That Butler, Departure
Chêne knew she could only push the demon so far, and she most definitely did not have a death wish, but Ciel … She looked at the boy that was still sleeping in Sebastian's arms. The wound on his chest had somehow been healed when he made the contract with Sebastian, but his other wounds, the whip welts and small cuts, looked like they might be infected and needed attention soon.
"…Then…" Chêne spoke hesitantly, "Can we please stop so I can treat his wounds? I think they might be infected."
Though he did not show it, Sebastian was slightly surprised. He had not really expected her to continue to talk back to him, let alone say 'please' to a demon like him. Humans were rather interesting. Sebastian smirked at her again, his eyes glittering in amusement.
"Very well," he conceded, "Although he has not given me any order to do so, I suppose it simply would not do to have my master die so early on in the contract."
The girl sighed in relief.
"Thank you. Alright, put him down there – Please?" Chêne said. She sat down on the dirt floor of the woods and pulled out a fluffy, pink blanket that had a princess crown pattern on it and laid it out on the ground for him to set Ciel down on. He stared at the blanket. Although it was not unusual for young girls to favor this color, he hadn't expected it from Chêne. She seemed to notice his stare as she began pulling medical supplies out of a strange white box made of a shiny white material he had never encountered before. It had a red cross on it and an inscription that read FIRST + AID.
"…What? Oh, it's the blanket isn't it?" Chêne said laughing and rubbing the back of her head. "Yeah, that's my little sister's she's always stashing stuff in my bag just to annoy me, but I guess it came in handy this time."
Sebastian laid his new master on the blanket. Chêne removed Ciel's tunic, but she turned an interesting shade of red when she realized he had nothing else on underneath it. She instantly draped the tunic over Ciel's lower body and went back to work. Chêne opened a bottle of clear liquid labeled Rubbing Alcohol and wet one of the clean cloths in the kit with it.
"This is going to sting." She told Ciel.
Sebastian did not understand why she bothered since the boy was still unconscious. She started wiping Ciel's wounds clean, and he twitched at the burning sensation from the alcohol, but he remained unconscious. Once she had removed all the dirt from his wounds, Chêne began draining the puss from his wounds. After removing as much as she could, Chêne poured another liquid that was in a brown bottle called Hydrogen Peroxide on Ciel's wounds. The liquid fizzed when it came in contact with his wounds, and Ciel twitched again but did not wake. She then stitched up some of the more severe wounds and applied some kind of healing salve. Finally, Chêne began bandaging Ciel's wounds.
"Are you a healer or a doctor, girl? You seem quite knowledgeable in medicine." Sebastian observed. Chêne frowned at him.
"We've been over this already, Sebastian." Chêne said tartly. "My name is Chêne, not girl. Use it." She crossed her arms in irritation. "And no, I'm not a doctor. I just carry this thing around with me because I'm a tomboy, so I'm always getting scraped up doing something I shouldn't." Chêne told him.
She flopped backwards onto the ground out of exhaustion, but she immediately jerked back up into a sitting position.
"Oooow!" She yelped. Sebastian smirked at her. Falling on her wounded back like that must have hurt quite a bit.
"Forget something?" Sebastian teased her. "Aren't you going to treat your own wounds?" Chêne frowned.
"I'd love to, but I can't." She said, sighing.
"Oh? Do you need help?" Sebastian asked, smirking as crouched down beside her and lightly touched her bare back. She automatically smacked his hand away and shuffled backwards, staring at him, wide-eyed. Sebastian raised an eyebrow at this. It would seem Chêne did not like to be touched.
"N-No!" She stuttered. "Sorry for slapping you! It was a reflex, but no, I don't need your help… There's just no more first-aid supplies left in the kit." Chêne explained.
"You did not save anything for yourself?" Sebastian asked skeptically. She shook her head.
"No, there wasn't that much left in there to begin with." Chêne said. "…I think I will take some aspirin though. My back is killing me." She tore open a small packet and swallowed two white pills with some distilled water that had been in the kit. "Aaah! That's better." She sighed. "Or at least it will be once this pain-killer kicks in, thirsty?" Chêne held the water bottle out for him.
