Elysium: The Second Coming discussion

Town > Primrose Park

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message 1: by Kate Kid (last edited Mar 28, 2017 12:44PM) (new)

Kate Kid (katekid) | 99 comments Mod

message 2: by Kate Kid (new)

Kate Kid (katekid) | 99 comments Mod
The park wasn't as pretty as the garden, but that was to be expected. Typically parks weren't as gorgeous as those thoughtfully placed flowers, especially with the fact that everyone and their dog (literally) came here and just walked around. Though, one thing that stayed gorgeous no matter what was the beautiful blue river that flowed directly through the center of it.

Xander sat at the bank, leaning his head over as he looked at his reflection in the cool blue liquid. his hair was curly and matted, not groomed like a child's typically was. He had dirt all over his clothing, even having a mark of black mud dragged and marked across his cheek.

He was tired, his body exhausted from running around all day just to scrounge up enough to eat for that night. His mother had kicked him out of the house again, but she didn't even let him grab his run away bag that had clothing in it. So he had been in this outfit for the past day and a half.

He reached out, dipping his fingers into the cool water and watched some of the dirt particles fall off and sink farther into the water. He tilted his head to the side, his eyes shining slightly as he played in it. He was still a child, after all. He loved water and he loved splashing around in it. He plunged both hands into the cool water and shivered, though, he got a small smile on his face as he started washing off the matted dirt, loving the feeling of the water on this warm day. He was just glad it wasn't illegal to play in the water here, even if there was a chance of drowning.

message 3: by Dark Angel (new)

Dark Angel | 36 comments Mod
"If you ever get lost, go to the park. Someone will find you and bring you home to us."

That was what her father had said. Of course, she had never believed that she would ever actually get lost, nor had they. It was just a precaution. Cressida was rarely alone inside the house, and never alone when she left her family estate. She was chaperoned at all times, so getting lost never seemed like an issue. Of course, her father had still put the precaution in place, just in case it ever happened. She had been taught how to get to the park from almost every location in the town. She probably could have found her way blindfolded, though she had never actually had to go there because she was lost. She was, however, a frequent visitor to the park. Although it wasn't as beautiful as the garden of Eden, it had its own unique beauty. She loved to watch the people who visited and gaze at her reflection in the crystal waters of the river that flowed through the park's very centre.

Now, however, she was not coming to watch the newly betrothed couples stroll by hand-in-hand, or coo at the mothers with their newborn infants, or to bask in the light of the sun. This time, she was actually lost. She had never thought it would actually happen, but it had. She had been walking in a parade, and afterwards she had gone to greet the crowd. She had been with her Earth Mother, Ellowyn, the two of them walking at the head of the parade. It wasn't supposed to happen that way, but the crowd had swallowed her up, and the two women were separated. Cressida had tried to search for the woman at first. She'd tried to panic. A public figure was supposed to keep a cool head, but there were so many people, and it was overwhelming because she was all alone. Her vision had started to blur, and she'd thought she was going to faint. And then her father's words had returned to her.

Somehow, she'd managed to break through the crowd. As she was a person of great importance, they all made room for her, and she wove through them, though the crowd seemed to stretch on forever. The fresh air had calmed her slightly, and she'd been able to think more clearly, recalling the way to the park. With each step she took, her breathing steadied and her vision cleared.

From the Town Square to Primrose Park, it was about a ten minute walk. The streets were completely deserted. Everyone must have been at the parade. By the time she reached the park, she was confused, disorientated and more than a little stressed. The large park seemed to be deserted, so she rushed towards the river and collapsed onto the grass. She knew that this probably wasn't the best idea, because she was wearing a white dress, a symbol of purity, and it would probably get stained, but she was exhausted and the dress could be washed. Her golden hair, which had been elaborately braided, was coming loose from its style, and her face was slightly paler than usual. But she still wore her jewels, and she knew that she was still beautiful.

message 4: by Kate Kid (new)

