prydeful: (Thinking)
There's a little guilt, as she sits on the examining table and thinks on what she wants to ask.

Except--the thing is, she doesn't think there's ever going to be a good time for this. And she doesn't have any other doctor she trusts to ask right now, not until she goes (home) back to the mansion. It's Simon or no one.


And there are enough things that are going to cause problems that she wants to make sure she knows what they all are. It's like a list, in her mind: Things to be Done to Make Sure There's a Baby, Soon.

And there has to be this, at the start. (She very carefully does not think on the phasing. Does not think on it at all.)

Simon comes in and she swings her legs, slightly, and smiles a bit crookedly. "Mark the calendar. I showed up without being reminded half a dozen times."
prydeful: (Worn out and through)
"Home sweet home," she murmurs as they enter the bunk that's theirs. Hers. Whatever.

Kate's smiling a little, in the way that's very tired and a little pained.

She's not injured. That doesn't mean she's not hurting like hell.

It also means the minute Piotr sets her down on the bed she's intangible, not even feeling the sheets.

(She didn't think about doing that. She just did. That keeps happening.)
prydeful: (Damaged)
Kate doesn’t dislike Kaylee. Kaylee exasperates her and she’s not sure she’ll ever like her enough to be more than friendly at best, to be friends, but she doesn’t dislike her. And even if she did, she’d still be grieving for Kaylee today.

When Kate was sixteen and still called Kitty, Moira started adding things to her physical. Fertility tests were one of t hose things; the more mutants that were studied, the more it was discovered that there were more difficulties than normal involved with conception. That was when Moira told her about the potential effects of phasing on the reproductive system. Or, more importantly, on a fetus. She ran simulations, and Kitty watched without entirely understanding them—she understands genetics, but never studied biology beyond certain areas—and listened to the results. The odds of miscarriage, she learned, if phasing occurs during a pregnancy, are around 7 in 9.

So she would just have to not phase, Moira said, like it was always going to be that simple, and both Kitty and Moira knew as the older woman said it how hard that would be for her. Because “just not phasing “is like “just not breathing”, in some ways. Kate tried it in the prison because she had no other choice, and as she sits on her bunk now, knees pulled to her chest and watching Heed stalk about the room, she thinks she’d rather not breathe. (She wants a baby someday. She knows Piotr does. She’s always known both of those. But. But. But.)

Kate’s playing with her hair—it’s longer, now, than it’s been in a while—and thinks on Val falling down in the bar. Of taking her to the doctor, and the stupid, stupid girl leaving when she did. Thinks on emergency rooms and ultrasounds and nothing-more-you-can-dos. Thinks on Susan Pevensie, as they shopped for lingerie, and learning about losing a baby fifty years and another world ago.

Thinks about how she’s had sex since she was 17, and sometimes she’s not entirely sure she’s never been pregnant. Because she phases, every day, and so she could have been and never known. Just because it ended so soon.

That thought terrifies her.

Kate plays with her hair, and thinks on Piotr and how he loves family, thinks on how there aren’t enough mutants and every new birth is a gift to be celebrated. Thinks on words like “mom” and “dad” and “pregnant” and “birth” and “blood” and thinks on a little girl with black hair and hazel eyes and artistic hands and dancing feet. Thinks on the odds that she’ll ever see a baby who looks like that and speaks Russian and English both. And she’s thinking on Kaylee, and she’s grieving for Kaylee.

But when she starts crying, she can’t say Kaylee’s the one she’s crying for.
Logan's in the bar still, looking around and drinking.

And she's glad to see him, she is, and they've talked and laughed and oh, it feels good to laugh.

...And right now, she's dragging Piotr into a room upstairs in the bar. Because she wants a big bed made for a Colossus-sized person and a Shadowcat-sized person instead of squeezing into one on Serenity.

Which probably has something to do with why, when the door closes, Kate's cheerfully jumping up and into his arms, because experience has told her that he'll be certain to catch her in time.

And then there's kissing.

They have to talk. Talk, she supposes, before bed.

But she can do this first. For a while.

...Maybe other things. Not all the other things she wants to.


