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 MxM  Fantasy  Romance  Closed  One x One RP O Death!

Discussion in 'Roleplay Haven' started by Sunshine Kitti, Dec 27, 2020.

  1. Sunshine Kitti

    Sunshine Kitti Every light casts a shadow Member

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    "And here- this is the lake I mentioned," Joyendra gestured to the scene in front of them as they approached. The grassy landscape gently sloped downwards to the shore, where the waters were as sapphire blue as ever. The water lilies dotting the surface were already perking up at his and Sulene's combined presence.

    It had been an utter delight to be able to show off all that he'd made to someone new, and he had been equally fascinated by the things she told and showed him in return. He was dimly aware that they'd rather lost track of time, but as long as nobody came calling for them, nothing too important could have happened. Probably.

    Mar 29, 2020#734

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    It had been such a wondrous time. Sulene had been taken all over Joyendra's realm, from the plains, to the forests, to the mountains-- even to the dunes of a desert. It was all so incredible, and they took their time wandering through each, appreciating the different kinds of life that flourished there. But more importantly, they had been appreciating each other.

    Joyendra was breathtaking in his element, and Sulene had to learn to how adjust to the world as it belonged to him. He was just so achingly beautiful, shining no matter where they were. His passion lit up his eyes, and sprang forth new growth, and she could not resist igniting it within him from time to time. She would ask him questions, admire his answers, and indulge in the luxurious surroundings.

    She could spend an entire era here, she imagined. She wondered if he would be alright with that.

    As they arrived on the shores of the lake, she felt that familiar sense of awe as she took it all in. "Oh, Joyendra..." she whispered. "It's magnificent. I've never seen water so clear." She had been tucked around his arm but stepped away to feel the sand beneath her soles as the gentle tide of the water washed over her feet. The water's were warm.

    "I love it," she said as she spun to face him, golden hair and blush pink gown swirling around her in a flourish. Her eyes were aglow with absolute bliss, and her smile lit her features with something unabashedly joyful.

    Mar 29, 2020#735

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    It was impossible for Joyendra to not grin back at Sulene as she expressed her appreciation. Even with all the time they were spending together, she never seemed less than impossibly beautiful. "I like to come here whenever I need calm. It soothes the spirit... well, usually." His expression clouded for a moment, recalling Julian's disastrous experience here.

    "...I am glad that you like it. I was hoping you would." A smile found its way back onto his face. Joyendra stepped forward to join her at the water's edge, taking in the simple pleasure of the warm tide lapping at his feet. "We could stop here for a while, if you like. I hope I haven't overwhelmed you." Excited as he was to show off -- and there was no denying that it was showing off, but he couldn't feel bad about taking pride in his work -- he didn't want to risk burning through Sulene's interest so quickly.

    He was constantly marveling at how perfectly she seemed to fit among all he'd made. He wanted to make things for her, and he wondered if it was too soon to offer something like that.

    Mar 29, 2020#736

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    Sulene turned back to look out to the lake's sparkling surface. It wasn't an endless body of water, but it was large enough that she was sure there was plenty to see beneath the surface. But there was something else that had piqued her interested. She had begun to notice, as she and Joyendra continued to spend time together, that his gaze would linger on her more often than not. As if he was watching her, gauging her reactions-- or was it something else?

    She bit her lip as her fingers toyed with the tie that kept her gown wrapped snugly around her waist. There was something there. They had already established it at the beginning of their time together. Time works so strangely here that she wasn't sure if it was too soon to say what exactly it was, but it was something.

    Now seemed the perfect opportunity to find out. With a slow tug, the fabric unwound and it was much easier to slip one shoulder from the dress as she stepped further into the water. But she certainly had him in her peripheral by the way she had angled herself as she shrugged out of the other half as she sauntered waist deep into the water. The dress seemed to dissolve, fabric folding into itself into it became a cluster of water lilies drifting around her as she continued to walk in.

    "I suppose I could use some time to freshen up," she mused. Her hair was a golden trail behind her as she turned, just enough to glance over her shoulder with a small smile.

    Mar 29, 2020#737

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Oh.

    He'd had a vague thought of suggesting a swim sometime, but not- not so soon, certainly not like this.

    That made it sound like Joyendra was in a position to complain. He certainly was not.

    "Would you like- a moment-?" He managed to get out. He was sure that his eyes were comically wide, but Sulene's smile seemed inviting, and he couldn't imagine that she would so readily start undressing if she didn't want his eyes on her at least a little. This hadn't been his intent, but no, he definitely was not complaining.

    Mar 30, 2020#738

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    "A moment to swim?" Sulene sounded amused as she continued further into the depths. "I suppose longer than a moment." The floor of the lake was a bit too far for her to touch, so she began to tread water, turning back towards Joyendra. The length of her hair kept the view modest, but there was very little left to the imagination otherwise.

    This was bold. Perhaps nothing would come of it but a swim. But either way, she fully intended on enjoying herself.

    "Care to join me?"

    Mar 30, 2020#739

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    If gods had been subject to all the same processes as humans, Joyendra might have started sweating. As it was, his face was quite warm. He could only imagine how anyone watching might have laughed -- Life himself, suddenly acting shy -- but he was off-guard and still eager to make a good impression. Sulene deserved to be treated with dignity.

    On the other hand, who was he to turn down her invitation?

    Taking a deep breath to steady himself, he let a smile return to his face. "I'd love to." Stepping forward, he began to shrug out of his clothes as he entered the water after her.

    My... it wasn't as though he felt self-conscious, exactly, but it had been quite a while since he'd undressed in front of anyone.

    Mar 30, 2020#740

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    Sulene was polite; she turned away again as Joyendra began to disrobe, swimming out towards the middle of the lake. The lilies followed behind her in a trail, some of the petals threading through her hair as the long tresses passed over them. When she was certain that Joyendra was completely in , she rolled onto her back to drift back towards him, eyes closed and expression serene.

    "I've had such a wonderful time with you, Joyendra," she murmured, letting the water carry her wherever it may. "Thank you so much for hosting me; you've been incredibly gracious."

    She knew what she was doing was coy at best, but she didn't want to overwhelm him with her eagerness. The heat of desire had been steadily coiling within her, and though she had not been bold enough to act before, now was an opportune time. Of course she was willing to be patient; she was in absolutely no hurry, but she did want to know where they stood after this time they had spent.

    She had to know where things were headed.

    Mar 30, 2020#741

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Joyendra waded out until the water was waist-deep, then he pushed off of the sandy bottom and swam out towards Sulene with smooth strokes through the water. He considered letting his hair loose as she had, but decided against it for the moment; it would rather kill the atmosphere if they managed to get in a snarl with their own hair.

    "It's been my pleasure. I haven't had the chance to enjoy such wonderful company in a long time." They were both playing coy now, dancing around the obvious. He knew this game, waiting to see who would move forward first. He'd always enjoyed the thrill, because if they felt the same, the outcome wouldn't be disappointing no matter what it was. If he he merely got to look at Sulene and enjoy this swim, he'd be happy.

    That wasn't to say that there wasn't a deeper part of him that yearned for something more. Joyendra will still quite in touch with his desires after all these years.

    If Sulene kept drifting this way, she'd bump into him after a moment. He didn't move out of her way. "Is there anything more I could do for you?" He asked, letting a teasing lilt slip into his voice.

    Mar 30, 2020#742

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    Surely enough, Sulene's head did bump into him. Though she was a bit flustered by it, she laughed and turned to right herself and caught herself on his shoulders.

    "I would hate to ask anything more of you," she cooed to him, allowing the current to carry her just a little closer. "You've already been such a lovely host, and I would hate to become demanding."

