Warnings: BOYXBOY YAOI. Not really shota, since I made Ciel eighteen. Unfortunately the yaoi is more hinted at than explicit, but Kuroshitsuji is all hints and teases…
Disclaimer: Nope, don't own them. I'd love to, though, so if anyone ever hears that the manga-ka is selling them/raffling them off/throwing them out/getting rid of them/raffling off spare parts/giving away their used clothes/etc, let me know! (I call dibs on Sebastian…)
NOTE: This is a SEQUEL to 'A Conversation at Midnight', 'A Thief at Morning', 'A Question at Midday', and 'An Interlude at Midafternoon'. You probably want to read them in order for this to make sense.
ANOTHER NOTE: A reviewer just brought up a good point – why have all these oneshots in a series when they could just be in one convenient fic? I'd like everyone's opinion – should I combine all the oneshots and just have a six chapter story, or should I leave them in a series?A Murder at Midevening
"No- no, don't! Please! Have mercy!"
The sound of bones snapping filled the air, cries of pain echoing off the walls of the richly decorated bedroom.
"I will show only the mercy you showed my master almost a decade ago."
"I-it wasn't my idea! I was against it from the start-"
"My informants have told me otherwise." The speaker smirked at his victim's pained, choked gasp. "I take it you have heard about them?"
The man on the floor nodded, tears of pure terror leaking from his eyes. The stench of urine and fear was heavy in the air, but above all that was the coppery tang of blood. The man tried to crawl away from his attacker, the shadowy figure looming over him, but his legs dragged uselessly behind him and left stains on the plush carpet. His arms were in little better condition; crimson seeped from deep cuts there as well.
The killings had been all over the papers. Wealthy noblemen being found dead - murdered - in their own rooms, bodies torn to pieces with a strange symbol carved into their chests and the same symbol drawn on the walls with blood and bits of tissue was big news. The killer was still at large as well, since no hint to his identity existed but for the strange symbol left behind at each scene.
The man on the floor didn't need to inquire about whom the killer's 'master' was. The sign so grotesquely displayed at each site had told him everything he needed to know - who was responsible for the killings, who the victims would be, and why. Had he been able to go to the police, he wouldn't have to be cowering now and several other men would still be alive, but to involve the Yard... They would ask too many questions he could not answer if he wanted to save himself from jail. The killings weren't as random as the media and the Yard suspected.
They were all done in retribution for that Incident.
"Pl-please spare me... I didn't want to, I swear-" he begged, staring up in horror at what seemed like the Angel of Death. The creature paused, regarding him with a cool expression.
"I have a few questions for you," he said, apparently deaf to the nobleman's pleas. "Who else was involved? Answer quickly and I may show you some mercy."
The cowering man bit his tongue, looking away from the red eyes that seemed to bore into him and see his every thought.
"I-I don't-" he sobbed, but his words were cut off by a loud cry of pain as the figure above him stepped hard on the already broken bones of his left leg. "I'll tell, I'll tell!"
The pressure was released, the dark angel smiling in a falsely benign manner as he walked to crouch near the nobleman's head. The nobleman's eyes followed him, wide with fear. There was something distinctly unsettling about that smile that made his heart turn to ice and stomach roll.
"Good. Now quickly, the names."
Stammering, the man quickly began to list them.
"T-there was... Bradbury, that's right... a-and Muraki! Jackson and..." His mind raced, trying to come up with more names. "Bagman!"
"Just four names? Is that all you can give me?" The murderer seemed disappointed, sighing lightly as he stood once again and laid his leather-clad foot on one of the victim's hands. "You do not remember any more?"
The nobleman wept openly, staring at his hand as the shadowy figure began to apply pressure.
"We never knew all the names!" he cried out, trying futilely to tug his hang free. The pain just increased as the shadowy figure pressed down harder. "Those are all I know! All the others are already dead! You killed them already!"
The weight on his hand relented.
"I suppose you are right. You can hardly be blamed if I have already killed the others you knew. Who else would have names for me?"
