Jul. 18th, 2009

eight_or_eleven: (Tarot)
Stories end, and stories begin.

One chapter in the endless saga was over, to make way for the next.

Flanked on each side by her lions, Strength looked out at a sky that seemed to be both gold and purple, as if someone had been playing with this world's gradient settings.

It amused her, in a way. The sky was not always like this.

But it was pretty.

A nice change to the usual, even if the usual was always changing.

Change.

Ah, yes. Change.

It had come to one of them, and now, she thought, it was coming to her.

She remembered the meeting where they all gathered to discuss and argue the matters set before them. There she'd made a personal choice.

She would go back to him, if he asked her to.

He had, and she did.

Just like old times, she mused, mind drifting back to that night.

It was like time had not passed at all.

A sound of sand whispering as footsteps disturbed the grains. All but silent, but she heard it, and knew without looking who was making their way over.

Justice.

He had decided to come out here to be with her. And she welcomed his presence.

"How does it feel?" he asked her, as Shujaa moved away from his mistress to allow Justice to stand next to her, to put a hand on her. If she welcomed it, he welcomed it.

Strength provided the other half of the gesture by leaning against the other card.

"I think you know," she teased.

He did know.

"I want to say 'as good as before'," she began, then added, "and some part of me wishes to say 'better'. But I don't think either response is fitting. Neither is truly adequate enough."

Justice moved his hand from her arm to her waist, his arm crossing her back.

The familiar touch caused an old and very familiar feeling to rise, and with it, old and familiar anxieties.

"Because this time, we start anew. Truly anew. We walk a path together that is being repaved as well as being discovered for the first time. Unlike before, we are given liberty to love."

Love. Yes.

This time there was the freedom to truly face and feel love without any hesitation or fear to barricade the door to their hearts with.

It was strange, and yet welcoming.

Strength was going to discover just what courage meant, and what it meant to be courage.

"I am not sure if this time it will last," Strength said. "It may be as it was before. A time to enjoy, not for its permanency but for what it gave us."

"Permanency is not why you came back. Nor is it something you promised me the night you did come back. I will not lament if it is not permanent. I will enjoy what I have for however long I have it. That, I think, will do. And if it does become permanent? Then I shall have a reason to rejoice."

"I think you did quite a bit of rejoicing that night," Strength teased her returned lover. "Enough that the others knew what had transpired between us even without having to tap into the network that connects us all."

Justice coughed. She knew he was blushing. It made her laugh.

"You had reason to," she added. "And you still do. This time, whatever happens between us, it will be for and because of love. That, more than anything else, is cause to rejoice. Because the cards are at last beginning the next stage of their evolution. I for one will welcome this change."

"And what about the others? Do you think those that object will change their minds?"

"If they do, I will be happy. If not? I will wish them well whatever they decide to do. I will not begrudge them that."

Justice nodded, and silence fell about them, as they watched the gold and purple tones swirl and shift in a slow and subtle dance over the ocean. As though it intended to reflect the ever-shifting state of affairs below it, the ever-shifting state of affairs in the lives of the cards.

They stayed like that for what felt like hours. Or was it days? Time meant nothing here.

"We should get back to the castle," Strength said after the lengthy pause. "I think it's time for a little more rejoicing."

This time, it was Justice's turn to laugh...

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