Title: Like Calls To Like
Author: Abby Ebon
Fandom: The Chronicles of Riddick
Prompt: Riddick/Vaako, Furyan mating call
Spoilers: You've seen Pitch Black and The Chronicles of Riddick, yes? If that's a no, then there might be.
Word Count: 4000+
Summary: Shirah wakens Riddick to the reality of being the last Furyan.
He'll survive it, but will Vaako?
Notes/Warnings: This is un-Beta'.
"Hello, Riddick." He knows that voice, would know it even if he weren't dreaming - which he knows now, that he is. He's only seen the face that goes with that voice a handful of occasions; none of them bring pleasant reminders. Her lips curl into a smile, and it isn't nice – it's smug, knowing. He can't help tensing, expecting pain to hit- though he knows it won't do any good. She is, after all, only inside his head. She isn't real, not physically here or there. That doesn't mean shit - she can hurt him. He's learned that much.
It was by her will that he'd felt first hand the heartache of seeing his people become nothing more then a world's mass grave. Then he had had the rage of his people shoved through his skin deep enough to rattle his bones, echoing through the air around him as if it was too much to bottle up. It was the sort of pain not caused by physical wounds, the worst sort of pain. She'd given it to him as a gift, so he would survive to see another day. Riddick still wasn't sure if his life had been worth knowing that pain.
"Shirah. What do you want?" Riddick hisses, though he doesn't really want to know. What he really wants is for her to go away, but she won't, so it's better to ask and get this over with quickly.
"You have been to Furya?" Her head tilts to the side, the braided main of dark curls falling onto her bronzed shoulders. She's beautiful, pleasing to the eye. Riddick won't deny that much, though he can't say how much is real, her born beauty, and how much is only her playing about with his mind.
"Yes." Riddick states it – for it is the truth, and a lie would be known here. She nods, as if she'd known the answer all along. Maybe she has, and all this is only acting for formality's sake.
"It's gone, Shirah. They are all gone, scattered over the 'verse like the stars if they survived at all." He doubts that any others – like him, Furyan - have survived, and if they have, he doesn't think he'll set eyes on them in this lifetime. Still, Riddick thinks he knows what she is. There was a clue on his dead world, a shrine to Shirah, the inner guide - it translated to mean "my song".
She wasn't a living being, not even on Furya had she been considered one of the people…she was something else, what she was – if a goddess, or a genetic quirk the dangerous Furyan people passed from generation to the next, Riddick didn't know. If she were something purely religious, Riddick knew he should not see her, having never heard of her before going to Furya, and not seeking a survival guide even in his earliest days.
As her blue eyes burn with tears, he feels pity for her. Tears fall silently down her cheeks like glistening silver stars, wasted. What keeps her from looking truly compassionate is the utter fury on her features.
"Then you must find them! You have the Legion Vast at your feet – surely you see that the Necromongers could…" Riddick doesn't let her finish, stepping forward to interrupt, with a single gesture he's cutting her off before words fall from her lips. He can't blame her for the rage or tears, but he can't go about acting as if he's a dog on a leash. He has a people to lead, a people who are taught that they can keep what you kill, showing the sort of weakness that Shirah's madness would lead him to follow would doom him to a early grave.
"It wouldn't work, Shirah! I – we – don't have that sort of time." His silver eyes seem too old suddenly, though he isn't as old as all that, but the white of his eyes seems to feel for a moment as if it's age. She looks to him as if she hadn't really seen him before. She steps closer, narrow blue eyes cutting into him.
"You don't need time, Riddick. You need…motivation." She licks her lips, top to bottom, and Riddick stays perfectly still, wary of her causing him pain. Riddick does not flinch from her, though they both know that he does not like that she's so close, that she's lured him in like this. He tries to move away, just a step back - but she does not allow it. Even within his own mind she has power; for he is captured – hers- and can not move to escape.
"What are you thinking?" Riddick imagines spending the rest of his life here - shut away in a cage of her making within his own mind, while she controls his body like a puppet on strings. He doesn't let himself dwell on it, sneering at her as she stands face to face with him.
"You can not be the last, Riddick. Your mind linking with me is proof of your being an Alpha Furyan, and through me, you may find others. You will rebuild anew what was lost. If you do not, you will die." Her words fill his ears, even as she speaks them reassuringly against the skin of his jaw. He is very still, watching her with narrowed silver eyes. He knows her now to be mad, frighteningly powerful – but mad all the same. Riddick's making plans to kill her, even as he's forced to listen and abide by rules of her making.
"You're talking about…?" Riddick has a feeling he knows. Still, he can not move away, can not wake up. Shirah will not let him. So he asks, and waits to hear her answer.
"A Furyan mating call." He doesn't know what that is, but he thinks that would have been for the best, if not for how Shirah is looking at him right now. She smiles as if she thinks she's being clever, and then she's kissing him.
