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Ipomoea
Guest
#1

in a garden of endless flowers



Sometimes he liked to come to the edge of the world, and wonder what it would be like —

It’s winter on the island; and in winter, all things die. He had come too late to see the stars (but he had heard the way they all sank into the ocean one day, and how all that was left of them were the crystal skeletons he now walks over.) He was too late, and now he walks through a graveyard of stars and wonders how many wishes had died with them here, how many more had sank in the sea. Each one he passes makes his heart feel like it is both speeding up and slowing down, as he counts all the things that might have been.

He wonders if it says more about the stars or him, that he sees himself watching from every jagged reflection. Or not him, but someone like him — someone with the same smile, the same spots, the same rosy cheeks. But there, he thinks, is where the similarities end, skin-deep, like the stranger is wearing his to hide what lies beneath. Maybe it’s only a lie he tells himself, to pretend that other-Ipomoea is more like himself than he wants to believe. Because he knows, even when he turns away from that first mirror and presses on, that the island is only showing him who he is, beneath his bones and muscles and blood and magic. The orphan in the desert.

Each reflection is the same, that trapped self stalking after him as he makes his way through the fractured maze. It follows him all the way to the cliffs, where the star skeletons form an edge sharp enough to cut, a dam by which to hold the dreams at bay.

He listens to the ocean breaking itself against the glass-cliffs of the island as he stands there on its brink, watches as it throws itself upon the ice and the crystals with such a frenzy he begins to wonder what the waves are trying to escape from. Saltwater slicks his skin from the spray, adds another layer of frozen brine to the ground. He watches the waves rage as far out as he can see, and it feels —

Oh, it feels like watching himself.

He watches the snow fall and disappear beneath the water, watches the waves reach up like so many hungry mouths to consume them.

Behind him his flowers are growing overtop the mirrors. From the glass and the frost and the bone-white star-skeletons, color blooms shy and slow and spreads like spiderwebs across the surface.

And he does not turn to look. Ipomoea never sees the way the frost creeps along their petals like a funeral veil, or the way they grow stiff and cold beneath its weight. He never notices his reflection staring out at him like a ghost, with blood and bones replacing the flower wreath on his brow and eyes that are far too sharp and hungry to belong to him. And he is not watching when that other Ipomoea’s lips peel back and his teeth flash in the winter-gloom as he laughs.

He sees only the sea, and the way all those snowflakes sink into it like so many dreams that ran out of the hope that kept them alight.





open to any!
rising // blooming












Played by Offline Obsidian [PM] Posts: 380 — Threads: 45
Signos: 25
Inactive Character
#2

i'm a pretty flower girl
check out my pretty flower curls

Florentine has not left the island for days. Her joints ache from where the cold of glass has bitten too deep. Her mind is weary from how it has worried and wondered after her children too much. How can a mother’s mind rest when her children are lost? Her soul twinges and her heart is sick. Yet she stands radiant, gilded by a sun that this sky does not know. The glow of her skin is as bright as her smile could be, if it were not darkened by the loss of motherhood. 


The snow settles along her spine. Each flake lands like a cold winter’s kiss. They melt upon the sea and Florentine watches as they land and disappear. The once-queen might come to be ashamed how she does not notice Ipomoea until a frosted flower taps against her ankle. As a girl she might have once been sure that upon such a reunion she would feel the presence of a friend like him anywhere. He has a place in her heart, of course, as all good friends do. Her heart should know him, should recognise when he is near. But Flora’s heart is too busy twinging at the frosted flower to consider its conjurer. 


The white dust, cold and wet, that makes it rigid… She extends her slender neck and brushes her lips over the flower’s frosted face. A part of her expects it to be hard, rigid as glass, like her father made before her funeral pyre, when she died a child once before. Ah. Her eyes close against the thoughts that wash over her as cold and unwelcome as a tumble into the winter sea. For all her life she had been glad for her gift of traversing time, making herself born and unborn, dead and undead upon a whim. But now, it is that very same magic that pulled her children from her side. How can she be so grateful for it now? Still the strange, cursed magic of this place repels her. Still she comes here, for this is where she birthed her babies when Time stood still and this is where they parted ways. 


