Meant to cook and meant to clean
Meant to rise and do the thing
“You know, brother,” Sunlight began one day out of the clear blue, while she was whipping up some sort of cream topping for the pie she was making.
Roh really had no idea, but being himself, he didn’t say so.
“I think I love you,” she informed him solemnly.
Roh blinked twice as Sunlight kept whipping—as though she hadn’t just said something outlandish and terrifying. “If you mean romantically, this partnership is over.”
“What?! Ew, no.” She wrinkled her nose. “I call you brother. I’m not kinking on pseudo incest here.”
He sighed relief. “Good. I hate you too.”
Red goes well with the Queen of Attolia. Her reign was founded on bloodshed, and she spills it like wine as she must to keep her nation and protect her people.
“Invoking the goddess again?” Eugenides’ smile is in his voice as he trails his gaze over the ruby red, the burgundy hues of her attire.
He doesn’t comment that sometimes her reign has stained them with blood. No one can tell with just their eyes.
She puts her hand on his arm above the hook, and they both still. They are both ruthless and vicious in the service of their nations, she thinks.
“And you your god, my king?” she queries, a brow raised.
He laughs, and she loves him for it, for rising to the occasion of her.
Then he bows over her hand with a kiss, drawing heat to her cheeks. “Shall we?”
Hers are not the only clothes which hide blood well.
Khun children were vicious and ruthless. They were a dangerous family and above all, not kind.
Then Maria sat down and asked Khun Aguero Agnis to help her become the princess of Jahad, and she was the kindest person that Khun had met. He’d been raised to be able to measure a person quickly, and he listened, measured, and at least considered the fact that he’d been raised to make his sister princess.
His sister was vicious and ruthless and dangerous—everything a Khun should be. Maria was different.
“Okay,” he said.
The Tower was just another competition, demanding the regulars be vicious and ruthless, willing to kill anyone that stood in their way. Khun had been born for this.
Then he met Bam—kind, stubborn, loyal Bam who didn’t want to hurt a fly and was willing to fight to the death for others, knowing he was too weak to win. He was good, and Khun measured him with a sort of shocked realization that Maria wasn’t as kind or good as Bam.
“Okay,” he said and set the crown on Bam’s head.
Khun Aguero Agnis is a name bought with blood.
His mother gives him, his sister, and Kiseia each their own knife and the opportunity to train. His first instructor says he has an affinity for the spear. His father’s spear. He turns it down and keeps his mother’s knife.
The first time they draw blood is on each other, and it was perhaps the most terrible idea his mother ever had. He bloodies his sisters and bleeds red to each of them.
You’re not a Khun until you survive the battle against your siblings and win, the battle that earns your own name. He bought his name with violence and a knife sharp in hand, blood between his teeth.
When he stabs his sister in the back, sends Maria to Jahad instead of his sister, they throw them out of the family. He keeps the name.
And the knife.
“Let’s go train, turtles!” Rak announced to the occupants of Khun’s room, that is Bam and Khun.
Khun looked up from his lighthouse work (which he was doing from the comfort of his bed) and blinked. “No, today’s a lazy day.”
Bam looked curious. “What do you mean?”
“Come here.” Khun made room and Bam curled up against him, then sighed softly as he relaxed his head against Khun’s shoulder.
Rak waxed eloquent on the merits of hard work. (Khun was quite familiar with those merits, having been obligated to train hard since his childhood every time another life and death contest loomed.)
Bam burrowed closer and tucked his face against Khun’s neck, clearly quite comfortable.
“Come on, Black Turtle. You and I will go train!”
Bam muttered something indecipherable. Khun smirked.
“What did he say?” Rak demanded.
“He sees the appeal.” Khun stayed on his lighthouse, enjoying Rak’s jaw agape, and plotted and schemed their next victory.
A Khun doesn’t need love. Khun children were fed on ambition and cunning and trained to compete for their lives and their name by the time they were ten. They don’t need affection. They need strength in their limbs and lightning in their bodies and blood between their teeth.
Then Bam looks at Khun Aguero Agnis and tells him, “I didn’t have any friends. Let’s be friends with them.”
There’s something else between his teeth and he can’t decide whether he likes the taste of it, the word coming out before he can hold it in. “Fine.”
He doesn’t need the feeling of Bam’s shoulder between his fingers, but he can’t stop reaching for it. Doesn’t need this sudden warmth in his chest when Bam asks to climb the Tower with them. A Khun doesn’t need love, he tells himself, unwilling to admit he doesn’t still believe it.
Last Order wouldn’t stop staring at him.
“That’s creepy,” Accelerator told her, shoving her off the end of the couch with one arm.
“‘Don’t be mean!’ Misaka Misaka protests, flailing her arms for balance,” Last Order squawked indignantly. She shot back upright and glared.
He eyed her from the corner of his eye, but she just huffed and clambered back up beside him.
“Misaka thinks that you look happy, Misaka Misaka notes with satisfaction.” Last Order grinned. “Misaka thinks that you should stay here with her forever.”
“Happy, huh?” he murmured and closed his eyes.
Such an odd feeling. Happy.