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It has been at least an hour since she had let her eyes linger on the the red ruby pendant that laid prettily on the table not far off from where she stood. Malva leant against the wall of her room and crossed her arms in contempt. She wasn’t sure what to do with the petty little trinket that she has had in her possession for almost four centuries now. For such a small thing, it held a certain aura to it and it wasn’t at all near pleasantries. It held all the dark energy she harnessed for some particular missions back in the days. Sometimes, in order to best the darkness, was to overtake it using the lesser known method. One it doesn’t expect you to go for. Life did have a tendency at wanting the most twisted for everything.
Shaking her head at her own herself, she grabbed the pendant and tossed it into the drawer before closing it furiously and sat on her bed, her sapphire hues never leaving the mahogany wooden table. It wasn’t as if she could avert her attention so easily without any reason to do so despite giving herself one very solid one. Which was to forget about the past and move ahead in her life. But it’s always easier said than done, per usual. The pendant might look fancy and pretty, but it was gleaming in a very malevolent light. And if there was anything Mal knew from centuries long of dwelling around magic, it’s that she doesn’t go well surrounding herself with so much dark energy as it tempts her.
She pulled out her phone from her pocket and checked the date, which she usually did whenever she got the chance to do so. Speaking of which, she hasn’t been in contact with any single person for the past few weeks. The last person that was seen making contact with the Aspect of Magic was Ophelia Dreyvalian, the Celestial Wayfinder and her former friend. Just by the mention of ‘former’, it made the dragon’s heart ache somewhat. Well, she was quite the sensitive soul, after all. Given that she didn’t have a lot of people that she cared for in her life, she tends to put those she had the chance to care for, on a high pedestal. She wanted to keep a hold of them for as long as she could, as she cherished them deeply. For someone who doesn’t know how long she has to live, it’s very vague and ambiguous for Mal to plan anything ahead for her near future. Which was why, she felt the need to close herself up since it was an easier way of a defense mechanism.
It was then that she realized, she left one person in the dark. With no explanation whatsoever nor a note to go with it. Way to make her feel more guiltier, which was exactly the Russian born woman needed at the moment. She needed a clear head. And of course, a slap of reality. Getting up from her position, she wrapped a scarf around her her as she donned herself with a simple do-over and let her now lighter hair down. Mal made sure to grab her bag with her before she exited her room, but not before she did a quick turn and snatched the ruby pendant that she threw in the drawer earlier, with her as she came down the steps of the stairs. Maybe she should give him a call, but it would be obvious she was visiting. Which was exactly she was going to do, considering how blunt the woman is, she wasn’t really someone to shy away from such extends.
Soon, she arrived in the familiar neighbourhood she came twice before. To see the same person. She hoped nothing befell him but she couldn’t be so sure. Though she did not receive any distress call from the male, she was easily paranoid. She did went off coast for the past few weeks with no warning. For a good reason, fortunately. She got out her phone and dialed the number. "I hope you're home because if not, I might need to update the schedule." She started it off with a playful tone. Inhaling the breeze, Mal took it upon herself to get a few knocks on the door across as she waited for the said person.
Benjamin’s work load had increased drastically in recent days, then there was his helping Giselle with her training so she felt comfortable defensing herself and that didn’t leave a whole lot of time for much else. He had given The Organization a few names of potential recruits along with their personal and military files. The human had also called and left Malva a few messages but it seemed to she didn’t want to talk or be contacted since she hadn’t answered or responded. So maybe their partnership was at an end, he didn’t really know. Nor had there been a massive amount of time for him to contemplate that new information so he just decided to push it to the back of his mind and focus on what he did have control over and could help with. The city was in unrest with the Celestials which made his job more complicated since until the Celestials were officially signed into the peace treaty, the hands of The Organization and himself were a bit tied. They could still render aid and help them but not if it put them at odds with another species, lovely.
Benjamin had spent the better part of the day on the phone explaining that the Celestials weren’t a threat to the city which had already been relayed by Sariah Holloway along with the stance of The Organization on the matter. “The Celestials are just as much a part of this city as every other species, if we have to take action to insure their safety than we will. Peace treaty or not this City was built on the precedence that all are welcome, we aren’t going to make it seem like we’re retracting that.” It was a matter he had so far seen both sides of since Malva had shown him what happened to them upon Ophelia failing to change the past. However that didn’t make the Celestials bad either, it made them a species worth protecting. “No, we not putting a military presence in the Celestial or Ailward territory, are you insane?” Sometimes he questioned if he worked with ideas. “I already explained what’s been allowed and what we’re doing, this conversation is over. You have your orders and you know what will happen should insubordination occur.” As he hung up the phone he rubbed his temples a headache forming.
Checking the clock he decided to change into a pair of sweats and a body contour work out shirt, tying his shoes on his feet he grabbed his headphones, keys and his phone, the case doubling as wallet. Setting it to Pandora and selecting Journey radio he locked up his house before deciding to take a jog around the neighborhood. The sounds of ‘Don’t Stop Believin’ were blaring through his Bluetooth head phones as he sing quietly under his breath as his feet pounded against the pavement of the sidewalk beneath him. For a short time it was easy to just forget about everything else as he ran only focusing on the music and where his feet were carrying him.
After about forty minutes and a thin sheen of sweat later he was headed back home. That and his headphones had died since he had forgotten to charge them up so it was just the sounds of his breathing and the wind that followed him as he made it back to his house to find Malva standing on his door step. “Did I miss a memo or something?” He asked as he grabbed the hem of his shirt and raised it to wipe the sweat from his face. “Was starting to think we weren’t on speaking terms anymore.” He said before pulling the keys from his pocket and unlocking the front door and pushing it open motioning for her to head on in.
Unfortunately her call went straight to voicemail as it appears to be, Malva scrunched up her nose and wore a slight frown that clearly showed her dislike over waiting. She paced in front of the doorstep a few more times until she decided to wait it out. Half an hour then passes where the Aspect of Magic was still standing still. For someone who’s not really that patient, she was behaving quite well. At least it meant he was significant enough for her to wait for, and she didn’t really have much of those people in her life. Tucking her hands into her pocket, she tried to stretch out her limbs just for the sake of doing it. Until a few minutes later, where once again, she did not notice a presence, was heard talking.
She turned around to face the said person and saw that it was the person she wanted to meet today. The owner of the residence she was in. She really needs to stop go off the rails and let herself lounge around the trances, since she might get ambushed so easily if that were to happen. It wasn’t the first time in the week, in fact it’s been a few more where she had the liberty of having Draco reprimanding her about it the last time she was in one. “No, you didn’t miss a memo or anything. I just thought I’d stop by.” She shook her head with a smile. She had a small sheepish grin gracing her features. Judging from the looks of it, he probably just returned back from his office and clearly was looking slightly bothered by something. Centuries worth of reading people because she had nothing better to do obviously sums a lot of things up for the purple dragon.