"I do not have the same needs as humans." Sebastian said, declining her offer. Chêne gave him a blank stare like she had no clue what he meant by that. "…I do not need to eat or drink human food." He explained. "My source of sustenance is the human soul." Chêne blinked.
"…Oh…right, silly me. You are a demon after all." She said, laughing nervously. "I'm gonna shut up now…"
Sebastian stared at the girl. She could not have forgotten he was a demon already, could she? He had his suspicions from the moment he first laid eyes on her, but this confirmed it. Chêne had absolutely no sense of self-preservation. Sebastian heard his new master groan as the boy finally regained consciousness.
Ciel blinked as he awoke and tried to sit up. He felt someone gently brace his back as they helped him sit up. It was Chêne. Ciel glanced over her shoulder and saw Sebastian standing behind her, observing the two of them. It felt like the demon was mocking him with his stare.
"I can do it by myself." Ciel said, trying to push Chêne away. She frowned at him.
"Maybe, but if you strain yourself, it could rip your stitches." Chêne warned him. "So you can either lay down on your own, or sit up with my help."
"Stitches? Ciel asked. He looked down at himself and realized all of his wounds had been treated. He had also been undressed. Ciel flushed in embarrassment. "W-Who undressed me!" Ciel asked panicking. He had been made to endure much more humiliating situations than this over the past few months, but for some reason he couldn't help but feel embarrassed for being so exposed in front of Chêne and Sebastian like this. Chêne rubbed the back of her neck and gave him an apologetic look.
"Sorry Ciel, that was me…I didn't realize you weren't wearing anything under that tunic until it was too late – But I barely even saw anything! I promise!" Chêne said, trying to reassure him. It did not work at all. Ciel was mortified.
"!" Ciel sputtered, he was beyond words. Sebastian chuckled, clearly amused at his expense. "Sebastian, this is an order! Fetch proper clothing for the three of us!" Ciel barked.
"But Ciel, I am wearing 'proper' clothes." Chêne said, slightly confused. Sebastian raised an eyebrow at her.
"Oh? So it has become proper for a young woman to walk around in public in only a very revealing corset and pants that leave nothing to the imagination?" Sebastian asked her mockingly. Chêne blinked in confusion before glancing down at herself. She blushed tomato red from head to toe.
"!" Chêne yelped, slapping her arms across her chest in an extremely belated attempt at modesty. "NO!" Chêne yelled, clearly scandalized. "I just forgot that they took my shirt, okay! And there's nothing wrong with my skinny jeans; everyone wears them! I would like another shirt though."
"Proper ladies do not wear pants." Ciel said.
"Yeah well, I'm not a lady. I'm a teenager, and it's the 21st century Ciel. Women have been wearing pants for like decades now." Chêne said. Ciel and Sebastian stared at her. Sebastian was slightly amused. Ciel just thought Chêne was a lunatic.
"She did hit her head rather hard earlier…" Ciel told Sebastian. Chêne scowled at him.
"I didn't hit my head that hard, and I can hear you, you know." Chêne grumbled.
"Then you should know that this is the 19th century. The year was 1885 last time I checked." Ciel told her.
"What?" Chêne said in disbelief.
"That sounds about right." Sebastian said, agreeing with Ciel. "It has been approximately one hundred years since I last walked amongst you humans, give or take a few decades." Chêne just gaped at the two.
"Okay ya'll, this is seriously not funny." Chêne said. "You'd better knock it off because I'm gullible so, I might believe you if you keep it up." She paused, as though she just remembered something. "Oh, I almost forgot! I have something for you that'll take the edge off your pain a little, and lucky for you I happen to have an antibiotic in here too. Your wounds were infected." Chêne said as she handed him two small white pills, one large pill, and a bottle of water. The water was in a strange clear container. Ciel could tell it was not glass. He did not think Chêne would try to poison or drug him, but Ciel was still hesitant to take the medicine…what was an antibiotic anyway?
"What's the matter?" Chêne asked.
