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 Naivety is Not Innocence, [Development] [For Jani ~]
Kaien
 Posted: Dec 25 2017, 12:54 AM
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Naivety is not Innocence
The clouds filled the sky, barely able to be seen through the rare crack in the canopy of thick, powerful leaves high above. What could be observed through those sparse openings were the ever darkening collections of water, creating an ominous feel to the humid air. With spring coming to a close, the season they called 'Summer' about to come in full swing, it was supposedly going to continue getting warmer. It was pretty comfortable to her, if she said so herself. But today seemed to be a bit of an exception, the moisture hung heavy in the air still as it did many days, but there was a strange chill to the air.

Shae was never one to think badly about the signs in the world around her, always looking at the positives in life. The weather did seem to be a bit gloomy, the woman noted as her bare arms stretched high into the air above her, the klink and murkrow moving fast around the clearing they were in as she observed, her eyes lifting to the sky for a moment as she relaxed and stretched, beads of sweat decorating her forehead. Wondering if it was going to rain, she considered calling it a day early to make sure they didn't get caught in it. It wasn't worth taking a risk that any of them could get sick from being out in the rain, and it would take a bit before they'd be able to get back to their home.

Well, they'd put in good effort so much lately. Perhaps a few extra hours to relax today wasn't a bad thing. She smiled lightly and returned her attention to the duo, the murkrow landing a peck attack and deftly flying out of the way, so Kay couldn't get her trapped in a vice grip. Though the klink had been around with her longer, the flying type was certainly the most proficient fighter on her team, clearly and gracefully showing her prowess when they trained and in any battles they found themselves in. She'd been growing so much since they'd been together, and she was glad their relationship seemed to finally be improving.

"Kay, Mar, let's call it a day. Great job!" The dark bird's head twinged inattention to her, continuing to fly above in circles but slowing a bit as the battle was called off and they no longer were fighting. She simply stayed in flight and continued to stretch her wings. The steel creature lowered slightly,but as usual showed no expression to indicate what it was feeling. The woman pulled the correct pokeball and returned the klink, knowing it wouldn't want to travel home. She still didn't quite understand why it was as it was, but she'd learned that what was important was that it was different than her, and she should let it be and not impose her own values on another.

With the pokeball returned to her belt, she lifted an arm and whistled, her dark eyes gazing towards the black-feathered avian flying above, grabbing her attention once more. The wings fluttered and made her descend, careful deft talons reaching out as she closed in. They clenched loosely on her arm, the woman lowering her arm to a more comfortable position, leaning to pick up her basket before starting to walk, the bird starting to preen as they started off, pushing into the brush and back towards town. The tall grasses and other shrubbery brushed upon her ankles, the short strapless dress exposing most of her legs to the warmth outside.

It wasn't long until her legs carried her through the edge of the forest, the trees clearing up into the city, the short distance between the two being covered quickly. It was just past midday, and the traffic was showing such. People were out and about, going on with their business. It was always a pleasant sight, the many citizens of Ashfield moving around and living their lives as they did. There were many she knew, and she greeted them on her way home, though a few were a little uncomfortable, due to Mar being on her arm. Though she didn't agree with their prejudice, she could understand their fear of the so called 'demons'. Mar was mischievous, but by no means demonic or evil.

Soon enough, Shae had crossed through the market and arrived at the place she called home fore so long. Pushing through the wooden door, she turned her head and looked inside, the murkrow fluttering off her arm and flying to her favorite spot to perch. She nestled in as the dark-skinned woman looked around, noticing the brunette sitting in a chair in the main room, bright eyes lifting from her arms and up to the immigrant. They were wet, and seemed red, which pulled away from the idle beauty of her eyes. Her own smile drooped at the sight.