    Still, her fingers wandered along his shoulder and neck. "But... I am starting to hope for more," she murmured. "It's been so long since I've had the opportunity to be so close to someone. I don't want to be presumptuous, but--"

    She couldn't help herself. She leaned up press her lips against his; just enough to feel their warmth so it would linger in her memory.

    Mar 30, 2020#743

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    "Ah, but-" Joyendra let himself be cut off by the kiss and leaned into it, reaching up to lay steadying hands on Sulene's waist. When he judged it a good time to pull away, he did so and murmured, "You say that as though I wouldn't happily give in to your demands."

    The air was warm, but a different sort of heat was curling at his insides. He closed his eyes for a moment, enjoying it. He liked to simply feel, almost as much as he liked to be actively doing something.

    Opening his eyes again, Joyendra pulled Sulene closer against his chest. "Of course, we could dance around the subject all day, if the chase is more pleasing to you," he said with a teasing grin. He betrayed his words by leaning in to kiss her again.

    Apr 8, 2020#744

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    In that moment, Sulene realized just how long it had been since she had been kissed. The sensation swept through her, slowly coiling all of her nerves like microscopic springs. She lost herself in it, eyes drifting shut and hands twining up to stroke her fingers against the back of Joyendra's neck. He had his own climate, and she could feel it radiating across her skin. She was simmering, sweltering; the way that she suddenly ached must have been thousands of years not realizing what she was missing.

    This kiss was much harder to pull from, but she have to take a breath, and found that she had wound all of her limbs around him, leaving no space between their skin. An abashed flush toned the glow that had enveloped her form from a soft gold to a blushing shade of pink.

    "Maybe another time," she murmured. Her eagerness had her quivering. "I'm afraid I don't have the patience for it." Her lips were along his neck now, and her hands had begun to wander.

    There was suddenly so much more to explore and discover.

    Apr 28, 2020#745

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Sulene wound herself around him, and Joyendra shifted his hands, bracing one against the small of her back and the other against her thigh to support her. "I promise I won't keep you waiting then," he murmured back.

    He tipped his head to the side, letting out a pleased sigh as Sulene's lips moved along his skin. His hand moved up her back, trailing his fingers over her spine. He could have spent hours just fascinated with the way he felt her move and breathe, but it wasn't the time to get sidetracked by artistic fancy.

    "Would you like to move elsewhere, or-?" He broke off, almost laughing at his own boldness, but it was also not quite the right time for excessive decorum.

    May 27, 2020#746

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    Were it not for the splashing of the water between them, they may as well have been floating on air in Sulene's mind. She took her time answering as her lips feathered against the strength of Joyendra's pulse, and her palms slid against the the rippling muscles of his back. But after some consideration, she did decide to nestle against him instead with an almost impish smile.

    "I suppose it might be in our best interest..." she murmured.

    And in an instant, they were elsewhere. She had only a fleeting thought of where, if she had to choose, she would rather be, and her whims had carried them into the nearby grassy plain beneath the shade of a large tree with beautifully sprawling branches. She sat up a little, just to get a sense of their surroundings and was pleased to find the lake still in view.

    "Perfect," she whispered as she slid closer to Joyendra, right into his lap, to catch him in another kiss.

    Jun 12, 2020#747

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Sulene wasted no time. Joyendra appreciated her decisiveness, the sureness with which she moved. He caught one of her hands in his own as they kissed again, lacing their fingers together, and skimmed his tongue over her lower lip.

    Water still rolled off his skin and dripped from his hair in shining droplets, but the warmth of the air -- not to mention the warmth between their bodies -- would soon dry them. Sulene was right; the surroundings and the situation were perfect.

    With the hand not holding Sulene's, Joyendra cupped her breast, feeling her heartbeat beneath his fingertips, and then rubbed his thumb over her nipple. There was so much about each other's bodies that they had yet to discover, and Joyendra wanted to know exactly how Sulene reacted to his touch.

    Jun 25, 2020#748

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    It was electrifying; Sulene wasn't sure if it was his power that sent little shockwaves across her skin with every touch, or if it was the magnetic force between them-- either way, there was nowhere else she wanted to be but closer to him. She took what time she could to endure the anticipation, encouraging his hands to find every curve and angle of her body. But there was only so much she could take before she had to act. She was not afraid to take charge, to ask for exactly what she wanted.

    And all she wanted was to have her way with the god of Life.

    Time was indiscriminate and leisurely. She could have spent a new age in his arms, rolling with him in the grass, pinned beneath his strength and succumbing to the crests and valleys of pleasure over and over. She would have liked to, really; but even deities of vitality needed to rest. She wasn't sure how long it had been when she finally had to press away from him, her entire body riveted by the after effects of another intoxicating climax. But she could not stray far from him, instead curling up at his side with her head nestled against his thunderous heartbeat that echoed her own.

    She was able to at last take her eyes off of him and glanced around; the grass and flowers had overgrown around them as untamed and beautiful as their union. The very thought sent shivers down her spine and she pressed little kisses along his skin, unable to help herself.

    "I don't think I thought this through..." she murmured to him, fingers stroking against his abdomen. "How am I supposed to ever leave here now?" Her gaze tilted up towards him with such warmth.

    Jun 25, 2020#749

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Joyendra had spent centuries losing himself among people and in nature; it had been so long since he lost himself in someone personally. It had to have been hours that they spent giving and taking in equal measure, completely consumed with each other with no care for anything outside. When they finally had to rest, they still didn't part completely.

    Joyendra nuzzled into Sulene's hair, once more breathing in her scent that had settled all around him and clung to his skin. "If you wish to stay, I won't turn you out." His tone was lightly jesting, but if she'd asked, he wouldn't have thought of saying no. He turned onto his side, seeking out one of the blooms that had sprouted from the ground near them. The one he came up with was a peony in a shade of dusty pink. He plucked it with a flick of his wrist and tucked it into Sulene's hair, running his fingers through her golden curls and spreading them out in a halo around her.

    "I suppose we could go somewhere a little more comfortable. Eventually." He was certainly in no rush. The afterglow was magnificent.

    Jun 25, 2020#750

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    The gesture warmed her in a way she had not been prepared for, and as the blossoms spread through her hair, so too did a fresh splash of color across her face. She couldn't resist leaning up for another kiss, twining her around around his shoulders, pressing ever closer to him with a leg strewn across his hips.

    "I can't remember the last time I was so comfortable," she confessed against his lips. She twirled a finger through his hair as she settled against him again, "I love this, Joyendra..."

    Perhaps it was too soon to say-- but the words were at the tip of her tongue, fluttering like the monarchs that never seemed to stray too far from Joyendra.

    "I... love everything about this. Being with you... the idea that I could yours." Her heartbeat stammered, her body tensed as if preparing for the worst. But she pressed a soft, sweet kiss along his jaw. "If you would have me, I would love nothing more, truly."

    Jun 25, 2020#751

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Joyendra cradled Sulene's cheek, returning the kiss. Despite his suggestion that they move, he settled back again, draping his arm back over Sulene's waist. "I must confess- well, you know by now that I'm not one for planning."

    If he were being completely honest, he had to say that they'd earned this. Joyendra stroked Sulene's arm. They'd been through quite a bit; not as much as Julian and Silvanus, but it had still been an ordeal, and frankly, they hadn't received much understanding except between themselves. Where was the harm in taking some time to enjoy things? To enjoy each other?

    He smiled. "It seems that we have nothing to lose from trying."

    Jun 25, 2020#752

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    The little laugh that bubbled up from Sulene was like a release in itself. She savored a few more kisses before she snuggled against his chest, melting into him. She was glad-- overjoyed that he agreed, and relishing in this moment was all that she could think about. There was no appeal in wondering about the future when the now was so wonderful and perfect in its way.


