Happy Hump Day!
Hope everyone’s week is going well! Proud to report that I’ve been able to maintain some amount of discipline and I’ve been getting lots of writing (and reading!) done! Even made some headway on Withered Legacy. Not only that, but I’ve actually been getting my scheduled posts out on time. It’s been a weird week.
Today’s post comes courtesy of Our Write Side’s Master Class prompt series. I started working on a piece for A Vampire’s Bride based on the “Hidden sparkle” prompt, but I just wasn’t feeling it. Then, the “Tattered tattoo” prompt jumped out at me as perfect for Saxon! So, I’ve written something to help me move along with Withered Legacy instead. The prompt serves as inspiration, and a pretty obvious descriptor for one of Saxon’s more particular features.
TW: blood, and self-harm
Elle’s staring at it, and making no attempt to hide the curiosity in her eyes. Even though it’s one of the few parts of my chest that doesn’t have a fresh wound, she devotes some time to cleaning it. Guess I got some blood on it anyway.
“You can just ask, you know.” My voice startles her. She must have thought I was still unconscious. Elle backs away slightly, discarding the bloody rag she’d been using to clean me up in a bucket full of water nearby. Despite all the bandaging, I can move pretty freely. Everything is stiff, and I want to stretch, but I know doing so will only make pain shoot through every inch of me. How long was I out?
“Sorry. Didn’t mean to stare.”
“It’s alright.” My hand wanders absently up to the tattoo, following the scar that trails straight across it. “It’s a rune.”
“I know. I recognize it.” Her eyes go back to the ink. If she recognizes it, then she must have her suspicions as to why it’s there. “Why would you get that tattooed onto your chest?”
“It wasn’t supposed to be permanent.” I sighed. It’s not easy thinking about it, but now that I am I can’t stop. “Back before everything happened, my brother and I tried to reach our mother. We wanted to help Lexia, but neither of us had the capability to astral project far enough to find her, so we did our research. We found this rune, knew it would sever the tie that hooks our astral forms to our bodies. We were stupid.”
Elle doesn’t say anything, she just sits and listens to my story. Before I continue, she reaches over and places her hand on mine.
“It wasn’t until after everything that Adwin and I tried to get rid of the mark. The energy we infused the rune with permanently engraved it into our skin, though. Even tried cutting it out, but I’ve never had very high pain tolerance.” I shrug.
“So you’ve been to the Death Realms?” There’s a note of hope in her voice, out of place in our conversation.
“Yes. Had a brief stay in Heaven. As stupid a plan as it was, we did succeed in seeing our mother.” At the mention of Heaven, Elle’s eyes go wider than usual. A sudden bout of sorrow seems to overcome them. “Elle?”
“Sorry. Just…a little jealous.” She offers a sad smile. “This homesickness never goes away. Part of our punishment.” Her hand squeezes mine again, and I find myself pulling her into a hug. The angel relaxes into the embrace, resting her head on my shoulder. “Don’t know why it didn’t occur to me sooner – it explains the divinity in you.”
“What?” I pull back, confused. She’s already regained her composure, the usual smile lighting her face.
“Souls that reach Heaven and come back bring a piece of it with them. It doesn’t happen often. Can’t remember the last time, actually.” She stands from the bed and moves towards the bucket of water now mingled with my blood. Picking it up, she turns to me. “Get some rest, Saxon. Your wounds are still too fresh for you to move around much. I’ll come by later with some food.”
I’m only half listening, still mulling over the information she’s given me. It’s not long before the wounds take their toll, though, and I pass out from exhaustion again.
Didn’t occur to me until now that Saxon and Adwin could have brought something back from their little trip. The story continues to unfold outside my control! Thank you, Elle, for that bit of information.
Be sure to check out the other responses at the prompt!
Friendly reminder: #TuesFlashFicTrain is up and running for round two! Check out the prompt and ride with us 🙂
Friendly reminder #2: Have you check out OWS Ink Literary Journal yet? It’s an awesome lit journal from the great peeps at Our Write Side. It even includes a brand new short sci-fi story by yours truly! You won’t get that short story anywhere else, so if you want to read it, subscribe to the journal!
As always, think happy thoughts!