Aha! I finally found time to get the next chapter of this up!
Kid flew gracefully at the point position of Spartoi. The weapons were in human form and flying, so they could practice. The flock stayed back a little, in their own haphazard formation. Even though they didn't know it, Kid's heightened Shinigami senses allowed him to listen in on their conversation.
Max was muttering to the tall, dark one – Fang was it? – and the blind one was being informed on the desert below by the short blonde boy. The dark-skinned girl was chattering to the smaller blonde girl and the flying dog. Now if Kid's shadows had stunned the flock out of the sky, Total – the dog – had certainly sent Soul, Maka, Liz, and Tsubaki plummeting. Nobody had hit the ground yet, but… you never know with these people.
"You sure we can trust them?" Max.
"Do we have a choice? A safe house, maybe even school for us. And not the bad experimenting type, or the docile annoying preppy kind. An actual school with martial arts and stuff like that." Fang.
"Yeah… fine. Wait, you bought into the safe house idea? Remember Anne?"
"He's a Grim Reaper. Those shadows convinced me, definitely. And the fact that Angel can't read his mind." Ah, that was it. The little blonde girl was Angel. "Plus… I don't think gods can tell lies."
"He's a reaper. Doesn't that make him equal to a god?"
Smirking, Kid dropped back abruptly. "Technically, yes." Max jumped (apparently that's possible in midair…) and Fang whipped his head around, relaxing after a moment.
Frowning, Max looked the pale boy up and down. "You say you're a reaper, and a god and all that… but how old can you be?"
"That depends. Do you mean my soul or my body?"
"Is there a difference?"
"With me, yes."
"I don't know, soul…?"
His smile changed to something unreadable. "Let's see… I think it was… eight?"
The leader of the flock snorted. "You're eight years old? Okay, that does it. You're way younger than me."
Kid glanced at her cooly. "You interrupted. I meant eight hundred."
And another flying kid fell out of the sky.
A few hours later, they'd managed to get to Death City without any more sudden falling-to-death stunned kids. Although it had taken Kid a while to explain how his body had been born to a human woman, and his drifting Shinigami soul had decided to take it over. This is apparently very rare, and even more so that the drifting soul was in fact a fragment of Lord Death's, split off by the enormous energy it took to seal Asura away. So, in all, Kid's soul was eight hundred years old, but his body fourteen. And he was considered Lord Death's son, although if you think about it he's really just a younger version of his 'father,' or his father reincarnated while the original was still alive. Apparently this was a bit of a new concept to the flock.
Kid decided he wanted some time to think, and soared higher than the rest, only to come zooming down at several hundred m.p.h. when he spotted Death City.
Gazzy's jaw dropped. "That's Death City?" It was a gigantic city in the middle of freaking nowhere. Nowhere being the deserts of Utah. Or Nevada. It was hard to tell.
The black-winged reaper was hurtling downwards, literally leaving a stream of turbulence at such tremendous speed, when with a loud BOOM he broke the sound barrier, a sonic boom which left behind a ring of clouds and he streamlined over the city at close to a thousand miles per hour. It made both Spartoi's and the flock's jaws drop. Shooting at incredible speek right over the DWMA, Kid made a loop back, eventually slowing down and lighting down in front of the Academy. The others came divebombing down, slower than Kid but still a few hundred m.p.h.
Nudge and Gazzy immediately started peppering Kid with questions. "How did you do that?" "Is it because you're a reaper?" "It must be. None of us can do that!" Scowling, Max stomped up to them and dragged the younger kids away, leaving a bemused Kid behind.
"Look, we'll stay with the guy for a while, go to this school, and figure out what to do from there," Max growled. "Got it?"
Nodding like bobble-heads, the two younger flock members folded their wings partway and dashed off to join Iggy, Fang, and Angel. Max glared at Kid a moment longer before walking over in front of the flock. Just then, some tall guy in a spiky black cloak with a weird mask that matched the symbol on the Shibusen kid's clothes came bouncing out. The flock just stared.
