There is also Beauty


amato_icon.gif tamara_icon.gif

Scene Title There is also Beauty
Synopsis 'The end' is just another way of saying 'the beginning'.
Date February 3, 2009

Calvary Cemetery


An archetypal symbol of ambiguity, the twilight has wrapped itself in a shroud of fog. Perhaps it is in mourning, and sees the misty garment as sackcloth. Perhaps it merely finds the tenuous clouds befitting the gloom of the times.

Alone in the cemetery which has not yet had time to accept new bodies into its warm, earthen bosom, a man sits perched disrespectfully on the base of a statue. It is an angel at the head of some poor soul's grave, her delicate stone hands reaching out as if to offer consolation, her wings half-relaxed at her sides. But the man, perhaps unworthy of such angelic comfort, sits with his back to her, his face cradled in one hand's fingers which dig into the dark mask of bruises he wears.

"Careful. Your face'll freeze like that."

It's the sort of jesting chide a grandmother gives to their grandchild, spoken now by a childish voice, levity at odds with the graveyard's gloom. A familiar voice, perhaps, though one Amato has not heard in months, accompanied by soft footsteps on the winter-chilled ground. Tamara ducks around one of the angel's marble wings to stand beneath an outstretched hand, haphazard blond hair framing a face almost equally gentle in the expression bestowed upon Amato, and older in all ways than the words it just spoke.

There is silence at first as Amato wracks his brain in an attempt to place the voice. He's only heard it once, but that occurrence was odd enough to firmly implant itself in his mind. It just takes a bit of digging to uncover it.

"I should hope not," he finally responds, lowering his hand and turning his head in the same moment. The face he offers the young woman is covered in purple bruises, save for the medical tape over his nose which gives his eyes a sinister line.

Tamara can wait, and she does. "That's better," the girl says when he lifts his gaze to hers, its visible discoloration doing nothing to dim her bright, albeit brief, smile. "I didn't ask for a smile," she assures Amato, plopping herself down on the stone pedestal beside him with rather less ceremony than the angel's grace deserves. And it is clearly meant as reassurance, even if the seeress mixes her tenses up, as usual.

A quizzical tilt of her head, then, as Tamara folds her hands across her knees. "What do you see?" Perhaps the question rightly should be what are you thinking about — or maybe it is meant exactly as spoken.

Rather than immediately answer, Amato takes time to look around him. Or, if one rathers, to collect his errant thoughts. "Fog," he replies, his voice hollow. "It covers what I wish to see and mandates I only look at it." Metaphorical, most likely. He crosses his left arm across his chest, gripping his opposite shoulder in order to steady himself. "I cannot find what I am looking for, nor can I see where I am supposed to walk."

Tamara also casts her gaze outwards in the wake of Amato's reply, watching the pale mist cling to the profiles of tombstones. "It's spooky. Like Halloween," the girl cheerfully clarifies a beat later, as though she failed to interpret the metaphor. But there's something in her eyes that suggests otherwise, when the precog turns them back upon Amato at last.

"Sometimes trying to grab the pieces let the river swirl them away. You're looking, and it's… it wasn't hollow." The teen's fingers tap on the stone behind them. "They weren't here. The threads…" Tamara shrugs, a gesture of little help. "Shadows never come alone. Almost. You made them that." The context of the words is not accusatory, despite how they sound if taken alone; she means only to answer the problem posed, however poorly her words convey that reply.

Talking to Tamara is like trying to glean understanding from the wind or grab at the stars through a blanket of mist. But Amato deciphers some of her words, even if in his own way. "I tried," he sighs, shaking his head. "I tried to protect them. I tried to make sure they would be safe." But if they went into the fray of their own volition, is that Amato's fault? "I could have done more."

The teenager tilts her head at Amato's choice of interpretation, and a soft smile tugs at her lips, peculiarly affectionate in its reprimand. "Don't be sorry," she instructs. "The river moves on. But that isn't even really important. The river doesn't care if you know." There's a brief pause, blue eyes flicking away, looking into the distance. "They weren't here," Tamara states again, emphasizing the words. "Not in the stone or on the grass. Fog burns away; it doesn't like the sun. And then the sky is a very pretty blue," she finishes. "Much better for being out in." How much is metaphor and how much meandering madness…

"Not yet." The answer works in many ways. No, they aren't here. But they could be soon. No, the fog isn't yet gone. No, the sky is not yet clear and sparkling like sapphire. "But they may be elsewhere, deprived of…" but Amato's voice catches at the thought. "Do you know where they are?"

Tamara laughs softly, bell-bright sound that belongs somewhere the opposite of a cemetery. Light. Life. "Don't be sorry," she says again, the three words sounding oddly more like a benediction than a command. "Don't worry." The girl bounds up to her feet, turning to face Amato directly. Her expression, as she does, is more somber; almost mercurial, the shift in mood. "The mirror's shadows were elsewhere," she informs him. "Words weren't enough. Not… not to mean much. It's a mare's nest." Metaphors are easy. Direct answers… tend to rapidly turn into confusing ones, when attempted. "But the shadows haven't gone away."

Amato tries to listen between the words in an attempt to more accurately interpret the strange girl, and he ends up simply nodding at her, his own icy blue eyes bright when she finishes. "I shall keep looking," he assures her.

Another small smile. "Good," Tamara says, as she steps back from the pedestal. "Don't forget that." Another step, and a third; more, until the girl begins to fade into the shrouding mists. "There is also beauty," the seeress says in parting. "In the mist. And out of it."

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