The Nightmare Child

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The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Feb 21, 2012 9:23 pm

Snooze dropped out of the control seat and crumpled to his knees, gasping.

He flexed his fingers on the cold tiled floor, trying to grab hold of some sort of reality. Inside the control sphere there was--it was--indescribable. Everything and nothing was real, everything and nothing made sense. It was a universe inside the universe, but a pointable, directable universe, and when he was in the control sphere he lost himself in the weapon and destroyed the sanity of his enemies, the way they had destroyed the heart of the little boy he had been so long ago.

When he managed to open his eyes, Snooze saw his fingers shook, that his entire right hand suffered a tremor.

He clenched it into a fist. He was the strongest. He was one of the only ones able to control the weapon for hours at a time, instead of minutes. He had to be better than the others who could control it for hours--had to be stronger, more ruthless--so they would let him return. So they wouldn't throw him out of the program.

Orderlies and nurses helped him to stand, and, now uncurled, Snooze took a proper breath.

The Scientist and the General came out from the viewing room. The General shook his hand, then the Scientist's. "Very good work, gentlemen. Very impressive."

"We're nearly ready," the Scientist said. "For deployment."

"Nearly," the General agreed. He examined Snooze. "But not quite yet."

Snooze held the General's eyes. He knew he looked a mess. He hadn't eaten in three days--no appetite--and hadn't slept in thirty-six hours--not tired. He wore the plain white trousers and tunic of all the weapons controllers. The machine tore apart any other clothes. He was even barefoot. He must look like a mental patient. But still he held the General's gaze with all the confidence of someone who knew they had done a job well.

Because he was doing his job well.

He could control the Nightmare Child.

-

In the commissary, Snooze could only pick at his food. It was always like this in the run up to and the come down from sessions with the Nightmare Child. Never hungry, never tired, just--jittery. Shaky. Adrenaline overdrive, for days on end. He would settle down eventually, and be able to eat again.

He had been here for--three months? Four? Or was it more? He had been taken to the Nightmare Child thirteen times, that much, he knew.

The first time had been the worst. He had struggled against the weapon, the first time, not knowing what was supposed to be happening or what he had to do. When it had let him go, two hours after he was loaded inside the rudimentary cockpit, the Scientist had been almost ready to give him up as insane, like most of the candidates they had tried out.

But Snooze had dragged himself to his feet and demanded an explanation.

He had joined the ranks of the successful few who could control the Nightmare Child.

The others sat at the table with him. There were seven of them. Out of two hundred candidates, seven had narrowly avoided insanity, regeneration or death. Now they spent every waking moment together, except when one of them was taken to the weapon or the infirmary.

Red, across from Snooze, picked at his food too. He was the next rostered on for the Child. Two days, and he would be in the control seat.

Snooze watched Red peeling open his Mandrassian peas. "If you are not going to eat those, someone will."

"Can't eat." Red shoved the bowl away.

Antea grabbed it. They only had to eat what they were given at these meal times, and they had learned to take advantage of each others' regular loss of appetite. Snooze palmed off his food, too, to Veron, who was the skinniest of them. Veron constantly fainted after being in the control seat. Not enough energy.

Jamar finally burst out with the question he always did. "How was it?"

"Same as always." Snooze rubbed the corner of his eye. There was still some of the paste they used to glue the control helmet to his head there. "Terrifying. Exhilarating." He smirked at Jamar. "Long."

Jamar had the lowest aggregate time of all of them. Even Veron could stay in the control seat longer than Jamar. The longest Jamar had been able to stay in the sphere was twenty minutes. Barely long enough to settle in, let alone do any real damage to the simulated opponents.

Scowling, Jamar slumped down in his seat. "You don't have to rub it in."

"Was it any different, at all?" Red asked.

Snooze shook his head. "Why?"

"They said they were going to try something new this round."

"They did not say that to me. The General was watching, though." Snooze saw the guards stand to attention. He drained the rest of his water and nudged Jamar into sitting up straight. "Speaking of."

The General strode into the commissary. There were just a few workers and the controllers eating. Most of the facility's engineers, nurses and other workers knew when the controllers ate, and avoided the comissary at those times. So it was easy for the General to spot them.

He stood at the head of their table, and looked at them all in turn: little Antea, scowling Jamar, skinny Veron, hulking Red, the twins Marta and Lura, and Snooze. After a moment, the General nodded. "You all have done Gallifrey a great service. In just a few short months, the Nightmare Child will be deployed. At that time, we will only take two pilots. You had best start proving yourselves worthy to earn those two spots."

"What will happen to the five of us who don't qualify?" Jamar demanded.

The General looked at him blankly. "You'll be transferred."

But Jamar was not satisfied with that answer. He had the worst chance of being one of the pilots--Snooze liked that, better than controllers--chosen, with his time score. Of course he would want to know what was going to happen to him. "To where?"

"That's not my area." The General set his jaunty hat on his head, and gave them an expectant look.

The seven of them jumped to their feet and saluted.

Once the General was gone, they slid back down onto their seats, eyeing each other up.

Snooze was going to be one of those pilots. He had the highest time scores, the best kill scores, the strongest constitution. He was going to be one of the pilots chosen, and they all knew it. The hunger in the eyes of those six highly-trained military elite, though, said they were not pleased about it, and would prefer that both spots remained open for speculation, not just one.

He was going to have to watch his back.

-

Two days passed.

The pilots woke early in the morning--or at least, they assumed it was morning--and ate in the comissary, then as a group adjourned to the gymnasium. Snooze liked to run on the treadmill, especially when Marta was on the opposite one. Marta and Lura were worthy competition when it came to speed and endurance, Marta more than Lura, who was more easily tired.

They didn't go to the commissary for lunch. Instead, they trooped to the infirmary for their daily examination, and ate Xhumari buns while being poked and prodded. The examinations used to only be weekly, but that was when there were eight of them. Once the guards found Harulth dead in her room--aneurysm, her brain literally bursting from the stress of the Nightmare Child--the examinations had increased in frequency and importance.

After lunch they had free time in the recreational facilities. There was a library, and chess sets, which Snooze liked, and also games. Snooze held the high score on the shooting game, but Veron was close second with Antea not far behind them, and Snooze would have to increase his lead soon.

They also had a lesson or two during this time, to keep their mental acuity high. Mathematics and science, which were not and had never been Snooze's strong points, were often; history and strategy, more to Snooze's strengths, were less frequent.

Then the pilots had dinner, mail was handed out, and they were given an hour of actual free time, to do as they wished until they were herded off to their rooms to sleep.

