The Florette's Dilemma

18x- Revenent

by Motherlygirl

Tags: #dom:female #drugs #Human_Domestication_Guide #pov:bottom #scifi #anxiety #depression #dom:plant #f/f

This one's a bit emotionally rough! If you enjoyed chapter 9x's Legally Distinct Video Game Battle you might like this one. Cw for more horror imagery, some gore, and Christian symbolism.

Melody was lying in bed. In one hand she held the capsule full of class-Z's she'd been given for the night. Its contents were weaker than the sleeping gas produced by her owner's body, but it would have to make do for now. She wasn't an only floret anymore and that meant she would have to...share…

The bittersweet memories that Impy disliked so very much gurgled unbidden below her mind. She saw flashes of that former sweetheart of hers, their soft smile patient unlike any other human's had ever been with her. Melody screwed her eyes shut. Please take the medicine, Impy's presence that no longer so clearly resembled a voice spoke into her. You'll feel so much better. Please. Were haustoric implants supposed to be stronger than that? Melody could have sworn that they were. Still, he had access now to most of the motivating sectors of her brain. Perhaps he, like his maker, expressly wished for her to retain her sense of self. 

The memories flashed past her again. The comics Mane shared with her after they came across them on the intranet. The way they resonated with her, and the questions they left her asking herself about what she was. The way they stood up to her bullies. 

"I miss her…" Melody whispered shakily. She knew it was okay to cry now, but the instincts saying otherwise weren't yet buried. Their corpses twitched still in her subconscious, forcing her to shrug them off before she could shed a tear. There, there, Impy seemed to reassure his host, let it out. It's okay to cry. The dam burst. Whether it was broken by Impy's reassurance or through more direct means, Melody neither knew nor cared. A wave of cathartic longing and sadness crashed against her body and set her tears flowing. She missed her. She missed her gentle eyes, her words, her calming presence. 

Melody cried in silence for about ten minutes before she started to run low on energy. It had been brief, but the outburst left her feeling...not better, but something adjacent to it. She thanked Impy for his care and sat up just long enough to swallow the capsule. Her body fell backwards onto her bed and she...was suddenly...so very comfortable…snuggled up all cozy...under her soft sheets…



Sleep wasn't long coming after that. It took her in minutes. 



-----------

It was a cozy day in early fall. The leaves on the middle class planet where Melody lived were starting to turn red and blue and abandon the bark coated limbs of the trees. On this Sunday, a Melody (who was nineteen or twenty years old) woke up as usual. She was in time not to be woken by her mother, and not because of an alarm no less. She got out of bed feeling tired and groggy. The news about the brewing conflict with the affini buzzed from downstairs. Was that right, Melody wondered? For some reason she felt like the timing might not have been accurate, despite having no idea what that actually meant. 

She got dressed for church. Her mini-tablet sat pretty on her counter, shinier and in much sharper relief than anything else she could see. This was not difficult for the girl to ignore. She had to cover her legs. 

She wasn't sure why. Her mother already knew. Her mother had told her father, and her sister was taking a history of gender class (and taking it seriously). There was nobody in the center of the venn diagram made from circles labeled "doesn't know," "needs not to know," and "will actually see me today." Instinct demanded she hide the evidence anyway. Preventing her mother from seeing it wasn't going to out her a second time, it was silly to be hung up on this and she was well aware, but yet there she was. Hung up on it anyway. She got kakis on and quickly buttoned up a button-up shirt, which she promptly tucked in. She hated that almost as much as it sounded like her best friend did. 

At the thought of her friend she paused and found herself smiling. They'd slept next to each other at a weird leadership seminar...type...thing that the school held the last few nights of the summer break. Which it was still called out of linguistic legacy, despite Gisk not actually having a summer. Wait, was that a Gisk thing? Did every corner of the planet Gisk not have a summer or was it specific to her area of Shrenwood? She was confused that she didn't know. She felt it was weird and anachronistic for her not to know. Anachronistic? Why was that a word she used for this? She bid the thoughts goodby and picked up her mini-tablet. She had one message from a sender whose name she couldn't read. 

"Hey, are you still trying to think of a name? The, uh...the comments you've been leaving mentioned you were looking for one but never said whether you settled. If you want ideas I'd be honored to help!" 

