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Blooming Across My Skin (A Canvas of Emotions)

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Virgil can barely remember what it was like when he was born in the mindset, he remembers darkness being the only thing in sight, how it seemed to envelop his very being; leaving him cold and restless, and then suddenly lying on a cold wooden floor. He remembers a gloved hand reaching out and pulling him up, leading him into a room full of others.
He remembers a burning sensation crawling underneath his skin not long after being pulled in front of the others, face set in a confused and pained grimace, he yanks up his sleeve he sees a inked on outline of a Christmas Rose flower curling its way across his skinny, pale wrist.

Soul flowers; he found out soon that’s what they’re called, it’s where any strong feelings, or events paint themselves across skin in the pattern of pretty petals. Younger him thought that it was beautiful, the way bodies could plant themselves beautiful colours. As he grew up he learnt it wasn’t beautiful, only a burden. That Begonia flower had made the others realise just what he represented; anxiety.

He learnt that he was a dark side, that those who had found him and shown him what it was to live, were all manifestations of negative emotions. He learnt there were three light sides; Creativity, Morality and Logic. He was firmly taught not to mention them, or show a desire to see them, in the form of a hand print on his bony cheek. There was only one neutral side known so far: Sleep. Virgil didn’t dare say that he felt more like a neutral side then a dark side; he’d already learnt what pain disagreement brung on.

He can’t properly remember how they all bloomed across his skin, only that once they started, they never really stopped spreading. It takes a gloved hand throwing him across the room and a deadly grin thrown at him for a Bellwort flower to burn itself into existence and lay across his shoulder.

Twin Carolina Roses paint themselves on the sides of his hips, the night, the man with the Orange Mock flower on his wrist, crawls in bed with him.

He’s still so painfully young. So young but his heart is already cracked and shattering, his mind is in a constant state of chaos, he’s all but a child, but he will never be as naive as he first was: he’s learnt that weakness means pain and he will never let himself be that weak again. The moment he teaches himself that, a circle of Begonia Flowers crawl up to encase his wrist.

He spends his time in a state of paranoia and pain. He’s had his lessons carved into his body, in the form of flowers and scars. He knows better then to blindly trust people to help him. It doesn’t take long for a Yew Flower to crawl it’s way to his sit on his collarbone, weighing him down each day.

He learns to hate what he represents, he hates the thought of causing harm to others, of making them feel the same way he does. As soon as he realises he hates everything he stands for, everything he represents; a Rhododendron flower takes form on the left side of his heart. A sense of apathy in cases him, he’s not so young but he’s many years younger then all the others: he’s young and already the self-hatred has begun to consume him.

Orpys Flowers paint his palm, representing the words Deceit has snarled at him daily. A Cypress flower has made its home on his sternum, weighing him down which each breath of every wrong emotion he feels. The emotions Dark Sides are not supposed to have. Emotions only Light Sides have.

He’s already decided to cover his flower markings, it’s better to let them think he doesn’t feel a thing then to let them know just how damaged he truly is. He materialises a concealer to hide whichever markings that his clothes cannot conceal.

It takes one screaming match, harsh fists and rivets of blood for him to finally snap. It takes twin Teasel Flowers covering his and Deceit cheek for him to decide. He makes a choice that night, a choice that means he will never have to feel that pain again.

He pulls himself out of the Dark Sides lair and into the unconsciousness. He spends his time there; waiting for his wounds to feel, for his damaged and fractured mind to finally calm itself enough that he can function again.

He paints his skin in a thick concealer, pulling his hoodie firm about him and he steps head first into the one place he had been told never to go, the place he had sworn never to go: the Light Sides lair.

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Even if there was barely any space between where the Light Sides and the Dark Sides resided, it felt like he was crossing an endless ravine as he tried to escape the enclosing darkness. Avoiding the others was just as hard, he would bet anything that at least one of them knew that he was leaving, they weren’t stupid.

