have you ever seen—
a single soul split
into two halfs
he comes into the world in a single second, in one body and then in two. his mother is going to the sky and amata, himself, who he was when he was whole, is on the ground, doing nothing about how their mother is leaving them. he grits his teeth, feeling anger and disappointment over how worthless
amata is. amata can sit there and cry, but he isn't going to do anything such thing.
he runs after their mother because amata won't, and in that moment, he may as well have cast aside his original form. he follows their mother into the sky, up into the light where he leaves vega and comes out onto altair, his mother nowhere to be seen. a man happens upon him, and he soon forgets everything about his original self, his other self who he left behind to rot for all he cared, forgets about his parents and where he came from.
mikage is as cruel as he is beautiful with a voice that seems like it's always laughing at him. there is no rest with mikage around. there is no childhood for him to enjoy with mikage looking after him. everyday is hell filled by taunting and mocking and nasty smiles from mikage. his guard is up near constantly around mikage, because otherwise he's sure he would have broken a long time ago, but it doesn't keep the awful words from tearing into his skin like the prick of thorns so similar to the ones keeping him bond and open to mikage's torment. he's too stubborn, too angry, to completely give into mikage's cruelty, no matter what he does or how much time scabs over his wounds only for them to reopen again and again. it still hurts, it still cuts deep, gashes into the meat of his heart. he hates mikage with every part of his being, hates him so much that red, the color of blood and roses, invades his sight with frequency. mikage's love is the worst thing to ever happen to him.
for years, it's just mikage and him. his parents, a mother he never found and a father he doesn't know, people he doesn't even know he forgot, never come for him. after a while, he finds he no longer cares about them, whoever they are, if he ever had anyone like that. they weren't there for him; no one was. he doesn't remember anyone before mikage. he was alone, even in the presence of another person. he relies on himself alone, with his insides all scarred and messed up from abuse, his edges all rough and teeth sharp like an animal's. he can't trust anyone to be there for him if he needed someone. he's needed someone for years, yet no one ever came. no one ever took him out from underneath mikage's thumb no matter how much he cried and screamed, and he hates the world for it. he hates that love, real love, was something he never felt he truly had. he can't remember if anyone ever really did love him before mikage became the black mark on his life, the terrible angel of his misery.
he grows up despite mikage's efforts to push him down. he grows up, and he wants love.
a love which was
destined to be
there are no more women on altair. the process had started long before he was ever born, but living under mikage's thumb for so long didn't give him a whole lot of time to think about what that really meant until later, until after he was already involved. no women on altair means that one day the entire planet will be devoid of life. the planet needs women to keep thriving, and vega is full of choices for a woman who will overcome the curse of eve. he's pulled along into the task because mikage is important to the men of altair and izumo, the man in charge of finding the true eve. he honestly doesn't care if the men of altair die out or not. the idea of finding love, of finally finding peace within someone on vega, sounds much more appealing than making sure the population survives. he's strong enough to find an eve, and he's more determined to find someone for himself than anyone else. he just goes along with it, because it's a goal for everyone on altair and he can't opt out. he can't deny that his own desires play more of a part than anything.
he can tell right away when he comes across her on vega. she stinks in a way that's he's never smelled before but is also familiar at the same time, as if he's been waiting years to catch her scent again. the moment he smells her, he doesn't want any other woman, and the plans of izumo and the rest of altair are even less of a concern than they already were. he never cared about that, just like they never cared about him.
she's the one for him, the one meant to love him. he can smell the destiny between them, the future that they'll have together. he wants her more than anything he's ever wanted in his entire life, and if weren't for izumo calling him back to altair, he would have fought tooth and nail to make sure she was his and his alone. her scent is still on his mind long after he goes back through the dimension gate, her smell stuck in his nose and throat like a sickness, and he only wants her more and more the longer he thinks about it, the longer he remembers her smell. that sense of destiny that he got from her, of having met her before in memories too distant to reach, only makes more sense to him as time goes on. he wants to kill her, wants to hold her in his arms for the rest of his life and kill her. he wants her with such a ferocity that he can't think of anything else.
it's so deep in his gut that watching her get hurt much more than anything physical he's ever experiences. he's seen red a lot of times in his life, but never has it been so thick, so blinding. his screams from altair do nothing to stop her pain. his voice can't reach vega no matter how hard he yells for her. the space between them feels more like years than miles.
