Hanakotoba: Sagiso


Date: 2016-06-18
Pose Count: 16
Makoto Kino 2016-06-18 01:56:41 45434
Dark, darker, darkest. The darkness is a physical thing, smothering and viscous; it presses heavily from all directions, stifling against the skin. A person could drown in this blackness.

In this thick sea of darkness, like a seedling uncurling beneath the earth, Makoto searches for light.

I want to see you. Blind, straining against the weight of the darkness that seems to bind and hamper any movement, she reaches, stretching her fingers out as though she might tear through the dark enough to reveal a familiar glimmer.

As she dreams, Mako's heart calls out into the blackness for the one she most wants to see.

"Nephrite!"
Nephrite 2016-06-18 02:07:42 45441
%rA mostly broken leg. Mostly broken ribs. Severe energy loss. Heavy medication to try and mitigate all these things. It's a recipe for deep unconsciousness. As Nephrite slumbers on the couch of the shared apartment, no doubt annoying at least one occupant with a little too much snoring, he is dead to the world.%r%r
Nephrite 2016-06-18 02:11:47 45444
A mostly broken leg. Mostly broken ribs. Severe energy loss. Heavy medication to try and mitigate all these things. It's a recipe for deep unconsciousness. As Nephrite slumbers on the couch of the shared apartment, no doubt annoying at least one occupant with a little too much snoring, he is dead to the world.

Except.

Except her voice, calling his name. Reaching into him and awakening some deep part of his mind. He latches onto that voice and follows it, deep into the darkness. Clawing his way through it to her. "Mako-chan!"
Makoto Kino 2016-06-18 03:00:31 45462
There. From somewhere she cannot see, she hears him calling her name - and as she does, from amidst the darkness a tiny point of light shimmers into being. A single star.

Redoubling her efforts, Makoto reaches determinedly, desperately toward that light. "Neph! I'm here!"

More follow, one by one, little pinpricks against the unrelieved black slowly resolving into the patterns of constellations. The light is weak - barely sixth-magnitude, the very faintest degree of brightness that can still be seen by the human eye - but even this trickle of starlight is enough to see by, and suddenly he's there, right in front of her.

The gluey liquid darkness still bogs down her limbs, but it's her own hesitation more than anything else that holds Makoto back from simply throwing herself against his chest in relief. After the way she left--

"...I really screwed up," Mako whispers, suddenly abashed.
Nephrite 2016-06-18 03:18:59 45466
A blue-white star, surrounded by a tight cluster of six others like it, is what hails Nephrite's entrance. Like so many other things in the night sky, it's something he always meant to point out to her, but hasn't yet. That star's meaning, like so many others, is something he has held onto, because... well, if there is always one more star to show her, one more secret to share, then there always has to be a next time, right?

But that next time is now, it seems. He is here and she is here, and as is the nature of dreams, he does not question it. Nor the inky blackness that clings to them both. He steps forward, starlight beaming brighter than ever around them. --And he laughs. "You've got that the wrong way around, haven't you? I screwed up royally. I've taken screw-ups to the next level."
Makoto Kino 2016-06-18 03:59:05 45471
His laughter draws a laugh out of Makoto as well, an involuntary little sound bubbling up out of her as she cracks a helpless half-smile. "Can we agree that we both screwed up?" It's an oddly hopefully question. If they can just go with that, call it even, then maybe they can leave it behind them.

Right?

More and more stars are becoming visible around them, and the wash of silvery white light drives back the pitch-like clinging blackness. It's a true starfield that surrounds them now, glittering like diamond dust. Freed of that weight, Mako gives in to the impulse she's been feeling from the moment she saw him here. It's more like falling than leaping, her arms wrapping around Nephrite to hug him rightly.

"I missed you," she says. "I wanted to see you so badly."
Nephrite 2016-06-18 04:17:18 45474
She falls into his arms like a leaf from a tree, and he catches her just as easily. Though they're in this dark place, his arms are warm around her. "I missed you too. I--on that asteroid, Mako, that sea of flowers only made me think of you. Which is dumb, I know, because what I should have been thinking about was the fact that every one of them was designed to kill me. But they were pink flowers, what was I supposed to do?"

He sighs against her hair. "I should have told you. I'm sorry I didn't."
Makoto Kino 2016-06-18 04:33:56 45476
"I understand why you went." Makoto tucks her head down against Nephrite's shoulder to hide her face, leaning into the reassuring warmth of his arms around her. Understanding it doesn't really help, but it's not something she can go on ignoring, either. Not here.

