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She knew it was wrong. How many times had she told herself that it was utterly and inexplicably wrong? More times than she could count to. Yet there she was, the now slightly flaxen haired Aspect of Magic was standing her ground on venturing off to the city of Georgia. Malva had placed all hands on deck upon deciding that she shall go off to Atlanta to search for any other possible answers she could be provided with, regarding the fall and destruction of their home, Isle of Skye. How could the Russian born woman forget about it? How could any one of them forget on what happened? There was no way she could push it aside without investigating about it. Only, she knew she had to push the matter aside for a while as she got down and resolved other problems on her plate.
But ever since she got back from her unexpected meeting with Ophelia a month ago, she couldn't help but to let her head wander off with so many negative possibilities. Ophelia had told her that she had no idea who the person that gave her the spell was. Another dead end. It was very unfortunate but thankfully due to a large prospect of having many contacts throughout the globe, courtesy of being an Ailward, she managed to get a few small information from one of the diviners residing in Atlanta. It was actually due to Anthony's help, her close friend who was a vampire she met back in the late 16th century. He had a long list of diviner contacts, which somehow the Aspect had found weird, but dismissed it as he did operate an apothecary in Marseille. How could she ever doubt such a friend of hers?
Although she knew better than to inform anyone of where she was going to go, knowing fully well they would insist a few guards accompanying her, if not one or two. Since a few months ago, Tatiana, her personal guard, the one that has been with her since so many years ago, went down their friendship path as the dragon was making it very hard for them. She even went as far as severing their mental bond, rendering the dhampir useless when it comes to sensing the Aspect of Magic as she used to do. That was a story for another time. Now, Malva didn't want anyone to accompany her. Not if she had anything to say about it. This trip was solely a personal one despite it regards their faction and family heavily. But it was her element, so it was her responsibility to get to the bottom of this. Whilst she wasn't at all immune to magic, she was the best at wielding and understanding it out of all her siblings. Malva shoved her spell journal inside the duffel bag as she clasped on her ruby red pendant and wrapped herself in a leather jacket before locking her room.
She had used the ladder from her balcony to get down. Once she has landed gracefully on the patch of green grass, she made her escape through the back gates. The Aspect of Magic had wanted to make her way to Denver so she could catch a flight to Atlanta. She didn't bother to fly there in her dragon form, one because she didn't exactly remember the coordinates on landing anywhere near the site. Two, neither could she portal there since she didn't exactly remember any landmark there. She had other things to pay attention on, so finding where in Atlanta never sufficed. She got inside a car and started the engine. She had centuries worth of sneaking out the island with Tati, so sneaking to the garage to carjack a car wasn't really a problem. Not when getting the key was so easy when she had magic down her sleeves. She recognized the car to be one of the many they had for emergency reasons. A silver Volvo V40. She noticed she hasn't drove in a while, ever since she went on a hiatus as a doctor at the General Hospital of Evermore.
Well, let's just say, she wasn't actually alone. She was about to drive away when she noticed another presence stepping into the passenger seat. "I haven't even set a foot outside the manor yet..Not even out of Evermore, or even the south side of the city and I'm already interrupted.." She didn't even need to face aside to see who the person was. She spent centuries with them, so honestly, it wasn't hard to remember who's who.
Aurelia was the guard that would do what need to be done in the manor, with the majority of the guards being light species, things didn’t come as easily as they did to her. She was always ready for a fight, quick to anger and with well over a century under her belt she had a high body count, though she had been through countless battles and wars now. With all that fight it wasn’t to say Rei was cold, when you first met the Russian you would either notice the pain behind her eyes and get to know her, or you would run the other way. There was rarely an in between, but a lot of people chose to run the other way when it came to her. She figured her external kept the weak away.
Becoming a guard put her skills to good use and she found a home among the family she had thought she had lost, even though she felt like she lost her way more times than not. She pushed through the times and worked from being a guard to being head trainer to the guards along with Argents personal guard which was not something she saw coming. They are literally on opposite ends of the scale. Aurelia had more in common with Ery the aspect of death then she did Argent and yet the two worked in harmony, as if they were meant to be the others yin and yang.
