Portal Breach: The Collision of Worlds :: v.4.0


    Housework for the Soul

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    Mortis
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    Housework for the Soul

    Post by Mortis on Thu Jul 14, 2016 12:28 am

    Time: Afternoon
    Date: February 8, 0006

    Three days had passed since Mortis had come to stay at Kev's home. Although it was going to be a long while since the ghoul would begin to feel good about anything regarding himself, he had made plenty of effort towards improving how clean the house was. First, the towering superfiend decided it best to remove his pauldrons and kneepads, for the sake of moving around the two-floor house easily and not accidentally knock anything over while tending to his chores. Throughout the house, any of the tenants within the green alien's abode would find the floors being vacuumed and the dishes washed by a tall, skinny undead, who wore only his black leathers and green utility belt. He decided his overcoat and hat were best saved for when he had to go outside, if only to keep the lengthy garment from catching on anything when he turned.

    Today, the ghoul started the day tending to the floors and the front porch after he joined Fear in his morning walk, doing his share of decreasing the population of dust and dirt particles that resided in the carpet fibers from usual household traffic. Especially from the dogs. After he stepped outside, careful how he went about disturbing the grass between his toes, mostly out of concern of stepping in something brown instead of green. The shovel tool was put to good use picking up the recent additions that the dogs had left behind and disposing of them before coming back inside.

    The ghoul's feet were considerately wiped outside before he stepped into the family room, carpet softly padding beneath his feet. he was not about to undo his own work within a few hours of completing it. That was the dogs' job. Empty sockets rested upon the couch, the dark leather beckoning to him more out of an interest to sit and think instead of any sense of wanting to rest. It creaked beneath him as he took a seat, claiming the center cushion. The superfiend leaned forward with a small sigh, resting his skeletal jaw within a palm as he looked out at the backyard. He considered doing the dishes next, if there were any left in the sink for him to take care of, along with any other chores to busy his decayed hands with while he stayed. Though, even with a diligent topic to focus upon, he still found his thoughts wandering...

    To his walk in the wilderness, and what suffering he had uncovered within the darkest recesses of the basement. He had not raised a talon to his brother, or Lunette, or Veskur... And yet he had caused so much pain regardless. Veskur had died, Lunette fell into self loathing because of his death, and his brother, he had suffered the worst of all. Fear had to stand where Mortis should have been, and deal with the consequences of his mistakes. Or at least he had to deal with a portion of them. He had to put Veskur out of his misery, he had to be there to comfort Lunette where no one else would. All for what? To hear his brother tell him he needed to spend a few weeks more in the icy wilderness, more time to make a decision on something so trivial and meaningless. Was it any wonder he wanted him to never return? Coward, hypocrite, deserter... Fear was correct about all three. A heavy sigh escaped the ghoul as he sat there, finding himself once again falling into a common snare. Despair was a clever vice, one that struck the uninitiated without fail and sunk its venomous fangs deep. Alas even in his centuries of existence, the ghoul had not the experience to know how to evade it.

    Even while surrounded by numerous distractions, Mortis could not will himself to turn aside the images he managed to discover; how her face must have looked when she learned of what happened, how Veskur must have looked in his final moments... But most of all he heard the vile that had plagued his brother, saw him rocking back and forth, gripping a helmet overflowing with troubles and pain within his claws.

    Because of him.

    "Ssssss..." His talons curled and scarped against the side of his mandible, before he removed his head from where it sat in his hands. For a moment it so easy, so right, for him to step out that back door, hop the fence and do what he had set out to three days prior. he could already see his claws wrapping around some random mortal, rotting the life out of their body. He could see the shadow of the ISOs looming over him, quickly coming to their judgement upon his disgusting and decreeing their sentence in the same motion that they issued it. What would it be like to die for the last time, he wondered?

    What finality waited for those who had committed such atrocities as he had...

    But, could he truly call it justice? By all that he knew, death should be his punishment, the final dispersal of his spirit upon the four winds, never to return. He could see those he had wronged issuing a final 'good riddance' at his passing, but he could also see pain. His brother, once again, in pain. He could see Kev in pain because his brother was in pain.

    "...We're all that'sss left, Mortisss. If you became captured or obliterated into nothingnesssss, I would never be able to exissst asss I do now."

    He heard him as clearly as he did during their walk three days prior. Fear would not be able to exist as he would without him around. What justice would there be if he left his brother feeling such agony? There was another hiss, and Mortis rose to his feet, a hand traveling up to rest upon his bleached brow, while the other crossed over the bottom edge of his ribs to let the elbow of his reaching hand rest upon it. The flesh of his thumb and forefinger "pinched" his brow, the empty depths of his eye sockets just as dark as the personal devil he wrestled with, that whispered in his thoughts. Though his despair did not work alone, for guilt just as gladly twisted its barbed blade into his ribs.

    They were hard to ignore, impossible with the pain that wracked his mind and spirit. What felt like instinct clamored for him to douse it as he did before, to drink until he remembered what it was like to be numb, and the memory of warmth spread itself through his thoughts. But, experience had told him otherwise. Drinking did nothing for the dead, all the memories of the better effects of liquor that he held dear were never his in the first place. Collected from the minds of those he had purged, snippets and details that he kept for his own use were accumulated over time until he had enough to piece together for personal pleasure. Thus, it was only a physical reflex for an artificial experience. Did it feel real? Certainly, and while Mortis could initiate it he found he... lacked the initiative.

    Part of him found his suffering warranted. He had earned this pain, for however long it lasted. Whether it be a few weeks or an eternity, he deserved that gaping hole that ached in his chest, the swimming dread and despair in his skull. His fingers lightly rubbed the bone of his head one last time, a sigh escaping him one again.

    It was all of his own doing.

    Ancient limbs creaked as he let his arms fall to his sides, the towering undead's shoulders sloping forward in a burdened slouch. Mortis' lengthy stride carried him through the house and into the kitchen. He swore he saw some dishes here that needed to be tended to earlier...
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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Kev on Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:15 am

    Ah, Mondays. The bane of the working man, though it wasn't so much of a bane for Kev. His job was fine enough, definitely brought in interesting people. The material was always fun to play around with too! With his shift for the day finished, having sold a nice handful of CDs and records to those seeking to replace music that had been left in their home dimension, Kev was walking home. It had been easy enough to carve a path through the city that sliced straight through to the residential district. The view was quite nice, the architecture of the city admired by the scaly man even though the lighting was best appreciated at night. He still rather liked how the buildings and skyscrapers stacked together so neatly. Only the chill in the air, nipping at his heels, made him walk briskly along his path. Though he was bundled up quite snugly, he was still a reptile and didn't exactly care to just sit in the snow and dawdle. The heat in the house called to him!

    Easily spotting his house once he came upon Broadband Boulevard, Kev shuffled even faster to his house, eyes squinting as he made his way up the little cement walkway. Stomping his boots on the rug to dislodge any snow, Kev opened the door but didn't quite enter yet. Instead, he set down in the walkway and pulled off his boots, one foot at a time. Positioning them together like a private arranging his shoes beside his bed, the alien set his boots down on the cement. With the heels against the wall, they sat right outside his front door, next to the welcome met. That way, any residue snow, melted or otherwise, wouldn't be tracked in. Picking himself up, he finally stepped fully into the house and shut the front door behind himself. Almost immediately, he could feel the warmth surrounding him like a heavy blanket. Ah yes...much preferred over the chill. Head ducking down to rub his chin against his scarf, Kev decided not to start shedding off any layers yet. Far too comfortable. Know what else would feel great right about now?

    Skkt skrt skrrt

    Socks scuffed against the wooden flooring before making the transition to tile as the alien shuffled his way to the kitchen. Lo and behold, there was a Mortis! Slightly surprised, the alien gave a wave. "Oh, hey Mortis! Hope I didn't interrupt anything, I was just going to get something to drink." From the looks of it, the former Judge was elbow deep in chores. Or, was about to be. "Do you want anything?" He asked, trying to be courteous as he peeked into a cabinet and pulled out a cat coffee mug.


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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Mortis on Sat Jul 16, 2016 6:04 am

    In his thoughts, Mortis had hardly noticed Kev approach. His mind swam with melancholy, the ghoul's inner ruminations cycling viciously from image to image. Veskur suffering flicked back to his brother rocking in the corner, and then to Lunette as she loathed herself for actions that were not of her doing, then to Kev as he had to deal with the aftermath... His sockets remained fixed on the sink, the ghoul's claws poised as if to grab something out of it, but refusing to finish the task.

    Skkt skrt skrrt

    Socks scuffled against wood, and then to the kitchen. Something new entered the cycle playing on repeat in the ghoul's head, the visages of his crimes and the torment they caused to himself interrupted by the simplest queries. Though unspoken from the green alien, Mortis could read them all the same. A desire to be comfortable, relief and contentment to return inside from the cold after the day's work was done. The homeowner had returned, and now was interested in fixing a drink for himself. Ah, if only all the residents of the house could be so worry-free. Though Kev's thoughts were minute and simple, the undead found himself latching onto those feel-good thoughts, wishing to focus on them instead of the troubles in his own head.

    There was a stirring in the superfiend's still host, bone clicking and popping as his tail weakly flicked to either side, and soon his head turned to meet the diminutive alien that came to join him in the kitchen. However, his posture remained slouched, an invisible weight burdening his wide, bony shoulders. Mortis registered a greeting, surprise entering the alien's psyche at seeing the sheep-skulled superfiend outside of the basement and moving around. "Greetingsss, Kev. You merely caught me in the middle of thinking." He replied, a small sigh hissing from his host. The ghoul's tone seemed to be carrying a similar amount of melancholy. The alien seemed to be making an attempt at being courteous by asking if the ghoul wanted anything, as he pulled out a cat-shaped mug.

