Hey everyone, back here with the fourth Episode. Seems people are really enjoying the story and many are speculating about how the prologue relates to the rest of the story. As I replied to an emailer; a guy who was contemplating what the story turns out like; let me keep a few cards to myself. All will be revealed in good time.
Also have a few announcements to make. Have a major exam coming up on the 24th of this month and have to slog it out before that. So will not be writing this story till after that. Till then I need to be totally hooked up on my studies (on my studies and on Brandon Routh). Really sorry for that but everyone, please pray for me and wish me 'best of luck'. Need lots of it.
One more thing I need to declare; this may come as a spoiler for some of you so you can skip this paragraph if you want to; the story 'Black and White' is intended to be a 7 Episode series (and Prologue + Epilogue). This is the fourth episode so there are 3 more to go before the story wraps up.
Anyways, enough prattling. Onwards with the story!
"See you in the evening then," Black said to Aiden who was tying his shoelaces, getting ready to leave his apartment.
"Yup, got tonnes of work to do before that." Aiden replied.
Black knew that since it was a Saturday, Aiden had few lectures in college and intended to cover up on his studies as well as do work on some robot project; this Aiden had informed him. He also knew what Aiden had not informed him about; that he planned on visiting the so called 'Joe Black retirement home'. Aiden meant to spend some time there and later tell him about it. Good thing he kept track of Aiden's thoughts; arrangements would have to be made to ensure that the old age home did exist and would be filled with patrons when Aiden got there.
"Why can't you just get your work and do it over here?" Black questioned much to his own surprise. He did not want Aiden to leave yet.
Aiden tightened a lace and stood up grinning. "Because, we both know that if I do get some of my assignments here, I'll never lay a finger on them with the way you keep me occupied."
Black showed Aiden his tongue and walked him to the door.
"Bye Will." Black replied by kissing Aiden on the lips, a kiss cut short by Aiden, leaving Black needing more. He watched as his lover made his way to the waiting elevator and waved to him before the doors of the elevator slid shut. Black took a deep breath as Aiden disappeared from view. He wondered if he had been spending too much time in his lover's head.
"You know I've never come to a place like this. You'll have to tell me what to do." Tinka was a bit queasy as Aiden led her inside a building painted in subtle hues of mauve and green. Large golden letters above the foyer claimed it to be the 'Joe Black retirement home'.
"There's nothing you've to do stupid. It's not like we're here to juggle knives and jump through hoops of fire to entertain elder people."
"No but still; How should I behave and that kind of stuff."
"Just behave like yourself." Aiden stated and then pretended to think about what he said. "No wait, that would be disastrous, act as a normal polite girl."
Tinka swung her handbag and smacked Aiden across the head as the two entered the reception. Aiden's 'oww' was cut short as both realized that they were inside now and would have to put on some semblance of decency.
"Good evening Mr. Writer!," a chubby lady with red cheeks behind the reception desk boomed as soon as she looked at Aiden. Aiden frantically tried to recall the lady's name.
"It's Doris." The lady chimed in before Aiden could come up with anything to say. "I see you've come with a friend."
"Yes this is Tinka." Aiden referred to with his hand; who politely greeted the jolly receptionist.
"So you want to spend some time here? The elder people sure could use some younger company." The receptionist was beaming, showing all her 32 teeth to Aiden.
"Yeah, that's what we had in mind."
"I see Mr. Black's not here to escort you today."
"Yes, I intended to come on my own. Please don't inform him, he'll go to a lot of trouble and come all the way here worrying unnecessarily."
"Sure thing, don't tell the boyfriend eh?" Doris lifted her eye brows suggestively as Aiden blushed.
"You kids go on ahead and give those oldies a time to remember," she said, swiftly getting up and ushering the two into a passage that Aiden remembered led to the recreation rooms.
"And remember," the jovial receptionist called out, "Don't do anything I wouldn't do."
Aiden and Tinka glanced at each other with a 'what was that all about' look on their faces.
