Breathe - A Petshop of Horrors Fanfic
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Breathe
by Edmondia Dantes

Disclaimer: They aren't mine.

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It's simple, really, like nothing ever is, and it's a fucking goddamned cliché on top of that, but when the goddamned incense gets up his nose, he can't breathe, and he can't stand it either. He doesn't like things that fuck up his body - least not the ones he can't control - he needs it too much, has to be able to breathe and think and move or else he'll get all tangled up and maybe shot again, and maybe this time the bullet will stick and it'll be so long Orcot, and then what will happen to Chris? Problem is, he's used to it now, and anything else knocks him for a loop and leaves him grouchier than usual and wheezing for air. Maybe it's like drowning, being swallowed up forever, and if you breathe too deep, all you gulp in is water, and all that he ain't is a fish. Come out on dry land, and all of a sudden you've got the creepy feeling that there's scales slicked over your skin, and you'll never blend in with your own kind again. If he squints real hard, he can see it, silvery-pale and glowing, so he tries not to look, because he's not supposed to be able to see what he knows he can't, and he doesn't want to anyway. Most of the time, that's enough to keep it squelched down, and most of the time, it's enough that even no matter how in the thick of things he gets, he can still keep breathing.

He'll never stop breathing until he's dead, and he's not going to let anyone, not even D, take that away from him, even after he's gone. So he takes a deep breath, cuts his ties, and moves out and along, because you fucking goddamned bastard I nearly died and I'm pissed off and I am going to get you and then strangle you to death!

So he chases, and even if he never catches, he's not drowning yet, and he won't ever be, not the way some hapless enchanted fool would be, caught in some careless immortal's net. When he catches D, he's going to beat the shit out of him.

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Somewhere and somewhen else, D stands utterly still, staring out into the distance, trying to cool his nerves, trying to calm his spirit, and even the pets are no help to him now. He should be pleased to be where he is, he knows, content in his role, content with the way things were supposed to be, the way they will never be again, though they should be. This is normal, this is the way things are, this is his purpose. He closes his eyes, trying to remember all of the things that have become so muddled, now, trying to regain his sense of balance, and takes a deep, shuddering breath of the sweet, perfumed air, familiar as the swish of silk on his skin.

He chokes on it.

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