“So sorry for that. I kind of went off the grid for a while.. I needed to get my mind sorted and remind myself again where my priorities lie. I didn’t realize it took longer than expected, and that I didn’t even give anyone a warning about my well-kept silence that follows next.” Which was true, Malva had a few conflicting problems with herself for the past months and it wasn’t as if she was all better now. Still yet to find a way to work her way around it, but she remembered she had somewhat a partnership with the human. If there was anything she hated the most, it was making promises you can’t keep. So, she can’t find herself in that just as well. It will make her question herself. When he invited her in, she only gave a small nod before following him.
“I saw you leaving me a few calls and messages.. Again, I’m sorry for not replying to it nor give a notice on whatever I was on to. I promise I did not do that deliberately or purposefully. You’re about the third person who’s seen me after I kept myself dormant ever since. To which I realized, I owe you an explanation for disappearing with no trails. It wasn’t as if you could just come waltzing down the manor and ask for me. It was a heavy disadvantage for you.” The Russian born woman took a seat at one of the couches in the living room, as she gave him time to change into something more comfortable, where then she took out a journal from her bag. When he came back, she still had her gaze glued to the journal, but it didn’t stop her from asking him. “You seem distressed.. Trouble at work? Is it because of us?” The moment she said that, she made sure to highlight the word ‘us’, knowing fully well the impending war of dislikes going back and forth between the two most mysterious factions in the eternal city.
When you come from an organisation that literally dedicated their life to guarding the world, you tend to get around a few rumors spreading like wildfire. The tension between the Celestials and Ailwards were never-ending and even she didn’t know what would occur to them. There was no clear resolution to it, yet. But she knew Ophelia does not wish for violence to lay waste in Evermore, especially when they have made themselves known, which means more and more hostile forces are hunting them down again as they speak. And since both factions are residing in Evermore, of course the Organization will take note. “I feel like I’ve given you nothing more than trouble ever since I walked in. For many more days in the future, some forces will pay a visit to this city after knowing the Celestials were roaming around once again. The amount of power they could acquire will only quench the lust and greed surging through their veins. You’ll be forced to take action soon.. I’m sorry for the trouble, I really did not mean for it.” There was one weird thing going about with Malva. In this one single conversation alone, she has apologized over 3 times already, and whilst she might appear somewhat more endearing around Ben, it wasn’t really her to go about apologies so much in one context. Clearly, something is going on.
Benjamin wasn’t angry at Malva or the current situation, he was let down in the fact that she hadn’t reached out to be and had pretty much ignored all form of communication he had attempted to initiate. He understood needing time but usually you let people know so they didn’t assume you got suck into some weird portal or a ticked off lesser witch hadn’t found a way to contain her or something. A lot of thought had gone into multiple reasons for her not responding to him until he had finally settle on the fact that she apparently just didn’t want to. Which was never really the kind of realization a person wanted to come to but as he so often said, it was what it was. “Right you thought you’d just stop by after a month of ignoring calls. Sounds like a great time to do that.” There was a clear bitterness to his tone which was rare and only came out with good reasoning, the sheepish little grin doing little to curb his current mood.
There had been a lot on his mind and a lot of things he wanted to discuss with her and it hadn’t been possible. “Kind of?” He asked with a sandy brow arched up in question not liking the sound of, ‘where my priorities lie.’ Since that wasn’t something you heard often and it usually didn’t bring positive things for the person on the other side of that conversation. “I guess the fact that you didn’t reach out to anyone should make me feel a little better but it really doesn’t.” Since she clearly didn’t understand how human emotions and even friendship and partnerships worked. In France he had felt more than enough out of place and then to come back and pretty much get cut off, that didn’t sit well with him but it was conversation best had inside instead of within the eye and ear shot of neighbors.
“I had a lead on the people who attacked me in his house, but I’m human and not completely insane so didn’t want to follow it alone. Needless to say that lead ran cold. I tried to get to the manor but none of them were too keen on letting me in.” He replied in response to her apology since she should know exactly what she was apologizing for at this point. “Yeah it was a great reminder of exactly how much a disadvantage being human can be, especially when the person you thought had you back, disappears.” It was a really good thing he hadn’t needed her in a life or death sort of situation but he should be used to being let down in life. To keep his temper down he excused himself so he could at least change out of his sweaty clothes. In his bathroom he ran a damp wash cloth over his face and then chest since that was as good as it was going to get at the moment. Pulling on a pair of jeans and reapplying anti-perspirant he pulled a clean shirt from the drawer and pulled it over his head before heading back out to where Malva was sitting. “No, it’s because I took the defense general position in a city of supernatural beings which means there always seems to be something threatening the peace and the city. Guess I kind of signed myself up for it.” Along with taking an oath to follow and to always keep the best interest of the city as a whole in mind.
Honestly Benjamin had no idea what either the Celestials or the Ailwards were thinking, he knew that neither necessarily wanted war but the conflict was brewing and putting most on edge. Plus news of the Celestials was beginning to spread and bring in those who wanted to gain power off of them, it was a mess. The vampires were of course doing their best to protect the Celestials but their hours of being able to run security were limited and The Organization was limited to what it could do since it’s hands were a bit tied. And then of course there was the city council as a whole along with the Privy Council and Ben really needed a drink just thinking about it. “Whether you walked into my office or I just knew you from a file it wouldn’t change what’s happening in the city now. Neither would it change the fact that it’s something I have to find a way to deal with and handle. None of us can survive another war.” She kept apologizing but this was so much bigger than her, the Celestials in themselves were something else entirely the likes of which most of them had never seen. “So…did you come here to apologize or for something else?” He found himself asking absentmindedly crossing his arms over his chest.
It wasn't the first time she's let someone down nor was it the first time she felt the backlash of not being able to sort out her things as she should be able to, so it didn't felt foreign to her. However, she would be lying if she didn't feel a stump in her heart, hearing it from him. She was guessing, it was due to the whirlpool of emotions that struck her everyday in the month. Malva has been experiencing that every night since she came back from her meeting with Ophelia. And even before then, she was slightly struggling with trying to keep it down but it didn't seem like things were working out for her as it didn't cope well. Coming back from Ophelia's, she knew the Wayfinder was right about another force, obviously darker, who wanted the fall of her family. How the spell placed on the Isle of Skye was evident in proving that. The Aspect of Magic didn't like the fact that she wasn't able to recover any trace from the debris and could only conclude, they were playing smart and slow.
If there was anything she knew about witches and wizards, it's that they love to be creative in their works.
That does bring about the worry that settles in her. Another malevolent force is rising from somewhere and Malva did not know where, seeing as it was within her aspect that they are playing with, she needed to get to the bottom of it. But it wasn't easy. So, yes, the Celestials were on the 2nd in the list of her many worries. That was what she's been working on for the past month but what did she worked on before that? Fortunately, it had something to do with her partnership with Benjamin. She found out it was connected with her current problem now. Somewhat.
