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Misfits

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It was a peaceful day on the Grandcypher, the crew having landed on Port Breeze for their once in a lifetime day off from their adventures across the Skyrealm. The sun bore unto the gentle waters of the island as many of the crew's inhabitants exited the large ship in hurried giggles and laughter, excited to spend the day with their friends and comrades. Lyria and Vyrn left as well, wanting to savour in Port Breeze's fine culinary of seafood, and Gran had bid them off with a promise he'd join them later on-- having business to attend to on the Grandcypher (with the two of them scolding Gran for working too hard, but eventually leaving the ship soon after).

Gran heaved a small sigh, watching as his two friends ventured off into the town as footsteps slowly approached him from behind, and the young male could immediately identify the newcomer by the click from his heels and the heavenly presence radiating off of him.

"And may I ask why you aren't going out into town as well, Gran?" Sandalphon asked as he stood next to the captain, brow perked up in curiosity.

"Hm?" Gran turned to the brunet with a smile, mimicking the latter's raised eyebrow. "I wanted to try and get some new weapons! We got a lot of crystals back on Amalthea, so I want to use them and get prepared for tomorrow."

"Always thinking about the crew, huh? For a day off that you scheduled, you're quite hard on yourself, Captain," Sandalphon mused, a smile dancing on his lips.

Gran laughed, "c'mon, Sandalphon! You should loosen up too! Go on, shoo! Get some coffee beans for yourself." At his words, Gran dug into his pocket and retrieved a small pouch of rupies, extending his hand to the Supreme Primarch.

But Sandalphon was quick in shoving Gran's hand away, shaking his head, "I appreciate the gesture, but I'm fine. I prefer to stay on the ship-- but seeing as you're also staying, I'll accompany you." He smiled.

Gran blinked, pausing, before letting out a small chuckle. "If you say so, Sandalphon. C'mon, let's go to the basement, then." Tucking away the sack of rupies, Gran led the way down the staircase and to the large basement located in the Grandcypher. Crates and boxes of supplies were scattered and discarded on the floor, paired along with dust that littered the top of almost every object in the room. And although the basement was dark and devoid of light, the young captain was far too familiar with the ship to be able to easily locate the door deep into the pitch black, a hand going to the doorknob and turning it open.

Both him and the Supreme Primarch were met with a harsh gust of wind followed by a flurry of clouds, the former quickly batting away the white particles and taking Sandalphon's hand into his own to lead them down the rocky pathway up to the crumbled shrine-- where a large blue crystal glimmered at their presences.

When Gran first discovered the room on the Grancypher, he had almost passed out from sheer surprise at the otherworldly space behind the normal wooden door. Though, seeing as the crystal brought plentiful weapons of varying uses at the sacrifice of crystals, Gran had saved as many as he could along his travels with the crew in order to offer them to the shrine.

Sandalphon raised a brow at the large gem, "how many crystals do you have?"

Gran hummed, a hand outstretching to manifest a large sack from thin air, the bag plopping onto the ground with a large thump that a few stray crystals spilled from its opening.

"... A lot," Gran mumbled, and Sandalphon sighed.

"What nonsense is this..."

~~~

A few minutes had passed by with Gran having offered plenty of crystals to the large blue gem upon the shattered shrine-- Sandalphon sitting on the gravel pathway in the mass amount of weapons they accumulated throughout the entire process.

As the brunet twiddled with a strange and cryptic looking spear, Gran had poured out the last remaining crystals onto the shrine, clapping his hands together in a pray for good luck before gently pressing his palm against the monument. The blue gem glowed in response, the smaller rainbow crystals dissipating into particles of white and fusing with their large counterpart-- a rainbow hue replacing the former deep blue. Gran smiled at this, rubbing his hands together in anticipation, "alright, something good..."

"Hopefully nothing we have already," Sandalphon hummed in agreement, gently setting aside the spear to stand up, dusting off his pants.

The crystal began to manifest eight ordinary looking weapons, which ultimately made Gran huff out in boredom, before two gems appeared with a shimmering rainbow colour-- indicating weapons of high rarity, as Gran had learned. Eyes sparkling with excitement, the two crystals burst and two weapons clattered to the ground-- both the captain and the Supreme Primarch looking down at them in curiosity.

They were both new, that was for sure. The first was a large sword with a curved and glowing orange blade, wrapped in long black tendrils that sprouted from its hilt. The other was a pure black scythe, three smaller blades emerging from the back end of the weapon accompanied by a swirl of deep purple feathers.

Gran blinked. They looked oddly familiar, but the young male couldn't exactly pinpoint it...

... On the other hand, Sandalphon's face adorned a frown, a drop of sweat running down his temple, "these weapons..."

Though, before Sandalphon could continue with his words, the crystal unexpectedly began to glow a pure white, making the ground beneath both the captain and the Supreme Primarch to shake. In response, Sandalphon hurriedly stood in front of Gran, his twelve wings sprouting from his back to shield the young male as the large gem cracked-- blinding the both of them momentarily as a rush of energy surged from the wound.

However, the light was quick to fade, and Gran swiftly recovered thanks to Sandalphon taking the majority of the hit. At this, Gran patted a thankful hand on the brunet's shoulder, watching as the dust that sprang up from the surge of power clear-- the shadow of two figures appearing amidst the debris.

Gran widened his eyes at the familiar presences, mouth gaping. No, it couldn't be...

But his suspicions were proved correct for he felt Sandalphon tense, the latter's wings fanning out to their full length as his crimson eyes narrowed in menace.

"Ho~? It's awfully nice to see you again, Sandy~" Belial chuckled as the last of the dust dissipated, revealing both him and his ivory haired creator. "I suppose you have our thanks as well, Singularity~ You managed to summon us, after all," he hummed, amusement dancing in his voice.

"Lucilius...!" Sandalphon hissed beneath gritted teeth, his dual amethyst swords manifesting and plummeting into the ground next to both him and Gran.

"The spare and the Singularity... I see..." Lucilius hummed out, a hand reaching out for his glowing orange weapon-- the blade immediately responding to its owner and flying into the Astral's grip. "It seems like your powers as the Singularity brought us out of that realm. Though I have no intentions of giving any gratitude."

Before Gran could open his mouth, Sandalphon had already kicked up his feet and was flying towards Lucilius with his pair of amethyst weapons. In response, Lucilius frowned and a dark glow emanated from his pale body, the silhouette of his twelve midnight wings manifesting before...

They disappeared.

All four presences in the room widened their eyes at the absence of the Astral's power, and before Sandalphon could stop himself in surprise, his blade came towards Lucilius and slashed him right across the chest-- deep crimson pooling out from the gash. The Astral tumbled back from the attack, and Belial immediately came to his side and steadied the ivory haired male, pressing a large hand to the wound. "Cilius!" His deep burgundy gaze went to the Astral's cut, and noticing that it wasn't closing, Belial tsked, "oi! Why aren't you healing?"

On the other hand, Sandalphon retracted and went back to Gran's side, his glowing purple swords swirling around him in confusion. "Captain..."

Gran nodded, "I do admit you've gotten stronger, Sandalphon..." he trailed off, teeth clenching, "but something's wrong..."

Hesitantly, Gran took a step forward, then another, until he was slowly advancing toward the fallen angel and his creator.

"Gran!"

The young captain ignored Sandalphon, coming to a stop in front of the duo. And although Belial's eyes narrowed, a playful smirk danced across his lips, "Singularity, you wouldn't hurt a poor, injured man, would you?"

"Belial..." Lucilius mumbled through gritted teeth, glaring at the taller male-- a threat.

Gran merely blinked at the fallen angel's words, unsheathing the steel blade at his side and pointing it at Lucilius's chest. In response, he heard Belial's voice hitch-- a power rumbling from the male's core as a warning to the young captain. He took a step forward, before retracting it, and Gran guessed that he wanted to shield his creator, but the crimson wound on Lucilius's form was still dripping with fresh blood. If Belial released the pressure he was applying to the slash, Lucilius may face more critical conditions. So instead, Belial posed another question, laced with both menace and amusement, "being a bit rough now, aren't you, Singularity~?"

Gran hummed, tilting his head, "not really." At his words, the young captain's blade glowed a soft green, the shine transferring onto Lucilius's pale body as Gran began to heal his wound.

"Captain!"

Gran shrugged, waving off the Supreme Primarch, "hold on, Sandalphon."

Lucilius also found the captain's actions to be strange, for he raised his weapon once more and pointed it at Gran's throat. "Just what do you think you're doing, Singularity? Pitying me?" He mused, deep blue eyes narrowing.

"Nope," Gran replied, blinking as the wound finally closed. He sheathed his steel blade, Lucilius's very own sword still pointed at his neck as the captain spoke once more. "You're obviously no threat to us right now, yes," he started, "but I'm not pitying you whatsoever-- you both are still a threat to the entire Skyrealm. But..." Gran trailed off, smiling, "even then, I can't leave you guys alone, can I?"

