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Feeling human

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“I was wrong about you professor… You are nothing like the rest of us. You aren’t human, far from it in fact. You are the goddess that fools everyone.. The commeners, those in need- you lie for their sake. You pretend and all FOR WHAT!? I can all see through that fake and coy damned act that you put up in place of every fake emotion you feel. No.. You don’t even feel. You are but a shell controlled by your own subconscious! You will be nothing compared to the rest of us BYLETH, if that is even your real name. You are nothing compared to this blade at your neck. You spent all this time being known as the best. But now, you are defenseless. And I can finally put an end to what I should of 5 years ago!
I will NEVER let you step in the way of my vengeance.
I WILL NEVER LET YOU CEASE MY VICTORY!”

 

Byleth had awoken without warning, blinking up at the ceiling with wide eyes of disbelief and an overwhelming feeling of pure shock & disbelief. Her body uncomfortably lifted up from her bed, sweat filming over her whole body in a sticky and gross sensation that she had never really felt before. No matter how many mental gymnastics or hurdles she jumped over, he couldn’t wrap her head around what had just happened. Her throat strained to the feeling of Dimitri's Areadbar at her neck, the piercing feeling becoming more and more apparent up until the final moment he sliced. The image of an unhinged man flooded every corner and crevice of her mind, and she couldn’t think of anything else. She was going to be sick.
Turning to her right she pulled herself out of bed and lifted herself further into the darkness of the night, holding her mouth while she walked with stumbling feet and a dizzy feeling that grew increasingly worse with every step. With tears slowly making there way down her cheeks she opened the door to the washroom and almost immediately dropped to her knees, closing the door with her foot and crawling desperately to the toilet she felt her face grow hot and mouth begin to salivate. He felt herself gagging and breathing heavily, a overwhelming amount of emotions shooting there way through her foggy head that she couldn't make out entirely what was happening. The lights were too bright, the floor was too cold, her mouth tasted of metallic and her breathing was too loud to process. She felt as if she was a million light years away from the world ahead of her. Never in her life did this dream hit her so deeply.

“My love.. Is everything okay?”

A soft and composed voice spoke from the outside of the door, a very gentle knock joining in lieu of the voice. Byleth only stayed silent, staring at the door with a wide and panting mouth, her eyebrows furrowing as her eyes rush with tears in a sudden constriction of her breath. Her face, drained of all color, was soon met with a slow opening door and a shirtless, bed-headed, half awake king coming to her aid. His face soon became overtaken with the look of worry, his body, crouching down next to hers. Without words of a formal exchange, Dimitri took both of his hands and gently gathered the locks of her hair, pulling it back moments before her muscles contracted and she began throwing up. Dimitri, now holding holding her hair with one hand, rubbed Byleth’s back with a continuous caress up until the last second she finished. Her body shook uncomfortably, pulling her arms away from the seat she wiped her mouth and leaned back against Dimitri, who worryingly ran his hands through her hair, trying to cool her off.

“Lets run you a bath, okay?”

"I-It's-"
Byleth didn’t have time to object before Dimtri had already turned towards the bath, adjusting the nozzles to turn it to the perfect temperature, not too hot and not to cold… Just how Byleth liked it. He carefully helped her stand up, holding her up while he assisted her taking off her night clothes and then guiding her into the bath, all without a single exchange of words.
Dimitri left for a few moments, rushing back in with a small stool which he sat down on to get a easier reach to her grace.

Byleth sat almost emotionless, her eyes zoned far far away into the water, staring at her rippled reflection with weary eyes.
“Byleth... What is it you are thinking about? ”
Dimitri spoke with a gentle tone, his fingers carding through her hair while he attempted to break the silence.

“I am ok.”

“You know that isn’t true.. I know that isn’t true.”

“I’m… Fine just a little sick is all. Nothing to really worry about.”

Dimitri chuckled faintly “You must think this is my first time meeting you.” he spoke, grabbing the small metal pitcher from outside the tub.
“I could hear the reluctance in your voice. The pause you made before finishing your sentence. I know a lying Byleth when I hear one.”
Dimitri smiled at her, filling the pitcher with water and tilting her head upwards. He shielded her eyes, and poured the water over her head and down her hair and back, sending chills down her body. Dimitri sighed, still noticing her ever longing gaze.
“I suppose now is not the time for joking... Forgive me."

The two sat in awkward silence again... Dimitri hesitated.

"I am not sure why you still feel as though you have to hide things from me. It is okay. I promise it is.”
Byleth finally moved, turning her head to look up at Dimitri, who was honestly surprised his words cut through so easily.

“Dimi… What do you see when you look at me”
“Hmm… Well I see a beautiful and strong woman.”

Byleth frowned, turning away and pulling her legs up to her chest, wrapping her arms around them.
“D-Did I perhaps say something wrong? Agh.. Please forgive me it is still early I... I am enervated” Dimitri asked, pouring water over her head again.

Silence fell again, and eventually words finally fell. Slow... So very slow.

“Sometimes... I feel....as... though I don’t really... E-Exist.”

As alarming as this sounded, Dimitri breathed in and kept his cool, massaging her head as she began to zone out into her reflection again.
“I see… Might I ask why?”

“I look around at you all and... Everyone has grown up so well, and I... I haven’t changed a bit. I am struggling to find where I fit in anymore. People treat me as if I am not the same to them. They see me as a goddess in that I have no outer emotions other than love. I wear a facade everyday pretending like I am just fine. But truth be told, I am nothing like any of you... Nobody truly knows me. Honestly speaking im not even sure I know myself and I just... I feel so distant..

Is that not wrong for a queen?”

 

“We all feel that sort of idle wandering... that type of loss. It’s a matter of discovering what truly lies beyond that shell and breaking free.”

“All I am is a shell. I don't even have a beating heart.”

Byleth spoke with sadness, turning her head to face Dimitri once again, who studied her with longing eyes of despair.. A look that was all too familiar to Byleth.
Dimitri moved his hands down her head and to her face, creeping towards her neck only for her to violently shake backwards, her eyes wide with an expression Dimitri hadn’t ever seen before-- it pained him.
Was this his fault?
Did he cause another to suffer, just as he once did?
Did he hurt the love of his life?

“I had a dream. And you killed me.”

“I… I what?”