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Sep. 29th, 2008

Title: The Uberwold Student Uprising
Author: dangerousdame
Pairing & Fandoms:  Angua- Discworld/Combeferre- Les Miserables
Rating: T
Spoilers:. Well, if you don't already know how the revolution in Les Mis turns out...and there are a few spoilers for Angua's backstory in The Fifth Elephant.
Warnings: Implied sex and (with one character) suggestions of incestuous motives.  Also, some jumping back and forth in time, so danger for the easily confused.
Summary: In the days before the collapse of the Empire, Vimes wasn't the only one to spend time behind the barricades...

"How the world moves!  The woman who mocks our ideals and says that our world of perfect freedom will never come now chooses the freedom to die beside us!"

"Who said I was dying?"  Angua kept her eyes fixed on the horizen, over the walls of the barricade.  It might have been a pretty picture, all things considered- fair-haired warrior women were always crowd favorites- if not for the sense that this one wasn't just posing.  She was out for blood.

"You said it yourself.  Have you already forgetten?"  Combeferre reached out a hand to her, but she ignored it.

"I said you would die.  I think you could say I'm a bit different."

"You have my prayers with you, in any case.  It would be a shame for you to fall in the name of a cause you care nothing for."

Angua did not respond.

***

"You're all fools," Angua laughed.  "My family alone would take your whole band in one bight!"

She was an odd addition to the cafe group, even more so than her sister had been.  They were all sons and daughters of the
nobility, of course, but it was the minority of the upper class who were still human after so many generations.  They would be the first to tell you they were different from the rest- they cared about the working classes, and wanted to end the tyranny of the undead rule!  The group was comprised of men who were handsome, intelligent (though lacking in common sense), and idealistic- words that, to Angua, pretty much spelled 'doomed.'

"Come now," said the bookish one.  "If you truly had no interest in the prospect of revolution, you would hardly spend your days with us."

"Someone has to look after little Elsie."

Angua's sister had become quite the self-proclaimed revolutionary, which was understandable- she had all the downsides to the aristocracy's lycanthropy (headaches when the moon was full, a temper described as animalistic) and none of the benifits (such as actually being able to turn into a wolf.)  Elsie gave Angua a good excuse to spend time at the cafe, being weak and in need of protection, and was trusted enough to vouch for her sister to the rest of the rebels.

Angua told herself that she wouldn't have gone on her own.  The revolution was a lost cause, no matter how much she sympathized, or how many amature philosphers caught her eye.

She exchanged a meaningful glance with the one who did, anyway.


***

Angua sat beside Combeferre, counting the boxes of bullets the rebels had.  He knew what she was thinking, for he'd thought it himself- it wasn't enough.  Silver bullets had been hard and expensive to make, and their supply would necessitate each shot hitting one of the undead.  He had never held a gun before in his life...

Angua probably hadn't, either, but that wasn't much of a concern.  She could take the vampires easily with tooth and claw, and the werewolves would have as much luck killing her as she'd have with them.

In a way, it was almost comforting.

***

Angua eagerly pressed Combeferre against the wall of her bedroom, nipping gently at his skin.  "Say it again," she whispered.

"The good must be innocent, Angua!  We should channel all our passions into the revolution, caring nothing for our lives while we serve our cause! "  Here he paused, grinning in a manner unfamiliar to him.  "And I honestly don't care."

***

"I don't believe you, Angua.  You must have faith in our principles!  It is not only sisterly love which makes you take Elsie's place beside us on the barricades- or have all my speeches and theories to you meant nothing?"

She shrugged.

"They meant something- I fell for you, didn't I?"

He sighed, adjusting his glasses.

"If only my words could move all of the ruling classes this way..."

"Well, it did have a bit of rebellion in it.  If screwing the daughter of the enemy isn't subversive,  don't know what is."  Her tone was matter of fact, not accusatory.

"Angua, how could you say such a thing?  Are you suggesting that I-"

"Look, forget it.  It doesn't matter, anyway."

***

"Oh, dear sister..."

Angua, her body covered by a sheet, stared back at Wolfgang coldly.

"It's my business.  I don't give a damn about your ideas of purity- and I don't interfere when you bring literal bitches to bed."

Wolfgang sneered, something he'd probably been practicing in the mirror.  He was only a bully with delusions of grandure, no matter what uniform he wore, but Angua was still glad that Combeferre had left the house before her brother came home.

"It seems," he said as if he hadn't heard her, "I have two utterly disgusting sisters.  It's bad enough the revolutionary human trash Elsie gets mixed up with, tainted as she is, but you!  You could have been at the forefront of my army, and you throw it all away to dally with lesser races!"

Don't bait him, she thought...

"Jealous?" Angua asked before she could stop herself.

"Of what?  The shame you've brought our family?"

"Of the fact that I'm stronger than you, and can get away with this sort of thing?  Or...are you jealous of him?"

Wolfgang seemed about to strike her for a moment- an action which would not have turned out well for him had he done so- then smiled.

"Of course.  Just ask little Elsie how much I love my sisters!"


***

Combeferre sat down beside Angua, absently taking her hand.  He was rather glad she'd taken the place of Elsie (who Angua said couldn't make it), whatever sense of honor it had been that drover her to do so.  It was a moment before he realized she was crying.

"Angua?  It's a bit early to begin mourning us..."

She shook her head.

"No, it's not! You're all going to die, and there's nothing I can do to stop it, no matter how many I take down!  This is senseless, and I'm going right into the middle of it."

She touched his cheek gently with her hand.

"If you do survive...and I don't find you...will any of this have meant anything?"

Combeferre made an attempt at joviality.

"Well, at least you've sealed my preference for unstable, educated women.  And I?"

She smiled sadly.

"Oh, you've left a mark.  From now on, I'll make it a rule to fall for gentle moralists with more ethical philosophies than are good for them."

She turned away from him, breaking down again.  It hurt to watch someone like Angua cry- it felt almost unnatural.  Someone like her didn't come apart this easily, but the evidence was there in front of him and he wasn't one to start doubting scientific data.  Was it good to know someone was weeping for him, and would do so after he had fallen?  Life with Angua would undoubtedly not have been paradise, but it was sad they hadn't had more time.  Did she shed tears for the days they'd never spend together, the books they'd never argue about, the character flaws they'd never have time to learn?

"I think I might love you, if it is any consolation," he said.

"Thanks.  But it's more than that- I know I wouldn't have come in different circumstances, and after today I know I should have."

She picked up a rifle.

"Elsie was killed."

Combeferre looked at her, then put a hand on her shoulder.  The sound of beasts began to draw near, and Angua raised her gun.

Comments

( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
demoerin
Oct. 1st, 2008 09:05 am (UTC)
"Well, at least you've sealed my preference for unstable, educated women. And I?"
She smiled sadly.
"Oh, you've left a mark. From now on, I'll make it a rule to fall for gentle moralists with more ethical philosophies than are good for them."

And this is why I love random crossover pairing comms. Some weird pairings just end up working so well!

And the ending exchange is just beautiful.
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )