Monday, April 30, 2007

heaven knows it's not the way it should be

Baby please,
baby please don't take your love from me...


I sit and look for the darkened moon, and there is only shadow. I look at the sky and even the stars seem distant. Am I misinterpreting, or has the wandering satellite wandered farther away than I can reach?

I breathe carefully, wondering what to say, wondering if there are words to say, wondering how to call down a moon that's no longer there.

Moonless night indeed, but for how long?

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silently please, listen to the words I say well
I'm not talking just for play, listen to me please


We've danced this dance before, and I myself am far too familiar with the steps. Step and turn and meet; step and turn and part; the dance of leaving is engraved deep in me. I always know the ways to turn, the formal movements, pavane of departure, unconscious and knowing.

I do not want to leave the wandering satellite. It's my way to be left, true, and in some sense, I always expect that over leaving myself. But...it's also not my way to fight, I don't know how to fight, in some sense acceptance is easier than denial.

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If I knew how...if I had the skills...I'd fight, this once. I'd stake my claim and expose the beating heart in me and say to the satellite that this is more important than he knows. But I lack the words, the phrases curl in me, I cannot fight.

heaven knows
it's not the way it should be
heaven knows
it's not the way it could be
don't you know
there's no need to leave?


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There will be blood from this, if he goes. Third strike to my heart, I know it. And when the second's barely healed, barely closed over, could reopen that wound in me...but if he means to go, I cannot stop him. I have pleaded all I can. I have stood in the night shadows and begged him not to go. I can do nothing else but wait, now, wait and hope he makes the right decision.

Whatever that decision will be, for him. For us. For me.

down inside,
don't get caught with foolish pride...
put all the other things aside,
there's only you and me
believe in us...


It's all I ask. That if you reach that point, that if you need to say goodbye...that you mean it, that you know what it means to me. Because there's no going back after. There's no reopening the door. And more than my life has been shattered over this, too much blood and pain and heartbreak have gone into this now to change.

If you say it's over...it will be. Don't say it...unless you're sure.

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heaven knows
it's not the way it should be
heaven knows
it's not the way it could be
don't you know
there's no need to leave...


(Lyrics taken from Donna Summers' "Heaven Knows")

sing for the laughter, sing for the tears

I attended the monthly Masquerade ball in Steelhead last night, for far too brief a time. I decided early on I was going to wear Prim & Proper's lovely rust velvet ballgown, and spent some time looking over various shops, trying to find something that went better than my brown leather Loki mask. As I was wearing a rare kitten--my orange, brown and white calico--I wanted to tie everything together as much as possible.

(Psst--go to Masks & Feathers. Trust me on this. They're amazing.)

I nipped off to a sandbox to scroll through and eliminate various things from my inventory, then traipsed off to the ball, feeling unsettled for no clear reason.

It hit me when the doctor came in the room. Oh, right--first formal society appearance since the demon...departed.

I put no great faith in being recognized--there's no proof he's ever set eyes on me, after all (barring those two flashes of clear blue eyes, set into demonic pallor)--and danced until evil lag made my steps slow and my motions drag on. I decided, much as I wanted to stay, me being me, I'd flip into limbo again, so I chose to depart. I announced my leaving to the assembled, picked a handy location, tapped my Key...and fell into limbo anyway as I went.

*sighs*

But as I was leaving, in that split second between the ballroom under my feet and featureless void, I heard the doctor clearly say, "Good night, Miss Orr."

Good night, Miss Orr. Wearing a dress I was fairly sure the demon's never seen, a gold satin-and-feather carnivale mask I'd bought new that day, and a kitten skin I know the demon never saw.

Good night, Miss Orr.

Something survived. Something that knows me. Or...there was more of the doctor in the demon than I knew.

At least five dance floors, countless number of dances, being swirled around in strong pale arms, in and out of Steelhead...does the doctor remember watching me dance, behind demonic eyes?

It would appear so.

And I am back to feeling wary, as I do not know what else the doctor remembers, what moments have been left behind...

for the world's more full of weeping than you could understand

And now, a public service announcement--Project Open Letter was started as a way for residents to make their complaints known to the gods of the grid.

I signed. We'll see how it goes.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

where am I to go now that I've gone too far

It took a while to fight back from limbo, and there was one more flip of my broken Key to take me away from the space, but barring that, I made it to the Sonata gallery in one piece, more or less. I waited with bated breath to finally see what the artist had done, and I was astounded.

The photographs were intense, visceral, some painful to look at, some making me want to shy away from them. In the midst of them, there were two photographs of Cellside that I found myself yearning for. I'm going to get one of them. I don't know which one yet. But they both call fairly hard.

The artist was happy to see me, and all four of her Muses showed up to accompany her at the opening. The demon's daughter--now the doctor's daughter--showed up as well, in burning scarlet and black, with huge curving horns and armor that looked as if it had grown from her bones, attached, living with her, not worn like clothing. And she did not have her engine, which still makes me happy to see.

She said, there was enough magic in that gallery to sustain her without her constant fuel-source, and this I believe. This many artistic types, this many inspirations, and the art itself crowded into one building--it was a work of deepest creative magic.

We spent the night, once the music started playing, dancing together, or at least near to each other. This was a comfort in itself, in a building full of three floors of deep pain, souls' crying need, the unease and the insanity of what lies within.

It convinced me, as if I needed convincing, that I have friends, that my friends can sustain me, and I them, and I do not need to go mad to do so.

Or at least, not additionally. One must always remember my start point is a bit farther down the line from stability than most.

The show will run for two weeks. Please do attend if you can.

Friday, April 27, 2007

the trick is to keep breathing

I'm....mystified by something.

There's an art show coming up. In Sonata, tomorrow, Aprille 28th, at seven pm SLT. I have the landmark for anyone who wants one.

But press on the show is starting, and the first interview with the artist was published in SLNN today.

It's a fair article, considering the controversy the show's bound to create--the artist is calling it The Madness after all, and it's all aspects of insanity--but something is baffling me.

End of the show, one of my pieces--I know it's one of my pieces, as I know the title is Arise--mentions me as bipolar.

I am many, many things, but bipolar isn't on the list yet.

(The artist's just noticed that the mistake is there. She's going to ask them to correct it. This should be interesting...between that, and the interview I did recently for Scarlet magazine...strange things are afoot.)

stay here in this moment, for all the rest of time

I could stay awake just to hear you breathing
Watch you smile while you are sleeping
While you're far away dreaming...


He kisses me like I'm the only source of oxygen for him, and he must keep breathing me in. I hold him like I never want to stop touching him. He keeps me awake far too late at night. I keep him awake too.

Last night, I told him I had to sleep at two in the morning. He agreed. We still kept kissing, and talking in soft voices, until four, when I finally spun away, wrapped the blankets around my head, and fell into dreams of him.

I could spend my life in this sweet surrender
I could stay lost in this moment forever
Every moment spent with you is a moment I treasure...


This is happening far too fast. And the tragic thing for me is, I have a memory of telling someone, "I don't move this fast, it's not me..." I told that one those words, more than once, and fell anyway. Maybe it was unavoidable, but the tragedy that followed is still searing my soul.

This, now, is happening far too fast. And every great love contains the seeds for great ruination, I know this full well. Taking the risk means risking pain as well as joy, and I have to take the risk anyway.

But it's making me breathless, how fast we went from "he looks interesting" to "never want to let him go"...

Lying close to you feeling your heart beating
And I'm wondering what you're dreaming
Wondering if it's me you're seeing


He asks me to dream of him and I do. He asks me what I dreamt and I blush. He speaks to me, soft voice in the back of my mind, for hours. What I've done, what he's doing, costumes he created, furniture I'm building. What I've learned. Philosophy. Humor.

Kisses...

Don't want to close my eyes
I don't want to fall asleep
'Cause I'd miss you baby
And I don't want to miss a thing


Always comes back to kisses. And holding each other. Close across the miles, the scent of his hair everpresent, the movement of his hands across my skin, the gentle smiles tossed my way, the tenderness in his fingertips.

I don't move this fast. The train wreck's speeding up. Does it matter that it's not on fire anymore?

I don't want to miss one smile
I don't want to miss one kiss
I just want to be with you
Right here with you, just like this
I just want to hold you close


And all my otherloves, gathered around me, and the questions in my eyes...is it just the flush of the new? Is it just infatuation? Adult-sized crush imbued with rampant kitten hormones...is that all it is?

I think my rational mind would love to say yes, dismiss this, dismiss him, just a fling, just a moment, lovely but soon will fade...

...but I don't think it is. This has time and care and intensity writ large across its structure. This has breathless wonder built into the bones of it. This is...

...bigger than a fling.

Don't want to close my eyes
I don't want to fall asleep
I don't want to miss a thing...


He kisses me, and I drown in sensation. He touches me and I'm happy. He's glad to see me and I purr. And less of me is scared at this, than the scared parts want there to be.

Five days in and I panic, he plays my body like his best-loved harp, and my inner control freak rises to the surface, wanting to wrest such knowledge from him. Can't go back, I know this well, but suddenly, it's too much, it's too much that he knows so much, too much that I've told him so much, and all because...

...the scared parts want this to be momentary. Because they want no more pain. And I do understand, I do, but understanding doesn't change anything.

Not now. Not after he knows. Not after I've handed him the keys to me, on the small silver plate, offering made to want and curiosity. Not after he's tested my limits, found how and when and where I fall shuddering to the ground, reaching for him, needy, desperate. Not after falling so far, so fast, and still not striking the cold still earth below.

...but I fear. Still, I fear. And I won't say I love him. Too soon, too far, too fast. I can't speak.

So the dance goes on...

(Lyrics are taken from Aerosmith's "I Don't Want To Miss a Thing")

Thursday, April 26, 2007

I will surround myself with things that help me grow

((RP MODE))

Living in the nostalgia spaces again. I've been thinking about my past.

Near as I can figure...it goes like this:

I was born sometime in the early 1800's to a feral neko mother and a tengu father. As my father told me later, my mother's clan were practical cats who waited to see which of any clan litter would survive in the harsh mountain conditions of Ezochi prefecture, in feudal Japan. Hitomi, my mother, was one that did, and she was named a year after her birth because of her color-shifting eyes, a trait I inherited.

As my father, Shin, told the tale, he was flying in a comfortably large avian form when a rock from a sling struck him forcibly over his left eye, starring his vision and sending him spiraling to the ground. He hit with such force it knocked the breath from him for a moment, and he felt the excruciating snap of his left wing, and when the black surge lifted, he saw a grinning neko girl over him with blazing red eyes, straddling his hips. As she brought her blade to rest against his throat, he asked softly that she not kill him.

She watched him, and he watched her eyes shift to a deep, reflective purple, before she nodded. She helped him up, tied a scrap of soft leather from a belt pouch around his wound, and half-carried him back to her clan's village.

There was some outcry at this, but not as much as when Shin and Hitomi were found together in the clan's temple in each other's arms. He was seized and dragged away, and imprisoned, and he fumed at the inability of his left arm to function as well as it had. He was kept locked away, fed only taunts, rice and water, for the entire time that Hitomi carried his children to term.

He was allowed out when none of them died, and it was a clan wonder that not a one succumbed to the winter's cold. But it was urged--strongly, and with sharp claw and blade--that he leave, and it would be decided later whether Hitomi and his brood would be forced out or would be killed.

This injustice was too much, and that night, he burst from his enclosure, gathering up Hitomi, me (which they named Emi), and three other kittens--all he could carry of my brothers and sisters--and flew off to the coast, where he booked passage on a Russian trade vessel bound for Alaska. Even such a short flight tired him greatly, and, over the course of the journey, the harsh early spring seas claimed the lives of seventeen sailors, Hitomi, the three other kits, and himself.

He died wrapped around me, feathers flared, his breath labored from the upper respiratory infection that had devastated Hitomi so greatly. A sailor heard my young-kit wails and carried me to the crew deck, trying to find a way to communicate for the rest of the journey.

Surprisingly enough, the next morning, where the pale striped neko had been the night before was discovered a violet-eyed, platinum-haired human child. The sailor didn't care, though, save to note to his fellows it would make it easier around folks who'd never seen the cat-people of Japan before!

As a result of the multinational crew's attempts to teach me, I'm something of a polyglot--I remember very little of my native Japanese, and only some Russian; most of what I practiced was the crew's occasionally hysterical attempts to learn English, in order to better communicate with traders coming up from the American territories, and Canadian trappers on the coast.

Once in Alaska, Josef Orischenko, the sailor who'd kept me by his side, introduced me as his daughter. For the next several years we would go on sea journeys--I dressed as his cabin boy--and we roamed widely across Alaska whenever our ship returned to shore. Granted, my curiosity got me into and out of several hazardous situations, but along the way I learned some small bits about shipcraft, some of sail repair, some simple cooking skills...and I was a voracious reader, reading any book that drifted across my path.

Unfortunately, puberty struck with a vengeance, and it was no longer possible to disguise me as a pretty-faced boy on ship. While we spent some time in Alaska debating on what to do, the Battle of Sitka broke between Russian settlers in the area and the local Tlingit tribe. The Tlingits were crushingly defeated, but Josef was killed in the bargain.

I remember running off, heartbroken at this new loss, and hiding in the woods for many days. I don't remember much, other than the comforting sounds of wind in trees, the feel of rain through the green, the unfurling early-summer leaves. When I was found by the tattered remnants of the local Tlingit, I was taken for a tree spirit. They carefully brought me down from the high branches, seemed unfazed that I resembled nothing less than a human-shaped Arctic white fox, and cared for me until memory became stable, and my grief had lessened. I will ever be grateful for their care. They treated me as any other--if slightly furrier--Tlingit maiden.

To this day, when I am in fox form, I feel more comfortable wearing buckskins, or beaded doeskin dresses. It was all I wore when I was another Tlingit, I got used to it.

Around 1840, I'd managed to identify several forms--nekos of varying shades, Arctic fox, and the platinum-haired human. I remember one day, walking through the woods, I was practicing what little my father had managed to teach me of his magics. I was never very good at it, but I thought I was slowly improving. Suddenly something swept me off my feet, sent me spinning into a odd vortex striped with burning colors. All my senses disoriented, I felt directionless, I knew neither up or down. When I landed finally, shuddering, I looked out on the night-time shadows of a green and temperate land. And when I rose, beginning to wander, I recognized not a single name of the lands I'd known. The shock of such unfamiliar surroundings brought my human form back--to an extent: this time, I had brilliant blue butterfly wings.

