A.N - Merry Christmas! I have been so desperate to writ this for today! I'm pleased to have something relatively decent out but do apologise for it's shortness. I hope you are all having a wonderful holidays and are spending time with the people you love!
Disclaimer - Nope, not mine.
Methods of Entertainment
Ciel remembered Sebastian saying that maturing was difficult, that it required a lot of energy and that the child's parents needed to be around. He had not expected this however! A few days after Sebastian had announced that Ciel was maturing; the younger demon spent the night exploring the entire house, from the basement to the attic. He felt disconnected from himself in a way; his instincts were searching for something but apparently did not find it necessary to enlighten his conscious mind as to what this thing was.
Sebastian was aware of Ciel's restless search of the house, but carefully avoided him and refused to speak. When Ciel went to ask a question, Sebastian would leave the room. It was all very frustrating.
The next thing Ciel found himself doing was relieving all the couches and beds and armchairs of their cushions and pillows and blankets. He systematically divested the entire house of comfortable textiles and carried the items to the nook where he had spent his poison induced illness. Once he had collected everything that could possibly be considered 'comfortable', Ciel began building what he could only describe as a nest.
After layering the floor thickly with cushions and building a wall of them around the room's perimeter, Ciel covered that layer in feather filled pillows and then covered everything in blankets and eiderdown. The corner of the room furthest from the door had the resemblance of a chair; it had been constructed with a little hollow so that Ciel could recline there fully supported. He was most confused.
After the nest was finished, Ciel lost all interest in it and found himself frequently drawn to the vault and collecting a handful of coins before leaving swiftly. Sebastian never seemed to notice. Whilst Ciel would eat one or two of the coins, he stored the rest in a little wooden box on the mantelpiece of the fire in the dining room.
Over the next week or so, Ciel's behaviour didn't change much. He continued to interact with the animals, grinning viciously when the goats showed anxiousness around him. He would read with Sebastian, wander the grounds and request lessons in cooking again. He also continued to retrieve and horde coins.
Then, all of a sudden, Ciel was hit by a wave of fatigue. He swayed tiredly as he went to collect his little box of coins and carried it with him as he lit a fire in the dining room and then meandered into his nook. Settling into the corner of the room and pulling a patchwork blanket over himself, Ceil systematically ate the contents in the box of coins before falling asleep.
When he awoke, Ciel could not move his limbs. Craning his neck, the young demon cried out and desperately began to squirm. He flinched as something touched his face and turned panicked eyes to meet Sebastian's.
"Se-Sebastian!" he whimpered.
"Hush, you are fine." The Raven demon soothed. "You are maturing." He added. Ciel peered back down at his body, examining what he had thought to be spider silk stretching across him tightly. He frowned, identifying the bonds as the beginnings of a cocoon.
"I am not a butterfly! Nor a caterpillar!" he protested. "You said 'metaphorical chrysalis'. I assure you that this is most literal!"
Sebastian smiled gently, brushing gentle fingers over Ciel's hair soothingly. "All children mature differently. I created an egg, according to my mother. They ended up placing me in the fire until I hatched. Father just dug a den and went into a deep sleep. Some demons submerge themselves in liquid. Others bury themselves in plant matter. It doesn't always relate to your animal form. I believe it has something to do with each demon's beliefs about the process. For some, like you, it seems it is a transformation, for others – an ordeal, some hide from it, some are bored by it. I perhaps saw my maturing as a sort of rebirth."
Ciel quietened under Sebastian's touch and listened to his soft voice before nodding. "Don't leave me." He murmured, closing his eyes. "I do not like this at all."
Sebastian nodded, petting Ciel's hair still. "I will be here. I have ensured the animals will be fed and watered enough for an extended period. You will be fine. Just relax. There is nothing to be concerned about."
Ciel was glad that Sebastian was there. When his silken threaded cocoon covered his face, he found staying calm difficult. And it hurt. Oh how it hurt, he could feel himself melting and changing, his bones reforming, lengthening, shifting and becoming lighter but stronger. His flesh burnt and altered, running like a wax sculpture in a fire. It was pure torment and Sebastian's touch and voice were the only things to let him know that time was still passing.
Every so often, the raven demon would do something that gave Ciel a reprieve, a span of time where he could rest, painless and cool for a while. Then the torture would start again.
It took a week for the pain to abate. Ciel gladly fell into a deep sleep, allowing Sebastian the chance to tend the animals. Something told Ciel that it wasn't all over just yet, that he needed to gather his energy for one final push.
He slept for just over twenty four hours before beginning to struggle his way out of his cocoon. He knew Sebastian was there, offering encouraging words, but he couldn't help. It could not be forced; Ciel had to do it alone. It wasn't easy, he felt weak and the cocoon had solidified in the week he'd been encased in it. It felt like it took forever to claw and bite and squirm his way free of his prison until he flopped out, panting, draped unceremoniously over Sebastian's lap. He was exhausted.