Other things.
prydeful: (Next best thing to a ghost)
References to the Mekanix limited series and God Loves, Man Kills II.

She's angry.

She notes this in an absent sort of way, because really, she's always angry these days. It's par for the course.

She's not sure if she's angry at Kaylee--she doesn't think so, though she's frustrated, she knows that--or if it's just life, or if it's something else.

The collar's thing and hard and solid in her hands. Electronic key disabled in the break from Prison 42. She fixed that, in the past few weeks.

She's not sure why.

Because she could, maybe.

She's good at fixing things. She called herself the gearhead, once, when talking to Betsy (Betsy's dead again) and it's true. Maureen made her say it, once. Made Kate-who-was-Kitty (she misses being Kitty) cry in session, made her yell that she's a genius and can solve any problem, that she can fix anything, take it apart and rebuild it better than before, but she couldn't fix her parents' marriage. She couldn't save her dad. She couldn't save Yana-Pete (not dead)-Piotr (dead now not dead)-Rachel (back from the future, without Michael J. Fox), couldn't save Magneto from himself.

So what good, she yelled, before storming out, did being able to fix anything do, if she couldn't fix that?

She just met Peter Petrelli, Kate knows, and she wants to fix this for him. She doesn't want anymore to die (please no more explosions in New York, in any world) and doesn't want to think on a school and children being killed on TV. Doesn't want to think on jail.

She fixed the collar. The collar could help.

But it can't even go back with him.

And Kate doesn't know how to fix that.

Kate doesn't know how to fix this, and the thing is, Ogun always said she was made for destruction anyway, said it was why he wanted her, what made her special, and oh so very good at killing (and he made her so much better). And the collar isn't doing any good, the one time it could.

She considers it, and then phases her hand through, watches the sparks fly and (almost) feels them go off against intangible skin.

She could fix this too.

She doesn't think she's going to any time soon.

Sometimes, Kate thinks, she just wants to leave things broken.

And this damned thing deserves to be.
In Kate's mind, there are some things that are required after a crying fit.

Therefore: one (1) copy of Firebird, one (1) copy of Le Spectre de la Rose, one (1) bag of sugar-tastic treats, one (1) bag of salt-covered treats, two (2) pints of ice cream, and one (1) determined Shadowcat.
prydeful: (calm)
Kate's curled up on--

Well, okay, it's on the air again, but this time it's the air just a few inches above a crate in the storage bay.

She's taken to behaving, in some ways, like her namesake, and that involves being curled up like one for a good portion of the day and just...being.

In part because that's all she could do for a long time, but still.
She's back.

She's not talking a lot, which she's vaguely aware means something's not quite right, not quite like it was. And she's not unphasing except when she has to, and she knows that's wrong.

(She wants to phase more. She knows that's just dangerous.)

But she's back, and she's curled up on her back on the air in the cargo hold.

There's quiet for the moment here.

She kinda doesn't mind that, right now, either.

The fucking cane's on the floor, and can stay there for all she cares.
prydeful: (Try me)
This is the plan. The first one, anyway.

Step One: Don't die.
Step Two: Don't go crazy.
Step Three: Repeat steps one through two.

All she has to do, Kitty thinks, is ignore her track record for following plans.

And then it's all well.


Plan Two, Step One: Hold you head up high.
Step Two: Never let them see you cry.
Step Three: Remember that they only control you as much as you think they do.
Step Four: Don't say a word.

She's good up until step four.

Step four is where the second plan falls apart, really.

Admittedly, Kitty vaguely guessed that was how it was going to work out.

Plan Three, Step One: Step into the transporter.
Step Two: Pray.
Step Three: Remember you're not talking to God, return to Plan Two.


Plan Four, Step One: Try not to throw up as the Negative Zone hits you in the gut.
Step Two: Don't gasp the way you want to.
Step Three: Try not to see the world around you as made of targets.
Step Four: Laugh, a brief and quiet giggle.
Step Five: Ignore the looks that gets you.
Step Six: Ignore the people who've fallen over (two) and are screaming. Ignore the guards. Ignore the walls.
Step Seven: Realize the guards and the walls and people screaming mean nothing.
Step Eight: Repeat Step Four.
(Step Nine: See Plan One, Step Two.)

