A/N: Yet again, this is for lizadale, who should not have described that scrapped animatic with so much detail, because I have no self control and boy do I love writing depressing things :]c

This is another alternate ending for her Dimigi AU, where Luigi sleepwalks into Castle Bleck, discovers a half-dead Dimentio there, and takes him home to heal him up. That's about as much detail as you need to know, but please for the love of god check out her blog! If you're looking for some good Dimigi or Mario content in general, she's your gal!

"It's getting late
It all just wanes and pales and fades away
If we just want it too much
And what a shame
If all there is is all that's gone away
There's nothing left here for us

Deadlight holiday
Killing time to make us stay
Hollow as the promises of yesterday

On and on the music plays
Memories in paraphrase
Falling past my window like the morning rain"

There's a clock ticking somewhere.

It takes you a moment to realize that your eyes are open. It's dark, and you don't know where you are. Your entire body aches, especially your head; you hiss in pain as you uncurl yourself from the little hidden corner you'd teleported yourself into when… When…

The ringing in your ears suddenly rises into a roar when you try to stand. You sit down heavily and tuck your head into your knees until it passes. Shakily levitating yourself up, you try to move your limbs as little as possible.

Your eyes finally adjust to the darkness, and you realize that you are in the meeting hall of the castle. The crater in the center of the room sparks a memory of explosions, explosions you used to cover your escape. That's right, that's right, you'd been defeated and…

You had felt something snap inside of you, at some point. The room is deserted, and you can't hear any noise at all except for your own labored breathing. How long have you been asleep?

Well, you suppose, the end of the world has been averted. But you're still here; you just have to recuperate and try again since those fools hadn't been careful to finish you off. They probably think you're dead, ha!

Exiting the meeting hall, you make your way to the kitchen. You take several wrong turns before you finally find the right door. The first glass you levitate out of the cabinet shatters on the ground. The second one you successfully get into your hand. You turn on the tap.

There's water running somewhere.

The glass has rolled away from you, and you are lying on the floor in the kitchen. Coughing, you prop yourself up on your hands and knees. You're so terribly thirsty.

Water splashes on you; it's overflowing from the sink. O'Chunks, that oaf, he must have left the stopper in! How many times must Nastasia tell him to pull it out after he's done soaking the dishes? You are going to add another time to that list when you see him.

You grab the glass, pulling yourself up by using the counter for support. You rip the stopper out of the sink and listen to the drain gurgle as you fill up your glass.

The water is the best you've ever tasted. You stand there and savor it as the chill air seeps into the damp spots on your clothing. The torches have all gone out.

The torches are out and it's cold, but you don't really care. Something is gnawing at the back of your mind. There are explosions and a snap of sudden loss inside you.

Two actually, because you remember that Luigi was ripped away from you, his mind and soul suddenly vanishing, and you hope that he's hurting every bit as much as you are.

There's something important you should really attend to. A book, you like reading books, no no, the book! The Prog something- The Dark-

The Dark Prognosticus!

The second glass breaks when you drop it, but your heart is suddenly beating frantic in your chest. You have to find it! The other snap was the Chaos Heart's connection with you being severed!

You leave the kitchen as fast as you dare. The water is still running.

You don't get very far before your stomach turns and you drop out of the air to your knees. The rank smell of bile fills your nose; you barely got your mask off in time and your head is pounding. The book, the book, what happened to-

"Have to, have to," you say hoarsely. "Have to find it, I have to find it."

First, first, first, you have to take care of yourself. But you need to find it! First, recover first. Go back.

You remember to turn off the water this time, and you take smaller sips. The chairs at the table look inviting; you can sit and rest your head on the table and sleep, and you almost do just that. But what if someone finds you? What if someone finds you vulnerable and they take a knife out of the knife block that's sitting right there on the counter and-

You take a chair out of the room with you before you realize that there would be no table to lean on. You leave it in the hallway and go back to the meeting hall to sleep.

