Godforsaken (that valkyrie/aleta fic)

I said I’d write it and I DID

Title: Godforsaken [title subject to change, as usual, but I actually quite like this one]
Fandom: MCU (Guardians of the Galaxy 2 & Thor: Ragnarok)
Rating: uh, mature? NSFW? There is sex.
Characters: Aleta Ogord, Valkyrie (Brunnhilde), Stakar Ogord, a few other important people mentioned here and there
Pairings: Aleta/Valkyrie, Aleta/Stakar (background)
Notes: This is set after Valkyrie exiled herself to Saakar, but before the events of Thor Ragnarok and before any of the Guardians of the Galaxy movies. This is a fairly young Aleta.

Also, I’ve only seen Thor Ragnarok once, so I really hope I haven’t gotten anything crucially wrong, especially re: Valkyrie.

Summary: A case of mistaken identity, a one-night-stand gone horribly wrong, and absolutely no sense of a resolution whatsoever.


what’s left of you

HOORAY this is finally done! (you might have seen me accidentally post a bit of it like… FOUR MONTHS ago?) It is a missing scene from GOTG2, essentially. One I badly wanted to see, so I wrote it.

Title: What’s Left of You
Fandom: Guardians of the Galaxy
Rating: PG13 maybe, but only because of all the swearing
Characters: Rocket, Kraglin, Stakar Ogord, Aleta Ogord
Pairings: Kragdu, if you squint (you won’t have to squint very much)
Summary: Rocket and Kraglin send word to Yondu’s old Ravager buddies.


Night had fallen.

Except it hadn’t, of course. Night can’t fall in space. But it felt like
night had fallen. If anyone had asked Rocket about his state of mind, as he
skulked in the shadows in the hangar, that would have been roughly what he’d
have told them. Just with more swearing.

“I am Groot?” said Groot, who had followed him.

“They’re preparing the body. They won’t notice I’m gone. Or if they do,
they’ll just think it’s ‘cos I’m a coward, which they probably do anyway. Go
back upstairs.”

“I am Groot,” said Groot forlornly, and left.

Rocket turned to the navcomputer in the corner and started pushing buttons,
before his mind could catch up with the rest of him and make him stop. There
was a vague list of possible contacts in his head, people who maybe could help
him find what he was looking for, but he wasn’t holding out much hope. Over and
over again he entered codes.

“I need to get through to Stakar Ogord’s personal channel,” he told whoever
answered on the other end. Most of his contacts – scum of the galaxy, all of
them – just laughed and cut him off.

“What the hell you be wanting that for?” the last guy said. “What’s a…
whatever the fuck you are… doing thinkin’ it’s important enough to talk to
the leader of the Ravagers?”

“Oh, fuck off,” Rocket said in despair, and turned off the call. He decided
it would help considerably if he picked up his gun and shot at the console, but
when he turned around to get it he saw Kraglin was there. He was slumped against
the wall, doing nothing.

“What’re you here avoiding?” Rocket asked, after a moment’s silence,
although he knew the answer.

“All my friends are dead,” Kraglin said hollowly. “Thought that was shitty
enough, like an idiot. Now the person I guess I loved the most is dead too, and
I’ll never see him again.”

Rocket nodded. He didn’t want to get drawn into anything overly emotional,
and as awful as it sounded, he sort of wished Kraglin would just go away.
“S’been a shitty day.”

“Stakar won’t answer you, even if you do get through to him somehow,”
Kraglin said. “He ain’t gotta pick up a transmission from Yondu’s ship.”

“I gotta try,” Rocket said. “I owe it to everyone to try,” he added, under
his breath. He thought he could try calling the Nova Corp next, as much as he
didn’t want to. Maybe there was a chance that someone, somewhere, could pass on
a message –

“Maybe we could try Aleta,” Kraglin said hesitantly.

“Yeah, I’m not up on Ravager lore. Who or what’s that?”

“Stakar’s wife.”

“Huh. Ravagers do actual monogamy? I didn’t see that coming.”

“She’s scary,” Kraglin said, rather unnecessarily. “I don’t wanna talk to
her. Not… now. But maybe if you did it -”

“Yeah. I’ll use my natural charm.” Rocket placed his gun on the console,
where it would be visible during calls. Couldn’t hurt… “Right. You do actually
have her code?”

“Sort of.”

“Sort of? That’s no fucking use then, is it, Kraglin?”

“Well,” Kraglin said, “y’see… Taserface usedta like to brag that he’d, um,
sleptwithher.” Those last three words came out in a jumbled explosion. “He
never thought too much of women.”

“Uh-huh. Big surprise there.”

“And whenever anyone backtalked him about that, which was a lot, somewhere
inbetween the beatings he’d say,” and here Kraglin put on a Taserface voice,
which should have been hilarious but wasn’t, “’WHYDA I HAVE HER CALLSIGN,
THEN,’ and say every number with, like, a punch in the face on each one.”