    But time was ever in motion, ever changing as Fate wove itself in and around the many paths that it could take. Atropos smiled down at the final line he had written, blew on the ink and gingerly shut the book.

    "A new age," he murmured as he rose with the book cradled against his chest. He moved to the sprawling bookcase whose room never ran out though it always seemed full. With absolute care, he tucked the book in its place and selected a new one with fresh blank pages as he flipped through to the first.

    "I wonder..." He touched the feather of his quill to his chin before he began to write anew. "Where are we all headed now?"
     
  2. Zinzerina

    Zinzerina Butterfly of Disaster Member

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    In the realm of the gods, very little seemed to change. For that, Julian was thoroughly grateful. The longer he spent in Silvanus' home, the less appealing it seemed to go back to his own. But he was reminded by a very vivid (and mildly disturbing) dream one evening that there was a detail that had unfortunately slipped his mind.

    "Oh my God, I forgot about Frankie!" It was his immediate reaction upon waking as he sat up in bed, voice strangled with grogginess and panic.

    "What's a Frankie?" one of the Keres who had been lingering in their master's chamber chimed, drifting over to inspect Julian's sleep tousled hair that seemed to defy gravity.

    "Silv, wake up!" He shook his lover's shoulder, ignoring the inquiry for now. There were much more pressing matters at stake. "I gotta go back, how do I get home?"

    Jun 25, 2020#753

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Silvanus had been savoring his rest lately. He'd gone so long not bothering to sleep, since it didn't feel needed, that he'd never realized quite how refreshing it could be. Of course, it wasn't half so appealing when he didn't have Julian curled up in bed next to him, so that probably had something to do with it.

    He didn't find himself particularly groggy when he was jostled awake, but he still blinked slowly at Julian for a moment, parsing his words. "Hm? Did something happen?" Julian looked a bit frantic, but the Keres lingering about didn't seem panicked, so Silvanus wasn't yet alarmed.

    Jun 25, 2020#754

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    Despite his sudden sense of urgency, it was hard to ignore how Silvanus' sense of calm permeated everything that he did. It was even harder not to smile and reach down to brush a bit of hair out of Silvanus' eyes. During all of this, Julian had been wondering if he should consider himself lucky. The jury was still out, but at least he was well aware that the trade off was certainly in his favor.

    Wait. He was distracted. He had been doing this for who knew how long. That was the problem.

    "I mean, not that I know of, which is kind of the problem?" He bit his lip, as he thought, fussing with the blankets in his lap. "I kinda just up and disappeared again, and the last time I did that was because I was..." His gaze wandered up and away. "You know."

    He sighed and shook his head. "She's probably freaking out. I've gotta get back..." Even if I kinda don't want to, his thoughts tacked on.

    Jun 25, 2020#755

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    "Ah." Silvanus sat up, sliding one arm around Julian's waist. He pulled Julian against his chest and rested his chin on top of Julian's head. "Right."

    They both knew that Julian couldn't stay here forever; he did still have a life to attend to, as he'd suddenly recalled. Silvanus had thought about it more than once, but he wasn't in any rush to send Julian back to deal with things before he was good and ready. There was still the matter of how Julian had wandered here on his own the first time too; Silvanus still didn't fully understand how he'd managed that, since such things were normally off-limits to all but demigods and the gods themselves. As far as he could tell, despite the changes, Julian wasn't quite a demigod. The fact that he'd gone straight to Silvanus's realm rather than anywhere else was reassuring that Julian wasn't going to slip between planes on accident and get lost while just going about his business.

    "I saw her before I came to you, so if she's upset you can blame it on me. I can return you to your home whenever you like."

    Jun 25, 2020#756

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    Perhaps it was a little anticlimactic, but it was nice to know that getting back home would be no trouble. It was just what could possibly be waiting for him when he returned that gave Julian pause. Was there any real way to know how long it had been since he and Silvanus' date went sour and they disappeared? Well, he supposed he would be getting an earful to some degree from Frankie once he found out.

    He sighed and snuggled into his shoulder. "You're always so calm," he remarked, wrapping his arms around Silvanus to keep close. "How am I supposed to maintain my reputation as a drama queen when you're so good at disarming me?" He laughed as he placed a kiss on his cheek before he moved to get out of bed.

    "I guess the longer I stay, the more trouble I'll likely end up in." He sighed as he took a look at himself in the wide mirror against the wall. He had to admit, though; these days of relaxation did look pretty good on him. He hardly remembered what had been bothering him so much in the first place.

    ...Not that he wanted to go digging to find out.

    "Let's get back... I'm sure you've got plenty to get caught up on too." He cast Silvanus a slightly sheepish look. "I keep forgetting that I can't really keep you all to myself all of the time."

    Jun 25, 2020#757

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Silvanus smiled and followed Julian in rising from bed. Turning to the lingering Keres, he said, "If Lachesis and Clotho need me, let them know that I'll be taking Julian home." Not to rush Julian since he'd made up his mind, of course, but he was right. He couldn't leave his life behind forever, and Silvanus did have plenty of his own responsibilities.

    Once he'd made himself presentable, Silvanus reached for Julian's hand. "If it would make you more comfortable, I can stay with you for a little while when we get back too." Was he just buying more time together? Perhaps, but he would still prefer to make sure that Julian was comfortable and safe before taking his leave.

    When he thought about it, there wasn't much for him to do that was out of the usual routine now. His work was demanding, but he was beyond used to it. Things were finally approaching normal again, only for Silvanus, he also had Julian. Better than normal, then. The new normal, which he greatly preferred. Silvanus enfolded Julian's hand in both of his. "Just tell me when you're ready to go, and I'll take you straight there."

    Jun 25, 2020#758

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    Was he ever going to truly be ready? Looking up at Silvanus, feeling the warmth for those stormy eyes, it was hard to imagine really wanting to be anywhere else. He chewed on his lip, considering it for a moment before he sighed and nodded. "I'm ready."

    And in that moment, the world seemed to dissolve away. Julian closed his eyes, swayed closer to Silvanus, as if it would keep him from fading away with it. But when he reopened them, they were standing in his bedroom. Early evening sun filtered in through the slightly parted drapes as it began to set. He felt as though his bones needed a moment to settle and the first step he took away from Silvanus was accompanied by a slight sway.

    "Weird," he murmured, but steadied himself on his way to retrieve his phone. As he waited for it to load, he sank onto the bed with a sigh. "It's so unfair..." he murmured, mostly to himself. "How am I ever going to be able to sleep in this bed ever again? Yours is like an actual cloud-- shit."

    The moment his phone began loading, the notifications came pouring in. Texts. Calls. Voicemails. Emails. More texts. He took a sharp breath as he opened his messages with Frankie and saw that it had been three weeks since his last message to her. Weeks.

    He rubbed a hand through his hair as he began to scroll through his missed calls. Most of them he could understand, but there was one-- a single phone call that had been missed earlier this morning that caught him by surprise.

    "Zhion...?" His brow furrowed. "Since when does he call me...? He never calls me unless..." He went scrolling through his texts again, and after a bit of searching, the color drained from his face.

    "Oh god...."

    Jun 25, 2020#759

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Silvanus had made the trip between his own domain and the realm of the living so many times that he'd stopped keeping count when the world was still young. Few gods traveled between worlds frequently, and none went back and forth so often as he did. To him, it felt as natural as stepping through any ordinary doorway; Julian clearly still needed a bit of time to adjust. Silvanus kept a steadying arm around him once they arrived back in Julian's apartment.

    When Julian stepped away to go to his bed and check his things, Silvanus checked on the vase of flowers that Julian had set on his desk. He was pleased to see that they were still healthy and blooming; Joyendra's promise that they'd last had been true. He was glad for it, since he'd worried a bit that Julian wouldn't get to enjoy them if he spent too long away.

