Rumour Pickings
Apr 10, 76
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Esmera @ Sep 09, 2018, 09:11 PM
25 Posts 20 Years Female Macenia Merchant House Asheron Played by andromeda
Courage does not always roar. Sometimes, it is a quiet voice at the end of the day, saying, 'I will try again tomorrow.'
She was here.

Here and rather quite displeased about it, actually, and trying so very much not to punch anyone in the face. That was, as it happened, somewhat difficult, given she had spent the last six years being high-pitch-giggly-whined at by... what was even that girl's name, again? It wasn't like Livia cared (give her another two or three glasses of wine, and she'd care even less), but remembering names and things, those typically were very good things to remember.

"You look radiantly dreadful," was what Kassandros decided to say, upon slinking up beside her somewhere amid Livia mentally stabbing someone and reaching for another glass of wine.
"And you look like you'd rather be anywhere else," Livia answered, sounding more bemused than anything. "I take it the guards are working out," she added, glancing behind him at his shadow.
"Yes well," Kass answered. "You know," he went on, dropping his voice a bit. "I'd figure free people would be less difficult to get to go somewhere else, but this one decided he's not leaving."
Livia, in all her fine slightly buzzed controlled manner, let out a very unladylike snort. "Well, Alcides." That was all she had to say. ... hey, wait a minute... Alcides wouldn't leave because - so did that mean Kassandros' guard had a - ... well guards did seem to currently have a track record of - ... how did he find enough hume in there to fall for, anyway... that was a very terrible thing to think. (See drunk. See not caring.)
"... yes. Alcides," Kass agreed. "So, anything interesting?" He was changing the subject. It wasn't like Livia was too drunk to notice that much. (He was not getting away with it.)
"Nope," Livia replied. "Just a bunch of high-pitched giggling and complaining about shipments being late. You're a merchant, Livia, couldn't you, you know, do something? Yes. I'm apparently more powerful than I thought, hmm. This'll get confusing, I seem to get caught going back and forth between powerless and all powerful quite randomly a lot."
Of course. Kassandros didn't say it, but the look on his face probably did.

"You know why Alcides won't go, right?" she asked.
"Well I think that's Icarus calling me, nice seeing you," and Kass turned right around and headed somewhere else. "Slow down on the wine, Livia."
Livia, of course, made a face. "You know you can't run from everything! Sooner or later you have to stop running, Kassandros! ... why do I bother?" she asked, looking at his guard. Honestly, why did she bother? Who knew.

80 Posts 24 Years male Macenia Commoner House Essair Played by Lenara
Sandalio snorted slightly at that particular comment, but wisely didn't say anything. There was nothing to say, really. He'd made his choice - he wasn't leaving. Sandalio fully intended to remain and continue to do his job as a proper guard. It wasn't like he was the first - there was another who'd done the exact same thing right over there, just behind Livia. It shouldn't have been surprising - good masters were hard to come by, and Sandalio didn't want to abandon the one he'd found. Never mind he had other, more personal reasons not to want to leave.

"I'm not sure why, Miss." Sandalio sounded slightly amused, as Kass went the other way. There was something in his expression, though, a bit of surprise. He was more obvious than he thought he was, if Livia recognized it. Or, perhaps it was just because of Alcides that she was able to guess so easily. Ah... well. He dipped slightly in a polite bow and went after Kass to make sure there wasn't any trouble lurking in the crowd. Sandalio didn't trust Dalmascans, no he did not. Not even at a festival like this.

... Maybe especially at a festival like this. People got drunk and they did very stupid things.

"Mostly I wonder if Sandalio knows why he won't leave, yet." Alcides offered in a quiet voice to Livia, after Sandalio had left them to follow after his former master. It was possible the other former slave believed it was merely a sense of duty or something similar. But... Alcides didn't think it was. No, there was something all too familiar in the way Sandalio looked after Kass when they were separated.

