Momma! Momma! Momma! Where are you?” Cristiano called out towards her, Carmela turned in circles only being able to see utter darkness. She went to scream out but no voice left her throat. Her hand shot to her neck as she began to cough up dirt. Gasping and struggling for air jolted the Aurazin awake as she gasped for air. The nightmares of not being able to get to Cristiano had been frequent. She needed to get some form of proper sleep, but being trapped in Evermore, no way through the veil, was driving her mad.

As she sat up her eyes drifted towards the window of her room in the Aurazin home. The room was small, they all where but It was more than she needed. A place to lay her head, though sleep seemed utterly impossible at this point anymore. As her eyes focused on the night outside of the window she noticed the lights casting a glow upon the outside, it was clear that someone was awake. She rose to her feet, her long pale nightgown hitting mid shin. Her mind wondering if whomever it was had coffee, maybe something sweet even. Though she knew she shouldn’t eat such things.

She found herself wondering through the halls of the home. She wondered if whomever it was had nightmares like she was having. As she came around the corner seeing the glow from the kitchen/dining area she paused in the frame way. Her eyes landed on Lucian who stood in the middle of the room with a paper in his hand. She raised a brow towards him, she seem to have gone unnoticed to him. So she cleared her throat as she leaned against the frame of the doorway.

“Hey, I couldn’t sleep and saw the lights on. Do you have coffee? Or you know… Something sweet.” She said the last part in a joking tone but really after the nightmares she could go for something that would ease the pain even if it was addictive to them. “Nightmares have been constant.” She said softly to her leader, He was one that understood, since his wife was locked in the veil. It had been a year since the veil closing and it seemed they where no closer to getting back there then the day they were trapped here.

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Lucien thought on her words about how the world was in the current. He didn't comment right away, but gave another short bow once the dance had ended. "My honor entirely," he responded with a soft smile. "It was just the thing I needed, I think." He offered his arm again as they began their walk back towards the lodge, his mind working on what she had said. In all his attempts at trying to find reasoning behind why they were brought back to Earth in this way, perhaps he was missing the real purpose for it all along. What control did they possibly have when their purpose was given by something of a higher power to begin with?

"Perhaps that is why we've been sent here," he responded quietly as they continued their walk in silence. "Kindness and patience seems to be wanting as I've noticed in my catch up of the world since being back. Wars, politics. It feels like people have forgotten compassion and empathy, doesn't it?" Lucien sighed and looked up to the night sky where the unknown entities he knew created what they were existed somewhere he could not ever see. He felt very human suddenly and extremely small as he did those many years ago when he walked a different life. "Fate could be argued one way or the other and it's something we don't even really know the answer to after death ourselves, but it seems like maybe our predicament came at the right time to make a difference on Earth now. As you said, you're still on the mission to bring an ease to those hurting and your continued presence only means more souls being helped than you would've been able to do after being called back from a singular mission."

Lucien reached for the heavy door and opened it for her as they stepped back into the dimly lit entrance while the rest of the lodge remained asleep. "I think I need to remember our whole reason for being and not dwell on the logistics of it so much for now. Answers will come eventually. Probably when I'm not even trying. I've exhausted myself too much. It's probably from being in the void so long that I'm so used to the fighting when it should be connecting with the people we're trying to save in one way of the other."

"Anyway," he smiled and looked up to the stairs. "Enough of my long windedness. I hope you are able to find a more comforting sleep now. Tomorrow we'll venture the world a bit more and undoubtedly look strange to the passersby in our curiosity of their mundane. Thank you for the company. It helped a great deal."

Linking her arm with his once again as they started to make their way back to the cabin she stared at the building that was holding the few of them that were land locked once again. “Dancing is rather therapeutic for the soul, that is something my homeland believed in heavily. Seeing people just dancing in the streets wasn’t uncommon.” She thought back on her short life as her gaze became distant, getting lost in a memory for a moment. 

It was when Lucien spoke once again that she was pulled from the memories of herself dancing in the streets. Carmela gave a gentle nod of her head as she looked at the man watching his face. “Compassion and empathy have been forgotten, people are scorned once or twice and choose to turn to cynical ways to keep themselves safe. People fear opening up, or are driven mad for power. This is not the future I wanted for myself or the children of the world.” As he looked to the sky she did the same though all she was taking in was the different shapes that made up clusters of stars. “A difference.” she said softly as she looked at him as he was staring at the sky. She felt a sting of proudness in her chest as she looked back at the sky. “I never thought of it that way. I guess I never thought of it often. I just acted because I wanted to help people.”

