Mag cried a lot as a kid. Perhaps it was because tears were the only normal things Mag could produce from her faulty eyes. Perhaps it was because she had always been rather sensitive. Perhaps it was because, as a blind kid, her life had been rougher than the average person's. Perhaps it was from the abuse she suffered at the hands of everyone else who lived at her orphanage. All of the other kids at that orphanage would often call her Blindy or No-Eyes or Blind Hag. They were cruel names spoken with enough hostility for Mag to learn very early on that she was an outsider. She might not have been able to see what her attackers looked like but the venom in their voices was enough for her to have an idea.
"Ugly Maggie ain't got no friends and no eyes!" one of the boys jeered at the little girl. The others quickly followed suit, claiming that she was so unlovable the good lord above didn't even think she was worth a pair of functioning eyes. They told her that she was a mistake, that she should have died before birth. Why else would she be born defective unless God had changed his mind? But here she stood, alive enough. Hot tears poured down her face as she tried to hide from the words, but they followed her everywhere she went.
"Why?" she asked herself. "Why are they so mean? What did I do? Oh! I don't want to be blind! I want to see! Then maybe they'll like me…" but it was not to be. Once blind, always blind. Surgery was only for the people who could actually afford it and there certainly wasn't anyone down in these parts of Sanitarium that would be able to afford it. Heck, there were times when they could barely afford food. So the others, even the adults who ran the orphanage, told Mag to abandon her hope of ever seeing. She had no choice but to believe them. After all, they were so much older and wiser than she was and the actually had working eyes. With working eyes, they would know so much more about the world than she did, so what right did she have to protest? How could she tell them otherwise? So her tears kept coming. Day in and day out, sharp and salty tears would slide from her unseeing eyes and down a small, miserable face.
"Once blind, always blind!" they shouted and Mag believed it.
Or at least, for a little while, she believed it. By some miracle, as the years rolled by, Mag suddenly found herself in a position that a precious few people could even dream about obtaining. She was now the Voice of GeneCo and she could see. Rotti, the company's benevolent CEO, had blessed her with the gift of sight in exchange for her vocal talent. That was a no-brainer deal in her mind. What's more, she was serving alongside her first and best friend, Marni. The woman had befriended Mag during her teenager years and the two had been inseparable ever since. It was how Mag met Rotti in the first place. Marni had somehow caught his eye and the pair began dating and it wasn't long after this that Marni brought Mag to Rotti. The rest was history.
"Once blind, always blind!" Mag scoffed, shaking her head as she admired herself in the mirror. She was so very beautiful, she regretted not being able to see it sooner. Of course, this was partly thanks to Rotti improving her standard of living, but she still couldn't help but feel a flash of pride at how much better she was doing in terms of her circumstance. Those poor fools down at the orphanage had been so wrong!
Or had they. Life had never seemed to like Mag very much and even after she pretty much came out on top of the world, life still found a way to bring her down. First, Marni died. Through an illness and an accident, she and the child she was supposed to give birth to died. Second, the death of Marni drove Rotti and Nathan, another one of Mag's friends through Marni, to new depths. Nathan shut himself off from everyone, including Mag, and Rotti became increasingly controlling and megalomaniacal. Mag was left utterly alone under his cruel thumb. Then thirdly, Mag began to see. Not in a physical sense, but in a metaphorical sense.
As the years passed, Mag began to see GeneCo for the web of lies it was but, by this time, it was far too late for her to back out, so she continued to live her life as a slave for a man who relished bringing people to their gory demises. Mag wanted nothing more than to be free of all of this mess but she was entirely bound to Rotti. She supposed she had been so thrilled about getting new eyes that she had still been so blind to the truth. But hey, once blind, always blind, right? So Mag spent the next 17 years in a literal Hell.