Rocket tried to picture the scene. Ordinarily he would’ve found it pretty
damn funny, but his mind kept kicking back, against his will, to the body lying
a few floors up.

“Were you one of the people who got punched in the face?”

“No. But I remember the number.”

He recited it. Rocket punched it into the console, not daring to actually stop
and think about it.

“There’s no way he actually slept with her,” Kraglin added. He seemed
awfully keen to defend the honour of a woman he barely knew. “Taserface was…
well, you saw him.”

“A jackass,” said Rocket, suddenly thinking of all Yondu’s loyal Ravagers,
who were still floating lifelessly in space somewhere.

Suddenly, the call went through. Rocket found himself holding his breath. A
woman who looked like she’d recently battled her way through hundreds of hells
and then stopped to key the devil’s car at the end appeared on the screen.

“How did you get this number?” she demanded. She had had the same idea to
keep her gun on the console, it seemed. Hers was much bigger and marked with
the seven-flamed Ravager symbol.

“Yondu’s dead,” Rocket said, before she had the chance to hang up, or shoot
somebody. Her face changed only very slightly.

“The fuck are you?” she said.

“What’s it matter? I gotta message. I told you the message. Someone you knew
once is dead. It sucks and I’m pissed. You gonna answer me?” Behind Rocket,
Kraglin frantically shook his head.

Aleta’s face seemed to soften a bit. Somehow that was even worse. “I’ll call
you rat thing, rat thing. You know who I am?”

“Yeah,” Rocket said.

“Then you know I murdered twenty slave traders during the Siege of Hala, and
twenty more when we raided the Klyn.”

“Didn’t know that, actually.” Rocket took a closer look at Aleta’s gun and saw
it was marked with several tally marks. Several hundred in fact.

“But you know enough, or you wouldn’t be calling me. And yet you don’t
bother speaking to me with respect.”

“Lady. I just put my life in danger, helped kill a freaking god, helped save the whole damn galaxy, and
watched a friend die,” Rocket said. “Don’t get me wrong, you’re probably very
good at slaughtering people and all that, but I figure we’re actually probably
on the same level.”

Aleta glared at him, and then she suddenly spun her chair away from the
console. A second later she was holding a datapad up.

“This?” she snapped. Somehow, that one word seemed to sum it all up quite
nicely. On the screen, people on Xandar were being dragged out from underneath
a great landslide of sea-blue earth, and then suddenly the image changed to a
vast makeshift mortuary, hundreds of bodies covered by sheets, crowds gathering
around them, people crying-

“Yes,” Rocket said, feeling like he was going to be sick. Behind him he
heard Kraglin slump back down to the floor.

“And Yondu is dead,” Aleta said. “Stay there and don’t move.”

“I’m not going anywhere. Obviously,” Rocket said, but she had already turned
her screen off. Kraglin walked over and sat down next to Rocket and rubbed his
face frantically with his sleeve. About half a minute passed during which
no-one said anything. The screen flickered on again.

Kraglin saluted, immediately. Stakar Ogord did not salute back.

“The fuck are you?” he said to Rocket, in exactly the same tone Aleta had

“Most people say ‘hi, thanks for calling, I know this is a terrible time for
you right now.’”

“How did he die?”

“Straight to the point, aren’t you?”

“Sir,” Kraglin spoke up nervously, “Rocket’s a science experiment gone
horribly wrong, and due to that he’s kinda touchy and snarky, don’t take any of
what he says personal like, sir-“

Stakar (who was also, Rocket noticed, absolutely loaded down with guns)
regarded Kraglin with what seemed like cool detachment.

“I remember you, boy. I almost admired your loyalty, y’know.”

“Not a boy anymore, sir,” said Kraglin.

Aleta appeared in the right-hand corner of Rocket’s screen, on a different
camera, not saying anything at all.

“How many people did Ego kill, then?” Rocket asked, not looking at anybody,
because he didn’t really want to know the answer. “That was his name. The god.
Suited him pretty well.”

“There’s reports of all sorts of shit coming in,”

“And the death toll?”

“High,” said Aleta. A single clipped word.

All the people in the conversation, who had a combined body count of well
over a thousand, considered this sombrely.

“Anyway,” Rocket said, “without Yondu around it might’ve been even higher.
He was willing to fight and die fighting that jackass and he did.”

For the first time since the call had gone through, Stakar and Aleta looked…
shocked. It was a weird kind of shock. Shock mixed with… triumph, Rocket would have guessed, if he thought himself good at
reading expressions, which he did not.

“Thought you might want to know,” he said, hiding the catch in his voice. “That’s
it, so I’ll go now. Try and make that little extra effort to not hunt us down
and kill us.”

