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Author Topic: Forget-me-not. [Mara]  (Read 5147 times)

Re: Forget-me-not. [Mara]
« Reply #15 on: October 31, 2018, 06:18:42 PM »
Mara gave him a bewildered look. What was the point of flowers? She knew he had his heart set on being a soldier, but she hadn't realised just how... out of nature he was. Were most cadets like that? She hoped not. There were plenty who came from the territories rather than a district, and she expected those from districts weren't quite as in tune with nature as she felt she was.

"There's no such thing as a magic cure-all," she answered. "There are pendants and amulets and mixtures, but nothing cures everything." If only. She had plenty of charms that helped her, but you couldn't just mash them together and then they all worked perfectly. "They're perfect because... well, they symbolise a lot of things. But especially remembrance. Like... remembering times that are good."

Namely, times when things weren't all infected with terror. Even if he was injured.

"They can help to stop bleeding as well, people say," she added, and eyed his wound. Something needed to be done about that. "But I think they're too pretty to pick. I know what to do." With her slightly bloodied jacket, she dropped to a knee and covered the wound with one side, wrapping around, and then used the sleeves to tie it. "That'll do. It might slip a little, but I think I have it wrapped high enough to keep over."

Re: Forget-me-not. [Mara]
« Reply #16 on: November 06, 2018, 01:17:11 AM »
Axel's cheeks darkened at Mara's answer. He hadn't wanted it to sound like a serious question. That sort of thing was magic, impossible. But it appeared that she believed in more than he did. It took some effort to conceal his disbelief that she'd even think about 'pendants and amulets and mixtures'. The symbolism, however, got him.

He stared at her, eyebrow cocked, and scoffed, "You believe in that rubbish?"

At least it had some medical usage. As she declared them too 'pretty' to pick, despite their usefulness, he had another outburst. "This is ridiculous. They could help stop bleeding, yet you won't use them because they look nice? Mara... come on." Watching as she tied her jacket around his leg, he shook his head. "You can't just wave off something that could help because of how it looks. If you want to help people, who cares about flowers? They'll grow back. My limbs won't."

Re: Forget-me-not. [Mara]
« Reply #17 on: November 18, 2018, 10:50:54 PM »
His words stung, but Mara kept herself steady. "Just because you believe it's rubbish doesn't mean it is," she murmured. That was where she wanted to end it, to avoid any argument that he might take too far.

"Well... Yes, but..." He had her there. "It's too late now, anyway. I'm sorry." She sniffed. "We'll get you back now, and they can bandage it properly." Maybe she should get into the habit of carrying something to use as a bandage, in case. Not just because she might cause injuries, but to ensure she was always ready to help.

Mara dipped beneath his arm so she could anchor him, taking on his weight. "Okay. It won't take too long to get back. Walk with me." She began to walk, slowly, step by step, to make sure he wouldn't stumble.

Re: Forget-me-not. [Mara]
« Reply #18 on: December 18, 2018, 11:25:30 PM »
"Most people believe it's rubbish," he corrected her, his words pointed. "Whatever makes you feel better, I guess," he added with a careless shrug of his shoulders. He'd never understood such things - trusting in something invisible rather than those around them who could actually do something.

Axel slung his arm around Mara's shoulders, and started walking alongside her. He had to lean on her to avoid putting too much weight on his bad leg. Granted, it hurt for his foot to even touch the ground, the wound stinging sharply with each movement. "It'll take ages walking, it'd be faster if I could use my gear," he grumbled, though knew the pain would increase tenfold if he hit anything, and when he needed to land.

"Walls, this is stupid. But it's good practice, I guess. I'd get hurt in combat sooner or later."

Re: Forget-me-not. [Mara]
« Reply #19 on: December 18, 2019, 03:15:45 AM »
Mara didn't reply, hurt by his words and running through so many possibilities on how to answer. She barely heard him at all until the end. "You've been hurt before," she pointed out. She knew he had, because he was one of the ones always taking it so seriously. Fighting until he ended up needing medical attention.