It was so foreign to her to think that people didn’t want to help other people. That they rather be divided and fighting, causing rifts between themselves. As the door opened she unlinked her arm from his making her way through the door. She gave a chuckle to him as she reached up, placing her hand on his shoulder giving it a gentle squeeze. “Seems you have had a clarification this evening. Maybe all you needed was a dance, after all.” She tossed him a wink. “The people of this world in need will benefit from having your help. I am looking forward to seeing what the world becomes with you helping it.” She gave him an easy smile. “We still have a fight, we all want back to the Void, but I believe everything happens for a reason. Our collective was brought here for a reason. Answers do like to come when you stop looking for them.” she teased with a smile.

“You try to get some sleep also, fearless leader.” she said softly as she took a step backwards and turned on her heel rather gracefully. “Besides I like your long windedness, it's rather refreshing to the quiet I have been lost in. Thank you for helping me through my own issues.” she said as she made her way up the stairs to her room. She laid out in bed passing out rather quickly, finding comfort in a dreamless sleep at once.

Lucien smiled in return to her kind words before bowing his head slightly when she took her leave. He followed Carmela's footfalls to the stairs before she disappeared in darkness on the second floor. Clasping his hands behind his back, he looked to the map on the table that remained where he'd left it. "Some other night, perhaps," he said aloud to the inanimate object and then turned to head to his bedroom instead of the office where he'd been falling asleep most nights. The bed was welcoming and instead of tossing and turning, the Aurazin drifted off to sleep within a few moments, dreaming of the bright fields of the veil instead of the darkness and echoing screams of the void.

Morning came too quickly. He rolled over in the bed and realized he was still on top of the sheets and comforter, never having stripped himself of a single layer of clothing or even his boots which currently hung over the bed. The sunlight beckoned him, but even better was the smell of coffee brewing which was enough to make him sit up and stretch to ease his aching muscles from the awkward position he'd put himself in when passing out.

After a much needed shower, Luke made his way down the stairs, passing a few of the Aurazin who were awake. The map he'd been circling still remained on the table. He walked over to it and stared down to the points of interest he'd noted and sighed through his nose pointedly. He was almost tempted to sit in the chair again had it not been for the sound of the coffee maker announcing to whomever was brewing the drink that it was done. "Come now, you need the break," he quietly told himself. 

Moving into the kitchen, Lucien grabbed his usual mug that Hudson had bought for him that read 'Best Boss' in big black letters which apparently he found quite hilarious. He reached for the cookie tin that he and Carmela had found last night above the fridge and opened it, stuffing one of the large treats in his mouth whole. He then rummaged through the fridge and grabbed the eggs while trying to attempt to poorly balance everything in his arms now and failing miserably, stumbling in his steps.

As the sun rose, so did Carmela, trying not to wake anyone else as she shifted her way to shower off the dream sweats she had before her walk with Lucien. Washing her body with a soft hum on her lips. It was hopefully going to be a good day full of distractions. Maybe it would make them feel somewhat normal, well as normal as a dead being placed back on a walking plane can feel. Climbing out of the shower she dried off and caught the smell of coffee circling up the stairs.

The growl that came from her stomach made her chuckle as she pulled on jeans and a shirt before bouncing her way down the stairs barefooted. Seeing the other Aurazin fluttering out the door or off to do other things as she made her way towards the now almost empty coffee pot. “Morning.” She nodded to Lucien as she poured the last of the contents into a mug that had a unicorn on it. Placing her hand out to catch his shoulder making sure he didn’t fall over. 

“Take a load off and get your talking voice ready for me will ya?” she said with a chuckle as she scooped the eggs from his hands and found some other things. Pulling the pan out she was quick as she made them each a cheese and ham filled omelet and plated them before handing him his. “Here you go.” She quickly changed the coffee pot to start brewing a fresh pot since she took the last of it before moving to sit down to dig into the omelet. 

She was one of the few that enjoyed cooking for the group of Aurazins. She came from a culture that food was love, that seemed to stick with her even in death. “Are you ready to show me all the things I don’t understand from your time?” she asked as she scooped up a bite chewing the bite making a soft moaning sound as she did. Feeling the hunger that was rocking her moments ago fading as her belly was filling. “Also checking out some of the shops on the way back, yes?” she gave a slow smirk, “or you wanna go to the horse ranch?” she wiggled her brows at him.