Kate Kid (katekid) | 99 comments Mod
The young boy kept playing in the water until he heard someone huffing as they collapsed into the grass. He jumped a bit and got ready to run when he realized that it was a girl.... he tilted his head to the side a bit and slowly approached her. He blinked a few times, his eyes gazing down at her. She was pretty, and her hair was a little messed up, but to him, it looked fine, since his hair was a mess, too. Hell, his didn't even really look blonde, it looked more brown. "Are you okay?" He asked as he approached the laying girl. "Are... Are you hurt?"

message 5: by Dark Angel (new)

Dark Angel | 36 comments Mod
Cressida let out a soft gasp, scrambling to her knees at the sound of a child-like male voice. She fought through the fog of her confusion, and the haze of her blurry vision, to understand the situation. She blinked a few times and took a few calming breaths, allowing her vision to clear. The voice belonged to a male child. At least, she thought it was a male child. He didn't look like anyone she had ever seen before. His clothes were covered in dirt. His tangled hair was a strange colour that looked like it might be blonde, but it was too dirty for her to really be certain. She had never seen that much dirt before. Even the poor houses she had visited were clean. They were just smaller. But this boy was covered in dirt, though it looked as though most of it had been washed off. He was still wet, so he must have used the water from the river.
Only then did she remember, and comprehend, his questions. He was asking if he was okay. He was asking if she was hurt. She managed a tremulous smile as she looked up at him. It felt strange to be looking up at a child, but she was still on the ground.
"No, I'm not hurt," her voice was shaking slightly, but she was nervous. She'd never been on her own before. "I'm just...afraid. I'm not supposed to be alone. Thank you for your concern, though."

message 6: by Kate Kid (new)

Kate Kid (katekid) | 99 comments Mod
He tilted his head to her, not really thinking anything weird of the fact that he was dirty and she wasn't. To him, it was all normal. He was used to being covered in dirt. He hadn't gone to school recently either, so he couldn't even use the showers in there after hours to make himself all clean. So he just sat down on the ground next to her, "But you're not alone now, isn't that good?" He asked, looking at her, "You're with me." He said, blinking a few times, "So you don't have to be scared anymore." He said, looking at his hands.

It was such a child answer, innocent, sweet, and fixing the problem with such ease, though, not solving the actual problem at all. He was sweet, his fingers brushing through the green hairs of grass and his eyes studying how they moved.

message 7: by Dark Angel (new)

Dark Angel | 36 comments Mod
She felt a little better when he lowered himself down to her level, safer somehow, though she didn't understand why she had been frightened to begin with. He was only a child, after all, and a citizen of the Utopia. He would do her no harm. The Utopia was a place of peace and unity. Perhaps it was only because he looked like no citizen that she had ever seen before that she distrusted him slightly. But his words were kind, and his gestures caring, so she quickly set aside these ideas.

He was trying to reassure her, she could see that, and she didn't want to worry him. He couldn't have been any older than...what...ten? eleven? His answer proved that. He was trying to solve her problem, and although his presence wasn't actually a solution, she did feel slightly better with him there. He was right, after all. She wasn't alone anymore, so she had someone to keep her company while she waited to be found. So she nodded at her words, allowing a soft smile to cross her lovely face. As she smiled, some of the colour began returning to her cheeks.
"Yes, it is," she murmured softly, speaking in a calmer tone than she had done before. Her voice wasn't shaking this time. "Thank you."

message 8: by Kate Kid (new)

Kate Kid (katekid) | 99 comments Mod
He nodded to her, looking over at her, and he blushed slightly. "No one's ever thanked me before." He said, plucking one of the green blades out of the ground and he twirled it around between his index finger and his thumb. "Why can't you be alone, anyways? You're... older than me." He said, looking over at her, "I'm... always alone." He said.