“What do you think Ravagers are, exactly?” Aleta asked. Her tone was still
aggressive, but… less aggressive than it had been before.

“The rat’s only ever been around the likes of Taserface, ma’am,” Kraglin
said quickly. “He don’t know the real code.”

 “We aren’t gonna kill ya,” Aleta said
flatly, and then her screen went blank.

Stakar’s screen didn’t. He remained staring at Rocket and Kraglin, tapping
one of his guns against his leg, which was incredibly unnerving.

“What happened to the kid?” he asked.

“What?” said Rocket.

“The kid. There was a last kid,” he said, almost impatiently, as if he’d
expected Rocket to understand straight away what he meant.

“Them kids Yondu was dealing in? They were Ego’s children,” Kraglin said,
roughly. “The captain knew he was getting paid a ton but he did honestly want them safely delivered
to their dad, sir. And, Yondu really was torn up like hell about it when he
realised what was going on. Thass why he kept Quill. Well, one of the reasons he
kept Quill.”

“Quill,” Stakar muttered, as if he was trying to locate the name in his

“So… honestly, Peter Quill ended up being Yondu’s kid, sir. You can call it
sentimental shit, but that’s what happened, and that’s why he died.”

“I told that asshole years and years ago, put the boy back where you found
him,” Stakar said, in a creaky voice which was somewhere between a whisper and
a snarl.

“S’a good thing he didn’t, sir, or Ego would’ve unlocked his full powers way
earlier, and every last one of us would be dead. Ego needed a vessel to help
destroy the galaxy, or some shit, and he ended up killing all his other kids,
cept Peter. I mean. I know the galaxy nearly did get destroyed, but-”

“It actually didn’t, in the end,” Rocket interjected.

Stakar sat down on his console chair, which was lined with fur like a
throne, and after relocating a couple of his guns to the table he said,

“Ravagers don’t make good parents.”

“Agreed com-fucking-pletely,” Rocket said. “And Yondu wasn’t one. But he
loved Peter enough to help fight his psycho god dad and then to give him the
only spacesuit when they were left floating in the void. So… you know.”

Stakar gave a strange little smile, if it could even be called that, which
looked completely wrong on his face. It was there for less than a second and
then it was gone.

“I gotta lot of shit to take care of, thanks to that planet-eating god of

“We stopped him and killed him, you’re fucking welcome.”

“-so, I’m turnin’ this screen off, and going down to ground with my boys.”

“Wait,” Kraglin yelled. He said it in such a hurry that he forgot the “sir”.
“What – what happens now?”

“Fuck do you mean, Kraglin?”

“You know what I mean… sir. I been a Ravager since I was twelve. If taking
on a god doesn’t entitle you to the colours and what comes after, what does?”

“That ain’t for you to decide,” said Stakar.

“We don’t have no gods of our own. We ain’t got nothing but each other,
Yondu told me once. Where d’ya go if you die a Ravager but your own crew won’t
vouch for… for what’s left of you?”

Stakar gave no answer. Kraglin suddenly stood up with a jerk, like he was
squaring up to fight him.

“S’you who named yourself after the Colors. S’you who formed the Clans. So
you’re the only one who can tell me. Where’s my captain now?”

There was a second of silence and Rocket decided to jump in there. “You know
what I didn’t expect when I dialled that number? A friggin’ philosophical

“You’re not a Ravager,” Kraglin snapped at him. “You don’t know the code and
you don’t know the… you don’t know.”

“No-one. Knows. For certain,” Stakar said loudly, each word coming out like
a punch. “We got what we got.”

Those words, stark and almost sensible, hung in the air.

“You haveta give him the colours,” Kraglin said brokenly. “You said you
admired my loyalty. So do it for me if nothin’ else.”

“If I’m guessin’ right, and I think I am,” said Rocket slowly, for he had
only just realised this, “Yondu died for Peter knowing nothing good was coming
after. That probably entitles him to…whatever afterlife you guys think you have…all
by itself.”

“What the hell makes you think you got anythin’ like a say in this?” Stakar

“I don’t know about the rest of you pricks,” Rocket said, long past the
point where he should have lost his temper, “but the thought of someone I kinda
liked lost in some stupid afterlife-less void forever, it actually depresses me
the fuck out!”

Stakar laughed, sort of. It wasn’t really much of a laugh. “You got the guts
of a Ravager, rat thing. But you ain’t one.” And then his screen, too, went

Rocket and Kraglin were left alone. Although there were six other people on
the ship besides them, there might as well have been not a single being left
alive in the galaxy at that moment.

“They’ll come,” Kraglin said, in a voice that implied he didn’t really
believe it, although he was trying to.

“What makes you say that?”

“They loved him once.”