    Unfortunately, all didn't seem to be well. Silvanus turned back to Julian when he heard the soft groan of despair, frowning. "What's happened?" He hoped that Frankie wasn't too upset with Julian. Silvanus would happily take the blame for any mishaps there. "Zhion?" He echoed the name. He didn't recall Julian mentioning it before.

    He hoped it wasn't some past lover. They'd had enough dealings with those for the time being.

    Jun 25, 2020#760

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    "He's my brother," Julian answered, though there was such an air of concern to his words as he got up. "I just don't talk about him much because we don't really talk that much, but he's been trying to contact me..." He pressed the call button and placed the phone to his ear, but sighed when he was sent straight to message. "I didn't think that he'd try and get a hold of me. But he gets so weird about certain things and I just don't want him to--"

    And as if he had been asking for it, there was pounding at his front door. Julian bristled, nearly dropped his phone, then gave Silvanus a panicked look. "Okay, new plan. I'll get in touch with you later after I deal with--"

    Again, he was interrupted. This time, by the sound of splintering wood. The noise that Julian made was of absolute distress as he fled into the hall. "Stop, stop! What are you doing, are you crazy?!"

    But it was too late. His front door flew open beneath a leather clad foot, swinging inward as a tall, dark-haired gentleman stepped in. His eyes, the color of jade and just as cold as the stone, swept the area once before settling on Julian as he scurried into the den.

    "Zhion!" Julian's hands were in his hair. "You've gotta be kidding... You didn't even give me time to--"

    "I gave you two and half weeks," came the sharp retort, promptly getting Julian to quiet.

    He looked down then, rubbing a hand along his neck, before he tried for a smile. "...H-hi...?"

    Jun 25, 2020#761

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    If Julian thought that Silvanus was going to leave, when someone was literally in the process of kicking the front door down, he was very much mistaken. Silvanus followed him out to the den, already reaching for Julian's shoulder to pull him back and plant himself firmly between Julian and their intruder.

    "Excuse me," he said, perturbed. Julian had already spoken, but his shy greeting to the man -- his brother, apparently -- did not inspire great confidence for how this was going to go. And anyway, Silvanus wasn't going to just stand there with someone barging in and snapping at Julian like that.

    "...You must be Zhion," he said coolly.

    Not a former lover, but honestly? A brother was almost as bad. It was an ironic echo of what they'd already been through, with the difference that Silvanus was actually around to step in this time.

    Jun 30, 2020#762

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    Zhion's brow furrowed as Silvanus stepped into his line of vision. Admittedly, he hadn't even heard the man approach, but that should have been impossible given that he seemed to even edge Zhion out in height; something that was unusual, given his six-feet-and-four-inches was rarely rivaled. His gaze immediately went to his brother, who seemed even more shell-shocked and it only worsened the tension in his shoulders.

    "Who the hell--"

    "Boyfriend," Julian blurted immediately, tugging Silvanus back a step by his arm. His face had gone completely red and he may have been trying to smile, but it just looked like he was baring his teeth in panic. "I mean, this is my boyfriend... Silvanus. Who I was with." He paused then cleared his throat. "S-see, he lives out of town and there's no service out where he lives."

    Green eyes narrowed. "Which is...?"

    "In the mountains. Like... way up there." Julian ran a hand through his hair, looking up at Silvanus. "And I ended up staying way, way longer than I planned to. It was so irresponsible of me... I'm sorry. I should have tried harder to get in touch."

    Zhion was not convinced. In fact, when he turned attention back to Silvanus, there was something significantly darker about his stare. "Interesting. This is my first time hearing about you, so forgive me if I'm a little... tense." His hand curled into a tight fist at his side.

    Please don't hurt him. Julian's thoughts were drenched in panic. He's pissed, but he means well, and he's very human and I'm pretty sure he's an atheist, so...? It was bad enough that this was the introduction that his family and Silvanus were getting to each other, but he was in no way prepared to explain the rest of it.

    Jun 30, 2020#763

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    I would not hurt him, Silvanus assured Julian gently. I'll be civil. Now that he'd confirmed who Zhion was, he could ease his tension somewhat. The entrance was hardly graceful, but Silvanus had done his share of tearing around and barging into others' homes in search of Julian himself. As long as Zhion posed no threat to Julian, there was nothing to worry about.

    He acknowledged Zhion's words with a nod. "I apologize if I startled you. I haven't heard much about you either, if it helps." He doubted that it would, honestly. He was dressed casually, by his standards, but he could imagine how he appeared to someone who didn't know who and what he was. He was unbothered by Zhion's forbidding stare; it would have moved a human, he was sure, but Silvanus had weathered displeased mortals more times than even he could count.

    "I'm afraid that some considerations fell by the wayside when we decided to make a trip; it was rather spontaneous. We didn't mean to worry anyone." As he spoke, Silvanus studied Zhion more closely. He and Julian really were like night and day; perhaps a bit like Silvanus himself and Joyendra, but the difference between them seemed even more dramatic. He and Joyendra were still twins, after all. Silvanus wondered if Zhion had inherited any of the touch of life magic that Julian had in him. There was certainly something a little wild and unpredictable about him that Julian didn't have.

    If anything, Silvanus supposed that he could be relieved that Zhion had only shown up now. Circumstances were still not ideal, but at least Julian was healthy and understood what was going on. If he'd had to deal with Zhion instead of Frankie early on, Silvanus could imagine that the outcome would have been much less amicable.

    Jul 8, 2020#764

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    It did not seem to go over well that Silvanus didn't know much about Zhion. In fact, it earned the younger brother a hard look, which had him averting his eyes out of habit.

    "I take it this is a fairly new... Arrangement?" There was such a harsh grit to word that it might have curled the spine of a lesser man.

    "I wouldn't call it... 'new...' I don't just go running off with strangers, y'know," Julian insisted. Not by choice, anyway. The thought was barely a whisper, but it made his stomach knot.

    So much for getting away from it all...

    "I don't know," Zhion retorted. "How am I expected to know anything if I have to break down your door just to make sure you're alive?"

    That certainly struck a chord, and subconsciously, Julian's hand found his neck. He hated how quickly the tears were beginning to gather in his eyes and he looked down at his feet to hide them.

    "I.... I'm sorry..."

    It was only then did Zhion's demeanor soften. Despite how he sighed, he reached for Julian, pulling him closer (and pointedly away from Silvanus) for a tight hug.

    "Don't..." Zhion laid a hand on Julian's head. "I didn't mean to upset you. I've just been worried, Julian... You've been distant..."

    But the glance in Silvanus' direction made it clear that Zhion was beginning to suspect that he was the cause.

    Jul 9, 2020#765

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Silvanus's instinct was to pull Julian back again, but he restrained himself. He could tell that Zhion meant Julian no harm; his anger was born of worry. His concerns weren't necessarily unfounded, either, but there was no use in trying to explain that now, especially not to someone who was already feeling hostile. The issue of atheism also wasn't uncommon, but Silvanus rarely had to confront it so directly. Julian had been forced into belief by his circumstances, as had Frankie. Silvanus wasn't keen on trying such a thing again, at least until some of this tension dissipated.

    The look in Zhion's eyes told him that wouldn't be happening anytime soon.

    Silvanus hadn't paid much thought to Julian's family. Julian had mentioned them, but they were only vague extensions of Julian himself in Silvanus's thoughts. When he reflected on just how much time had passed since all of this began, this sudden visit didn't seem so sudden. Julian deserved to have this moment with his brother.

