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So, following c'est what's example, I tried my hand at writing dialogue tags for a pesterlog! I ended up doing the Terezi--> Vriska conversation from Alterniabound (the Past Karkat: Wake Up flash), and, damn it was hard. This is my first piece of fiction work in literally 10 years, so....gosh. I'd love feedback! Anyway, here it is:

>Be Vriska

You consider, for a moment, being Vriska, but dismiss the idea because it is patently absurd. You cannot imagine for a moment being that terrible.

>Talk to Vriska

You should probably check on her, though. She’s been glued to her labtop, tapping away furiously since the discovery of the humans.  It is highly suspicious, and someone should investigate! You will have to be subtle. Despite not being particularly canny, she is a notoriously difficult defendant to pin down.

“Hey, if it isn’t Miss Moneybags!” Vriska says as you approach, turning from her computer. “How are you enjoying your fabulous wealth? If it
was me, I would feel ashamed to get rich that way. By having a secret admirer just hand it to me like that, rather than earning it.” She puts a hand to her chest. “That’s just me though!”

You wish you were surprised. You really do. But you are not. “Your jealousy is ridiculous!” you tell her. “Nobody cares about stockpiling meaningless treasure other than you.” You lean hard on your cane. “Will you grow up?”
 
Vriska sprawls backward in her chair, grinning. “I guess you’re right. I’m just giving you a hard time!” This is true. It is the only thing she has ever given you! You award her a couple of verapresentation points. “You know, like the good old days,” she says. “Don’t you miss our friendly rivalry sometimes?”

“Friendly??” You strike all verapresentation points for gross inability to interpret events. All of them. Including all future points! This defendant cannot be trusted. 

Vriska shrugs. “Sure! So to speak. Anyway, just so you know, you’re not the only one who can play a chumpy boy, and manipulate him into doing what you want. In fact, I’m not even going to use any powers! Just to prove it’s no big deal.”

All of a sudden, you miss Karkat. You miss him so much it settles around your bloodpusher and fills your throatstem with bile.  You can hear him across the lab, shouting at Sollux, but you miss the Karkat from a couple hours ago, the Karkat—you had plans to show him Prospit. Hell, you even miss the game. You don’t want to do this anymore, to deal with plans made by a super-powered Vriska. You don’t want to

You barely resist pressing your hands to your eyes. This is giving you a headache. “What the hell are you talking about?”

Vriska, on the other hand, is laughing. You take a deep breath: she’s leaning her chin on her hand—the one that used to be hot-gunpowder-silver—and that still unsettles, that she’s whole again—and smirking. Her stupid eyes glitter behind her stupid glasses. “You’ll see!” she crows. “Oops, I mean, smell.”

You hate her. Platonically.

“Isn’t it a bummer you never died?” she asks, and looks up at you, something gone soft around her eyes, less sharp in their creases.

You stiffen. You feel as if someone has pulled all of your skin and snapped it like a rubber band. She has no right. “No,” you hiss. That, at least, is easy. Something tugs at the corners of your eyes—Karkat—Gamzee—a painted room—but you take a sharp breath and it clears. Your head pounds, and your hands clench on the head of your cane.

Vriska blinks at you. “Oh well!” She grins again, quick, and your nose wrinkles. “I hereby declare our chumpy impressionable boy-off to be…..Oooooooon!” She flips her hair and turns back to her labtop, hunching over the screen, like she can stop you from smelling it that way.

Like you were going to try. Her game is stupid! The legislaterator declares the defendemmed completely retarded. “Ugh,” you mutter to her back. “Why are you so crazy?”

You turn to leave, and three steps away, your headache blooms. It peels and peels and peels, like petals falling down across your eyeballs and through your nose, if petals weighed, if they were heavy, and you know this. You’re embarrassed you didn’t recognize it earlier. You thought, maybe, your powers were gone without god tier—but your nose and mouth fill with colors so quick and fast you think, briefly, like every time, you’re going to choke on them, until they settle, a little, just two streams dripping down your face—you catch lemon-blueberry and licorice and sopor—and then candy-red and the tang of copper and ocean that’s your own blood and—oh. Shit.

The visions pass, but the aftermath is still thrumming in the bones of your face, buzzing up your horns. The knowledge trying to find a place, you think. Trying to find a way to settle. You touch a hand to your jaw, absently, and wonder if Sollux feels like this, ever, if psiionics have a similar effect. Not that it matters.

You have a human boy to contact.

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July 2012

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