Re: the villain in my own eyes

POSTED: Mon Jan 14, 2019 1:38 am

Word Count → ??? :: ---

The problem stemmed from the fact that Odalis Amaranthe was not a very good liar. Or - at least - not to the standards of the Salsolan court, which had made an artform from falsity long before its current queen had even been a spark in her treasonous father's eye.

Because she was looking for it, Elphaba saw the disconcerted expression slide across the girl's face when it came. Her stomach tightened uncomfortably, and in spite of herself the young ruler felt foolish, as though she had allowed herself to be tricked by her own wants and desires.

And she had.

"Do you like it?" She asked, more sharply than intended, her lips pressed tightly into a thin line. Without answering the girl's question she reached out and carefully took the collar from her lap. She held it aloft for inspection. The dark leather was well-worked, soft and supple, the creation of a master tanner. The tarnished metal loops gleamed nonetheless, fragmented where they had been beaten into shape by crude hammers. It was a very simple piece, but as with all things Elphaba owned, the quality was unmistakable.

She smiled, and perhaps if Odalis was paying attention, she would notice a ghost of something dark in that smile, glinting in warning.

"Here, let me show you."

She moved slowly so as not to scare the girl. Even though the tea helped to sooth her Odalis was jumpy, and since her arrival Elphaba had been careful with her, careful not to push on her overmuch. Still, she could grant only so much clemency without getting what she wanted. Leaning forward until their heads were almost touching, she slowly brushed the girl's unruly auburn curls back from the sweet curve of her pale throat.

If her fingers lingered now, soft and barely-there, could she be blamed for it?

Sweet breath unfurled, feathery and light, against the girl's ear. Dark fingers looped the leather smoothly around her throat, settling the metal rings in the pretty dip where her collarbone met. "Almost," She murmured, swollen pupils deep as black ice with a fine ring of vermilion.

The final touch was a small metal lock. In spite of its diminutive size it was heavy in Elphaba's palm as she slid it home through the rings, and closed it with a click.

Running her tongue over her lips again, she leaned back to take the measure of her work, allowing Odalis' curls to fall back into place. "There - Perfect."


we need a forest fire
Salsola
The Boss
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Alaine
Luperci Witch she hath or consulteth with a familiar spirit the queen is dead, long live the queen
hierophant
burn the witch
↟ ↟ ↟

POSTED: Mon Jan 14, 2019 2:01 am

She wasn't sure what she had expected but the collar that lay between them seemed to be an answer to a question that Odalis had been too afraid to ask. There was a finality to the hammered loops that had the girl reminded of a noose - and without thinking she raised a pale hand to gently stroked the base of her throat. The Salsolans were a proud people, and Odalis wondered if the collar would protect her from the other servants or simply draw attention to her lowly station in this new life.

She had not drank her tea, and so her mind was sharper than usual when she answered.

"Y-Yes." What else could she say?

Elphaba held the thing between them as if it were a medal to be bestowed upon a loyal soldier, and Odalis watched blankly as the woman's face twisted with thoughts that she did not understand.

She was a Robin caged here - coveted keenly like a shiny coin in the nest of a crow.

Odalis flinched as Elphabas hands brushed her shoulders, her long fingers pushing aside the flame of her hair. She looped the leather so that it sat firmly against the nape of her neck, the silver rings gathered together where the hollow at her throat laid bare.

Once she had had a necklace - an amulet with a crowned serpant etched in gold.

More questions brewed within her but were forgotten as the woman's grip tightened - forcing her forward. Odalis felt her teeth click as the woman threaded the padlock through the collar, and all at once the weight of her new life lay firmly against her chest.

She raised her fingers to toy with the edges and pulled at the loops as if to test their strength. It held fast and so she dropped her hands back to the crumpled paper that still lay dejectedly in her lap.

Elphaba preened - proud of the display that marked Odalis as her own.

Odalis attempted warmth, attempted to hold her head high when all she wanted was to curl up in her furs and slip away into nothingness.

"Thank you."

The kettle bubbled over and broke the spell between them. Odalis instinctively rose to tend to it and prepare for supper. She glanced over her shoulder, the collar jingling as she spoke. "...Am I to get you something too?"
Salsola
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Amanda
Maintenance Aide (I GOT THAT BROOM BROOM BROOM)
straight through the smoke

POSTED: Mon Jan 14, 2019 2:21 am

Word Count → ??? :: ---

Sometimes, when her head was turned just-so, it was easy for Elphaba to imagine the girl as she had been. Intact. Looking at her in this way one might never see the jagged scar that tore through her other eye and splintered the soft cheek below, ruining what might have been real, rare beauty.

The illusion was jarred by the way Odalis' lips trembled, the way her fingers pulled at the leather as though already testing its parameters. Elphaba's eyes followed the motion, transfixed, watching the tendon in the girl's neck as it tensed, watching the line of her throat swallow with emotion. Having returned to her lap, the young queen's fingers twitched, clenching tightly together.

Perfect. She should look perfect, like a doll. Someone ruined it for me.

A shame, a shame, a shame. We can't always have what we want.

Both young women jolted from their separate miseries as the kettle hissed loudly, spitting bubbles of water from the lip. The room returned around them, the tower tall and unyielding, the stone cold. Elphaba forced her hands to relax, and rubbed her face wearily with one, smoothing out the intensity of her expression.

Her gaze fell to the fire, and she did not look at Odalis again for a long while.

"If you want to," Mild, her tone was flat over the soft metallic jangle of the lock as it rattled against the girl's throat. "Though your time will be better spent serving to pay off your debt than dallying about, finding gifts. You can thank me by behaving." That seemed reasonable, like something she should say. Elphaba sniffed petulantly, and pulled a wool blanket over her legs, scooting closer to warm her icy fingers against the glow of the hearth.


we need a forest fire
Salsola
The Boss
User avatar
Alaine
Luperci Witch she hath or consulteth with a familiar spirit the queen is dead, long live the queen
hierophant
burn the witch
↟ ↟ ↟

POSTED: Thu Jan 17, 2019 5:13 am

Time spent serving.

The thought had Odalis gazing into her hands as she waited for the tea to steep – the rich scent of the leaves reminding her of spring. She remembered Elphaba explaining to her that now that she had been rescued that there was a debt that she would owe to The Kingdom, her Kingdom – and once it was paid, she would be given the freedom to wander back home. Odalis checked the water and began to pour it into bowls, ignoring the seeping heat that rose against her body as steam wafted through the air.

Odalis carried a bowl to her Master and set it upon the stone hearth with a dip of her head.

With the collar her moves seemed more pronounced – each dip and bow punctuated by a delicate jingle. The pad-lock was still cool against the hollow of her throat, a weight that seemed to hold her in place while she glanced at Elphaba’s pale expression. ”I will try my best.” It was all anyone could ask for – and as she turned to collect her own tea she wondered what her best really was. The servants she had seen in her lifetime had been brutal lifeless things – their bodies covered in arcs of scars that told horrible stories of their pasts and futures.

She refused to be one of them – though each time she saw her reflection she found it difficult to recognize that that was her.

Odalis was changed; she was alone.

She hugged the warm mug between her hands and watched as the leaves swirled endlessly around and around.

Finally she whispered softly as she hugged her knees – the flames twitching behind her like an omen.

”I will behave.” She sighed, ”For you.”

Salsola
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Amanda
Maintenance Aide (I GOT THAT BROOM BROOM BROOM)
straight through the smoke

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