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Does It Go Alone? — Magnolia Promenade

Does It Go Alone?

Started by Ezio Ember at 12 Mar, 2020 11:16 pm
May 23, 2020
262 Views
9 Posts

Played by Arceus

Spellcaster
Wolf Blood

Some people learn to love their chains.


He'd ended up out here around an hour early. Ezio was just the kind of Sim that liked to be early rather than late, especially for things that were somehow important. It wasn't like he was only interested in Cassandra because she was a Goth - admittedly, there was a little bit of that, primarily because someone eventually might think to start piddling around with either one of the Goth children. So far, they'd remained relatively safe, likely mostly thanks to Bella and Mortimer's actions and decisions. Now that at least one of them was old enough to make her own choices and do her own things, that protection waned somewhat, and there were plenty in Magic Realm that would be very interested in getting very friendly with Cassandra.

And she was young, and maybe a little more naive than she'd like to believe, and damn if he didn't have a bleeding heart or seven. One day, he was going to be the death of him. Yes he was. Hey, if he went down killing Aine or something, he was okay with that.

Ezio had settled down to one side by the water, leaning against the low wall by the stairs and trying so very hard not to think too much about depressing things. It was hard sometimes. He wondered what kinds of things she was interested in. Obviously art. Ezio was a mere observer, he didn't create his own, which was probably kind of strange. He had ideas from time to time, but the frustration of getting things from his head onto paper or canvas, as the case may be, it'd eventually become too much and he'd stopped trying. It was something wrong with him. He was a creative genius, but he was creative and a genius in highly unconventional and strange ways. Like, he could get real damn creative about killing a guy, that was for sure, but something told him maybe that wasn't a good conversation topic. At least, not in public, and perhaps he shouldn't be putting ideas in her head.

With any luck, he'd be less awkward this time around. He pulled his phone out, checking the time. Eh, still kind of early. Well, waiting certainly wasn't the worst thing he'd ever done with his time.

Grimscythe


Love is not afraid.



Played by Grimscythe

Sim

Public settings didn't bother Cassandra, and that much was clear in the way she carried herself from place to place. It was social interaction that stood as a barrier to the eldest of the Goth children, and as long as that was limited, Cassandra did wonderful. She existed to be a wallflower, and she seemed happy enough to be just that. Her departure from the Villa had been carefully orchestrated in an attempt to avoid any questions from her parental unit. She fired of a text to her brother, letting him know where she'd be. She made no mention of meeting Ezio, deciding that there would no doubt be too many questions that she didn't feel like answering.

When she arrived, it was precisely fifteen minutes early. Most of the time, except for class that day, Cassandra was punctual because it was a learned habit from her parents. Always be on time, and no earlier than fifteen minutes. Too early, and you're lazy. Too late, and you're lazy. Right on time, and you're not prepared. But fifteen minutes was fine. Except Cassandra had no idea what to do with an extra fifteen minutes and as her gaze swept over the chairs and those present, she was startled to find that Ezio was already there, down by the water.

He was looking down at his phone when she finally snaked her way through tables and chairs to arrive next to him. Cassandra didn't seem fully aware that it might feel awkward for Ezio, what with her standing over him for what felt like a few seconds too long. She almost cleared her throat, a trait she picked up from Bella, before catching herself.

"Hey," she called, dark painted lips curving into a carefully practiced smile. Her composure seemed a lot more reserved than it had been before, and perhaps it was because she'd stopped going to social events with her parents that she suddenly found herself unable to properly assess how to handle this unusual encounter. Her heart thumped in her chest as she unintentionally held her breath and stepped around him, dropping into the chair opposite from Ezio. She wore a pair of black leggings, heeled boots, and a snug, burgundy tunic sweater.

"How are you?" Cassandra asked, her voice more tense than she expected. Kohl-rimmed eyes widened, startled at the coldness with which she'd spoken. "Sorry, I didn't mean that to come out that way." The words were offered quickly as she offered another pearly flash of teeth in an attempt at warmth.

 



Played by Arceus

Spellcaster
Wolf Blood

Some people learn to love their chains.


The fresh air and the sunlight were probably good for him, so he didn't mind the wait too much. He didn't spend enough time outside anymore, probably, and that was unfortunate. There was a time when he was outside a lot more than this, but he used to be stronger than this, too. He had a limit to how much he could do now. It was frustrating, but it was what it was. Every time he heard music anymore, it was hard not to get up and move to it, and music was everywhere. The temptation was definitely there, but if he pushed it too far...

