Mooses_little_sister t1_j611s2f wrote

To be perfectly honest, I'm not quite sure. It could have been simply an abusive situation, (Parents or other adults taking advantage of the power dynamic between an adult and a child.) Or, because Alex was different, either with powers or something else. I left that to the reader's imagination.

Thank you for reading!


Mooses_little_sister t1_j5weovq wrote

"Hey, you should try it with me." The words were slurred, Alex had obviously been hitting the punchbowl tonight. The noise of the party dipped a little before rising. No one was paying attention to us.

"Not the best way to try and get over a breakup," I said, keeping my tone light, I didn't want to destroy the party spirit.

"Oh, come on, it will be a laugh. Just put me behind your back and pull me out."

"What if you can't breathe back there? What if there's a time dilation? What if I pull out a dead body?" I said, grasping for reasons not to do this. There had to be a reason I never did it with living, breathing creatures. Even if I couldn't fully remember, I knew it had to be bad. I hadn't done it since my sixth birthday.

Alex stepped closer, eyes locking with mine. There was a deep sort of despair there, that threatened to reach out and absorb everything within its radius. I took a deep breath but before I could speak, Alex smiled.

"Just put me behind your back and pull me out." The words were the same, but the sound was layered, as if multiple people spoke at once. My hands reached for Alex without my conscious thought. It was their superpower, the ability to mesmerize someone, to make them do what they wanted. It was also the reason for their most recent breakup.

"Don't make me do this."

"It will be fine, come on. Don't you want everyone to have a good time?" Alex said in their usual voice as my hands closed around their arm and passed them behind my back. Instantly moving my empty hands to the front of my body and then backwards again, I pulled Alex from behind me.


The person who stood in front of me was older; dishevelled in a way I had never known Alex to be.

"Send me back! How dare you take me from my destiny." The voice was different too, and my heart sank. I had never been able to confirm what I suspected about my power, until now.

"Let me put you behind me. You should go back." I said, reaching out and guiding the stranger around. They vanished and I took a breath. Reaching behind again, I tried to envision the Alex I knew. Pulled them in front of me, and ducked. The sword whistled over my head, taking a few hairs with it. The person who looked like a young version of Alex gabbled something in a language that vaguely resembled French.

"Sorry, sorry," I said, any French I had ever known flying out of my head. Shoving them behind me, I reached again.

"What the hell man? Where am I? Oh, a party. Groovy, man. Groovy." I tried to snag this version of Alex but they wandered off, their psychedelic clothes matching with the aesthetic of the party. Damn. Hands going back, I pulled again.

"Well, aren't you the bold boy. I daresay I haven't been groped like that since I was a young'un." I blinked at a person who was old enough to be my grandparent. They fluttered their lashes at me, fanning themself with their hand.

"Back you go," I said, and pushed them behind me. Pausing, I tried to think. Reaching blindly wasn't working, all I was doing was pulling alternate versions of Alex from across parallel realities. Or their reincarnations from this reality. I wasn't exactly sure, but either wasn't ideal. So where had I sent my Alex? What reality were they inhabiting?

The answer that came to mind—driven by my memories— broke my heart. If I was pulling them from parallel realities, the reality my Alex would have ended up in... I closed my eyes, reached behind me and my hands closed on an arm. Pulling them in front, I dared a peek.

Tears coated Alex's face, and more horrifying than that, was the knife in their hand.

"Alex? Where did you go?" I asked, a little afraid of the answer. They stared at me, crying silently.

"I went... I went...Back." They said, their face crumpling. I pulled them into a hug, trying not to cry as the knife clattered to the floor. A few people looked our way and I waved them away.

"I realized. Are you... Were they...?" I asked, unable to finish the questions.

"No. They were still... they were still..." Alex gasped, their breath coming in gasps. I rubbed their back in circular motions.

"All right, all right. Breathe. Just breathe." I knew beneath the shirt that covered them there were terrible scars. Scars inflicted by the people they'd just seen, the people they'd just been sent back to. The horrible people that I'd stolen Alex away from when I was six years old.

The memory of that day finally unfolded fully in my head. I'd suppressed a large amount; hadn't wanted to deal with it. There I was, playing with my newly discovered power, and I had the bright idea of reaching for my imaginary best friend. I thought at the time that I made things appear, not just stole them from elsewhere. When Alex had appeared in my hands, bloody, their back a mess of old wounds and new, I thought my power had hurt them during the process. They had never talked about their past, but I pieced it together through what they screamed out during their nightmares.

They were the reason I had never touched another living thing. I was afraid, afraid of what had just happened. That I would send that living being back to a horrible place or take them from paradise. In my arms, Alex stilled, their breathing starting to go back to normal.

"I'm sorry," I whispered. "I would never have done it if—"

"If I hadn't forced you. I'd forgotten too. When I appeared in that room... The memories came back." They said, voice hoarse from weeping. Breaking free of my embrace they looked at me, their eyes still wet. "Thank you for finding me again."

I smiled, wiping their cheek as gently as I could.

"I will always find you. You're my best friend. Remember?" I said, and they nodded, trying to smile.

"Now, I don't want to overwhelm you, but while I was looking, I found a rather interesting version. They wandered off before I could send them back. So, I guess the question is, where would you go if you were feeling groovy?" Before Alex could respond, there was a shout from the punchbowl.

"Man, this punch is wicked, man. So gnarly!"

Wiping the remnants of tears from their cheeks, Alex managed a tiny smile. As we turned towards the beverage table, they leaned into me. I knew they needed my support, so I wrapped my arm around their waist.

