Remembrance: written by Kora Knight & Raven Foxx
"Was that fun, too?"
It is the humans’ Christmas and everyone in the outside world is celebrating. Those inside Seth’s dark palace, however, are mourning the holy holiday. Irritatingly, anything holy makes him think of his captive.
Memories assail him of their most recent encounter. What an epic disaster their dinner had been. His muscles tense at the recollection, blood pounding louder in his ears. So much so, that he nearly misses the faint, pitiful mew of a scuffling feline in one of the rooms behind him.
Stopping, he tilts his head and watches as a witch rushes out with a struggling orange fur ball in her grasp.
“Finally, I caught you, you little devil!” she hisses. “Now I can drown your mangy ass.” She freezes in her tracks at the sight of Seth. “Forgive me, Master,” she mutters, wrinkling her nose. “It seems one of my cats has spawned a litter.”
Seth looks from her to the black mother cat weaving around her legs to the orange striped kitten wiggling desperately in her clutches. A sneer curves his lips—until his eyes meet the kitten’s. Instantly, he knows what he must do.
Stalking forward, he snarls at the witch. “Give me that damn thing.”
She jumps, the tiny cat looking curiously smug as it drops into Seth’s hands. Wriggling around, it gives the witch a fearsome hiss.
Seth smirks, then turns and strides soundlessly down the hall, moving like a wraith through the darkness. When he reaches Jazz's room, he bursts through the door.
“Merry whatever the fuck it is,” he snaps, dumping the tiny fur ball onto the bed by the sleeping angel. Jaw clenched, he watches Jazz stir, one hand lifting to rub his sleepy eyes. The kitten nuzzles instantly under Jazz’s chin. “Disgusting,” Seth grunts. Irritably, he turns and stalks toward the door.
“Seth.” His name on the angel’s tongue is thick and seductive, spoken in a voice still laden with sleep.
Seth inhales and turns around. Jazz is sitting up now, eyeing him curiously as he holds the stray against his smooth, bare chest.
“I'll order the chef to save the scraps for your rat,” Seth mutters, turning back around to depart.
“Wait,” Jazz calls again.
Seth pauses in the doorway, but only to glare at him over his shoulder.
The corners of Jazz's mouth curve upward. “Thanks,” he murmurs, inclining his head.
Seth narrows his eyes, his gaze dropping to Jazz’s thumbs, watching them idly stroke the kitten's fur.
Finally, he frowns and gives a halfhearted shrug. “The witch was going to drown it, and since you’re always complaining about being lonely, I figured maybe that thing might shut you up.” He pursed his lips. “Just keep it in your room or on your person at all times. I will make no promises for its wellbeing should you let it out of your sight.”
As he continues to watch Jazz’s lazy fingers stroking, a strange surge of jealousy surfaces from within. That feline, so visibly enjoying his ministrations. Seth hisses and shakes his head. What in hades is wrong with him? Pining for the touch of an angel?
He scowls. Perhaps bringing the gift was a foolish mistake.
Jazz never takes his gaze off the dark lord’s face, even when the kitten starts chewing on his thumb. “Yeah, okay.” He nods, acknowledging Seth's fair warning. “I’ll keep an eye on him.”
He looks down, lips twitching at the little bundle of stripes. The dude was small enough to rest comfortably is his palm. Jazz turns it onto its back and scratches its tummy and under its chin. A tiny purr vibrates from its throat.
Jazz can’t’ help smiling. “He likes me.”
A soft snort resounds from the doorway. He looks up to find Seth’s dark frown has deepened. His body language is tense, as if he’s one heartbeat away from splitting. Jazz cocks his head to the side. “Leaving so soon?” he murmurs. “Why don’t you hang out for a few… Help me think of a name for him. He needs a name.”
Seth scowls, unable to understand why he’s still standing there, lingering at the angel’s threshold.
“I think it’s name is Spawn,” he drawls sardonically. “Or was it Bastard?”
Jazz scoffs and motions for him to come back in.
A feeling of unease slithers though Seth’s gut. Why on earth would he stay? He glances down the hallway then back at the angel. Finally, he takes a step forward, then another and another, until he reaches the chair beside Jazz’s bed. Feigning an empathic air, he drops on its cushion and sprawls out casually, as if he hasn’t a fucking care in the whole damnable world.
An awkward silence follows as he stills in his seat. Instantly, he’s back on his feet. “Really,” he growls, starting to pace, “why should I stay? I don’t enjoy watching you stroke that thing.” He snarls in frustration. Son of a bitch—he’s jealous! He wants to be stroked by the angel! Is he losing his mind?
Jazz rolls his eyes. “Dude. Is your schedule really that booked?” He can’t help noticing how Seth is glaring at the kitten. Lifting a brow, he chuckles. “He's just a babe. What on earth could you have against kittens?”