Two days in on my discovery of this very odd land, still trying to figure out where I was, and how things worked here, I came across a silver-haired vampire princeling, who charmed me quite completely. He took me to some of his favorite places, gave me a gift of Lindens--the local currency--and vanished, I thought never to be seen again.

Months of wandering, footsore and impoverished, brought me to a small industrial building with a large, raised round stage. I wandered around it, wondering, feeling the cool off the poured stone, the clatter of my boots against the grey floor. I climbed over the low railing, watching the moving patterns on the circular blood-red floor, the neon glow of female-shaped signs enticing my eyes. The owner of the building caught me dancing at one of the poles, and called me down.

They needed more dancers, she told me. Would I like to be trained?

I nodded, of course, enthusiastic about the possibility, and that was the beginning of several dancing years at the Enigma.

I had no problem taking my clothes off for donations--Josef had frequently left me in the care of one or more ladies of, shall we say, dubious pursuits between his infrequent journeys from my side--and I found didn't particularly have a problem with sharing my body, with those who wished to pay for it. I found I was more closely drawn to men, but I took female clients when asked, and the only thing that chafed was the club owner's insistence on humans only. Nonhumans were seen in the club--raccoons, wolves, a very elegant tiger, fellow neko, exotic dusky patrons with silver hair and sharp elongated ears the locals called Drow--but I was bound to a human form for most of my dancing days.

The club grew larger; the building did not. The choice was made to rebuild, and I--now calling myself Emilly Orr, for my adopted father Josef, as well as a more 'natural'-sounding first name in this place--was hired as manager.

In my off-times I went exploring, as much as I could, walking long hours across magical lands, discovering wonders beyond imagining, but never a way home. I made friends--a vampire and his mate,several of the dark Drow, an enthusiastic young raccoon in a bright yellow jumpsuit, a man named Stiv with a shaggy haircut and a guitar.

One day I was redecorating the new club building, when a flash of silver hair not mine made me turn. It was my long-ago met vampire princeling, standing in dark leather and darker silk doublet, blinking quizzically.

It took me some time to realize he'd come to the club looking for the small blue-winged, purple-haired fae he'd met, and was somewhat puzzled at seeing the rosy-skinned, silver-haired woman I'd become.

Thus started a tumultuous and ultimately heartbreaking love affair, sweeping me in and out of grand vampire wars, shootouts with redneck elves, and one memorable day the setting afire of the musician Stiv. While I and the princeling stood arguing over the corpse, the corpse asked for quiet, and as both looked on in amazement, the corpse rose, shedding the blackened skin.

Thus was the God of Rivula born, and the next night, he pronounced that anyone who'd witnessed the Resurrection was more than happy to be sainted in the new church, and he'd toss in an invite to anyone else who wanted to be sainted that night.

The vampire's mate opted for Saint of Vampires, the vampire opted for Saint of Healing, a fellow dancer opted to be Saint of Creepy Girls...and I chose Relationships.

Be careful what you wish for, the saying goes, Thus ensued the train-wreck love life.

I kept practicing her father's magics in secret, and I thought I was getting closer to finding a way home. Once I found herself in a place called Caledon, which was very nearly a perfect set of Victorian cities...only slightly off from what I remembered.

Once I felt I was able to get back to Rivula safely, I started taking more chances, leaping from odd portal to odd portal with relative ease. One of them led me to Steelhead City, on the coast of Oregon, which was again, so very nearly what I remembered from my reality...but there was a catch; the Sheriff was a pale-skinned incubus, the land manager was a ruby-red succubus, and there was a centaur waking the streets with burning red eyes.

As I wandered the town, I overheard voices talking about a lack of staff at a local business. On occasion my hearing is very acute, so...I drifted over to gain more information. Le Jardin was in need of staff, and I got the madam's attention to ask if I could help.

I was told--firmly, but regretfully--that what the madam was really looking for was another non-human. I actually laughed, and changed into neko. The madame hired me on the spot.

I was instantly charmed by the town, and made friends with many at Le Jardin. I admit, I was more charmed by the Sheriff, and astounded to find a local resident who was also a shapeshifter. I began to feel that if I couldn't make it home to the Alaskan coast, that the Oregon coast would do just fine...


Nostalgia. So much has changed from those heady optimistic days. My vampire princeling, dead, and gone; brought back, and still gone. The Sheriff not the sheriff, and now gone; now even demon, no longer. My neko lad a strong presence in my life; the statue come to life arrived; the darkened moon, circling in orbit.

And still the train-wreck, off and on. Should've known. Saint of Relationships, that doesn't only mean the good ones...

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

but I fear I have nothing to give

Morning smiles
like the face of a newborn child
innocent unknowing


Yesterday.

Yesterday the statue brought to life and I talked most of the day.

Yesterday I built the first ten of thirty gift boxes, for my art photographer to put limited edition prints of me in, and sell to patrons.

Yesterday I came up with the second version of the tea-table for Taiyou House, and I'm well on my way to a design I like.

Yesterday.

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Yesterday the darkened moon drifted closer. Yesterday a friend of mine designed a gun. Yesterday I counted the grid down with the statue, warm in warm arms, and was flung into limbo with lips that still remembered kisses.

Yesterday.

Winter's end
promises of a long lost friend
speaks to me of comfort


Yesterday I realized things are happening far too quickly with the statue brought to life.

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Yesterday I told him I'd dreamed about him.

but I fear
I have nothing to give
I have so much to lose
here in this lonely place
tangled up in our embrace


Yesterday I found the dance, the lovely dance that's part of a dance machine a certain Duchess maintains. It's called, "Dip Me In Chocolate". The pictures you see are stills from the dance.

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Yesterday. Yesterday I got shot in the face at the new favorite sandbox. While I will go back, I have found a new favorite sandbox. Yesterday I learned that, though I build slow, I do build, I'm a fair copyist, a good pattern researcher, and I'm committed to learning more.

there's nothing I'd like
better than to fall
but I fear I have nothing to give


Yesterday I discovered new love is a possibility that may not be undesired. By both of us.

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Yesterday I finally came to terms with being human. I won't have as many problems, now, wearing my human face.

Yesterday I finally said goodbye to the ghost of my vampire princeling.

Wind in time
rapes the flower trembling on the vine
nothing yields to shelter it
from above
they say temptation will destroy our love
the never ending hunger


Yesterday I spent far too short a time sparring with a sword with my favorite Victorian. I am lousy with a sword. I still killed him.

He sat on the civilized grass of Caledon and said, he must get better. We must spar more. I am, obscurely, for this.

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Yesterday I put up two windchimes in front of Taiyou, one on either side of the front door, high up towards the roof. They have to be touched to chime, but all that means for me is that they won't chime always.

but I fear
I have nothing to give
I have so much to lose


Yesterday, for the first time in a long time, I was happy.