Glazed glowing red eyes fluttered open, Sebastian's contract once more etched into the iris. Sebastian smoothed his hands gently over Ciel's hair and back, soothing and gentle. Ciel sighed softly and blinked. "Is it done?" he asked, cheek resting against Sebastian's leg.
The raven demon hummed. "Yes. Welcome to adulthood, Ciel."
Sebastian let Ciel drift back into a restorative slumber before picking him up, holding the younger demon close to his chest as he carried him to his room. Laying Ciel onto his bed, Sebastian took the chance to simply look at him. The boy was now an adult. He was stunning. All traces of baby fat were gone; he was built more like an athlete...or, to be honest, a cat. Lithe muscle under soft skin. All demons had their own clothing when they shifted forms. A signature outfit. Something that expressed something about you. Ciel's demonic form wore skin tight soft leather trousers in a charcoal grey colour. His boots came to mid thigh, laced tightly with a modest heel. He wore a very long black coat with a swirling skirt and heavy mantle worn open over Ciel's bare chest.
The boy was beautiful. Everything a Hell Cat should be.
Sebastian did not know how their relationship would change now. Ciel would still need guidance, but he was not obligated to receive that guidance from Sebastian. He may decide to keep the raven on as his butler, he might send him away. But, Sebastian was proud to have supported Ciel through the various changes he'd undergone on his journey into fully grown demon.
Ciel slept for ninety six minutes before gleaming red eyes opened slowly, taking in the sight of Sebastian asleep beside him. The young demon smiled slowly, stretched languidly and rolled closer to his butler, curling into the curve of Sebastian's body and settling into the warmth. He felt as though he were moving very quickly, but at the same time – everything seemed to have slowed down.
Things were different. For the first time he was completely aware of his home. He could feel the chickens scratching in their run, knew that Abra was rubbing his flank against the rowan tree. He could also feel the fluttering pressure of the few souls that still floated around his home. He wondered how many had gone into bringing him through his transformation into adulthood.
Sebastian was surprised to find that little had changed between himself and Ciel. The boy was more confident in some ways, and yet still strangely hesitant, especially when it came to leaving his home. He no longer wore his eye patch, he walked tall and proud, but Sebastian could tell that his young master was nervous. Perhaps it was because he thought he could no longer turn to Sebastian for protection from the unknown, he needed to face it himself. Still, he hated being the object of scrutiny, and many people wished to meet the new Hell Cat. It was only a matter of time before they would be forced to host a party to satiate the curiosity of Ciel's new peers.
For now they worked on making sure all of Ciel's paper work was filled out. He would receive his own income when he'd learnt to hunt and, to Sebastian's pleasure and surprise, the blue haired demon asked him to teach him to do so.
"You don't have to leave now that I am grown, do you?" he had asked one morning. Sebastian had shaken his head.
"I may stay with you for as long as you wish me to. Someone must teach you the laws and how to hunt and how to exercise your will...what you might call magick." Ciel had looked pleased but did not voice the 'I do not want you to leave me.' That he wanted to say. He did not know what Sebastian was to him any longer. He was more than his butler, more than a teacher and a carer...was it friendship? He didn't know. He missed their close contact but didn't know how to ask for it to return. He didn't want to remain childish or seem weak.
Learning to manipulate his surroundings was easy in his home. It was as though his home was a space in his mind. If he wanted to bring a chair into existence, he merely had to imagine it there. With practice he stopped melding two objects together through lack of concentration. The chicken/teapot had been a disaster. Sebastian, as ever, was a marvellously patient tutor who explained things clearly and concisely and encouraged him when he made mistakes, praising him when he did well. Ciel still managed to feel mixed up around the older man.
He knew that it was...considered wrong for a male to desire another of his gender, but he was a demon now, and he had seen male couples and female couples in the town. There seemed to be nothing wrong in this culture, but he was still unsure about whether he truly felt...love and attraction for Sebastian or was he merely looking for a way to bind the demon to him? Being an adult did not bring everything into clear understanding and Ciel dearly wished it had. He'd thought that wisdom came with age; he would find some wisdom quite useful about now.
Sebastian was tied to him anyway, through their contract...but Ciel didn't really feel that it applied anymore. Sebastian was more than a butler. They'd grown closer, learnt more about each other. Ciel felt that they were...family. He liked the idea of Alkippe and Artair as family members too. Was it strange for him to find this level of contentment in Hell? Though he was confused about his relationship with the raven demon, he felt very...whole. He no longer felt the anger and despair of his past life.
He wondered what adult life as a demon would bring. He would have to form a contract. He might find a mate, have a child. He might live with Sebastian for a millennia before deciding that he needed to do something new. Would he be required to torment the Tortured souls? Would he be sent to cause havoc and mayhem back on earth? Ciel was not sure how he felt about these possibilities. But, for now, he was happy to learn about how to manipulate him home and anticipate returning to earth with Sebastian to be taught to feed upon a soul.
A.N - Okay guys. This story is dying on me. Feed me plot ideas or something else I fear I may struggle to continue with it! I feel like my eyeballs are about to explode right now, so I'll leave you with another 'Merry Christmas' and a mince pie!