    "I..." He paused, thinking over the offer. While Mortis did not wish to use what was meant for the actual residents of this household, it was evident that keeping out of the way and doing his daily share of chores was not enough to stave off his darker thoughts, and the single solution that tended to meet them. I would not mind having sssomething to drink ass well, I appreciate your offer. What are you having?" The superfiend replied, turning to face the bundled green alien fully.
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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Kev on Sun Jul 17, 2016 1:33 am

    The other occupant of the kitchen was stooped over by the sink, the ghoul's spine seemingly more...hunchy than usual. Kev also could not ignore the slight sensation in the air, as if a dark storm cloud had come to rest in the room. The former Judge's tone was sad, a light sigh escaping him as he answered. A scaly brow quirked, connecting each saddened dot together as if he were playing a depressing 'connect the dots' game. Thinking indeed. Approaching this as casually as he could, he tilted his head at Mortis. "Oh? About what?" He prodded lightly, the alien leaving room for Mortis to open up as he pleased. After the past few months, he couldn't begin to imagine what thoughts could bring the sheep skulled corpse down.

    Turning the mug about within his hands, fingers tapping the ceramic gently, Kev waited patiently for an answer. Upon the final answer, the scaly man nodded to himself. Setting down his own mug, a hand reached back up into the cabinet and pulled one out for Mortis. He stretched his arm out towards the ghoul, allowing him to look it over as he gave him a bashful shrug. "I hope you don't mind, I know it might be a little...cheesy. They were a matching set." As for the drink? Opening another cabinet door, the alien took note of the available drinks. "Well, we've got some hot cocoa mix, and we have some tea bags! I'd be fine with either one, as long as it's a warm drink. Which would you prefer?"


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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Mortis on Sun Jul 17, 2016 8:04 am

    Mortis could detected the cogs turning in Kev's mind, dots being connected, a hint of a calculation as to what could be troubling the long-faced ghoul beginning to take shape. Although, with all that had occurred, it was a pretty big hint to begin with. Yet, the alien retained his tact, Mortis watching as his face tilted towards him. About what... Oh, there was so much the ghoul would not know where to start. Even so, would Kev wish to hear it all? The lament of one so despicable, so worthless as himself meant little in the face of his crimes. The question was left to hang in the air for a moment as he debated what to say, and what not to. Although, given Kev did ask, perhaps he did genuinely wish to know?

    There was no sound but the tapping of Kev's fingers upon the mug, and the skeletal crackling of the superfiend's bony tail as it curved and flexed close to a leathery thigh.

    "...Many thingsss, Kev." Mortis replied slowly after a few moments. He watched Kev as he fiddled with his cup. "I think about my brother, I think about Lunette, about Vessskur... I think about you asss well. I think about what I have done, and what I have failed to do sssince the evening of my initial return from the grassslandsss. It isss all that hass been on my mind." He admitted, the superfiend's statement barely scratching the surface of the crushing abyss. The events of the past year weighed heavily upon him, injustices coming to sink their talons deep into his being. From the fateful evening he had summoned the cold fire in the grasslands, and paved the way for the rest of a long series of misfortunes and poor decisions, they cycled in his ethereal psyche. Like a spiraling whirlpool they converged and swallowed him, shoving him down to be bitten into by despair's jagged teeth.

    Damned...


    Unworthy...


    Monstrous...

    It repeated like a mantra, a dooming judge whose log of evidence squelched any argument to think to rise against the logic of its undeniable decree. Had he not proved he was unworthy of love through his treatment of Fear, his very own brother in arms, through Lunette's neglect and Veskur's demise? Had he not damned himself to a fate of his own devising, meticulously built brick by brick and paved with mortar by his own hand; through stubbornness, denial, distance, jealousy, and envy? Then finally, was he not a monster for these crimes, against those who cared for him, those who had loved him but were denied their equal share and gratitude?

    Guilty, it hissed.

    ...Guilty!

    ...Guilty!

    ...Guilty!

    GUILTY!

    Louder and louder, until it blotted out any argument to suggest otherwise. Until it resonated in his very being, and became an identity. He was Mortis; Mortis the Damned, Mortis the Unworthy, Mortis the Monster... Mortis the Guilty. He was guilty, and there was only one cure for the injustices he committed, said his inner adjudicator. One cure, one treatment he knew intimately, and yet it was one that would only exacerbate an already painful situation and ironically, refute any perceived justice to those who had been harmed. Indeed, Kev could not begin to imagine what the superfiend's thoughts were like.

    Mortis watched as Kev picked out a second mug, his snout tilting at the gesture. It was still something he had to get used to, a host politely getting a cup for him, asking if he would like anything. The mug, which resembled the one Kev held in his hands, resembled a canine... There was some sort of cosmic irony to that, but Mortis was not in the mindset to linger upon why or how. Long fingers spread and wrapped around the vessel delicately, as if overly aware of how small it was in his grip compared to Kev's. "Thank you. I do not mind the matching ssset." He rasped, looking at his cup and then to Kev's. "They look... Good, together.

    It was almost a surprise when he found the residue of the buyer was actually Livewire instead of Kev or his brother.

    The master of the house opened the cabinet door, revealing the choices in drink available this afternoon. Hot cocoa, or tea... Although Mortis' preferences leaned toward tea, he figured that Kev might prefer something sweeter after coming home from work. He did not know the alien too well, but mortals tended to enjoy things that were relaxing after working, and while tea was very relaxing... It also took a bit of preparation when treating more than simply oneself. Kev would likely want something simple. "We can have the hot cocoa, if you wisssh." Mortis decided, both hands coming to hold the dog cup.
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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Kev on Sun Jul 17, 2016 8:04 pm

    Mortis' answer had been more open and honest than he had anticipated. Of the times the two had gotten a chance to talk like this, it hadn't been the best of times. The former Judge had a tendency to be standoffish, but now he seemed to lay everything down at Kev's feet. Deeply humbled, and ashamed. Many things were on the ghoul's mind, none of them good topics. He thought of the brother he'd abandoned, the woman he had gotten close to only to inadvertently hurt her, the rabbit man who'd become a casualty...and Kev himself? The scaly man shuffled in place, black socks not offering much traction on the tiled flooring. "Mortis...you're beating yourself up about this. You've done wrong, but the fact that you feel bad about it like this is good. You are here, you're working on it. The past cannot be changed but the future...the future is right here for the taking." Rather than hide away from all responsibilities, Mortis came back with a heavy head to admit his mistakes. Even if Mortis didn't think it counted for anything, it really did count for a lot.

    Any hard feelings regarding what had happened were hard to hold onto with the corpse looking so morose. Impossible, even. No longer did it feel as if he were caught in a game of 'Tug o war', fighting for the right to love Fear, let alone whether his love was worthy. Back straightening, he ceased all shuffling as Kev stared back at Mortis head on. "For what it's worth, Mortis, I'm not angry at you. You don't have to think about me like that, you haven't really hurt me. I'm just happy you are here now." Hands continued to grip and touch the smooth ceramic, fingers curling around the handle and opening, a tip rubbing at one of the triangular cat ears. "You belong with him." He insisted softly, almost pleading. Perhaps it was not in the manner that...Mortis had hoped. But people, even former Judges, could love more than one person. A different type of love was no lesser than any other. It was still love.

    Second mug claimed, Kev held them both by the curved handle and gave them an appraising look for himself. Cute and complimentary, even though they were different. Mortis took the cup within his own hands, the ceramic mug looking so tiny now. The alien trusted Mortis though, big hands and long claws and all. The delicate cup would be safe even though it was dwarfed. "You're welcome!" With a little nod, Kev's mug found its new home upon the counter. He turned it, so that it looked as if the little cat face was watching the two of them. "They really do, huh? Thanks! We bought them when we first moved in. New cups for a new home." Quite fitting with how animal filled the house had become, between his own animals and Livewire and Skyler's. As for the drink... His head cocked to the side. While hot cocoa had been the drink he'd first thought of, he still had a guest to keep in mind. Tea was still warm, which was what he desired most. Blue eyes flickered back to the cupboard, a gloved blue hand reaching in and pulling out a tea bin. Opening the lid, he gave it a small sniff to admire the aroma. Mmm...a sharp little sensation in his nose, like a tickle. "Peppermint tea okay?"


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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Mortis on Sun Jul 17, 2016 11:58 pm

    Indeed, the sheep-skulled ghoul was not exactly the most accommodating soul, but since then and now... There a number of sizable changes. No longer was there a plot to wipe all life from the face of this world, diabolical scheming tossed aside in the face of something he had thought himself far beyond, and finally, the aftermath of it all. Initially it had been a matter of rank and duty, Judge and sinner, it diverged to such petty rivalry and in its final quelling... The presumed roles of superiority had been reversed. Kev was now higher, greater, and Mortis... Mortis was lowly, pathetic. The superfiend may as well be no better than the numerous sinners they had once slaughtered like cattle.

    He watched as Kev shuffled in place, the alien noticeably pondering over what the undead had revealed to him.

    "Hm... My brother sssaysss the ssame thing." He rasped, talons tracing over the slight formations that rose from glazing upon the cup. "It isss difficult to consssider my actionsss any other way. I have committed crimesss not only againssst thosse who cared about me, but againssst my own brother and you by extensssion. I have been a Judge for centuriesss, Kev... Certain inssstinctsss are hard to ssshake." The iniquitous and guilty needed to be judged, wrongs needed to be righted, and justice must be served with an iron, unshakable fist. It was what he was raised to believe, and had dutifully upheld for over three-hundred years. A large part of him doubted a pat on the back and a heartfelt "there-there, ducky" would set him at ease.

    Not when there was so much that still needed to be mended... If it could be mended.

    "For what it's worth, Mortis, I'm not angry at you. You don't have to think about me like that, you haven't really hurt me. I'm just happy you are here now."

