They both stood across each other gripping the sword tightly in their hands.
“Please go easy on me” Sebastian teased. They both lunged forward at tremendous speed, their reflexes were amazing. Everyone including me was pretty amazed; they seemed on par with each other. I was rocking back and forth nervously, if they tie then that would mean that both Soma and Sebastian would still fight for me and I didn’t want it to cause any disturbance. Sebastian will take great measures to make sure I do belong to him, even with the restrictions applied with the contract with Ciel. Both of Sebastian’s and Agni’s swords met at the very tip, thus making it bend. Sebastian saw this coming and didn’t put much pressure on his sword making Agni’s sword snap. Sebastian caught Agni’s flying piece, Soma’s eyes widened and a smirk was swept across their faces; Sebastian won. I was shockingly relieved that Sebastian won the match, have I really fallen for the same species that killed my sister?
“It seems your sword broke,” Sebastian noted holding the broken piece in his gloved hand.
“As expected, the butler won,” Lau smirked.
“Your butler is quite interesting, Ciel,” Soma complimented, “Her heart is with you then”
Ciel smiled and looked toward me, “However, I will not have control over her heart; she should decide who her heart belongs to, not me”
I mouthed a thank you to Ciel and he just nodded in reply, but Ciel was pretty amazed how Agni was pretty close to have a draw with Sebastian.
“Agni is the best warrior in my palace, but it seems not against your butler,” Soma noted, he put his hands on his hips, “I am always grateful to have him!”
Ciel walked toward Sebastian not losing his glance at Agni.
“Sebastian, what is he?” Ciel asked with a whisper, “Don’t tell me he’s another...”
“Ciel you don’t have to worry he is human,” I giggled softly walking towards the two, Sebastian looked toward me and he had a soft smile on his face.
“I see... But that much power...” Ciel whispered being suspicious.
“Yes, he could easily hang men upside-down” Sebastian whispered locking his suspicious gaze on Agni, I agreed with Sebastian.
“It is time for me to make dinner” Sebastian said taking out his pocket watch and looking at the time. He got up and made his way swiftly to the door, he glanced back at me and smirked.
“Come, I need to talk to you” Sebastian whispered to me, only for me to hear. I rolled my eyes and excused myself from everyone and I quietly exited the room. I looked both left and right but, there was no sign of him. I walked through the quiet hallway, feeling a bit of a dark presence.
“Sebastian, come out already” I sighed. Sebastian came out of the shadow and he stood close behind me.
“My princess, you were worried weren’t you?” Sebastian teased gently turning me around to face him.
“No....” I said looking away from him.
“You’re denying it, I can see it” Sebastian laughed while combing his fingers through my hair.
“No I am not..... I just didn’t want to be with him that is all” I replied still denying the fact that I wanted him to win. He moved closer to me and swiftly gliding his gloved hand from my shoulder to my exposed stomach. His gloves tickled against my skin as he made his way to land his hands on my hips. He moved in to my exposed neck and his breath made me shudder.
“Princess, no matter what you wear you looks exquisite,” Sebastian whispered as he kissed the side of my neck, “You are the perfect poison”
I blushed and shuddered at the same time, I clenched my fists. I couldn’t fall in love with him; I couldn’t, no matter how handsome, how intelligent, how nice he can be. I had to remember that this was all a mask that hid his true personality, a merciless, terrifying demon.
“I am not a belonging,” I said sternly, “I am not something you can just own”
“Is that so?” Sebastian raised an eyebrow surprised with my sudden anger.
“I belong to you, only because of this cursed half marking,” I turned my back at him, “You can only say I belong to you when you win my heart, not with lust”
“Very well,” Sebastian bowed smirking, “Just so you know, I will win your heart with all measures”
“I won’t fall for anything easy” I said angrily while walking away to my room.
. . . .
Lau, Ciel, Soma and I sat down at the table for dinner; Sebastian placed the main dish in front of me.
“How long do you intend to stay?” Ciel asked while cutting his food.
