Four beanbag chairs were her friend right now. Yes she was hording them...no she didn't care. Nor did it seem the owners of the shop did. She had made a nest of sorts near the fireplace and was more or less staring off into space. The past few days had left her with a lot to think on, moreso after her talk with Mesteno.
There was no such thing as sneaking into the Teas shop, thanks to that bell on the door. But then, he wasn't in a sneaking mood today. In he came, opening the door and slipping through with his familiar catlike grace. A polite smile and a nod went to the old man behind the counter as his green-gold eyes turned about the room, settling on Katt in her nest. He couldn't help the grin that came across his features as he approached her. "Hello, Kathryn. You look quite comfortable."
Hearing that voice left her with a variety of mixed feelings. Slowly her eyes tilted up and over to the cat in manflesh, a small smile ticking the corner of her lips. The little handheld was settled against her lap but oddly enough she wasn't wearing her earbuds and listening to music or something. It was just there as if some sort of comfort. "Hey." A shift of her frame had her attempting to move in order to make room for him but it was like trying to swim against the current. After a bit of movement she gave up. He'd have to figure out something!
He couldn't help being amused, watching her struggle with the beanbags. When she stopped he finally moved, settling into the nest she'd created with feline ease, right next to her. He didn't need to be an empath to know she was filled with questions - he'd talked to her brother and gotten the details of their conversation. For a moment he simply watched her, green-gold eyes taking her in with no small amount of pleasure, before he finally spoke. "I understand we need to talk, love."
She was brooding for sure and it was likely why she chose this place, of all places, to do such. She watched him settle and slowly her eyes drooped when he spoke. Her brother apparently warned Clayton ahead of time. She wasn't sure how she felt about that. "Yeah...How much did he tell you?"
He shrugged, still smiling. He couldn't help it, really. She could be on a rampage and he'd still be happy to see her. "He told me everything you talked about." The green-gold eyes settled on hers, and he breathed a soft sigh. "I imagine you must have many questions."
He would find that her sharp greens were just staring at him. There were thoughts going on in that head of hers...and she wasn't sure where to even start. Slowly her brows furrowed, showing the struggle all the more. "Why did you go to your homeworld? There was a reason, wasn't there? It wasn't just a pop on over for the hell of it..." Slowly she sat up in order to face him a bit better. "Why didn't tell me? Why didn't you tell me about...about..." Slowly her chin lowered, ever so slightly
tilted to the left. "....what your people hunt. Beyond that ...why me? I mean..you know...what I am.."
He was silent for a long moment, regarding her. They were all valid questions, He answered the easiest first. "I went back because of my brothers. They were in trouble with the...'civilized' people of our world." He almost spat out the word 'civilized', clearly indicating his opinion of those he was talking about. "But I couldn't go alone...that is why I asked your brother to come. He would be accepted there, and he's the only person I trusted to watch my back that I could bring with me. You couldn't come because...well...of what you are." He looked at her. Not with pity, not with sadness or regret or resentment, but a simple warm, loving look. "That is no fault of your own. To me, you are the most beautiful thing I have ever laid eyes upon. To the people of my world...you are a creature of darkness...to be hated, feared, and hunted like an animal." His gaze fell to his hands. "I didn't tell you because it is not something I am proud of. It's true, I...I used to be like them. Like the rest of my people. But my people, the Yamni...most of those that hunt demons do so out of necessity, because that's what they were born to do. The others of my world do it out of fear and hatred. But myself...and a few others...we..." He looked away from her, and now shame crept into his voice. Shame, and a deep sadness. "...we did it for the pleasure. Because we enjoyed it."
Hated. Feared. Hunted. It explained why he was able to keep up with her when she went berserk. He was built for it. The more she listened to him the more she felt that ping of fear in her chest. Born to. He was similar to those that hunted her from Unity to Rhydin and after... Hunted, not out of necessity, but for the sheer enjoyment of it... Her eyes slowly turned away and landed on the fire. Slowly she drew her tongue over her lips, wetting the painfully dry flesh. She was listening more than he could ever imagine. So very closely... It was almost painful to breath and she was measuring out her breaths. "Why were they in trouble? Your brothers that is..."
