Summary: Anya McPhearson; the girl who's hands on, likes working with people, and doing cocaine. AU where Anya's coke addiction was not so easily negated.
Warnings: Drug use, cursing, unhealthy relationship dynamics, and excessive purple prose.
Everything went to hell when University was a non option and the lovely Dr. Chris turned out to be an asshole. She feels stupid now for thinking that twenty-six year old doctor would still be into her after he found out how old she is.
But- well- fuck him.
She presses her lips to Owen's unsuspecting mouth at a party. He is filled with vinegar, heat, and muscle. His hands are strong enough to wipe her memory, his kiss just wet enough and biting. She falls into the slick ecstasy he promises. She shudders when he slots his head between her thighs, his shoulders under her legs. His eyes flicker up at her when he takes his first lick and they are dark, and endless, and mesmerizing.
(-she has never felt sex like this. has never known the secrets of someone's flesh. never had someone settle into her bones and blood and meat so integral and primal and so, so fucking perfect.-)
When she asks him to, he counts his sins off his fingers for her. They pretend he is the leader but he bends at the slightest touch from her hand. He watches her face, waiting for her to balk at the numbers. She doesn't shy away, she knew what she was asking for.
She wants him to shed his guilt, to relish in the stains he's left. She came to him for earthquakes. Tectonic shifts that can only mean the ground will split and swallow everything around it whole. All he comes to her with is his secrets, soft kisses, understanding. But she knows that with him chaos will follow. If she sits on her hands long enough, someone will come around the corner and offer what she needs.
(-and when that day comes she will keep him in her pocket. he worships the pliance of her thighs, bows at the altar of the slick heat of her cunt. he is hers to hold and her grip is always ready to tighten.-)
She had never been partial to the uncertainty of rebellion. Had never curated a taste for all things wild and destructive. Her sonic booms were found in dancing in her bedroom; her curious explorations of flesh in timid boyfriends and her own fingers.
Owen is so fond of running free and wild. He lives for the out-of-body floating of freedom, for throats raw from screaming, and the silk of flesh and sweat. He breathes the uncouth yearning she was taught to expect and never really felt. He is the face of all things her mother has taught her to avoid like the plague.
(-and in his touch she finds the shivering heat of comfort. under his weight she finds the clouds of her mind dissipating. rebellion is settled between the sheets on his bed, and she has made it her own.-)
Owen was never her first choice. He's a rocket, a plume of smoke and fuel plummeting upwards teaming with uncertainty in hopes of doing great and dangerous things. The cut of his eyes and the callouses on his hands are masterminds of destruction. He is the endless swirling vacuum of teenage terror, and-
(-the precious view of sunlight bowing to kiss the earth; the curve of the moonlight shining over vast bodies of water. the hills and valleys of his body are hers to play in and she is rampant in their secrets.-)
He takes her to a club, where her skin is awash in sultry lights and the music is so loud it pounds against her eardrums. Her hand is locked in his, and she tries not to think about the way it makes her chest pitter patter. He leads her, gently, and she steps like each tile is a cloud ready to disappear under her feet. He takes her a little further into his world, where laughter is poured into a glass and freedom is found in the grind of bodies set to dance music. It's exhilarating, electric, intoxicating; and a lot of other words she had never prescribed to him consciously.
He watches her with caution and excitement in a way that makes her yearn for something more than his touch, more than sex. He guides her around gently, letting her scope the land and trying to keep her experiences light enough that she'll come back. And it's perfect, it's so perfect-
And it's where she finds the chaos. A tiny girl with blonde curls and the sort of smile that cuts. A tiny girl named Chloe, who holds out her hand and offers Anya even more perfection.
(-she doesn't think about the fact that even owen and bianca shied away from coke; that she is alone in this journey. it's new, and it's scary, and it's like fire in her veins. like the adrenaline that comes with climbing up to poke through the ceiling window in a limo while she throws her hands up and screams into the vast promises of night and youth and fucking
He doesn't think anything about it because it's normal to test boundaries; to try things that are dangerous, exciting, and stupid. He certainly isn't clean in any sense, he has been through the pitfalls and triumphs of temptation.
Still, he does have his second glances. Worries when she wants to stay out later, dance longer, fuck harder. She quells him every time. She says that she's just having fun with it, that it's strictly for clubs. He relaxes, always, but never enough to completely abandon alertness.
(-she believes herself sometimes when she says it. that she really will stop all on her own, that the she will never let it leave the club or the dance-floor with her. that she'll never take it home, to her mother, or her friends. but there is a monster clawing out of her skin and she wants so desperately to let it out.-)
"You're not better than me," She is vicious, the serpent who has wrapped itself around him in preparation to feast. This is the same fight they've had, with a slightly different sequence of events. It's the mundanity that kills her honestly, she can handle fights. But she can only maintain the same fight for so long before she gets too good at winning, and then things get bad.
