Adventuring through twisted time.
“Feed us, feed us. Please, we are hungry, Shadow. Ever so hungry.”
The eerie hauntings of the Elders whined within each nook and cranny of her mind in a series of screams which beckoned her from her slumber; striking features crunched together as the morning light broke through the barrier of her eyelashes. With cupped fists, she rubbed her eyes with the back of her hands before sitting up and on the edge of her bed; the sounds of her sisters on the other side of the door caused her to shake her head. Yet, it was not her sisters that got her to get ready quickly, it was her. - Matron, they called her; nothing more, nothing less. The name haunted the hallways of Hallows Hill Manor, echoed round spacious rooms and more importantly, it etched itself to the back of every young banshee’s throat. “Yes Matron, No Matron” Robotic, monotonic and lifeless; character, personality and individuality all relentlessly stripped from her children, plucked with precision and ease.They are one of the same; they are a moulding of her. Those that dared to defy her would be punished in the most undesirable of ways; as Ciara found out.
Beneath the deafening silence of the many footsteps coming to a halt and the sounds of girls holding their breath; Ciara could hear the faint ticking of the Matron’s shoes, causing her to make her bed as quickly as possible only to stand beside it with a childlike grin upon her features. Without a knock and without warning, The Matron barged into her room, her own mist covered gaze roaming around the state of the room before falling upon Ciara, she took one step closer. She smiled, a wicked curvature possessed aging lips, crows feet appeared at the edges of each eye and the back of bony fingers ran the length of Ciara’s flushed cheek. “If you do not feed them well today, it will not be you we will punish” The Matron cooed close to her ear, chilling breath freezing the lobe that it brushed over whilst a sinister laugh escaped her lips. “The Scream Chamber will reopen but, this time, the girl will be forced to swallow her scream" The air around the two women became palpable, so much so that Ciara began to hum a cheery tune, with a slight sway of her head. “Good girl, now go.” A kiss as sickly as nectar was placed upon her cheek, her tone ominous as it departed the tip of her tongue. Ciara gave her a child like smile with an agreeable nod.
Hallows Hill Manor stood tall, dying wisteria climbed the aged building as a permanent coating of mist painted the buildings bricks. Overindulging shrubbery nipped eagerly at passing ankles, whilst the distant whispers of the deceased echoed from the woodland’s deep belly. Skeletal branches waved in the breeze, beckoning anyone in who crosses it's path; wanting to swallow an individual whole within its shadows. Ciara found herself staring into the temptress for a few moments before setting off to find her prey this evening. The preselected male was not hard to find, he was a predictable creature and would be found in The Crowhurst bar, once again, cheating on his wife. The bitter taste of alcohol tickled hungry taste buds, the distant screams of her sisters screams rang in the distant air as she made her way towards his table; sitting opposite him with a wide grin.
“Shadow! Pleasure to meet ya!” Her Irish accent rolled effortlessly from her tongue; a wide grin on her features created dimples within her cheeks. The evening continued, a constant flow of conversations, laughter and flirtatious touching; of course, she had no intention of following through with her suggestive ways - it had been many, many years since she allowed a man to touch her or for her to touch him in that way. Ciara slithered her fingers through the gaps that his provided, there was a skip in her step as they left the bar and the man followed her eagerly. “Your name surely isn't Shhhadow" He slurred his repeated words as she guided him into one of the darkened alleys which looked as if it had fallen victim to an apocalypse; rubbish littered the floor and a singular rat scurried along the obstacles. Ciara grimaced internally at the scene, the screams in head growing in volume, in eagerness but also in sinister delight.
“Shatter every bone in him"
They taunted her, urged her on as if they could control the very muscles in her body; she pressed the male against the wall, his hands found her waist much to her dismay before he leaned in to kiss her. Ciara allowed one kiss; the literal kiss of death before pulling her head back. “Say hello to Mister Devil for me when you get there! His dark magic gave me a second life” A light, teasing giggle bypassed her lips as he looked down at her in confusion and in silence. “Nooo, this is when you say, Yes Ciara, I will say hello to him for you. Go on, say it.” She pouted and prodded his shoulder.
“I knew you were too good to be normal” The male stammered and attempted to get away from his space between her and the wall; he only got so far before she channelled the scream which had been clawing at her lungs. Within seconds, his bones were licked with lightning as they cracked within his body and he dropped like thunder to the ground. Ciara managed to stand before him - her mouth wide as the scream erupted from her, windows cracking in the nearby radius as blood soon trickled from his ears, eyes and mouth. He looked up at her, pleading for her to stop but little did he know that her Elders were already feasting upon his soul. Her eyes had fully succumbed to the mist as the scream possessed her briefly, her fingers gave him a little wriggle of a goodbye before he fully crumbled into a mess on the floor. Once she was sure he was gone, Ciara let out a prolonged exhale and leaned her hands on her thighs to catch her breath once again, wincing somewhat as her lungs cracked themselves ever so slightly at the pressure.
Fingers ran through her sun kissed locks vigorously as she composed herself. “Cor Blimey Cici, that was a good one. Good job" She grinned to herself before giving herself a pat on the back and going on her merry way. Just as she was about to reach the entrance of the alleyway, the moonlight rested against another man on his way home; she caught his profile and frowned. His hair, how he carried himself - Ciara tilted her head to the side like a confused puppy. “It couldn't be…. Dimitri?”
“It's him, look at him walking without a worry. As if your death didn't affect him”
Curiosity and a forgotten anger carried her forwards, remaining in the comfort of the shadows as she followed him.
Ding! Ding! Ding! The clock struck twelve and Madeline elegantly chauffeured everyone to the door. Closing the art gallery for the night before trotting up the stairs to the apartment above. "Papa?" She called as her smoke-filled blue eyes scanned around her home "nou ta dwe ale anvan yo fèmen nou deyò. (We should go before they lock us out.)" She spoke Creole rather than French though she knew the language fluently because at heart she was a bayou girl. Born and raised in New Orleans, it was even her first language. She found her father hovering over the bathroom sink staring off into nothing really, forwarding her brow she placed the palm of her hand on his cheek faintly a heavy frown pulling all of her features down.
"Yeah," I told Maddie after a moment and her words registered, taking a deep breath I kissed her hand before I pulled away and left for my room. I caught her starting to clean up after me "leave it." I spoke softly and her frown came with a huff and forwarded brow this time. 'If I leave it you will not clean it and I will be forced to do it later when it is inconvenient.' I huffed this time, heading back towards her, picking her up and carrying her out. I placed her on the floor "Get dressed, I will clean it now and then we will leave.' She looked to me sceptically at first but then scurried off once I gave her a playful growl. I stared at myself in the mirror before rubbing the facial hair that had grown on it and after a while began to clean up the shavers and creams I had but never had the motivation to use as of late.
"Se konsa, ou ap grandi yon bab ak cheve ou kounye a tou? (So you are growing and beard with your hair now too?) Madeline asked as she left her room dawning an all-black dress "Oh!" She quickly rebutted as Dimitri stepped out of his room dawning an all-black ensemble as well but also a clean-shaven face. Madeline gave a heartwarming smile at seeing her fathers face unobstructed but it was a sad smile too because she could still see and sense his pain. A pain they shared but was much deeper and different for him, it showed in his eyes and even with a beard it was potently there but the beard helped to distract her from the look in his eyes, distract her from the way he looked at her though he thought she did not notice. She placed her hand on his cheek again "Ready then?" She asked her ever so sad smile fading as he took a deep breath and nodded.