Tinka had been having a good time; though she had not expected it. She had been involved with Aiden and 6 elderly people from the retirement home in a card game called 'Uno' which she had just learned. Now 8 people were laughing and joking around a round table, including two aged men in wheelchairs, all throwing cards on the table with oomph, merrymaking as long known comrades.
"Draw Four!" Tinka squealed as she slammed a card on the table making Aiden grimace. "And I change the color to blue!" she added as Aiden's grimace turned into a frown and he lifted four more cards to add to the already loaded collection he possessed. Everyone on the table clapped and cheered at the girl.
"You're gonna get it from me sooner or later you know." Aiden mock growled at his friend.
"That's only if someone uses a reverse in their play. And I think I'll finish my cards by that time." Tinka rubbed the two cards she had in her hand to emphasize her point.
Aiden groaned knowing he would never get a chance to trounce Tinka in the present game. She would have won long before he even got a through a fourth of his cards.
2 rounds later Tinka triumphantly thumped her last card on the table yelling 'Uno'. She was ecstatic that she had not only won the game, but ruined Aiden's position in it also. She had been the first person to finish her cards making her the absolute winner.
As the game continued without her, Tinka glanced at her watch and realized it was over an hour since they had started the game. She was 'whipping Aiden's butt' as she put it, but she had something else in mind; she yet had to exact revenge on him for making her eat those 'melbies' filled with toothpaste in the coffee shop a week ago; and she had the proper apparatus in her handbag.
"Hey Aiden, I need to visit the restroom." Tinka whispered into Aiden's ear. She had won that round of the game and would have to wait till the next round to rejoin.
Aiden looked around and signaled to a blonde girl who's name he correctly recalled as Rachael and asked her to point Tinka towards the restroom.
Tinka entered the restroom though she had no intention of actually using it. She shut the door behind her and took out a set of undersized black plastic binoculars from her handbag. This would be her method of taking revenge on Aiden.
The vengeful female then dipped into her bag once more to retrieve a stick of mascara and then proceeded to generously apply the mascara to the region surrounding the eye-piece; the mascara getting applied as a soft black shine, barely discernible to the human eye. All she had to do now was to get Aiden to use the binoculars once. And she would have the perfect opportunity on the way back when they passed the wharf area above on yellow bridge; and revenge would be hers. Of course she would not let Aiden know what had happened and why people were staring at him till he realized the mascara smeared over and under his eyes himself.
As Tinka completed her nefarious deed she perked up as she heard some intermittent humming-grunting sounds. There were some weird noises coming from somewhere, reverberating as a hum across the confined room. She knitted her brow wondering what the hum could be, and where it was coming from.
Tinka began placing everything into the handbag, placing the maligned binoculars in a plastic Ziploc. The noise suddenly got louder and more continuous. Her curiosity got the better of her; she wanted to know what the noise was of. She walked towards the door swinging it open and immediately the sounds were amplified, indicating that the noise was resounding from an adjacent room. Tinka glanced around and realized that it was coming from a room adjacent to the restroom she was in, and the door was slightly ajar.
She quietly tiptoed towards the door and positioned herself against the open slit. 'Just a peek' she told herself.
What she saw left her astounded. "What the fuck?" she said before she could stop herself.
Inside the room were some 6 feet tall swarthy squid like beings; each having only one eye. Their tentacles were sliding about smoothly as they hummed and groaned.
Instantly Tinka felt someone appear behind her. She whirled around to find Will upon her and opened her mouth to let out a scream. Will grabbed her and put a hand to stifle her shrieks.
The binoculars she had been holding in her hand fell to the ground with a thump.
Aiden was cursing the cards he held in his hand; he would surely end up being last at Uno unless he got hold of some fantastic cards; still he was enjoying himself. That's when he heard an abruptly cut-off noise. He immediately perked up.
"What's that? Is that Tinka?" he asked aloud.