On the third day, it was Red's turn in the Nightmare Child.

And he died.

--

The group splintered after that.

The twins went around together, and Antea and Veron, and Snooze and Jamar were often on their own, since they could hardly stand each other. If he had lived, Snooze would have spent his time with Red. The huge, gifted footsoldier had been his friend, or as close as they could get to friends in this place.

Days passed.

Now that he no longer ran side-by-side with Marta, or played chess with Antea or Red, now that the pilots did not sit at the same table to eat, or spend time together in the evenings, Snooze rarely spoke. He never received mail, so he avoided the offices, and he slept little, preferring instead to practise his mathematics and science lessons. He hadn't had lessons since he was in military school, more than a hundred years previously, and he had let his mathematics fall by the wayside unless he needed it for logistics calculations. He should not have. Mathematics was important. It helped him realise trajectories and angles and the maximum number of targets he could wipe out in one swoop if he just tilted his hand--the Child's hand--this way, rather than that.

His kill score shot up. His aggregate time in the control sphere increased.

Then, around the end of the fourth month, the nightmares started.

"They don't call it the Nightmare Child for nothing," the nurse who found him shaking on the floor of his room said, the first night his screams were loud enough to draw attention. "Are you okay, sweetheart?"

Snooze didn't reply. One of his eyes wasn't tracking, and concentrating on it and not the skittery fingers crawling over his shoulder, the slimy grey mass huddled in the corner of the roof of his room, was taking all of his energy.

The pilots banded together again after that.

No one else understood the things they saw. The things they had seen. They had killed hundreds, thousands, in that control chair. Simulated, so the Scientist said. But how did they know? How could they know? They were just the pilots, test pilots. They were lifted into the control sphere and the Child enveloped them in its darkness, and the Scientist ran simulations, and then they came out.

They did not know what the Nightmare Child itself looked like. They did not know what happened outside the sphere when they were inside it. They did not know where the simulations came from, or who the Scientist was, or who the General was. They did not even know where the facility they were being kept in was.

"What if," Veron said one day, in his quiet whispery way, "what if none of this is real?"

"Shh," Antea hissed, shooting a look at the guard standing outside the gym. "Later."

That evening, in their free hour, they all sat in Veron's room. "What if none of this is real," he said again. "I heard once, at the Time Lord Academy, they have stasis pods. That they can put students in there and run them through a hundred years of education and life in just a couple of physical years. They do it for species who aren't Gallifreyan, who don't have a hundred years to spend at school."

Lura looked thoughtful. "You think that's what they're doing to us?"

"It would explain the things--the things we keep seeing," Veron pointed out. "Bugs in the programme."

Snooze said, "But it feels real."

"Feels real when we're in the Nightmare Child, too. When we're flying over those battlefields," Jamar muttered. "I can feel the wind in my hair, smell the weaponsfire. If they can make that simulation feel real, then they could make anything feel real."

Snooze could not argue that.

"We should stop talking about it," Marta said. "If we are in a stasis pod, they could be listening to what we're saying."

"They could pull us out of the programme."

"If we question it, they could just get rid of us. The General said we would be transferred if we weren't of any use to them anymore."

"Harulth. And Red," Snooze said. "They died."

Jamar went white. "Do you think they were killed? Because they weren't useful?"

Snooze rubbed the corner of his eye. "Red said the Scientist was going to do something new in his test that day."

"If anyone was going to be killed 'cause they were useless, it'd be you." Marta punched Jamar's shoulder, grinning.

"Or Veron," Jamar pointed out. "You always faint."

Veron scowled. "Lura has the lowest kill score."

"But Antea is rostered on the least," Lura said.

"I'm more accurate than Marta," Antea pointed out. Marta narrowed her eyes at Antea. Antea shrugged. "What? I am. You just wave your hand and hope they die. I target them."

They were all quiet for a moment. Then Jamar looked at Snooze. "I guess you're safe."

Snooze rubbed the corner of his eye again. "Maybe."

--

The nightmares got worse.

Snooze slept just three hours a night, and still his body found time to throw him for a curve. There was one nightmare he kept coming back to, after that conversation in Veron's room. One thought he couldn't shake, no matter how hard he tried.

In the nightmare, he woke up from a stasis pod. He delivered a report about his progress with the Nightmare Child, and in deceiving the other candidate pilots into believing that he was one of them, instead of the only real pilot. They were the power source for the Nightmare Child. It fed upon them, their nightmares and fears, when they were uploaded, and when he was in the control sphere, he used their nightmares to blind his simulated enemies with terror.

The General was there, and the Scientist, and they would inform him that he was doing very well. He would ask them about Mitz and Mouse and the Doctor, and they would remind him that those people were created as part of his background in the stasis reality. They were not real.

Then Snooze would lie down in the stasis pod again and return to the reality with the other pilots, and he would wake up in his bed at the facility.

The worst thing about that nightmare was that it didn't feel like a nightmare at all.

It felt real.

--

In the seventh month, long after any of them had expected to still be at the facility, Jamar attempted an escape.

While the guards and nurses were occupied catching and restraining him, sedating him, Snooze stole outside for the first time since before he had sat in the control chair of the Nightmare Child. There was an information kiosk outside. The first thing he did was attempt to contact the TARDIS, to contact Mouse and the Doctor.

And he did. They were real. And Mitz was still lost.

He had not dreamed it. Any of it. Maybe some of it. But the people he dreamed about, the nights he didn't have nightmares, they were real. But he did not know if he had indeed fallen in love with them, and they had fallen back. He could not remember if the Doctor was really his Cousin, or how he was even supposed to treat a Cousin. He had never had one before. Maybe it was just wishful thinking? But at least the Doctor was real. At least Mouse was real.

Unless, he thought once he was inside again, he had hallucinated that entire experience. He had just climbed out of the Nightmare Child when the alarms had sounded and Jamar's escape had become known. Maybe he was still in the control sphere.

Why would Jamar even try to escape? He realised that was stupid. None of them had ever talked about escaping, or leaving, or requesting a transfer. Not after their first time in the control chair. It was not the sort of thing anyone would, or could, walk away from.

The only way to leave the Nightmare Child was to die.

Something hit the back of his head, and he stumbled. The world blurred and his skin went hot, sweat breaking out on the back of his neck and his hair, when had his hair gotten long enough to fall in front of his face like that.

He blinked many times, and he thought that he was moving.

When his vision cleared, he found himself staring at his tremoring right hand, spread flat on the tiles underneath the control sphere.