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Yesterday I began to breathe again, and that clenched feeling in my chest eased.

here in this lonely place
tangled up in our embrace
there's nothing I'd like
better than to fall


Yesterday the burning of the train wreck slowed.

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Yesterday I finally felt like I am recovering, from everything the past two months has thrown at me.

but I fear
I have nothing to give
I have so much to lose
I have nothing to give
We have so much to lose...


Yesterday I never wanted to stop talking to the statue come to life.

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Yesterday was...pretty good.

I wouldn't mind another day like yesterday.

(Lyrics are Sarah McLachlan's "Fear")

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

I've been losing my mind, baby, since I've been lovin' you

Remove one presence from the life, one sidecar of the train wreck, fire-daubed and black-lined. One presence gone, left behind, train moves on.

When chaos reigns without a purpose
When the swell of sound becomes too much
Crushed between the cogs that work us
When I feel I'm slowly losing touch


Suddenly the cars are unlinking, getting tangled, lighting on fire again...sound of metal tearing once more and I'm in the conductors' car, wondering why. Beginning to think it might be time--again--to clamber to the top of the front car, pull the side chains up and braced, and ride the wreck on down as it thunders off the cliff.

Sometimes I drive to run from all my demons
Sometimes I drive so I can be alone
Sometimes I drive to see the world in a different light
Sometimes I drive for no reason at all


The statue come to life says, he never intended to bring me back to the rail. And I tell him, it's not him. Honestly, it was the demon dying, earlier this afternoon, and he blinked, and wondered what happened that he'd missed.

When the walls close in around me
When the ceiling's caving in
When the anxiety surrounds me
When my patience is wearing thin


So I told the whole story. Tragedy and consequence, confusion and misunderstanding, defriending and turning away. All of it. Dark and bright, though there was precious little bright in the latter days.

Sometimes I drive to run from all my demons
Sometimes I drive so I can be alone
Sometimes I drive to see the world in a different light
Sometimes I drive for no reason at all


We danced until the dawn hours again, and I can't regret it. I'll probably regret enough later, when the wandering satellite chooses to wander far from me, and...when that happens, I'm not going to be right for...quite some time. I can't even conceive of the depth of this wound. I'm not even anticipating now.

The open road unwinds before me
An onyx ribbon spreading out
No idea where I'll be going
Sometimes the journey is what counts


[5:13] You: So yeah. Not going to say worst day ever. Because that was a certain Tuesday in January, when I learned the Enigma was closing and Savan was leaving me, all in one night.
[5:13] You: THAT one. Worst day ever.

Yeah. Like that.

Sometimes I drive to run from all my demons
Sometimes I drive so I can be alone
Sometimes I drive to see the world in a different light
Sometimes I drive for no reason at all


Hells, bits of the train wreck are already on fire...almost seems a shame not to let it burn down to the frame.

Again.

I mean, what's a train-wreck love life for, if not to burn spectacularly to twisted metal and rust? I've always had a thing for rust...

Sometimes I drive to run from all my demons
Sometimes I drive so I can be alone
Sometimes I drive to see the world in a different light
Sometimes I drive for no reason at all


And maybe I need to get away too. Find a little quiet out-of-the-way nook. Build. Put on sunglasses, change my name, walk the world incognito. I don't know. All I know is, pain's coming, and the train-wreck's ablaze once more, and I just want less drama all around.

Still waking up in the mornings with shaking hands
And I'm trying to find a girl who understands me
But except in dreams you're never really free
Don't the sun look angry at me...


Still thinking...hiding? Best policy this week...

(Lyrics are Assemblage 23's "Drive"; last stanza is from Warren Zevon's "Desperadoes Under the Eaves")

Monday, April 23, 2007

don't forget me when I'm gone

((RP MODE))

By the time I arrived in Steelhead this morning, even the echoes of the echoes of the scream that shattered the town's peace early this morning had dissipated. Some residents were quick to tell me, though, and I headed first to Taiyou, putting potential drama from House Bloodwing far from my mind. I wasn't allied to the House anymore, I had no ties there...so I kept telling myself...

...but standing on the kanji rug in the dance alcove, I sighed, and shifted to my little fae shape, sprouted petal wings, and fluttered over, perching on the roof of the clocktower, peering down.

What I saw somewhat amazed me. A man I didn't recognize--a human--was standing at the postal box in front of Bloodwing. I'd never seen him before. But I recognized the vest he wore, from one visit, oh so long ago, to my Rivulan abode...

...and then he turned, lifting his face to the sky. Had he seen me? Had he heard something? I quickly ducked behind the wooden railing but not before seeing his eyes--a clear, vivid blue, and even more puzzling, a clear blue I recognized.

That long-ago December, that Christmas night on Enigma's dance floor, the singular moment etched on my memory, the moment the demon first said he loved me--that's when I'd first seen those eyes. Clear, and blue, and seared into me, and I curled into a ball, fisting my hands and pressing them against my lips.

No. No. I don't understand. This is too big.

If anyone needs me, I'll be in Lumindor. If you're coming, come armed.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

let me smother every aspect of your soul

Some friends you have, he tells me. Standing in the way of injured love screaming for repair...I tell him, they seek to protect me. They saw me hurt, they saw him as the cause of it, they added two plus two and did not get five.

Then he must go back to waiting, he tells me. And hoping against hope the paradigm will shift. And I have no words to answer him.

Why isn't it enough I can acknowledge I still have feeling for him, but I won't come back? Why isn't it enough I can say, yes, I still care, yes, I still hurt when he hurts, but no, my path is not his? No longer...why isn't it enough?

My neko lad begins to despair. He sees me drifting back. It makes him shudder in my arms and I have no words other than no, my love, no, it will not happen, no, I said no then, I say it now, I say it in future. No.
No.

I stand in Taiyou, evaluating dances for the alcove. This one goes, this one stays, is this one at the right height? I cannot think what to answer the demon. I turn my face to the darkened moon and receive only silence, and impression of deep thought, for counsel. It's not enough.

Hours pass. I dance with the statue come to life and think. And then...speech.


I love you.

Three little words.

I love you.

...all right. All right. I've been willing to risk many things. Risk sanity, risk consequence, risk the love borne to me from chosen loves and friends alike.

This, I will not risk.


I love you.

I am clouted by revelation on the kanji rug. This is truth that cannot be denied. No more demon.

No more, demon.

No more.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

soon you will disappear, fading into beautiful light

Been an...odd few days.

First, investigated some of Grendel's Children's new sim, in Avaria. When we arrived, from the link I was sent, I was staring down a long columned hall, listening to the sound of wind. And something else--and when I turned around, I saw what it was.

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Granted, I'd never seen a stargate with green swirling light before, but this thing was breathtaking. The odd symbols rotated around the central swirling glow, and the entire apparatus hummed, as if preparing to move aloft. It took some time before my friend and I were able to move back, and continue down the columned hall.

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At the end of the column, the hall opened out--and I mean, really opened out--an over three-story rise from the base stones to the ceiling, full of overarching trees and curving horned architecture and odd little details. Like this one:

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These two small creatures seemed very startled, hanging out on one of the great tree's root loops. Aloe and olive surround them, ferns in high hanging pots, sandblasted urns and the eternal march of patterned stone. It's fairly awe-inspiring, it truly is.