Icarus, for the record, was as far off to one side as he could manage, not exactly trying to avoid being noticed, but sort of. He had a glass of wine in his hand - but it was the same one he'd had the entire time they'd been here. ... No, he didn't trust anyone not to be a problem, go figure. The middle Essair had managed to disengage from the last person who'd insisted on cornering him to talk about their 'next deployment' never mind that Icarus had calmly explained that he wasn't going out onto the lines for a while as he needed to focus on his family.

light from the shadows
102 Posts 17 Years Nonbinary Dalmasca Warlord House Essair Played by Esmera
Is this your salvation? Is this all you can give? I will not stand in reflection of someone else's dream.
"Oooh, I think he knows..." Livia answered. "He doesn't strike me as the sort that's more blind to his own feelings. It didn't take you very long to figure it out, did it?" She didn't think so. On the other hand, quite frankly, she had no idea when he'd figured it out. Maybe it'd taken him longer than she thought. "Or, maybe he knows, but he doesn't know? Like, he knows he feels a thing but what thing is in the air?" ... Livia was not making sense. Nope.

"... I should go home, huh?" That would probably be the safest thing to do, yes.

Kassandros, for his part, eventually managed to find Icarus, and wandered that way. As he came up beside his brother, he made a face at him, somewhere between amused and annoyed. "Livia is drunk," he said, somewhat flat. "... did you know she has no filter when she's inebriated? I didn't." He'd make a mental note to stay away from her when she was drunk, yes.

"Hope you're having a better time of it than I am." Where was Cygnus, anyway? Not that Kassandros particularly cared what his youngest brother got into, but he also very much did. Cygnus clearly couldn't make proper decisions about who to interact with on his own, and yes, Kassandros worried. Perhaps a hair more than he needed to, but this was Cygnus, he who has no concept of social decorum, nor any concept of acceptable individuals to interact with.

The Salonus kids. That was all.

14 Posts 21 Years Male Dalmasca Commoner House Asheron Played by Lenara
Alcides shrugged a bit. "You might be right." But maybe not all the same. "And that depends on when exactly you draw the line because honestly even I'm not entirely positive when it went from seeing you as a friend and duty to much more." Ah, no, he'd be honest and admit he didn't know when that happened. He'd figured it out long before he ever shared it, and maybe the line could be drawn somewhere around when his mind was able to make that change as they grew up but... hm. Anyway, this wasn't about him and his feelings, it was about Sandalio. "Besides that, he has been around much less time." Oh but that didn't mean it was less deep, just that it was possible he didn't recognize the difference yet.

"That's possible." It was, though her wording of it was odd. "Perhaps." Not saying yes, but, probably. She may regret what she said eventually if it went on like this.

Icarus made a noise in the back of his throat. "Does anyone have a filter when they're drunk?" He wondered allowed in a mild tone. No, it didn't surprise him really. And it didn't surprise him that she was drunk, either. She had her bodyguard around to make sure nothing went sideways, so why shouldn't she enjoy the festival gathering? "What'd she say?" Curious what had brought this particular point to Kassander's notice, that was all.

Sandalio considered answering that for a heartbeat, but decided to leave it to Kassandros, who he suspected wouldn't answer at all. But the Macenian didn't want to be glared at next.

"That depends on how difficult your time so far as been I suppose." But Icarus hadn't had it so bad. They were mostly slightly annoying, not particularly dangerous.

light from the shadows
102 Posts 17 Years Nonbinary Dalmasca Warlord House Essair Played by Esmera
Is this your salvation? Is this all you can give? I will not stand in reflection of someone else's dream.
Right. That was more complicated than she could comprehend, at the moment. Yes, that meant, she should go home. "Okay, you didn't make sense a second ago, mefinks is go home time," Livia decided, standing, wobbling... not falling, and toddling off that way toward the Asheron Estate. Home, before she really did get up and then bust her ass.

"I like to think I do," Kassandros answered. He did not make a habit of becoming drunk, though, so perhaps he was remembering incorrectly. It wasn't like he'd gotten truly drunk for a while, mostly because alcohol was not a terribly good thing to make a habit. He also preferred to have his wits about him. Having those around was generally a very good thing, indeed. Maybe it was just him. Given most of Dalmasca seemed to enjoy getting utterly smashed any time they had an excuse to, he was going to go with, probably. Him and Icarus, because Icarus also didn't generally get drunk.

"Something stupid." That was all he was going to say on the subject. Yes, he still knew she was right, just like Leon was, but it didn't endear him to the subject matter any more than he already was. That is, he wasn't. See, maybe, if he ignored it long enough, it'd go away. Most things seemed to. Besides, he was still having a very underwhelming argument with Sandalio about going to the Free Cities and not being in Dalmasca where there was also a Marcus, and that was, you know, that was going very well. As was, honestly, to be expected by now.