Plan Five, Step One: Join the outbreak.
Step Two: Hit.
Step Three: Kick.
Step Four: Bleed.
Step Five: Repeat steps two through four as needed.

Plan Six, Step One: See Piotr.
Step Two: Ignore his expression.
Step Three: Suppress the instinct to punch him too when his arm loops around her and starts dragging her out.
Step Four: Be vaguely aware of his voice saying she's getting out, she's going to be taken to Simon, she's going to be fine.
Step Five: See Plan Five, Step Four. Repeat as reality demands, willing or no.

Plan Seven: See Plan One.
prydeful: (Damaged)
"That could," she muses to the air as she studies the ceiling, "have gone better."

A lot better.

A hell of a lot better.
prydeful: (Damaged)
"Do you understand all of this, Ms. Pryde?"

I'm going to hell.

I'm going to lose my mind.

I told them not to come, and now it's too late.

I'm going to die. The part that is Kitty will. Wonder what's left after that. Wonder who I'll be.

I'm fucked.


"You'll be taken to Prison 42 at the next transfer of prisoners."

Wonder what's there when Kitty's gone.

prydeful: (Little bit shifty.  Little bit confused.)
There are standards.

They're low, but there are still standards.

It's not that any of the guards is going to abuse any of the prisoners--well, not most of them, anyway--if for no other reason than if one of them got loose--


There's abuse.

And then there's smiling when you hear the crack of knuckles and see the way faces twist, the way you know the mutie bitch is freaking out inside again, as you watch.

prydeful: (Damaged)
There's not a lot to do.

She thinks.

She thinks a lot, and sits with her legs pulled tight to her chest and studies the wall.

Sometimes she hits it.

She's pretty sure when they move her, at this point, they're going to have to paint it.

There's--it has a name, and she doesn't really bother remembering what it is. "Happy social fun time". Not a lot--it's stupid to allow a lot, with the kind of prisoners they keep here--but some.

And then it's back to sitting.

She's read every book she's allowed so many times she knows them by heart, and she's tempted to see if she remembers how to make origami frogs out of the pages now.

Maybe origami frogs are a sign of treason.

But right now, she's just sitting and thinking.

The blanket on her cot has three snags on it and one flat-out hole.

She wishes she didn't know that.
It's getting

(oH iS iT GeTtInG KiTtEn ToLd YoU So)


All of it. The things she's heard, best she can.

She doesn't mean herself. (She doesn't mean just herself; she's getting worse, and she knows it.

The walls are still walls.

She can't phase.

It's been too many days since that wasn't true.)

Everything outside, and it's--

She doesn't know what will happen. Something will.

She can't risk betting what anymore.

There's a letter. She wrote it carefully, and thinks it's not what she'd write if she were--if she were better than she is (it's not crazy, but it's not, if she's honest, as in control as she used to be; there's bloodstains on the wall that no one tries to get off) but it's what she writes anyway.

And seals, carefully, and then, to the air, "Uncle?"

He's there, bleached and white and it makes her smile.

A little, anyway.

It's harder than it used to be, and she thinks for a minute she sees something unpleasant in his eyes.

It's not directed at her.

"I need a favor."

She has red hair.

She has red hair.

She has no hair she has green hair she has blue hair

“ArE yOu GoInG tO lOoK At Me?”

and Kitty notes it out of the corner of her eye.

Del’s here.

In the bar, that’s one thing.

Here, it’s different.

There are rules and there are Rules and there are things Del does that she doesn’t want to think about, so Kitty stares at the wall across from her cot.

There’s two blood stains on it now. She’s been hitting it a lot. They’ve given up trying to stop her.

“KiTtY kItTy PrEtTy KiTtY KiTtEn CaT. MeOw.”

And she giggles, and Kitty closes her eyes.

“ArE YoU GoInG tO pLaY wIth Me?”

”Not any time soon, Aunt Del, no,” Kitty says softly, after a few minutes.

And there’s a shriek of laughter that



“SiLlY KiTtEn. ThAt’S WhAt YoU ThInK.”