There's a clock ticking somewhere.

It's dark and you groan and everything seems to hurt a little worse. Your head certainly hasn't gotten any better, and a shiver passes through you.

You're in the meeting hall, in the little hidden corner you'd teleported yourself into today when you'd been defeated and Luigi's soul had been ripped away from yours and you need to find the Dark Prognosticus. It couldn't have gone far in a few hours.

The crater in the center of the room reminds you of a hole. Well, of course it's a hole in the floor, but it doesn't go all the way through. It's a hole in the same way The Void is a hole, you think.

"Have to find it, have to find it," you mutter, rubbing your hands on your arms and feeling all the bruises along them.

You don't find it. You don't find it. It's not in the meeting hall.

The sky in the courtyard is a clear blue. The light makes your eyes hurt and the ringing in your ears grow. You can't recall if you've ever been out here or not.

You do your best to look, but there's a strange feeling hanging around the altar. A confused mix of despair and hope. Spots dance in your vision, and you have to catch yourself against a column.

A tiny piece of your mask crumbles to the ground with a quiet clatter and you're sick again.

You go back inside.

There's a clock ticking somewhere.

Your throat is burning and it takes you entirely too long to find the kitchen. You don't bother with a glass this time, you just stick your head directly under the faucet and drink.

You sit in a chair and can't seem to breathe right. The refrigerator is there and not running. You try to open it with your powers and your mental hand misses a few times before you manage to grasp the handle and pull.

Food. There's food. Fresh food. The sight starves you.

You bring a peach towards you and your mask gets in the way and you rip it off too roughly. (It crumbles a little more.) The taste is so sweet that your eyes water, and you bless the naivety of whoever stocked the kitchen not knowing that the world was going to end today. (And it is still today, right?)

You throw up before you can even finish it, and at least you make it to the sink in time. The water runs over your lips for a while as you lean there against the counter and pant. You can't keep…you can't keep doing this, you can't keep wasting everything you ingest.

You just need to rest more. Then you can keep looking for the…the thing. You slump down to the ground, not noticing that the puddle you made the last time you were here has already dried.

Something falls down somewhere.

You jerk awake with a gasp someone's here someone's here someone's here but you're alone in the kitchen and the refrigerator door is still open. It's so cold, it's so cold you can almost see your breath and your teeth are chattering.

You get yourself back into the air because you have to keep looking for the thing, the book.

You've left your mask on the table.

You don't find it. You don't find it. It's not in the kitchen or any of the rooms close to it.

Something falls down nearby.

You startle awake, and you don't remember going to sleep in the hallway. A piece of rubble rolls up to you and bounces off of your leg, leaving another bruise. The torches are out and it's cold and the castle is decomposing.

There's no one out there in the dark and your head is pounding.

It takes you hours to get back to the kitchen. You eat a single cracker and manage not to throw it up.

There's a clock ticking somewhere.

Despite the battle and the crater, the meeting hall seems to be mostly stable.

It isn't safe to sleep in the kitchen, so you searched on your way back to the hall. You didn't find it. You didn't find it.

You eat a few crackers out of the packet you brought with you, and drink a little water out of a canteen you found to wash away the saltiness. You don't get up yet, because you're pretty sure you'll throw up if you do.

There's a clock ticking somewhere.

Occasionally, your toes skim along the floor as you search. You can't seem to stop shivering.

"It's my turn!"

You freeze.

"Yeh can wait yer turn, yeh big bebby."

Your invisibility spell doesn't work; you open the door to the gym very slowly and peek inside.

Mr. L is planting his finger directly into O'Chunks's chest, and of course the burly man isn't intimidated whatsoever. "I said it's my turn!" Mr. L shouts indignantly. "It's literally on the schedule!"

"Yer watch is fast, L," O'Chunks says with amusement.

You blink. You have no idea what time it is or who's right. What the argument is about in the first place is a mystery.

