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Where Truth Lies

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51 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 5:53 pm

"Alright, Nik," I nod, taking the brush and setting it in my lap as I absently rearrange the items on the small table before the mirror. "I'll be right here."

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52 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 6:06 pm

I shake my head, frowning a bit at her confusion as a whole new level of dread rises in the pit of my stomach. Leave it to Marn to pick the one girl who could go down the rabbit hole after our mother. She seemed so put together two weeks ago - clever, ballsy, fucking sultry in comparison. Or maybe I just like a smart mouth, I don't know. Two weeks ago, I could understand why someone might go after her. Right now, though... ugh, I can't even bear the idea of leaving her alone much less blackmailing her.

"It's about time!" I hiss when a knock sounds at the door and I go to open it to find my driver waiting on the other side. I snatch the change of clothes from his hand before gesturing for him to come in and gather the suit from the sink. 

"Did you bring the stuff?" I ask as I begin stripping out of my clothes without batting so much as an eyelash to the two witnesses in the room. 

"Just as you asked, sir," Hensley replies as he puts the bag on the messy counter, his gaze wandering over to Ljuba curiously. 

"Good," I snap quickly as I pull on a clean pair of underwear and the pants Hensley had brought. "Go pull the car around and bring the rest in. I want this place cleaned up while we're gone... and find the kid with the bucked teeth that lives around here. Give him, I don't know, a fucking doll or something."

"Yes, sir," Hensley responds with a slight bow before he finishes gathering up my wet clothes to leave. Once he's gone, I smile over at Ljuba as I pull on my shirt and then set to work on another tea for her to down before we leave.

"How's your hair coming?" I ask cheerfully.

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53 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 6:13 pm

I've been so intent on organizing the table, I'd entirely forgotten the brush in my lap as I pick my head up to look at him in the mirror behind me. 

"I have to brush it," I say absently, taking the brush and starting to task of brushing down the back where I'd slept on it. The uncomfortable haze of mixed thoughts seems to glaze over my expression as I brush, running my hands over my hair self consciously until Richard approaches me with the thermos in his hands. 

"Nikolai was my husband," I say as I set the brush down and turn to take the thermos, "I know you're not him... I didn't mean to call you that. I just kind of got lost for a moment..." I frown, the warmth of the thermos inviting me to take a slow sip.

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54 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 6:26 pm

"You don't have to explain," I say lightly as I take the brush from the table. I watch her in the mirror as I step behind her, my fingers combing through the tangles that are still in her hair before I start to brush them out gently. 

"Marnin doesn't know this, but our mother suffered a brain injury many years ago," I say quietly as I focus on working the tangles out. "He thinks she just declined into senility, but that's not exactly the case. I cared for her during her initial recovery - it was my fault, after all - and she had moments like this. Thought I was my father... still does, when I visit... What I mean to say is that I'm used to it. There's no need to apologize or explain or... just pretend it never happened, and I will, too?"

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55 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 6:36 pm

I nod up to him as he brushes my hair, my eyes closing against the pleasant sensation. 

"How was it your fault..?"

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56 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 6:38 pm

"I made an enemy of a man who thought he could best me," I say simply, my lips pressing together in a thin line as I try to keep the heat of my hatred for the man under wraps. "When conventional means didn't allow him to win, he went after my family. I didn't feel like playing after that."

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57 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 6:49 pm

I don't say anything after that, taking the brush as he hands it back to me so I can set it on the table before I pull the thermos back into my lap. 

I turn in my seat to face the room, pointedly not looking up at Richard as I stretch my toes against the floor. 

"I left my only pair of shoes at Marnin's house..." I confess a bit lamely.

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58 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 6:51 pm

"Not to worry," I say as I step over to the kitchen area to put on my own shoes - Hensley apparently forgot the socks. "The car is just outside. And I'm sure I have something in your size lying around somewhere."

