[jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

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[jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by padfoot; » Thu Nov 09, 2017 5:57 am

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He'd been pretty lucky, in retrospect. Being attacked by a vampire usually ended in a human's death-whether it was because they were turned into a vampire and became one of the undead or because they were sucked dry for an evening meal, so to speak. He'd been warned about the darker things in the world. It was one of those things his father and mother spoke about in hushed tones, not to be talked about in public, when he was a child. But that was a long time ago and now it seemed like only those privileged even knew about it at all.

As it was, he'd spent most of his life far, far away from any of it. He lived in New Orleans as an adult but he'd traveled most of his childhood, never staying in one place. He'd lived in France, Russia, Australia, Italy, and most places in the US for some time. It wasn't until he was old enough to travel on his own, after he no longer lived with his parents, that he stepped foot into the 'night life'. It had been easy, though. He'd always had an innate darkness. His parents had treated cautiously, keeping him at arm's reach more often than not. He'd never had that many friends, aside from a select few, while growing up. And now, old enough to see just how dark both the human and non-human world really were, he barely made connections unless it had to do with money or his own dark interests.

He'd always had a lot of money; so it was easy to use it as a way of communication. And working as a bookstore owner meant he didn't necessarily have to put up with any of the posh people he'd grown up around. Of course, taking care of old scripts and texts, not at all like what they sold in the public library, still meant he got an array of rich customers. But whoever actually wanted to read or buy any of the books or collections that was on the pricey side wasn't exactly trying to find some light reading before bed. Maybe trying to raise the dead, more like.

Nevertheless, he usually didn't mind his job. Even if it kept him up late at night, making it so he had to walk past the lively streets of New Orleans to get home. He could probably use one of his cars, but quite honestly, it seemed like a waste. It wasn't like he'd bought them to show off; at least not when he was bone tired from work all day. As he walked, he scanned the crowd, easily picking out who was human and who was not.

He'd been attacked at 16 years old and spent two weeks bed ridden, with no idea if he was going to become a monster or not before he'd be diagnosed as some sort of mutant. Apparently, according to the expensive and knowledgeable doctors his parents made him see, his blood just happened to be uniquely able to fight off most of the venom that turned a human into one of the creatures of the night, but not without some side affects. He could sense the supernatural just like most vampires, craved blood as if it were his favorite dessert but not a necessity. And the sun didn't exactly feel very nice but it didn't burn him. Crosses, thankfully, and other religious paraphernalia did nothing. And any nonsense about having to be invited in was all just myths and childish stories.

---

He was six feet exactly, standing straight, and his shoulders looked a tad wider now that he wasn't hunched into himself. One thing anyone sane hated was waking up early, but for a mutated vampire-human, it was doubly so. He fought through the feeling of wanting to stay inside and went to the store early that morning, before sun up. He was sure his regular customers would start coming in with just enough time to re shelf the new stock that had been dropped off. Matheo's shoulders relaxed by the time the streets started bustling with morning people and he settled into the comfortable routine of working at the bookshop on a Saturday morning. Boring, some might think, but he appreciated books more than people, any day. He'd crafted his life around the idea and he was well settled into it.
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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by TheJadedFeather » Thu Nov 09, 2017 6:32 am

Ava tried to bite down her giggle thanks to the podcast she was playing on her phone, as she browsed through the new stock of "Codex Seraphinianus" bookstore; she still couldn't get over the name.

The place was worse than her childhood library in terms of socially instilled quietness but nevertheless, she couldn't pass up the insane deals the place sold, so she did her best to not attract attention.

Still, it wasn't as if she acted like she wanted to attract attention. Even if she was taller than most, at nearly six feet, she looked like every liberal arts beleagured college student, complete with hipster glasses, a pixie cut, and a colorful scarf.

And as a perpetually tired college student, she would have normally been sleeping in at this very moment, considering it was a Saturday morning. However, instead she got up, stopped by the nearest Starbucks (sue her, she liked pumpkin spice) before stepping into this quiet little world of books; finals had been killing her, and now that they were over, she wanted to spend her Saturday just reading whatever of the new stock had caught her eye.
I think there's a flaw in my code...
These voices, they won't leave me alone Well, my heart is gold and my hands are cold.