Years past with the aspects and Rei had come to have a pretty good grasp of the aspects and the mannerisms. When Argent was upset she would lock herself away in the library in order to bury herself in books in other worlds. Ery would drink himself and brood in his room, so on. Malva when she had a plan to do something and it wasn’t a spur of the moment kind of thing would slowly withdraw from the guards and family wouldn’t notice. Most didn’t but Aurelia did, since Tatiana and Malva were not on the best of terms Aurelia had began to keep a watchful eye over her, since Argent was busy with other things that kept her in the manor lately.
So when Aurelia heard the latch lock to Malva room down the hall then the grunt of her climbing out of her window, Aurelia could only roll her eyes. Her sneaking out had not gotten any better then when she use to do it with Tatiana before. Aurelia was quick running to her room picking up her go bag and then moved through the house dropping a text to Argent as she entered the garage and was there opening the door to the Volvo sliding into the passenger seat tossing her bag into the back seat and looked to Malva.
“I know when you are about to go off on an adventure and you know me. I refuse to miss out on all the fun.” She said as she settled into the seat “The deal is I go with you. Or I can drag you back into the house and let one of your sisters and brothers figure out what is going on with you. You have become withdrawn, and since you cut your link to Tatiana it has only caused more worry then it should.” She said simply and crossed her legs “Beside I could use a vacation after almost dying on the last mission you sent me on with Tatiana.” She chuckled and then looked to her. “I won’t ask questions, just drive and we can play iSpy or something.”
Leaning against the driver's seat, the slightly flaxen haired Aspect of Magic grumbled in distress as Aurelia occupied the passenger seat next to her. The problem was because she could not shrug her off no matter how badly she wished she could. It's Aurelia, for Gods sake. Placing a hand on the steering wheel, she turned to her side slightly to face the blonde vampire. "It's not even going to be fun, dear Rei, love. It'll probably fill your head with so many impending disasters that I'm sure you'd love to avoid. Trust me." Okay, it wasn't usual for Malva to ask others to trust her so much in the last minute ordeal. She was desperate to shake her off her tail but it was Aurelia, not anyone else. Unfortunately, Tatiana's mother knew the relationship between them were slowly deteriorating, no thanks to Malva.
The Aspect was quick to dismiss the latter option where she would be dragged back to the manor and be left at the mercy of her siblings. "Yeah..not a chance there." She retorted, running her fingers through her locks as she lets out a heaved and defeated sigh. "Fine, tag along if you want, Rei. But don't say I do not warn you it's going to be a boring journey." It wasn't as if there was anything that she could do about it other than let things unfold as it was supposed to. With hopes, nothing would be jeopardizing it because the information she was tracking down was highly vital to the Aspect of Magic. When the vampire guard talked about her recent withdrawn behavior towards everyone, she bit her bottom lip and shrugged absentmindedly. "There's nothing to talk about it, Rei. I'm a bit busy is all.. And I need time away, not that you're giving me much of a choice to explore through."
Starting the engine, she drove them out of the compound and away from the south side of the city as the speed increases. Tapping her fingers against the steering wheel, the Russian born woman pursed her lips lightly before glancing over to her. "I think she's better off without me. The bond will only bring her down whenever I have my mood swings.. you know my pattern. There's always a viable option when it comes to me withdrawing myself away from everyone. Until I get to the bottom of this, I can't be distracted and I have plenty to distract me right now. It's almost overwhelming." Malva was sure Aurelia, out of everyone, knew how conflicted the witch felt. To everyone, she might look like it, but deep down, Malva Ailward was still so much that resembles a teenager who is still struggling in her young adult years despite being over 1290 years old already,
"We're not playing iSpy for sure. I hate that game. And please- you're exaggerating it. It was only a retrieving mission. Wasn't my fault your daughter triggered the flaming temper in a second degree century old witch."