“I believe you said that you were searching for someone” I commented as I softly placed the piece of food in my mouth.
“But, why are you staying here?” Ciel asked taking a sip of water from his glass.
“A good question,” Soma pulled out a piece of paper from his jacket, “I am looking for a woman”
He showed the child like drawing of a girl that was hard to identify, I almost choked on my food.
“Her name is Meena. She was a servant at my palace” Soma said pointing at the drawing.
“Sebastian, is that enough information to find her?” Ciel asked.
“Even I can’t do much with this....” Sebastian said politely , “...But I will try my best”
I laughed under my breath; he will have to have the greatest luck to find her with those descriptions.
“So what is she doing in England?” Ciel asked popping a piece of potato in his mouth.
“Meena was my servant, more like my nursemaid,” Soma’s eyes softened as he spoke, “She has been with me ever since I could remember”
Ciel’s eyes darkened, I knew Soma wanted to get Meena back.
“Both my parents never looked my way, but she always stayed by my side and showered me with love,” Soma’s voice started to get angry, “But a British nobleman had his eye on her and took her away”
“Basically, you came here to get her back?” I asked.
“Yes, I’ll get her back no matter what!” Soma exclaimed having determination glowing in his eyes. I noticed that Agni’s eyes darkened a bit, there was something he was hiding from Soma and I could feel it.
“That is a lot of fuss for only one servant,” Ciel commented. This made Soma get angry and he got up from his chair and grabbed Ciel tightly.
“Can you understand my pain being separated from her?” Soma shouted still grabbing a hold on Ciel.
“I can’t understand it, and I don’t care to” Ciel harshly replied back. Ciel then slapped his hand away and walked his way to a nearby door.
“Some things will never come back no matter how much you work for it” Ciel said as he turned the knob and exited the room.
Soma’s head dropped, “But, I still don’t want it.... I don’t want to be alone in the palace”
I wiped my mouth with the napkin and slowly got up to walk toward Soma.
“I will talk to him, don’t worry” I smiled softly assuring him.
. . . .
I sat beside the cozy fire as I read my Edgar Allan Poe book, which had many stories written by him. I was about to turn the page until Ciel and Lau arrived in the room, they sat on the coach and began to play some cards.
“Playing Old Maid with Soma didn’t work out?” I asked still reading the book.
“No,” Ciel sighed, “He suddenly had some work to do in the evening”
Lau chuckled as he played down his cards. The two kept playing for about an hour until Soma and Agni came back from their “business”.
“It seems they are back” I said closing my book close.
“They seem rather suspicious, don’t you think?” Lau asked Ciel, waiting for his reply.
“I do, but I don’t see how they benefit from those crimes,” Ciel replied as he played down his card.
“Plus they don’t seem to have much hate over the colonial rule” I commented as I rested my chin in my palms watching their game.
“If they are the culprits, it wouldn’t make sense to waltz right in my house and stay here,” Ciel said, “as if they are asking me to suspect them”
“That is true Ciel, but maybe they are truly looking for that woman,” I said walking towards the game, “Maybe it’s not both of them or maybe only one. I sat on the edge of Ciel’s couch and he threw his cards at the table, he won.
“However, it is too soon to say” Ciel sighed as he looked out the snowy window. Suddenly the window slid open and Sebastian was hanging upside down, that was rather odd...
“Young master, Lady Ciela he made a move,” Sebastian informed still hanging like a bat on the window.
“Take me with you” Soma ordered as he walked in the room.
“You?” Ciel asked.
“I’ve known all along that Agni was going out after I went to bed,” Soma replied, “want to know what he’s doing”
“I think he should come, Agni is his butler after all,” I suggested Ciel, “And he has the right to know whatever the truth is that Agni is hiding”
I walked to the door, “Let me change into something warmer before you guys leave”
I left the room and went to my bed room. I took out the same red dress I wore earlier and changed into that, I didn’t want to be an ice cube when I came back, so it was better for me to dress appropriately. After I was done I hurried down stairs to the entrance, where everyone stood there waiting for me.
