Chapter Two

Vivian walked herself back home, where a faint smell of sage hit her nose. Was he burning something? The candles had just been put to rest and the shop had been locked up. Undertaker had just retired for the evening, and so she joined him in the larger coffin he was lying in, as though already expecting her to come lie next to him.

His hair was beautifully lying against his back as he slept on his right side and she crept in next to him. The braid she'd done was peaking out from underneath the rest of his hair, but it still remained there. Her arm wrapped around his form and she snuck in close, finding him most comfortable to curl up next to along with the large pillow on her side of the coffin. Soon, she too had fallen asleep.

It was this way for weeks. All of a sudden, he just would creep out from her grasp (or she'd move in the middle of the night, Vivian didn't know which) and never be there when she woke up. This morning though, she was pleasantly surprised to find him out and about around the shop.

"I thought you'd be gone," she said, rubbing her eye and yawning.

"Already collected," he replied, drawing lines up her back and breathing softly into her ear. "And I'm not opening shop for another hour."

"Mmm, what does that mean?" she threw her head back without looking at him.

He laughed into her ear, tightening his grip.

"It means that we can have a pillow fight whenever the hell we want!" he exclaimed, lifting her into the bedroom and snatching a pillow, ready to fly full force at her. She laughed and nailed him in the stomach.

"The joys of retirement, huh?" she asked as he pulled her down on top of him.

"Mmmm...yes," he said, studying her face. "Better make that two hours."

"What? Oh!" He flipped her over. That's what she was waiting for...

As they lay between their blankets, Undertaker reluctantly needed to open the shop. He was already late in doing so, and if that little Earl stopped by...

Vivian on the other hand, refused to leave the warmth of the bed, and when she finally broke her word on that, she made damn sure there were no customers around. Around her body, she slipped on the little black laced gown she'd found in town when she was walking around. Of course, she was just flaunting to be a total tease, but she loved every second of it.

"Was that the Earl you spoke of?" she asked, but he didn't turn around.

"Yes, that's the Phantomhive. Isn't his butler amusing?" Undertaker asked.

"Very," Vivian said, creeping up behind him. "Is he your main customer?"

"Sometimes," Undertaker replied, and that's when he felt the silk brush against his fingers as Vivian found her way into his lap where she sat herself down for a brief moment. Her legs swiftly took her off of him, just enough for a glimpse.

He said nothing at first, but she made her way back to the room before another customer came through from Scotland Yard.

"Vivian," he called, looking at her through his green eyes so she could see him clearly. "Be careful with that." She saw the look in his eyes, knowing that was a complete success. He was tied.

"Never. Not around you," she replied. All she saw before retreating was the wide smile on his face.

He closed up the shop later that day, walking into the room where Vivian was quietly wrapped in a book.

"You're still wearing that?" he sounded surprised, but she simply nodded as he swiped the book away and placed the lockets around him on the nightstand.

"If you do what you did today one more time, there'll be more...immediate consequences," he warned her.

"Good," she pulled him down onto her, where she kissed him roughly, hanging onto his black robe.

"No remorse," he observed, reaching his left hand to glide up her leg. "My my, what to do with a lady like you?"

Vivian found herself in a complete state of bliss. From the looks of William's final exam partner, he'd be jealous. The two reapers didn't talk much even though they were preassigned to each other's fate. Will wanted to hold off as long as possible, somewhat childish of him.

Undertaker had been having fun dealing with customers as a cover business. There was plenty of money to go around, so Undertaker decided to start charging new forms of payment.

"Surrounded with death me whole life's really been taking a toll."

"I take that as an insult," Vivian said, narrowing her eyes at him in a sarcastic manner. He let his large sleeves cover his hands long past their length, letting himself dangle there for a second.

"I'll deal with you later," he said.

"Again?" she asked, pretending to blush. "My my, I'd say your energy levels are quite high for a retired reaper..."

"Are you calling me old?" he snapped playfully. She laughed.

"Nope," she said, kissing his cheek. "I'll just let you close up shop."

"Actually, I have an errand to run. You'll have to wait for my company."