"Ah... Bradbury, he'd know... he always knew-"
"Good. You have been most helpful. I suppose I can show you some degree of mercy."
The nobleman relaxed, tears of fear turning to tears of joy and relief.
"Oh thank you, thank you-"
"Your passage to the afterworld will be swift, but do not blame me if you dislike what you find there."
Fear was back, more strongly as the relief instantly turned to the cold chill of reality.
That same unsettling smile was back, an almost benign expression but for the ice in those blood colored eyes. There was amusement there too, as if the darkly dressed man was enjoying this.
"You should never have touched what was not yours."
The nobleman screamed as the blood red eyes began to glow and his scream didn't stop until a clawed hand dug into his chest and pulled out a lung. His scream turned into gurgles and was quickly turned to nothing as the hand returned and came out with his heart. The muscle still beat faintly, blood running from inside to stain the murderer's arm from the elbow on down.
The now useless lump of flesh was tossed carelessly aside next to the other organ, the murderer regarding his latest victim coldly.
This man had been fairly useless, but now he had more names to go on. As promised, he had shown some mercy. This man had died quickly, unlike the man before him. The killer had needed to tear off two of his previous victim's limbs before getting any information from him. He had rather enjoyed that, actually - the previous victim had committed far worse sins than the man he had just killed.
Torturing his previous victim to death had been a pleasure.
The murderer smiled to himself, then took a closer look at his bloody arm. He sighed.
"Young master will not be pleased. I seem to have ruined another uniform." Sebastian tugged lightly at the material, feeling the cloth already begin to adhere to his skin as the blood began to dry. Ciel would probably lecture him about ruining yet another suit, then ask if there was any new information. At the very least, Sebastian could offer him the four new names and take pride in the fact that Ciel's other order had been taken care of. There were no witnesses and the staff had all been knocked out at the time of the murder. The men and women unfortunate enough to be here when the demon had made him move would not wake until the next morning, giving him plenty of time to move in and then make his escape without being disturbed.
With some, like his previous victim, he had needed the time. With others, like his latest victim, he needed the promise of quiet and the lack of disturbance.
He glanced towards the wall, making sure he had drawn the symbol there. He hadn't been able to take as much time with this one and had simply used blood instead of using pieces of the man's organs. When his victim had come into the bedroom, one of the first things Sebastian had done was cut open the man's arms and used the blood to draw the symbol.
The man's chest had been next. The demon disliked leaving such important things to the end of his 'game' and living flesh was much more interesting to cut into than a corpse. Corpses, for one thing, didn't bleed.
He absently reached into the pocket of his suit jacket and withdrew his silver pocket watch, flipping it open and reading the time. It was already getting late - he would be expected back at the manor soon. He turned towards the window, only to be stopped dead in his tracks at the figure sitting in the window frame, looking at him.
Long red hair blew in the light breeze, a huge shark-toothed grin on display for the demon to see.
"Ah, Sebas-chan, leaving already?" Grell asked, a bit of a pout on his lips as he stood and practically bounced off the sill. The pout turned into a coy smile. "I've been hoping to run into you - it took me such a long time to convince Will to let me back here so I could see you again, Sebas-chan."
Grell winked at the demon, blowing him a kiss from just outside of the butler's kicking range. One of Sebastian's eyebrows twitched.
The red haired shinigami looked around behind Sebastian, noticing the fresh corpse and the organs. He whistled lowly.
"Ah, Sebas-chan, you splashed that color around quite a bit. Did you miss me-"
"Do not flatter yourself." Sebastian replied with a sigh, busying himself with straightening his clothes. He could feel the shinigami's eyes follow his movements, but steadfastly ignored it. "Why are you here?"
Grell attempted to be seductive.
"I'm sure you already know, Sebas-chan-"
Red eyes fixed the shinigami with a glare, but unfortunately the demon had forgotten just how crazy the redhead could be. Grell fanned himself, blushing mightily.
