Faeday, 17 Entropy.
I don't even fucking know where to start. Start with getting back to campus after having to fend off Plax's attacks, his magic gone completely wrong? Start with that bedamned link between myself and Typheous being the thing that let us search the library at Tybil even while fighting Plax? Start with the debriefing, or the snow, or Vance being a total asshole even now that he has a second chance? Or him saying Alex and Mer were fucking, or me finding Mer and how she's changed? I'm fucking overwhelmed, confused, exhausted. And then there's the real issue that's clouding my mind...what happened tonight. I didn't need more things happening. I needed to come back to campus and look at my classmates living their normal, petty, uninterrupted lives - remember what I'm fighting for, why I'm doing this, what I'm bothering to try to save. Not pay Typheous back on his walk and wind up with just more questions...
I should be above this, better than this. I shouldn't be acting like one of these godsdamned simpering girls who follow him fucking everywhere. Not giggling and blushing and kissing - I kissed him, or let him kiss me - twice. No, three times, if you count the first time when I almost jumped off the bed in shock...And the worst part is that after that first time, I think I enjoyed it. Just like I'm starting to enjoy his company. I don't want all of this shit.
It's the weather. And my crazy fucked-up mood. And coming back to campus and finding things so strange in some ways, and the same in others. It has to be - I'm just so off-balance I'm not acting right. We came out of the debriefing (looks like we'll be going back out with Lady Del'zenivras to try and stave off the end of the world. The end of the world isn't going to fucking well happen until I'm old enough to fucking do something about it. End of sentence.) and right smack into a snowball fight. And there was Vance, telling me that Alex and Mer were fucking...
Took off to find her, and I did, in Barliman's room, cuddling, maybe more. And I wondered then what'd changed, and then I talked to her, and I started to get worried. She looks different...better. Still plain, still ungainly, still Mer - but cleaner, more confident. And talking to her....Typh told me Alex said she went out looking for me after we disappeared, outside Wyzdin, and came back after a few days, changed somehow. She stopped taking shit from people - and started taking revenge. Seems she got scary about it, scary enough that Karlos took it into his head to "de-shrewify" her. And I guess she led him on, cock-teased him, and then when he pushed the issue she kneed him and then took him apart with a pair of sewing scissors. A fucking pair of scissors. Fucking killed him. What a fucking waste. And she told me the story, and looks at me and says she's sorry she wasted the time she could've spent making him suffer in killing him. Gods...I couldn't even say anything, I was so shocked.
I don't understand how anyone can want to torture someone like that, how she can actually desire to make him suffer. I...gods, it twists me up so badly I don't even have the words to express it...makes me feel like I'm going to vomit with disgust. This isn't Mer. I don't - I can't - imagine what's changed her so much, but I don't like it. Something's wrong, terribly wrong, for her to be so casual about the suffering she's willing to inflict. I never thought I might wind up wanting - needing - to clean up after her, but she's flippantly talking about dropping Barliman. How she "just hates" to break his heart, how he's "so fragile"...I need to talk to him, much as we've never gotten along, find out what his side of the story is. He was worried about her, I felt it. He knows something - something more. I need to know what it is. I can't put this together without knowing more.
And then...then after telling me all of that like it's some kind of happy sleepover-secret, she tells me I was right, she's never been happier than since she started standing up for herself. And then she says goodnight. And leaves. Leaves me standing there, wondering if I'm going to be able to walk without vomiting. She got this from me. Somehow, she thinks this is what I taught her. How?
Calm down , Psyche. Breathe. You can start trying to mend that tomorrow...after the rest of this is somehow figured out. After all, Mer isn't the immediate problem, is it? It's the boy sitting behind me on my bed...the one I can sense even though I'm blocking, the one whose position, whose health, whose fucking thoughts I always know. The one who completely turned me inside-out tonight. I can feel him worrying, even though he's trying to block just as hard as I am, and I'm touched and frustrated and annoyed and...fuck.
I had to talk to someone...I had to do something besides go back to my room and cry or chase her down and strangle sense into her. It's strange...the more things happen to me, the harder it is to be alone. It's the fucking hormones, I swear it is. And Typh didn't go out with Alex on a pub crawl like he was threatening. Said Alex was acting quiet...withdrawn. Not really interested in going out. Which meant that he was more than willing to take me up on that walk. Except that it was too fucking cold out, and it wasn't like he wanted to kick Alex out to talk in his room. We have enough fucking rumours that're going to spawn because we disappeared together. So we went to my room. I have a single.
