A/N: Hello! Did you see that Auggie Episode? Didn't I tell you it'd be amazing? Lol.
Sorry I haven't written on the board for a couple of weeks. I wanted to get some ideas before I put my fingers back to the keys. I've got this, a two-shot about a couple lines in Communications Breakdown (yes - a TWO-shot! XD), and an AU story that I have yet to know how I'm going to start.
Good stuff. :D
If you like this story, I urge you to read my others. Not because I'm trying to promote myself, but I honestly have enough pride in what I do to say that I don't have the most boring, run of the mill plot-lines in the world. I think my only semi-generic one is Annie, and you can ask any one of the dozens of people who reviewed and favorited and alerted it (though I don't know why you all did that - it's complete!), it's good. :D
Alright, time for shout-outs! TheGothAndTheGLeek, of course. Lovely girl, she is. Great stuff, too. :D NeoNails, for the spectacular stories and the bragging rights that I'm totally going to use right here. ;D Andd SeluciaV, for the kick-ass reviews that make me blush and giggle like a girly girl. And then, of course, to all of you! The people who see my name next to a story they haven't read and grin to themselves or maybe clap a couple times. I don't know where I'd be without you. :)
Alright, well I hope you enjoy this story. I don't usually like to outright ask, but please review?
She grumbled with a few other select words (some in a different language—of course) as she fumbled around her too dark guesthouse, trying to ignore the pain in her toe. The power was out, and the thunderstorm was raging on outside. Groping blindly around the drawer, she almost cried out in joy when her fingers brushed against with the unmistakable shape of a flashlight.
As the harsh, fluorescent light engulfed her and everything in a three-foot radius a sick feeling settled in the pit of her stomach; her eyes burning with the glare and the sudden sadness they were barely holding back.
Auggie would never have this. Not anymore.
She wanted to sigh, to shake the thought from her head and maybe from existence all together. Auggie wouldn't want her thinking like this, she chided. Not about him. He didn't want her pity.
Not that she did pity him though—she didn't. It was just times like these that his disability hit her like a ton of bricks.
She took a deep breath and steeled herself, anticipating the many bruises she could almost feel pooling under her skin, preparing themselves along with her as she shut her flashlight off.
The instant nothingness that swam before her eyes terrified her, if just for a second. They fought to adjust themselves to the darkness as quickly as they could, but that would defeat the point of this rash and slightly insane experiment. She screwed her eyes tightly closed, purposely blocking out any miniscule trace of light that might greet her from the outside world.
The inky, lifeless abyss seemed to surround her, all but sending her into a panic attack. She took another deep breath and nodded reassuringly. "Come on, Walker." She told herself, "you can do this. How hard can it be?"
One step. Two steps—
Shin. Knocking painfully against what further inspection told her the coffee table.
She swore to herself and turned away from it, bending down to try and rub some of the throbbing ache out of her injured leg.
That was, of course, until she abruptly remembered the matching end-table perched rightfully at the end of the sofa.
Straightening up and huffing angrily, she was sorely tempted to open her eyes and botch the whole silly idea. She almost did, too, if it wasn't for her stubborn pride and the irritating headache spurting from the goose-egg blooming on her forehead.
She wanted to do this not just for herself, but for Auggie. Maybe, if he didn't hate her for trying this, she could relate to him just a little bit better. She would never know the full extent of what he went through day in and day out, and she would never pretend to, but they clicked on so many other levels as it was, so why couldn't she try to get a glimpse at this level, too?
Because you'll probably be black and blue by the time you give up, she thought bitterly.
Thunder crashed against what sounded like a wall of pure electricity, white hot light bursting in front of her closed eyelids. She jumped and screamed, simultaneously ramming her already tender toe into the same end table that had bashed her head.
Ugh, she groaned. This was not working.
"Okay, okay." She assured herself, taking deep, even breaths in through her nose and out through her mouth. Her eyelids fluttered instinctively, but she forced them still with a hard squeeze and a determined scrunch of her face. "Think: one foot in front of the other."
One step. Two steps. Three steps. Four.