Rocket had not really been expecting that answer and had to quickly come up
with something cynical to counteract it. “S’got nothing to do with it. I’ve
been to countless funerals, buried and burnt countless bodies according to
whatever shit they believed in, and I don’t
love anybody.”

 “You love that little tree thingy,”
said Kraglin.

“Alright. I guess. But I’m sort of
his parent, so that doesn’t count.”

“And you love that green chick who was yelling at you for saving her life.”

“We’re friends, it doesn’t

“And the scary big guy.”


“And Quill. Everyone fucking loves
Quill. I figure like I should hate him for it but I don’t.”

Rocket had absolutely no answer for that. There was silence.

“Why do you even care so much? About Yondu. You knew him for like two days,”
Kraglin said, softly.

“Guess I’m just redemption trash,” said Rocket.

“Ain’t we all.”

There was a sound in the distance like a great engine firing up. The funeral
would start soon, once they were a respectable distance out into deep space.

“I should go,” said Kraglin. And then he said something surprising for a
supposedly ruthless space pirate: “You tried. You tried real hard. Thanks for
doin’ that.”

“For all the good it did. I don’t even know what the fuck’s gonna happen

“Well,” said Kraglin, sounding gloomily older and wiser, “we got what we

“That we do,” said Rocket, suddenly longing to be amongst his whole family
again. Even at a funeral. Even with them all hating him. It was still something to cling to in a void. “Let’s

They went. Behind them, a little white speck appeared in the blackness: it
was Stakar’s ship, on its way.



I wish I’d appreciated more when I was younger and involved in the fanfic world how something can be “bad writing” in the sense that it doesn’t work as a piece of literature, but good in what it’s doing for the writer.

Especially (but not only) for very young writers, fiction can be a badly needed escape or a way to work through their own problems in metaphor.  A girl who feels invisible and unloved in the real world can write a version of herself that’s a half-unicorn half-faerie princess with every magic power simultaneously, and whether it’s narratively strong or not, it means something to her that she can be that princess in her story.  A person who has no other outlet for their sexuality can write awful “lol, what even is anatomy” porn as part of the process of feeling out what they want and who they are.  A boy who’s afraid to express softness and vulnerability in the real world can write unbearably melodramatic and glurgey hurt/comfort fic, and find in it the tenderness that’s inside him.

And 99% of these stories will be awful and unreadable and embarrassing, just as 99% of therapy session transcripts wouldn’t make good one-act plays.  But that’s okay.  They serve a purpose beyond conventional literature, and while you may not necessarily want to read them, you should still respect that purpose.

This is so important.

A fic I’ve been mulling over since The Doctor Falls aired. One of those strange, sad little affairs told from the perspective of a not-so-great person

or, “Bill heads ‘home’ to her foster mother after meeting Heather again.”

[warnings: homophobia, unsupportive parental figures, ….nothing you couldn’t have guessed about the Bill and Moira relationship from the show though?]

[Also, this has no title yet.]


One quiet Saturday morning, Moira was sleeping in when the noise of the front door woke her. It was Bill. Bill being just plain inconsiderate, Moira thought, but she put on her dressing gown and went to see if she was all right. Bill didn’t usually come back to the house in the mornings. She was almost always out, as if she didn’t like being there at all unless she had to.

Moira found her rummaging about in a drawer, looking for something.

“You alright?”

Bill jumped and turned around and stared at her. She stared like she hadn’t laid eyes on her in years. That was ridiculous, of course, they’d seen such other just a few days ago, but – something had changed. Something big.

“Oh god, what is it? I know that look. Your mum had that look. What’s happened to you?”

Bill opened her mouth and closed it again and a million awful concepts ran through Moira’s head. “Bill, answer me, are you all right?”

“I’m fine!” Bill said, far too quickly. “Honestly, I’m…I’m totally fine.” But her sleeve was wet, as if she’d been crying. “Um. You remember the Doctor? That nice old man who was my teacher, my friend? He died. He died last night.”

“Oh. I’m sorry.” That explained why she was so completely out of sorts, then. But it didn’t explain a few other things, it didn’t explain the backpack Moira had just noticed open on the floor…

“What exactly are you doing, Bill?”

“I’m gonna m – go – m-move out, for good this time.” It was said with dignity, but she stuttered terribly over the words.

Why?” Moira considered herself not an intentionally ignorant person, she suspected where the conversation was going, but she wasn’t in the least bit pleased about it. “Your friends run into another dodgy landlord on the street? Cos look how well that turned out-”

“No, I got a girlfriend.”

Moira didn’t consider, for even a second, the weight her foster daughter put behind those words, or the look in her eyes.

“And you’re – you’re gonna run off with her without even a by-your-leave, then?” Now she was the one stuttering.

