more of a little idea than a oneshot. may expand later. made with @avistella in mind since i unfortunately can’t write for some of her other faves
It was raining.
It was spring and yet there was nothing spring related, at least in the sense the season was portrayed. The sky was moggy and ominous, darkness spreading like an infection, a blurry splatter of [lighter darkness] [paint] in the spot where the clouds had covered the sun.
There was a scent in the air, musty, barky, the odd odour of bareback earth, dust after rain, that you couldn’t describe verbally if you tried. It was nothing definitive, only nostalgic, and somehow….familiar. (There was a word for it, you think.)
A droplet slid down the curve of your nose, off-tracking into somewhere past your cheek and getting trapped in the sliver of space where the corner of your lips met. The uncomfortable sensation of your clothes sticking to your skin made you briefly consider moving, but your feet may as well have turned into bark, rooting themselves into the ground where you stood.
“You’ll catch a cold like this, you know.”
Petrichor. Ah, there was the word.
It took you a moment to realize the downpour was no longer battering your form. You glanced up, blinking away the water, irritation turning the whites of your eyes a faded pink. The stranger smiled down at you, adjusting their hold on the umbrella above the two of you. Unlike you, he didn’t look like a drowned rat - the droplets trapped in his silver eyelashes glittering like diamonds, those crimson eyes piercing through the tension and the cold to address you.
You took him in for a couple more moments, before turning to stare blankly at the sky once more. A few beats of silence passed.
It was a while before you spoke.
“And ruin that dress?” The stranger tilted his head, smiling softly. “Why are you here?”
You didn’t know why you had spoken, heck you didn’t even know why you were having this conversation with a complete stranger, but your mouth was moving before your brain caught up.
“My string was cut.”
There was no disgust like you had expected, only acceptance.
“I thought he was going to propose. But my soulmate had other ideas,” You continued, staring at the dress you’d worn for the occasion, fists clenching into the material of the skirt. “Cut it himself.”
“How was yours cut?” Your shoes were utterly soaked now.
“Me?” He watched you, his eyebrows furrowing and disrupting the peace across his features. It was a bit unreadable, but then he was looking at you like he didn’t understand what he was seeing. He didn’t even bother hiding the truth. “How did you know?”
“Your eyes.” You smoothed back a wet strand of hair from your face, catching his gaze for only the second time since the conversation had begun. “They’re the same as mine.”
“Pretty?” His voice, fluid, soothing, teasing, vibrated from his chest without a second beat. But there was something else in the inflection, something challenging you.
“No,” You tightened your grip on your handbag. “Dead.”
He smiled, and this time, there was teeth.
His finger lifted to wave at you and you traced the almost invisible line with your eyes. While your string looked like it had been sheared precisely, as if by a scissors, his was ripped haggardly, loose ends curling. What in the world had happened to this man?
(The rain was lightening up.)
“Do you have a ride?”
“He left me on the sidewalk.” Unwanted. A freak of nature.
You wordlessly watched as he reached for your thread. Your breath hitched when he touched it to his, tying the two together.