There was a fire, she wasn't about to argue before the thought crossed her mind.
"My cousin is still somewhere in there. We have a meeting spot towards the entrance, is it safe there?" She asked, panic in her voice. Taking out her phone she called her cousin hoping and praying that she was okay.
Dante was able to get her towards the front. They hadn't been far from the entrance. It was getting heated with panic and some chose to fight.
"You couldn't just let his death happen. Just had to ruin it all, expose us all," hissed one of the cat people, eyes dilated in anger.
"I don't know what you're talking about," Dante said coolly keeping a protective arm around Adriana.
Malchior could sense the heat and where it was seeking its path so that he could guide him and Arella at least out of the city and away from the flames. The screams and smell was only rivaled by what he had seen during fights between factions.
He turned to her when she spoke up. Damn it, how was he supposed to explain it? "I'm guessing a fire broke out somehow," he replied, also coughing from the smoke, "You said yourself these people were strange. Not like an extreme situation makes people any more sane." He doubted that it would work, but he could at least try to convince her this wasn't too abnormal. He couldn't fault the supernaturals, as they couldn't have known a human was around.
Arellla had no problem in following him away, just as there was a sound of another fire and more screaming and other sounds. She had no words for those sounds.
"What's going on here?" She asked when it felt like a good distance. Coughing at the smoke. "Why are they yelling about hidden ones being cowards and then other people fighting back?"
She was sure she saw someone using strength that didn't even exist.
Ariadne remarked him with an intrigued look. "Sounds like you know a thing it two about that," she said, "But yes, considering something with just appearance in mind is naturally not good." Speaking as an attractive woman, she understood something about that. She was surprised he did.
She felt his gaze as she admired the building and gave him a smoke over her shoulder before pausing. There was suddenly shouting above the loud music. It seemed panicked, even if she didn't understand it. Before she could figure out the words, she saw a distinct flickering down the street. "Oh God, there's a fire," she said, turning to Dante. This place could become a firey death trap quickly. They had to get out of there. Where was Arella?
"I got around a bit," Malchior admitted with a small smile. He saw she was eying the stairs, but was glad she didn't try to go upstairs. That would be too dangerous,even if he could understand the appeal.
He was about to reply when he also heard the commotion. At first he thought a fight had broken out, but then he heard the word fire a split second before he smelled it. His mind went into overdrive. Without thinking he grabbed her hand and pulled her to the exit. "These buildings will catch fire easily," he explained, knowing there was substantial wood in them.
Once outside he looked around to figure out where the fire was and how to get out of the city.
"No, just anything underappreciated just for appearance," Dante answered before regretting that answer. It was a good way to give away what he was. Someone with permanent image issues, quite literally.
He smiled as she admired the building it was beautiful like this and she glowed amongst the old buildings.
It would seem that she was a good human, he just had to get her out.
"Spoken like someone well traveled," she offered a smile to him as she looked up the stairs. She wanted to know but the floors could give in. She wondered if there was still the beds and clothing from when they fleed.
"This is beautiful," she said before hearing the commotion in the plaza. It sounded like someone yelling in something other than Italian, French or English.
Then there was the smell of fire.
There was something absolutely charming about her. Malchior couldn't exactly say what, but there was a groundedness that was simple and beautiful. How she didn't seem to believe a guy could be interested in her.
"Not quite. The buildings, the culture, the way people define themselves. It varies from country to country. Depending on the country you might have very different views on the same topic," he pointed out, knowing this from experience.
Seeing her step into a house, he followed. It was covered in dust inside and the floor creaked, but held. If the building for some reason did collapse, he could always save them. He ran a hand along the dusty sideboard. "It would appear so. You can almost see the lady of the house coming down to demand the maid clean, a cook in the kitchen and the husband expected to come home from work any minute," he mused, the scenery running before his inner eye.
