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paralyse my mind

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Wanda slips into Pietro’s room, closing the door gently behind her. His bedside table flickers beside him as he sits on the edge of the bed, bare back to her. She eyes the notches of his spine as they try to claw their way out from beneath his skin. She remembers trying to follow the map of freckles on his back in Sokovia. This back is blank, empty of the constellations she used to lightly connect with her fingertip.

Entering his room slowly, Wanda clasps her hands together. Still dressed in her Sokovian fortune teller costume, her lips are a bright blood-red and her shoulders are slumped with the night’s efforts. Saving Vision, expanding the perimeter, tucking the overhyped boys to bed and seeing Vision to his… She’s in desperate need for her Polaris.

"Are you okay?"

He makes a noncommittal noise. "Dunno," he says, keeping his head bowed. He sounds sulky; for a moment, she believes he’s him. He lifts a big, sharp shoulder. "I mean, my sister just blasted me into a makeshift grave. Dunno how I’m feeling, really."

"I’m sorry," she says, American accent thick and deep. To her ears, she sounds sincere. That’d been her script cue to venture closer. Standing before him, she keeps her hands tucked against her belly as she peers down at him sheepishly. "I don’t know what got into me. I am sorry, Pietro."

He only aggressive hums, nodding. Keeping his head bowed, she hears him sniff. "I get it, you like the toaster more."

"No," she says, shaking her head. Her brows furrow as she stares down at him. His hair isn’t as thick as she remembers it being. "Of course not. You are my brother, Pietro. My twin."

Continuing to sulk and keep his face hidden with the bow of his head, he mumbles, "Doesn’t feel like it sometimes."

"I’m sorry," she says, placing her hand against her chest. Her heart thumps in inside of its cage, betraying her attempt at nonchalance. She is in control. She allows her hand drop as she moves to her knees, placing her hands tentatively against his clothed ones. They’re knobby, smaller in shape than what her hands are used to.

He doesn’t look at her, but she does think he relaxes beneath her touch. "I would never choose anyone over you, Pietro. Never. I did it to protect us."

He bows his head further, neck almost folded in half, and sniffles. He turns his head away from her and grabs the light blue shirt he’d worn trick-or-tearing, and slips it violently over his head, keeping his gaze locked away from hers. Something inside of her tugs sharp at her insides. Wanda feels like it’s a slap.

"I can pretend to be him for a little while," he says. Her eyes widen as her brows furrow. Her mouth falls open. He looks up at her, eyes tinged a scarlet red, and he lifts his bruised hand. He shakes it and her protests are gone. "I know all of this was a test, Wanda. For the person that you’re really missing. Maybe we can just pretend for a lil’ while that we’re not oil and water, you know?"

She inhales deeply, feeling it leave shrapnel in her chest. He was never meant to know. He was never meant to be as sharp as the man he’s not. She sinks onto her knees. Quietly, she looks up at him and says, "Will it make you feel better?"

His gaze is warm and piercing. "You looking at me like I’m not some stranger would make me feel better, yeah," he says. Pietro lifts his hands and rubs his biceps as if he’s sore.

"Are you bruised? Let me see." Wanda rises on her knees, shuffling between his legs. She peels back the collar of his light blue shirt to reveal a present of bruises aligning his shoulder and the slope of his neck. She had done this to him. These bruises he sports are her doing. Her love for him had discoloured him. "You’re hurt."

He only swallows. "It’ll heal."


His lips quirk upward into a shape that’s familiar. "You’re the bossy one, huh?"

"You know this," she says. She stands and places her hands on her hips. "Off. Now."

"All right, all right," he says, smiling. He stands; he’s too tall, his body not as broad as it should be. Wanda ignores it. Keeping her gaze set on his, she studies the arrogant upward curve of his mouth and the slight shyness in which he glances away from her. All of it is strange. All of Pietro’s tics and habits and bruises are packaged up strangely in this man who doesn’t take on the shape of her brother.