    His talons paused in the middle of circling spot over the cup's left eye. He could read that Kev was not angry, and it was nigh impossible for him to even attempt to be so when the ghoul was so morose. In all sense, Kev pitied him oddly enough. "...Why?" Mortis quietly hissed, finding the statement, and Kev's mindset, hard to believe. Not in the way that he thought the alien to be a liar, but the in the sense that it merely... Did not make sense. "How can you be happy after all I had put my brother though, that which you had to sssuffer alongsside him?" His statement was as quiet as his prior query. Did Kev not have to suffer a long, agonizing month where Fear was not there in soul or mind? Did he not remember when his companion was but a hollow husk of his former self?

    And then, to say that Mortis belonged with Fear... There was a low, somber hiss, and the ghoul gently set the cup back on the counter. The superfiend's towering form turned away from Kev slightly, eyeing the floor."No... No I do not. He belongsss with you. You have earned him. I- I have earned nothing." He replied, the ghoul's usual graveled bass emerging a murmur. He had not worked with his brother, or trained for weeks on end to overcome his fears. He had not earned the right to stare into his brother's face unfettered without seeing his greatest terrors. All he had done was strive for a goal that meant nothing in the grand scheme of things, blinding himself to everything that transpired around him for the sake of a twisted ideal made impossible, and a leader that would never arrive to join them. "I am merely one of hisss brotherss in armsss."

    One four, now reduced to one of two. Half of what was left of their world and all that they knew.

    His talons came to hang limply at his sides,his snout tilting as it followed Kev's movements. Evidently Kev had acquired the mugs when they first arrived in the new house. new cups for a new home. "I sssee. It isss a nice way to move in to a new home." Mortis agreed. New things for a new start. Although at the mention of hot cocoa, the alien cocked his head to the side. Perhaps he had misinterpreted what Kev would likely wish to drink? From what he could infer form the surface of Kev's thoughts... He wished to keep his guests in mind. Instead of reaching for the hot cocoa, Kev instead retrieved a bin of tea, opening the lid and letting the scent of peppermint waft into his nostrils.

    "If you wisssh it ssso." the ghoul replied, content with either. "We may drink whichever you prefer, my sssensse of tassste isss mere memory."
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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Kev on Mon Jul 18, 2016 9:21 pm

    That Fear had told Mortis the same thing was no surprise, yet hearing it still made Kev's heart flutter. Whether due to Kev's influence on the ghoul, or Fear's influence upon him, apparently their advice held similarities. No doubt, the culprit was a mix of both. Nice as it was, and it very much was as he felt like a schoolgirl who found out her crush loved her back, there were other matters to deal with right now. Mortis insisted that browbeating himself came with being a Judge, that those long held instincts compelled him to punish any sinner...and right now he was the sinner. The owlish eyes set themselves into an almost determined gaze, pooling his own instincts that he could only consider 'Judgelike'. His pose stiffened as well, resolve written all over the alien. "Everyone commits crimes. Not even I am free from ever hurting anyone's feelings, let alone your's or Fear's. It feels terrible to wrong others, especially when you don't mean to. It probably hurts even more, because you are a Judge. But seeing how you cannot sentence yourself to death," Due to being immortal, and if the sheep skulled man did try to find a permanent end, the scaly man would be on him like white on rice. "It doesn't do you any good to hurt yourself like this. You understand where you went wrong, now you have to work from there to make things right." There was the situation as he saw it, explained as resolutely as he could put into words.

    Silence made the stiffness melt, like ice left in the sun. When the former Judge did speak again, it made Kev blink in slight surprise. He was sincerely caught off-guard by the seemingly odd question. Why was he happy? Was it not obvious? Of course, what may be obvious to a sinner might not be for a former Judge... This, he knew very much. Shrugging his slim shoulders, Kev sighed. "Because he's no longer suffering. All these months...this struggling between the three of us? It was very hard. Very stressful. One of the worst parts was seeing Fear ache, and not knowing how to help. The troubles between you two are...a bit beyond me. I've never had the relationship you two have, and to almost lose it..." His small heart panged, and not only at the thought of Fear losing Mortis. It panged too, because losing Fear had been so awful, perhaps the very worst. Several long weeks, helpless and longing for the man he loved. Even Livewire had tried to help, filling the void for the moment with her very soul. Without her, and if not for Fear's recovery, Kev was not sure what would have happened.

    A deep breath sounded from him, the alien thinking for a moment and clearing his mind. The pain ebbed away, mere remnants of the past, as Fear was no longer lost. Like heartburn, he swallowed it and even reached a hand to rub at the area of his chest where his heart was. "All of that hurt, and I was upset with you, even disappointed in you. But I'm happy now because he needs you. He needs us both." Kev stepped closer, ever so slightly. "I never wanted to replace you, Mortis. He wants us both, always has. You've known him for three hundred years, and just because I'm here doesn't make all of that nothing. I'm happy because this," A hand reached outward, gesturing between the two of them. "Is all I ever wanted for him. To have a brother, and a lover." Fear had given him a second chance for a reason. The only thing that would have made the alien disagree would be if the former Judge didn't care about the harm he'd caused. As he could see now, Mortis cared greatly.

    Setting his own mug on the counter now, Mortis gave a saddened hiss as he turned away from Kev's gaze. He insisted that Fear belonged with Kev and that he...earned him? Stepping forward gently, the alien inclined his head to the former Judge. "Earn? This was never about earning him, especially at the expense of your relationship. Fear isn't someone to be earned." The wording Mortis had used was...interesting. "Fear and I have been through a lot, but that doesn't mean we earn each other. It just means we get to grow together. This doesn't have to be a contest, where your achievements and mine are compared together to decide who spends time with Fear. That's Fear's choice and...he has chosen the both of us." Kev's tone was insistent, hands tempted to reach out and grab Mortis as if that would help to explain. Fingers furled, but in the end did not touch the ghoul. "You're a brother in arms who has known him as long as either of you can remember. That's not something to scoff at. Fear's taken you back and welcomed you into his home, what do you think that means?" Surely it meant Mortis meant something to the helmed ghoul. Was more than just a remnant of an old time, definitely not 'just' a brother.

    The topic shifting for a moment, Kev nodded his agreement. Indeed, new things were good for making a new home. Most of the furniture at the cottage belonged to Leslie as well, so Kev didn't feel too comfortable moving it out of there and claiming it as his own. The scaly man felt much better to shop with Livewire and pick things that appealed to the both of them. "It does feel good, like a new beginning. Maybe it could help you to feel good too." A light suggestion, nothing too serious or forceful. He wasn't even sure where Mortis had been staying prior to moving in with them, nor where he would go after. Maybe a new home was in order? The two of them agreeing upon a drink now, Kev left the tea bin alone to grab the usual kettle. Setting it down in the sink, he moved the faucet to fill it to about halfway. Turning the knob of the stove top, he set the kettle down on a burner and leaned lightly on the counter, a brief pause to consider their previous conversation. The tea would take a bit, after all. Perhaps they could continue talking this over in the meantime.


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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Mortis on Tue Jul 19, 2016 1:00 am

    The smaller alien's heart fluttered, and Mortis could read clearly that his brother's statements were taking inspiration, or maybe influence, from Kev. It was unsurprising, the two shared a mental link, and with how long they were together, likely a few things would start to blend and mingle across their respective psyches. As brief as Kev's epiphany was, the towering superfiend took note regardless. It was interesting, that Kev was influenced so by such a small gesture given how long he and his brother had been together. Large blue eyes came to gaze into the empty pits of his eye sockets with determination, and the former Dark Judge  tilted his head as Kev attempted to match what sort of instincts may be dwelling within Mortis' empty skull.

    Resolve stiffened his slender form, and made his statement unshakable.

    Of course, Kev was not above hurting others, the undead knew this the moment he set his empty gaze upon the Kryptonistanian. He was alive, and the living naturally were flawed. However, the ghoul both saw what the alien was telling him, and at the same time... fell short of the mark. "Yesss, I am not free from hurting othersss, Kev. Thisss I know." He slowly hissed, the ghoul's voice soft and tired in the face of Kev's determined resolve. "It isss that I had never raisssed a finger againssst my brothersss, in all of my yearsss on Deadworld. I had never sssought to purge my mind of feelingsss I thought impure, or go to sssuch lengthsss to deny and to dissstance mysself asss to harm or betray any of my brothersss over sssomething sssso... Ssso petty." The sheep-skulled undead would have liked to think he held himself to a higher standard. However, Kev was correct in the way that things needed to be made right.

    Although Mortis was a little surprised that the smaller alien would have come after him should he have done as he initially intended and sought his own demise.

    "Asss I had sssaid, Kev; sssome insstinctsss are hard to drive away. Our lawsss were ssstrict, harsssh even before Death became chief." The superfiend sighed, it was what he was raised with since his youth, from his enrollment at five years of age onward to his graduation from law School as a young man, a fully fledged Judge.

    Yet, this harsh example of justice, of lives meaning little in the face of the law and its consequences seemed to be hard for the alien to grasp. Although it was not out of the same ignorance as a sinner from the Mega-City, who preferred mercy and their freedoms over justice. Kev's persistent denial of the consequences befitting of the crime came from something more... Heartfelt. It was evident in how he shrugged and sighed, thinking his happiness obvious and easy to understand for himself, but perhaps not for someone like Mortis who came from a far harsher world. The towering superfiend quietly listened as Kev explained, a looming shade of pestilence lingering in the middle of the alien's airy kitchen.

    Silence overcame the room as Kev explained further, and the superfiend observed. He read how his heart panged, how it ached and pained him at the memory of losing Fear. To the point where his hand came to rub over his heart. Kev had been upset, disappointed... But now he was happy because his brother needed him, and he needed Kev. The alien stepped forward, and his skeletal snout followed his movements while his host stood still as a, well... corpse. All he wanted was for Fear to be happy, to be complete. That isss all you wisssh of me?" He hissed, surprised worming its way into his tone at the simplicity of Kev's request. "Nothing elssse?"

