i'll be with you still
you are the angel that I couldn't kill
One must be blind not to see the sweet haze of nostalgia that clouded her warm brown eyes, like he could pluck out the memory between his fingers. Was that a sense of longing he saw? He was sure that it was. It could be a lonely dark and dangerous place within Sacrosanct's borders at times. Yet someone like her surely had no problem making friends, right? It certainly wasn't for him. It was better that way. Hunt, sleep, recoup, make a solitary, simple life for yourself. Wash, repeat. The people in his life were liabilities, or so he told himself. Yet in Sacrosanct... within all its chaotic glory, high supernatural population and screwy people that made you shake your head and wonder if the world could be saved.... It had something. Something intangible and yet something nonetheless. It felt more like home than anything his younger self could remember. But like all things.. It had a dark side. Like picking up a rock and seeing all the creepy crawlies underneath. It was there where he found himself lingering more than he had to. He'd seen enough in his relatively short life to leave a mark in the damp earth. A mark like a rift inside his mind, one that he had carved out further with grief and anger.. And something far better. Something that meant he survived.. A warrior.
Was it possible to dislike something you cared for? Was it possible to both love and hate oneself? Ah, the conflict most people dealt with and did not speak, some didn't even realize or give a care for it. That's the thing about being alone... it gave you way too much time to think. Something he had a lot less of with a newly turned hunter under his wing and all the other things that conflicted against the world he'd crafted for himself. He was breaking all the rules. How far he'd fallen from his solitary mountain peak.
Even as he considered showing her the beauty he had found in this corrupt city where not all was tarnished. Like all things, Sacrosanct had two sides, like a coin. One must take one along with the other to truly appreciate without the eyes of a dreamer. To love something for what it was, including its darkness was not something most people could do.
She'd seen one half. That ugliness that added darkness that only made the light shine brighter. It was one of his many places he'd found for himself, like that perilous solitary mountain he used to stand on. This place wasn't too far away from here either and he had just the idea to keep the chill from settling within their bones. The hunter peered at the fae in silent consideration, his heavy, hard eyes softened for a moment, wondering for a brief time how he wound up even here. A supernatural? Him! A date! That's what he'd been parading it around as in his mind. It made entirely no sense to him. The man who spent a good chunk of his life slaying monsters. But he had seen enough monsters to know that Audi was not. Still. It was like he couldn't help himself, unsure if it was curiosity or some hidden lure.. How? He'd never really sought the companionship in others all too terribly often and he'd drawn himself to danger more times than not. He was not a safe person to know, to attach oneself to. He was content alone.. And he was alright working with others when he had too but he preferred it his own way. It made no sense to him. Women made even less sense. It was a question he would not figure out tonight. Yet despite those thoughts, he decided to submit to them, willing to partake in a night of breaking his norm.
Those thoughts far from mind when hot steamy plates of food arrived. Oh, one could think of nothing other than his stomach with this glorious feast. He hadn't eaten most of the day.. He refused to believe it was nerves... a denial he was happy to oblige himself. The pair chatted while they filled their bellies with the variety of dishes placed before them. So many flavours packed in every bite... one would think it would have been conflicting to a pallet. But it wasn't. At least not for him. He was a glutton of his favourites, and it hardly prevented that look that crossed his features when he liked something a lot or the occasional rumble that escaped his lips as he chewed. To be a vampire or a creature unable to enjoy food! What a damned existence!
What surprised him was how eager and fearless his companion was. She tried new things without fear, even seemed to enjoy it. He shouldn't have been so surprised but the woman, even with powers dialled down... was the brightest thing in this hole-in-the-wall of a joint. He hoped she hadn't noticed that there were times he stared when she wasn't looking. Curious of the looks upon her face or the way she seemed to be all but determined to try each and every dish...He thought ballerinas didn't really eat.. But this one did and enjoyed it, genuinely too.. Or so he thought. The pair had found a comfortable presence within each other's company. He couldn't remember the last time he felt that in another or allowed it.
The final dish came too soon. The expression of dislike upon his features was not one he'd soon forget. That bad? Really? He'd known it was an acquired taste... but it couldn't be as bad as the look on her face was telling him. 'Not good' was the woman's verdict. Of course, Adrien had to try it himself. Hm. She was right... but it wasn't as horrible as he anticipated, this distinctly unpleasant assault he'd imagined it to be. The dinner had come to a close. The blonde dancer seemed quick to admit that the rest of it was delicious. The hunter could hardly help that brief grin that drew upon his lips.
However, this night didn't have to end with just dinner. He did promise her something of beauty. At least it was to him. But he wasn't just going to tell her, she had to step out into it with an open mind. He'd spoken obscurely about trusting him in attempts to lure her with curiosity. 'Trust you?' She questioned and he inclined his head, his gaze locked with her own. " Yes." He wasn't going to cave and tell her even though his shadowy purple eyes observed her considering it. But the moment he obtained her curiosity he'd already known that answer. For a moment she studied him and he could only wonder if she'd suddenly seen him. All those shadows that stained his soul. It nearly caught him off guard to hear her speak with such determined resilience. He hardly knew if she was foolish or she'd seen something he hadn't. Regardless he refused to let no harm come to her. Not with him around. That subtle smile that returned to his lips that he concealed from her as he went to track down that waitress. He'd paid and slid his jacket upon his broad shoulders. It was not much time before he'd led her back out into the streets. He always felt warm after he'd eaten, the man usually running on the hot side, his high metabolism saw to it. He'd slowed his own gait so the ballerina could keep up with him at an easy pace. She walked as gracefully as she danced... surely she could keep up with him.
