whispering

Sleep had been somewhat elusive for him. He still couldn’t help but worry about what he was supposed to give his brother for their first properly shared holidays. He’d unknit the ugly thing of a blanket he’d started on, it had been an atrocious sort of thing and he hadn’t really wanted to chance giving something that wrong-looking to his brother.

Usually he slept in the dark, he needed, lately, an absolute darkness to be able to rest properly. His room had been just that, absolutely dark and he knew he’d been moments from drifting off to sleep when he heard it, a tiny little click from somewhere in his room. He frowned and reached for the small lamp on his bedside table and he touched it. Nothing. For a lamp that usually lit with a single touch, this was somewhat disturbing. He knew it couldn’t very well be burnt out, he’d just replaced the bulb a few days back.

He reached a little further to click the light onto his alarm clock, it brightened just dully and told him it was something close to two in the morning. He sighed and pushed his blankets back. He slipped on his socks, not much caring to wear those ridiculous looking slippers he’d seen other people wear in movies. He shivered as he stepped to his door and flicked on the light. Nothing.

Frowning, Mira carefully stepped out of his room, wishing he had kept a flashlight in his room and reminding himself to get one come morning.

He tried the hallway light and still nothing. He stepped across the hall and knocked on his brother’s door. He listened for a moment, snickering softly at the bit of stumbling he heard as Agni obviously had issues getting around in the dark himself. The door opened after a few moments and Mira offered his brother a tired smile. “Looks like the power’s out, how about a little light while we get Cyrille? We should probably get a fire going in the fireplace, I don’t know how long this thing is going to last but I’m already cold.”

His words were soft, whispered and Agni stared at him blankly for a few seconds. “Agni, a flame, if you would so we can get to Cyrille? I don’t have a flashlight in my room, do you?”

Finally, Agni shook his head and held one of his hands, palm up. A small flame burned there, just enough to offer them a view of where they were going. “Why are we whispering?”

His own words were quiet, whisper soft. Mira stopped halfway to the last door in the hallway and he blinked before shrugging. “I don’t know, it’s the middle of the night and we were all supposed to be sleeping? We’ll get the fire going once Cyrille is awake, do you want to see if you can get Armin up here to join us? I figure he can get a fire started just fine on his own but I’d feel better knowing he was warm.”

Agni nodded, using his free hands to rub sleep a little more from his eyes. They stepped to Cyrille’s room, knowing and listening quietly. There was some stumbling and muttering, much to the twins’s amusement. Cyrille opened the bedroom door, wrapped in a blanket. “I think the power’s out.”

“Yup, which is why we’re getting a fire started and we’ll all settle there, Agni will check in on Armin and if he’d rather stay in his apartment, you can help him get that fire going, right?” Agni nodded, leading them to the living room where they set a few smaller bits of wood into the fireplace before settling two big logs. Agni got the fire going, Cyrille staring at him all along.

“I’d never actually seen you do that before, that is so awesome.” Agni blinked at him, laughing after a few moments as he disappeared into his room to get his bathrobe. It was thick and comfortable, easier to put on than a coat at this point.

“Okay, I’m going to head down and check in on Armin, see if he’d rather stay down there or come up here, one way or the other, he needs to stay warm like the rest of us. I know Eoghan said we have a generator but I don’t know that the batteries have much juice in them at this point so fires are our best hope, I’ll see you guys in a bit.”

With that, Agni stepped out of the apartment and into the slightly chilled air of the hallway.

“This brings back memories or half-memories in any case. We spent so much time out there, cold and without a roof. At least now we’ll be warm soon and there’s a roof over my head so I’m not all that worried.” Mira sighed as he settled not far from the fire, fanning it gently to make sure it caught properly. Before long it was crackling and hot, he sighed.

“I can’t say I really know what it’s like to be cold and stuck outside in the winter, I’ve always had a roof over my head, all the food I could ever want. I grew up spoiled, in a way but I try to not act that way.”

“You’re going fine, you’ve helped us more than most anyone we’ve ever met and that says a lot.”

After some time, Agni came back on his own, rubbing his arms with his hands. He settled in front of the fire and breathed out a soft sigh as the heat settled back into his skin and bones. “He still was fast asleep when I came in and knocked. His apartment was starting to cool down a bit. I offered to walk him up here to us but he said he’d be just fine so long as he had a fire so I got it going for him and I moved in a few bits and pieces of wood closer to the fireplace so he could have an easier access to it all.”

Mira nodded, a little worried about their friend still but since the fire was going and he figured it would keep going until either morning came or the power came back on, he figured that it wouldn’t be so bad.

“Now, someone tell me why we’re still whispering?” Agni blinked at the pair, his head tilted to the side before he was laughing softly.

“I honestly don’t know, I guess that in this case it was a matter that we were in the dark and it feels wrong to not whisper when you’re in the dark.” He spoke a little louder now, still not quite his usual volume but no longer a whisper. The apartment still was dark but the fire was crackling and bright, warming the three of them up just right as they sat there, side by side.

“This whole thing calls for hot cocoa and be more than happy to go and get it ready, I know we could, even without the power but I think that’s too much effort. I suppose I could go and get us a few sour worms.”

Agni’s eyes brightened at the mention of the worms and Cyrille laughed. He excused himself for a few moments and walked his way from the fire and towards the darkness that was his bedroom.

“You guys need flashlights!” He called out as he bumped into something in his room. He was answered by the twins’s laughter. He did find the container of gummy worms and he carefully made his way back out of his room, into the hallway and down towards their source of light and heat.

“It was on my list of things to buy, to be honest. A couple of flashlights in case stuff like this happens again, we’d be at least able to find our way around a bit better and not hit our shins on everything that surrounds us.”
“Well that’s set for now. Sour candy for everyone.”

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