A She-ra fanfic
After the war
Her heart broke anew with every step she took. It kept beating and kept breaking, in a never-ending cycle. How long could it go on before it was too late?
It had been like this ever since her mum left, maybe longer. Maybe it had been her dad’s disappearance such a long time ago that had caused that first crack, that first opening that had grown with time and now exploded with every step.
For how long could a heart keep breaking and still beat?, Glimmer thought.
She’d left the party down in the hall. The celebrations had been going for days but she could only feel her heart. Her hole. Her void.
Why did you have to leave?
Despite all of it, the world somehow kept moving forward, the steps kept being taken and she was pushed with it, heart and all.
She arrived at the runestone and the space was empty. She didn’t expect anyone to come either. Not when the fete was going on downstairs.
That’s how she liked it, not wanting to be disturbed, not knowing how to share her broken heart with anyone.
She put her hand against the cold stone and was reminded yet again that there was still life out there. Not everything was lost. She just didn’t know how to bring that back into her own life.
Did you use to do the same? Come here for answers after dad had disappeared?
She didn’t get an answer but something flickered on the other side of the bridge and she turned to look. It was a tail, disappearing behind the pillars. Catra.
Flames rose within Glimmer
How did she dare to come here!? To my place!?
She imagined the steps Catra took behind the pillars and when she was almost out on the other side Glimmer stepped out from the dimness of the runestone. Catra saw her the moment she was out.
They stared at each other from a distance, frozen. Like two animals measuring each other. Glimmer held her gaze, and Catra yielded, ears flat against the side of her head.
How did she dare to come when I’m here?
Catra turned away to walk away, shoulders sloped and eyes trailing the floor.
She… looked like a kitten trying to hide from a foe, Glimmer thought.
The fire within her went out, drenched, and all she could see was a scared kitten trying her best not to be seen.
- Catra, wait!
Glimmer started to run along the banister leading around the bridge and Catra froze mid-step. She still stood there when Glimmer arrived, with sinews tense as harp strings running down her shoulders.
- I... I just wanted to see how you were, Glimmer stammered as she came to a halt.
Catra was mid-step but put her foot down. Her shoulders smoothed but she kept her gaze low and didn't say a word.
They stood in silence and Glimmer imagined their heartbeats filling the void, the only thing that could be heard in the space.
In the end, she got too uncomfortable and gestured towards a wooden bench behind them. Catra sat down, and Glimmer followed.
Catra still hadn’t said a word and Glimmer felt her thoughts wandering to what it normally wandered to.
Why did you leave?
The hole grew inside, as it always did whenever she thought of her mum. A hole that never truly filled, because what should have been there was gone.
She heard someone talking and realized that Catra had said something.
- Glimmer, do you hate me?, Catra repeated
The hole within Glimmer exploded and became a raging storm. It threw her around, like a glove in a tornado.
Don’t ask me that, I don’t know... Don’t ask me questions I can’t answer...
Catra's shoulders slumped and when Glimmer didn't give her an answer she stood up and began to walk away. In a moment of no thought, Glimmer reached for her wrist.
- No, wait, please.
Catra stopped and turned, gaze still following the tiles of the floor.
The tornado stilled within her Glimmer felt tears falling down her face. She wiped them away.
- I just miss her so much...
Catra’s hanging ears turned backward and she hissed
- So hate me then.
Glimmer backed away at the sudden venom in her voice.
- Why? Why would I hate you?
- You’ll feel better from it.
The coldness in her voice made the tears start falling down Glimmer's face again.
- But, I cannot hate you...
And she realized it was true, she couldn’t hate Catra.
Catra didn’t notice her change of mood and continued,
- I’m used to it, everyone’s always hated me.
Glimmer looked at her, suddenly understanding what she’d been through, what her life had been about.
- No, it’s not true. Adora didn’t hate you.
- Adora left me.
The storm within Glimmer suddenly picked up speed again. A slippery path crystallized where her heart should be and Glimmer started to slide down, out of control.
No, no, please...
But it was too late, Catra’s words had opened it up and she fell helplessly into the unknown.
She tumbled, desperately trying to hold on to something but it all crumbled beneath her fingers.
A small whimper and she realized it was hers.
- You hated her, didn’t you?
I have to make sense of this. That’s why Catra had done what she’d done.
- You hated Adora for leaving you.
Catra’s ears fell to the side, her hardness gone.
- No, she whispered. I didn’t hate her.
Glimmer’s last hold crumbled and the world fell to pieces.
She stood up, and out came a scream
- So why did you do it then!?
Catra stared at her feet, and Glimmer could hear her whisper through the rage of the tornado inside.
- To stop it..
- Stop what!?
- To stop the pain. I’m sorry...
Catra untangled herself from Glimmer’s grip and turned to walk away.
Glimmer looked at her disappearing back, and suddenly the anger was gone. In its place was a clarity, a flow she’d never felt before.
She reached out and put a hand on Catra’s shoulder.
- No, wait, please.
Catra stopped, then slowly turned. Her face glowed with surprise.
No one had ever asked her to stay, Glimmer realized.
The silence stretched out in between them until Glimmer took a deep breath and said
- I forgive you
The surprise in Catra’s face widened until Glimmer could read hope and happiness there too, and she heard her whisper
- But, why?
Tears flowed down Glimmer’s face as she said
- Because if I don’t, I will do the same as you did.