"Heya, hi, wassup? How's it going, Kiddo?" the strange spiky man asked cheerfully.
Kid rolled his eyes. "Chichiue, I brought the flock. They're the ones with wings."
Max frowned and leaned over to Liz. "Chichiue?"
Liz nodded. "It means 'honorable father' in Japanese," she whispered back. "Now shush. Shinigami-sama will want to speak with you."
Shinigami-sama? This place was full of Japanese words and frankly it was starting to annoy Max. Then Lord Death came over to Max and held out a gigantic white foam hand. "Heya! I'm Death, but you can call me Lord Death or Shinigami-sama. Although my enemies have an annoying tendency to just call me 'Shinigami.' Or Reaper. This gets rather confusing, as you can see, my son would technically be called either of those as well. But oh well!" Okay. So he was a… Grim Reaper… who rants. About who calls him what. What the hell is the world coming to?
Kid rolled his eyes again. "Chichiue… I offered to let them stay at Gallows Manor. We just flew for six hours. I think a little rest would do us good?"
Nodding agreeably, his father waved them away with that ridiculous hand. "Okay~! See you tomorrow for classes!" Then he bounced back inside the DWMA. Sighing, Kid flapped a few times and took off, sailing over Death City on the generous thermals, keeping his jet-black wings perfectly even. Gliding was by far one of the best ways to fly.
Lighting down in front of a perfectly symmetrical house decorated with scythes and skulls, he folded his wings and led them inside. Everything was absolutely symmetrical. Very freaky.
Gazzy ran in chattering about explosives, Nudge was babbling about asymmetrical clothing fashions, Iggy was muttering irritably about how would someone please explain what the place looked like, Total was moaning about gourmet Parisian croissants and Angel had Celeste in a death grip. Patty decided it was an opportune moment to talk about Kid's rules of the house, while the reaper himself simply sighed and padded silently up the stairs to his room.
And it all went downhill from there.
I flopped on the couch with a sigh. The flock was finding the whole 'being in the house of Death' thing a little scary, so they were abnormally well behaved. The symmetry hadn't been that much of a problem, Nudge thought it was pretty and Gazzy agreed that bombing it wouldn't be very productive. And me? I still thought the whole thing was a bad idea.
Today we start classes. Since Lord Death had amended that we hadn't gotten much sleep, being on the run and all, he let us skip morning classes and start after lunch. It was actually about seven in the morning – I couldn't sleep.
Just then there was a small unearthly ringing sound from up stairs. I counted eight bells. Huh. Eight in the morning already.
Kid came downstairs a moment later, dressed only in black slacks, pulling on a perfectly ironed white dress shirt. He looked surprised for a moment to see me sitting there, then relaxed and resumed his normal cool, composed demeanor. Would it kill him to play a practical joke now and then? Maybe it would. Perhaps Death was supposed to be all 'calm and collected.' His father didn't seem that formal though. Something to look into.
Nodding at me, Kid stifled a yawn and opened the pantry, hauling out some flour and other random ingredients. Interested, I ambled over and sat at the raised bar in front of the kitchen counter, watching as he mixed stuff carefully together.
"What are you making?" I asked nonchalantly.
Without looking up, he replied, "Waffles." My mouth gaped open. This time he glanced at me and raised an eyebrow. "What?"
"Uh… I just never thought I'd see the day when I'd watch a Grim Reaper making waffles." I stifled a giggle. The thought was so ridiculous, you almost couldn't help but laugh. "So you're taking the morning classes off too?"
"Yeah. Chichiue asked that I show you around a bit before you're stuck in a classroom. Don't worry, you'll be mainly in the martial arts courses and outdoor curriculums. I understand your… claustrophobic tendencies."
"Oh, yeah? Good. That saves us a lot of explaining." I watched as he poured batter carefully into a waffle press, making sure that no dribbles of batter spilled over. Then a thought struck me. "Hey, why do you call your dad chichiue? Seems a little… formal to me."
