Straight from BB net, i didn't alter it into the format I usually use for this site, sorry folks :/ Originally written for Caladria's thursday crack thread, and inspired by her talking to me about the pairing XD

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Down the steps again. I count them under my breath as we go. One, two, three four… The older man grabs my face and twists me towards him. "What are you saying boy?" He asks gruffly. I try not to flinch as his sour breath presses over me, it stinks of whiskey. I attempt a smile. "Nothing, nothing at all, just counting," The man grunts as he tilts my face to and fro in the dull light. "You really are pretty for a brat, and an illegitimate one at that," The words seem like a slap in the face, and ring in my head unpleasantly.

Then he presses his ugly chapped lips against mine, and I don't have to think anymore. I don't have to think about my mother, who spent many a night with men like this, just to get back at her husband who forced into marriage. The Earl Gray, the one who sold me off when he knew, who told me I was nothing but trash. His hands shaking with desire, he leads me down into the darkness I loathe, I fear, I hate above all others.

I can't even see the hand held in the man's iron grip anymore. I have nothing to protect me now. He rips off my clothes like candy wrappers, gripping and shoving until he forces me down, and then he's on top and it hurts and it hurts. I cry and I scream and ask for someone to help me, to kill me, even though I know it won't happen.

He falls off of me, and I can see it. Light, it burns my eyes and I cover them with dirty fingers. "Honestly, looking at you I can see I have my work cut out for me," A voice slightly annoyed. I pull down my grubby fists and squint into the light. An older man holds a lantern over me; he is armed with a sword, and wears a white suit. Impractical, the material is surely already stained in some places just from walking down here. I glance over. The man lies with his head lolled to the side, his pants still down.

I try to speak, but only a rough whisper escapes. I lick my lips and try again. "Did you kill him?" I ask, nodding my head towards the one who bought me for the night. The man in white snorts with contempt. "Hardly, I merely knocked him out," He tells me. My mind starts to work again as I let out a breath I was unaware of holding. "Did you come to take me?" I whisper, not really wanting to know the answer.

He looks towards one of the slimy walls, scratching his chin, where I notice a mole. "In a manner of speaking," He mumbles. I shiver, but I know better than to try to fight by now. I stand and walk over to him, pulling apart the pearly buttons one by one. He stiffens and uses his free hand to pry my fingers away. I look up at him. "Are my hands too dirty?" I ask, feeling hurt and relieved at the same time. He looks a little shocked, and then his face becomes unreadable as he bends down to one knee.

"Your hands are too clean, to be doing something like this," He tells me, lifting the digits covered in dirt and slime to his mouth and kissing them gently. I stare at him, awed to have been saved by such a man. "Then, how do I know if you do ever want to…" I trail off, not wanting to finish. He gives a small smile, which I would learn later, was rare for him, and whispers, "If I ever do, which I doubt will happen, I will say 'When,'" He tells me, then picks me up like a child, and carries me away from the fearful darkness.

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I fidget in the uncomfortable suit, and loosen the cravat around my neck. Phipps sighs and re- tightens it. "This is an important day, Grey." He tells me solemnly. "It is your initiation, and everyone will be watching you, remain respectable for the queen's sake if not yours," He says, brushing imaginary dust off my suit.

After only three months in this new life, it still seems awkward to stand above others instead of cowering below them. I still can't stand any place dark, or dirty, or at all like that place. I had learned that I was here as a replacement for my father and his family, who had all burned to death in a carriage accident the night Phipps, saved me. A fitting end for my family in my mind, a preemptive greeting from hell itself.

"Charles, come this way," Says a small maid timidly as she peeks through the door. I grin. "Do you mean me or him?" I ask. "He or I," Phipps corrects me. I ignore him. "Ch-Charles Grey," The maid hastily corrects and I bounce after her, acting much more cheerful than I feel.

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All I can do is watch as he sobs, something very uncharacteristic for him, over the freshly dug grave. A grave only made significant by the name carved into it. 'Anthony Phipps' his younger brother. He beats on the stone as though it were an enemy holding a hostage. In a sense, I suppose it is.

The carriage grows impatient. Everyone else left ages ago, even the boy's parents. I walk over to Phipps and gingerly place a hand on his shoulder. "Phipps," I whisper. "He was only seven," Phipps says, his voice hoarse from crying. "I know," I tell him, still whispering, it seems wrong to speak louder. "He was only seven, and if I had been home I could've-" "You could've gotten yourself killed as well," I tell him cutting him off. He raises a hand and places it on the hand I have on his shoulder, he grips it hard. "He was my only brother, Grey," I grip his shoulder harder underneath his own grip. "I know," I say again.

I pull him up and we stumble towards the carriage. Phipps pulls his face to an impassive state. I wouldn't know he was grieving still if it weren't for the crystal tears pouring down his hardened cheeks. "I…I always thought of him when I saw you," He tells me. "Ever since I saw you down there, in that old cellar," I shudder at the memory. "You looked so scared, so small so, fragile," He tells me, his voice breaking in spite of himself. "Only, there was a difference, a spark, almost…" He trails away, lost for words. I grip his hand with mine, as though it could keep him from drifting away. "I always looked up to you," I say, it sounds like a confession. I clear my throat. "When you came to me you were like an angel. If there is anything I can do for you, Phipps, anything at all," Phipps suddenly yanks his hand out of mine.

"I can't," He murmurs to himself. "You'd hate me, forever," He says, turning away. I grab his arm and pull him back towards me. "Whatever it is you'd better say it right now," I say, annoyed with his indecision. He looks away and whispers something I can't hear. "Loud enough for me to hear," I grunt. "When," the word spills off his lips. For a minute I can't think of what it means, but then I remember. I smile gently, and bring a hand up to softly caress his tear streaked face. "I don't hate you," I tell him. "In fact, I probably love you above anyone else in the world," His eyes crinkle with another rare smile. "Love huh?" he asks. "Yes, love," I tell him with certainty, and then I claim his lips in the graveyard, with only the dead to witness it.

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I just can't make anything happy, it all has to be depressing. Review anyway.