The Phantomhives, Can Look Out For Themselves
My mouth was parched. My eyes were glued shut from the crust on them. I had to reach my hand up to gouge it from my eyes. The crust flaked away, scattering filth along the bottom of the metal cage I was in. The once annoying drip, drop, clink of the water drops a few feet away from me was now captivating. I tried reaching my arm out of the cage to catch a few drops on my palm, something to quench the desert sands blowing in my throat. But I was too short, or it was too far, but nothing was right. I opened my mouth and my lips cracked, I took in a shaky breath and it was like gasping for air. Tears pricked my eyes from the dryness of my mouth. I wiped at them with my thumb and shoved them to the back of my throat, desperate for any relief.
How many days had I been here? Away from the warmth of my home, the safety of my parents, the comfort of fresh food and warm water. Ah, fresh water and warm food. I shook my head and laid back down on the metal. The metal was cold, my throat felt hot and dry perhaps the metal could help. I stuck my tongue out and licked it experimentally. I felt no relief. I was losing my mind. I had run out of tears yesterday, the day before? It was pitch black here, I only knew that I had managed to fall asleep four times from exhaustion. And only once, after the first time I had woken up was I given water and bread.
I brought my knees up to my chest. I was going mad. My mind was slipping. It didn't matter, I told myself and laughed, then coughed and choked. I needed water to laugh, I needed water to speak. You didn't need a mind to be a captive, you needed help. I was in a pitch black room with no resources in a locked cage, what on earth could my mind do to help me out of that?
Nothing, I giggled.
So who cared if I spent my last days in madness. Maybe I would be less miserable then. I laughed, choked again then turned to face the top of the cage. I closed my eyes and the darkness got darker. Hopefully, they were sending help.
I woke up a few more times, I tried to keep track of how many but I couldn't. Each time someone was responsible for it. Once or twice it was bread or water, but usually, it was handcuffs. I would be lifted from the floor of the cage my arms restrained, I kicked at the men, especially the second time, but it never stopped them. They would put the cuffs around two of the bars and leave me hanging in the large cage. Then, they would rip off my clothes. I would cry and scream, it was awful. I felt dirty after I was always bloody.
One time a boy a little older than me came in. He had pink hair and a really sad expression on his face. He had been very gentle. He took me from the cage, he didn't judge me or how I screamed or flinched. He was nice. He put me into a warm tub of water. I cried. He had kissed my lips softly and whispered apology after apology. He had gently massaged shampoo into my scalp and washed my hair, it had looked black from all the grime. But afterward, when he dried me off with a towel, he held me close. Just breathing, he let me cry and rubbed my back, I didn't care that I was naked, I was used to that now. He had cried when he put me back in the cage. I had screamed for him, tried clutching onto his shirt and yelling at him to save me. Begging him, offering him money, anything, it was the last time I had any hope. I had slept at least ten times, no one was coming for me. I had to give up. I shattered, I sat on the floor and stared at the spot the door had been until I lost consciousness again.
I woke up, for the seventeenth time if I was keeping count ok. I whimpered as rough hands grabbed my arms. I yelped and my eyes snapped open as my clothes were torn off my body. I could see only two sets of eyes in front of me. They looked angry today, not like usual. I had been asleep, I wasn't ready, I hadn't had the time from the door to my cage to detach, to not care, to-to die on the inside. I panicked.
"L-let go!" I rasped out. "Let go of me, get your hands off me," I protested. I tried to shove the two away but my strength was almost nonexistent, I was starving and thirsty, I kept trying to get away but the hands were clawing at me. I hadn't been fed for at least two sleep cycles and it was hard to find strength. The voices were laughing all around me in the darkness. There was a blinding light coming from behind them, I couldn't fight them off, I couldn't see them. I was completely at their mercy. The first man grabbed me and I...blacked out again.
When I woke up I was naked and on a marble slab. There were seven or eight guys standing around me and I was tied down. My eyes were wide, there was a pain in my side. I tried to move my hand to inspect it but the restraints bit into my skin and stopped me. I screamed out suddenly as there was another jolt, this time on my leg. I looked down and my eyes went wide a knife. A knife was sticking out of my leg. I looked at the hands and the men around me, they-they all had knives. I was shaking, I didn't want to die. What they had done to me already was bad enough but I had assumed if I just hung on long enough eventually my family would find me. But, who knew how long it had already been with no sign of them.