She did notice that he dodged her question, though it was definitely in one of the most impressive ways she had ever seen it. Ariadne looked to him impressed. "I would not have taken you for someone who is into architecture," she mused before chuckling, "Should I be offended by that statement? But you are right. It is beautiful. The colors used in the houses. How it mimicked the surroundings. Though people still consider old cities and such beautiful, so I suppose beauty is only fleeting as a human." She grinned to him.
A hand ran along the brick. "It's almost a miracle that it is still like this. It survived two wars. It has a peace to it that one can only imagine in a big city," she said softly.
There was no way she was passing this up. Arella looked to him wondering why this fall stranger was showing so much interest. Was it different experiences? She didn't think so.
"It's all the same, except for food and the way people talk," she shrugged before peaking in. Unable to help herself she did step inside. There was still the iron stoves and furniture.
"This is amazing. It's like time forgot this place, entirely," she smiled.
"People define beauty in different ways. This was once a defined city, sitting on history from the Etruscan. And it's still beautiful. Beauty is always fleeting," Dante said looking to her. Away from the crowd the streets were narrow and quiet.
"This is original. Nothing was harmed in the wars. Narrow streets before the modern car or scooter came around."
The way he looked at her was strange. Ariadne couldn't exactly say why she thought that, but it was. Like he was calculating a move or something, but it didn't seem quite that either.
"So you either have all consuming work or you are the type of person that lives for their work," she concluded with a nod, "I get it. Working for a fashion company is a 24/7 job too."
She was surprised that he wanted to go anywhere with her. Didn't really seem interested, but she would see where it would go. "Are you calling beautiful, old Italian architecture a dump?" she chided in good humor before nodding, "Sure, let's go. You're not from here, are you?" While she was by no means as interested in it as Arella, she enjoyed the sight as inspiration.
Somehow Malchior found her awkwardness amusing. Normally that wasn't always the case, but perhaps it was because she was a human. She seemed ready to bolt, which for the supernatural beings here would not be a bad thing.
"It honestly sounds like a fascinating story, if I may say that. Complicated yes, but living in different countries is an enriching experience," he mused before he followed her gaze, "You mean into the buildings? They haven't been lived in for over a 100 years. The would would definitely be fragile, but a peak from the door shouldn't hurt." The buildings still looked okay, but it was hard to say, if they were close to collapsing or not.
Dante regarded her for that moment in thoughtful silence. What did she know? Clearly not what he was, and his role in this thoughtless snowglobe. Thinking to himself on what to say first. Perhaps, it was time to have her get out.
Once there was a word of Angelo's death there would be all sorts of hell breaking out.
"I'm glad you think so. My personal life tends to be as busy as my business life," Dante answered. "Would you like a tour of the old dump."
This was awkward. She was awkward. Maybe she should just go home.
If it wasn't for the ruins she would have at this point. The chances of her cousin going home with someone was high.
"Um, sort of. It's somewhere between here, a little bit of France and America. It's complicated, "Arella shrugged before glancing around. "I wonder if it's safe in there."
In a way it was sad to think about this. That would never happen to these buildings. They were abandoned and no one was coming back. This party was the most life this place had seen in years.
Malchior was glad that she allowed him to come along and gave her a soft smile. "I suppose as much as anyone. It was abandoned in the early 20th century due to a landslide. The people moved not a mile away to the new town. Suppose we are some of the only people to be here in a while," he told her as he looked to her, "So... are you from here?" He was still curious about her.
Ariadne couldn't help a small chuckle. "You definitely aren't," she agreed, not being one to sugarcoat things, "But practice makes perfect. We might have to dance some more another time. How come you don't dance often?" He didn't seem reclusive, but what did she know?
When he asked her opinion she paused to think for a moment. "Setting amazing. Really sets a tone. People not your typical party people, but I suppose that's not a bad thing. Dancing with a good looking guy is icing on the cake, so in all one of the better parties I've been to in a while," she told him, "And you? What do you think?" He was still an enigma. It felt like she couldn't quite grasp who he really was.
Arella looked to him curiously when he mentioned that statement he had given. It was true, the doors looked so still that she expected someone to fix them as soon as they could.
