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Author Topic: now love, from loving. [solo]  (Read 64 times)

now love, from loving. [solo]
« on: November 23, 2019, 02:54:18 AM »
[ year 845. ]

”What about you? Do you have any regrets?”

The idea is laughable, isn’t it? Sebastian swirls the amber liquid in her glass, watching as the light of the bonfire makes it spread a glow across her fingers. Her grip grows a little tighter as she thinks, once, twice, ‘Do I?’

There’s food on the floor.

Zoë’s eyes burn with blue, cold-blooded fire. She looks at her sister and sees, in the look she gives her, the blank, stupid comprehension of an animal.

“You fuckin’ idiot!” she shouts, voice creeping high enough to break in two. “What did you do?!”

Anna sneers at her. Such a stubborn, stupid child. “I didn’t like it!”

Zoë tries to breathe. She tries to count down from fifty, tries it all, yet she can’t— for she is a child herself. Weak, impulsive. Her hand raises, muscles taut as a bowstring. Anna cowers, though her sister has never once struck her before.

She doesn’t, this time, either. Her hand comes down full-force on the wobbly wooden table, instead, sending a sharp pain all the way to her shoulder. “You don’t get it! You don’t get anything!” she yells, so loud that their neighbors will surely hear. “You know, I wouldn’t even have to deal with this if not for you! None of it!” Her anger is so white-hot that it hurts her, too, stinging with the heat of her skin and tears in her eyes. “Everything’d still be okay if you’d never been born at all! I hate you!”

Anna’s face is red, all the way to the tips of her ears. Her lip quivers with the desperate effort to hold it together. “F-fine! I hate you t-too!” she shouts in reply, wiping her eyes with her sleeve. Before Zoë can even think to stop her, she turns on her heel and takes off out the door.

With the anger still twisting her insides into knots, she doesn’t chase Anna down. Her chest heaves so much that it makes her feel sick. Zoë numbly falls into one of the chairs at the table. Her head falls into her hands as sobs begin to rack her body. It’s not fair. It isn’t fair that she has to do this. Why wasn’t mom still here? She hiccups, remembering her kind hands and warm embrace. Surely, she would know what to do.

Zoë doesn’t hate her sister. She knows that.

She hates that her sister inadvertently took their mom away. It isn’t her fault. No one chooses to be born, just as much as they don’t choose how they would one day meet their end. Anna wants to have a mom, too, doesn’t she? Zoë never thinks to ask, but she sees the way her eyes would follow mothers with their children. Jealousy, awe— at least Zoë had known what it was to be one of those children, for a little while.

Long fingers twist in her soot-black hair as she tries to hide away from the world. “Fuck, fuck,” she mutters. She’s choking, trying to catch her breath as the sobs continue to twist her ribs till she can only cough and wheeze.

For how long she sits there and cries, she doesn’t know. If it were minutes or hours, she wouldn’t have a clue.

Zoë’s world ending feels like an earthquake; God himself aiming to strike her down for her cruelty, she thinks.

When the world goes silent in the aftershocks, her feet carry her numbly outside to see . Her heart stops as her eyes land upon the massive titan staring down at them. She’d never seen a titan. Terrifying. Its body seems exposed, sinew and muscle all bared to the world. This creature looks like it could swallow the earth and everything on it if it wanted to.

Anna. Where is Anna? She must be so scared.

Before she can think any longer, the wall comes down. Rather, in an instant, that thing has kicked a hole straight through their barrier.

 Zoë doesn’t think. She acts on animal instinct.

She has to find her sister, her
baby, and escape.

There’s boulders flying through the air, one cast far off to the side by the force only narrowly missing her.

Fuck.

Shards of rock come in its wake, leaving little cuts on her skin that she can hardly feel.

Where is she?

Anna goes to the fountain to think when she’s upset. She likes the way the cool water feels. She says that if she moves all her anger to her fingertips and lets it go, the water will take it away. Since the water comes back again crystal clear, that means all the anger is gone and she can move on. Kids think stupid things, right?