“Are you ready my lady?” Sebastian asked as he put on my coat for me.
“yes,” I replied.
“Why do women take so long?” Lau sighed.
“I didn’t take long!” I shouted back. Lau just giggled behind me as we left the townhouse to enter the snowy night
. . . .
We arrived at the gates of a man’s estate; we were hiding in a corner as we watched Agni enter.
“This is Harold West Jeb’s estate,” I continued “he handles a wide range of import goods from India”
“He also owns a store, a coffeehouse, and such” Ciel added, “I have met him before and he is obsessed with status”
“So people that were stripped and hung upside down were at his coffeehouse?” Lau asked. Ciel nodded.
“But one of the representatives happened to be away, so he never had to go through what they went through” I said.
“Happened to be away, eh?” Lau questioned.
“Shall we have a look?” Ciel asked as we both looked toward Sebastian.
“Very good choice” Sebastian bowed. He then took both of us in our arms and jumped over the brick fence.
. . . .
We tip toed through the estate trying to find Agni. We came upon a door and we slowly creaked it open to reveal Agni and Harold West sitting and talking.
“Our plan so far has gone perfect,” Harold said as he drank his glass of scotch, “You’ve done well for me, Agni”
Harold got up and moved in closer to Agni, his eyes were full with evil.
“You don’t have to string up any more people” he said as his eyes gleamed with control.
My eyes widened, I knew he was the behind it, but I don’t think he was doing it for himself but for the obsessed man in front of him.
“You have crushed all my major rivals” Harold said dropping the newspaper beside Agni.
“With this godly right hand, the Royal warrant is as good as mine!” he snickered as he grabbed Agni’s right hand, Agni’s eyes became full of disapproval but he knew he had to do whatever he said, but for what reason?
“So, this was what it was all about” Ciel whispered wanting to hear more of the conversation.
“And if I carry out this plan as promised, Meena will?” Agni asked hesitating a bit.
Soma gritted his teeth and opened the door, “Meena?”
“Who are you?” Howard turned around and Agni got on his feet right away.
“Prince Soma!” he called being pretty surprised. Ciel was about to get Soma but Sebastian grabbed him and covered his mouth.
“They’ll recognize us, let’s watch and wait,” Sebastian whispered. Soma angrily grabbed Agni’s clothes.
“You knew where Meena was?” Soma asked trying to get the answer from him.
“I see that’s your master” Harold pointed out as he grinned.
“You must be the one who took her away!” Soma pushed Agni aside and he glared at Harold.
“Agni! Defeat him!” Soma ordered, but Agni didn’t budge.
“What are you waiting for?” Soma asked still not believing what Agni just did.
“We should take the prince out of here and withdraw for now” I suggested.
“But the West will recognize the three of you!” Lau said worriedly.
“Please leave it to me” Sebastian said placing his hand on his chest. He better pull something off or else we will be in big trouble.
“Agni, hit him and make him shut up!” Harold ordered. Agni hesitated but Harold said his name again with an evil grin. Agni then lifted his hand to hit Soma until Sebastian came between the two and blocked his attack. I just noticed he was wearing a Deer’s head, I covered my mouth to make sure no sound was coming out from me, I was laughing like crazy.
“A deer?” Soma and Agni asked while still staring at Sebastian. Harold’s jaw dropped he must have thought that it was unexpected.
“W-who the devil is this deer man!?” Harold asked while pointing at Sebastian. Sebastian turned to face Harold which scared him a bit.
“I am a deer who has come to take the prince home” Sebastian said calmly as he bowed before him.
“H-he might be a spy! Take care of him Agni!” Harold ordered.
“Actually, I am just merely one hell of a deer” Sebastian said.
“I said kill him!” Harold ordered. Agni dropped to his knees and he was crying blood, he was going to regret it but he had to do it for the sake of that promise with Harold.
“F-forgive me” Agni said as he ripped off his bandaged right hand and plunged forward. Sebastian quickly grabbed Soma and dodged his attacks but Harold was going crazy since his treasured belongings were getting destroyed... poor guy.... but he deserved it.
