Kung Fu Peacock
This is an AU of Kung Fu Panda, the first film, taking into account some events of the second film. This plot bunny would not leave me alone, as such, it involves a badly OoC Shen, so BEWARE!.
Shen… was, to me, an even better villain then Tai Lung. Tai Lung had a tantrum because he did not get his way, but Shen was a paranoid and ambitious bird. There is no justification for his actions. He was beyond redemption, and he knew it.
This, however, is to consider a possibility of Shen screwing up and… let's just say… 'bumped his head' during the chase of Po's mother, and thus, not only did he fail to catch her, but he was lost, both in mind and body.
This is overall improbable and implausible, but I still wish to try it, horrible writing or not. There are so many holes for a plot bunnie to dash through.
In other words, this fic is guilty of two things: being no more than 'notes' and the Draco In Leather Pants trope, something that even I, writing this story, feel Shen does not deserve. There is emptiness toward the 'end' because this is just a… collection. With an amnesiac Shen, it's hard for me to pin whether he'd be… himself… or Jack Black in the body of a white peafowl instead of a panda.
That said, do not take any of this serious. Shen's an awesome bastard, but still not Draco In Leather Pants quality.
If I owned Kung Fu Panda or any characters… well, I wouldn't be writing this.
Shen, wake up! You'll be late for work!"
The white peacock bolted up, his red eyes looking around. He was in a room, the walls decorated with memorabilia of the greatest warriors in all of China, the Furious Five. "… That dream again…"
"Shen!" called the aristocratic bird's father. "Get up!"
"I'll be down in a moment!" the albino called down as he got himself out of bed, straightening out his dull, yellow robe. Out of the corner of his gaze, he caught sight of his old 'action figures'. What possessed him to carve these, he'd never know.
"Monkey, Mantis, Crane, Viper, and Tigress," he mused, shaking his head. "Not like I'd be worth their time." He cursed his Kung Fu-based dreams… and his condition. Besides, he was sure that he was at least older than the tiger… he thinks. It would never happen.
After throwing one of his 'collectible knives' into the wall, into the forehead of the image of an ox, he made his way down the steps. "Here, father," Shen greeted as he descended, his long, red-spotted tail feathers ruffling.
He had been a young teenager when he had come to the Valley of Peace, somehow with a shipment upon a cart. Shen did not know himself past his name… at the time. After so long being raised by Ping, bits and flashes of… something horrible… had appeared to Shen in dreams.
A village on fire, pandas being attacked by wolves left and right… Such bloodshed… He hated it. That had been the dream to greet him the previous night, and so many nights before.
His trail of thought was broken by the sound of Mr. Ping's voice. "Shen!"
"What?" the peacock snapped, before withdrawing his neck. "… Sorry, father," he let out.
"Sorry does not make the noodles," the gray goose responded in good nature as he looked around the pile of supplies in his arms. "You were making a lot of noise. What were you doing up there?" he asked as he set the pile down.
"Just some strange dream," Shen answered immediately, strutting like a noble to the counter.
"Oh, about what?" the older goose asked as he turned around to chop on the cutting board.
"…" Shen looked away with hesitation. … No, he couldn't tell the goose about that nightmare. No need to make him worry. Still, he needed an excuse. Shen's red eyes darted around, before his gaze fell upon the bowl his wing was over. "I was… dreaming about… noodles." Noodles, really! That was the best he could come up with!
"Noodles?" the goose asked after chopping a vegetable in half with his cleaver. "You were really dreaming about noodles?"
"… Yes," Shen hissed out. Oh, great, the goose actually believed him. "What else would I dream about?" he let out with easily missed sarcasm as he passed bowls of hot soup and noodles to customers. Rabbit. Pig. Rabbit. Pig. Pig. Rabbit.