Her sweet soprano voice that was such a contrast to his own could have been lost within the sounds of the city but not to him... it seemed as bright as the smile upon her face as she'd admitted she'd liked the food. Save for that cuttlefish. "I'll remember that." Her girlish giggle seemed to all but linger in the air as they walked along the sidewalks. Part of him seemed ever aware of the potential dangers that simply weren't there. It was automatic to find those perfect places for night creatures to lurk. He'd played the part of a gentleman, offering to carry her duffel bag down a block or two before he brought them to a cafe off the beaten path that he found one night on a hunt. Espresso was his drink of choice when he ran on little sleep, plus he enjoyed that bold flavour after a meal. He reached for the door to open it, for her to scurry inside. They were hit with a blast of delicious scents of baked goods, chocolate and coffee. If he had a weakness for scents he was certain that this might have been it.
Her blonde hair seemed to glint in the warm light, softly whispering about her shoulders as she moved. She'd delighted in the smell as her line of sight lined up straight to the illuminated case with all kinds of treats he'd rarely indulged in. The hunter was nothing short of strict in all aspects of his life. At least until lately. Lately, he seemed to tiptoe with the grace of a bull in a china shop. That was his sister's mo, not his. She was a creature of chaos and he was order... well usually.. If you didn't include recent events like... Turn a man, attempt to go on a date with a fae, let a vampire that somehow knew his sister go without even a scratch upon him. He'd scoured the streets for him days after that and no sign. Like he simply appeared to not exist. He could barely keep up with himself.
What next? A cheat day it would seem. She practically ran to the case in what seemed like excitement, complete glee woven within her words. Maybe he did know women after all. Chocolate, he was certain was a universal thing.. She'd even found her pain of chocolate she had mentioned earlier. He'd curiously lingered close to her to peer down at what she was looking at. "Croissants! Of course.." He exclaimed. The dancer practically danced toward the final distance, on her tiptoes. He was hardly prepared when she set her doe pleading brown eyes to face him. That look alone near disarmed him as that question if she could get one feel from her lips. At that moment he wasn't sure if anyone was capable of denying her. "Sure, did you want anything else?" He eyed the case, at a loss at what to choose.
"We'll take 2 croissants and I will have a double espresso with a hint of cream." It made for a very light cup..
Once their items were procured and safely packaged up in a brown paper bag, he'd paid the man before returning out into the cool city streets, clouds blotting out part of the moon like they were shadows consuming light. The sound of cars whirring by them. He stopped just outside a building, nondescript mostly, a small apartment complex with a convenience store across the street attached to it. It was still quite high upon the hill it was already on. It seemed odd to untrained eyes to stop there and he waited for that look of question.
"The man who owned his building had a vampire problem, I helped him out with a year ago. It has one of the best views in the east and one of the best vantage points. Come.. You'll see." The building itself didn't look like much, but it was sturdy, built well and hardly fell apart. It was an old building that had been well maintained. The owner of the building liked him lurking up upon that rooftop.. It was like an added security feature to mention to his renters to explain why he kept hiking up their rates.
Adrien led the way toward the back of the building, a path he'd travelled many times. Through the alleyway it led to a poorly lit parking lot where an old creaky metal staircase drew up from the back of the building. With one hand he reached to lower the steps to the floor. "After you." They climbed, Adrien holding the croissants, his large hands careful not to crush the bag with the delicate pastry within.. With his hot drink in his hand and Audi's duffel bag slung over his shoulder. The hunter followed closely behind, his long muscled limbs climbed those painted black, metal grated steps with a hollow clunking sound as they reached the top. Already, the air felt lighter to him as he moved across the space to the ledge, a thick cement barricade lined the perimeter that gave a spectacular view of that city.
It was the closest thing to feel like a bird surveying the sprawling glowing intricate city scape below. He placed the duffel bag upon the dry rooftop before he turned to watch her approach. Once she appeared at his side, he lay his hand flat against her lower back, his other hand rose that held his cup gestured toward the beautiful city in its glowing glory, soaking it all in. Up here.. Everything for all it was.. Better or worse. On such a large scale it seemed far more dazzling. "A bird's eye view. You can see everything from up here.." He gestured toward several places like a park in the distance and other distinct landmarks, the ocean in its massive glory, even the beginning of the darkened forest in the far distance which looked more like a vast shadowy blur.
Being atop a hill had given them a perfect vantage point. It wasn't all bad. Over to the right there was an old broken woman holding far too heavy bags, her brittle bones could be seen from up here.. A young man rushed out to offer her some kind of help. There were people chatting with their friends.. A young couple making out by a phone booth with a busted light, a woman walking with purpose to her next destination a look of pure business in her eye and yet she was smiling from something unknown. There were hundreds if not thousands of tiny stories all playing out before them. His sharp vision spotted most of them. "You can look as deeply as you'd like.. You will never see the same thing twice." He uttered, he lowered his head to peer down upon her expression, curious of her opinion. It wasn't what one would call typically beautiful but it was in its own right. It was to him. "You can't get much more privacy, people rarely look up and the shadows keep us concealed." The perfect place to stand guard.. To listen for anything a miss, to see if a vampire stalked the wrong prey.. To observe if anything was amiss. A perfect place to be nothing more than the shadows, simply waiting.