Morning came with a rap loudly at their door causing Aerian to wake with a start, before groaning her body still exhausted from last night’s event. It didn’t take Aerian long to figure who was at the door as the only person to come would be Zia.
“I’m going to kill her myself,” She muttered before attempting to sit a second time, finally able to climb out of bed and pull on her pants she made for the door, pulling it open and glaring at Zia “You don’t have to knock so damn loud,”
“Sorry baby, but your sexy significant other said breakfast,” Zia replied as she looked Aerian over slowly licking her lip with a grin “Long night?”
“Shut up Zia, we’re not even awake yet, but come in and take a seat and try not to get yourself in too much trouble with my loves, else I’ll let them kill you instead of being me,” Aerian shook her head yawning and then stumbled back toward the bedroom peeking her head in “We have a guest, ten points for whoever guesses it right,”
Domi was already up, sitting on the edge of the bed and finished slipping his shoes on. His lengthy brown hair loose today as he shot Aerian a grin. “I’ll get breakfast ready. The sleeping beauty here won’t budge.” He smacked Virra’s behind as her back was to him, she grumbled and pulled the covers over her head.
He rose to near Aerian, kissing her deeply. “Morning, angel,” Domi then left the room after a loving caress of her face.
Aerian pressed into his hand with a gentle sound of content before pouncing on the bed landing on the small of Virras back, she stretched up Virras body yanking the covers down and kissing the back of Virras shoulder “Hey you, time to wake up, before I’m forced to kill our guest and leave you to clean up the mess,” she kissed the flesh of Virras shoulder again then nuzzled the back of her neck.
Virra grunted to the land of Aerian but squirmed to the kiss at the back of her shoulder. “Oh? Yeah, next time I’ll say dinner. It’s fucking early…” She rolled over and pinned Aerian, kissing her deeply but then suddenly took her lips away. Only in her top, rising from the room. It was only a manner of moments before the sound of retching could be heard echoing forth the hall.
Aerian raised a brow in thought knowing all too well before making her way to the stairs “Erm Domi, better make an extra cup of Jades tea,” She called, before thinking and looking over her shoulder “You OK Baby?”
“Yeah…I’ll be down soon…” She managed before the sound of retching returned. “I’ll meet you down there…” Again with the sound.
“What’s that?!” Shouted Domi at the bottom of the stairs.
Aerian made her down kissing his cheek “Your kids are playing havoc with us both, better make tea for us both,” She smiled and kissed his cheek again “She’ll be down in a minute, how’s breakfast coming?”
Aerian made her way to the front room as Zia was crouched in front of the fire warming her hands she looked up to Aerian “Everything OK?” Zia raised a brow with a smirk. She stood and turned now to face Aerian, her eyes taking in the form of her slowly.
“Fine, just a little morning sickness,” Aerian replied flatly, “Domi is cooking, so we’ll have breakfast and then we will talk,”
“Oh? Yes. I’ll make both my angels tea.” He turned to enter the kitchen. “Almost done, he said over his shoulder.
Zia settled back by the fire as she stared into the flames “We miss you, but our little family is all kinds of broken, you were the heart of it Aery, without you, we lost our way and Harley she is just …” Zias voice trailed off
“Nuts?” Aerian snapped back
“I think she was nuts before you left, but after yea, she really lost the plot. Too much blood on her hands, but you want to know the really funny thing?” Zias voice dropped now as she turned standing to face Aerian, instinctively Aerians hand moved to the blade at her back, “All those years, and we never knew, none of us,”
“Knew what?!” There was a rise in Aerian, feeling a prickle run over her flesh that made her nervous.
“Who you really were, all that time and none of us, knew you were Elcarus, royalty, running around with rats,” Zia smiled darkly as Aerian felt the panic subside she moved her hands back over her stomach.
“It didn’t matter then, still doesn’t, and to be honest the only family I have to worry about now is the one under this roof, there’s blood on all our hands Zia and not always for the right reasons, the difference is I made a choice to walk away to save myself, can you say the same?” Aerian replied softly.
