Niki had woken up that day, and her voice was raspy, throat sore, stomach and head aching, and she had that sense of foreboding.
She had wondered why, for a split second, she had woken up at 4AM of all times. Then the realization that the covers were too itchy and warm but her skin was chillingly cold came to her, the fact that she was sweating through her pyjamas.
She checked her watch. 4:08.
A nasty sense of regret washed over her. She was tempted to go and wake Techno and/or Phil up, but she immediately felt guilty after thinking that. She wouldn't want to bother them.
After all, she had only just joined the Syndicate. She would need to prove her worth, prove she's tougher than she knows that they thought she was .
She put her own hand on her forehead, before realizing how stupid that was. She groaned to herself, careful to be quiet as to not wake the sleeping Technoblade.
Okay, she thought to herself. First things first. What am I ill with?
She reached out slightly from her bed like an absurd cat and snatched her phone from the desk. Quietly as possible, she looked up her symptoms.
Huh. That made sense. The wind was flowing through the open window, yet Niki had thrown off all the covers in an itchy, too-warm sleep, which meant her skin was cold but warm at the same time.
So far, her situation sucked.
She placed her phone back on the desk, then lay back on the bed, thinking of things to do.
Okay, call her dumb, but her logic was basically going haywire, like her brain and logical functions of it had been deep-fried.
But she decided to have a nice, hot shower.
It was what she usually did to clear her thoughts. She smiled at the prospect of it, and carefully got off the bed, as to not make the nausea in her gut and brain worse.
She walked into the hallway, before doubling back to grab some clothes to change in.
Thank any god that was out there that still somehow loved her that the bathroom was semi-far from Techno's room.
She sighed in relief when she got there, now much more excited than before at the prospect of cleaning herself. She probably smelled like literal shit.
She pondered in her thoughts for a while, her thoughts straying annoyingly towards Tommy. She forced any sympathy she may or may not have had out of her brain.
No! No. Bad sympathy. No sympathy for Tommy. Bad. She scolded her brain, laughing internally whenever she did so.
Thankfully, she got most of the grime from days of travelling off her body, even managing to cleanse her ears with this weird fur shampoo that must have been Techno's.
Sighing in relief and satisfaction when she was done, she slipped into her second pair of pyjamas she had at the ready.
It was only at the doorframe when a sudden wave of heat blasted at her entire body.
Her entire body ached, and she realized how fucking stupid it was to take a hot shower while having a fever .
Her legs felt like they were going to buckle under her any second now, her eyelids were drooping while her eyes were wide and her nerves were going haywire. In short; it felt like she was being shot out of a cannon.
So, she did the only reasonable thing.
She mustered all her strength, everything she had left, into one yell.
Techno was used to people calling him. Whether it was the voices, Death Threats or cries of fear (or Death Threats within cries of fear), he was used to it. Blood for the blood god, after all.
What he was not used to, was hearing it being yelled at him at 4 in the morning. Jesus christ, did those people sending Death Threats have to send it at him so early? Did they even sleep?
But something about this yell.. It wasn't one of fury, rage or anything negative. In fact, in almost sounded.. desperate.
Alarmed, he jolted upright and picked up the netherite sword he kept by his bed. ( never be unprepared!! POG SWORD!! lmaooo he sleeps with the sword by his side. BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD!!! poggers. )
He ran into where he heard it from, though the voices disorientated him a little.
He had expected to find someone waiting to hurt him, maybe a hostage situation, or maybe even Tommy, the vicious little raccoon prick, finally getting to guts to face him again.
He had not expected to find Niki, sprawled out across the floor, sweat gleaming on her brow.
It took him a second to remember, then it came to him; she had joined the Syndicate.
He rushed down towards her. Since he knew jackshit about helping sick people, he did what Philza did whenever he was sick; put his hand on her forehead.
"Shit." He muttered quietly. She was burning up. Her eyelids fluttered open halfway, giving her a dreamy, half-asleep look.
She groaned and pushed her head into Techno's palm.
Okay, now this was really alarming.
Niki didn't seem like one for affection, walking a step away whenever anyone got near, and avoiding people's gazes.
Her ear flicked, and she groaned again, making a whimper like sound.
Shit, shit, shit .
He didn't actually know anything about helping a sick kid, goddamnit!