"It's not fast!" Mr. L looks to be on the edge of having a meltdown, and you smile.

"Mmmmyy dear Mr. L," you purr, stepping into the room, only it doesn't come out anything like you meant it to. "D-Didn't you know patience iss a virtue?"

They don't look at you. O'Chunks pats Mr. L on the head and Mr. L growls at him.

"A-And you, Ch-Chunks," you continue, leaning heavily against the doorframe. "You fforgot to take the sstopper out of the kitchen ssink. I would clean that mess up iff I were y-you."

Why were they ignoring you? They can't ignore you, you're the Master of Dimensions! You touch your face to make sure your mask is on straight, and horror floods through you when you realize that you're not wearing it at all. You can't let them see, you can't, you're an open book without it! The book, the book, "where's the fucking book?!" you shout, and your voice echoes in the empty room.

It's not in the gym, or the training room.

"Patience is a v-virtue," you say again, wondering where Mr. L and O'Chunks went. Only…Mr. L was dead, wasn't he? He's Luigi again. And there were explosions, yes, that's right, what had you been thinking…

You find this to be deeply troubling.

You are surprised to find a packet of crackers and a canteen in your pocket. Ah, well that would save you a long trip to the kitchen. You finish the crackers and drink some water, heading into another wing of the castle.

You seem to have lost your canteen somewhere, but you think it might have been empty anyway.

You are looking at yourself. You can't seem to escape your reflection, because there's a new mirror with every movement you make. You don't look good. You really don't look good.

There's a nasty gash on your face, your clothes are torn and burned, and there's dried blood in your greasy hair. You don't care and practice your smiles in the mirror hall for a little while. You have to be prepared for your next bid at world domination, after all.

When you get hungry, you go back to the kitchen.

You wake up to see your mask looking at you, and you pick it up, not recalling when you had left it on the table. All of the knives were still in the knife block and none were in you.

You feel a little better after eating earlier, but your head still hurts so, so much. You want to sleep more, but you can't. You have things to find.

Thirst and hunger assail you again. It's a waste of time, because you have to find the Dark Prognosticus.

There's a clock ticking somewhere.

The crater is a hole.

It's getting harder to move around and you still haven't found the book. You're able to eat more now, and you sleep, but your head won't stop pounding. You've had to lean on things several times by now, and have fainted more often than you are comfortable acknowledging.

It disturbs you that you have no idea how many days it's been. You have no way to keep track of time, except that there's a clock ticking somewhere.

Your fingers dig beneath the tab of a Shroom Shake and pull, and pull, and the stupid thing won't open until it does and you spill half of it on the floor. It doesn't taste great, but you've seen what it does for Mr. L.

It barely has any effect on you. You are not entirely human, not like Mr. L. You are over three thousand years old and laughter is bubbling up your jagged throat because you can't find the book and you think you might die here.

You sit in the hole, the crater, for a while. You hold your mask in your lap; a good chunk of its right brow is missing now, and there are cracks reaching through its eye.

You should leave. Get help.

But who would help you instead of mutilate you? Who would see you so weak, barely able to think straight, and decide not to hurt you?

You sit in the hole for a while.

You hear humming, but you're not entirely sure it's coming from you, so you ignore it.

There's a clock ticking somewhere.

The crater is a hole.

The kitchen is starting to smell.

Rubble almost falls on you, and you wonder if you should have let it. The sound sends shockwaves through your head and you struggle not to pass out. But you don't do anything like either of those things, even though your feet can't completely leave the floor anymore. If you can find the book, it will help you.

You see a flash of green and turn to look. You know better, you know this time that she's not really there, but you want her to be.

Mimi turns around a corner, and you follow. She doesn't notice you; she's humming and writing in her diary. You wonder what she's writing about, if she's writing about you and the way your clothes are starting to fit loosely or the way your injuries won't heal.

