Pygmalion and Galatea
Disclaimer: I do not own Naruto, Misashi Kishimoto does (and Itachi). I do not own the Mona Lisa, Leonardo Da Vinci does. I do not own the Venus de Milo, uhh… someone else does. I do not own the legend of Pygmalion and Galatea, our late ancestors made it up.
He ignored the sweat that trickled down the side of his face, fully concentrated on the forming statue in front of him. His long, skilled artist hands worked fervently to hone the perfection of his marble art, gaze never leaving for too long. The hammer and chisel had a very comfortable weight in his hands as he used it to shape the figure.
Stopping momentarily to admire his work, the man continued laboring after a swift observation. A rather phantom of a smile ghosted on his lips every once in a while every time his flesh would touch the stone. This was a different man contrary to the cold ice that he was outside his art studio. He would rarely smile; much less give attention to the human beings which were God's creation, His art… but instead immerse all his free time into this piece of rock.
But to this man, it was no piece of rock. It was a piece of his life, his self. After devoting countless hours and days to make it into what it was now, he would fall into immediate despair if something were to happen to his statue.
The work of art was a marble statue of a young male, an imaginary person that this particular artist would dream of each night with longing and desire. He had imagined him to be petite but exquisite; with slender curves only women should posses. Each limb was proportioned and bent into a graceful arch in its pose. The artist had placed slight muscles to indicate his masculinity but not too much to destroy his feminine wonder. The face was given much care to make, taking into account the high cheekbones and angled jaw; the eyes were also given detail. Even though they were colorless, the artist had carved them in a way that made them unique along with the delicately carved eyebrows and long eyelashes.
It was a beautiful androgynous male.
The artist was almost finished with it and the mere thought gave him immeasurable delight. He was known for making outstanding, magnificent art works and he has to say that this was his best yet.
This man was a fan of both the Mona Lisa and the Venus de Milo and having taken these two artworks as his prime inspiration, he came across this statue. The Mona Lisa is said to have one of Leonardo Da Vinci's little secrets. It was said that the legendary painter had not set a specific gender for the Mona Lisa and had shown his infatuation with the goddess iconology through the painting. Da Vinci believed in the balance of both male and female and that in order for one human to reach enlightenment, one must hold both male and female elements.
That was where our painter got his wondrous idea of a female-looking male. He believed that if he was to make the ultimate work of art, he would need to believe that he was replicating the perfect human being of both genders. But that alone was not enough for the dear painter. He needed to give his art something special and enigmatic that will want the spectators look deeper and deeper into its mystery.
The Venus de Milo, according to experts, is the exact art replica of the Greek goddess, Venus's image. Having been said to be made of mysterious powers the statue was first found in a deserted field as lumps of rock. When residents had attempted to put the statue together, they were amazed at its beauty but were greatly disappointed that she had lacked arms. Even so, they could not deny the statue's beauty despite being armless. This incomplete art had attracted tourists and scholars around the world and all had wondered, 'where are her arms?' This proved to be of high interest amongst them and started many centuries of searching. They found none and their theories of what the Venus would look like, complete, still remain unsolved. This gave the Venus de Milo a mysterious background that made her famous around the world.
That was what our young artist wants. He wanted his art to be beautiful but he also wanted it to be a mystery. There would be no joy at looking at a boring statue, even if it was beautiful. He would make his art into some thing wonderful that even though he cannot make it look as beautiful if not more than the goddess herself, he will try to make his art resemble something more inferior… something human.
An artists' goal is to either imitate God's art, or make another art totally in itself. Our artist's goal is to make his statue look life-like but at the same time creating another type of enigmatic art, something akin to divinities. He wanted to make his art into something legendary, something historical. It was an ambition every one in his family had; he just didn't act like a pompous prick like all of them.
Speaking of family, our artist's brother suddenly burst into his art studio and almost tipping off his precise carving with a sudden opening of the door. "I've been calling you for the past hour. Dinner's ready Itachi."
He didn't even spare the young male a glance as he all but carefully placed down his tools on the stool beside him and gave a final check on his work, to see if he made any mistakes by his brother's entrance then grabbed a blanket to cover it gently. "I already told you I won't be eating tonight, Sasuke. And didn't father always tell you to knock before entering another artist's studio? I could have made a mistake with my work."