“I am, actually,” Bill said. And then she said, in a tone that somehow managed to combine both hesitancy and anger, “You weren’t actually surprised at that, were you? You always knew. I told you often enough. And you were always talking about me and men anyway.”

Moira had always known this day would come, so she was prepared. “It just might be worth considering that it’s just a phrase.”

“A phrase that I’ve had since I was seventeen years old.”

“Don’t be like that, Bill. It’s not unreasonable to want the best for you. You know.”

“The best for me,” Bill said after a pause. “The best for me.”

“Anything like what you’ve got now, girls with girls, it’s hard and it’s difficult-”

“Because people don’t accept it! People like you, apparently!”

Moira considered whether or not she accepted it and she came close, she really did, but it wasn’t enough. It had never been enough, for her foster child.

“It just – I don’t -”

“It makes you uncomfortable,” Bill said bitterly.

“Fine, if you must know, yes! But that doesn’t mean you can’t live under my roof, it just means-”

“It means leaving my new girlfriend. It means changing my sexuality. It means a conversion,” Bill said, and her voice sounded…different, and old, and resonant. “That’s what you mean.”

Moira had no real answer. She wanted to say no of course that’s not what I mean, I’m sorry, invite your girlfriend in and we’ll talk, but she didn’t.

“I just want you to be…

“Happy? Well, other people have done that,” Bill said with finality. “I’m gonna go now.”

She put what she had been looking for in the drawer – pictures of her mother – into her backpack, and started towards the door. Moira, uncertain, hovered behind her.

“Bill, I really am sorry your teacher died.”

“I am, too. He was a good man. And he accepted everyone just as they were.”

“It doesn’t have to be like this,” Moira found herself saying. She didn’t want Bill to go, not really. She had never been her parent but she thought she was her friend.

“It does,” said Bill. “I can’t live here. Not now. Come on, Moira. I am… grateful, yeah? I’m grateful you fostered me and fed me and put a roof over my head and all. I kinda have to be. But you were never my…”

“Don’t you dare say ‘my mother’. I was never trying to replace your mother.”

Bill didn’t flinch at the slightly raised voice. “That’s pretty obvious.”

A thin strain of desperation rose in Moira as Bill opened the door. She’d promised to look after the girl, when she’d showed up on the doorstep as a lonely, angry teen. A lot of it had been out of duty to the memory of a friend, but… she had liked the adult Bill had grown to be. It felt unfair.

“Bill, this isn’t even a dealbreaker to most people!”

As Bill stepped outside Moira caught a glimpse of another woman, the girlfriend. She was standing in the street, her feet in a puddle, as if she hadn’t got a care in the world. But her gaze was intense, and it was terrifying.

“Bye,” said Bill. “Call me when or if you’re ready to be… I dunno… better.”

She walked off without looking back, kissed the girlfriend, and the pair of them wandered off.

Moira, unable to even work out what she was feeling beyond hurt (it was guilt) went back upstairs. A few hours after Bill left she noticed a water stain on the carpet, and she tried to clean it up over the next couple days, but she never was able to entirely remove it.



What the hell must Peter have thought, I wonder, when he saw the little troll doll among Yondu’s console toys? It must have been an absolute gut punch. Yondu guessed what was going on with the orbs after all, and not only forgave Peter for tricking him but was downright impressed that he had, and kept the toy around because he was proud of Peter, because he missed Peter…

(And now Peter has to put it on his funeral pyre.)

Peter was managing to hold it together okay until he found the damn troll doll.

It helped to have something to do. He was all right as long as he could just keep doing things instead of thinking about things. Kraglin was off finding and preparing fabric for the binding of the dead (old spacer custom; Peter had no idea where it had come from, but a lot of space-nomad cultures like the Ravagers seemed to have something similar) and Peter had decided to scour the Quadrant for items to lay on the bier. He’d last seen Groot sitting in Rocket’s lap with Mantis beside him, the little tree sprouting flower after flower, to be carefully plucked from his body and placed on the growing pile. Drax and Gamora were preparing the body itself.

Honestly, Peter hadn’t expected everyone to pitch in. He’d thought it would just be him and Kraglin. He couldn’t let himself think about it right now, about the enormity of all these willing hands working together to prepare the funeral arrangements for someone most of them had hardly even known, as if all of them had lost –

As if they’d lost a member of their family.

Because that’s how family worked, wasn’t it? It wasn’t people you liked, necessarily. It was people you were tied to, people who were tied to you, tied with bonds that not even death could break –

Stop, he told himself, blanking his mind as he carefully picked up handfuls of toys in the captain’s quarters. They were everywhere, stashed into drawers, tucked into nooks and crevices.

He craved his music to get him through this. He hadn’t wanted his Walkman so badly since his early days on the Eclector, when the loss of his mother and his world had been a raw, gaping hole through his chest. He just wanted to put on the earphones and tune out reality for awhile.