    Mortis knew he was to be Fear's brother, having served by his side for centuries. Part of him knew he could not be replaced, and yet... There was another that said otherwise. After all, Judges were expendable, the lieutenants especially so with how their work with Death tended to turn. While Kev may not have wanted to replace Mortis, after all that had happened it seemed like the logical action to take. After all that had transpired, it was hard for the superfiend to imagine his brother wanted him around.

    Just as it was hard for him to imagine Kev did not have any particular punishments in mind.

    As he had turned away, Kev stepped forward once again, the distance between the both of them slowly closing up. Though he could only see Kev out of the corner of his eye socket, he could see the alien incline his head towards him. It was insisted that Fear was not someone to be earned, and the ghoul gave a small sigh, two taloned fingers coming to pinch and gently rub the bridge of his snout. "Indeed, you are correct... I had meant--" He paused, leathery skin popping and crackling as he turned to look at Kev. Just in time to see his fingers curl and read the temptation to reach out and grab him. His hand dropped from the bridge of his snout, a small sigh hissing from his ragged chest. Although the superfiend did not mind contact either way as he did in the past, given the events regarding his aura...

    The ghoul naturally was a little uncertain about letting Kev touch him. He may have passed the trials needed to be around Fear, but what of him? Would he grow corrupted should He draw too close to the sheep-skulled ghoul? Would he suffer as Veskur had, and draw his brother's ire and lament once again?

    "You're a brother in arms who has known him as long as either of you can remember. That's not something to scoff at. Fear's taken you back and welcomed you into his home, what do you think that means?"

    "Perhapsss not... But being there when he needed sssomeone mossst isss not sssomething to ssscoff at either. You cared for him, you looked after him in his timesss of need, you sssucceeded where I failed. You may not have known what to do asss I would have done, but you were there regardlesss. In the midssst of my own troubless I losst sssight of my dutiesss asss a brother. I failed him, but you did not. That isss what makesss you worthy, and I, unworthy." The morose ghoul hissed. Just as it made him unworthy of someone like Lunette. As for what it would mean to let him back in, to allow him to be a brother again... Mortis' skeletal tail briefly waved, weak and limp. The talk they had while walking the dogs when he first arrived came to mind, all that had been shared and discussed...

    The ghoul grew silent once again, his gaze resting once again on the floor for a few moments before tilting back up to Kev. "I...I sssupposse, however that it cannot be completely true. He did sssay he could not exissst asss he doesss now without my presssence... And he ssspent hisss walk ssspeaking with me when I had returned." It was merely a challenge to see things the way his brother did, when every tomorrow felt like the same day before it.

    At the suggestion, the ghoul shook his head. Mortis could sense where Fear was possibly going. "You need not worry, Kev. I have no intention of overssstaying my allotted time. Once the two weeksss have come to an end, I ssshall take my leave." He assured. Where he would go was uncertain, but aside from Deadworld, Mortis had no real place to call his home. Even in Mega City One, the closest he came to claiming a residency was his long stay in a glasseen crystal, encased in a reinforced plug meters below the ground. That said, Mortis let his talons rest on the edge of his belt, watching as Kev went to fill the kettle and place it on the hob.
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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Kev on Wed Jul 20, 2016 12:51 am

    "We're both capable of hurting people, yes." Kev agreed, sounding almost hesitant as a scaly brow rose. So Mortis' big issue here, was that what he had done to Fear had never occurred in the hundreds of years that the Judges had known each other. An interesting point, it did have merit. Such thoughts and feelings had never occurred to Mortis before, and perhaps now that they had...it was as if he were 'damaged goods' in a way. Yet, he still couldn't agree. "Well... You didn't exactly have any reason to feel like this back on Deadworld, right? There were no sinners around who'd fall in love, at least none you'd keep alive. Did you even realize, throughout all that time, that you felt that way for Fear?" A small, well-meaning shrug. "You couldn't exactly take...uh, 'preventative measures' against something you hadn't been away was there. Your reaction was far from the best, yes, but neither Fear nor I hold it against you now. So why do you hold it against yourself?" It had only been three days, yes, but Mortis didn't seem keen on giving himself any leeway or credit.

    Mortis' answer, his insistence upon instinct driven into Judges, was like a silent confirmation. Strict laws indeed. Sighing himself, Kev turned his gaze away and to the white tiles. His hands clenched, a feeling almost like dread pooling in his chest. When he spoke again, it was in a soft tone. "Instinct or no...if you had gone through with something like that it would have hurt him. Perhaps more than anything else that happened between you two." How he would have felt... Scales bristling lightly beneath his layers, he looked back up at Mortis, voice firmer now. "I want you to promise that you'll never take that route. No matter what happens from here on out. Never do that." It wasn't a threat, because the lean alien held no power or sway over Mortis. All he had was a heartfelt insistence that Fear should never feel that type of loss. No matter how much Mortis might think he deserved it.

    "That is all I wish for him. For you, I'd like for you to be peaceful and happy. And of you...just that you learn for the future, try not to repeat your mistakes...and the promise I just asked." When you get down to it, the scaly man was a pretty simple creature. A life without strife, and those he loved, cared for and protected. What else could an alien ask for? What more could he demand or expect? "Just don't leave him again." He could not bear to feel his lover ache like that again, heartbreak and disappointment with a side of depression. Together, they made Fear as happy as can be.

    Guilt, both for misinterpreting Mortis and for the feeling to reach out and touch the former Judge, as Mortis stared back. He seemed gobsmacked, and perhaps Kev was being too bold. It only felt natural, to want to reach for Mortis. To comfort him, maybe help him understand. Because oh, was he struggling to understand. The touch of rot, and Mortis' reaction stayed his hand equally. As Mortis spoke again, Kev felt a familiar sort of helplessness. As if nothing he was saying could break through or help the former Judge. A hand rubbed at his temple, massaging it as his brows furrowed in thought. "O-of course I was. I couldn't just leave him alone in his misery... Fear's been there for me through so much too." On one hand, hearing the sheep skulled man insist that being there meant something made Kev feel better about that helplessness. Even if he couldn't take away Fear's pain, at least he was there, right?

    And yet the words seemed to spoil, souring like grapes. Frustrated, he shook his head. "I-I'm not worthy, I just... You're not unworthy, you just made a mistake. Everybody makes mistakes, you're still worthy to live here, to be his brother." A hand swiped downward in a frantic gesture. "This isn't a contest. We don't have to compare what we've done for him." Still shaking his head, the alien gave a shaky sigh, shoulders shuddering. "I'm not...comfortable talking about us like this." Like a prize, or competition. It was a matter of love. Fear did not choose Kev because he deemed him worthy of it, and Mortis not worthy.

    Finally, it seems the ghoul was beginning to understand. He admitted that Fear had to care for him, using what the former Judge himself had told him and pondering how Fear had talked with him. Returning to lean upon the counter, he nodded his head in a weary bob. "See? He still cares for you." At last, they were getting somewhere... Though what Mortis said next sent the alien in a light flurry of embarrassment. Holding his hands out defensive, he waved them from side to side. "No no, I didn't mean it like that! I've already told you, you can stay as long as you have to! I just mean--whenever you DO leave, it might be nice to get new furniture, a new home. To help move on." Sighing softly, he hung his head. "I'm sorry, I didn't mean to shove you out or imply you move out as soon as you can." Ah, this was going swimmingly.


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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Mortis on Wed Jul 20, 2016 4:17 am

    Hesitation rose in Kev's tiny body, the superfiend observing as the cogs attempted to turn in a direction in Kev's mind that set Mortis off of his current course of thought. Regardless, to think of Mortis as 'damaged goods' may have been applicable, but not in the sense the tiny green alien had dictated. Especially a certain statement that stood out to the sheep-skulled ghoul.

    "...Did you even realize, throughout all that time, that you felt that way for Fear? You couldn't exactly take...uh, 'preventative measures' against something you hadn't been away was there."

    "Ssssss..." The ghoul sighed, his skeletal maw cracking open as he mulled over Kev's words. If only it had all been as simple as he made it out to be... His snout tilted to the floor, before looking back up to Kev, empty sockets focused upon his large blue eyes. "Kev... It wasss not that I had not felt thisss way before about Fear. It... It wasss that I did take preventative measssuresss. I did ssso the moment I realized that I liked him, and that my feelingsss were unlawful according to our doctrine. I sssealed my thoughtsss away for yearsss, Kev. I kept them in a vault ssso deeply buried, ssso sssecret that none would be able to find it." The ghoul's talons flexed at his sides, taking a moment for that to sink in. "It wasss when I arrived here that it grew more difficult to keep them buried. And when they did finally sssurface... Y-you know the ressst." Another sigh whispered from the towering superfiend's rotting host, and he turned his empty stare towards the kitchen window.

    "...It wasss ssstupid of me. After all, if Fear had not found interessst in me on hisss own, without knowing of my feelingsss in over three hundred yearsss... What difference would one more make, or one hundred? I had made him sssuffer wrongfully over that which I ssshould have kept controlled. That isss why, Kev." The ghoul reasoned quietly, his tone still carried that somber weight, but it was not over feelings that were not reciprocated. Although his brother may say otherwise, times were better when no one knew, when they were just lieutenants and stalwart upholders of the on true law. There was no pain then, and he certainly had not made Fear suffer like he had during this past year.

    When he decided to look towards Kev again, he could detect the dread rising his chest, how his scales bristled beneath his thick winter clothes. Small hands were clenched, and the alien's gaze bore into the white tiling at his feet. He feared for what his brother may have felt, should Mortis have decided to go his intended route, if he had actually succeeded in what he sought to do that fateful morning... Though as he spoke he heard a certain familiarity.

