I just started another Sweeney Todd fanfiction, but whatever. I'm equally partial to both my ideas and have good feelings about both. This is a Sweeney/OC fanfiction. Don't say I didn't warn you. If you enjoy my writing but prefer a Sweenett story, I have a lovely one in progress you might prefer. If you don't prefer either, I really don't know why you're here!
My stories are all very similar, you'll find, in a central aspect, and that it at one point they must involve a main character falling ill. I like to write sick fics. Okay? Say anything and I'll sic Sweeney on you!
Just kidding, of course, haha.
The premise of this story is that Mr. Todd, amidst the days of his revenge upon all of London, becomes mortified when a nineteen year-old girl stumbles into his barber shop, and aside from some minor differences, could practically be Lucy's incarnate. And she comes to him looking half-dead, as though she's got one foot in the grave already. And she has a tragic tale about her that fuels Sweeney's desire for revenge even further.
Generic, yeah, I know. Whatever. So, read, love, review?
Disclaimer: Of course I don't own Sweeney Todd. Whatever gave you that idea?
The girl staggered through the streets, weak, pitiable, but free.
She had escaped the hellhole that had been her prison for the last four years, though at a cost. That last one, the last she would ever service against her will, was dead. She hadn't meant to kill him. It was an accident. But he was dead nonetheless. And she didn't give a damn that he was. In fact, she was ecstatic.
Except for she couldn't be ecstatic. She was slowly deteriorating. Phantom flames licked at her arms, her legs, setting her on fire, though she knew they weren't really there. Those drugs in the incense they kept her and the other girls on at all times were making her hallucinate, now that she was finally away from them. She'd face a hellish next few days, as it worked its way out of her system, suffering from withdrawal, even. But it was a necessary price to pay.
The headache, though, that was real. It was like an explosion of pain, penetrating each part of her skull, originating at the unreachable center of her head. The aches in her limbs, in each joint, that was real, too.
She fantasized in her deliria that they were coming after her, eager to punish her. Those two dreadful people who were responsible for the nightmare of her life. She let out a cry and slipped into an alley. She couldn't travel the streets.
She staggered through the alleyways now, growing ever weaker, steadily more pitiful, but still free. She didn't know where she was going. She was sick, so sick. She hadn't known just how bad she was until her stomach wrenched violently and she toppled over, onto a pile of rotten old crates, and vomited everything in her stomach and then some more.
Maybe she'd finally gotten one of those dreadful diseases Madame was always talking about, the diseases that took her best girls from her just when the clients were starting to really enjoy their company.
She knew how people got better nowadays. What was it she'd heard again? She could barely remember. She's heard it during one of those precious stolen moments at a window, when Madame had been forced to replace her dress since one of the men had torn it off of her, ripped it to shreds in his impatience. They bled fevers out of the body nowadays.
The girl recoiled at the very thought of seeking out a doctor. Not after so many of those types had ravaged her while she screamed. She'd sooner die.
But there'd been something else she'd heard, hadn't there? If she didn't want to go to a surgeon… go to a barber. Yes, she remembered now. Seek out the white and red stripes characteristic of the trade. That's where she'd find help.
She slid a hand beneath the fabric resting on her chest to make sure the purse was still there. She'd taken it off the last man's dead body. He had been a well-to-do gentlemen. His purse jingled merrily with coins over her heart. Her only comfort. She'd be able to pay a barber, certainly.
She was lost when it came to London. She'd lived in the city her whole life, but she'd barely seen daylight in the last four years. Her mind was foggy from drugs, her memory was foggy from time, and she had no idea where she was going.
She collapsed against a street sign when she came to it, gasping. She could barely make out the words in the dim light – the only streetlamp lit was a good fifteen feet away. Fleet Street, it read. She sort of remembered that name. There was a… a pie shop there, yes. She'd been there for the last time five years ago, when she was still a starving ragamuffin on the streets. She remembered because the woman who ran it was the first woman who'd been nice to her, ever. Gave her a pie for free. It was admittedly the foulest thing the girl had ever tasted, but even a stupid street urchin knows you don't stick your nose up at a free meal, and she was far from stupid.
