call me something, anything,
I used to say,
as though just having a name
was good, though it wasn’t
Izumo never used to mind butterflies. They weren’t important, pretty enough when one floated by on a breeze. Now, he looks at them like they hurt him personally.
It was just the three of them once upon a time, before Clans and Kings and the Dresden Slates changed everything. It was Tatara and Mikoto and Izumo—friends.
The butterflies he sees now aren’t made of fire and red aura. They don’t rise from Tatara’s hands like proof that flame can be beautiful and not deadly, wielded by the right hands. Everything is gone—Tatara, Mikoto—leaving only Izumo and butterflies.