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8 [Year 498 Fall]








Finnhorse X


14.2 hh







Last Visit:

04-04-2021, 10:42 PM


Signos: 45 (Donate)
Total Posts: 11 (Find All Posts)
Total Threads: 3 (Find All Threads)

If there is one thing I have in common with my siblings, it is the eyes: smoky amber, rimmed in a line of dark skin that looks almost like kohl. And, I suppose, my jewelry—a decorated ring through the nostrils, like a bull’s, and a thin chain stapled into my ear and my brow—is somewhat like Hagar’s, though mine is silver and hers gold.

But the eyes strike people first. Hagar, Pilate, Corradh and I all have them. Eight unblinking yellow eyes in a row. On the rare occasions I feel alive enough to look in the mirror, sometimes my gaze will catch itself, and for a moment I will see the faces of my brothers and sisters superimposed upon my own, as though I am less of my own being and more a canvas for them. Perhaps this should worry me.

Perhaps I should fight more to keep myself myself. But when it happens—when I lose myself in their reflection; when I struggle to separate my cheekbones from Adonai’s, my dark lips from Pilate’s, my look of coldness from Hagar’s—I feel... nothing.

It has always been like this. This is who you are, Miriam. Not a warden but a prisoner.

If it’s true that my mother sculpted instead of birthed us—well, then I’d understand. I am the first of her princesses. The first one of anything never turns out quite how you imagined it.

It’s amazing that anyone believes Adonai and I are twins. We look absolutely nothing alike. (We are twins, I’m sure of it: my mother told me. But sometimes I wonder what sick game she played setting us so far apart.) I’m nearly a hand shorter than him, and built heavier, sturdier; a jaguar, if he were a cheetah. And where he is the gold of the Solterran sand my mother supposedly built him from—I am stone, the dark, smooth, haunting gray of basalt.

Bottom-of-the-sea color. Ash on the end of a cigar color. It’s interrupted only by two knee-high socks and a roughly edged sabino marking, painted in bright white, which falls on both sides of my face and partway down my neck.

Otherwise: stone. Even plainer than Ruth. I was polished less, I think. Maybe Keturah just ran out of time. Sometimes I grow bitter about it, when I look in the mirror and see all the places I wasn’t quite smoothed out, the patches of skin that look as though they were pockmarked by coal; but I think I was meant to be practice, anyway. The good news is my mother did not make the same mistakes again.

I’ve been called pretty. I don’t know that I agree with it, necessarily; but I do think if my mother did one thing right in making me it would be my hair. I keep it long, as long as it can grow without becoming unhealthy. Unlike my sibling’s sleek manes, though, mine (and my tail) falls in thick ringlets, a texture my mother always called unrefined. And unlike any of my siblings’, those unrefined curls are a bright, eye-catching, head-turning red: a deep, vicious, bloody red, from root to frizzy tip.

Blood, blood, blood, all the way through.

I know that Ruth thinks she looks the least noble of all of us. Dull-eyed. Alternatingly dark-skinned or dusty brown. She’s been self-conscious (in her own way—a way that I don’t think anyone but me can really see) of her not-quite-royal appearance since we were kids, way back when I had to protect her from the boys’ teasing. Or felt like I had to—it’s hard to tell what does and doesn’t bother her, and has been since I can remember.

But I’ve told her this, and I believe it: you look more like an Ieshan than I do. Even with the cracks.

When Miriam the Younger died, a piece of me went with her. (Sometimes I wonder if that piece was really all of me, and whatever girl wanders the house now, wearing my name and body, is a different creature entirely. I certainly don’t recognize her.)

I think part of it is that without my siblings, I don’t know who I am. At all. I cannot imagine a life which they are not the center of. They are a burden, certainly. Many times I have wondered what it would be like to leave them, and most of those times I have even dared to think of what it might look like. When would I leave? What would I bring? I am used to a life of luxury, one of many things I dislike about myself, and perhaps too spoiled to really make it on my own. But every time I seriously make a plan—to slip out at night and go look for Sofia, to throw myself into the ocean like a dirty martyr—something pulls me back at the last minute. Grabs me by the scruff of the neck, like a kitten, and yanks without regard for the health of my hair.

I'm not sure what it is. I’m not sure I’d want to.

Pilate would say love, and kiss my cheek. (Like anyone in this family knows anything about love). Adonai might say the same thing that binds him—responsibility—is what binds me. We are twins, after all, and if life were fair we might bear the weight of the House in equal measure. Ruth, I think, would only look at me sideways with a glance that implies she knows, but won’t say; her dull eyes briefly mischievous, her expression just barely amused.

None of them will say the thing I am thinking, which is that this thing, pulling me back, is Miriam the Younger’s ghost.

When Miriam the Younger died, a piece of me went with her. I think this is the piece that had been holding me together.

