she's a well oiled machine

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Realm of Eternity: Part 19

(Read: Part I | II | III | IV | V | VI | VII | VIII | IX | X | XI | XII | XIII | XIV | XV | XVI | XVII | XVIII )

CHAPTER NINETEEN

Manon swore and leapt to her feet, drawing Wind-Cleaver and snarling commands at her coven as she darted over to Abraxos, who was already crouched and growling. She and her Thirteen were a well-oiled machine–they knew their roles, their battle formations. Manon ordered Vesta to take Aellai and Daeraya to a safe place to hide, and the witch obeyed without question.

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Jealous in Paris

Happy Valentine’s Day everybody~! xoxo

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Cassandra was doing her thing again, uttering a bunch of math jargon and moving her fingers in the air as she calculated. However, soon she started talking about food and strayed from whatever she’d been thinking about because her senses were becoming over stimulated. When she started tilting over, Stone caught her as usual and said, “Come on, Cassie. The other memories, focus on something else.”

How sure he was when he spoke sent a spark of irritation through Ezekiel. When he glanced over at Baird, she had no issues with the cowboy helping out. Instead she was nodding in approval. They were working like a well-oiled machine because Stone knew exactly what to say to Cassandra.

*** 

Cassandra’s math mind solved the case that day and after saving the world for the umpteenth time, Ezekiel’s focus wasn’t on that anymore.

He was focused on the bubbly redhead sitting across from him at the table in the Annex who he wished he could help more when she was in need.

Cassandra was scribbling down all the equations she’d used to solve the situation they’d once again been stuck in. Once he’d asked her why she bothered, she had a photographic memory anyway it wasn’t as if she’d forget it, she’d said, “It’s not about remembering. Writing it down just gives my brain time to settle itself out again.”

He studied her now with the intention to say something to her. Good job or that was awesome or thanks for saving our asses again, but no words would come and before he could even open his mouth to speak Jenkins walked in with a mop.

“I wish you all had a little more courtesy to wipe your shoes before returning to the Library.” He shook his head in annoyance as he began mopping up the footprints at the door. “I told Charlene we needed to get a mat so that none of this would be an issue, but nooooooo. The budget.” Under his breath, he muttered, “You’d think with my invention we would have more money to spend because we’re not spending it on airline tickets. The budget is ridiculous if you ask me.”

“But nobody did so stop huffing about it,” Charlene said as she entered the room. “Why should we buy a mat that will just get dirty anyway when we can clean it up ourselves?” She set down a stack of receipts in front of Cassandra. “Whenever you can, dear.” Then she disappeared again.

Jenkins left shortly afterwards, still grumbling about budgets and dirty floors when Ezekiel was about to say something. But then Baird strolled in and went straight to the desk. “Have you two seen that book on Dragons?”

Cassandra and Ezekiel both stared blankly at her.

“Please, be more vague,” Ezekiel snorted. He smiled to himself when Cassandra giggled.

“You know which one I’m talking about. The red one. The only one we use. Flynn’s stupid desk—” Just as she said this, the book appeared on the desk. “Hah.” Baird turned her eyes to the ceiling. “You’re going to have to accept me at some point!” she shouted to the air.

When she left, Cassandra and Ezekiel both exchanged grins. “She’s getting crazier by the minute,” he said.

And as usual, she played along. “Yeah, why would the Library care?” She scrawled the last bit of the equations—which to Ezekiel looked incoherent—before tackling Charlene’s receipts.

“Don’t you want to do something fun?” Ezekiel asked. He tried not to be snarky or sarcastic around her, but his boredom was getting to him.

Cassandra shrugged without looking up from her calculations. She’d gotten used to his boredom attitude. “This is fun. Besides I’m not really in the mood for stealing.”

Ezekiel pouted, although he’d already known that that wasn’t her idea of fun.

Before he could make any suggestions, Jake walked in. Under the table, Ezekiel crumpled a piece of paper tightly to hide his frustration. “Cassie!” Jake exclaimed. “A new exhibit in The Louvre! Let’s go!”

Stone was the history buff and resident art lover (Ezekiel was a lover of art for different reasons), but he enjoyed dragging Cassandra along for the sole reason that she wouldn’t scoff nor interrupt his descriptions of whatever new painting they’d added.

Almost immediately, she was on her feet. “Really? Let’s go!” Her genuine excitement made Ezekiel jealous of Jake once again. She’d never gotten that excited about any of his suggestions.

Jake was already setting the Back Door for Paris when Ezekiel got to his feet, saying, “I’m coming too.”

His fellow LiTs looked at him with raised eyebrows. “What? You don’t think I want to ‘marvel’ at really old paintings too?”

“No. We just don’t want you near them plotting way to steal them,” Jake retorted.