When at last she lifts her lips from the flower, Ipomoea is there. His white, his brown, his wings, his flowers. He awakens his place within her aching heart. The flowers were not her father, Gabriel, but Ipomoea. Another she loves, another whose place has grown too vacant. Florentine goes to him, she does not look at every Florentine that gazes out at her from every different world and circumstance. Some she has already lived, some she will come to live, some she is living now. There are others of her, being reborn and unmade in a thousand different worlds. Her every decision splits her into two over and over and over until there are more of her than the stars of the sky, there is a Florentine for every decision, every world. But the only one that matters is this one. The only decision that matters is the one that presses her lips to her friend’s shoulder and has her exclaim his name from a tongue that has not spoken it in too, too long, “Ipomoea!” 


She draws back, enough to gaze at him from beneath her heavy fringe where petals fall to join his myriad flowers. “I have missed you,” Florentine says as she drinks him in, repainting the memories of him with his radiance, his softness. There are tears that gather at the corners of her eyes, the waste no time as they spill and tumble down her cheeks. “How are you?”



@Ipomoea
florentine
rocking your pretty flower world






She is clothed with strength and dignity, 
and she laughs without fear of the future 





Played by [PM] Posts: N/A — Threads:
Ipomoea
Guest
#3

in a garden of endless flowers



He wonders what it would be like, to be a shooting star upon which people cast their wishes. Was it the dreams they carried that made them burn so bright, that had them soaring through silent skies while all the others only watched?

He supposes, in the end, that being a king is not so different.

Every day he walks among his people, and every day he listens to their hopes, their worries, their fears and their joys. Every day he feels a little less like Ipomoea and a little more like a thing upon which others rest their lives like hats on a coatrack. Every day he sinks a little further, a little deeper, a little harder, and when he listens to the winter wind tapping out a rhythm of branches and snow against his window, it sounds only like come home.

I am home, he had told it one night, as he watched an owl glide through the stars. And the words had felt like a lie long before they left his lips.

The island is not home, but it feels close enough to pretend. It feels like magic, like dreams that know how to make themselves come true instead of relying on the stars that fell dead to the earth. It feels like a world in which he can remake himself over and over and over again, as many times as it sinks into the sea and drowns its own bridges, only to let a new one surface in its wake. It feels like almost-violence, and almost-softness, and that twilight place between shadow and soul that he has come to love.

It feels like a unicorn whose horn sits more like a weapon than a thing of beauty. It feels like a flower girl with a knife by which to tear worlds apart.

It feels like an orphan who has learned that a home is wherever he chooses to be.

“Florentine.” Her name is a sigh on his lips, and he wonders when he started to sound more like winter than spring (when he looks back he thinks it must have happened over time, slipping a little more into it with every bloody bone and dead-star he found buried in the snow.) But his eyes, oh his eyes still know how to smile even when his lips have forgotten.

There are a thousand questions begging for space on his tongue (where have you been? why were you gone so long? did you find a flower for my daughters while you were away, like you promised once?). But none of them feel very important when he leans into her touch and says instead, “Better than I was, now that a friend is here. I am glad to see you.” And even when he has forgotten how to say how glad, and why, his eyes are speaking it all for her.

The snow is still falling gently, slowly, into the waves, onto their backs, frosting over his flowers and the mirrors. Winter lives inside of him as much as on the island now, with the hungry waves reaching out for it. ”The island was a field of galaxies before this. There were so many colors, and stars, and to walk among them was the closest thing to flying I’ve ever known.” He is not watching the snow fall when he brushes the tears from her eyes, and braids flowers into her mane to replace the petals that have grown impossibly cold.

”Will you tell me what it is like?” He has never asked her before. And when his wings begin to tremble at his ankles and open and close, open and close, the way he’s seen a hundred thousand birds do before —

He wonders how he was never brave enough before.