“Wow what a ruckus” I said. Lau picked up Ciel in his arms.
“We’ll attract attention if this keeps going, take him and let’s go!” Ciel ordered. Lau, Ciel and I ran out of the estate as soon as we could while Sebastian broke through the window and escaped.
. . . .
We returned home, Sebastian made us some tea to warm us up and calm us down; I took a sip from my cup.
“That man was superhuman” Lau said referring to Agni.
“It’s Samadhi, a state of mental concentration” Soma said as he stared off at the distance
“Samadhi? I imagine it as a trance” Ciel stated taking a sip from his tea.
“He’s producing superhuman power through his faith in his master,” Sebastian said putting his hand on his chest, “the power of faith which is born from, believing in and loving someone”
Ciel and Sebastian’s eyes met.
“A power we can never have” Sebastian concluded.
“Why did he have to betray me!?” Soma banged his fists on the table, “Why do people close to me always leave!?”
He then pushed the beautiful china pieces of the table in frustration, I sighed. Ciel’s eyes widened.
“Soma, this is part of life people betray us and leave or they leave without a reason” I reminded him.
“But... Why? Why?” Soma whispered to himself and ran off to his room. It is a hard time for him that I understand, but he shouldn’t be trashing other people’s things like that.
“Oh, just look at the Havilland tea set I ordered,” Sebastian sighed, “I guess I should teach him some manners”
He was about to walk out the room,
“Sebastian” I called.
“Yes my lady?” He asked turning around.
“Go easy on him,” I sighed. He nodded in reply and left. After a while Lau left to his room, Ciel and I was left alone in this room. He got up from his chair and was about to head out the door, but he turned around, I gave him a confused look.
“I’m going to eavesdrop want to come?” He asked, I nodded and followed him to Soma’s room. We rested against the wall and heard every single bit that Sebastian said to him. I sighed, he was going pretty harsh on him, but this was reality. Ciel opened the door and we both rested our backs against the edges of the door.
“I may have turned out like Soma” Ciel spoke softly. Sebastian and Soma were surprised with our unexpected presence.
“Maybe I wouldn’t have been the same person, if it weren’t for that month” Ciel sighed.
“I wouldn’t have either” I said while looking at Sebastian. Sebastian knew perfectly what I meant.
“That month?” Soma asked curiously. Ciel looked at me, I nodded for him to go first.
“My family was killed, my home was burned down, and I suffered so much pain and humiliation, it was worse than you would do to a beast,” Ciel clenched his fists, “I was a powerless child”
Ciel then glanced at his ring and continued, “But, I came back to make the people who made me suffer, suffer the most pain. I will remain the head of this family to see who kills me and then I will kill them”
“I am no different,” I smiled softly, “My parents died when I was young, and my sister was the only one I could rely on. However, she was killed and he wounded me to the point of bleeding to death”
I looked up at him, “I was saved by a man whom I am so thankful for, but that gave me strength to come back and become more powerful to find that same man who killed my beloved sister”
“Why would you both go that far?” Soma asked, astonished with our stories.
“What good would pain and suffering do to us?” Ciel explained, “We fight no matter how much pain we went through”
“We took a chance as thin as a spider’s thread was sent to us to crawl out, and we didn’t give up on it” I said folding my arms.
“We humans have that strength” Ciel said trying to give Soma hope.
“But, taking that chance is up to the person or not” I finished.
“Enough of pointless talk, Sebastian, lady Ciela I need to talk about the West with you two” Ciel ordered. We both nodded in reply and left the room, I walked beside Ciel.
“I wonder what he will do” I whispered in thought.
“It is all up to him” Ciel replied. We were about to head down the stairs until Soma called our name.
“Ciel, Ciela!” Soma called we turned around to see him panting.
“I am only seventeen, but compared to you two I am a fool!” he continued, “I just let myself be spoiled by my parents and thought the world revolved around me”
“I want to see them both in person and find out the real truth of why they left me!” Soma put his hands together, “So please let me come with you!”