And it was true. This park was barren, only the two of them here. Only the two of them sitting by the river... There weren't older people looking out for their child. He was all alone, dirty... He wasn't any normal child, that was obvious, and she had already picked up on it. Though... He didn't have a dangerous feeling around him. He was... just a child, peaceful, caring, sweet. He still held the light of the future in his heart, despite his dark surrounding.

message 9: by Dark Angel (new)

Dark Angel | 36 comments Mod
Cressida was unable to prevent the look of surprise from crossing her face when the boy spoke next. Nobody had ever thanked him before? But how could that be right? 'Please' and 'thank you' were two of the first words that people learned as children. Her mother had once told her that the people of the old world were impolite, while the children of the new world had far better manners. It was the belief of her own parents that if those in the old world had been taught to respect one another, the war might have been preventable. How was it that nobody had ever said thank you to him? This was not the old world. This was the new world. This was Utopia. Not only Utopia, but Elysium. Things were different here. Things were better.

Before she had the chance to question him on the subject, he questioned her. He asked why she was not allowed to be alone, and this really surprised her. Did he not know who she was? Had he not seen her on television, or walking in the parades? Come to think of it, she had not seen a flicker of recognition in his eyes when he had looked at her. Perhaps he really didn't know. But how was that possible? Everyone knew who she was. She didn't quite understand his last comment. He was always alone? How could that be? But as she looked at him again, she saw that it had to be true. She had probably known it all along. No parent would allow their child to leave the house in such a state, even a poor one. Even the poor had access to water here. But why were his parents not caring for him? He couldn't be an orphan. The orphans were cared for here. It didn't make sense.

"I have never really thought to question why. I only know that I'm not permitted to be without a chaperone. My parents say it's because of who I am, and who I will be. My name is Cressida Lockwood. I'm going to become betrothed to my Sun Father, the head of the council, very soon," she explained gently. Her parents had never really given her a reason for why she couldn't go out alone. She assumed that it was because she might hurt herself, or something like that. "If you don't mind my asking, why are you always alone? Where are your parents? And why does nobody ever thank you? That makes no sense."

message 10: by Kate Kid (new)

Kate Kid (katekid) | 99 comments Mod
Xander listened to the pretty woman and what her life was going to be. To be honest, none of it made any sense to him. He didn't know what a Sun Father was and why he would be marrying his daughter. Why would she marry the sun? And if he was her father, wasn't that incest? Wasn't that frowned upon? He knew that much at least.

He nodded, not able to question her before she asked her many questions. He pursed his lips when thinking, biting onto the white grass root he had pulled out. "Because.... I live here in the streets." He said. "My parents yell a lot and tell me to leave so I do." He said, "Then they come and find me and take me home, and it happens again... Or I leave because they hit me." He said, looking at her. "It's normal." He said. "And no one thanks me because I don't do anything good." His voice never changed. He really did think this was all normal. He thought it was... Okay.

message 11: by Dark Angel (new)

Dark Angel | 36 comments Mod
She watched his face, noticing how confused he seemed to be. She wasn't sure if it was her questions that had confused him, or her statement. Perhaps she explained things wrong. She didn't really know how to explain things any differently. She only knew that she was Cressida Lockwood, and that she was one of the two most important women in Elysium, and because of that, she couldn't go out alone. It didn't occur to her that he didn't know what a Sun Father was, and that this was the reason for his confusion. After all, as far as she knew, everybody did. In the old world, they had been known as godfathers, but god was never mentioned anymore. There was no God. There were Gods, and they were living beings. Religion was very different now. Rather than worshipping a Father in heaven, people made offerings to living beings. They needed symbols of hope, reminders of what was real, something to unite them. They had all fought over different Gods before, because the Gods were unseen. Now, they were living beings of flesh and blood. There could be no arguments as to whether or not they existed, or who they were. As Christianity was no longer practised, and there were many Gods, the term godfather was no longer appropriate.