I remember her birth. Her christening. Her dark eyes, these little stones that shone wet, like my mother had chosen them from a riverbank. And I remember the feeling then, this brief moment of my life glowing gold, in which I thought: I am happy. I knew, more than I could have known anything, that she was made for me, made not only by my mother but by fate, and the universe, every god I could possibly name. And perhaps I had been most of myself up until then, almost a fully formed girl. But the moment I saw her is when I knew I was me: wholly me, fully me, and that it was not something to be ashamed of. That someone could love me because of, and not in spite of, who I was.

This is the piece that had been holding me together. My little sister. My real twin. My heart girl.

I have been veritably amputated, and the scar is almost too grisly to look at.

I can be volatile; especially recently. There have been times where I think I’ll react one way and end up doing the opposite, times when I mean to say something sweet and end up incurring someone’s wrath, and often I don’t know that I’m doing it—one way or another—until it’s already happened, and by then all there’s left to do is clean up the mess I’ve made.

I can see there are times my siblings dislike me, for those episodes or other reasons. They are used to having their way, and I would not be surprised if some part of each of them remains bitter from the times I had to be their punisher. (My parents, for all their merit, did not raise us well. Simple as that. My father was gone often, and Keturah dreaded the idea of ever having to tell her little statues no. I understand. If that had been an option, I would have taken it; but someone had to be responsible for raising children decent in more ways than just manners, and so we have come to our great battlefield.)

They might hate me. I don’t care. I can’t. (It would only matter if it were her.) I tell myself this every morning, and again when I see one of them glare at me. And yet the thought of it makes me froth up with despair, and on top of that, bright rage: they cannot imagine how much of my life has been dedicated to cleaning up their messes, on top of my own. And still I have found it in my heart, my little shriveled, stone heart, to forgive them.

I love them. But they cannot imagine what it is like in here—heartbroken, this stone body, this spine cracked from the weight of my family’s name, all my little deaths.

I love them. I hate them just as much.

My siblings have always been a burden. Being the oldest sister is, in practice, as bad as being their mother. My whole life until now has been dedicated to breaking up fights between the boys, and ushering my sisters to their lessons, and finding lost instruments, and helping with homework, and I am so sick and tired of it that I often find myself horrifically close to just—snapping—and caving someone’s skull in. More than once I’ve thought a jail cell might be better than this; at least in there it’s quiet.

The only one who does not expect this of me, does not expect anything of me, is Sofia. And I love her. I love her. I love her.

My mother has said that I have no heart. Sand is not so easy to sculpt. Sometimes, she says, if it is too dry, all the organs sift and slide together, bent completely out of shape, and one may overtake the rest. Whichever organ this is in me, it apparently has eaten up my heart. (Or, more likely, my mother was distracted when she made me and just forgot to put one in.)

But I do have a heart. I know I do, because it is broken.

Adonai has Mernatius, and Pilate has his ever-rotating cast of bright-eyed boyfriends, and I have no one and nothing, anymore.

I am in love, I am in love, I am in love. Everything in me is suffering for it. The wretched girl’s name is Sofia, and she says she is visiting from Delumine to train in our arts-of-war (a phrase which I have always hated, but out of her mouth I somehow find it charming). She is ridiculously good-looking and surprisingly charismatic, especially for a Deluminian, and best of all she knows nothing about our family; when I introduced myself to her there was not a flash of recognition on her pretty face. She calls me just Miriam. I do not think I will ever tell her my title.

I miss Adonai’s silver eyes. I miss Her. I miss my father. I miss the world as it was.

Pilate came to check on me today. I cannot say I am not surprised. I am shocked, actually; I had thought he and the rest of my siblings, the ungrateful, naive little brats, had forgotten about me; this is the third week I have spent alone in my room, meals delivered, in the dark and the heat. Anyway. He came to check on me. Perhaps it was only a trick of the dim light, but he really did look concerned. And he brought a gift for me—hamantaschen from my favorite bakery, a whole box wrapped in a green ribbon—and sat and ate them with me for hours, in silence, without judgement.

As I write this, he is asleep in the chair he first sat in, for once not wearing a scowl, looking like the child I used to have to drag to music lessons. I love him. I hate him just as much.

Months ago my heart put on a suit of armor and went out into the world. I know, as much as I can know anything—she is not coming back.

To know something like this is to be dead. I think I am dead. What horrifies me about this is that, though I am dead, I do not feel all that different than I did yesterday, or the day before that, or last week. In fact I feel much the same as I did when I was a child and let Adonai beat me into the ground during spars; like the time he cracked my shoulder, and instead of screaming in pain, or crying, or feeling any kind of hurt at all, I looked up from where I writhed and was overcome with the need to name every shade of blue in the sky.

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Played by:

RB (PM Player)


beccazw    //   



Staff Log

Saved incentives/prizes: None.

08/02/20 Character application approved, +20 signos sent for character ref (wants outfit item for Scholar rank incentive but will redeem at a later date) -LAYLA
12/21/20 +9EXP for RB's 1st, 2nd, and 3rd year OOC anniversaries (06/19/17). -INKBONE