Zia took a step toward her then stopped seeming awkward as she though for her answer “You could have saved us all, instead you ran and left us to your whack job creation, now it’s caught up and you may have your little family here but you know in time she will come looking and when she does you won’t be able to stop her,” it was a threat now as Aerian eyed Zia.
“Let the crazy bitch come,” said a calm but cold voice from behind Aerian. “Firefly is who she is. Not defined by the royal blood in her veins, not the shadow of her Pops. It’s good that you don’t care, but remember she made a choice. Just like the choice that brought you on OUR doorstep. I don’t care for your tone or you waking us up. It is what it is, but the important thing is, that the issue is dealt with.”
“So you’re going to help?” Zia asked flatly now her eyes straying to Virra, suddenly she looked from Virra to Aerian then back raising a brow “Wait, the guy that lives here, he knocked you both up?!”
Aerian rolled her eyes and slid back into Virras grasp “Yes, we’re both pregnant, both carrying Domis children, and it still doesn’t concern you, however, once we’ve eaten, we are going to prepare to deal with Harley and The Ever Present, and you’re going to help us,”
Virra chuckled, nearing Aerian to wrap her arms around her from behind and perching her chin on Aerian’s shoulder. “Catches on quick doesn’t she?” Virra stayed in her dry sarcastic way, sobering. “Anything she does, all of us do. Together.”
“I have your back, just as I always have, this is for family Aery,” Zia replied softly “I may not be the sharpest knife in the drawer, but I always was the most dangerous next to you,”
“You were also the first to admit when it came to loyalty, yours was to yourself so you can see my dilemma in all of this? But Virra is right, everything we do is done together, so let me tell you what you once told me, I have your back until it’s my front that’s at risk, at that point us surviving is what’s count and the three of us will do what it takes to survive together,”
Zia looked from Aerian to Virra then back “I guess if that’s how it has to be, then I have no choice,” She smiled softly, though the glimmer in her would suggest there were other things in her head in that moment.
“Don’t guess Zia, accept, that’s how this works,” Aerian stated, there no intent in those a reminder of the leader she once was, as Zia nodded again this time coming to understand Aerians words.
“Splendid. Seems we are all in an understanding. I wonder…Is Domi finished with breakfast yet? I’m starved.” Virra commented straightening, though glancing behind her. “I’ll see what’s taking him. Seems like the two of you have catching up to do. By the way on even ground, one fracture could crumble that bridge.” Suddenly Virra spun Aerian and claimed her lips in a deep passionate way, displaying to Zia the possession and claim. Spanking Aerian’s bottom in the passing to the dining room.
Aerian watched Zia as she watched the passionate interaction, before Aerian sank into one of the chairs, she kept her eyes on Zia.
“She likes to make her point,” Zia remarked softly.
“You’re lucky she’s not making it with her blades, its love Zia,” Aerian replied softly, as she touched her lips in thought, then looked back after Virra.
“You loved us once, we had everything, then we didn’t, she still does you know that right? Absolute and unconditionally, she was convinced you’d come home, then paranoid you’d come to kill her, then crying you’d left her, but she does love you,”
“Who are you trying to convince Zia, me or yourself? Because I’m beginning to wonder,” Aerian stated softly before finally pushing herself to her feet “Come on lets go eat, Domi is a hell of a cook,” she walked past Zia, as she did Zia grabbed her wrist, Aerian turned knocking her wrist away “Don’t!” She growled darkly.
When Aerian arrived in the dining room, she found Virra placing down a bowl of sliced fruit, those dark eyes glanced to her with a smirk. As the table was arranged with four place settings, pancakes with butter and a small glass pitcher filled with syrup. It smelled delicious, though, unlike before there was no smell of eggs or meat. Domi entered then with a tea pot and two cups, as well as some juice within glasses. “There are my beautiful angels.” Domi said with a grin and moved to pull out the chairs for not just Aerian and Virra but for Zia as well. Virra sat on one side of Aerian while Domi took the other place and began to pour the two women the special tea. “Jade told me to send message to their new home when we were in need of more tea leaves or anything else we should need.”
