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Except... this wasn't really how I'd seen things panning out. Normal guy, normal family, normal life. Zero complication factor, just one big peachy average newlywed party train.
You know, up until that train derailed in a fiery blaze of death - literally - and things went sideways.
All couples have secrets, sure... but you never thought to tell me you were a [i fucking WARLOCK]?
Essentially, we have one character (deceased) who was a warlock and actually married a half-blood. He did so with the promise of turning this half-blood into a full-blood on the basis of [i love], and under these terms, the coven's high council agreed.
The only problem is that this half-blood doesn't even know he's a half blood, and his husband is kind of dead. Which introduces us to our new guy - our resident problem solver and seasoned warlock who serves as a mentor for this unguided soul.
Question is, how exactly are things going to turn out when all of these secrets come out and our half-blood realises he was actually marrying into a coven that expect his commitment.
It's only that or, you know... [i death.]
This all falls within the landscape of a larger magical conflict and a hellish clash of covens. There will be secrets, death, and most certainly a lot of witching. Plus, who could pass up the comedy of a new fish trying to complete rituals?
↟ Please send me a skeleton titled [i Ashes] if interested. ↟
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Silveus never got an answer on the newcomer's name, so he tucked his hands in his lap and looked down. He still felt like a fish out of water, gasping for something to breathe where there was none. Maybe once he learned how to control his powers, it would be different.
If he could even learn. If there was anyone out there who could teach him. Faustus certainly wanted to send him home and wash his hands, but kept on out of some sense of brotherly loyalty. He felt awkward. But even he understood that it wasn't safe to leave the house, so here he stayed.
Silveus shook his head to banish the dark thoughts. He had to keep his chin up. It was what Logan would want him to do.
A dark shape welled up before his eyes, the memory of that thing from the forest. The thing that had claimed to be Logan. But all it wanted to do was eat him. Then, if he was living for Logan's sake, should be have let it eat him? He didn't know.
He didn't want to ruin everyone's fun, so he put on the headband. Silveus shuffled, and even showed off some of his skills to bridge the cards back together again. This was one thing he'd missed. Logan had never liked games, so he hadn't had much of a chance to play cards. It was one thing the memories hadn't ruined.
To his surprise, the first card came to him. He put it on his forehead obediently. "Um, what kind of cards are these?" he asked. He hadn't even been paying that much attention. Playing cards? Tarot? Some other cards he'd never heard of?
“How about some good old fashioned fun?” He took out a box with cards and markers. “Nothing crazy complicated. We’re going to draw cards and wear these stupid headbands.”
Azalea glances between the box and Bastion, then around the table. “You’re serious?”
“Absolutely. Now put this on.” He tossed a headband at the new guest, then to Silveus.
He slid one onto his own head and had a seat just as Ezra had strolled into the room, returned again to see what the status of things was. “What... the hell? Why are you wearing those stupid things on your heads,”
“Come, join us.” Bastion extended his hands, palms up.
“Is this a cult?”
“It’s a game.”
“The difference is?” Ezra sat nevetheless across from Silveus. Azalea has settled beside him.
“Okay,” began Bastion, tossing a headband to Ezra. “The way this works is we go in rounds. Essentially, we can do this with words. We will stick to English to keep the playing fair. Silveus, would you shuffle these, please?”
“What are the terms of the game?” Azalea piped up.
“You have to guess what’s on your card in the allotted time or be challenged to a task. Which may or may not be embarrassing.”
“Of course.” He rolled his eyes with a faint smile.
“Hey,” Bastion pointes. “If this were my kind of party there would be more booze, snacks, and we would be stripping or winning cash. So be glad there are children.”
“Thank heavens.” He mumbled, straightening up a bit.
Hopefully everyone would be reconvening soon. Especially Angeleau. He’d gone radio silent to a point of serious concern, and as much as Bastion likes to think he was just too much of a free spirit to be plagued by the expectation of contact, these were strange times, you know?
A board game? It was such a ridiculous suggestion that he nearly laughed. Half the family was missing, a demon was holding them accountable for his kidnapped mate, he'd nearly been sacrificed for gods only knew what ludicrous master plan, and they were going to play board games?