"I'm not good at these sort of stuff, so I'll say it. By priorities, I mean, I got held up by a few problems. One that is far more bigger than the Celestial matter. I'm sorry for leaving you in the dust but I got held up, and there was nothing I could do about it. You know my duties, my position, what my job description entails me to do. I know I could have send you a simple message about it but I didn't even find my phone until yesterday. But I know I told you before, Ben. That I'm not used to all of this. It's been a while. You're right, clearly I don't know how friendships and partnerships work, because it truly has been a while and I don't need to remind you how old I am and where I stand now." There was slight thread that was building up to what seemed to be agitation. She was already temperamental and though she did not show it to him for many reasons, she was overwhelmed by the train of emotions that she has been battling for a while now.
When he talked about the disadvantage of being human, she felt like a cord went off. "Believe me, I wish to be human more than anything right now. This whole thing going on with my head made me feel like I'm insane. It's lucky enough I'm able to maneuver everything normally as of now. I hope you know why I'm not good at socializing. I didn't close off because it was hard for me neither was it due to defense mechanism solely. Emotions are deprived off me when I use magic, and with me there's endless supply of where that came from. That's why I kept it dormant but now it feels like someone unlocked the Pandora's box. So excuse me if I went off the trails to find myself again. Which by the way, is not working." There it was, the agitation that snapped off. "So I'm sorry for not coming forward because I don't wish to hurt anyone I care about while trying to control myself." She muttered. It was only then that she realized she went off and sighed before covering her face with both her hands.
"None of us can survive another war. Now more hostile forces are making their way here, where so much power lies within and your hands are a little bit tied. I came here to apologize and to inform you I might be going away for a while. A short while. I need to find out who passed down the spell to Ophelia. If I don't, then my entire family will face extinction. But I'm also here to give you whatever information I can regarding our partnership, one I'm sure needs to end soon." Her choice of words weren't pleasant but she couldn't risk more casualties. She's lost enough from the Ailward guards that fell so she can't afford more. She might break one day and considering her element was magic, it was dangerous. She then looked at him straight in the eye, where both of their bright hues clashed together. "Both of us wanted peace and we strive for order in it. But I am willing to do bad things to achieve it. Look at what we did to the Celestials the first time. And I don't want you to see me that way, neither do I want you to remember me in this kind of light. Which I'm pretty sure was what your grandfather remembered me by."
"I can handle an entire faction hating me for what I've done, but what I can't afford, is to have yet another person I care resenting me. I lost my guard because of the secrets I can't divulge in with her, I argued with my brother, the brother that I have been close to since the very beginning, and now here I am, almost arguing with you. Nothing good will come out of this, but I wish to uphold my promise and word, that our partnership stands on, before I go."
Ben knew that little bit of pompous asshole that he tried to keep locked down managed to bubble it’s way up but it do so more when he was hurt than any other time and Malva disappearing had hurt. When he trusted people and believed they were working together and they just faded into darkness with no words given he tended to take it hard even though he knew he shouldn’t. Someone like Malva would have her reason and he knew that but sometimes reasons didn’t make reality better and it didn’t sooth the wounds which had been inflected. Granted the stress of not knowing and of work itself had been wearing him thin already so he didn’t necessarily handle their reunion in the way he should have. True part of him was happy to see her but the other part was hurt by the situation.
Malva’s words hung him up as he listened and heard her speak of something larger than the Celestials. He wasn’t sure if he she meant those who seemed to be hunting them down or something else and by her expression she didn’t have any intention of truly explaining as she continued on. “I understand what your purpose is and I know you aren’t always going to be accessible but communication would be nice. I don’t expect to eternally kept in the loop but I’d rather not feel like I’m being dropped like a sake of potatoes either.” Truthfully Ben had no idea how to make this partnership work when he seemed the one putting in the most effort, but he has to remind himself this was new for her especially given he was just some human and not even an Ailward Guard. But it was all just like a reminder of what he heard in France, he was just some human tagging along.
Ben just wanted the supernaturals of the city to accept him, he knew he wasn’t a strong and didn’t have powers but he at least wanted to feel like they respect him and what he had to offer but that didn’t seem to be the case. “Everything going on in this city makes me feel like I’m going insane regardless of being human. There are too many unknowns and too much that I can’t begin to even understand.” Because no one trusted him enough to actual talk to him. The Organization did but even they only had a limited amount of information since they merely had what they were able to gather. “Even humans have struggles Malva, they might not be world ending or life changing ones in the eyes of an immortal but we go through things as well, I’m just asking that you try not to just cut me out. That’s kind of what friends are meant to be for, when you have those hard times and when you start to lose yourself. Friendship is kind of like marriage, it comes with good times and bad and you can’t only have one or the other.” Ben hadn’t meant to upset her he had just let his own frustration out since it had be bottle upside for the past few weeks and everything else in his life had been causing it to grow.
“There are more and more people coming to the city every day, word of the Celestials and what they can do obviously spreading and there isn’t much that can be done. Not until they get included within the Peace Treaty.” No species could move against another that was part of the Peace Treaty and those from outside of the city were trying to take advantage of that which could easily start another war between the factions. Plus if a Celestial lost their life then they may all be majorly screwed. “Malva, if there are people in shadows moving against the Ailward Aspects and the Ailward Guard you can’t go on your own.” Granted in the same turn he couldn’t necessarily leave the city either, not in the state it was currently in and being human he wouldn’t be as much assistance as an actual Guard. Confusion came over his face like a Halloween mask, “Why would it need to end soon?” He inquired not following whatever path of thinking she seemed to be on. “I don’t necessarily think any of us are going to get through this without testing our morals and without actions which are going to be questionable at best.” When he took the oath and his position within the city he swore to do everything in his power to maintain peace and keep this city safe from all who would seek to destroy it or cause it’s inhabitants harm. An oath he took very seriously.
A heavy sigh left him as he listened before he carded a hand through his dirty blond tresses. “We all make choices that cause people to hate or despise us, when it comes to family things are said and done that can drive you apart. None of that is permanent and there’s always a way to mend bridges if you try. Tatiana has been with you long enough that she’ll forgive you but it’s going to take time and your brother, all siblings argue.” Pulling his bottom lip between his teeth he slowly let it go, “And a partnerships are tested, nothing in life is perfect nor does it always run smooth. I’m not going anywhere and I’d like to help you but I can’t leave Evermore, not right now.” He told her with a bit of a frown.