"That actually wouldn't be a bad idea," she agreed with a nod. "Hm, it almost does. Do you know anything about this old town?"
She was curious about the place more than the people. Thankfully it was a warm night, much warmer than she was used to where she had been living.
"I'm sorry, I'm not much of a dancer. Rarely get the chance to dance. Maybe it's a good thing," Dante said in amusement. He was awful but she was beautiful and seemed innocent enough.
It wasn't a good thought. A friend, of a friend, which meant there could have been more been told. "Sounds special indeed. What do you think so far?"
It was a curious answer. Naturally, there were people that were just good with faces, but this was a party and unless this party just moved around it seemed odd that he would know them all. "So just a good memory for faces? That's an impressive and useful talent," Ariadne mused as she moved with the music. She had inherited the Italian style of dance, effortless and at the same time almost a bit sultry.
"Friend of a friend, like everyone else here," she replied with a shrug, "Curious people though. Suppose everyone here is considering that we are partying in an abandoned town." Despite his clumsy dancing he was handsome and the crowd of people around them made it so they had to dance closer, something she didn't mind.
Kind of weird... Malchior was becoming more and more certain she wasn't supernatural. After all, this was a normal party by their standards. Though that begged the question how was she possibly here? His gaze went to the ruins. "It does. Like time has frozen and any minute the window will be opened to air the room," he agreed, finding her more and more interesting.
He watched her get up, but soon stood to catch up with her. If she really was mortal, that was bad enough. If she accidentally got attacked by a drunk supernatural, it was a disaster. "If you don't mind, I would like to accompany you. After all, walking around here alone might not be safe," he said as he caught up with her, falling in with her steps, "So you enjoy the ruins? What made you come to the party then?" How did she find out about it?
"Now, that one is a bit harder to explain. Suppose it's fair to say that...I just take in faces and keep track," Dante said thoughtfully. This woman has no idea what he was. Was it possible they were not supernatural at all?
"How did you hear about this party?" He asked curiously. It was awkward dancing, he wasn't a dancer, but he was trying to find out more about this woman. She was beautiful, at least.
Dante didn't usually have the chance or comfort level to chase women. In this case, it was another reason.
"It's, uh, been a while and kind of weird here," Arella said, glancing around. She liked the ruins at least. "It's almost like they're waiting for the owners to come back, doesn't it?"
Placing the empty drink down she started away from the plaza to take in the rest of the place. It wasn't often one got to explore an old town like this.
The music would guide her back.
There was something downright cute about the brunette. Malchior supposed that had to do with the blond friend as she was clearly the one that men ogled. "It's nice to meet you," he said with a smile.
When the chameleon and Ariadne had gone off to dance he took in Ariadne's spot. He took in Arella and it seemed clear she was not too thrilled to be here. Was it because of the war? He had never seen her before. "Not much of a party person?" he asked, wanting to figure out what she was about.
Both men were handsome, each in their own way. Ariadne took them in with a keen eye. Something was off, but she couldn't say what. Hearing the offer to dance, she smiled. "I thought you would never ask," she teased and downed the rest of her drink before following Dante to the dance floor.
Dancing she looked to Dante. "So you know all the faces here? How does that work?" she asked curiously, wondering if he had a photographic memory or something.
"Not such a bad thing," Arelle drank carefully, taking in the two males. When asked her name she rose her eyebrows almost asking if he meant her. "I'm, uh, Arella."
She thought about offering her hand to him as an afterthought. By then it would have been even more awkward. They were both easily attractive, only Malchoir seemed more earnest.
Almost holding her cup carefully she took them in more carefully.
A name was a precious thing. Dante was careful when it was given out, it wasn't even a true name, it was a guarded secret among doppelgangers.
"Dante," the male said offering a smile. "So...how about about a dance?"
That was meant towards Adriana, not wanting to reassure someone that it was okay here. Certainly when he was sure they didn't belong here.
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