He doesn't know how to escape her terror, he can only scream until his throat is raw. He's left wriggling and panicked in her presence. She picks at his insecurities when he can't fight back anymore. For a second all she feels is triumph, but he can't completely hold a brave face. So when his hurt shines through she sours. She straightens her posture, eyebrows crinkling together while she bites back bile.
This time, her voice cracks when she speaks, "You've done so many worse things than me. You've fucked up more than I have. You can't judge me."
Owen clenches his jaw, raises his eyebrows, shuts down his expression, "Let's just go."
(-there is no real victory in this brand of destruction. no pleasure to be felt when you have successfully broken everything you care for.-)
She keeps him pacified by going out less. Instead, she holds the key to world's secrets in her hands; cased in a small plastic baggie and taunting her inside her childhood bedroom. She checks to make sure the doors are locked three times before she sets up, listening to the meticulous ticking of her alarm clock.
She uses a hand mirror from her makeup table that she's not particularly fond of to put the coke on. She cuts it with a blade pried loose from one of her spare unused shaving razors. She chops it slowly, makes the lines small. She reasons that it's only a little mistake if she paces herself well enough.
(-her subconscious prods at her that she's falling, that the earth is swallowing her whole just like she wanted and she will never be able to climb out the same as she was. but she's soaring, and the wind in her ears is too loud to hear anything over.-)
She had never wanted to deny herself the comforts of flesh. She has ached for the press of fingers, the soft caresses of lips and tongues. There is a hunger settled deep in her stomach; gnawing away at her until she finds a way to whet her appetite.
She has tasted Owen's pleasure; made a meal of his skin and sweat. She has heard the cries of sweetened death pried from his lips. She has felt triumph when he grew pliant under her, and muscle clenching excitement when he roused.
There is nothing sweeter than the taste of them. She stretches, languid and licking her chops, in his bed while he pulls out his cigarettes. She rolls onto her stomach, watches the pull of his lips while he smokes; and in her rare fog of clarity she studies him. The curve of his neck, the delicate slant of his nose, the arch of his thick dark brows and how they settle over the deep blue trenches of his eyes.
She is struck with the beauty of him; the dusky pink hue to his skin and the sunlight painting him golden. She leans over to kiss one of his freckles on his forehead. She can feel her heart threatening to beat out of her chest when he smiles, chuckles, kisses her nose. He strums through her body in a sweet melody, of yours yours yours.
(-she has tainted their copulation with her sins. soon he will not want to touch her like he's starving.-)
He watches every second of it, too dumbstruck to process the trainwreck he's witnessing. Too hopeful to recognize the growing, festering, wound inside of her that refuses to heal. It makes her want to laugh, or scream her throat raw, or cry until her ribs ache her stomach heaves and her eyes are swollen and useless. Because for all he sees he's still so oblivious to the immensity of it. To him, it all shakes down in three simple steps before they're both sitting in the eye of her shitstorm waiting for the real terror to start.
Step 1: They go to the club and she gets high enough to forget her problems.
Step 2: When she's high enough to forget her problems she picks at the wound a little more.
Step 3: She wants to club every weekend, most weekdays, until she picks at the wound and there is nothing left but her bloody meaty remains festering with maggots.
When her interview is botched they both know that's not the worst of it. That she will bring more. Owen will help her board the windows, lock the doors, and hide in the basement until it passes. Or he'll leave. Let her sit in the puddle of vomit, blood, and tears. She doesn't tell him enough about what's happening, that she's taken it out of the club and it still isn't enough. He's not prepared to deal with what's coming and it eats away at her.
(-so when he's done trying to fuck her better and rolls off of her, she puts her hand on his chest and whispers "i love you" into his shoulder. until he rolls right back and kisses her so hard her mind is wiped clean.-)
Some nights she flies. Her wings beat heavy, hard, pulling her up until the air is almost too thin to keep her breathing. She feels wind crafting her face into weather worn flesh; the sun is wrapping her body in it's intensity and she revels in it. Owen is always pressing his judgements into her skull. But she doesn't care those nights, because she's ten thousand times faster than her problems. She can escape anything.
(-until she crashes harder than before and she can't even escape the homework left undone on the table, and owen's blue eyes filled with disappointment. she is left on the rocky ground with her limbs broken and mangled, her blood staining the earth, wondering how it is so easy to fall.-)
"Where you going?"
She's standing by his bed, shimmying into her jeans because she's supposed to meet Chloe in half an hour. She doesn't turn around, she hears the whir of his lighter when she bends to pick up her bra. She smells the bitter smoke from his cigarette.
