Levi scrubs the last of the dirt off the coffee table. “Finally.” That’s the last time he trusts Isabel to bring a ‘mystery box’ into the apartment.
He hears a crash in the kitchen, followed by a squeak of “Oops!” Isabel is a freaking tornado with legs. He sighs as he goes to investigate what she’s mussed up now.
“I was never-”
“I know,” Isabel interrupts. “You were never this crazy when you were 5!” she mimics with R’s that sound suspiciously like W’s.
Levi suppresses a grin at her sass. He shoos her off while he rights the stool she managed to topple over.
The doorbell rings and Isabel rounds the corner at top speed. “I’ll get it!”
“No, no, no!” Levi scoops her up. “Remember what we talked about? You’re going to watch a movie while Eren and I study.”
Isabel nods wisely. “‘Cause it took you a whole year just to invite him over.”
Sure, tell the kid a million times not to jump on the furniture with muddy shoes and it’s in one ear and out the other. Mention your undying crush on a certain football player while you think she’s napping, however, and she remembers every single word you say about him. Unless, of course, Hange told her. Quite frankly he wouldn’t put it past them.
Levi takes a deep breath. “Don’t repeat that again,” he says. “Ever.”
Eren knocks on their door. Levi sets Isabel down. “You remember how to set up Netflix?”
“Duh,” Isabel says proudly before marching towards the living room.
Levi laughs. He never imagined himself as the guardian of such a spunky kid at the age of 19, but she makes him a little more grateful for it every day. Even if she does like to pour an entire bottle of bubble bath in the tub and turn the water on full blast. He shudders.
He makes one last stop at the mirror in the hallway to fix his hair before he opens the door. He has to pause a second, the same as always, and just admire Eren’s radiant smile before he can say hello.
“Levi!” Eren says. “How’s it- oh, who’s this little angel?” he asks, peeking around Levi.
Angel. Levi almost snorts.
“I’m Izzy!” Isabel says confidently. “And I’m-”
“Supposed to be watching a movie,” Levi finishes for her, turning around to fix her with a stern look.
Isabel sticks her tongue out at him.
“Izzy, huh?” Eren smiles another brilliant, blinding, beautiful smile. “That’s a cool name.”
Isabel nods. “And you’re Eren.”
Eren tilts his head at her and Levi’s stomach drops a little. “How did you know that?” Eren asks.
“Green eyes. Nice hair. Pretty face.” Isabel ticks each point off on her fingers. “You gotta be Eren.”
“Izzy!” Levi whispers.
Eren raises his brows at Levi’s back.
Levi’s face burns. He refuses to turn around; half because he can’t look at Eren right now, half because he’s having a stare down with a pint-sized hurricane that possesses just as much bravado as he does.
Eren pipes up against the silence that has fallen over the apartment. “Pretty face, huh?”
And like a switch, Isabel goes from scowling to grinning. “Uh huh. Levi talks about you lots. Like, all the time.”
“S’kinda annoying. But he really, really likes-” Levi clamps a hand over her mouth.
“She’s had a little too much sugar,” he explains apologetically. He shoots Isabel a look. “I’ll make sure she doesn’t get anymore for a while.”
Isabel glares at Levi. A hint of mischief lights up her eyes, and before Levi can work out what she’s up to- “Ew!” - she licks his hand.
Levi grumbles his way to the bathroom, turning the water on as hot as he can handle it.
Eren shifts under Isabel’s intense stare. She’s sizing him up, lips set in a firm line and eyes narrowed. She nods, satisfied with whatever conclusion she’s come to and takes Eren by the hand. “C’mon. I’ll paint your nails.”
Eren laughs, and allows her to lead him into the living room. She chatters away a mile a minute. He tries his best to keep up, and nods encouragingly when she finds the perfect nail polish to match his black shirt: the brightest blue in her collection.
He looks around at the pictures on the walls, tempted to ask who they all are, but Isabel says something that catches his attention.
“What was that, Izzy?”
“You’re nice,” she repeats. “That’s why Uncle Levi likes you so much.” She brushes another coat on his index nail. Half of it ends up on his skin. “You like him too, don’t you?” She looks up at Eren and smiles. “I can tell.”
Levi watches them from the archway, waiting eagerly for an answer. Eren simply smiles at Isabel, and when she resumes her work on his fingernails, he gives a small nod.
Isabel is a freaking tornado with legs, and Levi loves her more than anything in the world. Though, watching Eren ruffle her hair with his clean hand, he’s becoming a close second.
Artemis, the silver twin, has green eyes flecked with gold. Her dark red and auburn hair falls down her back in a braid ending in a silver leaf ring. She has freckles across her nose and and smiles with pure joy. She loves wearing flannel and her jeans are torn from the branches she snags on them. She races the deer and rabbits with her arrow and bow shining silver in her hand. Her skin is a modest tan from her days in the forests and plains of the pantheon’s new American turf. She likes red nail polish and perfected a type that doesn’t get scuffed in the dirt or scraped by thorns. She has trees and animal shaped tattooed on her back, waist, arms and legs. Whenever the seasons change, her leaves change too. The spring brings a new set of animal faces, animal bodies and every growing and maturing beasts adorning her freckles skin. She screams like an eagle for social justice. Her fist raises for women’s rights and equality but becomes a soft open hand to hold and help when it comes to those she protects.