Ciel sat in his office chair, his small body sinking into the large leather seat. It was late in the evening, and he had finished his paperwork as of late. No other work awaited him for the night, so he simply sat and watched the thick snow fall outside of the window.

The boy sighed and laid his head on his hand. He kept his gaze glued to a single snowflake, watching it until it fell out of view, and then he would find another. It reminded him of the days when he and his father would sit at the window and choose a snowflake, and they would pretend to race their snowflakes. He knew that his father would always let him win.

Ciel shook his head. He couldn't afford to go down "memory lane". He was head of the Phantomhive family now, and with that came responsibility. He needed to focus on the present, rather than the past.

Though, no matter how hard he tried to act like a mature adult who needed no one, he would lay alone in his bed at night and remember that he was only a child. A child that had lost his parents, and was alone in the world. And sometimes children just needed to be held.

Ciel shivered and wrapped his arms around himself, suddenly feeling an overwhelming emotion come over him. Tears came to his mismatched eyes as he remembered Christmas night, when he and his family would sit in front of the fire place. He would sit cradled in his father's arms. His mother would sit beside them, tracing circles on his tiny legs and tell him stories. And his dog, Sebastian, would lay at their feet, the same dog he had named his own butler after.

Sebastian. Speaking of the devil, where was he? Usually he could sense when Ciel was finished, and he would come with a treat, or an offer to have a bath or go to bed. Ciel had finished his work almost an hour ago; Sebastian should have been in here by now.

With another sigh, Ciel pulled himself up off of his seat and sauntered over to the door. He explored the halls of the Manor, opening each and every door to search for his butler. The other servents had retired quite a while ago, and Ciel was beginning to feel sleepiness taking over him. He yawned as he opened the door to his bedchambers, but he wasn't going to sleep until he found that damned butler.

Before leaving the room, Ciel pulled the extra quilt off of his bed and wrapped it around his shoulders, kicked off his shoes and pulled off his overclothes, then headed out the door. Sebastian wasn't in any of the halls, the bedrooms or offices, or the kitchen. Ciel stood at the top of the staircase, willing his mind to think rather than shut down due to his exhaustion. He sat down on the carpet, leaning against the railing with a sigh.

Ciel's shoulders were tense as he sat there, his arms around his legs. As he had walked, every sight of the Manor seemed to trigger a different memory of his long dead family. Every day of his life after that incident, he was required to be a leader, so he had held in his emotions. Tonight, as he sat alone, he finally let those emotions come out, and he buried his face in his hands and cried.

He didn't know how long he sat there, but when he finally controlled himself, he looked up and noticed the soft glow coming from the living room. He sniffled and stood up, pulling the blanket tighter around him and made his way through the doorway. Sebastian sat on the sofa, the fire place lit in front of him. He heard Ciel's soft footsteps and immediately stood, bowing low.

"My apologies, My Lord," the butler said. "I was not aware of the time. Are you ready for your bath?"

"Sit back down," Ciel said quietly, his voice cracking.

Sebastian looked up at him at the strange sound, then finally made out the tearstains on the young earl's cheeks.

"My Lord, have you been...crying?" Sebastian questioned carefully.

"Sit back down," Ciel repeated, wiping his nose with the back of his sleeve.

The demon sat down on the sofa as ordered, still watching his master with concern in his eyes. Ciel crossed the room until he stood in front of Sebastian, then climbed onto the butler's lap, resting his head against his shoulder. Sebastian's eyes widened despite himself, then he smiled softly and wrapped his arms around Ciel, stroking his hair gently.

"Is there anything you desire to share, My Lord?" Sebastian whispered.

Ciel shook his head, willing the tears gathering in his eyes to go away.

"I just want to be held," the boy said quietly.

"Yes, My Lord."

They sat there in silence for a while, the only sound coming from the fire and their soft breathing. Ciel watched out of the corner of his eye as the flames danced, flickering shades of amber. He closed his eyes for a moment, then looked up at Sebastian's face.

"Will you tell me a story?" the boy asked, almost hesitantly.

Sebastian raised an eyebrow at the young earl, then sighed and pulled Ciel closer.

"Very well, if it pleases you."

Ciel snuggled into Sebastian's shoulder, closing his eyes and listening to his butler's velvet voice weave a tale. Eventually his words faded off, and Ciel drifted into sleep, cradled in the demon's arms. Sebastian trailed off as he realized the boy was sleeping, and he gazed down at Ciel with a small smile. He chuckled softly, then stood up with Ciel in his arms and carried the young earl up to his bedchambers.

Sebastian laid Ciel on his bed and began to undress him, careful not to wake the boy, then redressed him in his nightgown. He then shifted Ciel underneath the blankets and tucked him in, afterward turning to take the candelabra from his side table. He moved to the door and looked back at Ciel, then sighed and walked silently back over, leaning over the boy and kissing his forehead.

"Good night, Ciel."