Kassandros snorted, a bit. "Well, Sandalio hasn't gutted anyone, so I think it's safe to say, mostly just grating rather than difficult." He paused for a moment, watching Livia toddle off toward her estate over there. "Please tell me, you know where Cygnus is, and he's not talking to someone bad." That would, at least, be very reassuring.

36 Posts 17 Years Male Dalmasca Warlord House Essair Played by Lenara
Alcides nodded a bit. Yes, if that hadn't made sense probably. ... To be fair, he could have put it more simply, but... no one else was going to be easy on her in her alcohol haze either. So he didn't argue, and he also didn't try to clarify because it was probably easier that way anyway. Alcides followed Livia quietly, fully intending to make sure she made it home and into bed safely.

"Everyone likes to think they do." Icarus pointed out mildly. The difference here was that Kassandros didn't usually actually get drunk, at least in his experience, and so he was able to have a filter because he wasn't actually, well, gone. There were plenty of reasons to keep his wits about him and focus on not doing anything stupid, so well, it made sense that Kass didn't actually drink heavily all that often. "There are benefits to not being that drunk though so there's that." Yes like being able to think straight and keep a lid on one's secrets. ... Though Kassi had too many of those.

Anyway.

Something stupid. Well of course Kass thought that. He didn't ask though, there was no point in it. Kassandros probably wouldn't answer and they'd end up going in circles about whatever it was.

"Well that's a bonus." Small one, admittedly, but still a bonus. Not needing to kill anyone was a positive. Er. "... Well unfortunately... I do not." Icarus started to look around though, at that particular question because actually yeah where was he. Cygnus had a habit of getting into trouble and it would be a good thing if his assigned guard for the night kept him out of it but Icarus didn't necessarily want to bank on that. 'Cause he could be a handful, after all.

light from the shadows
102 Posts 17 Years Nonbinary Dalmasca Warlord House Essair Played by Esmera
Is this your salvation? Is this all you can give? I will not stand in reflection of someone else's dream.
Yes, quite a few benefits to not being that drunk. Kassandros tended not to be, so, he'd be wildly aware of them. He got drunk at a festival just one time, regretted doing that, never did it again. It was better that way, anyway, because if he was the sober one, he could mostly keep Cygnus out of trouble. Mostly. Apparently he missed his youngest triplet getting cosy with Salonus.

He was still very angry with himself for that one, yes.

Oh. Of course. Well, since neither he nor Icarus knew where Cygnus had gone, Kassandros was just going to hope Tristan was having better luck keeping track of him. Because clearly, he'd dropped the ball, today, but to be fair about it, there were a lot of questions about whether he was going on this next military tour or not. Ah, no, haha. Kassandros intended to go to Saqqara, not Macenia.

... yeah no, not that he didn't trust Tristan, but he didn't trust Cygnus not to get into trouble. "I'm gonna go look for him," Kass decided, and he turned around and went in a seemingly random direction. Eventually, maybe his triplet-sense would kick in. "Try not to go crazy."

36 Posts 17 Years Male Dalmasca Warlord House Essair Played by Lenara
"That's... probably not a bad idea." In fact, it was such a good idea Icarus was going to look too, just in a different direction because the sooner they put their eyes on Cygnus the better. He loved his brother, he genuinely did, but uh he wasn't good at staying out of trouble. And after learning he'd made friends with Salonus' kids of all people Icarus didn't really like that he didn't know where... he was. "I won't." Go crazy, probably.

So when Kassandros turned one way, Icarus went in another after glancing at Thana to make sure he hadn't accidentally lost his bodyguard. He was sort of looking for Tristan in the crowd, hoping the large Macenian would have a better idea of where Cygnus was than they did, given he was the one supposed to be keeping track of him. Not really holding his breath, but start there would be good. Because if he knew then great, and if he didn't then they'd have someone else to help them cover the area until they did find him.

Sandalio decided to follow along with Kassandros, figuring that losing more than one sibling in the crowd was a bad idea. Enemies may not strike when it would be so easy to be caught, but on the other hand, it could be awfully easy to disappear among strangers. No, Sandi didn't intend to take any chances here.