Maddie lead the way as I locked up behind us, both of us walking slowly and in uncomfortable silence as we made our to our destination. The aura of light that lived permanently around Madeline fading, darkening and growing thick I could feel it rest on my chest and shoulders and make it harder to breathe near her. I placed my hand on her shoulder 'Sorry...' She said as she stopped walking to collect herself, already aware of how her sadness affected the space around her. "She would have liked that dress Colie-Flower." Though she kept her head down I could see a very faint smile at the edge of her lips as she tucked a strand of hair behind her ear 'I am sure she would try to steal it.' We laughed with each other a moment before starting to walk again the light slowly returning around her mixing with the darkness to create a balanced grey colour that matched the grey of her eyes, they grey that told the world her story of death.
At last, they arrived at their destination and stood outside the gate for a moment or two until a young man came to answer them. "You two are late." He teased a sly smirk growing at the edge of his lips and he and Maddie embraced. Dimitri squinted his eyes at the two and let another playful growl escape causing Madeline to chuckle let her friend go and scurry into the graveyard. He eyed the young man before hugging him himself, the young man giving him a tight hug back. With the arrival of the newest century, Dimitri travelled with Madeline to do his angelic duty when they both found this boy. He was the same age as Maddie and her first friend but also her father's duty as he had just lost his parents. The whole town teased the children that they would be married one day but Madeline and Dimitri knew the truth and the now young man and Maddie, though they admired each other found no other interest for each other. Of course, that did not mean they did not put on a show for the town just to later watch their bafflement when he married the Governor's daughter and Maddie well went missing in the woods of England somewhere.
We drudged forward our steps growing heavier yet deeper still we went. My heart leapt and ached as my eyes spotted the tombstone under the blue moons light. We stopped, stared and frowned heavily, Maddie bending down to wipe the tombstone clean and place the flowers she held down in the attached vase. She kissed her fingers and then pressed them to the grave saying sweet nothings so softly I could not make out what she said. Eventually, she rose "I will give you time." She said faintly with a hand on my shoulder before walking away. I took a hitched breath once she was gone and squatted down placing the palm of my hand on the inscription "I miss you." I whispered with great struggle as a lump built in my throat, shaking away the tears from my eyes. "The town still thinks Maddie will marry Brandon but he just got engaged to the Governors daughter." I laughed a moment "You would probably want to kill him at first for believing he wanted to marry our daughter and then for not wanting to marry her. Uhm..." I paused "Colie-flower leaves next month for England, we have some buyers out there she will be delivering my art to personally...."
He stayed there for an hour or so just talking, trying to keep it together but also not keep everything so trapped inside because he lost himself when last that happened. His words slowly faded as he whipped the tears from his cheeks and took in a deep breath unable to say anything more. He soon found Maddie and Brandon in the security booth innocently talking about how he goes out of his way to keep Ciara's tombstone better maintained than most. Brandon walked them out and bid them adieu and the moment they stepped out of the graveyard Madeline froze. A violent shudder jabbed down her spine as she gazed in the opposite direction of where they would be walking. Dimitri when this would happen never felt the air of death as that was not what he was designed for, he was not the Angel of death, his daughter, however, was. But! He felt this, he sensed the violence in the air followed by the sorrow of the lost life. With haste Madeline quickly rushed off, brushing past him in the direction of home, wanting to get away from this feeling as best she could because it scared her. "Maddie?" He questioned thrown off by her demeanour he trotted after her quickly feeling that heavy darkness seeping from her again. New Orleans was lively city 24/7 so the last thing he wanted was for his daughter to be storming around town on a night of murder unintentionally spreading darkness when she was really just trying to get home. He was caught up in this he did not notice the "shadow" following him now, though he sensed something he chalked it to just the feeling he had felt earlier and Maddie, who was moving really fast for a girl in heels and a dress. He found it hard to catch up to her honestly so he look about the ground for a moment until he found a pebble and flung it at her. "Madeline Bridgette Esperanza-Colette!" He rose his voice to call her as the pebble bounced off her shoulder. He spoke a little louder than he had intended to and it did not help that some of the townsfolk believed he and her were married and he now had those said people attention to "Oh Lord." He huffed quietly to himself rubbing the back of his head "You just had to give me a daughter. You are probably up there laughing." He chuckled to himself but really was talking to God. From out of the shadows before him, Madeline appeared, playfully flinging the pebble back at him and chuckling at his moment of confusion because he thought it might have been raining until he realized it was the pebble. "Your age is getting to you, old man." She snorted faintly as he chuckled "Yeah, Yeah, Yeah." He waved his hand as he approached her and wrapped her in a big hug, kissing her forehead and whispering something to her as he cupped her face. She sighed and shook her head in agreement to what he said: "Okay, let us go home, Little Love." He said as he wrapped his arm over her shoulders and began to walk with her.
Her movements were feline, silent and agile, hidden in the cloak of shadows which were created by the moonlight. The longer she followed him, the more her stomach dropped, the more her blood boiled within her veins and the more the voices yattered on; she was an unpredictable creature and in this very moment, she could feel a hurricane stirring up within the depths of her belly. Upon seeing him caused such an uproar within her, and she couldn't pinpoint which emotion was the most dominant; part of her wished to tackle and then hug him after the many years apart, another side of her wanted to ring his neck in for not saving her as he promised whilst a very, very small section of her wanted to disappear and not investigate. Yet her curiosity carried her forwards. She smiled as she heard his voice, the sound caressing her earlobe which eventually opened the lid to the memories that she managed to keep after the fatal attack of The Scream Chamber. The memories slowly calmed down the storm which was brewing inside of her, it calmed it so much that she felt his name tickling the back of her throat. “Dimit-" Her arm extended, not that she was close enough to touch him or for him to hear her. Her mist filled eyes widened at what she saw; she saw, her.
The brunette girl, despite radiating darkness was truly beautiful. The highlights beamed from the tops of her cheeks, the happiness which glistened in her eyes was almost blinding as she looked up at Dimitri; it caused Ciara to stagger backwards, her lips fell apart as her back met the brick wall. Inside, it felt like her organs were caving in on each other; cracking, crumbling and rotting all at once. Slender arms curled around her torso as she sunk into herself, the wall being her only support. The way they acted together was incredibly loving, playful and sincere.
“See, all these years we were keeping you from him, we were protecting you”
“Look how replaceable you are. We, your sisters, won't ever let you go like he did”
“He should pay for how he has left you behind"
“Kill an Angel and we will be satisfied for a very long time, our dear Shadow"
A singular tear dared to drop from the mist to down her cheek; it left a faint trail along her makeup as it did so, the air tightened in her lungs, choking her harshly as an unintended scream bellowed from her once again. Nails clawed at each side of her face, the scream a mixture of her own emotions and the premonition of someone's death. Throughout the scream, her pain filled gaze remained on Dimitri and this new found female.
“Killing him will make it all better, my dear petal.”
