Explanation, if you missed it! : https://www.bungie.net/en/Forum/Post/256751222/0/0 [spoiler]Thank you guys so much for all the responses and support, and here, as requested, is page one, Shadow’s grimoire card that I wrote over 3 years ago :) ugh I can’t believe how far I’ve come since then, and I hate my writing from this long ago... just uh, ignore how bad it is and focus on the story, alright? [/spoiler] ‘Bug hugger.' Its funny, I guess that is kinda accurate either way you look at it. Listen, when i was a kid, back when I was a human, I always liked bugs. I’d show them to the other kids and... Well, let’s just say I didnt have many friends. They said I was pretty weird for picking them up and playing with them. Thing is, even when I got older I’d still go out of my way to make sure I didnt step on some spider or whatever. I guess it was even weirder now that I was an adult. I didn’t mind though. I thought bugs were cool. That is, until the fallen. And until people referred to them as bugs. I hated them, the fallen. It wasn’t fair, what they were doing. But you gotta learn sooner or later, nothing's very fair. Waking up to a world still taken over by fallen was rather infuriating. I had no problem killing them. I took joy and pride in defending my home. But you know what was even more unfair? Not finding out the whole story till id been revived for quite a while. Not knowing the traveler left them. If people hadn’t pushed the idea of them being evil, I probably would have stood on a middle ground. Tried to find a way to make peace. To make things work... Like someone else I know. You know, after that, after the Reef opened to guardians, I just kept learning more information that made me angry. Angry at the traveler, and angry at people. But I was a loyal guardian. I couldnt let down Zavala, Ikora, and especially Cayde. He was like the only family i ever had. But... There was this friend I made. In the Reef. He was a fallen. Or, as he explained to me, eliksni. A lot of guardians didnt feel all too comfortable with Variks. Since he was from a race who had killed so many of us. I didnt care though. Variks was different. Not that all eliksni were bad. But he was something else. He was smart... really smart. He really caught my attention, you could say. Not every day you meet an eliksni who speaks English. So it started all over again. 'Cept this time, i actually got a name pinned on me for it. Other guardians, well they sort of started noticing how much time i spent at the Reef. Half of them believed me when I said I felt at home there. I am an awoken, after all. Half of them did not. Half of them were smarter than that. I guess I spent a lot of time in the prison. You know, its funny. I didnt even know all too much about him yet. But I knew enough to know how much i hated Skolas. I was more than happy to capture him. It was my pleasure. A reward in itself. The Queen, she ordered me not to kill him. Now that... That just may be the hardest thing ive ever done. Ive never been so angry at anyone. Not in this life, or my last. I knew I should try to hide it. You can only hide feelings for so long before people start to notice. And they did. And so I was a bug hugger. A betrayer of sorts. But its not like I didn't still kill fallen. Not like I didnt still protect my city. I hadnt abandoned anyone. I never would have joined some random group of fallen bent on killing all humanity. I just saw both sides. Was that so wrong? I was glad Variks told me stories that were not my own. Glad to hear the other side of things. When i captured Skolas, Variks seemed pretty happy with me. And you know, id never felt so accomplished since then. I guess that's why I enjoyed his prison so much. Impressing him was always first on my list. And i guess that's why they should be disapointed. Cayde, and the others. I guess thats why they dont trust me as much anymore. Even after everything ive done to help them and our city. You cant get too close to a fallen. Part of me wondered if this was illegal. There was always that worry, that urgency to keep things quiet. I suppose my fierce defense of him gave me away. If anyone had a problem with Variks, they had to go through me. Why? He was my friend. Someone very, very special to me. Why didnt they see what I saw? Someone with more bravery than any guardian. He did what he knew to be right with only one life to lose. He didnt have a ghost to bring him back. He paid a price I bet you no guardian would be willing to pay and he did it alone. What did he get for it? Sure, he had a place to call home. But is it really a home when the people around you dont trust you and still accuse you of being a killer and a lover of mindless violence? Sure. Variks enjoyed violence to an extent. I think thats partly why he enjoyed the prison so much. Thats why I practically put on a light show every time i went in there. Yeah. Maybe youre right. Getting his attention was a little too important to me. Its not like i saw it coming. Not like i could have stopped it. What? Im telling the truth. After the whole Skolas deal. I got a lot closer with him, ill admit. Sometimes I couldnt take my eyes off him. Like he was some foreign, precious thing. Something incredibly rare and important. Something I would do anything to protect. If Zavala knew, he didnt say anything. He probably didnt want to ask. Didnt want to hear the answer. I think Ikora knew. She looked at me like she pitied me. Cayde understood, I think. And maybe would have even supported me. But instead, he just kept quiet. Perhaps a greater gift. I wanted the vanguard proud of me. I wanted my city proud of me. But like I said. Its never fair. Eventually I had to start admitting some things to myself. And there were a lot of times I wanted to say something. Anything. I thought up plans, but always scrapped them last minute. Everywhere else, I felt brave. I felt like a guardian. I felt like i could do anything. But not with Variks. I couldnt be brave. I couldn't be smart. I could hardly think at all. So I settled for quiet contentment. Smiles and glances I hope he understood. There were some nights we spent together. Usually with other guardians. Sometimes id wait them out just to be alone with him. And those moments just talking with him. Those were the best moments of my life. Hope I didnt freak him out, now that i think about it. I stared a lot, i guess. Part of me thinks he might have caught on. He had this habit of touching me, but just barely, like he knew he would get a reaction out of me. But I knew he was someone who deserved only the best. I didnt know if that was me. I didnt care about other guardians comparing him to a dreg. His body, to me, was perfect the way it was. Two arms or four, he was still the most beautiful thing id ever layed eyes on. And maybe thats why i had trouble saying anything. Those eyes, blue and glowing and traveler damnit, like ice and like fire, like a lake reflecting the sky. Like someone poured gasoline in my lungs and threw in a match. I should have said something. I settled for resting my hand on his and leaning against him just a little. So a bug hugger i was. And maybe I was fine with that. If i carried it over into this life to, maybe i was supposed to be this way. But I still wonder what they would say if i told them. Maybe even just Cayde. That one of their guardians had fallen completely and hopelessly in love with Variks. How disapointed would he be? Would I be kicked out? My ghost taken? Could they stop me from being a guardian? But then, I think perhaps im at the point where I wouldnt really care anymore. Variks was someone I couldnt lose. Someone i wouldnt give up for the world. Someone id die for. Yeah. They wouldnt like that. Cuz like I said... Nothings fair.
Missed this the first time around. Glad I got to see it, early writing or not, I still thinks it’s really good. Keep going Shadow, we all will support you!