something inside him unlocks with her screams and mikage's harsh words. something buried in his brain that he didn't know he forgot.
she's his silvia, and the two of them promised to meet each other again after 12,000 years. everything he felt up until now makes so much more sense, and - though it doesn't seem possible - he loves her so much more than he already did. the desire to keep her to himself, to kill her in his arms for the rest of their lives, is almost unbearable.
he's not going to let her go again no matter what anyone says, no matter what anyone does to him. she's his silvia, and he plans to fulfill his destiny.
another half who was
too weak to move
amata, his original self, is just as much of a pain and waste of space as he remembers. his memories had unraveled bit by bit until he got all the way back to the beginning of this life when their mother was taken away to altair and amata just let it happen, tears in his eyes and knees in the dirt as if he was glued there. he still feels that anger toward amata for being too much of a coward to do anything. it's even worse now that it directly affects his silvia. he's so angry over how amata just isn't strong enough, not for their mother, not for silvia, not even for himself.
he hates being connected to who he used to be, if only in the soul. he hates thinking that he used to be a part of someone who is too weak to get up and try, who sat by passively as his life was changed forever. too weak to go after their mother, too weak to protect the woman the two of them are fighting over, too weak to love properly. his silvia deserves so much better than amata. his destiny, his life with silvia, is much larger than anything amata could ever go. he has no problems making this apparent to amata. it would be much easier if amata just gave up and let him have silvia. there's no way amata could really understand just how much he hates her and want her, and he doesn't care to explain it in any sort of depth. there's no point in trying; amata is too weak to spend his time on more than he already does.
were it not for amata, he would already have silvia. persistence is the only thing amata has going, unfortunately. amata is too persistent despite his element throwing him back and keeping him still over and over again. he loves to fight, loves the challenge, and his desire to have silvia for his own only fuels his need to fight harder, to push amata back further, anything to keep hands that aren't his off of silvia.
getting caught up in mikage's plans isn't something he wanted or intended, but it never is. and, even now when everyone is fighting for their lives, he hates amata for not being strong enough. he's held a grudge all of his life without really knowing it, and seeing amata now doesn't lessen that feeling in the least. he doesn't care about anything that he's done. he doesn't care that he killed his father, a man who never seemed to care about him in the least. he doesn't care that his mother is now dead, because she was never there for him either. he doesn't need people who won't be there for him, who won't love him when that's all he wants. all he wants is silvia. she's the only one who would ever love and understand him, the only one in all of humanity who he feels so strongly for.
he doesn't care about anything else but her.
a new life living by
your own rules
he's the first to know when amata and mikono return from their battle with mikage. he may not be able to smell amata since they were originally in one body, but he'd recognize mikono anywhere no matter how far away she was. it's something he's going to know for the rest of his life and his next life and however many lives he has after them. he remembered her scent for 12,000 years. what's another 12,0000 years? he suspects he'll have to wait that much longer to finally and truly have mikono in his arms.
he gave mikono up to amata, as much as it hurt, as much as he really didn't want to. even he could admit that what he was after was something that had died and been reborn a long time ago. there were times while he was waiting for mikono to return when he was still stuck on the past image of her that he remembered, a girl with a different face but the same smell, a girl who was named silvia. he was wrong about his original self, because amata fought for mikono just as fiercely as he would have, and it's something he can respect. he still loves her so much and he wants to be with her now, but he guesses he can wait. he's waited a long time already.
it isn't another 12,000 years wait as he expected. it takes time, a readjustment to their new lives, especially his on a planet he doesn't remember much of at all. when he gave mikono up, he could have never seen that he would get to have her in his arms just how he wanted to one day. he thought amata would never leave mikono, and he would have been mad as hell if that did happen, and in a way he wasn't wrong in the slightest. he never truly thought of himself as amata; he was his own person as soon as they split, and he lived as his own person anyway. so having amata involved, even going so far as being intimate with him, doesn't feel strange to him. he can't say if he feels the same for amata as he does for mikono, but it's growing the longer he sticks with it, the pit in his heart, which was once reserved solely for mikono, is slowly making more room for amata, stretching out and reaching into his old wounds. either way, he can't see himself without mikono or amata.
for the first time in his life, he feels loved.
—the eyes of a predator