When he started speaking again, she thought he was joking at first. But then she looked again at his tangled hair and dirt-covered clothes, and realized that he had to be telling the truth. Why else would a child be alone in the park? His parents weren't here. And why else would he be so dirty? But the fact that they actually hit him came as a surprise. Her azure eyes widened as she took in a sharp breath. Normal? He thought that was...normal?
"Parents aren't supposed to hit their children!" she exclaimed, saying the first thing that came into her head. She couldn't help it. It was just so...wrong. His family was all wrong. This wasn't what the Utopia stood for. The Second Coming had created a bright, brilliant world. There was no violence here. There couldn't be. "It isn't normal, it isn't the way..."

message 12: by Kate Kid (new)

Kate Kid (katekid) | 99 comments Mod
He had no idea who this man was, he had no idea who she was. All he knew is that he had a father and a mother, and he would never marry either of them. Though, one of them was taboo to be with anyways. "I just don't understand." He said, looking at her again, "Isn't it wrong to be with your father like that? And... does that mean you were born from the sun?" He asked, tilting his head to the side. As he did this, the underlying part of his hair was showing, and it was darker than the outside part of it. It was matted there. The child needed a bath desperately.

He looked at her in a bit of shock, seeing that she was very animate about how it was wrong that his parents hit him. They hit him all the time. That's why he was typically locked in the basement that was his room. It was so there were no cameras to prove it. Though, he didn't know that. He blinked up at her, not understanding. "They just do it to teach me what's right and wrong." He said, looking away from her. It was like when he thought that he had an attraction to boys... It was wrong, and he had learned that the hard way. He was barely able to walk after that... They also sent him to correction camps for the "confused".

message 13: by Dark Angel (new)

Dark Angel | 36 comments Mod
Cressida tried to keep a straight face, but she just couldn't. A bright smile spread across her rosebud lips, and she let out a tinkling, melodious laugh, shaking her head. Though, to be fair to him, it did look as though she had been born from the sun. Her hair was as golden as its rays, and her eyes as blue as the sky above.
"No, no, my Sun Father is not my actual father," she explained patiently, after her laughter had died away. The boy clearly did not understand, and although she did not know how that was possible, it was no fault of his. So she tried to be serious, though friendly, as she gave her explanation. "A Sun Father is a man that your parents choose to help guide and protect you. Sort of like a second father, except you aren't related. I believe in the old world, they called them godfathers, but that term is no longer appropriate. I am not born of the sun. I am as human as you are."
As he tilted his head to the side, she noted the condition of his hair. Her eyes widened a little, and she quickly cast them down to the grass. She didn't want to be rude, and she certainly didn't want to frighten or alarm him. But still, she was in shock. How could his parents be so neglectful? When had he bathed last? Did he know anything about the Utopia at all? Did he even know who the Council were? her name had not meant anything to him, had it? He had not responded to it.
"Do you know who I am?" she questioned cautiously, hoping that this new line of enquiry would take her mind off his parents neglect, and that it would answer her own questions. She was careful to keep her voice gentle. She didn't want him to think that it was too important, or that she would be upset if he didn't.

She saw the shock on his face, and realized that it was a reaction to her response. She couldn't understand it. He really thought that violence was normal. How was that possible? Violence was so rare here. His sort of thinking was the sort that started the war. But he was just a child. He had been taught to think this way. Adults who should have known better had taught him to think this way.
She stared back at him with widened eyes as he blinked up at her in confusion. She didn't quite know how to respond to his answer. For a moment, she was stunned into speechlessness. Only when he averted his eyes did she find her voice.
"There are other ways to teach a child right from wrong," she responded gently. "Constant violence is what started the third world war. Do you not know that? We are trying to prevent another war, so that we can live in peace forever."

message 14: by Kate Kid (new)

Kate Kid (katekid) | 99 comments Mod
He didn't understand really what she was talking about. Though, she did make sense when she explained that he was a man picked to walk her through life and help out with her well being... though, why would she marry a man like that if he was like a father. It... still really didn't make sense, and the way that she was talking about the old world didn't help either. All of this was alien to him. He just looked up at her again, "I... Still... don't understand why you would... marry someone that was your father figure or... something." He said, frowning a little bit.
Then she asked the question if he knew who she was. He looked at her, shaking his head slowly. "No." He said. "I... don't think I've seen you before or met you..." He said, "I'm sorry." He said, frowning a bit. "Am I supposed to?" He knew nothing about the world. He had been neglected so much he had no idea really what was going on in this world. He didn't know that this was a Utopia, he didn't.. really know what a Utopia was. He knew the word, but he thought it was just how life was. He didn't think it meant perfect.

