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    The Morning After, Take Two

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    Queenofinsanity6
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    The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by Queenofinsanity6 on 27/05/11, 11:46 pm

    Nils woke up the next morning to the very strange sensation of his pillow being warm. And squishy in a way that pillows normally weren't. A bit puzzled, he opened his eyes and had to resist the urge to jump away in horror. Now he remembered. He slept with Esperanza. He SLEPT with ESPERANZA. He wasn't sure what made him think that was a good idea, but it seemed a lot less convincing on this side of things.

    He honestly rather wanted to slip out of bed and run the fuck away, but Esperanza deserved better. Instead he slipped quietly out of bed and put his clothes back on before heading over to the kitchen to make tea. He DESPERATELY needed tea right about now. Or possibly something stronger, but that was an impulse that he was absolutely NOT going to give into. Tea it would be, very very strong tea.

    He fidgeted as he waited for the water to boil and poured himself a cup. After a moment's thought, he poured Esperanza one as well and considered trying to make her breakfast. Probably a bad idea, he didn't want to wreck her kitchen and he knew his cooking was far inferior to what she could make herself.

    That decided, he took a long drink from his cup before taking both back into the bedroom and, after a moment's thought, kissing her forehead to wake her up.
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by tuck on 28/05/11, 10:38 am

    Esperanza dreams.

    Through a tear-stained fog, images and sounds and ideas flitter like broken glass. The rustle of giant obsidian wings beating softly in the night sky. Icy fingers comb through tangled hair. Three women, deaf, blind, and mute, scramble through a forest. A grinning skull with silky red feathers adorning it like hair. Hot breathe on prickly skin.

    Esperanza stands on a precipice, a rocky ledge over a vast chasm. Above her head the blood red sky churns and roils, and now and then ghostly faces appear and morph and disintegrate in the mass of crimson clouds. Below her the mountain disappears into swirling blue mists, a glimmering fog that blocks her view of whatever lies below. Pinpricks of light shine through the fog, dimming and swelling in complex patterns.

    "What's out there?" she asks out loud, and she knows the answer even before it comes.

    "Stars and sky, Hermana." the voice says from behind her as Chrys steps out of the darkness and stands beside her "Hopes and fears."

    She gestures at Esperanza's hands.

    "You should be careful with those."

    Looking down, Esperanza finds that she is holding two beautiful white roses, their stems entwining around her slender wrists. She sees the blood dripping from where the sharp thorns have pierced her skin, but she feels no pain.

    "What are they for?" she asks her friend.

    "They're for you, big sister. Your links to the world in days to come. Without them you'd be lost."

    As Esperanza watches, the roses grow and change, becoming two white doves with blood red markings, liquid stains of crimson on white. The doves coo and peck in her hands for a moment and then take flight out over the shrouded chasm, carefully tracing a path between sky and mist, between heaven and hell, until they are lost from sight. Esperanza watches them fly with a growing knot of fear forming in her stomach.

    "Chrys..." she says, almost in a whimper, "They're gone. What do I do now?"

    Chrys laughs, her smile doing little to relieve the growing dread that Esperanza feels.

    "Now you jump, silly. That's why you're here."

    "I..." Esperanza begins, her voice faltering, "I can fly... I think I can."

    "Not here." Chrys says, her voice taking on a sad tone, "Here you either rise or fall, and you can't know which until you try."

    "Do I have to?" Esperanza asks.

    "I'm afraid so." Chrys says, "You've been here for too long. Your friends need you. You have to help them. You can't do that from here, all alone. It's time for you to move on."

    Chrys smiles. Esperanza nods. She knows it's the truth. They're counting on her.

    "Don't worry. I'll always be here... if you can find your way back." Chrys says.

    She steps forward, her arms open to embrace her friend, and Ronnie steps into her, not wanting to leave, but knowing she must. But as she does, Chrys' form swirls and parts into mist, and Esperanza tumbles forward, her mind reeling as she falls over the edge, plummeting down the side of the cliff, screaming as the swirling mists rush up at her.

    ----------------------------

    Ronnie awoke with a gasp, her eyes snapping open as Nils kissed her lightly on the forehead.

    "Chrys!" she gasped.

    After a moment she remembered where she was... who she was, and her pulse began to slow.

    "Oh god... Nils... I'm so sorry. I... I had a dream..."




