The Traveling Pan-African Carnival! [ d12 ] Feb 1, 2022 21:26:50 GMT -5
Post by ⋆｡ﾟ☁︎ kaitlin ☾ ﾟ｡⋆ on Feb 1, 2022 21:26:50 GMT -5
↳ NICO THORNE
Nico feels trapped, but he did it to himself.
He's been in the Capitol for eight months, hasn't been home in—he doesn't even remember the last time he was here, thinks maybe that he forgot on purpose, or maybe he forgot because he spent the entire time on the edge of blackout drunk and avoiding two of the people that he cares for the most in this stupid fucking world.
He missed Carter's birthday. Ten's, too. That makes his chest tight.
He wants desperately to pretend that it doesn't.
That's always been his biggest problem, the one thing that he was never able to stamp out. Flames made out of of pride and far too many self-destructive tendencies to ever properly lose their light, they suck up all the oxygen in every room that he walks into until he's choking on them, his jaw clenched. He's never been any good at looking past himself, seeing how destroying himself is hurting the people around him almost as much as it's hurting him. Sometimes more. It's always been his undoing, his willingness to let people see the worst in him and nothing else.
You can't disappoint if no one expects anything of you.
At least he's not drowning himself in liquor anymore. He's drowning himself in other things, sure, trying to drag himself out of the darkness and the abyss by doing something good. He doesn't want to admit that it wasn't his idea, doesn't want to admit that the organizers approached him and offered him a briefcase's worth of money just to stand up on this stage in the Square and announce the start of the parade. It makes it feel... less, somehow. And he doesn't want that, doesn't want this to feel smaller than it is, wants to be proud of the fact that he's here. It's been this endless cycle of paid appearances over and over again for the last five years, burying himself in his public image, standing in front of expensive lenses and walking down runways, all eyes on him as he stares back at them, feeling emptier and emptier with every flash of the cursed camera.
He was so in love with his own pain he didn't know how to leave it behind, fell deeper year after year after year.
But he's here now. He clawing himself out.
And he turned down the money. And he's here for himself. Call it narcissism, call it selfishness, but it's the truth. He's spent the last half decade, the last twenty-five years really, running and running and running away from himself, away from the people who care about him, away from the things that would make him better. He buried Francis six feet under and it was like he'd buried himself right alongside him, let himself get lost in the glitz and the glamour of the Capitol until it blinded him, let him be someone, anyone other than Nico Thorne. But he here now, doing something kind and fun and exciting because it makes something in the very bottom of his stomach feel warm. Spreading heritage and knowledge to the districts, spreading warmth and fun, a genuine kindness—it's nothing like anything he's ever been a part of before. They're things that Twelve never gets to see, and after twenty-five years of taking and taking and taking from Twelve and never giving anything back, he's starting to feel ready to pay his dues.
But still. He hasn't been here in eight months.
He feels like an impostor.
"Twelve, welcome!" He says into the mic. He hates this stage, always has, can still remember standing down there in the crowd and having his name drawn from a glass bowl sat on a table five feet from where he stands now. And while he long since stopped feeling awkward in front of crowds, today feels different. Today, for once, he feels like he's being seen. "It's an honor to introduce you all to the Traveling Pan-African Carnival!"
He goes on to introduce the main cast of performers, the troupe that will lead the charge doing a series of graceful dances across the stage, a technicolor collection of golds and purples and green enchanting the crowd. Nico feels a shiver upon realizing how much he's smiling simply for having seen a collection of children's eyes in the front row widen at the performance.
"As you all know, you've been invited to participate in the parade if you'd like! Local performers are welcome to join in, encouraged even." He closes his speech quickly, wants to get the party started, waves his hand and goes to take his place at the front of the brigade of floats. "Cue the music!" he shouts loudly.
Same practiced grin, this time it feels real.
✧ ✦ ✧
Local entertainers are encouraged to join in the opening parade with their own floats or walking performances, and are welcomed to set up their own booths or stalls in the main district square alongside the other carnival setups. So be creative! If you have a local way to celebrate black heritage, they want you to show it.
Beads are determined by a dice roll [*roll range="1-10"] in your first post, and all posts after earn you +2 beads.
Please keep track of your beads here!
This event will run until February 28th.
And most importantly, have fun. x