Ezekiel shot a glare in his direction before shifting his gaze to Cassandra. He already knew Stone would be opposed to him coming. However, Cassandra had changed her attitude towards him in the past couple months. She treated him less and less like a thief, believing he would steal at every opportunity, and more as an equal. Even if his brain wasn’t on the same level as hers or Stone’s.

“Why can’t he come along?” she asked Stone after holding the other’s stare for a while. “You can teach him how to appreciate art.” Both men scoffed their disapproval and she rolled her eyes in turn. “Fine, just—”

“… be good!” Flynn was saying as he entered the room, Baird following just behind. They didn’t notice the three LiTs standing at the Back Door, as they were absorbed in whatever they were talking about.

Ezekiel was sick of being interrupted while talking to Cassandra when all he wanted to do was talk to her. Irritated, he grabbed her hand and dragged her through the Back Door; both of them stumbled as they walked onto the streets of Paris, but they were used to it by now.

Stone followed suit and eyed Ezekiel in annoyance. Ezekiel kept a firm hold on Cassandra’s hand as he led her in the direction of the museum. It was his favourite museum to case; the security was upgraded with the times, which proved to be more challenging than others. His dream was to crack the security of the Louvre.

More importantly, Paris was his favourite city to bring Cassandra to as she always marveled at the architecture for so long that he had to keep a hold of her otherwise she’d get lost.

Her hand naturally found its way to the crook of his arm and she moved closer to him by instinct as they weaved trough the locals.

“Jones!” Stone called. “We can cut through here.” He was pointing towards an alleyway.

“Uhm…” Beside him, Cassandra was muttering again about tangent lines on a building intersecting with another sort of line he missed the name of. “We’ll meet you there, mate. I think she wants to go to the long way.”

Stone looked torn between following them and getting a good spot in line. His love of art won over his apparent jealousy though, and with one last glower in their direction, he was off.

Ezekiel beamed as they continued through the streets.

***

“You know, you’ve been acting strange lately.” It was the most tangible sentence she’d said to him since they walked out the Back Door 20 minutes ago. They were nearing the Louvre now and could see Stone reading a pamphlet as he stood at the top of the stairs to the Louvre’s entrance down below.

“Strange, how?”

“Mm, more hostile.”

“Hostile?” He hadn’t felt annoyed with anything or anyone except—

“Towards Stone. I know you guys don’t really like each other that much, but you can’t kill him with your death stare.” At a whisper, she added, “No matter how adorable it is.”

His ego didn’t ever need a boost, but whenever Cassandra was concerned, his confidence usually faltered. Until she said that.

“What did you just say? Can you repeat that?”

Cassandra smiled at him, shyer than she ever had around him before. “No, I won’t. You heard me already.”

Ezekiel looked down at his shoes in a futile attempt to hide his smile, but even Stone saw it when they sauntered up.

He tapped Ezekiel’s chest. “Why are you smiling so much?”

The world class thief’s smile only broadened as the math genius’s hand moved from the crook of his arm to his palm, keeping their arms tangled together. It was such a subtle difference, not even Stone noticed. But if the thief had learned anything from the math genius, it was that a subtle difference could have the biggest impact.

And finally, the last major character in BSB!! Arguably the most important, too, aside from the player themselves!! It’s no. 9, 28′s best friend since childhood!

No. 9 is a bossy, but highly skilled and competent lady who has always been there to light a fire under 28′s ass, ever since they were kids. She pressured them to study, get jobs and otherwise get out of the house. She’s a little overbearing, but has 28′s best interests at heart, since 28′s lack of motivation almost never puts them anywhere good.

Years ago, she joined the Blood Saga Brigade as a general assistant in the castle division, but has since moved up and become Executive Floor Manager, where she puts her leadership skills to good use. She’s a young go-getter with a fiery temperament, and is great at keeping a well-oiled machine running smoothly.

Recently, she found out about 28′s life being stuck in a rut after not seeing them for a long while, and for old times’ sake she decided to give them a hand, introducing them (or all but dragging them) to the B.S. Brigade, giving them a job and a fresh start in the criminal organization.

-no. 93

+ soccer practice

“Okay, let’s run through thirty four,” Lavina said, glancing at her fellow captains as she spoke. The coaches had been tied up and have made today’s practice a captains practice, leaving Lavina and two other girls in charge. After a quick run through of what the play consisted of, the girls disbanded and Lavina went about tweaking their cuts. She loved soccer practice, it one place where she could work together with other girls to function as a well-oiled machine and feel part of something.

Some days she honestly felt as though she didn’t have an actual place in the school. Sure people saw her as being the likable popular girl, but she didn’t feel like that was enough. What did being popular mean in the long run, more people who wanted her to sign their yearbooks? No, soccer was good for her and she loved it for that.