Kanna entered the tent, pushing the bottom corner of the flaps open and stepped inside. She could see Adrian curled up and knew that posture immediately. She pursed her lips into a thin line and approached, making her way to he man's head before going to reach out, hesitating a few times before placing her hand upon his head "Adrian..."
He stiffened; he hadn't heard anyone come in. Adrian flicked his eyes towards the voice he recognized easily as Kanna's before turning over slowly onto his other side to face her. "What?"
A foreign expression of concern marred the demure beauty of Kanna's face and conflicted with the easy level of calm she'd built over the years "...You're in pain." She observed.
His guard was down; he was too startled by genuine concern creasing her lovely face to bother denying the truth. Why did she care so much? He frowned at the ground, then met her eyes again. His silence spoke volumes.
Acting on both whim and instinct to care for those in need, Kanna approached his face and extended her hand, the sleeve sliding smoothly down her arm before her palm reached his cheek. She gave the surface a small rub.
A warm, tingling sensation spread from her tiny fingertips through his skin. Adrian's frown deepened, but it was of confusion and built-up emotion. He had never been good with accepting people's help or sympathy. So he surprised himself when he reached up to pinch her wrist and keep her hand on his cheek when he felt her pulling away.
Kanna felt the soft strength of a giant's precise grip on her arm and she remained where she was, hand spread over the surface of his face. There was a grief that couldn't be spoken within the depths of his eyes, one that could only be felt and shared when one knew the pay of loss.
He was infinitely grateful she wasn't trying to make him talk about his feelings. They were having a heart-to-heart, but in a way he was more comfortable with. And she understood that, he could tell. The kindness she was showing only made him want to tear up more. "...You would have liked her." He closed his eyes, guiding her hand a little lower. "She loved learning new things. She got so excited on days when she could go to school with everybody else." A faint recalling smile lit up his face.
"I would have enjoyed teaching her, I'm quite sure." She replied then left room for Adrian to continue, giving him the benefit of one of her rare smiles. "What was her name?"
"Verity." It felt good to say her name. Adrian opened his eyes, releasing her wrist. He stared at her smile a moment; he had never seen her smile like that, and certainly not at him of all people. With this encouraging thought, he mustered up the courage to continue. "She...just had this way of bringing out the best in people." His voice nearly cracked. "..I swear she was the brightest ray of sunlight God ever did make." Adrian finally broke eye contact when he felt a hot tear escape. Dammit..
Even if she could be cold to men, not a trace of that was clear when she knew what needed to be done. Managing as best she could, the teacher approached his face and embraced it. Kanna rubbed his cheek "She sounds like she was an amazing person."
Story by myself and
Kanna is her original character, Adrian is mine.