Rachael got a pale expression on her face. "I'll go check it out." she stated and quickly exited the room before Aiden could object. "She probably saw a cockroach or something." Rachael called out as she was leaving.
Aiden settled back down into his game.
Black was present in the retirement home, though neither Aiden nor Tinka had known of it. He had been watching his lover and his friend. And then he had reacted instantly when he comprehended that his lover's friend had encountered something unusual.
He immediately focused on her and appeared directly behind her using an 'Ambulatory Ability'. The girl screamed in shock and fear as she saw him but he thwarted her din with a firm hand placed over her mouth. The girl writhed under his hold, but it was no use, his grip was far too tenacious for a fragile human.
Black held out one arm and hovered it above the girl's head as he opened his mouth to use a spell.
"Ability of the Shadows 34; Stasis Coffin."
Instantly a velvety black stasis field surrounded the girl, encapsulating her and cutting her off from all time and happenings. The girl would remain in the dark stasis, frozen in time, wrapped in a dark cocoon, unless Black would release her.
Black glowered at the two empathic troglodytes who had caused this scene by not concealing their forms. He beckoned the two to follow as he placed a hand on Tinka's form, now encased in black fustian covering.
"Ambulatory Ability 7; Shimmer Teleport." And as soon as those words left his mouth he disappeared from the material plane, taking along with him the frozen form of Tinka; back to the Kingdom of Void.
The petite Empress sat on her throne, her countenance emanating rage that seemed unnatural for such a little girl. The space before her turned hazy as her guardian Black and the two miscreants, along with the 'coffinized' form of a human girl appeared in front of her.
"I have witnessed what had occurred on the seven vision stone." She stated angrily before anyone could say anything.
Black immediately bowed before his mistress. "And what ensues here?" Black asked.
"Deracinate the perpetrators." A simple assertion by the little girl would end the lives of two troglodyte empaths.
Black rose from his position and stretched out both his arms, placing one palm on the back of the other, pointed towards the shuddering form of two careless troglodytes. "Internecine Ability 57; Ineluctable Disintegration."
The squid forms shrieked as their bodies started disintegrating, thousands of tiny particles slowly separating from their bodies, till their screams were curbed as their forms exploded in a cloud of dust and particulate matter. They had been consummately wiped out.
Black fell to his knees in pain, recoiling at the massive internecine spell he had used. But it had been befitting; the troglodytes would not be punished in any milder manner for their carelessness.
"Release the girl," the Empress ordered. She knew there was no time to waste as the Alchemist was waiting on the material plane.
Black reached out an arm as the stasis cover collapsed under his will. He was still holding himself in pain.
A bewildered Tinka blinked rapidly, trying to comprehend her surroundings. No words left her mouth as she looked around the dark chamber she was in, sparsely lit by opalescent multicolored gems studded in the walls that gave her surroundings an eerie feel. She was frightened and shocked at 'just' having been curbed by Will and witnessing two 'aliens', and all those feelings were interlaced with confusion as she saw her best friend's boyfriend writhing about on the floor with apparent pain.
"You girl, have witnessed too much." Tinka turned sideways to see the speaker. An adorable little girl, she noticed, with crystal blue eyes and long golden tresses that touched the ground.
"Don't hurt her." Black called out in the midst of painful agony. The Empress glowered at her Guardian with anger and contempt, but just for a moment. Then she turned her attention back to the intruder.
Tinka suddenly cradled her head in her hands as she felt a piercing pain through her skull. The Empress was expunging her memories.
Rachael led a dazed Tinka back to the recreation room where Aiden was still laughing and joking with his new found friends.
Aiden noticed her arrival and turned towards her.
"What happened?" he asked, with concern over his face, all his laughter and joy abruptly vanishing.
"It was a spider." Rachael explained and immediately Aiden relaxed. It had been some time since Tinka had disappeared.
"Creepy Scary eh?" Aiden asked Tinka, wiggling his eye-brows, smiling.
