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Private  - I feel I'm starting to rust

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« she said my spirit doesn't move like it did before »

or a long while, Ipomoea only stands beneath the arches of that bleached-bone bridge and stares out at that other world.

As others hurry along on their descent into hell their footsteps, to him, sound like a melody he once danced to. In each of their gazes he can see the reflection of it, of a world they once lived in that knew nothing about magic torn inside-out or what the skeletons of dead stars looked like. When they only knew how to wish, and wish, and wish, and never worried that speaking those wishes aloud destined them to die.

He looks down on them now and is counting their wishes like tears hanging frozen on their eyelashes. And deep in his chest he is carving out a hollow space in his bones for his own, where his heart trembles and remembers the agony of his flowers growing from ribcages.

And he starts to wonder at the way he feels like he’s dying in his own skin.

Behind him the desert is still calling him home in that language that goes beyond sunlight and shadow and soul. And beyond that he can feel the roots of the forest reaching for him, their age-old yearnings wrapping tighter and tighter around his heart like a tether afraid of letting him go. Each day the tear in his soul widens. Each day he is breaking a little more.

Each day he feels more like two halves drifting apart, while his blood turns to grains of sand and soil that are leaking out bit by bit.

But ahead of him —

ahead of him the island waits. And that, too, calls to him, that too reaches out like one more noose around his throat drawing him in another direction. That, too, is one more piece of him shattering itself like a wave against a rocky shore.

He can feel the spring growth and the rot on his tongue when he looks down into the city. His wings curl against his fetlocks, reach out to feel the curls of bone beneath him while feathers whisper eulogies to the monster it once belonged to. He imagines that he can hear its roaring in his ribcage, where all the parts of him are clashing. He imagines that the bones are all that will be left when the war of it is finished.

So he stands there, watching and listening and breaking every second.

And he stands there until a man that smells like smoke and spice crosses before him, and Ipomoea can’t help but breathe it in and feel the rift widen. He can’t help but step forward and drive yet another wedge like a stake into his heart. “Are you going in?” The bone-bridge echoes beneath his hooves, and there is a moment that he wonders at the way his flowers rarely seem to grow here. As if the island knows who he is beneath it all, beneath the fury in his lungs and the petals pressed against his ribcage. As if it is stripping him away piece by piece and laying them out in front of him, only to whisper, choose. But only one.

Ipomoea has never been able to choose only one.

“If you are, would you mind if I joined you?” Because he can feel those pieces of himself being whittled into knives, and he can hear the island calling out like a rabid thing (or is he the rabid thing, whose days are numbered, who feels the insanity creeping in?) And he is so very afraid of what he might do if he wanders into the belly of the beast alone.

« r » | @Renwick

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