When he pulls his shirt up and over his head, she lets her gaze drop. She sees what she hadn’t been able to before. Perhaps he had been trying to hide it from her, wanting to spare her the grief he had promised her. A bruise wraps around his chest, kissing his waist darkly. She imagines his lower back—the skin and constellations she hadn’t been able to see, hadn’t wanted to see—is a mess of blotchy darkness.

His hands sit on his hips as he looks at her. It’s with a slightly arrogant blankness that he regards her. Wanda looks at him and finds nothing familiar.

Stepping closer to him, she places her palm flat against his chest. His skin’s warm. Heart pounding beneath her fingertips. Wanda slowly lets her magic slip beneath the surface of him, seeps inside the calloused armour of his pec as she finds his blood and dives right into it. He shivers.

"I’m sorry," she says quietly. Dropping the act of the American housewife, she returns to herself in front of a poltergeist of her brother. His skin’s warm beneath her gloved hand. She tugs it free, dropping her red gauntlet to the floor. She picks up her Sokovian accent, thick and warm and feeling like home in her throat.

It’s with a shaky hand that she returns her palm to his chest. His skin is warm, just like it should be. Bruised and sensitive, but not clammy and decaying.

"Toaster all tucked into bed?"

She nods. "Mhm." She fans out her fingers against his chest, pressing her fingertips gently against his skin. She allows herself to sink into him again.

She’s startled when his hands come up to her headdress. He’s gentle in the way that he untucks it from her head, taking it from her like he’s undressing her of her crown. The weight of the costume, of home, of everything that she’s kept tucked inside of herself transfers over to his palm as he holds it gently.

"You know," he says, smiling down at the small, bright red headdress. It looks odd in his palm, like he’s wretched a mechanical heart from out of her gaping chest. His own heart thumps against her hand, a reminder that he’s here. He’s here. "You looked real cute in this thing. Put all the other fortune tellers to shame, sis."

"Wanda," she says, peering up at him. "Call me Wanda. Just once."

"Okay," he says, giving her a smile. The way it’s shaped is so warm and soft that she presses her other hand against his mouth to let his lips burn her fingertips. His gaze softens as he looks at her. Quietly against her fingers, he burns: "Wanda."

She traces the slope of his mouth, finding his lips are different. They’re not as she remembers them, but they’re enough. She’ll take what she can get. The strange tallness of a man who isn’t as broad nor as soft as the boy she calls home. He’s present beneath her fingertips, warm in a way that they haven’t been for years.

Dropping her hand, she lets her fingers press nervously against his bare hip. His pants are too low, hanging off his bony hips like a piece of shedded skin. Too sharp, like the bone wants to harm her.

"I can’t do the accent," he says unnaturally quiet. "It’s lost."

"Sh," she says, shaking her head. She begins to undo his pants, pulling them down his hips. His thighs are thick with muscle, powerful in the way she knows they’re meant to be for a speedster. Some of his shapes are familiar. "I don’t want you to try. I don’t want to be alone anymore."

Her other hand falls from his chest when he pulls his pants off his legs. He stands before her in his dark briefs, his cock half-hard. Wanda looks down at him, feels her skin flush scarlet, before she reaches out to touch him.

He makes an amused noise in his throat then sighs. "Shit."

Lifting her hands, she pushes him back onto the bed with a wave of red magic. He laughs lightly, pulling himself up the dark blue sheets. She kneels against the bed, right between his spread feet.

"You can tell me anything, you know," he says earnestly.

Wanda nods, humming. She begins to pull her leotard off her shoulders. She looks at him and tries to picture him as he should be—same thick legs, a broader chest, a little birthmark against his left hipbone. Peeling her leotard down to her hips, she bares herself to him in the way she’d only begun to outside of the makeshift graveyard. She’s half-naked, skin flushing red. His gaze is glued to her like he can see beneath her flesh and into the very thing that’s keeping her standing.

Lifting her fingers to her cape, she starts to pull at the strap when he shakes his head. "Leave the cape on, it’s hot."

Arching her brow, she smiles. "You are very naughty, Pietro."

He shrugs. "What can I say? I’m the wild one."