He didn't look at her. Couldn't. He was afraid to see the look in her eyes. "They were on a hunt. It took them into the middle of a city. We...they...are not welcome there. They're treated much the same as the demons are, though marginally more tolerated." He forced himself to look in her direction now. She wasn't looking his way yet. He hadn't answered all of her questions yet, and after a moment, he spoke. "You asked...why you. Even knowing what you are." A smile found its way to his lips. He couldn't help it. You still have no concept of how you effect people, my love." His tone grew warmer as he spoke. "But that doesn't tell you what you want to know, does it? You want to know why someone like me - a creature born, bred, and evolved to fight demons, one that even professes enjoying it - would go and fall in love with one." He peered at her, reaching out to lay a hand on her shoulder, green-gold eyes seeking hers out. "Am I on target?"
"I don't...understand. I mean I can see a hunt being unhappily looked upon if taken into a place full of people but..what do you mean they are treated much the same?" She was confused a little now. She was straining to keep certain things from spilling out. She had always felt that a person should be judged by who they are not what they are. Their race didn't define them. But this... Why did this feel so different? She likely wouldn't of answered, or even looked to him, if it hadn't been for his reach out to touch her. She tensed, nearly taking a full leap out of her own flesh. Sharp greens turned up to him quickly, "Yes..."
He sighed softly. "To explain what I'm talking about, when it comes to the people of my world who are not Yamni, would require quite a long history lesson. Suffice it to say, they are a fearful people, of anything that they regard as supernatural in origin. Including the Yamni, despite the fact that we are of the same world, the same ancestry." He didn't take his hand away, not moving to distance himself or come closer just yet. "Unlike most of my people, I've left my world. You must understand, my world gets interdimensional traffic much as Rhy'din does...though not nearly on the scale we see here.But our people don't leave our world - it's like a cultural phobia, stepping off our own soil. It was terrifying, the first time I left my world behind. But I did it, and once I was no longer on my world...I discovered many things that most of my people will never be able to fathom." He paused a moment, looking into her eyes again. "But perhaps what changed me the most was that my life was saved by one of the very creatures I spent my time hunting."
She silently listened to him, those heavy unnatural eyes of hers scanning his face. Scanning for any tell-tale signs? No. Just..searching. She wasn't even sure she knew for what. Eventually her eyes met his. As much as she wanted to avoid it she just found her gaze settling there. A slow curve of her lips took place as she started to spill a question but she stopped only to form another, "When we first met, that night at the teas. Were you...hunting me? Is that..why you were drawn to me?"
"Because you are a demon, you mean?" He shook his head at the question, smiling. "I was not hunting you...I was not hunting at all, in fact. I was simply...drawn there. When I first saw you, I knew you to be a demon - that can't be hidden from a Yamni - but...you're not like any that I met before. The demons of my world are cruel, unfeeling creatures with little thought outside of their hunger...except maybe for the pleasure of the kill." There was a return of the guilt in his features. He had been no better than the creatures he hunted, and he still hated himself for it. "You're...not like that at all. You're the complete opposite, in fact." And then a smile appeared on his features, and a hint of blood showed in his cheeks a moment. "Although I suppose it might explain why you smell so good to me..."
"You've seen me angry. I can be cruel..." And in her past she was all of those things. Cruel...unfeeling.. And there was part of her that still enjoyed the spilling of blood. She'd never admit to that. Damn it.. why was it every time he blushed she ended up staring. It was just...so damn fetching. For a moment she was silently just staring at him though she did make a single sound to him saying she smelled good to him. That...was so wrong..in so many ways. Bad Clayton! A smile started to twitch her lips but something seemed to click and the smile shot down quick. "Do people know you are with me?" Her eyes turned to meet his. "Are you in danger because of me?" No..she didn't ask if she was in danger. She was always in danger! Him...Him and Edward...those were what meant most to her...
He blinked at the sudden turn of her mood, but he smiled and shook his head, lifting his other hand to touch her opposite shoulder. "No, my darling Kathryn, we are not in danger. My people know, but they will not pursue me." His smile turned a little sad as he said that, before he warmed again, one of his hands reaching to touch the heartstone at her neck gently. "And they cannot harm you, because of this."
Her brows dipped and she turned her eyes down to the stone that she was quite protective over. "Because of it..." She'd shake her head and look back up to him. "I am not worried about myself. I am worried about what they might do to you. They don't know me. They do know you." There was a bit of a pause and her brows furrowed. "I ..know you..right?" If anything she was making sure that at no point...he had been leading her on. She didn't want to think that but she did have to make sure. She had to make sure..