    "And don't you talk about getting contained or dessstroyed, We're all that'sss left, Mortisss. If you became captured or obliterated into nothingnesssss, I would never be able to exissst asss I do now."

    Indeed, the undead felt he deserved the fate he had set out to do... But there was one detail he seemed to fail to notice.

    "I may feel asss I do, yesss. But I am not blind to the consssequencesss. I have already heard a sssimilar ssstatement from my brother ass I hear from you today... That alone isss why I ssstand here, ssspeaking with you asss I do now." He murmured, the alien's firm tone a hammer against Mortis' tired rumble. If his brother hand not made the importance of his existence clear, the ghoul would have already roused the ISOs' wrath, and their conversation would not exist. "I agreed to remain, for him. However, if my pressence isss not enough to convince you, then yesss, I will promisse to exissst ssso long asss he isss here." After all, there was little here he found worth staying for. What friends did Mortis have? What family did the retired superfiend possess aside from his only remaining brother?

    Who would be able to relate to a creature like himself... Who would want to try?

    There had been only one, and she had paid a heavy price for her generosity.

    Ah, but that could be completely true. After all, there had to be some reason Kev was reaching out and trying as hard as he was. Though Kev's intents seemed to be on behalf of Fear, which he respected, there was some inkling that suggested he was also doing this for Mortis as well. His wish for the other to simply be peaceful and happy, the guilt he felt for misinterpreting him, a desire to reach out and touch the towering superfiend and attempt to give him comfort. Though the ghoul could not step forward and contact the alien physically or psychically, out of concern for whether his aura would corrupt and inevitably kill him... He could still speak. "I ssshall not leave him, Kev," He assured. Though as for peace and happiness... "I will be content that my brother isss happy. That isss all I wisssh while I wait out the ressst of my exissstence upon thisss dimenssison." After all, it was the only thing he was certain would be attainable at this point. To wish for any other form of happiness seemed foolish.

    In fact, he was glad now that his brother was happy, though it was not expressed or made evident.

    But, Kev grew frantic now. He was uncertain he could break through the melancholy that wrapped itself tightly around Mortis' mind and soul. Helplessness dominated the alien's mind, and soon turned to frustration as his hand swiped down in front of him. Empty sockets stared back at the growing storm that was making itself clear upon the Kryptonistanian's features. Was he frustrated because this was a new experience, or because he had seen another case like the superfiend that stood in front of him? The same song and dance, portrayed by a different face, spoken in a different voice...

    "This isn't a contest. We don't have to compare what we've done for him. I'm not...comfortable talking about us like this."

    Uncomfortable thinking of Fear as a prize, an object... Indeed, it was an uncomfortable subject, but there was some truth to it. This time the ghoul stepped forward, his palms laid open and flat towards the green alien. "No, we do not. But I ssspeak asss I do to perhapsss help you sssee that love hass reasssoning, that reasssoning dictatesss worth. People do not love ssspontaneousssly and without reasson. He grew clossse to you, he changed for you, becaussse you made him feel lesss alone. You made him feel asss if he had more purpossse than what hisss job offered... You gave him sssomething he needed and dessired mossst, but had never attained from any of usss, hisss brothersss." At that, his hands fell, dangling limply at his sides.

    If his brother had felt as if he were not alone, or that he had purpose, he would have never accepted the advice of Emmet on that day in the park. He would have never needed the opinion of a blind old man to make him feel as if he had a purpose... His brothers would have been enough to make him feel better if that were the case.

    But, such was history.

    "You may wisssh to deny it, Kev. But it isss an undeniable truth, you are worthy." He hissed again, stepping back. Though Kev thought the topic uncomfortable, the walking cadaver found it all to be completely logical. However, once Kev was convinced that Mortis thought his brother still cared about him, he seemed to relax. The alien slumped against the counter, bobbing his head in agreement. Evidently attempting to aid the towering undead was growing to be far more taxing than he had anticipated. Though his reprieve was a short one, as his body once again erupted into a blur of movement. Mortis' bleached skull tilted to the side, pondering the alien's words.

    When he did move out... New furniture, a new home...

    Home.

    For some reason that word lingered longest in the ghoul's mind. Deadworld was his only true home, and outside of that, he had deduced that his home was with his brothers. Wherever they went, he would surely follow. Outside of that, Mortis had not seen the need for a home like Kev had put it, the way a mortal would associate the term. After all, if he did not have them, even the most impressive house would feel... Empty. He did not need to be close to them all of the time, existing in the same dimension sufficed. But to stay somewhere that was truly his own, instead of standing around in the Dark Hall of Justice with the rest of his kin... It was not something he was familiar with, or that he even considered before it had been suggested.

    And often, such notions were quickly forgotten.

    "Hm, I sssee..." The ghoul replied, his skull turning away from Kev to look around the kitchen and outside of it. "You need not apologissse. I had asssumed incorrectly. I tend to expect that othersss would want my presssence gone, the living do not usssually wisssh to sssuffer usss." He began, his tone as soft as it had been throughout the conversation. One hand extended slightly towards Kev, tilted down with the palm partially displayed to him in an apologetic gesture. "I... I alssso had not consssidered what you sssuggesssted. A new home, asss you put it. Oursss isss an exissstence that doesss not tend to lend itsself to sssuch notionsss. I hold little to no persssonal belongingsss that would require sssuch a dwelling, and a houssse tendsss to be more for one that needsss the facilitiess it offersss."

    A place to store food and cook it, a place to sleep, somewhere to rest and relax away the fatigue that came after a long day of work. Such feelings were alien to the unliving.
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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Kev on Thu Jul 21, 2016 4:40 am

    Wait... So Mortis knew he was in love with his brother? Back in Deadworld, he realized it and...and shut those feelings away? Kev's intervention may have metastasized the situation between the brothers but...the ghoul before him had already planted these despairing seeds without even realizing it. For hundreds of years, he denied himself of his love for his brothers, denied any attempts to reach out or admit such feelings. Locked them away, buried them deep down inside, and went about his un-life. A smaller sigh escaped him from his nose, face turning away and off to the side. "Love doesn't work that way... You can't just hide it like a dirty, shameful thing." Things may not have worked out in the end with Leslie, and things with Carrie hardly went anywhere at all, but he didn't regret it. It never would have occurred to him to hide his feelings. The way that Mortis had hidden them...well, it reminded him of somebody else. Hugging himself around the middle, the scaly alien sighed. "You made a mistake, a choice, and it hurt him. He suffered, and now you feel you can't do anything to make it right. I've made him hurt too. In the beginning of my training, I'd need psychic surgery on a daily basis. He had to feel everything I did, and repair it all. I felt like scum for it, for not being strong enough." Mortis was not alone in this sort of pain, he'd felt it many times. During New Year's, last year... and their catalyst for training in the first place.

    Life was not without pain, and the two had hurt each other, though perhaps not on the scale Mortis had. Though even then, Kev refused to throw his hands up and tell the ghoul he was awful for it. "You need to accept that you hurt him, and that he forgives you for it. By hating yourself like this, you're only hurting him there too. I know it, because it's never fun to watch someone you love struggle like this. Acceptance is hard but I know you can do it. Eventually..." It had been a concept that he too, struggled with.

    "I have already heard a sssimilar ssstatement from my brother ass I hear from you today... That alone isss why I ssstand here, ssspeaking with you asss I do now."

    "However, if my pressence isss not enough to convince you, then yesss, I will promisse to exissst ssso long asss he isss here."

    If that was supposed to comfort Kev, the ghoul would find that the alien was very much not comforted by those words. He gawked at Mortis, eyes wide and concerned. No wonder Fear had insisted upon bringing Mortis here...on housing him for a while. He knew Mortis was feeling bad but...not this bad! "Of course it's not enough to convince me! You just admitted that if you hadn't talked to Fear, you would have found a way to cease existing! You're only here right now because the two of you encountered each other while he was walking the dogs!" Kev wavered on his feet for a moment, mind spinning with these implications.

    "W-what if he hadn't taken them for a walk that day? You would have left him behind? W-without another word?" It came out in a squeak, slipped out more like. "What if something else happens...? And you start thinking that way again? Can you sincerely promise you won't try that, even if you feel like it's the only way to fix things?" Kev never would have guessed that Mortis would have considered it so seriously in the first place, so the ghoul's blase insistence that he'd be fine now was a little hard to take. He would need just a little bit more convincing. Mortis' assurances did seem to work, some of the fear and worry draining out of him like poison from a wound. The only downside was that the former Judge...didn't make his continued existence sound particularly...fun. Merely something to do for the sake of his brother, not for himself at all. "Mm..." He didn't respond with any words, merely a hum. What could he say to that?

    Pupils darted down to the green palms for a moment, before flickering back up at the empty eye sockets. The way Mortis spoke, it was deceptively correct. Love wasn't without reason, this was true. Fear grew close to Kev, and had changed bit by bit for him. Their first date had been a sign of that, as the Judge handed over his badge to make the alien happy. Gods, even the fact that Fear did not immediately kill Kev after his confession was a sign of his change. And yet... "You're wrong," The scaly man started, shaking his head. "I only made him feel less alone, because you left him by himself. When he had you, he wasn't alone. And if anything, he gave me purpose. Fear was content with his job, even though certain situations with other people did strain it some... He would have been happy to continue being a Judge, he only retired for you. Not for me. I fell in love with him, and eventually he fell in love with me too. I didn't rescue him from being a Judge or suddenly give him a better life away from you, I just... I just picked up the pieces and kept him going." A sigh, and a hand that rubbed over his own scaly dome. "You make me sound like some sort of hero... Like I scooped up Princess Fear and saved him from an awful life. I just supported him, through all of the struggles and the strife. That doesn't make me worthy, it makes me a good boyfriend." The alternative would have been unthinkable. His beloved guypal was in pain and needed someone there, to listen or comfort him. He wasn't beloved by Fear because he was worthy and did these things, he did them because he loved Fear and the ghoul loved him back. There was no measurement of worth, no ruler for Mortis to stand against.