"Is this normal for you?" he asked Bastion. He was starting to understand why Logan had never let him get to know the family, if the world nearly crashed and burned around them regularly.
A new voice made him jump. [i These guys really have to invest in a better door lock,] he thought to himself, looking over the new arrival. At least this one didn't have horns or a sling or kittens on him. He was a friend of Ezra's, though. And Silveus couldn't help but notice that he claimed not to be a demon, but didn't say he was a human, either.
"Uh, Silveus. Also... not a demon," he tried, managing something like a grin. [I A warlock, a demon, a mysterious being, and a widower sit down at a table.] It sounded like the start of a bad joke. "What's your name?" He eyed the newcomer carefully, slightly wary. He didn't want to piss off any other infinitely powerful magical beings. Whatever this one was, he looked relatively normal. His fashion sense was a bit out there--if 'there' was the Renaissance--but other than looking like a medieval LARPer, he looked relatively normal. Incredibly beautiful, from an objective standpoint, but then, so were the warlocks and the demon. He was almost starting to get tired of being the ugly one all the time, except no one seemed to mind.
He sat down at the table. Agalma gave him a leery look, but when he ignored the kittens, went back to ignoring Silveus. "Um, so what should we play?" he asked.
[center “Hey... no no no, none of that.” Bastion snapped. “I can see the storm clouds gathering above your head. We’re not gonna’ let you get sucked into sadness and despair. And I’ve got plenty of time to kill as we wait. Truthfully, I’d love to play a game.” He admitted. “Anything come to mind? I know we have tonnes of board games and tabletop shit in the library-“ Bastion flinched and glanced at the kittens. “Sorry, Agalma...and...babies.”
Sorry, but how exactly were Ezra’s children cats again? More importantly, how did they maintain that form? Was it that he forced them to revert to this form or— too much math. Lots of science. Not enough brain space left for hard questions.
“Now that all the grumpy characters are out of the house, the two of us can bond. Well, as much as possible under the circumstances. I promise when things settle down we can go have a good time in town. See some nice historic spots and take in the atmosphere at one of the secret lounges. For now, though, games will have to do, if you’re down?”
Bastion cocked a brow hopefully, hands clasped in front of himself in suspense. He knew Silveus was in a bad mood, but surely things could improve.
“If you’re going to play a game,” came an unfamiliar voice. “May I join?” Azalea now stood in the dining room. “Pardon my quiet entrance. I didn’t want to disturb the... young.” He examines Agalma with interest, wondering if he recognised him. And if he did, he trusted the familiar would keep their mouth shut.
Bastion blinked, leaning to one side to spy Ezra close behind. “Oh! Well... since we are taking a break, I mean... only if you guys aren’t going to be complete killjoys. It’s been a rough few days.”
“Promise I’ll be good.” Azalea smiled warmly, introducing himself a moment later. “I’m a friend of Ezra’s. I’ll be helping you lot out with a few things. Disclaimer, not a daemon.” Luckily for them. Sort of.
“I’m Bastion.” The brother shook his hand politely and offered Silveus an encouraging smile.]
Different now? Silveus tilted his head, curious. Before he could ask, though, the man himself walked in. Silveus gave him a look. Had he heard? It didn't look like it, but you could never tell with Faustus.
Then again, did it matter if Faustus heard? It was no secret that Silveus didn't exactly get along with him. Especially since every single one of their encounters seemed to end on a sour note. Even when he thought things were going well and the two of them were getting along, Faustus ended up turning it around somehow. Honestly, it was almost a skill, it was that impressive.
"Where is Angeleau?" Silveus asked. He hadn't noticed until now, but once they said it, it was hard to ignore. The man was missing. He wasn't sure he'd seen Angeleau since he'd been kidnapped, let alone today. Was he on a vacation or something?
Then again, no one else was home either, and the brothers didn't seem too concerned about that. He put it out of mind for the time being.
"Ah, thanks,"Silveus said. It'd be interesting to see if divine magic worked out better for him than the dark kind. It made sense, though. The brothers were part demon and did dark magic. He was part angel, so, therefore... It made logical sense. Not that he knew if magic was supposed to make sense. Maybe he was just a dud.