It was almost as if the last scream in her head took on form of The Matron; Ciara nodded and used the back of her hand to wipe away any stray tears as well as the mascara river which would have been left on her cheeks. Cici let the two get a fair distance in front of her once more, before following her prey; it was in those few moments that her sadness took on the form of anger, the storm brewing inside her once more. Individuals in the street either looked at her in a concerned manner whilst others could feel the negative energy radiating from her and avoided her at all costs. “Are you okay, Ma’am?" One gentlemen attempted to speak to her, she simply replied by shoving him out of the way. Eventually she watched them enter their apartment; a brow quirking as she noted it was above his own art studio. “I wonder if he painted her too" Cici growled under her breath before stalking round the property, her fingers running across the glass which displayed his masterpieces. Each painting that was in the window caught her eye, she stood silently for longer than she attended as she examined every single bit of detail; she could recall now passionately he would speak of his talent and how he would also get embarrassed by how others adored it. Despite all the loving and happy memories of him, she now couldn’t get passed the image of him with another woman and with that, her next move was decided - she was ready to meet him.
A low, happy hum vibrated from her painted lips as she picked up the nearest and biggest rock that she could find. “You’re a pretty rock, you will do the trick” Cici murmured and pressed her lips to the face of the rock before throwing it as roughly as she could into the window of his display; consequently knocking a painting down as she did so. “Ooops” But it was the sound of the alarm which made her grin more, a light appeared in the back of the shop and Ciara went to stand on the other side of the road opposite the door; with her hood up, she allowed the moonlight to hit some of her features to make her appear ghostly to him as he came down to investigate. “Tick tock” Her tongue clicked against her teeth as he finally appeared; she waited patiently for him to glance outside and when he caught her, she smirked with a little waved before walking off into the night - hoping it was now his time to investigate.
Dimitri sat on the couch in his living room with his hands buried in his hair. Madeline had just gotten to sleep somehow with death in the air and that left Dimitri deep in thought of how he might help her. So here he sat knowing something was wrong about her tonight, different from the other times this had happened but having naught but a clue on how to help his daughter. He ran his hands down his face with a slightly tired and aggravated huff deciding sleeping on it might help. Though he highly doubted it actually would.
No sooner had I rose to my feet did a crash come clanging in my ears, too loud to be anything else but my storefront down below. I stilled, holding my breath at that moment hoping, praying, Madeline did not wake up. Yet, out of her room, she barged with a livid look about her face and a bat in hand. Wait, a bat!? "Maddie!?" With a hop in my step, I trotted after her tossing on some boots I kept on the stairs for emergencies. I came to halt as I reached the gallery 'They ruined it.' She spoke as she bent down and removed a painting from beneath the shards of glass. My heart sank, she did not even have to tell me, show what painting it was because there was only one she cared about. She held it up in the moonlight that peered in through the broken window. 'I... I asked you for one thing in my whole life and you just could not grant me that.' She looked my way, I was speechless, all I could do was watch as she looked around with teary eyes and then back down at the painting. It did not have anything special on it, it was just a painting of the field I would take her mother too often but what made it special was that it was painted by her mother.
Madeline let out an angry huff "I will go get the broom." She spoke robotically, hiding her emotions as she jotted up the steps to hide the painting away and return with the broom. "I will go and close off the storefront." Dimitri reply with a mix of sadness, shame, and also anger for however did this. He huffed as he stepped forward trying to avoid stepping on the glass but still hearing the crunch of the shards beneath his boots with ever gentle step he took. He began to step out through the broken window aimlessly looking around before he froze. One half of him still in the shop and one half out as his eyes now stayed glued on the figure across the street. He forwarded his brow and swallowed hard "Ciara!?" He questioned as he stepped outside completely. Madeline, who had begun sweeping behind froze at the sound, her head sharply turning his way but Ciara had already gone so it left Madie to believe Dimitri was having "another one of those nights". She growled to herself, tonight was the worst night for him to have a hallucination of her. " Dad?" She spoke softly as she touched his back "stay here!" He commanded shaking her hand off of him and pulling down the metal door to close and lock the place up. She growled from the inside of the gallery a moment fighting with herself on if she should obey but with a huff, she swallowed it, her anger and frustration on the matter, he had to learn on his own how to fight this. With one final huff, she opened her eyes and scanned around in the dark "I am really too tired for all of this." She said to herself with a disappointed shake of her head and a listless look in her eyes before heading back upstairs and collapsing onto her bed.
I stumbled forward as she walked away "Ciara!". She had to hear me, she had to be real. It was a lively night, as usual, the streets crowded with locals and tourists keeping me a distance behind my love as I clawed my way through them to her. She had to be real, it had to really be her this was all too clear for it not to be and she did not just pass people by unnoticed and unphased as she did in the past. They saw her like I did felt her as she brushed or pushed them by. " Ciara! Please!" I was desperate to reach her now because she was getting farther away and some of the men around were now skeptical of why I was chasing down and begging after a woman in such a desperate manner getting in my way and pushing me away as if to protect her from me. "You do not understand, I have not seen her in years. I am just trying to get her attention before I lose her." I gave reason after reason person after person as I pushed my way through this crowd but I was losing her. "No! No! No! God please!" I broke free of the crowd but it was too late, she was gone.
He looked around frantically but after a while, you could see him just deflate as he rubbed his eyes and the back of his neck. "Maybe it was just another trick my mind was playing on me again." He sighed to himself as he spun on his heels to head home but stopped short when he found someone standing right behind him. He opened his mouth to apologize but stopped and forwarded his brow when he actually got a good look at the lady in his way. "CiCi? Ciara?" He questioned as he approached her slowly bending down slightly to see her face a little better. He stopped at arm's length away from her a faint smile growing at the edges of his mouth as cautiously he reached out to see if he could touch her if she was truly there. He took her hand slowly as a breath hitched at the back of his throat in both relief and disbelief. "It is you!" Is all he could choke out through the lump growing in his throat. He pulled her to him in excitement and just the need to hold her again as he wrapped her in a warm loving hug without a second thought. He held her tight for all but a second before he peeled himself away feeling, sensing a very dark difference in her. He looked her right in the eyes with grave concern as his hands rested on her shoulders he could see the blackness in her eyes and immediately he knew she was something darker now and he stepped back heartbreakingly because all he wanted was to hold her and for her to hold him back. "Me or her?" He questioned with a sudden dark and sad tone. "You are back to kill, I know that look all too well." He studied her a second. "So are you here for me or the woman with me?"
For once, it was not the voices of The Elders which were buzzing around her head, it was her own thoughts, her own worries and her own emotions; in that split moment, she felt that she was the only one in her head. The idea of that comforted her and concerned her - whenever they were quiet only meant trouble was looming; just like The Scream Chamber, it was the calm before the storm. Ciara didn’t dare look behind her, she couldn’t face the idea that he didn’t follow her - the idea that he simply dismissed her as an hallucination would hurt too much but she needn’t look round for her confirmation; his shouting was enough, he had seen her. To know that he had indeed seen her, and was following her, sent her stomach to go round in somersaults; her buried emotions for him attempting to crawl back to the surface much like she had done all those years ago when she became reanimated. To be difficult, Ciara had decided to go against the current of people, weaving her way through the crowds elegantly; her movements feline and agile and she could hear the frustration in his voice as others got in his way which caused a smile to tug at the very corners of her painted, crimson lips. It was the sad undertones in his words which felt like her stab wound had reopened and due to that it made her question if she was even able or even strong enough to do as The Elders ordered; after all, he was the reason and only reason that she survived The Scream Chamber - without him, even to this day she was sure that she would not have survived the screams she endured. “Damnit Dimitri” She mumbled to herself.
