a c h i l l e s

He is brighter up close. More than you could ever imagine. He is half-god, half-dream. When the war comes–and the war will come–his eyes will turn to ichor. His skin will harden, harshen. The tragedy is that he will love you still. He will return, blink away the grandeur of godhood, come to you human and bare and seeking. He will be his brightest when you see his smile.

He will be the sharpest when he shapes a different smile of his spear.

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//the sun dreams of murder

‘You’ll kill him,’ Poseidon tells him, with the calm of a sea at its most dangerous. ‘You love him and you won’t mean to, but you will.’

Apollo glances at him sharply, ‘You’re the one who drowns him.’

Poseidon’s smile is smug and serene, and he hates it, ‘Yes.’ Then he’s leaning forward, lips brushing his ear in a caress of salt-wind-wet that would feel too intimate if Apollo didn’t know it to be anything other than spite. ‘But out of ruinous love for you,’ murmurs the sea, ‘it’s into my arms he’ll fall.’

A strangled shout—

A crash of waves against the shore—

and Poseidon is gone.

Apollo remains there, hollowed out and worn because he can picture it all too well. The boy with a heart overfull and yet still so hungry. His eyes, how they’ll turn from ecstasy to agony as he learns that you can be destroyed by what you love. A small eternity of falling, the despair of it and the longing.

He thinks of Icarus’ back, the supple curve he’s so often traced, and the marks he’s put there. Because if the boy is greedy, then oh how the sun is too.

He thinks of Icarus breaking upon the waves and—

an ocean embrace putting him back together, a smile of triumph against soft skin, hands and lips soothing the burns on his back with a pleasure to hide the pain.

Those hands and lips are not his own, and Apollo finds he can barely breathe.

— the sun dreams of murder // (c.ruth)

#421 Icarus with burns on his back