Riddick can not move away, neither can he force her to stop, but that does not mean he'll kiss her back. Determinedly passive, he lets her slick tongue tickle the roof of his mouth before withdrawing. He gets one last look at her before he wakes, and it's to a puzzled frown. Saliva cool within his mouth begins to burn him awake.
Riddick's calling out in surprise before he can stop himself, silver eyes burning into the dark. It would be argued later that what was heard was more like a beast howling then a man screaming.
He pants like a winded breast, his lungs aching and choked. His blood is boiling under his overly sensitive skin, he sweats, and the feel of sheets under him is unbearable.
Perhaps sensing this, or only acting on the instinct of being woken so rudely, his hellhounds jerk to wakefulness with low growls and threatening snarls. Alecto, her belly heavy with pups, does not hesitate to walk with her sisters as Tisiphone and Megaera move to circle the room, hunting in the dark for a threat. Riddick named them for the Kindly Ones, the Fury goddesses - avengers of the Greek underworld. He'd found the name choice ironically appropriate for his fierce trio.
Their black hides are burning red coals to his overly sensitive eyes. Any one of the three was more then enough to chill the blood of any man or woman who moved to harm him while he slept. Seeing no one, they nonetheless move as one pack to sweep the room with swift steps and the easy threat of grace.
There is no one here, Riddick knows this, even as he watches them and struggles to get his breath back under his control.
"Riddick? Open the door, Riddick!" Someone is pounding upon his door; it's loud enough to make him flinch back from the noise, as if it is a physical threat. Tisiphone's black hide is spiked blood red as she hisses at the door menacingly. There are no guards at his door, for who would be fool to trespass with hellhounds running amuck within here unchained? Who could have heard him call out in the middle of the night? Who would have come to save or damn him so quickly? Answers would only come if he could force himself to his feet. Even as he thinks of doing so, he wonders how long he has been acting like prey with the hellhounds circling.
Riddick hasn't moved, but the doors are blown open, as if by a gust of wind. Riddick knows who this is then, even as he says nothing. Tisiphone sees Aereon and Vaako (who was, after all, the one yelling at his door) and moves away, as if shy, going with Megaera and Alecto at her heels to Riddick's bedside.
Aereon meets her eyes with his, staying where she stands. Perhaps she is as wise as she claims, reading the warning in them. Vaako has no time for such subtle things, he dashes into the room, as if leading a battle charge.
Riddick wanted to shake his head at how obvious and desperate Vaako seems. He's fought Vaako himself and knows him to be so bold and treacherous, no movement or thought so carelessly wasted. Riddick had not doubted that Vaako found him a better lord then Zhylaw, but if he had ever needed proof of Vaako's loyalty…well, Vaako was simply too open with himself to be traitor. Zhylaw had been a fool, playing with Vaako, finding his duel loyalty to the Legion and conspiring wife amusing. Riddick had made it clear that he had no such low traits; Riddick is many things, valuing above all simple survival and blunt honesty, a convict with a code, some would say.
"Riddick?" Vaako asks softly, glancing around the room and seeing nothing as it shouldn't be. Still, he looks, as if he expects something to come out of the dark.
"Don't go near him." Aereon warns, speaking to Vaako when he seems to decide to take a step forward, nearer to Riddick. Dark brown eyes look to Riddick, curious and newly made cautious. Vaako sees now what Riddick had tried to warn Aereon of, there is no recognition in the silver eyes watching him. They are as inhuman and primitive as the hellhounds, now settling near Riddick, bedding down with him on white sheets – as if his grand sleeping chamber is but a simple den tucked within the cavern of the earth. Vaako is aware of his danger now, that Riddick is on edge and while some part of him recognized Vaako for himself, Riddick is not wholly in control of his own body. He's been driven into instinct by the manifesting of his over sensitivity, while his mind is burdened with too much information from his senses. His primitive side rules him now.
"What's happened to him?" Riddick struggles to find words to answer, even as he knows that Vaako's question is for Aereon. He hates that he has been made so helpless by his own traitorous body. He snarls past sharp teeth, and Vaako does not flinch, so Riddick finds it within himself to watch – silent - with a tilted head.
"Among my people, there is a record of a last Furyan encounter, a so-called Alpha Furyan named Proserpina had settled among my people, learning our ways. She was young - a serious student, very bright, a lovely girl. We thought she was young enough that the brutality of her people could be educated out of her, for we took it for granted that those called Alpha Furyan were only a label by birthright. News came from Furya that her family's bloodline had been killed by a rival family, and Proserpina overnight became someone else. All the male Furyan on our world, or navigating by ship near, came at once to land. We witnessed a blood shed that shocked us, many tried to flee, and many others were murdered while watching - standing there, without offering any harm. Proserpina herself fought these invaders hand-to-hand, with weapon or often not, eventually out of all those Furyan men killed came Haides, who took her as his bride by abduction. Yet he was found to be her worthy mate. They left us, and Proserpina told us she knew that we could not understand, and still wrote down the encounter though her eyes, having it sealed until our memory was not so fresh. Alpha Furyan isn't a bloodline title, as we thought, it is in essence a future progenitor for the Furyan family, and among them only such an individual can claim territory and breed freely." Aereon watched Riddick as she spoke, both because she could tell Riddick was listening, and when Riddick offered no resistance to her words she thought she might have explained it correctly.