He watches her with his lips parted and his gaze hungry. She stands by the edge of the bed and peels her leotard off her body, along with her stockings. In a surge of adrenaline, she pulls her panties down her legs and kicks them off, too. She stands before him in her red cape, her hands against her sides. She feels strange, a naked she hasn’t felt even with Vision.

Pietro simply stares at her. Mouth agape, eyes wide, cock hard. He’s so stupid. Too stupid. The stupid brother who can talk his mouth off when it doesn’t matter and remain quiet when his voice should be loud in her ears.

"Speak," she barks quietly.

He smiles, shaking his head. "How?"

She smiles. It’s the right answer.

Kneeling on the bed, she crawls to sit between his legs. Planting her hands on his soft inner thighs, she peels his legs open even wider. She lies on top of him, feeling his warm chest kiss hers. Sinks into him in a way she’s been craving for too long. His naked skin feels good against hers, even though it feels different.

Resting her cheek at the base of his neck, she waits, counting to ten, wanting his hands on her. He hesitates for too long before his big palms rest on her cape, as if afraid touching her.

"I don’t want to be alone anymore," she murmurs quietly. Lifting her head, she peers up at him. For a split moment, she sees him: silver hair, warm and laughing eyes, recognition in his face. She holds onto the vision of her Pietro and glues it to his face.

His throat tightens before it relaxes. Quietly, he says, "You won’t be alone anymore."

Wanda doesn’t kiss him.

She bows her head and kisses his chest. It’s easy to pretend his chest is his chest. It’s easy to remember his biceps are his. She’s slow in her appraisal of him, her quiet worship of him being alive and real and warm beneath her. Where her Pietro would never remove his hands from her cape, he does, letting them rest above his head as he stretches out beneath her.

She kisses her way across his chest, searching for beauty spots beneath the bruising marring his skin. She looks for freckles, the scar she’d given him beneath his right armpit. Her search for her buried treasure is empty. X doesn’t mark the spot where she needs it to, but she drags her tongue along a small beauty mark that’s placed in the wrong spot.

At his hip, she nips at his skin. He hisses, a quiet laugh riding it. It’s not the same, so she bites him again until she hears him hiss and gasp and moan.

Red magic curls within the threads of his briefs. She pulls them off of him, phasing them off of his skin. She tosses them at the headboard.

He’s looking at her stupidly, gaze dark, lips curved upward too high. "Impressive."

She shrugs, smiling up at him. "I’m the impressive one."

Sitting between his legs, she takes his cock into her hand. Nothing about him feels the same. His weight hardly feels like home. But she lets him imprint his warmth onto her palm nonetheless, a new reminder of who he is now. He hisses and watches her, propped up on his elbows as she fondles him.

With a smirk, she looks up at him before she begins to stroke him. "I forgot how you like to be touched," she says, Sokovian accent thick.

His doesn’t match. "Like that, yeah." His gaze is dark and unfocused, looking at her hand holding his cock. "Definitely like that."

Wanda watches him as she strokes him. His muscles tense the same way. His skin sets itself ablaze, turning his bruised chest into a strange painting of red and dark purple. He pants, curling his fingers into fists beside him. She refuses to let herself feel disappointed he hasn’t shot up to pull her close to him yet.

Feeling him harden in her hand, Wanda lets him go. He whimpers and she smiles, moving to sit on his lap. She sits her cunt right on his cock and grinds against him, using his hipbone as her purchase to move hard against him.

"Pietro," she says quietly. She pants, closing her eyes, imagining herself within a small room in Sokovia. His hands would reach out to grip her hips, blunt nails sharp like talons. His hands don’t reach out for her now, but Wanda pretends.

"You’re not alone, Wanda," he says. His voice is all wrong, but the words are all right. She smiles, feeling a tear slip across her cheek.

It’s with a fumble she grasps his cock again and takes him inside of herself slowly. It’s excruciating to reconnect herself with him again. Nothing feels like it should; the imprint of him doesn’t match the way he stretches her, but Wanda only sinks deeper, biting her lip until its torn and bloody.