"Oh? I have to wait now?" she crossed her arms, smiling the whole time. He nodded without mentioning why or where he was going, he simply kissed her full on the lips and locked up the shop before heading out onto the streets of London.

"Are you sure that's the one?"

"Most certainly. It suits her almost too well." He laid down the pocket change for the man and was about to be on his way.

"No diamonds?"

"None," he affirmed. "This one's perfect."

"Suppose it's appropriate," the man whispered to himself. "He is an undertaker."

The set was perfect, the stone was practically etched into the black gold of the ring. It was of a diamond shape, but there was no diamond to be seen. Instead, an opal glistening of purple, green, pink, and dark blue when the light hit just right. There were smaller moonstones alongside the centerpiece, and that was what Undertaker considered a ring too good to be true. It was perfect, and hid it within a black velvet case, tucked away in his overly-large sleeve, along with whatever else was in those sleeves of his.

He returned to Vivian that evening, keeping his little errand a secret for a few more days. He needed things to be just right.

"Take a walk with me," he said suddenly one evening. "I don't think we'll have many more customers tonight."

Undertaker locked the doors to his shop where Vivian was arranging a few urns.

"Oh. Okay," she said, placing her last one back onto the shelf. "Where are we going?"

"Anywhere we like," he replied, throwing off his overcoat and top hat. He hung them on the coat hanger and opened the back door.

"Getting all serious on me are we?" she asked, stepping out before him. He locked that door too, offering her his arm.

"Have you gone insane yet?" Undertaker asked as they walked through the rather silent streets of London.

"Insane?" Vivian questioned.

"Well, given everything that's happened to you…do you think you've lost your mind?" Undertaker asked.

Vivian looked at the ground, thinking for many steps at a time before she finally rose her head, looking at Undertaker who had his eyes fixed on the path ahead.

"No, I haven't lost it," Vivian said. "If anything, I found it."

"I do not believe you are ready to live forever," Undertaker said. "But, no human is."

"If it's where you are, then I'll be all right," Vivian replied.

"I am glad to hear you say that, my lady," Undertaker said, stopping them in their tracks. They were outside an old churchyard, and there were rose bushes in full bloom, thorns intact. Vivian noticed them right away, smiling at their wonderful petals and the colorful cast the twilight had upon them.

Undertaker plucked one of the roses before her eyes, wiping his left palm over it.

"How on earth did you—" Vivian gasped. The rose turned to blue instead of red! She blinked a few times, just to make sure she didn't just imagine that.

"This is how you might feel," Undertaker said, placing the blue rose back into the bush where he'd plucked it. "Everyone else will die around you, but you will remain here, watching over the world…with me. Is that all right with you?"

He turned towards her, seeing she was still staring intently at the rose.

"Of course," she nodded. "I want to remain at your side and never leave it."

"Well then," he said, brushing back his black coat, letting the wind sweep it up behind him. As he knelt down on his one knee and took her hand, the wind brushed aside his overgrown bangs so Vivian could see that he was looking straight at her.

He pulled out the small black box, flipping up the lid to reveal the opal gem inside.

"Vivian, I ask you to be mine…for as long as we both shall live," he said.

Her expression gave him everything he needed to know. He took the ring out from its casket and placed it elegantly on her ring finger. She stared at her hand with the ring upon it, then back to Undertaker. Vivian moved his hair aside.

"I will," she replied, a single tear rolling down her cheek. He caught it with his index finger, and she helped him stand back up. Through the silence of the wind, Vivian rushed into him, holding a long and passionate kiss to his lips.

She released.

"So that's where you went," she said quietly.

"Indeed, my dear," he replied. "I had to make sure no one would even think to steal you away from me."

She leaned into his chest, and he placed a kiss on the top of her head.

"I love you," she said, clutching him closer.

"And I love you. I just hope we're still saying it like that in 100 years," he said with a smile. She gave his chest a single slap and looked up.

"Of course I will!" she exclaimed. He snatched her up into his arms and kissed her in a way that said 'you're mine and mine only.' Vivian got that message loud and clear, leaning her head on his shoulder as he carried her back to the parlor.