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Sep 20, 2020 12:51 AM
Abadar uses a helm of opposite alignment on Hagan and a bad time is had by all
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I'm sorry for making people worry. I don't really know when people started thinking of me as sick. He seemed happy about it, at first. I hadn't told him about it, I thought he'd see it as me trying to be manipulative again. But he seemed to appreciate it when I stopped - needing things. It was just - when I wasn't protecting myself at all then eventually a lot of other things started breaking. And there was less and less of me left.

- this is also why I needed you to take care of Verita. There was not - going to be any of me left, to be a parent to her. I am sorry for that.

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"I think you were doing your best to deal with some duties that were - not very possible for a person to shoulder. I think Verita would have left anyway, I think she worried she couldn't get stronger as a sorcerer here."

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Nodnod. She cries a little, and wipes her face.

 

That seems likely. But I wish that - I think it was very bad for her, to know, or at least to suspect, that I was choosing someone else over her, in a very complete way that left me unable to care for her at all.

Right now we are in a situation where - I am not all the way better. I don't really know how to get better. The, uh, metaphor that I have on hand is that before I was wearing armor, very heavy armor that was crushing me, and now that I have said some things and Hagan has said some things I am wearing less armor and being less crushed. But I am very scared scared that - that the things that caused a lot of the damage haven't actually been sufficiently fixed, and that going around without emotional armor is going to mean that I am very fragile and easy to hurt, and I might not be able to handle things even as well as I did before. And I am very scared of what happens to me if I break more badly than this. I think this is - still reversible, if I knew how to reverse it. But I don't know if that will keep being true, if more things happen.

Unfortunately, I am also not sure that our first baby will be someone who is capable of being pharaoh, or will be someone who Abadar is willing to accept, or will be someone who won't be destroyed by being pharaoh, or won't be chaotic good, and - I do not want to leave the country in that position, or the baby in that position. But now that Hagan is aware of - how bad the last year was for me - he thinks that we should not try to have any more. And I am very scared that this means that it will be a very very long time before I can have a husband who doesn't - constantly hurt me by accident, even when he's not trying to - and that even when I can I might only be able to do it by watching my child be crushed.

I don't - really know what to do about this. Because I don't want to break further and I also don't want to pin all of the hopes of an entire country on one baby. And I feel like the problem would be solvable with someone I trusted, but - I do not really trust Hagan very much anymore. I am aware that I am supposed to trust him, and that he wants me to trust him, but - it is very very hard.

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"It would definitely be really good if you two had more children," he says. "That said, it has also been very bad for the country to have you being sick and miserable. I do not think you should risk that state again for the sake of the country, I don't think it'd help."

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It is also not actually very obvious to me how I would go about not being sick or miserable anymore.

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"I think usually even when very terrible things have happened people do not actually stay sick and miserable forever. I would expect you will get better over time as long as you are in a place where you feel safe now. If you don't, maybe you and the pharaoh should live at different palaces."

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I don't know if the pharaoh would be okay with that.

It's also complicated? Because I am trying to think about what I want now, and it turns out that - a lot of the wants that I have are something like 'I want the person I trust to make sure that I am safe and cared for until I am better', but the person I trust isn't here, and the closest thing I have is - the person who did this to me. And maybe it's very stupid to want anything from him, but that doesn't stop the wanting.

I think I could be functional if Hagan were able to demonstrate adequate trustworthiness. And I think I could be functional if I completely gave up on ever having a relationship with him, but - if I do that then I think maybe I will probably just never get him back. Even if he takes the helmet off. And that's - certainly something that I have been willing to trade away in the past, but it's still scary.

But I do not feel very safe. I feel somewhat less terrified than I have felt at some points in the past year. But I do not think that I feel safe.

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"I think even if you want to repair your marriage it might - still make sense to try going somewhere else and see whether that makes you feel safe, in the short run. It might be easier to repair your marriage once you've recovered."

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I don't really know if I - know how to psychologically recover while still holding out hope for that and also not being able to have most of the things that I keep thinking that I want. But maybe it's still worth it.

I guess - I feel very stupid saying this, but I am scared that - maybe I tore my heart out and gave it to him to hold, without him knowing it. And I feel like I could probably grow a new one, with different loves growing in it, if I gave up on this one, but - I'm scared that I don't know how to get the same one back unless he gives it back to me.

I am aware that this doesn't make any sense.

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He looks like he cannot think of anything to say for a while. "I think the pharaoh loves you," he says, eventually.

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Yeah.

I don't really know what that means anymore but I am aware that I am very important to him.

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"I think...that doing right by you as your husband is very important to him, and that he values your comfort and your advice and your love, and that he wants you to have his children and he wants you to feel safe and happy here."

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"What'd the note say."

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He reads it. 

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"The one before that."

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He reads that, too.

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"You should read all of them when you get them," he says to Fazil, and "I want to give your heart back to you. I am - grateful, and I didn't mean to hurt it while I had it, and I want to give it back now."

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Nodnod.

I want that. A lot. But I don't know exactly what would need to happen.

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"Me neither. Sort of wish we could just - start over. Like -" he gestures at the crown. "Like it just happened."

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That would be nice. I think - I don't have enough access to who I was anymore to know what she would have done. Even if there weren't any other things that needed to be healed.

I do remember that when I first came here I was very very scared, because I didn't know who you were or what you would do and I didn't feel like I had any control over the situation, and I was - watching you to determine how much danger I was in. And I ended up feeling like I was in a lot of danger. 

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Nod.

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Do you have ideas about what you would have done? If we could, like, hypothetically start over?

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"The thing you said about - understanding how important an heir was but needing it to be a sacrifice you felt like you were actually making. Could've done that. Could've gotten you better presents, not the ones you hate and get mad about. Could've gotten you some place with trees, animals..."

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Yeah. I think - I think the first thing would have really really helped and the third thing would probably have helped and the second thing is - I guess maybe doing good presents is really hard right now, right, harder than it would be normally, because - maybe I want people to make fewer unilateral decisions about my life. If that is something that I am allowed to want. But it's definitely complicated in that when I first got here I wasn't going to ask for anything, right, because - I don't know if I can trust my memories, but I remember not wanting to ask for anything I didn't really need, so that maybe when I did ask for things you would take it seriously and know that I really needed them. This - didn't really work, at all, but I guess I assume it must have been making things harder on that front.

I just, uh, want to say that I'm not mad about the presents. I'm mad about some things. I think. But not you - guessing wrong about what to get me when I was too terrified to ask.

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"What things are you mad about?"

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