"Are you crazy!?" Sandalphon finally flew over to Gran, eyes widened as he placed his gloved hands upon the captain's shoulders. "You just said it yourself! They're a threat!"

Gran turned to the Supreme Primarch, one of his hands going to Sandalphon's, staring at him, "and your fingers are delicate."

Sandalphon immediately closed his mouth at Gran's words, retracting his hands as a faint pink dusted his cheeks. "You don't have to rub it in all the time...!"

Gran merely smiled at the Supreme Primarch, "for whatever reason, Lucilius can't manifest his wings, and I'm guessing Belial can't either. If we leave them on some island, they'll probably cause chaos once their powers do return. For now, I gotta keep watch on the both of them. I'm not gonna kill them either-- that's just unfair."

"Keep watch?" Lucilius repeated, scoffing, "and I suppose you think I'm willing to comply to your commands?"

"Of course!" Gran grinned, "because if you don't, we'll kill you!" The captain's eyes darkened, a white glow engulfing his form before quickly dissipating-- his regular blue hoodie now replaced by his Eternal armour, a light blue glow dancing around his feet as his grin turned from cheerful to menacing. "And I do think you know what we're exactly capable of, Lucilius."

"Cilius, the Singularity may be right," Belial mumbled, turning to his creator. "We're no better than regular primals at this point. Without our wings, we're completely useless." A smirk grew upon his lips, "and on the plus side, we have plenty of toys to play with here~ I'm sure we can busy ourselves for awhile, Cilius."

"Silence," Lucilius growled, before turning back to Gran, "is that all, Singularity? I don't believe certain death is a very good bargaining chip. However, I'm sure your band of irregulars are more than willing to give us that."

"That's true," Belial hummed, chuckling, "how do we know little Sandy here won't hurt us~?"

Gran hummed, a gloved hand going to his chin (also ignoring the glare Sandalphon sent Belial). "If any of my crew lays a hand on the either of you..." he started, before grinning and spreading open his arms-- his white cape fanning against the wind. "I'll give you both a free hit on me-- you can use weapons too, but I'll be totally unarmed."

Belial grinned, "giving yourself away, Singularity? You're really begging for us, aren't you?"

On the other hand, Lucilius's eyes narrowed, but said nothing.

"Hey!" Sandalphon tsked, wincing, "do you really trust them? They'll lie about being attacked and kill you!"

"Then that's that," Gran sighed, smiling still, "if they lie, then so be it. But I'm not letting them off whatsoever." He crossed his arms, "additionally, you two are still in proper fighting condition. We won't do anything to you as long as you help out with some explorations."

"Assistance with explorations of the Skyrealm, and in return, we won't be killed?" Lucilius repeated, seemingly half to himself.

Gran nodded, "since you've been gone for two thousand years, I'm sure you want to see what's changed, Lucilius. We can supply you with some things too-- just not anything deadly. In fact, we'll even visit Lumacie and see if there's anything in your old labs that can help you bring back your wings."

"Experiments..." Lucilius hummed to himself, closing his eyes. Because six of his wings were from that being, who was tied to Etemenanki, he supposed that that was the reason why they didn't transfer when he arrived to the Singularity's airship.

However, what happened to his other six wings?

His brows furrowed. Something, or rather someone, was preventing both his and Belial's wings from transferring.

What a nuisance.

"I cannot assure you that this is a peaceful alliance..." Lucilius finally murmured, eyes opening, "however, until my wings are manifested, I shall reside here. Not one of your irregulars shall disturb me either."

"Understood," Gran smiled, humming, "once you have your wings back, you can fight me and Sandalphon all you want."

"Gran..." Sandalphon sighed, yet hesitantly folded back his wings, showing peace.

The young captain smiled at this, twirling around the Supreme Primarch's figure. "I'll have some separate rooms prepared for the two of you-- off to the side of everyone else. No disturbances, no nothing."

"I'll be in the same room as Cilius," Belial spoke up, humming in amusement, "I can't leave him all alone, can I~?"

"... Put him in a separate room," Lucilius huffed.

"Ciliuusss..."

"Then it's settled," Gran hummed, extending a gloved hand to the Astral and his creation.

"Welcome to the Grandcypher!"

Chapter Text

Although Gran had respected Lucilius's wish in having privacy, the young captain made an exception and told his close friends on the Grandcypher about the Astral and the fallen angel on their ship-- which provoked numerous reactions, but most of them were out of surprise (luckily). Rackam, Eugene, Io and Katalina were startled out of their minds at the temporary peace treaty, whilst Rosetta simply laughed along and voiced how interesting these next few days were going to be.

Lyria and Vryn on the other hand, though...

"You're out of your mind, Gran!" Vryn exclaimed, flying around the young captain and the girl in blue-- who were walking towards the Astral's chambers. "Sheltering that Astral and that perverted angel? You're kidding!"

"Vryn, don't worry," Gran chuckled, "I've got it all under control. Why else would I propose an alliance?"

"Gran..." Lyria's hands clenched, determination spreading across her features. "A-Are you sure?"

"Look at Sandalphon," Gran replied, "he was causing the cataclysms all those months ago, tried to kill both you and Vryn, and yet here he is now-- closer to us than ever and making us coffee every day. I'd say that's a huge difference, don't you think? I'm sure he would've poisoned us by now if he didn't consider us comrades, much less friends." He tilted his head, huffing his he readjusted the box in his hands-- containing materials that the ivory haired Astral had requested.

"B-But..." Vryn hesitated, glancing away.

"... I trust you, Gran!" Lyria spoke up, surprising both the captain and the red dragon. "I don't know what they're going to do once their wings grow back... but I know you'll do the right thing!"

Gran blinked, before a grin spread across his lips. "Thanks, Lyria."

"Just keep that perverted angel away," Vryn agreed as well, "I don't like him at all."

"I guess we have different opinions then," Gran hummed.

"W-Wait! Don't tell me you actually like him!" Vryn exclaimed.

