Summary: Loleus wakes up from a bad dream.
Written for Lucathia Rykatu for Yuletide.
A Strange Life
By Dark Ice Dragon
Loleus bolted upright in bed, gasping, barely feeling the sheets as it slithered away from his body. What? What had…? He squeezed his eyes shut, trying to even out his shaky breathing, his racing heartbeat.
Pompeii. That was the first thing that came to mind. Pompeii had been-!
He snapped his eyes open - and then gaped at the completely unfamiliar room he found himself in. This was not his room. That much was obvious. None of the items in it were familiar, the entire shape and colour of the room wrong, his bed was in the wrong place, the sun entering it from the wrong angle.
But what had happened? He and Sirix had gone to release Lady Aglaia. And then… And then he had told Sirix to run, to tell of Lady Aglaia's innocence.
He had been stabbed in the –
Loleus looked down at where his hand was –where there should have been a wound or at least bloodied bandages- and felt blood rush to his face. W-what?
He would have scrambled back on his – this bed, but he was no longer in control of his – this body as this person yawned wide, lifting her hand to her mouth.
"What a weird dream…" she murmured, shaking her head as she swung herself out of bed. When the woman he was possessing started to change clothes, Loleus was veryglad that he could stop watching out her eyes and somehow 'turn his back' on what was happening.
Once the woman (Mii-chan, her father had called her, Loleus reminded himself) had finished changing, Loleus focused on…everything he could as she made her way to a friend's house. This world, it was so different from Pompeii, and the only remorse he felt was that Mii-chan didn't find everything around her fascinating to look at it as he did, her gaze passing over all things of interest. He wished she would stare up at the buildings, standing so tall as they reached up to the sky, sparkling in the sunlight. She did, sometimes, but that was so she could make sure that there were no carriages (cars) coming towards her.
This world was so much louder than Pompeii but Loleus found himself filtering out the sounds in the same way that Mii-chan did, and he eventually became used to it.
Loleus itched to paint, to seal in this world's wonder and differences, so that he could come back to it later and just stare, to imprint it in his memory, rather than seeing fleeting snatches. But he wasn't just seeing things; he also had some sort of access to Mii-chan's memories – what she knew, he knew too, though it took him a while to untangle what it meant, trying to convert its meaning to something that he could translate it to, something he could understand in terms of what he knew.
He wanted to think of Pompeii, of what had happened, but…it was rather obvious that he had died, if not from his wound, then being crushed by a building as the world shook. He couldn't remember much of his last moments, only coming to him in small confusing bursts. This wasn't any part of the underworld that he was aware of, which Loleus supposed wasn't that surprising – he had been a slave, after all. Not a person of worth. Why would he be allowed passage there? Who would have buried him with the fee? Sirix or Serena would, of course, but his heart told him they were gone, even if he couldn't recollect why.
So, he contented himself with watching this strange new world through Mii-chan's eyes and felt more and more information slide into him, fitting like pieces of a puzzle.
Loleus could feel Mii-chan's happiness swell in her as she neared her destination, her steps quickening and becoming lighter, a smile spreading across her face.
There was a boy walking in front of her, and Mii-chan called out to him. "Yuuma!"
Yuuma turned around and Loleus gasped, seeing him overlapped with an image of Serena, his hair longer, wearing a stola. That – that wasn't – what was he seeing? Loleus could understand himself not going to the underworld, but Serena? No, that was impossible. But then, one quiet part of him wondered, if he and Serena were here, then who else? Loleus wanted to hope, but he quashed it down quickly before it could grow and became unmanageable. Serena – no, Serena's soul (the flickers of memory passing between Loleus and Mii-chan were showing that Yuuma was similar, but still not the Serena he knew) was here; that was enough for him.
Yuuma frowned, stepping close to Mii-chan when she had stopped in her tracks. "Serizawa? You all right?"
The smile that Loleus hadn't realised had faded came back again, though Loleus could feel Mii-chan's uncertainty. "It's nothing," she told Yuuma, shaking her head. "I just felt dizzy all of a sudden."
Yuuma's frown deepened, and it was only because Loleus was connected to Mii-chan that he knew Yuuma was worried. "You're not ill are you?"
Mii-chan shook her head. "I didn't sleep that well last night, so maybe that's what it was."
The quiet look Yuuma sent her wasn't convinced, but together, they entered the house that he had been heading for when Mii-chan had called out to him.
The house wasn't that much different from Mii-chan's – the items dotted around gave it a different feel (it was definitely more orderly here), but it was still the same. A home.
Mii-chan flashed a grin and a wave to – Raoul and Aria – as she dashed past them and up the stairs. Loleus was still reeling at seeing those two before he registered that Mii-chan had gone into one of the rooms, walking confidently over to the sleeping occupant. All she could see was tuffs of brown hair, but it made her smile nonetheless.
She sat down next to the person's head, pulling back the cover, and Loleus stared as his thoughts halted, seeing Sirix dozing there, completely at peace and unguarded.
"Yeah," Mii-chan whispered, "that's Sirix."
If Loleus had a body (or he was in control of this body), he would have stopped breathing. She – she knew he was there? This was extremely awkward…
Sirix (Kei-chan) stirred at the sound of her voice, mumbling something as he opened his eyes. Kei-chan peered blearily at her before smiling widely.
Loleus had seen that smile before. He had seen that smile so many times that he had it memorised – and he knew that it had only ever been directed towards one person.
But then, that had been Sirix's smile, not Kei-chan's smile.
"Morning," Kei-chan said softly, languidly raising an arm to cup the back of Mii-chan's head. He tugged her close, and Loleus was forever grateful that they only bumped foreheads, nothing more.
With that, the rest of Mii-chan's memories flooded through Loleus, triggering his own patchy recollections and he laughed. He hadsaid that he would never leave Sirix, and that he would go flying to his side no matter where he was, hadn't he?
How lucky was he, to be surrounded again by people he knew and were close to?
But, this wasn't his life. He had lived his, and Mii-chan should live hers.
Maybe, hopefully, this cycle would continue, where they would all find each other in every life. That sounded good.
Loleus wasn't sure what he did, but everything started to fade and blur…
"Hey," Kei-chan murmured, wiping Mii's unshed tears. "What's wrong?"
She shook her head, scrubbing the rest of them away. "I'm all right." How could she tell him that after he had waited so long for Loleus, when he had finally let go of his death grip on his past memories and had started to live in the present, that was when Loleus had appeared? How could she tell him that Loleus' memories and consciousness had been fleeting, and ultimately had decided not to stay?
So she didn't tell him, wrapping her arms around Kei-chan and hugged him tightly instead.