    Silvanus met Zhion's dark and suspicious gaze calmly and without ire. Zhion certainly must be an intimidating man to anyone on equal or lesser footing. The circumstances weren't ideal, but now that his immediate worry that Julian might be in some sort of danger from their unexpected guest was quelled, Silvanus could take things in stride. Probably.

    "Perhaps we should sit?" He offered. The furniture in the den seemed better than the three of them continuing to stand in the hall in front of the open door. Would you like a moment alone? He followed up to Julian privately. If Julian was willing, Silvanus would step back for a moment; it was just that if he asked out loud, Zhion might insist upon it before Julian could decide for himself.

    Jul 12, 2020#766

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    Before Julian could answer, as if the message had been intercepted, Zhion was quick to retort. "Perhaps you should leave." There was such a harsh edge to his voice, it was clear that he was leaving no room for argument.

    "Zhion--" Julian began, but the set to his brother's jaw was enough to get him to rethink arguing. This was far from how Julian imagined this first meeting going, but if things were to continue to escalate, they would end up much worse.

    He glanced over at Silvanus with a frown, still caged in the protective hold of his older sibling. "I'll catch up with you later, okay?" But his thoughts carried on: He's going to need some time to diffuse, and I don't want him to do anything stupid. It's probably for the best. Try not to worry; he not going to do anything to hurt me, and he is only human...

    It was strange to need to have that distinction. Some small part of him wondered if he ever had reason to doubt that now. There were so many things to be unsure of, and being dropped into the middle of it all once again was beginning to make him feel sick. He shook his head and the thought away, and gently pulled away from Zhion.

    "At least let me see him out?" Julian rubbed the back of his neck. "I know I'm in trouble, but he's still my boyfriend..."

    "That is something to be discussed," Zhion muttered, but he stepped aside all the same. With one final glower in Silvanus's direction, he went into the kitchen-- likely to check to see what was there. It was a habit of his.

    Julian gave a heavy, but inaudible sigh as he moved back over to bury himself in Silvanus' chest. Is it too late to change my mind and go back?

    Jul 13, 2020#767

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Fortunately, of all the gods, Silvanus was one of the few who managed to count discretion as one of his virtues. He didn't retort when Zhion snapped at him, waiting patiently until Zhion and Julian had separated for the moment and Zhion disappeared into the kitchen. Silvanus gathered Julian into his arms when he was embraced, gently cupping the back of his neck and rubbing at the tension there.

    You were right when you said that we couldn't simply leave things as they are. I know it won't be the most pleasant, but the longer you put off reaching out to your family and reassuring them, I'm sure this will only get more... intense. He wasn't pleased, of course. He'd wanted to get Julian comfortably settled back in the mortal realm before returning to his own duties, not leave him alone with an angry person, however familiar and well-intentioned. Much like putting the conversation off, however, his continued presence didn't seem like it would do anything helpful. He could be back here in an instant if need be. That, and the knowledge that Zhion was human and nothing more, and that his anger at the situation had been safely redirected towards Silvanus instead of Julian, would have to be enough for now.

    Silvanus bent to kiss Julian's forehead softly. Out loud, he said, "Don't worry. Call to me if you need me."

    He'd have to go out the front door, he supposed, instead of leaving from Julian's room or balcony like usual. Hopefully there would be nobody loitering in the hall.

    Jul 15, 2020#768

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    There was a moment-- a terrible, selfish moment, where Julian almost begged him to change his mind. The plea was at the tip of his tongue, just past his lips; he didn't want to be right. He didn't want to deal with any of this, now or ever. But without much of a choice in the matter, he just sighed and let himself enjoy the small offerings of affection before they inevitably had to part ways.

    "I love you," he whispered and thought, wanting to be sure that Silvanus understood. His blue eyes were somehow bluer, filled with the sadness of their anticipated separation. "Don't stay away too long, okay?"

    He managed to step away, only after an extra minute of indulgent clinging, and wiped at his eye with the heel of his hand. But he did his best to smile for his lover, to reassure him that he was going to be alright without him. After everything, he still couldn't afford to be a burden to him. Silvanus was a busy and important god. He had work to do.

    He opened the door for him, leaning against to watch him leave. That familiar feeling, that sense of longing, coiled its way through him and nestled uncomfortably in his chest. It was hard, knowing already how badly he was going to miss Silvanus.

    "See you later?" he said, though there was a slight inflection to his tone. Hopefully sooner than later, anyway.

    And when he had gone, he sighed as he shut the door behind him. The hardest part was yet to come; something told him that Zhion was going to be exceptionally difficult to get to leave this time around.

    It was so wonderful to have family come visit...

    Jul 15, 2020#769

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Silvanus cupped Julian's chin and gave him one last kiss before they parted. "I love you too, so very much," he whispered. He didn't want to go. He wanted to take Julian back to bed and hold him until the world was a less daunting place, but unfortunately, that would never happen if they didn't engage with it. He couldn't keep Julian sheltered away from everything and everyone else, no matter how much he longed to.

    When Julian held the door open for him, Silvanus smiled at him reassuringly and reached back to gently brush Julian's hair from his eyes and tuck the stray locks behind his ear before he slipped out. Tell me how it goes later.

    Hopefully Zhion would just accept that Silvanus had a pair of shoes sitting around somewhere that he hadn't noticed, rather than the reality that he'd just stepped out barefoot. Things were already going to be difficult enough on Julian; it was hard to accept that Silvanus's continued support and presence would just make things worse right now. Anyway, now that he was out, it wouldn't do to linger. If Zhion changed his mind and decided to chase Silvanus down for answers, well...

    That was a conversation they were not going to be able to have on his terms, unfortunately for Zhion. Silvanus lingered for only a moment before he forced himself to step away, vanishing between the realms once more.
     
  3. Sunshine Kitti

    Sunshine Kitti Every light casts a shadow Member

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    Ydis's cell couldn't even be called that, really. It was just a room, with little in the way of structures to actually keep someone or something in rather than out. In a way, that was more of an insult. Like Kestrel knew that with what he'd done to Ydis, it was as good as a prison. No mere room could contain a god, but throw a mortal in a pit, and they'll probably die down there before ever figuring out a way to escape.

    Ydis themselves sat listlessly against the wall. Even a determined mortal could escape eventually, but not if they gave up. The brown huntsman spider clinging to one of the walls, which had been idly circling for a while now wondering if Ydis would notice, felt an alien stirring of pity.

    Don't you look a mess? The message was sent curiously, unsure if it would even be heard, much less responded to. Nothing like this had ever been done before, not to one of the True Pantheon. Anansi had been seething ever sense, but he was unsettled too, both at the fact that it had happened at all and now by Ydis's completely out of character slump of utter defeat.

    Jul 18, 2020#770

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    Before Anansi, there had been nothing. No cold, no warmth, no light, no sound-- nothing. For some time, though it was impossible to tell how long, it was what Ydis had to grapple with the most. They shouted into the darkness, paced through and fought with the shadows. But there was never any change. There was always just... Nothing.

    That had to be their punishment-- the lack of change. It was what Ydis prided themself on; they needed it. It was their Call. To constantly change and yet remain in complete control. But there was no control here. There was... Nothing.

    They were lost in it now; swallowed by listlessness and unable to find any sense of relief. They were drowning in it. It should have been impossible. Nothingness should not be so suffocating.

    So when the voice came, they were unsure of its reality. Pale gray eyes lifted slowly, a curtain of unkempt black hair framing them, as they looked out into the empty space for the source and found none. Perhaps it was the weight of the disappointment that finally broke them.

    Wordlessly, recklessly, Ydis screamed. Their melancholy filled the cell, shook it at its foundation, but faded when they were finally out of breath. No echo. No pain in their throat.

    Just... Nothing. Except now there was something new: tears.

    Jul 18, 2020#771

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Well. That could be called a response.