"What's an antibiotic?" Ciel asked her. "And what is this bottle made out of? It isn't glass." Chêne furrowed her brow.
"An antibiotic is something you take to help your body fight off bacteria and cure infected wounds. That bottle is made out of plastic, like this first-aid kit and practically everything else in this world." Chêne said as though it were common knowledge.
"I have never heard of such things before." Ciel said. Chêne was giving him that blank stare of disbelief again.
"That antibiotic I just gave you is penicillin in pill form. It's usually given as a shot though…anyway, penicillin has been used and manufactured on a massive scale ever since World War II." Chêne told him. It was Ciel's turn to stare in disbelief. A world war?
'This girl is as mad as a hatter.' Ciel decided.
"Here are the clothes you requested." Sebastian said. Chêne jumped at his sudden appearance.
"Whoa!" She yelled in surprise. "That was fast! I didn't even notice you'd left."
Sebastian smirked at her. He was now wearing a suit that reminded her of a butler's uniform.
'Oh, right, Ciel had mention something about Sebastian acting as his butler when they made the contract.' Chêne thought, remembering. She had been a little too busy getting over the shock of her near death experience, courtesy of Sebastian, to really pay attention."You even made a costume change, impressive." Chêne said.
"Hn, It took you long enough." Ciel said as he took the clothes and shoes Sebastian handed him. Chêne raised an eyebrow at his attitude, but decided not to comment.
"I decided to bring a copy of today's newspaper as well since there had been some difference of opinion on what century we are in." Sebastian said, looking directly at Chêne. She scowled at him before snatching the paper from him.
"Sorry for having an opinion!" Chêne huffed as she read the date. "Let's see…eh?" The date was there, in big, bold print: 1885. Not only that, but Chêne had seen a paper from around this time before in a display at a museum back home. It was made with the same type of paper, same ink, same typeface, and the pictures weren't photos, they were sketches and engravings. The only real difference between the two was that the one in her hands was in mint condition and hot of the press.
"Fudge." Chêne said, running her hands through her hair. "Well, either I imagined the last sixteen years of my life, or I traveled back in time…I'm really hoping it's the second one, because I refuse to go to a mental hospital." Sebastian handed Chêne her bundle of clothing.
"Thanks." Chêne said politely. "…Is that a corset?" she asked in disbelief when she realized her bundle included not only a Victorian style dress and shoes, but also a corset, petticoats, and other undergarments. The whole bundle felt like it weighed at least 15 lbs. "Where did you get all this?" She asked. Sebastian smirked deviously. "No, on second thought, don't tell me. I have a feeling I don't want to know." Chêne sighed, pinching the bridge of her nose. She eyed the corset with hostility.
"Is there a problem?" Ciel asked. "Oh, I suppose you'll need help putting that on won't you?" Chêne raised an eyebrow at Ciel.
"Um…no, I'd actually rather not wear it." Chêne said. "One of my friends talked me into wearing a corset when she dragged me to a renaissance festival with her one time. It was like being stuffed into a dull iron maiden – really painful, and really hard to breath." She sighed. "But on the other hand, my bra is dirty and bloodstained, so I don't really want to wear that either…"
"You could just wear nothing at all." Sebastian suggested. He was sporting a brilliant shit-eating grin. Chêne decided he was having way too much fun messing with her. If Sebastian weren't an all-powerful demon that could snap her like a twig, he'd already have her handprint tattooed on the side of his handsome face.
"Ugh, corset it is then. The pressure might help keep my wounds from bleeding." Chêne said as she hung her head in defeat. She blushed and avoided making eye contact as she added, "I'll need help lacing it up in the back though…"
Since Ciel was too used to having his servants dress him, and he was the one with the least amount of clothes on at the moment, they had agreed that Sebastian would dress Ciel first while Chêne went a few yards away to give him privacy and to change into her new undergarments before Sebastian helped her into the corset. Chêne clearly did not like the idea of Sebastian seeing her like that, but beggars can't be choosers. Once he was fully dressed and while he waited for Chêne and Sebastian, Ciel pondered what Chêne had said about her being a time traveler.