Gran ignored his dragon friend, "as long as Belial's with Lucilius, he shouldn't do anything." The door leading to Lucilius's chambers came into view, and Gran paused in his steps-- enabling both the girl and dragon to halt as well. "You two should go now-- Lucilius doesn't want any company."

Lyria blinked, "o-oh... right..." she mumbled out, sparing a glance at Vryn-- who shrugged.

However, before the two of them could take their leave, the door clicked open-- the tall figure of Belial appearing (even though Gran had complied to Lucilius's request and gave them both their separate rooms, Belial still preferred to stay in the Astral's quarters instead). He cocked a brow at Gran and his companions, before a smirk grew upon his lips. "Ho~? Bringing along the girl in blue and ol' Scaly? You really want to have some fun, huh, Singularity?" However, unlike Belial's suggestive words, his voice was dipped into a soft murmur-- making Gran mimic the fallen angel's raised brow. "What's wrong?" He whispered back, tilting his head.

Belial momentarily glanced at the darkness behind him before trailing back to Gran and his companions, "Cilius passed out while looking through more papers," he hummed, his tone delicate, "he gets grumpy if someone wakes him up~ In the meantime, you can have some fun with me."

"No way we're going with you!" Vryn hissed, "let's go, Lyria!"

"O-Oh! O-Okay!"

And with that, the girl in blue and the red dragon dashed down the hallway-- leaving Gran and the fallen angel alone.

Gran and... a very perverted fallen angel.

The young captain brushed the thought aside, lifting up the box in his hands, "I brought the things Lucilius wanted," he voiced softly, "we should be arriving in Lumacie in about ten minutes. Can you wake him up when we land?"

As Belial took the box from Gran's hands, there was a stir amongst the darkness in the room. "I'm already awake thanks to your bickering," a deep voice grumbled, hoarse and strained.

"Sorry, Cilius~" Belial called over his shoulder, grinning.

"Fool, do you want me to rip out your core again?"

"Again...?" Gran mumbled under his breath, letting a small chuckle escape his lips. "Sorry for disturbing your sleep, Lucilius. I handed over the materials you requested to Belial."

The young captain heard Lucilius let out a slow hum, "... Belial, let him in."

"Okay~" And with that, Belial stepped aside to let a rather bewildered Gran into Lucilius's chambers, closing the door right after the captain entered.

Gran's eyes darted around the small room. Although the space was just as he had left it when he gave it to Lucilius, the desk seemed like the only thing that really changed. The wooden table was almost entirely covered in scrolls, the dark ebony wood nowhere to be found beneath the mass of papers that also littered the floorboards. And, for whatever reason, the main lamp in the room was turned off-- the only light source being the small candle flickering on top of a pile of books. The Astral sat upon the chair next to the table, eyes narrowed with evident grogginess and a matching scowl with the light from the small candle flame. A white silk robe was draped over his bare shoulders, seeing as though his pale torso was almost completely exposed and probably cold-- even for an Astral. But where did it come from? Gran wouldn't question it-- but he'd guess Belial probably made it, seeing as though the fallen angel was more than capable of taking Lucifer's body and stitching on Lucilius's head onto the corpse.

... Gran wouldn't think any more of it, for the sake of Sandalphon's sanity.

Lucilius cocked his brow when Belial placed the box down onto the floor, rummaging through the contents. "Everything's here," he hummed, "except..." Belial trailed off, retrieving a small canister from the container and examining it in his hand.

Gran blinked, realization coming to his mind, "oh! Right, sorry about that. I thought as a small welcoming gift, I'd make some coffee for the both of you. Or at least... I hope you both drink it...?" He chuckled, smiling.

"A treat~? You're far too kind, Singularity. Perhaps you're begging for a little reward in return? Hm?" Belial mused, unscrewing the lid before taking a small sip, cocking his head to the side. "Not poisoned~" he hummed out happily after a pause, passing the canister to his creator.

"I don't need you to be my bodyguard," Lucilius huffed, cautiously staring at the warm brown liquid inside the container before taking a quiet drink.

There was a thick air of tension in the room as Gran shuffled between his feet, awaiting Lucilius's (probably) harsh verdict of the coffee. Of course the young captain wasn't the one to make the coffee, it was actually Sandalphon-- who was far more skilled than he was at brewing. But Gran had lied to the Supreme Primarch, voicing how he wanted a canister full of the caffeinated drink to take on the go when they landed on Lumacie. And although Sandalphon questioned it and replied that coffee wasn't nearly as good left in a canister for steam to build up, he complied and gave it to the young captain.

And, similarly, if Gran were to tell Lucilius that Sandalphon had made the coffee, he'd for sure get skewered by the Astral's numerous blades.

But, surprisingly, Lucilius's expression remained the same as he retracted his lips from the canister, deep blue gaze returning to the brown liquid. "And you said you made this?" He hummed.

"Yep."

"What a ridiculous lie," the Astral scoffed, closing his eyes, "that spare made it, didn't he? It tastes exactly like Lucifer's." When he reopened his eyes, Gran was surprised to see laces of faint yet bitter, frustrated sorrow in his gaze. And it seemed like Belial had noticed too, for his burgundy eyes grew soft and... envious? Sad?

"Do... you still want it?" Gran cautiously asked when Lucilius didn't continue.

Lucilius merely hummed, and Gran was prepared to take a swing from the researcher's otherworldly sword but was surprised yet again when the Astral placed the canister on his desk-- indicating that he had no intentions of giving it back.

The young captain let out a silent sigh of relief.

"We're arriving at the labs, aren't we? What are you doing still standing there?" Lucilius grumbled, standing up from his chair-- the robe gently falling off of his pale shoulders.

"R-Right..." Gran mumbled in response, slowly nodding his head before exchanging a glance at Belial-- who smirked. "We'll be down in a minute~"

The captain gave a curt nod, glancing at the two divine beings once more before taking his exit, shutting the wooden door behind him as he left the two males to their own devices.

