Title: Middle Ground
Challenge: Writer’s Table Monthly Drabble – January 2019
Word Count: 500
Steve sat on the patio of the small cafe in the heart of Wakanda, his mind in turmoil, his heart was a mess and his tiger spirit animal kept glaring at him. He sipped at the strong African coffee, so very different to back home, and wondered if he could ever make up for all the destruction and pain he had left behind.
He had been so sure, had felt it had been the right thing to do. It wasn’t just Bucky. That wasn’t the real fight, it was the Sokovia Accords themselves, Bucky was just the excuse.
“I felt you angsting all the way back in the US and thought it was only right to come see what the hell you were doing.”
“Tony…” Steve’s breath caught in his throat, shame and guilt settled in him and he looked away. Tony sat something on the table and when Tony turned towards the noise it made against the metal, Steve’s heart stopped.
“I had a visitor. She was old, but wiser than all of us. She had a story to tell me and a tattoo she wanted to show me. She had heard some of what happened, you know, between us…”
“Be quiet Popsicle and let me finish. She said you and your Howling Commandos saved her whole family when you broke up one of Red Skulls camps. She had a lot to say and it made me understand some of what you were trying to tell me at the Sokovia summit. I didn’t want to listen. I wanted to be one-hundred percent right, but she made me see that maybe I needed to listen a little more.”
Steve took the little angel holding a child ceramic ornament and felt the years on him like nothing else had.
“We were getting the refugees across the border from Germany to Switzerland. It was close to Christmas and right as you walked over there was a little village. I saw this in a window and the little girl smiled at it. I went in and bought it for her.
“We couldn’t save them all…” Steve swallowed hard as moisture gathered in his eyes. A car passed and backfired, making Steve jump and reach for a gun that wasn’t there. Steve’s spirit animal laid its head on his thigh, giving comfort.
“We never can.”
Steve looked at Tony and wanted to get angry at his words, but they were, unfortunately true.
“I’m sorry, Tony. I never meant for things to get so far. I never meant to hurt you…”
“I know, Steve. But we have to do better.”
“Why do you even want to? There is too much…”
“Because I know what you are, and I know what we were supposed to be.” A spirit hawk landed on Tony’s shoulder and glared at Steve.
“How can you even consider this after everything that happened?”
“Because something’s coming and we’re stronger together, Sentinel.”
Steve sighed and looked Tony in the eye.
Challenge: Writer’s Table Monthly Drabble – Jan 2019
Fandom: Destiny 2 Video Game
Word Count: 496
Devrim Kay looked out of the burned out window in what he considered as his Church, a monument to a long-dead idea of Deity. Ever since The Traveler had shown up, the idea of God had changed. The ability to live a near-immortal life had an effect on those called Guardians. He wasn’t sure he knew what he believed as he looked through his sniper scope and picked off Fallen as they once again flooded into his area on the only inhabitable land left on Earth.
His thermos of coffee that Ikora would sometimes bring him sat waiting for him when he was ready for it. He thought about the nature of God. Why, if there was such a being had they let the things happen, The Fall, The Breach, The Iron Lords, and Earths many enemies. Devrim looked up at The Traveler and wondered if God, if there was one, had created it to help mankind battle the things that kept trying to either control, or tear Earth apart in equal measure.
Devrim had vague memories, ones of long past of who he thought might have been his parents, he couldn’t really be sure. Guardians, most anyway, didn’t remember much of their pasts when they were resurrected, but they all had some kind of vague memories. He had mental images of a kind man who spoke of a gentle, loving, forgiving God that created all things in the Universe. Maybe that was why he had chosen the Church as his base, an homage of sorts to those memories and the people in them.
Looking out on what was left of his homeworld, Devrim wondered for a time what the animals he had read about in the lore were like. H sometimes longed to see a Tiger, or Bear, even the little animals called squirrels. He had heard rumors of late that the Dreaming City had cats. He longed to one day go there and see them, now that the City was open to Guardians.
“How is your coffee, Old Friend.” Devrim smiled as he moved to the table where he poured out a cup, a picture appeared on the top in a kind of foam. He softly laughed at the bit of whimsy that was so rare in this age of constant war.
“Ikora, that is a lovely bit of technology. And, the coffee is delicious.”
“Have you…” Ikora’s voice faltered over the communication lines and Devrim knew what she was asking.
“I plan on paying my respects soon. I’m sorry I couldn’t be there.”
“He would have understood. You have a difficult job.”
“You don’t have to be strong for me, Ikora. Cayde was…”
“A lot of things to a lot of people.”
“May God and The Traveler protect him.” Devrim may not have been a godly man, but he believed in something deeper, he believed in The Traveler and The Guardian’s. He believed that Earth would one day be free again.