Aurelia watched as the aspect turned to face her and knew she was going to do her best to get her to move out of the seat she had planted herself in. The blonde smirked softly and let out a faint chuckle. “One I bring the party everywhere I god dear Mally.” She settled in and pulled the seat belt around her and smirked “Two do you not think I already have my head filled with those kind of thoughts already. Which is why I am in this car when you thought you could sneak out and no one would notice.” She leaned her head to the side and sighed heavily “It is either I go with you and watch your back or I go and get Tatiana.” She said in a soft threat knowing that was the only way she would agree willingly to let her tag along.
Though sometimes threatening the aspects with their siblings tended to get the job done just as well which in this case seemed to be the best option which made Rei settle back into the seat at the small victory. “Boring journeys are the best as they are the ones I can get caught up on my beauty sleep.” She chuckled softly as she clicked her seat to lean back slightly and adjusted the sunring on her finger that argent made her all those years ago. Aurelia rolled her eyes slightly at the response from the Aspect of magic. “That is bullshit and we both know it, but you don’t wanna talk about it fine I get it. But if its a long ride I will be right here to talk about it.” She placed and arm behind her head looking to her “I swear all of you aspects can’t lie worth shit.” she chuckled slightly. “Good thing you live the missions up to the guards mostly.”
Aurelia looked to Mal and sighed softly “You both were good for each other, but I am not going to question your motive for breaking the body Malva, you had your reasons, even if you are not ready to share them just yet.” The vampire said being someone who had broken many bonds in the past. “Just know you are going to have to take steps to repair what has been broken if you want to salvage it in the future. I know from experience.” she said softly being one of the most emotional guards around the Manor. She learned to channel that emotion to make herself a better guard and worked on train the younger guards to do the same. Many in the manor had taken up calling her Mama vamp, it was a nickname she had kind grown proud of even it she would act like she hated it.
Aurelia pulled down her shirt where it revealed the scar in the center of her breast “I don’t exaggerate. I was on bed rest for a month. Let me turn you into a vampire and almost stake you into your heart and daystar flooded into your system.” the vampire grumbled back to the aspect as she remembered saving her daughter while the mission was a set up to get the guards to reveal the aspects new location. “There was a lot more to that mission then a witch.” She said lowly as she closed her shirt looking out that window “I believe there is an upraise happening Mal, and one that very well could be attempting to take out the Aspects and bring chaos if we are not careful.” she said softly to her.
When is dealing with an Ivakov ever easy? Never, that's the answer. Malva stopped trying to pry the vampire guard off, knowing fully well she wasn't exactly going to take no for an answer anyways. There was no actual reason to push her off, other than the Aspect of Magic wanting to keep her search for this matter low-key. Surely, she could find some compelling reasons to keep Aurelia's lips sealed from telling anyone else. Placing her hands on the steering wheel, Malva shrugged in response to her answers. It was not as if it was oblivious to the Aspect of Magic. She noticed the differences and the bridge between her relationship and friendship with Tatiana was slowly breaking off, where it would truly be hard to recover and salvage if she continued this useless feud longer.
"I wouldn't have to sneak out if I didn't have to, Rei. It's not just for fun, unfortunately. Seeing as I don't know the concept of fun." The sarcasm dripping in her voice was almost unreal, but seeing as it was Malva, it wasn't really a rare occurrence. "Well, one thing is for certain. We're going to keep that party low because I happen to like finding this information and not lose it again. It's hard enough to sneak about to gain such thing without the approval and knowledge of my brothers, especially Venetus and Aureus. Reus would never let me out the manor if he knew what I was doing, for sure. And Ven..well let's not even start there." Malva was positive her brothers were trying to keep them safe and protected but she couldn't exactly sit back and watch everything unfold from the sidelines, not if some things involved her direct element. She wasn't going to let any other form of magic spiral out of control again, mainly because she was confident she wouldn't be able to control them if Pandora's Box were uncovered.