~~~

Gran led the party consisting of him, Belial, Lucilius and Sandalphon as they ventured into the thick foliage of Lumacie-- being wary of the overgrown leaves and the uneven terrain. And although Sandalphon stayed particularly close to the young captain for very obvious reasons, Belial was also quite hands on with the Glorybringer outfit Gran donned.

"Singularity~ You really are tempting me, aren't you?" The fallen angel mused, hands twiddling with the silk white fabric of the captain's sleeves.

"I wouldn't say that..." Gran mumbled in response, giving a quiet chuckle (and ushering for Sandalphon to not unsheathe his weapon). 

"C'mon, Singularity. I think you're practically asking for me at this point. Quite confident, aren't you?"

"Oh gee!" Gran exclaimed, pushing Belial's face away and rushing up ahead of the party to brush aside a few stray branches-- revealing the ruins and remains of the labs of the Astrals. "We're here!"

Gran ignored the pout from Belial and instead focused on the previous owner of the ruins-- Lucilius. The Astral merely narrowed his eyes at the sight of the former building, a small hum escaping his lips. "It's in far worse conditions than I had anticipated..."

"I'd say Uriel's a bit to blame there," the young captain hummed in amusement, leading the way once more to the fractured labs-- the cold stone of the fallen building greeting him with a click from his shoes.

Lucilius stayed silent, blue gaze falling upon a small podium in the center of the ruins. He beckoned with his head for Belial to follow him, and advanced towards the monument.

"Captain..." Sandalphon mumbled under his breath, warily watching the duo. "Are you sure about this...?"

"It's what I promised them," Gran replied, hands going to his hips, "I'll help them get back their wings as long as they stay under my watch. And if they want a rematch afterwards, I'll be more than willing to give them one."

Sandalphon's crimson eyes narrowed, doubt crossing his conflicted expression. "Gran, is that really your motive-"

"Singularity."

Gran's attention switched from the Supreme Primarch to the Astral researcher, giving a wave to the ivory haired male. Lucilius merely frowned at this, but knowing that he had Gran's attention, he placed his armour encased hand onto the pedestal-- which inflicted a spark of purple and black to erupt from the monument. "It seems that the dark essence won't allow me to activate it," the Astral hummed, brows furrowed. He beckoned for Belial, and in turn the fallen angel also placed his hand on the pedestal-- the spark returning.

