A/N: Saw The Croods the other night, and it was amazing. So I went home and used a really awesome movie as an excuse to write one of the sappiest, most horribly cliché things I have ever written. Enjoy, but don't expect top notch writing here (there is no plot people, it is replaced by sap unashamedly). That is your warning. ;)
Disclaimer: I do not own The Croods and this fic is entirely written for self-gratification purposes – there is no money involved, promise.
Thousands of Tomorrows
Guy isn't afraid to admit that Eep scares him sometimes.
The way she can snarl and snap pointy teeth, and the way she runs; wild and bestial, fierce and so damn fast. He's seen her devour his body weight in food in the time it takes for Belt to blink, and he knows she could snap him like a stick before he could even think to ask her not to.
Her family's the same – worse sometimes, and no one, nothing, scares him like Sandy, but he woke one night to Gran leaning over him with the hungriest expression on her face (and screaming does not make him a girl, thank you Grug) and he hasn't slept right since. They're cavemen (and women) after all, and sometimes he takes a moment to consider the insanity; that he has found a new family with what Uncle used to jokingly say were "our distant cousins a nut or three across the family tree. And they're dumber too." But they're not, Guy knows. They just haven't learnt.
So yes, Eep scares him sometimes, especially when she sneaks up on him with a predator's silent feet and her eyes glowing wickedly with mischief.
But other times he finds himself watching her, and it's suddenly hard to breathe.
Her grace and swiftness and the way her brow furrows when she's stalking something twice as big as her. The flick of her hands, splashes of toughened flesh under dirt and blood, and the arch of her feet (her ankles disappearing into the shoes he made for her). Her smile, and how it appears before she breaks a rule or kills something or challenges Sandy to a brawl. The way his presence has yet to fail to bring it forth. Her laughter, loud and unashamed at the smallest of things; at Thunk's stupidity, and all of Guy's jokes.
Some days he finds himself just waiting for her smile, or her laugh, or the fierce challenge of her gaze to rest on him. Most of the time he goes out of his way to tell her a joke, or give her a flower – because she loves this world they've discovered together and she finds beauty in it all. Yet there are other times when he opens his eyes to find hers already on his, her lips already smiling, her throat already laughing. Those are the best days, when he walks with only half a lung.
But this – this.
They escape Grug for a time, because he might not be afraid anymore but he is still a father, and Eep is his daughter, and he still isn't comfortable leaving her and Guy alone. But two knuckles before the sun leaves the sky for Tomorrow, Gran distracts Grug with vicious, vicious words (because she was in love once, a life and a world before) and Eep takes Guy's hand and pulls him away.
"C'mon," she whispers, her eyes bright.
He smiles and follows her, but he waits until they can't hear Sandy growling before he laughs and squeezes her hand in his.
"Where are we going?"
"You'll see," she grins. Her feet are sure as she leads him to a tall tree, higher than the others in the area. He can barely see the top of the trunk where it fades into dusky sky. "C'mon," she says again, and starts climbing.
He follows her, because she followed him to The End and they followed the sun together, and he thinks he'd go anywhere she would ask him to.
They climb as the air gets darker and colder, and Eep turns it into a race half way up. She reaches the top well before him and he's laughing and out of breath when he finally breaks free of the canopy. The thick leaves make the branches comfortable to sit on, and Eep pulls him until he sits next to her, facing the sun as it begins to dip beneath the world.
"Here," she breathes, "look."
Eep smiles at him, and the sun is in her face and eyes, and his breath is gone again. His heart pounds faster because he realises that she knows him – and that he knows her, knows the way she glows with curiosity and happiness. Their hands raise together, reaching up and tangling above their heads as their bodies are lined in light. He can feel the warmth like a physical touch, as real as Eep's hand in his. His chest is so full it feels like he can't smile; can only stare at her, at her hair flaming with the last light of this day's sun. (If he were moving on, past The End, he thinks he'd want Eep to be his last sight, his last touch too.)
She looks up at him and he lowers his head until their sniffers brush. He finds that his lungs fill with her air, and breathing is easier. He smiles as the cold of dark touches the tips of their fingers and trails down, slowly, as the sun sets, and she smiles back.
He still doesn't like the dark, and she doesn't either; has told him of the cave that was as much her prison as it was salvation. But Tomorrow is lit with thousands of suns and he thinks he'd willingly give all his air to her, if it meant holding her hand for just a little longer.
Author's Request: I would love to hear from you, so please don't be shy! Con-crit is most appreciated, so long as you keep in mind that the purpose of this fic was sap. Terribly, horribly cliché sap, no less. That is all. :)