"I don't want to die, I don't want to die," I was screaming as they stabbed me. No one said anything, they were all laughing manically, and for the first time I noticed the other cages in the room. A lot of them had other children in them, one had three bodies. I screamed. "I don't want to die, let me go, let me live," I was crying, I was spitting, I was thrashing. The men didn't stop though, they kept stabbing me, kept laughing. "Amber Rose, Amber Rose help me! Lucas," I screamed at the top of my lungs.
"Anybody," the world around me was suddenly pitch black. White feathers began raining around me. I wasn't crying, I wasn't bleeding, I wasn't hurting.
"Are you sure?" a velvety voice asked.
I looked around and saw a crow. "Are you," I cut myself off. I had been told many times about what it would look like. I had done it, by accident or instinct I didn't know. But here it was a demon, a demon who could save me, who I could make my own contract with. "Make a contract with me," I called out.
"If you reject the faith, even once, your soul will never be saved bocchan," the crow tilted its head to the side.
"I don't need the faith, I need you," the crow shifted shapes and a cat jumped elegantly down from the branch the crow had been perched on. The cat licked its lips and padded over to me.
"You seem very familiar with what's happening to you bocchan, perhaps you have been trying to summon a demon?" he inhaled and his form shifted again, a wolf stood beside me, salivating over my naked skin.
"I know the details, but I'm being tortured so I didn't exactly set up a welcome mat," I spat at him.
"Ah, tortured, they must be Satanists themselves, it's really the only way to explain this, such a small master," he nuzzled my hand with his head.
"Do we have a deal or not?" I asked, voice cracking, becoming once again hysteric, the two worlds were bleeding through and the calm of this one was being decimated by the agony of the other.
"Your soul is mine when you perish," he sat down and stared at me.
I kept eye contact. "You will protect me as long as I live, you shall never raise your hand to me, nor employ another to do it for you. You shall answer to me and me alone, you shall never lie, you shall become my servant and I shall become your meal."
"Yes, bocchan," he bowed his head. "Where to mark?"
"My eye, either one, it doesn't matter to me. You will be able to find me at all times, you will never let this happen again," my voice shook, tiny red lines began appearing over my body.
"The more obvious the place the harder for you to escape," he stared at my eyes.
"The easier for you to keep your end of the bargain."
"Yes bocchan," and he bit my eye.
My screams filled my ears again and I felt like I would pass out. I must have had a hallucination in order to cope with it all. In the end, I would die here.
My eyes bulged as a hand appeared through one man's chest. I looked at him and saw a man in a suit. He smiled pleasantly at me before killing the other men by ripping their hearts out as well.
"Bocchan," he came over. He picked me up gently in his arms, my blood sullied the otherwise impeccable suit. "Shall I kill everyone in the house?"
I was breathing heavily, I clutched onto him. He was mine, my demon, my savior, mine to command.
"Free the children in the cages, kill everyone else, what they do for themselves from this point on is their choice." I cuddled into his neck. He was surprisingly warm. I had thought a demon should be cold, even to the touch. It was a foolish thought, Amber Rose had picked me up in her arms countless times, Lucas had dressed me or shown me to hunt. I had interacted with demons all of my life and still, this one felt different, felt warmer. I pursed my lips and kissed his neck gently, just once. My demon.
I had been blocking the screams out but a voice, crying and gasping suddenly struck me. I took my face from Sebastian's neck. "You," I looked at the pink haired man.
"Demon wait," I said strictly. He stayed his hand and looked down to me.
"You were the one who was kind to me, but you still left me there."
"I'm indebted to one of their members, he comes sometimes but he wasn't able to be here today because of a surgery. He asked me to come in his stead. He was anxious to see you," the boy was blabbering.
"Why?" I asked.
"He's obsessed with you. He had wanted to come himself, or to gain your attention in some other way. But he couldn't."
"You treated me kindly simply to dress me up for your master? I was wrong," I turned my head away.
"No, they didn't even know I did that! I treated you kindly because I know what it's like," he was yelling as fast as he could, I looked at him again, tears streaming down my cheeks. "I lived on the streets before him, I had no choice but to follow his orders. I took you out and washed you because I've been that dirty and that miserable and that was what I wished someone would have done for me. I had no other motive." He swallowed hard.
