Categories > Original > Drama0 Reviews
For ten years, Iriador has hidden the terrible scarring on the right side of his body, and no one has questioned him... until Ronyo. And Ronyo has had just about enough of his self-conscious behavi...
Lots of Elvish in this story... Ronyo and Iri are still somewhat young (for my universe, anyway), and since they're younger, they only use Elvish for emphasis--otherwise they speak the universal language. Here's what it means:
Tula sinome: Come here
Mani naa lle umien?: What are you doing?
Faina amin: Release me
Tampa (sii'/ta): Stop (now/it)
Amin delotha lle: I hate you
Amin uuma malia: I don't care
Sorry if it gets confusing, but Ronyo keeps it pretty much obvious what's going on. Enjoy!
Ã‚Â© CJ Briggs, 03/29/05
Iriador was always awake before Ronyo. He had reset his internal clock so he would fall asleep after and wake up before the other Elf. Whenever he was with Mali, he had no reason to hide--she knew of the scars and knew that he did not want them seen.
However, now that he had to travel with Ronyo...
Always, without fail, he rose first. It had to be that way. Things were already strained between them, and if Ronyo saw the scars...
Ronyo wanted to see them. He'd realized that when the tall Elf had soothed his leg a few weeks ago, after one of his nightmares. Ronyo had expressed an interest then, and for a little while afterward, Iriador occasionally caught him trying to see whatever the redhead accidentally exposed. Ronyo had stopped peeking since then... but Iriador was sure that the curiosity was still there.
And why shouldn't it be? Iriador had always spoken of them in an unintended, mysterious manner, always took care to say as few words about them as possible. Ronyo was an inquisitive person by nature; being denied the knowledge he wanted was simply not something he would tolerate for long.
"You know, you should make yourself more accessible to others," Ronyo had said one day. "You hide under your clothes and a cold attitude... but that's not you. Don't be so eager to conceal yourself. You don't like yourself... that carries to everyone around you. They won't like you, either, if you find something wrong with yourself."
Sound advice that he could never follow.
He's the idiot, and he's always giving me the advice.
He took one, questioning look at his leg and immediately shook his head. No. He can't see them.
Why does it matter so much?
He's flawless... and I'm hideous.
The older traveler was still sleeping peacefully, brown hair strewn all over his pillow, and Iriador took that opportunity to slip out of the single bed and pull on his pants. He was just reaching for his tunic when he heard Ronyo stirring behind. "Iri...?"
He froze for a moment. "H-hold on, Ronyo, I'm just putting on my clothes."
"This early?" Now Ronyo sat up, sending him into a panic. "Why so early? We're not set to leave for another two hours or so."
"Oh... I... I just... feel more comfortable with them on."
Ronyo's tone darkened. "Because of your scars."
It wasn't a question, and Iriador did not respond.
"I'll never understand why you're so sensitive about them. They're nothing to be ashamed of, so--"
"Can we just drop it?"
"I don't want to talk about it," Iriador interrupted.
"But why won't you let me see--"
"/No one/ has seen them."
There was a short pause in their conversation. "No one?" Ronyo echoed. "Not even Mali?"
"Not even Mali."
Something told him that it had been a bad idea to speak those words. He reached for the blue-trimmed tunic again, but Ronyo interrupted him. "All right, then... Iri, come here."
Something sinister lurked within the hard tenor of the brunette's voice, and Iriador could not stop himself from backpedaling toward the wall opposite the room's door--Ronyo was nearest to the door; going that way wouldn't help him. "Why?"
"/Tula sinome,/ Iri!"
"I'm not going over there until you tell me why!"
Irritation burned in Ronyo's eyes. "Don't try my patience."
"Don't insult my intelligence!"
What happened next was a blur. Iriador had no idea when Ronyo had managed to spring from the bed, but within seconds he felt a strong hand wrap around his right wrist, and he was yanked back to the mattress, pinned under an Elf so different from his usual, annoyingly-silly partner. His arm throbbed and tears stung his eyes. "/M-mani naa lle umien?/" he stammered.
The answer came plainly, as if totally commonplace. "I'm going to see your scars."
He had never fought so hard in his life. "Let go, Ronyo!"
As he tried to shove Ronyo away--a fruitless task, as Ronyo's frame was much larger than his own--the violet eyes darted to his bandaged arm. "This goes first!"
Ronyo was tugging at the dressing, reaching for his dagger...