Heat coursed through him suddenly. His heart raced. Silveus put a hand to his forehead as it started to pound. Nearly as soon as he did, it all subsided. Confused, he looked at his hands. What the hell was that? A cold? Great, just his luck; he got kidnapped and came home with the flu.
"So... I guess I'll go read in my room," Silveus announced. "Unless you want to do anything?" Bastion was a perfectly fine human--warlock, unlike his mess of a brother. Silveus had no problem with hanging out around him, if he wanted to do anything. He still couldn't help but feel restless. It wasn't quite true, but he felt like he was on house arrest. It was only because people were actively trying to kidnap him, so he understood, but he still felt restricted the same way he had since he'd arrived here at their house. As big as it was, he knew he shouldn't, but it was hard to feel safe exploring a place full to the brim with potentially deadly magic.
He moved over and reached out to pet Agalma, who gave him hand such a vicious look that he reconsidered. Silveus sighed. He knew so little about Logan. Hadn't even known about his husband's pet cat. It made him wonder what it had all been to Logan. A fling? A vacation, maybe? A change of pace from his usual immortal life? But then, he'd thrown all that away to be with him. So... He sighed. Things were so complicated. Why couldn't everything be simple?
[center “Indeed.” He was gently touching at his eyebrows, amusement pulling his lips into a smile. Maybe these kittens were better off with the cat. It only made sense. Clearly this familiar had a good head on their shoulders. “You know, I can see why Logan liked you.” Bastion chuckled to himself before giving up entirely on helping himself. He’d just have to look like an idiot for now.
Well... maybe for a while. The fact that Silveus remarked upon it honestly told him all he needed to know about how bad it looked. “It’s... complicated. I’m beginning to think Ezra did that on purpose.” Bastion said with a glance to Agalma.
“Why so glum?” Oh... Faustus. Oof, okay, he guessed this was a justifiable question. “Well, he’s- Faustus is-“ How did he put this? “Different now.” He noted, gaze dipping a bit. “I don’t think he really means harm, but he’s not the softest being.”
That was an understatement and he knew as much. “But hey, you can always tell him off. We all do. He tends to back off at that point.” Which was good, right?
Still, Silveus didn’t seem like his opinion was going to change. Bastion parted his lips to speak again when Faustus misted into the room, pausing mid-shrug into his leather. Bastion’s lips sucked into his face, his fingers curling into nervous fists. If Faustus heard what was said, he didn’t remark, simply shrugged into jacket. “I’ll be back. I’m going to see if I can track down any signs of Angeleau.”
Bastion glanced between them for a moment, but Faustus cast Silveus not another glance before turning to depart. Bastion shifted uncomfortably. “I’ll keep you posted on what happens with Ezra. I’m sure he’ll track someone down.”
Little did they know Ezra was already well on his way in taking care of that.
“You want me to [i what]?” Was he serious? Brows furrowed, Azalea tilted his head in a way that Ezra was unfortunately familiar with. He was asking for quite the favour. “Why not ask anyone else? I doubt I’d inspire very good... juju or whatever it is they call it.” He sipped disbelievingly at a tasse of calendula tea.
Ezra’s eyes fixated on the flowers as they settled toward the bottom of the glass once more. “This is of great import. One, because there is an imminent shit storm, and two, because otherwise he may become problematic. Not that I doubt his divine alignment, but you’re divine, and you’re alignment-“
“Is strictly neutral. Absolutely.” Azalea straightened, piercing gaze shifting back to Ezra. “If I agree to this, I will not have my time wasted. I still cannot see why you wouldn’t have gone to Gabe or... someone less...”
“Busy.” Azalea fixed him with an unimpressed look. “You will address and introduce me to him by my mortal moniker only. Understood?”
“And you’ll trim my rose bushes for a month.”
Ezra furrowed his brows. “...deal.”
“And weed my garden.” Azalea added.
“...agreed.” He said begrudgingly.
“All right. Let me get changed, and we can be on our way.” ]
The cat chuckled rather than offer anything constructive on Bastion's eyebrow situation. Daemons. So flashy. Always had to be the center of attention. It was safe, of course. The daemon wouldn't hurt its kids. "Don't you grow up like that," it muttered to the kittens. They ought to be better than their crazy dad.
