everharts (everharts) wrote,

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sea of glass

In her tower of glass and stone by the sea, Aeryn writes stories in dog-eared notebooks and on scraps of wayward paper, ink stained fingers a blurred flurry as she struggles to put into words the impossibilities her imagination possesses.

Beasts, with fire tipped feathers and teeth that become fangs, and witches who cast spells and snatch the breath from babies. Tales of those who steal time and those who travel through it; of Stormhunters who bottle and brew tempests and fly on dirigibles in the great expanse of blue sky.

But with not much else to compare them to, her characters inevitably turn into something akin to those she reads about - plucked from fairytales, perfectly imperfect with the happily ever afters they rightfully deserve. Princes who draw swords and slay the terrible beasties with a single swipe, and damsels in distress that make Aeryn grit her teeth and cross them out, with strokes so deep that the paper tears. But that’s how love is supposed to be, right? Adventures, being rescued and swooning over men you hardly know because they saved you.

When she looks at herself in the shard of glass that is her mirror, with her spill of ink-black hair and eyes that mimic the sea, she doesn’t see a damsel in distress. Instead, she focuses on the furrow at her brow, the stubborn purse of her lips and the freckled constellations scattered across her collarbones, shoulders and arms. And the marks, the ones that shift in form, swirling, pooling, colliding with each breath she takes. Sky-dark and snake-like, moving beneath her skin, shying away from her veins that shine brightly with stardust and Light. She is no damsel.

She is darkness and light all at once. Made of a sprinkling of stardust that makes her everlasting, with just enough enchantment - borne from the hearts of dark faeries - to keep her body young and fresh and undaunted by the memories that would crumble the flimsy façade she unknowingly wears. 

Before means nothing, there is only now. Locked away and hidden from more than one world, she is safe. But it is not - and never was - in her nature to settle. Echoes of her old self remain, remnants that surface and make her want to flee. To leap from the tower, whatever the cost, if only to know something, anything, other than the life she leads.

Because surely, surely, there is more to life than what she has. The stories she writes, beautiful and horrible all at once, seem more than just stories. There is something familiar about them that haunts her, and still she writes them, even if they do make her feel even more empty and utterly confined - in skin too tight, with sight too blurry, and voice a little too sing-song like - than she already does. 

She is a caged bird, futilely throwing itself against bars that have long since been magicked closed. If only she knew that the way of escape was staring her in the face all along; if only she would open her eyes and see. See that you are truly never too old for fairytales, and sometimes, sometimes, the stories - her stories - are true.

Tags: novel: other, writing: original
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