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hc_bingo fic: homesickness

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Title: Perchance to Dream
Fandom: D. Gray-man
Pairing: none
Prompt: Homesickness
Rating: G
Word Count: 630
Summary: Being happy doesn’t mean you can’t dream of other things. Lavi still dreams, and maybe remembers. (Set around the events of the Ark [the Ark arc?] rather than the current situation.)

A/N: Written for hc_bingo. Masterpost with my game card is here.

To say Lavi wasn’t content with his lot in life wouldn’t be true, exactly. He was the apprentice to the Bookman, and someday he would be the Bookman, and while it wasn’t the most famous or wealthiest life option, it was what he wanted. But sometimes, just sometimes, when he was writing his own notes or reading logs from Bookmen past, he wondered what it would have been like not to be Bookman’s apprentice.

The problem with wondering, though, was that... he couldn’t remember. He’d been so many people from so many places that he couldn’t remember which one was real.

Was it Dirk from Germany? Whose mother baked fresh bread every day and always gave the leftovers to the little girl who begged in the street because her father was sick?

Or Glen from Galway? He certainly had the hair for it, and he thought he remembered a lilt to his mother’s voice, when he remembered his mother at all. It wasn’t often these days.

He dreamed of her, or a woman like her, once in awhile, but Bookman discouraged that sort of dream. His mother would not be in the Record, so remembering her was essentially useless. Even though Bookman was right, and Lavi knew it, it was still hard not to let himself fall into those dreams, just once in awhile. Just to remember. He dreamed of other people, too. People he wasn’t sure had ever existed.

He dreamed of a young boy, no more than ten, growing up in the southern United States. His red hair and freckles left him at the mercy of the brutal sun there, and the butt of many a joke from his young friends, but no one ever meant any real harm, and he’d learned quickly to ignore a joke at his expense. Better to laugh with a group than to be alone.

There was a boy on a steamship, trading between the Americas, some of the oldest sailors calling him a ‘powder monkey’ even if he wasn’t quite sure yet what it meant. A boy in Australia, with a first crush and a broken heart. A boy in Japan, where no people lived anymore, unless they had hard eyes and harder hearts.

There were too many, most of them just flashes of not-quite-memories, but one stood out. A boy who was almost a man, older, harder than any of the others. He lacked a name, and he was the only dream Lavi feared. He was dangerous, from everywhere and nowhere, and he was a truth that even a future Bookman didn’t want to know.

And sometimes, just sometimes, Lavi dreamed of loneliness. He dreamed of a home that wasn’t and never would be. Of an eternity of being alone.

After those dreams, he always woke up with a knot in the pit of his stomach that didn’t have anything to do with food. He told the Bookman about them, of course, because he told the Bookman about everything. That was just part of being the Bookman’s apprentice. All it earned him was a stern look and an admonishment to ‘try harder.’ Dreaming of things that weren’t was bad enough, if only because it was useless. Dreaming of nothing was worse than useless. It was dangerous. Unbecoming of a future Bookman.

Lavi would be the next Bookman. The Bookman had no home or past or future beyond his apprentice and his Record. Lavi knew that. It was one of the very first things that he did remember, and one of the most enduring. Like a mantra, Bookman reminded him every time they changed selves.

No home. No friends. No past or future. Only the Record and the truth. A Bookman was only an instrument.

But sometimes, Lavi wondered.

This entry was originally posted at http://envious-muses.dreamwidth.org/16255.html.
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