"Asking a daemon to summon an angel... Bold," the cat remarked. It rolled over and flicked its tail at Bastion. "They're a messy bunch, too. Always have to play by the rules. I'd rather not involve them, but then again, I suppose divine magic is off the table for you sorts."
Shoulders droopy, head bowed, Silveus wandered in. He caught sight of Bastion and frowned. "Why's it look like you pointed a firecracker at your face?"
He shook his head. No, that wasn't what he wanted to ask. "Why's your brother a dick? I mean, is he always like this? Or do I just bring out the best in him?"
Even when Faustus wanted to be nice, he still ended up asking questions like he knew everything about Silveus instead of nothing. Did he care? He didn't know! What had magic done for him? What did he want out of this? To survive! It was hard to see further than tomorrow when someone was very actively threatening to take that from him.
"No wonder Rossa dumped him," he grumbled. Who could handle that kind of idiotic, clumsy, thoughtless assholery every day?
[center Bastion nodded, stopping his tracks at the sight. “Three of them are in seclusion, mother is nowhere to be found, and Angeleau is still in the wind, which—under different circumstances I wouldn’t see as remotely suspicious given his personal attention to other things, but it’s just not helpful at a time like this.” What [i was] he doing, anyway? Didn’t he realise how desperately they needed numbers here?
Ezraeil, satisfied with the answer he’d received turned his attention then to Bastion. Okay, so the cat had a resume at least. Not the strangest thing, not in the least. “Ready to return-“
“Actually,” Bastion redirected. “Let’s talk about Silveus. You being you, surely you have consorted with... higher beings, right?”
Ezra scoffed, insult flitting across his features for just a moment. It was no more amusement than it was warning. [i Careful. Know your place.]
“Don’t get me wrong, I have no intention of asking anything ridiculous. It’s just that. Well... none of us fall under the category of Silveus’ origin, so Faustus and I thought that perhaps someone of the same—alignment—might be appropriate?”
“You want me to summon an angel... here.”
Bastion rubbed nervously at his nape. “It’s pretty important and far more difficult with not being able to really help him the way that he needs. Surely there’s someone?”
Ezra smiles, all sharp teeth but good humour. Bastion’s spine straightened, but he appeared no more alert than that. Perhaps he feared this was a mistake. Ezra was laughing at the ridiculousness of it all. “Okay. I will assist you with your request. For your nephilim.”
“However. We figure this out quickly. Time wasted makes things ever more difficult. I will return.”
“Right, but before you go, maybe a-“
Ezra disappeared a moment later, in dramatic flare. Well... less dramatic flare than usual, but Bastion could still feel the heat on his face. “He... I think he singed my eyebrows?” He felt for a moment. “Are they... can you still see them?” Slightly crisp, yes, but still there.
The cat gave Ezra a look. "A cat has no need for a name. If you must, you can call me what you will." It leaned down and sniffed at the kittens. Much cleaner now. And sleeping well. "If you must know, Logan called me Agalma." Statue in Greek. A joke for how still the cat would sit when tasked to watch something precious.
At the sniff, one of the darker-colored ones rolled over and started to paw at the air. After a few seconds, though, it settled back down to sleep. The cat nuzzled it and shifted slightly to get a little more comfortable under the pile of fluff.
"You don't need to be so suspicious. I was a familiar for years, to one of these auspicious brothers. The husband of the little nephilim, in fact. If I was going to do something nefarious, don't you think I would've auctioned off the divine idiot as soon as his protector died?" The cat blinked slowly at Ezra. "Still, hurry up and get your mate back. The little ones are going to bite me to death."
It looked around the room, then meowed at Bastion as he passed by. "What happened to the other siblings? I thought there were more of you." Surely he hadn't miscounted two to six, or howevermany there were in that brood of humans.
[center Bastion blinked as Silveus whizzed By him, his brow furrowing. He stepped into the reliquary and gave Faustus a look. “Can’t you just be nice to him? Patience is a virtue, you know?”
Faustus lifted a hand to silence him. “I think we should redo the wards on the manor.” Whatever was going on with Silveus currently was clearly attempting to creep through.
Bastion glanced over his shoulder. “Is this because he’s... you know?”
