Angel Hunt and Streifen Roleplay

+ M O D E R N D A Y +

Jun and Zephyr in Modern Day

Jun and Zephyr
The B E G I N N I N G

The cab bumps and shakes over the broken asphalt of the country highway, choking the clear blue sky with a thick cloud of dust. The driver, whose name has more letters than one can possibly pronounce in a single breath, rambles away on his cell phone in Hindi about the spoiled rich kid he has to take to some mansion way out in the middle of nowhere. A bad foreign movie soundtrack blares from the back speakers, apparently on a repeat rotation since they’ve heard this song three times already.

The Dark leans against the door, desperate to ignore the stench of cheap incense and old socks as the countryside rolls by. He’d spent the first part of the trip considering how many ways he could kill the cabbie without leaving a recognizable corpse. He’d come up with at least four, only one of which entailed harming the actual car. His gaze falls on the backpack sitting by his feet amongst the discarded lotto tickets and empty bags of Doritos, stuffed with clothes and other assorted items.

The messenger dog had been waiting for him at the base of the mountain as he stepped off the ski lift, wagging its tail and waiting patiently as he cut his finger and allowed the creature to smell his blood. Once the spell had confirmed his identity, the dog transformed into the note that Sashi had sent.

Zephyr hadn’t really known what would happen when Megumi walked into the apartment as everything that surrounds his brother’s friend seems to be as mysterious as she is. Despite feeling so utterly disconnected from everything, she does appear to understand just how serious the danger is for Sashi and like an odd, ruffle-clad knight in shining armor, she’s stepped up in his time of need to offer the most unlikely solution. He had tried to break the nightmares himself, hoping it would give the Dark more strength to deal with the magic, but the Incendia Seeker is also a Dream Walker with many more years of experience than he has, and her hold over Sashi is much too deep. In the end all he could do was be there when the nightmares finished, when his brother was drained and crying, bleeding from self-inflicted scratches and offer what little comfort Sashi would accept. It’s very hard to feel that helpless when someone you care about is suffering.

He’s still unclear about the details of what’s supposed to happen, but Sashi had asked that he come, and so he’d paid six months of advance rent and packed his stuff. Outside of Aki, Megumi, and himself, the Dark has no one so Zephyr knows how important it is for him to be here. He can see the benefit in this to the extent that the Dark may be willing to release the tight grip on his magic a bit if there is no one nearby to hurt. Only good things can come from Sashi’s acceptance of the powerful magic, the first of which is that it will stop killing him. Those Selestarri who are already unhinged when they switch factions can handle the overwhelming tide of magic that threatens to drown one when they first become Dark. For others, it’s unnerving and uncomfortable at first, and none of them are dealing with magic on the same scale as his brother. Sashi could destroy a small city with ease, so it’s pretty clear why the older Dark is concerned about losing his hold over it.

The scenery shifts from fields of cows to dense forest before the cab jerks to a stop outside a massive iron gate. Zephyr grabs his bag and steps into the cold winter air, pretending to root through his pockets for the fare as he quickly draws the pattern lines on the back quarter panel of the car. He sets a time delay to the spell before handing over the money, telling the driver in perfect Hindi exactly where he can shove it. The car peels off, the newly detached muffler dragging along in a shower of sparks, the screeching noise covered by the music. In a moment it’s lost in the distance, leaving him standing in the middle of the deserted road. He’d been told that someone would meet him at the gate and if they take long enough, he’ll be able to see the results of his handiwork. A hole punched in the gas tank plus the muffler sparks will leave very little left for reincarnation.

Smiling, the Dark wraps a blue and white scarf around his throat and pulls on a pair of earmuffs before settling down at the edge of the road to wait for the fiery cloud of smoke to appear on the horizon.

Jenova’s footfalls echo softly throughout the vast halls of his home as he moves leisurely towards the front foyer, long glass tipped fingers latched casually in leather pockets, his pure white locks loose and swaying gently at his lower back. He’s just finalized the arrangements in regards to the one Megumi has asked him to aid and has given specific instructions to a few of the human servants in his employ to tend to his guest’s upcoming needs.

In order to do what Megumi has requested of him, he requires the Dark to be within reach so he’s chosen a moderate guest house on the grounds for him to reside in for the duration of his stay. Megumi, unusual for her usual fashion, is currently with her friend, helping him settle in, and he’s confident that she will relay the importance of his following the house rules while he is in the confines and boundaries of his home. Megumi chooses few that she calls friend, so he knows that her choices are sound and because of this, he has no need to bother himself with the matter further as the Selestarri does appear to have a small measure of intelligence to him, at the very least.

The other however, the youth who shares a similarity in appearance to Jun and the second whom he’s been asked to accommodate, it appears he will require personal attention.