"Look, this is a mistake!" Shen called from behind the door. "I am not the Dragon Warrior! I just help make noodles!" Receiving no answer, the albino narrowed his eyes, turning around… only for his eyes to widen. "Oh my… The Hall of Heroes…" Slowly, almost as if he had forgotten his previous words, the white peafowl slowly strode through the halls, his gleaming red eyes transfixed on every item that lined the walls.
The interior of the Jade Palace was AMAZING! Weapons, tapestries, and valuable artifacts were spread throughout the entire hall.
Master Flying Rhino's battle armor!
The Sword of Heroes- OW! He was cut just by looking at it! Lousy legend…
And… either an empty weapon rack or the Invisible Trident of Destiny!
Gasp! He had only seen poor mimicries of that painting!
… So he was a Kung Fu fan boy. What of it? Shen doubted he was the worst case.
The peacock strutted through the hall with his tail-feathers low, beady red eyes taking in the sights.
"Glorious. Simply glorious," he let out. "To think, I'm actually in the Jade Palace…" His smile faded. "Now if only it wasn't due to a mistake."
"Are you through sight-seeing?"
Shen blinked and abruptly turned to face the source of the voice. Master Shifu… a red panda, clad in red robes… trainer of the Furious Five. "Um… yes. I apologize for my behavior, Master Shifu," the white peacock bid, bowing.
Shifu looked unimpressed. "So… you're the Dragon Warrior, hm?"
Shen blinked, looking up at the red panda. "… Perhaps?"
Shen leaned away as Shifu threatening thrust his cane at him.
The red panda continued his words with narrowed eyes. "You are not the Dragon Warrior! You will never be the Dragon Warrior unless you unravel the secret of the Dragon Scroll!"
"... I see..."
Shen groaned in pain as he struggled upon the steps, willing himself, and failing, to stand on his feet. Curse them… Curse all six of them for mocking him. They expected him to be some messiah? Were they jealous that he had been chosen by Master Oogway? These were the greatest warriors in all of China? Petty thugs who bullied when they did not get their way?
Tch. Of course, Shen had doubts that the members of the village would see the hypocrisy or stick up for him. They would probably say he deserved it for misleading them about being the 'Dragon Warrior'.
Quite suddenly, the albino felt something touch his wing.
Growling, Shen stared up at who ever touched him, spreading out his tail feathers in a threatening manner. Oh… it was the Master Viper. "What do you want?" he asked. "Come to push me down the rest of the way?"
The snake twitched –or flinched, he could not tell- at the accusation, frowning sadly at Shen.
Quite suddenly, the peacock would feel something small dash under his body, lifting him. The bug was helping now? Oh… joy…
"It said that the Dragon Warrior can live off the dew of a single ginko leaf and the energy of the universe," Tigress commented, refusing the offered soup as she took a bite of her tofu.
Shen narrowed his eyes at the tiger. You don't refuse the soup, as far as he was concerned. "Hm… from that story you told me, you sound extremely arrogant, a lot like a certain leopard."
Silence engulfed the table.
Tigress turned to glare at the albino peacock. "What did you say?" she hissed out.
Shen's black beak curved into a smirk. "You heard me, Master Tigress," he responded. "Bullying someone when you don't get your way? Taking your frustrations out on someone when either her or she had nothing to do with it or did not mean for what you wanted to be defied? That sounds a lot like Tai Lung. If you were trained to do that… well, it's no wonder Tai Lung rebelled against Master Shifu."
Shen only said that to goad the tiger… and it worked just a little too well.
The Kung Fu master lunged, pinning the albino peacock to the wall by his neck. "How dare you!" Tigress growled.
Shen gagged, inwardly grateful that Tigress was not slowly choking the life out of his frail body. "I… dare…" he coughed. "I dare, Master Tigress, because you've yet to prove me wrong…"
After Shifu's blow to Shen's head… something snapped into place… as if that particular strike was all that was needed.
And he ran.
"Peacock!" Shifu called out, frowning as Shen ran… Just what was up with that youth?
As Shen ran toward the edge of the water, images were passing through his mind.