Worst of all, Mag couldn't even cry anymore. Literally, her tear ducts had been destroyed during her operation. For that, if Mag ever did cry again, she would only be able to sob. Ugly, gasping sounds were all Mag was able to produce anymore and where the tears would've once been, only a sharp pain behind her eyes remained. It was a cruel reminder of what else Rotti had taken from her. He had taken her ability to cry. Her ability to be human. All that was left was a dry-eyed liar. At one point, she did cry. Or rather, she tried to. But she was trying to force out something that wasn't there. Just like her life. Spinning stories about a world that never was and never would be. The pain was awful! She was trying to grieve, but she couldn't because she wasn't human anymore. Rotti had rebuilt her to become his puppet. Puppets didn't cry. They were made of weak, pliable material and they couldn't shed tears. For that, crying became a literal pain to Mag because she felt all this pressure building up that she could never release. She felt so trapped.
Worst of all, she couldn't even cry. Mag's tear ducts had been rewired during the operation. For that, if Mag ever tried to cry now, tears of oil and blood would ooze out of her ducts. Well, it wasn't technically oil in the classic sense, but it was some mysterious fluid that was thick and dark. It was used to keep her eyes functioning but left her looking like a demon on the rare occasion that she did cry. And the fact that she could also cry blood, the sharpness of her sobs cutting her ducts on the wires inside, didn't help this appearance. Then again, Mag might've been a demon. She was working for the devil after all. Rotti had come to her like an angel of light but it didn't take long to see his true nature. After one particularly harsh reprimand from him, Mag went home crying. She had always been rather sensitive after all. But oh, the tears! They were horrible! Hot, red ooze pushed its way out of Mag's biotech tear ducts and ran down her cheeks in thick, sticky waves. Mag tried to wipe it away but only succeeded in staining her hand and face in a red-black liquid that shouldn't have existed within a normal human's body. Mag could feel her eyes sparking and crackling painfully in her skull as she wept and as the blood trailed down her cheeks, she wondered if it was all the people whom she had lead to death, trying to get her to feel their pain. If it was some sort of undead retribution, it was working. She had so much blood on her hands, literally and metaphorically.
But if there had been one good thing that came out of all of this, it was that Mag could still cry. Yes, it was an odd thing to say, but it was true. Mag could still cry. She did so very often. But there was a sick, twisted sense of pride in it. Ever since meeting Rotti Largo, Mag had become inhuman. She was no longer the innocent girl she started out as. She was a stitched up surgery doll flaunted around like a robot or a puppet. Her eyes were the fakest of them all. Those evil pieces of technology that had been wired into her skull did nothing but propagate the lies that she sang! Mag hated them more than anything except Rotti himself. But despite having biotech eyes that were more unnatural than her old, blind eyes, Mag could still cry real, natural, human tears. So, as Mag curled up in her bed, miserably reflecting on the lie she was living out, she was almost smiling. The thoughts swirling in her mind were terrible and depressing, no doubt, but Mag was busy relishing in the salty taste of her tears. The sharpness seemed to jolt awake that human side of her that died the moment she agreed to trade her soul for these eyes. They tasted as bitter as she felt and when they burnt down her face, they felt like retribution and salvation combined. Rotti, it looks like you've taken everything from me. Well, almost everything. I still have my mortality. I still have my humanity. I still have my dignity. I still have my compassion. I still have hope and love. I still can cry. I still have my precious, precious tears. And Mag cried for the rest of the night.
AN: If this story seems weird, you're right. It was more of a philosophical piece that combined 3 headcanons I saw regarding Mag's eyes than an actual story.
The first headcanon said Mag was physically unable to cry because the water would ruin her eyes. This would've also been a metaphor for her inability to be a human after serving someone like Rotti for so long.
The second was that Mag could cry, but the substance she cried was either blood or some other liquid entirely. This, of course, stood for how false and inhuman she, or rather, her gig as Blind Mag, was.
Then the last headcanon stated that Mag could still cry and this, of course, represents that although Mag had worked for Rotti for 17 years, she never did truly lose her sense of mortality as we see in the film. So I know this was a weird story and the 3 endings may have thrown some of you off, but it was really just a headcanon written in a longer form. So what do you think? How does Mag cry?