"Zoe, what's wrong?" The woman huffed, rubbing a wrist at her left eye as she crossed the room to take a seat near her. She looked into the other's eyes, wishing to make her pain disappear, if she could. For a few moments, there was silence, Zoe evading her gaze, refusing or unable to speak. The suspense was killing her, as if she wasn't a step away from sympathy crying from the sadness she was feeling in response to her dear friend's own emotions.

"You can tell me anything." Her hands reached out, seeking to calmly grasp her hands in her own, but after a moment of touch the fair-skinned woman pulled back, her chair scooting against the floor as she did so. "No. Don't." Shae's face was stricken with confusion and pain. She'd never rejected her before. "Oh, I'm sorry. Have I-" She paused, trying to collect herself and consider the situation. "Have I done something wrong? I'm terribly sorry if I did." She remained strong for the moment, resisting tears as she tried to comfort her.

"No, no I can't. I just-" She wiped her other eye, despite the fact that the tears kept coming. "I can't see you right now. I just don't even know what to say, after all this time." The statement only confused her more. They'd always been there for each other, to comfort one another and have someone to lean on. The idea that she didn't feel comfortable talking was upsetting. She'd noticed the past couple days that she seemed to be going through something, but the woman had insisted she was fine. Clearly that wasn't the case.

"Zoe, please. Tell me what's wrong. I want to help." She pulled her hands back to her lap, not wanting to push the boundaries. Apparently Zoe was not comfortable with physical touch at the moment, so Shae resisted the temptation and waited, hoping she could get through to her, to figure out what was wrong and how she could help make her feel better. There had to be something she could do. She was never someone who could simply stand by while someone was suffering.

But the scraping of the chair on the wood again was like screeching nails on a chalkboard to her, piercing and hurtful to her. Hair rustled and flipped as the woman stood and turned quickly away, taking a couple soft steps on the floor away from her. What could possibly have caused this reaction? "I-I don't understand. Why are you suddenly shutting me out? What can I do?" Her voice strained, tearing up as she stressed about the situation unfolding in front of her. This was not how she imagined today would be going.

"You can't do anything to fix this. How do you not get it? Her breathing became more rapid and frenzied in between the tears, her muffled sobbing tearing at Shae's heart with every breath. "You should get it, you should be there. And I thought you could be, from the very start. But you just... you don't get it! You're just dense, or whatever and you can't understand how I feel." Her voice started to become more shrill, her face turning halfway towards her but still refusing to meet her own gaze. She took a deep breath, with only partial success. "Just... leave me alone." Her eyes dropped to the floor as water dripped off her cheeks, falling to the ground as time seemed to slow, dragging in each moment as things spiraled even more.

Her mind was swirling, spinning, rushing from thought to thought as she tried to figure out what to do, what to say. But nothing was coming. There was nothing that seemed good enough, nothing that felt right. This was something new, something she didn't know. Something she certainly didn't like or feel comfortable with in any way. She wanted control, but she had no idea how to go about mending this strange gap that was being created between them. If she only knew where it had started, what had created this divide...

"No, I can't just leave you like this. I won't. Let's talk this through, or we don't even have to talk, if you aren't ready to. Just... let me be here, with you. We can make this better, if you let me in to help you." But her words were stifled when the woman whipped around, anger and sadness twisting her expression. "NO! I told you, you can't fix this. Just- Just stop trying!" Her voice got louder with each word, practically screaming at her by now. It was ripping her heart apart to hear Zoe like this, towards her. "Zoe..." She trailed off, unsure on how to react.

"You did this, you know? You kept leading me on, making me think we had something. Could have something. But here we are, and nothing is going to happen between us, is it? It's all just a fake, isn't it?" Shae took a step back, shocked by the stream of words coming out. What was going on? "I- what do you mean? We do have something special, you and me. We are very close, and I think what we have is amazing. I don't understand what you mean." Zoe shrieked out. "You really are infuriating sometimes! How can you not get it? You're so thick-headed sometimes. This should be such a normal, human thing, and yet here you are, unable to figure it out. Of all the things you can do, it seems like a real relationship is the one thing you can't do, huh?"