“We refuse” Ciel shot back. Soma was shocked and I giggled, I knew he was playing around.
“But, It’s not like my drawing room is locked....”
“Ciel! Ciela!” he shouted as he hugged us both tight, “I am sorry for breaking the cups earlier Ciel”
He hid behind us and peeked out his head.
“You.... You too.... I am very sorry” Soma stuttered as he apologized to Sebastian.
“It’s alright” Sebastian replied while smiling.
. . . .
We returned to the family room and we continued our discussion, hopefully without any interruptions. Sebastian served all of us tea, but Soma was still pretty scared of Sebastian.
“I didn’t predict that West would be after the Royal Warrant,” Ciel said, “Though it does make sense since he is a man who is obsessed with status”
“What is the Royal Warrant?” Soma asked.
“It’s when the Royal family recognizes their favourite shops or restaurants,” I continued as i sipped the tea, “this allows the shop or restaurant to be recognized by everyone thus making a big boom in the business”
“It seems that a big event is the most important which is coming in one week” Ciel said sipping his tea.
“It’s weird though, right now its winter and all large events are pretty much over” Lau added.
“Sebastian,” Ciel ordered, “Can you think of any major events taking place in a weeks’ time?”
“Choir concert, Wagner’s opera, Indian culture exhibition...” Sebastian listed.
“The exhibition of Indian culture! That could be it!” I said while still solving the puzzle in my head, “It makes sense, there is a curry contest which is coming up and the Royal Warrant will be handed to the best Curry making restaurant, after all the queen loves curry and I am one of the judges”
“You are right” Lau said sipping his tea.
“There is a rumour that the queen herself will be there” Sebastian added.
“I am guessing he will be participating in the Curry contest” Ciel stated.
Soma fidgeted in his sit and he looked pretty confused, “Wait a sec, explain from the start!”
“Don’t worry prince the earl will explain,” Lau pointed to Ciel and he just rolled his eyes, of course.
“The Hindustani coffeehouse that West owns has a main meal of curry,” Ciel continued, “In other words, West is trying to get the Royal Warrant with curry”
“So, he is wiping out other contestants who are competing in the contest!” I said.
“So, West must have told Agni to take part in this stupid plan at Meena’s expense” Ciel realized.
“The letter we found at the crime scene is referring to his god, in this case you,” I smiled at Soma, “You have a very good butler who cares for you”
“Wow, wonderful, wonderful!” Lau clapped happily like a little child, I rolled my eyes he didn’t even do anything.
“Then what’s the deal with Meena and Agni?” Soma shouted.
“Since it has nothing to do with the underworld, it doesn’t have anything to do with me,” Ciel continued with sly grin growing across his face, “however I am not gonna leave this petty case for nothing”
“Don’t tell me you are doing what I think you are doing” I said while stretching my arms.
“If my company enters the competition and wins against West” Ciel continued with that scary grin on his face, “then the Royal Warrant will be mine”
“Of course the Funtom company launching into the food industry will deter competitors” Lau leaned in being pretty interested.
“You only have a week to prepare everything! But how?” Soma asked frantically.
“There is no need for that” Ciel said sipping his last drop of tea.
“Simple, Sebastian will enter” I finished while meeting eye to eye with him, he grinned.
“That is impossible!” Soma shouted, “No one can beat Agni’s right hand of God!”
“But this is a curry contest so it can’t be that hard,” Ciel said shrugging his shoulders.
“He is right,” I slid back into my chair, “you guys don’t have an idea of what real curry tastes like, but Soma and I do”
“It seems that way,” Ciel said, “Sebastian?”
“It looks like it will be tough, but it will be quite fun” Sebastian said softly as he looked toward me, “however I will need some assistance”
I slightly jumped in my chair; I knew what he was thinking. I knew that I did have some real curry cooking experience from my sister and I did know some recipes. However, I knew from my gut that he didn’t need me for my “Curry experience” but rather for something else.
“Very well” I sighed as I slumped back into the comfy chair.