((Reposting because my last post got corrupted. Anyways, Happy Trans Day of Visibility, from a trans nonbinary man. Just wanted to write something to celebrate with my beloved characters, especially my main as he is a slight reflection of myself. Don’t expect a masterpiece, as I am not a writer and this is a short drabble.))

(TW: very brief mention of dysphoria and negative body image, possible brief mention of nausea)

Change was a constant in the Neath, as strange as that might seem. Nothing ever seemed to stay the same. Whether it was the current scandal gripping the city, the fashion trends, the loyalty of your acquaintances, or even their human nature, it was rare to find it as it was yesterday the next day.

The Dreadful Intriguer, though he would never admit it, struggled to stick to his learned normalcy. The thought of change unnerved him. Yet it was all around him down here, every single day. He reluctantly learned to embrace it, knowing that if he were to reach his goals, that’s what it would take.

That wasn’t to say he did not cherish the little he had that didn’t waver in the slightest.

At the end of a cumbersome day (Night? Time did not work the same down here, either.), he would shrug off his coat, greet his kittens, and head to the mirror. The rest of his clothes and bandages would disappear and he would examine himself in front of the glass.

His eyes roamed his body, tracing each edge, each scar, each reminder of the changes he himself had gone through. The man knew what society would have to say, if they could see him now. His reputation would be shattered, not unlike a broken vase thrown from the top of a tower. He grimaced at the very thought. At that moment, he thanked G-d that he couldn’t speak, if only that method of recognition was ruled out. Had his voice been a factor, he would have long been found out.

Regardless of what anyone thought, the sight of himself brought upon mixed emotions. Sometimes, on the worst of days, he would struggle to gaze back at the eyes that saw too much, bile rising like a suffocating poison. Other times, indifference was what he felt. And when he was in an especially pleasant mood, his heart would dare to dance as he admired himself like the hedonist he was known to be, proud of what he was despite it all. Proud to be standing there; proud to be flourishing.

And then, it would end, like always. He would redress his bandages, change into something exceptionally dashing, put on a pot of tea and invite his sister over. One of the few constants in his life. Her booming laughter would carry into the dark streets, ringing like bells, and somehow, he would end up in a crushing hug and with a hand roughing up his hair. Exactly like it was decades ago. Under his embarassment, his lips would curl up into a smile.

‘All is well.’

I think it’s quite well written. Very evocative.

As another trans nonbinary… person, I appreciate the option to be An Individual of Mysterious and Indistinct Gender in FL. It was the first game I ever encountered to have nb gender options. I’ve also wondered rather a lot about the potential applications for Shapeling Arts…

Thank you for the kind words. Much appreciated. I just wrote mostly from experience, I suppose.

I can definitely relate. Years ago, when I was a teenager, I found this game because I heard of the option. Back then, I identified as entirely nonbinary so it was utterly euphoric. And though I do have some minor qualms about the overusage of ‘it’ when it comes to ambiguously-gendered characters, I still hope FBG understands just how important that option is.

Now that’s something I hadn’t considered before…

Have you guys played Sunless Skies yet? There’s a certain Fortunate Navigator there, that you might appreciate, plus quite a number of well-written non-binary NPCs.

I haven’t played Skies yet, but I have played Sunless Seas. I liked the Pirate Poet, and always read her as being trans.

I haven’t played either. I’m trying to save money at the moment, but maybe one day. You have me intrigued, though.