Due to the sudden wave of emotions twisting her around since the past month, she understood fully what was at stake now. She had been too busy with her own self, she forgot the people around her. Suffice to say, the Aspect of Magic did not like the mention of that neither did she like a reminder of it but sometimes, it was exactly what she needed. A reminder. She has always been an attentive person since before and because of her emotions being so out in all of places, she could sense the unrest feeling Benjamin was going through. It was almost like a dilemma. Sighing as she stared down, her focus being solely accessed by the floorboards, she looked up back at him again with a softer look. It doesn't seem like it was that easy to shrug him off. And if it was up to Malva, it wasn't as if she wanted that to ever occur anytime soon. She grew fond of his company and the person himself. She didn't want to just leave everything in the dust because she knows how hurtful and hard for it to generate through.
"You might see yourself as just a human, Ben. But believe me, your species does not define you the least. It doesn't matter if you're mortal or not, it wouldn't change my perspectives towards you. I know you often felt left out and every time your hands are tied, you hated that useless feeling. I know that, I go through the same every day. You see me and you would never have thought I had problems with that, but judging from our encounters, I doubt you haven't understood the kind of person I am. It might not help much, but-- I severed my relations with Tatiana because of you. And this is not me wanting you to feel guilty or anything, it's actually the opposite. It means you're not just a human tagging along. Both of us are equal, and I don't wish for you to think otherwise." It was almost surprising to see how soft the Aspect of Magic's tone were. She suddenly felt the need and want to reassure him that it wasn't him, but her.
Seeing him getting everything out from his heart and mind caused her eyes to waver on slightly to a softer glance. "Hey..I'm sorry for being upset with you. It wasn't my intention. I just, don't know what to do anymore. I feel like every time I look the other way, I will always find a loophole somewhere but it often leads nowhere. I thought that maybe if I didn't have any other concerns, I might be able to focus more on finding out why I can't move away from my current position. With that being said, it only means you're worth the significance to me, and not the other way around. I wish you would stop doubting yourself, because the sincerity you hold while doing all of this, is what makes it even more endearing." Malva couldn't remember the last time she's been so maternal-acting and soft spoken. It's definitely been a while. She was just someone who was thrust into a world filled with problems on every nook and corner, with no one but her siblings to hold on to. That's a fine thin thread, a thread she was sure was being tested by the waters.
"I went to see Ophelia last month.. We talked and kind of reconciled between each other. It was very relieving. She was the one who brought up the matter about the mysterious tragedy that befell my home. I also talked to her about the Peace Treaty, but I couldn't get any clear correlation of any of their decisions. We'll just have to wait and see. I can assure you, you can move your forces and eyes more on the Celestials rather than us. We wanted to make sure they remain unscathed more than anyone. I don't think we can stand another rupture.. or another war. Which is very unfortunate seeing as everything is pointing to the direction of a brewing one. I heard the vampires are in an alliance with them. But whoever it was that destroyed the Isle, they have been playing chess pawns ever since the beginning. This would only put both factions at unrest while pointing fingers at each other, thus drawing them away from the actual problem. But we're slowly mending our relationships, and though of course it wouldn't be easy, it was viable because we needed to resolve this matter soon so we can prepare for any impending attack. They surely had a strong diviner-hell even probably an entire coven on their side."
To say Malva was worried would be an understatement. As Ophelia have said, it was one of the many few times she's actually seen the Aspect of Magic scared to her wits. "If they can bring about the destruction of our haven, a ward that Venetus put every effort on in contrast with my boundary spells from inside, what's a few spells on vampires? They can easily oust them if they have the right time and power. We should probably keep an eye out for the eclipse or any lunar events. That's where we're at our prime. They can harness the energy and do about anything if they had the right spell. I'm bothered because I don't recognize the spell they used at all. I would have known if there was such a spell. It was too powerful of one not to give me a notice. Yet I can't recall." She mumbled, as her fingers played with the helm of the jacket a few times. She was nervous. "I didn't want this partnership to ever end, you know. But I think we might have to put a hold on it, at least until we can resolve this. The reason why I wanted to put an end to it, was because the longer you associate yourself with me, the more reasons for whoever it was to target you. I was already right about the diviner being powerful, so it they ever used you as a leverage, then I'm not sure if I can even think properly and I don't wish for you to be caught up in the middle of this. Because you're a resident here, it involves you. But it shouldn't necessarily put you in the middle of this because it was clear their primary target is my family."
"I appreciate you wanting to help. It really means a lot, truly. It's okay, you have to stay here. You need to. You need to watch over the Celestials' defense. They are very important. Consider them like you're guarding a nuclear bomb? I don't know, something along the words of it. I reached out a few weeks ago and my contacts in Atlanta said they might have a trail. That's more than what we've gotten for weeks long so I'm gonna go there and check. It's my element, it should be me. I'll let you know if there was anything." A smile still stayed on her face, clearly touched by the fact that he's caring. "You're very caring, you know that? It would have warmed anyone's heart."
Ben knew humans were more than most species gave them credit for, they might be physically weaker compared to others but they had so many other strengths. And yet those strengths were so often seen as weakness. “The amount of perceived power that someone like me has is so small and you’re right, I don’t like feeling powerless or as if I have control over nothing and that goes for all aspects of my life, not just work or this city.” His mentality was that of a helper, if he saw a problem he wanted to fix it and if he couldn’t then he wanted to be part of the solution somehow, however that wasn’t always a possibility. Ben did see Malva, he didn’t just seem the Aspect of Magic but he was one of the few who had probably ever seen the girl she had once been, the girl who likely still resided deep inside of the Aspect. A small sigh left him as she spoke of Tatiana who he knew was her personal guard given their pervious conversations. “That’s….a whole different can of worms.” He finally managed to piece together despite knowing what she was getting at as she spoke, the fact of the matter was she never really made him feel as if he were only a human, others had in the past but she never treated him in such a way, “I don’t think otherwise Mal this is just….all a lot.” Though really what in his life wasn’t?
Truthful Ben hadn’t meant to get so angry or hurt by the situation at hand but when he placed his trust in someone it was a big deal considering how many times he actually felt abandoned throughout his life. That wasn’t Malva’s problem though, it was his and he needed to get that under control instead of snapping because of something she saw as her best option. Everyone was different and sometimes he forgot that. “I’m the one being upset and mildly irrational.” He responded knowing full well that was true since he didn’t really know what to do either, he hadn’t stopped looking into the journal or trying to find leads, he hadn’t stopped trying to contact her until recently when it was so obvious it was only going to be met with radio silence. When he decided to care about or help people he was fully invested 110% and that wasn’t going to change but he did doubt himself more than he probably should despite the usual sunny disposition he tended to sport. Lowly he pulled his bottom lip between his teeth he teeth before releasing it, “I’m just afraid of getting invested into something I shouldn’t but I guess you’ve kind of helped with that train of thought.”