“Is that man bothering you?” A series of people would murmur to her, yet she simply pushed passed them without a say on the matter, and she was sure that did not help his case when it came to catching up with her; eventually she looked over her shoulder to see that she had lost him and she couldn’t help but let out a huff of frustration - old age was clearly catching up with him, considering she still had the speed and strength of a human. Mist coated eyes rolled dramatically as she took off down a side road which was less busy, a road that only locals would use to avoid the crowds, in aims to work her way back to where she believed she lost him. Ciara rolled her lips together as she stalked one final alleyway which she believed took her back to the main high street where she was greeted by crowds, loud music and cheering; it still shocked her that both herself and Dimitri had found themselves living in this sort of city, let alone the same city. She found herself lingering upon the corner for a brief moment, watching him deflate as the realisation hit him that she was gone once again; it made her chest sink but soon enough, The Elders returned with would could have been a slap round the face.
“Do you want to go back to The Scream Chamber, Petal? Or better yet, return to your bed six feet under?”
The voices hissed, sensing her confliction between her humane emotions and her killer emotion; she knew all too well that her sisters could pluck her dead in a blink of an eye. “We can’t allow you to have both, him and us.” There was a slight pause for a moment, a moment of silence as Ciara just watched him speak to himself, her heart racing with excitement; excitement of seeing him again, and the ability to touch him, kiss him again but also the excitement of death which was as sweet as nectar upon her tongue. “But he has already moved on, the choice is really so simple our Darling Shadow. Rejection or Sisterhood”
Striking features scrunched together as she shook her head violently, recalling the woman that she had seen with him only an hour ago and how they interacted with each other; with a growl, she stepped into the street and right up behind him as if she were his actual shadow. For the first time in many years, the blonde banshee found herself becoming nervous as she waited for him to turn round; before he did, she closed her eyes for a short moment to compose herself before reopening them just as he did so. A coy smile appearing at one corner of her lips as he registered who she was, however, she had to ignore the butterflies which danced around her stomach as he said her nickname - his accent still having the same effect on her as it did all those years ago; yet, painfully, she couldn’t show it. Cici parted her lips as to reply to him but quickly pressed them into a faint line again upon feeling his hand take hers, their slender digits intertwining. Her countenance remained unmoved, making it harder to read for another yet as he brought her into her hug, when her face was hidden within his chest; her lips curled upwards ever so slightly yet that soon evaporated the moment he withdrew, the moment he sensed that there was something different to what he had known and loved over the years.
It was as if The Elders had clamped upon her tongue, sensing the words which wanted to erupt from her; witnessing the bubbling emotions close to the surface which could destroy everything they and The Matron had made over the years in Cici. Ciara swallowed roughly, swallowing the words and the emotions that her old self was allowed to feel and as she registered his words, it was like someone had switched on the light and made her animated once more. A wide grin found her lips as she glanced up at him, a sparkle twinkled within her grey hues as her fingers wrapped around the top of his arm, tugging him into the alley she had come from, away from the crowd of locals and tourists alike; alleys were clearly her thing this evening. Once they were slightly away from the crowds, she allowed her eyes to wander down his physique before working their way back to his own gaze; she bit down upon her lower lip in a suggestive manner, this time ignoring the sad tone and simply focusing upon his words. “I did just come for you, however…” She pressed the tip of his nose with her finger almost cutely. “ Then I saw that pretty little thing and well…” Ciara rocked back and forth upon the balls of her feet, a slight giggle laced her words. “I’m greedy. The man before you was starters, you can be main and she can be puddin’”
“Mm, puddin’...” She trailed off briefly before shaking her head to get back on track. “Lets begin? Yes? Yes. Lets” Cici grinned, she dropped her gaze to see if he could hold onto anything to brace himself but shrugged when nothing appeared.
“Do it. Get on with it.”
All it took was one sentence to beckon the scream which began to slowly erupt from her lungs, Ciara didn’t bother saying goodbye, simply out of pettiness; she never could remember his final words to her anyway. Her jaw clicked as it widened, a painful expression found her features as the power within the scream pressed against the seams; yet her eyes, despite excited also held great sadness that this was how her love, the love of her life would meet his end.
His heart was soaring, quickly filling with joy and pain as she unravelled and revealed herself to him. Her words hit him like violent numbing blows to the heart as his breath hitched and a lump in his throat formed and seized his voice. He let her pull him to the alleyway like a lost puppy on a leash, stroking her hand which held his arm. His heart shattering when she mentioned she would go after Maddie and that is when everything in him clicked back on. Snapped into reality and though there was a tinge of curiosity in him that just wanted to stand there and see what she was now, see if she would actually do it and if she could even, in fact, hurt him but it was too late. She loosed her scream upon and he suddenly found himself staggering back.
"Ciara please!" I begged as the violent wave of sound crashed right into me, I would not, could not die from this, but that did not mean I could not still feel the pain it havocally wreaked within me. I covered my ears as I lost my footing and stumbled to the ground. The lamppost behind me breaking my fall but not without clobbering the back of my head. "Ci-"I could not get the rest of her name out as her scream circled in on my and sat like a weight on my chest. I could feel the blood trickle down my arms from my ears and salty taste of iron as blood trailed from my nose to my mouth. "You can not kill me!" I choked out and it only seemed as though that made the scream worse. I forced myself to my feet, using the lamppost as leverage to further prove my worse, struggling to stare into her in a silent plea and suddenly it all just stopped. I had to close my eyes and fall to my hands just to be okay, spitting out blood as my body shook. I looked up to say something to Ciara but she was gone and suddenly I was thrown back into a panic because I knew whom she was after now and if I did not catch her and stop her we would both live to regret the death and murder of our daughter.
A faint whimper escaped him as he shot to his feet, not from his own physical pain but for his fear of losing Madeline. He fears of what that would do to Ciara once she found she was hers. He took off after her, less concerned about catching and more concerned about getting to his home first, taking back alleys and side streets to avoid the hustle of the nightlife like he had when he chased Ciara down the first time around. When he first arrived he had thought he made there first but the pieces his already shattered and still wildly beating heart sank into his stomach piece by piece once he found the front door busted and open.
I barged in and up the stairs like a desperate bat out of hell. Halting as soon as the sight of Ciara looming over Maddie came into view. "Cici, do not do this. Just listen to me, let me tell you who she is-"I held up my hands as I slowly walked towards them, Madeline was asleep at the dining table, clear evidence of her having fallen asleep in the middle of trying to fix her mothers painting. Her mother who was trying to kill her. Her mother who had just cut my words off with another murderous scream. Without a second thought, I hurdled forward and tackled Ciara. All three of us fell to the floor as her scream had just barely hit Maddie and sent her chair tipping backwards. While in the air, I had managed to flip us around allowing for me to be what hit the floor as she hit me as she landed instead. I winced in pain and I could hear Maddie's faint whimpers in the distance. I sighed in some relief because those whimpers though they meant she was in pain also meant she was alive. I wrapped my arms around Ciara tightly as I spun us around again, hovering over her I stared into her eyes with a forwarded brow. I was not sure what would be happening within her given that I had interrupted her mid-scream and that I had stopped her from killing a woman she was clearly jealous of. Yet, she had no reason to be. I brushed the hair away from her face "Breathe. Look at me." I cooed softly placing both hands on the side of her face before pressing my forehead against hers, hoping in some way this helped. That in some way it calmed her down that she heard me. I fought the urge to place a gentle kiss on her lips having had blood in my mouth minutes ago. I pulled my head back but kept her face in my hands and her pinned to the ground. "Look at me," I said more as encouragement than a command "please look at me" a heavy frown forming on my face that she would not. I could no longer hear Maddie in the background which twisted the pieces of my heart that were left as they sat in my belly. I sighed, she had always been stubborn, but she would always look at me when I asked. Except I had never done anything to make her jealous before or think I had broken my promise to her. I kissed her on the cheek before whispering in her ear "she is your daughter, our daughter."