Anna will be near the fountain.

If she’s not…

No, she will be.

Zoë voice can’t cut through all the screams of terror and calls for loved ones flooding the whole city. After a little while, she stops. She’s gone hoarse. The titans are huge, advancing quickly, but she’s still got long enough to make it to the fountain. Every muscle in her body burns with the exertion of trying to outrun something as inevitable as death itself. Her chest heaves as the fountain comes into sight. There’s blood smattered across the stones flung into the clearing and houses have caved in, the same as everywhere else. She had grown numb to it. Before, this didn’t affect her and her objective, because Anna was supposed to be
here . The blood on these stones might be hers.

A glint of something on the ground catches her attention.

Her heart drops into her stomach.

That’s her father’s hand creeping out from under that boulder, frozen into a clawing, desperate sprawl on the ground. He must have left the fields early today, she thinks. His ring is still shiny, with that special stone from the
outside embedded into it. She’d gotten so cross with him for keeping it after mom died, because it was worth enough that they could afford things like more food and a new pair of shoes for Anna. The marriage pact was rendered null, wasn’t it? Death had done them part, so things like this didn’t matter anymore. He insisted that the value wasn’t monetary, though, and she’d never understand,

Zoë thinks there’s a chance he was right. She kneels down, face blank as she tugs the golden band off his still-warm finger.

It will mean more to her and Anna in the city they evacuate to.

“Sorry, daddy,” she murmurs.

With a few precious seconds spared on preparing for the future, she starts looking under pieces of wood and piles of rock. Deep down, she knows that it might be in vain.

The city is growing just a little quieter, in some ways. Less screaming, now, because more and more people are dying. Her eyes scan the alleys around the fountain again. If she wastes any more time here, she’s going to meet the same fate as everyone else that doesn’t pursue their own survival first. Beneath her feet, the ground shakes. It’s a warning that she can’t stay here.

When she sees a flash of color in the rocks her hands dig through, she puts it all on the line for the idea that it’s the navy blue skirt had been wearing.

Perhaps her divine punishment is over, because a weak hand grips onto her sleeve and Zoë summons every ounce of strength she has left to drag that last piece of heavy wood out of the way. Anna coughs violently, sucking in rapid breaths that don’t seem to help her. That thudding is getting louder, the pebbles quiver in her stead, and there’s no time for questions. Zoë drags her sister from the rubble and clutches her tight.

"I'm here, Anna. It's- it's gonna be okay now," she says, even though she doesn't believe it at all.

There's a slight movement that she thinks was a nod. Anna tries to say something, but all that comes out is a wheeze.

The layout of the city is clear in her mind, but that means nothing now. Any paths might be blocked off, or flooded with titans— she has no choice but to do the thing she least wants to and make a run for it in whatever direction
looks safest.

Anna is holding onto her, but she still isn’t speaking. Her breaths come so shallow, like little gusts of wind that can hardly stir the grass.

As she keeps running to find a way through, she sees that there’s a woman crushed beneath the rubble of her house, with a titan about to dig her out. There is not even a fleeting compulsion in Zoë’s mind to go help her. She takes note of it, though; that angle makes it look as if it shouldn’t have been able to see her under there at all.

Did it
smell her bleeding beneath those stones? Really, she would believe it. The scent of iron and puke is so strong that it makes her want to vomit even more than the severed bits of neighbors on the streets.

Everything is starting to hurt so terribly. All the tears in her skin, the muscles that she’s pulled, her chest that burns like a live fire, do nothing to make her slow down no matter how much she wishes she could. Her eyes are locked onto the clearest open path, and she keeps her gaze forward even as she feels the ground shudder beneath her feet.

One of them
knows she’s here.

[ pt. 2 when i... um. git gud. lofglnhflgkj ]
« Last Edit: November 26, 2019, 04:43:58 AM by Sebastian Schwarz »
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i'm recklessly ecstatic, without a care in the world
putting on a false front / humming to myself

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