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Bonds Broken

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Roman woke up with a groan. Another day, another script to finish that will just get thrown out eventually. As usual. Letting out another exasperated groan, he reluctantly got up to get ready for the day. Better to not procrastinate. With a snap of his fingers he was out of his pajamas and in his usual princely attire, that he simultaneously loved and loathed. Loved, because it perfectly represented him in all his extra-ness. It incorporated who he was. (Creativity, he told himself. It represented creativity and nothing else). Loathed, because it was a hassle to wear, as much as it had been a hassle to put together. Contrary to popular belief, he didn't just summon it out of thin air. He created it painstakingly, hours and hours of precise placements and sewing. No magic, all hand stitched. If he wasn't so extravagant, he might have just snapped his fingers, but Roman was nothing if not dedicated to his work. (It also served as a grim reminder of the life he left behind, but he preferred to not dwell on that. No use getting upset over times long lost.)

When he was all settled, he decided it was time for makeup. Taking his place in front of his vanity mirror, he began his usual procedure. A little bit of foundation, contouring, a touch of eyeshadow… (Orange and glittery just the way… No. Don't think about it.) He had barely worn eyeshadow for quite a while, but today he just felt off and he knew the eyeshadow would soothe the subtle longing he felt in his guts. He was unsure why it was as strong as it was today. He didn't want to concern himself with the possible reasons either. He would just end up more upset than he already was, he was certain. He had always been good at repression, he thought, giving his makeup the finishing touches. Repress the fear, repress the guilt, repress the past. Nothing out of the ordinary for good old Roman. Blowing his reflection a kiss, because he was rather vain despite his insecurities, he pushed back his chair and stood up, stretching. Before work, he should probably grab a few bites, maybe a coffee. So that's what he did.

Strolling into the kitchen, Roman had begun to hum a small melody. The Villain Mashup song to be exact. That was still one he took great pri- he cherished the most. To his surprise, however, as he reached the kitchen, no one was yet awake seemingly. Patton wasn't making breakfast, Virgil wasn't half asleep on the counter, and Logan wasn't complaining about his coffee. Odd, truly. Gaze wandering over to the clock, he realized how early it was. Of course he was the only one awake. It was barely 6! “Shoot,” he mumbled, realizing he could have slept at least another two hours. The curse of refusing to look at clocks with calendars on them. Deciding that since he was already awake, he could just make his own breakfast and enjoy the silence of being alone. Fixing himself a cup of coffee along with a crofters toast, he took a seat at the kitchen table and began his feast. A little more than halfway through his little meal, someone else entered the kitchen, very clearly not fully awake. Looking up at them, Roman dropped his toast into his lap, staining the white. No. No this couldn't- No way.

Virgil honestly didn't expect anyone else to be in the kitchen at this time. He didn't even expect to be there for long himself. All he wanted was to grab a small snack from the fridge and then go back to his room. Today wasn't really a day he wanted to spend around the others. He had slept horribly, nightmares plaguing his well-deserved rest. Nightmares and memories, mashed together into a swirl of agony. He had awoken in a cold sweat, immediately knowing what he needed to make himself feel calmer, aside from some calming food. A particular old jacket, barely worn anymore aside from times of great despair or need for comfort, such as today. Jacket wrapped tightly around himself, Virgil's made his way into the kitchen. He didn't even notice the other presence at first, tired and upset. A gasping noise made him whip his head around and he came face to face with one of the people he least wanted to see.

“H.. hey Roman….”

Roman didn't answer, just staring at Virgil. Looking the yellow, red, and purple jacket over, and over, and over again. His entire system was filled with shock, regret. Tears had already made their way to his eyes, threatening to ruin his perfect mascara if they spilled.

“Do- you know what today is, right?”

He asked after a few seconds, voice cracking. Virgil nodded, of course he did. Roman's blood ran cold and he looked down at his lap, staring at the dropped crofters toast as of it held the secrets to the universe. He didn't look up at Virgil's sigh, knowing it might either be judgy or pitiful. After a few seconds he finally spoke, voice strained.

“I'm sorry,” he croaked. “For ruining everything.”

Roman had made his decision. It was for the best. He couldn't bear this anymore. He deeply regretted telling everyone, and not just Malice, like he originally planned. Because now he had to not only face Tate's condescending remarks about abandonment and cowardice, but also listen to Chase's yelling.

