Welcome to QueerBlogWed! We’re starting off right where we left Damian, Christopher, and Gabrielle on Monday. 🙂 Here’s the next part of ‘Waiting for Rebirth’.
“Enough of this!” Damian said with a heartiness that seemed forced. He seized my hand and turned his blinding smile on Gabrielle. “I’m going to start painting, if you don’t mind?”
He didn’t wait for Gabrielle’s response. He pulled me towards the door out into the bright sunshine once more.
“I always feel so trapped in that store!” Damian muttered. He marched along the road back towards the garden. I had to jog to keep up with him. “Every step outside is a step in the right direction, but I always end up heading back to my ‘dubious sanctuary’, as my aunt quaintly puts it.”
“What?” His reaction shocked me. “I thought the Navel was your home!”
“It is, but I’m offering it to you,” Damian said, glancing down at me without slowing his stride. People glanced at us, only to scuttle out of the way, intimidated by my companion’s determined pace. We arrived at the garden gate all too quickly. “In return, I’m hoping you’ll give me the Shadow Forest.”
“Give you the Shadow Forest?” I echoed, astonished beyond belief. “Whatever made you think it was mine?”
“Perhaps I phrased that wrong,” Damian said, stopping in front of the gate. Much of his angry energy diminished, when he reached out to touch its wooden slates and breathe in the scent of the flowers resting on the other side. “I’m hoping you’ll show me my true path through the Shadow Forest. I want to discover it, through my art.”
He opened it for me, waiting with gentlemanly patience for me to walk through.
“Oh,” I said, considering his words. It was possible. Damian had found me in the shadows, pulled me into this place with just his hand. Who knew what he could do with a paintbrush, a canvas, and a little inspiration?
What he could do was get himself into serious trouble.
“Damian, do you know how dangerous the shadows truly are?” I asked. “What they’ll take, in return for a path to your desire?”
“It doesn’t matter,” he said, shaking his head. There was a gleam in his rose purple eye. I recognized that gleam. I’d seen it far too many times before. “I’d give up anything for my wish.”
“You don’t know how many people have said that, including me.” I stepped through the gate, blocking the entrance. Not that I was big enough to block it entirely. “We all think we’d give anything for our wish. Too late do we realize the price was too high.” I waved at a rose, reaching its petals out eagerly towards the sun. It was exactly the same color as Damian’s eyes. “You lose the very thing that made you wish so hard in the first place.”
“Even so, I can’t stop wishing,” Damian said. He stepped through the gate to gently bump into me, brushing his entire body against me. I shivered, but the moment lasted only a moment. He’d already moved past me, to walk along the path between the flowers. “If I don’t follow my dream, I’ll never have a chance to blossom. I’ll wither here.”