"Uh?" was all Tinka managed to eke out. She was confounded; she had no idea what was happening. Wasn't she in the restroom or something? And then what happened? Why was there a throbbing pain at the back of her head.
"Are you ok?" Aiden asked with concern once more as he rose up from his chair and headed towards his friend.
"She's fine." Rachael interjected. "Aren't you?"
Tinka hesitated before replying. "Yeah I'm fine." But she knew she was not. Something was wrong. Something had happened back there in the restroom. Something that shocked her to the core. But she could not recapitulate on the happenings. And all she had now was a spitting head ache.
"Listen Aide, I don't feel too well. Can we go back to campus?"
Aiden looked disbelievingly at his friend. What happened to her suddenly? He shrugged as he agreed to leave.
"You servant," a little girl spat out, "seem to be harboring unnecessary human feelings that are clouding your judgment." The Empress was enraged by these amorous feelings that she could sense in her guardians mind. They had surfaced in Black once before, and the consequences had been catastrophic.
Black was kneeling before his Empress, barely recovered from the recoil of his mutually destructive spell. But the anger and disdain he felt at himself overshadowed any physical pain he might have been experiencing. He knew why the Empress has summoned him again after deporting the Alchemist's friend back to the material plane; it had been his earlier outburst to not harm the girl.
"I evidently understand that the girl could not be erased because of her closeness to the Alchemist, and you obviously were apprised of that." The little girl was livid with anger at her guardian.
"And still you opened your wretched mouth to bid me?"
Black hung his head low. He could not gather the courage to look at his ruler.
"Human feelings are nothing but falsifying ephemeral tragedies that certainly seemed to have surfeited my abysmal servant. What have you to say?"
Black raised his head slightly, still not lifting his gaze to the enraged four year old. "Forgive me your Excellency, It shall not happen again."
"Obviously it will not," the Empress stated, her eyes burning with anger. "I shall be keeping a careful vigilance on you as well as on the Alchemist from now on."
"Now can you tell me why you made us leave from there?" an irritated Aiden asked his friend for the umpteenth time. "You totally made a scene out there."
Tinka tried to compose herself. Aiden was being difficult; or was she? She was confused before, but irritated now. Why the hell could she not recall what had happened? She went into the restroom and then whap! Blank. Every time she tried to strain herself to recall what had happened back there, her head starting throbbing painfully. But something was definitely wrong, and there was a feeling inside her stomach which would be difficult to express to Aiden.
"Tinks, what's wrong? Talk to me!"
"Uh, yeah, just seem a little dizzy." Tinka stated, not knowing anything else to say. She was nervously biting her lower lip, trying to sort out things in her mind.
Aiden raised his hands exasperatedly as he neared ascended the acclivity of the yellow bridge from where one could see the ships. He was having no luck here. He had taken Tinka to the old-age home with a partial intention of showing her Will's work so she would do away with any aspersions and feelings of doubt she had for him, however subtle they might be, but things were seemingly back-firing. Looked like that was not working and in fact Tinka had shut him out.
Suddenly Tinka stopped short and started fumbling through the contents of her handbag, rummaging madly through its contents as Aiden stopped beside her giving her a look that asked 'Now what?'
"It's gone!" Tinka squealed. "It's not here!"
"What's not there?" asked Aiden hoping Tinka would not accuse the aged patrons of the retirement home of stealing her money.
"The binoculars. I had them earlier! They should be here!"
"Ok, ok, hang on a second. What binoculars?"
Tinka paused, knowing revealing about the binoculars would divulge classified revenge operation information, but this was not the time for that.
"Listen Aiden, I had a pair of black plastic binoculars I took to the restroom where I applied mascara on it." Aiden stared at his friend as if she had gone mad.
"They were going to be used to play a trick on you. And I had gone to prepare them in the restroom. And now they are gone!"
"What are you trying to say?" Aiden was exasperated and annoyed.
"What I'm trying to say is..," Tinka suddenly stopped. She knew what she wanted to say, and she knew Aiden would hate her for this. But she would have to do this.