He rose after that and headed to check on Madeline, she was breathing and responsive, but maybe had a slight concussion from hitting her head when she fell back. Dimitri knelt down at her side and brushed her hair from her face after checking her pulse. Standing he found the first aid kite they had in the bathroom and returned to Madeline's side cleaning the blood dripping from her ears before cleaning himself because she was more important to him. "Collie-Flower." He spoke in a hushed tone repeatedly until she gave a groan in response. "This is going to sting, Little one." She spoke again as he disinfected her ears with some sort of drops, a perk of being an angel with an angelic job like his meant people always gave him the weirdest things, these ear drops the prime example. She breathed hard and squirmed and whined until she passed out again and now an angry frown showed on his face. He picked her up and carried her to her room, tucking her in he moved this strange glowing flower in Mason jar filled with water from the top of her dresser to her bedside table. The mystical glow highlighting the features of her face as he ran his hand through her hair before coming back out and locking Ciara out of the room, who based off the fact that he knew she had not left was still stubbornly on the floor where he had left her. He walked over towards her and picked her up next, he thought to put her on the couch but he did not have the heart to do that so he brought her to his room and laid her down on the bed. He was deeply saddened by the fact she refused to look at him still but he was not one to try and force it or push it more. "I never broke my promise." He said before leaving to go clean himself off finally and collapse on the couch, shutting the door behind him as he left.
To be able to pinpoint what hurt the most for her was near impossible; physically speaking, the scream which rattled against her ribcage made her feel like every bone within her body was at breaking point, yet she would take that anyday compared to the emotional pain she was now enduring. There was so much pain, hurt, anger and the love she felt for him all pented up within her that it seemed to encourage the scream more, to fuel it to make it more powerful which she was unsure as to whether or not her own diminutive frame was able to cope with - let alone what he, himself was currently going through and experiencing. The sound of him begging her, the way in which he said her name sent her emotions into overdrive, to try and center herself, Ciara brought her fingers up to her face, her nails tugging roughly at the roots of her hair whilst she placed her feet in a position to balance and steady herself; yet all the while, her eyes remained painfully upon him. The cackling of the Elders laughter rang within her mind, they were seemingly enjoying the show which the two were giving them; especially the moment that Dimitri couldn’t hold himself up any longer and the moment that the crimson liquid began to make an appearance.
“Yes, Shadow, keep going” They cooed in sinister delight, it was as if just the pain that radiated from the pair fueled them enough, however, it was when and only when he stood back up and made a point that her scream wouldn’t kill him that the Elders pressed down harder upon her lungs; squishing whatever scream she had left within her to take him down. They didn’t care that they were physically hurting her either. With all the energy she could muster, the scream continued, her jaw continued to crack at its seams, before the realisation hit The Elders and slowly, but surely the scream began to soften. “It… It isn’t working”
“He should be dead now!” The screams panicked within her mind, frantically trying to find a reason as to why he couldn’t be killed and why they were not being fed by something so powerful and so light.
The moment that the scream had ended, Ciara stumbled, her brows forwarded to try and regain some control over the pain which soared through her; the back of her hand moved upward to wipe away the small trickle of blood which escaped her nostril. A silent moan bypassed her lips in a staggered breath of air as she could already feel the bruising within her; after a few moments, Ciara finally mustered up enough strength to be able to have complete comprehension - she took one final glance at the struggling yet recovering Dimitri, there was that small, hidden part of her that she couldn’t show, which was relieved that he had survived the traumatising ordeal. Despite the relieve, the killer mode in her was definitely still activated, and with a frustrated growl, she made sure she took off before he could completely come round; there was one more person in this game that could be removed, the pretty little thing that was with Dimi earlier that evening. The girl looked small and fragile, and therefore a lot easier to take down and she very much doubted that she was an Angel just like him. Unfortunately, Cici knew no other way back to the Gallery and to Dimitri’s home where she was would find the girl, therefore, much to her dismay she had to weave her way back through the crowds; some would look at her with concern as the blood that left her nostril now slightly stained her porcelain skin just above her lip, whilst others were more concerned with the look of pain and distraught upon her features. “Move. Get out of my way” Cici growled in a panic as she pushed and shoved individuals out of the way as if they were easily dispensable, which, technically they were to her; she knew she had to get there before Dimitri did.
Eventually, the light from the gallery came into view, and the shards of glass remained scattered along the pavement; her features scrunched up as she had to roll up onto her tiptoes to try and avoid the glass getting stuck in the soles of her feet. Her mist coated gaze drifted along the gallery and the many paintings which were untouched by her violent ways; she paused for a short moment to see if she recognised any and sighed when none came to mind - maybe he got rid of them over the years, or maybe they were too precious for public views. With a low hum, Ciara took to the flight of stairs, she attempted to keep her footsteps light and quiet so that she had the element of surprise when she attacked the girl. It didn’t take her too long to find the brunette girl which had stolen Dimitri’s affections - she looked peaceful with her head resting upon her arms at the table; soft snores breezed around the room as she slumped over a certain painting. Simply out of curiosity, Cici couldn’t help but want to get a better look at the girl to try and see what it was that Dimitri was drawn to, what made her so special that she could live with him?
“You are crazy obsessive aren’t you”
“Oh be quiet” She hissed back in undertones at the comment before the backs of her fingers moved to brush against the girl’s cheek in order to tuck a few strands of dark hair behind her dainty ear. Ciara froze momentarily as the young girl stirred somewhat at her soft, delicate touches before she crouched down to be on her face level - her eyes soaked up the girls features and a low growl began to rumble within the depths of her belly; she was beautiful. Cici closed her eyes briefly, before straightening herself back up and taking a few steps backwards to be able to direct the scream properly and accurately. She knew this would have to be her last scream of the evening, the internal bruising growing with each breath, the bruising causing her to wince as she began to find the scream once more; the sound of his heavied breathing, the desperate plea to stop her from committing this crime distracted her for one brief moment. In response, she simply shrugged her shoulders, she didn’t want to know who she was to him and with that, the gust of scream violently bypassed her lips; it brushed the girl, she knew that much but before Cici could witness the impact, she felt herself flying before landing upon Dimi which consequently disrupted and stopped her scream.
Ciara couldn't even try and protest as he switched their positions with her back on the floor, at first she kept her wide gaze up at him; the scream that should be in the air rattled aggressively within her, but she refused to show him just how much pain he had caused - therefore her lips fell into a fine line and her teeth clenched to prohibit the pain filled groans. Now that she could see him properly, he had not changed much, if at all and that comforted her but she could not admire him as much as she wanted - therefore, just as his forehead touched her own, she turned her head to the side to glance at the cupboards; she refused to acknowledge his plea to look at her or the poppycock of a whisper which caressed her ear. The moment he removed his body from hers, she exhaled, yet this gave her body and her muscles the freedom to wither in pain; blood dripped from her ears but she was too stubborn to voice her pain besides letting out slight whines- The Scream Chamber had helped with her tolerance.Ciara had to clench her eyes shut to try control how she reacted to the internal scream, she desperately wanted to scream out in agony but despite her half desire to hurt him, she couldn't do it; hence why she remained silent as he came back to pick her and dropped her off on his bed.