    It was not what Anansi had wanted; he wasn't sure what he had wanted, but he'd at least expected... something else. Rage and indignation seemed obvious. Boredom, perhaps. Maybe even relief at having some company, the only company that had ever truly understood Ydis and stood by them when their whims set them apart from the rest. Only the two of them, truly, seemed to understand that the universe was constantly in motion, constantly changing. Even Joyendra, who was more unpredictable than the rest of the Pantheon, was set in his ways and slavishly devoted to his own creations.

    This was not what he'd expected, this raw despair. Humans went mad in isolation all the time. Perhaps it only made sense that the gods could too, if they were confined against their will.

    It wasn't right for him to see them this way. It wasn't how they should have appeared to anyone. It was hideous. And for what? A single human life, not even truly out of Silvanus's grasp if it were dead. And it wasn't even dead. Anansi was used to being the one who roused the ire of the other gods; never had the positions been so reversed. He hadn't thought that his disgust could get any deeper, but what he'd found here after squeezing though the cracks in Kestrel's defenses was proving that assumption very wrong.

    Anansai had a moment of consideration where he thought about just slipping away again. He very rarely paid much thought to what the kindest course of action was in any case, but the wretchedness in this cell was enough to give even him pause. He truly couldn't decide if it would be better to stay or to go. Even he had a heart.

    In the end, he stayed, crawling down from the wall and crouching on the floor. He made sure that he was a safe distance away from Ydis before he discarded the form of the spider, crouching just out of reach. Despite whatever conflicted feelings he might have had, he'd gone through a lot of effort to get in here, and he didn't desire getting hit in thanks for it if he startled them.

    "Ydis," he said quietly, his voice seemingly swallowed up by the darkness as soon as the words left his lips. "It's me."

    Jul 18, 2020#772

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    Startled was certainly a word for Ydis' response. They flinched away from the sound, from the sudden presence, but instead of lashing out, they curled inward. Their shackles rattled as they covered their face, arms thrown up as if it would completely shield them from Anansi's gaze.

    "Don't look at me," they hissed. There was such venom in their words, but there was something else. It was terrible and broken. It was sad. "Leave this place. Leave now. This is no place for gods."

    And they meant it. They shouldn't have to be there, but every moment that crawled by made them feel less and less. They couldn't feel the ebb and flow of the tides, the slow but steady shift of darkness across the moon. They couldn't feel anything.

    Were they being called at all anymore? The thought wrung a sob from them.

    Jul 18, 2020#773

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Anansi had never been one for following orders, but after a moment, he dropped his gaze from Ydis's pitiful form. There was nothing else to look at but the blackness, but he didn't intend to leave so soon now that he'd settled on revealing himself, so that was as much as he could comply with. "You're right," he said. "It's not. It's... abominable, for you to be left in this place."

    If Kestrel, or the rest of the Pantheon, had really cared at all for justice, they should have simply let Silvanus wallow in what it felt like to have his heart so carelessly broken, if he was even capable of feeling as such. He'd put on a wonderful show at the trial, certainly, but Anansi had doubts, funny as the idea of Death being utterly laid low by his first taste of loss was.

    "I got in, though. If there's a way in, there's a way out."

    Oh, of course that had been his idea all along. Anansi was not known as a breaker of chains, but that was in part because he never had to resort to breaking things. He knew he was courting punishment himself just by being here, and he couldn't say he particularly cared in the moment. Who was Kestrel to mete out punishment to the rest of them as he saw fit, as though he was the highest authority? If Fate was so course-correcting, then this show of consequence was pointless too.

    Jul 25, 2020#774

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    But Ydis would not even entertain the notion. They turned away even more, tucking their face against the cold surface of the wall.

    "it does not matter." Their voice was barely a whisper or a hiss. It was unlike them in so many ways that it may have been unrecognizable if it were not only Anansi and Ydis in the room.

    "I have been stripped of my power-- of my duty." Their fingers clenched into a quivering fist. "All because of that--"

    The image of a youthful face with blond hair and blue eyes conjured behind their tightly shut eyes. With it was the gaze and the smile of Silvanus, which should have belonged to them alone. It tore at them, as it had been even before their imprisonment. The anger swelled, but was promptly drowned in the well of misery.

    "If I leave here, my power will not be restored..." they conceded. "I will be nothing."

    Jul 28, 2020#775

    Ile Coma

    Ile Coma

    Anansi sat back on his heels, biting back a sigh. Somehow, it was harder to argue with Ydis in this state. They seemed so much... less. That, of course, had been the point.

    He hated to concede the point, but Ydis was right. While he might be able to smuggle them out of this prison, the enchantment - the binding, really - upon them wasn't something that Anansi had the power to undo, at least not without a lot of time and work that they probably wouldn't be afforded once Kestrel noticed his prisoner gone. Without their Call, Ydis really was no better than a mortal. It was disgustingly ironic, which had been exactly the point.

    "Then what will you do?" He asked quietly. "I'm offering you my help, if you'll have it. If you're not willing to try to escape, then what?"

    Would it be considered a further crime, for them to try to flee? Of course. Would Anansi be considered an accessory, if not the instigator? Absolutely, and it would be entirely true. He didn't care. He'd never cared. The Pantheon's laws existed, and he had always existed to oppose them. In that way, he too fulfilled his purpose, even if nobody else appreciated it.

    If Ydis refused him here and now, Anansi might leave, but that didn't mean he would just give up. Chaos would always reign, no matter how tight a hold the rest tried to keep on things.

    Aug 12, 2020#776

    CursieKitti

    CursieKitti

    "Leave me."

    The command was barely a rattling whisper, but there sureness was there behind it. Conviction. Ydis did not want to be seen in this state of despair. To hear that Anansi was willing to put himself at risk of the wrath of judgement did not settle well within them. They would not have wished this on anyone, save for Silvanus himself who deserved far, far worse for putting them in this position to begin with. But even anger could not thrive here. All that he could manage was the hollowness that pervaded every inch of the void they had been thrust into.

    "I will serve my sentence as the Arbiter decides," they murmured. But their eyes narrowed and their fingers clenched. "And then... when all is as it should be..."

    At last Ydis lifted their head, and there was a glimpse of who Anansi knew.

    "...I will see things to their proper end."
     
  4. Zinzerina

    Zinzerina Butterfly of Disaster Member

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    Anansi's lip curled as Ydis made their declaration. There was the face of the moon that he had been hoping to see. "Now that's what I like to hear. Keep your chin up, love, and don't let the old jackal catch you feeling sorry for yourself."

    It was difficult to guess exactly what Kestrel had in mind for Ydis. He probably wasn't going to simply leave them here to mull over their actions; he had to know that they would only grow more resentful of his decision rather than coming around to his point of view. Anansi was certain that would be the outcome no matter what, truly. Ydis was mercurial and unpredictable, but they weren't going to just change if left to their own devices.

    The idea that anything Kestrel came up with would change them was laughable too, but Anansi supposed that part of the fun would be in seeing the Arbiter discover that for himself.

    He sighed. "But what of little old me? Shall I keep an eye on things for you during your... holiday?"
     
  5. Sunshine Kitti

    Sunshine Kitti Every light casts a shadow Member

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    "Do what you wish," was the answer. Ydis' voice had gone slightly hollow again as they hung their head once more. "You always do, don't you?"

    They turned slightly away then, finished with this interaction. They said all that they needed to; but without any power, without even the slightest influence over any force outside of the air they pulled into their lungs, there was little they could do to enforce the matter. If Anansi had any decency, he would let them be. There was nothing for either of them there.

    At least, so it seemed. Something just beyond the endless wall rumbled and it sounded as if the very structure was shifting. Ydis looked up again as a doorway formed where one had not been. Someone was coming.

