Valen Arrol ([personal profile] competitionsmile) wrote in [community profile] birdwithoutasong2014-04-25 08:45 pm

Looking up I saw nothing

Who: Valen Arrol ([personal profile] competitionsmile) and Vasilica Alin
Universe: Original
What: True love
Warning: to be added

Maybe Valen's old enough to know better than to listen to rumors, but it's more the case that he's old enough that he knows that even if most rumors aren't what they seem, they still often make for a good story later, and sometimes what the reality is turns out to be better than the rumor. Which is why when he hears the story of a beautiful ghost in a tower he assures the servant that exorcism is definitely one of his top ten skills and sets off towards the tower that had been described to him. He'd sprained his ankle in his last fight and he's going stir-crazy trying not to head out of town yet, so he agrees because it sounds interesting

He has his bow strapped to his back when he knocks on the door, the rest of his worldly possession in his bag because it's not like he has anywhere to leave them behind. The women who'd hired him greets him at the door, and he pins her with a charming smile. "If I'm free to look around, that's what I'm going to be doing," he says, because if he's going to find out anything, it's not going to be while he's being herded around. He needs to poke his nose where it doesn't belong, because he's sure the ghost isn't going to come out to say hi, if it's even real.
closemyeyes: (i trembled when he laid me out)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2014-04-26 02:03 am (UTC)(link)
The lord of House Alin has seven children - but most people only remember the existences of six. The eldest three and the youngest three - flawless, a matchless standard to live up to. The impossible made flesh.

Not many people remember the fourth child, the shameful secret - flawed, pitiable, half-mad, a disgrace to his name, except the servants that do take care and only speak of the rumors. Vasilica lives in that tower, and when he goes anywhere outside it, on the rare occasions that he does, it's usually after dark.

It's past twilight, when true night had fallen, when he ventures out of the room at the top, footstep near-silent on the stair. No further than the stairs, and only a couple of stairs down, a slim, pale ghost of a boy with white hair and white skin and white robes.

He's not expecting company. He never expects company.
closemyeyes: (close my eyes and disappear)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2014-04-27 03:11 am (UTC)(link)
It's not as though there's much noise, here: the servants never make much noise, spend as little time within these walls as they reasonably can, and he's silent as the grave himself. It's all stillness and silence, and the out of place loudness is startling to ears not accustomed to it.

And more to not being accustomed to noise, he's not accustomed to strangers: for a moment, all he can do is freeze and stare at the interloper, words caught in his throat.

Ghosts might not be real - though there are folklore about them everywhere, including the drowned maidens deserted by lovers - but he certainly appears as one now, between the stillness and the fact he's wrapped in white like it was his shroud (and someday he'd be burned in white).
closemyeyes: (close my eyes and disappear)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2014-04-27 07:47 pm (UTC)(link)
If he was a ghost, then he simply would have walked right through the wall and disappeared. A great many things would have been easier - but he isn't a ghost (yet), and cannot simply disappear.

The words meant to be soothing aren't particularly - perhaps they would have worked on a less skittish individual. And there's another long stretch of silence, words still caught in his throat, before he speaks, soft and barely audible. (and it's been almost too long since he's spoken last).

"Go. Please."

It's not a command, not the way it should be instead of something that was almost pleading, hands drawn back against his chest. Never the effortless way that his siblings handled those around them - those that they were better than.

Never that, never that at all.
closemyeyes: (so let me rest in peace)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2014-05-10 04:39 pm (UTC)(link)
It's not that he's offended, because he's not, and his eyes dart back and forth between the man and the door up, fast flickers, and he's about ready to run. Shouldn't run, shouldn't, but it's the way he's always, always been.

"...ahhhh." he realizes, then, what the man means, what he thinks he is, (and it would have been easier then), sound nothing more than the softest exhale of breath (but sign that he wasn't, in fact, a ghost, was still very much alive, because ghosts didn't breathe), and half a moment later, turns and tries to bolt up for his door.
closemyeyes: (so let me rest in peace)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2014-05-11 08:47 am (UTC)(link)
Ghosts were sad creatures, full of lingering regrets and an inability to let go of their lives, And (always wanting to please-) Vasilica pauses for a moment, rigid and trembling, very much the scared bird.

"Why?"

No one ever had, before, and he doesn't see why now.

There's nothing to talk about. Nothing he has to say.
Edited 2014-05-11 08:47 (UTC)
closemyeyes: (close my eyes and disappear)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2014-05-17 09:22 am (UTC)(link)
The silence stretches on - not a comfortable silence, he's never had one of those, but an uncomfortable one, until Vasilica lowers his eyes, turns his head away, hair falling into his eyes, over his face.