    A pedestal, that's what this was. The ghoul was putting Kev atop a bloody pedestal, one he had no hopes of reaching. Why? "Why do I have to be worthy? Why do I have to be some...infallible hero in order for you to understand why Fear would love me? Why do you have to...to think about it this way? In a way that puts yourself down?" Kev grappled with his hands, eventually just grabbing a piece of fabric on his pants and giving it a squeeze. "Love isn't about worth like that... I didn't look between Fear and Sonia, and pick Fear because he had more worth than her. I had feelings for him, and by the time I realized how she felt...it was too late. But worth certainly had nothing to do with it, and I know it didn't for Fear either." He would deny this 'truth' for as long as he could. It didn't feel right at all.

    Home though, at least that subject was reaching an agreeable position between the two of them. Mortis had assumed, but could Kev really blame him? It was not often that people would welcome former Judges into their home. Many would probably linger behind their heels with a broom, ready to sweep them out. The mouthless alien was quite aware that he was a...special if strange case. He nodded his head in understanding, and the apologetic gesture brought a softer look to his eyes. Though his eyes hadn't necessarily steeled over during their talk, they had found a more resolute and stubborn sort of stare to them during his insisting. Mortis was without the typical items one would need for a 'home', such as extra clothes and dishes and furniture, and most of the rooms in the house held no important to him. No reason to sleep in the bed, no reason to cook in the kitchen, and of course, the living room... Lightly shrugging as he conceded to it, Kev still wasn't going to admit defeat. "You still need a home base when you leave, right? Somewhere to stay, to be protected from the elements...and a place with something to do. How are you going to spend your days when you leave here?" Surely he wouldn't just wander the streets?


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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Mortis on Thu Jul 21, 2016 7:31 am

    "Love doesn't work that way... You can't just hide it like a dirty, shameful thing."

    Alas, perhaps that worked for the living, for Kev's kind, but what of another dimension? Deadworld had far different laws and regulations for ensuring those who upheld it did their job. Not to mention, there was an amount of wisdom that sat behind the interests of preventing workplace relationships. But... That was not what stayed Mortis' tongue, it was not the regulations, the laws. It was merely fear that once again crippled him. The what-ifs of whether the helmeted ghoul would see him the same way, or if he would be disgusted at the proposal, and his own cowardice that silenced him thoroughly.

    "I fear I know little of the sssubject, Kev. I may recognize my feelingsss, I may have an inkling of their posssible consssequencesss... But that doesss not make me wizened. You have already ssseen plenty, learned plenty. I know nothing... And from how I treated Lunette, I-I have learned nothing." He hissed, the ghoul's words starting to take more effort to say. Turning and leaning back against the edge of the counter himself, Mortis listened as Kev went on. he looked over at the green alien, his skull tilting to the side.

    Something about that sounded awfully familiar.

    "I sssuppossse in that ressspect we are the sssame. He also had to do the sssame for me, to... To reverssse what butchery I had committed to my own mind." The ghoul's form shuddered, a weak, pitiful sound like a sob escaping his throat. As he tried to go on, it grew harder and harder for the ghoul to speak, as a sorrowful pain welled in his emaciated chest and clenched around his throat like a vice. "H-he had--I... If I had not been ssso ssstupid... H-He would not have been.. Been gone for five daysss." He wept, the ghouls' legs buckling beneath him as his towering host came to slide down the side of the cabinet and sit on the floor, knees tucked against his chest and a green palm coming to cover his snout. Though Fear needed his rest after helping his brother recover his memories, there had been a part of the sheep-skulled superfiend had a wonder that crept like dread into his thoughts as he had watched over him.

    What if he never woke up?

    What if that amount of strain had taxed him beyond revival? All while Mortis sat there helpless, unable to aid him.

    Mortis' tail curled around his hips, as his other hand came to clasp over his knee. Though Kev did not wish to tell the ghoul he was awful for what he did, the alien did not need to with how Mortis saw himself already. Useless, worthless, a burden upon his brother as well as his damned tormentor. Though if Kev did say it, he would not argue otherwise. The superfiend, now sitting on the floor, shuddered as he sobbed once more. Acceptance was hard, but it was needed, said Kev. If he did not, he would still hurt his brother. Another pitiful sound escaped him.

    "hnnngh..."

    That clawed hand clenched slightly upon the bone of his face, before releasing. "Y-you are... Correct." The undead admitted, voice hoarse in the wake of his weeping. Although once Kev found out what kept the superfiend from seeking to destroy himself and succeed... Now there were spinning thoughts amid his sorrow, the undead hardly aware of how Kev gawked physically, but he could certainly hear him. Kev's thoughts squeaked at the implications, the what-ifs that could have transpired on that fateful day.

    "I-I had thought on it... sssince the eve of my i-initial return, after Fear confronted me." He hissed quietly, his brother's outburst and parting words still fresh in his mind. Kev had been there during the exchange, perhaps not sitting on the front porch, but he had been present so long as he still was connected to Fear's mind. "...What good would parting wordsss be, to one who could not ssstand the sssight of me? I disssgussted him, Kev... T-there wasss nothing left." He rasped shakily, his snout pointed down towards his knees. So far as he knew before Fear had spoken with him... He may not have even batted a single eye at his demise. Which brought them to Kev's next question, whether or not Mortis could give a sincere promise about an uncertain and unpredictable future.

    "Ssss..." Both hands came to rest over his eye sockets, a shaky sigh escaping him. "Sss-ssso long asss he wisshesss me to ssstay, I will remain." He weakly replied, letting his head remain sitting in his hands. It would be irresponsible for him to leave his brother in this dimension, when he had wanted him here. As for Mortis' happiness, he merely did not find enough worth in himself to consider anything else, or any other reason for his continued existence upon this dimension. Whether or not it was 'fun' held no place in the ghoul's mind. Thus, he thought little of Kev's hum, perhaps he simply could not understand?

    Rotten fingers slid down Mortis' snout to steeple over its bridge, an empty socket wearily watching the bundled up alien , though there was no way to discern where the superfiend's gaze exactly focused, as dark as those skeletal pits were.

    "You're wrong, I only made him feel less alone, because you left him by himself. When he had you, he wasn't alone."

    "...He would have been happy to continue being a Judge, he only retired for you. Not for me."

    "...I just... I just picked up the pieces and kept him going."

    Although Kev meant well, his statements were only supporting the ghoul's own argument, at least in his mind. Mortis had left him alone, Mortis had made him retire, Mortis had shattered Fear to pieces with his own folly... And left him by his lonesome. That was why Kev was worthy, and why Mortis was unworthy. How could he not see that when the truth was spilling out of his own telepathic diatribe like a rapid?

    After all, Kev did not make him feel uncomfortable... Kev did not make him suffer anything like Mortis had done. Kev did not rouse his brother's ire to the point where he wanted him to disappear, or disgust him so that he did not want to see his scaly face again. The undead's talons tensed against the bone of his snout, a grating sound creaking softly as they ran down the smooth surface. Mortis said nothing, the undead finding little to argue against in the alien's statement, and what he would say only repeated what he so openly denied. His snout tilted up as he heard Kev grapple with his hands.

    Why? Kev wondered, as he attempted to understand why Mortis would think of Kev so highly. Odd, considering how the superfiend used to view him, one would think he would have welcomed the switch in positions. Alas, such was not the case, and not what Mortis thought about. "It isss not that I think you infallible, Kev. I merely think you are better." he sighed, his voice still subdued. After all, Kev was experienced, he was attentive and caring... Mortis could barely fathom what to do with his own feelings. Of the two, who seemed, in all honesty, to be the better pick? The ghoul could already see all favor going to the diminutive scaly man standing in the kitchen, baffled. The ghoul had set aside his feelings for so long, preferring to shut them away instead of face and attempt to understand them, that he struggled to understand what they truly meant. "It isss not a tessst of whether sssomeone mussst be worthy, Kev. You merely are, and I merely am not. I am not worthy of anyone, not jussst my brother. You did what I could not... And what I could not do, wasss what ssshould have come easssily to any other. I did not face my feelingsss... I did not do what wasss resssponssible or expected." He hissed, sorrow clogging his statement and fatiguing his mind. "I m-merely... pussshed them away..." Just as he had done with Lunette, when Veskur had died. Just as he had done with his brother when Mortis' feelings began to resurface.

    The ghoul sighed, knowing fully well that Kev's question of why had not been answered to its fullest. Both hands came to rest upon his bony knees, and Mortis' snout tilted back down to stare at the white tiles. "You wonder why... I merely sssee it asss how thingsss ssshould be. In the affairsss of the heart, there mussst alwaysss be a winner... and a lossser." That was how that show had gone, right? That stupid soap opera that stared their leader falling in love with some voluptuous starlet. "I know my place, Kev. It isss bessst I move on... My apologiesss that I cannot put thisss in another way that can be better undersstod." He rasped.

    Move on from Fear, move on from Lunette, move on from love. For history made clear that was not fit for it. His failures were great, and clear-cut from the same depressing, regretful cloth. All things considered, perhaps he was better off alone, and merely be grateful he still had a brother who cared for him. No one he ould inadvertently hurt with his inexperience, and no one who would end up dying just by remaining in his presence for too long. A low hiss escaped him, another sigh.

    Kev's expression softened at the apology, and while he conceded that Mortis did not need a home for the same reasons a mortal would, he still kept on the topic. "My hosst can weather many thingsss, Kev. We need not be protected from the elementsss..." He rasped, remaining seated upon the floor in his huddled position. As for how he was going to spend his days... The undead superfiend took pause, claws flexing and relaxing.