A... relationship? They had one, didn't they? They were very close, they enjoyed each other's company, they lived together. What was missing? This hadn't been a problem with any of her other friends. She'd never heard any word that there was something wrong with the way she cared for others. "I thought I was doing it!" Oh, her own voice was raised. Why? How did she think this would possibly help. Her fists tightened as tears welled in her eyes. "We care about each other. I care deeply about you. I try to always be there, to help you pay for things, comfort you when you are in pain, encourage you when you are doing something you love. I-I don't understand. What else do you want from me?"

"I WANT YOU TO LOVE ME!"

The words rang through her ears, shrill and near begging as they both sobbed silently, her torn eyes meeting her own shocked eyes finally, the two woman standing face to face, only a few feet apart. The silence hung thickly between them, tensions high as she awaited her response. Love? What was love, outside of what she already knew, had already been doing? Sure, she'd heard that word, exchanged between others. Others who were considered... couples? But then, Shae had never quite gotten to the bottom of what a couple was. It was never something that she'd been concerned about, it had never been something that she needed to know about.

Or so she'd thought, yet here she was. Unsure about the meaning of the terms 'couple' and 'love', but faced with one of them from the upset words of this woman she cared for so deeply. This woman who'd taken her in. Her cheeks felt hot, even as the drops of her tears trickled down the curve of her smooth skin, dripping from her chin as she stood frozen, staring into those eyes which seemed filled with such anger, such hurt. How had she done this kind of damage, without being aware? Without knowing that her actions were... wrong?

"See? Even faced with it up front, you can't even speak." The words were quiet, the edge of her tone causing the taller woman to cringe, still trying to process the previous words. "I... I don't... She trailed off, and unsure hand coming up to her face, half to wipe half to simply cover her face, though from what she couldn't even figure out, her hand just freezing in front of her mouth. "Just don't even bother. I don't expect you to get. I don't even want you to. not now..." Zoe wiped her eyes, before returning her sharp gaze to her, piercing straight into her being. "It's too late, Shae." Her words were more confident, more stable as she got them out, which was even more devastating to the woman.

"What... What do you mean? Too late?" Was she... was she saying this couldn't be fixed? That they were beyond repair? No, it couldn't be. This was just a fight. This was only the first time they'd gotten into a disagreement, gotten into this uncomfortable and borderline hostile zone. "You should just... leave. I don't want you here. I can't have you here, in my home." Her breathing was still rapid, she made a few pained noises as she huffed through her tears. "Not anymore.

Shae swallowed, her tears still coming but the woman collecting herself. The words tumbled out of her mouth, her voice deepening as she spoke words she didn't even think she would, or ever want to say. "So, is that what you want? Do you need me to leave, in order to feel better?" Her voice was more calm than she could have ever imagined she could pull off in this moment, a strange version of herself taking control as she waited for the answer she dreaded. She knew it was coming, but she wished with all her heart she would be wrong.

"Yes."

That one word. It felt like her heart was torn out of her chest, even as her body felt heavy. Her legs were like cement, yet still they dragged, one foot in front of the other as her head turned, eyes falling to the floor. She moved over to the table, shaky hands clasping around the strap of her bag. "Okay. Then I'll leave." Picking up the bag, she moved towards the door quickly, wanting this to just be over. She stopped at the door, moving a hand to return Mar to her pokeball, having forgotten the bird was even there for a moment. With her pokemon and main things collected, she exited the house, closing the door behind her.

She paused, staring out at the now empty street. Night had fallen at some point, she hadn't even realized how dark it had become in what seemed like such a short yet long time inside the house. It was still early, the sun having just barely set, but still the darkness was closing in, both literally around her and emotionally inside of her. She couldn't possibly just move on, forget what had just happened with Zoe, but she had to do something, had to go somewhere. But...

Where could she go now?

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