Caleb walks slowly through the tall stalks of corn growing behind his small house, tracking the footprints of his much adored house cat.
“Halo” a little girl is sitting up against a tree on the brink of the woods, picking apart a flower with her nails. Her hair is tousled, and her smile is feral. A flicker of pent up magic ignites within Caleb. He smiles back.
Caleb trots hurriedly down the thin dirt street running through the center of of his town, cat held tightly in his arms, struggling limply to escape his grasp.
A little boy is sitting on the curb of a shop, picking the weeds idly from between the cracks of the gravel. He pushes up his thick spectacles, smiling half-heartedly up at Caleb. “Halo” says the little boy. A shock of hot magic runs down Caleb’s spine.
Caleb is reading beneath a tree in the middle of summer, the tall grass engulfing his bare feet. A young girl - as she will no longer tolerate being called little - sits next to him, reading a book of her own. A young boy sits on her other side, nose practically pressed to the pages of his thick tome. The girl will sometimes look up to the sky, stretch, and begin to read over one of the boys’ shoulders. They pretend not to notice.
Caleb sits in the library, studying, with pen ink smudged on his forehead, and deep bags beneath his eyes. He rarely even glances at the young woman - as she will no longer tolerate being called a girl - who sits stubbornly on his left, studying as well, but taking moments here and there to point out a mistake in one of her cohorts’ papers. And he almost never looks to his right, where a young man sits, face still too close to his book, glasses still held together by hopes and dreams. Although, their hands all interlace at points; a silent show of comraddery. They work in unison, trying their best to block out the whispers that always surround them.
Caleb puts his hands in front of him, Sparks still emanating from the tips of his fingers. He feels the weight of a hand on his shoulder, Astrid's breath on the back of his neck. The hand brushing his, Eodwolf silently telling him to move on. The tension of Trent staring down at him from yards away. And he crumbles. And the world goes black.
Mollymauk jolts up in bed, an unshed tear blurring his vision and cold nausea clenching at his stomach. He can't remember what he dreamt, but feels like it must be important. He rolls gracefully out of bed, hitting the floor with a bit less flair then he'd prefer. He hates the nightmares, mostly because he knows they aren't meant for him. He fumbles slightly over the mess of clothes and shoes that he calls a floor, stretching widely as he steps out his door. It smells like hash browns and red meat. A strange breakfast choice, but then again, the woman cooking it could hardly be called normal.
"Good morning, darling.” Molly casually pats Yasha on the shoulder as he walks to the counter, and plops down on a stool that looks like it was pulled from a dumpster fire.
Yasha makes an acknowledging grunt, and slides his plate towards him. "You look like shit." If he were anyone else, he would have taken offence from that, but he sees the worry in her eyes, notices the sincere tone to her voice. She isn't making fun of him, she's staying a fact of life. Molly looks like shit.
"You're looking lovely, yourself." The steak is medium rare, and the hashbrowns are slightly burnt. It's delicious. "We have a gig today, yeah?" Its a statement, but it comes out as a question. He punctuates it with a satisfied bite of crispy potato.
Yasha's smile is a brittle thing, nothing close to her thick, muscular figure. Her lips curl a bit at the edges, and her eyes glow with sincerity, but the rest of her face stays stony cold. She grunts. This seems to be a grunty kind of morning.
"I always look better on stage." Molly does a small hairflip as he says this, showing off his peacock tattoo, glimmering in the harsh lighting of the small grubby kitchen.