AAAAAAaaaaaaaaaAAAAAAA they knew!

Melody turned bright red and fumbled with the device. She sent something back. What did she send?

She didn't know. Her sent message was immediately dissolved by the ether as the entire world narrowed to the response she got back. 

I love you. I'm here for you no matter what okay? 

A feeling Melody had never felt towards anyone else rushed over her without relent. Time distended and came apart. Church came and went as an afterthought. The ensuing day was consumed by her friend's care and patience. Their...encouragement. 

"I can't wait to see you tomorrow! We're gonna have a smorgasbord of hugs!" She remembered that her friend really liked the word "smorgasbord" and had very deliberately gone out of her way to use it. 



Sadly no such thing happened the next day. Neither of them was brave enough to do it in public. They talked. They bonded. Her friend joined the drama club just to spend time with her. Occasionally when a girl flirted with her, her friend would jokingly say "sorry, they're taken" or even "this one is mine already." Of course her friend said the same thing about themselves being Melody's, but those didn't stick as much. Melody...belonged. she was wanted. 

Nobody had ever really wanted her before. It was wonderful. 

At some point mere days after that Sunday morning they became partners, too. In a funny kind of afterthought conversation that started with her friend joking about having been "friendzoned" and becoming genuinely loving and soothing when Melody became apologetic over it. At the end they asked each other "so...are we a thing now?" and collectively shrugged and answered the question with "I guess we are." They still treated that first text exchange as the day the relationship started though. It was an easier date to remember for anniversaries. 

The year came and went. Melody had her own crush explained: that she went to dances with girls, attending a catholic boys' high school herself, specifically to spend time with her friend. That her interest in that friend's life and history was different and more intimate and intense than any similar interests she had in her other friends. The way she committed to memory anything which she learned brought her friend happiness. The way she would occasionally go far longer without stuttering when having low-energy conversations with them one on one, possibly because those interactions were so relaxing to her and made her feel so safe. The idea that her friend had figured out Melody's own crush before her, and yet taken so long to figure out she was trans, amused them both greatly. 

Melody knew that she had very intentionally dropped hints of decreasing ambiguity on the subject for a long time before her friend's breakthrough. The specifics eluded her now. They seemed...almost unimportant, now that they had finally achieved their purpose. 

The year went on. She gave her partner her first kiss. One time two girls asked if they were bffs and exploded into fawning delight when they answered yes. After they had left her partner turned chuckling to face her and asked, "do you think if we said we were dating they would like, explode or something?" At the final cast party of the year the two trapezed the lawn arm in arm and then spent a while cuddling on a couch. 

On graduation day she grew furious when she saw her partner's father in attendance. He had not been invited and his presence would ruin their mood (which, of course, it had). The ceremony came and went bizarrely quickly. She felt there were important landmarks of the year that had been "skipped" somehow. The last tournament that video game club held, where Mane had come in first, led to victory by a behemoth crafted specifically to defeat the former champion's ace mon out of pure, petty spite. The senior retreat, where she lost her nerve coming out only for them to stand and finish the last sentence for her ("everyone, meet my girlfriend~"). The standing ovation the two of them got as they held and nuzzled her. 



That Christmas, they exchanged gifts: Each was given a plushie of their partner's champion creature from that first match. A black fox with colored rings on its tail for Melody, and a spiky penguin for her partner. 



The affini loomed ever nearer. Humanity was not going to win the war, that much was certain. It was almost impossible to find any properly documented statements from reliable sources which detailed a single affini casualty. Seeing her partner's family situation grow ever more dire as their uncle's company strained against the incoming death of capitalism hurt Melody's heart. Once the affini came...they could be free. Free from her parents, from the catholics, from even the gravity of Gisk. Out in space they could be...pets. Loved and cared for. 

Her partner came out one semester into college. They hadn't and couldn't decide on a name, but she was a trans girl too now and asked Melody to call her Ser for the time being, like some older texts would call a lady knight. Melody was happy to oblige. The process came and went with Ser's usual happy-go-lucky decisiveness. One day a friend asked her if-seeing as she was super into art and stories of lesbians, disinterested in sex out of a disdain for using certain parts of her body, and would be okay with waking up a girl-they might be trans. Within an hour they were experimenting with "she/her" pronouns and in under a day Ser decided she was a girl. 