'…I did just witness her materialize out of thin air.' Ciel thought. He glanced at Sebastian as the demon returned to his side. 'Also, if demons are real…I do not see why time travel cannot be possible.' Ciel concluded. 'It's better than the alternative, at least.' "Where is Chêne?" He asked Sebastian. "Why did she not return with you?" Sebastian smirked, clearly amused.
"She's still struggling to put the dress on." Sebastian said. "She accepted my help with the corset, but then she insisted on doing the rest herself. They heard a muffled thump and an "Ow!" a few yards away. Sebastian snickered. "She is a rather entertaining human, is she not? I wonder, is the Young Master entertaining as well?" Sebastian said, teasing him. Ciel scowled at him.
"Do not put me in the same category as Chêne." Ciel said sternly. "That girl is abnormal."
"Who's abnormal?" Chêne asked indignantly as she came into view. Ciel had to admit; the modest, dark-green dress Sebastian had given Chêne suited her rather well. She finally looked like a lady. She was rather pretty.
"Well, I would not call someone who can travel through time normal. Would you?" Ciel said, smirking at her. Chêne's eyebrows flew up in surprise.
"You believe me? You don't think I'm crazy?" Chêne asked hopefully.
"After all of the events I have just witnessed within the last few hours, I'm willing to be a little open-minded." Ciel admitted. Chêne launched herself at Ciel and pulled him into a hug.
"Oh thank you, Ciel! I'm so glad you decided to believe me!" Chêne squealed, radiating pure happiness. Her smile was blinding.
"…Can't…breathe…hurts…" Ciel managed to say while Chêne unintentionally smothered him. She gasped and immediately released him.
"Ah! Sorry, I was just so relieved…I forgot you were injured, and I'm a hugger, so naturally I …sorry…" Chêne said, laughing nervously.
"Just do not let it happen again." Ciel said, coughing to cover his embarrassment at being hugged like that by someone he barely knew.
"Well, I'm glad Sebastian didn't eat you while I was gone." Chêne teased him. Ciel scowled at her, and Sebastian smirked.
"Why, I would never." Sebastian said, a little too innocently. "My contract requires that I must stay by my master's side, protect, and serve him as his butler until he either realizes his revenge, or he dies. I am required to remain faithful to the very end. Despite our illustrious reputation as deceivers, demons do not tell lies, unlike humans." Chêne eyed him for a moment, carefully considering his words.
"Alright, fair enough." Chêne conceded. No matter how much she didn't like the idea of Ciel becoming the demon's next meal… What's done, is done. It was between Ciel and Sebastian.
"You may not lie, but I bet you don't always tell the whole truth either." Chêne said, smirking at Sebastian.
"Indeed." Sebastian replied, his eyes glowing as he smirked back.
"When the two of you are quite finished flirting with each other, I'd like to discuss our next course of action." Ciel deadpanned. Chêne blushed.
"I was not flirting with him!" She said, stomping her foot. Oh yeah, real mature. Ciel almost rolled his eyes at her. Sebastian smirked. He could use this as ammunition to tease the girl with later.
"Your orders, master?" Sebastian asked.
"I'm going home." Ciel stated, determinedly. "Are you coming, Chêne?" Chêne blinked in surprise. She had not really expected that.
"I'm invited too?" Chêne asked. Ciel nodded.
"It is not as though you have anywhere better to go. You don't even know how you came here, let alone how to go back, correct?" Ciel said bluntly. He was right of course, Chêne had no clue how to get home, and she really did have nowhere else to go.
"Thanks, Ciel." Chêne said, smiling gratefully. "I don't know what I'd do without you – probably die in a ditch somewhere – I can be your maid, no problem."
"I did not mean you had to be a servant." Ciel said. Chêne tilted her head to the side in confusion.
"Well, what else would I do? Besides, you know what they say, 'Those who don't work, don't eat.'" Chêne said.
"Very well." Ciel said. "Take us home, Sebastian."
Crimson eyes glowed as the demon smirked and bowed.
"Yes, My Lord." Sebastian said.