"What I'm trying to say is that something happened while I was in there. I clearly remember going into the restroom and preparing the binoculars. And then something happened which I can't remember for the life in me, something bad. And something that threw me off completely."
Aiden was confused now. What was Tinka's point?
"Aiden listen to me; you're gonna hate me for what I am going to say next but I'm gonna say it anyway." Tinka prepared herself, carefully picking her words. "There is something wrong about Will. He's not who he appears to be. There's something hiding behind that semblance of his, and it's not at all good."
Tinka looked sorrowfully at Aiden who had a pained expression on his face. He was speechless and the hurt was raw on his face.
"Listen Aide, I don't want to hurt you but I don't want to see Will hurting you either. I don't know what to say, but I know for certain that something is dead wrong!"
The two stared at each other, standing still on the path of the bridge, each hurt at the other's pain.
"But he said he would always stand by me!" Aiden sputtered finally. He felt all whiny and impaired.
Tinka stepped forward and hugged Aiden who stiffly resisted and kept his hands at his sides.
"Why won't you be happy for me?" Aiden had finally asked the question that had been playing in his mind for over 3 days now. Why would his best friend not be happy for his joy?
"I'm sorry Aide." Tinka finally whispered into his ear. "I don't know what this feeling I have is, but I promise I'll try to understand it and get over these differences with my feelings with Will."
Aiden relaxed into the girl's embrace. He hoped that things would be better in the future and that everyone would get rid of their insecurities.
Aiden sat waiting in the coffee shop he now considered his third home; his first being the frat room and his 'new' second being Will's apartment. But these were the last thoughts in his disconcerted mind. He felt restless and uneasy, unable to understand why things were happening as they were. He had met the greatest guy anyone could have ever known and now other things had placed a leg in his path to happiness, and he had tripped badly over that leg. Why could he not just be happy and stop worrying about things. People would change and adapt automatically, wouldn't they?
"A penny for your thoughts mate!" Aiden looked up, jolted out of his reverie by Scott.
"I don't know anyone who used that line since the 70's," Aiden snorted, trying to make light of his mood.
"Ha ha." Scott said dispassionately as he settled down into the chair beside Aiden. "So here's the PCB layout for the motor circuit, and I think you'll find it easy to understand now."
Aiden took the sheet of paper from Scott's hand and glanced at the circuit. 'Yep, it's a partial circuit' Aiden thought to himself. 'Scott really wants me to understand it in parts before I assemble these components'.
"So why such a glum face?" Scott asked.
Aiden took a deep breath. He had been distressed since the morning, and getting anxious about everything was becoming his second nature. He glanced at Scott who looked so hunky and so sincere. Should he have met Scott first? "Bah! Don't flatter yourself' he rebuked his mind. 'Just because he's bothered about me does not mean he's interested in me, and on top of that he has to be straight'.
"So what's going on in your mind?" Scott asked. White wanted more than anything to enter the boy's mind. This gracious youth who looked so distressed despite him trying to hide it. No soul should be given the right to worry this boy. It would be easy to dive into the boy's mind and soothe it. He would also easily understand what was bothering him. But he had pledged to not infiltrate the boy's thoughts.
"You know when things seem perfect and then something small like a feeling comes along and totally wrecks your mind?" Aiden stated.
"Yeah." Scott nodded. He had no idea what the vague words Aiden used referred to. Patience would get him the answer.
"Well I really really like this person but things seem strewn with uncertainties; all of which are only playing around in my head."
Will nodded once more, waiting for Aiden to continue.
"I mean this person is the most awesome one I've ever met, I can never be luckier than to have this person."
Will acknowledged Aiden's statement. He could obviously see the usage of 'a person' other than a 'he'. Why did humans try to hide all their feelings?
"And instead of celebrating and reveling the relationship, all I'm doing is worrying about inane things which I don't know a damn about. Why the hell do I have to be so screwed up?"