He should be glad for what he had, rather than upset about what he'd lost. That was much easier said than done.

Somewhere amid the debate about whether or not to get lost in a phone game, a shadow fell over him. And then she spoke, and he looked up at her and smiled. That was faster than anticipated, but he wasn't going to complain. "Hey," he answered, turning his phone off and setting it down. "I'm fine. I was just debating a phone game, but you're a lot more interesting." Phone games were probably the worst thing ever invented, if he was being honest about it. He got up long enough to settle down in a chair properly, and then tilted his head at her.

"You look nice," he said. She looked better in purple, he thought, but the burgundy wasn't terrible. They were probably a pair, almost wearing the same thing. His were all black, and a turtleneck sweater, and his heels a bit shorter than hers, but if one didn't know better, they'd think they coordinated. Today, his eyes were lined completely in black, a dusting of silvery eyeshadow over his lids, completed with black lipstick, all done well enough it was obvious today was not his first rodeo. He'd gotten into it in the 80s, actually, and come to think of it, he had no idea why he'd stopped. Except, perhaps, laziness.

Today was not a lazy day.

"How're you? I suppose I almost skipped that..." Almost, yes. He was almost jealous, though. Ezio didn't look good in reds. That was Morgyn's thing. The only colours he looked good in were black and grey, and those weren't colours. Go figure. Well, Morgyn did way better than him at a lot of things. Pulling off red was really only the tip of that particular iceberg.


Love is not afraid.



Played by Grimscythe

Sim

Something glittered in the youth's eyes as she drank in his appearance, sitting back against the patio chair as she studied his face. Cassandra's lips twitched as if she were restraining a smile, and she settled her hands on her lap, fingers digging into the soft cloth of her leggings. Nerves. Gods, she hated them and the way they seemed to writhe inside her body, creating nothing but discomfort in its purest form. She swallowed hard, and then finally the smile came. It was an unnatural feeling that spread across her lips and something about it threatened to make her giddy. Finally, she looked away, favoring the glittering surface of the water instead of Ezio's face. She could have looked at him all day long; she would have been fine to look at him all day long, and that was a problem. 

"I-I'm good," Cassandra answered and her expression shifted to something akin to horror. Her mouth shut immediately, and she chewed on her tongue as redness crept across her cheeks. "You do too. Look nice, I mean. The colors are wonderful."

Colors. What colors? The youth felt embarrassment set fire to her face. If that didn't send him walking away, she'd probably survive this encounter just fine. Cassandra preferred the wallflower days of her childhood, when she was made to wear pretty dresses and attend charity events and family gatherings. The sort of events where the most troubling question was, 'How is school?' She drew in a sharp breath, exhaled and grounded herself in the sounds of daily life that surrounded them. Finally, she looked at Ezio again, shifting in her seat so that she was a bit more comfortable. 

"I'm bad at these things," she admitted. This time, when Cassandra smiled, it was more natural. It wasn't the sort of smile that would light up the room, but it was definitely a smile. "My brother is more the talker, I tend to just... observe. Usually." Usually was the key word, though. Stars didn't always align, and the fact that Cassandra spoke to Ezio in the first place was out of character. If it weren't for the painting, she would never have spoken to him. At least art was something she could talk about.

"Hey," she said finally, pausing briefly as she tried to figure out her follow-up to that syllable. "Do you have any brothers or sisters?"



Played by Arceus

Spellcaster
Wolf Blood

Some people learn to love their chains.


He might've smiled, slightly. He was trying not to, really, but she was being kind of adorable, and it was hard not to smile at. Grey eyes eventually flicked to one side, getting the - what was it he felt, exactly? Not quite amusement... whatever it was, under control, before he looked back at her. Of course, he ended up smiling anyway.

Her smile was weirdly beautiful. Not in that stunning kind of way. There were the kinds of beautiful that were jaw-dropping, take your breath away sorts, and then there were Cassandra Goths, the sort of beautiful that was quiet and magnetic in its quietness. It wasn't vibrant or intrusive, but when you noticed it, you couldn't stop noticing it.

Great, now he sounded like a poet. Why couldn't he sound like one of those in his damned term papers?

