It had been two months since waking up in the snow. Already, she had started to adapt, merge almost with the left-over personality of the body that was now hers. At the start, she knew that some people would be cruel to her because that cursed arm of hers, but she underestimated the cruelty of humanity. She never thought she would begin to become so detached from the world that she would start to lose faith in humanity.
She had started to adapt to being called Red, to her new gender, to the way people called her.She never really cared about the pronouns she was called before, so that part was easy to adapt to, the new body took some time.
Red often did her best to hide when Cosimov was near and to blend in to the background around anyone really. She would tuck herself away into corners or hide behind anything around. Be it one of the animals, a crate, a tent, even a random person. Red would hide.
It was a bit hard at first, Cosimov would shout for her to come do something for him, mostly for her to clean up after him or to get some of his props. Red learned though. How to listen for when the drunken clown would be coming around a corner. He would grumble loudly and stomp with each step, when she heard his distinct Russian tone, Red would dive under tents, behind crates, over props, anything to hide. She could get away with it if no one else was around to see her. The main problem at first would be Cosimov going to the ring leader claiming she was slacking off.
Those times made her aware of how bad things could be for her. How disgusting the world around truly is. It triggered the memories that her body still held, though faded and faint. It also triggered her body’s natural instinct-no its trained instinct in how to react.
Red would be punished by the ring master first and then be handed to Cosimov to be punished and made to work. It was still a problem actually, Red just cared about it less. At the start, after punishment, it would be hard to move. She would want to curl up and cry, whimpering in a ball when alone and trying not to move. It might have not been so bad if only she wasn’t also ridiculed for her left arm by everyone who knew about it. It might have been slightly more bearable if she had someone to lean on, but everyone knew her status and deformity.
So Red adapted again. She did most of what she was told to, learned to role with the punches and kicks. How to move fast and make it seem as if she was hurt worse than she was. How to sneak more food then she was given. Where to hide when she really needed it to recover and avoid others. And as she became numb while still retaining a semblance of her true emotions, she still practiced what she planned on.
Red practiced what skills she could on her own and at her age, especially with her body’s condition. Malnourished and beaten near daily, worked to the bone, she would condition her body as much as she dared. Focusing on agility, flexibility, and other less straining activities. She picked up odd tricks and methods from listening in when other performers talked and practiced. Most of all she worked on her left arm.
It was stiff, grotesque looking. Seeming scaled almost and like it was freshly dyed in blood depending on the light, with black claw like nails. Red couldn’t help but agree with the gossip spread about her. Her arm really was monstrous, and it was hard at times to understand how something called innocence’s, something connected to god could be as cruel as her arm.
Then again, the devil was once God’s most admired angel before he became a demon.
Red would try to practice a type of therapy with her left arm and hand to get it to move, but it really seemed impossible. Within the two months of practice she discovered that her arm could move up and down and stuff, it was stiff but able to bend. Still the range of movement wasn’t as great as her right. She could barely move her wrist half as much as her right and her fingers may as well be stone with how much she could move them. It was like a doll that you could only make it close its hand and even than it never fully closed. With how little she felt in that arm besides an occasional ache and maybe slight temperature changes compared to the rest of her, it might as well have been a phantom limb.
No matter how frustrating it got, Red would stick to it, knowing that it would get better in time. A Lot of time.
Focusing on some positive aspects, at least she was getting used to being one handed. Though one-handed card games were more aggravating than left hand therapy, it would so be worth it if she could cheat with one hand. Besides all that, Red practiced when she was alone at night the devil/angle act that she would need one day. It was hard to say how successful it was, so hopefully the practice would pay off. She had noticed that while the world around her was darker than what was shown in the manga and even lighter in some aspects…kinda…there was a sort of manga logic that took effect that she would sometimes notice. From the hits that some people took that average people shouldn’t be able to get up from to the ‘sweat drop’ and ‘emo corner’ aspects that took place.