Walking past the threshold and stepping out into the cold winter air with no more haste to his steps than before, the Demon smirks to himself as he continues to move towards the spanning wrought iron gates far to his front. With barely a thought lent to the action, his consciousness reaches out to wrap the doomed car in a protective shell that much to what will be the Selestarri’s disappointment, will keep the display of fireworks the blonde so hopes for from actually happening.

He is not above games, but he will not tolerate anything that will bring unwanted and unnecessary attention to his home.

Reaching the heavily scrolled iron gates, the tall Demon’s knees bend in the slightest before he makes a single fluid leap up, thick soles tapping black pointed tips as if he weighs nothing before he steps over, his heavy leather boots making no impact on the snow covered ground as he silently lands on the other side. His continued footfalls come to a halt directly behind Zephyr and Jenova stares down at the teenager for a moment, studying the way midnight eyes stare out into the distance in amused anticipation for the show that will never come before he finally drops his masking spell to alert the Dark to his presence. Cool liquid notes spill from pale lips to rip a cry of surprise from the blonde when he finally speaks.

“I will suggest,” the Demon’s face remains an emotionless mask as Zephyr’s visibly shaken gaze slides up to find his clear crimson own, “that you do not try such stunts near my home again.”

It takes only a moment of looking into those frosty red eyes before the Dark pulls his gaze away. Damn, there’s some seriously powerful magic contained within the Demon, more than he’s ever sensed in one single creature and it’s dangerous enough to set off all his internal red flags. Zephyr rises to his feet, brushing the roadside dust from his pants before shouldering his backpack. The tone of the Demon’s voice is reminiscent of the instructors on the Eyrie, the ones who made it their lives’ work to be as belligerent to their students as possible. When he lived in Hong Kong as a Streaked, his friends had talked about being called into the Head Master’s office, and he supposes this is the same thing. It would seem he’s about to get chewed out.

The Demon hasn’t moved however, he hasn’t even blinked, and it seems that he’s waiting for some kind of acknowledgement of his words. Pulling his eyes away, Zephyr looks down the road at the unblemished skyline and sighs. “It would have been several miles away and more than well deserved.”

A single white brow arches in the slightest and for a split second, what can almost be described as amusement flashes through the tall figure’s features, “I am sure that you feel it was,” Jenova answers simply before turning to move back towards the gates.

Zephyr stands in place for only a moment as the white-haired man continues to step away from him before he quickly moves himself to catch up to his steady stride. The cast Iron aperture creaks in the slightest when they reach it, swinging open to allow the two to pass.

“There is an etiquette that I expect you to follow while you remain within the confines of my home,” Jenova begins without looking back. “Petty games such as that will not be tolerated.” His words are casual but his tone leaves no room for misunderstandings, and Zeph simply nods curtly at the back of the Demon’s head.

But once he’s past the gate’s threshold, the blonde’s footfalls abruptly stop, all normal senses washing away in an instant under the heavy wards that surround both the looming mansion and the vast grounds that frame it. Buildings not visible from the outside slowly materialize into view, the grounds themselves taking shape as if a fog were suddenly lifted from his eyes. Richly decorated stone carvings are scattered through every open area, winding pathways lace the thick forest of winter-wracked bare trees that blanket the immaculate setting, nearly every carving, rooftop, stone, and both unkempt and groomed foliage about covered in an undisturbed sheet of white. It takes the Selestarri a few seconds to collect himself from the onset of sensations and he can’t help but shake his head in an attempt to clear the sudden rush of overwhelming foreign magic that courses about.

“The house that both you and your brother will reside in is located out on the grounds,” the white haired Demon continues as the teenager resumes his steps and quickly jogs to catch up. “Simply ask one of the servants if you need directions and they will take you to it.” Crimson eyes narrow momentarily, his strides unaltered even as they shift to find the blue gaze behind, “I will say only once that these particular humans are to be left free of any additional fun you may wish to have. Understand?” Given a short nod, his gaze slides back to his front just as they reach the large stone steps of the mansion’s entrance. “If you do not find the house I have assigned to your liking, you may ask them to prepare a room within the mansion itself, or you may choose another that you deem more suitable, I do not care either way…”

Heavily carved doors swing open, the immaculately dressed staff standing silent just beyond the threshold with their eyes and their heads cast dutifully down. Finally coming to a halt just beyond the foyer, Jenova turns to face the young Dark once more.

“You are free to come and go as you please.” A small half grin forms on his pale lips, “though I would suggest for your own benefit that while inside you do not attempt any unconventional modes of transportation… as the results will not be entirely pleasant for you.” He smirks. “You will find there are many residents residing in this house and while most will not care or notice your presence… there are a few in particular I will warn you to refrain from using that little ability you possess on.”