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This is what I mean by horned architecture. These struts and curves and metallic spirals, almost like organic lace across the back wall, as details along the columns, forming the furniture. Really, really impressive stuph.

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We rounded a corner and saw this monolithic sculpture, next to a blue light that gave off dancing round azure balls that sputtered and faded. I maintained it looked like an ammonite shell, though the single largest I'd ever seen. My friend mentioned the concept of the Shofar, the Hebraic ram's horn that calls the faithful on high holidays.

We could either of us be right, and neither, but it was definitely an objet de intrigue.

We didn't see a tenth of the store, or the land surrounding. I'm going to definitely need to go back.

...in other news, the demon may well be at it again, and I never saw him coming. Again. Gods, but this is getting old, and I surpassing hate being this gullible.

I'm beginning to think it's not love, it's addiction, and I'm trying to live my life in rehab. It's far from easy. The latest ploy very nearly had me, very nearly drew me back in, wrapped me up with a neat black bow...I profoundly thank my favorite Victorian for kicking some sense into me, and saying No. And reminding me--the vow I took to the darkened moon does not allow contact, period. The promise I have from my neko lad is that he'll forgive me anything, but going back. And the promise I have from my favorite Victorian is that he will kick my ass soundly if, for any reason, I resume with the demon.

::sighs::

It shouldn't be this hard. It shouldn't still be this hard. I should be able to stand, and lightly laugh it off, and say, oh, once-love, we are over, do move on--but to date, I...I can't say it.

Perhaps that gives him hope. I know it makes my heart sink. After everything he's done--every mistake we made together--and I still feel...anything for him...that's not amused resignation, or firm disavowal? It makes me think I'm something of a hopeless case.

And I do not enjoy the feeling.

I could have danced all night

I took no pictures. I admit it, no photographic evidence--from me, at least--will be seen from the Tiki Night in Steelhead. Not because I didn't want to commemorate, but because I was having far too much fun--first dancing with the group, my mix of bellydance moves and post-sixties romping perfectly matched by the surf music served up by DJ Ortega, and then dancing with a lovely young fellow in Polynesian silks, twirling a fire stick.

And I spoke with the demon. As the dance ended, and his duties hosting left, he moved to the far side of the Kokopelli stage, sitting at one of the cafe tables, watching the young fellow and I spin in stately circles around each other. We talked of love, and loss...nostalgia, and living in the past...memories, hopes and fears.

He seemed...changed. He told me, no more games. No more interfering with others I choose to love. No more tricks. He seemed...subdued, quiet, the spark that powered him perhaps irretrieveably subdued.

And then he left, fire-eyes, horns and all vanishing in a burst of displaced air, and the young fellow and I kept dancing.

The dawn rose, the morning advanced, the sunset glimmered, the night sky filled with stars...and still we danced.

At present...we still dance, staring into each others' eyes, circling each other, dance as subvocal communication.

I know eventually I must sleep, but...not now. Not yet. Let me pay for this moment tomorrow....I'm too thoroughly enjoying the now, right now.

Friday, April 20, 2007

in the dark of night, those small hours

((RP MODE))

Once, long ago, in distant memory, the Drow dwelt on the surface, with the other races of elves. At that point, they dwelt in places rich in overgrowth--old forests, jungle spaces, places with overhanging trees and branches thick with moss--and even then, they were known as 'dark elves', for the color of their skin.

Because they prospered in their places, and were highly skilled with magics, over the talents of their hands, the lighter-skinned elves called them lazy, excessive, and decadent. Because they believed punishment should be dealt quickly, rather than stretched out into the endless time the 'light elves' would allot...the other elves named them vicious and cruel.

The other elves banded together--light elves, grey elves, High elves of the ruling councils, small brown elves of the forest lands. Through superior numbers--and because at that point, the dark elves feared no treachery from other elven hands--they were forced away from their homes, away from the surface world, their numbers depleted.

They ended up underground, in vast echoing spaces lit by oddly glowing crystals, radiant waters, populated by beasts the surface world could never understand. There they made their stand, formed soaring cities lit by new illuminations, and met their Demon Queen, the goddess Lloth.

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Welcome to the Underdark.

One of my friends has recently become involved with Avilion Isle. He loves it there. I have to agree--beyond the long-lost Tusk, it's the most impressive build I've ever seen on the grid. And he found a passage to chambers below the ground, and wanted me to see them.

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The passageway down, long and steep, is littered with torn wings--demifae swirled sets, majestic angel feathers, butterflies' best adornments--making it very clear that going down is more dangerous than departing. Making it clearer was noting, about halfway down the passage, the corridor-filling spiderwebs, glistening with dew and artistry.

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Once we reached the bottom, the source for the dim violet illumination became plain--large, freestanding crystals, giving off their own subtle radiation, their own illumined glow. The main space was huge; I couldn't see to the top of the overarching ceiling.

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I can only assume some giant creature died, at some point, or was killed by the denizens here, and the skull dragged into position over this small pool. It's very large.

We met up with a resident of the Underdark, a Drow male, who challenged us. As I was in the pose of a Drowess, I challenged him back. Whereupon he laughed at me, and said that sometimes, our true faces shine through any disguise.

Turns out he also shares space with the surface Drow of Lumindor. And he knew of little Em the shifter's ways.

That turned to our advantage, though--he was so tickled by my attempt to conform to Drow appearance he gave us the freedom to wander, for a night, assuming we did not run into any acid-tempered drowesses about. We bade him travel safely, and we were off.

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We still do not know what this structure was. Formed partially of the same ultraviolet crystals, part of natural stone, it was linked to the main land on which we stood by an arching bridge, over another of those radiant streams. We carefully walked over the bridge, keeping very quiet.

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In the large space inside, were three thrones. One was obviously the throne of the Matron Mother, or perhaps the highest priestess of Lloth this particular Underdark city had. Another was simpler, but cut from the same dark stone as the hall. This one, though...

Why would Drow have something so obviously of the surface world? White marble...white stone...is it ancient, that they have kept from their time above? Was it a gift from the rulers of Avilion Isle?

We didn't know, and we didn't want to wait there to see. We watched the spider fire bowl, looked at each other, and carefully walked out.

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My friend showed me another way out, an arching stone path winding around the main cavern space, that led through more cobwebs to the surface. Oddly, we never saw any spiders--barring the ones I brought in--though we would have been careful, had we. Killing a spider in Drow lands generally results in death, and in particular, painful, excruciating death. Spiders--as living avatars of Lloth, the Spider Goddess--are sacred.

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Several more giant cobwebs stretched across the path. Most we were able to gently phase through, the act of a small moment of concentration, before we continued on. It took some time. And always, the pervasive silence of the deep, soothing and unsettling at the same time.

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The passageway opened up past spiderwebs and curving stone corners into a cavern behind a waterfall, marked with the arching tree of Avilion Isle. Sparkling crystals inset into the walls gently chimed, dancing lights within swirling, as we arrived from the Underdark. As magical as the lands below were, and are, I think we honestly appreciated the return of vibrant colors.

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Walking through the waterfall led us to a garden; the garden led us to a torch-lined path; and on the other side of the torch-lined path, the gentle slope of giant flowers I'd first seen when he'd first brought me to Avilion Isle. Oh, my. Come full circle, indeed.