    Go now. Their narrowed eyes flashed towards Anansi. He would be no use to anyone if he was caught too.
     
  6. Zinzerina

    Zinzerina Butterfly of Disaster Member

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    "I always do," Anansi agreed. He'd have boasted more, or perhaps tried to bolster Ydis's spirits a bit more, but they seemed to have had enough of him. Normally, he might have taken issue with being dismissed so soon and in such a manner, but it seemed that the timing was appropriate.

    As the walls shifted and grumbled, he nodded to Ydis. Until later, then. And the shape of a man was gone in the blink of an eye, replaced once more by the spider that skittered off into the shadows and was gone when the new light cleared them away.
     
  7. Sunshine Kitti

    Sunshine Kitti Every light casts a shadow Member

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    As light flooded into the chamber, Ydis had to squint and ultimately avert their eyes from the silhouette that filled the space. When they felt that they could adjust just enough to glower in it general direction, they were alread confident that their scorn was well deserved.

    "Have you finally come to your senses then?" they snarled, lip curled like a wild animal.

    But Kestrel's ever patient expression didn't flinch. He merely inclined his head. "I was hoping you had come to yours. But some small amount of time here would mean nothing to an immortal who has already had eternity." He lifted a hand and his eyes filmed over white as the same glow coated his palm. The shackles that held Ydis in place liquified and sank into their skin as they had done when the sentence was first served.

    "Fortunately for you, I believe in rehabilitation." Kestrel gave a small smile, but there was no humor behind. "I have found you a host."

    "Your 'host' was a fool to take on any task you gave to them," the lunar deity spat. "I don't need my powers to make them regret their affiliation with you."

    "I was hoping you wouldn't say that." Kestrel sighed. "Ydis, you must understand that this is not something that you can force your way out of. You will either change, or you will be replaced."

    Ydis' features froze. "Replaced?"

    "It is not often that we have gods threaten the mortal domain as you have." Kestrel's brow raised. "But it has happened before. I do not repeat mistakes, and you will not carry on as you are. The balance of humanity--"

    "Humanity!" Ydis' face had gone red with rage. "This has nothing to do with humanity! I took one when it should have been long gone! No, this is about Silvanus getting his way when he deserves nothing!"

    Kestrel sighed and shook his head. "You claim to be above mere mortals, and yet their emotions color your intent so vibrantly." He paused, studying them for a moment longer before taking a breath. "You are not ready. I will give you more time to consider your options."

    "There is nothing to consider-- release me!"

    "That is not one of the options." Kestrel turned to go and the walls shifted to seal behind him.

    Ydis' breath hitched and they scrambled forward on all fours. "Don't!" But their hands only met cold stone.

    Kestrel's voice lingered within the chamber as they slid back to the floor, hands clasped over their ears.

    You will change, or you will be replaced. The choice is yours.
     
  8. Zinzerina

    Zinzerina Butterfly of Disaster Member

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    Over the past few weeks, Frankie had fallen into something of a routine. She'd struggled her way through finals, trying not to act too weird whenever people mentioned that Julian had stopped coming to class weeks ago and just shrugging if they asked whether she'd seen or heard from him. She always mumbled something about a new boyfriend and family stuff and changed the subject.

    She hadn't heard from Julian since Silvanus came to her door. He hadn't answered her texts when she tentatively asked how their date had gone. He hadn't answered his door when she went by his apartment, and she'd tried that more than once. She couldn't help wondering if something awful had happened to him. Quincy - Cupid - had made it sound like Silvanus only had Julian's best interests in mind, and okay, he'd looked kind of cute and dorky when he showed up with flowers and all that, but...

    Gods of death never had very good reputations in stories. Frankie would know; she was an English major. It was hard for her to not think about that, whenever she wondered just what could have happened.

    There was nothing that she could do but wait and hope though, having exhausted all the ways she could think of to try contacting Julian. Reporting him missing wouldn't do any good. Frankie had no doubt that if Silvanus didn't want Julian to be found, he wouldn't be.

    Frankie thought very often about kicking Silvanus in the shin, even if he was a nice guy who was doing his best. The gods, whoever and whatever they were, were clearly out of touch.

    With school out for winter break, Frankie just kind of puttered around. She actually did have a part-time job in the campus library during the semester, but her apartment was paid for by her scholarship, so she didn't have to search for work over the break. She didn't have anything to do, really. She had gotten into the habit of going by The Painted Lady, the cafe where she'd first found out about the whole mess from Julian and then again where she'd run into Leo and Cupid and gotten more of the story, a couple of times a week. Leo never seemed in the mood to talk; he really seemed like he wanted nothing more than to have the whole thing over and done with, and Frankie could kind of agree with that.

    She just kept hoping that one day she'd get there and Julian would be sitting at their table waiting for her.

    The Painted Lady's sign, a clever design that was a butterfly's wing from one angle and the side view of a woman's face from another, was lightly dusted with snow, as was the sidewalk when Frankie stepped off the bus. She could see Leo's bright red hair behind through the frosty window, going back and forth behind the front counter.

    Then she caught sight of a flash of bright pink, and she almost sent the cafe's door bell flying in her haste to yank open the door and rush in to corner Cupid before he could disappear. "Hey!"
     
  9. Sunshine Kitti

    Sunshine Kitti Every light casts a shadow Member

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    There were few things more pleasant than a day to wander without any responsibilities. Cupid knew that he was going to enjoy himself for the time being; he did love spending his time among the humans after all. It was always so interesting to watch them, to tap into their bonds and see where they lead. Sometimes, it led him all over the world, tracking flames that had been ignited and sparked from across the globe.

    But he wanted to stay a little local this time. Not that any particular place was home to him, but California had been a hub of activity since Silvanus took his husband... then lost him... then got him back. Honestly, he hadn't seen anything more interesting than that, and it would be wise to keep an eye on it personally. He knew that his mother had interest in it, and even though Silvanus clearly wasn't a fan of being watched and Sulene was surprisingly gone from her realm (for a while, actually) he figured he would be doing everyone involved a favor if he stayed nearby. Just in case.

    So he spent a lot of his time in the campus town, watching the locals and enjoying the scenery. And California always had great food. In fact, he was on his way to check out an Indian place he'd heard a gossiping pair of girls talking about when-- out of nowhere, someone shouted and it sounded like it was in his direction.

    "Shit!" His entire body bristled and he had to clasp his hands on both sides of his face to remind himself to hold his current form. The city was noisy and all, but he was still a bit easily startled. He just didn't need to shift forms in front of everyone. That would be... very hard to explain. Maybe that's why Sulene warned him to walk between planes...

    Still, the rose colored god turned towards call and found Frankie charging towards him. He felt he should be a bit concerned, but he was equally flattered, so he turned towards her with a smile and his hands in his dark blue varsity jacket.

    "Oh, it's you~ Hi, Frankie," he purred. "I wasn't expecting to see you today. What can I do for you? ...Uh, besides letting you hit me, 'cause it looks like you kinda want to?"

    That girl had so much fire in her. He knew he should be more wary of her, but it just made her exciting.
     
  10. Zinzerina

    Zinzerina Butterfly of Disaster Member

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    "I'm not going to hit you," Frankie huffed once she'd skidded to a stop in front of Cupid, shoving her hands into her coat pockets to mirror him. That was true - she didn't want to hit him, but it did sound kind of cathartic to maybe grab him by the shoulders and shake him a little. She wouldn't, though. Too many witnesses.

    Cupid smiled so disarmingly though, and it was hard not to... well, enjoy it. He was cute and charming, or at least Frankie had thought so before finding out more about who and what he actually was.

