He waits. The shards of glass have glittered like snow on the white carpet for five months now; he steps around them without thought as he paces. Sometimes he still purposefully treads on one to feel the bright, sharp pain travel up through his foot, to leave a few more bloodstains in the wreckage. He hasn’t even bothered to replace the shattered glass tumblers, instead drinking his liquor out of a coffee mug or straight from the bottle. He’s stopped bothering with an ash tray, too, and the cigarette butts leave little burn marks where they fall from idle hands. He doesn’t care. The one he loves will return to him, he is certain of this despite their parting words, the broken glass and passing months. The one he loves will return to him and so he must be here, cleansed by his penitence and proven faithful by his stasis. So, he waits.
Love lies at the end of a knife blade, the culmination of all you ever wanted to share with your beloved, beautiful red pain blossoming up around that sweet spot just below the sternum, and finally he sees the world you’ve made for him, for you both, finally he understands the language your love speaks in pain and punishment and the patience to lead him inexorably to this moment of final, total clarity, his surrender in your arms the last step in the dance of your own design, and you will be called madmen but that is because only you can see the beauty in a love this red.
[More details about my DnD character Rem’r, adorable tiefling and Best Professor Ever!!!]
- Rem’r has three-toed feet (think the show Gargoyles), along with pointy teeth and nails.
- Her tail is plain (meaning no spikes or anything) and swishes back and forth when she’s highly emotional (so…. like all the time).
- Her favorite food is chocolate-covered coffee beans and she lives off them when trying to meet deadlines.
- She tends to stay up all night and only sleep in brief naps during the day, or whenever her body forces her to.
- She might have a caffeine addiction…
- Her clothing is normal for a ranger type: Linen shirt, pants, no shoes (obviously), bracers, elven armor and cloak, etc [it’ll be color coded to her university’s colors, I just can’t decide what they are yet].
- Speaking of her university, they have her on “extended sabbatical” because she comes from a very wealthy and influential family and they’re afraid to fire her.
- Speaking of which, also, she’s either loved or hated by her students – loved by the passionate ones who don’t mind listening to a fascinating but rambling lecture which won’t be on the test; hated by the students who can’t stand rambling lectures or trying to follow erratic trains of thought because all they want to do is learn what will be on the test.
- All of her written correspondences contain a crap!! ton!! of exclamation points!!!!!
- She sometimes hangs stuff from her horns that she needs quick access to, such as a magnifying glass, and sticks writing implements in her hair.
- I don’t know what kind of queer she is, but I think she gets flustered around pretty girls.
- She hails from Hellas, a land with an environment and culture similar to the ancient Mediterranean. Her parents own a very nice villa there and move in the highest social circles.
- Fun fact: fellow party member and pirate extraordinaire, Tarcella the halfling, also grew up in the Hellas area and the two knew each other as children.
- Stuff in her pack: lots of half melted candle stubs, charcoal (from Tarcella, cause they’re BFFs), waterproof matches, compass, chocolate covered coffee beans, random crystals and rocks (one of which is from a witch turned to stone by a basilisk named Eli), pencils, quills and ink, a mysterious glass orb, several notepads and loose sheets of paper, like at least 5 books, empty potion bottles, some stuff she’s definitely forgotten about completely, a cursed half-orc fingerbone, a sample of some creepy tree mold, her official university documents, and clothes I guess.
- Weapons: Rock hammer, ice pick, silver dagger, longbow
- She is very pro-animal, especially those that she feels are wrongly maligned (like basilisks).
- She’s a lightweight when it comes to alcohol, but is a very nice drunk
- She’s an overachiever with an approval complex
- She really wants to be friends with Never [our nonbinary dragonborn [aka my girlfriend] but she has no understanding of introversion and therefore no idea that she’s very loud and very overwhelming.
- She recently obtained a Qualls Feather Token, which can turn into a giant bird (specifically a giant budgie) with the obedience of a golem. You can bet she has that bird out like 24/7, not for any reason other than it’s her giant bird friend. Name TBD.
Life is one long slippery slope. I started at the top, but from the first my stance was shaky. I slid so early so easily and never managed to climb back up more than an inch – and that just to fall again anyway. Drinking to smoking to injecting, kissing to fucking to binding, it’s all downhill. Melancholy to misery to madness. Love to obsession to hatred. I’m not sure I’ll even know when I’ve hit the bottom; will it feel any different than where I am now?
The first time I made him bleed, I thought I would kill myself rather than live with the guilt. But I didn’t, and the second time that guilt weighed a little less on my shoulders. I barely felt it at all the third time; he knew the possibility was there, he could have prevented it had he truly wanted to. My point is, none of those instances felt like rock bottom. Maybe nothing will, until the time I unwrap my hands from his neck and he lays still and silent. I thought love might be the thing with which I’d climb back up that slope, but I was wrong. If anything, it only accelerated my descent.
There are times when I want to either be fully in that world or not there at all. Like now: I can watch him sink to his knees, but I can’t pull him away. His hands tremble now, no matter how steadily they held the blade a moment before, but I can’t take them in my own. I watch him bite back a sob as he folds over, hands fisting in his hair – wiping blood on black locks – and I can’t hold him or touch him or do anything of value. If I could, I’d fix him a drink; wash the blood from his clothes; get him in bed. Do… something about Daren’s body. If I have to watch this scene replay itself unto eternity, I at least deserve to be a player and not solely the audience. I wouldn’t stop things or try to change the outcome. I just want to clean away the blood so neither of them has to. That seems fair.
Why, I ask you, is the summer solstice so much harder to face than winter’s? Awash in red, you shrug and answer with that eternally sad smile of yours, Because we both love him. I expected this answer. I love you, too, I point out, but you shake your head. Not in the same way, and then, before I can respond, Don’t worry, I don’t take it personally. Over the body of your dead lover, I try to meet your eyes, match your smile, and fail. Three’s a crowd.
The apple. The pomegranate. His hand.
Chest to chest, hip to hip as if one heartbeat, as if one breath
(step, turn, step)
hand to the small of the back and fingers trailing over stiff linen
(step, turn, dip)
and then the bite of the blade, too sharp to even hurt
(step, turn, step)
red drops on white carpet, rose petal wrists
(step, turn, step)
arm sliding around narrow waist, mouths bruising
then the blade to bare throat with merciful speed
and gentle hands amid the red river
lay him down.