knight of wang
ill-advised fantasyworld johnkat arranged marriage fic with no name, part 1 of oh god who knows.

[help me name this fic! luka said to call it ‘lie back and think of troll england’. seebs said to call it ‘bang them together, it looks like they’re kissing!’ and all i can think of is either ‘the limits of bilateral diplomacy’ or ‘general vantas gets hitched’. please, you guys, i know this fic’s mere existence is a sign of my descent into insanity, but i should at least ride that slope with panache.]

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    The last time Karkat had seen this many humans in one place, most of them were dead.

    He was pretty sure a royal banquet ostensibly in his honor wasn’t an appropriate place for battlefield flashbacks, but it was impossible not to draw the connection. Heat and noise. A cacaphony of uniforms. Overwhelming smells. Too many humans, not enough trolls. And just like then, too much depended on convincing people who outranked him that it was their own idea to do the sensible thing. All it lacked was the clatter of musket fire and the thud of the heavy guns.

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General Vantas Gets Hitched, or, The Limits of Bilateral Diplomacy, part 2/?

[so many awesome name suggestions! i decided to go with the excessively long one, because… i dunno… it fits the period or something. it will be tagged General Vantas Gets Hitched, and i’ll go tag the first part in a sec.]

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    He tried to remember exactly what he’d said. He’d gone off his speech. Rambled. Maybe he left out something important. “You’ll be a joke. They’re sneering at you already.”

    “I know!” That was a laugh, goddamn him.

    “So… that’s why you can’t accept,” Karkat finished weakly.

    “No,” John smiled, “that’s why I must accept.” He got up and moved to sit beside Karkat instead of across from him. Wrapped a hand over Karkat’s fist where it lay clenched on his knee. Surprisingly large hand. Surprisingly cool and dry. “I’m sorry, Karkat. I didn’t realize your position was so precarious. Not that I ever planned to refuse, but I’d thought you’d be safe back in Alternia during the engagement. We’ll work out a way for you to stay here until the wedding. We can move up the date. These things can be handled.”

    Karkat stared at him in utter, bewildered disbelief. “Are you actually insane?” Not an insult, but a genuine question.

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General Vantas Gets Hitched, or, The Limits Of Bilateral Diplomacy, 3/?



    “Awfully sorry to have you woken so early,” John said, looking a bit tired himself. “And for this mess.” His gesture took in the round breakfast table, with its crisp white linens, standing awkwardly in the middle of an enormous stone hall like an egg on a boulder. “We’re not used to you yet.”

    “I understand about conducting business during the day,” Karkat said, “but how does it explain the table?”

    “The room, rather. The places where we usually have meals… well, we like windows. This is part of the old fortress, though. The palace was built around it.”

    “It’s fine.” Karkat forked down a few mouthfuls of grilled fish before adding, “First defensible position I’ve seen since I got here.”

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General Vantas Gets Hitched, 4/?

[i just cannot stop writing this thing. damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!]

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    “Don’t look so worried,” John said in the carriage. “If they’re ranting in public, they’re not plotting in secret. I doubt Albright would know how to incite genuine sedition if he wanted to.”

    Karkat, with his hand over his eyes to shut out the light, muttered, “What happened to ‘you’d be suspected in every assassination attempt’, then? You made it sound like you expect to be dodging knives every day.”

    “Not quite every day,” John chuckled. “And not from those clowns. But yes, there are going to be a godawful mess of them, I’m afraid, and you’ll be dodging your share as well. Just try to remember it’s still better than war.”

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General Vantas Gets Hitched, 5/?

[general consensus is POST THE CLIFFIE NAO so that is what i am doing.]

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    John had been telling the truth about the schedule being a little easier after that. There was some kind of social function every day, but none were as grueling as the reception ball that first night or the weekly ceremonies at the Cathedral. Most of them were either afternoon receptions in which tea figured more heavily than wine, or banquets where Karkat only had to talk to the people beside and across from him at the table. John was always to the left of him, and the guest he was facing could rarely hear enough over the general chatter to offer more than the occasional pleasantry, which meant he could mostly just deal with the one to his right.

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General Vantas Gets Hitched, 6/?

[i might not manage more than one update today; it’s gorgeous out. we’ll see if the writey allows me to go out and play or demands that i continue my headlong plunge through this ridiculous — novella, i guess, at this point, and i may only be half done — wow, my muse has no concern for my well-being, does he?]