"...there are no ghosts here," he says, simply, before he turns away again, in a flutter of white silk. Maybe the man will leave, since he'd come looking for ghosts, after all, and there weren't any here.
Edited 2014-05-17 09:23 (UTC)
closemyeyes: (so let me rest in peace)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2014-06-14 05:04 pm (UTC)(link)
There really isn't anywhere for Vasilica to go that would have him be lost track of - the stairs lead upwards to his room, and Valen would be able to catch up to him easily at the door to his room.

"...about?"

He might not be a ghost, but it's easy to tell, even this early, how the rumors had been started, with how soft he speaks, how little, and how still his body language is with nowhere left to run to.

What is there even to talk about, is the ghost of the tone under the words.
closemyeyes: (i trembled when he laid me out)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2014-08-03 04:18 am (UTC)(link)
It's awkward, to say the least - awkward between them, and he can see the awkwardness in the other man's gesture. Someone being awkward at him (because of him) is new, and strange, and he glances away for a moment.

"...I don't mean to." he says, his voice as soft and blank as ever.

His hand clutches the doorknob, tightly.
closemyeyes: (close my eyes and disappear)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2014-09-12 07:25 pm (UTC)(link)
The moment is a fragile, tenuous one, and Vasilica's silence holds as he listens, glancing away. Of course they don't know him: there was always that gulf of station even before he'd drifted away, before he'd done his best to disappear.

"They forgot that I was alive." he says, finally, and he's still not certain whether it's better that way or not. Or even why this man bothered to find out that he was anything more than a ghost.

Perhaps anyone else would have been bitter, but his voice is still that same blank serenity.

He hasn't run again yet - he holds himself still, still and still, but this is the bravest he's been in (ever) a long while.
closemyeyes: (so let me rest in peace)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2014-12-31 09:29 am (UTC)(link)
Why would it seem difficult to believe? He's been haunting what should have been and was never his home for what has felt like his whole life. And he's certainly at a loss with someone /staring/ at him.

No one stares. Except this man. No one remembers he exists, except this man.

"...You-" You can't not forget, because everyone else forgets, like he was a swirl of snowflakes that faded into the storm.

(Vasilica doesn't know what to do, faced with a man who is certain he won't forget him.}

"Why?" he finally asks again. Why do you say that? "Everyone does."
closemyeyes: (better off believing you're a ghost)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2015-12-31 10:24 am (UTC)(link)
His expression doesn't change, though his cheeks darken with a blush. It's a door, an option, something he could choose (a way out), and-

"I-" he begins, hesitantly. But he doesn't take the way out: instead, he runs, slams his bedroom door in Valen's face and doesn't open it.

It's something he doesn't forget. Even after he dies less than a month after he met Valen (dies alone in the darkness, leaves a fragment of his heart behind) and lives again and leaves the tower, with a new name and a new family who actually loves him and a purpose, he doesn't forget.

(Even Valen, wanderer and passing through, might have heard of his death. How Vasilica, fourth child of Lord Alin, had died. His eldest sister lit a candle for him. May the Seven judge him fairly. Beautiful, broken, flawed and pitiable, not to be remembered or mourned.

Except while Vasilica died, Mira lived.)


Three years, maybe four. Enough time to find himself, stitch the pieces back together, to figure out who Mira is, to learn to be someone else. To learn his purpose and how to use his powers and know what he is. Three years, maybe four, and he meets Valen again, a chance-meeting at an inn one night. Dressed differently - he still has white hair, and white skin, but he's not wearing white robes that make him look like a ghost but darker colors that actually look good on him- and carrying himself much more confidently (still gracefully), but still looks much the same otherwise. It's enough to throw people off, even those who would have known Mira when he'd still been Vasilica Alin - Vasilica never looked anyone in the eyes, after all, and never spoke in complete sentences.

Mira's trying to pick his way through the crowd, which isn't an easy task given that it's raining, when someone jostles him - and knocks him, and his harpcase, right into Valen.
closemyeyes: (i open my mouth and nothing comes out)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2016-01-09 08:20 pm (UTC)(link)
He's initially too startled to quite process who he's bumped into, murmurs a hasty apology - and then recognition hits him, just as Valen asks if he's a ghost this time.

Mira sighs, quietly. With anyone else, he might have lied, might have tried to pass himself off as someone else. With anyone else, he might have done any of those things - and has, even to his own former oldest brother. But Valen isn't quite 'anyone else', because he's never forgotten, either. He's never forgotten his kindness to a broken, fragile boy.

