Who: Peter, Drax, Scott, Bruce, Carol, Gamora What: Entering the soulstone When: Today Rating: Green
Vormir was a desolate, barren planet, in the very center of the Celestial existence.
The keeper was a new one, bound to his role like Red Skull before him. There was no greeting, no questions -- it was obvious why they arrived. No one came to Vormir for anything other than the soul stone, which had come back to its rightful place.
Peter asked questions, trying to get the keeper to say something, anything about how to get someone out of the stone, but the keeper said nothing. It appeared that its role was to show them the cliff and then fade into the background. Soon, it was simply the five of them, the wind slowly curling dust and ash around their feet.
Bruce and Scott were the only ones here who had memories of the time heist back home and Bruce did not have a good feeling about being on Voromir. He knew that Natasha hadn’t survived the trip here and was afraid that this was going to end badly. They had not planned to come here and he knew that whatever was responsible for the beacon that drew them here could not have good intentions.
“I think we need to go back to Earth,” he said. “See if we can get a better translation from the beacon and formulate a real plan. This planet is dangerous. It’s where Natasha sacrificed herself for the soul stone.”
Somehow, he didn’t expect his suggestion to be taken seriously, but he felt like the adult in the room who needed to advise caution.
While this planet was one more scenic than others, it was also the place that Thanos brought Gamora to, to kill her for an Infinity Stone. His friends became his second family, and losing Gamora was a grievous loss for all of them, especially Quill. To make matters worse, this was also where one of the Avengers family lost one of their own, a woman that he didn't meet until recently. Even the air around them felt heavy and ominous, and the keeper disappearing so quickly without a word didn't help matters. He was on edge even before Bruce spoke.
"This puny man who becomes an impressively stronger green man is correct," Drax said, and the only feeling he could equate it too was the aftermath of tribal wars on his own world. That was before Thanos killed his wife and daughter. Thanos ruined everything, everywhere, for everyone. "This world has already taken its toll in blood and tears. Being here is like standing next to a funeral pyre."
Scott was sort of wishing that “Not It”s could be applied cross-dimensionally, because this planet was giving him about as many misgivings as the others. Not that he had a preponderance of planets to compare it to, but given the choice between this and Pluto? Pluto, every time. It might not have had a breathable atmosphere, but it also didn’t have Dollar Store Grim Reaper.
He glanced over his shoulder, checking to make sure the wispy, cloaked figure hadn’t returned, before addressing the group. “We don’t want the soul stone, though. Right? We want to get someone out of the stone? Maybe if someone climbs up the cliff--no, that’s stupid, ignore me.” At least he was spitballing. This place was Bad News, sure, but if they could eliminate the non-lethal ideas (the good ones, or Scott’s) while they were here it could save them some time.
This whole planet gave her the creeps. The thing was that there wasn’t anything for her to beat up, or to punish. It was just devoid of all of that. Carol was mostly watching, hoping that something popped up that did need a whooping just in case. That didn’t seem like it was going to happen though. This whole thing just seemed to suck any joy out of anything. And she didn’t like the sacrifice part, not one bit.
“I’m more of a punching and kicking sort of a gal, but Bruce is right. We should regroup and figure out what to do. There has to be a loophole or a way around this place. We just have to make a plan.” They had gotten good at those, right? She didn’t want to think about anyone else jumping, even if that was some kind of weird alternate dimension fever dream. “I mean it seems likely that both the stone and Gamora are here, we just.. Can’t see them. So we have to figure out how we can. Right?”
Vormir sounded like vomit which was what Peter desperately wanted to do. From the moment they landed, he’d felt disgusted and horrified and it was bringing back so many painful memories.
When Drax spoke about it being a funeral pyre, Peter had to agree. It was horrifying, standing here at the very edge, looking down into the place where he’d lost Gamora, not once but apparently twice. The memories of her fading in front of his eyes, trying to find her when he went into the soul stone..
Everyone’s words made sense really. They should get reinforcements. They should go back. They shouldn’t be here, where they were woefully unprepared.
And yet there was no way Peter could leave, not while there was a possibility he could find her, however minute, and he realized just having that tiny hope? Meant that he would do everything in his power to get her back.
