Three weeks…The demon thought to himself. She has been in this house for three weeks, and I still am no closer to discovering her true identity.
Ciel had thought it appropriate to hire the lovely young woman immediately upon seeing her. Sebastian thought it peculiar that his master didn't even desire to see her credentials. That, coupled with the girl's odd aura had the butler's attention completely. He had made it his personal mission to discover every secret Aria had hidden behind those emerald green eyes.
What Sebastian had thought would take a matter of hours at the very longest was now dragging on to three weeks, and the butler was no closer to discovering the first thing about this woman. It was as if she was a creature entirely her own. There was no physical trace of her in the world of the light or in that of Britain's underground. Her aura was not that of a human, but neither was it that of a demon, an angel, or even that of a reaper. Sebastian could think of no creature he'd encountered like her before, and it was driving him mad.
Sebastian's confusion and frustration had not had an ill effect on his perception of Aria, however. She was as kind and gentle as she was beautiful, and nothing about her suggested Sebastian should feel otherwise. He recalled his first meeting with the angel "Angela" and how despite her beauty and seeming personality, instinct told him that she would prove to be a danger to his master. Nothing had yet occurred to substantiate that suspicion, but the butler couldn't shake the feeling none-the-less.
His feeling of Aria was nothing to this effect. Her persona was one of curiosity, quiet generosity, and servitude. The only negative aura the butler perceived was one of deeply rooted sadness. A smile perpetually adorned her lovely face, but her eyes held a sorrow that was inexpressible in words.
In the days she'd spent here so far, when Aria wasn't instructing Ciel in the many subjects he was studying currently, one could find her outside helping Finny with the grounds keeping, around the manor assisting with Meirin's housekeeping, or even in the kitchen making sure Bardroy didn't blow the western end of the estate to smithereens.
On this particularly sunny afternoon, Aria was taking a stroll through the many gardens of the estate. Ciel and Sebastian stood in the study discussing a case. As they spoke, Sebastian gazed out the window. A small chuckle escaped his lips when he spotted Aria. She almost glided through the rows of white rose bushes with a solid black cat tucked cozily in her arms. Pluto plodded along behind her, looking dejected at having the cat chosen over himself.
"Well, that is definitely a mark in her favor," Sebastian mumbled, sharing in her love of the feline race.
"What?" Ciel raised an eyebrow.
"Oh, it's nothing, Master. I was just noticing that your new tutor has an affinity for cats."
"Yes," Ciel looked back to the paperwork on his desk.
"I also find it interesting that she accepted Pluto's…shall we say…peculiarity…without question," Sebastian continued to stare out the window.
Here, Ciel looked up, annoyed almost.
"What are you getting at, Sebastian?"
"She isn't human," the butler looked at his master over his shoulder.
"Positive, my young lord," Sebastian sighed. "Her energy is not that of a human. It's not like anything I've felt before."
"Do you think she's a threat?" Ciel raised an eyebrow, wondering if his quickness to hire her was premature.
"No," Sebastian frowned, "No, she is as innocent as she appears from what I can tell…but that is unfortunately all I have been able to discover."
"Find out more about her," Ciel touched his eye patch, "that's an order."
"Yes, My Lord."
The touch of the ebony fur between her fingers made Aria smile, and the cat's soft purring was a comfort to her. This place was beautiful even in the chill of late November. It was nothing like the beauty of her home, but it was beautiful non-the-less.
She reached a slender hand out to her side and rubbed the nose of the hellhound behind her. This pacified the creature enough to cease the whimpering. Aria held little love for the canine species, and this particular dog was demonic in nature, but hers was a heart that could stand to see no creature in pain of any sort…even if that pain was the mental pain of sadness or loneliness.
She gazed back at the large estate house and sighed. She didn't fully understand her purpose in being here. There was an endless array of negative aspects to this home, but was she supposed to remedy them all? It seemed a lot for one person to handle, but her kind were not sent out lightly, and Aria knew she must do her best to right whatever was in her power to change. This was not going to be an easy, quick mission, but those cases her people were sent to see to rarely were; such was the status of her race.
"Miss Aria!" a chipper voice brought the girl back to her surroundings, "Miss Aria! I've got something to show you!"
Aria allowed one of her hands to be taken by the blonde boy before her. She liked Finny; he was always so kind.
Before he could take Aria anywhere, though, Finny was attacked by the large white dog that was Pluto, and the two of them began a fantastic wrestling match. Aria backed away to watch the festivities with the cat still cradled in her arms.
Out of the corner of her eye, Aria spotted a white carriage coming up the drive.
Probably a new order from the queen…
In the time since she'd come here, several new orders had come out of that white carriage. Each of them brought some new danger down upon the young master of the house. He'd come out of all of them with barely a scratch though. Aria more than guessed who was responsible for that.
The Phantomhive head butler was a mysterious man, indeed. He was stern and solemn, but not always cold. He was a demon. He and the master held a Faustian contract. For what, Aria didn't know, but she guessed it had something to do with the reason the Lord Phantomhive was a twelve year old boy.
Even in the short time she'd been here, Aria could tell that Sebastian was not a typical demon. She'd met demons before on many occasions, and none had behaved the way Sebastian did. Demons were calculating and manipulative, which Sebastian had the capacity to be, but they were also evil incarnate, enjoying the most gruesome of entertainment. Aria couldn't be certain, as her time with the Phantomhive clan had been short, but Sebastian and Ciel definitely had a strange relationship. Though they heartily denied it, and even got enjoyment from each other's embarrassment and strife, there was something about the non-verbal communication that told her the two genuinely cared about one another on some level.
Shortly after her arrival, Sebastian had been "murdered" along with two others in a strange episode when several guests spent a stormy night at the mansion. Though she knew the master's emotion at seeing the "dead" Sebastian were faked, there was some small part of his performance that a being such as herself could tell was far from a façade. Had the plan not been the master's all along, he still would have reacted in much the same way to seeing Sebastian in that state.
Nothing here is quite as it seems, Aria thought. The white carriage brings news to the black estate of Phantomhive…yet which one is truly the darker? The darkened estate where in their own way the people are good, or the white carriage that hides a multitude of evil intents? I guess only time will tell.
"Master," Sebastian bowed low before approaching Ciel's desk, "a letter had just come from her Magesty."
Slowly, Ciel broke the seal and read from the paper. His young brow furrowed in a deep frown.
"Looks like we'll be off again soon."