I reinstalled my game in english.
I’m so confused now.
Warning: I’m rating this PG-13 for sexual descriptions
“You know Xav, you ask for favors a lot.” Annaliese noticed.
“Oh uh…yeah guess I do. Really sorry about that. I can totally understand if you don’t want to-”
“No, no, I will! I won’t pass off an opportunity to help someone, but maybe this time you can do something for me first?” Annaliese asked, and I let out a breath. Thank god, I’d been afraid she’d say no.
“Of course, what do you need?”
“Well my brother’s not doing so well. I thought things would get better, but it hasn’t. Physically he’s fine now, apart from a scar on his abdomen, but mentally…he hasn’t recovered yet. I guess being controlled since you were ten years old can have that effect, and there’s nothing I can do to help him since we technically don’t know each other well. But I do know your sister, Catarina, was good friends with him, or at the very least since she’s someone who can understand what he’s going through. She went through pretty much the same thing no? Do you think you could ask her to stop by here and see if she can help him?” Annaliese asked.
“She’s busy with her studies, but I’ll make sure to pass on the word. She doesn’t seem to be suffering like your brother is, but that may just be because she still has the magical bead.” I said.
“Thanks for passing on the message. Now as for your favor, it won’t be for anytime soon, but when I do have time I’ll stop by Ridgevalley and see what I can do.” Annaliese said.
“Okay thanks Anna.”
After hanging up, I scrolled through my contacts, my thumb hovering over my dad’s phone number.
I hadn’t seen that detective since, but seeing him at the bar the other night had really freaked me out. I was afraid he was suddenly going to remember everything and start causing trouble. Especially if he got fired…I had the impression he was the type who would lash out in anger.
I didn’t quite know what to do about it, but the answer that kept haunting my mind was telling James about it. But then I was afraid his solution would be to kill the detective.
And another death on my mind was not what I needed. With a quiet exasperated sigh, I turned my phone off and stuffed it in my pocket.
The door slammed open and Maxwell ran out, looking around in a frantic panic.
Erin was out meeting some clients today so I’d been appointed babysitting duty. I had planned to take Max out to see a movie or something of the like, but Erin had insisted he do his homework before doing anything fun.
Maxwell lunged forwards and gave me a tight hug.
“He’s gone! He left me!” Max said, his voice cracking as he started to cry.
“Who? Who’s gone?” I asked.
“Dad’s gone.” He choked out.
I bent down to give him a proper hug. Maxwell sobbed into my shoulder.
“He said he was going to leave one day, but I don’t want him to, but he did anyway! It’s not fair. He was my best friend, even though nobody believes me at school except Emily, it was okay because I could still hang out with dad, but now I can’t.” Maxwell cried, holding on to me tightly.
Oliver was gone? Did that mean Erin had finally let go?
“It’s okay buddy, you should be happy for him. He went off to a better place.”
“No. I want him to stay here.” Maxwell mumbled unhappily.
“Most people don’t get the chance you got Max. You’re special. Instead be happy you even got to see your dad.” I said, letting Maxwell go.
“You mean…I’m the only who can see dead people?” Max asked, his eyes looking worried.
“Well we don’t know for sure…” I hesitantly replied.
Maxwell was silent, his lower lip quivering a little. “But now there’s only going to be him.” He muttered, staring at something behind me.
“The shadow that follows you uncle. You know, your imaginary friend?” Maxwell said solemnly, playing with his shirt.
A shadow following me? My blood seemed to freeze and I looked behind me even though I knew I wouldn’t see anything. I wanted nothing more than to ask Maxwell to elaborate, what shadow? What did he look like? Like the grim reaper in my dreams?
But I restrained myself. It wouldn’t be fair to Max.
“Hey, want to go out and get some ice cream?” I asked with a sly smile.
Maxwell glanced back at his room, knowing full well he wasn’t done his homework yet. “Okay.” With a last sniffle, he nodded.
“Please, please, please?” Maxwell begged with his big blue eyes. I’d originally planned to walk home with Maxwell and talk to him about what had happened the other day. Maxwell had kept silent about it, but Xavier had told me all about how Oliver had disappeared.