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    John shouldered Karkat off him, clapping a hand to his side. “Lie still, that looks bad,” he said through clenched teeth as he got to his feet. “Did you see where —?”

    Karkat pointed with his chin. John sucked in a wincing breath, then took off at a sprint toward the sniper’s position. Not really hurt, then, Karkat thought gratefully as he struggled to sit up. Not if he can run like that. Seems the shot was spent after it went through me. Guess I’m good for something around here after all. Just call me Meat Shield Vantas.

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General Vantas Gets Hitched, 7/?

[this chapter may be insufficiently edited, but i’m going wall-eyed from looking at it, so i’m just going to post it as-is. please forgive any typos i may have missed.]

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    Sollux found him in the king’s chambers as the doctor was peeling his shirt away from the wound. Karkat had been concerned, when he asked John to send someone into town for Sollux, that his moirail would arrive in a burst of psionics and invective and cause an international incident. But Sollux was calm, even polite, remembering to take his hat off and bow to the king before approaching Karkat.

    The doctor, a plump, elderly woman with a kind face and cruel hands, paused in her task to watch Sollux warily. Afraid of trolls or just protective of her patient? When Sollux sank to one knee beside Karkat’s chair and took his good hand, she sniffed and went back to work. Karkat hissed at an especially unpleasant tug, baring his teeth. Sollux kissed the palm of his hand. “Shush,” Sollux said. “You’re too stubborn to die.”

    “Of course I won’t fucking die,” Karkat grumbled. “Shit. Just look how it’s swelling. It’s going to be the size of my fucking head. Think that’ll go down by day after tomorrow? Not goddamned likely. I’m going to have to get married in my undershirt.”

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General Vantas Gets Hitched, 8/?

[by the way, if you’d rather read this on ao3, i’ve been mirroring it there as well. this chapter’s a bit of a long one; i probably should’ve cut the convo with the master of protocol, but what the hell, it was fun to write and i’m not striving for perfection here.]

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    Karkat lost track of all the comings and goings after that. The king’s bedchamber was apparently a perfectly acceptable place to conduct business; John kept summoning and sending, talking to an endless stream of functionaries, ignoring the yawns they stiffled and the bleary eyes they had to force open. Too much activity to sleep through, but with Sollux to his right and John to his left, Karkat felt safe enough to let his mind wander.

    John let go of his hand from time to time, when there was a paper to sign or something, but he always took it again. In the private darkness behind his eyelids, Karkat allowed himself to imagine what it would be like if the gesture meant John was flushed for him — rather, ‘in love with’ him, as the humans termed it. (Silly terminology. They knew perfectly well there was more than one kind of love, but hadn’t bothered finding words for them.) What if their sham union were to turn real? How close to matespritship could it be, between a troll and a human?

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specspectacle submitted:

Here’s the edited version! http://soundcloud.com/specspectacle-1/general-vantas-gets-hitched1

-Specspectacle

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*flails in joy!*

this is absolutely delightful! i’ve never heard anyone else read my work before. (well, aside from theodore rickrolling me with it earlier today :D) you’re doing a fantastic job, please continue!

- j

He’s just never smiling…

atswim-twocows submitted:

I kinda mixed up the uniform, picked bits I liked etc. I’m gonna colour them in but maybe do less red more black/gray?

General Vantas, at your service!

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this is delightful! your draftsmanship is exquisite, just look at that braid. oh kk, you are going to regret that champagne tomorrow. :D

- j

mesitka:

Fanart of Jesse’s beautiful johnkat fic General Vantas Gets Hitched. I couldn’t pass up the chance to draw some uniforms <3 When the author confirmed my headcanon of Karkat wearing russian style of uniform, I threw all work aside, dusted my watercolours and whipped this up.
It probably doesn’t fit anyone’s headcanons but mine (see John’s goatee), but whatever.
I bulshitted the uniforms up, of course, Karkat’s based on russian marksman troops, John’s mixed from bits of French guard and English engineers… and stuff.

