First instinct, upon walking into a room—hitch yourself up to a door post, back against it, and let your eyes sweep the crowd. There, on the fringes, where both inside and outside are visible, just in case a quick getaway becomes necessary. That, and being apart. Separate. Off to the side.
I’m not a part of you.
Watch. Always watching them, watching him; letting him know you’re watching. And he knows, too. He’s all too aware of your mocking gaze, your derisive sneer that curls your lip every time he lets himself acknowledge you with the tiniest glance. It’s failure smacking him in the face, doom laughing at his attempts to hold it back, future not even deigning to give him a second look.
And he knows.
Of course, he knows everything. (And you’re only half-sarcastic for that one; he knows and yet he doesn’t know, in the end he’s such a fool like the rest of them, gods—)
And he knows that in the end, it’ll all be hopeless, everything will be useless, finally; when the nine worlds are swept with flame and ice and your children rampage and fight his and you’ll be right there too, leading the charge—what, did you think you could keep me leashed forever? All-father—
Just a tiny bit of chaos—everything needs chaos, needs a little spark to keep it from going stale—and you both know that. But when you deliberately kindle the flames, whose fault is it but your own—
So you stare. You stare as he gravely, solemnly (ha, so consumed with responsibility and duty, so pathetic—) converses with the others, how they look up to him and respect him, because he’s oh-so-wise, oh-so-knowing and oh-so-seeing, while you stand there and a laugh bubbles up in your throat because you’re the only one who sees how blind he really is, how little he knows and what a fool he is for all his wisdom, wisdom that only makes him a greater fool and makes the consequences all that deeper.
What greater price is there to pay than the universe itself?
(And yet in a corner of your mind, buried all the way deep down, it’s two-fold again—you’re the only one that sees, giving you the entertainment, the laughter, while they all cringe and wonder what you’re plotting this time, and yet... the idiot, why can’t he see?)
Ha. Rhetorical question.
You turn away, away from him and the firelight and look out into the starry night, deep blue and beyond the stone walls and see the worlds spreading out into the distance towards the horizon, and there’s this strange clench that your heart gives that you ignore, this strange sensation that you don’t want to admit, that comes upon you every now and then—not the longing for war, that stirring in your blood and the itch to fight and watch everything fall to pieces because the score will finally be even—no, that’s not it. A different one. One that’s usually buried so far deep you forget it exists sometimes, but one that takes over so suddenly when it does come—
Some desire, one that’s not the usual superiority, the desire to escape from them and crush them and get your own back, no, something else.
...A want. A want to see him beg for forgiveness, care enough about you and what you think and feel to beg for forgiveness, admit that he’s made a mistake—no, more than a mistake, made so, so many—admit that he should’ve treated you better. Admit that it’s his fault you betrayed him, that he betrayed you, the oath-breaker, the liar—and with them having the nerve to call you liar, the epitome of evil, when he’s just as bad, regardless of whether or not it’s the truth—because you’re oh-so-aware, at times, when you’re alone in the dark and the overwhelming hurt that you don’t want to admit gets to you, that you know you’re all that, that you’re a cheat and a liar and a slut and you’re going to go bad in the end, you can see it happening and it scares you so much so because you don’t want to lose yourself, but in the end—that’s his fault too.
It’s all his fault.
His fault this incredible bitterness and anger and malice is building up inside you, and you know it in your bones that when the end comes, you’re going to be right there, standing in the middle of pure chaos even as you’re dying, and laughing. Of course. You’re going to be laughing the whole time, when the seas are rough and the boat’s complete and you’re on the way there, laughing as your imprisoned children (another thing you’ll never forgive him for) break free, and laughing when the lot of you all end up in Hel anyway, because in the end it was all useless. All his planning, all his futile attempts to stall it, all the people he’s swept away to make his own personal army—and the solution was right there under his nose staring him in the face with a smile. The salvation was—IS—right. There.
You snap out of your thoughts and look up; they’re all smiling, the two girls and the stern woman and the cat and the angel and the demon, and her smile becomes a grin.
“C’mon, stop being such a wallflower and join the group.”
You unhitch yourself from the corner and grin back.
All in good time.