Well.

That explained that.

--

In the eighth month, Veron had a heart attack inside the control sphere.

The energy from his regeneration broke the sensitive circuits of the Nightmare Child. Veron was kicked out of the programme and the Child went offline for three weeks as the Scientist fixed it.

Snooze's appetite and fatigue faded as the time for his regularly scheduled turn in the weapons chair came around, but this time, there was no weapons chair to sit in. The day that he was supposed to take his turn in the control sphere, his adrenaline spiked and his blood pressure bottomed out and he nearly had a heart attack himself. But the nurses got him to the infirmary in time to administer relaxants and sedatives and put him on a nutrient drip.

None of the other pilots reacted so badly as him, but then, none of them regularly spent the amount of time in the Child as he did. He could remain in the sphere for up to five hours at a time, now. Marta, second to him, could barely manage three before she was begging to get out.

Snooze was the first to climb back in the new and improved Nightmare Child--and he could feel the difference.

The darkness in the sphere drew him in like welcoming arms, and he relaxed, suspended in the shadows. The nightmares brushed through his mind, barely there, not terrifying at all, not anymore. He was separate from the Child, and yet part of it. He could keep part of himself, the real part of himself--what felt like the real part of himself--away, and slide his fingers into the viscous red gel of the control disc and play.

He could play with the nightmares, change them and mould them. The simulation sprang to life, the battlefield stretching out beneath him. A wasted, barren world. It looked like a thousand others he had seen in these simulations. The Daleks swarmed over the low brown hills, heading for the Time Lord camps.

Snooze/the Child drifted through the air, and when the Daleks saw him/it, they fired at him/it. But his/its smooth outer shell absorbed the blasts. He/it was not made of flesh and bone. He/it was so much more than that, and no Dalek energy blast could even hope to fry his/its circuits. Snooze twitched his fingers on the control disc and the Child responded. The Child took the rage and the terror from Snooze and released its shadows over the Dalek army.

And the Daleks felt what was held in the shadows. They felt the fear of the children abandoned by their parents, the joyful hatred of the children as they thumped those who would steal from them, steal what they had begged and stole themselves, steal their chances of survival.

They felt the rage of the invisible children on the Shining World of the Seventh System, the children of Gallifrey's slums, born into squalor and ignored and discarded.

They felt everything Snooze and his pilot friends had kept hidden, kept to themselves, for hundreds of years. They were the lucky ones, they made themselves believe. They were the ones who got out. There were dozens, hundreds of children left in those streets to sicken and die, steal and die, escape and die. The system was far from just, but they had beat the system. They had gotten out and made something of themselves.

But the Nightmare Child found the fear and anger and helplessness and upset of the child within the adult and released it.

The Daleks, however, had never been children.

And they didn't feel emotions like these.

The Nightmare Child made them feel it and the Daleks physically could not. They burned up the circuits of their metal casings trying, and they shuddered to a halt, even as they rolled over those muddy brown hills. Snooze picked off three and four at a time, the commanders in their burnished gold, and the senior Daleks who tried to rally the rest, and the weak and helpless, the ones who managed to feel the emotion and were struck dumb by it, until they were dosed again and their brains, what little brains they had, just stopped.

Gleefully, Snooze stomped out an entire planet-wide invasion of Daleks.

He tumbled out of the control sphere and looked at the clock.

Thirteen hours.

--

After that, reality didn't matter.

The Scientist put him in the Nightmare Child every day. Snooze had no idea what happened to Marta and Lura, Antea and Jamar, and he didn't care. When he crawled out of the control sphere every evening, the orderlies dragged him to a treadmill and made him run for an hour, to keep his muscles strong, then manhandled him into a chair in the infirmary and pumped him full of nutrients, minerals and sedatives.

He dreamed of Mouse and Mitz sometimes. He dreamed of the Doctor. He dreamed he had grown up in Gallifrey proper, with them, with family and friends. That he had gone to the Academy, even, that he was smart enough for that. He dreamed, other times, of waking up and delivering his report to the General, and being reminded that none of this was real, that he was just in a stasis pod. He dreamed that Red had never died. He dreamed that he was still a sniper, that he was being held by the CIA and put through torture training again and again and again, his face cut open and his body weakening by the day but still, still he kept the information to himself.

What information he was supposed to be keeping, he didn't know, so he just kept it all to himself. That was the only way to deal with the CIA. Just don't tell them anything. Don't tell them anything, Snooze, don't give in, he heard someone tell him, and he thought it might have been himself, but he didn't say 'don't' anymore, so it couldn't have been. Or did he say it? He hadn't spoken in a while. Maybe he said 'don't' these days. Or maybe in his dreams he said it. Or in reality.

Then he would wake up in that chair in the infirmary, and walk to the Nightmare Child, and be drawn up into the control sphere once more. He killed Daleks, hundreds upon thousands upon millions of Daleks, wiping every world in the galaxy, in the Seven Systems, in the war, in the universe free of Daleks, exterminates ever more pitiful as they tried to break through his shell.

They could never break through. They could never win. He could never lose.

And one day, or maybe one dream, one nightmare, he stood in front of the General and the Scientist.

And the General said, "He's ready."
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nocturnalie
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Wed Feb 22, 2012 10:03 am

(Once again I'm rendered kind of speechless by how much I want to give Snooze hugs [and put him in rehab with another version of himself because he needs it] but how do we go about stepping onto the next part of this?)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Wed Feb 22, 2012 10:26 am

(Create something to draw the attention of rescuers, I suppose.)

One week after he had been pronounced ready by the General, Snooze walked off a plain grey military TARDIS and onto a once-inhabited world. The citizens had long since been killed or evacuated, but this was a key battleground in the current campagin.

From here, if the Daleks won the ground, they could make a base from which to launch an attack on Asuraz, on Shurogath, on Treskelia and on Rygel. All four worlds teeming with life, with natives and refugees.

People who had nowhere else to go and no one to protect them.

Except Snooze.

The engineers had set up the control sphere here, high in the chilly mountains, far from the actual battlefields. The Nightmare Child was slumbering in wait somewhere far below.

Snooze had never seen it. He didn't know or care what it looked like. All that mattered to him was that he could feel the buzzing, hateful presence of Daleks all over this forsaken planet, and in front of him sat the thing he could use to make their rattling advance stop.

He stood under the sphere and it lifted him up inside.