    Last edited by tuck on 28/05/11, 02:52 pm; edited 11 times in total
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by Queenofinsanity6 on 28/05/11, 10:43 am

    Nils was very glad he'd put the mugs of tea down before trying to wake her. He jumped back, startled and more than a bit confused. His residual unpleasant automatic reaction aside, the last thing he'd expected to hear at this point in time was Chrys' name.
    After a moment, he shook it off and turned back to Esperanza. "It's fine, sweetheart." he replied, looking at her carefully. Now he was tempted to abandon the previously planned conversation in favor of curiosity. Probably not the time, though. "I brought you tea." he said instead, motioning to the mug nearby and picking up his own. "I thought we should talk."


    Last edited by Queenofinsanity6 on 28/05/11, 03:07 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by tuck on 28/05/11, 10:57 am

    Ronnie sat up, shaking away the last ragged remnants of the strange dream. She realized she was still quite naked and awkwardly wrapped the sheet around herself for propriety's sake.

    "Um... yeah. Yeah, that might be... a good idea." she said, pressing her palm to her forehead, trying to rub the sleep from her eyes.
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by Queenofinsanity6 on 28/05/11, 03:16 pm

    He smiled wryly at her attempt to cover herself. "I think it might be a little late for that, love." He teased gently as he seated himself on the opposite end of the bed.
    He took another drink of his tea as she rubbed her eyes. "I..." He paused, unsure of what exactly to say. It was pretty clear to him that this was a fluke that should never be repeated, but he wasn't sure how to go about saying that without hurting his friend. Sure, he'd been involved in such conversations before, but never before on this end of things-and his painful memories of such conversations weren't promising. "Okay, I don't really know how to say this, so I'm just going to blurt it out and hope I don't make an arse of myself. I'm not sad that it happened, but it should probably not happen again. You deserve someone who's actually attracted to women and isn't going to freak out at the sight of vagina." He blushed at that particular awkward memory of the night before. "You're my best friend, and I love you, but I'd prefer to be the best friend I can be for you, rather than a really shitty excuse for a lover."
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by tuck on 28/05/11, 03:21 pm

    Ronnie bit her lip. So they had really done it, then. Part of her had been kind of hoping that last night had been part of her dream.

    "Oh boy..." she muttered, looking around awkwardly.

    "I'm... I'm so sorry, Nils. This is all my fault."

    She shook her head.

    "I can't believe I... I'm sorry."
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by Queenofinsanity6 on 28/05/11, 03:24 pm

    He shook his head. "No, don't apologize. I wasn't drunk, you didn't force me, I thought about it and did it anyway. Definitely the most awkward sexual experience I've had in a long time, but at the time we both needed it. I'm perfectly fine with that if you are. I just wanted to make sure we were on the same page with what comes next."
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by tuck on 28/05/11, 03:30 pm

    Ronnie sat quietly for a moment. The same page? She wasn't even sure what book she was reading at this point.

    "So... just friends then?" she asked, haltingly.
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by Queenofinsanity6 on 28/05/11, 03:32 pm

    He nodded, smiling a little. "I think that would be best. We work great as friends. Hell, we practically act like a couple half the time anyway." He gave her a reassuring smile. "If that's alright with you? I'm trying to gauge your reaction but you're not giving me much to work with."
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by tuck on 28/05/11, 03:38 pm

    Ronnie sighed and reached for the steaming tea on the nightstand, dumping several large tablespoons of sugar in it.

    "To be honest, I'm not sure how to react."

    She took a sip of tea, the warm vapors helping to clear her head some.

    "I know it would never work between us. I know that now. I love you Nils. You're my best friend. I just... I thought maybe we could be more than that. Or maybe I was just lonely. Either way it was a mistake. I'm sorry. I shouldn't have done that to you."
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by Queenofinsanity6 on 28/05/11, 07:16 pm

    He nodded, taking a sip of tea as he waited for her to gather her thoughts. "Stop apologizing. Really, you've done nothing wrong. God, if anything, I should be apologizing for leading you on." He paused, fumbling for the right words. "If I weren't gay, we could be. But I'm gay, and you're a woman, and I don't imagine either of those things will ever change. Though I suppose considering family history anything's possible." He commented, trying to make her smile. "So, putting aside the actual sex, what is it that you'd like out of us that you're not getting with us as friends? Don't try to shrug off the question, I really want to know what I can do."
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by tuck on 28/05/11, 08:56 pm

    Ronnie offered Nils the ghost of a smile, thin but genuine.