Instead, he stuffed his pockets full of toys and went up to the flight deck, where Yondu’s favorites would be.

He didn’t see Nebula sitting in the pilot’s chair until he started skimming toys off the armrest and then the suddenly dawning awareness of a very still presence in the chair made him jump so hard he dropped the entire handful.

“Thanks for giving me a heart attack,” he muttered, crouching to pick them up and hiding his face while he could blink back the tears that had been springing up, despite his best efforts, throughout this entire process. “Do you mind?”

“Someone has to fly the ship.” There was no intonation in her voice.

Peter cleared his throat. He recognized the toy in his hand, a little round-headed red thing; it had been sitting up here since Peter had been a teenager. Dealing with the ones he didn’t recognize, acquired since he left the ship, had been easier; these were going to be hell. “What I’m saying is, could I have a few minutes? I won’t take long.”

There was no answer, in fact there was no sound whatsoever, but when he dared to look up, she had vanished.

Probably hiding in the shadows, waiting to slide a knife between my shoulder blades, he thought, trying to reassert a tiny amount of normalcy in his own head. He went around to the other side, trying to blank his mind and just let his hands go through the motions of picking up the toys one at a time. Little jeweled cat thing he might’ve seen in the Broker’s shop once upon a time … a winged serpent that he knew they gave away as tourist geegaws on Bel-Set III … and, oh

All else was forgotten. The items he was holding slid from his nerveless fingers and clattered on the floor as he reached to pick up the troll doll with exquisite care.

Probably the only troll doll in outer space. He’d had it with him, in his backpack, when he was

(picked up)

abducted on Earth. Last seen when he’d sealed it into the orb containment device and handed it into Yondu’s waiting palm on Xandar.

He’d expected Yondu would figure out the trick eventually.

Expected Yondu would open it, sooner or later.

Expected he’d be pissed.

But he wasn’t expecting to find it here – not just among Yondu’s collection, but in the place where Yondu put his very favorites, the ones he liked to keep around to look at, pick up, and run through his fingers while he thought about things. As a kid, Peter used to shuffle the order around, even swipe one occasionally just to mess with him … but he’d always, always made sure he didn’t lose it and put it back, since he had a feeling that Yondu wasn’t going to spare the arrow on a scrawny Terran brat who meant less to him than most of the trinkets in that collection –

Peter clutched the troll doll so tightly he could feel the plastic deforming under his fingers. He pressed it to his forehead and squeezed his eyes shut, but that didn’t stop the pressure building behind his eyelids, the tightness twisting his throat shut.

“You son of a bitch,” he choked out. “You son of a bitch. You couldn’t say any of this while – while there was still time –”

He folded slowly to the floor, curled around that damn doll, and cried.

There was the vague awareness, in some part of his mind not given over to abject grief, that it almost seemed as if something settled on his back, a calm and steady pressure like that of a strong hand, palm flat against his back, pressing soothingly between his shoulder blades. But he was too deep in his misery to notice it except on a superficial level, until it morphed somehow into a smaller hand, just as strong, stroking down his spine – a familiar presence, kneeling at his side.

“Peter?” Gamora’s quiet voice asked.

“I’m good,” he gasped. “I’m good.” He dragged a fist across his eyes, took a few deep, gulping breaths, and carefully smoothed down the troll doll’s wild hair where it had been crumpled in his fist. “Do you, uh – there’s some more on the –”

“I’ve got them,” Gamora said softly, displaying a handful of toys. “Peter, we’re ready to prepare the pyre.”

Peter could only nod, not trusting his voice. Gamora helped him to his feet and released him once he was standing, but stayed at his side, near enough to touch and yet giving him a bit of space. When she moved forward, he did too, though not without a glance behind him at the stars standing silent vigil outside the ship.

For a brief instant before he set foot on the ladder leading down to the rest of the ship, he had to pause, as if something had touched his shoulder ever so briefly – the light pressure of a hand, there and gone in a quick squeeze – and then he followed her down to the funeral.

Oh gosh ;-;


Tumblr’s hatred of first-person fanfic gets me down, and not just because I’ve written so much of it. Every time I see one of those “oh, the first word was ‘I’ *closes tab*” jokes I’m just kinda reminded that for all the good work people have done bringing fanfiction into the mainstream, for all that folks are beginning to understand the importance of transformative works, it’s still seen as fundamentally lesser than published fiction. It can’t just be that people don’t like first-person narratives, or else The Hunger Games, The Handmaid’s Tale, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, A Clockwork Orange, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, To Kill A Mockingbird, The Colour Purple, Jane Eyre and countless others would never have made it to print. The implication is always “first-person fanfiction, i.e. a lot of fanfiction, is just teenage girls making dumb self-inserts” and I always figured we’d have got past that by now.

