when people understand me, we’re able to interact in a more pleasant, healthier manner, but I can’t exactly carry around pamphlets saying “so we might become friends: my trauma-based behaviors and why they’re Not About You™”, “so we might become friends: an explanation of my disorder-related behaviors“, and “so we might become friends: how to interpret my atypicalities”
Nesta looks at the wide, midnight sky, at the lights over Velaris, at the most beautiful city she has ever seen.
Not that she was ever able to see much outside of their little village, even if she wanted to.
From her window, she can hear the laughter coming from the streets, just as well as she can hear Elain tossing and turning in her bed, even if she said a sweet, yawning goodnight to Nesta several hours ago.
It took a while, but Nesta knew Elain needed to talk about Graysen, about the future she might have had, about the life that vanished like smoke in front of her eyes; but Elain, Elain smiled, grasping the jacket of that red haired Fae, and that smile, that smile makes Nesta remember how she shoved him, thinking that Elain would only be in danger, but maybe, from now on, if Nesta shoved him away it would be as if she shoved away her sister, too.
Nesta turns to look at the chimney, at the fire burning, and the dancing of the flames that as always calms down the roaring in her head, soothes her like nothing ever did and she hopes it can calm whatever is wrong with her- this, this feeling out of place that she feels.
It’s not only for the Night Court, not only for this whole place that is so strange, it’s more, it’s as if a part of her, but outside of her, is calling, pulling at her heart, at her veins, at everything that she is, and she thinks-
Her thoughts make no sense, have no logic, and they make her feel more than she ever did and it’s always him, him, him.
She remembers with painful clarity everything that happened in Hybern, everything,but the moment that wave of power engulfed him and his wings-she doesn’t know, didn’t ask what happened to them or, or to him, she couldn’t, she tried, but the words got stuck in her mouth.
She walks to the fire, sits in front of the earth and the warmth-
it reminds her of him.
It reminds her of her hand on his chest, of his fingers brushing her cheek-his touch gentle, so incredibly gentle and in that moment, that touch,the promise he made her, the sincerity in his voice-
It was more than she could take and she had-she had to look away, focus on those Queens because the hazel in his eyes was burning her alive.
And she tried, she tried to not think of him, all this time, because when she started, she couldn’t seem to stop.
The way he-how he turned to shield the other Fae, Azriel, without a thought for himself, that scream-
she remembers. She remembers it all.
She closes her eyes, her hand closed into a fist in front of her mouth
there’s no water in her lungs, there’s no water, there’s no-
Her eyes are burning, and she should- she should sleep, there’s no use in staying up all night, it won’t bring her anything.
But she-she’s scared of closing her eyes, she will drown, she will drown, she will drown, she will hear the water splashing under Elain’s feet, she will see the despeartion in Feyre’s eyes, she will hear his scream-
Her hands go in her hair, pulling-she can’t behave like this, like a child, there’s no point.
She gives one last look to the fire, feeling that pull, harder, sharper, like someone is calling her name, but the voice is too low, like a whisper, and she-
she wants to answer.
She wakes up at with the first rays of the sun, Elain’s face in front of hers and she’s uttering that name under her breath, Lucien, and Nesta knows she’s dreaming and it seems like a beautiful dream, because Elain smiles, a tiny smile and Nesta can’t believe it, they saw each other for just a moment, was it enough for that mating bond to do whatever kind magic it implied? How does it work? Does- does it call to you?
Nesta gets out of the bed so fast her head spins and the floor is too cold under her feet, like it never was
it’s not normal, it’s not right
She walks out of the room, traces the corridors, looks at each of the doors, at the intricate drawings on the walls and this place;
this is Feyre’s home.
Nesta arrives in the main room and food appears on the table as fast as a blink and she jolts back, surprised. She can’t help but wonder if she will ever get used to this,
no, no, no, don’t, don’t eat, don’t let them win
this voice, the same voice in the back of her head all her life, her lifeline, her rage.
Of what use would it be now? Where would it lead her? Of what use was it to her in all this years?
Who is she without it?
“Good Morning, Nesta.” she doesn’t need to turn to acknowledge the voice, it’s the tiredness in it, the sadness.
“It’s hardly morning.” she answers, turning to face Rhysand, half the man he was when she saw him in her home.
She wonders if Feyre took a part of him with her.
He chuckles, like he expected that kind of reaction from her, and she moves to the other end of the room, making the table stand between them.
She turns to face him, her finger running over the edge of a glass as she asks “How is my sister?”
“So what Mor said is the truth.” he answers and her eyes snap to him and just when she is about to tell him that he did not answer her question, he says “There’s no smell coming off of you, and I can’t get into your mind. It irks me, especially this early in the morning.”
She opens her mouth and she feels the rage rising only at the thought that he tried to get inside her head.
“How dare you.” she says, her voice low and growling and he looks at her, his expression serious, looks her up and down and Nesta hates him.
“How is my sister?” she asks again, eager to get out of this room.
He passes his hands on his tunic, as if to clean it from an invisible stain “She is well.”is all he says, and Nesta wants to know more, wants to-but it’s a second, a swirling of shadows, and he’s no longer there.
The glass in Nesta’s hand breaks.
Blood drips from her palm and soaks through the blue tablecloth, painting it black.
She presses her other hand on the wound, trying to calm her breathing, it’s nothing, it’s nothing, is just a stupid wound, it’s nothing, nothing.
Nesta searches for a place to clean her wound, a place to get air into her lungs, a place out of here because this isn’t-she shouldn’t be able to break a glass with her bare hands, she wasn’t-she isn’t strong enough, it’s impossible, it’s impossible.
She sees a door and the scent of fire and air pulls her through, she will be safe there, she will-
when she opens the door, she sees him hoisting himself up on his arms, his wings covered in bandages, his eyes wide and wild, going to her hand to her face and back again.
Cassian, Cassian, Cassian
She turns, runs through the corridor and to her room to find Elain awake and she can barely hear her over the frantic beat of her heart,, over the voice in her head that screams his name
Cassian, Cassian, Cassian
“Nesta, are you hurt? Is that blood?” she looks at her sister, at her soft brown eyes and when Elain takes the edge of the bed sheet and rips the fabric, the sound of it-it’s too loud, the tearing-
Now, now she can only hear someone screaming, and she wants them to stop, stop,stop and her knees hurt as if she fell, but she didn’t, she didn’t, she didn’t
make the screaming stop, make it stop, please
Someone moves toward her, all flowers and kindness, and then stops, because the room is on fire, it must be, she smells it, feels the reassuring warmth of the flames all around her, but-
but it’s not fire, not only fire, it’s blood and bandages and air and earth and wings and now she finally can breathe.