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“Alexis?”

The tall demon turns slightly, looking down to the blue and black haired youth as he stands next to him. He still does his best to respond to his full name though it sounds so formal to him. He smiles however, a soft chuckle escaping him as he realizes he hadn’t noticed the teen coming up to him.

“Yes, Mira?” He can hear the rest of their little group going about not far from them, in the adjoining rooms, talking, walking, placing dishes on the table, preparing for their meal, he tunes most of it out and focuses on their group’s youngest member. It seems strange, the oldest and youngest having a discussion, though perhaps not all that strange.

“Back then, before these cities and these large buildings and this technology, back when demons really didn’t have to hide about who they were,” he pauses on that point, frowning softly as he does, “there was a time when demons didn’t have to hide, right?”

Lex knows this isn’t the primary question, that somehow Mira has deviated from what he was wishing to ask. “There was a time when we, demons, didn’t have to hide. We were accepted by society as it was.”

“Okay, back then, during that time, did people live in split communities or was everyone together, helping everyone else and working with everyone else?” His eyes are wide and curious. Lex feels the urge to run his fingers through Mira’s growing hair to muss it up gently, so he does.

“Well, some demons were comfortable enough to mix in completely with the humans, I think that part of our civilization hasn’t really changed, Mira. There will always be those who prefer to stick to their own kind and those who feel more comfortable mingling. Where I was born, so long ago, the village was pretty close to a relatively big community. Demons and humans alike worked together, ate together, bathed together. People saw no harm in who we were and they didn’t use us for our gifts. We helped them willingly where we could. There were no slaves and no masters. At least not in our village and we were one of the few settled this way, sadly.”

He shakes his head then, looking out the window as he does. He sighs and tries not to think too much on the past he has lived through. It was a very long time ago.

Mira, still standing at his side, nods, as if that was all he had wanted to hear. “Thank you, Alexis.”

“You’re welcome.” He pauses, looking back once more as the bustling sound of movement is letting up somewhat, their table is almost ready for the meal, he’s certain, “you know you can call me Lex, right?”

Mira looks out the window again, gazing out, as if trying to find the right answer before he cranes his neck to look back up to the elder demon. “I know, I just don’t feel comfortable calling you that yet. I know you but I don’t really know you. Maybe in a decade or so more.”

The thought amuses Lex in ways he hadn’t expected. It is so sweet in its own way, this kind of respect. A lot of teens in this day and age no longer have that form of respect for their elders. “Thank you for that, Mira. Come, let’s go see if they need any help for the final few things that might need brought onto the table and then we’ll eat.”

With that, Mira turns and heads into the other room, to join his brother and their friend. Lex follows him, just a few paces behind.

“Should I get a penny?”

Next to him, at the door as they watch their friends walk back down the stairs or take the elevator down, Eoghan stands, hands lost in the long sleeves of his shirt. Lex blinks at him a moment before he turns away and closes the door with a soft yawn. As it always is, the dinner tickled the tastebuds of everyone present and the movie was appreciated by everyone.

“I’m just thinking, that’s all, really.”

“Okay, I’m going to have to up that bid and make it a whole dollar, you’ve been thinking since before we all sat down for our meal so it has to be some pretty deep thinking. What did you and Mira talk about? You two were the only ones not about to help with the table, not that it was necessary, we had plenty of folks almost walking on one another’s toes.” He laughs softly, those ever blue eyes looking up to his companion, trying to catch those green ones.

“He just asked me about how things were when I was younger, with demons not feared by humans but that’s not really what gets me, I think what gets me is how much he seems to respect me. Everyone I work with, when I’m dealing with the law side of my job, respects me, it’s earned because they know what I can do and that I’ve yet to ever lose a case but otherwise, when you meet up with people nowadays, it’s like there’s no respect taught to anyone anymore.” He shakes his head, stepping away from the door and deeper into their home.

“Mira respects everyone. I suppose I should give Zora that much, she taught them how to respect others.”

“I don’t know that Zora has taught them much of anything, honestly. Not when you really think about it. She refused to teach them the language, so they could hardly talk or interact with anyone, they couldn’t learn respect that way. It’s innate, or it’s in spending time with Armin or even Cyrille-“

“Or us, Lex.” Eoghan steps into their bedroom, moving to sit on the edge of their bed as he watched his lover round the bed to his side, tugging his shirt off as he goes.

“That could be too. Thing is, he refuses to call me Lex. Says he doesn’t know me well enough, that maybe in a decade or so, he’d feel as though he might know me well enough to be able to call me Lex and not Alexis.”

“They all call you Alexis though, I’m the only one who shortens your name.”

“I wish they all would, it feels strange.” He sits on the edge of the bed on his side of it, looking out of their window.

“Or you know, you could ask them to call you by the name you were given when you were born.”

Lex blinks and turns his gaze to Eoghan, eyebrows lifted in amusement. “So you’d rather they call me Lexius instead of Alexis?”

“You still were Lexius when I met you. You changed your name to Alexis when it seemed a more common name that most people wouldn’t really ask any questions about.”

“I had to, Eoghan. When I first left law and then came back to it a couple of decades later, when I told them my name was Lexius, I had to come up with the excuse that in our family, it was a really important name. At least with Alexis, I don’t stand out so much.” He laughs, shaking his head as he stands and goes about undressing so he can slip in between the covers. He feels absolutely drained and he knows it only is because he’s had himself several last minutes commission to finish before their friends came in.

“I know, I know. Aside the point, I know, you’re more comfortable with being called Lex but you can’t force anyone to anything. If they want to call you that, they will on their own time and that’s all there really is to it. It’s sweet that Mira respects you that much though. I know they all respect us in their own way but Mira seems to be the one who shows it the most. As parents, it proves we’re doing something right.”

Lex laughs and shakes his head. “We’re not parents, Eoghan and we both know this.”

“Details! Now come to bed and cuddle. I deserve cuddling for managing to cook perfect soufflés that didn’t deflate.”

“You always manage perfect soufflés that never deflate, love, but I can cuddle all you want. I don’t think our relationship would be the same if I wasn’t so willing to cuddle you whenever you want me to.”

“Are you complaining?” Eoghan, finally nude, slips between the bed sheets, shivering at their temperature and grumbling about it for a moment. When Lex settles in next to him, he scoots instantly over to steal some of the other’s body heat.

“Not complaining one little bit, I promise.”

“Good.”

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