And also, yes, because I’ve written so much of it.

#I love writing it but don’t that often for that reason (via albion19)


Tumblr’s hatred of first-person fanfic gets me down, and not just because I’ve written so much of it. Every time I see one of those “oh, the first word was ‘I’ *closes tab*” jokes I’m just kinda reminded that for all the good work people have done bringing fanfiction into the mainstream, for all that folks are beginning to understand the importance of transformative works, it’s still seen as fundamentally lesser than published fiction. It can’t just be that people don’t like first-person narratives, or else The Hunger Games, The Handmaid’s Tale, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, A Clockwork Orange, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, To Kill A Mockingbird, The Colour Purple, Jane Eyre and countless others would never have made it to print. The implication is always “first-person fanfiction, i.e. a lot of fanfiction, is just teenage girls making dumb self-inserts” and I always figured we’d have got past that by now.

And also, yes, because I’ve written so much of it.



I wonder… has anybody approached the Peter & Yondu angst/feels by making an AU where Yondu was too late to save Peter in Vol. 1?

If no-one else takes it, I reckon I could give that a try



“Boy,” Yondu snarled. “Boy! Get the fuck up!”

He slapped the face of the man on the floor. Nothing happened. Peter didn’t get up.

“He’s dead, Udonta,” the woman who had entered the ship with him snapped. “If you lay your hands on him one more time I will kill you and any man who tries to stop me.”

“Peter can’t die, you idiot girl. I know what his father is!”

Kraglin, standing at the front of the gaggle of Ravagers, winced a bit at that. “Maybe we oughta go drop him off where we was meant to drop him off twenty years ago.”

“We’re not doing that! You fucking insane, Kraglin? You know what his father is too.”

The woman – Gamora – opened her mouth to speak. Horuz, who was holding her back, spoke over her. “What’d you care, Captain? You said you were gonna kill him anyhow.”

Yondu whistled and the Yaka arrow came out of its holster. It hovered in the air over Peter’s body, looking for all the world like it was some sort of spirit protecting him.

“Anyone wanna question the way things are run around here, you know what you up against.”

There were some mutinous mutterings which Yondu heard and fully understood, but he didn’t care. Peter didn’t look dead. Apart from the ice on his face, he looked like he could have been just sleeping.

“There’s no life signs, Captain.” Kraglin was holding some little medical device. “Not one.”

Yondu looked at Gamora, partly so that he wouldn’t have to look at Peter. This was her fault, the sentimental sanctimonious witch, and he wanted nothing more than to kill her. But he couldn’t bring himself to. It would bring more trouble than it was worth… and it would render Peter’s sacrifice pointless.

“Idiot fucking boy!” He had no idea who or what he was actually talking to. “Idiot fucking girl,” he said to Gamora.

“Now isn’t the time to be grieving,” Gamora said. She looked like she was only just holding it together, but her voice didn’t wobble. “There are bigger things-”

Yondu whistled and the arrow came to a stop in front of her face. She barely flinched.

“One more word out of you and it goes through your brain,” he said. “And ta the rest of ya, fuck off and go do what I pay you for.”

More angry, whispered swear words.

“Tullk, Kraglin, get this up-herself green asshole outta my sight. Put her in the brig or something.” A pause. “What’re you all standing the fuck around for? Go!”

They went. All the Ravagers were smart enough to not glare at their captain directly, just, but Yondu still felt the contempt radiating off some of them. He would happily have killed them there and then if it wouldn’t have made things even worse.

“Let me say goodbye to him,” Gamora demanded as she was dragged out. She had apparently realized that the arrow-through-the-brain threat had been an empty one. “He saved my life.”

“An’ you’ll have plenty of time to contemplate that over the next coupla days, while we work out what to do with you.”

Let – me – say – goodbye – to – him.” Her teeth were bared. It served to remind Yondu that she was even more of a prolific killer than he was.

Only he, Tullk, Kraglin, Gamora and the corpse were left in the room. “Fine. You got five seconds. And if you try anything just remember, you can’t outrun the arrow. Nothin’ can.”

Gamora shook off, with dignity, the hands that were holding her arms behind her back. She walked to Peter’s body, knelt down, whispered something in his ear, and stood back up again.

“You remember that I showed you that kindness, girl,” Yondu said, as Tullk and Kraglin escorted her out. She spat in his face, so quietly that the others didn’t even notice, as she passed him. He did nothing.

A part of him had hoped Peter might suddenly sit up and laugh once the room was empty, but he didn’t. With fury and grief coursing through his veins, he picked up the body and carried it to the engine room. With every step, it hurt more.


“Folks ain’t gonna be happy that you’re giving him a Ravager funeral, Captain,” Kraglin said.

“You keep talking, Kraglin, and you’re goin’ into the flames after him, and it won’t be no funeral.”