He looked down at the grass, and as he heard her talk, his heart twisted in pain. He knew about the war that had destroyed the world to the part where it was almost unlivable. He knew that... He knew all about that... His lips quivered a bit, thinking back to the correction camps he went to. They said... that him being attracted to boys would lead them there, too... So... Was his whole existence... wrong? He didn't notice that silver tears dripped from his face, going down his face and leaving a clean streak down his face, showing that his skin was actually more pale than it originally looked.

message 15: by Dark Angel (new)

Dark Angel | 36 comments Mod
Now it was Cressida's turn to be confused. She blinked up at him, stunned into speechlessness for a moment. It wasn't that he had done anything wrong, or that he had asked an inappropriate question. It was simply that she didn't know the answer. She had never thought to analyse her relationship with her future husband. She had never considered it wrong. She had known for many years now that she was to marry him, and she had always accepted it and thought it perfectly natural. She had never once thought that there might be anything wrong with it.
"It is meant to be," she said simply, repeating the words that she had heard spoken so many times before. She realized then that she had not given him much of an explanation, and so she tried again. "He is the one that will be chosen for me, and so he is the one that I will marry. They would never tell me to marry him if it was wrong."

It took some effort, but she managed to keep her expression neutral as he revealed to her that he did not know who she was. It was true that he'd never seen her or met her before, but she would have expected that he might have seen her on television, or attended one of the many parades she'd walked in. But she wasn't upset. She was confused more than anything, and slightly worried. If he didn't know who she was, what else didn't he know?
He frowned as he apologized, then asked if he was supposed to know who she was. She offered a gentle smile, then gave a tentative nod.
"Most do," she responded carefully. "But it's alright that you don't. I was only curious. I don't know who you are, after all. I don't know your name. Will you tell me your name?"

She didn't quite understand what happened next. Her words must have impacted him in some way. Perhaps only then did he truly realize how wrong his parents' treatment of his was, because he began to cry. A tear dripped down his cheek, revealing surprisingly clear skin behind the layer of dirt.
"Please don't cry," she murmured softly. "I didn't mean to upset you. I'm sorry. Whatever I did, I didn't mean it...please?"

message 16: by Kate Kid (new)

Kate Kid (katekid) | 99 comments Mod
He looked at her and just nodded. It was put into simple terms so he just let it go. He looked forward and rubbed his knees a little bit. His jeans were all ripped up and he actually had a little scrape on one of them. Though, he really didn't draw too much attention to it by just playing with the rips, tugging on the fabric a bit.

He nodded, pursing his lips a little bit. He thought that it was weird that he didn't know who she was if he was supposed to. He curled up a bit more around himself and he looked over at her, smiling softly. "Xander." He answered. "Spelled with an X." He said, giggling a bit.

The little one didn't mean to cry, he just did. He hated that he was so wrong for this world. He thought that he might have done better in the old world. There they might have accepted him and loved him. But here he was all wrong. He was a stain on society that someone was going to bleach out... At least, that's what his mother told him. "I don't want to be a bad person anymore." He whimpered out. "I don't like it..."

message 17: by Dark Angel (new)

Dark Angel | 36 comments Mod
He didn't ask any more questions. She didn't know whether that was because he understood, or because he simply accepted the situation as it was. There were many things she didn't understand, but she accepted them, because she knew it was for the best. Everything in the new world was for the best. The boy simply looked forward, rubbing his knees. His clothes would have looked terribly out of place on any other citizen, but any other citizen's clothes would have looked out of place on him. His clothes were like a horror story. Sometimes, she heard stories about how things were. People would tell her about how children were neglected, or how loving parents desperately wished to provide for their children, but were too poor to do so, and not all of them could be helped. There were too many people. There were too many problems in the world. Not all of them could be solved. So there were many children dressed in ripped clothing, with dirty faces, wandering without their parents. Of course, she had never thought such a thing could be possible here. But it was only possible because Xander's parents had chosen that life. Unfortunately, they had chosen it for their son as well.

