The Star – Coda by Lawenta
Summary: Unable to fathom the second chance he’s been granted, Maqaxha/Kitsune is quite overwhelmed by the simplest of things.
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He ran his fingers over the fabric of his tunic in wonder. Not because is was so fine – it wasn’t, not in particular, though it was durable and tightly woven – but because it was intended for him and it covered him like a second, protective skin. It clung to his neck at the back and didn’t leave even the tips of his collarbones visible to a roaming eye, especially when he closed it as tightly as it would go. The sleeves went down to his wrists, covering the sores, and pants completed his outfit, easy to move in yet going down to his ankles.
No shoes, yet, but he’s been already measured for them.
Out of all the possible, horrible outcomes he had imagined, this definitely wasn’t one of them. To be delivered from the dungeon to be told he’s been claimed by the crown princess as a personal servant, to be allowed to wash and comb and clothe – he’d think he was dreaming but he was never blind in his dreams outside nightmares.
The reality was so vibrant and yet so alien to what he knew. Sun in his unpainted face when he tilted it just right, and fresh air from the outside that carried a faint smell of earth, not perhaps rich enough to be home, but achingly precious nonetheless.
No weight of chains, or collars. Not a whiff of salt, or perfume other than that of flowers outside.
He cried several times already, overwhelmed by the simplest things. Being allowed to walk over to the window. Being given clean water to drink. Each time, it wasn’t shame that stopped him, it was terror that somebody would see him in such an unbecoming state, carry word to his new mistress, and she would change her mind.
He was so very far from safe. His benefactor was young: going by her voice, barely on the verge of becoming a woman. That he now knew the whims of men can be just as cruel didn’t make whims of women, especially young ones, any less dangerous. She decided to save him, probably as a curiosity.
He knew where that would leave him once the novelty wears off, if he can’t make himself indispensable.
And he would. It was a prayer more than determination, but he would. Somehow. By any means necessary.