He drew on his own fears and nightmares. He drew on the rich miasma of terror and hopelessness emanating from the planets in the next system over. And he started to kill.
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 5:47 pm

Teela, Mouse and the Doctor were on some form of evacuation mission. They had done a few since Mouse arrived back on the ship, and they always seemed simple and quick on the surface. Every time, they seemed simple. But they always lasted for what seemed like forever and they always came back singed and breathless and laughing and pleased with themselves for saving yet another day.

Mitz had gone out with Teela and the Doctor once, before they got Mouse back. He didn't think that he was allowed out again. The Doctor said something about him being unable to think beyond the rules laid down before him but, Mitz reasoned, if it's rule one then why should he be thinking around wandering off on a hostile, alien planet?

The Doctor's rules didn't make sense to him, so he stayed on the ship after that. When Mouse came back, he just thought it was better. He didn't move very fast anymore, besides. They didn't really need a cripple with no field experience while they're liberating planets.

The main problem right now was that Mitz had been watching blips on the console screen for forty minutes. He hadn't moved, barely blinked. Every time Mouse left the TARDIS he would stand and watch her tracker blip move around, blink with her life-sign readings, get further away and then come back. Every time he watched that blip. But now there were two.

Snooze.

They weren't that far away. Not on the same planet, no. Maybe four over. But not far. Close enough to get a strong reading, close enough for him to be on the same screen as Mouse. And Mitz has got to figure out what he should do.

Of course the Doctor has no way of being contacted from the TARDIS. That would make too much sense. Far too much sense. And if Mitz even managed to get the ship off-planet by himself, there's no telling if he would be able to get to Snooze. He's amazed every time they land in the right place. Flying solo is crazy. And he would leave Mouse stranded. Alone. He refuses.

Mitz worries at his lip, staring at the blips. Snooze's blip is blinking steadily. He's alive. He's close and he's alive. Mitz has to do /something/.

This thought spurs him to run, as fast as his hobbles can take him, back to the workshop that the Doctor let him set up. There's so much around, so much that he made thinking that it could be used by the team or the Doctor or Snooze or Mouse, there has to be something. Mitz is /almost/ sure there is, in fact. It takes another fifteen minutes before he finds what he was almost sure existed.

Mid-range transmat. Prototype, 'course. A little more souped than the ones they used on their first mission, since Mitz had taken it apart and put it back together a million times since then. It should be able to lock onto Snooze's signal while it's so close. It would also be able to transmat both of them back to the TARDIS. Mitz is so frantic to get back to Snooze's signal that he trips and falls into a wall, but it barely slows him down. He can finally do /something/. Imagine having Snooze back on the ship. Imagine Mouse's face!

Once back at the console, he programs in the co-ordinates. His new fingers haven't had reason to work so fast before but it's reassuring to know that they can. He takes a moment, swallows, and wonders if he should leave a message for the others --- then hits the teleport.
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:07 pm

Snooze is lost. More than that, he's adrift. Memories, or dreams, or real life--he's waking up, he's falling asleep, he's touching a hundred million Dalek minds and exploding them all at once with every last thing he's felt in his life.

And then there's something else.

He opens his eyes, or he thinks he does. He's floating, alone, suspended in anti-gravity. The darkness around him could be nearly solid, nearly liquid. He doesn't know. But he opens his eyes, and he focuses on the new thing.

Snooze knows that feeling. It's something more alive than a Dalek, than the enemy. Daleks taste different to him. This taste brings up an order; a command.

Cause as little damage as possible to a Time Lord. Casualties are to be expected. But do at least try to control yourself, Child.

Snooze reigns himself in. There's a Time Lord here. For the first time in such a long time, he's not alone. It's so difficult to control himself, but he does try.

He doesn't like being alone anymore.
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:16 pm

Mitz leans up against the closest wall as soon as his molecules settle into place. That was a long transmat jump and he feels /awful/. He's never felt displacement as bad as this - not that he's ever had much experience outside of basic training. He gasps, blinking and waiting for it to pass. It doesn't, but he's able to look around a little better.

There's no-one in the room with him, but he knows where he is. At least, he knows what type of room he's in. He's in an engine room and, even while he'd bringing up Snooze's location on his eye-HUD to see how far away he is, he's checking out the make and engineering behind the engines. Mostly power generators, definitely Time Lord make. That's more than a little reassuring. And there's something about the crystals... He puts it out of his mind.

Snooze isn't far. He can still see the blip. He ignores the wave of nausea and panic that almost feels /oppressive/ - and when has transporting get that mind-bending? - and starts walking.
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:28 pm

It feels so close by, the new mind, the Time Lord. Closer than anyone he's felt before, closer than any Dalek. Snooze almost wants to reach out to it, but he has other problems to deal with.

This planet is still infested with the enemy. Snooze has to deal with them. He has to wipe them out. He has to protect everyone they may one day hurt; that is why he was brought here. That is why he was born, his superiors told him.
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:36 pm

Mitz gasps again, nearly falling to the floor. Behind him, crystals charge and fire, sparks that aren't sparks fly. Mitz /knows/ he can see in front of him, knows he can walk, but it all seems so hard. It makes him angry, thinking about going on and needing to walk and see and make it. He's so mad, and he's so afraid, and he's so /alone/.

And then he can breathe again, freely. Like it never happened. He blinks, looks behind him at the generators, and starts walking again. If that is a regular occurrence then he definitely needs to get Snooze back to the TARDIS. That can't be healthy.

He risks it, seeing as he's on somewhat friendly turf from what he can tell, and calls out. "Snooze?" The call is meek and quiet. He knows Snooze is close, so he might hear him. Unlikely, but he might.
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:58 pm

Snooze can see the lights of so many fractious, evil minds blink out, like whispers in the middle of a crowd. The enemy cannot withstand his might.

But that Time Lord--the mind so close to his, so alive and nearby, it wavers a little as Snooze lets fire. And almost immediately, Snooze lets up his attack. He cannot bring himself to destroy one so close to him, never mind about certain amounts of casualties being acceptable. What if the Time Lord is a child, alone and terrified like Snooze was? What if it's someone helpless, someone far from home? Someone lost and longing for something that never was?

The weapon discharges again, too much emotion built up in its crystals to stop it, and Snooze directs the dark wave across the rolling mountains of this deserted world the Daleks have terrorised. He pushes it away as far and fast as he can, slamming the enemy with it. he has to save people from the enemy, and what good is he if he cannot start here? What good is he if any Time Lord casualties are acceptable?