Zephyr blinks as the slow realization that the Demon is in his head sets in, stepping past his barriers and protections as if they are not even there. “Fuan will be the first of these that you are not to impose upon…” an image instantly takes shape in the Dark’s mind as if he were watching it from a projector, a frail looking human with long layered ebony strands, a single seeing pitch eye and a graceful beauty to his slight frame. “There is also a youth.” The image reshapes and takes the form of a tall, slender teen with striking pink eyes. His pure white hair short and spiked, offset by dyed long bangs held back by haphazardly placed small black clips. “You will find this one to be different in many ways and this boy in particular is not to be tampered with, nor is his mind to be violated. Do you understand?”

There’s very little hesitation in the Dark’s nod and as the images fade and the smallest of smiles tugs at pale lips in response. “Very good. So long as your behavior remains adequate and these few rules followed, what you choose to do with your time here will not concern me.” The smile bleeds from his expression, replaced by the icy cold that had been there before. “I have matters to attend to elsewhere,” he states, “I trust you capable of finding your own way from here on out.”

Without another word, Jenova turns away from the teen to stride casually down the nearest hallway without even a backwards glance. The Dark sighs with relief as the white-haired Demon’s immediate presence fades from his senses, his footfalls growing more distant with every step he takes, even if truthfully it feels as if the entire place holds lingering traces, as though he can see anyone at any given time if he wants. That’s a pleasant thought.

Without meaning to, Zephyr glances in the direction his host had gone, finding the corridor is empty and sighing in relief despite himself. Seriously, if he never has to spend another moment alone with the Demon, he’ll be very happy. However, he had been given leave to explore and since it’s doubtful Sashi will be looking for him right away, he has some time to do as he wishes. A quickly scrawled pattern sends his backpack, coat, and earmuffs to the empty space, and while he’s straining the holding dimension a bit more than he’d like with them, it’s temporary so he’ll have to deal for now. With his burdens gone and a free pass to explore, the Selestarri turns and heads through the massive archway on the left side of the foyer, opposite the direction the Demon had gone.

Several parlors and a few meeting rooms later, he’s still wandering through the first floor, tracking his way by checking which direction the sun is coming in through the windows. The dining room he’s currently standing in appears to be on the eastern side of the mansion and he finds himself a little taken aback… this is the most formal place to eat that he’s ever stood in. Voluminous velvet drapes of deep burgundy flank the floor-to-ceiling windows, and a large fireplace bearing an unknown coat of arms on a tower shield take up most of the opposite wall. Under a spectacular crystal chandelier is a long table of black wood, polished to a high gloss and surrounded by straight-backed chairs covered in the same fabric as the drapes. Zephyr walks down the length of it, dragging his fingers over the smooth surface. Not a speck of dust. Damn. The Eyrie isn’t even this formal, and that’s saying something.

Directly outside the dining room, a winding set of marble stairs curves to the second floor, and accompanied only by the echoing sound of his footsteps, the Dark ascends. The upstairs has more of the same museum feel with gilt-framed paintings, vases, sculptures, and even a large case displaying a beautifully detailed silk kimono. Most of the doors are closed, but by the layout of the sitting areas, he suspects they are reserved as guest rooms or other such quarters.

The first open door he finds contains a bedroom more personally decorated and as Zephyr passes he catches a quick glimpse of an ivory-haired kid playing in the corner with his back to the door. Okay, there are little kids here? This doesn’t exactly seem like the ideal place to raise a child… Continuing on, he reaches the end of the hall just as an irritated voice spills out into the corridor from within.

The Dark pokes his head around the doorframe when he draws close, and he’s surprised to find that the occupant is the pink and white haired look-a-like he’d just been warned about. He’s sitting on his bed and on a cell phone, facing the windows from the center of the room and quite annoyed if the tense set of his shoulders gives any indication. Glancing around, he finds that the room itself has an… interesting… motif of pink leopard fabrics, but otherwise looks like the space of anyone of a similar age, save the striking immaculacy of it overall.

Unaware of his guest, the pink and white haired teenager pins the small pink metallic cell phone between his cheek and shoulder before pulling himself from his bed in order to fasten the zip of the black bondage pants he’d only just put on. His tone is clearly annoyed as he continues a conversation that only his side of can be heard, still oblivious of the presence standing behind him in his doorway. “Come on man… you can’t do this to me right now… shit, hang on-“ slender fingers pull the small metal button through the buttonhole while he makes his way to the dresser that holds his shirts.

“Dammit…” Jun mumbles to himself, quickly sticking the phone in his mouth in order to free up his hands. Reaching out he tugs the brass handle of his dresser drawer open, dipping in to grab at a black printed tee. Hastily pulling the garment over his head, he tugs the hem downward before grabbing the phone from his lips and returning it to his ear. “Yeah I’m here…” the fingers of his free hand slip up to ruffle the back of unruly white hair even as he moves to the bay window at the far end of his room, his early dawn hued eyes staring out into the snow covered grounds beyond, “Look, I’ve been holed up here for weeks and you promised- what- why? Oh fuck I don’t know… that pasty freak put the mansion under lock down for some reason, that’s not the point, you said you’d come over is the point so what the hell?”

