I never expected __________

Today turned out rather differently than I first had expected. It was my first returning visit to Armin after I had brought in all that new furniture—that he honestly needed in a somewhat bad way—and told him, in a very basic way, all about demonhood. Or at least, that demons existed and were the reason behind most ‘gifts’ humans might possess. Telepathy, telekinesis, fire abilities, the list really is mostly endless there used to be so many of us.

I felt a little uncertain as I got up, almost afraid he might close the door in my face after he might open it and notice it was me. I don’t pry in his mind, it’s wrong. I could do it easily but I promised him I never would unless he told me I could. Plus, the bracelet he still wears makes it even more difficult to pry and that’s for the best, at least for me.

When I got out of bed, Alexis was already in his work room. Most of his commissions were on short time constraints. It’s like people who order from him don’t know that they could do it at least a couple of months early or a couple of weeks at least but not. Most folks I’ve heard him talk to usually want their piece within the next couple of days. Blargh.

I got dressed, ate a little something though I really didn’t feel hungry and I made my way down to his apartment where I knocked and waited. I listened, hearing his slightly shuffling step come towards the door. I held my breath as he opened it, looked at me and canted his head, as if he was considering whether or not to let me in.

He did thankfully set back though I still couldn’t read his expression, I didn’t know what to make of it. He led me to the kitchen and we sat at the table.

“So tell me more about these demons and about how most things that humans shouldn’t be able to do comes from them.” I stare at him for a long moment before shaking my head, a smile finding my lips. I honestly hadn’t expected him to turn around this quickly. I really had thought he would either just deny everything I had told him though it seemed unlikely for all the reading he does, or he would just take a really long time to come around.

I open my mouth to begin to tell him more but I shut it and I look beyond him, towards the wall a moment. I’m not really staring at anything, it’s just something I do when I briefly slip into my mind to try to figure out a few details. I focus on him again and I offer a slight smile once more. “There’s a lot of information out there, what do you want to know about?”

There is a lot of information out there, Alexis knows more than I do since he’s almost five times my age and all. We start small, about general demonology. The basic history of where, why and when. I don’t have all the answers but I tell him what I know in the simplest of terms I know. This is a lot of information to take in. I’m demon born, gifted and even I have a hard time accepting everything I’m told about my own bloodline. I can’t even begin to imagine what it must be like for him.

He asks questions and I answer them, it’s how most of our morning goes by. By the time noon drifts around, his stomach gurgles to remind him to eat and I laugh a little. The atmosphere isn’t tense, I’m glad for that. He’s like a sponge though, his eyes are bright, he’s curious, he wants to learn more. It’s like tutoring kids all over again, something I did a hundred year or so ago. Of course I tutored them about human things since they were human kids but that’s aside the point. It feels good to feel useful again.

After he settles back with some soup and a sandwich, we go back to playing questions and answer.

By mid-afternoon, when I know his brain has to be full to near bursting, I let him be. I give him time to digest everything he’s asked for and I head back up to my shared home. I don’t know how to honestly feel. I feel a little lighter because I haven’t completely alienated him but at the same time I feel a little guilty for all I’ve essentially thrown at him. It’s so much information.

“Are you done with your commission piece?” I ask him quietly when I close the door behind me with a sigh. I rub my shoulder and take my shoes off. Guilt has settled into my bones even though I know I was only looking out for him and I wasn’t really doing him any harm.

“Almost, I just need to add in a few details but I’ll be doing those tomorrow. You look like your world has fallen to pieces.” Lex’s voice is smooth, silken and I almost smile, almost. I shake my head and flop down limply onto the couch in the living room. I reach for that tie-dye blanket even though it’s warm in the apartment.

“I don’t know that I know what I’m doing. I told Armin about demons. I mean I haven’t told him about how we all are but I’ve told him about demons in general. He just had all these questions and I just answered him to the best of my knowledge. By the looks on his face he just wants to learn more and more and I’m afraid of what I’ve just done.”

I know I sound like I’m just wallowing in self pity or something but I really feel terrible. I don’t know how human minds really work and I don’t know if they can really wrap themselves around that kind of knowledge.

Before I realize it, Lex is settled next to me. He smells faintly of chocolate and I can’t help the faint chuckle as it escapes me. This scent always does that to me. He smiles at me, a warm, gentle smiles. He wraps his arm around me and I’m more than willing to move from the couch to his lap where I press my face against his throat and let out a choked little sound, probably a sob. I’m frustrated with myself. Absolutely frustrated.

He rests his chin lightly against the top of my head and I just sniffle away like a child who had just received news of a lost family member, a child trying to be strong. I feel weak and I hate myself for it.

“You’re just preparing him for an eventual move to the realms. We don’t know how diluted his blood is and we don’t know how long he’ll live but he deserves to know about these things so I don’t think you did wrong. He’s open minded, he believes in a lot of things and I think you did well.”

I choke on a soft laugh and I shake my head. These words are not going to help me at this point though I wish they would. I hate myself when I do this, wallow absolutely in self pity. It doesn’t happen often and I usually pull myself out of it within a couple of hours but it’s just one of those things in my life that happen and where the only person who can help me change any of it is me. I’ll get over it before too long but it’s just one of those things.

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2 thoughts on “I never expected __________

  1. Hi,
    I’m not finish reading this story. Your short stories I have read thus far I have enjoyed. I don’t know if it means anything, but I’m confused with the first paragraph, it may just be me, maybe if you re read it you may see if it needs adjustment. It may be the wording or punctuation.

    I’m not quite as good as you, I need help with my writing, this is something I’ve noticed off hand and wanted to let you know because at this time I can’t finish the story but definitely have plans to return to this story and many of your others.

    • Thank you for this. I’ll skim it over. I know I post my writing (for this particular challenge) without reading it over twice but I noticed a typo that might make the first paragraph confusing. I’ll correct that.

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