@Florentine !!
rising // blooming












Played by Offline Obsidian [PM] Posts: 380 — Threads: 45
Signos: 25
Inactive Character
#4

i'm a pretty flower girl
check out my pretty flower curls

They lean into each other and Florentine turns her face to him, into his warmth, the smell of woodland and sunrise. She longs to step into her friend, wear the cocoon of their embrace like armour to protect her from the agonies of being back. She did not think there would be so many. 


The snow falls and Florentine listens to him speak, listens to how the words echo inside him and without. His body vibrates with his voice, a low muffle that reaches out reverberates into her too. She hears his words, she feels them too, not just in her heart but her skin, her bones where they touch.


Though they are close now, she still feels the years in which they were apart. They are like vast galaxies, even to this girl to whom time is nothing at all. She can go anywhere, any place, any time. Yet sometimes it was better to live in her present place, to feel the pain and the joys of living. She stands in this moment and feels his pain, drinks it like water, then she bathes in the joy of their reunion. When she rises, she knows she will be stronger. Ipomoea has always made her stronger. 


They do not need to say how much they have missed each other. Florentine is not even sure she knows words enough to express it. But the way she tips her gaze up to his, lays a kiss against his cheek is all they need, the quiet, the companionship. Here, beside him, it is almost as if she has never been away. Almost.


He tells her of the island, the many metamorphoses it has had. Her amethyst eyes close, purple as a bruise. She imagines it, even as mirrors lie to her of other worlds, places where she is reunited with her children. Flora wonders what sights her children have seen, were they here too, when the island was a field of galaxies? She turns to him, the question is upon her tongue, Did you see my children here then? But she does not get the words out before he speaks. She swallows them down and listens to him and smiles. Sad that this is not her moment yet charmed by his wonder.


“Oh Po.” She whispers softly. “Do you want to know? I can take you.” She looks down to the mirrors, looks and looks for a world where his wings are not at his ankles but atop his shoulders, broad and great. “I can take you there.” She points to the one where he is, different and yet so utterly him. She passes worlds where he is beside two girls, she swallows and pauses at it and wonders if that is his future, his present or his past. Yet she looks up to him instead and says, “Or i could simply take you to the spaces in between worlds.” And she lifts her dagger, holding it out to him. “Our last adventure.” She breathes, because she knows it is.



@Ipomoea
florentine
rocking your pretty flower world






She is clothed with strength and dignity, 
and she laughs without fear of the future 





Played by [PM] Posts: N/A — Threads:
Ipomoea
Guest
#5

in a garden of endless flowers



Perhaps it is only her touch that keeps him from diving then into the waves and seeing how deep all those broken dreams sank when their stars fell. Perhaps it is the frost glittering like frozen tears on his eyelashes (tears he does not remember how to shed). Maybe it is the way the snow lining his back feels only like another weight compared to the winter he holds now in the hollow chambers of his heart. Or maybe it has only to do with the way Florentine looks at him, like he is still the boy who chased eagles and lavender petals with her all those years ago.

It reminds him that he has not lost everyone like he had thought. And it reminds him that he is not ready to lose himself.

So instead he leans into her touch and he tries to remember that not all the stars in the sky have fallen, and not all the dreams they carried have died. And he tells that pit of magic lying coiled in his belly, later we will go hunting for the fallen ones again. Later I will find the depth of you. And when he steps back to look at his friend he is not looking for any new lines on her face or stories carved into her skin, or thinking of all the people he has lost or almost-lost —

— he is only looking at his friend.

He follows her now, as she leads him past mirror after mirror. And he looks at all those different versions of him, of her, of them, and he wonders what it would hove cost to have lived them. He wonders what it would be like to have been formed by softness instead of violence, to run through another world below this one and only ever be looking up, and up, and never down or back. He wonders how many worlds there are with both of them in it.

It would be easy to love her in another life, he thinks. Once he might have, when they were both still young and his heart was only over looking for something soft to hang onto to forget how hard the world could be.