Seth just grumbles and resumes his pacing. Jazz fights back an amused smile and tosses the cat onto his pillow. Sliding off the bed, he saunters over to stand in Seth's path. Arms crossed, he gives the vampire a stern look. “Seth. Chill. And sit down.”
Seth merely glowers, moving to shove him out of the way. Jazz’s brows shoot high. Planting his feet, he refuses to budge. Seth stiffens at his defiance, his vampire eyes flashing black fire. But Jazz isn’t intimidated. If anything, it just eggs him on. A smirk curves his lips as he returns Seth’s hardy shove. The dark lord bristles.
Jazz can’t hold back his chuckle. “What. You want a piece of me? Bring it.”
Standing utterly still, Seth contemplates Jazz’s arrogant question. It both enrages and arouses him to the point of madness. Faster than lightning, he lunges, ripping Jazz off of his feet, only to slam him back down on his bed. Brutally, he pins him, a snarl rifling up his throat as he grinds his hips into the angel’s pliant form.
Jazz grunts, then quickly shoves Seth off and onto his back, rolling along with him as they tumble across the bed.
“Yesss…” Seth hisses, Jazz’s firm warmth delighting.
The kitten watches them raptly from its pillow.
Seth growls, grasping his angel, but then abruptly goes ramrod stiff. What the fuck are they doing? He shoves Jazz over and rolls back atop him. As much as he tries to conceal it, he can’t fight the smile tugging at his lips. He is enjoying this contact. It’s rough and raw and rowdy, just like him.
Jazz laughs, low and genuine. Never in a million years could he have predicted this moment, wrestling with a vampire on his bed. “Finally. A little fun.”
Again, he pushes Seth onto his back, grinning down at him. God, he’s missed this. Missed roughhousing. It was—and he suspects will always be—one of his favorite past times. Even as adults, he and Jared still tangle wildly in wide open spaces.
What sounds like a chuckle rumbles up from Seth's chest. Jazz freezes at the unexpected—and disturbingly sensual—sound. But before he can shake off his surprise, Seth’s on the move again, shifting with lightning speed to pin Jazz on his stomach. Hot breath tickles Jazz’s ear as Seth’s parted lips graze it
“Was that fun, too?” the vampire asks, his heated timbre dark and smug.
Jazz nods, then barks out an awkward laugh. “Yeah, man. And a sweet move, at that.” He wriggles beneath Seth’s weight. “But check this out…”
In a blur, Jazz reaches over his shoulder and grabs Seth's nape. With a hardy tug, he wrenches the vampire off, essentially rolling him right back onto his back. Seth snarls as Jazz wastes no time wrangling his opponent into a head lock.
Seth barks a curse.
Jazz happily growls against his ear. “Now that right there is what I call fun.”
Seth growls back, but a snort of amusement quickly follows suit. “So glad that you are having so much fun.”
Undaunted by Jazz’s wrestling prowess, he abruptly rolls to the right, then awkwardly the left, struggling to extricate himself. After many attempts, he finally manages to peel the angel off, only to grapple with Jazz further atop the bed. In the end, both end up panting in a tangle of limbs. Amidst it all, the kitten has fallen fast asleep. From all the rocking they’d created on the mattress?
With his head resting against Jazz's, Seth smiles a forbidden smile. Then the desire to close his eyes and rest at ease washes over his dark soul. Just this once, he decides to allow himself the luxury, to enjoy this strange peacefulness Jazz so close provides him.
He can feel the tension leaving, seeping from his body. The angel’s warmth is like a balm to his jaded soul.
Catching his breath, Jazz inwardly smiles. God, how desperately he’s needed to just unwind like that. He senses Seth needed it, too.
Somewhere deep inside, Jazz can’t help but to wonder: has Seth ever laughed from simple, innocent amusement like he had just now? It had sounded nice. Really nice. Jazz wants to hear it again. Lord knows, so few things in this place gives him pleasure, so when he stumbles across something that does, it’s hard not to appreciate. And right now, as Seth chills beside him quietly on the bed—his body heat seeping into Jazz's bones—Jazz thoroughly relaxes.
Seth may not be the family Jazz still longs each day to return to, but he is a unique and captivating individual. One who has incredible, undeniable innate potential. Jazz can feel it down to the fibers of his being. The vampire is passion. And confidence. Conviction and power. All such admiral traits in their own right.
In the quiet of this strange moment—as he idly strokes Seth's back just like he’d idly stroked that kitten—Jazz makes a decision. He’s going to unearth Seth’s potential. Somehow. Someway. Everyone deserves second chances. All fall short of grace, after all. In one form or another. Seth is no different.
Releasing a sigh, Jazz closes his eyes—and smiles on the outside, too.
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