His golden eyes glared at me a moment, and I was taken aback. What with all the crazy events of yesterday, I'd barely taken the time to notice his eye color. The irises were two-toned, darker in the middle and lighter on the outside. Both were unmistakably golden-yellow. What the hell was that about?
"My father and I are immortal. We do not share in many of humans' biggest… flaws. However, we also do not share in silly emotions like love and hate," he said stiffly. "Chichiue finds it best to put up an easy-going attitude, mostly so as not to scare the normal people, those not affiliated with the Academy."
Now I was the one to raise an eyebrow. He made it sound so easy, like he really wasn't human. "So… you're not really human."
"Only partly. My mother was human, but it is rather like that ridiculous story that mortals have about a different God – the Christians I believe – who impregnated a virgin with nothing but some 'holy spirit.'" The look on Kid's face was one of disdain. "Ridiculous, of course, but perhaps stemmed in truth. My floating Shinigami soul found it was time to find a body for itself, and settled into what happened to be my father's last death scythe." He looked down the the waffles again, his features unreadable. "She died a month after I was born."
Normally, people in this situation would say 'I'm sorry.' But being raised in a dog crate with a two-faced weasel for a father and an unknown (but later found to be very kind) mother, I couldn't really share any sympathy. Instead I remained silent while Kid carefully arranged the waffles on plates and poured more batter in.
Once he was done, I frowned at the number of plates. It had taken about an hour – during which the others were still sleeping – and all the plates were absolutely heaping with waffles. They were pretty big, around six inches across, with each plate holding five to six waffles. My flock would have no trouble downing them, but… why were there fourteen plates? It was nice Kid had thought to include Total, having put aside an extra slightly smaller plate with only three waffles, but there weren't fourteen of us. I did know how to count. I opened my mouth to ask why, but Kid held up a finger with a sigh.
"Five, four, three, two, one, and…"
CRASH! A streak of blue, white, and black came arcing into the dining room, skidding to a halt in front of the bar to reveal BlackStar. Apparently this was normal because Liz and Patty came rushing down the stairs a moment later, followed by a startled flock. Finally Maka, Soul, and Tsuabaki came in more calmly from the entrance hall. There were exactly thirteen bar stools where I was sitting, and one with a back in the middle for Total. Kid had already placed the fourteen plates of waffles in front of each chair, the smaller one in front of Total's, and arranged a large jug of maple syrup, a perfectly sliced stick of butter, and a tube of spray-on whipped cream.
The exasperated reaper sat down in between Patty and Angel, digging into his waffles carefully. The others were quite used to this strange routine and had settled in what seemed to be pre-arranged spots. My flock shuffled for a moment, before joining me and Angel at the bar. Total flapped his wings and settled on his special stool, chowing down on the poor symmetrical waffles with gusto.
"Um… does this happen a lot?" I asked unnecessarily. Snorting, Kid gave me a what-do-you-think look and continued cutting his waffles symmetrically. It was then that I noticed he'd artfully drawn a symbol in the batter of the topmost waffle – a skull for him, a weird symbol I'd seen on Soul's shirt for Soul, a pair of crossed scythes for Maka, a star for BlackStar, a ninja sword for Tsubaki, a giraffe for Patty, a set of bracelets for Liz, and different patterns of wings for the flock. Not to mention a bone for Total.
"Wow, did you draw these?" Nudge gasped, trying to cut around her winged waffle. Iggy couldn't see it, but he ran his fingers over the waffle and raised both eyebrows in surprise.
Kid nodded, chewing his waffle slowly. I frowned. It's too nice here.
You can trust them, Max. Oh, crap. Just when my day was going so well too.
Why, hello, Voice. I thought sarcastically.
sorry, it would have been longer, but I didn't have much time tonight… speaking of which, I didn't even upload a chapter of dark moon today! *le gasp* don't worry, I'm working on it .