I glanced behind him where his friend Emily was standing with a timid smile. Instead, it seems Maxwell had other plans in mind for today.
Well I do know Emily’s parents…and he’s gone there before…but right after school?
“Alright fine. I’ll come pick you up at 7pm okay?” I said, and Max’s face filled up with a huge grin.
“Yay! Thanks mom!” He said, giving me a quick hug and then running off to join Emily. I smiled, watching them run off in the direction of Emily’s house. It felt a little nostalgic, just a little. It reminded me of when Xavier and I used to be kids.
Oh god, have I reached that age?
Repressing a shiver, I turned around and started to make my way back home. On the way, I automatically did my checkup again. I can’t seem to help it, every time I walk by here, I have to lean over and check down the alleyway and see if there’s an unlucky sniper, passed out on the ground.
And it seemed there was something different about today.
I could just make out a pair of legs sprawled out, patches of dirt and blood mixed in with the grey snow.
I had to double check.
Nope, it really seemed that sniper had gotten himself beat up, again, at the exact same place.
I trudged over, finding the sight mildly amusing.
I kicked one of his shoes lightly, but he didn’t respond. He really was passed out. He didn’t seem that badly hurt. They probably just tossed him around and knocked him out with a good konk on the head.
I pulled out my phone and called Xavier who was out with Edmund.
“I’m going need your help to carry something back home.”
Xavier and Edmund dropped a now semi-conscious sniper on the couch. Xavier stepped back, frowning a little as he focused on his sixth sense.
“Well…I can’t sense anything bad, just like last time. Actually he seems better off this time.” Xavier noticed.
Edmund was oddly quiet. The whole ride over here, he kept glancing at the sniper and frowning, like he was trying to remember something.
Then again, he wasn’t there the first time and I don’t know everything Xavier’s told him, so for all I know he’s really just confused as to what’s happening and attempting not to fall behind.
The beat up man groaned, lifting himself up from the couch. He took a quick look around, taking in his surroundings, and inhaled sharply in annoyance as he recognized us.
“There’s a limit you know. You should’ve left me there.”
Of course, face deep in cold snow in only a light jacket and torn pants.
“You didn’t complain last time.” I shot back.
“Last time I thought it was because I’d let you two leave that time you had a knife to my throat.” Evan snapped, glancing at both Xavier and I.
Edmund pulled Xavier a little to the side, to whisper in his ear.
“Who is he?”
Well that was the question wasn’t it? I could see it in Xavier’s reaction as well, it was about time we learned exactly who he was. With a few hesitant movements, Xavier finally ended up deciding to turn off the incense and cast an identification spell, under the sniper’s scrutinizing glare.
“Edmund asked who you were, thought it might be about time to find out the real story.” Xavier said, as if that would stop the sniper from glaring at him as the information appeared temporarily in front of us in thin air.
That was the name that appeared, along with vague mentions, like the fact that he used to be in the russian mob, has no living family, and a lot of other things, but the spell wasn’t up long enough.
“Evan…you remind me of someone…” Edmund muttered, more to himself to anyone else.
Evan’s eyes suddenly narrowed as his gaze drifted to Edmund. “Edmund…Edmund Pallen?” He said, a little uncertainly, reaching up to adjust his beanie.
Xavier and I watched as both men seemed to suddenly recognize each other.
Which was odd in and of itself.
“You used to live in a hotel or apartment nearby…” Edmund remembered, and Evan started to look a little less pissed.
“Huh, I was sure you’d fallen in a ditch and died. You guys just up and left.” Evan remarked.
Well isn’t this an interesting turn of events?
“Yeah well, my dad didn’t react well when he saw us.” Edmund said with a small smirk.
“I’m lost, you guys know each other?” Xavier asked. Oh…oh no…
“Yeah, my…” Evan adjusted his beanie again as he attempted to find the right word. “Family was going through a rough patch then, so I spent most of my time at Eddie’s huge house.”
Eddie? I caught Xavier’s eyebrows raising a little at the nickname.