    "You're a good friends, Nils. I just want things to go back to the way they were... Back when we were still normal. I feel so... strange... all the time. Different. I feel like a stranger in my own body. I just want to feel normal again. Just for a little while. I had that feeling. Once. With... with him. I just wanted to feel that again. But I can't. It's not the same."

    She sighed and took a drink of her warm, sweet tea.

    "I can't ask anything more of you, Nils. Not unless you can turn back time."
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by Queenofinsanity6 on 28/05/11, 10:45 pm

    He smiled at her sadly. "Oh, hon. I can't... I can't replace him for you. It wouldn't be fair to any of us for me to try." He scooted closer and gave her a hug, not caring that she was still just covered in a sheet. "I know. Things were so much simpler then. We just have to remember the wonder of it all. It's strange and terrifying, but we can do amazing things. We're amazing." He kissed the top of her head. "It's not the same, but on the bright side we get to save the world. Pretty cool, yeah?"

    He laughed a bit sadly. "No, if I could I would. I'd go back and fix all of this madness, and we'd all be happy together again."
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by tuck on 29/05/11, 12:00 am

    "I know." Ronnie said, "You can't replace him and it's not fair of me to ask you to. Just be you."

    She set her cup down on the night stand and leaned into Nils' shoulder. She sighed and closed her eyes with a wry smile.

    "We're quite a pair aren't we?"
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by Queenofinsanity6 on 29/05/11, 12:24 am

    He grinned at her. "Be me? That I can do. Quite enthusiastically, in fact. There's no one better at it. At least these days."

    The joke fell a bit flat in light of the mood of the room. "That we are. A mad, wonderful disaster of a pair. But at least we're in it together."
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by tuck on 29/05/11, 12:45 am

    Ronnie nodded thoughtfully.

    "Together..." she said.

    For a moment she sat quietly, letting herself be held.

    "Yeah..." she said eventually, "We are in this together. All of us. One of us is fragile; weak. Two of us are strong. All of us together...."

    "You're right. We need to do something."
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by Queenofinsanity6 on 29/05/11, 01:01 am

    Despite the events of the night before, and all the reasons why the situation ought to feel a whole lot more awkward than it did, he was content to hold her and enjoy the moment for as long as she wanted to. In a way, he wished that things could have been this simple for the both of them. If they'd been properly compatible, it would have been beautiful. He could see that, imagining in his mind's eye the two of them properly together, happy.

    But even his imagination wasn't quite accepting of that. Others for both of them intruded, life and lovers and circumstances. He was who he was, and she was who she was, and that was the best thing he could imagine either of them being right now. He had a vague idea that this better served what they needed, though not so much what they wanted.

    When she finally did speak up, he grinned at her again, a proper grin, with none of the tension of the morning in it. This was all Nils at his finest, hope and joy and fire. "Yes, exactly!" he replied excitedly, "Now you see. And with the two of us working for this, how could we possibly fail?"
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by tuck on 29/05/11, 01:14 am

    Ronnie smiled. It was always good to see Nils being excited. The way his face lit up was almost child-like. She was glad that things seemed to be okay between them. At least for the moment. She just hoped they stayed that way.

    "I have some things here that I need to finish. People I need to talk to... plans I need to finalize. I can't just walk away. Give me a few weeks. A month at most. Then we'll see about getting the band back together."
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by Queenofinsanity6 on 29/05/11, 01:34 am

    He nodded. "Of course. I don't expect you to just up and leave at the drop of a hat. I'll start nosing around and see if I can't get a feel for how best to go about this, and you let me know when you're ready."
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    Re: The Morning After, Take Two

    Post by tuck on 29/05/11, 02:47 am

    Ronnie nodded and sighed. The previous night's dream was now just a vague jumble of foggy images in the back of her mind, but now a flash of Chrys' face came back to her.

    "You either rise or fall..." she had said, "And you won't know which until you try... It's time for you to move on."

    Chrys had been right. She always was.

    She smiled and put her arm around Nils. For the moment they were two friends, each leaning on the other, and for the moment that was enough.

    ~Fin.~

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