"Chat, help." He pleaded, not knowing what to do. Voices immediately swarmed him, giving him some helpful and not-so helpful suggestions ( purge the weak. get philza! k ill her! s pill the blood for the blood god! ) . One voice spoke above all.
As a medical student here, I suggest you try move her to a more comfortable place. After that, try find a cool washcloth and place it on her forehead.
"Thank you, MedicalAnarchist," He said out loud, infinitely relieved. "I am forever in your debt."
Slowly and as carefully as possible, he picked up the raccoon girl. She seemed to instinctively struggle away from him, as if he were the contagious one.
"Stop strugglin'." He said, his voice awfully calm for the panic he was feeling. "You're only gonna hurt yourself."
Surprisingly, she obeyed, and instead opted to hug his torso, practically attaching herself to his chest.
Even more surprisingly, he didn't mind. Usually he hated contact unless it was with Phil, but this was different. It was like having a little sister, or daughter.
He smiled faintly down at the form in his arms, then placed her softly down on the sofa. She immediately made herself at home, her delirious self clutching the nearest pillow and hugging it like it was her lifeline.
He felt a small pang of ridiculous jealousy; a second ago she had been hugging him , and now she had changed loyalty to the pillow.
( haha SIMP!!. lol nerd., jealousblade.., oOOH THE BLOOD GOD IS TURNING SOFT. softblade? technosoft? AWW technobro! technodad? )
He rolled his eyes at the voices, but smiling at the nickname given to him.
He liked that.
Niki's eyes fluttered faintly open again, giving her another half-asleep look, then she made grabby hands towards him once he came back with the wet flannel.
Techno froze, and glanced around. Shit, this wasn't happening, right?
"'noblade.." She muttered, her accent thicker than he had heard it before. "'noblade... T'chno .."
"I'm here, Niki." He murmured softly, swiping a stray pink hair from the girl's face. The girl smiled, relief lacing her raccoon features. "I'm here."
He awkwardly patted her on the head, unsure of what really to do.
He knew how to skewer orphans on sword like a skebab, not how to take care of sick kids, goddamnit!
(On the inside, he knew she wasn't really a kid.
But, in his eyes, she was so young. She was barely 19.
Besides, she wasn't treated like a kid during her childhood, why not make up for it now?)
"Stay." She said softly, as tears began to gather in her icy-blue eyes. "Please."
As she said this, he realized that he didn't just mean this night. She had been betrayed and mistreated by everyone she had called a friend. She had been belittled and ignored.
He would never.
He nodded, feeling tears gather in his eyes as well. "I will. Don't worry, kiddo."
Niki smiled faintly and murmured something. He smiled softly again at her, awkwardly patting her on the head again. She leaned into the touch.
God, he missed having kids around.
Wait, was Niki an orphan?
He vaguely thought about it, before deciding himself that Niki was not an orphan. If she was, he would instead adopt her, or force Phil at gunpoint to do so.
He traced his finger around her face, smiling more when she leaned into his touch.
Fuck it, he thought. Softblade indeed.
He picked her up, practically cradling her small form in his arms. She leaned up against him again, snuggling against his pyjamas.
He chuckled. God, if this is how Philza felt each time he adopted a new hybrid child, he couldn't blame him for getting so many.
"'m gonna keep you safe." He told her. She straightened a bit, then put her arms around his neck in a childish fashion. "Okay?"
She murmured some German words he didn't understand, but he distinctly heard the phrase, dad.
His heart swelled with uncharacteristic joy. He grinned at her, though she couldn't see.
He attempted to place her down onto the bed, but she made a muffled sound of discontent as she clung onto his pyjama shirt.
"C'mon Niki- You need to sleep-" He tried to reason, but she just held on tighter, her tail curling around his waist.
This vaguely reminded him of himself when he was young; Wilbur and him had both refused to let go of Phil, no matter what. He was their stone, their lifeline, everything they could have ever hoped and dreamed for.
He wondered if Niki felt the same.
If she did, well, he was going to protect her with his life if he had to. If she didn't... Well, he would still protect her with his life.
Carefully as to make sure the wet flannel didn't fall off her forehead, he lay down on his king-sized bed.
He didn't sleep, but that wasn't new nor did it bother him. It was worth it to hear Niki's muffled sounds of discomfort turn into evenly spread breaths.
"YOU GOT IT ON TAPE?!"
"Yeah, mate- It's so cute! Technodad! My chat is telling me Dadza and Technodad!"
" DELETE IT!!"