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Remembering a Friend
#1
It had been a shitting month - all starting with his house blowing up. Now magic was real, he was likely on the most wanted listed for the Atharim as a traitor - not even a god just a plain old traitor, Nox wasn't sure which was worse. Betraying everything he knew and loved for strangers and Aria. Aria dragged him with her but he'd made this choice before he understood what Aria would do and where she'd take him.

But it was that one event that he was remembering today. Nox had woken up early as always and found himself in the basement running through forms and dancing his way to oblivion. He remembered the fight with Bas in his own dojo back in the warehouse. Nox was going to miss his friend. Though he wasn't lacking in friends at the moment. Christian had kept him company until about 6am when he went back up to the kitchen. He'd at least have a friend in the so-called butler of the house.

But Christian wasn't just a butler from the interactions he'd seen with him and Dorian. Friends, brothers - there was a lot more to their relationship than employer and employee. At 8am Nox send Pytor a message from his old phone telling him to meet him at Kallisti in the Red Light District. One thing that had always stuck with Nox about Bas as his after battle plans - and this was the closest thing he could come to it. "Let's remember Bas in a place he would have loved." It wasn't about the girls - not really, it was honoring Bas' last memory. And Nox knew he'd been there often he'd seen Bas' file at the end. It was the last place he'd been before he died.

Nox had told Christian where he was going and he said Ana would keep Elyse busy while he was away. Nox frowned knowing that what Ana wanted to do was not likely to be something an Atharim would enjoy - girl or not. But he thanked his friend and let Elyse know. It wasn't a big deal, he told her where he was going and why. He wasn't asking permission but she'd said it was okay to go - have fun. Nova stayed with Christian. Dorian had no problem with the puppy and Ana had scooped him up and covered her little blue dress in dog hair and only laughed about it.

Cruz went to class and Nox was introduced as his friend. Though the guys Cruz hung with were all the brainy types they all seemed like good guys. But his morning and afternoon were boring and the classes he attended were way over his head. School was so not his thing.

By the time 7pm rolled around and Nox was walking into Kallisti he'd had a full on boring day. He looked around and didn't see his friend yet so he took a seat in a booth and waited. When the waitress came around Nox smiled at her. "I'll just have a bottled beer - whatever is cold."
He didn't even ask for it unopened. This was about Bas not about showing off.
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#2
A message from a friend - one he hadn't heard from in awhile. Pyotr responded that he would be there. Life had taken over and Pyotr hadn't been able to see Bas or Nox in a long time. Of course he wouldn't see Bas again. Pyotr had seen the news.

Things for the past few months had been up and down. Confidence sometimes wavered. At times, Pyotr was confident and at others he was the complete opposite. That was life. So it goes.

Today was a sort of in the middle day. He didn't feel confident, but he didn't feel down either. Pyotr just sort of felt like he was there. The power - luck - whatever you wanted to call it was something he never used. It just had no application to what he did. Pyotr wasn't very good at it anyways.

The world was turned on it's side now. Everything was crazy. People like him existed. That was now known by everyone. Ascendancy had said so. Pyotr wondered what this would mean for his lessons with Marcus. Pyotr's heart wasn't really into them anymore - not that he had had one in awhile. Again, he never used it.

Pyotr arrived at Kallisti's and found Nox in a booth. He didn't really want to drink, but he ordered a beer anyways. If they were going to remember Bas, that is what he would need. "Hey,"
Pyotr said as he took a seat, not sure what else to say.
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#3
Nox watched the show with mild interest. Burlesque wasn't a strip club, and the nature of the clientele was rather obvious. In every strip club he'd ever been in the men were loud and usually obnoxious here the sex appeal came in what you didn't see. Granted both dancers moved the same way. They were selling the same thing - sex.

When weasel boy showed up Nox grinned at his friend and raised his beer in greeting. "Pytor."
His friend - while not a great friend was still a friend none-the-less. It wasn't like they were best buds. Even he and Bas hadn't reached that point. But they were his first real friends.