He has to control himself. He has to breathe, and focus, and be in control. He is the pilot of this machine. It does not pilot him.
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 7:06 pm

The blip leads Mitz to a room. The room is obviously the bridge, if the ship is following any logical layout, but it's like nothing Mitz has ever seen. There are no controls, no seats, no nothing. The blip leads him here, but he doesn't see Snooze. Where Snooze /should/ be, there's a --- thing. Something. Something maybe alive.

But the readings...

Mitz swears that if he ran off on a faulty reading and is going to end up dead because of it, he'll never live it down. Mouse will be angry at him. The Doctor will hate him more. Teela will talk to him even less. He might even be dropped off the task force, such as they are.

But the blip /says/ -- he tries again, meeker this time. Defeated.

"Snooze? Snooze." His voice dulls out. There's no-one here. His bones ache with how much he just wants to give up. Maybe that's just him being unable to go very far, again.

(I assume Mitz won't be able to see Snooze in the thing)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 7:18 pm

(Yeah, I was thinking it's probably a chamber meant to block out all of Snooze's senses so his psychics are heightened or something, which means it's all black and everything.)

Just as Snooze is starting to get frustrated at his inability to control himself, he feels something. It's something he hasn't felt in a very long time, and it's something he wasn't quite sure he had ever felt. Something from a dream he had had, at the training facility--when he had been dreaming of a better life, one where he had purpose apart from destruction and friends that existed outside his own head.

He feels /Mitz/.

He'd never realised before that he knew what Mitz /felt/ like. But there was a distinctive feeling to being near Mitz. Maybe it was a psychic feeling, or a sense Snooze did not know he had. But he could feel Mitz, and the feel of him brings back all those days they had spent together. Kissing in the kitchen, in the observatory, in the hallways, careful touches while watching films, Mitz fussing over him when Snooze was hurt--Snooze /longs/ for it to have been real.

All at once, it's too much for him. It's the most he can do to set the machine to stasis, to hold, and let him go. He's allowed to take breaks, though he never has before. He's allowed to need fresh air, to stave off the sickness. They don't want their prize weapon to get broken.

So the capsule drops open, and Snooze slides out of it almost like a yolk out of an eggshell. He crumbles to the cold metal floor of the control room, and he's disoriented--this isn't the test chamber, and it isn't darkness. It's too bright, too loud.

The feeling of Mitz is too real.
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 7:29 pm

Mitz stumbles backwards when the - thing opens, pouring out a person. A definitely alive person. A definitely Snooze person. Mitz stares for what is probably too long, but all of this is thoroughly surreal and he just saw Snooze fall out of something that his eyes were telling him held /no person/ and Snooze is /right there/.

He run-hobbles over to him, careful not to touch him. Once he's close enough it's obvious that he's been cracked open, psychically. Touch might make things worse. And Mitz hasn't cleaned up in his head for a long time. Carefully, slowly and painfully, Mitz kneels beside Snooze.

"I," he begins, not knowing what to say. Snooze looks gaunt. Unlike himself. Unlike the security vids Mitz managed to get from the TARDIS after days of begging. "Snooze, can you - are you okay? Can you hear me?"
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 7:43 pm

Snooze cringes away from the sound. It's been too long since he's heard any kind of voice, it's just meaningless noises for a long moment, too long, and suddenly Snooze is terrified he can't understand anything anymore. That he's become a babbling idiot in the middle of the machine.

He feels sick, and he's freezing cold. There's a bright, swirling vortex of time energy brushing gently against his skin and mind.

It's too much. He was wrong, it's too much out here, it wasn't too much in the machine, he needs to be back inside the machine, it was warm in there and dark and he was comfortable and powerful and right now he's just a bag of skin and bones on a cold floor next to...

Next to an angel.

"Help me," he tries to say, and he doesn't know if he shouts it or whispers it or thinks it.
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 7:51 pm

Mitz opens and closes his mouth, then nods. He looks around for something - anything - that could help him touch Snooze. He sees nothing. There is literally nothing in this room. For some reason that makes Mitz even more uneasy.

He shrugs off the flimsy jacket he wears when he's just wandering around the Doctor's TARDIS and puts it around Snooze's shoulders, then uses that safe area to grip and help Snooze up. It's hard, since neither of them are very stable on their feet, and it takes longer than they would be proud of if they timed it. But they get standing. Mitz feels mildly victorious, and risks a smile at Snooze. It doesn't quite reach his eyes. There's still something nagging at him.

Snooze didn't really answer his question. He's obviously not okay, but he didn't say anything about hearing Mitz, and he flinched and -- Mitz worries his lip.

He mouths home at Snooze and pushes as many thoughts of the TARDIS and the bed they shared too briefly and the library and Mouse's face and a question. Does Snooze want to go there, or somewhere else on this ship? Mitz will help either way, but one decision will break him apart where the other will bring his world together.
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 7:57 pm

A flood of memories that are not his own suddenly overwhelm Snooze's mind. He was certain they were all things from his dreams, that blue box with the million rooms--the bed, with Mitz and Mouse--the library, where they had read to each other so often.

Snooze opens his eyes properly and looks at this angel, and it's Mitz.

Mitz.

Snooze grabs at him, to make sure he's real, to touch him and bring him into reality and not the weird vortex of angelic energy that he had been seeing. The double-layer of memories of the training facility and the TARDIS squeeze his mind and he suddenly has an awful headache but he can't not touch Mitz. He has to know if Mitz is real.

But the very moment that he does touch Mitz his mind cracks.

(Snooze is going to regenerate at some point during this, yes? Or was it when they were back in the TARDIS? Like around soon-ish, before Mitz does, because it's his turn, yes?)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:07 pm

"No, no, no, no," Mitz says in a stream, not really stopping. He feels Snooze fracture and fall away from himself. He nearly goes with him. It's only years of training reflexes that manage to get his shields up enough to save his own mind. He'll thank House Stillhaven's obsessive need to get their tots braining so early on later.

Obviously a ship like this has a top of the range zero room, especially with - whatever Snooze was doing to make him so open. But Mitz doesn't have the time to get him anywhere. And he doesn't trust their legs. His legs. Their legs.

He both knows and doesn't know where to go. He starts to slip.

He has enough wherewithal to hit the transmat, get them /safe/, but he wasn't counting on the transport sickness to make everything so much worse.

(Hell, we only have a rough plan for this now, I say regenerate him! The idea I was playing around with along with Freo was that Mitz kills himself twice over so that when Mouse actually boards the TARDIS, she won't see the mess he's become. But since this is the broken in pieces Mitz that is saving Snooze, that does not happen. So play! Very Happy)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:15 pm

Snooze's whole being is wrenched from one place to another and as soon as he leaves the safety of the machine, the cold and sterility and silence, he vomits all over the floor. He's still holding onto Mitz, he won't let go, can't let go, doesn't want to but literally /can't/ because his fingers are curled over into claws and dug into Mitz's arms.