As Jun’s conversation continues on, Zephyr leans against the doorway itself, simply watching him in amused silence. “Yeah... I guess I get that… no, no I’m not mad at you.” Pulling his hand from his hair, the pink and white haired teen moves away from the window, his eyes cast downward as he paces slowly back towards his bed. “I’m just stressed ‘cause the Family’s trying to bump up the marriage again – huh? Yeah they’re still trying, only it gets worse the closer her birthday gets… Look I’ve said that to my Sis already, but she still says the same damned thing and it’s really just… pissing me off is all. She won’t fight it, she just does whatever the hell they tell her to and- huh? Yeah okay... I know, we’ll talk about it later, yeah bye.” Shaking his head, Jun pulls the phone away from his ear, flicking the button to click it off.

Well hell… so much for having fun today. He knows Taz is busy a lot lately, but Jesus, this was like the first time in weeks he had any hopes of getting out of this stupid house and instead he’s going to be stuck inside yet again. Another annoyed sigh leaves him as he drops his phone onto leopard print sheets, pulling his hands up to run slender fingers through long pink bangs again. There has to be something to do… maybe he can coax Megumi into coming into the city with him or something or maybe even Kazuya…?. Jun can’t help snorting to himself. Yeah like that’ll happen anytime ever, and he’s really not up for babysitting the runt so... Sliding his fingers from his hair he turns towards his doorway only to nearly jump out of his skin when he’s met with amused blue eyes.

“Ho fuck!” Jun’s eyes go wide in shock, his mouth gaping for a few moments as he works to comprehend what he’s seeing.

Getting over his own surprise in turn, the Selestarri can’t help but smile at the look of shock clearly written across the pale features. Holy shit, he and this kid look even more alike than the Demon’s image had portrayed. “What’s the matter?” He teases his counterpart. “Seen a ghost?”

“Ah… yeah?” Jun blinks. It’s less a matter of seeing a ghost, and more that aside from blue eyes and blonde hair, and the fact that he’s obviously taller, he and this stranger look almost alike, “Okay so… uhm, who are you?”

The Dark responds with a laugh. “Your evil twin separated at birth? Genetic clone? Alternate reality version of you?” Jun does not look amused with his flippant answers and well, Zephyr supposes that seeing someone who so closely resembles you might actually be a shock. Hell, even prepared, he’s been caught off guard himself. Still, that pink glare of death he’s on the receiving end of is a bit unnecessary… unless this is some kind of new greeting that he’d missed out on over the past year or something… Comas are fucking murder on the social life.

“Relax, it’s not like I’m gonna eat you or anything.” All he gets is more of the death glare. Okay… the shock and surprise round is long over, so what the hell is the problem? An invasion of personal space? Maybe, but damn, the other teen needs to take it down a notch. Out of habit, the Dark reaches for Jun’s mind, curious to discover the source of the hostility directed at him but the Demon’s words reiterate the warning just before he makes contact and he yanks his telepathy instantly back. It’s such a natural part of his existence that curbing it is going to take actual effort, but considering the implied result of fucking up was more than just an ass kicking, and since he’s pretty fond of breathing, it’ll be best to remember.

Instead, the Selestarri pushes away from the doorframe and enters the bedroom, crossing the distance before settling on the edge of the other teenager’s bed. Jun takes a step back as he passes him, but the expression on his face remains unchanged. Fingers trace over the leopard print design of the sheets before midnight blue eyes rise up to meet pink. “Seriously, stop looking at me like I just kicked your dog. I’m Zephyr.”

Early dawn hued eyes narrow at the introduction and for a moment, Jun remains silent. Whatever is going on, he definitely wasn’t expecting to be confronted with some stranger kid who just happens to have a style nearly exactly like his own. That stupid jerk is probably somewhere nearby, ready to burst in on him and laugh about whatever the hell joke it is he’s playing this time around, that’s what this probably is. Well fuck him, he’s not falling for it and he’s getting real tired of that white haired freak’s ridiculous games.

“Look, it’s just… well if he put you up to this you can go tell him I don’t find it funny…” Jun snorts before pulling his gaze from their dark blue counterparts. “You hear me?” He suddenly blurts out and with his attention shifted away from the Dark, he glances around as if he genuinely expects some unknown figure to materialize from the very walls. “You can knock it the fuck off you freak!” He continues, suddenly bolting towards the doorway before stopping just beyond the threshold and addressing the long stretch of empty hall. “It’s not funny!”

Zephyr blinks in response, staring at the doorway as more demands spill in from the hallway beyond, the teen’s nonsensical shouting echoing about. It takes a minute before the pink and white haired teen reappears, his slender fingers already up and scratching at the back of spiky white hair while he mumbles quietly to himself. Okay, so the hallway outburst? Just a smidge crazy, but maybe this is some kind of ongoing thing between Jun and the Demon? Jenova didn’t strike him as the type to play jokes, but whatever. People who live together for a long time can get a little strange, he knows that from personal experience. Perhaps it’s why most of the Dark Selestarri live away from Nova at any given time, or maybe it’s the high mortality rate…whichever. If he’s learned anything from the Dark though, it’s that crazy can be fun and despite what just happened, overall his first impressions of Jun is that he might be a pretty cool kid.