When the other man's drink arrived Nox leaned forward on the table and smiled at his friend. "To our friend, Sebastian Volodin, may he make the devil's life a living hell!"
Nox raised his glass in salute. Bas had died in his house, hiding from his people and there was nothing Nox could do about it even if he wanted to. Avenging his death would be pointless. The Atharim would hunt him down like a dog as they did Bas - and he was a traitor now anyway so it didn't matter. Maybe he'd find someway to dish out revenge on what they'd done to Bas, and what he would have done to gods himself if he'd not had the misfortune of being on himself or meeting those like him. If situations were different...
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#4
The show wasn't distracting. It was quite subtle actually. Pyotr didn't find himself watching though. His mind was still on the past couple of days. Pyotr wondered if he should register, but since he never used the power, he had decided not to.

Nox raised his glass and Pyotr raised his clinking it with his friends. "Sebastian Volodin,"
he said echoing.

Pyotr took a drink and finally looked around the room. Several patrons watched the show with interest. Others like him and Nox kept to themselves.

Pyotr finally turned back. "So what's new?" It's been awhile."
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#5
Nox wasn't sure really how to answer that question. Life was shit right now. Aria was in the hospital turned traitor that still was his only explanation of things. Which means he was a traitor to be hunted down by the only people he'd ever called family. He had a girlfriend... him... Nox sighed as he finished the last of his beer.

"Shit has hit the fan. New job, old job will fire me soon I'm sure. I did learn some cool new tricks though."
Nox grinned playfully as he pulled the power around him and wove a fanciful net in the air which did nothing but warm the air around them. He dropped it seconds after he'd created it. It was just an indication of what he meant - not the actual trick. He'd picked up a great deal since he'd seen Pyotr last. "How's life been treating you?"


Small talk was going to bore Nox to tears. But then he and Pyotr were never close maybe this was a bad idea. A quick drink and a show here that's what he'd give it before moving on. There were better things to do than babysit someone who didn't want to be where they were. But he didn't let his friend see his true feelings he hid it behind the never ending grin.
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#6
Pyotr smiled. "I don't doubt that you've learned new tricks. You always were good with learning new things."


Pyotr turned his attention to his drink, relaxing a bit as he did. "Things have been okay. Unexciting for the most part. Life as a waiter is...well...boring."
he said with a matter of fact tone.

Finally he turned to one of the dancers. They were different here than they were in many places. More grace. It was still sex that they were selling, but there was a subtle nature to it. It almost made it more engaging.
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#7
Conversation was not their strong suit - blowing things up was far more fun. Nox ordered a second beer when the waitress stopped by. He'd have the second, watch the current show then leave. He could be blowing things up or doing much more fun things with Elyse instead of sitting her watching girls sell sex. Not that he minded watching them.

The last show ended with a blackening of the stage as Nox leaned back against the bench cushion and stretched free arm across the back of it sipping his beer with the other and settled in to watch the next show. Music started softly and a melodic voice started singing. Nox wasn't much of a connoisseur of music his tastes tended towards anything he could dance to be that ballet or dance club music didn't matter. But her voice rang through the captivated audience and nearly every eye was on her before the lights ever lit her body.

The costume she was was that of a Parisan. Nox didn't understand a word of what she sang she was singing in French, the outfit matching perfectly. The image of an Eiffel tower displayed on the backdrop she belted out her song from. She wasn't a stick figure of a girl, she had generous curves in all the right places and the outfit suited her. The black pants clung to her body leaving little to the imagination. The black and white stripped sweater was the same underneath a pair of suspenders. A red rose was pinned to her left breast. Her black high heels and a red beret completed the ensemble.

She moved with the grace of a cat as her voice spilled out the lyrics. She hid behind the hat before tossing it behind her. There was laughter in the audience presumably from those who understood the lyrics. Nox only watched in fascination as she pranced around the stage. He watched her in a way he'd watched his mother dance. Understanding the underlying movements - revealing in the strength she displayed as she preformed on five inch high heels moves that would be engaging on flats.