"No," he says, quietly, resting his instrument case on the table. "Maybe I should have been, but it's...complicated."
closemyeyes: (and all this longing)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2016-01-10 07:14 am (UTC)(link)
Mira can see that the other man's eyes are narrow, and can't really blame him. Not with how he'd died and come back, when that wasn't exactly a common occurrence. Not with...everything that had happened.


"...I know." he finally says, and sighs. He does have a room at the inn, because he'd planned to stay here. And the explanation he owes the man? Will have to be in private. "Come upstairs with me? I'll talk with you more there."
closemyeyes: (Default)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2016-01-11 04:19 am (UTC)(link)
Mira leads him upstairs: the room he'd gotten for the night was spartan, with one small bed (no insects, though: he'd paid extra just to be certain of it). and what few possessions he has are tucked away in his pack, which is set out of the way in a corner.

He closes the door behind Valen and turns to face him. "I should start from the beginning, shouldn't I?"
closemyeyes: (take what the water gave me)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2016-01-12 09:01 am (UTC)(link)
The smile Mira gives him in return, as he sits down on the bed, is sweet and sad around the edges. If Valen is unsettled now, he's certainly going to be unsettled once the explanation starts.

"Less than a month after we met...I died." alone in the dark. "Normally, that would have been the end, but...it wasn't quite. " he's pretty clearly trying to find the words. "...I'm not certain how much attention you pay to religion, but you've at least heard of the most common stories? About how the Lady turned her eyes from the world but in Her mercy sent Her Seven Messengers to watch over us?"
closemyeyes: (my heart almost stopped)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2016-01-17 05:45 am (UTC)(link)
"What the church doesn't teach or acknowledge is the nature of the Seven. A steadfast denial." Mira says. It makes their job easier...or harder, in some respects, to have that misunderstanding. "Besides simply messenger gods...they incarnate in mortal vessels, who are born and live as ordinary people, unknowing of the power they carry in their heart, until they die."

He pauses, for a long moment. "...So, then, you can see why I'm alive, now, even though I died and my sister lit candles for me. May the Seven judge him fairly. And I'll stay like this until I inevitably die again doing my job."

Delicate lips quirk into a bitter smile. "I wasn't exactly supposed to tell you about this, but you deserve the truth. Please don't spread it around."
closemyeyes: (Default)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2016-01-17 09:05 pm (UTC)(link)
"Of course." Mira says (that crease is cute, though it's a bit weird to think of an older man as being 'cute'). "I'm still me: I'm just more now then I was, with more magic and the memories of my predecessors." he pauses, for a moment, and gives Valen a hesitant smile.

"There's a lot of stuff from before I would have wanted to forget, but you weren't one of them. The only thing that's really changed is my name, for...perhaps obvious reasons. I call myself Mira now."
closemyeyes: (and all this longing)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2016-01-18 02:27 am (UTC)(link)
Mira nods. "I chose it myself." he says, quietly. It's a tradition they had...to change their names, both because it would make things easier and to put distance between themselves and their old lives.

"Yes, I do. I'm...a lot more stable, now that I'm away from where I was."
closemyeyes: (you've been holding up a long time)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2016-01-23 01:28 am (UTC)(link)
Valen's lucky in that way, and Vasilica, throughout his short life, had wanted to be someone - anyone - other then who he was. Now he was, and was happier for it.

"I have responsibilities, but there's nothing that needs doing at the moment." Mira says, propping his chin in his hand. "We can enjoy ourselves in that kind of...downtime? Peace."
closemyeyes: (take what the water gave me)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2016-01-25 08:19 am (UTC)(link)
Mira can feel his cheeks heat a little at the teasing. The warm kind of teasing is something he's still getting used to, but it's nice.

"It's something I had to learn." he says, quietly. "...I like reading and I'm something of a musician?" he offers, a bit sheepishly. "I'm...still learning, beyond that."
closemyeyes: (then believing you can think at all)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2016-01-30 10:34 pm (UTC)(link)
Mira gently taps his harpcase, settling it onto his lap. "Harp, mostly," he says, running his fingers over the case. It had been a skill he'd learned after he'd died, since his former family had regarded music as a skill fit only for women. "Though I sing a little."

He can hear the interest in the man's voice, and offers him another shy smile. "I could sing for you, if you wanted?"
closemyeyes: (my wishes are exhausted)

[personal profile] closemyeyes 2016-09-12 06:51 am (UTC)(link)
Carefully, Mira extracts the instrument from the case, carefully tunes it as he speaks. It's been well-cared for, but was never a fine instrument. "I wouldn't have offered if I'd minded." he says, expression warm and soft, as he begins to play, spinning a gentle melody beneath his fingers.

"Is there a particular song you would like to hear, or shall I just play whatever?"