He couldn't help the purring chuckle as he looked at her, lifting one hand to caress her cheek as he looked into her eyes. Again, there was no regret, or sadness, or guilt, or even hurt in those eyes. Just warmth and love that was all hers. "You do know me, my lovely Kathryn. Better than anyone living." He shook his head to her previous question. "And no one will be coming after me, I promise you that...so long as I never return to my world." Before she could make any noise of protest, he moved his hand from her cheek and pressed his fingertips to her lips to silence her. "And before you say that I should not have to sacrifice that for you, please understand this: it is no sacrifice. That world is no longer my home...perhaps it never was. My home is here. With you, for as long as you will have me."
She knew if it came down to it...if someone did try to come hunt him..Well it just wouldn't be a pretty thing. No..that would be very..very ugly. Before she could say anything she found herself being silenced. Slowly nodding she squinted up at him. She'd trust that..right up until nipping his fingertips. Slowly her head drew back. "Is there anything else you feel I should know?"
He shook his head at the question, smiling. "Just that I'm sorry I didn't say anything before now. I intended to, but...well, we have been a little busy." He waggled his eyebrows suggestively at her with a very feline grin as he scooted a little closer to her on the beanbag chairs. "I just didn't want you to doubt that what we have is something real...I didn't want you to doubt me or the way I feel about you." He reached down and took one of her hands in his.
More than I already have..you mean.." He did seem to get a chuckle out of her with the waggling of his brows. She didn't attempt to stop him from getting close and her eyes turned down to watch his hand creeping close to her own. "I...do have something I should tell you..It doesn't have to do with this..subject. Though I am..happy ..that it has all been cleared up." Her fingers flexed and slowly curled to his own, more pressing than trying to claim. "Do you ...remember the subject we talked about at the inn?"
His fingers curled around hers as he chuckled, arching an eyebrow at her. "You may have to be more specific. We tend to cover a lot of ground when we talk, lover." He thought for a moment. There were only a couple of things that immediately sprang to mind. "You mean about having your godchildren in a couple of weeks?"
"No." She did chuckle though. He was right. When they talked they did tend to cover a rather large amount of subjects. Her eyes turned up to his face. "I was informed by a source that...I can't have children, Clayton. My insides are too screwed up..." she watched his face for a reaction. She already knew her own..she wanted his.
He frowned slightly as she said that. There was disappointment there, in no small measure. Ever since he had heard of a possible future with her, with children perhaps in it...the thought had been intoxicating, to say the least. It hurt to know that she couldn't have children, and not only for his own sake, but hers as well. His voice was soft as he spoke. "I am sorry to hear that, Kathryn. You would be a great mother." And then he brightened again, the purr back in his voice. "But we could always adopt. So long as we don't end up like Icer and Aurthur, taking on a quarter of the city."
There was a disappointment she understood and then there was hers that, as a woman, went slightly deeper. Her eyes drifted down to her stomach. "I don't...want to adopt." Her brows furrowed a bit. "If there was a way I could fix myself...do you think I should take it?" She didn't look back up to him. Instead she had turned focus on his hand. "I mean...it would be worth the chance...right?"
He blinked at that. It was a thought that hadn't occurred to him, though this was Rhy'din. If it could happen anywhere... Something registered to him, just as he was about to feel a ray of hope, and his gaze focused on her intently. "What do you mean? What chance?" He had to think a moment to really be able to voice what he was thinking, what he wanted to know. "What would the cost be?" If the cost was her life, even in some small chance, he wasn't sure he could agree to that.
"No cost beyond it working or not...as far as I know." He had the same thoughts she did. Slowly her eyes turned up to his face. "And the source that would be fixing me...you might not agree with." Hell she wasn't sure she agreed with it much herself. But it was a chance she was ...almost willing to chance. Suddenly her eyes went wide and she looked away, scowling at herself. "I am so sorry, Clayton. I shouldn't...even be talking about this."
"Kathryn." His hand found her cheek, a gentle touch to turn her eyes back to his. "If...you think it worth the chance...if it's really what you want...I would be by your side, no matter what. I won't deny that I want this for you...and for us. But it really is more for you to decide than it is for me."
For a moment, just a split moment, she considered not telling him. Or her brother for that matter. "The one who use to refer to herself as Renna...the woman who infected me with the Shadow Virus.. She said she could fix me by injecting me with another virus. One specifically for..fixing me."
He considered that for a long moment. He had only heard of the one called Renna, and encountered her perhaps a single time that was more fleeting than anything else. He only knew she was dangerous in the extreme, according to what he'd heard. "Do you trust her?"
