ever_lovin: (Hard Stare)
Ben has been trying his best to deal with the feelings and ghosts his recent visits to Milliways have provoked with little to no affect. He is still plagued by nightmares, and his temper is suffering. Worse yet he can't shake the feeling he ran out on Milliways, but the truth is, the last thing the bar needed was him to turn into Angrir again. The fear is also gnawing on him, and he finds himself wondering if he is going to turn into some sort fo coward now. Was he really that messed up from Angrir? Did Agrir still lurk within him, waiting to return?

He needed help. He needed to know. Thor would be the first guy he should goto since the whole mess was started by his uncle, but things are kind of crazy with the Future Foundation and the Fantastic Four, not to mention the New Avengers, so he needs to stay close. He couldn't disappear for the time it would take to fly to Oaklahoma and Asgard.

Doctor Strange is another possibility, and since Ben had business near Greenwich Village today anyway, why not take care of two birds with one subway token.

Of course as soon as Ben had knocked on Strange's front door he got sucked into some sort of nightmare.

"Sweet Aunt Petunia! Strange ya got'a work on yer interior decorating," he yelled out as he fought with the tentacle that was wrapped around him. He grabbed it and dug his fingers in to get a good grip before pulling and tearing it apart.

"Benjamin! Are you a sight for sore eyes!" Strange called out from inside what appears to be a cocoon of webbing. Two vaguely human shaped tenebrous shadows crouched over the cocoon and hiss at the intrusion. "Or ears I should say rather. Be careful, I believe this is some attack from the Nightmare Realms."

"I'm comin'," Ben calls out before more tentacles come, tentacles that turn to thick vines which remind him of the Slenderman nightmares. He can feel the fear buildings again and he finds himself coughing. His sight is fading too. "Assumin' I can find ya."

The fear is sticky tar sweet and reaches into his heart. He tries to fight it, to be brave, but he finds himself trembling like when he was a kid and fell down the sewers with the rats. He's drowning in the fear and can't find his way out.

A memory brushes his heart then. It's FDR, and it's like he is reaching out to that kid in the sewer, the only thing we have to fear is fear itself—nameless, unreasoning, unjustified terror which paralyzes needed efforts to convert retreat into advance. 
The kid stands and remembers Captain America leading the Allied Forces through the darkness, but the fear pushes back, drowning him again.

Then he hears another bit of broadcast advice. Fear is the mindkiller.

"Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration," he whispers into the tunnels. "I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me." He stands and opens himself to the fear, pulling it in. "And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see it path." Ben opens his eyes to Dr. Stranges' entryway and the paradaemons. "Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain."

He picks the shapeless, tar-skinned pair up and pulls them close before saying, "Boo," and releasing them. They tear and fade as shadows at dawn, and Dr. Strange is left blinking and dazed on the rug in the corner. "You okay Doc?" Ben asks helping him up.

"Yes, I am now. Thanks to you." Strange says recovering himself. "May I help you with something?"

Ben dusts off some imagined dirt off Strange's housecoat. "Nah, I'm good. Just thought I'd stop by fer Dim Sim if Wong has up for it?"


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Benjamin J Grimm

September 2017

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