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59 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 6:56 pm

Nodding, I push myself up and hold tightly to the thermos as I watch finish gathering... Whatever it is he's grabbing. My gaze wanders around the apartment sadly and I wonder idly how this became my life when I hear the door open as Richard waits for me to snap back to reality. 

My fingers trace the wall as I head for the hall, more to brace myself should my legs decide to collapse under the threat of their tired and aching muscles than anything else.

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60 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 7:02 pm

I'm careful to keep a hand near the small of her back, not quite touching her, but close enough to steady her if need be. The walk is slow, Hensley and my assistant still working on unloading the trunk as we step outside. Hensley, quick as ever, hands his bags off to Hamish so he can open the back door for us.

"It'll just be a moment while we finish unloading, sir," Hensley says as he nods at me after I've climbed in behind Ljuba. 

"Thank you," I nod, situating myself more comfortably in the plush interior as he closes the door. "I'd offer you some wine, but something tells me you might not benefit from mixing it with your tea."

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61 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 7:09 pm

He garners no response as I stare out of the tinted glass tiredly, my legs tucking as closely to the front of the seat as they can. The events of the last few hours have been coming back in small pieces, and I'm still in the midst of sorting them out when I hear a persistent voice looking for my attention. 

"Did you say you sent people?" I ask abruptly, hardly noticing the trunk shutting and doors closing as the driver slips into his seat. "To my family? You sent... You sent people to check on them?"

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62 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 7:13 pm

"Hmm?" I ask as I glance back at her, the effort to tear my eyes from my phone drawing a slight frown of confusion from me. "Oh. Yes. They're passing Overwatch now, in fact," I say as I offer her the screen of my phone so she can see their most recent message. "Won't be but a few more hours, and they'll be sending pictures to confirm they've reached their destination."

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63 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 7:16 pm

"No," I shake my head, "I don't mean-" 

Frowning, I stop to gather my thoughts. "What will they say...? To my family?"

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64 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 7:19 pm

"Nothing," I respond as I look back at my phone, typing out my response to the message. "They'll never know anyone was there. Unless you want differently?"

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65 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 7:19 pm

"No," I shake my head, looking back out the window tiredly. "No, nothing is good."

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66 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 7:30 pm

"Would you like for them to fetch anything for you?" I ask hesitantly. "A trinket, something small? Something that won't be missed?"

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67 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 7:34 pm

I only shake my head as I rest against the door, watching as the street sways into motion as the car pulls out into the slow and steady flow of traffic. 

"No, the less I've to do with them, the better off they are." I sigh.

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68 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 7:38 pm

"You realize that the threat to them is being dealt with?" I ask as I glance over at her with a faint frown. "Unless you're referring to whatever threat you pose to them?"

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69 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 7:42 pm

"I know that," I say as I look back at him, "But they never deserved to be involved to begin with. They think I'm dead, they've mourned me. The best I can do for them is to stay that way."

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70 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 7:46 pm

"You know," I start after a long moment of silence, my lips twitching slightly as I try not to smile. "I sort of have a guild for people who are dead-and-staying-that-way-but-kinda-not-really. Perhaps you've heard of it..?"

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71 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 8:11 pm

I look at Richard out of the corner of my eye before sighing tiredly as I put my head back against the window. 

"Marnin's right." I sigh, "You are a dick."

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72 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 8:14 pm

"A dick who brought you tea," I correct as I point absently at her thermos with my phone. "And a dick who climbed in the shower with you, in my favorite suit, after I swore I'd let your arse drown if you went off and had a seizure while you were in there. So I may be a dick, but I'm a soft dick."

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73 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 8:27 pm

I can't help the grin that spreads across my cheek as I look back at him, "You sure you want to have said that?" I ask quietly, exhaustion still evident in my tone despite the seemingly light-hearted exchange.

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74 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 8:28 pm

"Well, I can't be a hard dick all the time," I smirk. "Then I'd be a priapism."

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75 Re: Where Truth Lies on Fri Nov 18, 2016 8:53 pm

"What?" I laugh slightly, looking back at him, "You're foul."

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