He really hopes he doesn't vomit on Mitz, but he can't see anything and his ears either aren't working or are working too well because he can hear all sorts of strange sounds that he's quite sure he's never heard before.

But then, he could be dreaming. This might not be real. He prays and wishes that this is real but it might not be, he could be curled up inside the machine or in the training facility or an outpost and he could be dreaming of being rescued from his misery, by Mitz, by the perfect dream man he had dreamed up to fall in love with him.

There's a burning under his skin, and in his stomach, and all up his throat.

(Hooray for play! Do we want Barnes or Law or a later one, d'you think? All could do gaunt and broken quite prettily. Very Happy! Who is the next Mitz we get? Asian Mitz?)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:20 pm

Snooze does vomit on Mitz, but he doesn't care. He had that coming, making Snooze go through that just because he panicked. That's so /stupid/. Mitz hates himself. Why would he do that to Snooze, who obviously needs stability right now?

He attempts walking, but it's slow. He's murmuring to himself, begging the TARDIS to move the zero room close and easy to get to. Help them fix this, fix Snooze.

(I like Barnes a lot, to be honest~ Also, yes. Asian Mitz is the next male Mitz in the line. But if he commits suicide, he turns into female Mitz, who I have decided is Emma whatserface from Glee.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:29 pm

The burning grows and grows, until it's like an inferno in his mind's eye. He feels like a towering pillar of fire--like he might burn Mitz alive. He couldn't stand that, even if this is just a dream, if it's not real.

Snooze tries to pull away from Mitz and let go of his arms. As he does, the faint singing in his mind starts to intensify, and he has the strangest feeling that it's the TARDIS, that she's talking to him. They aren't words that he can understand, but then, he couldn't understand Mitz speaking to him, either. He can't understand words, oh god, he cannot understand anything anymore--

The TARDIS washes cool air over him, maybe real or maybe metaphysical, psychic cool air, and Snooze breathes out, and when he does, he breathes out gold.

(Emma--oh, I am not so sure I enjoy that. I only really liked her in that one song where she freaked out about the wedding because she got it so spot on)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:33 pm

"I cannot believe you're regenerating right now," Mitz mutters. "The Doctor is going to kill me." It's not good to be touching him but - but what's the regeneration going to be like when her goes from that, the man that Mitz knew who was so /not him/ but /him, to someone else he doesn't recognise? What about all the shields Snooze doesn't have up while he regenerates? What about regenerating without being close to zero room to center himself? Mitz is overcome with worry.

He lets Snooze let him go, and watches, brows furrowed and trying to figure out what to do when he can do something again.

(I don't like her at all, to be honest. But she's freaked and manic and that's what Mitz would be like, all wide-eyed and weirded out. Also yes the wedding song was pretty amazing, let's be real here)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:42 pm

Snooze stumbles away from Mitz as he breathes out that deadly gold air.

Regeneration. He is regenerating. That must mean his body is failing, or his mind is failing, and he needs to become new. He starts to panic. It's been so long since he has regenerated; the last time was when he transferred into the army. This is only his third regeneration. What if his next body is terrible at sniping, what use will he be? What if Mitz and Mouse are no longer interested in him?

He will try to suck the artron energy back in, and swallow the burning in his throat. Then the TARDIS soothes him again, cool air over his hot skin and frantic mind, and he may start to relax. Snooze at least /tries/ to relax, and accept it.

(I saw it performed at a 25th anniversary special and it was good, but she /nailed it/. Also if you don't like her, then you should find someone you /do/ like, 'cause you have to look at her for a while, and so do we. Like she's gonna be in your head. JAYMA MAYS that's her name, I was trying to think of the actress)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:46 pm

Mitz watches all kinds of emotions flit over Snooze's face, feels even more hit him like a ton of bricks. It's impossible to keep track. He holds his hands up, placating, and shushes. What he hopes is a soothing noise.

(I don't have to look at her for very long at all, since Mitz is just going to kill himself straight away after. Snooze might be okay with a female him but Mouse really wouldn't. So s/he'd go "welp those are breasts MAN the weight ratio is weird okay enough of this I miss my penis")
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:52 pm

Snooze leans against the wall of the TARDIS, a soft thrumming echoing up his hands and back, and he looks at Mitz. He fixes his eyes on Mitz and doesn't look away, because Mitz is there and real and the more Snooze looks at him, the more steady the ground is underneath his feet.

Mitz holds up his hands and makes a sound, and the sound actually registers in Snooze's ears. Mitz is trying to calm him. Snooze takes a deep breath but doesn't close his eyes. He must look like a panicked animal, a skittish horse backed into a corner. He does not want Mitz to see him like that. So he takes another deep breath, and looks at Mitz's hands and his face, his earnest eyes--there's something different about his eyes, isn't there?

Then the burning heat overtakes Snooze's face. Golden energy explodes from him, his face, his skin, his hands and toes and everywhere. His insides are burned out of him.

He regenerates.

(I literally snickered, that sounds about right, /man/ he is going to use up a lot of regenerations all at once, the Doctor is going to cluck at him so hard)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 8:57 pm

Mitz watches and he's /so close/, he shouldn't be this close, and he gets hit by a few waves of artron - memories and heat and fear and happiness and faces he doesn't know - but at least he isn't contaminating Snooze by touching him. He'll get a fresh start.

He watches Snooze's hair lengthen, his face change. And he can't help it, he can't, but he wishes with everything that he is that Snooze regenerates healthier, that he gets to ignore damage and healing and gets to just be healthy straight away.

(Mitz doesn't really see how it's a big problem, since he's no-one. Besides, that is not a thing that happens any time soon, like I said. He's normal old broken-pieces Mitz McGregor here. Not Suicide So My Lovers Won't Be Disgusted By Me Mitz)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 9:04 pm

Snooze drops to his knees as the uplifting energy leaves him.

He gasps for air, and he can /breathe/. He hadn't even realised that he had been having trouble breathing, that his lungs had been heavy and full and straining with every breath. But now they're clear, and the air tastes fresh and cool. His eyes are no longer hurt by the light; his ears have cracked and popped and re-grown, and now he can hear.

And, the most strange thing, Snooze is /hungry/.

He holds a hand to his head, because he has the most incredible headache thanks to everything being flung out and then crushed back inside, and looks up at Mitz.

