They say that men like him are made of iron, are giants of the world, structures that don’t bend to even the most violent of situations — power players, game changers, the kind of men who have a power to rule the world.
They’re survivors, it’s what they do, it’s the intermolecular bonds that keep them together, that make up the properties that make them Starks, where ferocity and ferrous-ity are intertwined.
But even iron experiences fatigue, even it cracks, and given the environment, the exposure of elements that seep through the small fractures and imperfections of a mask and an armour so frequently used, they corrode. It’s demons that get the better of them, undermining a system so weak against certain elements.
(An explosion, a car crash, the destruction of something called home.)
He’s tired, exhausted, feeling the wear and ache in his bones, the weight of guilt and a heavy burden that adds stress to an already failing system. But no — he can’t stop. Not now. Not yet.
He can’t sleep — in both senses of the word, and he’s sure that when he slips into the place he once called home one quiet night, welcomed with creaky floorboards from a lack of care, a musty smell of a place aged and dust that gathers in corners and surfaces - foreign elements in a familiar place, he knows that that’s not going to change.
It’s a place no one would expect him to return to, after all, he avoided it for so long, wiped it from his mind as much as he could aside from the knowledge he possessed a piece of paper that told him that this was his — another inheritance that he hadn’t wanted, but was given.
He has a stuffed bag, filled with clothes nabbed where he could get them, pieces of a prototype he’d been working on and papers — information needed to understand just what had happened this last month. It drops to the floor with a thud that echoes throughout the empty hall, and it’s then — when he doesn’t even hear the scatter of a mouse - any squatter of the rodent variety, that the realisation hits him.
It’s been two weeks since he’d ‘disappeared’, two weeks since he’d last spoken to someone and —
— he’s alone.
Probably not but I’m open for something more along the lines of experimental and practical procedures.
Call it my super power.
Hmm. And to what else do these powers extend?
I must admit, my standards remain high. A backhanded compliment, but I am certain you require no guidance in thinking well of your prowess. In any regard.
Are extensive abilities something you’re worried about?
No, not at all. You could say I’m uh, well assured. We’re all called gods for some things.
If he uses his tongue like that subconsciously, you’ve really got to wonder….
[which works entirely too well, seeing as he closes his eyes and reminds himself to breathe, and opens them to find his bagel gone. He shoots a look at Tony, ones that’s a mix of “Huh” and “I can’t believe you just did that”]
I’m a terrible influence on you.[Something dangerous sparks in Arthur’s eyes. He leans forward.]
Was that a request?
Are you wanting it to be?
[ Like he would ever back down from something like this. ]
You know I don’t need it to be.
[But being asked lead to some interesting, very similar, ideas.]
That I’m well aware of.
[ Cue a smirk — a challenge, and a hell of a lot of bad ideas he’s certain he doesn’t need to voice.
(Audibility never really was an issue though) ]
"You’re really asking me that?”
"Yeah, that was silly in hindsight."
"Come on Tony, break out the good stuff for an old friend."
"An old friend? Are you really going to call yourself that?"
He’s asking a lot of questions, and there is a playful edge in his voice, but he does, in a way, speak the truth — or in this case, question that was normally not exactly spoken of.