He pushes himself up, hands finally on her hips. He peers up at her like she’s something beyond him.

"Wanda," he says quietly. Something in his voice slips into Sokovian, but she opens her eyes and sees the boy who has her brother’s soul but not his face. He shakes his head and says gently, "You’ll never be alone. You called me here. I came. I’m here forever."

Another tear slips, this time falling onto his chest. She reaches out to grasp his shoulders and begins to move against him, her breath hiccuping. "I know," she says quietly. She ensures to rock against him slowly, wanting to remember how this feels.

She swallows thickly and smiles wetly. "I know, Pietro. I will never let you leave me again."

Curling her nails into his shoulders, she marks him with crescent moons. Red magic slips inside of his skin, into the very cells and marrow of him. She pushes herself against him, her hips working harder to remind him that she’s here. A part of her hopes to fuck him back to her, the stupid boy with his stupid promises and stupid quips. She pants softly, fucking herself on him as he stares up at her with the wrong face.

When he leans up to kiss her, she tilts her head so he lands against her neck. His mouth is warm and his tongue is possessive, but she never dips her head again in fear he’ll catch her. She doesn’t want his lips to fit incorrectly against hers.

The cape sticks to her damp back as she fucks him. Magic curls into his bones, pulling him apart from the inside. She sees the way his silver hair turns red for a moment as she possesses him, submerging herself inside of him as he pushes further inside of her.

Pietro’s hands glide beneath the cape to her back, fingers warm and palms soft. His grip is possessive in the way he pulls her toward his chest. His hands roughly glide up her spine and around her sides, palming her breasts roughly. He presses his face against her collarbone, kissing and dragging his teeth against her skin.

He kisses her breast, right above her heart. It thumps wildly for him, beating at a furious pace as it charges towards him. He won’t catch it; his hands are too soft and slow. She arches into him as she grinds down upon him, her nails tearing at his shoulders. She glides her hands into his hair to hold his head against her chest.

The room glows red when she comes. Her fingers tug ferociously at his hair, nails scraping against his scalp. His moan rumbles through her as he keeps his head bowed between her breasts.

He bucks up into her and she grinds down against him, uncaring of how sensitive and spent she feels. She’s waited too long to have him again. She’s called, he’s come home. Wanda bows her head and kisses his too-soft hair.

"You’re not alone," she murmurs, rocking against him. She murmurs it over and over in Sokovian, tilting her head up as he grips her back painfully and she rides his orgasm.

She remains in his lap as he pants against her chest. His hands remain on her back, hugging her to him. For a moment, Wanda lets herself forget. The body she knows isn’t buried deep within the earth of Sokovian. The boy she had loved and still aches for isn’t embraced by the earth as it protects him better than she ever will. When she closes her eyes, he is here beneath her and inside of her, hands trapping her against him.

She presses her hands against his back where the bullet wounds had been, ensuring her magic keeps him pieced together. She’ll protect him this time. With a kiss to his head, she murmurs in a language he should know that he will never be lost to her again.

With the slightest shift of his head, he looks up at her. When she pulls back, it’s not to recoil from him; she looks down at him, thinking the way he looks up at her is familiar. She hovers over him, finally feeling as though she’s merely another piece of him. For the first time since he arrived on her doorstep like a beacon of hope, she feels connected to him. Her twin.

His eyes glow red, her magic pouring into the gaps of him that should have already been possessed by her. The slope of his nose isn’t right. Wanda finds she doesn’t care.

He smiles. Something bursts inside of her. "You know, sis, you’re not that bad."

She smiles, letting out a very quiet chuckle. "Not bad, huh?"

"No," he says, shaking his head.

Curling her hands around his head, she smiles down at him. Wanda can see freckles on the slope of his nose that don’t belong there. She can see the way his hair isn’t as thick as it should be at the front. But he holds her in a way that feels familiar, fits inside of her in a way that makes her feel whole.

"I’m not alone anymore," she smiles down at him. The upward curve of his lips is a familiar shape—her shape.

She lets herself kiss him.