Oh boy.. That was the question, now wasn't it? She looked away as she considered that. "I don't know... Partly? I do know she has the means..." She looked back over to him. "And I am not sure I should ask Edward about it. I mean it is a weird subject to bring up to my brother..you know?"
"Having never been able to get pregnant - as I'm male and all - I don't really know from experience." He let out a purring chuckle as he nodded to her. "But I do see your point." He fell silent again, thinking a moment, moving to slip an arm around her and pull her close. "She made this offer to you?"
Slowly she leaned into his arm and she closed her eyes. She was, just for the moment, soaking up the warmth... "When she ...infected me she learned all my ..well..we can just say she knows me inside and out and some. She said she can reproduce my .." she gestured at her stomach, "Or fix..Yeah..She offered it to me. Said she owed me for what she did to me. What she took from me..." She paused there. She was half expecting him to ask what even got the two of them speaking of pregnancy.
When he gestured to her stomach, he laid one of his hands on it. He couldn't help but be amused at the way she had trouble articulating things in that area, even now. For a moment he simply curled up with her, savoring the feeling of her close to him, a comfort like no other he could imagine. After a moment, though, he voiced the question she was expecting. "Might I ask how you came to this subject?"
Her stomach dipped in when he touched it, quivering under his touch even. She knew it was dumb to be thinking of having kids. When she heard the question she made a strange little sound that was more of a strangled groan than anything. "She...is with child.." Yeah. Everyone she knew was having kids. "I...asked her what it felt like..and it just came to me saying I didn't know if I could..and she said I couldn't."
He hadn't known Renna was having kids. But then again, there were few enough events in Rhy'din that caught his attention. Still, it made sense that the conversation might drift that way. He made no move to take his hand away from where it rested at the moment, just looked at her, into her eyes. "What would you like to do, my love? What is it you want?"
She was relaxed against him a little more until muscles had simply melted and her full weight was his to deal with. Not that he ever seemed to mind. Meeting his eyes she just stared at him while she considered the question. "I don't know... Being under the influence of the Shadow Virus was a nightmare for me. But...if this virus does nothing more than fix me..." Her brows twitched. "I know it is too soon to be thinking about it but it is something I would like to do. I mean...have kids. It is something I want to experience..."
Of course he didn't mind. She weighed about as much as a feather might to him, and the feeling of her molded against him was perhaps his favorite sensation in the world. Next to her scent, and other...more intimate sensations they experienced. "I would like that too, my love. And not simply for me, but moreso for you." He leaned in close and touched his lips to her temple. "You really will be a great mother. I'm certain of it."
Not simply for him. He ..wanted to have children with her. It still surprised her a little. "Clayton? Why...do you keep saying that? That I ..would be a great mother?" It was a question she suddenly felt she needed an answer to. She wasn't exactly motherly. Hell she had problems getting close to her godchildren... "It..will be something I bring by my brother before I cross that bridge though. I don't..want to keep anything from him."
He chuckled softly, a low purring sound as his lips brushed soft against her skin. "Because in my experience, my love, it is those that are most troubled and frightened at the prospect of motherhood that turn out to have had nothing to be frightened of." He leaned back a touch and eyed her thoughtfully, then nodded. "A good idea. Though I do not expect him to be very happy about it."
"I..." her brows furrowed, "Never really thought of myself as a mother or having children until..you. Or rather..that conversation. I still don't know." Yeah it did frighten her. She was a screw up.. She didn't want that for any living soul. "Yeah I know he won't be. I mean I don't want him to think that I am not turning to him because I don't think ...I don't want him to think I don't view him as someone I can turn to. I just..I don't want to make him uncomfortable. That is why I didn't..accept her offer when she first asked. It is something I am simply thinking on.."
He nodded, curling his arms around her with a soft sigh of contentment. "It is your decision, lover. Whichever way you choose, I will be with you." A purring chuckle escaped his throat for a moment. "Though I hope you will forgive me if I choose to be absent when you talk to your brother about this." Curious as he was about the aftermath of that conversation, he didn't want to get the looks he was certain he would be on the receiving end of from her brother.
She laughed under her breath. "Are you afraid that he might eyeball you as the reason for my decision?" She really wasn't sure how her brother would react. It was, to say, going to be an interesting conversation for sure. "I'll forgive you but I think I might call claim that you owe me one." She grinned playfully to him and placed a soft kiss against his cheek. "Thank you..for letting me know about everything. You've no idea how much I've been ..." fretting? Worried? Concerned.
There was a long list.