Chapter 15: The Ark
Yay! Another chapter! For those of you reading this and are a fan of DRAMAtical Murders I have posted another crossover (a while ago now lol). It's my second one for that and as far as I know they are still the only ones of their kind.
The teen had never specified that he had to be alive for the protection of this Joker or passing on the message.
Finally making his way back to the manor, Harry discovered that neither Sebastian nor Ciel were home.
"They went to London, they did," the maid said knowingly when he asked. "Said something about going to see a circus. I bet the young master is finally taking time to have fun."
Bard snorted and Finny looked over at him curiously. "Whenever he goes out for fun he leaves us all here!"
"But we take care of the manor," Finny protested.
"I wanna do something fun, too," the chef sulked as he chopped up some meat for their dinner.
Harry chuckled and gave his thanks before leaving. As soon as he was away from the manor his smile dropped. For Ciel to leave to London without even a note… the child was beyond angry with him and probably hurt too.
"So, you finally made it back," Ciel said coldly as Harry walked into the study in the townhouse. Soma had seen him and bolted in the opposite direction so there was no loud warning to announce his presence.
"I am. I went on a hunt."
"Very well. Sebastian is waiting for you in the servant's quarters. He will brief you on the events for tomorrow."
It was brief and cold. Yup. He was getting the cold shoulder and right when had just gotten back too. Deciding to choose his battles, Harry bowed out of the room and headed towards the back of the house. It was the laundry room where he found the raven demon.
He sighed, "It's Harry. The little lord said we were doing something tomorrow?"
"Yes. We shall be infiltrating the circus, Noah's Ark, in our investigation to find the missing children."
Sebastian paused in folding the clothes the laundry and glanced over at his mates desolate face. His wine red eyes studied the slumped posture and the downcast eyes before he let out a sigh.
"The young master will come around, Harry. I imagine he is not so happy with you because you are leaving, yes?"
Harry's eyes jumped up to latch onto the raven's own. "You called me Harry again."
"Don't get used to it," was the snorted response.
"He," Harry hesitated bringing a hand up to swipe through his messy hair only messing up his ribbon again, "was not thrilled when I told him about Lucifer. I did not even get to stay long enough to tell him our plan…or about Soma... but perhaps it's best if he does not know about the former…"
Sebastian was studying him again, he could feel it, but he said nothing and neither did his mate.
Harry let out a harsh breath. "Why does everything have to be so complicated? This is all your fault, you know? If you had not asked me to help with your contract-!"
Sebastian shut him up with a kiss again. A wonderful, hot, devouring kiss, but a kiss none the less. And he could not help but let himself get carried away in it. To let all of worries go just for that moment. It was all so fantastically beautiful until the raven pulled away slightly.
"Sleep," he murmured against the chimera's lips. "I know it helps you and tomorrow is an important day."
He huffed pushing Sebastian away and headed towards the open door that he had forgotten to close on the way in. Without a backwards glance he left towards where the rooms were and fell into a bed ungracefully, ignoring Agni who had looked up from something he was sewing.
"Ah! Ye sure brought an adorable little boy and a handsome man. Are you a boy?" The ringmaster questioned curiously as he turned to Ciel. The little lord's fine clothing had been exchanged for a few of the lower class garb that he kept in his closet just for cases like these. A bandage replaced his customary eyepatch.
Harry let out a little snort from where he stood next to Sebastian, safe from the boy's quick fist. Not that it would actually hurt.
"Yes," Ciel replied disgruntled. "I was a pageboy at the manor… I'm Finnian."
The gathering crowd burst out into whispers about how cute he was. Ciel shifted uncomfortably keeping his hands by his side to prevent anything (like posture) from giving him away.
"What a grand sounding name ye have." The redhead leaned in closer giving the child a once over. "We'll give ye a stage name if you manage to make it into our troupe. And what about you?"
Harry smiled slightly and stepped forward. "I was the stable hand at the manor. My name is Harry."