Taking a deep breath, he steadied his thoughts and reached up, turning his mask on. The others were still talking amongst each other, and he didn’t know if they even noticed what he was about to do, but he didn’t care.
A leap of faith, that’s what it was all about.
So he jumped headfirst, his entire mind, soul, being focused on Gamora, memories of her, snippets of their life together, not even bothering to put his boots on, not until he knew he was going to hit the ground and that this was a stupid plan.
Only he didn’t hit the ground.
Before he realized it, he was back on the ground, coughing obscenely. Flashes of light were playing behind his eyes, and he had a vague sense that he’d been somewhere that he’d seen before. That all escaped when he realized he wasn’t lying there alone.
There, right next to him, was the only person he’d loved more than life itself.
“Oh shit,” he whispered to himself before scrambling up to all fours before reaching a hand out tentatively to her. “Gamora…”
Gamora’s time in the Soulworld had been hazy, plagued by visions of different timelines as well as an overwhelming sense of disconnect from any kind of reality. Thanos had been there at one point, she had been a child - the size she’d been when he had come for her people and taken her away, in fact. For all she knew she was dead and this was her eternity; she had scrambled, suffered, screamed herself raw trying to call out for help but never thought it had actually reached anyone.
And her hold was weakening. She felt it, soon she was going to be strands of energy trapped in this orange nightmare. And then, a great big commotion disturbed the peace of this realm, and Gamora had waded through the haze in her mind to be present when she saw who it was.
“Peter. I’m here. I’m alive!”
Peter choked back a gasp and reached for her, only to look on in horror as his hand went through her. She was there, and yet she wasn’t and that was more than his brain could handle. “No...no no no no no,” he chanted, trying desperately to touch her when suddenly, it was like his longing and desire manifested into something more and he found her arms were gripped under his hands.
He could tell she was saying something, her lips were moving, but he couldn’t hear what she was saying. All he knew was how he was feeling, and how in that very moment, if there was a way he could give his very soul for hers, he would, and happily.
And it was with that in mind that he leaned down and pressed his lips against hers, hurt inside that he couldn’t feel her lips until all of a sudden he could. In that kiss, he tried to convey to her how much he’d missed her, how lost he’d been without her, how much she meant to him. He tried to share their story, their history, everything to her.
But most of all, he wanted her to know how much he loved her.
Seeing as Gamora had felt pretty intangible for quite a long time now, she knew better than to hope merely reaching for Peter would undo that. She was a soul, after all, and who knew what had happened to her body at the bottom of that cliff.
It filled her with anger, however, to see the despair in his face when he couldn’t reach for her in turn. It spurred her to action, grunting desperately as if wishing herself corporeal was even realistic but none of this was, not really so why not reach for the unlikely? Gamora still gasped as Peter’s touch materialized around her arms. She looked up at him, frantic and confused. The first time she had been touched in a long, long time and thus the first time she really felt real. Gamora tensed against his kiss for a moment, then melted into it. Anything to be real, be away from that place. And the longer the kiss lasted the more tangible she felt. Pretty soon Gamora had her grip around Peter’s forearms so tight it might just hurt. But she wasn’t thinking about that.
This was what he missed. This is what he had flown across the galaxy for.
For Gamora. And for this moment.
Feeling her melt against him spurred him on further, and he gave her one of the most passionate kisses he’d ever done, pouring himself into her, his hands almost frantic against her back, her side,wherever he could touch her.
“I love you,” he whispered, practically choking on the thick emotion in his throat. “I love you so fucking much, I miss you, I need you,” he continued, punctuating every statement with another kiss. He murmured, not caring if she said anything back and just as he felt he couldn’t get anything else out, he felt a strange sensation, a wind gusting around.
And just as suddenly as he was on the ground, he was standing back amongst his friends, Gamora draped in his arms, unconscious.
There was no explaining this but hey - why worry about details?
“Back to the ship,” Peter said gruffly, trying to clear his throat. There was no sense answering any questions right now when he had no answers...all he knew was she was here again, and he wasn’t going to let her go.