“The Truth Is, I’m A Bad Person.”
( Set in the present day. )
7 - Bitter
“Just try it on, see how you feel.”
By the time Eleeria made up her mind to follow Lily’s advice, it had been several bullshit-filled days since. She thought she had some clever excuses to get out of it -- the armor didn’t fit, first off. She had gone from a scrawny, stick-like rogue with health issues to a healthy, athletic Knight. Weleria had laughed when she saw Eleeria trying to stick her arm into a hole made for a much smaller bicep several months ago for fun.
The other was that she had no real reason to. Why would she want to leave her plate armor? She was happy. Work was….fine. Blackheart was actually fine. The kind of fine she didn’t have to lie about. But the Blood Knights seemed more interested in in-fighting, pedantry, and being makeshift Guardians of Silvermoon than they did any actionable work. And since her contract was assigned permanently to the Horde military, there wasn’t much for her to do, save the paperwork for Blackheart she was already doing.
So Eleeria stood in the Cove, examining her small body in the mirror with her hands on her hips. The multitude of scars that criss-crossed her form spoke volumes of her years of combat. Reaching down, she traced the most recent one, still red and puffy compared to its pale, white companions. A frown graced her lips as she remembered how all the plate in the world had not saved her from Ezekiel Drake.
Was she using her plate armor as a shield? Against what? Her feelings?
It’s…possible. It’s possible I just feel safer wrapped in metal and encased in solitude.
“I don’t pay you to act right, I pay you to tell me the truth.”
Eleeria closed her eyes, letting out a soft exhale. “Fuck all of you,” she mumbled to herself. She could feel her cats watching her: Smear, Smudge, and the newest member of the family, Scrape, all curled up on her bed. Though she was used to feline judgment, today it felt particularly palpable -- as if they knew her internal dilemma and weighed their estimation of her upon it.
“You too, cats.”
They didn’t answer, nor did she expect them to. It’d ruin your aura of quiet judgment if you suddenly could speak Thalassian. The thought brought a smile to her face, and she opened her eyes, glancing herself over once more before turning towards her dressing room.
Her current set of favored plate sat polished and clean on its armor rack, Blood Knight tabard laid out neatly beside it. The red set was sleek, unlike her ruined former armor she’d worn for most of the Fourth War. She reached out, brushing her hands over the metal that had so often been dented and scratched, then repaired. It was a story of battles fought and won, a tapestry of blows taken and withstood. The issue wasn’t the plate, really -- it was the bureaucracy. The things the plate armor stood for were the things that made her tense and uncertain. Her head turned, glancing over her shoulder.
On another armor rack, neatly taken care of, lay a new set of armor. Weleria hadn’t been joking when she said she’d had one made for Eleeria for her birthday all the way back in July. It was beautiful: blues, greens, and dark greys mixed together in a perfect, subtle pattern. The hood pulled up over her nose, and down low enough to hide her distinctive eyes completely. She’d even sat Eleeria’s daggers out beside it: well-loved blades, they had served her well for many, many years. Without a second glance at her plate armor, she smiled and moved over to take them into her hands.
“Hello friends,” she murmured to her beloved daggers, inspecting them for signs of wear. “I have missed you.”
Setting them aside again after deciding they seemed sufficiently taken care of, she stared at the armor again.
What do you want, Eleeria Silverwing?
It was the familiar voice of confidence from so many years ago; the same, familiar voice she so often tried to deny in her work as a Knight. The voice led to nothing but bad decisions -- confident ones, but bad ones. She closed her eyes, shaking her head slightly to clear her head. “I am a good person now. I don’t do this kind of thing.”
Are you sure? Do you think they gave you your position of command because they think you’re a good person…?
He gave you a medal for annihilating those Alliance troops so thoroughly, the only thing left of them was powder.
They thanked you for it.
It’s too late to pretend your soul can ever really be clean, you know. You will never be as pious as Getheniel, as steadfast as Zanrethan. You never have been, and never will be.
So ask yourself: what do you want?
Eleeria’s eyes snapped open, and she reached for the leather armor with a sigh.