"Very pleased to meet both of ye! Now if you could come along to do our tests?"
And the next half hour was spent with Ciel having his daggers angle fixed to actually hit the board (by Sebastian) and getting pelted by rocks to keep him on the tightrope (by Sebastian) while Harry tried to keep the giggling women off of his mate.
"Mighty fine indeed~! Now we just need ta test Harry! Is there anything ye are particularly good at?"
"My skills lies with animals. Or well... anything you could think to test me on I am willing to try."
"I see… How do ye think you work with animals?"
Harry shifted onto his heels and gave a big enough grin that it made his eyes close. "They love me~! They do anything I ask without a problem."
The ringmaster got a glint in his eye. "Really now," he purred. "Would ye be willing to put that to the test?"
The man spun and looked into the crowd briefly before disappearing and returning with a man that had snakes wrapped around his body… and scales in his skin. How interesting, a naga descendant.
"We are willing to see what this man has to say… Says Wilde," the man muttered softly hunching in his shoulders.
"This is Snake, I'm sure ye remember him from last time," he said addressing the butler who smiled pleasantly in answer. "His snakes have volunteered for this demonstration. So begin~!"
Harry blinked but turned his attention onto the snakes. They were quiet as of yet, probably curious about what he would do. Very well. If they brought him snakes there was no reason not to go all out on this one. He took two steps closer so that he stood just out of reach of the striking zones.
~Hello~ He said pleasantly, hearing a few gasps from the crowd. Snake's body jerked back a step and his snakes all turned their full attention onto him. ~I wonder if you wouldn't mind coming over to my arm for a bit. Just to prove a point to your Ringmaster, of course.~
Wilde agreed and Harry held out an arm for him to slither over.
"Th-that was amazin', Harry! Can you speak to all the animals like that?"
The redhead was right next to him in an instant. Harry shifted away slightly before responding, "Not all. There ones I can't talk to like this but they understand me just fine when I use english."
After actually getting a smile out of Ciel, even if it was forced, everyone gathered when the redhead gave the call. He stood in front of them all and raised his arms as if he was about to give a grand speech.
"Everyone! I want you to welcome our rookies Black, Savage, and Smile!"
Ciel, dressed up in his new outfit that made him even more adorable, choked at the horrible name he was given. Harry and Sebastian chuckled at him, but said nothing in response to the boy's nasty glare.
Harry's eyes turned to focus on the ringmaster. This man was Joker, right? This was the person he was supposed to protect? Well, he seemed competent for a man raised on the streets so for now he would just sit back and help with the investigation. Richie never really gave a time frame for his message and he was pretty sure it had something to do with the missing children.
"Now! I'll take you a tour of ta backstage! If you'd follow me?" They walked past the main circus tents to the smaller living ones that were arranged in perfect rows. "These're the tents you guys'll sleep in. Thes're are where the backstage workers and new members -second tier workers- stay! Bout two or three people share a room," he announced cheerfully as the peeked inside for a quick look.
"That over there," he said pointing at a very large tent with the side flaps held open, "is the mess tent. S'an important job for ta new recruits to provide the grub! So good luck~!"
Then they were lead to small area with a few living tents spread around it, a larger tent, and then a tight ring of more extravagant tents that was fenced in. The ring was centered in the middle and the larger one closer to the ring of surrounding tents. "This one 'ere is the medical tent and that center one is the main casts private quarters."
"Private," Ciel asked quietly.
"S'a private room you get if you're really good. Oh!" Joker turned slightly and pointed at a tent slightly away from the cluster that mostly blocked the entrance to the gated area. "That's Snake's tent so stay away from it for your own good. There's lotsa poisonous snakes roamin'. One bite from them and you'll be on your way ta the underworld. Snake an' his friends are still shy ye know so be careful of their poison ye three."
"I suppose I'll have to catch him when he's not in his own territory then," Harry grinned.