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Then I took him to E's, and showed him Eeron Kilian's Drow skins. While there are many Drow skins on the grid, I truly believe that Eeron's and Nomine's are the best-looking. And Munchflower Zaius, the mind behind Nomine, doesn't offer demo skins for the Drow.

If you're going to visit the Underdark...tread lightly, offer no one disrespect, travel armed, and travel in stealth. Try very hard not to be seen. And you may escape with a night of wonders behind your eyes...instead of wondering why there's a Drowess debating between the heated tongs and the thumb clamps...

Thursday, April 19, 2007

so many bright lights they cast a shadow

I've been struggling for most of two days now with the ingenious little programs that make it possible for me to pose prettily on the grid. I can't even rez out the first one now, it's essentially just a name and a place mark but otherwise? Doesn't seem to exist! And the one I spent all of yesterday trying to tweak into place...now seems to be locked from any future editing!

At this point I was, quite literally, tearing my hair out...so I flipped on fins and went to swim at Rua.

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The problem is Rua's gotten smaller. Far smaller than I remember. I'm not entirely sure why. There are two other parcels on either side that make it somewhat hazardous to swim in long straight lines.

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There's also a new sea monster. I didn't actually notice, I was preoccupied, until he swam up behind me. Thankfully, he's quite lazy, and stopped for a bit.

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Unfortunately, that still left the dilemma of how to get past all those teeth in his open mouth...

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After that, I'd had enough undersea adventure, and I swam past a thing I remembered had been topside, quite some time back. An ingenious underwater teleportation pearl, now, that took me directly to the cargo bay of Serenity, floating high above the waters of Rua.

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And this is me in the ship's medical bay. Note the poster. Also, if you travel to the ship, reserve some small amount of time to watching the small screen next to the poster. It features a rather engaging loop of Captain Malcolm Reynolds.

Dancing.

Trust me, it's worth the time to watch.

Now, I must swim off the ship, and flip my fins back into storage. Where did I put that grass skirt...it's Tiki Night in Steelhead, Friday, so I do believe my hula-dance outfit is called for.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

there's just too much that time cannot erase

And you still have all of me...

That's the long and the short of it now. And I have to work my head around how to take myself back again. I don't have a crypt handy, this time, with a corpse to speak with; rant out all my inner turmoil, unleash all my pain...my lost one is still breathing. Makes it difficult to grieve, for shouldn't I be celebrating for both of us? I'm free, he's free, we're moving to a better place, we just weren't meant to be....

I don't buy any of the platitudes right now. I savor little. My mouth is ash, my eyes are dull glass, I am empty and hollowed of all. I'm desperate for any affection, and little gives me ease.

But I've been here before and I've gotten through this place before. There are green hills beyond and I will reach them.

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Heaven bend to take my hand
And lead me through the fire
Be the long awaited answer
To a long and painful fight


Fire burning, ashen pain, cobalt chill of the frozen soul, I've been in these places before. I know these lands. Right now I'm doing my best to keep busy. I'm working on building jewelry, tricky and intricate, projects involving the whole of my brain and more. I'm working on work; dancing for tips, being the pretty club accessory, something involving less brain but more acting, at least right now.

Everything else...will happen when it happens. Contact with the demon, involvement with friends and loves, investigating the rich diversity of the world again. Walking. Walking may become essential soon. And I recently found a Japanese hot springs I'm going to have to look into...

Truth be told I've tried my best
But somewhere along the way
I got caught up in all there was to offer
And the cost was so much more than I could bear


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So, okay, back here now. I see it now. And I may abuse my privileges with the corpse of the dead one, and go rant at his bones for someone else. Who knows, maybe it'll help. Because I know, I know full well, I only realize what I'm thinking if I see it in print, or say it out loud. It's the deepest way I'm wired, and one I've never wanted to combat.

So go rant at the dead boy, some, surround myself in the chill of sturdy Forsaken stone, and breathe again. Maybe it's time. Maybe it's necessary.

Though I've tried, I've fallen...
I have sunk so low
I messed up
Better I should know
So don't come round here
And tell me I told you so...


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In the meantime I've got this. I've got dancing back. And yeah, it's not brain surgery, but it takes a little skill to look good. Thankfully I've still got all the accessories, and I still like my dance togs, and I've got enough I can go through every single one that's legal to wear and still have gear for two months of dance shifts.

So I dance. I dance and I try to forget and I try to deal and I work on not thinking about things so much. In the meantime I remember and I can't deal and I obsess on everything. Of course.

We all begin with good intent
Love was raw and young
We believed that we could change ourselves
The past could be undone


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Spent the morning as the little oiran, the evening as the poledancer. Found a lot of things I'd love for Taiyou, and just maybe, I might be building some furniture for it to go with my new samovar. I'm thinking a little tea nook, with images of the Companions, might be just the thing. Dances and sitting opportunities in one alcove, tea in the back corner with the pictures, the fireplace with the couches, and the grand piano in the far alcove. And upstairs, should anyone desire, access to other leisures. It should work. It should be fun.

Given a month or so...I think I'll even be in the mood for it.

But we carry on our backs the burden
Time always reveals
In the lonely light of morning
In the wound that would not heal
It's the bitter taste of losing everything
That I've held so dear.


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I have to be honest with myself, in spite of everything else. And the question of today is, would I have gone with him, had I known then, what I know now? I think the answer's still yes. I think I still would have taken the risk, even knowing pain would be the reward.

Great love means great risk, and the potential for great loss. Love anyway. That's rule 6. And I still hold it to be true.

I've fallen...
I have sunk so low
I messed up
Better I should know
So don't come round here
And tell me I told you so...


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In the meantime, I breathe a lot, I walk, I talk to people. I try not to worry those who love me. I fail spectacularly at that...I've been hanging out a lot in sandboxen, building my own little projects, watching others build theirs. I'm trying to sleep when I can, but my brain's keeping me up late, tossing questions at me, images, nostalgic taint thick in the blood and bone...

Maybe I need to flip on some fins and go swimming in Rua, too. Just back and forth, around and around, cool water all around me and nothing human in my way.

Heaven bend to take my hand
Nowhere left to turn
I'm lost to those I thought were friends
To everyone I know
Oh they turn their heads embarassed
Pretend that they don't see
But it's one missed step
One slip before you know it
And there doesn't seem a way to be redeemed


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And I'll do it. Day by day, getting better. Isn't that what I'm telling people? I'm telling them the truth. Told the demon this. Day by day, every day, getting better. Getting stronger. Farther away from it. Dealing with it.

Just...takes time. Takes time, and allowing it to take time. That's the hardest part.

Though I've tried, I've fallen...
I have sunk so low
I messed up
Better I should know
So don't come round here
And tell me I told you so...


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But on the plus side? Sometimes, as the line goes, I dress to match certain events, and sometimes, regardless of whatever else is going on, at least I know I like my clothes.

And I do adore my fishies. Panicked as they are to be in shoes. So that's something to make me smile, anyway.

Now you'll pardon me, apparently something of significant tragical nature has befallen the demon's daughter, and I must go find out what...

Current build: Decorated cabochons in bezels. Now to find someone with spare necklace chain about...

but where's your heart?