I stared impassively at him. "You may follow my demon around the house as he finished exterminating the vermin, after that he will burn it down and you will come with us to my house. If you choose to interfere at any point my demon will dispatch you."
"D-demon, you've said that three times now. Surely it's a metaphor?"
The demon grinned and his eyes flashed red, the boy yelped a bit and backed up.
"Follow now or die," my demon moved around him, I touched the soft material of his suit, I kept one hand around his neck at all times, occasionally the other would join it. I played with the hair at the back of his neck that fell slightly long and tickled my hands. Every part of me was fascinated with every part of him.
"That is everyone bocchan," he said snapping me out of my trance. I looked up at him. "Shall I light it on fire now?"
"Yes," I said.
"Very well then," he nodded and lifted his hand, the torches at the door sprang high into the air and crashed against the sides of the house, the fire circled the building like a crazed predator and swallowed it whole.
"What's your name?" I looked to the boy behind me.
"I, well you can call me Joker, that's been my name for years now. I'm not sure I remember the other one." I nodded.
"Speaking of names bocchan," my attention was drawn back to my demon. "I need one as well. If you would be so kind as to bestow one upon me."
I stared at him for a long time. "Sebastian," I said finally.
"A fine name indeed," he bowed his head. "Now what should we do next, there's a fire burning here and the smoke and ash aren't good for your health."
"I want to go home."
"Excellent choice bocchan, how do I get there."
I stared up at him and colored lightly. "I don't know," I looked away from his slightly irked eyes.
"You don't know," he arched an eyebrow. I shook my head.
"The Phantomhive estate, correct?" Joker asked from behind me. I nodded. "I know the way, I can direct you."
"Excellent, do so quickly." Sebastian picked him up under his free arm and jumped into the air. The next ten minutes were spent with panicked 'lefts' and 'rights' and 'wait no that way'. I was nuzzled safely into Sebastian's left arm, I pressed my ear to his chest and listened for a heartbeat. A few times I thought I heard one but it was hard for me to be sure. Suddenly as we jumped into the air from a tree branch I could see my mansion.
"Sebastian! That's it," I pointed.
"Very good young master," he nodded and landed in the front yard. Suddenly everything was in a flurry. There were people surrounding us and I clutched him tighter.
"It's ok bocchan," Sebastian whispered. "Joker, go find somewhere to hide, I can't ensure your safety," Sebastian took the boy under his arm and tossed him back towards the forest. Joker yelped but I didn't have time to focus on him. I looked and recognized Amber Rose, Lucas, Henry, Julia, Helen, and even Karen was here. They were surrounding us closely.
"Amber Rose," I called out. "What is the meaning of this?"
"Don't worry Ciel," she called out. "We'll save you from this demon."
"Oh, you're one to talk," Sebastian chuckled. "I see what you are. And even with the six of you here, it will be as simple as swatting a fly." Sebastian began to glow black, a pale wave floating around him and beginning to engulf him. "Back away from my young master," Sebastian said.
"It's alright," I said to both of them. "These demons serve my house, my family. And Sebastian is my demon. Amber Rose tell my mother and father, bring them out here at once to clear this up."
"I would be putting them in danger, this, this is a monster, Ciel. Even as far as demons go, Ciel, he's bad news." She looked anxious, I couldn't understand it, they were both demons.
"I'm hurt," Sebastian's voice was smug. "A monster is that what you call yourself too."
"Don't deceive the young master," Lucas snarled. "You have no business in this house."
"My young master lives here, my business is to serve him."
"Don't act so innocent," Amber Rose said.
"I wouldn't dream of it," Sebastian said.
"Put me down, I won't have any of this fighting," I wiggled in Sebastian's arms.
"Bocchan," he seemed worried. "They may attack you."
"They wouldn't dream of it, they serve my parents and my family. We are the Phantomhives, we live in the light of demons. They know their place. Put me down I need to go discuss this with my parents."
"I would feel much more comfortable escorting you."
"Sebastian this is an order," he straightened up. "Put me down, you will remain here under Amber Rose's gaze, you will not harm the demons of the Phantomhive house," he set me down and I saw the other demons' eyes glint. "Unless they strike you first. In which case I will not tolerate you losing."
Sebastian smirked and bent onto one knee. "Yes my lord."