"You're real."

(Mitz isn't no one, he's here on the TARDIS so he's not no one, the Doctor has never met anyone in the universe who is /no one/, everyone is someone.
Also, Snooze can't say for sure, since he's terrified about his own self, but he's fairly sure he would never be /disgusted/ by Mitz.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 9:10 pm

Mitz kneels clunkily so he can be at the same height as Snooze. This new Snooze who he doesn't know but does, just like the new Mouse he doesn't know but does. He studies Snooze's face - gorgeous, obviously, he almost laughs because it's so obvious that Snooze would be devastating no matter what. He smiles though he's still a little panicked.

"Surprise," he sing-songs, voice weak. He's more than a little aware at how he must look to new eyes, but he tries to ignore it. Tries to be happy that Snooze is alive and healthy and right in front of him and, to be quite honest, that really isn't difficult at all.

(He's someone to Snooze and Mouse, not to anyone else. And he did this so they would still find him tasty. Makes perfect sense.
Snooze would have reasons for not liking Mitz McGregor. The constant limp reminder, for starters. Mitz felt/feels pretty guilty at having that around.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 9:18 pm

Snooze stares at Mitz, then he reaches out his hands to hold Mitz's face. "Your eyes are different," he says wonderingly, and his voice is croaky. It's lower than it used to be, he notes, but then tears his mind away from that--he can't process it right now, he can't process the fact that he just regenerated.

He's very tentative as he holds Mitz's face, because he's aware Mitz might not want Snooze to touch him. The last time they saw each other... Snooze hardly even knows when that was. The Master had control of Mitz for such a long time, if Snooze's dreams are to be believed, so there is no telling when the last time they saw each other for real was.

Before Mitz can reply to the comment about his eyes, Snooze says, "I've missed you."

(It really doesn't. Mitz shouldn't change to please anyone but himself.
That would definitely make Snooze all kinds of guilty. But mostly he would feel guilty because he wasn't there to rescue Mitz, or to help him recover. He hasn't been there at all, because he agreed to go on a mission where he nearly died properly and never came back to Mitz. Now /that's/ guilt-making.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 9:25 pm

Mitz tries to explain about the eyes but then Snooze says /that/ and, well. Mitz may fall apart a little. He throws himself at Snooze, hugging him, which is another terrible idea. He's still humming with regeneration energy but Mitz doesn't /care/, he just doesn't care.

"I've missed you," he says, but the words aren't half enough for how he really feels. He kept himself mostly together when Mouse came back. She came back a hero, all war-torn and dusty. In one piece and looking tired and injured but not broken. Strong, like always. So Mitz kept it together. Tried not to clutch and cling and beg her to stay every time the rest have missions and adventures. But Snooze was worse off than Mitz ever was. He /regenerated/. He won't mind if Mitz breaks down a little. It won't be so bad, maybe.

Besides, Mitz is so tired of looking brave. "I have missed you so much."

(Mitz hastens to ask if any of us have met him.
Aw, Snooze. Mitz doesn't think he should feel guilty at all. Not in the slightest. Not for anything.)


Last edited by sinistra_blache on Wed Jul 17, 2013 9:08 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 9:31 pm

Snooze catches Mitz and sighs, shakily, with how good it feels to hold Mitz in his arms. He's not alone--all of his nerves are singing with energy and the fact that he is not alone. Almost without noticing, he pushes a good amount of his regeneration energy right into Mitz, both to soothe him and to heighten his awareness of Mitz.

Snooze buries his face in Mitz's shoulder and breathes him in. His new arms are just slightly longer than his old ones, though less strong, less muscled--because this body hasn't been through decades of army training. In any case: he can encircle Mitz completely within his embrace. It's everything he's been longing for.

He rocks Mitz a little. "I dreamed of you. I hoped you were real."

(We all have. Very often.
But he wasn't here for Mitz.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Tue Jul 16, 2013 9:36 pm

"Oof," Mitz says, shaking his head as if to clear it. That wave nearly made him reject his augments. "Haha. Uh. Totally real. Too real. Snooze? We might need to get you somewhere to be settled? I'll, I'll help, obviously, duh. Of course I'll help." He starts to shift to stand again, then pauses and looks at Snooze.

"You dreamed of me?" That's so wildly romantic. It's so Snooze. Mitz is the kind of happy that looks utterly heartbroken on the surface.

(Well then.
Yes, well, okay, but that's not exactly something that was in his power so it has no right to make Snooze feel guilt so there.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Tue Jul 16, 2013 9:40 pm

Snooze moves with Mitz, going up on his knees. "Holding on to the memories."

(We have met him in many, many different universes.
Snooze could have should have told the CIA to go shove it.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Wed Jul 17, 2013 2:26 am

Mitz moves slowly and stands slower, partially from his injuries and partially because moving on new legs is disorientating as all get out. He holds onto Snooze's arms to steady him. "I. When, when you're settled, I'll let you see mine," Mitz offers. He offers quietly and like it doesn't matter. But it doesn't matter. It's not a big deal to let Snooze into him. It's /Snooze/.

(And they would all probably do the same thing.
Right, yeah, because telling the CIA to shove it would have resulted in Snooze staying alive, wouldn't it?)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Wed Jul 17, 2013 9:34 am

To Snooze, it is a big deal. He holds on to Mitz's hands to help himself stand up, then keeps holding on to them, because he seems to be taller and that's quite strange for a long moment. His fingers are longer, too, he notices as he holds Mitz's hands.

"That would help me believe they're real," Snooze says. "Thank you."

(Most of them.
Ah. The core of the problem.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Wed Jul 17, 2013 9:37 am

Mitz smiles and opens his mouth to tell Snooze that it's no problem - then stops. "You," he says slowly, wagging a finger. "You just used a contraction." He rolls back the last two minutes and replays quickly. "You did it twice."

He looks worried. His brain usually works under the assumption that if there are contractions in Snooze's speech then he's either hyper stressed or majorly aroused. He is definitely not the latter.

(That's-a Mitz!
So it's not Snooze's fault.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Wed Jul 17, 2013 9:44 am

Snooze blinks, and carefully inspects his own mind. Yes, everything seems to be back in its place. A little jumbled, some damaged, but nothing leaking or too broken. Yet he did change his speech patterns. "I spoke the way I did," he says carefully, "because I thought that was how Time Lords were supposed to speak. I thought I would be respected more if I spoke like that." He wanted to fit in, he doesn't say.

