Part 1 [chapter 5]- Up Top

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It was with a deep disappointment that Eurydice does not find lush grass and dirt under her fingers, but several inches of fresh snow. Her body shivers in the clothes that Hadestown provided for her, old fabric, worn paper thin, and small clothes to combat the heat of the air down below. This was not how she imagined arriving back home. She imagined sunlight, and flowers, pollin drifting through the air. This was her every worst nightmare, making it out just to die, shivering in the cold again.

But Katia and Kryos don't seem to mind. Their tears drip from their faces, making patterns and polka dots in the snow.

"When was the last time you saw trees and snow?" Eurydice croaks out. Katia laughs, pressing a hand to her stomach, as if trying to touch her baby, not yet born.

"too long."

Eurydice knows, partially, how lucky she is, to only have been in Hadestown for a short while, not even a year yet. But it's hard, looking in the mirror, and seeing a different girl. A girl with longer hair and bangs that she pushes behind her ear. They aren't even bangs anymore. One of the things Orpheus loved the most about her appearance, the way he could push back her bangs and press a kiss to her forehead and then cover it with her hair. As if saving it for later. She remembers cutting her bangs and bob for the first time when she was fifteen. Cathartic. Calming. She felt more like herself, free. And now, as what was left of her baby fat from her teenage years disappears, her face slimming, her hair longer, her eyes gray, she is no longer young and hungry. But old souled and starving. What has this world turned her into but a machine made to tear down everything around her?

"The baby alright, Katia?" Eurydice finally asked, ripping herself out of her reverie.

"Yes."

"You good, Kyros?"

"All good here."

"Good."

"And you, Eurydice?"

"I'm fantastic."

The revelation was upon them, and Eurydice couldn't help but spit out the words from where she knelt on the ground, not caring that her clothes were getting soaked, "I always hated winter."

"Why?" Katia asked. "It's so beautiful."

"It's cold. And wet. And deadly. I lost my body to winter, I lost hope to it year after year, I lost everything to winter. Forgive me if I don't care for snowfall every now and then."

"I hear a tint of bitterness." Kyros laughed, his laugh booming deep in his chest. "More than a tint, a whole spoonful. A heaping."

"Maybe I'm a little bitter," Eurydice shrugged. "But I'm grateful to be home. More than grateful, actually, elated."

"You don't seem quite so elated." Katia said.

"Oh, don't I?"

A small pause where Eurydice stood, clearing her throat and standing before the couple. Shame painted her cheeks a faint red. "I'm sorry. There's a lot for my mind to work through at the moment, I'm- I'm afraid of having to see Orpheus again."

"Orpheus?"

She remembers briefly that she never told them his name, that she could barely even think his name in her head without feeling sharp shards inside of her jab at her heart.

"My poet. My... fiance, or when I left, he was my fiance. I loved- love- him, and I left, and... if he hates me now, I'm not sure what I'll do."

Katia stood up beside, the older women took the young one's hand in hers. Lacing her fingers through Eurydice's. "We're your family, if Orpheus doesn't want you, which he will. Me and Kryos, the baby, we'll be there for you. And besides, you don't need him to love you. You're strong enough on your own, you made it this far after all."

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