Redemption: Initiative

As he entered his room, Sebastian Michaels pulled off his form-fitting tailcoat and rubbed his nose bridge in exhaustion. Really, that little brat…I swear, if it wasn't for the contract... He grimaced and then went to his mirror and started pulling off his necktie. Out of the corner of his eye, he saw flash of white, and reacted without thinking; flinging a silver vase that stood on his dressing table towards it.

The white-clad figure perched on top of his bed caught the vase with two fingers, and sighed, "Really, demon, is this any way to treat your other self? You've been getting paranoid of late. I think that boy's gotten to you."

Sebastian didn't react but turned back to the mirror, continuing to unknot his tie. "What do you want?"

The white-clad figure sighed again and then jumped lightly down, white hair shimmering in the candlelight, and from behind Sebastian, whispered into his ear, "You know what I want." They were identical in every feature except for their hair and eye colour, making a disconcerting image in the mirror, alike but yet so different.

"Remind me again," Sebastian replied nonchanlantly, all the while pinning his other self with glowing cat-eyes, and pulling off his gloves with his teeth.

"You could give the Initiative back to me." The sky-blue eyes in the identical face shimmered peacefully over his shoulder. "I would ensure that Ciel remains safe."

Sebastian smirked as he dropped the gloves into his open palm. "I recall it was you who offered me the Initiative, back then when the Phantomhive family was decimated. What was that you said? 'I can't take this anymore; I've failed so badly'?"

The other's face crinkled down with anger. "So I fell. I was weak, and I gave in to you for a while, but you went and enslaved their only child…"

"I'm sorry?" Sebastian asked, smoothing his gloves absently. "For a while? You knew full well that the decision to pass on Initiative lies with the active personality. You know the rules; how every angel has to struggle with his inner demon. The demon persuades the angel, the angel persuades the demon, both fighting for the Initiative. So don't come whining to me just because you were weak, or lecture me about what I have chosen to do with the Initiative. I never questioned your use of it or why the Initiative is always awarded at the start to the angel."

The face behind him folded into a deeper frown, and the white-clad man stalked off. "No, but you—"

"Also, for your information, I didn't enslave Ciel. Rather the opposite. He called me, and I went and I was bound. "

"But you—"

"I didn't set any of the conditions of the contract, you know. Ciel was the one who decided everything. I simply accepted the—"

"YOU HAD NO RIGHT TO ACCEPT A CONTRACT FROM A TEN-YEAR-OLD-BOY!" A pair of gigantic white feathered wings burst from the white-clad man's back as his face suddenly splotched with anger. He breathed hard for a few seconds and continued, more calmly."He couldn't—he still can't—understand the consequences of the contract. It was the most morally reprehensible act I've ever seen."

There was a moment of silence. Then Sebastian turned lazily and smiled. "That's why I'm a demon, and you're an angel. You value morals, we value results. And so, while the Initiative was yours, the Phantomhives perished; while I've kept Ciel safe for the last two years I've had the Initiative. Who would believe that you could protect him now, a guardian angel who once failed? I wouldn't. I won't give the Initiative to an incompetent fool like you, not while Ciel needs my protection. In fact, I don't think I'll ever return it. You don't deserve it."

The angel clenched his teeth, "You're an asshole and a bastard."

Sebastian's eyes and mouth ever-so-widened slightly in amusement, and he tilted his head to the side inquisitively, "You're cussing?" He dropped back into his usual secretive, knowing smile. "Seems like the human world has soiled you."

The beautiful sky-blue eyes narrowed and the lips pursed. "I could say the opposite for you."

"What?" Sebastian said, for the first time that day, stunned by his words.

"That entire speech about protecting Ciel and keeping him safe—since when has that been the main concern for a demon like you?"

"It was in my contract." Sebastian replied curtly.

The angel suddenly smirked too. "Fine, but it doesn't always override your demonic duties, does it? Yet for the last two years you've not done any of those duties."

"I don't need to hear about duty from a person who has failed in performing his." Sebastian remarked coldly, looking offended.

"As you wish," the angel shrugged. "But you know as well as I do that your discharge of demonic duties is as imperfect as was my discharge of my angelic ones."

Sebastian clenched his teeth, and did not respond. Dammit, he's right. When was the last time I did something—anything—that Ciel didn't order me to or that wasn't aimed at pleasing him?

The angelic persona read his line of thought and smiled wider. "To tell you the truth, I'm relieved. I still—want to make sure nothing bad happens to that child. Looks like I don't have anything to worry about then. I'll go for now." He paused. "But it would do you good to remember, demon, if you care too much about a human... whether you're angel or demon, as long as you're one of our stock… you'll get burnt, you know."

The angel disappeared in a flurry of white feathers. When the air finally cleared, Sebastian stood alone in his room, gloves clutched tightly in his fist. Slowly, as in a dream, his shoulders relaxed, and he looked down at the felt gloves embossed with the Phantomhive insignia.

"We'll see, won't we... Young Master?"