Gran hummed, his hand going to his chin. "Would Cagliostro know how...?" He murmured to himself, before returning his gaze to Lucilius, "what'll happen when you activate that thing anyways?"

Lucilius narrowed his eyes, icy blue gaze piercing the captain. "I don't believe that's necessary information for you to know, Singularity." The Astral's gaze flickered to his surroundings, humming to himself, "... I can activate it, but it'll require Lucifer's plume."

At this, Sandalphon's eyes widened, his wings automatically manifesting as his gloved hand moved to the sword at his waist. "I won't let you take Lucifer's-"

"Am I to believe you want me to rain chaos upon this world once more, spare?" Lucilius murmured bitterly, scowling.

"I'll defeat you once more then," Sandalphon growled, "there's no way I'm giving it to you."

The Astral's brow twitched in irritation, "you worthless fool. You never knew half of what Lucifer was capable of-- he was everything this world needed, unlike you."

"But even then, I knew the other half of him!" Sandalphon shouted, "I knew the Lucifer who cared and protected the ones he cherished!"

Lucilius's gaze turned icy cold-- even more distant and menacing than his usual demeanor. "And I suppose you're saying that because you were the one who caused his death?" He replied, voice dripping with venom. "He was far too busy protecting your worthless cradle that he didn't dare escape. He was more than capable of leaving you there to rot but instead he had to protect your useless life. Even I couldn't believe he had done something so redundant-- he would be alive if it weren't for you."

Sandalphon's whole body froze.

And upon remembering the time when Belial voiced the same words to the archangel at the ruins of Pandemonium, Gran immediately placed a comforting hand upon the Supreme Primarch's very own gloved hand. "Sandalphon..."

Belial also seemed affected by Lucilius's words, for his mouth surprisingly stayed shut as his eyes narrowed in an unknown emotion that Gran couldn't exactly identify-- the same mixture of emotions from earlier back in Lucilius's room.

"Sandalphon, let's go back to the ship for now," Gran ushered his friend, before his gaze went to the Astral researcher. "Wouldn't one of Sandalphon's plumes be sufficient? He inherited the wings from Lucifer, after all."

Lucilius scowled, "if that spare refuses to give me Lucifer's, then I suppose his very own will suffice. Though, the chances of it working are minuscule."

Gran merely gave the Astral a quiet nod, mustering down his growing agitation and instead leading the Supreme Primarch back into the overgrowth for some time to cool off.

Meanwhile, Belial's gaze was entirely on his creator.

And it seemed like Lucilius wasn't particularly in the mood to brush it off either, for he directed his icy glare at the fallen angel. "What?"

"Cilius..." Belial paused, his mouth open, before slowly continuing, "... you really liked Lucifer, huh?"

Lucilius's brow creased, "and your point is?"

The taller male gave a sigh, "nothin', nothin' at all..." he trailed off, burgundy eyes drifting to the monument in the center of the ruined lab. "Hey, Cilius... this thing... isn't it supposed to-"

"Silence," the Astral growled out, "I don't need any more of your persistence; unless you want me to rip out your core."

Belial blinked, eyes softening in just the slightest, "really got to you that badly, huh, Cilius?" He murmured quietly to himself, unbeknownst to the Astral. He spun on his heel, stuffing his hands into his pockets. He may as well leave the researcher be-- at times like these, the ivory haired male would never revert back to his usual demeanor until he got what he wanted.

And that thing was certainly not Belial.

The fallen angel smiled to himself, bittersweet and lonely. What purpose did he really serve? Sure he was the archangel of cunning, but the fact that Lucifer was made at the exact same time as himself and became the Supreme Primarch...

Was he really valued? Or was he simply a loyal puppet to his master?

He followed through with every single wish Lucilius had without argument nor hesitation. He followed his creator in his wish to recreate the world and even went to the lengths to revive him in order to be alongside him as the world crumbled and yet...

"Is Lucifer really dead?"

He hummed to himself. Was it the selfishness in him that made him feel this way? Perhaps the jealousy? Or maybe even a tinge of envy? It'd be another two millennia before he could figure it out-- even if he was one of the most craftiest archangels created.

... Or, perhaps, maybe there was even some sadness underneath it all. Would he be recognize as not a simple tool, but instead as another being? A being who so selfishly desired some sort of affection from the one he admired the most?

Oh how complex his core was.

Love was a mass of contradictions.

A deep rustling from the debris dragged Belial from his scrambled thoughts, and the fallen angel perked up at the sound-- expecting to see the young Singularity and his archangel companion.

But he was completely wrong.

A horde of monsters crept from the overgrowth with piercing red eyes and fangs that salivated in their desire to kill. And although simple creatures like these were but ants to the archangels-- and much less to an Astral-- seeing as though both Belial and Lucilius had little to no power stored in their cores, this might be a tad bit of a problem.

