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And Reality Will Warp

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"So..." Cecil begins, as a means to fill the pause, "Do you have pain receptors?"

"Yes?" Carlos, ever so sweetly and hesitantly, replies.

"Oh." Cecil closes his bottom two eyes and opens his third for a glance at his fingernails on the Third Plane. He'll have to cut them short if Carlos invites him to spend the night. It wouldn't hurt if he filed down the teeth either, but... A quick check with Cecil's right eye tells him his tattoos begin to lift off his arms on the Second Plane, to manifest as if in protestation, and he resolves to calm down, because that sort of behavior is just embarrassing in public.

It’s just a trim! Behave yourselves.

"Do you… Not? Have pain receptors, that is."

Cecil opens both his bottom eyes to see Carlos clearly on the First, and Carlos reaches across the diner's table and thumbs Cecil's wrist, as if checking for a pulse.

Whoops. The Second Plane becomes a lost cause, and while Carlos isn't able to see the utter mess Cecil is making of himself right now, old woman Josie, sitting at a booth across the aisle with two of her Angels, smirks at him.

"I, um. No."

Carlos is all rich purple custard shot through with orange smoke and forest green vines drip down his sides.

On the Third Plane, at least.
He's gorgeous.

And then Carlos notices Cecil staring, and his aura goes streaked with grey, with uncomfortableworryconcern, so Cecil closes his third eye and opens his bottom two. Carlos is at his most stunning on the Third, but nervousness and self-consciousness make Cecil think Carlos prefers to operate on the First, where he can see what he's doing.

"You're beautiful," Cecil reassures him. And oh how he could have let his voice break on that second word. Crack. Fracture. Shatter.

Cecil is a complete wreck on the Second Plane, and a terror on the Third. Old woman Josie bites her lip and looks away as Cecil settles into the Third Plane to calm himself on the Second. The windows melt where his aura brushes them and lines of perspective in the long, narrow restaurant begin to bend. Angles show where there should be none, and intersections become flat. Cecil relaxes the writhing masses on his shoulder-blades that drip tentacles like wings drip feathers, and on the First his tongue splits in two and the tattoos on his back begin to reflect the textures and patterns of the elements on the periodic table. In reverse order. No matter. He is calm.


His First Plane flesh smiles at Carlos.

He is calm.