"Oh?" Joker turned to him in curiosity.
"Of course~! I absolutely adore snakes," Sebastian twitched slightly, "and ravens! I figure if there is anyone here that I will get along with the most it is someone else that can speak with animals!"
"That's the spirit," the ringmaster cheered. "Oh yea. I've been meanin' ta ask ya… but what happened to your right eye, Smile?"
"O-oh! This… there was an accident."
"Is that so?" For a moment Joker looked so sad, like he was empathising with Ciel somehow. "You've been through so much…" The prosthetic skeletal hand came up to rest on Ciel's hair making Harry bristle slightly. This was his cub, no matter how mad the boy was with him at the moment, and he didn't like the way Ciel was letting Joker get close… even if he knew that he was supposed to be Smile at the moment.
"Everyone here has been through something, so you'll fit in well~!" Now the ringmaster had his fake arm around his cub and only the light brush of Sebastian's hand held him back from interfering.
His mate's pleasant voice did that for him instead. "Did everyone join during the tour like we did?"
"Hmmmm? S'true for almost everyone, cept the top tier members are from the same hometown."
"Childhood friends?" A very good question. They were probably all street rats like the Richie boy he'd eaten.
"Yeah. But Snake's still a new face. His snake charmin's none too shabby and we didn't have a snake handler so he quickly became a member. The perks are much better if you're a top tier member and ye don't have ta worry bout survival of the fittest. There's a reason why everyone's workin' hard to become a top tier member."
Right! This way," Joker pulled them along (well more like Ciel) back towards the front area but still slightly out of the way. "This's the practice tent. New people practice over here and over here! They're working' to make their debut to the public. Work on the basics first. Warm up carefully and-"
The ringmaster was called away by Beast, the women throwing a glare at Sebastian on her way out, and the trio were left to their devices in the practice tent. He tuned out Ciel commenting on Snake's tent and instead focused on what was happening around him. Some of the people were gifted, others not so much, but none were a match for a demon. Instead his eye caught on a figure that he remembered seeing somewhere else. The presence around him also didn't help.
So he left Sebastian and Ciel to their chatting and stretching and instead made his way over to the man balancing on a tightrope using his weapon as a balancer.
"William T. Spears, what in the world are you doing in a circus?"
The shinigami paused, shifting his foot slightly for balance, before he glanced downwards at Harry. The half-demon swore he saw the being's eyes briefly twitch but it could have been a trick of the light considering the rope was swaying slightly with his weight.
"What do I owe this pleasure, Sir?"
"A pleasure… right. I'm pretty sure you hate when I'm around," Harry grinned cheerfully. Apparently his mind had decided his mask in the circus was going to be a happy idiot. Ah well, he could work with that. "Now what business would a shinigami have here?"
"I am conducting an investigation. I would prefer neither you nor your pet demon get involved."
It was Harry's turn to twitch, those his was more of a full body one than just his eye. With the grin still spread across his face he pulled a small knife, borrowed from Sebastian a while ago, from his coat and launched it so that the shinigami had to pull an acrobatic stunt of flipping on the wire to escape unharmed. With a slight pull of magic the blade was back in his hand before it even reached the fabric of the tent ceiling.
"What happened to not insulting the Master of Death?"
"No insult about the Master ever left my mouth," William said primly.
"You insulted my mate-"
"HEEEYY! COME DOWN HERE FOR A SEC! SUIT!"
Both Harry and Spears flinched as Dagger's loud yell had their heads ringing. The shinigami though, turned his head towards the entrance and sniffed haughtily while looking down at the small group.
"I thought I sensed an unpleasant aura. So it was you, was it? Honestly…" His scythe shot out and barely missed hitting Ciel in the shoulder before it buried itself in the ground. "I did not think we would meet again," he started as his scythe retracted bring the shinigami closer to his mate and cub. "What have you come to fish around for this time, you devilish fiend."