Aiden stared at Scott waiting for a reply. He had just blurted out nonsensical things to Scott, who probably thought he was nuts by now. Aiden stared at Scott's face while waiting for his reply. The man looked absolute fireworks; the great face structure, the awesomely blue eyes, the golden blonde hair. Why the hell was this guy just an instructor who dealt in electronic circuits? Wasn't that for geeky guys like himself?
"Aiden, I don't fully comprehend your problem," Scott started, "But I can tell you certain things I've learnt. Your worrying incessantly, your being happy, your being sad; all of it is just a state of mind. Whatever happens around you, it's ultimately you who decides how you are going to react, and how happy or unhappy you are going to be."
"Apart from that, it seems you're with an incredible person. A person who would be very easy for you to fall in love with, and yet you are being held back by your own insecurities. If you really like this person in your heart, you should completely surrender, and with a person like you, I'm sure anyone would be more than willing to return the affection."
Aiden stared at Scott with warmth in his eyes. Everything Scott had said somehow applied to him. How could Scott be so wise and affable?
"Besides, I'm sure he's a remarkable person." Scott stated.
Aiden jerked up. "Er, who's remarkable?"
White immediately realized the revelation he had inducted in his speech by using a 'he'. There was no way out of this now.
"The guy you're falling for Aiden, I'm sure he'll be good for you."
Aiden was shocked. Was he that easy to read? It must be all the staring and gazing he had subjected Scott to. 'No wonder he thinks you're gay' he thought to himself. But Scott appeared to be taking it comfortably in stride.
"You don't mind th "
"Of course I don't mind Aiden," Scott cut him off. "And I also know that any guy would be extremely lucky to have you."
The pair was interrupted by Brian, as Aiden had got to know the young waiter that always served him and had been eyeing him and Will before. Aiden had gotten a tad friendly with the boy.
The young waiter took their orders and stooped down to whisper into Aiden's ears. "How come you get the hottest guys on the planet?"
Aiden smiled at Brian. "And the looks are not even the best part of them you know."
Brian sighed before leaving to get the two their orders. He would never understand Aiden and his 'boyfriends'.
"Ahem!" Scott coughed as Aiden diverted his attention back to his companion.
Aiden smiled goofily at Scott. He realized that Scott was a person he would want by his side forever, even as a friend. And he was sure that nothing would get in his and Will's way now. He was going to pour everything he had in him, into being with Will.
"Thanks Scott. I mean thanks a lot. Your words really make a difference."
"No no, I'm glad if I could be of any help."
The two sat smiling at each other, Aiden happy that he had not only found a great lover but also a great friend and White taking joy in the fact that he could do away with the Alchemists worries by just using his words.
The pair was distracted as someone crept close to White. Aiden looked with a puzzled expression as a timid old lady, totally crouched into herself came up to Scott.
"An angel!" the lady cried as she put both her wrinkled hands on White's cheeks and lightly stroked them.
"Uhh.." White uttered knowing what was happening. This aged human lady could see his true form.
"A beautiful golden angel." The lady reiterated. Aiden reached out his hand to stop the lady, then realized that Scott was not discomfited and the lady looked way too old, with her face skin wrinkled like parchment paper, to be interrupted.
"Why doesn't the angel spread his wings and fly?" the lady asked in a sad manner as she leaned closer and embraced White in her arms.
Aiden watched smiling, finding it amusing that Scott was being compared to an angel. He did not understand the significance of the old lady's words.
Aiden nervously stopped outside the black glass door and contemplated what he was doing.
"This is it, he told himself. I have to do this." He tried to push the door open but it would not budge. 'So it's really not a shop kind of place anymore' he thought to himself as he knocked. Even the sign outside that read 'Horoscopus - Fortune Telling' was gone, and he was back there though he was not sure what he was doing.
The door swung open as the Japanese girl that had scared Aiden earlier, opened the door, and he once again noticed how pale white her complexion was.