“It was before I moved to Legacy Island II. Actually it’s because my dad caught us kissing that he made us move.” Edmund concluded, and I wanted to reach over and slap him silly. Was he not paying attention to Xavier?
“You’re gay? Could’ve fooled me.” I said, making sure Xav didn’t feel obligated to comment.
“Bi actually, since you’re so interested.” He said, tilting his head back to smirk. I rolled my eyes.
“This is just weird.” Edmund started up again. “Now that I know, you don’t seem to have changed a bit!”
“But you do. You really do.”
“Can’t believe you became a hired gun…” Edmund said with a bit of a sad expression.
Evan shrugged. “That short period as kids is probably the only time I wasn’t one.”
Xavier stopped nervously playing with his watch to cut in. “Short? You guys were so young I’m surprised you remember.” He said, maybe a little harshly.
“Hard to forget, he was my best friend at the time.” Edmund replied, still not noticing Xavier’s obvious growing jealousy.
“He was my only friend then.” Evan admitted a little too nicely. I should’ve never gotten Edmund to help us.
“Okay, fantastic, reunions, want a glass of water?” I said, practically shoving his shoulder to make sure he was listening to me and not Edmund. “Before you go on your way?”
He shrugged his approval, and I headed off to the fridge, hoping Edmund would stop saying stupid things.
But instead Edmund went and sat beside Evan.
“Isn’t a sniper supposed to stay away from the action? What’s with the wounds?” Edmund asked.
“Yeah well, I’m actually trying to drop my rifle, but a lot of people aren’t happy with that. They seem convinced I owe them, and if I stop shooting for them I have to pay up.” Evan said, and I found myself paying close attention to his words as I poured a glass of water.
“Just get out of town then.”
“I don’t have the cash for it, they do. As a matter of fact they took everything I own for themselves.” Evan said, as if he was just realizing it entirely himself. “It’s a work in progress.”
“I can relate.” Edmund said. Xavier sat down on one of the stools, trying not to look glum.
“Wasn’t your dad a real stickler for reputation?”
“He still is, but I got out of that house. I’ve been making money from my writing.” Edmund said proudly.
“Really? Good for you. I was initially supposed to have enough cash to move to China, but this guy here,” Evan said, gesturing at Xavier. “blocked my bullet from shooting down his dad, and when I finally do get a shot, my employers die before they can pay me in full.”
Oh he was just doing it on purpose now.
“I think you were the one that basically failed there.” I snapped, more than annoyed with the two.
He was just not getting that glass of water now.
I went back into the living room, crossing my arms.
“Okay! Edmud you’ve overstayed your welcome, escort him out will you Xavier?” I said.
Xavier gave me an expression that couldn’t quite decide between annoyance and relief.
Edmund looked at me a little confused, but at least he was smart enough to look like he was trying to figure out what he’d done wrong.
“Overstayed his welcome?” Evan asked in what seemed to me like a much too innocent sounding voice.
“You too jerk.” I said, nearly slapping the beanie off his head. He caught it in time.
Edmund pushed himself off the couch, and still confused with my glare in his back, he made his way out with Xavier tagging behind, his hands in his pockets.
I couldn’t have seen this coming, if I had, I really would’ve left that sniper in his pile of snow.
“What the hell?” Evan asked once Edmund and Xavier had left and he’d readjusted his beanie.
“Maybe I should flip your top hat off, how would you like that?”
“You just had to keep going with your ‘male bonding’ didn’t you? It was obviously hurting Xavier.” I said, disdain filling my voice.
“So?” Evan said, searching for what the big deal was.
“So those two are dating.”
“So?” He repeated his unwavering gaze actually throwing me a little off balance.
“So don’t frolick with Edmund like that.” I finally snapped.
He chuckled. “Oh you poor girl. Don’t worry, he’s not my type. I prefer the broken ones.”
Okay he officially doesn’t have the right to combine that face and that voice together anymore. It’s just…NOT FAIR.
I can’t even come up with a proper comeback now.
“I’m going to punch you in the face if you don’t-”
My words were cut off more from surprise than anything else as Evan suddenly took a step into my personal bubble, one of his hands reaching out for my waist.