A brow rose at her words as he listened to what she was saying in regard to Ophelia and the Celestials as a whole. “I mean, that’s a step but you weren’t one of the strongest advocates against the Celestials. I’m not sure Venetus really was either but Aureus hasn’t exactly been quiet on the matter.” Not until recently from what he could tell but a lot of intel had gone quiet recently. “Even if Ophelia asked to be included it has to be put under a vote for all the Ambassadors and I’m really not sure where any of them other than the Vampires and Humans stand. Right now the Celestials are as much of a first priority as they can be with our hands being tied.” Which was one of the most frustrating things, to act against another faction, even if it was members of a species from outside of the city could still incite war especially if the species being protected wasn’t one allotted protection by the Treaty in place. Though as he listened Malva was telling him much more than anyone else had and her words gave validation to his gut feeling that something else was currently at play. “Loyalties and peace are still so fragile that it would be easy to rip the city apart and thrust it back into war and it wouldn’t even take a whole coven.” That was unfortunately the reality they were currently facing.
Worry was clearly etched on the face of the Aspect of Magic and Ben was sure it was also evident in his own features since he had already been concerned and Malva’s fears and worries were far from helping his own. “I didn’t think it was possible for there to be a spell you don’t know. Maybe they found your journal and that spell is one of the things you can’t fully recall.” He knew she had a few holes in her memory that she believed she put there for a reason and maybe that was part of it, or it was something else altogether. “I wasn’t even involved in this when I was first attacked, not enough that anyone would know so I don’t see end this helping anything. If they know I was involved then I doubt anything will change that perception.” Though as she spoke of not being able to think clearly if something happened to him or if they decided to use him his brow rose in question. The human wasn’t sure when the last time she had shown genuine concern for another person in such a way was but he had the feeling it didn’t happen very often. “And what would be so important about me that it could cloud your judgement?” He inquired curiously since now he did in fact want to know.
“Oh great, I’ve always wanted to be tasked with looking over an entire species that could potentially end if the world if they die. No pressure or anything.” Despite the completely dire words there were an edge of humor to them. "Not sure I'm best suited for the task at hand, but I'll do my best." Truth be told he didn't like the idea of Malva going anywhere alone, especially while following up leads. "Is there anyone else who can go with you? I'm thinking now really isn't the time to chasing down leads alone." And with her being on the outs with Tatiana and him staying in Evermore, he wasn't sure who if anyone would be accompanying her.
A small smile tugged itself on her lips as she lets out a slight sigh as the manner of the demeanor they were in earlier shifted into another one. "Power is a wholesome thing. Knowledge is a powerful tool but power..Is just power. You have it or you don't. There is no in between. I probably shouldn't say this, but I'll do it either way. You mean way too much to me for me to ignore it." Obviously Malva didn't even realize how trailed her words were already. So much she didn't notice her last line. "You have the power you wanted to have. Believe me, this is the level of power you want now. I would trade everything to have this kind of solace for once in a while, if not forever. Wanting to have the power to change and make the world a better place is pure, Ben. But it was only then, that you realized that the power you wielded will end up burdening and place another weight over you. Up until that moment, you'll doubt yourself, and you'll keep on trying to do that until at some point you just break." The Aspect of Magic's voice was highly accentuated with a somber and solemn tone; indicating her experience.
Malva wanted to change the world, make it a better place as she swore to never let others of their kind be mistreated as they once suffered, but there is always a price to pay in accordance. Her siblings' price might not seem much but in reality, it wasn't really all of that. They had so many differing side effects to each of their own and hers plagued her till this day. It might've worked when she worked her way to keep it dormant, but almost four centuries had passed; which meant she might need to renew such membership again. One problem of course. She didn't have the means to do it. No ingredients, no spell, no place, and obviously not the time. Although, Malva herself wasn't sure how long she was able to hold on to the thin thread of her sanity if actions and measures are not taken soon.
Chuckling softly towards the male human, she shrugged casually upon dismissing the charges away. "We all have days where all we wanted is just peace. Trust me, you're not in the wrong there, Ben. You're still prone to such feelings, you're human. Hell, even if you are a supernatural, you're still very much exposed to them, especially if you have them heightened." Truthfully, Mal wished she could experience all of it again without having to worry that her magic will spiral out of control. But that was one of the many luxurious and lavish privileges she wasn't allow to have. Hearing how he told her that she wasn't the one who's fully advocated against the stars, made her sigh in relief briefly. Before she ended up thinking of what she has done to the poor species a century ago. It has already been a century since their imprisonment, but it felt like only a few years for her yet sometimes it felt like a millennium.
"My brothers are conflicted. That much we all know. It's not hard to detect from them. We're siblings, despite not being biologically related, we are tethered and linked to one another as one entity and has lived under those circumstances long ago. The two differ in a lot, but the similarities are quite eye-catching. Both have been our leaders. I love my siblings, truly with all my heart but sometimes even I have differing opinions that goes against them. So, there has never been a moment where we could agree on anything." Now that she has spoken of such, the brunette chortled in response. It brought memories back. "It's funny, we're a council that was formed to determine the fate of the world, yet we still bicker like any other siblings. But I guess, that does bring a lighthearted revelation to everything. It means we're still there as more than representatives to control the aspects of the world." The Aspect of Magic was aware that Ben knew regarding her doubts on her identity. She was afraid she was nothing more than a person tasked to protect and overlook these and those. She didn't want to lose herself neither did she want any part of her to diminish into thin air throughout the time.
"You're right, it won't take a coven to tear the place apart. It's so fragile, like glass. All they needed was to knock the glass down and it'll shatter. Is that how thinly our layers are? If so, then we have every right to worry about the impending event that might take place in the future. As you have been well briefed about my problem with my aspect, I might have forgotten some things. Unfortunately, I fear that spell might be one of them. I usually remember them since I stored every spell I have ever created in my journal, but those pages are always so endless that I made sure one could never find the right page using magic. Which means, if I'm going to delve deeper to find the said spell, it's gonna have to be done manually." It was at that moment where Malva felt like she wanted to hit her past self who's paranoia is probably over the top.
She would never admit it out loud, but lately the more time she spent with the human General, the more her emotions began seeping out from the place she's kept them dormant in. All it took was a trigger. A catalyst. Though it should be a good thing that her compassion was slowly taking its rightful place again after a while, it also worried her because it often overwhelmed her; her emotions. "I can't believe you're actually making me say this, human." She shook her head lightly, a small smile adorning her features as she pursed her lips and continued. "Surely you know I grew fond of you. Not sure if it's your company or you. I'll say both. You remind me a lot of your grandfather but you're also a breath of fresh air at the same time. It's enticing. And let's just say that I don't want to taint or ruin anything nor anyone else that could possibly have a positive effect on me. I don't get a lot of those. Why would I want to turn it away?"