And there are lips like frogs like ice like knives like a thousand things that send a shock through her near her ear.

“YoU KnOw? YoU kNoW. ThE PlAcE. ThEy WaNt To SenD yOu. ThEy Do. ThEy WIlL. YoU kNoW it. YoU kNoW iT.”


“YeS. 42’s ThE lOnElIeSt NuMbEr. Or OnE oF ThEm.”

She’s giggling. Kitty’s studying the inside of her eyelids.

Each laugh feels like a thousand pinches on each inch of skin.

“YoU cAn FeEl It AlL.” It’s almost marveling, as Del brushes Kitty’s hair back.

“Do YoU tHiNk YoU nEeD ThE EmPtY SpOtS To MAkE yOu CoMe PlaY WiTh Me? Do yoU ReaLly?”


“I’ll see you in the bar,” she says through her teeth and doesn’t look and doesn’t pay attention to things like reality and things like what might be true.

“MaYbE LiTtLe NiEcE pErSoN. AnD MAyBe NoT.”

And there’s a kiss that makes her gasp because it burns oh god it all burns it all hurts make it stop how does everyone feel this all the time and then it’s over (except it’s not because it’s all still there) as Del giggles again and says, “BuT yOu WIlL sEe Me.”

She opens her eyes.

She’s alone.

There are two bloodstains on the wall in front of her.

Her knuckles are raw, and it hurts worse, this time, when she slams her hand back, than it has previously.

And then there are two bloodstains on the wall in front of her and one behind her.

"In recognition of the fact of service you've done for the United States and SHIELD in the past--"

"You mean like Captain America an' all them have?"

"--and due to the recommendation of various levels of government--"

"Val worked her ass off, didn't she, and pulled the X-Man card?"

"--you will be allowed vistors until the time, if and when it should occur, you are transferred to Prison 42."


"Katherine," Emma hisses as the suit walks out, "did you really have to mock the man the entire time?"

"...Kinda, yeah."
"You've got a visitor."

The most beautiful four words, Kitty thinks, she's ever heard.
prydeful: (I'm a comic girl inna comic world)


There’s no good way to write this. You know? I could write a thousand things to you and I think they’d all be true.

I guess this isn’t a polite letter though.

So here are the things I need you to know.

I don’t love you because you remind me of anyone at all. Just case you’re you.

And yeah, that’s pretty fucking sappy, but it’s true, and I figure I may not be able to write this one again—second chance, y’know? The things you might’ve said if you’d known at the time—so I’ll get out what I can think of, while I can think of it.

Now we’re done with that.

So here’s the thing—the other thing, one of many, I guess—I need you not to break through this. Because I’m not, so you can’t. So there. And because I’m going to tell you exactly what’s going on. You deserve to know, and I think Piotr will want to be less than blunt, and yeah, there’s a reason for it. But I also figure I’d rather you know than wonder. It’s always easy to think on how bad it can be.

And you know, this one’s pretty bad, but it’s not the worst.

Trust me.

Okay? Just that.

Here we go.

The thing is, I’m not a good person. I happen to like the hitting people thing and the killing thing and the breaking and entering thing and the hacking thing and—most things, honestly, that are Frowned Upon. And, well. Illegal.

I don’t like that I like them, but I still do, and I’m pretty damned good at them. And I’m even better at getting away with them.

That leads to a tiny problem that means that there’s more than one or two crimes I could be charged with, and saying I did it for the right reasons doesn’t mean they can’t call me guilty and be in the right to do so.

I don’t know how much they know yet, and I’m not exactly giving them a hint. But all else aside—there’s a lot I did that I don’t regret, but it could all make this more complicated that anyone wants to admit. Treason’s one thing; stabbing someone in the back’s another.

There’s that. So it’s complicated there. And it’s complicated because—they’re not wrong.

I broke their laws. Their laws are wrong, in this case. Registration is wrong. What they’re doing is wrong.

I still broke their laws. I won’t pretend I didn’t. I’m proud of it.

Makes it kinda hard to plead “not guilty”, though.

I won’t to treason; I was loyal to exactly what this country is based on.

