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Perhaps she was thinking too much on this. Malva found herself staring at the painting hung across her room, sighing softly to herself as she launched herself against the pillows stacked on her bed. The family portrait had been there for awhile, ever since they made this place their home, to be exact. It was the 8 of them, in Marseilles and it was over 400 years old. For people who almost never stepped one foot outside the Isle, Malva recalled this was one of the only times she was given the chance to scour an entire city for one night. It was a rare case to have the Ailwards out and about, especially when they cannot move around individually for long without slowly deteriorating. It was also the proof of them being a family, once upon a time. It wasn't as if they were no longer a family, but they've been very distant as of late and Malva could feel herself feeling out of it.
The only times they would ever gather together were during meetings and she was sure her brother tried his best not to call them every week or month. It made her wonder if her family were no longer the family they once were. It didn't help that she had been trying to get away from them either, but after what has happened with her connection to magic, she didn't know what else to do. Octavia remained her only confidant and one of the ones she wouldn't toss an object to, every time people attempt to enter her room. The crumpled papers surrounding her bed were a result from her attempts to create a new spell, only to remain futile as ever. "Usually, I would say nothing… perhaps you're just tired. But it's been months, Mal… get ahold of yourself" she grumbled to herself, she could handle one month or two, but this has been on-going for far too long. And if it continues, then she wasn't sure what else she could do to get back to her old self.
So she gathered every crumpled piece and threw it into the bin before dragging herself to take a coat and scarf from her closet so she could find her answers elsewhere. Keeping herself cooped up in the room would not do her any good, anyway. Her eyes fell on the picture in her tablet, right, the flower; a flower that she's been dying to get her hands on ever since she heard from Bexley that it was growing nearby. One flower would do her more than enough but if Mal was able to get more than one, she could do some good with it. Just because she could no longer do magic, it doesn't mean she couldn't still practice alchemy and the likes. The Aspect of Magic tucked in the tablet inside her bag alongside her journal and closed the door behind her before making her way downstairs.
The manor felt so empty and even Christmas last year wasn't able to make it better. Her hair grew longer and she was tempted to cut it but promised not to touch it until she was able to get her magic back. The snow was sticking in and she couldn't believe she would be our searching for a flower in the mountains this early in the morning, especially in the cold. Trekking there wasn't an easy route and the moment she saw where the flower would be at, she knew climbing was inevitable. "How am I supposed to climb… that far up ahead... " she murmured and kept trying to look for a loophole that doesn't require her to climb. The brunette kept pacing back and forth while holding out her gloves, with no proper equipment except a few ropes to climb, how was she supposed to do that?
He rolled his eyes and narrowed his gaze but let it go, he wasn’t able to forgive her for what she did to his brother because he wasn’t the one who had been hurt by her, if she wanted to be forgiven she needed to take it to the person she had hurt. He grumbled when she mentioned how a spell would only work it everyone was together, he failed to see her point given Han had already told them they were gathered on the isle when everything went down, they had trusted them and in return they had been betrayed.
“Good” he commented bluntly, he was glad to know that she at least suffered somewhat for what she did, though it was nowhere near the level of what Han went through, he knew how it had affected the elder star. It made him angry every time he saw Han get entirely freaked out by small spaces, he could barely make a trip in the car without freaking out. He did chuckle when she said magic gave her a headache too “The world would be much better without it” he commented and shook his head, he resented the fact he was part of that world, especially because there had never been a point in his life where he felt proud to be a celestial.
He rolled his eyes “Well I wasn’t dumb enough to ask anyone who I wasn’t almost certain knew something…” he shook his head, but he supposed everyone assumed he was human given that he didn’t glow like the other celestials and no one stuck around long enough to see that he never aged. “I do take it personally because it brought me nothing but pain” he commented matter-of-factly, he was part of a world he didn’t even know existed and all he ever questioned time and time again was what he did to deserve being shunned and alone. He watched with a hesitant expression when the portal opened, it looked like the exact one he’d seen in the past, except this one was purple and the one he saw before was golden “Isn’t it supposed to be golden?” he questioned but shrugged, he knew it wasn’t a trap because he’d seen one before so he stepped forward and allowed himself to be taken in by it.
