Author: Kat Lee
Character/Pairing: Lockheed, Kitty
Challenge/Prompt: towerparty: I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul.
Word Count: 1,254
Date Written: 20 June, 2016
Disclaimer: All characters within belong to Marvel Comics and Disney, not the author, and are used without permission.
I am many things. I have never been a simple creature or a beast of only meager instinct. I have traveled the galaxy and, at one time, forged new relationships with species with which it was a first for my people to interact. I have fought and loved for the survival of my species and yet, at one time, believed myself to be the last of my breed.
I have done so many things. I have fought; I have loved. I have saved entire species and worlds. I am my own dragon. I have been for years. We were always best friends, she and I. Even as a child, she did not try to demean me or ever say that I was only her pet. She never considered me to be a mere pet. She didn't always correct others when they called me one, but I know she never once thought of me as being just her pet. I was always her best friend, her partner, her equal even if she was surprised to find me traversing the galaxy and smoking the cigarettes I used to fuss at her mate for smoking.
I kept many secrets from her, but I'm not ashamed I did. She was only a child when we first met. I had to be careful I did not make her grow up too fast, and yet, they did. They claimed to be her friends and yet betrayed her so many times. They faked their deaths and hurt her in other ways so many times. They made her cry. They made her grieve. They stole her smiles and innocence away and made her grow up faster than any being should have to.
And yet, when the interstellar chips were down, when I should have been honest with her, when I could have been honest with her, I, too, hurt her. I lied to her. I betrayed her. Instead of dying, I simply vanished on her. I thought she'd come hunting for me, but how was she to know to turn her search to the cosmos?
And again, they hurt her. Only this time, they did more than hurt her. That sadistic Frost all but killed her. She trapped her in a bullet and left her to die in the colds of outer space. I should have found her. I should have been the one to save her. And yet, when she needed me the most, I was elsewhere, saving other lives and ignoring the one that was most precious to me.
That's the trouble with forming ties with humans or any other creatures. They get underneath your scales and mess with your mind. You put them first when you shouldn't and doubt yourself when you don't. You can save the world, yet still feel guilty because you weren't there for them and let them cry without you, or worse.
There's no easy answers in this life. I've been searching for them since I was a hatchling. They don't exist, and the most powerful thing -- the thing that can make a woman come back from the dead when her species isn't supposed to have that power or a guy like me search the interstellar cosmos for answers that don't exist -- is also the most complicated. It's true what they say: love is a bitch. It makes the strongest of us weak and the weakest of us strong. It gives a fourteen year-old child the power to save her planet. It makes a strong fighter willing to be a pet and hide the truths of himself. It really does change the world, sometimes for the better, sometimes not.
I've done so many things. I'm heralded as a hero on some worlds. I do on a daily basis what most humans only ever dream of. I am the master of my fate. I am the Captain of my soul and of my own ship. There are very few beings to whom I ever have to answer. And yet . . .
Yet, I can not forget her. I can not stop thinking at times, when space is still and the night is long and my scales are cold, that I would give all of this up again and again just to be once more what many others consider to be a pet. Just to feel her arms around me, keeping the cold at bay from my scales. Just to feel her warmth around me, keeping the cold at bay from my soul. Just to hear her laugh again, see her smile, just to bloody well know that she's okay.
After we met again, I so desperately wanted to stay with her, but I knew it would be a mistake. We both have our own lives to live. We both have souls to save, but hers are down there on her planet and mine are out here in the cosmos. I could have stayed with her longer, but I knew I'd have to live again soon. Too soon. Always too soon.
It's better this way, or so I told myself at the time I left her loving arms again. It's easier this way, not on me but on her. I couldn't bear to hurt her again. I still can not. I saw the tears she cried for me when she didn't know I was watching or even alive. I saw the way I hurt her after having watched for years as her other friends, her so-called family, hurt her. I was able to comfort her then, but when I left her, there was no comfort left for the child.
She's no longer a child. She's grown into a beautiful, powerful woman. She, too, is the captain of her own soul, the master of her own fate, but I know hers will be harsh unless she learns to stand by herself. They will continue hurting her as they have since she was but a child and my wings were where she hid her tears.
I can not stop them from hurting her. I can not stop her from allowing them to wield that power over her. But I can make sure I do not add to her pain, and I do. Every night away from her is a night I do not cause her pain. Every day spent fighting the evils in the galaxies out here instead of being cuddled in her arms is a day where I will not increase her troubles.
She thinks I chose saving the cosmos over her. My poor, innocent, foolish girl . . . My sweet and dearest friend . . . She'll never know I'll never be able to choose anything over her, but there comes a time when a dragon must protect what is his, and sometimes, that protection has to be against one's own self. I'm keeping her safe. I'm doing my part to ensure not just her survival but her happiness as much as I can give her, too.
They may hurt her, but I'll never hurt her again. And if because of that, I never get to feel her arms around me again, or feel the sweet, chaste press of her lips against my scales, it's a sacrifice I'm willing to make. I've been willing to do anything for that child since the first, fateful day we met. I still am; I always will be. It's no longer for my people I fight. It's for her; it's all for her and always will be.