“S’not an insult, Captain! I swear. I’m trying ta warn ya.”

Peter’s funeral pyre had all Yondu’s console toys on it, and the Walkman, obviously. Peter wouldn’t have wanted to go anywhere without his mother’s last gift to him by his side. The flames were licking at it and turning it black and making the room smell like chemicals. Like death, too.

“We picked up some of Peter’s buddies,” Kraglin said. “They came after him, trying to save him from… you, I guess. An angry green guy and an angry tree and a really, really angry rat thing. All the fight kinda went outta them once they learned he was dead.”

“Did you put ‘em in the brig with the girl?”

“Yeah. They won’t shut up though. They keep yelling about that fucking orb.”

“S’all that girl’s fucking fault…” But it wasn’t, of course. It was all Peter’s fault, for being good and noble and stupid and far, far more than Yondu had ever deserved. “We’ll deal with ‘em later.”


Both of them stared at the fire and at the trail of ashes visible from the window. Yondu wondered what Gamora had whispered into Peter’s ear.

Kraglin put his hand on Yondu’s shoulder, which made him jump. “I’ll leave you alone, Captain,” he said. “Just watch your back, ya know?”

“Not one of them assholes has the balls to go up against me, not while the arrow’s still flying. Just go, Kraglin.”

Kraglin left. The door to the engine room slid shut with a clunk, and Yondu was left to watch Peter’s body burn. Terrible things were going to happen soon, he was fairly sure of it. He was surrounded by enemies, and Peter’s friends would probably be out of their cell soon enough if they’d been smart enough to make it so far already, and that whole orb situation sure as hell wasn’t looking exactly promising either…

“Sorry, boy. Hope wherever you are now’s better than here.”

It was a shitty eulogy. Once again, Peter had deserved better, but Yondu had run out of words and out of energy. He slumped down next to the blazing engines, so close he could almost feel the fire on his skin, and took the arrow from its holster again. It had been his last connection to his home planet as much as the Walkman had been Peter’s. But it didn’t really matter anymore.

He snapped it in two with his bare hands, and threw it into the fire. Within seconds it was gone, its ashes merging with Peter’s and falling out into the darkness. Yondu watched the patterns forming in the stars, longing to see some sort of sign, in accordance with Ravager tradition, that Peter was still in some way there.

But it was alright. He’d gotten lucky. They’d be coming for him soon enough.


What follows here is not a nice story (although we know how it ends, luckily) but I sort of wanted to have a shot at telling it.

Title: Smile
Fandom: Guardians of the Galaxy
Characters: Mantis, Ego
Summary: Mantis’s life under Ego.
Rating: Um. PG13? It’s not graphic, it’s just… unsettling.
Warnings: Well… this is a story about abuse, and its effects. So there’s gaslighting, and physical violence, and trauma, and… slavery, essentially. Mantis is a slave, even if she doesn’t know it. Plus a sort of vague, menacing misogyny in the background. Also, y’know, it’s partly about Ego, possibly the most casually evil creature the MCU has conjured up.

If you think you can handle it, click here to read on AO3, or,



The kind of literature that fan fiction is did not spring fully formed into being in the 1960s and 70s, though some journalists still seem to think so. Throughout this book I have been stressing the link, in literary terms, between fan fiction and any other fiction based on a shared canon […]. It is clear from the comments of fan fiction writers like Ika and Belatrix Carter that one major attraction of this genre for writers is the sense of a complicit audience who already share much information with the writer and can be relied on to pick up ironies or allusions without having them spelled out. Writing based on the canons of myth and folklore can do this too, though as Belatrix Carter pointed out in chapter 7, these canons have been so extensively used for so long it is becoming harder to do anything with them that feels original.

But there is another point, implied in Ika’s remark in chapter 2 – “What I like about fan fiction is that you can still get that very highly trained audience that can understand very, very complex and allusive things.” The use of “still” alludes to the undoubted fact that for the traditional canons of myth, Bible, history, and folklore, this “very highly trained” audience is not as reliable as it once was, because the canon information is not as widely shared as it used to be. […] a writer can no longer allude to Lazarus, Circe or Alexander and be reasonably sure that most of his readers have in their heads the thoughts, stories or images for which he was aiming. The human need for heroes and archetypes does not go away, but their faces change with time, and one avatar takes the place of another. Ika’s point is a shrewd one: in an age of fragmented rather than shared cultures the fan fiction audience is unusual in having as thorough a knowledge of its particularly shared canon as a Bible-reading or classically educated audience once did.

Sheenagh Pugh, The Democratic Genre: Fan Fiction in a Literary Context, p. 219 (via nihilistelektra)

I’ve mentioned memes as intertextuality before but fanfiction is another thing that’s intertextual. 

(via allthingslinguistic)