Your mask dangles from your fingertips, half of its eye chipped away, and you wonder what she would think of the scars around your dimly glowing left eye. At the start, she used to write about how handsome you probably were under there, until she decided that you're a royal asshole instead.

You look over her shoulder, but there's nothing on the page.

The humming stops.

You almost jump out of your skin when glass crunches beneath your weary feet. Luckily your shoes are thick enough that you don't get cut, but it takes a while for your heart to slow down.

You don't remember how the shards beside the sink got there. You must have broken something, and it can only be you, because you are the only one here (you insist).

Nearly everything in the refrigerator has gone bad by now. There are still edible things in the cabinets, but crackers won't fulfill all of your dietary needs.

You start rationing.

You sit in the hole with your knees tucked against your chest and you try very hard not to cry.

You know the book isn't here, but you keep looking anyway.

There's a clock ticking somewhere.

You've stopped shivering, and you can't float at all anymore. Your feet are just another thing on your list of aches and cuts.

You should really care more about this, you think. But you just don't have the energy to do much of anything, let alone care.

You don't regret your actions, you think. (If you do, it's only so that someone would be willing to help you.)

You knew, you knew, you had been so afraid. That there was a good chance you would fail, that the final battle would be your undoing, and maybe you should have cut your losses before stabbing Count Bleck in the back.

You only wanted

You only wanted

You wanted a place to belong, and life has taught you that you don't.

There's nothing left in the kitchen except for the water that still blessedly runs from the tap. Nastasia stands beside you, writing on her clipboard and scowling. She doesn't look at you, doesn't see the glass or the discarded wrappers and cans.

"Y-You should restock the kitchen, my dear. You're sso very behind schedule," you say softly to her, swallowing down what was either a laugh or a sob or both.

You think you must already be dead. There's a clock ticking somewhere, and you wander aimlessly with your mask in your hands.

You feel like…like…a phantom.

A withering ghost haunting these dead halls.

You don't even feel hungry anymore, it just hurts and it's cold. Perhaps this is simply your punishment.

You're too weak to leave now.

Even if you wanted to.

There's a clock ticking somewhere.

You lie in your hole, the crater you made with your last hurrah. If only it had really been the last.

When you open your eyes, there are two glowing orange orbs peering down at you, one dimmed by the presence of a monocle.

"Count…" you whisper. He's looking at you, he's looking-

"Count!" you say louder, trying to scramble to your feet.

He looks impassively at you and doesn't move to help you get out of your hole.

"Please help me! I'm sorry! Please don't leave me here!" you cry, reaching for him.

His gaze flickers down to your hand. He doesn't take it.

Instead, he steps back and out of your view, leaving you with tears running down your cheeks. "Blumiere!" you scream wretchedly, but he's gone by the time you manage to pull yourself out, and this somehow hurts more than your body does, as used to the pain as it has become.

You miss them you miss them you miss them

You wish they were here to make fun of you for dying in such a pitiful way.

Your heart won't beat correctly anymore, and your breaths rasp through your mouth. The blanket is an ugly thing, some kind of animal fur, but the familiar sweaty smell of O'Chunks brings you to tears. You collapse to your knees and bury your face in it.

There's a clock ticking somewhere.

Hopefully soon it will stop.

You climb down into your hole, your void, and lie down on your back. Your mask has lost half of its cheek by now, and you set it aside after briefly considering putting it on.

O'Chunks's blanket is rough beneath you and it does nothing to soothe the cold piercing deep into your bones. (You are so very tired of being cold.)

A polka dot dress rests beside you, one of Mimi's favorites, and the pearl in the chest of Nastasia's shirt is a lump beneath your head.

There is a green bandanna wrapped as tightly around your wrist as you can manage, and you drape a star-speckled cloak over yourself as you settle in.

This is as close as you can get to them being here with you. (You are so very tired of being alone.)

You're terrified. No good afterlife could be waiting for you, but (you are so very tired).

Darkness creeps in at the edges of your vision and you don't fight it.