Shaking his head, Belial strode back to Lucilius, summoning his divine scythe before standing in front of his creator-- shielding him.

"Nuisances, every one of them," the Astral growled, calling upon his very own orange blade and plummeting it into the ruined stone beneath his feet. "Take the rear, I'll deal with the leader," he voiced, eyeing the larger monster out of the pack.

"Yessir~" Belial hummed, grinning as he gripped his midnight weapon and charged into the fray, swinging it with absolute precision and experience from countless of experiments that revolved around his ability to kill. Though, even with his strength, the fallen angel couldn't even down a monster with a singular hit. Of course, considering they were deep into the forestry of Lumacie, it was to be expected that the monsters would grow in power as well. But Belial thought that at the very least, he would be able to handle them no problem-- even with the absence of his wings. He let out a faint grunt, plummeting his curved blade into one beast before reaching out with a hand and cracking the neck of another. "Cilius, what's taking so long?" He huffed out, frowning.

Belial heard a quiet hum in response, and as he sliced another trio of monsters, his burgundy gaze went to the Astral-- who still stood amongst the ruins. However, a dark swirl of energy circled around the researcher's feet, encasing his pale body in a growing power that Belial chuckled at. "C'mon now, don't leave me hanging~"

"Quiet," Lucilius voiced, his icy blue gaze narrowing, "unless you want to be pulverized, then I suggest you move out of the way."

Upon seeing the leader of the ravage pack approaching the Astral, Belial quickly hopped out of the way to stand next to his creator, flicking the stray blood from his weapon. Lucilius grimaced at this, sparing a glance at the taller male (who merely grinned and gave a shrug of his shoulders).

The Astral researcher took his glowing weapon into his armoured hand, pointing it at the larger beast who crept near both him and his creation. He took a small step forward, pausing, before disappearing and then reappearing right before the monster-- his blue gaze glimmering with traces of purple. "Phosphorus," he murmured, his blade glowing a bright yellow before slashing the beast-- a burst of golden feathers springing from his weapon. He raised his free hand into the air, summoning his two thinner crimson swords and combining their hilts together into one singular weapon. "Begone. Iblis," he voiced, before descending his weapon and cleanly discarding of the monster with a few strikes from the scarlet red blades. The Astral watched as the creature dissolved into particles of black and red, a long sigh escaping his pale lips at the use of his strength. He may have overestimated his own capabilities without his wings, for there was a strain upon his body from the use of his attacks. Lucilius cursed to himself, the weakness he retained at the moment was more than a hassle.

"Not bad, Cilius~" Belial mused from behind the former.

The ivory haired male huffed, turning to the fallen angel. "And I suppose you-"

The Astral froze when he blinked, for Belial was nowhere in sight.

Instead, he felt the fallen angel's presence from behind him.

Turning his head, Lucilius marginally widened his eyes when he was faced with Belial's chest-- a claw stained in deep crimson protruding from his pale skin.

"Whoopsies," Belial chuckled, as if the blood leaking from his lips were nonexistent. "Gotta be a bit more careful, Cilius~ Always straining yourself," he hummed in amusement.

"... You fool," Lucilius finally voiced after a pause. Though, the Astral was left surprised once more when the monster retracted its claw, and Belial fell to the muddled grass in defeat-- his hand having discarded his weapon and the crimson from his core leaking onto the floral. The fallen angel let out a weak chuckle, "it's pretty bad to not have any regeneration..." he mused, grinning as he closed his burgundy hues, "haha... sorry, Cilius..."

Lucilius stared in both shock and confusion at the taller male-- who now laid unconscious upon the sprouting crimson grass. On one hand, he wasn't very surprised at Belial for taking a blow for him, that was for sure. However, on the other hand, just the mere image of his creation falling...

The Astral turned to the beast and its approaching companions, blue gaze narrowed in frustration as he raised his orange blade once more.

