The Devil's Own
Chapter 2: Of Trains And Primates
By Angry Angel
He had been sitting very still, and those that didn't know him well probably would have thought that he was sleeping. Wisps of straight, chocolate brown hair danced lazily into his face to the quiet rhythm of the wind that was sweeping through the streets of Timber in the golden light of a fading afternoon, and he put no effort into brushing them away. In the distance, his keenly trained ears could perceive the sound of children playing and the familiar whistle of a train that had just boarded at the station. The air was laden with the sweet smell of blossoming trees and freshly cut hay from the surrounding farms, but he paid little attention to that.
Sighing, he tilted his head to the sky, and his slate blue eyes narrowed instinctively as the still quite intense rays from the descending sun cut sharply into his face. Fair and finely chiselled features crinkled just slightly at the sensational overload, but he didn't blink once. His secretively attentive gaze zeroed in on some random clouds that drifted across the endless azure surface of the heavens languidly, and his back connected with the rough wood of the bench that he had been resting on so soundlessly.
He was a strange sight to behold, really. Clad in heavy biker boots, long black leather pants that came straight down his legs and almost touched the ground when he stood, as well as a short sleeved black t-shirt that rippled tightly over taut abdominal muscles and supply built arms that almost gave away more than he liked, he seemed somehow displaced sitting on that bench at the outskirts of Timber, bathing in the luminous beauty that surrounded him without even paying it any heed.
No, his attractiveness was certainly of a different kind than the simple splendour of a warm April's day. It was infinitely darker, almost melancholic in nature, enhanced even more so by the clash of his ivory skin with the cold brown of his hair that fell in large chunks into his face, but was cropped fairly closely at the nape of his filigree neck. His appearance could have even been labelled as fragile, perhaps, hadn't it been for that dangerous glint smoldering in his storm colored eyes that openly belied his youth and spoke of wisdom that was far beyond his age.
Indeed, few would have believed that his lifeline counted little more than seventeen years, although he looked not a day older than his generic ID card stated - well, one of the many, anyway.
His crimson lips were dry and raw against the sun, and he licked them absent-mindedly, tasting a faint trace of salt and the bitter sweetness of pollen. He decided that he didn't much like that particular blend.
His legs had been resting on the wood beneath them almost motionlessly, placed in a flawless angle to each other and the slender hands that were set on either side of them. Now, he stretched them with a mute sigh, flexing lithe muscles that he had spent much work on steeling and sculpting to almost disturbing perfection.
Not that his looks actually mattered to him.
His shoulders and his back were a little sore from sitting up straight like a board for so long, and he extended his arms before himself to ease the tension. It didn't really help much. For a moment, he found himself wondering at the time, but then he recalled the high metal whistle that had rung mere minutes ago from the Timber station.
Without really knowing why, he rubbed at the slanted scar that ran across the bridge of his nose, but he didnít actually think of the mark as he performed the intuitive movement with his hand. He was just feeling slightly under the weather, which was particularly unusual for someone like him. He wasnít exactly the type to be much bothered by outward influences.
Then again, he didn't exactly think that he was the 'type' for anything, for that matter.
Well, short of being the type that could go for a hearty and early dinner, perhaps. It was about that time.
Thus, he pushed himself off the bench with astounding elegance, his body giving away none of the it had been complaining about only seconds before. He had made a habit of not displaying any sign of weakness - ever - be it around his friends or his enemies. He neither liked the idea of the former scolding him for his ruthless carelessness concerning his health, nor the thought of the latter making use of his apparently fading impregnability.
It wouldn't have been a healthy choice either way, nor a pleasant one to say the least.
But enough of that.
Indeed, he was hungry and his stomach was churning in the scary imitation of a wild beast, spitefully reminding him that there were still some things in his life that were not under his chaste control.
Oh well, he was going to give nature this one, he saw no danger in it. His friend Selphie probably would have laughed at him had she seen his face right then, and more likely than not she would have mocked his obsessive urge to possess power over everything that ever happened in his life, be it by destiny or by chance.
Not that he actually believed in either.
His lips twitched into the semblance of a smile at the thought, but there was no humor in that slight upturn of the corners of his mouth. He rarely ever smiled, and surely not when he was all by himself of all occasions. He would have felt like a mental case, and that was never a nice feeling.
Nope. Certainly not.
His arms hung slack at his sides as he slowly trudged back into the heart of the town, Timber. The prospect of a dinner at home or the local restaurant, perhaps, had stirred another idea in the arcane crevices of his mind. As much as he usually preferred a state of complete solitude at any chosen time of the day, there was still one person he could think of that needed a good meal probably even more than he did.
Thus, he didn't take a left at the crowded market place as he would have usually done when he was on his way home or to work, but instead swung right to walk a bridge that hovered above the train tracks that stretched all across one level of the city. Timber was indeed quite the reloading point, as it was the only existent connection between the islands of Balamb and Galbadia. In fact, said connection was a fairly advanced submarine railway line that the Galbadian Railway Association took much pride in.
The dark haired boy snorted quietly at the thought.
He dug his hands into the pockets of his pants as he crossed the bridge, and he stopped just briefly at the display case of Timber's weapons dealer. The owner, Watts, was actually someone that the brunette youth knew quite well, but today he didn't linger to study his friend's merchandise any further.
His actual destination was the Timber Hotel, and he stepped through frosted glass sliding doors and inside the establishment's foyer with his head hung fashionably low, while his steel blue eyes were nailed fiercely to the graphite tiled floor at his feet. Subconsciously, his ears were listening for the soft wheezing of the model railway that had been put up for reasons that the teen would never understand - as Timber was already crammed with trains without the toys to add to the effect - but had gotten used to over time. After all, there usually was not a day that passed that he did not stop by the city's hotel, and he knew that place almost as well as his own house.
One thing, though, he most certainly did not remember from his previous visits.
Apparently, someone had decided to plant something very big and very sturdy right in the middle of the doorway, and before the brunette could have done anything to prevent it, he had bumped straight into said obstructing object, face-forward and hitting his delicate nose against something that felt much like a shoulder, and that, most annoyingly of all, was sort of capable of talking.
Sort of, because the words that came low and sharp from somewhere in front of the youth could have hardly been classified as a full sentence, let alone an intelligent one at that.
'Great. Of all things to bump into, I have to bump into an anthropoid.'
And with that thought crossing his mind and resonating in the smooth lines of his face in the darkest of scowls, he finally raised his head.
=To be continued!=
Well, I thought that chapter 1 alone doesn't do all that much, so I decided to post chapter 2 as well. Not a whole lot of action, as you see, merely some character introduction. And I just know that you know who the mysterious protagonist of this chappie is!
By the way, for those that don't know (since I have been accused of using big, fancy words hehe), an athropoid is a human-like animal... a monkey, for example, or a caveman. Usually a monkey, though. Our dark haired friend could have said monkey, of course, but in my opinion that wouldn't have achieved the desired effect. If I know what an anthropoid is without having to look it up, a certain grouchy brunette sure as heck does, too ;)
To Lovely Princess Peach and Wai-Aki... thank you for reviewing, and I'm glad you like it so far :)
Return to Archive | next | previous