"Oh," She uttered, clearly surprised to see Aiden. "It's you."
"Yeah it's me." Aiden replied, not sure of whether his trip here was a bad idea.
"Listen if you've come to talk about the other day, I'm really sorry but I was an ass that day, I didn't mean to "
"No, no, it's not a problem. I can understand," Aiden cut her off. Then he swung his hand forward to reveal a bouquet of a dozen white lilies he had been holding behind his back.
"I, err, got some flowers."
The girl stared wide eyed and then looked at the flowers and then back at Aiden's face, speechless. Aiden extended the flowers towards her.
"Thank you." She replied as she took them.
"Just my condolences for your mother; I can fathom what you must be going through now."
The girl and Aiden stared awkwardly at each other for a few moments.
"I'll be going then." Aiden finally stated as he turned to leave.
"Listen," the girl called out. "I don't know what your name is, but this means a lot to me."
"Uh, no big deal. I just felt I owed you at least this much."
"And, uh." The girl hesitated. "Be careful."
Aiden smiled and nodded as he walked away. He had a warm feeling in his heart that told him he had just done a good thing.
"Yeah I'll be there in 30 minutes!" Aiden yelled into his phone before he disconnected the call and hastily started stripping his clothes. Steve was already at 'Escape' and was demanding Aiden get there fast. Escape was an amusement park, replete with rides and roller coasters and quaint food stalls and games. It had been Steve's idea to go there with Aiden, and with Will. Aiden was excited that Steve was finally going to meet his boyfriend. He quickly ran through the things in his cupboard, unsure of what to wear.
"Dammit, there's nothing to wear!" he cursed. He had been wearing his best clothes everyday, along with some of Steve's and had run out of good habiliments. "Will have to repeat this." He said as he pulled out a pair of jeans and a sweatshirt. He craned his neck from where he was standing covered by the door of the cupboard as the door swung open.
"Hi Jase." He called out as Jason entered.
"Hi." Jason said barely audibly without glancing at his roommate.
Aiden had been getting the feeling that Jason had somehow come to know about his sexuality since the past few days and was avoiding him since then. Jason would never come to the room when Aiden was there and would evade him in the college corridors. Or it could be just Aiden's overactive imagination. He hoped the latter was true.
"Hey Jason, Me, Steve and Will are going to 'Escape.' You wanna join us?"
"No, I gotta go."
"You could get Aditi along," Aiden advised as he stepped towards his roommate. Aiden had only his underwear on and he noticed Jason stepping backwards as he stepped closer. Being roommates, they had never been modest before.
"NO!" Jason cried out suddenly. "I gotta go." And with that he hastily exited the room with a basketball under his arm which Aiden realized he had come to collect. Aiden stood there dumbfounded.
Aiden and Steve stood watching as Will took position and pulled his hand backwards, carefully aiming with the red painted tennis ball. With one swift motion he hurled the ball towards the target and smacked it bang in the centre.
"Bull's eye!" he yelled as the stall owner handed him over a pink teddy bear as his prize, glaring at him to give him an idea that this stall was meant for people much younger than him. Will took the proffered soft toy and made his way towards where Aiden and Steve were watching, leaning against a railing.
"Here, this if for you." Will handed over the fluff pink toy to his lover, smiling cheekily.
"What the hell am I gonna do with that?" Aiden asked indignantly as Steve burst out into peals of laughter.
"I dunno." Will replied innocently. "You could decorate your frat room or something with it."
Aiden humphed and pushed the teddy bear back into Will's hands, storming off to the stall where his boyfriend had 'won' him a teddy bear. He handed over a token to the irate vendor and took the 3 balls offered. 2 missed shots later he finally hit the mark and knocked down the target.
"Here! Your prize." The vendor scowled at Aiden as he handed over yet another pink fluffy teddy bear to a winner. The stall was intended for a much younger crowd. Aiden collected his 'hard earned' reward and strode towards his waiting friends purposefully, where Will was trying his best to put on a frown as Steve laughed maniacally.