Now I know
That I can't make you stay.
But where's your heart?
But where's your heart?
But where's your...


All day long I've been listening to this song. There's a showroom I've got the link to, has some videos available to show people the quality of rebroadcast. All day long, I've been listening to this one. Going back. Restarting it. Listening. Going back. Restarting. Listening...

And I know--
There's nothing I can say.
To change that part.
To change that part.
To change...!


And I know I live in the nostalgia spaces, all my life, I've lived there, looking forward from the past. It gets old. By design it gets old. But it's how I'm wired, maybe, and I've never tried to challenge it.

I don't even know if I can; but I'm fairly sure I have to try. For good or ill...maybe it's part of the sea change I must suffer through, to reach the other shore.

So many
Bright lights, they cast a shadow,
But can I speak?
Well is it hard understanding,
I'm incomplete?
A life that's so demanding,
I get so weak.
A love that's so demanding,
I can't speak.


Train-wreck love life is picking up new cars, and I'm so afraid it's a panic reaction, because...of everything...and I'm being warier with the new ones than I like. In the long run, that may save any potential interrelationships, because...being wary of interaction, chary of contact, is making me move slower.

And maybe that's good. Rebound relationships, I am told and know, rarely work, but...everything feels like rebounding at this point, and the echo's becoming unbearable.

I am not afraid to keep on living,
I am not afraid to walk this world alone
Honey if you stay I'll be forgiven,
Nothing you can say can stop me going home.


I'm questioning everything now. Every relationship I have. Unknown or known, friends, lovers or casual contacts, everything is receiving scrutiny, whether the individual in question knows or not. Why did I love this person? Why did I want that person? What's happening right now, with this other person? Is it good for me?

That's become a mantra, of late. Is this good for me? What's good for me? Do I know what's good for me? How can I not make this mistake again?

The Great Mistake, it's become in my head. Which may be doing a disservice to any genuine good that was between us, once upon a time, but it's even getting hard to remember the good, it's so interwoven with the bad.

Can you see?
My eyes are shining bright,
'Cause I'm out here, on the other side,
Of a jet-black hotel mirror,
And I'm so weak.
Is it hard understanding?
I'm incomplete...
A love that's so demanding,
I get weak--


I have very little ego, about anything. People tell me I'm pretty and it's hard to believe it, I keep thinking I'd need to be more for people to really see me, and believe me, to be pretty. Less short is the big one. Less short, maybe more curvaceous, definitely more tanned...

...but then I'd be everyone else, and I don't want to be. In a world where I can change into nearly any shape, any skin, fur or smooth or scaled or just plain odd, I am choosing to be short, pale, and neko. I try not to lie to myself that I could be the standard Malibu-tanned Barbie cut-out like all the other girlies with fewer brain cells than they have cup sizes...it's just that I don't want to be.

I am not afraid to keep on living,
I am not afraid to walk this world alone
Honey if you stay I'll be forgiven,
Nothing you can say can stop me going home.


And I think I disappoint people; I know I hurt people; I know two of the people I love, very much, are jealous of any affection I give to others and that still makes my soul curl, because it happened with me and the demon, so now I know how deeply that burns, inside....and I don't know how to change.

And that should be funny. It's something akin to a grand cosmic joke, really. Shapeshifter, I am. Neko? Sure. Human? I've got that. Spider, rabbit, fox? No problem. I can be seven feet tall, I can be three feet tall. I can be small or large. Wings? Pick your pattern. Hells, pick your shape, your substance--feathers or fronds, petals or bone struts--I've got them. In some places, for some things--eyes, hair, wings--Iv'e got a dizzying array of options.

I've got everything from hobbits to a giant rock. Change? Change is my nature.

I am not afraid to keep on living,
I am not afraid to walk this world alone
Honey if you stay I'll be forgiven,
Nothing you can say can stop me going home.


And in all of that, I fear change like others fear dying, and the big bane of my existence is love going away. And I get the feeling I'm just feeling the edge of panic, and trying to ride through it with style...hells, trying to survive it at all, because...I've been here before. I know what I've done before.

Hells, the vampire princeling, far and gone and lost, sent a letter, scrawled in his far from elegant hand, and I was inches from accepting. And by that, I don't mean I chose not to attend; I mean, I was prepared and waiting for any eventuality, open to any possibility, waiting for...

...well. That night? My long-lost first love could have had me back with a question. Even if just for an evening. That is my greatest fear. I can't do that with the demon. I cannot.

These bright lights have always blinded me.
These bright lights have always blinded me.

I say:


And back again, and back again, circling around this song, and to this morning, to this moment, I don't know whom it better applies to, nor if it really applies to either of us. But something in the song, in the lyrics, in the driving passion of it speaks to me, and I respond. All day long I've been responding.

I see you lying next to me,
With words I thought I'd never speak,
Awake, and unafraid.
Asleep, or dead...


Awake and unafraid. Asleep or dead. As long as those three words aren't said. Is that what's pulling at me? Or is that a misinterpretation of the song? I can't see clearly any more, and I'm so close to....hells, I'm already turning to my friends, saying, you make my decisions for me, I'm too tired. It's amazing they don't kick me free as a cumbersome irritant. Pretty or no.

And the drops of sunlight on my skin still burn...

'Cause I see you lying next to me,
With words I thought I'd never speak,
Awake, and unafraid.
Asleep, or dead...


On the other hand, I am relying on their judgement, on their clear vision, in ways I was never able to before. I feel like I have no choice, but...I am choosing to listen. To heed. To try and behave according to a higher good, to try not to get in my own way, to try and let my head lead, not my heart...I have no idea if it's doing any good, but I am trying.

'Cause I see you lying next to me,
With words I thought I'd never speak,
Awake, and unafraid.
Asleep, or dead.


And I'm not going over the edge if they hold me back...I suppose that's something. But it's such a thin margin some nights, and I feel as if I can't talk about any of it...because if I'm tired of talking about the demon, good gods, they must be tearing their hair out...and I know, I know, it's a bad trait, but I so hate burdening people...

'Cause I see you lying next to me,
With words I thought I'd never speak,
Awake, and unafraid.
Asleep, or dead...
Or dead...
Or dead...
Or dead...


Tonight--or very early this morning, depends on one's outlook--my favorite saint tells me I've made a grievous error, but all is not lost, and any time I'm in a lull, I should look him up. Which did make me blink and step back, but not away from him. More...the nature of the error.

Because at this point? Hells, even if it's just another warm body to cuddle, I'll so take that. Don't leave me alone in my head with these thoughts. It's definitely not good for me.

I am not afraid to keep on living,
I am not afraid to walk this world alone
Honey if you stay I'll be forgiven,
Nothing you can say can stop me going home.


And it's funny, the defenses I'm battling down now. Silly little infatuation, my head sneers. But it wasn't. Meaningless trifle, but even my head doesn't believe that. More trouble than he was worth...

...well. Maybe that last one has some validity. But by all the gods, so was I...

I am not afraid to keep on living,
I am not afraid to walk this world alone
Honey if you stay I'll be forgiven,
Nothing you can say can stop me going home.


