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The last time she bled, she swore to never open her heart again. Never again to the impurities of those that wished to defile her, contaminate the childlike innocence of a young, star-studded soul.
But Adaline’s greatest strength brought on her downfall: her unfailing belief in the goodness of the world, her unbridled faith that every soul was brought into this universe for nothing short of making miracles. She never reconsidered the repercussions of her naiveté, not until she stood at the edge of a cliff, with the pieces of what was left of her in her small, quivering hands.
The very first time they had cut her, she had bled Moonlight. Silver pools of shimmering diamonds oozed out the gaping holes in her chest and pooled at her feet, mixing in with her thick tears. She had never known pain before, a stranger to the ways of the world. That day, Adaline fell. That day, she learned of mortality of the spirit.
The second time, they did not break her, not completely, not yet. But it was enough for her self-sewn stitches to come undone, as did she by the words they stabbed her with. They weaponized the truth, a thing of beauty, and wielded it as a weapon, slashing her across the throat and leering at the voice that gushed out. Her words were no longer hers, her thoughts reduced to whispers no one ever heard or cared to acknowledge.
Viridian seeped out from the tender wounds of her heart; a reflection of the lush green Earth she had learned to love, a mirror of the bright blue skies that had once been Home. The second time, Adaline learned of the immortality of her scars, of pain.
The third was her last. She saw it coming, all the telltale signs of caution. There could be no greater danger than the deceptive toxicity of a poisoned love – the way it did not transform but attempted to convert her. The way it did not accept but reform her. The way it gave her nothing that love should but broke in her everything that it possibly could.
The Blood was thick and clotted as it flowed like rivers down her body, painting her red with the transgressions of generations passed. She did flinch at the rusty, metallic taste of it on her muted mouth. It tasted of their modern devices. The final time, Adaline did not feel the transience of her being. She simply did not feel.
Her trembling hands held the last of her: her jugular throbbed, less certainly with each passing second; her heart reduced to nothing but scattered remnants of gray, rusted cogs and screws; her soul, dissipating.
With every step she took closer to the edge of Never, the trembling grew still. An unsettling calm washed over her as she peered down, the voids in her eyes consuming the oceanic abyss beneath her.
And when her palms overturned, tipping the individualistic ingredients of her unique creation into the nothingness below, Adaline was no more.
The trail of bloodstained footprints was the last the skies saw of her as they weeped, droplets of a harsh rain washing away the grief of another of their children lost to this world. The red disappeared and with it, so did she, as she ventured into the faceless, plastic masses of the empty vessels that walked the Earth.
Alive, but not living.
/Adaline/: the noble one