He was paying perhaps slightly less attention than usual though, as his gaze flitted across the others, trying to see if he could spot the third sibling.

light from the shadows
102 Posts 17 Years Nonbinary Dalmasca Warlord House Essair Played by Esmera
Is this your salvation? Is this all you can give? I will not stand in reflection of someone else's dream.
Certainly, Kassandros didn't think it was. It was actually probably a very good idea, given Cygnus had rather the penchant for getting in colossal amounts of trouble. In any case, he just waved a bit as they separated, following the direction he'd decided to go. Of course, he was half-looking for Tristan, too, but he might notice Cygnus faster than he noticed Tristan, if only because Cygnus was more immediately familiar, and the one he was actually concerned about. As he wandered, he tried to work out, in his head, what exactly Cygnus would be most likely to be attracted to, and somewhat adjusted his path to account for it. Somewhere amid his weaving through the street, managing not to get knocked into along the way, he heard his name.

Instinctively, he turned toward the sound, but realised who that was, and immediately froze.
"Eyy, 'ju get sent somewhere else last tour?" one of the group of three or four in that direction called. "We missed you last send out!"
No, he thought. Control it. "I did," he answered. His voice shook. They didn't notice.
"Yer goin out next time, right?" another one asked.
"No," he said. "Have you seen my brother?"
"Which one? Eh ain'matter, ain'seen either," the first one replied. "Commere, we're bored!"
"Maybe next time," Kassandros forced out, and then turned and bolted a random direction. It really didn't matter which way he went, he could figure it out from wherever it was he ended up. He could hear them protesting behind him, but it wasn't like he gave a damn, darting through the crowd. Eventually, he scooted into a side alley, fell back against the wall of one of the buildings, and slid down. It was odd, like his vision had blurred somewhat, and he could hear his heartbeat in his ears, thundering wildly, but he didn't think he'd run that far. His breathing wouldn't slow down.

Ultimately, he just sort of curled up right where he was, holding his head and rocking slightly, trying to calm down. It wasn't even that bad, Kass had no idea what this was about.

80 Posts 24 Years male Macenia Commoner House Essair Played by Lenara
Sandalio was paying attention to the conversation - he was, at least partially. But nothing about it was particularly concerning, so he merely listened to the exchange while his gaze was elsewhere. He did hear the tremble in Kassandros' voice, and that was concerning enough to draw his attention back.

But the group didn't move, they didn't seem to pose a threat that he couldn't handle, either. Sure there were several of them, but he wasn't really concerned. Maybe he should have been.

Clearly he should have been, given Kassandros bolted off rather suddenly after refusing. But that didn't seem to be the found-what-he-was-looking-for run it was... no. Something was wrong. Sandalio darted after him, but had a slightly harder time slipping through the crowd. His bulk didn't afford him much extra space when people didn't see him before he needed to get through, after all.

Eventually he did manage to break through and continue following Kassandros. Ah, it took him a moment to locate the other because he hadn't seen exactly where he turned. But eventually Sandalio did find Kass curled up against a building having some sort of a breakdown.

Sandalio shifted a little closer until he was in the alley as well and within a conversational distance, and then he crouched down. The Macenian made no attempt to touch Kassandros just yet, unsure of exactly what had set this off - though he had some theories - and thus uncertain if he would manage to make it worse.

"Kassandros?" In a quiet, low tone. "It's going to be alright." He hoped. He didn't say that. "They didn't follow us." Just assuming it had to do with those three. But it was just the two of them and it was going to be okay.

light from the shadows
102 Posts 17 Years Nonbinary Dalmasca Warlord House Essair Played by Esmera
Is this your salvation? Is this all you can give? I will not stand in reflection of someone else's dream.
Somewhere amid the internal pep-talking, he became vaguely aware that he was being talked to. Or someone was talking, in the vague vicinity of him, he supposed might be more accurate. It took a moment for it to fully sink in, for the haze of panic to settle long enough for him to become fully aware of it. A glance up, and a squeak, and he shoved himself back against the wall more properly - wait, that was - okay. And he relaxed again. That was Sandalio, and he was fine, that was good, right? Right. Because even if Kassandros was having a full-on melt-down, he did believe he'd be fine if the Macenian was there.

Trust him with the pieces of you that maybe aren't entirely whole. ... and there went his inner Leon voice. He never did figure out why he had one of those, but, maybe that was a better voice to be hearing, about now, in his head. For a moment or two, he just breathed, probably looked a bit confused, and then shook his head, more to himself. "M'gonna hug you," and it came out in something of a messy tumble, but, he was alright with that, pretty much immediately scrambling over to Sandalio and damned near clinging to him.