"/Tampa,/ Ronyo! /Tampa sii'!/"
"Quit squirming, Iri, unless you want me to miss the bandage and cut /you!/"
"Iriador, I'm warning you...!"
The binding fell away, long-worn strips of material slipping off the edge of the bed and falling to the floor. For the first time in ten years, Iriador's arm had nothing wrapped around it. He tried to turn it over, to cover the horrible scratches, but Ronyo foresaw his attempt and held the arm stationary. "/Leave it!/"
When had he started crying?
"The only way you're going to get over this is if someone sees everything you're so embarrassed of and /doesn't desert you,/" Ronyo said between clenched teeth. "And I don't care what you say--"
"/Amin delotha lle!/"
"/Amin uuma malia./"
He went almost completely still after that, head turned to the side, eyes gazing at the nearby window. All the while, he was painfully aware of Ronyo's intense stare. You don't care? Fine, then... neither do I.
He was silent until he heard Ronyo's next words.
"Only ones I haven't seen now are the ones on your leg."
"Are we going to do this the easy way, or the hard way?"
"We're not doing it at all!" he cried.
Ronyo released a sigh of exasperation. "The hard way, then... I don't know why you're resisting me so much. I'm only trying to help."
"Oh, right, some help! How are you helping? What kind of person disrespects one's wishes?"
"What kind of person wishes for something like this? Don't you think it's about time you dealt with this?"
"Maybe I don't want to deal with it!"
"Oh, that's right... because you're such a damn masochist, right? That's the dumbest thing I've ever heard!"
Ronyo was pulling off his pants now, but once again, he had lost the will to fight.
"Do you want me to hate you, Iriador?"
"Of course I don't!"
"Are you sure? You seem like you'd be happier if I expressed some form of hatred toward you."
He didn't answer.
"Fine, wish granted. See this?/" Ronyo squeezed the upper half of his arm, and he winced. "It's gross. I think you're a weak-willed /fool for letting that Demon mess you up like this. Not only that, but you waited so long to get them healed, you completely missed your window of opportunity! Not very bright, are you?"
"Were you just looking for something to make you even more different? Did you call that Demon over to you? You made it attack you!"
"I did not!" he protested loudly.
Ronyo sneered above him. "Oh, so you mean to tell me that a wolfÃ¢Â€"a Demon wolf/--consciously scarred only half your body, and kept the /other half /totally intact./"
He opened his mouth to speak, but paused to let the words sink in. Only half...
When he looked up at Ronyo again, the violet eyes had softened. "Understand what I'm trying to tell you?" the larger Elf whispered.
"I know you don't feel normal... but you're not. You are bright... and you're damned strong to have dealt with something like this..."
He shuddered as Ronyo's fingers, soft like feathers, traced his scar from the knee up to his thigh... "R-Ronyo," he choked out.
"Ah, sorry... overstepping my boundaries again. Not to sound like a complete idiot, but I can't help myself sometimes..."
Ronyo's weight left the bed. Finally able to sit up, Iriador did just that. "Ronyo, what..."
That carefree grin was back, and with it, the Elf he had become to accustomed to traveling with. "What... do you think of them?"
"You really want to know?"
"Well..." Ronyo sat at the foot of the bed, facing Iriador, but not looking at him. "... I think they're beautiful. They're not ugly, Iri... no more so than you are."
"I just... I hate them. It hurts so much to move my limbs because of them. I always feel like people are staring at me--"
Ronyo laughed. "Of course they're staring at you! You're a Spellsinger, Iri!" he said. "They're not staring at your scars... they're staring at you. Who else has hair and eyes like yours? They stare at my eyes, too, you know." A smile, content with just a hint of sadness, formed on Ronyo's face. "You're not alone in this, Iriador. There aren't many... but there are others like you."
Iriador found that he could not respond.
"As for your scars," Ronyo continued, "you may think that half of you's ruined, but I don't think so. It's no difference to me... and I think you're perfect, no matter what."
"You don't have to say that..."
"I wanted to."
Ronyo's smile broadened, and he placed a caring hand atop Iriador's head. "No need to thank me. It's the truth, right? Now, I don't know about you... but I woke up a little too early and could use a bit more sleep."
Not another word was spoken between them. Ronyo rescued the bed's forgotten sheet and blanket from the floor, where they had fallen due to Iriador's struggles, and the two Elves lay down again. Iriador had replaced his pants.
However, he left the tunic alone. There was no reason to hide the scars now.