Part 130: Episode CXXVII: LacanEpisode CXXVII: Lacan
Music: Bonds of Sea and Fire
You haven't been able to get this kinda food around here lately, have ya? Well, this is also due to my business savvy."
You just whipped candlesticks all afternoon.
Hey, anyone can whip frikkin candlesticks. It takes a man of talent to know WHICH candlesticks to whip. So pipe down and eat.
"...What's wrong, Lacan? You look kinda down. What's bothering you? Are you worried about something?"
"It's nothing... I'm just thinking about painting Sophia. I don't know why I agreed to do her portrait..."
"Sophia... You mean your childhood friend who's now the Holy Mother of Nisan?"
Yes that is the one Captain Exposition. But...
"She's not really a childhood friend...I just made her acquaintance at the monastery near my home when I was a child... She went to the clinic there for convalescence. ...She was frail."
Who makes acquaintances when theyre a kid? Stop being such a damn stiff.
"She does not wish herself to become a symbol of her sect. ...Actually, it seems she wasn't interested in having her portrait painted at first. But, when she heard I would be the painter, she turned around and agreed. That's what I don't understand..."
"I see... Then she must like you..."
"What are you talking about?"
Come on, guy. She agreed, without hesitation, to let you stare at her alone for hours on end? I aint much knowledgeable about painting, but Im guessing that wouldnt fly with a childhood acquaintance unless she had a thing for you.
"That's how women are... Right, Krelian...?"
"...What's up? You're not having any? It's ready to eat."
"The Holy Mother of Nisan, huh? What, are you out to offend divine providence or something, Lacan?"
"Cut it out...! It's not... like that..."
Aww yeah. Lacan is gonna stand tall and shake the heavens in that ass.
Shut up... Its not like that at all...
Aww yeah. Hes gonna paint the portrait of Mother Sophia with the paintbrush God gave him!
Why do I even hang out with you...?
Music: The Treasure Which Cannot Be Stolen
...and now I'm hooked on reading. I'm not trying to brag... but I've learned a lot of things I never knew before. Lately, I've been reading this."
"What is it?"
"Something I borrowed from Melchior. It's about a form of molecular engineering... nanotechnology.
The heck is that?
Tiny little robots so small you cant even see them.
What would you need with robots you cant even see?
Well, you get enough tiny robots together and you can do...well...anything. Anything the plot demands.
Wiggy. Whered you find that book?
I believe it's a book found in the ancient ruins of the Zeboim civilization. It's a copy of someone's research report, but it's incomplete. I think there were even more wonderful things written in it, but we'll never know now..."
Music: Lost... Broken Shards
"Lately, you've seemed melancholy almost every day. Has something happened?"
*stops painting and shakes head* "I don't know. I just can't paint right now. Sorry, but do you mind if we stop here for today..."
Plus Krelian was talking Science again and that always makes me head hurt.
"I see... It is not good to push yourself too hard... Why don't you rest up for a little while? I'll have Krelian take you..."
I lashed out at random... Everyone around me feared me... Even my friends. I lived a life surrounded by people who looked at me with fear in their eyes."
Ever kill one of your dudes in front of your other dudes just to prove you were THAT bad a dude?
"But she was the only one who wasn't afraid of me. She would just smile. Peace of mind... She was the one who taught me what that was and how I could receive it... She taught me how to live as a human..."
Hehe... Too bad she never taught you fashion sense. When you ever gonna lose that frilly tiara, princess?
*glares* This is a symbol of my rank as the leader of Nisans Holy Monastery Corps!
Still doesnt stop it from looking like something a magic girl would wear to transform.
Music: Bonds of Sea andFire
"Why stop now...?"
"It's the circumstances. I shouldn't be painting her at a time like this. Eventually, she too must stand at the front lines. So..."
"Is that really the problem?"
"...Her smile... it's killing me. The more she smiles at me, the more I... I feel my very being become insignificant. Inside my heart there is this empty existence. Other than painting, I have no worth... Yet, she continues to accept my presence. I feel like I'm getting smaller and smaller."
*looks at painting then his hands* "I didn't have this feeling in the beginning. I just wanted to paint her one more minute... one more second longer... I wanted to keep on painting forever. But, suddenly I couldn't. As the picture neared completion, the empty part of me started to manifest itself in my brush strokes. I was meant to be painting her as she really is... but... this picture is... my own self... My empty self has begun to appear within there. That's why... I've got to stop now."
"Your own self...?"
...Artists are weird.
"You're just running away! You can't bear it when she smiles at you. By painting her portrait, you noticed the gap between your own inner emptiness and her inner abundance. And you could not fill that gap... That's why you are quitting your painting. You are refusing her! Even so, you still can't bring yourself to leave her, can you? In spite of that... why is it that she continues to smile at you? You who can't accept her feelings... You who won't accept her feelings..."
"Tell me why!? If it was me... who was receiving... such feelings..."
Why aren't you kinder to yourself, Mistress?"
Please, give it a rest Krelian. We do not have to find a proper rest room every single time I need to use the facilities... Now, could I ask for a moment of privacy...?
