A/N: POV Second Person. You're Mono, the paper bag headed kid from the second game. Unfortunately I can't list him as a character yet because the second game hasn't been released yet and he's not been added yet, lol.
LMK if there's any funny formatting stuff going on because italics and other things get removed sometimes.
There is a certain draw to the televisions. A dangerous pull. Something that calls to you… asks you to come in…
Other people answer that call, and you see what happens to them. You don't know how or why. Some hand is orchestrating this, but the details are a mystery to you. All you know is that you shouldn't go near the TVs. But sometimes… sometimes they sing to you, lull you, soothe you. It becomes hard to resist. Your mother couldn't, not forever, and she's not herself anymore. So y ou get scared. You don't want anything to do with the lulling TVs, or the School that demands obedience to them. Instead, you run. You don't think there's anything better anywhere else in the world, but you can't stand one more moment here.
The Hunter gets you first, as he gets all runaway children. He locks you up, and you think, this is it. This is your end. Maybe death is better than what happens to the others, but when death is right around the corner, any alternative sounds more appealing. Only the Hunter doesn't kill you quick. They have many children; you are just one, and there's no hurry. So he puts you in a dingy room with pictures drawn by children that aren't you. Children that came before you, and are no longer alive.
You're too scared to draw anything. This is the end. This is the end.
You're hunched on the floor when she appears, a slash of yellow high on the bookcase. She looks down at you like a silent, judging God, but you imagine sympathy in her gaze. You hardly dare to hope. There's a moment like a balanced pin where you wonder what she will do. Then she gestures at the shelves, and gestures behind her. The message is clear: the same way she came in, the both of you can flee.
There's no time to wonder what miracle of coincidences could have brought someone to save you, when so so few are saved (and so so many are destroyed). The Hunter is in the adjoining room. He could come in to fetch you at any moment. It's now or never. At her bidding, you ascend the bookcase (with books are large as you - you must claw your way up, twining fingers around ribbon bookmarks, bruising the soles of your feet on nails jutting from the wood, clambering on any little knickknacks). Three-fourths up, you accidentally dislodge a little glass figurine on the shelf. It falls before you can grab it, and down, down, down it plummets.
Your heart leaps in your throat. The Hunter roars. You're out of time. You need to move.
Nearly crying in terror, you fling yourself recklessly up the shelf, scrambling as quick as possible with no regard for your own safety - because if you don't move fast enough, your fate is sealed. High above you, she's waving and hopping on her feet frantically. Don't leave, you selfishly pray. Don't leave me.
The door slams open. The Hunter's shadow falls on you.
No! NO N O
You're not fast enough. You can't make it in time. His thundering steps shake the bookcase. You're so close but you won't make it-
Right as his thick hand reaches, so does her small one.
You grasp hers; she pulls -
His finger brushes your leg, but he's a fraction too late. You collapse in a heap on top of the bookcase. You're dazed, shocked that you're not dead, but she leaps right up and seizes your hand, tugging.
Now, now! She seems to be urging. T he danger isn't gone yet. Not at all. The Hunter begins to shake the bookcase, and that motion is all it takes for you to seize her hand in return and stumble blindly after her. The both of you slip through a minuscule crack in the wall. Outside! You're outside now! With surprising strength, she yanks you into the gutters. Like riding some bizarre slide, you cling to each other and plummet down the side of the house until you land in a puddle.
She violently pulls you from the puddle, and you see why - the Hunter left the shack, and he's quickly gaining on you. His legs will swiftly outrun yours. Soon you're racing side by side with her, convinced that you've doomed her, too. Except she ducks and dodges this way and that - into a hollow log she runs, and you follow after. Under brambly bushes and around trees and -
You understand. The Hunter is inevitably faster. So she's finding paths where he can't tread. Taking turns beyond his abilities. Guiding you deep into woods where you might vanish in the little things.
And it's working.
You nearly laugh from the sheer delight of it. Then another sharp turn, another. The two of you dive into a little burrow, cushioned with fluff and sticks. Then you huddle close, listen, wait.
The chirping of evening insects. Wind through leaves.
The Hunter's heavy boots, and heavy breath. You suck in your own breath, afraid to make even the tiniest of sounds. He growls like an animal. Stomps first one way, then another. He's looking for you. But he doesn't know where to look. At one point, his boots stomp directly over the burrow and you quaver, certain he's found you.