“I think Jade is … I dunno mad at us I guess, I think that’s why they left so suddenly,” Aerian stated softly as she watched Virra with a soft smile, thankful for the lack of anything that might induce her reaction, she pulled over the plate of pancakes placing a couple on her plate.
Zia was stunned as Domi pulled her chair, she sat quiet as she watched the three of them she remained silent now, as Aerian took the pancakes she felt a twist within her, realising suddenly “You shouldn’t go, I can’t be the one who lives with any more regret if you end up getting yourselves killed, let it go please,”
Aerian pulled her blade and slammed it into the table in one motion before looking at Zia “You put this in motion and now Zia we will see it through, together, like every damn time before, we made a choice together and just like always we will see it through, one way or another Harley needs to be stopped, together we will do this and when it’s done The Ever Present will be stronger for it,”
Virra sipped on her tea while watching the interaction between the two, though, gathering a few flapjacks herself and then placing some on Domi’s plate. Plucking a few grapes too much on, though, she hardly reacted to the slam of Aerian’s dagger into the table, reclining back with an amused expression on her face. “Now, she wants us to back out. Hold on, Firefly, I want to hear this…Regardless, we are all going, but, I want to know. Why?” She gathered Aerian’s hand to curl around the hilt of the dagger to withdraw it.
“I can’t be the one who is responsible for getting you all killed,” She looked to Virra “You’re not the only one who loves her, she is the only one that can get near Harley, but there is a chance that Harley will simply kill Aerian the moment she lays eyes on her,” Zia eyed the dagger and Virra in thought for a moment before she looked at the remnants on her plate “Harley is the very definition of crazy, paranoid, and more than insane, but, love it has pushed Harley over the edge when Aerian left, Harley killed three of our own just for telling her,”
“When I came here, I wanted Aerian, leader of The Ever Present, but I found Aerian, lover, fiancee, friend, I don’t want to be the one who screws that up,” Zia sighed softly “Surely you can understand that,”
Virra leaned back with a pleased expression flowing across her features, folding her arms over her chest. “Will you listen to that, Firefly? She seems to think that WE cannot handle a maniac. Look, Zia, we worked together on this war and you mean to not give us the honour of backing out of our end of the bargain? It was set in stone then, it still remains as such now.” She plopped some pancakes past her lips in a chew, this plumped her cheeks with the full contents.
Domi began to laugh now, suddenly breaking his silence. When everyone turned to look at him he sobered after a short time. “For fucksake, look at us, Zia. REALLY look at us. Virra was the daughter of Bryant, standing on his only heir. I was within those ranks, though, found it best to change sides. What happened between was provided by the realm, you coming was nothing short of that either. I fight best with both my angels at my side, as they are pure demons in battle. Sexy as hell, but, that is beside the point. You really are coming to ask for our help to secure you the position at the head of the Ever Present, don’t hand me the line that isn’t the purpose in that little mind of yours. I’ve seen that look before, especially on Virra’s face. You are terrified that this…Harley will get too out of control and you want her put down like a lame horse. From what I have gathered it has been boiling beneath the surface and I for one agree, I want to secure our future and will do so, as my angles are in agreement. It is best to handle this before their pregnancy gets too far along. Now, enjoy your meal, then we will move out afterwards.” He then looked to Aerian, his tone softening, while placing a hand on her belly. “As for Jade, no. I do not think she is mad at us. Perhaps, a little jealous. I mean, after all, you all have me.” Domi grinned and puffed up his chest, while Virra poked it with her butter knife and he deflated.
“Nah, nice try. I think, it is that Hades and Jade, have a wedding to plan. Can’t see that it would be easy for a kitsune to birth outside of her kind…maybe she is fearful of such not happening and letting Hades down.” Virra shrugged but returned to her meal.
