Warning: This work has been rated 16+ for language.
Creativity splits. While the other sides grapple with what that means for them, the newly separated Creativity decides that being two people isn't nearly as bad as it sounds.
Author's Note: Hello there! I never thought I'd write a Sanders Sides fanfiction, but here I am. This story was inspired by a drawing done by ask-us-sanders-sides on Tumblr. Here's the post. I wasn't going to post it on YWS, but I changed my mind when I remembered there were a few fans lurking. Since I'm new to writing the Sanders Sides fanfiction, I'd appreciate comments on their characterization and my interpretation of the mindspace. I'd also really love any suggestions related to grammar or formatting.
Last, but certainly not least, the style of this prologue was heavily inspired by a batch of Good Omens fanfiction I read before writing it. The future chapters won't be written in the same style, but I thought it worked well with a prologue.
Thank you for reading, and I hope you enjoy my story!
Thomas Sanders had come to a decision.
It was the kind of decision you don’t spend hours upon hours agonizing - it was natural, quick and just made sense given a variety of factors. The factors don’t entirely matter. Thomas, even, doesn’t entirely matter. Because while this is a story about the complexity of Thomas Sanders, it is about the complexity. Not Thomas.
When the decision was made, Thomas was just barely in high school. It was a hot, scorching summer day in Florida, and Thomas was lounging in his bedroom. He had plenty of things to occupy him, and plenty of things to occupy the many facets of his personality: his morality, his logic, his deceit, his creativity and his anxiety. There was another side, too, but that side was that kind of side that enjoyed solitude.
Thomas was sitting in his bed when the thought came to him. As mentioned before, it wasn’t a moment of great realization. It was him thinking about his old childhood stories - childhood being only a few years before, and even a few months before - and thinking about how much his creative tastes had changed since then. It was a time before Vine, so these stories, while something that could be shared, were something deeply personal.
The decision wasn’t really a decision. It was a stray thought that would go on to shape how he defined himself as a person: the idea that maybe, just maybe, some of his stories weren’t the kind of stories that he wanted to tell now that he was older. It’s important to stress that none of these stories were inherently bad. Thomas wasn’t inherently bad. But there was something cringeworthy about the gore he tossed around because he could, the inappropriate humor that he still found a little entertaining, and all of the taboo words and ideas that were fun to share when first granted the freedom to but not as funny farther down the road.
And, in that single moment, Thomas changed the lives of the sides he didn’t even know existed.
Farther down the road, a certain side would decide that “dark sides” was an appropriate title for a good chunk of Thomas’s personality. It’s hard to tell if this was out of repressed feelings, a desire for conflict, or just the plain drama of good versus evil, but the dark sides weren’t technically an entity on that summer day. There was just “us” and “them”. Who us and who them was depended on which side you asked. Deceit would insist that the better pair was Anxiety and him, while Morality would be quick to side with Logic. There was the “other” as well; neither pair liked to claim companionship with the side who generally got on all of their nerves.
But then there was the prince.
The prince wasn’t really on anyone’s side, but they’d love him regardless. Creativity is something that can’t be confined or defined by nature. Creativity would help Deceit with his most creative lies -- never wanting Thomas to get in trouble, especially when there were stories to create! When Anxiety was feeling particularly anxious, Creativity would be there to help create even more terrible scenarios.
(Misery likes company, and those increasingly more horrific scenarios ran the surprising effect of calming Anxiety down when he realized how outlandish and impossible Creativity’s ideas were.)
Creativity was Morality’s right hand man when coming up with something particularly nice to do; all of the best gifts came from his imagination. And though Logic and Creativity argued on principle, Creativity needed Logic for worldbuilding and Logic needed Creativity for problem solving. And Creativity would occasionally help the “other” as well, but that was admittedly a rarity.
Still, it would be hard to call Creativity “good” or “evil”. Creativity just was. Creativity was rescuing a damsel in distress from a hungry, man-eating dragon, but Creativity also was creating the dragon and the tower the princess was locked inside in the first place.
(Creativity had no interest in damsels, obviously, but there was something to be said for rescuing them.)
