A/N: Written for forthrightly for a drabble challenge on my journal. Intentionally this short, complete, and will not be updated. Ever.
Prompt: Tres x Esther, 'gentle persuasion'
Truth and a Half
We learn best what we teach.
It's strange to her, the fine line he walks between being human and being not-quite.
His eyes are always empty. They were not made to tell the truth, only to see it. His face does not know how to smile. He is incapable of tears.
Yet still, to her eyes which can see beyond the barriers of flesh and iron, there is more.
Behind the tearless eyes, behind the unsmiling mouth, between and along his wire veins, Esther catches half-glimpses of trapped smiles and the light of a soul. He is not empty. There is more to his life than the lightning which courses through his limbs and lets him move.
So one day, when there is no rain, she takes him by the hand and tries to teach him about sunlight and summer.
He doesn't seem to understand, but she keeps talking anyways. It wouldn't be like her to give up so easily.
She shows him birds, and grass, and moment by moment gently persuades him to believe her when she says this world is a place he can live in. She teaches him every truth she knows and then some, and one day in winter when the snow falls, she realizes that he understands.
Blood is not needed for a soul to be born, she learns in return.
A sky and a warm wind and an honest smile are more than enough.