But he keeps on. Huffing like a dog. Angry. A shot fires, but it hits nothing that you know. He's shooting at shadows, maybe. Whatever it is, his sounds begin to grow more and more distant.
The chirping of evening insects. Wind through the leaves. Her soft panting beside you.
The Hunter is gone.
He's gone. You're safe.
Giddy happiness bubbles up. She saved you! You're rescued! Feeling at once weak and whimsical, you pull her into a tight hug and bury your face in her shoulder. She twitches, as if surprised, then slowly draws her arms around you and hugs you back. A strange grumbling noise has you pulling away in confusion. What was that? Her face looks pale, her mouth twisted in a grimace. Is she okay? Did you hurt her?
She hunches over, clutching her stomach. This time, you recognize the grumbling noise.
After she went through all that effort, risked her own life to save you… the least you can do is make sure she gets something to eat. Frankly, you're hungry too. It's not like the Hunter provides buffets for his captives: he hadn't given you a single bit of a food in two days. But she looks worse off. Yes, you'll get food for her. You're not sure what is okay to eat in the forest, but you signal to her that you're looking for food, and that she should stay where she's at. She nods, and seems to understand.
Off you run, head swinging one way or the other as you look for anything, anything that might be edible. Lately, your meals had come from the little shop in town, which is safe to raid at night, so long as you avoid the rat traps and aren't too loud. But the town is far from here. You're not even sure how far, or in which direction to run. So you'll have to make do with whatever you can find in the wilderness. Several plants you consider, and then dismiss - the last thing you want to do is poison her. You pass an earthworm, and debate about that, too. But feeding her bugs seems discourteous. Several minutes later, you haven't found anything else, and you start having second thoughts about the earthworm - that's when you stumble across a very lucky find: a large grey rabbit, its neck circled with blood from the snare that had captured it.
You approach warily, but the creature is, undoubtedly, dead. Freshly dead. Perhaps it was intended as the Hunter's meal. You can't deny the satisfaction of taking some of the Hunter's meal - although, of course, you can't bring the whole rabbit to her. No way she could eat something that big. But you can take some, and there's satisfaction in that. So you find a sharp rock nearby and painstakingly hack off a sliver of meat (it takes a frustratingly long time). It should be enough.
Proud of your find, you begin marching back to the burrow only to meet her halfway. Your eyebrows raise in surprise. She should have waited. You were bringing it back; it wasn't like you had abandoned her - but she stumbles out of the grass, clutching her stomach, air hissing through her teeth. She looks horrible. Sick, even. You raise up the slab of meat to show it off. She lurches closer. There, see? You were headed right back. Now you can start up a fire for her, and cook -
The rabbit meat is ripped from your clutches with startling force.
She has her teeth in it before you can do a single thing.
Blinking, shocked, you watch as she vehemently devours every last bit of the meat. Her frenzied crunching and tearing is feral, almost barbaric. After it's all gone (which takes very little time), she wipes bloody lips and offers an embarrassed smile with a wince. Sorry about that, she seems to say. You're just relieved to see her behaving more normally. Maybe she doesn't need it cooked after all, and just... hadn't eaten in a while. That's all. Now she's full, and that's all that matters. It's good to see her feeling better.
You squeeze her hand to let her know it's okay. But you will need to get more meat and actually cook some for yourself now.
This time, she comes with you and helps you to slice off more rabbit pieces. Together, you collect twigs for a little fire, and build it not far from the burrow. The little pieces of rabbit are mounted on sticks, and then dangled over the flame to roast. Given how she responded before, you half wonder if she's not going to want or expect more from your share. You wouldn't mind - there's plenty to go around. But she shakes her head when you offer some.
Soon the rich smell of cooking meat fills the air, and your own stomach grumbles. The two of you giggle over this, although you aren't sure exactly why. It's just nice not being alone. Although there's no seasoning or spices, the rabbit turns out to be delicious (not eating for a few days will do that to you). Again you offer some, and again she shakes her head.
Once the fire is only embers, and all the food is eaten, she takes a stick, writes SIX in the dirt, and points at herself.
Six. You finally have a name for her.
MONO You write under her letters.