"Yeah... To people who don't know her that well... I guess..."
*studies the portrait* "Her smile... I don't know... The smile in this picture is somehow different from the one she usually shows us. I realize Lacan's feelings are in there, but... I don't think she has ever opened herself up and shown her inner self to others like this before. You've been painting such a beautiful expression of Sophia... I just can't see the reason why you want to stop."
*looks at the bottom of the painting* Is it cuz you suck at drawing hands and youre just making excuses...?
"Beautiful...? Forget it. This picture...!? It's anything but beautiful..."
Id hit it.
"Lacan, you say you're empty. Then why do you come along with us? What we've been doing up till now, are not just acts of mercy... it's a fight for freedom. Time and again you've been through life threatening situations with us... A man who has nothing in his heart couldn't do that kind of thing... right?"
Well hook you up with a Gear with like a...paintbrush shaped sword or something. I've got a chainsaw on mine. C'mon. Itll be great.
*shakes head* "Roni, you're giving me too much credit. As long as you do something to keep yourself occupied... you can ignore the hollowness inside. From the beginning, my very existence itself was an emptiness. It wouldn't matter if I were to die right now... You live, you die... That's all..."
Gawd youre a buzz kill sometimes... *sigh*
"Pessimistic as usual, Lacan... And now you're lying."
"It is just that you're not good at expressing your own feelings. You're not empty. She knows that. That's why she shows only you her true smile."
"I don't deserve to see her true smile. She is the hope of the people. Their support. There is so much more for her to do. Why would she open her heart to a mere artist like me..."
Rene and Zephyr enter the room...
"The Council of Elders of Shevat issued a decision. Tomorrow we will leave for Soylent."
"Soylent? That's in Solaris..."
Ugh... Isnt that where they make Solarian Mystery Meat? Blargh... I double check where all my sandwich meat comes from ever since I heard about that place. Do we really gotta go there...?
"Yes. And... Sophia will be coming with us."
"That's ridiculous! The refugees are still increasing! We can't afford to have Sophia leave Nisan! And going to Soylent! That's plain foolish! It's too dangerous! What are the elders thinking?"
*shakes head* "No. It wasn't the council's wish. It was Sophia's will. It appears that she expressed this desire herself."
"That can't be... What is she thinking?"
"Originally, we talked about it being just us..."
Krelian runs over and decks Lacan...
"You keep back! I knew we couldn't leave Sophia in your care! I'll protect her...even if it costs me my life!"
Music: Ship of Regret and Sleep
You haven't slept since the day before yesterday, have you? You shouldn't do that to yourself!"
"I'm fine, it's not a problem..."
Cmon. You need some rest. Youre not a robot.
"Look, I'll watch over her, so you go sleep. What will we do if you also fall ill? Do not forget you are the head of the sect's military forces."
"Okay... I suppose you are right."
Krelian and Roni leave... After a few moments of hesitation, Lacan goes over to Sophias bed...
"I... It was my misjudgment that did this to you."
"I was terrified... It was like you could see right through me... Your eyes... That look... That was me that was being reflected back in your eyes... I was looking at myself... And thus painting myself... I couldn't stand it! So that's why... Oh Elly... What in the heavens did you find inside of me?"
"When you wake up, I think I will ask you that...
On second thought, no... No, I don't want to burden you with my concerns... Besides I wouldn't be able to ask you... One look into your eyes and I can't say a thing... I wouldn't even be able to tell you how I feel..."
"You are the sweetest person..."
Elly sits up in bed...
So you hold everything in and bear all the burden. If you get hurt in the end, you think that is fine..."
*pauses* That's... what I like about you."
*shakes head* "Stop! Don't say that. If you become just another human, everyone will..."
"Humans... aren't all that frail, you know. They don't need a symbol who is just appearances only. I believe that if you have light in your heart, you can overcome any hardship. What I have been doing is simply showing people that such light exists in the hearts of everyone."
"I'm just a woman. And to fulfill my womanhood I am prepared to throw away anything... even this position. I'm just playing the role of Sophia. But I am still me. I haven't changed... a cowardly, selfish, crybaby... I am still the same. Could you live a lie like that and still be happy...? I... don't want to do that."
To be able to tell the man that I love that I do love him. And I don't care if I get hurt or rejected. You only have one life. I don't want to turn around later and regret not having done such things..."
*shakes head slowly* "I... I..."
Outside the infirmary door...
Krelian proceeds to work off his aggression from being planted firmly in the Friend Zone by going on a rampage blowing up some Solarian Gears.
Music: Tears of the Stars, Hearts of the People
So, Krelian... Please open your fist... and with your open hand gently hold the people who will continue to live..."
"Thank you, Lacan... But... sorry... There's no other way..."
So share that happiness... and please...
Roni Fatima Portrait The founder of Aveh, Barts great-great~ grandpa and the original pilot of Andvari, if you need a history refresher.
Rene Fatima Ronis brother. Margie's great-great~ grandpa. Died in the Day of Collapse. His daughter took Sophias job as Holy Mother of Nisan after she died.