Feeling the hand on his shoulder to stable him was a relief as he crookedly smiled back at Carmela with a hint of embarrassment. "I was never very good in the kitchen. Though I suppose that's because I never really had to be." He gave a roll of his eyes, knowing she would understand the reference to his time in life when the roles of men, women, and social status meant he would never have to worry about such a skill. He thankfully made his way over to the large table against the wall which could house a number of the residents in the lodge and sat down before he could make any more of a mess.

Lifting his mug, he smirked. "I'm hoping this will help clear the fog, but be careful what you wish for." He timidly drank the hot coffee, but was thankful for it nonetheless. He was more of a tea person himself given that was what he was brought up on, but life in America seemed to revolve around the black liquid which he was growing more accustomed to. Especially when he wanted to keep awake and alert from all the research he had been doing since their fall. As he sipped the coffee, his eyes went over to watch as Carmela moved about the space with ease. Lucien had come to learn she enjoyed doing this and was often the reason he didn't go hungry because she was so willing to cook for others. Clearly this was something that followed her from one life into the next.

Once she had joined him, his eyes took in the omelet before him. The noises in his stomach instantly reacted to the sight which made him scoff. "Funny how the human body reacts to such a need and desire. Still getting used to this all over again." His gaze lifted to her and he bowed his head slightly in gratitude, smiling. "Thank you, Miss Carmela. This looks wonderful." 

His fork easily cut through the egg and he took a satisfying helping to his mouth. It tasted better than it looked. "I'm honored you would still come with me, but there is time to still back down," he joked, readying for another bite. Lucien hadn't realized how quickly he was in fact eating the breakfast. "You were kind enough to do this for me, I think it's only fair the lady gets her choice of what we do and where we go first. Though the ranch might be best saved for last given the exertion and smell that others might not find too appealing in the close quarters of the autobus. That is unless you'd prefer to take one of those death machines outside." He looked loathsomely out of the panoramic window beside the table to the driveway in which a few cars sat for the Aurazin to make use of should needed thanks to the Ailwards. "Wretched things." Lucien turned and looked to her with a wry smile. "More and more I may take you up on that suggestion to get a small stable here to ride a horse everywhere instead."  


✧ The New World Order ✧


Carmela gave an easy laugh as he spoke of times before now, “Well if you would ever like to learn how to be better in the kitchen. We live together, I am happy to teach you.” She gave a toss of her hair to show how confident she was that she could get him making omelets and more in no time, if that is what he wished to do with his time. She got to work making the pair an omelet each when he was done, she plated it and sat it in front of him. It was as if her movements were that of a dancer filled with grace and fluid in motions. “Coffee tends to have the effect of lifting the fog, unless you have ADHD. In my studies at the Hospital I have learned when someone has ADHD, caffeine tends to have an opposite effect.” Her work with children had been so full of knowledge, it's been interesting and beneficial to her time stuck on this plane.

Finishing her Omelet shortly after his she was there sitting beside him with a mug of her own. She chuckled and put her fork into the steaming egg, “Because our memories of such desires play out and our body wants to relive those memories.” She gave her best logical answer, “You are most welcome Mr. Lucien. Always happy to keep another from going off on an adventure hungry.” She gave a wink towards him before taking the bite that was calling her name since placing it on the fork.

“Back down?” she gave an easy chuckle and smirked to him, “One do I look like someone who backs down from anything? And two a chance to learn of a time from someone who had been there and is an expert in history due to their love of it is invaluable.” She tucked her hair behind her ear as she took another bite. There was something about breakfast food that had been some of Carmela's favorites, maybe it was because of the wide variety of sweet to savory that could mingle together. She gave a look that said she was thinking hard on what they should do first, yet she agreed with saving the Ranch for last.

“I agree the Ranch smell lingering into the Museum seems rather unpleasant for those who aren’t cut out for Ranch life.” They all were truly different breeds compared to those of modern times. “And you can just call it Bus if you would like.” She gave a small smirk towards him, finding it rather adorable how he called it Autobus. “I mean I know how to drive so if you are willing to put your life on the line.” The joke left her lips then a sadness came upon her realizing how death for them now would bring an unknown with the vile closed. “I think having a small stable here and a few horses would be good not only for you but some of the others. Horses are great Therapy animals I have learned.” She said finishing her last bite and getting up to grab her shoes and jacket so they could set out on their plans.

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