“Yeah… anyway,” the blonde restarts, an easy smile painted on his lips despite the shorter teenager’s display, “so this is the part where you tell me your name… and clue me into whether this place is more interesting than the immaculate housekeeping and ancient artifacts let on or not.”

“Um… yeah” the shorter teen answers as early dawn hued eyes slide back to find blue and staring at the blonde for only a moment longer, he lets out a reserved sigh. Well, so far it doesn’t seem like Jenova is anywhere near, but he wouldn’t put anything past that albino freak not to have this whole thing set up on some delayed timer or something. God. He doesn’t know if he’s going to regret this or not, but considering they don’t currently seem connected, he’s willing to give the taller teen the benefit of the doubt.

“Anything interesting? I wish.” With a roll of his eyes, annoyance quickly creeps back into the pink and white haired teen’s tone. “Seriously, you’d think with all the cash Jenova has he could spend some of it on bringing this place up to date or something,” Jun snorts as he moves to his bed, sliding his fingers away from his hair before seating himself down a moderate distance away from the Dark. Curling over with fluid ease, he rests his elbows on his knees and smirks. “Unless you’re into tea dates like my Sis or that Fuan, pretty much the only thing to do around here is go into the city. There’s a ton of clubs and arcades and stuff there but here?” Pulling his eyes from Zephyr’s, he shifts his gaze to the front. “Nothing. I keep asking that asshole to put a game room in or something, but it’s like he won’t do it just because he wants to piss me off.” With a shake of his head, Jun returns his attentions back to his side, “I’m Jun by the way.”

“Nice to meet you, Jun. So all these elaborate rooms and no billiards or darts or anything?” Zephyr slides to the center of the bed and then turns around, flopping backward on the mattress as if it were his own, his head hanging partially over the edge. Oh, wait, shit, if Jun has to go to the city for the arcades then… “No TV or video games either, I suppose?” The pink and white haired teenager shakes his head. “Damn,” The Selestarri mutters, mostly to himself. “I was really looking forward to the spring season of reality shows after so long…”

Zephyr sighs, absently cracking his knuckles as he stares at the ceiling. “What a waste… I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, since given the décor, this is apparently the place where all old relics come to die, but seriously, make an effort for being current to last century.”

Straightening his lean frame, Jun smirks “Yeah, you’d think huh? I guess I shouldn’t be surprised either about how this place looks considering just how old that guy is and all…” a look of distaste crosses his features and he shudders lightly, “but it’s not like it would hurt anything to install some sort of technology, but no… can’t have that, might make it kinda fun for the people living here or something.” Pink eyes roll. “Jesus, even after two years of being stuck in this mansion I think I still get surprised there’s any electricity at all.”

Zephyr tilts his head toward Jun and smiles. Well, at least there is the city and after spending his days running around Chinatown and the surrounding districts, he knows most of the best places. Jun made it sound like they can come and go and while it hadn’t been made expressly clear during his ‘orientation,’ maybe the barriers work like Sashi’s alarm spells and once you’ve been through it, you are golden. After checking in with his brother, he’ll be free to do whatever and some kind of food not served on some stuffy silver platter is starting to sound really good… “Tea parties are definitely not my thing, although bubble tea is pretty good, so I’ll have to pass.”

Jun laughs lightly, “Thank you… I swear – sometimes I feel like I’m the only one here with any sense. I mean tea parties? What the hell is that? It’s not even like they really talk or anything,” he snorts, “they all just sort of sit there staring at each other for hours on end. It’s kinda creepy actually…” His eyes shift quickly to Zeph’s and even though the taller teenager has no idea who he’s speaking about, he’s still quick to amend as if he does. “Don’t get me wrong… I think Fuan is a really nice guy, despite the fact he’s with that jerk, and my sis… well she’s my sis. But come on… I’m sixteen , and sitting there with my pinky out while I sip tea and stare at a wall is not my idea of fun at all.”

The blonde smiles in response, “Mine either, but a trip back to the city for a while would be cool.” The Dark rolls off the edge of the bed and rises to his feet, flipping white-gold strands from his eyes. He is a little tired from snowboarding this morning, but it isn’t like he has plans tomorrow, other than sleeping all day. “So there’s gonna be an awesome rave at the warehouses near the lake side of the city and we could put in an appearance, if you’re not busy…”

Pink eyes practically light up in response. If he’s not busy? Well, he was going to go into the city with Taz before whatever it was that his best friend had to deal with came up, so busy is the exact thing he’s not right now, and anything, even hitting up a rave with a stranger is looking to be a hundred times better than sitting around here being bored out of his skull. “As you can see I’m just so socially tied up today,” Jun grins before rising to his own feet, turning briefly to grab the pink metallic cell from leopard print bedding below. “So yeah, you fucking kidding me? I’m so for it if it gets me out of this stupid house for any amount of time.” Shrugging, he turns towards his open door, snatching his sleeveless jacket from a plush chair as they pass.