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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by padfoot; » Thu Nov 09, 2017 7:14 pm

He was used to her, but it didn't mean he was OK with her ruining his peace and quiet all the time. He couldn't help it. There was a very, very small nook in the corner of the shop for those that wanted to read quietly. Quietly being the operative word. He sold books-he wasn't a library, where people could hang out. That was what the Starbucks was for, wasn't it? Maybe he was missing some chance to make money by being so strict but the place was making good enough business that he could enforce it just fine. It was more important to not have people be rude and loud in the place than to make more money. If you gave someone a hand, they'd want an entire arm.

That said, Ava hadn't done that, yet. For the most part she was quiet and that was one of the only reasons why he tolerated her. And she clearly appreciated books-she was a welcome buyer any day, for that reason.

He was having a restless morning, though, and when one of her giggles finally escaped her, Matheo sent a glare in her direction. She wasn't looking towards him though so he sighed to himself. Brushing his hair back, he grabbed a small box of books, and came over to her. He dropped the box in front of the only empty shelf, next to her feet. When that got her attention, he quirked an eyebrow at her.
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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by TheJadedFeather » Thu Nov 09, 2017 7:29 pm

Ava nearly jumped out of her skin at the loud "BOOM!" sounding right beside her feet, almost squeaking in surprise. What the heck?! she thought.

Looking towards the sound's source, she saw the book store's owner, Mattheos, looking right back at her - with rather unhappy eyes; whoops.

She cleared her throat before apologizing, feeling rather embarrassed. Taking a headphone out one ear, she gestured with it and awkwardly muttered, "Just the podcast," before she went back to looking at the line of books shelved in front of her. Unfortunately, her concentration was shot after the entire commotion, so the previous enticing line of books looked rather unnappealing. She simply now just wished she stayed at home.
I think there's a flaw in my code...
These voices, they won't leave me alone Well, my heart is gold and my hands are cold.

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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by padfoot; » Thu Nov 09, 2017 9:16 pm

Her reaction made him hold back a chuckle of amusement. "Didn't mean to startle you," he said, before kneeling next to the box, sitting back against his heels. He wasn't wholly impolite to customers.

He separated the books in the box, by both genre and author. Then he sorted them alphabetically as well. "Any plans for the weekend?" He asked, tilt of his voice curious. It was a long weekend, after all, and he wasn't entirely sure if she was the sort of college student to take advantage of it to do more than usual.
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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by TheJadedFeather » Thu Nov 09, 2017 9:27 pm

Ava looked back at him in surprise. Part of her was surprised Mattheos was talking to her, as he was a pretty quiet guy. Still, nothing interesting had her caught her eye up to that point, so it wasn't like a bit of conversation was going to annoy her.

So, leaning lightly on the bookshelf, she shrugged as she readjusted her glasses. "Not really," she admitted. "All of my friends don't live nearby, and even if they did, we'd mainly just sit around and binge watch some shows. In fact, if I don't find anything here, I'll probably do just that when I get home - need to catch up on the new season of Stranger Things, anyways."
I think there's a flaw in my code...
These voices, they won't leave me alone Well, my heart is gold and my hands are cold.

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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by padfoot; » Thu Nov 09, 2017 9:36 pm

And this is where conversation got a little tricky. He looked young, of course, but he aged much slower than humans. Perhaps not at the nonexistent rate vampires did but there was a noticeable difference.

"Ah." He couldn't quite manage to get interested in television except some popular news channels when he needed an update on local news. He usually just read books or used the internet (but not for shows/movies).

It was good news to hear that she had no plans, however.

"That sounds awfully boring," he admitted, but gave her a teasing look to go with it, so she didn't feel offended. "No family here either, I take it?" He was confident about it but it didn't hurt to make sure. He liked things to keep from getting messy.
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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by TheJadedFeather » Thu Nov 09, 2017 9:49 pm

Ava shook her head. "No, I'm studying out-of-state. Hah, thank god for it too..."

Ava then stammered, trying to save face. "I-I mean, I love my parents! But... I just wanted to live on my own for a while, y'know? Be independent or something like that," she said.