Finally, she added, as he grimaced at the pain: "You don't know what most people believe. You just think they think like you." She said it gently enough. Still, she avoided looking at him, not trusting herself; she might crumble into tears if he snapped at her again. "You care about people being hurt, but you don't care enough to think about how they really feel. Just what you assume they feel..." Hesitating, expecting a refutation, she finally looked at him. "I know you care about people being safe, and happy... but they won't be if you make assumptions. That's doing what you think is right for them. Not what's really good for them. It's... It's selfish."

Re: Forget-me-not. [Mara]
« Reply #20 on: December 18, 2019, 03:43:52 AM »
The skin stretched at the wound and gave him a fresh jolt of pain; grimacing, he went to reply, to accept that yeah, he had, but not by a blade. Instead, she spoke, and his chest ached. She was... right. And he hated it. Every single word. "I..." he began, but he let her keep talking.

Was he selfish? He'd cared for people, helped sort out rations, fought for people, encouraged them, trained them, been nice to them. But had he done it for himself? No. He'd done it for them. Sometimes, though, he'd done things without asking them. Started a fight on their behalf. Argued with them, demanded they do something so they'd be better off. Deep down, it was to help. Always. He couldn't bear to see it, the lost and the hopeless, the hungry and the weak.

"I just want to help," he said quietly. "People can't always fight for themselves. So I fight for them."

He knew her. Mara was so soft and optimistic, but she was good at knowing how people felt. She knew when to back off, and she could calm down some with just a little patience and politeness. So he knew how she'd respond. You can't fight for everybody. Axel answered it before she spoke. "All my life, I've seen people need help. The Garrison has been my family, they've taught me a lot, they put me in my place and told me I couldn't help yet. I was too young, or too small, or too weak, or just a kid. It didn't matter if they said it nicely or if they yelled at me to clear off. I can help now. That's what all this is for. I'm going to fight for people. Whether I'm in the Garrison or I'm out with the Survey Corps... I'm fighting for everybody who can't."

The lump in his throat made swallowing hard. Still, he managed to speak again before she did. "I have to fight for my family. They'd be out here right now if not for what happened in Shiganshina... they were soldiers, and they would have helped. My father would still be baking and feeding everybody he could. Money didn't matter to any of them. Nice things, a nice house... All that matters is helping everybody else. Shit..." The pain returned as he placed his foot clumsily, tears already specking at his eyes.

"The day..." He drew a breath. "The day before I told my uncle I was enlisting, I had to tell a soldier about people planning to steal food. Rations were scarce, and nobody was getting enough, but if anybody had none, they'd... They would be closer to death. I knew I wanted to enlist. But I had to list then. I was just a kid. They need soldiers out there, Mara. Strong ones, who can fight for them." His voice hardened, the tears slipping down his cheeks. "So forgive me if I think I know what they're thinking, but I can't think about everything, okay?"

That she even still listened to him would be a surprise, but she would. She was too nice for her own good, and that was going to hurt her one day.

Re: Forget-me-not. [Mara]
« Reply #21 on: December 20, 2019, 02:55:36 AM »
She listened, because he needed her to. The more he spoke, the more she saw the wall fall, the carefully constructed barrier against his emotions crumbling. It wasn't that he never showed emotion, it was that he stuck so firm about fighting on, being a soldier. And he was still just a boy. He forgot that, he didn't see how small and how fierce and how much of childhood still showed in his face. She'd heard his voice start cracking. She'd seen him stand his ground against those bigger than him and come out of it winning. Not always. But he had a flavour of control over himself, at least until his anger broke through.

"I'm not asking you to," she murmured as he finished, tears across his cheeks and the wall not rebuilt. "I'm sorry. I know you've seen a lot. But that doesn't mean... you have to look after yourself. As well as everyone else. It's okay to live for yourself too, Axel." Her voice wobbled, the emotion getting to her. "You're so caught up in being the perfect soldier, you're not looking at what people really need."

Mara gazed at him, watching as he sniffed back his emotions and wiped at his eyes. She reached out, taking his hand, holding it in hers to stop him. "Nobody wants a soldier who thinks they know everything, who makes decisions for people without asking what's really needed. They need Axel, the soldier who will listen and fight for them." She took a breath, adjusting her hand to thread her fingers between his. "They want someone who cares and fights and listens. I know you care... but you care too much about being perfect. You're allowed to make mistakes. That's what makes you human."

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