“Well, since you’ve so kindly cleared out your busy schedule…” The Dark smiles, following Jun out of the bedroom. “If you’d like, I know of a tea house we could stop by so you can practice the correct drinking etiquette. They probably even have crumpets.” Zephyr playfully elbows the shorter teenager as they walk side-by-side as if they’ve known one another their whole lives, bursting out in laughter when Jun flashes him a disgusted look.

The light is rapidly fading from the windows, and it successfully ruins the navigation system he’d been using earlier. He could backtrack into his memories to see which path he’d taken to get here, but instead it’s easier to allow Jun to lead the way through the maze of halls and rooms. “Hey, so your sister is here?” He asks as they pass through a sitting room swathed in rich shades of purple.

“Yeah…” Jun shrugs, “well my sis and my little brother are here.” He reaches down, pulling the zip to a pocket on his bondage pants open to stuff his cell phone in as they reach the stairs and begin to descend, “we got shipped in shortly after I was adopted into the Family.”

Zeph glances over at him. “Are you related to Jenova or something then?” Jun definitely doesn’t seem to like the Demon, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t family in some kind of way. Hell, from what he’d seen living amidst the humans in the past, people often don’t like their relatives at all. The Selestarri don’t have families like humans, so their free to dislike anyone without it seeming weird.

A look of distaste washes over the pink and white haired teen’s features that even with his back to the blonde, he’s able to see it. “Me related to Jenova? Oh hell no! I’d have nothing to do with that guy if I had a choice. I don’t care what Fuan or my sis says about him, he’s just wrong in all kinds of ways. I mean, you’ve met him right?” he glances back. “It can’t be just me that finds him creepy as all hell… ” Pulling gaze back to his front, one hand slips out to touch at the marble banister while the other slides up to scratch at the back of his head, “No, my family’s forcing my sis to marry him, it’s really fucking stupid too. They’re doing it all because they want a piece of the guy’s money or something. There’s a bunch of other crap too and it’s all kind of complicated but what pisses me off the most is that she’s only fourteen and they keep going on about family traditions and all this other bull… I know I haven’t been around very long, but I still see her as my sis so it just makes me so angry that’s she’s stuck doing what they want.” With a frown as the two teens reach the bottom of the stairs, he slides his fingers away from his hair and down to latch onto the pockets of form fitting pants.

“So yeah… like you really wanted to know all that,” Jun laughs, lightly embarrassed. “Sorry. But if you’re here you’ve gotta have something to do with the Organization right? I guess it all sounds weird, but it’s not like they’re together or anything like that,” he narrows his eyes and snorts as they turn a corner. “I think I’d kill him myself if he ever actually tried to touch my sis. But there’s all these bullshit family politics and red tape crap involved and I’m just kinda worried that once the marriage happens that pasty freak’s gonna think he has some free license to do whatever he wants is all.” The pink and white haired teenager shakes his head, “Ugh I just don’t get what the hell Fuan sees in that asshole, I really don’t…”

The Selestarri listens attentively as Jun talks about his sister and Jenova. They’re getting married? And she’s only fourteen? That is… both creepy and a little odd, given all the surrounding circumstances. Either the Demon is a sick fuck like Jun thinks, or something is definitely not what it seems.

“Yeah,” he agrees when the teenager pauses. “Jenova is certainly…something else.” From the way Jun talks, he doesn’t seem to realize exactly what that ‘something else’ entails though. Does he know who and what everyone really is here and can he even sense the magic that’s so thick in the air that the Dark can almost taste it? Telepathy would be so useful here to find out, but since it’s been banned, maybe it’s a good idea to err on the side of caution and keep the magic to a minimum all around.

The main doors come into sight as they round another corner and Zephyr stops before them, watching as the one beside him shivers a bit from the cold air that seeps through the door jam. Leaning against the door, with his hand wrapped around the wrought iron handle, his eyes are caught for a moment when from their sides, the movement of the deep shadows stretch toward him as usual. Shit, had Jun seen that? The pink and white haired teen seems oblivious as he stares at him expectantly, so maybe he hasn’t, but the innate umbrakinetic abilities of the Dark are going to be a bitch to hide if he has to, especially since it’s not as if he can shut them off. Most humans just think their eyes are playing tricks on them when they notice though, so hopefully that will apply here as well. He’ll still have to be careful because the last thing he wants to do is freak Jun out and make the Demon angry…

Blue eyes shift back to meet pink, and the Selestarri smiles. “Also, I have no idea what the ‘Organization’ is, but we’ll have time to talk on the way. I don’t know how you usually get to the city, but if you could get that worked out, it’d be cool. I may have a driver’s license if we need one.” Jun shoots him a questioning look and the Dark shrugs. He hadn’t really looked through the paperwork from Nova beyond his passports, forged records, and fake school ID to find out if he does, especially since it isn’t like driving in the city is a necessity normally. “It’s a little complicated,” he offers.