"And frankly, I don't need much to be happy. Like you said, what sounds like a 'awfully boring night' doesn't sound so bad to me. Now, if someone dragged me to a nightclub, that would be a bad night," she joked around.
I think there's a flaw in my code...
These voices, they won't leave me alone Well, my heart is gold and my hands are cold.

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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by padfoot; » Fri Nov 10, 2017 12:40 am

He didn't seem to even notice her blunder, if his expression was any indication. Whether she hated her parents or not was of no concern to him as long as no one would be missing her nearby.

"Gotcha." He slipped another two books on their proper place on the shelf. His lips twitched at her joke and he glanced in her direction.

"Not a patron of The Axe, I take it?" He teased, speaking of a club a block or two away. Generally it opened just as he was closing for the night. "It's not my scene either. I much prefer to stay in. Though I don't watch TV shows like you do." He turned back to the shelf. It was probably the most he'd talked in her presence ever.
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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by TheJadedFeather » Fri Nov 10, 2017 4:27 am

Ava's face scrunched up and she shook her head at the sound of The Axe; nevertheless, she did suppose the name was rather ironic, considering she'd walk about in such a place like a headless chicken.

She then shrugged at him admitting to not be much into TV shows. "I do stuff other than just watch TV. Read, cook, bake, all sorts of things. I'm kinda a jack of all trades."

Taking a glance onto one of the higher shelves, she then gasped. "Oh my god, is that...?" she spoke, as she moved forward to pull the book who's title must be decieving her eyes. "It is!" she gleefully exclaimed, as she clearly read the book's cover and title displayed in her hands. "Elric of Melniboné! I've been having my eye out for this for forever, ever since my friend Ori recommended it to me..." Mattheos subsequent expression compelled Ava to explain.

"It's by Michael Moorcock, involving... well, a lot. In fact, this book sort of kick-started the dark fantasy genre. The first book especially sounded fascinating to me, as I really like world-building and the first book really covered that, particularly with the Melnibonéans. They're a race of people who are very decadent and hedonistic, but extremely sadisitic as well, as they get most of their entertainment from torture. Actually, if I remember right, I think Ori told me they had set up a specific kind of torture where a slave would scream at a particular note constantly, and would then arrange multiple slaves to scream at different notes, so as to form some sort of screaming symphony..." Ava rambled on before she realized she probably like she sounded like a crazy person, sounding so fascinated with such a dark, cruel culture.

She cleared her throat. "So, yeah! Pretty dark stuff. Still, it's amazing you have such a nice edition, this one in particular. Guess I found what I'm spending the rest of my afternoon doing," she bashfully said.
I think there's a flaw in my code...
These voices, they won't leave me alone Well, my heart is gold and my hands are cold.

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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by padfoot; » Sat Nov 11, 2017 9:34 pm

The sudden squeal made Matheo sit back, eyebrows rising in surprise. He looked at what all the fuss was about and gave her a questioning look at the name before going back to the bookshelf. He knew what she was talking about but he wondered what he would say. He could, at least, empathize with what it felt like to find a book. That didn't much bridge the gap of how disconnected he felt from most humans, though.

To say that he was amused at her choice of book was an understatement. He'd read parts of the series before himself, as he did with most books he sold at the shop, to veto them. He already knew her tastes from other books she'd bought in the past and he had to admit it was ironic that she spoke with so much interest about torture. She had yet to come to know what real torture was.

"I'm familiar with some parts of it," he said, with a shrug. "Not everyone's taste, though, so I didn't buy the entire thing yet." He gave her a blatant once over. "But if you intend on reading them, I suppose I can arrange a shipment."
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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by TheJadedFeather » Wed Nov 15, 2017 6:02 pm

"Wait, seriously?! That'd be amazing!" Ava exclaimed. "Although, I guess it wouldn't be too unusual. You have a amazing selection here. In fact, I've found some of my favorite series thanks to this book store. Thanks, Mattheos."

Ava then opened the book, skim reading the introduction, feeling the book out. She bit her lip in excitement, she couldn't wait to sit in the corner of the shop and dive right in.
I think there's a flaw in my code...
These voices, they won't leave me alone Well, my heart is gold and my hands are cold.