Right now he doesn't care so much about fitting in as fixing himself. His previous regeneration was very concerned about fitting in and following the rules. All of that training is still within Snooze, but... he has been in captivity for months. It's not the most important thing in his mind anymore.

(Not all, I said.
He had lots of time to try and find Mitz before the CIA came looking for him.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Wed Jul 17, 2013 9:50 am

Mitz frowns, processing that. It makes sense. The way Mitz has it figured, from how Snooze would talk about how he felt about Time Lords before he came to the Doctor's TARDIS, most Houseless Gallifreyans had a lot of ideas about Time Lord privilege and etiquette. "Oh," he says simply. "Okay. That's okay. You're okay?" It makes sense. It doesn't stop Mitz worrying.

While they talk, Mitz starts walking them towards where he hopes help will be. An infirmary where he can check Snooze over. A zero room where he can wait outside until Snooze feels whole and settled. A bed where he can rest. Anything. Just help.

(Some are exceptions to the rule. Well. One, I think.
Mitz really doesn't think Snooze was just sitting around, doing nothing. He came back to trackers and leftovers from Mouse and Snooze trying to decode where his transmissions were coming from. It's not like he did nothing.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Wed Jul 17, 2013 9:55 am

"I--believe so," Snooze says, getting the hang of the new legs. It's been a while since he's had new legs. And he notices, while they walk, that Mitz is limping. "And you. How are you?"

(And what's that one got now?
But he didn't do enough.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Wed Jul 17, 2013 10:00 am

Mitz answers with his trusty fall-back. It's not a lie, but it's not as ugly and annoying as the truth. "I've been worse," Mitz says, smiling a little sardonically. He changes the subject. "We'll take care of you. And then the others will come back, and they are going to be so happy to have you back, Snooze. So happy. Mouse is going to --- she doesn't like to show it, because she's Mouse, but she's been worried. We've been worried." He walks a little further in silence. "It's been so long. I keep wondering if you're really here."

(The ability to play sweet lullabies on his ab-xylophones?
Mitz doesn't like this, stop it. Snooze and Mouse did more than anyone would have expected if they knew Mitz's history. They did more while he was gone, because they cared about him, than anyone has ever done for him. So there's no point in being guilty about that. Because it's amazing. So stop it.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Wed Jul 17, 2013 10:07 am

"So do I," Snooze says honestly. He's still holding Mitz's hands, and he can't bring himself to let go. He can't even remember if Mitz liked holding hands, or if he used to, but he doesn't want to let go now. If he lets go, maybe he'll wake up in the training facility. So, no, not letting go. "But--you--how are you here? On the TARDIS? What happened?"

(and a ring on his finger
But they both just--and it took the Doctor all of three seconds--Snooze isn't going to let this guilt go.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Wed Jul 17, 2013 12:21 pm

Mitz loves holding hands, but the longer they go the more paranoid he's getting about Snooze's silence about the parts of him that aren't flesh. He worked a little on his new fingers so that they look much nicer from the ones he made from Masterbot scraps, but they're still not natural. He spent a long time not caring and now Mouse and Snooze are back, it's all he thinks about.

Mitz waves away Snooze's concern. "The Doctor found me and him and Teela took me back here," he summarises. "I've been back for a while now. What feels like a long time."

(That has nothing to do with his confidence and everything to do with Snooze.
That might make Mitz mad and snappish. Look. The Doctor didn't find Mitz, not really. Okay? He found the Master. And taking Mitz made the Master mad. That's the only reason why the Doctor did anything.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Wed Jul 17, 2013 12:30 pm

Snooze says, very quietly, "I am so sorry that I wasn't here when you came back." It was all he and Mouse wanted--to be on the rescue mission, to bring Mitz home and make him happy and healthy again. And here Mitz is, having been alone for a long time, limping and with strange eyes and cold fingers. No one has cared enough to help him.

(Not everything. Mitz being who he is helped a lot.
Snooze is not the Doctor's biggest fan, and even he knows that's not true. The Doctor took Mitz because he would never be able to live with himself, having left someone so hurt in the control of someone so psychotic.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Wed Jul 17, 2013 12:37 pm

Mitz shakes his head. "Don't worry about it," he says. It was horrible coming back to see no-one he really knew. He'd been with Mouse for centuries. He felt like he had spent centuries looking for Snooze, waiting for him to be part of his life. Even Max was gone. But there was nothing he could do about it and it felt worse to dwell. "You're here now." He looks at Snooze and smiles because Snooze /is/ here now and Mitz is going to look after him and everything is going to be fine.

(The parts that Snooze love, definitely.
Mitz scoffs.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Wed Jul 17, 2013 12:44 pm

"I am," Snooze agrees. He wants to ask again about Mitz's limp and eyes and fingers, and the shadows in his eyes, but he's also terrified to ask. It feels horrible, to be this scared. He forces the fear away, and swallows the questions as well. He can ask Mitz once they have settled somewhere comfortable, somewhere private, where Mitz can speak. "Where are we going?"

(And all the rest. Snooze wouldn't have only parts of Mitz.
Mitz acts like he hasn't heard the same stories Snooze has.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by sinistra_blache on Wed Jul 17, 2013 12:51 pm

"Uh," Mitz says, pausing and looking at where they are. "I actually think we're going to the infirmary. Which is not where I would choose, but we all know that I should be in charge of where I go." That last part was definitely not for Snooze's benefit. Mitz may have been talking to the Doctor's TARDIS more than he should. He'd probably get in trouble if the Doctor found out. He studies Snooze. "How are you feeling? Is there anything you want? ...what was that thing?"

That last question falls out, and it falls out tiny. He doesn't want to ask, in all honesty. He doesn't want to know what Snooze was doing while Mitz was unable to help. It looked horrible. He doesn't want to know how horrible, because he's selfish. But he has to know, because he /has/ to help.

(Because Snooze is the best.
It's different to be the poor beleaguered soul in the story, Mitz guesses. ...he has a lot of anger, it's probably misplaced, just ignore him.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

Post by nocturnalie on Wed Jul 17, 2013 1:10 pm

Snooze shudders, just a little. "A machine I was piloting." He isn't keen to say much more than that, right now, lest he fall right back into the nightmare place--the Nightmare Child. He squeezes Mitz's hand. "The infirmary sounds good. I do hope the kitchen is close by. I feel like I've not eaten in... quite some time."

(And he would not settle for less than the best.
He's angry because it took so long for them to rescue him. Because he got hurt and no one seemed to care. Because he was left alone. Trust Snooze: he understands that.)
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Re: The Nightmare Child

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