"Wouldn't this increase your 'significance' level? I mean, the pride you'll have upon finding out that someone who's far older and powerful is relying on you for her sanity. I hope that's not much burden for you." She snickered lightly. "Emotions. Empathy. They're probably the most powerful thing to exist. Period. You'll worry if someone has none, because that would mean they have no humanity nor will they care about anything really. But what of the people who had too much of them? Instead of reassuring them of their humanity, it eventually becomes a burden that shrouded over them like an epidemic." Honestly, Mal was afraid on her current matter. While she was off worrying about the matters of the world, she was also battling with her own self. "It would be like unlocking the Pandora's Box. Imagine, when you've kept it down for long, until one day the lock was broken and all of that went out. Wildly." However, it didn't occur to the Aspect of Magic that she has said that out loud.
Shaking her head at the trance she was in, she frowned profusely before letting out a distressed sigh. "I won't be alone, I guess. There will always be someone accompanying me. Though their hiding skills are the worse. It's just Georgia, Atlanta, Ben. It's not Greece. Though I'm sure I probably should get by some places soon. There's one group of particular people I want to meet. A coven of witches, basically. Let's hope they're civil. I don't want to accidentally turn another witch into a rodent again." Shrugging absentmindedly, she then quipped that it was at least a better option than ending up incinerated. "Witches are so unpredictable.." Hypocrisy at its finest, there.
Ben didn’t necessarily have an inflated sense of self-worth but he kind of thought they were past the point of pushing one another away. Maybe Ben cared a little more than he should but he had seen a lot of Malva and saw her in a different light than he was sure that most did. “I’m in this whole thing for better or worse and despite being human that doesn’t mean I’m just going to step down or leave it to more powerful beings. I’m stubborn like that, if you’re seeing this all through, so am I.” It wasn’t that Ben wanted to be some powerful being, he just wanted to feel like he could hold his own in the city. Recent events had shown him that he was lacking in the ability to protect himself and others. Malva had already saved his life once and he didn’t want her to think he was a burden. “There isn’t much solace in knowing you’re on the bottom of the food chain in a city full of supernaturals. That’s never stopped me from doing my job or standing up for those that can’t. I just feel like this city can be the start of something better for the entire world. No one can change the world on their own and I’m definitely not trying to.” Through her memories and their conversations he knew her life had been a roller coaster ride, even after becoming an Aspect things hadn’t necessarily gotten better for her and he could see the weight that seemed to rest on her.
They both had their own responsibilities to the world and the city, though Ben’s first focus was the human populous in Evermore City where as Malva was tasked with keeping order with magic around the world which was not a responsibility he would want. “Emotions are a tricky thing and peace without yours isn’t an easy to find.” Usually Ben was a chaotic mess inside but he was able to play it off pretty easy on the outside since most saw him as calm and collected though that wasn’t the case. “Emotions affect us all and even if you can push them back or bind them it gets worse when you they finally come crashing on down.” Though he hated to think about his emotions being heightened when he was already he pretty sensitive person, he had just learned to compartmentalize. They both had so many people to worry about and consider in their lives since they both had protective personalities and it seemed they were both rather good at keeping people and each other at bay and it was tiring.
“Family isn’t about agreeing, most don’t. At least all of your are there for one another whether you necessarily want to be or not.” The truth was he didn’t have that, the closest thing he had to family these days was the Privy Council and he was protective over Sariah like an older brother of sorts, there was just something about her genuine and sincere nature. “If you were all the same it would be a rather boring eternity but you’re allowed your opinions as are they and if they clash that’s just natural.” Moving to the kitchen he grabbed a bottle of water before coming back since it had already been such a long day. Coming back in he continued to listen to what she had to say as he twisted the cap off the bottle and took a deep gulp from it. “I can imagine determining the fate of the world isn’t an easy task so you all aren’t always going to agree. At least there’s usually one person on your side I would hope. I’m just glad none of you are in it alone.” Surely there were dark times and times of light and happiness but it was something he couldn’t imagine struggling through by yourself.
Ben knew that Malva was right, in Evermore, it wouldn’t take much to turn the tides of fragile peace to war. Which was something every Ambassador, the Ailward and the Privy Council were trying to avoid. So at least they did all have a common goal, “One person out of line could cause the entire treaty to crumble and they don’t even have to be from the city, I don’t envy the Ambassadors or you Aspects. You did what you thought was best at the time and that spell may have very well kept it safe, though that also makes it harder now, it’s a bit of give and take really.” He could only imagine how pages upon pages there were to read through for the spell in question. “I’m a speed reader if you want the help.”
For some reason he couldn’t help the google smile on his face as Malva called him human, maybe it might seem insulting by some but from Mal it was a strange almost term of endearment. It probably the closest he’d ever get from her since she was so closed off with people and for some reason he wanted to break past the wall she had up. “This human likes it when you actually put your thoughts into words, I don’t do well with trying to read your mind and I just want to know that I….” That he what? Meant something to her? That sounded insane, “That I’m not like everyone else you push away.” Why did he have to keep skipping over what he meant or wanted to say? Probably because he was still trying to figure out where he stood with her and if taking a risk was worth it and yet that didn’t stop him from spending more and more time with her even when she tried to place distance between them.
“Well when you put it that way I’m starting to feel the pressure.” His tone was pretty light and joking since there were much more pressure being put on him from other places and other people. It wasn’t easy being close to an Aspect especially while being a human with his own struggles and issues but he liked that she trusted him so much whether it was because of his grandfather or wholly himself. “Too much or too little empathy is never a good thing but regardless of what side a person falls on they need someone to level them out. I think we both do a pretty good job of that with one another. I’m not going to shut you out but at the same time you can’t do the same to me.” More often than not he left things unsaid and he needed her to know he was going to be here but she had stop pushing him away as well since he made the choice to place himself in danger.
The General gave her a look, “I’m pretty sure it doesn’t matter the city, no matter where you are you have people working against you and using magic in a way they shouldn’t be. Just be careful since I know the trouble you can always manage to find yourself in. Do you actually think these witches are going to be helpful?” He could only hope that they were since if they weren’t they were wasting a large amount of time Malva wasn’t going to get back when there was something looming on the horizon.
She hated that she couldn't push him away even when she wanted to do nothing more than that. Malva didn't like being doubted, that's one of the biggest rules she's had for her entire life and everyone who knew her did well in knowing that particular aspect on her. Even if they weren't close, she was someone who's notoriously known for her perfectionist tendencies and meticulous workaholic habits that often pushed her a way off the cliff. And she definitely couldn't handle taking people with her, no matter the distance or the cost, Malva just couldn't. It wasn't that her hubris was stealing her away, but more to the fact that the brunette Ailward could not bear the guilt if anything were to happen to them under any circumstances when it draws back to her. It was her call, so that makes it her responsibility, and she wanted nothing more but to deal with it alone so no collateral damage would concur.