The bed lining smelt like him and she waited until he left the room for his comforting smell to simmer the agonising pain which caused havoc inside her; which it did and that didn't surprise her - after all these years, just the thought of him was powerful enough to help but now she had the physical. “Never broke my promise” Cici mimicked him in a childish tone as she weakly pushed herself up into a seated position. “Never broke my promise, my ass” She pfft’d to herself and then slowly explored the multiple of objects which decorated his room.
Minutes turned into hours and finally, Ciara was brave enough to open the bedroom door; her head poked out first, warily and suspiciously before her body followed. She remained close to the wall as she got her barings of his apartment before she entered the open living room and kitchen combined. There he was, she couldn't tell if he was asleep or not but he looked peaceful despite just finding out his love was alive after all these years and how she just attacked him and his so called daughter. In an attempt to not stir him, she removed her shoes to walk barefoot to the kitchen to grab a drink to soothe the pain in her throat which gave her the impression that she would have lost her voice, or at least she was on the verge of losing it. Cici rummaged through his fridge first before huffing as she didn’t see anything that appealed to her and found herself settling for tap water; the pint of water didn’t last long but before she knew it, some of the water came back up and landed in the sink as she coughed. She glanced into the sink and saw that the water had been tainted with some of blood, which caused her to forward her brow. “Not again” Ciara muttered to herself before freezing as she heard footsteps behind her, her eyes widening as she slowly looked over her shoulder as she watched Dimitri approach her; they remained silent for a few moments as they looked at each other, eating the other’s appearance before she slowly broke the silence, by turning the tap on to wash away the blood residue. “I will be on my way soon, so you can continue your life with her”
As soon as Dimitri found himself to his own devices he lost it, in a silent despair. He slumped to the ground and held his hands to his heart shaking in both fear, anger and heartbreak. So this is what it was like to get a wish granted? It was terrifyingly numbing. Quickly he pulled himself together at the sound of a door opening and the sight of Maddie hurtling towards the restroom, the door slamming behind in a matter of seconds, this only confirming she had a concussion. He rubbed his tired eyes and headed for the kitchen cleaning himself of the blood stains and dropping the liquid in his eyes as he had with Maddie. A faint hiss zipping passed his lips as the sting hit him. He headed down to the gallery to clean up and lock and gate everything off, fixing the door before finally returning upstairs. He checked Maddie's room first to only be met by their dog Scotty the giant ball of fluff was sadly waiting for Maddie to return. He forwarded his brow then and headed for the bathroom gently knocking "Madeline?"
The door faintly opened and I took the opportunity to creep in. I shut the door behind cautiously, finding Maddie just laying in the empty tub. I frowned and knelt down beside the porcelain basin and reached in to rub her head. "How do you feel?" She just stared out into nothing for a while so I asked again. This time her eyes shifted to me 'you sound like... I am underwater.' She forced herself to say a slight pant coming with her words telling me she was going to just need time until she was okay. "Okay, just rest. I will be the flower to see if that helps and Scotty to keep you warm." I went to rise and stand but her petite hand fragilely caught my wrist 'What happened? What is happening?' She croaked out with a whimper and a pleading look in her eyes. I frowned and knelt back down, rest my mouth on the side of the tub as I looked at her and looked for a way to tell her. "Your mother is alive but she is far from a human and even farther from the women I loved." A heavy frown overtook all of my features and I soon felt Maddie's weak soft touch on my cheek. She was always so selfless and far beyond my own understanding at that. She could be dying and yet if someone else suffered near her, stranger or friend their well being came before her own. "Try and rest." I said kissing the palm of her hand before taking her hand and resting it down beside her. I returned with the flower and Scotty before locking her in the restroom.
He had not noticed the hour until he was sinking into his sofa staring at the time. The realisation that hours had passed and he had been up for 24 hours settled into his mind and made him question if everything was real. His tired mind had this way of making dreams seem so real to him but then he would wake up and the bitter realization that this was all fake would come crashing down on top of him. Except he was not sure if this is what he wanted he had longed for Ciara to be alive again for so long but... Not like this... Not like this... His eyes began to close as they uncontrollably grew heavy and before he could fight it he was fast asleep.
I jerked awake to the sound of rummaging, blinking a few times as my brow forwarded and I took in a deep breath. I got to my feet and followed the sound, her golden hair flowing as she moved told me two things, that it was her and that she was really here. I approached cautiously watching the expression on her face. I hated this new dynamic between us and felt guilty for it despite not being the full reason. "Or..." I said to her words my fingertips gently brushing up her arms as my dark eyes stayed on hers. "... You could stay and get to know your family." I spoke in a hushed tone as my hand came up to her face, caressing her cheek. I pulled away once I felt Scotty push his way between us to smell Cici. Glancing over my shoulder in time to see Maddie walk out. I watched as she froze for a second looking our way, allowing myself to faintly shift enough for her to see her mother. Her eyes widened a faint glimmer of hope and joy shining in her eyes as she stepped towards but stopped once I shook my head no. She did not understand that was clear by the look her face but she listened despite clearly not wanting to. 'vini sou Scotty( come on, Scotty)' she called before walking to her room with the flower jar held to her chest.
He returned his attention to Ciara once they were alone again, he studied the expression on her face and sighed. Now pondering how he could convince her Maddie was hers or to even acknowledge that he had said it. "I would really love if you stayed." He asked with his head down, stepping away from her to give her space. "But I know I can not make you." He took a sharp audible breath solely through her nose "he saw how her eyes shifted to Madeline's door. " You should try and get to know her, maybe you will learn the truth about her." He said walking back towards her this time he kept walking until her back was on the wall and his chest was pressed to hers. He cupped the sides of her face and rubbed his nose to hers "Please. Please stay with me!?"
The words which drifted from her tongue couldn’t have been more of a lie even if she had even tried - as if she would have just disappeared without a trace, without seeing him again or without making sure he was okay; not after so long. Even if that was what he desired, for her to leave so he could continue his life the way it had been for the last God knows how many years, she still wouldn’t abide by it, and he would, deep down know that. Now that she knew where he was and where he lived, she would never be too far even if seeing him with another woman twisted the permanent knife in her stomach. Therefore, once the words left her, she knew she was simply being petty and hurt by the fact that a younger, more beautiful woman had filled the void that Ciara didn’t intend to make. She stood there silently, her eyes remained intent on his in anticipation as to what he would say or do in regards to her statement and now that the Elders had seemed to simmer down she openly hoped that he would fight for her; yet it was his next movements which took her by surprise. Ciara lowered her gaze to watch his fingers run over her arms, she took a slight intake of air at the softness of his touch and couldn’t help but lean into his hand the moment it reached her cheek.