The details are where it gets kinda complicated.

My father told me he saw you making rescue plans. I want to tell you not to. I really do. I don’t want you getting hurt. Not for this, because there’s no reason for it.

I don’t know that it’s fair to say that, because I think—hell, I know—that if it were reversed, I’d do the same. So here’s what I’m going to do.

I’m telling you what I know.

What I know is, if I break out, things get bad. For a lot of people. But things are already bad, and look like they might be getting worse, anyway. And the more I hear—the more I see the faces of the people come in to talk with me and try and get me to tell them things—the more I realize how bad things are.

If I stay, here’s what’s going to happen. I am going to go to trial, at some point. This may or may not be after I’m moved to Prison 42.

You are not, under any circumstances, to break me out of Prison 42.

This is not negotiable. This is not an option. It’s my life more than anyone else’s, and I’m telling you that if I’m moved there, you and anyone else is to stay as far away as you fucking can. You can mourn me, you can declare me dead, you can hate me, I don’t care; don’t do it.

Prison 42 is in a place called the Negative Zone. There’s some info on the zone on one of my laptops, if you want to look—password’s 3.141592653589—but I can tell you the details. They built a prison there to hold people who violated the Superhero Registration Act. They’ve been studying it for years. It’s—

I think it might be hell. I don’t know. It’s a place between worlds. A nothing kind of place, but there are things in it. Creatures, animals, aliens, I don’t know what. Not a lot, but some. And River, that place does things to you. Drives you crazy, saps your will to live, I don’t know what, but—

You don’t come out the same as you went in. No matter how long you’re in there. More than one person who’s been interred, if the reports I’ve read are right—and they are—just—went crazy the minute they went in. And some of them are taking longer and going the same.

They never should have built it there. I know why they did. I know they thought it was the best option. But this is why I’m proud to break their laws and proud to be guilty, if I am.

I don’t want to go there. (Understatement.) But I’d rather go there than have you get hurt. Keep that in mind, okay? I’ll ask that.

And if I go there, I’m not making it easy for them, and I promise you I’m not going to let them get rid of me that easy. No one else has in life, don’t see why the U. S. Government should get away with it.

If you do anything, you do it before that, or you don’t do it at all.

If you do anything—I don’t think I can come back here. To this world, I mean. And I’m good at disappearing, if I need to, so that’s okay, but it’s still something. And it’s something Piotr needs to be aware of, if he isn’t. I need to tell him that somehow. Sometimes he just does things and doesn’t think, like if he hits enough the world will be better when he’s done.

Me, I just hit anyway.

Think Mal’d let me bunk on Serenity a while longer? (Yeah. I know. Thinking way too far ahead.)

It’s not fair to tell you this.

It’s not fair not to.

I don’t want to make you worry or upset you; I don’t want your own brain to make it worse than it is. Because it’s not hopeless, River. If I’m lucky, I’ll just stay in this cell until someone decides something about the war. Hopefully coming down on the side of the angels. (Well. Side of the humans. I never want to be on the side of angels, poor Aziraphael aside; I think angels fight far more fair than I do.)

And I said I’d tell you what I know, River, so here’s the thing: I’m not fine.

I can’t phase, and it’s itching at the back of my skull, and I can’t forget it. It’s like having a hand cut off, almost. Or having yourself blindfolded. I can’t explain it, because—you know. When it happens. When they take away what made you special. What made you into you.

So I’m not fine.

But I’m not breaking. They don’t get that one.

And I’m not fine, but oh, am I so much finer than any of them will be the minute this is over with. There’s one guard in particular whose nose has a date with my fist.

And it’s still going to be okay. I promise. In the end, it’s going to be okay one way or another.

I won’t ask you to rescue me, River. I don’t know that I want you to, as much as I want out of here. Because I think I’m doing the right thing. And I think if I leave—nothing will change for the better. And I’d really, really, really like things to change for the better.

I can’t tell you not to, either, because—I don’t know. Because I don’t want to ask something of you you’d hate yourself for doing later, if you bothered to listen, and I know what that’s like too much.

So here’s what I’m asking: be safe. Okay?

