Murderous Filigree

Let's admire the pattern forming, Murderous filigree, I'm caught in the twisting of the vine, Go ascend with ivy, climbing, Ignore and leave for me, The headstone crumbling behind

I can't help my laughter as she cries, My soul brings tears to angelic eyes

Let's amend the classic story, Close it so beautifully, I'll let animosity unwind, Steal away the darkened pages, Hidden so shamefully, I'll still feel the violence of the lines…

If there was one thing Followers learned in their many years on Earth, it was that beauty could be the most dangerous weapon of all. Stanton had always thought the more delicate, the better.

Daughters had always been known most for their beauty and their potential for devastating evil. The last Daughters he had known were no different. Except for one.

Vanessa.

She had been the first of them he met. And she was beautiful. Her name, butterfly, truly became her. Delicate, but even under strong winds, she could fly. She had saved his life, an act of kindness that forever entwined their fates.

But even after her courageous feat, her role as Pandora Daughter brought her to the brink of destruction. The sorrow she had the potential to sow was terrible.

But only Stanton saw how fitting it was that her reminder of this came in the form of an arabesque tattoo.

Catty.

Atertra Adamantis. Black Diamond. Fitting, most thought, hard but dazzlingly beautiful. She was the unstoppable force that would inevitably collide with an unmovable object.

Catty was a much more fitting name for the small girl Stanton helped Zoe Reese rescue. Kittens, the playful and fragile animals young girls used to decorate their school notebooks and beg their parents for every Christmas. But kittens eventually became cats. Their play became hunting. And prey, as delicate as they had been, had no chance of escaping their claws.

And Stanton could see in the arabesque on the Scroll and in Catty's own spiraling designs, a certain fragility lived within her heart.

Serena.

His one true love. She was as soft and serene as her name suggested. Her hope was strong; it could never be taken. She came after him with ferocity in their battle. And in every meeting afterwards, the passion she had, awed him.

But even in the strength of her conviction, Stanton had seen the sensitive nature of her heart. She was the key that could shift the balance of power between light and darkness. And she was easily swayed by love.

Whenever Stanton heard the arabesques she created with her cello, he thought they revealed the tantalizing dance between good and evil that ruled her life.

Tianna.

She was certainly the definition of devastating beauty. Her dainty features and acquired bleeding heart were enough to enchant anyone she came across. Tragedy in her early life always made her a beacon for good, so much so that Selene saw it fitting to award her status as a Daughter of the Moon despite her true heritage.

But even the great goddess of the moon could not stop the Atrox from claiming his bride, whom he had created to be The Becoming of Sorrows. She was so precariously pulled by the two forces, her fragile heart could have easily been ripped in two.

The grace with which she made every movement never failed to remind Stanton of the arabesque of ballet.

Jimena.

She had walked through the fire and came out without even a mere scratch. Stanton was certain that somewhere beneath the layers of hard exterior, a soft heart awaited the lucky ones who made the cut. But evil could have never pierced through. She the exception, the one invulnerable to becoming the evil that threatened her sisters.

And so, Stanton mused to himself, he was entirely pleased with the naming of his daughter. Jimena. As he watched her sleeping in his cradle, Stanton prayed that she would be just as lacking in the murderous filigree as her namesake was.