Title: Nothing Like Sanity
Author: Amy Fortuna
Rating: PG-13 to R
Fandom: Shakespeare, King Lear, Edgar/Gloucester
Archive: You don't want this. You really don't. You say you do? Okay then.
Disclaimer: I didn't do it!
Warnings: Don't like even a suggestion of father/son incest? You might want to avoid this. Don't know King Lear? You won't get it.
Feedback: Of course.
Summary: The Earl of Gloucester seeks comfort in the stormy night.
Notes: Never tempt an English major, oh Muses, when she has a paper due far too soon.


This is nothing like sanity at all. This is only fire. I have stopped listening to higher reason, I am no longer a creature of thought -- only of driving thunder, rain, storm, high winds, caught against him in the night, my body seeking his with every breath.

I hold him to me. I hold him. My hands seek him out. My eyes, darkened as they are, strain for a little light to watch him by. Who is he, this mad young man that chatters in my ear, speaking of things I do not know and cannot understand?

And the pain of my burnt-out eyes is still exploding through my body, but I yearn. I need the touch of another; I need to know that I am alive in the thunder and rain, though I know not where I am.

He calls himself Tom. He is crazy. And I don't care. Blindly -- ah, how ironic that sounds -- I search for his lips. I catch his with mine. I feel him stiffen and pull away, startled.

"No..." he whispers. And his voice sounds completely sane, not a trace of madness in him.

"Yes," I say, and breathe it into his mouth. We stumble backward against the wall of the barn we are hiding in. There is a bundle of hay beneath me, I can feel it. I pull him downward.

He is stiff in my arms, unyielding, but not actively resisting. He says nothing, lies limp. He is warm. His body is beautifully formed, and I do not need to see him to know that. Ah, and that is all I care for right now, that he is warmth in the night, even if dirty and mad. I kiss him again.

This time the reaction is much stronger. He pushes me away, and moves off of me. I lie there on the hay, limp, bereft. Cold. It is so cold. And I am so dark; there will never be any light again.

I do not deserve this! I have lived fair and just with all. I even gave my bastard son a share of the inheritance. And now...I am blind, cold, in pain, in the dark while the rain pours down, and the man I look to for shelter is mad.

I have been rejected once again by a cruel world. Silently I turn and try to crawl into the hay to find a shelter of some kind.

And hands are there beside me, settling a blanket over my shoulders as I shiver. Is it only a dream that I hear my son's voice? My beloved son, is it really you, my Edgar?

"Poor Tom's a-cold." The voice speaks by my ear and I jump. I do not relinquish the blanket, however. Let him be cold, if he would not be warmed by me.

I hunch into myself, waiting for eternity or morning, whichever comes first.