Whatever you do. Be safe. And do what you have to so you can get through the night. And don’t do it after they move me, if they do. Then just wait, and trust me that I’ll come out okay. Do what you have to, outside of that.

Including break, which you’re possibly doing at this point. And I hope to God you’re not. But if you are—sweetheart, I do love you. I really do. And I want to dance with you again. And I think I’m going to.

--You know what? I don’t care. One way or another, I’m going to. Even if I have to beg Dream for a trip.

And it really will be okay.

prydeful: (Worn out and through)
Socialization is mostly forbidden.

It’s common sense, when you’re in a prison for supers (oh God, she hates that word, she hates that word, she wants it gone and banned, because this isn’t super, this has never been super, this is just her life and her blood pulling a trick and doing what the fucking rest of the world won’t) to not let the people who can break you with a pinky have too much time to talk to each other.

It’s different, she knows, in the Negative Zone (she knows, she’s seen the files, she read them and she worried and she hoped Piotr had nothing to do with this, because if he did she’d kill him, and she thought she meant it seriously, and she prayed they’d never go through with it) because once you’re there, there’s no way out.

Not unless they let you out from this side, and she’s not convinced they’ll ever do that.

Socialization is mostly forbidden, just passing through in exercise areas, words here or there, but she does see people, and she remembers what's said awfully well.

“We’re debating your case before moving you,” Val said, and her eyes said, It’s just buying time and Kitty knows and looked at the wall behind Val because she won’t be afraid.

"We'll argue that you didn't technically violate registration, and so you've no place in Prison 42," Jennifer said, and looked tired, and her eyes said, We're trying.

She won’t be afraid.

There’s nothing to fear but fear itself, someone said, but the thing is, she’s not sure that’s not what the Negative Zone is, and she never wants to set foot in Prison 42.

Destruction said River was making plans, and Kitty thinks of Serenity and closes her eyes, when she’s in her cell, and prays she’ll open her eyes and be back there, because if you think any of this is easy to do—

You’re out of your fucking mind.

She wants to go home.

She wants to wake up.

She wants to phase and to dance and to have the walls be an option, to have gravity be a rule that can be broken, and she wants to not know there are five snags in her uniform and one hole near the ankle and she wants her necklace back (of course they took it, sharp edges, never know, not with these) and she wants it all back before M-Day and it all went to hell and never came out again.

She opens her eyes, and she looks at the wall in front of her.

It’s nine steps away from the edge of her bed.

Kitty stands and takes nine steps and touches the cool cement and looks at it before slamming her hand into it again.




Fuck. Fuck. Fuck.

She’s going, she thinks, to ruin her hand at this rate.

She doesn’t care.

They’ll come and treat her again, when they notice—there are cameras, it won’t be long—and probably lecture her (it’s just a lecture, Miss Pryde, you should listen to what your elders tell you, Kitten, because someday it’s going to get you in a lot of trouble if you don’t) and she’s not sure that sooner or later they won’t stop treating her.

She doesn’t care.

It hurts.

And she doesn’t care.

They’ll be here, but for now she hisses at the pain and then goes and lies on her back on her cot and stares at the ceiling, hand carefully cradled against her chest.

Logan, she thinks, would understand.

She wishes he were here.

She wishes he were here almost most of all.


She mostly wishes, she thinks, and can’t quite help smiling crookedly at the ceiling, that she wasn’t.

And she closes her eyes and just focuses on the throbbing in her hand til they come to fix it.

It’s something to think on.
If she sits straight up, her back doesn't touch the wall.

Not sitting on anything isn't an option--that's the problem--and she is going to write a long, long, long letter if she ever gets out of here (when, she wants to think, and doesn't) about how, you know, if you're going to make someone who doesn't touch things have no way to not touch, at least a uniform that didn't tear so easily (every time it does she feels the hole or the snag) would be nice.

Details are fun to think on.

It's not even two weeks.

Details are really fun to think on.

It's kind of like being blind. But not. Like if they'd blindfolded her, then stuck her into the brightest lights they could, a week later. Except her eyes don't adjust.

She hates this. She hates this. She--


really shouldn't have slammed her fist into the concrete wall.

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