His little brother was quite irritating to disturb him in his sanctuary, always acting like the spoiled brat of the family. Itachi growled softly in his throat at the thought of making a mistake on his lovely art. If he had made one, Sasuke would have Hell to pay. He would not afford a single mistake, he could not.
Sasuke huffed at remembering their one of their father's most important reminders. Never, under any circumstances, never disturb an artist at work. Complete concentration is a necessity in making fine arts and every disturbance may well lead to the destruction of these arts. You must always proceed with caution and always control yourself if you want to create magnificent artwork like the rest of our ancestors have. Their father would always say that but it slipped the young Uchiha's mind tonight.
"I'm sorry." Itachi felt no remorse in his tone. "I'll try to remember that next time. By the way, what are you working on? A sculpture?" The younger male had started to advance towards Itachi and his marble statue but was stopped in his tracks when his brother moved in to block his path.
"I'm afraid I can't allow you to see it Sasuke, much less go near it." Itachi's tone spoke hostility and held a very real threat underneath. He really didn't want anyone else touching his statue.
The young brat glared at his brother but knew it would do nothing. Itachi was known to act as cold as ice and was as emotional as a rock that his glare took no effect on him. He was also a subtly stubborn individual and would often times do as he wished without thinking of what others thought about it. It was almost as if like his brother was of another world.
But then, why the hostility? Why would he keep his work away if one day, he would show it to millions of others? Sasuke was just one man and what harm would it be to take a peek? Was this statue so important to Itachi that he would not let anyone else see it?
"And why not? Don't tell me this statue is some kind of replica of your secret lover that you don't want the others to find out." The idea of Itachi and a lover seemed gross in Sasuke's mind that it took him a while to process the thought. Itachi did not love. It was like telling other people that it was raining cats and dogs. It was an impossible thing.
His brother did not move from his position between the statue and Sasuke but when Sasuke started to move past him did he move. The shorter male was almost at hand's reach to the statue before he was harshly pulled back and thrown to the door with a slam. "You should learn to respect other's works, little brother. Some artist's do not like it when filthy hands touch their masterpiece."
Sasuke slumped to the floor; the impact was not that hard and only left him at a momentary daze. He looked up to see Itachi moving back his statue and watched as he slightly lifted the blanket covering it with uncharacteristic care. He saw how those eyes softened just by looking at the marble rock and wondered more what the hell the statue was.
"I am disappointed. It seems you have not yet reached the level of enlightenment some of us has acquired." Itachi spoke in a soft voice. "Tell me Sasuke, have you ever made something that took your all into making it?"
The duck-butt styled male was confused. Why the hell is Itachi talking about this 'enlightenment'- stuff? His eyes tried to peer underneath the blanket but Itachi placed it back down again gently, covering the sculpture from view. Sasuke saw how his brother's touch lingered on it and detected a very weird expression on his face. Was that relief and contentment?
Itachi's red eyes gleamed brightly in the darkness as he regarded Sasuke's position on the floor. He took slow steps towards his brother and the younger male wondered what he was going to do next. The older one brought up his hand and used it to grip Sasuke's hair, tight enough to hurt and hurled him uncaringly up from the tiled floor.
"Have you ever made any piece of art that took an important role of your life? Have you, Sasuke?" Itachi pinned his brother to the door behind him and fixed dangerous looking orbs at him that Sasuke couldn't tear his eyes away. "Any piece of art at all… be it ugly or unworthy of praise, have you ever created one that touched your soul in such a way you can't imagine life without it?
"A special piece of art… THAT, Sasuke, is what I am referring to. A piece of art that will make you complete just by being there. If you can understand what I am saying and have actually made one like it, come to me and you may have the privilege of seeing MY special piece of art." The older male released his tight hold on his brother's hair and moved away, giving space for the other. Sasuke stared at his older brother as if he was delusional and smoothed his hair out into its usual style. What the fuck is he talking about?