Compared to the process that Melody's identity had undergone, it was practically a speedrun. The speed and confidence with which Ser could address herself harkened back to that easy, unmasked pureness of self which had first garnered Melody's affection. That quality of hers was steadily slinking away though. As her father became ever more overbearing, her mental health suffered for it, and her schoolwork suffered for THAT, further driving her father's hand over her throat, Ser became more and more guarded and bitter. 

After their second semester, Ser learned hypnosis. The two had lots of fun with it. Ser gave Melody kitty ears once, and a trigger that allowed her to tell the truth unburdened by the shackles of her trauma another time. For about a month, this new power brought back the Ser that Melody had fallen in love with. She took care of Melody in gentler ways than her family ever had, she listened when her parents wouldn't, she-

November of their second year together was gone. Or-she was in October one moment and December the next? 

That made sense even though it shouldn't have. Their third semester at school happened. Thanks to her father's help, Ser was forced to switch to a psychiatrist she hated. Thanks to that guy's help, Ser's health hit rock bottom and her grades did the same. Her father became even more involved. Through a Herculean feat of determination, Melody pulled her performance up during their fourth semester-but it wasn't enough. She had to drop out. 

Through this all, Melody could only watch. Ser became increasingly unresponsive to offers to help her. She was there for Melody at the drop of a hat, as she always was, but she grew angry sometimes. Never for Melody needing help, or being distant herself-she was struggling at the time too-but she had outbursts. 

Their fourth semester ended. Ser was forced to move in with her father and do labor under the Greshul family's company. She was terrible at it but persisted for lack of another choice. The stress built even more rapidly than before. Ser's father had her commuting to another planet some days, and the other side of this one on others. Ser became quicker and quicker to lose her temper, always swiftly apologetic the instant she realized she had hurt Melody but always simmering afterwards. 

After an event that-

Ser exploded at her twice in the same week. Melody had had enough. She loved Ser! She wanted Ser to be happy! 

Ser wasn't healthy for her. Their attachment to Melody wasn't healthy for them either. Melody no-contacted Ser for a weekend (not that Ser didn't try to break it) and made the difficult decision to dump her. According to their friends, the impact was disastrous. Ser didn't have an appetite for a week and cried herself to sleep at least twice. It hurt her to hear, but it was unavoidable. Slowly, months later, the two began to speak again. For a while it seemed like things would go back to normal. Ser moved in with her stepsister. That failed. She moved in with her family again. 



The affini were imminent. Planets were being taken, the Terran Accord didn't have long left. Melody stood before Ser, face set with determination. Each of the two wore a gift from the other: an upside down cross hung from Melody's neck and a black ring adorned Ser's left pointer finger. It was windy out. Six cubes hung from each girl's waist. Ser wore a blue coat. Blood and rusted iron encased her right arm. A scar ran across her neck. 



"I can't do this Melody. You know that." Ser's eyes were a duller green than usual, but they were speckled with intense splotches and speckles of red. "If you go, you'll have to say goodbye to me. Forever." 

"One last match then!" Melody cried, anguished. A big, thick, furry cape hung from Ser's shoulders. It was black and blue and white. It moved occasionally as what seemed like skeletal arms without hands and incomplete human skulls bubbled up out of it squirming before receding back inside of it. The whole thing was gastly to look at and it seemed to weigh on Ser's throat like an anchor. The cape loosed always a constant but dissonant song of pained moans and accusatory growls at a volume just low enough not to impede conversation. "If I win you have to come with me!" 

"Fine!" Ser growled. She crossed her arms and stared at Melody. "But if you lose you have to make your affini masters take away all your memories of me." Ser's voice was cruel and cutting. The lovingly star of warmth and soft affection seemed to be well and truly dead. Wind whipped at them both and Melody stumbled; Ser did not. 

"Why!" Melody cried. Ser narrowed her eyes into an enraged squint. 

"You'll be happier without them, won't you? That's all those creatures seem to care about." Ser took a cube in one hand and crushed it. No light show, no vibrant colors. The cube fell in pieces to the floor. Gasses poured out of the pieces and coalesced into some kind of ghost.