*hyperventilates*
oh my god oh my god oh my god osdhljasfgijhlasfgafjhl
aaaaa
holy shit aaaaaaaaa
you have no idea how big my eyes are right now oh my god THIS IS SO GORGEOUS
and you may have mixed and matched a bit, but the feel of the period is SO RIGHT, and is that a turkish saber i spot on karkat’s hip? and the cacaphony of medals and their expressions and OH JESUS LOOK AT THOSE HANDS
i’m just going to stare at this with a silly fixed grin for the next hour or so, okay?

mesitka:

Fanart of Jesse’s beautiful johnkat fic General Vantas Gets Hitched. I couldn’t pass up the chance to draw some uniforms <3 When the author confirmed my headcanon of Karkat wearing russian style of uniform, I threw all work aside, dusted my watercolours and whipped this up.

It probably doesn’t fit anyone’s headcanons but mine (see John’s goatee), but whatever.

I bulshitted the uniforms up, of course, Karkat’s based on russian marksman troops, John’s mixed from bits of French guard and English engineers… and stuff.

*hyperventilates*

oh my god oh my god oh my god osdhljasfgijhlasfgafjhl

aaaaa

holy shit aaaaaaaaa

you have no idea how big my eyes are right now oh my god THIS IS SO GORGEOUS

and you may have mixed and matched a bit, but the feel of the period is SO RIGHT, and is that a turkish saber i spot on karkat’s hip? and the cacaphony of medals and their expressions and OH JESUS LOOK AT THOSE HANDS

i’m just going to stare at this with a silly fixed grin for the next hour or so, okay?

ceruleancynic submitted:

Vague Kanaya sketch for GVGH is vague. I don’t really know where in the century you’re basing this, this is a 1880s-1890s riding habit type of dealie.

-ceruleancynic/coldhope

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i was thinking much earlier than that, but oh goodness that’s lovely!

- j

General Vantas Gets Hitched, 9/?

[i am pretty sure i didn’t make any silly mistakes, but it’s 4:30 in the morning now, and that’s a bit late even for me. still, i have this pathological inability to leave a finished chapter sitting around and not post it.]

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    Jade went directly to John, perched on the edge of the bed, and hugged him. She smiled at Karkat over the top of his head. “Thank you.”

    “I would’ve done the same for any comrade-in-arms,” Karkat grumbled.

    She smirked. “Really?”

    “Unless we were sort of generally under fire, yeah.”

    “Well, I’m thanking you anyway, so suck it up,” she grinned.

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General Vantas Gets Hitched, 10/?

[it’s really surprisingly difficult to write a conversation between six people. i think i managed to make it clear who’s talking when, but if i’ve left any annoying ambiguities, do point them out to me.]

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    There was a knock at the outer door of the suite. Strider put his helmet on long enough to admit the Seer and a short parade of servants bearing food and drink. Rose Lalonde greeted John with a kiss on the cheek while the servants set a small table and brought bed trays for Karkat and John.

    The smell of the food was intoxicating. It made Karkat realize how ravenous he was. He had to remind himself sternly several times not to dig in before the king took his first bite — and John was ignoring his plate, damn him, just guzzling cold milk coffee like food wasn’t even a thing.

    Once the servants had finally gone, Karkat growled, “This is a protocol-free room, right? Good, I’m starved hollow.” He grabbed a chicken wing and crunched into it, bone and all.

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General Vantas Gets Hitched, 10/?

tamagus:

jumpingjacktrash:

[it’s really surprisingly difficult to write a conversation between six people. i think i managed to make it clear who’s talking when, but if i’ve left any annoying ambiguities, do point them out to me.]

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    There was a knock at the outer door of the suite. Strider put his helmet on long enough to admit the Seer and a short parade of servants bearing food and drink. Rose Lalonde greeted John with a kiss on the cheek while the servants set a small table and brought bed trays for Karkat and John.

    The smell of the food was intoxicating. It made Karkat realize how ravenous he was. He had to remind himself sternly several times not to dig in before the king took his first bite — and John was ignoring his plate, damn him, just guzzling cold milk coffee like food wasn’t even a thing.

    Once the servants had finally gone, Karkat growled, “This is a protocol-free room, right? Good, I’m starved hollow.” He grabbed a chicken wing and crunched into it, bone and all.

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And then they sat up and tried again.

There. I wrote the next chapter for you.

Pff, what is consistency.

haha yes, that’s the next chapter. thank you for saving me the trouble, i’ll jump directly to chapter 12. :DDDDDD

(ps: cuuuuuute!)