And if you measure the power in a relationship by the chaos it leaves in its wake when it goes away....well, that 'meaningless trifle' with the demon was more powerful than my most intense and tender trysts with the vampire prince. Hands down.

But I'd rather measure relationships by the strength of them ongoing, and by focusing on the ones I've lost I lose sight of what I have in the present. And I have, I do, I know that I do--my neko lad, my favorite Caledonian, that wandering satellite, the ex-dancer, the fallen angel, the half-dragon, the demonic Drow DJ, the Texan with those eyes...All the lovely ones I share my heart, my mind, my body with, or variations on that theme. They all support me, they all enrich my life, and I would sincerely be lost without them.

I am not afraid to keep on living,
I am not afraid to walk this world alone
Honey if you stay I'll be forgiven,
Nothing you can say can stop me going home...


Everything happens for a reason. And so with this. I have to listen to the universe, and trust my judgement, and--in times like this, when it proves to be profoundly untrustworthy, I need to rely on my friends. Because they won't let me fall. They won't let me go back. They won't let me fail, at this, and it's too important, this time, to let myself go under the anaesthetic of dismemory and slip away...let whatever happens, happen...to start it all again.

I have to be aware for this. I have to keep thinking it through. I can't just blindly go on instinct, because instinct will lead me unerringly to the shore I left. And leaving once was pain enough; I don't think I could leave a second time.

So I have to stay in the water. Even if I'm only splashing about, just enough to keep my head above the waves, not enough to strongly swim to the distant shore. I can't turn back now. I've come so far. I have to cling to that, if nothing else.

The vow I made. The words of friends. Committment and my own will not to give in. Such slender, breakable threads....but they haven't broken yet.

If I make it through...there's a tapestry in this. I just have to make it through this...

(Lyrics are My Chemical Romance's "Famous Last Words")

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

I walked forty-seven miles of barbed wire

You're thinking about him again.

Look, it comes and goes. It's like tides, it gets stronger, it goes away.

Bad image.

Why?

Means thought of him is always gonna come back. Tidal. Comes and goes.

Yeah, well...

You're stronger than this.

Maybe I'm not. Maybe he's always going to be there, somewhere, back of my mind.

You're stronger than this.

Maybe I'm not.

You're reading his journal.

Yeah, well...

You don't think that's a bad sign? What the hell does 'disconnection' mean to you, then?

Look, it's not that simple, maybe it never was! I'm just...I'm having to relearn a lot. Breathe a lot. Be calm.

Be gentle with yourself.

Yeah. I'm not used to that.

High time, then.

Yeah...

Don't read his journal anymore.

Yeah, like that's gonna happen...

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Working with the concept of making my own backdrops for photography. I'll get the angles down yet, this one's basically just a big open lit box. Came out pretty well, though, with the light attachments.

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But yeah...it's all a learning process. Or relearning. Or processing in general. It's going to take time, is all. I'm not used to letting things take time. By and large--not with other people, but with myself--I push, I push hard, try to speed things up in the process...wreck myself on my way to personal health and growth...

...but it's like I have a wound, and it's just started to heal over, and I can't stop scratching it, picking at it, making it bleed again. Even when that's the worst thing I can do. Even when I should just leave it alone.

This one's going to scar. I know that much already...

darling, so there you are, with that look on your face

You know
our love was meant to be
the kind of love that lasts forever.
And I want you here with me from tonight
until the end of time.
You should know
everywhere I go


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The grand ballroom at the castle on Avilion Isle is one of the most amazing spaces on the grid. It's definitely one of the most elegantly appointed ballrooms I've seen, hands down. It's gorgeous start to finish, with a deep reflective floor that seems to go down for miles.

Always on my mind
in my heart
in my soul
baby.
You're the meaning in my life
you're the inspiration.
You bring feeling to my life
you're the inspiration.
Wanna have you near me
I wanna have you hear me sayin':
No one needs you more than I need you.


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There are side chairs to sit in and nooks to withdraw for quiet communication and scattered liberally throughout the large space are the traditionals--ballroom dancing, waltz sets, tangos, slow dancing.

And I know
yes
I know that it's plain to see:
So in love when we're together.
Now I know that I need you here with me
From tonight until the end of time.
You should know
everywhere I go


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This was one of the songs playing when my neko lad--not so very neko in these images, and this night--and I were swaying across the floor. We needed a quiet space to talk, to gain each others' trust again, to communicate, heart to heart.

I took him here. I wanted to be surrounded in beauty if I was to bare my soul. Sometimes, we get that choice.

Always on my mind
you're in my heart
in my soul.
You're the meaning in my life, you're the inspiration...


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The Avilion Isle grand ballroom is formal dress only. That means tea-length dresses or longer on ladies, and tuxedos or formal suits on men. They have no qualms on evicting people who do not conform to the dress code.

I think I will have little problem conforming; it gives me a chance to actually wear my ballgowns. They get so little use these days...

Wanna have you near me
I wanna have you hear me sayin':
No one needs you more than I need you.
You're the meaning in my life
you're the inspiration.
You bring feeling to my life
you're the inspiration.


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Beyond the ballroom, there's an amazing Elven land full of wonders. This statue and others are placed on the land, highly detailed, amazingly so. Everywhere I turned, walking, there was art, there were flowers, there were delicate little walkways and places to sit, and talk, play music, or stroll...it's truly breathtaking.

When you love somebody 'til the end of time
When you love somebody
always on my mind
No one needs you more than I.


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After we talked, I needed to find a quiet space on my own, and sit, and think. Behind me in this image is a half-circle of stone-walled, thatched-roof cottages, with little shops. In the center of the half-circle is a fountain, with the most realistic dragon statue I've yet seen. It's for sale, by the way, though you'd nearly need to dedicate a parcel of land just for it.

When you love somebody 'til the end of time...
When you love somebody 'til the end of time...


"I need rescuing, is what you're saying," I asked him.

"You have been rescued," he told me.

Oh. That's good, then. I have been rescued.

Okay. I'll keep that in mind.

(Lyrics are Chicago's "You're My Inspiration")

Monday, April 16, 2007

there's something deep inside of me, there's someone else I've got to be

My first full dance shift at Dorian Gray's was last night. Friend of mine was spinning pop and dancetrance, some nice crunchy electronic house, kept the place grooving.

It felt so damned good, being back on a pole again.

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It was Best in Leather night, I discovered, once I went down to the club. I offered to change; the DJ and the head dancer that night said no no no, you're fine. So I hopped up on a pole.

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Old habits came back pretty quickly. Greet people who come in, welcome them, be friendly, make conversation...look pretty and spin around.

I can so do this.

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Plus? They have a pretty good Sploder. It's almost as good as the old Enigma one, and I made a little over six hundred Linden over two and a half hours.

That was a good feeling. Sure, there's ego in this--people are tipping me because I look pretty--but they're also tipping me because I enhance the club, and not just as girl-shaped ornament. There's a brain underneath the pretty, and you know what? Contrary to popular belief, a lot of guys appreciate that.

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It's also the only club I've ever worked at where they can have major particle effects, and I don't crash. Lag is pretty low. That's the best thing ever, these days.

So overall? Pleased with the new job. It makes me happy.

And there are worse things that being happy at a job you enjoy, believe me.