Normally, mind, he'd actually ask first, but Sandalio had never minded before. Actually, last time, Sandalio had asked him first. That was still perplexing, mind you, but essentially everything about him was, anyway.

"Sorry," huffed in there between panicked breaths. "Jus', need a second." Perhaps a few minutes, who knew, not the point. The point was, whatever-the-heck-that-feeling-Sandalio-gave-him-was had just kicked in, and him being there in the first place gave Kass something to focus on besides whatever-the-heck-he-was-freaking-out-about, it was a win-win situation, really. "You know," Kass started, "you can call me Kassi, if you want." ... he'd meant to say Kass, you know, occasionally he reiterated that. Then, he thought about it, and he hadn't made a mistake, there. As it turned out, no, he wouldn't mind that.

80 Posts 24 Years male Macenia Commoner House Essair Played by Lenara
For a moment his presence seemed to make things worse, and Sandalio prepared to slip backwards and give the other more room to breathe while still remaining close enough to protect him from anyone else who might stumble upon the scene, but then Kassandros relaxed again, and Sandalio decided to stay where he was lest he manage to upset him by withdrawing or upset some sort of delicate balance. That was the last thing he wanted to do, after all, make things worse. So he didn't move closer but he also didn't withdraw. Just, letting Kassandros take a minute to sort himself out, if he could.

And if not, if it took some time, at least Icarus was looking for Cygnus and Sandalio knew where Kass was and he could trust Thana and Tristan to take care of things inside. This was fine.

"... Okay. You can do that." Sandalio was confused, of course. Kassandros wasn't normally particularly tactile. On the other hand, he had accepted the hug that night that things had gone terribly so maybe that was just something that he did admit to liking from certain people when things went terribly. Ah, but he did gently wrap his arms around the other's form - loosely hugging back, but being careful to make sure that Kassandros could break the contact if he wanted to at any time.

"It's fine. Take all the time you need." There was no sense in rushing it, and making things worse for himself, after all.

Blink. "Kassi..." He repeated it slowly, seeming to test out the word. "Alright." He liked that, actually. Maybe only in private, but still.

light from the shadows
102 Posts 17 Years Nonbinary Dalmasca Warlord House Essair Played by Esmera
Is this your salvation? Is this all you can give? I will not stand in reflection of someone else's dream.
Once, Kass had hated that nickname.

His mother gave it to him, when he was still very young, and he didn't mind it, from her. She always said it affectionately, but eventually Vopiscus picked it up. Vopiscus always said it with a sneer, and when Cygnus later picked it up, too, he said it the same way. Icarus never did, at least. Most others that used it outside the house used it maybe only once, because Kassandros often glared daggers into them for it. It was somewhat difficult to be taken seriously when too many people called you some cutesy nickname. It turned out, he was right; he didn't mind it, from Sandalio, and despite him just testing out the sound of it, it still managed to make his heart leap into his throat. Either that, or that was the panic. At the moment, it was a bit difficult to say.

Quite honestly, he really wasn't sure why this was working, in any sense of the term. Still, it was. It was going to be okay, he was going to be fine, and he knew that. As frustrating as it was, how defensive of him Sandalio had become, it was also fairly reassuring. It meant he could afford to sit here, and freak out for a few minutes, if that was what he had to do. He went quiet, there, breathing, trying to force it to slow down. To some extent, it worked. At least the world hadn't stayed narrowed down to what was right here, except it also did, in some way, but that was purposeful on his part. Sandalio's presence was just anchoring enough, he didn't completely lose it, at least. It was a start. Not enough of one but - it was a start all the same.

Funny, wasn't it, how it was always Sandalio that managed to catch Kass at his worst. Nothing seemed to have changed between them, though. Well, maybe something did. Breathing, in for four seconds, out for five, there we go... at least that was getting under control; the shaking wasn't, but, ah, actually, he sat up a bit, watching the Macenian's eyes. Grey was a rare colour to come across, and it suited him. Cygnus' eyes were a little more grey than blue, but still mostly blue, and Sandalio was the first person Kass had ever met that had truly grey eyes. Most would find that colour boring, he was sure; Kass thought it was the most beautiful colour he'd ever seen. ... he was never saying that. Still, it didn't take long, after that, for his breathing to become easier to control. Somewhere in there, he reached up and brushed his hair out of his eyes. That was better. Enough the light brightened them up, and, unconsciously, Kass almost sort of smiled, a bit. One more breath in, and he wasn't fighting with his breathing, anymore, at least.