When she heard Aurelia saying something about them not being able to lie, the purple dragon found herself staring at her lap briefly before averting her eyes back on the road. Was that actually true? She's been in this for a month and a half, no one has noticed? "I'd like to believe we both were good for each other. Tati offered me comfort when I needed them, Rei. Desperately. I was nearly off my rocks long ago, it was a surprise I'm still holding on to my sanity. Dwelling with magic and holding up with them after so long, it's not exactly a healthy job.", she chuckled half-heartily, not knowing whether it was worth holding up to the end of her bargain. "She was always there whenever, I am thankful. But this matter, it's hard for me to disclose it to anyone. What I can tell you guys is that, I'm working on it. Once everything is settled, I'll divulge in all the secretive ones in here. I can't keep them alone, and that's exactly what I've been doing. It's- unhealthy." Oh if Malva had the slightest idea on what's unhealthy, she wouldn't even do this.
When the blonde revealed the past injury, the Aspect of Magic sighed. "I should've known to send more backup to it. Tati wouldn't let me, is one thing. But I underestimated the measure. Magic is always susceptible to everyone, and of course the witch would have alliances being made with other people. For a witch, obtaining daystar wasn't nearly half as difficult as it should be." But when Aurelia brought up the matter of malevolence force thriving on bringing them down from somewhere, she bit her bottom lip and pursed her lips lightly before speaking. "That's honestly why I'm on this trip. Do you really think if it was not important enough, I'd be handling it personally rather than just sending out guards? This is something I can't entrust anyone to do other than me. And not because I don't trust any of you enough to carry it out, it's more to it being my responsibility. I am aware there are other parties who sought out on unraveling chaos and our demise. Taking us out is one big step but it's definitely one step closer to the world's annihilation. Everything could be wrecked and there would be no one trying to fix nor mend it. I am on the road of finding out what spell they used to make sure the Isle fell, first. Like I said, magic is susceptible to everyone. Even us. If they had possession to such access of spells, all they need is an experienced diviner." Although Malva felt a bit responsible on not knowing if there was such rupture in her own element's flow. It was almost impossible for the other party to enact such spell without her noticing the signs earlier on.
Aurelia was one of the few guards in the house that didn’t gossip or tell others things she was told in confidence. She wondered if it was because from her past giving a secret to someone cost her, her nephilim life. So as she settled in watching as the aspect of magic gave up on trying to kick her out of the car. She looked out the window of the car and played with the sun ring Argent gave her when she first became an aspect in order to walk in the sun again and hummed softly. “All I am hearing is why you need a guard with you even more. Listen I am not one to pry you know this. But I have sworn my life to protect you aspects so I figured either me the Aspect who will not ask questions and will just keep you side or…” she nodded her head towards the house. “Keeping you alive will be my concept of fun.” She smirked softly to Mal “After all we both know I am the best guard anyways.”
“You will barely notice me. I swear it.” Aurelia as she looked over to her nodding softly towards the aspect, “Well lucky for you, your brothers are occupied at the moment but we both know that won’t last so it's better if a guard is with you. Who would be willing to lie to them and tell them you planned this mission with their approval that that simply forgot.” Aurelia smiled softly to her trying to provide a air of comfort to the aspect who was clearly on edge slightly. Aurelia was very observant and had notice that things were off with Malva and chose to just watch her not calling her out. Being the aspect of Magic had to take its toll on Malva she was sure there was much more going on then she would let slip from her lips, just like all her siblings. With all the magical artifacts she was looking at lately it felt to Rei she was looking for something important.
All the aspects couldn’t lie when it came to her, she had been with them far to long and saw through them most of the time. About the only two who could get away with it were Reus and Ven and that was more because the two just had an air about them that she tend to know there was a reason for them doing what they were doing. “You are strong Mal, just have moments that your magic is to much for you. You need people like Tati or anyone that can help ground you when you are going through those times.” She said softly looking off to the road “Hell I am surprised I made it so long till I met…” she trailed off slightly forgetting for a brief moment that no one in the manor knew of her certain initia friend yet. “Point is we all need people to keep us off from going off the deep end.” she said softly giving her a smile, giving a soft nod to Mal “Then I won’t ask questions, but I am here to protect you and what not.” She said trying to make her feel comfortable.