    "You haven't been hanging around here, huh? I've been coming here a lot," she said to him with a frown. "Since it seems like the place where you... guys... tend to show up." Her energy had been reignited in an instant, and she was practically vibrating with nerves and frustration now. Even with Cupid trying to just make civil conversation, Frankie knew that he had to know something. Something more than she did, at least.

    "Have you seen Julian?" She blurted out, skipping over any further pleasantries before she even really took the time to try to come up with any.
     
  11. Sunshine Kitti

    Sunshine Kitti Every light casts a shadow Member

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    The sentiment was not lost on him, and it made Cupid laugh. He supposed The Painted Lady had become a hub of godly activity. Funny how that worked. It made him wonder if any others would feel the traces of influence and be curious enough to stop in.

    But perhaps he could test that out later. For now, he just shook his head. "Sorry, but I'm not really allowed to keep heavy tabs on him and his man anymore. I got caught last time and it caused a lot of problems from the looks of things." He rolled his eyes a little. "I didn't even mean to, I was just passing by and didn't want to make things awkward... I guess seeing a pink bird in the middle of the city would be hard to miss... But that's not my fault."

    He paused and glanced back at Frankie, realizing how little sense that might have made. "Gods have color schemes," he added. "It's not always so easy to notice but mine just so happens to not occur in nature." He ran a hand through his hair with a snort.

    "Anyway... I'm surprised you haven't seen him. Doesn't he live around here?"
     
  12. Zinzerina

    Zinzerina Butterfly of Disaster Member

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    Frankie pulled her hands from her pockets and folded them in front of her face, exhaling slowly. "Okay, of all the things I wanted to know about you, the fact that you're anime characters wasn't on the list, but sure, why not." She lowered her hands and clasped them in front of her. "I'm not gonna try to unpack all that right now. Yeah, Julian does live around here. And I haven't seen him in like three weeks, ever since Silvanus showed up to say he was taking Julian on some kind of date. He hasn't answered my texts or calls, and he's not at his apartment."

    She shoved her hands back into her pockets, trying not to make it obvious how her heart was sinking with Cupid's words. She was probably failing. "I thought you'd know what was going on, since you did before. Where the hell are they?"
     
  13. Sunshine Kitti

    Sunshine Kitti Every light casts a shadow Member

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    A thick, but well manicured brow rose, and Cupid mirrored her gesture, his fingers steepled in front of his lips which were now curved with a frown.

    "Three things. One, rude. Most people would kill to have protagonist syndrome, thank you very much." He sniffed, a bit smug. "Two, if you think that's worth unpacking, you may wanna quit while you're ahead."

    He then turned to keep walking, assuming she would follow. "And three, Julian's not the only one MIA right now, so obviously there's something probably going on. But I don't know anything about it, and hearing that from a mortal kinda chafes... No offense."

    His expression was a bit darker now as he tapped along his jawline. "What is going on...? First Mom, then apparently Julian and likely Silvanus too... Maybe I need to go find out..." He was muttering more to himself now, perhaps more bothered that he seemed to be missing something.
     
  14. Zinzerina

    Zinzerina Butterfly of Disaster Member

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    Frankie did indeed follow, her frown deepening. Cupid had seemed like he had all the answers and knew exactly what was up the first time around, so hearing that he too was out of the loop now wasn't comforting. "Shouldn't you be flattered that I thought you knew everything?" She quipped, a little sharply.

    Something else he said caught her attention. "Your, uh... your mom's involved in this too?" She guessed that made sense, maybe? She hadn't really thought about gods having moms. Was Cupid actually a god, or did he just hang around them for some reason? And apparently turn into a bird sometimes to spy on them?

    The more she learned about all of this, the less Frankie felt she understood.
     
  15. Sunshine Kitti

    Sunshine Kitti Every light casts a shadow Member

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    "Huh?" Cupid glanced up at her, then rubbed at his neck when he realized his mistake. "You weren't really supposed to hear that part..." He sighed and looked away. "But yeah. My mom-- Sulene. She's like Death's only friend. You know that whole phrase 'Love is strong as death?' Well they meant that, but they also meant that love is just as stubborn." He laughed a little. "She'd stuck by him for ages because she refused to believe that he was just a wrecker of all things good and decent in this world."

    He crossed his arms as he kept walking. "I guess I'm inclined to believe that now, even if I don't understand how they get along... It is pretty weird that I haven't heard from her. She isn't even home..." He considered this quietly before he tsked quietly. "But you probably don't care about any of that right now."

    He cast Frankie a sidelong glance. "You don't want me to check Silvanus' place or something, do you? Are you sure he's not just spiraling somewhere? He's been through a lot."
     
  16. Zinzerina

    Zinzerina Butterfly of Disaster Member

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    Frankie chewed on her thumbnail as she absorbed that new load of information. So Cupid's mom was a god... goddess. Sure, she could buy that in light of everything else. And the goddess of love, sure, right, explained why she named her son Cupid. Love being Death's BFF was a little on-the-nose considering the circumstances, maybe, but Frankie supposed she could buy that too. Frankie wondered a little peevishly of Cupid's mom had anything to do with the whole marriage incident that had kicked everything off, but Cupid hadn't made it sound like that the first time, so she could give them the benefit of the doubt... for now.

    "I saw Silvanus before Julian stopped responding to messages again," she said finally, deciding not to pry into Cupid's family life for the moment. "He didn't look like he was spiraling or anything. He was all dressed up, he had flowers... he looked like a dork actually, but Julian likes that, so you know, I think it would have gone over well-" She caught herself rambling and stopped with a sigh. "I was mad at him for everything, but I still helped him get things set up to take Julian out, because, you know... I guess Julian's kind of in love with him, or whatever." She scuffed the toe of her boot against the ground.

    "It's just that was the last time I saw or heard from either of them. I don't know what happened after that. If you can go to Silvanus's... wherever he lives or stays, or whatever... I don't know, are you even allowed to just do that? I have no clue how any of this works. Why's so much stuff happening with gods got to center around Julian? He's got his own life to live, you know."

    That was the part that bothered her the most; it seemed like people kept reassuring her that they just had Julian's best interests at heart, but they weren't the ones getting dragged around on someone else's whim, not even knowing what their motivations were. Frankie wanted to be able to see her best friend again and know he was safe, but she would have settled for just knowing that Julian could be in control of his own life again.
     
  17. Sunshine Kitti

    Sunshine Kitti Every light casts a shadow Member

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    Cupid snapped his fingers. "You know, that night have been the last I saw them too. It's always get weird to see Silvanus wear shoes of any kind," he remarked. "And they were headed to the theatre. I mean, there was a huge line outside so I was hanging out and watching people, and they just so happened to show up." He shrugged. "Sounds like your story checks..."

    Still, that didn't make things any clearer. If the date had gone well, wouldn't Julian want to tell his best friend? Cupid suddenly understood what Frankie meant about Julian living for himself. He couldn't imagine getting swept up in half of the things he had experienced, and he had the benefit of knowing that gods existed.

    "I mean... I could. I might not be very welcome, seeing as Silvanus thinks I'm just a snoop, probably. But I could just pop in and see if they're together..." Cupid thought it over, but shook his head. "Maybe not right this second though. If he isn't there, we don't wanna freak Silv out. The last time we didn't know where Julian was--..."

    He stopped himself short and cleared his throat. "You know, I might not completely get where you guys are coming from, being on the other side of things... But I know this is probably really stressful," he murmured. "You're worried about your friend, and there are a lot of unknowns surrounding that. It's... Probably kinda freaky, all things considered."

    He reached out to place a hand on Frankie's shoulder. "If it means anything, I'm here to help if I can. We can look for him together around here before we start moving Heaven and Earth to track him down. Maybe it'll take a load off of you, too." He smiled at her. "You're a really great friend to him, Frankie."
     

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