Ah, that was a valid question. Ezio glanced down at the table for a moment, one hand raising to rest against his chin, held up at the elbow, resting on the edge of the table. "A twin, actually," he said. "Just the one. For the best, too many of us and we'd probably have Ragnarok on our hands. We're fraternal, not identical, but you wouldn't be able to guess, and yet we're like night and day. When we were kids, I was the rowdy one that didn't follow the rules, and Morgyn was the quiet and calm one. Now it's like we swapped roles or something." Well, Ezio grew up, something like. Morgyn... hadn't suddenly become more immature, but rather, grew out. Maybe, it was as if Morgyn had bloomed and Ezio was still curled up tight in a bud.

Sooner or later, though, the pain of remaining in a bud became stronger than the pain it'd take to blossom. When that time came, he supposed he'd have a choice to make, but for now, this was fine. He was fine the way he was. And anyway, he may never get there.

"And yeah, I'm pretty bad at this, too," he admitted. "I was always the shy one that didn't talk a lot. I never know what to say. It either comes out sounding dumber when vocalised than it did in my head, or it sounds aggressive somehow. Someone else being as nervous as me, though, that helps a lot. Not sure why, but I've learnt not to question things like that, or it stops working." He decided not to mention thinking, once or twice, it was almost like they were on a date or something.

It seemed a bad thing to mention.


Love is not afraid.



Played by Grimscythe

Sim

Cassandra was unknowingly glad he didn't speak his thoughts, because that might have sent her into a sort of lockdown. The truth was, she thought it too, and that was largely why she appeared so uncomfortable. Her gaze swept back to his, made a bright amber shade by the eyeliner she wore, coupled with the sun's reflection. A thought occurred to her then, that maybe this wasn't so bad. His words gave her a sort of comfort, and there was something about those nearly mercurial eyes of his that she found comforting.

"A twin," she echoed, and she considered that for a moment. She tried to imagine Alex as her twin, as opposed to her younger brother. It would make some conversations easier, for sure. A prolonged silence followed as she studied him and tried to imagine what his twin might look like. 

The youth didn't linger long on those thoughts, worried that the wandering of her attention might be somewhat off-setting. It bothered her that she was this way, considering the way they were raised. Cassandra was sure she probably didn't have to explain that to Ezio; it wasn't unusual for people to know things about her that she didn't expect them to. Keeping her art a secret was a challenge.

"Aggressive isn't always a bad thing," she mused aloud, unexpectedly defending the way Ezio might sound to others. "If everyone were passive in their mannerisms, we'd never get anywhere. For instance, asking me to come here. That was an aggressive approach, as opposed to hinting at it passively. Which would probably go straight over my head."

Cassandra paused for a moment, watching his expression for any change. Her blush returned after her first statement and the explanation that followed was said with only a couple breath's pause. Her eyes dropped finally, this time settling on the table where her phone sat. She picked it up and shot Ezio a text message, finally revealing her own number to the other. She meant to do it last night, but every time she picked up her phone and opened up the new message screen, she froze and ultimately, she always swiped out of it.

"Are you a student too?" It was as if she'd read his mind regarding the term paper, but obviously Cassandra hadn't done that. Her gaze lifted, settling on his painted lips as she continued, "I'm working on a paper right now. That's why I asked."

 



Played by Arceus

Spellcaster
Wolf Blood

Some people learn to love their chains.


Ezio looked a bit amused for a moment. It almost sounded like she was defending him from himself there, but after a moment, he tilted his head to one side, tapped on the table lightly with his other hand, and then snorted softly. "You're looking for assertive," he said. "Assertive boldly asks you out for coffee without being demanding about it. It's the difference between telling someone they hurt your feelings and you don't appreciate it, and lashing out and calling them names." See, Ezio wasn't really a writer. He understood the concept of linguistic semantics and how to communicate effectively, but putting these things into practise was a little bit harder than it sounded like it should be. It was probably something he was doing.

"I am," he answered. "Language and literature. I've got two presentations and a paper." Because fuck him, or something. "It's my last term, though, and then I'll be done, and I can start my job. Can't say it'll be my dream job, just good enough. ... Morgyn's blond, by the way. Everyone wonders. Golden blond, green eyes, physically half my size, slightly shorter, otherwise we look more or less the same." Looking so much like Morgyn had been a problem more than once, and Ezio did and did not like looking so much like the blond. It made him worry, too, because if Ezio had such a bad time of it, then Morgyn probably did, too.

But there were things they didn't talk about. Not because they shouldn't, or because they couldn't, but because sometimes, neither of them had figured out how to get past something, and had stopped trying. It was stupid, probably. Eventually they got to the point they could speak frankly about it, but there were some things they never did and likely never would. Jean was one of those. Whatever trouble Morgyn had gotten into before Ezio and Drake had gotten to magic realm, that was probably another.