I guess I had a decent amount of time to react or push him away, but I ended up letting him be as he leaned in and captured my lips in a surprisingly sensual kiss that sent warmth rushing to all parts of my body.
I didn’t protest at all, and when he pulled back, I felt almost sad that he had.
“See? It’s pretty simple, it has the element of surprise and is devoid of face bruising.” He said with a grin.
My mouth was open, half to catch my breath, and the other because I wanted to say something, be it: You jerk or Is this some weird kind of revenge? or Who do you think you are!?
But my voice wouldn’t respond, because oh my god that had been good and the closeness was making my head spin a bit and from here I could see his eyes were a nice gentle color and-
When the mind can’t make itself up, the body tends to take over.
And mine gripped his shirt and brought him towards me again, our lips crashing together and our mouths opening to inhale each other’s breaths.
It was intoxicating to say the least. My mind had long since become addled, and all I could focus on was the feel of his lips on my skin, of his firm muscles under my hands as they explored his thin frame, and of the warmth flooding my body with each touch.
Things ended up leading to many, many other things…
The whole way down the elevators, an uncomfortable silence had settled between us. It’s not that I wanted to make it awkward, I just couldn’t bring myself to say something I may or may not regret later.
Just when I thought my torture was over, instead of putting on his coat, Edmund put it to the side and turned to me.
“What’s wrong Xavier?” He asked with a kind smile, but a look that was determined to stay until he got a suitable answer.
“Nothing.” I said with a nonchalant shrug. It was stupid anyway.
“Come on Xav, I can tell I did something wrong. If Erin’s kicking me out and you’re acting like this…” Edmund’s voice trailed off as he began to realize what it was. “Wait, are you jealous?” He asked unsuccessfully trying not to smile.
I bit the inside of my cheek, looking away as my face started to burn.
“Maybe.” I muttered. Maybe I was jealous. Maybe it was a little shocking to know I hadn’t been your first. Maybe I’m being selfish and just simply not liking how well you two were hitting it off.
Yeah, maybe I am damn jealous.
I glanced up, hearing a condescending tone where there wasn’t any, all ready to defend myself only to be reigned in by the genuine smile on his face.
Edmund stepped forwards, gently cupping my cheek.
“Xavier you have absolutely nothing to be jealous about.”
“I know, I’m sorry, I shouldn’t even be doubting you.” I muttered, avoiding his gaze.
“It’s understandable if you do.” He smiled.
“I thought I’d been obvious enough, but just in case I’ll say it aloud.” Edmund said, and I looked up, my heart suddenly skipping a beat at the idea of what he had to say. “Xavier, I promise I won’t do anything to betray your trust. I don’t want to ever leave your side again.”
My chest filled with warmth, and I leaned my head against his hand, gazing up at the man who somehow made it possible to adore him more every day.
There wasn’t even an ounce of hesitation in my body this time as I leaned forwards, delicately closing the distance between us.
It was a small soft press of lips, in which Edmund wasn’t sure how to react.
I pulled back slightly, our gazes meeting, and then we exchanged grins before closing the small space again.
Our lips met, recognizing and appreciating the familiar touch, and tasting something new at the same time.
I held on to him as we exchanged breaths, now as determined as he was to never let this go. It was an exchange of souls, he was mine and I was his.
Staring at this beautiful man, I was certain now. I was at my best around him. He made me happy just by smiling, and I was never, ever, going to let go.
Xav’s marking his territory XD
Beside Evan, Edmund looks like a big teddy bear.
Here y’all have an insight into the rough drafts of my chapters lol, copy of my exact jot notes:
Ev: “Yeah, my…family was going through a rough patch then, so I spent most of my time at Eddie’s huge house.”
Ed: “It was before I moved to Legacy Island II. Actually it’s because my dad caught us kissing that he made us move.”
Xav is like ohhhhh, and Erin is like snap damn.
I just found myself really amusing when I was rereading to write the actual chapter
Oh btw, next update won’t be on friday. I got stuff to do, so it’ll probably be pushed back to sunday or monday depending.