and if you're still breathing, you're the lucky ones
‘cause most of us are heaving through corrupted lungs
Adna no longer knows what anything means anymore.
She carries a child of a man who does not love her—a child that she cannot help but both fear and adore and fret over. She has heard rumors of a red and mahogany woman taking the Tephra throne and while she cannot imagine her sweet, calm mother ever stepping onto the world stage in such a manner, there is something in her belly that tells her it might be Leliana. At the same time, she has nightmares of her father standing over that child’s corpse. She has nightmares of being left alone. Of being lost forever.
In the end, it’s what it always comes back to.
That feeling of overwhelming darkness.
It is enough to drive her from the shadows and into Loess, back to what she still considers her first home. Even though she doesn’t hunt down Ophie (she can’t bring herself to tell him what has become of their single night, nor can she bear the thought of seeing him with his true family). Even though she can’t bring herself to look for her father (she still dreams of blood and acid on his face). Even though she can’t bring herself to find her sister (what would she think of her now, how she would pity her).
So, instead, she sticks to the borders and the quiet corners.
Her face is taut, even when her belly is swollen, and it does not surprise her terribly when the pains first hit her. There is a moment where tears hit the scales of her cheeks—when she thinks that she never thought it would be this way, having her first child by herself—and then she clenches her jaw. She would not be weak. She would not let the first thing that her children see be a mother with tears in her eyes.
So she forces the tears back. Perhaps in rage, or out of spite, but it doesn’t matter because instead she focuses on the pain and what happens next. It is both fast and slow at once—peaceful and agonizing. Before she knows it though, there is not only one child curled on the ground, but two.
A boy with the gold of his father and scales that are like hers and not. A boy that glows softly with a halo atop his head. To him, she leans over and presses a trembling mouth to his delicate head so that she can whisper “Rupture.” And then there is a girl. Black and white with splotches of gold. A girl that is so clearly serpentine that her heart swells and then shatters in her breast as she kisses her. “Bela.”
The tears threaten to come, but she holds them back.
Instead, she focuses on cleaning them, on wondering at the way you can feel joy and sorrow at once.
we're setting fire to our insides for fun
collecting pictures from a flood that wrecked our home
Jassal and Leah - here, have the saddest birth post ever. you're welcome.