Chapter

32

(Vriska) grabs Gamzee by the front of his shirt and yanks him down, her hot, furious breath brushing his disgusting face.

GAMZEE: I sAiD tO yOu YoU gOtTa ChIlL, yO.

GAMZEE: It’S hIgH tImE yOu GoT yOuR rEdEmPtIoN oN.

GAMZEE: sEe, YoU gOtS tO mAkE sOmE mOtHeRfUcKiN aMeNdS tO yOuR tRaGiC bAcKsToRy.

(VRISKA): My WH8T????????

GAMZEE: HoNk. :o)

(Vriska) looks into his eyes. She beholds his serene expression and the casual sag of his shoulders. His posture is so contemptibly flaccid, it’s as if he’s literally wilting. Her gaze travels to where his weird, long fingers are wrapped around the curve of her shoulder. His hand is sticky for some reason. She notices a few strands of her black hair clinging to whatever heinous substance is coating his hand. It’s an image so viscerally objectionable to her that she nearly vomits. After all she’s been through today, this... THIS is the last goddamned straw. Her eyes fill with fury, with indignation, with vivid, radiating malevolence, and then it finally happens.

She just. Plain. Fucking.

SNAPS.

(VRISKA): Don’t you daaaaaaaare

(Vriska) clenches her fists together and slams them into Gamzee’s nose. A brutal Double Axe Handle right off the hook. His nose makes a crunching sound like someone just stepped on a pile of crackers. He stumbles backward, cupping his palms over his face to catch the gush of blood.

(VRISKA): FUCK8NG touch me

(Vriska) grabs him under the armpit and delivers a European-style Uppercut with her bloody elbow. He expels a wheezy, guttered honk. It comes out slowly, mournfully, like a broken bike horn getting backed over by the rear wheel of a hearse.

(VRISKA): EVVVVVVVVER

She spins out from under his flailing arm and does a full 360-degree pirouette off the fucking handle to deliver a ruthless Knife Chop straight to the cartilage at the center of his chest, like a veteran butcher getting down to business.

(VRISKA): AG88888888IN!!!!!!!!

GAMZEE: :o(

Gamzee tries to get his bearings, but (Vriska)’s spinning back in the other direction with a Discus Back Elbow. Her elbow connects with his cheekbone hard enough that it shatters. A sharp tooth goes flying out of his puckered lips so fast that John has to take flight to avoid it. (Vriska) takes a crow’s hop back, grounding herself to swing a lead-legged kick right into his chin. Gamzee goes flying into a nearby tree. The first branch splinters under the impact of his spine. He gets clotheslined backward by the second one, spins around it and face-plants on a hard root under the tree.

John winces, but not sympathetically. The impact was just that rough. That HAD to crack a rib or two.

(Vriska) stalks over to Gamzee and triumphantly lifts him off the ground, high above her head, only to drop him and slam her knee into his face again. His lip splits, staining her jeans bright purple. He’s rolling from side to side on the ground, groaning as blood bubbles up from his mouth. It sounds like he’s drowning. (Vriska) drags him to his feet again, her hands fisted in his shirt. With an impressive maneuver, hard for the eye to follow unless you’re a trained wrestler, she adroitly twists a hand in his hair and Reverse Hangmans him against the tree branch.

GAMZEE: HONK!!!!

(VRISKA): WHY WON’T YOU JUST

She slams his throat against the branch again and again. Each time he lets out a sound like a damaged squeeze toy, his bloated, slimy tongue unspooling like a frog’s as all the air is crushed out of his esophagus.

(VRISKA): D8EEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!

Shouting like a berserker, (Vriska) perpetrates a textbook Groinal Clawhold around Gamzee’s codpiece and rips it right the fuck off. He yowls as if he had actual testicles to be mauled, and for all anyone knows, maybe he really does. He paws the air desperately and fecklessly after his treasured purple dick-sock, but (Vriska) tosses it over her shoulder and shoves him into the mud with her heel. She grabs Gamzee by the hood, pulls him up, and then grinds the top of her shoe along the ridge of his broken nose, rubbing her laces into his eyes.

Ah yes, John pauses his wince to admire, the good old Bootlace Eyerake. Jake loved that one back in the day, even though he had much more practice with the receiving end of it.

Gamzee grabs (Vriska)’s foot by the bridge. Instead of yanking her off-balance, he opens his huge, bloody maw of a mouth and... runs his tongue along the rubber bottom of her shoe? (Vriska) freezes. She watches him lap the mud—and his own blood—out from between the grooves of the sole. His lips drag lewdly over the ridge of her footwear and begin sucking at where her big toe would be, if it were not safely ensconced in several layers of rubber and canvas. He draws back, a string of glutinous, tinted saliva connecting the shoe to his lip, and catches (Vriska)’s eyes with his own half-lidded gaze. His face is bruised, bloody, swollen. His makeup is a nightmarish disaster. But the expression he’s giving her is unmistakable. It’s not fear, not rage, not even pain. It’s...

Lust.

(Vriska) goes perfectly still, absolutely paralyzed by the sudden recognition. For several seconds, she doesn’t dare move a muscle.

And then, quite suddenly, (Vriska) reaches a plateau of rage so intense, so pure, that she isn’t even seeing straight anymore. She howls like a storm cresting over the ocean, drowning out the sound of the human government’s tanks firing their first volley over the battlefield. She lunges at Gamzee’s catastrophic face lips-first, and practically dives into his mouth, ramming her tongue into his lewd, gaping maw like she’s questing for prizes at a carnival. They roll over each other, groping, tearing, tongue-lashing, and vanish into the underbrush.

Gamzee’s unwashed stench is so bad, the motion of him being knocked into the dirt wafts it in John’s direction. The stink hits him like an olfactory haymaker, and he does a full 180 to dry heave into the impact crater.

Mercifully, John’s attention is caught by someone calling his name from above. He has never felt so grateful for an excuse to look away from anything in his life.

ROSE: John, up here!

ROSE: I need to speak with you!

> ==>
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