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Fire in the Mirror [Closed]


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“….the father is apparently estranged, she’s having that child completely out of wedlock.” “How shameful, the line is basically dead and it’s like she isn't even trying anymore. Maybe that’s what happens when you spend a few cycles sleeping in the streets, you just don’t care about what’s proper anymore.” “She’s more nouveau riche than before. Not only does she not have a drop of blue blood in her veins, but she spends all her time walking around with a hideous lizard, riding side-saddle as if that made the beast any more appropriate!”

 

In the stable, Portia dusted off Amethyst’s snowy feathers with a wooden brush, hidden by the wooden door from the view of two Elezen women. They walked at a leisurely pace around the wooden bridge that hugged an enormous tree trunk, one of many that made up the entirety of Lavender Beds. The bridge provided a wondrous view of the waterfall behind Bartel Manor, as well as the manor and gardens itself.

 

The woman sighed to herself, ears fluttering in disappointment down against the top of her head. She wasn't exactly deaf to the rumors floating about concerning her, ever since she made her return. No matter her status or wealth or property, she would never quite live up to the Bartel name. If it weren't for the fact that her parents were gone, she might not have considered herself a Bartel anymore. Foolish to expect an adopted daughter to be able to hold up a bloodline, even if it was the only choice they had. But now, she was the only Bartel left. Blood or name, it didn't matter, she was alone in it.

 

Portia didn't hold herself quite as high as usual as she finished in the stable and went to go back inside.  She headed to the bath, eyes falling upon the pile of gifts sitting in the cradle in the corner of her room. Shoes, ointment, stuffed animals, clothes, a flower vase, a mobile, and blankets adorned the baby corner, filling up the empty space. A lilac blanket caught her eye just before she turned her head, recalling memories of Tiergan’s face as he had come through the door.

 

His hair was much longer, she thought, and face much harder. Or had it always been that serious? She recalled the rugged man, tanned skin and covered with scars, gentle yet fierce all at once. But for whatever reason, she couldn't specifically remember  his expression. It was always changing, from that of a threatened beast, to a warm lover, to a surprised little khit. So many layers, so many masks. She wasn't sure anymore what was real, and what he put on for her sake. In the back of her mind she always wondered…had she simply not been good enough for him, or had he pushed her away for some stupid reason, thinking to save her from some horrible future.

 

Haughtily, Portia flipped her hair, staring fiercely into the mirror in the bathroom as she shrugged off her gown, letting it slide down her skin and onto the floor. Long brown and white tendrils of hair cascaded over her shoulders in a mess. Her purple eyes stared daggers into the figure in front of her, trying to find some sort of flaw, some sign of weakness. The months of living in the life of luxury had done well for her. Her skin was glowing, her hair was a beautiful sheen, her breasts had grown fuller, and even with a protruding belly she still retained her slender form. From behind, one couldn't even tell the Miqo’te was pregnant.

 

Beautiful, eyes flickering with a growing flame, she gathered the aether, pulling in all that she could. The air popped and sizzled, stands of hair starting to dance around her flushed face. If anyone were to walk in, they could be dead on the spot. Her very presence threatened the entire room, but the one she had eyes for was the reflection. Who would dare look at her, and think her incapable. Who would DARE think of her as someone that needed protection? It angered her more than anything. She was with child, and that fact did not make her feel any less powerful. In fact, she felt even stronger than before. She was invincible. She had with her something more precious than all the lives in the world, which made her that much more dangerous. She had something to protect, and an entire universe full of aether to draw upon. Fire was at her fingertips. Everything would burn.

 

Her situation was complicated enough as it was without the aloofness of Zagi’zi. She admitted it to herself. It made her angry. Her eyes glanced down at her pendant, the golden circle of chocolate gemstones. The only physical proof she had that he did not despise her. But she didn't know what the man felt other than that. Portia knew her feelings, had discovered them moons ago. She was devoted to him, an apprentice, mother to his child, and mate if he would even have her, even if he was more caught up in his own personal gain to even see her once every few moons. “Damn lucky” her friends called him, as she wasted away alone in this large house.

 

A small crack popped on the side of the mirror, and then all of a sudden the entire full-length mirror shattered into a million pieces, raining glass shards across the bathroom floor. The ones that flew towards Portia bounced off an invisible barrier as if it were nothing, and the woman stood there in the middle of the floor unscathed. She was breathing hard, staring aimlessly at the wooden frame of the broken mirror. Her limbs trembled, and beside her, the bath water began to boil and fill the room with thick steam.

 

The blood lust that had consumed her twenty-one weeks ago felt like it was returning, only this time she had nothing to take it out on. Playing a princess in a castle wasn't going to be enough for her, perhaps. Maybe it was like she told Raelos all that time ago….maybe she wouldn't make a good mother anymore. The smiles, they felt like illusions now. Hatred still burned. Hatred for the world. How could she be the mother she wanted to be, when the darkness felt like it was trying to take over once again?

 

“…give…in…”

 

 

A voice whispered in the back of her head. Portia’s ears flickered and she turned to look over her shoulder, but she was still alone.

 

The aura around her seemed to change. Distort. Become denser. In the steam of the bathroom she almost couldn't breathe.

 

A dull pain came suddenly, and Portia threw her hands over her protruding tummy. The baby moved inside, twisting one way, as if startled awake. The woman dropped to her knees, squeezing her eyes shut, fearful something was wrong.

 

“…mine…”

 

 

As soon as the voice had appeared, it was gone again. The heavy feeling eased off of her mostly, yet something still lingered. Opening her eyes, Portia glanced at her stomach, running fingers over the flesh. No scar nor bruise nor burn tainted the beautiful skin, yet….it almost felt like something was there.

 

Like something was wrong.

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