"What has that to do with Riddick?" Vaako looked between them, as if he could not wrap his mind around what he was being told - and how it could connect to Riddick. Vaako had never been a believer in prophesy, and Zhylaw's slaughter of the Furyan world had been before his time.
"Everything. I think him to be one of the last of the Furyan people, and perhaps the very last Alpha Furyan." Aereon allowed, and this time Vaako was very careful not to look to Riddick. Vaako was trying to distance himself from what was happening to Riddick, to think around it – to solve it before it got out of hand. Riddick was becoming unstable, and a Lord Marshall that showed weakness was swiftly culled for the good of the Legion Vast. Vaako would not so easily let Riddick die.
"So all he needs is a mate?" Vaako asks this softly, as if this is only a battle strategy and not something that makes his heart feel as if it's about to be cut out. Vaako knows very well what will happen when Riddick chooses a life-mate, the easy familiarity between them, the unspoken knowledge that Riddick would protect him and Vaako would always be at Riddick's side would either fade or cease altogether. Vaako isn't ready to loose Riddick so utterly, but he's ready less to watch Riddick die for want of a breeder.
"With whom he can have children –an equal above all else, is necessary." Aereon confirms, and Vaako nods his understanding, the tie of his black hair slipping out of its coil as he looks to Riddick only once before stepping away.
Stop! Riddick wants to say, but he can't find the words past the vivid imagines of reality that swim before his eyes. Dancing as if something he has only imagined. Yet he knows the bitter truth, because it chokes him with the words he can't say, making his heart an aching burden. Riddick can say or do nothing, and so waits in the dark for Vaako to return. He'll survive this, fight past the pain of his senses on overdrive, gain control – for Vaako, but Riddick can only hope that Vaako will wait in this 'verse long enough to learn what Riddick has to say.
* * * * *
"He needs you." Aereon reminds him when no one else will. It's a comfort Vaako lets himself take refuge in. A part of Vaako never wants to go back in that room again, because every time he does, he knows what's inside is killing him piece-by-piece. Still, what he knows is that someone has to see Riddick feed – and Vaako trusts no one other then himself to see that Riddick isn't poisoned, and eats what he needs to survive. Riddick again has made himself a contradiction, allowing no one to feed him but Vaako.
Vaako knows that there is talk of his usurping Riddick, for there is a whisper that Vaako is killing Riddick slowly, and if he is, they say it is no one's business but Vaako. They do not yet challenge him; for all that he acts as the Lord Marshall's First without Riddick to stand beside. They will wait, as he must wait - and Vaako can only hope that Riddick will come out of this fevered condition soon.
It is absolutely dark as Vaako steps into Riddick's quarters. Vaako has kept Riddick's rooms dark, for Riddick's eyes – and for the comfort of the hellhounds. He thinks that Alecto is near to giving birth, so the other females have tolerated no one within Riddick's rooms save Vaako. Aereon thinks this is dangerous for Riddick, that if he doesn't find someone soon he'll die as easily from not mating as poison.
His heart whispers that he's being selfish, keeping Riddick from chosen someone else.
It's just as well that Vaako might be thought Riddick's murderer, because of in truth keeping him isolated, he just might be dooming Riddick; for all that Riddick prefers it. Vaako doesn't know if Riddick wants to die, or how lucid Vaako could claim him to be. Vaako closes the door behind him, shutting out the light, shutting out his doubts as he lets his eyes adjust.
Riddick is –as always- watching him, silver eyes hovering mid-air within the dark. Vaako pays better attention to his surroundings when milky orbs writhe about his ankles. A yip startles the shadows, and two little vividly red bodies reveal themselves. Vaako can not help but smile even if no one will see.
Vaako takes the hint, and sits down cross-legged, letting the plate clatter to the metallic floor in front of him. Kept under a sealed lid is what Vaako hopes Riddick will eat. He keeps his fingers on the edge of the platter, so he won't loose it in the dark. Once the pups are done, and he knows this when he ceases to hear the gnawing on bones, the playful tugging on meat – the play fights. Then he can see outlines of the bigger females approach, swift and silent, they nudge the pups into a corner to sleep – and while the sisters watch them, their mother eats, only when she is finished do the last two proud protectors settle themselves to dine under Vaako's eyes.