Ah, those were depressing things to think about. Somehow, though, his less 'okay' side tried to come out around Cassandra, he'd noticed. It was almost like she didn't sing to his angels, but instead soothed his demons. ... wow, it was a little early to be getting so poetic, okay then. It took a lot not to burst into laughter at himself at that one. Yikes. He either needed a drink or he needed to go home, he wasn't sure which one.


Love is not afraid.



Played by Grimscythe

Sim

For a long moment, Cassandra seemed a bit distracted--and she was. She was trying to imagine what it might be like if her brother were the same age as she, and the sorts of conversations they might have if that were the case. He was 16, she was 21. And though it was only a five-year difference, it felt like eternity had passed since she was sixteen. She liked to think she was an adult now, but she knew that in those terms, she was a baby. The first years of adulthood seemed an awful lot like the toddler years--bumbling around from point A to point B and trying to get a grasp on a reality she had no way of understanding. Not yet, anyway. And it would pass all too quickly when she began to, but she liked to think of things that weren't so harsh reflections of reality. After a moment, the youth's lips curled upward into a smile, and she carried on with the conversation as if she hadn't just allowed for a long, awkward pause.

"Assertive, yes... That sounds better. And a lot nicer, too. Language and literature... Are you planning to teach?" she asked, and she was honestly trying not to be so weird. Cassandra felt like she was making small talk though, as if she were desperately seeking something to say for the sake of talking, of not being boring, and it bothered her. Her tongue darted out, moistening her lips briefly as she realized she was thirsty and a glass of water would be splendid. Or a shot. Those did wonders for soothing the nerves--but how would she know? Most of the alcohol she'd consumed had been swiped from Mortimer and Bella's liquor cabinet and downed in the privacy of her bedroom. She chuckled, seemingly out of nowhere as she leaned back in her chair. 

Cassandra was aware that she hadn't said anything on the specifics of her own majors, it wasn't an easily broached topic. How does one inform another that they hope to one day terrorize the world, solely for the purpose of making their own name? She had no real driving motive, only a twisted desire to watch the world burn. And yet, her personality didn't exactly match the sort of person that would do that. Well, outwardly it didn't... there was always her paintings.



Played by Arceus

Spellcaster
Wolf Blood

Some people learn to love their chains.


Ah, most thought that. Well, Ezio wasn't terrible at teaching. Unfortunately (quite unfortunately), he was a sage and had been teaching for years by now, but teaching someone how to not go insane when a ghost screeched in your ear, or made you hallucinate vividly, those were very different from actually teaching something. You see, necromancers that had issues with ectoplasmic hallucinogens tended to want that to stop, and would actually listen. High school students had zero interest in paying attention in mathematics.

"No, actually," he answered, looking a bit amused. "Ah, I'm going into law." Which, you know, he probably didn't look a damn thing like someone that wanted to be a lawyer. Of course, he was just in it for the money, or at least that was what he told himself. Maybe some part of him had some stupid ideas about wanting to make a difference, wanting to save some of the ghosts he saw before they became ghosts, but what for, anyway? People died, every day, that was what they did. If the loss of one life was somehow more tragic or terrible than the loss of another, if one life meant more than another, then why did any of them mean anything?

Ah, maybe it was the human factor. The reality that some of those deaths could be prevented, and maybe they should, because people didn't need to be killing other people. But then, that brought him to the internal war of morality, and Ezio liked to say he stayed on just this side of it, but there were... moments. Morgyn's were more frequent, and lasted longer, but Ezio was no stranger to them, either.

He did the right thing. At least, whatever thing he thought was the right thing at any given time. Sometimes he was wrong. Most people were a few times in their life. The difference, he supposed, as that he didn't agonise over it. Sometimes he made the wrong choice, but the only thing to do was... whatever seemed like the right thing after that. Maybe he just wanted to try and keep kids off the street. Wanted to put abusers and rapists behind bars where they belonged.

Wanted to help people that were like him, even the tiniest little bit, and ruin the life of every Jean he could find, like somehow it'd save the Ezio he used to be, but that wasn't possible, was it?

"I know," he said, snorting softly. "Kind of dorky. Good money though. Oh, should probably go order if we're actually going to have that coffee, huh?" He smiled slightly, in that odd way that made it seem like he knew some secret no one else did, and he stood up to go in and order. "Want to come, or shall I bring you something back?" He didn't mind either way.


Love is not afraid.