But when he sees the world where his daughters were grown (so fast — too fast! — but perfect in every way) he knows the only lifetime that should matter is this one. And oh, how his heart still aches because of it.

”Flora,” he whispers, and closes his eyes when he lays his cheek against her shoulder. ”I want to —“

Ipomoea knows his time is coming. He can tell the truth of it in every heartbeat, can feel the way his heart has become an hourglass counting down the days of him. But not yet. His smile is sad now, because he knows she is right.

He swallows. And when he takes a step back, he pushes her dagger gently back to her. ”But I can't. I can't leave yet.”





@Florentine !!
rising // blooming












Played by Offline Obsidian [PM] Posts: 380 — Threads: 45
Signos: 25
Inactive Character
#6

i'm a pretty flower girl
check out my pretty flower curls

Florentine feels him following, close, his toes to her heels. There is something comforting in their proximity and the way they peer into worlds together. What they see fill their minds with what might have beens and what will come to be, here, within this twisting, turning world. Florentine does not need to look at another world to think how easy it would have been to love Ipomoea. She has already thought, in this world, years before, how easily she could have fallen in love with him. Yet their time was never to be here, not when Messalina, Lysander and Thana lived. Even as she watches him now, she knows she would never think to go back, to live her life any differently. She was content to love Ipomoea as she does now and for all eternity.


He lays his cheek against her shoulder. His skin his warm, soft like the dawn. Fitting, Flora thinks, how being with Ipomoea is always like bathing in light - no matter how he feels the shadows within him yawn and stretch and consume. 


He wants to, he says such and it comes out with regret and yet with resigned knowing. Florentine looks upon that version of him, with wings that reach out beyond the lens of the mirror. He knows how to fly in that world, how the air feels beneath his feet and the clouds across his torso. “Not even for a moment?” Florentine asks and turns her head into him when he steps back. He magnetises her, pulls her in as he always has. The Dusk girl gravitates to him in need and companionship. 


Her smile grows across her lips, even as he presses her dagger back against her chest. “I can have you back, to this very moment, as if you have never been gone,” It is impish, impulsive, playful, yet all the while beneath her smile, she knows, she knows this is not his time. Yet still she seduces Ipomoea with her magic and the chance to flee his life, just for a moment. It is as much for her as for him - for her to forget the grief of losing her children, him to forget the death, the violence…


But this is not their time.


Florentine knows it, in the way she knows so many things about Time and Fate. 


The smile slips off her lips and she walks to him until they are nose to nose. Lifting her chin she holds the gaze of her oldest friend. She knows no-one here as long as him, not even her brother, Asterion. “When you are ready, Po,” Florentine whispers, “you will let me know, won’t you? I will send you then, wherever you want to go.” And she knows that it will be for the last time.



@Ipomoea
florentine
rocking your pretty flower world






She is clothed with strength and dignity, 
and she laughs without fear of the future 





Played by [PM] Posts: N/A — Threads:
Ipomoea
Guest
#7

in a garden of endless flowers



There is a part of him that wants to believe, however foolishly, or childishly, or naively, that this other Ipomoea with wings at his shoulders instead of at his fetlocks is who he was meant to be. And that part of him is disappointed when he looks down at the ground and watches his wings flutter open and closed and open again, like outstretched hands reaching for that other world, that other him.

All his life he has been looking to the skies, and wondering if that was where he belonged.

But even if he had wings as strong as an eagles, Ipomoea feels so very heavy now. And he is not so sure he could my anymore, given the chance, or if the earth would allow him. Like a desert poppy Ipomoea has learned how to survive in places he should not have, how to grow roots in soil that was not made for him. And to not only grow, but to grow tall, and strong, and steady — how to shift in the storm but to not be uprooted by it.

Winter may be curling like a snare around his heart, pressing tighter and tighter —

But the heat of the desert was in his veins. And what lay between winter and summer if not spring? And what was spring it not a time to grow a garden, to pull up the weeds and to let the flowers establish?