“A target? Divine?” Faustus could feel the migraine already starting behind his temples. “I’m not sure whether starting over is possible for him, but forcing all of this magick on him doesn’t seem ideal. If he’s not meant to mingle with the likes of dark magick, it would all backfire in the end. It does nothing but hurt him.”
“Hmm, maybe we can ask Ezra about that. Doesn’t he consort with—them?” Bastion wiggled a finger toward the ceiling. “That might be helpful. Maybe we are going about this all wrong. Maybe what we need is—“
“Divine intervention.” Bastion announced dramatically.
“...I despise you. And I’ll ask.”
“No, no. I’d love to-“
“The wards.” Faustus eyed him suspiciously.
“Consider them done. As soon as I speak with Ezra. He went to see his kids.” Not that Bastion could blame him for having separation anxiety with everything going on. He seemed particularly interested in how well they’d taken to their guardian for the time being.
Ezra was posted up, inspecting how easily they snuggled to this... cat. They were looking particularly shiny, too. “What is your name?” And Where has this being come from?
Did he care? Silveus sighed out and brushed his hair back. "That's... hard to say. I basically--I felt kidnapped, the first few days. And then I was kidnapped and nearly sacrificed... is it surprising I don't exactly have a positive association with magic?"
He rolled his shoulders and stretched his arms. Now that he was free of having to hold someone's hand, it felt good to swing his arms around. "I've been thinking about that, too. Maybe it's because you guys do black magic, and I'm, well... not exactly daemonically aligned." It'd all been dark magic that hurt him so far. To be fair, he hadn't encountered any light magic, didn't even know if such a thing existed, but still. Honestly, it did explain a lot, though, if that were the case. Of course he couldn't learn if they were teaching him the wrong kind of magic. Of course it would hurt, if his body couldn't handle that kind of magic.
Silveus pushed his hair back with both hands. He stood dead, eyes on the floor. "I don't know. I don't know, okay?"
How was he supposed to know? He'd lost his husband, been dragged to a new home, been kidnapped, been nearly sacrificed, he didn't know what he wanted. Could anyone, after going through that much shit? It was all too much, too soon.
Earlier, he would've wanted to go back to his normal life. But could he still do that now? He knew he was a target for sacrifices. Without something to protect himself, wouldn't he only be targeted again?
But so far, he'd been useless at magic. Was there any point in trying something, when he already knew he was going to fail?
Unnoticed to him, pale light started to shine around his body. Feathers drifted from seemingly nowhere to rest on the floor. He closed his eyes.
"I don't know." Silveus shook his head and sped away. He needed time. An idea. Something.
[center Yeah, it was probably enough for now. Faustus allowed Silveus to lead the way, content to be distracted for a moment. “We should. And Ezra is... nice. Stressed, and rightly so, but they’re not so different from everyone else in comparison. Daemons, that is. No different from anyone else than, say, how two different cultures may differ.”
It was the best example he could come up with. As they left the greater reliquary, he relinquished Silveus’ hand to brush fingers through his hair. It was... lighter than it had been. “Correct,” he began, addressing the other man’s question after a beat of contemplation. “Granted, each of us has something different to show for it.” Especially when it came to true forms. That could be... terrifying.
As if suddenly remembering his encounter with Eolande, Faustus straightened. He’d have to keep his word or suffer consequences later on. Eolande was not one to sleight. “Silveus. Forgive me if this comes off as rude, but... do you honestly care for all of this?” Turning to face him fully, Faustus settled against the edge of a nearby desk of sorts.
“I mean... what with all that’s happened, and what you’re learning now. Are you invested in this?” Better to know now so he knew where to set his expectations. “I assure you, I’m under no illusions that you remotely enjoy my company or have any interest in associating with me beyond necessity, but it would be nice to know what to expect going forward.”
Especially since getting invested in really teaching him only for it to be for naught would be more disappointing without a little expectation.
“I get that none of this is anything you’ve dealt with before now, and I wouldn’t be offended if you denounced it all, but I’m having a little trouble reading you. It seems like, with consideration for how strange this must all be, you are... averse to magick. And maybe... maybe that’s why it hurts you?”