"It seems you have a death wish."

~~~

"Gran!"

The said captain perked up at Sandalphon's voice, surprised to see the archangel out of his earlier trance. "Hm? You better, Sandalphon?"

The Supreme Primarch shook his head, crimson hues widened in panic. "That's not it!" His teeth clenched, "I feel it-- there's a hoard of monsters at the labs!"

Gran froze. "Exactly... how many?"

Sandalphon took the young captain's hand into his own, his multicoloured wings sprouting from his back. "Too many for those two!" He hissed out, dragging the captain through the woods with the added boost from his twelve wings.

Gran merely tried to keep up with the Supreme Primarch as they ran, his free hand holding onto the sheath of his blade until a question rose up from his mind and escaped past his lips. "... You're worried about them? Even though Lucilius said those things?"

Of course Gran didn't say that with ill intent, but more so curiosity. Sandalphon loved Lucifer more than anything in the world-- so Lucilius reminding him of the diviner's tragic death, Gran would assume that the brunet would be more than willing to let the Astral and his creation be slaughtered.

Sandalphon stayed silent, still dashing through the forestry and using his blade to slice the debris that he didn't bother with brushing aside. And for a moment, Gran thought that his question would be left unanswered until he heard the archangel let out a tsk. "I'm not letting some monsters kill him before I do," the brunet muttered, voice laced with venom and a hint of... confusion?

Gran blinked, attempting to decipher the brunet's emotions. Perhaps it was because Lucilius's body was still technically Lucifer's, or that small bits of Lucifer's core still remained inside of that pale figure.

Either way, the young captain smiled.

It seemed like his plan was slowly working.

However, the captain's satisfaction was cut short when Sandalphon burst through one final cluster of green-- the duo emerging from the debris and to the ruined clearing of the former Astral laboratories. Gran's eyes immediately spotted the pale figure of Lucilius, beaten and dripping with crimson and sweat but still dancing amongst the hoard of monsters with his multitude of swords swirling around his form. And behind the Astral, much to both Gran and Sandalphon's shock, was the still figure of Belial-- laying in the pool of his very own scarlet red.

Before either of them could speak, Lucilius spotted them-- his blue gaze narrowed in frustration. "And I suppose you have a reason to be standing there doing nothing?" He hissed, holding off a beast's deadly fangs with the blade of his glowing sword.

Gran immediately responded to the Astral, a white glow surrounding his form before his Glorybringer outfit changed into his Doctor attire-- his gloved hand pulling out his gun. "Let me heal you first, Lucilius-"

"No!" Lucilius shouted, making both the captain and the Supreme Primarch flinch. "Heal that fool of a fallen angel first," the Astral's gaze momentarily went to Belial, before going back to the duo-- or more specifically, Sandalphon. "Spare, if you truly are to be Lucifer's replacement, then show it to me."

Sandalphon tsked, his amethyst swords manifesting at his side as he dashed into the hoard. "I don't have to show you anything!"

"Wait Sandalphon-"

"Focus on healing Belial!" The brunet shouted over his shoulder, already back to back with the Astral researcher, cutting down the beasts with their numerous amount of blades.

Gran hesitated, assessing the amount of monsters that crawled toward the duo. "But-"

"Singularity," Lucilius growled out, eyes never leaving the hoard as he spoke, "Belial's core will shatter if he's left for another ten minutes. Heal him until he recovers enough for me to personally rip it out."

Gran blinked in confusion, pausing, before nodding and rushing towards the fallen angel. He knelt down beside the taller male, hovering his hands over the crimson wound on his chest as he began to heal the gash. Once the stream of green glow began to mend Belial's wound, Gran retracted one of his hands and looked up towards the crowd of monsters, snapping his fingers, "Miserable Mist."

The young captain watched as the crowd's defenses and power dropped, allowing both the Astral and the Supreme Primarch to cut them more effortlessly. And although Lucilius merely spared Gran a glance at his actions, Sandalphon responded by a wave of his hand in gratitude.

Though, Gran's attention was almost immediately taken away by the stir beneath him. Looking down, the captain watched as Belial opened his eyes, blinking, before turning his head to lock gazes with Gran. "Oh... Singularity... what a surprise~" he chuckled, albeit a bit weak.

"Cram it, Belial-- my healing's gonna take some time," Gran sighed, "honestly, how can you get this kinda wound?"

Belial blinked, before a slow grin stretched across his lips. "What can I say~? Love is a mass of contradictions~"

Gran blinked, before another sigh escaped his lips. "You and Lucilius are weird..." he muttered.

Belial perked a brow up, "how so?"

The young captain hummed, attempting to form the words together, "you're more than loyal to him-- like this wound, for example... yet Lucilius never really reciprocates that affection, huh?" Gran mused, "but I can tell Lucilius feels the same way. It's not really there but at the same time... it's there, y'know?" The captain smiled, tilting his head at the fallen angel.

Belial's gaze momentarily widened at Gran's words, before narrowing in gentle amusement. "You're a softie, Singularity~"

Gran's eyebrow twitched, a hand retracting again from Belial's wound to pull out a green potion from the red bag at his side, shoving the bottle into the fallen angel's mouth, "I said cram it," he huffed, “but...” The captain's gaze momentarily left Belial's to watch the duo in the mass of monsters-- both bickering with one another yet still back to back, their swords swirling around each of their divine forms. Gran hummed to himself, a small smile forming upon his lips.

“I guess you could say I have a soft spot for idiots."