And while the damsel in distress, locked away in the tower by a hungry, man-eating dragon would have been a metaphor on most days: it wasn’t today. Morality and Logic were dictating Thomas’s actions right now, with a hint of Anxiety. Creativity could enjoy himself by conjuring up a good old adventure in Thomas’s mind. He was bruised and battered after defending the damsel from the hot blasts of air and flame once he got her down from the tower, but the injuries were just temporary. And they were temporary enough for him to get a really good idea.
“Poison fangs!” Creativity shouted, with an excited snap and maniacal grin. The damsel, who bore a striking resemblance to one of Thomas’s classmates, had a blank look on her face at this realization - Creativity was so caught up in improving the dragon that he had forgotten to make her react.
That was quickly rectified, and she adopted an appropriate look of horror when oozing green liquid started dripping from the noticeably larger fangs in the dragon’s mouth.
Now, the poison had to do something, or the quest wouldn’t be worthwhile. So Creativity really shouldn’t have been surprised when the poison hurt like hell, seeing that he had been the one to create the poison in the first place, but he had been distracted by improving his sword. A handsome hero, after all, had to have an equally glorious sword when slaying a dragon.
Creativity hissed in pain and retreated, glaring down at the wound festering through the cut in his sleeve. “That was a great idea,” Creativity hissed, voice dripping with sarcasm. It was only after the words left his lips that he realized he wasn’t really sure who the sarcasm was directed to. After all, he hadn’t dragged any of the other sides into his escapades today. The damsel was just a damsel; he hadn’t given her any other part to play than looking scared.
“All good dragons need poison,” he told himself, though his voice was a little bit uncertain. He wasn’t exactly comforting himself; it felt more like a one-sided argument. The dragon stopped, the damsel stood still and Creativity mused over a problem he didn’t quite understand. Maybe he had been cursed by some witch during the adventure, and then cursed to forget her existence. It could have been the Dragon-Witch; he loved adding her into his quests.
But that explanation didn’t feel right.
And a dull, throbbing headache appeared to accompany the uncertainty and confusion.
“Creativity,” a voice said. It was a stern kind of voice, but also slightly worried. And while the sides technically had the same voice on most days, save for when they felt like changing up their appearances for the heck of it - Creativity being the worst offender - it was still easy to tell who was talking without seeing them. So Creativity knew that it was Deceit who had just interrupted his crisis and battle, even before he turned to see the other side folding his arms besides the dragon.
(A dragon who notably had the same color scales as Deceit someday would.)
“Yes?” Creativity replied. His head was still throbbing, and he was struggling to stand now. But Creativity was just as good as faking being alright as Deceit could, so Deceit wasn’t any the wiser. “What’s up...pants-on-fire?”
“That’s the best you can do today?” Deceit asked, his false condescension hiding his surprise. Deceit, though seemingly dark, was a facet of Thomas’s personality, and was therefore not a malicious side. He did have a heart.
He just did his best to hide it.
Creativity gave a strained grin, a searing pain shooting through his skull.
Deceit shook his head. “It doesn’t matter. Have you seen Anxiety?”
“Anxiety doesn’t like to come here,” he reminded the other side. “He says it’s too dangerous. Go ask Morality and Logic - I have dragons to slay, damsels to save, and kingdoms to rule-”
“Creativity,” Deceit interrupted, with an urgency that didn’t match the nonchalance of him readjusting his gloves. “If he’s not with you, then he’s with Morality and Logic. Do you remember the last time he was left alone with them?”
Creativity, in fact, didn’t, but the pain was so much that he couldn’t come up with a good retort to hide his lack of knowledge. He gave a meek, pitiful shrug. Even the damsel and the dragon looked concerned at his lack of a spoken answer.
Deceit gave Creativity a long, hard look before sighing and storming off to other parts of Thomas’s mind. In Deceit’s defense, Creativity was the type of person who could be chaotic one moment and orderly the next. Useful ideas were typically balanced out with less useful ones, and Deceit simply thought that Creativity was too off in his own little world to care about the ramifications of Anxiety interacting with any other side.
If Deceit had stayed a little longer, he might have seen Creativity go crashing to the ground as the pain became too much to handle.
A fantastical world faded into nothingness.
And then, something.