The journey of a small Gem in a big new world.
Jade officially had no idea what was going on.
Excited to go on her first mission to Earth, to document and record her observations of the Crystal Gem's war plans and base camps, and of the terrain and habitat and plants and animals and EVERYTHING that Earth had to offer her!
Except . . . everything was really scary at the same time. For every amazing thing, there was another thing that could shatter her. She was REALLY good at blending in however, so it usually wasn't a problem.
And she was easily distracted. Very, very easily distracted.
She's spot some random thing across a body of swiftly moving rushing water and dash off to check it out.
Jade considered herself lucky enough to require her own personal guard-Gem.
She didn't really understand when they muttered under their breath about "defective" and "reassigned" and stuff like that. They were total buddies, pals, besties!
As an intelligence and cataloging Gem, Jade was never meant to be anywhere near the front lines. She wrote her reports in her little arm-bands-computers, all neat and tidy in their little folders and cross-referenced, sent to her higher-up, and then this was sent on to the Generals and the Diamonds themselves.
It was always so exciting to think that her efforts and gathered Intel was reviewed by the Diamonds themselves, and being put forth to serve the better cause of winning the war against the rebel Gems!
But, she wasn't a warrior by any stretch of the imagination. Nah-ah. She didn't have any training, she'd never even held a weapon before! The most dangerous thing she had was her impulsive knack for getting into trouble by running off all the time.
Which is why it shocked Jade all the more when her BGFF (Best Guard Friend Forever) brought her to one of the Generals themselves, not even a mile from the battlefield itself!
So much . . .chaos, scattered weapons and Gem shards and dust lay across the field, the Homeworld Gems sheltered farther down within the valley whilst the Rebel Gems had claimed the highlands.
Jade was tasked with with sneaking behind enemy lines and directly into the base camp, to confirm or deny that the rebel leader Rose Quarts was indeed leading her troops head-on in the upcoming battle.
Despite being nervous, Jade took up the challenge immediately, moving under cover of night. She had a knack for staying hidden like no one's business, and after several hours of shifting from bush to tree to tent to rock, Jade finally spotted Rose Quarts!
She was . . . a lot taller than anticipated (gulp! Scary). But, Jade had gotten the intel she needed! Hurrying back to her General, Jade quickly pulled up the data from her files, explaining everything she had heard.
" . . . that's it?"
Jade flinched, her bright smile slipping a little at the harsh tone and cold gaze of her General, wondering what she had done wrong.
"You retrieved NOTHING of their plans of attack? When? Where? Their strategy?!" advancing on the smaller Gem, the general slapped Jade across the face.
Jade shrieked and fell, unaccustomed to pain, the attack a complete shock. She scrambled back, raising her arm in futile self defense.
"You pathetic, defective Gem! You didn't even get CLOSE to Rose Quarts!" These harsh words were accompanied by sharp kicks from the generals hard boots, hitting stomach, face, and side, punctuating her anger.
"I-I'm s-s-sorry!" Jade cried, a wetness spilling from her eyes, over her cheeks, in a flood she couldn't control, frightening in it's newness. The much smaller Gem looked to her Guard Buddy, silently pleading for her to help.
Nothing but a neutral glance, devoid of pity, or of delight. Merely watched on as Jade was brutally beaten, without remorse, or explanation.
Sniffling and sobbing, in pain all over, Jade finally snapped, letting out an anguished shout, pushing herself to her feet before lunging at the General, wrapping her arms around her leg and biting at her.
This baffled the higher-up enough that she did not immediately attack, or simply pluck Jade off, since the little Intel Gem was doing literally no damage at all.
Some other soldiers took notice, stopping to gawk at the ridiculous spectacle.
Finally, the General simply plucked Jade up by the back of her uniform, swinging and clawing at the air. "Enough of this."
Giving Jade a hard shake before dropping her, the General loomed over Jade once more, daring her to do a repeat of her stunt.
The smaller Gem glared back, angry and hurt, before leaping to her feet wit ha scream. Tearing off her computer-wristband, she threw it at the ground with all her might before stomping on it, still screaming.
She repeated this with her other armband, a sort of backup should the other fail, destroying it as she had the first. Then, she took the pieces and flung them into the General's face.
"MAYBE I DIDN'T WANT TO GET CLOSER TO ROSE QUARTS, ALRIGHT?! SHE'S TALL AND SCARY, THIS WHOLE PLANET IS TERRIFYING, BUT IT'S SO WONDERFUL TOO! Hah, hah. . . .it's so amazing. . ."
Panting and huffing for air, her rage exhausted, Jade suddenly realized that people were staring. Looking up, she met the Generals stunned, disgusted expression.
Looking around, the small Gem realized that everyone was staring at her with mixed expressions of shock, disgust, and horror.
Thinking back over her prior actions, Jade paled considerably, realizing first one, then another and another of her deadly mistakes.
Making a decision on impulse, Jade screamed again and ran, hands thrown up in the air.
The air felt so . . . weird, around her wrists. They'd always been covered by her wristband-computers, ever since she'd first emerged from the ground on Homeworld, some two-hundred years ago.
It felt . . . nice.
A slow smile creeped into Jade's expression, and she laughed aloud, finally beginning to fall into a more even, manageable pace.
What had she done?! She'd just betrayed Homeworld! O-or at least, it LOOKED like she'd betrayed Homeworld. . . they probably thought she was defecting to the side of the Crystal Gems.
Jade felt something inside her chest cinch tight at the thought, her breathing stuttering as her laughter turned hysterical, liquid welling up in her eyes and spilling over once more.
Without her really meaning to, Jade slowed to a halt, falling to her knees.
"Wh-what have I d-done . . ."
She'd just thrown away! Her whole life! They'd hunt her down off the face of the planet now! They probably believed that she was running off to spill all of Homeworlds secrets to their mortal enemies! That she'd defected!
"I-I . . . n-never wanted . . . th-this."
Scrubbing at her eyes, trying and failing to stop the flow of liquid that frightened her more than it intrigued her, failing to clear her blurry vision.
"Wh-why won't it . . . s-st-stop. Make it STOP-"
Chest heaving even harder, the liquid falling in earnest now, Jade collapsed on her side, hugging her chest as tightly as possible, the constrictive feeling only worsening, choking off her breath as the world spun out of control around her.