Seeing Ben not backing away made her grumble in distress, because she couldn't be bothered to keep an eye out while working out with what's going on with her currently. “I don't underestimate you, Ben. I think you know that.. I just don't want you to get involved in things that wouldn't even be worth your time. Things aren't going well nowadays. For either of us. Being human or supernatural doesn't exclude you from what will happen in the future, of course. But it doesn't mean you have to join the fight every time there's one,” sighing to herself, she glanced over to the defense general. “It's not cowardice. It's self-preservation. It's okay to sit one out occasionally, you know. You don't always have to be the hero.” No matter how tempting that was, she only wished he would stray away from any path that would lead him to his demise and hurt him at the end of the day.
Perhaps she was being selfish. But even if she is, she would proudly display them without a ment. So she cares about him, so what? She's allowed to care. God knows how much care she would need to showcase just to remind others she wasn't all insensitive and emotionless just because she chose to put her emotions behind a door 400 years ago. But being that does make it all easier, she'd admit. Everyone would not try to approach her and attachments go easy on her, leaving her room to improve without any woes. “I hate that you always manage to make sense at the end of the day.” Shaking her head in dismay, she had to surmise that by the very least, Ben always made good and valid points that even she couldn't debunk nor discredit. It frustrated her for sure.
Whilst the Aspect of Magic wanted to focus on one by one on her platter, it didn't seem like the world was giving her much of a choice to begin with, seeing as it's shoving her to every nook corner every time she does anything. Keeping the balance of the world is one thing, watching the progress of the city is also another. But he personal problems? Tracking down her rather untimely problems on her own? That's a whole new thing. It made the Russian born woman feel conflicted at every path she tried to overlook. “I'm a rather sensitive person if anything. The only reason why I always act like I don't care was not because it's a cool facade to be wearing. Or that I always think badly about myself. It is neither. My magic is tethered and connected directly to my head which is a big mess, I tell you. My emotions; they're a principal factor on my progress. One simple misstep and things go awry.” She knew it was the very reason why she went against her siblings’ words and decided upon herself to create a place to store the rest of her emotions so it'll stay dormant for a while. That while lasted about 400 years give or take. And unfortunately, she couldn't create a new space.
Her magic has more risk on spiraling out of control more than ever, the very element of it beginning to show its volatile nature. Of course she wouldn't tell anyone about that, since it was her problem and hers alone. “I don't need to find peace, I just have to find a way to keep going.” Admittedly, Mal's mindset is quite unhealthy and tricky. She's always looking out into the horizon of the other side. She loves her siblings dearly, that much couldn't be more true than it is already. But there were times where she wished they wouldn't interfere in her personal life, even if it was for her own good. There was a reason why she kept them hidden, and for an emotional person like her, it was very hard to hide anything.
Though it did warm her heart that despite the current setting of how things were going to go, Ben still managed to have that optimistic light to him, a charm she never forgot to to count when it comes to him. Who would joke at times like this? Benjamin Vaughn would. And in any regular time, she would snap but it only cause her to curve a small smile instead. “I'm 1290 years old, Ben. And believe me I do not write only one page per year. Or one page per week. Doesn't take a brainer to calculate and do the math.” It also didn't help that even regular diviners couldn't decrypt her journal since she always go back to old Latin. Sometimes even Gabriel had a hard time reading at first glance, because of how complex and tricky her writing and instructions could be. It was somewhat a precaution if any of her work falls down to the wrong hands, they wouldn't be able to utilize it fully without her help. “Take a few Latin lessons and perhaps we can start.” she teased.
Her blue hues seem to brighten up around him, a singular effect that only he possessed. She feels at ease yet constricted whenever she's around him, something she couldn't put into words unfortunately. “You're not. I don't think so, at least.” she reassured lightly, Ben definitely had more access to her than most. “I-,” it was as if her airstream felt stuck halfway because the Aspect of Magic couldn't find the right words to speak into them. “I don't want to shut you out. I don't want to shut anyone out. I know I need help. I'm not the most stable person lying around and the last thing people need is an unstable dragon who could do wonders going rogue.” Ironic, it's what almost happened, well happened about four centuries back that resulted her trauma in going anywhere near the dark arts. Every story had its backstory, afterall. She didn't stray away because she didn't feel comfortable with it, but rather the opposite. Malva felt too comfortable around it and it scared her. Like anyone in denial, she shut it out the next time. Little did she know it doesn't work that way.
When Ben asked if the witches she was seeking would be helpful, she had to stop and ponder at it. “I'll be honest with you. I have a good vibe about this coven because someone very dear to me is in them. Perhaps I'm biased or playing favorites, but if she is who I think she is, she would inherit her family grimoire and knowledge, which makes her a potential ally. A lot of magical antiquities poofed here and there lately, sold to the highest bidder and yet there's not one soul that could be traced back to it. I can't keep sending guards to their suicide missions to procure this or that when I know they are in dangerous light. So I wanted to look into it myself. Personally. But in order to do that, I would have to go through.. A few lengths. Desperate times require drastic measures, right?” Her tone however, wasn't implying it to be anywhere positive. She is playing with fire, and she knows it. The question is, did others know?
In truth the Ailwards were dangerous to get close to despite the fact that both the Aspects and Guards were being of peace. Not everyone liked peace or order in a chaotic world and so they would fought against it. The Celestials of course weren’t too thrilled with them either and there was just a lot going on currently. “Mal, you don’t get to be the judge of what’s worth my time though, that’s my decision. I know things are rocky, in this city they always are but there definitely seems to be….something going on.” He couldn’t put his finger on what but it was just a feeling he had and everything that Mal was focusing on told him that he was right to worry. “I pick my battles Mal, I’m not the smartest man on the planet earth but I’m not a fool either. I’m not a man who deals in ‘what ifs’ and wants to look back and wonder what more I could have done. Not every fight is mine but I choice why I fight, who I fight beside and what I fight for. I’m not a hero Malva, I never have been and that isn’t a title I want, I just want to do what’s right no matter the cost.” And in the world they were both aware of they knew that cost could be high.
Ben did have his moments and now seemed to be one of them since for once Malva didn’t seem to have a counter to his words which was surprising. A wide grin spread across his face as Malva stated that she hated that he had the tendency to make sense and instead of commenting he just shrugged his shoulders. “Your emotions don’t have to control you, you can show them without being over taken by them. It’s alright to let people know you care or don’t care, you just have to learn to walk that line. I can’t say that I fully understand but I’m in a position in the city where I hade to use my head and not my heart. I have to use logic instead of emotion and it’s not always easy, especially when it’s something I’m passionate about.” Sighing he decided this probably wasn’t a subject he was going to win on which was fine since she knew herself better than he did but the way she said one simple misstep did make a shiver course down his spine.