A tiny, young, white peacock looked up at his father, both dressed in ornate silk robes. "One day," the blue peafowl spoke to him, a hesitant smile on his beak, "one day, my son, you will claim this throne as your own."
A few years later, that same tiny peafowl hears a fortune, standing just outside the lavish door that separated him from the beloved Soothsayer's room as she gave a prediction, about Shen himself, no less, to his parents.
"A peacock is defeated by a warrior of black and white."
Shen found himself back in that same, horrible, bloody nightmare.
Fire surrounded the village, and Shen felt himself stand tall and proud, looking around at the destruction his forces had wrought. The village was in flames, and so many panda were now… shall we say, 'departed'.
It was glorious.
Then, his beady red eyes caught sight of something. A little infant panda… That would not do.
"Leave none alive," he commanded.
Immediately, his wolves leapt into action, rushing for the infant with the peacock himself following shortly behind. No one would stand in his way, especially not a few stinking pandas!
So caught up in his thoughts and so inexperienced, Shen did not notice the wooden rake until it was too late. Being a 'sickly albino', Shen was, shall we say, made of glass.
The white peacock was knocked through the air and sent rolling, pain flaring through his body as he rolled down a steep hill.
His victory… so close… so close…
"… A peacock shall be defeated by a warrior of black and white."
What seemed like ages passed, before someone stumbled upon him.
"Hey, there's someone here! It looks like he took a blow to the head!"
Groggily, the young white peafowl stared up at the pig whom had found him.
"Get him on the cart, we'll take him to the Valley for help…"
And then, it all went black.
Lord Shen's eyes were wide with amazement and disgust… before he squeezed his eyes shut, tears coming forth from his eyes as he faced the Pool of Tears. No! He didn't cry! He was Lord Shen, heir to Gongmen City! He didn't cry. He did not cry!
But… but here he was… This wasn't like him. What had changed?
He remembered, now… That dream… no, that memory. He wasn't some Dragon Warrior… He was a monster whom ordered wolves to massacre a village, all for his paranoia and ambition. Shen never felt sicker in his life. He was no better –no, even worse- than Tai Lung. That panda who struck Shen… he should have crushed his head in.
Shen craned his neck to look at Shifu, whom looked taken aback at the tears.
"Master… I have to tell you something…"
"Who are you?" the snow leopard demanded, only slightly slackening his grip around Shifu's neck.
The white peacock smirked. So… here it would end. Monster to monster. With a dramatic flourish of his white silk robe, Shen revealed one of his old blades.
"Who am I?" He actually cackled. "Tai Lung… I'm the Dragon Warrior," the albino announced in a tone of confidence.
"You?" Tai Lung asked as he narrowed his eyes, releasing Shifu.
"Yes, me…" Shen responded with a sagely nod. "And… I know you want this!" He held up the Dragon Scroll mockingly in his right wing. "Ta-ta!" He leaped off the steps as Tai Lung leaped for him, spreading his tail feathers out like a glider, on course for the city. "That's it, kitty. Follow. Catch me if you can…"
"That scroll is MINE!"
Shen had only that roar as a warning before Tai Lung landed on his back, bringing him down to the stairs harshly.
The peacock squawked in pain, the precious container of the Dragon Scroll slipping from his wing and bouncing down the steps.
Immediately, Tai Lung leaped off of Shen, chasing the bouncing scroll container.
The albino shakily stood up, staring at the leopard. Quick as he could, Shen threw out one of his knives toward the bouncing scroll capsule, or at least where he predicted it would strike the ground.
Steel, stone, and jade all impacted. The capsule flew out of Tai Lung's reach as the leopard grabbing for it. Golden eyes went wide as he missed…
And then Shen took to the air again, leaping over Tai Lung in pursuit of the jade-capped container. He looked over his shoulder, a smirk on his black beak at the leopard.
Tai Lung let out a growl as he pursued the peafowl.
... Yeah... this was bloody awful. Use the first film to fill gaps. For this... I... I don't mind flames. I really don't.