Leaving that place felt simultaneously relieving and also like he was leaving a part of his soul behind. As much as he hated them with a passion, they did raise him; they were responsible for how he turned out now, and not all of that was bad. As much as he wished he could be happy, that he could stay there; he knew that him being there, that was only going to ruin him.

Leaving was going to feel like he’s being torn in half, as he begins the process of changing, but it was something he needed to do. It was that, or his only choice left was to fade.

As it turns out, fitting in with the Light Sides was turning out to be a lot more difficult and painful than Virgil had first thought. They didn’t trust him, that much was obvious. It wouldn’t be hard to figure out, the looks of distrust and annoyance that had been thrown at him make his chest feel like it’s caving in. The Protea King flower that has bloomed across his kneecap, feels like a lie; weighing heavy on his skin.

Honestly, he doesn’t blame them, he’s a side that has suddenly appeared from nowhere; they don’t know who he is, or what he is, or even what his moral code is; knowing what some of The Others are like morally, he understands their caution. The unknown is dangerous, the unknown kills; they aren’t quite aware of the fact that Sides can die, they simply think that they “fade into the subconscious”, which in a way they do, except it’s a lot more painful, and sometimes they don’t come back. He knows that they die, he’s witnessed it; he’s felt it.

He’s caused it.

They introduce themselves, Morality is Patton, Logic is Logan, and Creativity is Roman. Quietly he introduces himself, not with name; that’s something he’ll never reveal to anyone ever again; the Others ruined his trust with anything that’s personal who him, when they blatantly abused his show of trust; says his name is Anxiety, he’s not exactly lying, even if he did use a different name to what his trait originally was. He figured if he’s trying to fit in with the Light Sides, he probably shouldn’t go with a “Dark Side” name, instead going for a more neutral sounding one. It’s not lying if he’s simply bending the truth.

He can basically feel Deceits smirk everytime he avoids a question with a silver-tongued reply.

Knowing all of this should have made it hurt less when the the twin looks of distrust take form on Logan and Romans faces. He feels the burn of a flower etching it’s way onto his ribs, he’s used to the feeling of something being burned into his skin by now. Silently he turns, feeling their gaze drilling holes in his back; shuffling towards his newly summoned room and closing the door as fast as he can.

He slides down, resting his head against the wall, and he breathes. He’s not so much of a fool to believe that he’s free from The Dark Sides forever, but in this moment he is safe, in this moment he can breathe. He doesn’t know how long he sits there in silence, and he doesn’t know how long the tears trailing down his cheeks have been there; before he takes a deep breath and remembers to check what that flower was.

Lifting up his hoodie slowly, he inhales sharply at the sight of the Oleander flower on his ribs. It seems even now, he can’t escape everything that has happened, and it seems this new beginning will not be as peaceful as he had once hoped. He should of known he wouldn’t be aloud to start new, the Others will always haunt him, they’ll always know what he’s doing and he’ll never fit in with the Light Sides like he did with the Others. It’s a bitter pill to swallow, but it’s the truth.

A Yellow Carnation takes a place on the left side of his stomach. The last time he had two flowers in one night was when he fought back at Deciet, when he first learned what pain truly was. That was when he learned that there is no help for those born on the wrong side of the mindset.

When he wakes up the next day, he can’t remember how long he sat there until he drifted off; only that he wakes up stiff, numb and with crusty eyes, the aftermath of his crying fit last night. Remembering that makes him cringe slightly, he had to make sure that they never saw him cry, Deciets words echoing in his dead “trust will get you killed, don’t let them see you down” he hates that Deceits advice sounds good.

He hates that even after he’s left that place; their words, their gazes, their personalities are still haunting him, occupying his very thoughts. He’s not foolish enough to believe that he’s untouchable while he’s here, he’s not oblivious like the others; he’s well aware that one of the Others could show up at any moment, could come and drag him back kicking and screams.

He hates that he’s still so afraid.

There’s a knock at his door.