He wants to remind her that she has made this promise before, and he thought her dead or lost because of it. Ipomoea knows the island is not a content beast, or one to sit by and let a magic that was not its own win out over it. And he knows that when he leaves — it will not be so easy to come back. Not when the rest of the world is promising to be a new garden for him.

This island has only ever been a promise, he sees that now. And a place for promises to be made, and kept, or broken.

Florentine begs a promise from him, and this, too, is only too easy to make for a friend. "I will," he whispers when he presses his nose to her’s and seals his promise with his breath against hers. The frost on the mirror before them cracks into so many bursts of color as his magic grows a bouquet from a long-dead star. "I promise I will." it does not sound like breaking the silence. It feels only like reaching out to the spa ce between their two beating hearts and tugging them closer, inch by inch.

For a moment they stand there like that, two friends watching the snow fall gently on the blooming flowers. And with time he feels his smile returning, as he shares in her warmth.





@Florentine !!
rising // blooming












Played by Offline Obsidian [PM] Posts: 380 — Threads: 45
Signos: 25
Inactive Character
#8

i'm a pretty flower girl
check out my pretty flower curls

Florentine forgets, in that moment of impish delight. She forgets how her magic broke and shattered when put to that of this strange island. Yet that forgetting is always so fleeting. She can never truly forget, not when her children are lost and her partner trapped in another world. Her loss is always a wound. It is a hole which can never be filled. It has a long and deep shadow that weighs upon her back. She can forget its there, like one can forget all pain, for the smallest moment. But always it is there, black like a dog, like depression sinking in with the winter blues. 


No. She does not forget and she is glad he does not remind her, for her smile would have slipped away faster than the dew in the morning. Ipomoea presses his muzzle to hers. The flower-woman’s eyes close, feeling, knowing, loving. Their breaths mingle as their lives have for so long. Winter snow paints all things white, steals the echoes out of the air and turns all soft and mute. Ipomoea’s magic blooms, flowers erupting from frost and glass. She grins, for how can she not. She laughs lightly and presses her brow to his.


Between them he makes his promise. She feels it painting itself across her skin. Her smile does not falter, not even when she wonders whether this is a truth, whether he will find her on his last day and let her send him away, ripping worlds apart for him. 


They stand together for so long, as if they are bulbs within the soil waiting for Spring to come and bring them to bloom. Yet when the snow is a cool press along the gentle curves of her spine, only then does she draw away. “I shall hold you to that,” Florentine whispers to her friend as she turns for the island to continue her searching and find where her lost children roam. “I should like to meet your girls too, one day.” Florentine says, again pushing her own splitting heart aside as she taps a glass mirror as she leaves, two twin girls, beautiful and terrible.


@Ipomoea ~ Fin <3 I love them. I demand one before he goes, please <3
florentine
rocking your pretty flower world






She is clothed with strength and dignity, 
and she laughs without fear of the future 





Played by [PM] Posts: N/A — Threads:
Ipomoea
Guest
#9

in a garden of endless flowers



He sighs against her. And in the trembling of his lungs he feels the way a flower does in the spring, when it fights its way through the frost in the morning to open its flowers to the sun in the only way a meadow knows how to smile. And the promise that paints itself across Florentine’s skin is bleeding there across his, spreading from her brow to his and smiling at him from the mirrors that surround them.

Vines are creeping across them all, like his magic is reminding him in whispers that this world is the one that matters today. And while he does not forget about those other worlds, it is enough for now to tell that pit of magic simmering in his chest not today, and to feed it with the promise that its day is coming.

“One day,” he promises her, and his heart is carving the words into the muscle of it.

But Ipomoea does not let her leave alone. He only falls instead step beside the friend he thought he had lost (and he is so very glad he did not). Because friends do not let friends search alone —

and Ipomoea is not ready to watch her leave just yet.

He would tear this island apart if she asked him to, and if he thought it might reveal the secrets she is looking for. But for now he leaves only a trail of flowers in their wake, making a path of all the wildflowers she wears in her hair.





@Florentine I couldn't resist getting one last reply in
rising // blooming













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