You close your eyes and go to sleep.

There's a clock ticking somewhere without you, and you never open your eyes again.

"It's all the same
So many words remaining
Always too late
It never seems worth taking
And all the days
And all the nights lost sleeping
And in the end
The secret's not worth keeping

Deadlight holiday
Killing time to make us stay
Hollow as the promises of yesterday

On and on the music plays
Memories in paraphrase
Falling past my window like the morning rain"
Holiday – The Birthday Massacre

You dream, your eyes open but unseeing. The walls are dark, and the cold does nothing to wake you.

You walk slowly through Castle Bleck, lest you trip on the rubble scattered about it. The Heart has its strings around you and it is pulling hard; it wants to look for something, so you look.

It's the chair in the hallway that tips off your unconscious. That snaps you completely awake and shreds the influence of those puppet strings. It's a chair from the kitchen, and it's several rooms away from where it should be.

You know how you got here, even though you don't remember the journey. You think there might be someone here.

The kitchen smells awful, and you pinch your nose as your suspicions are confirmed by the litter of food wrappers and the broken glass beside the sink and the mysterious bits of white clay on the table. Your shoes stick to a sticky patch on the floor.

Someone has been living here, and living poorly at that. It's been almost five weeks since the end of The Void Crisis, and you can't imagine who could have found this dimension, let alone who would decide to move in. Your heart beats hard in your chest, but you won't leave yet, not if someone needs help.

You pick your way through the castle, noticing more and more things that have been rifled through and carelessly discarded. Mimi's clothes are scattered all around the floor of her bedroom, the door to the Count's office has been broken down, and there's a general aura of unwellness lingering in the frigid air.

It makes you shiver.

You swallow heavily and open the door to the meeting hall. Unpleasant images of the last time you were in this room assault you, and you can feel the Heart feast merrily on your trauma.

You haven't found anyone yet, only the signs of their presence. You stand there and examine the room, not really willing to go any further inside. The clock on the back wall says that it's five after twelve in this dimension.

You're turning to leave when you spot it; a patch of color in the crater that Super Dimentio left behind. You go closer and-

There's someone in there!

You sprint towards them and slide down the side of the crater. And then you freeze as your brain registers who you're looking at.


It's Dimentio.

Your heart stops beating entirely, until you realize that he's not moving. You dare to take a step closer.

You wonder if this is some kind of trap, if he noticed your arrival or even called to the Heart to bring you here. He shows up in so many of your nightmares, and you have simply been hoping that he was dead and wouldn't come for you.

But he's just lying there, not moving even a little bit.

You set your fingers against his neck, right where his pulse is.

Or would be, if you could find it.

Something sick is rising within you, clawing at your heart. No air gusts over your hand when you hover it beside his mouth and nose.

Hands grasp around your neck and turn your stomach as you put your head against his chest (he's as cold as ice!) and hear nothing.

He's dead.

He's dead and you can barely breathe and freezing tears drip down your face. He hurt you badly, but this is still someone you know and have spent time with. For a brief time, your souls had been one and the same before he was ripped away from you.

You notice too many things (the clothing he's surrounded himself with, how badly damaged his mask is, how there are dried tears on his face and how he hasn't yet gone stiff) and a sob tears out of your throat as the realization slams into you like a thousand pounds of bricks. You bury your face in his too still chest and cry, and some part of you still thinks this is a trick, but you know better.

He hasn't been dead for very long, maybe not even an hour. He must have been here for weeks, trying to survive, and he'd finally lost the battle just before you got here. If you had only gone to bed earlier… If you had gone to sleep sooner and sleepwalked here sooner… But you hadn't wanted to; you are terrified to go to sleep knowing that the Heart is waiting to wrap itself around your unconscious mind.

You could have helped him, you don't care what he did; you wouldn't have left him here to die! You could have helped him if you'd managed not to fuck it up just like you do with everything else.