“You're- you're leaving us?” Came Virgil's voice from next to Deceit, who had been unbearably quiet throughout this entire ordeal.
Before he could respond, Chase already intervened. “Oh no he's not!” Unwilling to let go. What else to expect of the embodiment of obsession.

“You can't be serious!” “I am!” Roman yelled, much louder than anticipated. He flinched at his own tone. “He won't listen to Pride so I just have to be… not Pride anymore.” “But Roman-” “No! I can't do this anymore. It's too much. I want my voice to be heard!”

Without another word , he turned on his heel and left. He was surprised, really, that Tate had just let him leave like that. As he later found out, it was part of Tate's ‘greater scheme’, which in itself was something to be feared. At the moment, however, Roman didn't care. He was glad to be left to his own devices.

That night, Deceit had come to see him. Come to talk with him, maybe change his mind. Roman had never seen the deceptive trait so distraught, so upset. Roman felt awful, but he wouldn't go back on his decision. He couldn't. The argument that followed wasn't pretty.

The next time he saw Virgil, he was met with contempt. Roman, who at that point already established himself as Creativity, the goody two-shoes, noble hero, had reciprocated Virgil's behavior. The two fought and spat poison, and behaved like enemies. Keep up the act. Play his role. Be someone else. As an actor, of course, he had mastered these abilities. Nonetheless, it pained him. Hurt like hell. But he played the role he had written.

Virgil shook his head and took a shaky breath. “No, you didn't… It was just the first crack. If anything it was my fault.” Virgil cringed at that thought, moving to sit down opposite to Roman. Now that he was already here…

“I was so angry, so bitter. My behavior turned hostile, even with the others. With Da- Deceit.” He gave a sigh. Deceit had, during their final argument before they stopped talking, instructed him to never use his name again.

“You don't deserve to use my name. You're one of them now.”

He deserved it, he knew that, but it stung nonetheless. “Me and Dee fell apart, we were always fighting and I did nothing to try and save our friendship. I ruined it. Don't blame any of that on yourself.”

“But I left! It was the stepping stone to set everything off. Because I was selfish,” Roman argued. “I left you and Deceit alone with Tate. I didn't consult in you. We were supposed to be best friends but I didn't even consider your feelings.”

Virgil gave a sigh. “Yeah it was a dickmove,” he admitted. “But… it was bound to happen eventually. You're Pride after all. And I know you don't want to hear that but we are in uncomfortable territory anyway. You're Pride. You want to be heard, to be acknowledged, to be appreciated. So Thomas ignoring you? Of course you could only take it so long. I mean hell, that's the reason I ducked out for a while, as you might remember.”

Roman nodded, of course he did, how could he not? It was the first time he and Virgil started to act like friends again. After the whole debacle was over, he had finally apologized. They had talked things out. They grew closer again. But it wasn't the same, it never would be. There was always something different, something was missing. Roman knew Virgil felt that way, especially considering the jacket he was wearing.

The question of the third member of their ‘Gang’ hung in the air. Overall, there was underlying tension. Virgil found it suffocating, painful. He looked at Roman and bit his lip.

Roman was the first to speak, regret in his eyes. “I want to apologize to Deceit. Today.” “Today? Do you really think he would want to talk to you?” With an unsure shrug, the prince nodded. “It's the day of our last argument. Today would be the best probably. For closure. I don't know if he will accept it, why should he after all? I screwed up royally. But… I want him to know that I'm sorry.”

Virgil nodded, looking at his hands. Apologize… he should do that too. “You're probably right. I'm coming with you. I was a giant douchebag.” It wasn't as if he wasn't aware of how he acted back then. He was just angry, bitter. He felt betrayed and abandoned. Began isolating himself. And it made him feel awful. “We can't let anyone see us though,” he mused quietly. “Tate will rip our head off.” Roman nodded in agreement, sighing. “Dee’s room is farthest from Tate’s, so that shouldn’t be an issue unless we have horrible timing,” he decided, leaning back in his seat, and looking down at his robe. Oh yeah, the toast. With a sigh he picked it up and placed it back on his plate. “... Before we do anything I have to change.”