"Oh, Sebas-chan!" The shinigami's hand dropped down to low on his abdomen, the other hand on his opposite shoulder. He wiggled in place, eyes shut in what appeared to be ecstasy. "Such beautiful red eyes- ah, if only our children could have your eyes and my hair-"
A fist buried itself into the wall next to Grell's head. The shinigami stopped his antics to meet the furious eyes of his opponent, a shocked and angry look on the redhead's face.
"You dare aim for a lady's face? You're not a man!"
"I will not miss next time." Sebastian warned, expression cold. He turned away from the shinigami and towards the window, ignoring the redhead mutter such things as 'killjoy' and 'beast' behind him. He could hear Grell pick his way through the mess, then the rustle of cloth as the shinigami leaned over the corpse. The slight sound of film running let the demon know the human's Cinematic Record had been activated and was being collected.
He began walking to the window, only to be stopped by Grell's voice.
"Why do all this for a human, Sebas-chan?"
He turned, watching as the shinigami began to look through the dead nobleman's Cinematic Record. Grell seemed almost bored by the task, sighing heavily.
"There's never anything interesting in these. Nothing dramatic at all." The redhead turned towards Sebastian and blew him a kiss. "Watching me? Aw, Sebas-chan-"
The demon's eye twitched again in irritation. Grell cut himself off, pretending to cough, then put his hands on his hips and pouted.
"I don't see what's so special about that brat anyway. Humans die, but I won't Sebas-chan." Grell winked again, clasping his hands behind his back and bending forward slightly. "Why don't you choose me?"
Sebastian stared, unimpressed, then turned away from the shinigami. The question didn't even deserve to be recognized by a response. He could hear Grell huff in annoyance behind him, but ignored the redhead.
"Mou! I just want to know what that brat has that I don't!" Grell called after him. "What makes him so special!?"
Sebastian disappeared out the window, leaving an irritated and disappointed shinigami behind. The redhead turned back to his boring task of collecting the Cinematic Record, muttering under his breath about cold, if sexy, demons.
Said cold, sexy demon was beginning to walk back to the Phantomhive estate, using the rooftops of nearby buildings and treetops in order to avoid walking on the ground and possibly getting caught with his hands literally red. As he walked back to the estate and his master, one of Grell's questions replayed in his mind.
'"Why do all this for a human?"'
A slow smirk stretched his lips. The shinigami was being too kind in assuming that Sebastian did this solely for Ciel. It was in a demon's nature to enjoy violence and bloodshed, two things he did not get to enjoy nearly so often while working as a butler. Demons were obligated to follow orders, but even if the Earl had not ordered it, these were deaths Sebastian was more than happy to be responsible for.
The night he had first been summoned to Ciel's side, the night they had first made their contract, not all of the men who were to blame for the then-young child's imprisonment had been present. Though Sebastian had slaughtered those that were, he had not killed those in charge, the men who had come up with the idea to use Ciel's body as their sacrifice... among other things.
Back then, Ciel had just been another foolish human whose soul he would eventually eat. He hadn't taken his time with the deaths back then, quickly snapping necks or tearing off limbs and allowing the humans to bleed out while the child had watched.
Now he knew he had been far too kind back then.
Ciel could believe that his order was what killed the noblemen and that his butler was acting out his revenge if he wished. If the slate haired man ever asked, Sebastian would be honest.
Grell could and would believe the same as Ciel.
The truth was vastly different.
The killings were not done out of revenge or solely because Ciel wished it.
Sebastian would have killed those men anyway. A human, after all, was never allowed to lay its filthy hands on a demon's possession. His young master was his young master and belonged to no one but Sebastian. No one was allowed to touch Ciel unless Sebastian allowed it. (Lady Elizabeth was a completely different matter, as there was nothing he could safely do about the blonde, but he had been pleased to note that his lord had not visited his wife's bed before said wife had moved permanently to the London house.)
No one was allowed to taint his master except for him. No filthy human was allowed to touch what belonged to a demon without severe repercussions.
It was a lesson his 'students' had taken some time to learn, but they had learned it well.
He hoped the lesson stayed with them in whatever Hell they had ended up in.
A/N: Hopefully Grell was IC… he's very difficult to write.