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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by padfoot; » Thu Nov 16, 2017 6:42 am

"It's not a problem." She was a regular customer after all. He knew she was good for it at least and he wouldn't be wasting money on too many copies unless it got popular with other customers as well. But one copy sold was all well and good too.

"I suppose I should let you get into reading," he remarked, moving to shove the last book into the shelf, and got up on his feet with the box against his side.
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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by TheJadedFeather » Thu Nov 16, 2017 9:10 pm

"Yeah," Ava said, as she closed the book. She looked up, and Mattheos was already walking away. Hmm... nice guy, she absently thought, before moving over to the nook of the bookstore, flipping to her reading playlist on Spotify, and diving right in.

By the time she stretched and silently yawned in her armchair, she had finally notices that the sunlight's angle from the window had significantly changed - it was nearly the end of the day. Woah, how did it get so late already? she wondered.
I think there's a flaw in my code...
These voices, they won't leave me alone Well, my heart is gold and my hands are cold.

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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by padfoot; » Thu Nov 23, 2017 1:05 am

After that, a few customers came and went, but it was mostly a slow day. Matheos was used to the differences in routine depending on the customers he had any given time so it wouldn't be surprising to know that he'd picked up a book to read eventually. Some of his clients, however, didn't browse the shelves where Ava had been known to visit. Instead, they were pointed towards the door near his desk, with no particular marks on it explaining what was behind it, and he'd follow along after putting up a sign to wait for him for anyone who happened to arrive.

Usually, these sort of visits were fast. Most people came in with appointments already, interested in getting their books quickly, considering what they might be about. It was illegal to sell some of the books he had in his inventory-mostly because necromancy was illegal in general. Even those naturally gifted with the powers were few and far between, and usually kept quiet for fear of prosecution. Most people just didn't believe it was a real thing. Most of the night life knew about vampires as something you didn't talk about-but if you wanted, you knew exactly where to find one. But most other creatures were kept in the dark as well (pun intended).

Matheo wasn't really interested in making friends with most of the people who came to see his collections and buy but he kept his reputation clean when it came to business. He tended to keep his business and pleasure separate too. Taking prisoners that weren't human wasn't something he did often or lightly. Hell, most of the time he didn't take his human customers either, if he were honest. Ava was just..well, she was cute.

And breaking cute things was always fun.

---

By the time Ava noticed the world around her had kept moving without her, he'd finished all of his appointments for the day, and the last person had left a few minutes ago. Matheo kept his routine, as usual, locking up the back (and fortifying the wards set up), as well as closing the shop up front. He was usually pretty flexible with things but Ava staying late had worked right into his plans. He took a few books from the back he'd been meaning to take home, sliding them all in boxes, and making sure none were out of their protective sleeves, before turning his attention to the human.

"Hey, I'm closing up," he told her, when she looked up from her book and didn't go back to it. "But since you're still here, can you help me with these to my car? Rather not make more than one trip." He nodded towards the boxes he'd filled, biting on the inside of his cheek as he smiled at her.
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Re: [jade]when you scream, it sounds like a lullaby [18+]

Post by TheJadedFeather » Thu Nov 23, 2017 9:34 pm

"Oh, yeah, no problem," Ava said, putting everything away in her messenger bag before following Matheo outside, carrying one of the boxes. She shivered as a cold evening wind passed, the sky quickly darkening, and for some reason Ava felt anxious, almost afraid, which she then felt was... odd.

She hadn't been legitimately scared of the night and darkness since she was six, and had gotten accidently left behind by some friends at the park. Thankfully, she had been cared for by this nice lady and her baby until her parents came to get her; however, she felt pretty dismayed that as soon as her parents had shown up, the lady and her baby were suddenly gone. At the time, it made her feel sad, as she had wanted to thank her. Now, part of her wondered if she just imagined the whole thing; she hoped not.

As they placed the boxes in Matheo's car, Ava suddenly remembered her book and said, "Oh, hey! I still need to pay for this," as she took out Elric of Melniboné from her bag.
I think there's a flaw in my code...
These voices, they won't leave me alone Well, my heart is gold and my hands are cold.

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