    "I do not know..." He confessed, empty, dark pits seeming to focus upon the alien. There was little he felt like doing, nothing that seemed worth the effort. This world held no purpose for him.
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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Kev on Fri Jul 22, 2016 8:50 pm

    Could anyone truly say they understood love? Could anyone claim to be an expert? Even Kev, with his experience gained both from taking part and watching other relationships crumble, was hardly an expert. Love changed, evolved over time. His own relationship with Fear had hardly stagnated in the course of their first year. They learned more about each other, grew together, and found equal footing in what the other needed and wanted. Love was a process, and it was different fo everyone. His scaly brow arched, skeptical as he stared back at the ghoul. "Nothing? Can you really say you've learned nothing from what happened with Lunette?" If so, that was going to be a problem. Squinting his eyes, the alien stepped forward. "I know you feel regret for what happened with her, and you don't want any repeats of that, yes? It was a horrible situation, but you should have learned something from that, Mortis. Because as long as you feel sorry, learn from your mistakes and make up for what was done, no one can blame you or hold that over your head. Not even yourself." Kev was adamant on this, even more insistent. Like before, he refrained from physically touching the fiend, instead allowing his hand to hover before Mortis in a pointing gesture. Sometimes a man's worse critic was himself.

    Any sense of stiff and unyielding presence faded at the sound of Mortis' sob, face falling as Kev stared like a deer caught in headlights. The expression only intensified as the ghoul fell to his knees before the cabinet, choking out words like a drowning man. It was rather frightening, to see the intimidating former Judge who once held him by the throat and stared into his soul with glowing embers for eyes, suddenly fall apart to the floor. Knees were tucked to his chest, sobbing pitifully with talons poised over his skeletal snout. After a brief pause, allowing the ghoul this chance to let his emotions seep out like blood from a wound, the alien crept forward. Still standing, he reached out and physically placed a hand on Mortis' shoulder. A hand that remained stubbornly rooted. "Mortis...try to remember that...although Fear was out for five days, it had to be done to lead to this. To fix you, and himself. With that goal in mind, Fear would have gladly allowed himself to be passed out for as long as he had to be. And he did wake up...that's what is important." He spoke softly and kindly, his palm rubbing against leather. "If it helps at all...Fear being out of it was actually pretty helpful to me. I-I know that might sound bad but...hear me out."

    "I wanted to get Fear something for our Anniversary, but I was worried about the surprise being ruined. Psychic, you know. If I went to the store to buy him a gift, he'd see it being purchased. I could always block him out but then that makes it obvious I'm blocking him out for some reason. So while Fear was passed out and I cared for him...I also took that opportunity to buy him the golden ring I gave him for our Anniversary. As long as I hid the ring away and didn't think about it, he was none the wiser. I was able to truly surprise him with it." It was small, simple. Hardly the 'big answer' that could cure Mortis' morose. Kev's hope was simply that realizing he'd done some good might lift his spirits. Yet a worrisome inkling told him the former Judge may still blame himself. Sighing softly, he gave the man a pat. "I'm sorry I upset you...I didn't realize bringing up memories about psychic surgery would upset you like this. We just...have to work on never needing psychic surgery again so that he won't tire himself like that for us again. Maybe we could...help each other out that way? I'm always here if you need to talk...even if it's hard knowing the right thing to say." Because sometimes there simply wasn't 'the right thing' to say. Sometimes there were just emotions that needed to be expressed.

    Silence overcame the alien, listening silently to Mortis' reply. Eventually his hand slid off the man's shoulder, bringing both hands to fold over his front. Ever since they had parted ways that night, Mortis had thought on his disappearing, his leaving. His death. What use were parting words to someone who'd already said their good byes? All the same, the scaly man shook his head. "But there was something left," He insisted. "It's why the two of you encountered each other and eventually reconciled. There was still a chance. No matter how bad things may get between two people who really care about each other...there's a chance." They had known each other for so long... No matter how dark things had gotten, there had to be a shred of light somewhere right? And they had found it. "The important thing is you didn't go through with it." Kev said it more for himself, though also for Mortis. How awful would it have been, to cease existing only to later realize that there had been a chance for redemption? Reconciliation?

    The future was...another matter entirely. Mortis wasn't quite in the spot to promise he'd never do it again, only insisting he'd stay so long as Fear wanted him to. It was...something, the alien begrudged, and so he nodded his head. "Alright." Pushing the matter seemed to only upset him. Another time, perhaps. He moved on to other subjects, watching the ghoul for his reaction. The sight of talons scratching against bone was...worrisome. He had a sneaking suspicion that his attempts to comfort Mortis didn't help at all, and t was confirmed once the other man spoke again.

    "It isss not that I think you infallible, Kev. I merely think you are better."

    "In the affairsss of the heart, there mussst alwaysss be a winner... and a lossser"

    Both hands flew up into the air, and the alien let out a loud huff. "Goddamn it, Mortisss! You're being a bloody idiot!" Kev sputtered, a light hiss in his speech for a moment and idiot being pronounced 'eejit'. "You aren't a loser! Being a loser implies that you lost something, and you didn't lose Fear! He's still your brother, and he's still here! He invited you to stay with us! If you were truly a loser we would have never let you move in because he wouldn't need you anymore! But he does need you, and I know it's not in the way that you wanted but...but it has to count for something, doesn't it?" He paced in the kitchen for a moment, gesticulating wildly. "I'm not better than you! I never wanted to be better, I just wanted to be on equal footing! You used to treat me like-like an insect or some sort of phase, some idle fascination, b-but I didn't want you to decide I was worth more than you! I'm not. We may do things differently, and I might be dating Fear, but none of that means you're some awful thing. You aren't insignificant to Fear!"

    Kev's wrist rolled about, the alien well and truly on a tirade of some kind. "You may have made some mistakes, and they were pretty big mistakes. But that doesn't make you unworthy of Fear's affections. I've made mistakes, I've hurt Fear's feelings...because I'm not better than you! I have made mistakes and made him feel bad, I can be a right ass! Cause I'm not a winner!" Eventually he wound down, standing there like a limp ragdoll. Closing his eyes, his head rolled forward to hang loosely. "I just... Isn't Fear's love for you enough to make you realize you're not a loser? Being his brother...isn't like getting a bronze medal." Loser, less worth. It was infuriating to hear this man, so important to his boyfriend, put himself down. "I never wanted to be more than you. I-it shouldn't...why do we have to be one way or the other? Either I'm nothing to you, or I'm so much better than you? Can't we just be...two people? One happens to be dating Fear, the other is his brother? Neither of us better than the other? Both of us on...equal ground?" At the apology, his sentiment that he needed to just move on, the alien quietly returned to the oven to stare down at his kettle. The water was beginning to boil, little bubbles growing along the bottom and surfacing up in a light splash. "No need to apologize, it's just...hard. You do what you have to do. I'm...sorry it didn't work out." Matters of the heart were quite complicated sometimes.

    "What about rain? It makes you bloat up, right?" The alien insisted, glancing over a shoulder. If nothing else, perhaps a home should be found for that very reason. Mortis' response regarding what to do with himself was...candid. He truly did not know, and who could blame him? Hundreds of years spent with one single job, a duty that was all-encompassing. What was Mortis to do? Take up golfing? "You can...think about it while you're here. No rush. If you can't even think of anything in the end, that's fine too. You'd be welcome to visit anytime you wish." How do you give a man a purpose when he feels as if he's lost all purpose he ever had?

    TOOOOOT

    A sharp whistle made Kev flinch for a moment, turning away from Mortis and back to the kettle. "Oh, uh..." Flipping off the hob, he moved the kettle to a hob that was still cold. Allowing it to sit there, he grasped the tea bin and pulled out a simple tea pot. Measuring out four even scoops of the tea leaves, he poured the boiling water into the pot. To top it all off, he reached inside of a drawer and pulled out a familiar little cozy. He slipped it over the pot, and leaned his back against the counter-top with his hands grasping the edges of it. Tapping the marble lightly, he shifted his gaze back to Mortis. "Shouldn't be too much longer."


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    Re: Housework for the Soul

    Post by Mortis on Sat Jul 23, 2016 12:28 am

    "Nothing? Can you really say you've learned nothing from what happened with Lunette?"

    It all sounded familiar, the same message, a different face.

    "I had warned you to be mindful - to ssshow diligence! And what did you do!? You disssregarded my ssseasssoned advice and went plodding forward without a sssingle ounce of cognizance for your actionsss; your ssselfisssh, inconsssiderate ACTIONSSS!"

    Mortis' claws flexed once again over his snout, another sob wracking him. "T-that isss not what I meant..." He shakily rasped, his limbs tucking closer to him as Kev squinted and stepped forward. He learned plenty from what happened with Lunette. He learned he was dangerous... He learned that he was neglectful. His maw parted to try and say something, but the words choked in his throat under the alien's lecturing. His host shuddered, and his clawed hands rose to cover his cranium. When Kev finally grew silent, the ghoul sobbed again, claws tensing upon the bone of his skull under Kev's accusing finger. His words were timid, stuttering when he spoke. "If I had l-learned from what happened with my brother... Do you believe ssshe would have sssuffered like ssshe did, that Vessskur would have died? If I had been more careful, more attentive... None of thisss would have happened..." Another sob choked in his throat, his host shuddering. "I have learned from it, Kev... I-I have learned plenty. That I am neglectful, that I am dangerousss, ssstupid... I am unworthy of sssuch care, of her kindnesss." He shakily hissed. In the end, Veskur was the better match for her. He cared deeply about her, he protected her unquestioningly with his own life. What better choice could there have been?

