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28 September 2009 @ 09:41 pm
082 Lunch  
Title: Darkness Overwhelming
Fandom: Mystic Force
Prompt: 082 Lunch
Summary/Warnings: A Dark Wish AU. Somewhere, all wishes come true. The Elves' gift raises suspicions for Xander.
Word Count: 505





082 Lunch

The Elf’s present turned out to be fruit, including several kinds the teens had never seen. Clare exclaimed over them, putting several into a stew and storing the others away.

“You know these?” Nick asked doubtfully, sniffing the berry in his hand. It looked almost like a cherry, but it was bright blue.

“I used to pick them for Udonna. They’re very filling.”

“Uh-huh.”

“Try it, then.”

Nick eyed it for a minute. “No. I don’t do neon food.”

“Scared of a little berry?” Vida dropped beside him, taking the berry and biting into it.

“Well? What’s it like?” Chip asked from the other side of the fire.

Clare laughed. “Chip, you can have one.”

“Where’s your sense of adventure?” Maddie added.

“Gone to look for Vida’s common sense.”

“Good luck finding that,” Nick muttered.

“It’s been missing for a while,” Chip agreed cheerfully.

“Wow.” Vida stared at the half-berry still in her hand. “I’m totally full. How does that work? I don’t think I could even finish this.”

Clare smiled faintly. “I know. They’re dangerous, if you eat too many. People used to starve because they felt so full. But as long as you don’t eat more than one at a time, they’re ok. They taste good, too.”

“I don’t think I could even eat a whole one. I definitely won’t want lunch.” Vida offered the half berry to Chip. “Here.”

Chip eyed it for a moment before stuffing it into his mouth. “It’s spicy,” he mumbled.

Xander caught Clare’s eye; she rose to her feet, slipping around to join him. The others were still ribbing Chip and didn’t see her go.

“What’s wrong?” she asked quietly.

“Those things are dangerous?”

She shook her head quickly. “Not unless you eat them three times a day for a week or more. They’re just…” She shrugged. “None of us are eating enough. At least this way we can starve without being hungry.”

“So we can all stop eating altogether.”

“No!”

She’d said it more loudly than she meant; Nick was watching them when she looked up, and the others were ignoring them so obviously they must have heard.

“No,” she said more calmly. “Trust me. I know what these things can do, and I’m not trying to hurt us, I swear.”

Xander nodded. “I know. I’m sorry. I do know that. How much is there?”

“A few days. Maybe a week.”

He nodded again. “Why did you get them?”

“Sorry?”

He gestured vaguely. “No one gives anything away, Clare.”

“I didn’t give them anything.”

Xander relaxed slightly. “Then why…”

“My aunt was…their protector. They’re helping me out of respect for her.”

“Nick says we can’t let you out anymore.”

“Does he?” Clare deliberately lifted her voice; Nick was still watching them, but he only raised an eyebrow at her.

She smiled faintly, looking back at Xander. “Slannen says that the Master wants me. Because of my mother. I’m not anything.”

“Well, I don’t agree there, Clare.” She frowned, and he added, “You’re pretty amazing.”