Written in the Stars

Ever the dutiful daughter.

Ever the dutiful daughter.

Ever the dutiful daughter.

Eun felt the rough patchwork of the cloth wrapped around her face, digging ruts into the corners of her eyes, but no tears ran through that tilled land. Her ears caught the distant rumbling of thunder in the breaks between hard drops of rain, and the violent sway of the wood underneath did little to convince her the vessel wouldn’t flip at any moment. And yet she sat completely still, letting the rain pool into the raw flesh of her ankles. 

Ever the dutiful daughter, she waited for the boat to reach the deepest spot in the sea, the voices of the sailors drowned away by the calming thoughts of the world under the tides. In her heart, she had already been welcomed into the depths, nestled forever in the tangled swaying of seaweed. Thoughts of her father were left on land, stashed in exactly 300 bags of rice stacked neatly awaiting his notice. 

“We’re here,” the words scratched at her ears, the sudden silence of the disappearing rain leaving only the labored breaths of a handful of men. She felt the heavy, knotted hand of the sailor propping her up. “Are you sure you wouldn’t like us to remove the blindfold?”

Eun nodded, breathing in once, and out. Her heart was steady, a mirrorplane reflecting the endless blue skies. 

“Well. I’m real sorry to be doing this, but…” He picked her up, heaving her body clad in white over the side, waiting for her to disappear to where only the Dragon God knew. 

But the sound of her body hitting the water never came. Instead, the sailors looked up at the creaking mess of a massive vessel, more holes than ship. It shimmered the color of the sea at calm, unbothered by the encroaching storm. Stood on the bow was a woman with long, flowing hair, holding Eun. 

“I see you brought a sacrifice for the old lizard here. Unfortunately, this one is mine,” she stuck her tongue out, pivoting around and taking deliberate steps back onto the ship.

Eun was confused, and could only hear the shouting of the men and the crunching of wood as the storm and sea began to swallow them. She felt her body being let down and her blindfold removed, her eyes greeted by a woman dressed in bright, loose clothing, shining against the dark thunderclouds. 

“Ever the dutiful daughter,” the woman seemed to roll the phrase around in her mouth, deciding whether or not she liked it. “It’s very you.”

“I- what?” 

“I told you I’d always find you, neh?” She smiled, holding her hands over Eun’s, seeming to ignore her question entirely. Eun felt the corners of her mouth twist up into a small smile, feeling, for once, the warmth that follows a summer shower. 

This piece is dedicated to Bluejay, who was gracious enough to support me on Patreon!

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