That was the first fucking bad idea. He...he backlashed, and was seeing nothing but redcaps, and every fucking time someone is unhappy, I have to fucking feel sorry for them. And then we started talking, really talking. Not trading arguments about how to run the world, or spitting insults at each other, just...talking. Trying to figure out what was going on, why it seems like things are so different with us now that we're back.
When we came through into Wyzdin from the monastery, there were a few minutes when he was on one side of the pocket dimension and I was on the other. A few moments when I got what I'd been asking for for so long - he was out of my head. And I felt so fucking empty. So fucking...it was like part of me had gone missing. I don't understand it, but I can't argue with facts, and the fact is I missed his presence. Enough that when Lady Del'zenivras sounded like she wanted someone to go back out with her I couldn't even consider it if he didn't go too. Somehow, the facts are starting to line up: I'm stuck with him. For the rest of my motherfucking life.
I could live with that if he hadn't said something else very true...something I didn't want to and still don't want to admit. I like him. I've gotten so used to having him around that I didn't even notice that I wanted to have him around. And admitting that...
It's not so much that I don't ever want to like anyone. It's not that at all. It's that this is...different. Too different - so much so as to be alien to me. And while I was so off-balance, trying to figure out what that meant he meant and where he fit into my world, that's when he kissed me. And I almost jumped off the bed, there was such a shock, him touching me. And he was sorry...he even asked me if slapping him would help, said he should leave...and then I couldn't kick him out, didn't want to. And he kept talking, and what he said made sense. It was something we hadn't tried yet, since fighting seems to be harder and harder to really mean, and running away is too cowardly. I'm more than running away would make me. And...and it was a little embarrassing to react like he'd bitten me...when I know he didn't mean to. And what choice was there but to try again, when I was expecting it?
I don't know how he doesn't feel the shock when he touches me. It's the strangest feeling, something that twists my stomach and more than my stomach. Something in my bones, in my soul. It...I can't explain it. All I know is that it never goes away. Even when we were holding hands, I could feel it the whole time, something different about me. And that fucking well scares me. A lot.
I have a purpose, a job. I have a purpose that requires me to be able to weigh the facts and make a decision that is at once correct and defensible. It's not going to be easy, and the last godsdamnedfucking thing I need is to get my emotions involved in anything. All they do is muddle my judgment, make me vulnerable, susceptible. Fallible.
(there is a smudge of ink here, something now illegible, obviously water-damaged and blotted.)
And they make me fucking cry on my journal. And now I'm fucking...godsdamnit, this is almost as bad as walking with him. I can't think. I can't fucking think straight. Why can't I think? What's fucking wrong with me?
And a good cry later, I'm still stuck. We went on a walk to clear our heads - both of us were, are confused, how could we not be? This is anathema to what we've always both headed for. And somehow he took my hand, and we walked out to the park holding hands, and I didn't mind. It felt...right. For no fucking reason. And then it struck me how badly I wanted to hear what he really thought, and how as far as his eye could see he was talking to a redcap. And you can't be sure when you're seeing an illusion. Which is how his hand wound up on my cheek, so he could at least feel my face. And that's when I kissed him. And it was...I wish I could fucking give myself a little lie, say it was nothing, okay even. But it wasn't. It felt good, felt right, and it blew all of the bits of fragmented thought I had started to put together into little tiny pieces. And...I panicked. Just like I did a minute ago. That's what happened. I'm panicking, just like I did in Ironridge. Every single time I get my well-ordered framework of a world shaken up, I panic. And I run away, go hide in misery and self-doubt and shame.
Why didn't I see it before? Am I so arrogant, so blind, as to think that the world is going to just fall into place because I think I know what's best for it? I have to learn to keep my footing when things turn chaotic, or I'm never going to get anywhere. I'm never going to be able to understand what's going on if I fall apart every time my equilibrium's shaken.
So what does that leave me with? It leaves me with a funny feeling around Typheous, something that doesn't maybe fit into a nice neat box. And something that I can't quite think about in a logical way. But most people don't think logically. How can I work to change things if I don't know how things are? Better question: if I panic when things don't work just right, doesn't that leave me at a disadvantage? So maybe this is a chance to figure out how not to panic. Maybe I should look at it like that, and quit trying to figure out what's so wrong with me.
Maybe there's nothing wrong. And maybe it's okay to turn around and talk to him. He's not drawing any more, I can feel it. He's just waiting for me to finish.
This is so fucking weird.