"I think," They paused. "I might be at the punch. If I was feeling groovy."

I laughed, and as a small chuckle escaped Alex, we made our way over to the punchbowl.


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Mooses_little_sister t1_j1djrcy wrote

Thank you so much! I'm glad you liked the story, even in a voice you don't usually enjoy! I have the same thing with 2nd person voice/point of view, and am still looking for a story that I would like with it being utilized.


Mooses_little_sister t1_j19pdzx wrote

I awoke, peering through the many eyes of the forest dwellers. An intruder had appeared, a small intruder, but potentially still dangerous. The species it came from was capable of both great harm, and great good. There was no telling what this one would do.

Watching through a sleepy owl, I chuckled making the owl hoot softly. Apparently, what this intruder would do, was stumble around making enough noise to raise all the hunters in the forest. Gently, I extended my consciousness, warning them away, sending them easier prey so they left the intruder alone. No one wanted the retaliation that would come if this was a loved child, and it was found dead.

The night shifted to day, and still, the child stumbled. Still, it tried to find food, reaching for poisonous berries on more than one occasion. Watching through the eyes of a chipmunk, I pushed the berries out of the intruder's reach; convinced the plants to pull their branches out of the way. This child was worse than useless.

As day turned to night once again, I watched the child push its way deeper and deeper into the forest. It had long passed the point where it would be easily found by any searchers. And with an almost uncanny trajectory, it was headed straight towards my residence, towards the heart. After once again warning the predators away, I withdrew my consciousness from the animals and coalesced into a non-threatening physical form.

I would have to deal with the intruder personally. At least teach it how to survive inside the forest, so I didn't have to keep intervening. And I had just been planning to go down for a hundred-year nap. This would not be fun.

— — — — — — —

"What are you doing? It's a baby bird that fell out of the nest. Leave it to the first predator that comes along." I huffed at my charge. The child had grown larger, though it was still short of a full-grown adult. But it was old enough to communicate properly and was learning survival quite well. I could probably leave it alone now, but... it was nice having someone to talk to. Someone who could understand concepts and ideas that the animals of the forest could not.

"But I want to help it." The child said, hands gently lifting the peeping bundle of fluff. "It needs help."

"Yes, but the natural order of things means you are taking food away from a predator by saving its prey. Upsetting the balance of the forest. That sort of thing." I said.

"You saved me." The child frowned up at me, cradling the baby bird. "Shouldn't I have been a predator's meal?"

I sighed, turning away.

"Come on then, we'll have to go look for things to feed it while you raise it. And I will not be helping you, you will do it all on your own." The child scampered after me, moving with quiet speed, the first thing I'd trained it in; how to move through the forest without calling the wrong attention to yourself. I didn't answer the question and knew the child wouldn't ask again, it knew better than to pester me. But the question wormed its way deep into my heart, waiting for the day it would need an answer.

— — — — — — —

"Come quick, come quick!" The child— though now full-grown, I couldn't bring myself to call it anything else— ran into our sanctum at the heart of the forest. A raven sat on its shoulder, the adult version of the chick it had rescued. I raised my head, frowning at the child.

"What is it?"

"I've been to the edge of the forest and there are men there."

"I know, I felt them step into the trees—"

"They have fire!" The three words dropped from the child's lips and into my ears like stones. Fire. Rising, I moved towards the child, growing as I did so, until I doubled its size. With wide eyes, it stared up at me, as I growled.

"Stay here. You will be safe. I will be back."

I ran through the forest, the trees bending and shifting around my passage, the animals and birds fleeing towards the heart, away from the edges, away from the danger. The noise of their passage was the only sound that reached my ears until I drew closer to the forest's boundary. Fire crackled up the trees, small dark figures moving behind the flames.

"YOU DARE SET FIRE TO THE FOREST!" I shouted, my voice the sound of trees cracking in the winter, the rush of rivers, the loud screams of agonized prey and the triumphant screech of a hunter. The men ran, racing away from the forest, retreating. In two strides I left the forest, reaching towards the figures, all anger and vengeance, determined to destroy.

Arms outstretched, a smaller figure dashed in front of me, a raven swooping in, and landing on its shoulder.

"Stop!" The child shouted, glaring up at me.

"They destroy the forest!" I yelled back, though tempering the volume. "They deserve to die!"

"They will kill you." Motioning behind, the child pointed at the massed ranks of men just cresting over the hill. "Your power is tied to the forest, is it not? Out here..."

I looked at the army arrayed against me, then at the child in front of me. Anger still distorted my features, still powered my desire to kill the attackers.

"Why did you stop me? They are your kind." I lashed out, knowing the words would hurt the child, knowing it might let me pass if I hurt it enough.

"Why did you save me? I am not your kind." It stared up at me, water forming on its face. Human tears. "Why did you keep me safe, why did you train me, why do any of it?" Looking down at the child, memories of our time together flooded over me, taking me back to that first helpless moment I saw it stumbling through the forest.

"Love." It was a word the child had taught me, even though I had felt it before I knew what it was. "Because of love."

"And I stop you because of the same. Because of love." The child paused, as if summoning up courage. "Because I love you... Mother." I staggered back, the weight of that word slamming into my chest. Mother? I was a god, a force of nature, I had no children, except— Staring down at the small tear-stained face, I held out my hand, shrinking down to a more regular size.

"Daughter. Let's go home."

The child slipped her hand into mine and we turned away from the human army, back to the forest, where the fire had begun to die. She had been right, it had been a trap, destruction to draw me out. I smiled as we walked through the trees. The forest would heal, and we would remain inside. Alive, and together. Mother and daughter.

— — — — — — —

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