The older Uchiha seemed to have read Sasuke's thoughts as he turned his back to him and released an exasperated sigh. Of all the people, he thought that Sasuke would understand what he meant. But it seems that being coddled by many and growing up, neglected of father's praises might have caused this lack of understanding. He just wished that his brother would one day realize it before art will just become a hollow void in his life. After treating art as a form of competition, he wished that Sasuke would once again see it as something much more wonderful.
"Leave, Sasuke. Tell mother I won't be eating."
He returned to his statue and stayed beside it, comfortable in the inanimate object's presence. Itachi could feel Sasuke standing up behind him and hearing the opening and closing of the door, briefly illuminating the room and once again shrouding it in darkness as he left Itachi and his art alone. The Uchiha looked up at the tall glass window in front of him and saw the full moon, partly covered by a misty cloud.
I wouldn't be able to sleep again tonight, it seems. He thought in his head as he took off the blanket from his sculpture and retrieved his working tools. Back to work.
Uchiha Sasuke grudgingly stomped his foot like a tantrum-throwing child as he descended the stairs of their large mansion. Ever since he was young, he had always admired and idolized his older brother, Uchiha Itachi. Itachi was a child prodigy, having shown inexplicable talent with art at the tender age of four. He was also known as a genius that would sometimes show itself effortlessly through the different artworks he would make. A young Da Vinci, others would say.
The Uchiha family was a large family that was well-known in history as a great contributor and supporter of the artistic cultures. Having placed numerous of its ancestral history into the deep web of art history, the words 'Uchiha' and 'art' would almost immediately be partnered with the other. One cannot talk about the Uchihas without talking about art and one cannot talk about art without talking about the Uchihas.
And so having been born into an art-crazed family, it was only tradition that Sasuke follow their footsteps. And follow he did.
He was not an art elite like his older brother and his drawings were only slightly above average. But at times, Sasuke also made some very exquisite works and although not at par with his brother's skills, was very admired by many others. He had made art into something his life revolved around on and when his brother had spoken that his art seemed incomplete because he lacked that so-called 'special piece of art', he was greatly angered.
How dare he? Just because he was better at Sasuke at art didn't mean that he had the right to demoralize his beliefs in art like that. Art was still special to Sasuke even though he knew Itachi loved art more than he did. But that didn't mean he could say those things to him in such a spiteful manner.
The young Uchiha finally reached the bottom of the stairs and he headed to the dining room and saw his mother and father sitting on the chairs, waiting for him. His father looked up from whatever papers he was reading and asked his youngest son, "Where is your brother, Sasuke?"
"He won't be eating tonight. Itachi is finishing up his work." Sasuke replied, hissing out the last part with much venom in his voice.
Putting the papers he had been holding, Fugaku and Mikoto too, looked at their son in a disappointing manner. "What was that, Sasuke?" They were both clearly disapproving of Sasuke's spite towards what Itachi felt about art even if Mikoto just showed it with a small frown on her motherly features, Fugaku looked like he would erupt like a volcano at any given time. "Don't you dare talk about something as important as an artist's passion into his work like that. You are being impolite to your co-artist. Haven't I told you that when you were younger son or were you not listening in the importance of passion in art?"
Even Mom and Dad… "I'm sorry Father, Mother," Sasuke apologized as he dropped into a bow that hid his face and made sure his voice sounded remorseful. "That was really disrespectful and I had not shown the courtesy each and every artwork must be given… even if they are insignificant."
"Just remember to never do what you did again… okay?" Mikoto asked her son, that familiar soft look returning to her features while she motioned for him to come and sit on his chair by the table.
Following her command, he stood up from his bow and gave her a small smile. "Yes mother." Mikoto smiled back while Fugaku returned to reading his papers.
Sasuke eyed the cooked steak in front of him and picked up his fork, he thought about something in his head for a moment and stayed still in his chair before his hand came down and he started to eat the well- prepared meal by his mother.
A/N: How is it for a chappie 1? I'll post Chapter 2 when my muse comes. I'm just glad Itachi has one, though. Just not yet. XD
If you know the story of Pygmalion and Galatea in Greek Mythology, I'm pretty sure you'll know what will happen in this fic… with a few Sasuke-bashing included.
Reviews are always appreciated.
Love me, hate me, never flame me.