Note: This fic *is* cannon: In episode 12 of the anime, we learn that Griffith spent a night with Gennon, governor of Chudan, in exchange for funding for the Band of the Hawk. (If you haven't seen it, what follows may not make much sense.) -Hott


Griffith touched the outsides of his arms.

His scars were burning again.

Four white ridges on the outsides of each of his arms, skin torn deep by his own fingernails, the only sign on his body that something hideous dwelt within his memory.

Staring at the surface of the river, naked, exposed, Caska staring in shock at the tense freeze in his back, feeling frighteningly numb and the need to feel the hot salt of his blood well up between his fingers and down his arms and into the river to stain it like a curse- suddenly stuttering, babbling, insistent that even the filthy sale of his own innocence was worth dominion over the earth-

Gennon's reeking body pinning him, clammy hands pawing at his trapped face, sliming his hair, blanketing him in the sour smell of old unwashed flesh and desperation, and too much wine-

Griffith squeezed his hands over his burning scars, and shut his eyes.

(Caska staring in shock at the tense freeze in his back.)

He felt suddenly grimy, and the memory of Gennon's smell caused a ripple of nausea to grow in his belly.

I need to bathe.

Griffith left his tent and went down to the river.

Gatsu was already there, sitting nude on a rock, letting the summer wind dry his bare skin. He barely glanced at Griffith before turning his attention back to the stars.

He sees how dirty you are.

Griffith shuddered and hastily undressed.

He slipped into the chill waters of the river, sure to splash his burning scars, desperate to numb them and the memories they triggered.

Griffith heard Gatsu stand and splash into the river behind him.

I've got to get clean!

Griffith moved faster, scooping handful after handful of water onto his arms. Gatsu's body plowed through the current, then stopped near his. Griffith stilled his hands and clamped them over his scars, certain that Gatsu could see those telltale marks, wondering frantically if these bouts of burning pain would ever disappear.

"Hoy," said Gatsu. "What's wrong?"

Griffith stared at the surface of the river, naked, exposed, Gatsu staring at the tense freeze in his back.

(Gennon's reeking body pinning him, clammy hands pawing at his trapped face.)

Warm hands, strong hands, settling lightly on his shoulders.


Hands that belonged to him, hands that he could control- Gatsu's hands.

Hands he could trust.

(Clammy hands pawing at his trapped face.)

The ripple of nausea grew in Griffith's belly, and he stepped away from Gatsu's touch.

I'm sorry. My body was already sold to Gennon.

"Nothing," whispered Griffith.


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