“Uncle Hades will stay by her side regardless,” She eyed Zia dangerously now “Loyalty is what drives Elcarus blood, above all and you of all people know how deep my loyalty lays, you were between my legs before I knew I could trust you Zia, so don’t try to tell me this is about love or anything short of as Domi said a power play” She pushed her plate back with a smile “So let me put it like this, I made a mistake with Harley,”
Aerian stopped as her mind spun she drew a breath before placing both hands on the table in an effort to stabilise herself “I … ” she struggled for a moment in thought before she looked to Virra then to Domi “She may be crazy, but she never wanted to die, but if I have to then WE will shut her down for good, but I’ll be damned if I leave The Ever Present in your hands, control is coming to us and you either fall in line, or you leave, same choice you’ve always had,”
Zia smiled softly “Not quite, right now its fall in line or get your throat cut,”
Virra placed a hand atop, Aerian’s as her own were flat against the table, curling her fingers to lace within hers. A small reminder that Virra felt, that which Aerian would. Though, glanced to Zia at her words. “Then the Ever Present will fall to all of us, but, right now it is an exploding time bomb. We need to deal with Harley, then sort it out afterwards, I am not willing to jump to the gun on this just yet. Everyone makes mistakes it is those that stand up and right the wrong that is important. It should be if WE have to not you alone, Aerian.” She gave her hand a squeeze.
Domi sighed leaning back with a hand on his stomach. “Food comatose. Sometimes, I surprise, myself.”
Aerian chuckled softly with a smile “One of the many reasons we love you,” She turned her hand in Virras with a smile “It’s a trip to Evershore, we should be prepared for that, it will give me time to think how we handle this, it’s not like we can walk the front door,” She smiled softly “We got this,”
Zia watched remaining silent now lost for words, even if she had the words there would nothing to say but “Thank you,”
“Wouldn’t thank us yet, you will be walking through the front door,” Aerian replied softly before finally feeling things “But right now,” Aerian pushed from her seat and raced from the room.
“What in the…” Zia exclaimed
Virra looked up in surprise to the rise from Aerian, when she made the move to give chase, Domi was already up and placed a hand on Virra’s shoulder. “I got this.” He said, then glanced to Zia and Virra. “Don’t kill her.” Domi left for the door Aerian disappeared through.
Virra looked at Zia, standing and beginning to gather the dishes. “Well don’t sit there like a wart on a witches nose, get up and help clean up.”
Aerian heard Domi coming and kicked the door closed “Trust me you don’t wanna come in here!” right before her own bout of morning sickness hit in force, she groaned awkwardly.
Zia looked after Aerian before looking back to Virra “She OK?” she asked before beginning to gather plates from the table, she remained quiet as she simply helped carry things to the kitchen sink, before coming back for more.
As they finished up Zia made her way back to the fire crouching before the low burning embers “So how was it you met Aerian, last I heard she was in Elvera, working her own contracts,” she asked trying to find some ground common between her and Virra, though Aerian was continually that only thread now.
While Aerian was distracted with her upheaval, that is when she felt her hair gathered and a hand in her back. Running up and down in caress, even gentle pats of comfort. It was Domi, he spoke nothing but let her know he was there.
Virra looked to Zia now, then the flames. “It was when I was with my Pops. He had turned sides in the last war and was working with Ceremon and that crazy bitch. In either case, Aerian was locked up in the dungeon. Hareover had his way, so did Z’ress. I would watch her from the door, she never knew. I found her strong and beautiful…That’s when I knew my Pops had overstepped his boundaries. I was always trying to prove myself as a daughter and assassin. But one day I ran into Kane and Aishani, then when we broke Hades out and then Aerian fought. She didn’t want to go, Z’ress did a number mentally on her. Suffice to say, I knocked her out to get her out. We’ve been together ever since.”