"Use your hands," she said to the empty room. She almost felt like she was instructing someone else. She reached out (absently feeling quite dumb) and felt around, catching a few of her fingers on the entryway table. Wincing through the pain, she steadied herself against it, trying to imagine the room around her.
Fuzzy images hung dimly in her mind's eye, showing her darker, blurry solid masses in strategic places. She navigated herself slowly, like a baby learning how to walk, and never letting go of the wall.
"Son of a—" She cried out all of the sudden, her nail ripping on a particularly pointy picture frame her sister had gotten her for Christmas that year. It was silver, elaborate vines weaving in and out of the image flourishing in her mind, tying themselves around the thorny, silver roses that encased the photo of her parents.
It was a very beautiful frame, she remembered as the memory of when she unwrapped it sprang up in her mind, but all she could think of now was those damn thorns and how pointy the mementos store shouldn't have made them.
Seriously, Things Remembered must have a secret death wish for all its customers or something.
"Come on," she half yelled as she scraped her calf across a half-opened pocket door, beyond frustrated with herself. She wanted to punch something, but she didn't really want to add another bruise to her long-standing collection, what with work and this new-found stupidity act that was probably bound to kill her. "You can at least make it to the bed."
The small, delusional, pain-ridden part of her mind wanted to believe it was Auggie—taunting her, pushing her—in her ear, like he always was. She could hear him shouting at her, with her, urging her to keep moving. Saying that she could do this with the utmost conviction in his strong voice that she couldn't help but believe him.
One step. Two steps. Three steps.
"Seriously?" She yelled at herself, feeling like a complete moron as she rubbed her sore nose. She could almost hear him laughing at her. Okay, she thought as she reached out again and felt the smooth wallpaper, touching the edge of the bookshelf just a few inches off. She was in her room.
She inched carefully across the room, sighing loudly in relief when her knees collided with her soft mattress and sent her sprawling headfirst into its depths. She hugged her pillows, burying her now pulsing head in their fluffy goodness and promptly falling into the deepest sleep she'd had in months.
When the sun broke through her blinds she blinked blearily. Her hand throbbed, her leg ached, and her head was screaming. Not to mention all the existing bruises in various stages of healing that just had to join this painful extravaganza.
She stood up and padded her way to the bathroom, examining the nice-sized welt above her left eye in the mirror. That most definitely wasn't going away anytime soon.
Stripping herself of the wrinkled suit she so conveniently forgot to change out of the previous night and starting up her morning routine, she couldn't help but examine all the little blemishes on her person. In all honesty, she didn't think she'd ever had this many at one time before.
As she finished drying her hair she wondered if that fact was really as bad as she made it sound.
"Morning Auggie," she called as he passed her on his way to his office. He jumped slightly and whirled around, making her stop, close the file she had been perusing, and look at him worriedly. "Something wrong?"
"I didn't hear you," he said in amazement, more to himself than her. She looked down guiltily at her flat-clad feet, her toe still tender. He took a deep breath through his nose. "No perfume, either. Are you okay, Annie?"
She touched his hand, silently telling him to follow her to the tech booth.
"You're limping?" He asked as they walked through the glass door, although it sounded much more like a statement. His hand travelled down to her own, trying to grab it, but instead making her stifle the instinctive cry her body gave at the sudden contact. He stopped cold, a hard glare freezing his features in worry. "What happened?"
"Nothing, nothing. Power went out last night and I—well, it seemed like a good idea, and I wanted to know..."
"Annie, when you start making sense again let me know." He said after a few futile attempts on her part, barely containing the smirk that settled itself on his lips.
She stopped trying to explain and just stared at him, her face softening. His arms were crossed lazily as he leaned casually against his desk, laser cane hanging precariously on the tips of his fingers.
Auggie knew, she realized. Not about what she did, but about life. He knew how it worked, how to properly walk through it if you wanted to come out in one piece on the other side. He saw it all, how it really played with the people caught in its merciless web.
One foot in front of the other. Use your hands.
"Thank you, Auggie." She said quietly, reaching up to kiss his cheek.
Picture where you want to go and how you're going to get there.
"For what?" He asked, knitting his eyebrows together in confusion as he matched her low tone.
And for God's sake, just get to the bedroom.
"For being you."
One step. Two steps. Three steps. Four.