Cheerful idiot. Cheerful idiot. He was a cheerful idiot. He would not murder the shinigami in front of so many people. Spears was usually respectful regardless of his half-demon status but Sebastian seemed to bring out his more… impulsive side.
While William talked about himself being a shinigami and Black being a demon, Harry stalked closer, the grin on his face becoming a bit psychotic. He put the knife away figuring he did not need it. No, his own sharpened nails would work just fine.
Dagger, thankfully the man was an idiot, diffused most of the tension by believing what Spears said was a joke. And he'd been telling them stuff about the shinigami since he got here…? Oh man, thank whatever deity was listening that humans mostly didn't believe in what they couldn't see. Then Dagger decided to introduce everyone before noticing Harry wasn't where he had started. It was just sad that almost no one, Ciel included, even noticed that he was gone. In Ciel case, it was sort of heartbreaking that he was so mad that he'd blocked all thoughts of Harry's presence…
Harry slung an arm over Spears' shoulder, his grin nigh on bloodthirsty now. "And I'm Savage! Pleasure to make you acquaintance oh shinigami Lord~! If you have a problem with either of my companions you can take it up with me!"
This time the shinigami seemed to notice that he had actually set off Harry's temper and glanced down at him warily. Though all he said was, "I am not a shinigami lord. Just a field worker."
"Oh? So does that mean you running away and disappearing wasn't all that harmful to your… government?" Just like that new recruit I killed… Will your death mean nothing with the right paperwork?
Ciel was actually flat out staring, his mouth open just a tad. The boy had probably figured that out for the blatant threat that it was even if he couldn't understand the context of it. Sebastian on the other hand seemed pleased and there was a lustful look in his garnet eyes that made Harry want to shiver. Instead the chimera pulled away and trotted the few steps to his group, giving dagger a pleasant version of his grin.
"I think I'd like to test some of my skills as well. I worked mostly with animals but I'm pretty athletic, you know?"
"Perfect! Then we can work on what you'd like while Suit helps Smile and-"
"No. I… cannot work with…. Black."
Obviously there were some words Spears edited from his statement, trying not to completely ignite the half-demon's fuse.
"The circus is about teamwork-"
But the shinigami had already walked away and Sebastian and Ciel were now chatting quietly behind him.
"Dagger? If you could show me what else you have so that I might try my hand?"
The blonde turned back around brushing the black bangs from his forehead. The performer smiled and decided to drag Smile along with them for 'practice'. As they were walking away Harry could feel the dark energy hanging between the two and Dagger's comment of them getting along had him snorting softly. Right. Shinigami and demons were like cats and dogs or water and oil. Another reason that he was just a freak of nature.
"Alright! Let's test out what you can do! First what would you like to try?"
Harry glanced at Ciel still weakly struggling in the man's arms before shrugging and going with juggling. He was, to put it bluntly, extremely good though he toned down his performance to make it seem average. When Ciel had to try as well he could barely do it with two balls instead of three.
"Here, it's basically being really quick with your fingers and arms and having hand eye coordination. I think you just need to work on the speed part," he said happily helping Ciel fix how he was tossing the objects. The boy seemed reluctant to accept any of his help but with Dagger keeping a close eye on them he relented grudgingly.
"That's what it's all about! You're pretty good at teaching too, " Dagger commented as he watched Ciel's technique improve significantly. "Maybe you should work with the people who are struggling?"
"Ah! I'm not that good," Harry shrugged, closing his eyes and grinning. "I do love working with animals but I've always been rather good with children as well. I uh… I could work with people, I guess. If I know whatever they need help with anyways~!"
"Good point. Hey! Smile do me a favor and fetch Suit and Black would you? I need to test Savage on a few more things."
AN: Wow… I cannot believe it's taken me this long. I just had little to no inspiration or time to write. Well I hope you guys like that chapter! Let me know what you think please. Now that I'm at school I have between classes downtime so I should be able to write more.