She watched his expression, noticing how he pursed his lips a little. He seemed confused. She didn't blame him. She had the feeling that his parents hadn't taught him a lot. Everything he knew, he must have found out on his own, and how would a child gain this sort of knowledge? There was school, she supposed, but she was guessing he didn't attend school. If he did, it had probably been a while since he last had.
As he introduced himself, a soft smile crossed her face. He was smiling too, and he giggled as he explained the spelling of his name.
"That's a nice name," she told him. She had always liked names that started with X. She liked the way they looked.

Cressida felt a pain in her chest as she listened to his next words. She didn't know what she had been expecting him to say, but whatever it had been, it hadn't been that. For this child to think that he was a bad person, it just...it wasn't right. It was heartbreaking.
"Did your parents tell you that? That you're a bad person?" she questioned softly, keeping her voice quiet and trying to stop it from trembling. She didn't want to frighten him. "You aren't a bad person. Your parents just haven't been doing the right things. That's their fault, not yours."

message 18: by Kate Kid (new)

Kate Kid (katekid) | 99 comments Mod
He didn't think himself weird because of the clothing that he wore or the way that he was completely covered in dirt and grime. He thought himself weird for what his parents had taught him, what they didn't teach him, and what he had gone through throughout his life. He never had an easy time, even right now. He looked up at the woman, smiling softly, "Thanks." He said. "I really like it." He said, holding his legs a little closer to himself. He really did like his name. It was one of the few things that he actually owned. His clothing was one, his ragged pillow that was about as thin as his blanket... And his name. His name would never grow old, never flatten. It would stay the same as the day that he received it....

He shook his head to her, putting his hands onto his head to block out something. He nodded to her though, and he did believe it true. He believed that he was a terrible person. "I'm horrible..." He cried out, tears falling largely down his face. "And if you knew more about me you'd say the same thing... Just like they all say about me..." He said, shaking his head. He knew that was true, too. If she knew that he had a preference towards boys instead of girls, she would think him mad. If she knew that he watched adult movies like he did with his father, she would think that he was disgusting. Though, those movies were against his will, mostly because he just happened to be in the same room and was just trying to entertain himself from the dull world he lived in....

He didn't even understand that it was wrong, he thought that it was normal.

But if she knew... she'd hate him. At least, that's what he thought.

message 19: by Dark Angel (new)

Dark Angel | 36 comments Mod
She could tell that her words had pleased him. He was looking up at her, smiling softly. Still, there was something about him that seemed off. No...off wasn't the word. There wasn't anything wrong him him. He just seemed...uncomfortable? sad? She didn't really know. Different. Perhaps that was it. He was unlike any child she had ever met. He wasn't like the other boys of his age, and perhaps he knew it. Maybe her comments had made him aware of it, and it unnerved him. But she liked his name, and that seemed to make him happy. She wanted him to be happy. She didn't know why, because they had only just met, but suddenly his happiness was very important to her.
"It's a great name!" she assured him, her words not insincere. She loved the way it sounded, and she loved the way it looked when she pictured it on paper. "It suits you."

Her eyes widened a little as he placed his hands over his head. She didn't know whether it was to block out her words, or something else. Perhaps he was shutting out his own thoughts and feelings, or a memory. Maybe he was remembering someone else's words. His parents, perhaps? They didn't seem like very nice people. He still managed to nod to her though, which made her think that it wasn't her he was trying to shut out.
Then he spoke, and she felt confused all over again. And more than ever, she pitied the child. But she felt something else too. She didn't really know what it was. It couldn't be fear. She had no reason to be afraid, especially not of a citizen of the Utopia, and especially not of a child. Perhaps it was dread. Why did he think he was so horrible? Why did everyone say he was? But it couldn't be true. It just couldn't. He seemed so innocent.

"I don't think you're horrible," she murmured softly, finally finding her voice. "I think you're sweet, and misunderstood. I think you're parents...I think they perhaps haven't done the best job as parents, and that isn't your fault, it's theirs. But I don't think you're horrible. Please don't cry."

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