You cry, and the Chaos Heart chokes you, and your own heart won't beat right, but even now it doesn't overwhelm you (not yet). You won't let it when there's something left to do.

After you calm down a little, you wipe your eyes with your sleeve and gently brush Dimentio's hair away from his face. His expression isn't quite peaceful, but there is relief in it. Dried blood is still crusted around a gash on his cheek, and he looks so worn down that another sob rises in your chest.

You swallow it. Despite the gauntness and the deep bags under his eyes, you think he's rather pretty. You've never once seen him without his mask before, and this isn't the way you'd imagined finding out. You have never understood why he always wore it; you'd thought that maybe he had some kind of terrible, disfiguring scar (there isn't one, only minor, faded ones), or he has had an issue about showing emotions. You never did find the right time to ask him about it.

You're not sure what makes your stomach clench the most. You don't miss his head injuries, and you can piece together what happened to him.

What you had taken for carelessness was actually listless desperation.

You can't imagine.

You can't begin to imagine what he suffered through, how he must have slowly starved to death in the cold once the food in the kitchen spoiled, too muddled to do anything to save himself. You now know how lucky you were to come out of the fusion with mere bruises.

This time your sob escapes as you cradle his head to your chest (and oh god, oh god he's so thin). After he betrayed you and shoved a mind-controlling plant inside of your brain, you had really thought that he had never cared at all.

But your green bandanna is wrapped around his wrist.

And one of Count Bleck's spare cloaks lies across him, pooling in your lap as you hold him to you. And there's one of Mimi's favorite dresses, and O'Chunks's itchy blanket, and the pearl on Nastasia's shirt must have dug into his head wounds but he either hadn't noticed or hadn't cared whatsoever.

He hardly weighs anything at all when you stand and carry him away in your arms.

You've never been in Dimentio's bedroom either. He's He was so secretive; he never told anyone anything about himself if he could help it, while inserting himself into everyone else's business like the annoying hypocrite he is was.

It's just a normal room, with a messy bed, a bare desk, and a bookshelf with all of its books thrown on the ground. (Some idle part of you wonders how many of those he'll never get to read now.)

You set him down on his bed, and a long, awful moment passes as you can't help but look at his face again. Shaking yourself out of it, you leave the bedroom.

On your way back to the meeting hall, you spot the green bandanna lying on the ground where it's fallen. You pick it up, and feel a strange urge to tie it around your neck.

But you don't.

You come back and place Dimentio's broken mask on his nightstand.

You slide the furry blanket beneath him, and cover him with the star-speckled cloak.

You place the polka dot dress beside his shoulder, and tuck the shirt under his head so that the pearl is a lump beneath it.

You fasten your bandanna around his wrist, tighter this time, so he won't lose it again.

And that's where you leave him to rest, surrounded by the final comforts of his family.

You think he'd want it that way.

A/N: Wow gee good thing Luigi went to bed earlier in the actual AU right guys :'))))))) I said this was an alternate ending but the actual alternate part is so tiny compared to the rest; I could not resist writing Dimentio being fucked up out of his mind and dying. Oh well.

I also took the hallucinations in a different direction than in the original post. I have a long-standing personal headcanon that Dimentio's worst fear would be to live as a ghost; fully himself and aware of what's going on around him, but unable to be seen, heard, or touched, and unable to interact with reality in any way at all. So the fact that the hallucinations won't pay him any mind is really very frightening for him.

Anyway, this is the last of my ideas regarding Liz's AU (for now). I was basically too thirsty for it to not write anything, lol.

Relevant posts:
lizadale . tumblr (dotcom) /post/189425164873/what-if-luigi-found-dimentio-dead-instead-of
lizadale . tumblr (dotcom) /post/188894649683/in-the-drawing-of-dimentio-sleeping-the-mask-is
lizadale . tumblr (dotcom) /post/188874503008/how-did-dimentio-manage-to-survove-with-literally