Normally he’d just teleport back to Sashi’s apartment and go from there, and he’d have no trouble taking them both, but Jun might not react well to it since the first teleport can be a little… uncomfortable. All the magic aside, feeling miserable and nauseous will put a damper on the night’s activities so ground transport seems like the best bet. The Selestarri glances down at his jeans and long sleeved tee, hastily thrown on before he’d left and frowns. Also… not exactly rave quality attire. “I’m gonna need to change, and check in with my brother before we head out…”

“Well I was just going to talk one of the drivers into bringing us in,” Jun replies, “but if you’ve got a license then that’ll be better since we won’t have them tagging along that way. We can just take one of the smaller cars or something. I’ll have them bring one around while you go change and what... wait, brother?” Jun stops, but shakes his head a moment later, his hand drawn up, “No, you can tell me about it when we go in. I just want to get out of the house as soon as possible so meet me in the Courtyard when you’re done okay?” He grins and turning away from the Dark, he quickly moves down the hall.

Zephyr watches as Jun vanishes into the darkness. “Hey,” he calls after the other teenager. “Get something small and fast!”

Once Jun is far enough away, Zephyr pulls his backpack and coat from the empty space and steps out into the cold. Snow crunches under his sneakers as he moves off the marked path while white clouds huff into the air from his breath. The early evening is crisp, the chill of the air sharp enough to make his nose tingle and the silence of the grounds absolute. Stopping under a white-blanketed statue, he closes his eyes and spreads his awareness out, searching for Sashi. It only takes a moment to locate his brother, off to the west of the main building. Shifting the weight of the backpack, the Dark sets off across the lawn…

Sashi leans against the bed frame as Megumi explains a little about the mansion and surrounding grounds in her way, sliding his fingers over the smooth, varnished wood and shivering slightly despite the thick jacket and scarf he wears. Her words are running together a bit, but he tries to focus and look as attentive to it as he’s able. Restrain the telepathy… kitchen stocked… firewood outside… the Dark nods, wishing he could shake the heavy, numb feeling that had persisted throughout the day. All he really wants at this point is to lie down. I understand,” Sashi confirms quietly. Truly he hadn’t expected to end up here, of all places, and he can’t help but feel like an intruder. However, making a fuss would be rude when Megumi is only trying to help, and honestly he’s too tired right now to care where he is. “I’m sorry… I hope my being here isn’t too much of an imposition…”

“It is not,” Megumi answers simply, staring through the dark haired man as she tends to do.

Unable to find anything to say in response, silence stretches on between the pair until the Dark’s attentions are pulled when the younger Selestarri enters the house, shaking the loose snow from his white-gold hair.

Turning from the door and kicking snow from his shoes, midnight eyes fall on his brother and the small, dark-haired girl standing beside the bed. This must be Megumi, Sashi’s friend and the sister that Jun mentioned. She’s so small and delicate in a way that makes her look a bit like a doll. The ruffly, lolita style dress doesn't help much, either.

Two sets of eyes shift toward him, but it’s the ocean blue pair that stop the blonde in his tracks when they almost seem to stare directly through him, and it takes a moment for his brain to restart and form actual words. “You must be Megumi,” he smiles as he pulls off his backpack. “I’m Zephyr. Thanks for offering to help my brother.” Sashi’s note had not been forthcoming on exactly what kind of help that would be, but his brother wouldn’t have come all the way out here if he thought nothing would come of it.

“Do you require... assistance?” Megumi inquires quietly, and Zephyr shakes his head.

“I had an escort and saw the Main House, so I’m all set. The rules have been explained and I explored a bit. Your home has a lot of antiques.” Which is an understatement because the place is like a museum. There were six servants waiting as he and Demon walked in, and he has to wonder how many more are hiding out of sight just to keep the place so perfectly spotless. “Oh and I met your brother, Jun. We’re going to head into the city for a bit tonight.”

Megumi says nothing in return, simply nodding is the slightest without a change to her expression so Zephyr drops his backpack in the hall and pulls off his coat, adding it to the pile before stepping into the bedroom. “Damn, it’s cold in here,” he mumbles, turning his attention sliding to his brother.

Sashi looks like hell, the effort of merely standing seems almost too much, and Zephyr lightly squeezes his shoulder as he passes his brother and kneels before the cold fireplace. [Are you going to be okay with all this?] The young Dark draws the pattern for a looping fire spell in the faint traces of ash and ignites it, rising to his feet as the magic feeds upon itself and the flames begin to grow. The spell will last for a couple hours, but to make sure, he’ll bring in the firewood to keep it going while he goes into the city with Jun.