"I just... I don't know what to do about this," she confesses in a murmur. "How am I supposed to not be scared when I get reminded of how easily I could lose you? How am I supposed to not be angry?"
Nephrite 2016-06-18 05:04:51 45481
The stars twinkle around them, fragile lights in the darkness. "I'm still here," he reminds her. "If you learn the answer to that, maybe you could pass that on to me? I'm still trying to figure it out myself."

His hand strokes her hair, slow and gentle. "I don't know, maybe it's okay to be angry. Maybe it's okay to want to fight to keep each other. To remember how important every moment is."

His hand drops to her back. He does not pull away, but there is a stillness. "I love you. I want you to know that. Before anything else happens. You need to know.
Makoto Kino 2016-06-18 05:37:05 45483
At those words, Makoto stills as well. A soft breeze picks up around them, a shivering, sighing breath of air that swirls gently over and around them both, smelling of spring. It sets some of the stars swaying with its motion - no, not stars but flowers, scattered over the darkened landscape around them and glowing faintly in a mirror of the starry sky above. Little clusters of tiny blue forget-me-nots, larger white flowers with fringed petals like the spread wings of tiny white birds.

Makoto lifts her head, tipping her face upward to watch Nephrite with wide eyes. "It scares me," she whispers. "When you're not with me, I keep waiting for the bottom to fall out. But, I..."

The blush that rises in her cheeks is clear even in the soft light from the stars. "I love you, too."
Nephrite 2016-06-18 06:04:04 45486
The flower petals, softly glowing in the darkness, are fragile too. Like moonlit snow. But stars can glow steadily for an eternity, and flowers return every spring. Neither is quite so delicate as it seems.

He bumps his forehead against hers. "It scares me too. It scares me knowing what's out there, and how many close calls we've had. But we're still here. We still have this. I just--I can't promise I'll never do anything like that again. But I promise I'll talk to you next time. I can promise to be honest about the risks. So we don't have to always be wondering if something happened to each other.

He glances around, and smiles. "I guess I didn't have to bring you flowers from space, after all."
Makoto Kino 2016-06-18 06:29:36 45487
Suddenly Mako finds herself giggling, taken by a little rush of unexpected delight. "Don't think that would've gotten you out of trouble, Neph."

She can't resist; slipping a hand against the back of his neck, she rises up a little on her toes and presses a soft, lingering kiss to his lips.

"...I'll promise, too," she says as she settles back down to lean against his chest again. But then she falters, looks away. "At least, that's what I'd like to say, but..."

Beneath the sparkling stars and the soft glow of flower petals, another light is gathering. Veins of green-gold trickle through the ground beneath their feet, the spreading root network of the great tall oak that's growing now in residential Uminari, like threads trying to stitch together earth that's threatening to unravel.

"Listen, Neph." Makoto's eyes are serious and a little anxious when she looks up at Nephrite again. "Don't give up on me, all right?"
Nephrite 2016-06-18 06:55:46 45488
The flush of her kiss lingers on his lips well after she has pulled away. He watches the wonder of the green veins pulsing beneath their feet, a small smile playing at his mouth.

But as she speaks, his brow creases. "I could never give up on you." He leans in to kiss her again. Not on the lips, but on the forehead. "Never ever, Thunderbird."
Makoto Kino 2016-06-18 07:07:39 45489
"Thank you." Some of the anxiety eases from Makoto's expression then, and she manages to smile a little. "I'll find my way back, I promise."

For a little while, she leans against him, holding tighter. The star-strewn sky is clear as crystal, fading to pale blue where the great oak rises against it, but although there's not a single wisp of cloud to be seen from somewhere in the distance comes a low rumble of thunder.

Letting out a sigh, Makoto begins to pull back.

"I'd rather stay here," she says with a rueful little twist of her mouth, "but somebody needs a punch in the face."
Nephrite 2016-06-18 07:17:27 45490
If Nephrite were awake, maybe he would think to ask where here is. If he were awake, he would ask her who needs punching. If he were awake, he would wonder where she needs to find her way back from.

But her statement suits the dream-logic as well as the newly-grown oak tree does. He accepts both as being the way of things. "Somebody always does." He grips her hand as she pulls away, firm and reassuring, before letting go. Before it feels as though something is slowly drawing him back, an unseen line tugging him through the inky darkness, expanding the void between them. "Give them hell, honey. I'll be waiting."
Makoto Kino 2016-06-18 07:26:45 45491
Makoto answers with a brilliant, grateful smile, a brief squeeze of the hand that clasps hers before they part.

Then the wind picks up, and the landscape comes apart in a rush of petals and stars.

When Nephrite wakes up on the couch in the guys' shared apartment, groggy from sleep and quality painkillers, there's something resting under the palm of his hand. A flower, only slightly crushed, with fringed petals that resemble a bird's spread wings: the white orchid which in Japanese is named sagisou.