They finish quickly, always aware and watching, their eyes hovering at him over their dishes. It is an eerie sight, like watching will-o-wisps creep close and then flees into the dark. There is always within him the urge to chase them, but Vaako knows too well what happens in the end of such tales. He knows the reward for his patience is Riddick approaching, the chance to see his outline, to know that he still lives and breathes and it isn't all just a made-up nightmare in his head.
Vaako uncovers the lid and takes away a piece, because even as inhuman as Riddick seems, he shares his food or does not eat at all. Vaako can not see, and when warm lips touch his knuckles and teeth scrape against meat and skin, he freezes. He lets Riddick take the food from his hand without a fight, but those lips do not go away. Vaako dares not move as Riddick takes the food into his mouth and chews, his movements obvious and oddly seductive.
Vaako knows at once what this means, that Riddick is aware that he's vulnerable – and Vaako is protecting him.
"Vaako." Vaako stares at the gleaming eyes, wide eyed. There is a touch on his thigh that he didn't see coming, Riddick having moved too quickly. Those fingers dig into his flesh, and a gasp comes out from Vaako's lips without his attention. He doesn't know where the plate of food is, and doesn't particularly care as Riddick moves again, so close that Vaako can feel Riddick breathing against him.
He's sprawled out on the ground, Riddick hovering above him, his warmth spreading over Vaako like a salve, healing. It occurs only then that Vaako might be in danger of loosing his life.
"Mine." Riddick reassures as he mouths Vaako's neck and ear, Vaako closes his eyes breathing in Riddick's scent. Vaako feels teeth bite into his skin and knows that Riddick's drawn his blood. It could be a sign that Riddick is going to kill him, but Vaako shifts his hips and feels the press of Riddick's length against his thigh. Riddick matches his movement with his own, straddling Vaako's waist. He doesn't realize that Riddick is nude until he grips Riddick's hips for balance. A soft choked sound escapes, and it's smothered as Riddick kisses him with bruising force and something very like desperation.
Something blunt and sharp is tucked under the edge of his pants and with alert force; Riddick brings the edge of the blade down with careful precision, cutting away Vaako's leather pants. Vaako trusts Riddick, so doesn't move until he hears the scrape of the blade being tucked into a sheath. Only then does Vaako offer aid in his own way, shimmying out of his pants while Riddick sits astride him, feeling the strength of Vaako's body beneath him.
Leather pants are jerked suddenly down to his knees, his legs so entrapped, Riddick is given free reign of his body. Vaako is aware of how utterly vulnerable he is with every quick breath. He hears the sound of Riddick suckling on his own fingers, the soft eager noise he makes as he spreads his quivering thighs - he can excuse to being jumpy in the dark which Riddick rules.
Slick fingers invade by touch alone, with gentle motions Riddick insists on Vaako's giving in. And who is Vaako after all, to argue with what choice Riddick has made?
Riddick slithers downward, intent on his goal, feverishly warm flesh burning against Vaako's, threatening to consume him even as he is warm and comforted. Riddick can not be safety without also being a danger, and Vaako knows this – would have him no other way.
Blunt rounded flesh presses into Vaako, and Riddick groans as if rejoicing as Vaako feels himself breached and exposed. His legs are thrown over his Lord Marshall's broad shoulders, a careless vulnerability a Necromonger Commander of the Legion Vast could ill afford.
He thinks of the hellhounds watching their coupling, of the recording eye that Vaako had had installed so to be sure of Riddick's safety, and Vaako knows that even if he is blind in the dark – they are not unobserved. It seems wrong that this will be witnessed.
"You're mine. Vaako." Vaako hears, growled as Riddick sits within him –filling his ass up like some wanton thing. Then he begins to move, and Vaako has no more thought to shame or fear of discovery. There is only the pleasure that burns between them, and the frantic urgency to find the end to that pleasure together.
It's rough and harsh, Riddick riding him as Vaako can only take what's given to him, pinned to the floor by thighs and hips not his own. Their bodies are tangled up together, joined so thoroughly that in the midst of something that should be brutal and animalistic, for Riddick is mindful of only bruising what he could break, Vaako can only feel the sparking pleasure thrumming though his blood and body.
Vaako does not know where one of them begins and the other ends, they move with each other as if they are one and the same. It goes on and on, as if it will never end and they'll be burnt up between this moment and the next.
"Yours." Vaako gasps the word out, looking up at Riddick who watches him so carefully even in the midst of fucking him with such brutal honestly. Something in those intent silver eyes softens, and then consumes him, tearing him up and rebuilding him in one breath and the next. Riddick howls above him, finding his peak buried within Vaako, and wet warmth fills Vaako up and eases his breath as he comes down from the pleasure with his own sharp cry. It feels as if, for the first time since this started, that he can breathe freely around Riddick without fearing that something will be lost between them.