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A Delicate Machine
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The addition of a third person was somewhat a blessing, as there was now another target for Lili to focus her attention on. Cass was free to direct their gaze to Lili's kite for the first time since it had crashed, and though it was still pretty up close it had lost the majesty it had kept in motion, even a still image of something in motion feels like it is alive, and though there is a melancholic beauty in a caged bird it will never compare to a snapshot of freedom, but still-

Cass guiltily closed their sketchbook while Lili and Amanda were still distracted, realizing they were going down a dangerous road again. Once you get used to trying to picture the world around you on a canvas, it was difficult to stop yourself from getting carried away. Lili offered to bring the kite closer. "I'd love that, thank you." The suspicion seemed to have passed, and since it seemed as if it'd still be a while until Cass could gracefully extract themself, they might as well take full advantage of the opportunity. Not for the purpose of later art, but for the pleasure of appreciating art that had already been created, which was important as well.

They nodded politely and attentively as Amanda talked about her experience flying kites in Singapore. They envied anyone who had traveled abroad, or even better, had lived there for a time. Kingman was nice enough, but it was small, so very small, and the greater world was a beautiful place despite the suffering- no, maybe because - no, that sounds much too cold - but doesn't it reflect how humans can endure, and thrive through the most hellish circumstances- Cassandra?

At the sound of their full name Cass grimaced for a moment, gripped their sketchbook a bit too tight, glared at Amanda for a second before catching themself; reverting to a more neutral stance after taking a deep breath. It wasn't her fault, she didn't know, but it still stung. Cass was willing to let a lot of things slide, and even they could admit it was usually more than was healthy or what they actually wanted, but there had to be a line somewhere; if only for the sake of their own emotional state.

"Cass," Cass corrected Amanda. "My name is Cass, alright?"
a tribute for the dead and dying

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In C. · Liberty Park