"Here, this is for you!" Aiden reiterated with triumph on his face.
"And what am I supposed to do with that?"
"I don't know, put it into your car or something; I guess black Lambos and pink teddy bears look good together."
Will was not one to admit defeat. He purposefully walked back up to the game stall and handed over one more token to the stall owner, who was glowering at him with burning eyes this time. Will took the three red tennis balls and assumed his position to aim.
"This is for that one!" he called out to Aiden, pointing to a massive 4 foot tall pink teddy bear with a sign under it stating it as the grand prize. Will would be required to knock down targets on all three shots to win it.
Three glorious throws later Will returned to his mates with a colossal pink bear; Aiden scowling and Steve holding his sides with laughter.
"Well thank you!" Aiden stated angrily as he took the large teddy bear. "This is gonna be my new boy friend!"
"Oh no he's not! I'll whip his ass if he tries to be!"
And with that the trio burst out guffawing like a pack of hyenas, each laughing till their sides hurt. The stall owner was cursing the two pink teddy bear winners as the teddy bears were pushed onto Steve who handed them over to an excited 6 year old girl. The girl screamed with joy as her parents allowed her to accept the pink fluffy bear family.
"So where should we have dinner?" Will asked as the three finally restrained their laughter.
"Oh there's a diner just outside the main entrance where 'lots of grease' comes at no extra price," Steve interjected. "Scott will be joining us there."
Aiden looked questioningly at his roommate. "You called Scott?"
"Yeah Scott, the same Scott who played tennis with you the other day."
"Of course I know Scott!" Aiden replied. "He also happens to be my robotics guide, but when did you meet him?"
"Oh, he plays tennis with me in the mornings, now that you never have time for a game." Steve leaned in and whispered in Aiden's ear, "And he's always asking on and on about you. I think he's in love with you or something."
Will cleared his throat as Steve pulled away from Aiden who stood there with a confused expression on his face. Black could discern what was going on and knew all that had been discussed; he was not at all pleased. He knew of the Alchemist's fidelity but could not contemplate anyone else even touching his lover.
"Ok fine!" Aiden stated. "Let's go there and meet Scott then."
Aiden thought about how this would be the first time the two alpha males, Scott and Will, would be meeting each other; finding it a bit amusing for no particular reason. So Scott would meet his lover finally, and just when he had informed him about Will. This would be an interesting meeting to witness. His thoughts shifted to how Scott learned that he was gay and had been completely supportive; and how contrary it was to Jason's behavior after his roommate probably learned about him. He would have to inform Steve about both these cases later.
A few minutes later the three settled down into the uncomfortable wooden chairs of the diner Steve had mentioned. Aiden glanced at the prices in the menu happy that at least things were affordable here, he had been splurging too much money with Will nowadays and would never let Will pay for him anywhere. His self respect was burning a large hole in his pocket.
Will barely took part in the conversation while they waited for Scott and ordered a few appetizers. He was distressed. He felt restless, saturated with jealousy though Aiden's mind assured him that there was no need to be. Who was this man that could prove a match for the mighty dark angel Arangyunus? He would tear this man apart if he ever lay a finger on his 'Aiden'.
Suddenly Black started feeling uneasy. He was sick with jealousy, he knew that. But there was some sort of other overwhelming feeling that was making him queasy. And it was getting stronger. No, this was not an emotion. It was something else. It was a powerful spirit force that was clashing with his own, and it was coming towards them. Something was drastically wrong.
"Ah there's Scott!" Steve stated as he yelled and waved a hand to direct Scott there.
Black swirled around, partly dazed by the proximity of this oppugning spirit force. And their eyes met.
The two arch rivals Black and White stared at each other, their faces enraged and black as thunder.
Well hope this episode was enjoyable. I know I'm leaving you at a really steep point (call me a sadist if you want to) but I'll be back after my exam. Don't forget to mail and tell me how you liked or disliked this part.