The music and the show swept Nox away. He forgot about the shitty days he'd been having. He got lost in the moment. A nice break from the mundane things of life.

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#8
The conversation became muted. Neither one was really good at chit chat. Pyotr got another beer as Nox got one and sat back to watch the show. A girl in a french costume - also singing in French. Pyotr didn't understand it at all, but clearly some other patrons did.

Pyotr had to admit this one was one of the more attractive of the dancers - at least in his mind. She was curvy and well suited to the stage. She was a skilled dancer - moving in shoes that Pyotr could only imagine. Very few had such grace.

A quick glance at Nox, and Pyotr could see he admired her too. Not necessarily as a sex object, but...Pyotr couldn't put a finger on it. Not that it mattered anyways.

The performance ended and the crowd applauded. Pyotr joined in before turning to Nox. "Not a bad way to remember Bas...he would have liked that."
He raised his beer. "To Bas."
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#9
The show ended and the lights dimmed to set stage for the next routine. Pyotr pulled him out of his revelry with a toast to Bas. Nox grinned. "Bas really would have liked that. Among other things I'm sure. The lady in the red dress up on stage might have been something Bas liked too."


The memory was faded, mixed in with all the other memories of his life. Once they had been the only memories he had. Fighting with Giovanni when he got out of the hospital, sparring with Bas and meeting weasel boy and dragging him along - or rather meeting up with him later since he hadn't brought clothes with him. Nox wondered if he had gotten any better or was still going to Gracies. He hadn't been there since that first day he'd paid for a week but never went back. Lost money.

He remembered meeting Bas with his sister in the little Kremlin - after of course going to the Kremlin in the first place and was late. That had been a good day - but it was also the start of the downfall. Nox sighed and stood up getting ready to leave. His thoughts bringing even him down. Nox wondered if Sage was up - he'd like to see his sister again.

Nox clapped his hand on Pyotr shoulder and smiled. "To Bas."
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#10
[Image: enhanced-buzz-23117-1375125122-4.jpg?no-auto]
Roman Mordvinov

The night was cool. Yeah yeah, end of spring-beginning of summer and alla that. But today had been warm. And the club had gotten hot, especially there at the end. Between Holly and then Proya and the rest, well, it felt good to feel the night air around him. Course Holly was walking next to him, as was Proya. It wasn't very far. He eyes Proya's clothes. Eh. Good enough, he supposed. His silver thread suit and black silk shirt and black suede shoes would do. Holly had a thigh length tight black dress that hugged her curves. His eyes seemed to feel her up when he'd turned to look at her when they'd left.

It was weird. She'd been practically naked before, in just a nearly see thru teddy. And yet like this, somehow, she seemed sexier. Maybe it was the moonlight. And that smile. And those eyes. And he was flyin' after all. That heightened everything. Bottom line- he was having fun. The fighting was only icing to the cake.

Anyway, it was a short walk. Before long they were outside Kallisti. Holly's eyes went wide. She'd clearly never been there, but had heard of the place. "Alright man. This isn't like the other place. This is upscale. I'm guessing you know how to keep your nose clean. High rollers in here. So try not to throw anyone across the room."
He laughed, remembering the red-headed proprietor or whatever it was called. She had a temper on her. Some guy had tried to get handsy with one of the girls and she had lit into him before having the bouncer throw him and his whole crew out. Lion and shit. "This isn't, strictly speaking, a strip club. Watch yourself. But....I think you'll like it."


They walked in, Roman discreetly giving the hostess some bills to seat them at his usual table. As they walked, the stage lights had gone dark wehn a weak spotlight began to show the floor. The shadows gradually resolved themselves into two girls who somehow looked like vines or long limbed trees, lithe and willowy. The shadows made it hard for him to tell. Was that body paint or was it just tight clothing? Or was it a pattern from another projector displaying across their form.

Whatever it was, it was something, the way they rose from the floor, as if growing, somehow twining around each other. He turned to look at Holly to see what she thought, as they passed a table.

He heard a name and stopped, face going cold and frowning. "What did you say?"
he said coldly to the two men at the table.
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