    Kev's projection of being unyielding faded the moment the undead started to break down, fright filling the alien's mind and his expression reflected his uncertainty. Did he think the superfiend to be so unyeilding himself, as to not feel like he did? That his age and his crimes put him above such crushing sorrow? or perhaps it was merely strange to see the one who had projected himself to be so powerful become so vulnerable. "He ss-sshould not h-have had to... to do that!" He sobbed, barely aware of Kev's hand resting upon his shoulder until he heard the sound of his glove rubbing upon the leather in a soothing motion. "I g-gave in to my emotionsss, I wasss weak! I ss-sshould have done nothing, and kept... focusss on w-what wasss important." He should have reminded himself of his place, of what he was meant to do. He was a brother, a Judge... Not some pathetic, lovestruck woman who let her emotions rule her like a capricious hurricane. Even now, the ghoul was useless, pitiful. So, Kev took advantage of his brother's fatigue to buy him a gift... Something to surprise him with after he was done recovering.

    ... Kev really was better than him. And yet he still adamantly denied it. He was just being a good boyfriend, he said. He was just doing what was right.

    Evidently he had not heard enough from Fear to realize that maybe the rigorous, ruthless background they had might have impacted them in different ways. To get gifts had not come to pass the ghoul's mind until Lunette had introduced him to the concept, unless they were useful things, like the assassin's eye that Fear had given him. Then again, would it really be a gift, if the intent was to ensure that Mortis regained his strength more swiftly, and that the ghoul knew he was receiving it for said purpose? It was just as easily interpreted as new equipment, given their work. Or... Perhaps Mortis was just as unworthy as he thought he was.

    Another pitiful sob wracked his host, the undead refusing to argue one way or the other. Perhaps the answer made Kev feel better about the whole situation, but it merely reminded Mortis of the same fact. "I am glad... You w-were able to care for him. He dessservess sssomeone like you." He rasped quietly, sorrow still evident in his voice. The more he heard from Kev, the more he wondered why his brother wanted him around at all, why he felt like he needed him. With all Kev did to care for him, all that Mortis failed to do... It would have been more logical for the sheep-skulled ghoul to be left to his devices, and the inevitable play out.

    "I'm sorry I upset you...I didn't realize bringing up memories about psychic surgery would upset you like this."

    "I...I bring about my own misssery." He hissed softly. If he had not been so stupid, so blind, his brother would not have suffered, Lunette would not have suffered, Veskur would not have died... All of it was his fault, and no one else was to blame except stupid, inconsiderate, Mortis. Although as for being there to talk... Perhaps it was best if he kept his problems to himself, as it was evident that Kev was only growing stressed from having to hear them. "M-my apologiess... I-I ssshould jussst focusss on my choresss. It isss n-not my place to burden you with my troublesss." Mortis replied, attempting to push down his sorrow even as another whimper escaped him. Mortis' long claws dragged doawn the sides of his head with a dull, soft groan, before resting agains on his knees. His brother likely was already aware of this entire conversation, and growing irritated at how much he was distressing Kev. "The disshesss need tending to a-and--" He needed to get his mind off of his crimes, his transgressions against those who had cared for him. It was why he kept busy in the first place, but even then...

    There was no escaping it.

    There was something left, evidently, as his talk with Fear had revealed. That the ghoul could not deny. There was a shaky sigh, the undead superfiend remaining on the kitchen floor, his back against the cabinet. He weakly nodded as the shorter alien stated that the important thing was he did not go through with it. Although... If he did, who was to say he would be aware that there would have been a chance at redemption? He would have already been cast into the hereafter, lost to the realm of souls past. He could sense the frustration in Kev's mind, how he begrudgingly agreed it was better than nothing in regards to getting a promise. "My apologiesss... I find little worth in ssstaying... For I h-hold no worth except to my brother." Mortis solemnly rasped.

    His outburst made the ghoul curl in on himself further, his tail tucking tightly against his middle. For a moment, he figured the Kryptonistanian must have been channeling Fear, or perhaps his brother did not like what he was hearing from their conversation and added in his two cents alongside Kev. It could have been either, with him. Kev hissed and huffed, paced and tramped around the kitchen, gesturing as he ranted. The ghoul merely kept his claws over his head, shuddering as he quietly sobbed.

    "...If you were truly a loser we would have never let you move in because he wouldn't need you anymore! But he does need you, and I know it's not in the way that you wanted but...but it has to count for something, doesn't it?"

    "T-that iss not it..." He quietly trembled, the ghoul's voice a timid whisper. He watched the alien pace from the dark depths of his sockets. Yet he continued on, the green, scaly man's temper piquing.

    "...I'm not better than you! I never wanted to be better, I just wanted to be on equal footing! You used to treat me like-like an insect or some sort of phase, some idle fascination, b-but I didn't want you to decide I was worth more than you! I'm not. We may do things differently, and I might be dating Fear, but none of that means you're some awful thing. You aren't insignificant to Fear!"

    Again, the ghoul winced, his spine curling until his vertebrae stood out against the leather of his onesie like blunt spikes. "I-it isss not l-like t-that..." He whimpered again, his attempt to appeal drowned out by Kev's tirade. Sorrow gripped his mind, hearing all that the alien had to say. he knew that being his brother was not a bad thing, he knew that Kev did not want to be better than him... But he was. Kev did things that Mortis should have been able to do as a brother, as someone who cared for him. But in the end, he had failed, and history had given him plenty to ruminate upon that deemed it so.

    After all, had his brother not deemed him so untrustworthy as to shut him out when he had been trying to comfort him? Had Mortis not pushed him to the point where he grew suspicious of his presence? And now, knowing of what occurred while he was gone, had he not  pushed Fear to the point where he was debating his wish for Mortis to dissappear, to where he felt abandoned?

    He could still hear him. All of his anger, all of his outrage from those nights ago.

    "You abandoned me. You abandoned me, Mortisss... After all we had been through, after the reasssurancesss ssspoken on our behalvesss, you abandoned me becaussse you could not bear to wield the mantle of ressssponsssibility!"

    "...You never loved me, Mortisss. You coveted me, you desssired me, but you never loved me."

    "Pleasssse leave..." he urged quietly. "I cannot ssstand the sssight of you any longer. Leave thisss place and go about your dutiesss. There isss nothing left for you here but broken promisssesss and dreamsss."

    Every word was deserved, every stabbing pain as the knife was driven deeper into his heart earned.

    No, being his brother was not a bronze medal, but being the kind of brother that he was... A useless, inconsiderate, irresponsible, worthless excuse of a brother. Could he really call himself that? What good was Mortis, really, with all that had transpired due to his own foolishness and stubbornness? How long until he screwed up again, and made another mistake that would send his brother to want to never see him again? Who would be hurt next? Who would be the next martyr to act as unarguable proof that the ghoul was just as worthless as he thought he was, as history had shown him to be? He refused to argue against the green alien, but his snout remained tucked between two bony knees, his hands cupped firmly over the back of his head as if to protect his skull. There was no equal footing to be seen, there was nothing equal about how Mortis handled his situations and how Kev handled his.

    Yet, to point it out would only make him angrier, and in the process anger his brother again.

    "I'm ss-sssorry... I-I'm ssorry..." He whimpered between sobs, his host shaking. The ghoul's voice remained weak, small in the face of Kev's statements. Even as he wound down he remained curled against the cabinet, soft sobs escaping his skeletal maw. Even now, Kev could see what a pathetic excuse he was, Mortis was certain. Perhaps the ghoul was not even worth his brother's generosity, and Kev's, to allow him to stay in his home.

    "hnnngh..." His talons tensed around his skull, another pitiful sound rattling from his empty chest.

    He belonged on the streets. His place was facing an ISO's full, fatal wrath. He did not belong here, where he was so incompetent, so worthless, that he only wasted space within his brother and Kev's home.

    "No need to apologize, it's just...hard. You do what you have to do. I'm...sorry it didn't work out."

    His grip upon his skull relaxed some, but not completely. Another sob shuddered from him, the undead's sheep skull tilting towards the alien. "It wasss n-never meant to be... I w-wasss sstupid for entertaining it." He hissed, melancholy thick upon his graveled voice. "I-I sshould have kept... m-my disstance." A creature like himself was never meant to be loved. He was one of the living dead, a creature of nightmares, a bringer of death and decay. His body was riddled with holes from maggots, his organs eaten away until a cavity sat between his ribs and his hips, the ghoul's body reeked the foul stink of decay, and his aura was just as destructive as his rotting touch. He was not a lover, a friend... He was not meant to be held, to be kissed, or thought fondly of. And to humor the notion that he could be, simply because of a simple kindness and desire to humor him? Another sad sigh puffed from his maw, how could he have been so stupid to think otherwise?

    "I am n-not meant for anyone." He finally hissed, his voice soft and weak. The living were meant to stay with the living... His brother being the only exception.

    The intensity of their discussion began to dwindle, as they returned to the topic of a home. So, Kev thought that Mortis bloated in the rain? The ghoul slowly shook his head. "I am too decayed to bloat. My hossst isss hollow, and I lack the flessh that would trap moisssture to causse it." He quietly rasped. The most that would happen is the remnant's of his host's muscles would become more supple and tender than usual, and possibly rip easily when he walked or used his arms. "Even ssso... I could wait under a tree, or an overhanging roof until it passsesss." Undeath taught patience, as did centuries of immortality upon a dead, barren world. Though as for doing anything with his time... It seemed Kev was just as stumped for what to do as Mortis was.

    However, he apparently was fine to visit whenever he wished. The ghoul said nothing, merely nodding. The kettle was growing close to boiling, already the undead was counting down the seconds quietly in his mind until--

    TOOOOOT!

    "The water iss done..." He rasped, voice still no louder than a whisper. The green alien however did not seem to be expecting it, as he fliched and then quickly moved the kettle over to the other hob. The ghoul silently watched as Kev measured the tea leaves, four scoops tipped into the teapot before adding the water, and finally a fluffy purple sheep cozy. It would not be much longer until the tea was done, Kev said. Mortis merely nodded in agreement, remaining silent.

      Current date/time is Tue Sep 26, 2017 2:15 pm