“Sounds like she was lucky, I heard tales of Z’ress, she was supposedly some real magician with the mind, Ceremon tried to bring us in on his war but we refused to involve ourselves. I’m glad you got her out, this world would be less happy without Aery in it, though I’ve never seen her look at anyone the way she looks at you, it is something to be envied, we never saw that none of us,” Zia now wrapped her arms around her knees as she rested her chin upon them remaining to stare into the flames “And you place yourself before her in front of any harm, much as we used to, at least before, now it’s enough work watching our own backs in case one of our decides you’re in their way up the ladder,”
“It’s a dog eat dog world. I know that all too well. It’s a good thing you didn’t involve yourself in the war. I didn’t have a choice. Zia, what’s your real angle on all this? I would hold no reservations to bring Aerian back to take the reins, though it would be all or none.” She turned her gaze from the flames to rest on Zia. “Look, I know you love Aerian. I love her too, she and I share a bond. A link, so to speak. What she feels, I feel. She was torn up after you left. Speak to me plainly, I’m looking out for our best interest.”
“My angle is simple Virra, my life, I’m the last of Aerians highest, which means my life is danger at all times while Harley is in control, and she has made no bones that she wants me dead, but if my life means The Ever Present returns to what it was, then it’s a sacrifice I can live with. I don’t hold malice against Harley, I’d rather this isn’t how we deal with it, but I fear she is beyond saving and I can’t get close, Aerian can, right into her arms to sink the knife into her heart and that’s what it will take to stop her,”
“And how does that make me any better?” Aerian stated now stood in the doorway resting against Domi “My father raised me to believe we all deserve a second chance, my family took in Virra and Domi both who would have killed us given the right chance, they didn’t. It may come to it, but it isn’t going to be the first thing I do, that makes me no better than Harley and I’m not sure how more blood I can spill for the sake of it,” She smiled to Virra rubbing her stomach with a grin, before returning her gaze to Zia “The Ever Present never killed unless we knew why,”
“Because she’s fucking crazy,” Zia snapped in frustration, the moment the words left her mouth Aerian crossed the room her knife now to Zias throat as she held her in place “What the!” Zia spat angrily.
“You forget who taught Harley, who taught you, you want Harley out I get that, but I don’t see you leading any better, I know you Zia never forget that, I always protected all of you, that isn’t about to change because you deem one a lost cause, because you’re the last of the original group, ever consider that’s why you’re not dead already?” She released the hold and stood walking back to Virra.
“But you left, how is that protecting us?” Zia snapped back “You left us to die with that crazy bitch in control, you get that right? While you were out playing hero, we were fighting for our lives,”
Aerian spun the blade in her palm now watching Zia before she answered “If I hadn’t have left, I would have killed Harley, the closest to me, closest to the one I loved above the rest of you, and yes the sex parties were great, the love we shared as group, but she was the top always, I left because I had to, not because I wanted to, why do you not understand that,”
“You created us, and now we are all afraid,” Zia replied flatly
Domi allowed Aerian to move from his support to Virra, leaning against the door frame. Virra glanced to Aerian with a grin as her hand caressed over her abdomen, brushing her fingers against Aerian’s own. A brow inclined from Virra to the mention of group sex, but she never commented.
“Fear is a powerful tool, but the trick is to not let it rule you. Misjudgement can rise due to that.” Domi commented idly in his lazy lean.
Virra nodded now, expression never changing when Aerian drew her blade on Zia. “So, it is time we go investigate and deal with this.”
“We should pack, as I said it’s a trek,” Aerian replied softly before nuzzling Virra gently, she looked at Domi “How much of a supply of Tea do we have, we’ll be gone for a while, Evershore is the other side of the realm, kind of on purpose I went as far from Dentarius as I could get all those years ago, hopefully we’ll get back before the winter hits,”
“The tea won’t last for that long…We should stop before heading to the destination. Unless you both think you can handle it?” Domi said lifting a hand to rub at the back of his neck.
Virra wrapped her arms around Aerian as reflex to the nuzzle, doing her lips down to kiss her fiery crown.
“We’ll have to detour and pick up some more, it’s kind of on the way” Aerian replied softly “It helps the after effects, which is nice cause the vomiting bit sucks” She smiled at Domi “It’s all your fault you know”
An hour saw them packed and ready to leave, as they filed out of the house Aerian closed and locked the door tucking the key away in her back pack. As they left Dentarius Zia was qutte, Aerian had one hand in Virras the other in Domis, the twang of jealousy pulled at Zia from the inside.