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23 April 2011 @ 06:38 am
"The Bright Burn of Salt" — Supernatural — Ruby, gen  
fandom: Supernatural
rating: teen+ audiences
characters/pairings: Ruby
length: ~500 words
content notices: self-harm, possible implied torture, implied offscreen death(s) of original character(s), language.
summary: Ruby, a few of her hosts, and salted potatoes.
notes: for the prompt "Ruby, salt" at [community profile] fic_promptly.
ao3 crosspost: here

There’s salt in fucking everything these days.

Ruby’s never been one to deny herself the pleasures of the flesh—sins of the flesh, whatever, they’re the same thing. She could avoid everything even a little questionable, but that means leaving almost everything interesting out of her diet.

Which, no.

She’s strong enough that she doesn’t risk throwing herself out of her meatsuit if she eats salt as long as she doesn’t gargle with holy water afterwards or something equally stupid, but fuck it burns the first time she crunches down on a potato chip, like fire outlining her lips and curling around her tongue. She can feel the outlines of her teeth, the way the smoothness of enamel presses each tiny grain of salt or speck of potato like hooks into her skin. It’s like swallowing acid.

She knows. She’s done it.

Ruby manages to force three of them down, the sharp-edged pieces searing all the way down into her stomach, before she has to throw the bag out. Her fingers feel like she’s scrubbed them with sandpaper, and the human in here with her (Sandra, twenty-five, grad student finishing up her PhD) is clawing at the edges of Ruby’s control, desperate and hopeful.

That hope lasts until Ruby crushes it, until their neatly-manicured hands pick up a knife and Sandra can’t make them let it go.

Ruby tries French fries next. They’re easier on the mouth, softer, more tender, and there’s less of an edge to tear at her. She gets bored with Sandra and leaves her, drifts on to a quiet-voiced pharmacist named Yasmin and seduces a priest. It’s something to do to pass the time. She can eat an entire plate of fries by the time she drops Yasmin in an alley and goes blonde (Bethany, photographer, married for a year and a half) for some college girls screwing around with the occult.

Witches are whores, and Ruby’s an awesome madam. Who knows the trade better than she does, after all?

She starts salting the fries extra, dunking them in ketchup. They taste like poison and wildness, hot and crisp and fierce. She flat fucking refuses to let food stop her from eating it. Every bite’s a challenge, and Ruby has never, ever backed down from a test of will she has any chance at all of winning.

And then the Seven escape Hell and Lilith sends her to find the Winchesters. Ruby sits across a diner table from Lucifer’s chosen vessel, steals his fries, makes smartass remarks at him, with the bright burn of salt in her mouth and the giddy rush of danger tingling through her like a knife along her skin.

Lord, this is going to be good.

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