Disclaimer: I own Shingeki no Kyo- *gets stepped on by Colossal-Titan-kun*


A/N: So, my first SnK fic. Wow. I hope no one kills me for this. Also, Die Flügel der Freiheit is German for The Wings of Freedom

Special thanks go to my darlings lunardistance and xpyon for providing me with enough material for inspiration whenever I suddenly stop writing. And to surfacage who has graciously agreed to make fanart for me with her beautiful beautiful art. (ohgodimnotworthy) I love you guys.

And a heads-up. I don't update fast. Sorry, but I'd rather my readers wait than get anything from me that I deem less than worthy of their time or attention.


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Die Flügel der Freiheit

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Chapter 1: The Fate of Humanity Shall on Their Shoulders Rest

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It wasn't the first time humans had been compared to roaches — filthy scum crawling from the earth's crevices, refusing to die out at every turn, eyesores spreading disease and malaise wherever they go. They were once an irreplaceable part of the cycle of life: a species fundamentally integral to the stability of Nature; yet later on proving to be the pests that they were, having long abused and outlived their usefulness to the order that governed the very movement of the universe. Too much destruction, the effects of which rippled out in an inevitable crashing wave that the earth was never ready for. Too many creatures pushed beyond the brink of extinction. Too many resources hoarded and wasted. Humanity had been too selfish, greedily consuming everything as if all of it was made solely to cater to its petty whims and endless vanity with a sense of entitlement in imagined self-importance. The scales had tipped too steeply, and Nature herself had to compensate for the gaping discrepancy in the Balance. Something—anything had to be done; and to Humanity's unfortunate demise the Titans were born, hastily created for the sole purpose of human extermination in a poor attempt to restore the lost equilibrium.

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It was chaos. Pure chaos. Screams of despair and terror rent the air as people ran inward the district, desperately hoping against hope that they would somehow survive this living nightmare. Stumbling and falling over each other, scrambling to get up and clawing at the space before them, eyes wildly shifting to find an escape—any escape—only to find themselves hoisted far above the ground, the darkness and putrid stench of a foul Titan mouth lingering in their senses as the orifice served as their final destination.

Heaven's abandonment had never been more palpable. No god or deity took heed of the anguished pleas for mercy—a cruel disregard if they existed at all. People perished, one after another, rendered deaf by their own helpless cries gurgled in blood, blinded by the blackness creeping into their vision until their consciousness faded away into the useless reprieve of nothingness, its comfort too little too late.

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Eren hung limply from Hannes' shoulder, tear streaks trailing from his dead eyes to his blood-flecked cheeks (it was his mother's blood oh god how it rained upon him as the monster's teeth sawed her in half), throat hoarse from crying and calling out for someone who would never respond again, body spent from blindly lashing out at his saviour like a righteous ingrate. And everything in his world collapsed just like that with the stark realization of exactly how weak and insignificant he really was. The unwelcome enlightenment made everything else fade into a blur: how the three of them zipped past everything else and how suddenly they were settled on a vessel, meeting up with a worried Armin as Mikasa silently watched on, her deceptively strong hands firmly clutching the edge of his clothing. He felt dead dead dead and he couldn't, for the life of him, find it in himself to retake the white hot rage that was always just within his reach, churning and bubbling under the surface of his skin. He looked down at his hands, vision blurring every now and then as he was ripped apart by the rawness of his emotions. He unwittingly turned his gaze back in the direction from whence they came.

The light of the setting sun shone crimson through yonder. Eren morbidly thought that maybe it was heaven's rendition of the streaks and spots of red that senselessly (it served no purpose so why why WHY?!) painted the streets and curbs and all the buildings and roofs left behind. The colour splashed across the sky in careless strokes, mocking him. The beauty he used to enjoy through his own window ironically left a bitter taste in his mouth the more his eyes swallowed every sickening hue. Hard emeralds tore themselves away with a vicious snarl, startling a man slouched nearby, the paranoia and trauma manifesting in the latter's dilated pupils and shaking hands. Eren paid him no more than a cursory glance. They were all the same, the others. Nobody deserved any of what happened, but they chose to be livestock, did they not? And what else is there for them if not to be devoured at the diners' leisure?

He turned his head away, unable to bear his own thoughts. His gaze fell on his hands once more. He was shaking, too, albeit for a different reason. Slowly, surely, he finally felt it: the familiar viscosity crawling in his veins like molten lava, the heavy pumping of his heart pushing it further along to spread through his whole being. Just as it came, the trembling went away and everything became still in his closed fists.

He would fight, oh yes he would. He may not be one of them but he would do whatever it takes, give whatever it takes. It had been what he'd set himself on before, anyway.

He looked up as a fleet of shadows flew towards danger, the stalwart forms majestic against the canvas of the bloodied sky.

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But let it not be said that Humanity has forever earned the scorn of Mother Earth; for despite the wrongs done to her by her prodigal children, she continued to allow their survival, going so far as to providing them tools to fight back and reclaim their place in this plane of existence, pitiful as it may be. No one knew how they were chosen. Things like that were overlooked in favour of the frantic need for protection. It was both a blessing and a curse: an expectation of a shortened life in bearing the weight of humanity's hope in exchange for a measure of power—the boon of evolution bestowed upon them.

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tbc...


A/N: So... What do you think? Feedback would be very much appreciated. ^_^