The most recent mission Tatiana and Aurelia went on, Aurelia had almost lost her life, since returning she had been far calmer than se use to be. “If it had been Tatiana choice she would have went alone and she would have been murdered. I know my place is not only to protect the aspects but my daughter as well. If I had lost my life it would have been serving my duty.” Long ago she accepted her life would be lost serving the aspects Her eyes moved back out to the road as the aspect spoke and she let out a slight sigh. “I get it, all these magical items are having a part to play in something siring but even if you don’t want the guards helping, you should tell your siblings as you all have to work together to keep a balance.” she said softly “but that is just my opinion, if you wish to know it. You are not one, you are eight.”
As the Aspect of Magic rest her bright blue hues on the blonde vampire that was sitting on the passenger's seat, she shook her head in response before retracing her following to the steering wheel as she decided to keep her eyes directly on the road. Manners maketh man, after all. At least person. So if she wanted to arrive to the airport just in time for her flight and survive the ride with all of her being intact, she's going to have to play by some rules. "I know you won't speak of some details that were not supposed to be spoken of to others. That's not the reason why I tried or, 'attempted' to kick you out from following me, Rei. It's far more than that." Whilst she wished she could let her siblings know about it, she wasn't sure if it was the best option to be dilly-dallying about. It wasn't confirmed yet. She'll wait until she reached a consensus.
Upon hearing her stating she was the best guard, Malva snickered and wondered how that was going to look when her daughter, who was her personal guard, would take to it. "Yeah, normally I might agree to it, but we both know your daughter will kill me and bury me somewhere across the world for no one to find me, if I ever admitted that outright. Either that, or she'll never let me live that one down, which I'm pretty sure the first option was a lot better to take." Drumming her fingers against the steering wheel, she bit her bottom lip and lets out a slight heaved sigh. "I think I don't need to tell you that I've been doing my own very personal research on something that will end up being quite important. But then again, is there anything we Ailwards haven't done that's not supposed to bring any impact or significance to the world? But as far as this goes, it might just be my paranoia acting up again."
It was clear to both woman that Malva wasn't trying to delay the inevitable but was trying to affirm every possible outcome and result to it before taking the next step. "I would prefer if my siblings would not bother to keep themselves updated with my current state of affairs, for now. They have enough of their own to bombard the entire household with, anyways." The Russian born Ailward Aspect wasn't a fool not to notice the sudden changes occurring with some of her siblings. They might not admit it outright, but they didn't have to. Secretly, she knew every single one of them could sense it radiating off them. Malva wondered why they kept a silent tongue about it, but knew it was probably for the best. Speaking of which, maybe a family gathering or meeting is what they needed nowadays.
Chuckling at the thought of being regarded strong, she leaned against the seat and craned her neck to the side before shrugging. "I wouldn't go as far as to say I'm strong, Rei. I'm still very much vulnerable and susceptible to magic itself, it's frustrating. I know I'm prone to mistakes or flaws, but the fact that I wasn't able to gain at least third quarter of what I'm supposed to achieve after all these centuries, that is just mildly depressing. I feel like I'm being played for a fool. Much like a marionette." Everyone knew, when it comes to Malva, she despised so much the slight utterance of being outsmarted. It was mainly due to her history of being an amiable perfectionist. She couldn't stand the thought of being in the dark. Now whilst she was immensely grateful that the vampire would not ask her questions any further about what she was planning, a part of her wanted that part to stay briefly. She needed that.
"Do you ever wonder, if somehow, in a small mild occurrence, you became a variable that started a chain of reaction? If so, what do you think you'll feel about it? Would you feel guilty? Would you do everything in your power to stop it?" It was a weird question to most, but for her, it was a clarification she needed to have before confiding. Malva had to shoulder this burden for a while now, and she was getting really tired.