"Out," she says simply, fastening her bra.
"To meet Chloe?"
She turns and finds him staring at the wall. His jaw is clenched angrily but his eyes are wet; too vulnerable and caring. She climbs onto his bed, crawls over him. He turns his head away from her.
"I can stay," she whispers, settling on his thighs.
She watches his chest fall, reluctant and heavy. He brings his hand back for another drag and he attempts put it down. She stops him, grabs his wrist and leans in. She pulls a drag, blows the smoke against his skin before she nips at his collar bone. She unfastens her pants. He curses and takes another drag from his cigarette.
"I won't leave you," she murmurs, kissing up his neck, "not if you don't want me to," she whispers in his ear, trailing her hand down his chest, his torso.
It's a well conditioned reflex, the way he hardens under her and keens into her touch. She knows his weakness; the promise of long-standing affection. Even after she's hobbled his ankles, devoured his flesh, he comes back. Waits for a tender touch, preens under praise.
She's really no different, certainly not any better. She pries his bones until they crack, slurps the marrow, and returns every-time he rebuilds himself. Because every inch of him is honey. His touch is far gentler than she deserves, his forgiveness is a well she has yet to reach the bottom of and she will plummet until she finds it.
(-he is hers and she is his and they will always snap back together.-)
Her nose hurts; she rubs it while trying to hold a conversation with Holly J. Her mind is going a hundred thousand miles per hour. She's non-stop. A race car, a white water river, a hurricane. The absurdity makes her laugh because she doesn't know how to stop it anymore. She can't keep anything in when she's moving this quickly.
Holly J quirks an eyebrow, a concerned look plastered on her face. "Anya, is everything okay? You're kind of, all over the place lately."
"Yeah I'm just, full of energy right now!" She thinks she may have overdone it when she threw her arms up, but she doubts it'll matter. There are always second glances, but never thirds, or fourths.
Holly J's nose wrinkles, always concerned, "Really?"
Anya smiles, "Peachy keen."
(-university, dr. chris, owen, holly j, mom and dad, crushing spiraling darkness, no hope, life ruined, too much cocaine, can't breath anymore, ect...-)
She will be the unbreakable girl. She'll eat hearts out of the palm of her hand, and toss kisses like candy on Halloween night. They'll fall to her feet and she'll laugh at how much they want to be her. She'll crook her fingers and beckon them to stay in her world for just one night.
(-and you know what lucky them. being able to leave in the morning must be so sweet.-)
She's dancing, her body is a current of electricity and she feels-
She is the sweet romanticism in youth, the promise of air and light. Her mind is swirling with the possibilities lying just beyond her; too fast to focus.
(-and she tries to think this is worth it-)
He cups her face in his hands and her mind is muddy. Her eyes are blurring. She focuses long enough to see the tears on his cheeks and smiles dopily.
"You're worried about me?" Her words are slurred, misshapen and unable to completely crawl out of her mouth.
"Fuck," he's tapping her cheek, trying not to slap her too hard, "fuck, Anya, fuck."
She manages to grab onto his arms. She smiles while she uses him to pull herself onto her haunches. Her stomach lurches, everything in her world careens downward and she's falling onto him before she can stop herself. He stumbles back, clutching her in his arms and rubs her back. She shakes while her eyes heat up, the tears flooding and her ribs cracking under their weight. She doesn't know where she is, what she did.
Her fingers are gripping his shirt; soft cotton, worn just enough to feel loved. She wails and buries her face in his neck while he cooes and tries to soothe her.
"Don't go," she hiccups and he pants her back chanting 'I know, I won't, I'm here, Anya please' so she grips harder, lets her sobs wreak havoc. "Don't leave me."
"I won't, okay?" he kisses her forehead.
(-later, she will think about the relief that floods her chest and feel sick. for now, she relishes in it and digs her nails into his chest.-)
She thinks her mind is eating her. It's a festering mess of toxic waste; devouring all the things about herself that she has ever cared about. It's sickening, ceaseless, and everyone who's noticed has turned their eyes from the slaughter.
She is walking carnage. The girl who can't sleep at night. The girl who feels life crushing in on her so fast that she's suffocating.
(-the coke head, the bitch, the fucking idiot who could never do anything right.-)
She wants to be the Good Girl again. To feel Owen's arms circling her, to rebuild her home in the village of his chest. To be sweet and naive. The girl with doe eyes and delicate fingers. Dot her I's with hearts, her chest raw and ripe from laughter, the sun on her skin sweet and gentle.
(-and it's charming, really, how often she thinks she could go back. as if she hasn't burned her bridges, and found her solace in destruction.-)