"Not sure what that was," he murmured, and then realised he was still staring at his eyes and looked down at his lap, sitting back a bit. "Just, military friends." Then again, the last time he'd almost had a panic it was - but that was so long ago, that was so - ugh. He decided to leave that out. It didn't really matter. "This, see?" he said, quiet. "This is why. I'm not -" ah, words were being difficult. "You'll argue with me, I'm sure. You usually do, when you feel strongly enough about something. S'funny," he mused, fiddling with his sleeve, "a lot of people see me as this stubborn, immovable object, strong and solid and deliberate, but you're actually stronger than I am. I'm not that person. I don't know who I am, or was, anymore. S'just who I needed to become. Nobody's fault but this stupid nation's, I guess, but that won't get me very far, either. There's. ... there's not much left of me, anymore. I'm barely hume, now. I forgot how to be hume, and that's not fair to you, and it seems like such a waste of time, bothering with me, when there are plenty of people Dalmasca hasn't destroyed you could expend all that energy on." That was a lot of words, and he didn't even - ugh.

He shook his head, a bit. "What I'm trying to say is, I don't know what love is, Sandalio. I've never really felt it, before, I think. Maybe I love my brothers, but they're also kind of an obligation, too, and I know that's not fair to them, it just, is. I don't know what love is, but, if it's that weird giddy feeling when I hear your voice, or losing track of everything watching your eyes light up in the sun, or panicking a bit when I can't find you in ten seconds, or that feeling that makes it hard to breathe when you laugh, believing everything'll be okay when you're here, then, I... I guess I love you. But I don't... I don't know how to." And maybe that wasn't his fault, it was debatable, whether it was or not. "You've got your own problems," he added, glancing up for just a second, and then looking back down. "You don't need to be fighting through mine, too." And that was ignoring the fact he may not make it much longer than this, regardless of what Ytias said.

80 Posts 24 Years male Macenia Commoner House Essair Played by Lenara
A small, if slightly strained smile answered Kassander's own. Strained because Sandalio was still worried about him, of course, and it was hard to be completely care free with that level of concern flooding through him. But still, it was hard not to answer. And if it bothered him that Kassi seemed to lose himself looking into Sandalio's eyes, then it didn't show. ... Though, of course, it didn't bother him at all. He thought Kassi's eyes were pretty too, honestly.

Really? Hm. Sandalio had plenty of guesses what that might have been, but he didn't say that. Military friends. They hadn't seemed particularly unfriendly but there was still something about the way they'd acted that didn't feel right. Almost... too friendly. Then again, Sandalio had a hard time trusting Dalmascans on the whole and it was possible that he was overreacting just because of that fact. On the other hand, given Kassi had had a legitimate meltdown, maybe he wasn't overreacting at all.

That was not a turn Sandalio had expected this conversation to take. Despite that, he remained quiet here and allowed the other to speak his mind. "Maybe I am stronger than you," Sandalio allowed quietly. "I won't argue that point because there are different kinds of strength and comparing two different people is difficult. You certainly have parts of you that are stronger than I am, the reverse may also be true." Certainly Sandalio wasn't sure he could have withstood the amount of force that had born down on Kass until there was almost nothing left of him, and yet he kept fighting. He was still standing whether there were cracks in the base or not. "But even accepting that point..." He shook his head slightly.

"I don't really expect you to understand why I choose to stay with you." No, not really. "But emotions aren't exactly rational, and the fact that you have been beaten down to this point only makes me want to stay and remain your sword and shield." Because if he left, then there was no one to shield Kassandros now, and maybe no one who even wanted to, except the brothers who Kassi had always wanted to protect, and who had been shielded well enough that they didn't necessarily know what they were facing. "But I also love you very much, and the idea of leaving you is extremely painful." So there was that, too.

"It's okay if you don't know how to." Quietly. "It really is okay with me, because you're who I fell in love with, broken pieces and all. I know it won't be easy, but nothing worth it ever is." That was how he'd always seen it, at least. "Everyone has problems. It's just about deciding what you feel is worth it. To me, you are." So there was that. "...But I do understand if to you, I'm not."

That was a consideration too, and Sandalio had to remember that, despite his interest.