i_paladin: (hands)
the water is unearthly cold. damp, centuries of untouched cave cold. pure and metallic from the water washing down soil and rock over day and night to fill this baptismal pool that will serve well as a tomb.

breathing was at a premium before her head hit the water. arms squeezed tight pushing into her own sides, elbows digging in, ribs cracking in painful self abuse. while her chest caves in the lungs still work to expand, the heart snarls and leaps in a fight against the inevitable cave in, against that invisible, constant specter.

heels dig at the rock in struggle. the floor crumbles in betrayal and there is no movement except forward, deeper into the wet darkness.

into the waiting basin, the wooden edge of the tub digging into her chest and shoulders, knowing pressure, reminding her of where she is and who is behind her while her eyes are closed and she seeks escape. it pairs with the impossibly strong, bony fingers that shove at the back of her head, finding purchase in the short hair, a previous punishment that is proving an unlikely advantage: nothing to grasp while she tries to fight back.

the water is tepid, soapy, foul. an accumulation of body and cleaning. a fetid pool to get rid of a foul, rancid creature. an attempt to return a gift that was spawned unwillingly.

panic is the birth of all screams, no matter what the price paid for such a relief.

the water fills her lungs and nose and is swallowed down and choked on before being forced back up. wet is all there is. darkness follows, wet and black, faint and all encompassing with laughter as it’s music, mocking, cruel laughter as if this death were a joke. the punchline for a 10 year long joke.

the water won’t leave her lungs. even as air flows into them it is still blocked by what feels like a lake of water there. it vomits forth, forever, splattering on her soaked shirt, on to the stone darkness under her. the water brings panic and fear and choked noises that echo around her, from her, among the jingle of metal and the steady drip and splash of moisture from the ceiling.

to move is to invite agony. it is not her effort that brings her to her side but the heat and strength of a figuring towering over her, faded and gray in the faint light bobbing above them. the hands are not gentle but move with an urgency that suggest that fear and concern are at the root of the actions, not aggressive dismissal. she is thankful for them. how they unwind the trappings around her and bring her back to the cold stone that presses against her cheek and ignore the noises she makes. noises not of lung clearing and stoic regathering, but of childish panic and fear.

the weight rests on her shoulder. the weight of him rests on the floor. steady, labored breathing. the breath of a fighter after a fight. the heat and hammer heart of a battle won.

drowning out the splatter and peck of the constant, unending, never ceasing, cascading water around them.


i_paladin: (Default)

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