“Mal, we all need to find peace and balance in life. If you just kept pushing through thing then you aren’t dealing or handling them and they build and that tends to lead to emotional issue since everything you ignored or pushed through was never really resolved. Look, it might sound stupid but I worry about you. I know human worrying over an Ailward Aspect, haha, great punchline!” It was clear his laugh was forced, as was the smile on his because despite behind human he worried about her more than he worried about himself most days. Danger for him was just part of life and that was never going to stop him from living it or changing the way he lived.
The heavy weight on him seemed to lessen as her lips curved into a smile since he was pretty good at that. He didn’t know why he enjoyed knowing he could break through her rough exterior when others couldn’t but it made him oddly happy. “Alright, you got me on the Latin thing since we both know languages aren’t my thing but I’m trying to find someway to help. Even if it is an amusing offer. Besides, how was I supposed to know you write in your journal more than you talk to people.” He teased lightly not bothering to mention he was working on learning Latin, but he kept that to himself since he was failing at it more than he was learning.
The amusement an happiness was clear across is features his blue eyes taking on a lighter hue. “I might be the idiot reading more into things than necessary but no matter how hard you might push I’m not going anywhere. I want to be here with you, not just…” He paused and took in a deep breath before releasing a slow sigh, “Not just because I want to know what happened to my grandfather. You’re volatile and unstable at times but you’re there when I need you and I believe that actions speak louder than words. Maybe I should be more concerned about spending time around you and the dangerous which just seem to follow you and that journal but…I don’t know. I guess I think it’s worth it.” Which might make him the most mental human in the city and if it did then he’d take that title.
A brow rose as he listened to her reasoning as she explain that she had a good feeling and why. Ben hoped that everything would go the way she anticipated but as she reached the end of her explanation it left him with a bad feeling. “If you put yourself in danger and can’t get out of it you know the Ailward will track you down and that could be of greater risk to them all. I’d ask about the lengths you have to go through but I doubt you would be fully honest with me about it. I get you wanting to do it all on your own but it gives me a really bad feeling Mal. And despite being human, my bad feelings usually mean something.”
She had no idea why in the world would someone like Ben would want to get anywhere close with their family, much less affiliated with any one of them, mainly her; the pessimistic distant Aspect of Magic. He had a reputation to precede, as the eternal city’s Defense General, coming from the human faction that has been keeping the city well beyond the risks until now. She wasn't one for favoritism but she seeks his company because something about him just calms her down, but it was the only emotion she feels around him. All of those compassion and nurturing self was not just it, and all good things must come to an end. The problems would come running after and much to her dismay, it was a lot faster than usual. Malva wasn't ready to let him go as a friend, her acquaintance, her company, but what other choice did she have? Was she willing to risk it, knowing fully well his life is basically on the line here?
The thought of hurting someone else aches her, much less someone she actually likes. This is why she kept herself unattached to anyone else who's not in their guard. Because Mal knew it wasn't easy to befriend an Ailward Aspect. Not with the issues trailing behind them at every knowing second of their lives. “You're right, something is brewing. I feel like it escaped our radar, but at the same time I can see it. I just can't pinpoint it directly.” She made sure to hear every word he had to say, she owed him so much more than that, and sometimes questioned why she even bothered to even try in the first place. He's special, she thought. But in what way? That, she has no idea.
Letting out a heaved sigh, she leaned against the soft cushion of the couch and turned to face him with a frustrated look present across her features. “That's just it though. You don't have to. I know when you took up this position, you are dealt with responsibilities. You shouldn't have to shoulder such burden. You now know your family somehow had ties to the supernatural world, and both of your male predecessors died because of it. So why are you still so persistent in this? Most people would flee after knowing, you know. And they won't be cowards either. So why haven't you?” In all honesty, she is curious why he's still staying. This is his home, yes, but she's not exactly asking him to leave the supernatural inhabited city. Just the whims surrounding it because he deserved a good life. He's one of the kind, she can see that, but she still wondered why. Why would anyone risk their entire life to fight something like this?
That was when she blinked and chuckled to herself. The more she thought about it, the more it made sense. At least in her point of view. This fight, it reminded her so much of them once upon a time ago. They were willing to risk their lives and actually did, for the sake of a better world. But only one of them was human, the rest were supernaturals. They had a reason to fight for their mistreatment of their kind, when humans reigned over them. So she's still very much confused. “That's funny. The whole emotion thingy. Because when it comes to decision making, I never let my heart decides anything. I use logical trainings if anything, because I can't afford to make a mistake. Honestly it's a little bit pressuring, knowing one single misstep can ruin every chain. Knowing that your mistakes would affect more than just you.” And yet, they kept fighting. She was thoroughly very proud of them for that. They should be allowed to rest after their services for a millennium, but neither one of them seemed to want to do that. Maybe a few days of break, possibly. But in a whole? Not really.
“I don't think that's funny though, the whole part about a human worrying over a dragon. Sometimes people forget, we're just like you guys. We just so happen to be given a second chance to make the world into a much better place, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows either. The hardships that followed, sometimes we wanted to give up, and that is where people like you come in to save the day. And I'll be eternally grateful to know that there are people who actually care for me that's not my siblings or the guards. We don't get a lot of those. Though I'm sure it's my fault for pushing and closing,” pausing momentarily, she pursed her lips slightly and furrowed her eyebrows. “I think that's mainly because I'm afraid. You're not the first friend I've made outside my faction, not the first mortal either. I've seen many pass and there's me, who stays indifferent to everything else, and at the end of the day, I'll go back to Isle of Skye and just cry in my pillow, only to forget those the next morning. And that has been going on for 1200 years for me, Ben. I don't think my mental capacity can opt for more. That's why I never really bothered.”
The Aspect of Magic has never felt so vulnerable when it comes to personal problems such as this, but with him she felt at ease. Well, when she's not worrying about him getting hurt. Giving him a rather offended and unimpressed look, she scoffed lightly and shook her head. “Don't lie, you and I both know I'm a horrible people person. You said it the first time that my bedside manner is also abysmal” she rolled her eyes and clicked her tongue in feigned annoyance. What came out afterwards was not what she expected, the first time she met Ben, he had an air around him that commands respect but then she saw more of his goofy and dorky side which always brought a smile to her. Mal cares a lot more than she leads on, everyone who knew her well would know that. She's just bitter because the world made her that way, but underneath that exterior, there was still that compassionate girl who only ever wanted to live her life peacefully.
“I just don't want you to be hurt. If I recall correctly, you've been hurt a few times because of me, no?” Her sapphire blue hues narrowed down softly, a frown creasing her pale complexion as she tried to comprehend what the human is thinking. He is such a peculiar case. “I don't like being left in the dark, Ben. Usually I would send a few to run the errands to see if my worries were true. But so far, every guard I sent, always came hurt. I can't risk that anymore. We don't have the numbers like we used to, and we can't afford to look weak. And I'm not that fragile, I can handle myself. I'm sure of it.” But was she? The hesitation lacing her voice was not exactly proving that.