He understood very little of how words returned. He understood less how to verbalize them.
Happy was easier than Joy, simpler, but didn’t suit.
Mage, easier than Magician, but without the proper affection.
Rumor made little sense at all, vague and dire in its complexity, like her.
Love, all encompassing and deep and hard and easy and painful and soothing and everything, shouldn’t have been something he understood and could say to people. But he did, and she deserved it.
Sea and Tinker were the least complicated. There were few other words to describe them, simple, straightforward. Care woven in and applied liberally.
There were new faces though. And when he opened his mouth all that came out was baffled emptiness. Words largely trapped beneath aching horns.
He knew home. He wanted to go there. No idea where it was or what it was beyond the appropriately simple feeling of good.
Disconnected words spun daily in his head. Daily. Maybe hourly. Time had not returned. Just a locked box in a whirlwind and halfway pleased with it.
One was pink. He liked him. Well, he liked him. Bothways nonsensical detailed nonverbal emphasis.
He made him tea. Tealeaf. Not yet. For his voice, he said. He didn’t speak though. The tea was hot, and soothing like he’d been screaming. He wasn’t though. He thought. Maybe. Perhaps.
His horns (spiral, ram, keratin, decorative, curve) weren’t ostentatious. He knew ostentatious. Ostentatious was a big word that took up so much space. It didn’t fit easily into one word conversations. He was upset he wasn’t ostentatious. He knew there was a shorter one. Casual. But all he got thinking on it was repetitive bursts of white light, no description, then a headache.
He sighed when he got headaches. Joy fixed him. Or he made tea.
He needed a name. His real one slipped off his mind like uncooked pasta why did he know how to cook pasta.
The other he was not pink. He was purple.
He spared a brief thankful prayer to something round and up and bright and important that his beloved friends kept color in their lives.
He was purple like him! Inarticulate delight. But staring made him fidget. Cold, pretty eyes.
He-who-is-pink and He-who-is-purple were embedded in the group.
He-who-is-purple and Magician twine fingers in a way that makes his belly swoop like he is turning head over tail little laughing, joy not Joy. Feeling not person. He wants to touch the shimmering cord between them.
Love and Rumor have one too. He wants to wrap himself in that one in a different way.
Sea and Joy have another.
He wants to find those colors and make them something. Blazing red and silver twined between firestained fingers, the electric blue held fast in careful fists. Soft teal looped about hands.
Their relationships are different.
His coat is the closest he has gotten to all the good colors but it misses the love and the joy, not Joy. It’s missing the right shade of red, the fine silver, the cobalt and the lightning, the pastel and the ocean- Ocean! He knows the word not the thing- Tinkers color can be….lime. Color not fruit. Pink for his new tea friend, it sounds awful he can’t wait.
He-who-is-pink eludes his efforts to name. Cards in his mind, plants he never knew names too. He toys with them. Call him rose, call him cups, call him tea -no-noconfusingdont- call him wind call him the sensation of sun in grass. Doesn’t suit. Spades. Not cards. The tendril of idea is lost, he will return to it later. It gets easier by the moment.
He-who-is-purple has such soft hair. He rests his head on his shoulder and he feels it on his cheek. Magician smiles like when orange cat rolls, adoration, he feels a white hot trill of pure happiness, simple. He-who-is-purple rests on him for a moment soft and small and Magicians shoulders lower and He-who-is-purple is so achy sore tired exhausted is resting! they are friends!
His friends all look at He-who-is-purple.
They touch him, and push food at him, and talk to him and their voices are sometimes low and reverent even when he seems…Despondent -No.- Sad, melancholy, not allowed to be despondent, he sees them say so, say no.
They plan where to go and they look to him. They ask him and him about food the same. He reads to him, quiet and dizzying because he may be having trouble understanding and remembering but he is pretty fucking sure his books make no sense to him.
Cursing returns. Easier in all languages. He doesn’t say it though. One word conversations don’t need to be four letters. He does it once to Tinker, she makes a thing, he whispers, she looks at him, he blinks wide eyed and innocent and feels a piece slam into him or bubble out, feels a window gain another pane, a mirror glue one fragment back together. Tinker laughs, glares, looks confused, he is content with chaos.
Another piece. Growing or returning, ache in his chest, but amazing.
He-who-is-pink is revisited. Pentacles, Judge, Leaf? No still too close. He remembers the sensation of his presence. A fair, bright and warm, Sea fails behind him, a bright sweet burst on his tongue, strawberry? Maybe.
He-who-is-purple looks at him though, soft pale cold violet eyes, he had been lost in thought. He-who-is-purple worries about them all, quietly.
He chews on his words. Silver brows furrow as he opens and closes his mouth like a baffled fish. But He-who-is-purple waits patiently.
Silver, Light, Swords, Velvet, Orchid. No, nono.
He-who-is-purple looks concerned, but he feels like he’s run a mile. He feels like waking up and running in the aurora world.
Up, direction, bright. Not. Simple.
He opens his mouth decisively.