Or you could stay and get to know your family. His words echoed within her ears, and she knew that he knew that she had processed his sentence; yet in that moment she was too busy enjoying his caressing touch to even want to argue with him. Ciara bit down upon her tongue in that moment, not wanting to ruin it, however, their moment did break at the bounding dog that came their way and wriggled its way between the pair. For the first time since they met a few hours ago, a smile appeared on her features as the puppy sniffed around her; she had always loved dogs, her fondest memory would always be of the mongrel which lingered around The Pleasure House and cutely demanded to be fed too - Quinn had a thing for looking after things even if he could be an unpleasant man at times. Cici lowered herself down, and gave the dog a good scratch behind his ears before a soft whine left his vocals; she forwarded her brow, and couldn’t help but wonder what she did wrong, yet maybe he could smell the death which softly radiated from her. With a slight huff she straightened herself up once again, her gaze caught the slight movement from across the room and she could only assume it was the other woman and because of that, Cici refused to look her way.
It took a lot of willpower for her gaze not to wander to the girl, especially once Dimi had moved ever so slightly so that the brunette could get a better look at her; however, it took more willpower to hold herself back and try not to attack the small thing again. Cici curled her digits so that her nails dug into the palms of her hands in order to restrain herself, her gaze once again upon Dimitri until the girl faded back into the room along with the dog which trailed after her; and it was then that she eventually released her palms from such an assault. The moment they were alone, she did find herself glancing in the direction that the young girl had ventured off to, her head tilted curiously - Cici knew she would not be able to restrain herself for long if at all. Jealousy was such an ugly trait, but for now, she was alone with Dimitri, he was picking her in this moment of time and that made her feel smug; the dark haired beauty being shunned to her room caused a great amount of pleasure. “The truth is pretty damn clear” Ciara retorted, she turned her head to face him just as he walked up to her, noting that he was not stopping, she took those few steps backwards to find her back pressed up against the wall, his chest pressed against hers and his face only inches away. There was a passion in her misty eyes, her hands automatically found themselves cupping the fabric of his shirt that covered his waist, keeping him held to her; Cici bit down upon her lip as he rubbed his nose against hers but a small exhale still managed to escape at his question. “Your new lover isn’t going to stop me nor is she going to scare me away.” She purred and rolled up onto her tip toes and leaned in, her lips colliding with his in a deep and passionate kiss; her diminutive body pressed against his, it moulded in and against each curve of his own body perfectly. Ciara’s lips remained locked with his in a heated manner until she was satisfied she had taken his breath away and stirred up possible forgotten feelings that he had for her before she withdrew; her own breath hitched at the back of her throat in an attempt to compose herself, whilst her forehead leaned against his.
Ciara remained silent for a few moments, she just wanted to listen to their panting breaths before she briefly brought up the subject she knew he didn’t or wouldn’t avoid. “She isn’t my child, Dimitri. I was never pregnant, I think I would know” Her tone was much softer than before, he had always had the ability to relax her, but she shook her head - now was probably not the time to discuss it; for once she was attempting to be reasonable as she noted the bags under his eyes. “Come to bed with me again?” Cici cooed, her hands removed themselves from his waist and snaked up his arms to finally rest above his own hands which remained on either side of her face. She was sure he wouldn’t say no to that, not purely out of affection but he was wary of her too and her violence; she knew he would want to keep her where he could see and deal with her - just because she was calm now, it didn’t mean the storm had passed. Her fingers slithered through the gaps that his provided and began to guide him slowly back to his room; as they passed the door which separated them from the other girl whose name was still unknown to her - her eyes narrowed, a slight sinister smile appeared on her lips.
Despite her taking him to bed, she didn’t expect them to be physical, even if she did, just by looking at him and how tired he seemed, she was doubtful that he would last; she wriggled her hand free and after being a nosey one earlier that evening, she had already found where he kept his shirts to change into one for the night. “Rest Dimi, I pinky promise she is safe for now.” Ciara looked over her shoulder at him and gave him a crooked smile.
For just a moment he froze as her lips touched his but he melted into it as he began to kiss her back. He closed his eyes as all these suppressed emotions came flooding over him. He took in a sharp breath as he depended the kiss between them and so suddenly the feeling of never wanting this to end once again came in and took over finding it hard to stop and not go any further but he behaved, both grateful and sad when she pulled away and stopped the kiss. He took in a deep breath keeping his eyes closed as she spoke, a faint smile growing at the edges of his lips for just second before he sighed.
Explaining Maddie to her was going to be hard, hard to explain, hard to accept, hard to adjust to. Definitely a conversation for another time, hopefully, one I had more energy and rest enough to deal with both stubborn ladies of mine. I hummed in approval feeling her touch, letting her pull me to my room, I was not going to fight her, in here I could be sure to keep her away from well everyone especially our daughter. I cleared my throat and looked away as she undressed and put on one of my shirts. I had seen her before of course but we were not there yet.
He took a deep breath and ran his hands through his hair as she spoke. He gave her a curt nod at her promise, uncertainty slithering into his mind though he said nothing. He stepped forward and took a pillow and an extra duvet he had folded at the foot of his bed and set himself up on the floor. Remaining silent for some time seating on the moc bed he had made for himself, wrapping the duvet around himself. He noted the look she had given him when he set up on the floor and signed rubbing his face. "We are not there yet." Was all he said before he laid down and stared up at the ceiling. "Scotty will protect Madeline if you try anything, love." He commented as his eyes glanced her way a playful smirk growing on his face at just the sight of her.
She was back, different but back and no one ever said different was bad. Concerning sure but not bad, no completely at least from what I could tell because Ciara the women I loved was still in there somewhere. Her kiss told me everything, though of course, we would still need to talk about everything. Where to start? I sighed at that thought. "How long?" I asked as I turned on my side and stared up at her "how long have you been resurrected?" I braced for the answer because something told me that no matter the answer I would not like it.
This was not how tonight was supposed to go - she had planned to kill, and simply return to her room at The Manor and watch how her sisters fought each other for the attention of The Matron; in fact, she wouldn’t have been surprised if she had to take another trip to The Scream Chamber for slacking on her kills. Yet, despite how the evening didn’t go according to plan, she wouldn’t have changed it - even if The Elders within her violently disapproved of her inability to take out the Angel as well as the disgust at the passionate kiss which stirred up her human emotions they so desperately tried to get rid of; which they believed they got rid of. The taste of him lingered upon her lips and upon her tongue; a taste so familiar yet so foreign. The kiss alone caused an uproar within her, her mind racing - he couldn’t have been with the woman, the woman he claimed to be their daughter simply because the Dimitri she knew would not string two women along like that at once. However, for now, she wanted to ignore those thoughts and just embrace the moment that the two of them had just shared; a moment in which she had not had with anyone else, at least, not meaningfully since the last kiss they shared before her death.
For a moment, before she changed into his t-shirt, her fingers curled round the fabric and brought it up to her nose; Ciara inhaled deeply as his smell teased her nostrils. Of course, she didn’t know his cologne, she wasn’t that up to date with current fashion, but his own odour remained the same and it comforted her; at least one of them hadn’t changed so drastically. A playful smirk tugged at the very corners of her lips as he cleared his throat the moment that she began to undress herself. Ciara glanced over her shoulder to see that he had turned to give her some privacy - the act caused her to roll her eyes and allowed a small chuckle to leave the tip of her tongue; she dropped her current item of clothing to the ground until she was stood in just her underwear before she slipped the oversized t-shirt over her head. The palms of her hands flattened the shirt against her frame as she turned and jumped onto the bed; only to quirk a brow as he made a bed for himself on the floor - her lips parting somewhat in confusion, was he not going to sleep with her? “Suit yourself” Ciara shrugged her shoulders nonchalantly in an attempt to show that it did not bother her before she wriggled her body beneath the welcoming duvet.