He seemed to be trying to make sense of some puzzle. “I’m not entirely sure of what could be the cause, but that’s a possibility. Regardless, I have to ask what you ultimately want to get out of all of this. Once we have Kitty back and take care of this mess with this troupe of hostiles.”
Smooth metal felt cool under his fingertips. Silveus turned the band over in his hands. It felt heavier than it looked like it should. Not ridiculously heavy, but still heavy. He tried it on, curious. It looked out of place on his wrist. An oversized kid's fashion bangle, maybe, not a man's accessory. Embarrassed, Silveus slipped it off again. The words [i Maybe not] were on his lips, but at the last second, he put it in his pocket instead. It didn't seem to be harmful. He might as well keep it around.
Faustus looked distracted. "Should we go?" Silveus asked. Faustus' heart wasn't in it, so he wouldn't be able to do a good job, and it wasn't like Silveus could do anything. Magic just felt like pain. He'd have to figure that stupidity out if he was ever supposed to do magic. Unless he couldn't.
He pulled a face at that, but put it out of his mind a second later. He tugged at Faustus' hand and headed for the door. "Shouldn't we be getting ready to go get that one guy's... partner?" Mate felt like a rude thing to call a sentient being's partner. Spouse? Did demons get married? It'd be weird if they engaged in what was essentially a religious ceremony, but maybe they had an evil version with... blood, and orgies, or whatever.
"He's pretty normal, for a demon," Silveus commented. "That Ezra guy, I mean. He pretty much looks human, aside from the horns. And he put those away." It was the kids that were weird. The cat-kids. They were adorable, but still. It was... he still couldn't get over it. Maybe it was because they were the most obviously magical beings around.
"So one of your ancestors is a demon like him?" Silveus asked Faustus. If demons looked like that, he could understand why people would consort with them. The demon man was hardly some hideous red creature. Smoking hot was more like it, even if Ezra wasn't exactly his type.
So jumpy. What was with the reaction? He wasn’t going to bite him, after all. Rolling his eyes, Silveus turned his attention to the item that’s seemingly caught the man’s eye. It was kind of fitting, actually. Nothing over the top, and it would likely not get in his way. Excellent.
Reaching up to fetch the bracelet from its place, he offered it to Silveus to inspect. After all, this was more about getting him items then it was for himself. He was always donning speller items anyway. Since, you know, he’d spelled them. And if they were being really honest, he was a physical embodiment of old magick. Didn’t make him invincible, but it did make things a bit easier.
“Fairly symbolic. I think this actually might have quite the stabilising element to it, too.” He remarked, mostly to himself.
Faustus combed fingers through his hair and inhaled slowly, gaze shifting about the room to take in the clutter. Something seriously had to be done about all of this. And truthfully, he was so wound up now with the desire to get this all sorted out, that all this heavy magick was beginning to make him restless.
Then there came there guilt of realising Ezra’s mate was at risk here, too. Now he didn’t mind so much that his soul was marked. Fate has a way of working things out like that. Didn’t seem he was in so much danger after all, but that didn’t mean that Kitty wasn’t. They’d have to save him before he was hurt... or worse.
Although, he did have to wonder how far back this man went with Rossa? He hadn’t so much known him to consort with daemonic nobility, so what was the story there? ]
"They'd look good on you," Silveus gave his opinion on the gloves. His thumb ran subconsciously over the gold band he still wore on his finger. He didn't want to take it off yet or hide it away. Maybe it was stupid, but this way, there'd always be a piece of Logan with him.
[i You killed him. You have no right to act sentimental now,] a little voice in his head whispered. Silveus averted his eyes and clenched that hand tighter.
He backed away when Faustus leaned in. Too close! The man needed to learn personal boundaries. "No, I.. I did, but Logan didn't like them." He'd once had many, but all the holes had healed over by now. It'd be a hassle to get them pierced again, so he let it be.
"What about that?" He pointed to a bracelet on one of the higher shelves. It spoke to him, somehow. There was nothing special about it; it was a simple, polished band about as wide as his thumb and barely big enough around to fit his wrist. It felt safe, though. Bright and shiny, even in a dark room like this.
"There's a lot of stuff back here. What do you guys do with it all?" he asked, curious. Did they just let it sit and rot? That seemed like a waste to him, but then, what did he know about magic?
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