She didn't remember the woman's name, but if she was still running that pie shop, a nice woman like her would surely help a sick, pathetic little nit, just escaped from a whorehouse. But which way did she go, right or left? Where was that pie shop?
The girl released the street sign, making sure she could keep her balance on her weak legs. She'd go left. It didn't matter.
There were barely any street lamps lit, and she had to shuffle through the streets on the light cast from windows. She saw the occasional person lingering on the street, but no one paid her any mind.
The word caught her eye. The name was a kind one. She turned to the words, staring at them for the longest time until she was absolutely sure. Mrs. Lovett's Meat Pie Emporium. She'd sound it. Thank goodness it was still here.
The girl staggered forward too fast, slipping and falling flat on her face. When she extended her arms to break her fall, she landed far too hard on her left wrist. She grimaced as pain shot up her arm and into her shoulder. Not broken. Maybe sprained. And damn, it hurt.
She clambered to her feet, her stomach rolling, and started for the pie shop. A young, black-haired boy raced past her and into the pie shop, disappearing out of sight. Did the woman have a kid?
Twenty steps. Fifteen. Ten.
Something caught the girl's eye then. A pole hanging over the side of the shop, over a set of stairs that led to an upper room. It was vertical, striped with red and white.
Any thoughts the girl had of getting to the pie shop fled her mind. All that mattered was holding out long enough to get up those stairs. She could feel herself fading fast already. She was going to pass out for sure.
Once she get her foot on that first stair, she felt a last surge of energy. Clutching the side railing, she managed to pull herself up the steps, and then there was only to pray the door was open. It was.
She got her fingers around the handle and let the door swing open as she pressed herself against the doorframe for support. At first she thought the room was empty and her spirit sunk, but then she heard the deep, dangerous male voice from the corner and realized there was a man standing before the vanity there, back to her. "Come for a shave?"
It too her a few moments and several deep breaths to find her voice. "No," she gasped out. The single word was all she could manage.
He turned around, surprised to hear a woman's voice. The girl gasped. He was tall and thin, pale with sunken eyes, dark purple circles beneath them. His hair was a tangled mess, a wonderful shade of raven-wing black, interrupted by a strip of white run through it over his right eye. He was haunting, and at the same time sort of beautiful. She didn't know why, but the girl was glad, somehow, that this was the man she'd managed to seek out.
He was equally as startled by her appearance. She was paler even than him, with dull brown eyes and thin features. Her hair was long and yellow, damp with sweat, and she had the look of a half-dead person about her. But what was truly shocking was that, save for subtle features, the girl was Lucy's incarnate. Her cheekbones were slightly higher, her nose a little longer, but other than that…
Sweeney approached her unconsciously at first, the remnants of human compassion that were Benjamin Barker inside of him crying out for the poor girl. He felt a strange twinge of concern in the pit of his stomach. It had to be merely because she looked so much like his dead wife. Of course it was.
Struck temporarily mute, the barber finally asked, "Then what can I do for you this evening?"
The girl stared into his dark eyes, almost black eyes, like the color of midnight. She was going to faint, and if she didn't get it out soon he'd never know what it was she wanted. "I… need you… to bl… to bleed me," she barely gasped before the world went black and she slumped, unconscious, into the arms of Sweeney Todd.
It's short… and I'm tired… and am considering going to re-listen to the Sweeney Todd soundtrack for the fifteen billionth time. It's so hard to concentrate. Quality writing, I hope? I'm actually proud of this little chapter, and I hope you like it as well. Enough, perhaps, to tell me what you thought? I won't post another chapter until I get one review at the very least. So if you want to see more of this, by all means! I know what's going to happen, but unless you, dear readers, appease my selfish whims, you shall never hear the rest of the tale of the girl who looks so much like Lucy and the Demon Barber of Fleet Street!
I love you all, thank you for reading!