Ciara couldn’t help but snort in response to his comment on how their dog would protect the brunette girl if she were to go and attempt to kill her once more. “He is no more than a pup, baby teeth won’t hurt” She winked in his direction before scooting herself into a horizontal position near the edge of the bed, only to roll on her side to face him down on the floor. Yet there it was, the question she knew he would ask, and she knew the answer she would give would only hurt him more; it would bring more guilt to wash over him if he only knew what she had been through in her time since revival. Ciara let a prolonged silence was over them, yet in that silence she didn’t even consider her answer. “Awhile, but time ceases to exist when you’re impris--” It was as if a clamp had pinched down upon her tongue, preventing her from continuing her answer; her eyes clenched shut, in an attempt to stop the memories plaguing her mind - despite the memory haunting her daily.
“Oh tell him! Let us see an Angel go dark. If you cannot kill him, bring him to us.”
A low growl rumbled within the back of her throat, if he were to die, he would die by her hand; along with the girl in the other room. “He is mine.” Ciara muttered under her breath and in a matter of seconds, her features brightened and she glanced down at him once again. “I see you have made quite the life for yourself here” Cici commented, the sound of her bitterness almost shining through. Did she want to know how he continued life without her? Whatever his response, it would hurt but it would eat her whole if she did not know - after all, she was always so used to knowing everything about him.
He turned to hid his face from her when her answer came. Stiffening up upon hearing it, no breath leaving him, or movement made. The horrors of his mind in just one instance and a few words uttered from her all came true and crashing down onto his heart. Awhile... That alone would haunt him but now he wondered what more was she going to say? Why did she cut herself off? Why was she growling to herself? He turned around to look and check if she was okay. He was hurt beyond compare and heartbroken but he still loved her, he still had to be sure she was okay. That need showed itself in how often he tended to her gravestone or how overprotective he was of her daughter. He let out a slow sigh from his nose and got up.
I hesitated to move closer to her but I did, taking her hand and sitting at the edge of the bed. I stare off into some void, my mind plagued with all the listless and sleepless nights when my heart ached to just be able to see her face again. Now here we were both afraid of the others past, that gap of decades we went without the other. I set all that to the side though to be sure she was okay, at least one of us should get some sleep. Turning to face her I studied the structure of her face as she kept her eyes closed. She looked as though she had not aged a day since I had last laid my eyes on her. I leaned over her and cupped her face with my free hand “breathe, love” I cooed gently. “All these years and I still have to remind you to just breathe.” I brought her hand up to lips and kissed it. “I am not mad.” I was disappointed, hurt, and very scared but not angry, not with her, and I needed her to know. I stroked her face. “Sleep. I will be right here.”
He stayed at the edge of the bed watching her, holding her hand, soothing her. He stayed there even after she had fallen asleep. At last, when she was sound asleep he moved, checked on Madeline who was now fast asleep on her bed, buried under Scotty with her skin glowing in the light of the fire flower at her bedside. At last, he made it back to his spot on the floor in his room and drifted away into a restless sleep. He awoke to faint sounds of early morning jazz and the smell of freshly cooked breakfast, a warm room naturally heated by the sun beaming through his window. It was peaceful moments like this that reminded him why he chose to move and raise Madeline in New Orleans.
I sat up and stretched, running my hands through my hair and down my face before rubbing my eyes. I checked Cici and smiled to myself seeing her still fast asleep, she looked so peaceful and I could only hope that was true. To think, the angle of hope was hoping for the best of someone; my brethren would never let me live it down. I crept out of the room, leaving her to rest some more. I chuckled and pet Scotty as he jumped up to greet me “Better?” I asked Madeline as she sat and ate her breakfast ‘mhmm’ was all she gave which told me no. All eyes turned when my room door opened, but Madies eyes quickly flicked away and back on to the newspaper she read. She swallowed and cleared her throat before folding paper up and putting it down. ‘I have to get to work. I’ll see you later.’ She cleaned the table and turned to say something to Ciara but held it in. ‘ I made breakfast for everyone' she said instead and then trotted out the door with Scotty “You have already scared her off CiCi. Continuing to glare will not make her combust into flames or anything!” I faintly joked as I made her plate and my self a plate.
Ciara was unsure of what his response would be to her cut off sentence of being imprisoned, in fact, she was certain that he wouldn't quite process the last part of her answer; but instead only focus on the fact that she had been reanimated for quite some time. If that was the case, that was typical Dimitri - only ever truly focusing or paying attention to parts of her reply to him; yet as she aged as a human, she believed it was simply selective hearing and that, in fact, he did not want to hear or know what else she had to say, possibly as a defence mechanism. Perhaps he did not want to comprehend she was imprisoned, either way, the silence which radiated from him as he processed the fact she had been alive all this time made her confused and frustrated - why could he not answer her? Ciara clenched the back of her teeth, there was no need to overreact, thus she attempted to find the detached and emotionless personality that she had conjured up just to survive at The Hallows Hill Manor and from the cruel teachings of The Matron. She inhaled deeply through her nostrils, and then exhaled soon after to distract herself yet the moment she felt his body lower onto the mattress she froze for a brief moment.
The Banshee kept her eyes closed also, the human version of herself was very well aware that he would have pain written across his features and because of that, she was unable to look up at him; Ciara did, however, understand that he would not be mad or angry once he knew the real reason why she was unable to seek him out once she escaped her grave. Nevertheless, he had felt enough pain for now, he did not need to know of the torture she was succumbed to over the years of her second life. Slowly, she reopened her mist like eyes to meet his as he cupped the side of her face; Ciara inhaled sharply, it had been many years since she had felt such an affectionate touch, and quite frankly, she wasn’t quite show how to react to it, but stare up at him in silence. It appeared that he had not changed since the Morning of her death, yet she could see the years had taken their toll on him; she watched how he looked down at her, and let her lips fall into a fine straight line before she accepted that she needed sleep - despite the emotional turmoil she had experienced this evening, she had also screamed to death a man, which had a habit of tiring her.
Ciara succumb to sleep, comforted by his soothing movements but also by the smell which lingered against the bedding and the t-shirt which she wore; and much to her surprise, it was the first peaceful night in years. The fact that it was peaceful worried her the moment she woke up - when The Elders only went quiet for that long, it generally meant they were plotting something. Long digits ran through her messy hair as she sat upright; quickly noting that he was no longer in the same room as her. With a groan, she rolled herself out of bed and padding out of the room to the very enticing smell of breakfast; the smell alone was confirmation for her that it would be better than the foods they sold at Hallows Hill. The first thing she saw as she entered the room was the young girl and suddenly the anger which resided within her began to stir; naturally her eyes narrowed, and followed Maddie out of the house. Ciara, so much so went to the door to make sure she was left for good.
“It might, you never know” She huffed in response as she took the seat in which Maddie was in previously; her stomach rumbled, breaking the silence between them. “It would be less painful than death by a scream, soooo” Ciara awkwardly responded, her fingers drummed against the table until he placed the food in front of her which triggered a smile; she couldn’t remember the last time she ate, therefore, she tucked in eagerly. “Much better than the food I’ve been living on for the last how many years” Ciara spoke with a mouthful of food.