Old, old snippet from 2021 that you can tell is old because the characters still have their original concept names. Context is that Gordon (who later became Kryoloth aka Kry) is an estranged lava magic user from an ice magic using family.
Fight pain with more pain. That’s Gordon’s way of coping. Always has been. Even the more pleasurable mechanisms turn into something that fucks up his body and brain and makes him hurt.
His mother has disappeared before. It shouldn’t be unusual. But there’s something different about it this time, something more final. It’s one thing to abandon him and another thing to abandon Taiga, the perfect child.
He sinks into a bath of lava that flows freely from the mountaintop. Even with his gods’ blessing, his flesh screams in agony. It should melt him down to the bone, but instead it’s little more than getting into too-hot water. Gordon exhales between his teeth and puts his arms up on the rock on either side of him. He shuts his eyes and relaxes even as his pain receptors go wild.
His mother took ice baths back in the day. It confused him up until he settled into his own usage, at which point he understood. At least normie athletes could relate to bathing in ice, though. No nonny could stand to be anywhere near this pit.
That’s the theory, anyway.
He hears his name, faint amid the mountaintops. He sighs and wiggles his toes through the warm sludgy rock.
“Gordon!” Echoes again, closer this time.
He sighs and sits up. “Over here.”
Taiga walks over.
“What are you doing?”
“Relaxing, what’s it look like?”
“How can you be doing that right now?”
He stretches and rolls onto his front. “No time like the present. Careful with your laptop, by the way. It’ll melt.”
“What do you care?” Taiga asks, clutching it to herself.
“I don’t, but you like that thing, so.”
She cocks her head and it’s all Gordon can do to keep a straight face as he observes her in real time admitting, in his way, that he cares about her.
“Does that actually feel good?” Taiga asks, sinking down onto her knees.
“To me it does. You can tell all of your followers that,” Gordon says, grinning when Taiga makes a face, then sobering. “Hey. There’s nothing to be gained by worrying about Mom. She’ll do her thing and we can have our brother-sister bonding time.”
He relaxes in the lava for a little while longer, imagining that it soothes his injuries instead of stressing his body out. Then it seems like cruelty to stay away from Taiga so he gets out, encrusted in flaky rock.