So Ser was using the same team as when they first met? 

"I've learned a lot since Mane almost swept me." Melody crushed one of her own. A bloodstain appeared on the ground and widened under a humanoid shadow with crimson claws, foxlike features, a wide fanged grin, and a long bushy mane jumped out and landed in a combat ready stance. The stain vanished and the shadow became a fully realized beast. "You're not going to beat me with the same team." 

"We'll see about that." The ghost moved to charge up some kind of energy blast. Melody's creature lunged, flames like the night sky engulfing all three of the claws fully extended of out each its paws. The fox viciously swung down on its prey with both hands and vivisected it instantly. The ghost split apart and was gone before its killer hit the ground. 

"Not too shabby, eh?" Melody teased. Maybe if she could find some aspect of the person she loved…

Ser said nothing. She crushed another cube. A thin knight made of wedding dress cloth, with sandals for feet, a white organic head shaped like a helmet, and a blade in each of its thin and paperwhite but ostensibly humanlike wrists and elbows, came spinning out and landed on its feet. It threw itself into a low stance and extended the curved swords in its arms. 

"Crap!" Melody recalled her fox and replaced it with a headless suit of possessed armor. This gave Ser's knight an opportunity to attack. 

It lunged for hers, the curved sword retracting at the same time a daggerlike blade jutted out from each wrist. The same black fire as the fox's, gotted with stars, engulfed those blades as the living knight plunged them into the form of the deceased one. Melody's suit of armor screamed and its health bar dropped to near zero. Fuck, it wasn't fast enough to move again without being finished off first!



"Dullahand, back-"

"Interception." The cloth knight's eyes turned dark purple. Dullahand's cube formed around it but not fast enough to stop one last pulse of dark energies. Her knight's healthbar dropped to zero and he was beaten already. 

That was alright. They still had five more each. 

"Higherarch!" Melody crushed a cube. The topmost side flipped up into the air, matrixed outwards into a network of hexagons, swelled and then popped. In its wake was left a massive queen hornet with a network of dozens of of hexagonal silos, literally resembling anti-air turrets, around its gigantic stinger. "Queen strike!" The beast's horrible wings buzzed and it pointed its stinger at the cloth knight. A beam of energy shot from its needle and struck the target, followed by a horrible barrage of thousands of smaller wasps swarming it. The knight was downed in seconds. 

"Hrmmph." Ser glared at Melody and lifted up another cube. The whispers and movements and weight of Ser's cape all seemed to be increasing. 

"We don't have to do this!" Melody cried out. "I want to help you-THEY can help you!" Ser wasn't listening. She crushed the cube and two shards swirled around each other in the air as a giant egg appeared between them. They stabbed into it. The egg shattered and a gigantic eagle surged screaming forth from its center. 

"Sky Crusher." The immense bird took to the air and dropped into a dive. Its body rocketed down into-nay, through-Higherarch and tore a gigantic hole in the creature's center. The enormous bee sailed gently down to earth and landed with a horribly prolonged thud. The hornet queen's cube reclaimed it. Melody felt trapped. 

"I'm not leaving without you!" She summoned her old thunder tiger from its cube. The eagle repeated the same attack and badly damaged him, but succumbed to the thunder shout that Melody's tiger retaliated with. 

Three left on Ser's team. She could do this. "Please! You don't HAVE to fight!" Melody pleaded. Her heart hurt. Ser hurt. The cape bubbled more, it bubbled faster. "It can all just be okay, I promise!" Ser didn't answer. She crushed the next cube. 

This one released another bird. It stood some seven feet tall, bright red with a matching martial arts bandanna and fighting spurs literally built into the feet on the ends of its its long raptorial legs. Ser roared. The bird screeched and jumped into the air, coming down and smashing Melody's beast into the ground by its face. The tiger went limp instantly. Its healthbar...hit zero. Melody recalled it. Crap. 

Her fox would be similarly devastated by this foe, as would Pengi. She took a leap of faith and crushed the cube housing her last option. An enormous ghost jellyfish phased out of the cube and stared down its adversary. 