Sashi watches as his brother sets the spell pattern, his vision blurring slightly at the edges as if to accentuate his growing need for rest. [It doesn’t really matter where I am, so this is fine for now.] His legs have begun to shake, so the telepath shifts more of his weight to the bed frame in an attempt to keep himself upright a little longer. It’s been too long since he’s really slept and it’s wearing on him more and more, but when he closes his eyes the Seeker is always waiting so he’s still hesitant despite Megumi’s reassurance that the Demon will shield his mind while he sleeps. Without access, the Seeker won’t be able to use her abilities to corrupt his dreams. He’s not optimistic, but if by some chance it works, it would mean his first night of decent sleep in almost a year. Despite his powerful telepathic abilities, there’s nothing he can do against someone with the power to walk into his dreams and shape them to her will. He tried to fight against it, drinking or taking enough drugs to black out, but eventually he’d slip from unconsciousness to sleep and she’d be waiting. Not sleeping at all had been one of his other tactics, but that made it almost impossible to keep his magic in check, which is more dangerous than enduring the nightmares. No matter what he tried or how brilliant those ideas seemed by the light of day, once his eyes closed, everything went to hell.

As the Dark straightens, the two Selestarris’ silent guest turns her head in the slightest and her deep ocean blue eyes catch Sashi’s gray for just an instant before her gaze travels through him once more. [I will return... when it is time,] she states quietly before turning from the two brothers and walking from the room.

The chill wind blows in through the opened guest house door to drop the surrounding temperature at least a few degrees despite the fire’s building warmth, but neither it nor the large swirling flakes of white seem to touch Megumi at all, her silent footfalls carrying her slight frame away.

Once the door has closed, Sashi drops onto the bed. He desperately wants to believe that things will be all right, but the Dark isn’t sure that anyone understands just how powerful the magic is, or the level of destruction it can bring if not held in absolute control. People will die if he’s not strong enough, just as they had in the past, and he doesn’t want anyone else to suffer as a result of his weakness. He’d rather be dead than kill more innocent people.

Zephyr moves around the corner of the bed to stand beside him, leaning down to wrap an arm around his shoulders. Sashi reaches up and ruffles the blonde spiky hair, and the younger Dark frowns. [I’m sorry I dragged you out of the city, but I’m glad you’re here, Zeph.]

He’s supposed to get changed and meet Jun, but Zephyr can’t help taking a moment to comfort the older Selestarri with a lopsided hug. [It’s not a big deal, and you know I’ll do whatever it takes to help you feel better. Just promise me that you’ll let Megumi help too, because I’m worried about you.] Sad gray eyes meet dark blue for a moment and he can see the weight of long, painful months reflected in those storm cloud depths. The depth of that hurt hits the blonde hard, because No matter what words of reassurance he gives his brother, it’s not going to make up for the fact that he’s been unable to help at all since he woke from the coma. He’s a DreamWalker just like the Seeker, and a damn good one, but her hold on his brother is deeply entrenched and to his failure and shame, not something he’s been able to break. Coupled with Sashi’s unwillingness to release any of his magic due to the fear of hurting other people, the telepath is slowly getting sicker and sicker. So in addition to Sashi needing to trust that things will get better, he needs to trust in it himself. Certainly they can’t get much worse. [I planned to go into the city tonight, but if you need me here with you, then I’ll stay.]

Sashi shakes his head, his boots and winter coat banished a moment later, the cold air seeping immediately through the sweater and multiple shirts draped over his slender frame. [No, go have fun.] Caramel tinted fingers grasp the heavy quilts, peeling them back. [Megumi promised there will be no nightmares tonight because Jenova will block my mind from the Seeker. If it works and I sleep, there will be nothing for you to do but sit around.] Zephyr came all the way out here for him, so if he can find some fun during their stay, he should go out and enjoy himself.

Midnight eyes watch as his brother slides under the covers, a black spill of hair against the sheets soon the only visible part of the older Dark. Maybe Sashi is placing his trust in Megumi and Jenova, and while he doesn’t know either of them aside from the five minutes he’s spent in their company tonight, it will have to be enough. It’s obvious that the telepath can’t continue on as he has been, he’ll either lose control and kill scores of people, or he’ll destroy himself. Sashi’s desperate enough to take this chance, and the blonde is desperate enough to pray to whichever gods might be listening that Sashi gets the help he needs here. Switching off the lights, Zephyr lingers in the doorway, watching as the deep shadows cast by the fireplace shift toward the older Selestarri to wrap him in darkness.

[Goodnight, Sashi] he says, getting only silence as a reply.

[M A I N] + [N E X T]

The Angel Hunt story has been written by Nezumi LacSeul and is (C) 2004 - Present. All Streifen characters belong to Evphaedrielle. Please don't use, steal or borrow any part of it or take in whole.