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    version 22: awakening


    Wolfbane -- Year 210


    "She presses into him greedily, hungrily, and demands more. She does not know how to be gentle when she is with him—does not know how to quell the aching in her belly, the neediness in her touch. She would devour him whole. She would sacrifice herself completely. She would give and give and give—" --Tabytha, written by Laura

    [open]  it was your heart on the line

    For one (beautiful) minute, the world falls apart.

    It isn't the heart in her chest, protesting and angry at the loss of her only daughter. There is no hollow ache settling in her soul from being separated from her family. There is no burning rage at being taken from Nashua and Yanhua when they had been so young. No emptiness follows the thought of Wolfbane, like the thought of everything that will come after has razed away everything that came before.

    There is simply nothing and she feels so...  light.

    Her blue eyes lift to Neverwhere, hoping for the first time in months. Does she feel this, too? Does she feel like the whole world has fallen away and there is nothing to despair?

    Neverwhere, true to her nature, is scowling and scoffing at the way Lilliana interprets the world. Memories, the once-blind mare says and the chestnut one simply watches behind curious eyes. What does Nev remember? What does the Lie make her recall because it's not something that Lilli can see. It is something that she, can wonderfully, not feel.

    And then the world comes crashing back in vivid hues of desolation and agony, of loss and destruction, of heartbreak and fury until the Lie is summoned again.

    Lilliana watches, perplexed (and some part of her knew she should feel worry, shouldn't she?), as the dappled Queen questions the Lie and tries to understand the truth of it. It's Lilliana standing across from herself, not quite so lovely and not at all whole, that Neverwhere questions. She watches as her friend grazes against her false-torn shoulder (and finds herself not hating the flame for once), studies Never as the bald-faced mare looks for the cracks and tears in the lie-Lilliana.

    The only stirring she feels at this moment - something that makes a frown play across her dark lips - is the mention that the Lie has taken something from her. It should bother her, shouldn't it? Some part of her feels that but Lilliana finds that she doesn't care as deeply as she should. Something has borrowed her shape, sapped her memories and she should feel more than slight irritation, shouldn't she?

    She should feel the harrowing absence of her youngest child. She should feel overwhelming eagerness to get back to Taiga, back to Nashua and Yanhua so that she can finally hold them again. She should feel something more than the slight curiosity about how Neverwhere is wielding her gift, shouldn't she?

    Something in her should be asking that if something was taken, shouldn't something be given?

    At the moment, Lilliana watches her reflection for any sign that the weight of the emotion it carries will crush her. If she will drown under the burden of the weight that never leaves her. It doesn't. It blinks and still perplexed, Lilli turns to ask Neverwhere: "How do you feel?"

    Remember when our songs were just like prayers
    Like gospel hymns that you caught in the air?

    Grandma says she feels uncertain. Enjoy.
    [Image: sTAi2f.png]


    The End.
    Big Grin

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