"Tidal Wave!" Much like Pengi, the beast gathered energy into a sphere of brightly colored water. If it could just-

The bird moved faster. It performed the same diving strike as the eagle had, and despite its incorporeal form the impact left her ghostly companion devastated. Its health dropped to just over an eigth, handily in the red. As the ghost screamed in agony its ball of water blasted out into a terrent which hit Ser's bird like a truck. The beast ragdolled and was sent hundreds of feet through the air into the distance. 

Needless to say, that one was no longer in the equation. 

Only two left. 

This was it. Ser still had her two greatest monsters, including one which had once run roughshod over her entire team. Ser crushed a cube. 

The earth roared. A mountain rumbled and shuttered out of it and it splintered and cracked and shattered under the cavernous bellowing of the great monster inside of it. A massive skeletal tyrannosaurus rex towered over both human combatants, its half-fossilized body encased in a full suit of stone armor. Its eyes-their bloodshot form the only remaining organs of the monster's body-glared down hatefully at Melody's servant. 

"Tidal Wave!" The ghost launched their attack. A buffet of wind and sand cut down on the blast of water before it hit the behemoth's body and shaved off an eighth of its health despite an elemental vulnerability to the attack. Ser's cape was moaning at a much higher volume now, almost louder than the sandy winds conjured up by her monstrous penultimate beast. Ser glared at Melody. Shadows began to encroach on the ground and sky. Everything fell away. The green in Ser's eyes was gone. 

They were a furious red. 

"Crush Consume," ordered not Ser but the symphony of death in her cape. The monster thundered forward of hill-smashingly heavy steps and snatched Melody's ghost in its jaws. The creature started to wail in pain but was silenced almost instantly. The stone giant's jaws ripped it in half. It dissipated into vapor. What damage it had inflicted on the beast was gone. 

Shit. Melody crushed the first cube that she had that match. The fox came back out. It was a poor play, intended to peak Ser's interest. To appeal to that playful showboat Melody fell in love with that day six years ago. 

Her cries fell on stone ears. 

"Final Bellows," the cape groaned in agony. Ser's dinosaur roared and sacrificed a third of its health to bombard her fox with wave after wave of blasting, awful energy. Her fox lost all its health but one and became afflicted with spiritual dread which would damage it at the end of the turn. 

"Elmon's Saint!" Cried out Melody. The fox bravely dashed on all fours to its foe, ascended the veritable mountain of its hide, and spewed spectral blue flames in its face. The beast roared as its eyes caught fire. Both opponents took residual damage. Ser's survived, but Melody's didn't. The fox fell gracelessly out of the air back into its cube. 

"Thank you," Melody whispered. This monster was weak to water and the burn would not only help her wear it down, but also weaken its most potent attacks. Pengi had countermeasures for Offscalbadalb and an innate immunity to poisoning which made it a far tougher foe for Mane than most. Whatever final measure awaited her after this curveball, her faithful friend could save her. 

Pengi could save the girl she loved. 

"Please, Pengi," she whispered as she lifted Pengi's cube in front of her and kissed it. She felt...hopeful. things were bleak, but her faithful old friend had her back. She could rely on him. "Come on! Beat this bastard and SAVE SER'S SOUL!" She crushed the cube and her regal first warrior emerged proud and strong. He stood defiantly before his much bigger enemy, staring up into its eyes with such determination that it proved infectious. 

At the sight of her hero's back, Melody was filled with determination. She dug in her heels. 

"Pengi! Hydrus Surge!" Pengi crossed its wings in an X over his face. Water flew in from all around into its body, which lit up with neon blue light. A glow enveloped Pengi's entire frame and he turned his wings so they formed a funnel. 

A blasting cyllinder of neon blue water galloped out of Pengi's beak at rushing speed and impacted the center of his target. The t-rex screamed and stumbled backwards as the water chipped and broke and burrowed at its armor, punched a hole clean through it, ripped bits and pieces away from the shockwave of its merciless force. The beast's health dropped to a sixteenth.

Yes! A critical hit!