She bit her lip and tried to bite back any remark she was going to throw as soon as he said that, she reassured herself that all of his anger was justified, it was his brother, if something similar happened to her siblings, then she would’ve raised hell and any care for anything else would’ve been secondary. Because that’s Malva Ailward for you. She stared back at him and raised her eyebrows when he said the world would be better without magic “You do realize you are magic too, right? Hell, you’re more than magic, celestial beings as the title itself suggests, is something that not many earthly beings could comprehend. Without magic, as ironically as it is considering how much trouble it stirs every 5 minutes, the world would descend into chaos.” She couldn’t even deny it and it wasn’t just her talking as the Aspect of Magic.
She pressed her lips together and softened her eyes because in her eyes, even she could see the man in front of her was still just a child, and she did not mean it in a bad way. “Pain is a relative concept we need to get used to when you live in this world” she mumbled, “Believe me, not everyone wants to be where they are today, including me.” When you were presented with very few options in the first place, especially when you’re desperate to survive, you would take anything. You’d regret it much later down the line obviously, but that’s all on you.
Her ears perked up the moment he said the portal was supposed to be golden, immediately shifting her attention from the portal and back to him, looking at the celestial like a bewildered person “Excuse me? Did you say… golden?” Only experienced and powerful diviners could create portals, and even when they do it, they leave a significant energy signature for her to detect, and Malva has always kept count of who could and who couldn’t, as well as where they did it. But a golden portal? Only one person came to her mind. Once she came to realize who it could be, she cursed, “Motherfucker…” Sebastian Daystar, she’s going to kill you. She couldn’t think much because she had to trail behind him when he entered the portal, leading them to a private house in Denali.
Once the portal closed behind them, she clicked her tongue in annoyance “I am gonna kill that guy… of course he could hide the location from me, you think you’re smart…” well he is. “Anyway, welcome to Denali. I needed somewhere closest to the ley line in North America which is… aside from Evermore, here. We’ll start with your… case first. Wouldn’t you like to know I have one suspect for the person who suppressed your glow? I don’t want to see him though… so that’s another problem…”
Sunmin gave her an unimpressed look “No, I thought that stars managed to fall to the earth out of completely normal phenomenon” he commented sarcastically and rolled his eyes “ his point still stood though, what good did magical stars coming to earth have if they had to spend their entire life in fear, running from other magical beings, there was nothing positive about that whole situation. “The world is already chaotic enough without adding super strength or wings to the mix” he scoffed and shook his head slightly, he might be stuck in this but he didn’t have to believe it was for the better.
He noticed the way she was looking at him and averted his gaze, he wasn’t a big fan of seeing pity on people, it was a look he knew well and had seen often throughout his life so far and it always made him feel a certain way. “Tell me about it” he responded somewhat bitterly when she said pain was a relative concept in a world where you were constantly subjected to it. The way she responded when he said golden caught his attention but he didn’t have a lot of time to respond because he was already stepping towards the portal “The one I remember from the past was golden” he responded, he was certain because he had this repeated memory of it.
After he went through the portal he stumbled a little dizzy from the experience, reaching out for a nearby wall to steady himself “I definitely wasn’t remembering the sickness that came with it wrong either” he grumbled before realizing she was busy cursing someone out in a little rant to herself. He turned to face her for a moment and frowned slightly “Do you know someone who can use golden portals?” he questioned, she definitely knew something and suddenly he was filled with hope at the possibility of finding some answers.
“Why don’t you want to see him?” he responded in a somewhat brash and panicked tone because he really felt like he was getting close to some actual answers and now she wanted to back out of it? No way in hell he was going to allow that.