loved him, and he slowly turned his head to look at me.

    His hand was in my own, and he gave it a weak squeeze as he muttered something that I couldn't hear. Blood had started to leak from under his glove, but I only dimly noticed it as I pressed his hand to my cheek, an intimate gesture he had made many times through the years.

    He said something again, and this time I could discern the words, though I'll not repeat them. Suffice to say, he thought of only a single subject. I only said again that we would get him out.

    That moment, I remember all too well. I remember the coldness of his hand, like ice against my skin. I remember the sensation of blood dripping onto my pant leg from his arm. I remember the sound of a stone shifting from those who continued to work. And I remember them because it was the exact moment that I realized that he was dead.

    It seemed as though time stopped. Again it was only us two, his glassy blue eyes still seeming to watch me, his hand still against me.

    Another pebble fell, larger this time, and I rested his hand over his chest and stood, turning away.

    Someone told me later that I was crying when I climbed out of the pit, but all I recall from that was a haze over everything. I must have walked back to Lumiose, but to me, I had left the ruin and suddenly appeared in my lab. Time didn't matter, how I looked didn't matter and I must have been a fright, nothing mattered.

    Logically, I knew everything that had happened. He had planned to destroy everyone in Kalos, perhaps the world, except his own followers. I would have been among those sacrificed had he succeeded. And it backfired, and the victims were mainly those who'd sworn loyalty to him, and that he'd been a victim of his own ambition.

    But I carried on life as usual. My assistants asked me how I was doing every few minutes and I always said that I was fine. I felt fine. Not good, nor bad, nor anything.

    A few days later, I spoke with one of the trainers who had defeated him, and I found myself referring to Lysandre in the present tense.

    That was when that stone took hold, and I sank along with it.

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