"RRRRGH!" Ser bellowed. The back of the sky creeped up her body, enveloped her. She was limbs and hair and the cape and a single glowing red eye like a demon's. "Cliff Collapse!" The stone abomination roared a mountainside into being and smashed it apart with its tail. Shrapnel came flying at Pengi, who braced himself-

None of them struck him. The attack missed. The damage from the beast's burn finished it off and its body fossilized completely in place, disintegrating in seconds into dust carried away by its own breeze. Ser's cape went quiet. She seemed to stumble forwards out of the darkness, without the cape, back in the clothes she wore during their first meeting. 

Melody ran forward but Pengi blocked her with a wing. She leaned over it, hand outstretched. 

"Ser! Please! Ser, take my hand!" The darkness approached. Ser flickered back and forth between the Ser who she loved and the one who had hurt her. 

The one she needed to help. 

"Ser! Please! You can come with me!" Ser looked at her. She was scared, alone, loving, confused, her eyes were beautiful and wide and green like grass and glossy. 

"One...more?" Ser asked. It was how Ser had proposed this final duel. Melody caught her composure again. She nodded. The darkness receded. They were in a park. 

"Mhm. Gladly." Birds chirped. Bugs buzzed. Melody watched her ex get into position and a feeling of nostalgic joy gripped her. 

Ser looked at the cube in her hand. Melody smiled warmly. "Is it Mane? Your Flammegon? I can't wait, when we're florets we'll be able to do this every day!" 

"When. Yeah…" Ser's eyes darkened. She crushed the cube. 

Yet another beast burrowed out of the ground. This one was a strange chimeric abomination of a tiger, a shark, and a bipedal dragon. It had gills, a torpedo-like face lined with rows and rows of teeth, and bat-like wings on its arms that could, fully contracted, fold into finds.

Ser flickered. Once, twice. The angry one took over. She glared at Melody. Pengi puffed up defiantly, daring Ser to even try and hurt his master. 

"Adam." The beast roared. That must have been its name. This was the monster Ser had specifically bred and trained to be able to topple every single possible variant of the former club champion's ace monster at the time. 

The darkness flodded over everything. The park was gone. It swirled around Ser. A fire ignited somehere behind her. She threw her hands over her head and brought them down to her sides. The darkness enveloped her face, except a single bloodred orb gleaming hatefully from where her eye should have been. Clouds formed above Adam and whirled into the eye of a hurricane. Winged lances sailed in from nowhere and-sshhhlunk! Embedded themselves in Ser's back. She cackled angrily as more and more flew in, impaled her, as more and more opened puncture wounds in her back and shoulders and arms. Her body twitched in a manic fashion as they pincushioned it. Then, the darkness enveloped her. She was...a shape. A badly impaled, bleeding shape. Countless arms erupted from her back and seizes the spears, trying to pull them out...or, possibly, even to force them in deeper. 

"Ser…"

Ser looked at Melody. Her "eye" flared up and a toothy grin opened in the cavernous wall that was her face. "Let your shrill cries resonate with my anger! Scion of Satan, bare your teeth at the sky and bring Terra death under your heels!" Ser raised her arms skyward, spears and extra appendages included, "Shatter the stars and teach your Father fear! By my hate, my sorrow, and ALL MY ANGER! SUNDER HEAVEN AND MAKE GOD BLEED! ADAM, TRANSFORM!" A crimson lightning bolt lashed down and struck Adam continuously. Adam fell to its knees, screaming in pain. It tried to stand back up but even as its clawed feet punched craters into the ground and shattered rocks the lightning got brighter and angrier and its screams got louder and-

"AaaaaAAAAAAAAA!" Screamed Adam and Ser in unison. The lightning was absorbed into its body. Adam flashed, then-

A pillar of bloodred fire erupted out of the earth. Two branches shot out of the sides to make an upside down cross. Adam screamed and became a silhouette inside the inferno as the heat melted its body. Its jaw became massive and misshapen, its wings drooped and hardened into scythes of bone protruding from the wrong sides of its arms, spikes grew from its thicker, more muscular body. With one last scream the fire went out.

Terror gripped Melody. 

Was…

Was this all that remained of the woman she loved?

"ADAM! CRUSH HIM!" The monster sprinted, earth shattering and splashing like water under its hideously overgrown talons. Adam was upon Pengi in seconds-



Melody woke up on the Crest. She woke up screaming.



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