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Life After Death and Taxes

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The first thing Kylo noticed about the girl sent as Blood Tax was that her dress did not quite fit. 

It was not a detail that he was incapable of overlooking, though he always had a dress commissioned for the girl who was to be sent to him.  Perhaps the tailor had used the wrong measurements and there had been no time to correct the error.  Whatever the case, it was clearly just a small mistake.  The dress looked lovely on her despite it though.  She was extremely tall, as far as girls went, almost his own height.  Perhaps the tailor had seen the numbers specified for her height and thought it could not possibly have been correct.  It fell somewhere around her mid-calve, but everything else seemed fitted, making her seem a bit younger than she probably was. 

She stood waiting in the front entranceway, the doors closed behind her as a pair of wraiths disappeared into the shadows.  She kept her face turned downwards, keeping it covered by thick, brown curls, and clutched a shawl around her shoulders to guard herself against the chill.  Kylo remained in the shadows, watching a moment longer when he noticed something else: the girl was not crying.  They all cried, without exception.  They were like puppies after being separated from their mothers for the first time.  It was something Kylo had come to expect, and had been fully prepared to offer what comfort he could, but this girl was strangely silent.  She was not making so much as a sniffle. 

Normally he would approach, speaking softly about how he understood their journey must have been a difficult one before taking them to their chamber to let their feelings out.  By morning they were often calm enough to speak to properly.  This one seemed perfectly fine though, completely clear headed.  Though possibly a little agitated with the way her fingertips pressed into the palm of her free hand…her hand… 

It was far too large a hand to belong to a woman.  The shape was all wrong as well.  The joints were incorrect, the proportions were off.  This was no woman.  Upon a more careful inspection her bust was incredibly lacking and her hips were very narrow.  The shawl likely hid a pair of broad shoulders and an Adam’s apple.  Kylo was willing to wager that if she lifted ‘her’ face he would find a man’s face hiding behind all that brown hair. 

Amusing, but worrisome.  If this was a man, disguised as a woman to infiltrate his castle, than it was likely for an attempted assassination.  They did tend to happen once every century or so.  An enraged brother, father or betrothed trying to keep the girl selected as an offering from harm would occasionally break in or try to slip inside to mount a foolhardy rescue.  Kylo breathed in deeply.  The man smelled young, barely out of boyhood if Kylo guessed correctly.  Likely a brother or lover then.  They were all easily dealt with and despatched, but it never did bode well when humans decided to try and rise up.  The boy would need to be made an example of.  Or perhaps…

Kylo let the shadows slip away from him silently as he drifted through the dim, orange glow of lanterns.  His footsteps were silent.  He had centuries to perfect slipping behind his prey to catch them off guard.  As he approached from behind he noticed the corset around the boy’s middle was loose.  So he was naturally quite thin.  It was a quality Kylo found attractive, but not so much that he was willing to let this wanton display of insolence slide.  The boy did not seem to notice Kylo’s proximity.  With his silent footfalls and no breathing, he had not made any noise that would have alerted him to his presence. 

Kylo grinned as he settled his hands over the boy’s waist.  He clicked his tongue softly, “Oh dear…what happened here?” 

He felt the boy’s body tense under the touch as he turned his head slightly, then checked himself before looking up.  He had turned his head just enough that Kylo could glimpse pale skin and a narrow chin.  He gasped, quite prettily, Kylo thought as the boy fumbled with the shawl.  Kylo looked over his clothing.  The boy’s right hand was probably his dominant one, so if he was hiding a weapon, probably a pistol, where would he hide it?  There was plenty of fabric to work with, but the most obvious places were the skirts of his dress and under the shawl. 

Kylo clicked his tongue softly, “It seems they got your size all wrong.  This won’t do at all.” 

Kylo moved his hands down to the boy’s hips, causing him to gasp again.  He felt nice underneath all the violet, satin skirts.  His flesh was warm and yielding.  He was thin, with very little fat, but enough muscle to make his thighs and flank meaty enough to grasp.  Kylo admittedly enjoyed running his hands over the slight curve of his backside and how it fit perfectly in his cupped hand, but that was hardly his reason for groping the boy.  He needed to find the gun before this boy foolishly decided he might try and use it.  He paused, waiting to see if the boy would attempt reaching somewhere and giving away the location of his hidden weapon.  He did not though, so Kylo was obliged to work his way downwards, checking for any hidden pockets or weapons strapped to the boy’s legs, pretending to be inspecting the workmanship of the dress as he frisked over the boy’s thighs. 

Kylo hummed softly, “Hm?  I did send instructions that it should be fitted to suit you.  How did this happen, darling?” 

“I don’t know my lord,” the boy replied in what sounded like a well-practice falsetto.  If his hand had not given away his true sex, the voice may have been passable.  As it stood, knowing what he was, Kylo found it laughable. 

Kylo clicked his tongue again, “Oh, we can’t have that, can we?  How should this be remedied?” 

Kylo drew his hands up.  With the boy’s arms in the way it would be harder to get at his chest.  He was not going to fight him unless it proved necessary.  If the boy was to be made an example of he would need to be recognizable to his people, and Kylo was hardly one for holding back during a quarrel.  And if a different sort of resolution was reached, Kylo would not want him badly injured for that. 

Instead he raked his hands up and down his back, feeling for straps that might support a holster.  He hummed quietly, insistently, trying to draw a verbal response, “Hm?  What should we do about this poorly fitted dress?” 

“I don’t know my lord,” the boy repeated, albeit slightly more breathily.  Was it his nerves finally getting to him, or was it something else?  Kylo pressed his nose to the boy’s nape and inhaled deeply, eliciting another gasp.  He could smell fear, which was to be expected in his position, but there was also the slightest hint of arousal.  In that case, he might not have been the intended girl’s betrothed if he enjoyed the sensation of another man touching him from behind so much.  It was still possible, but it seemed less likely now.

Still not finding the weapon, it was time to change tactics.  He suggested calmly, politely, “There are many other gowns upstairs.  They’ve accumulated over the years.  I’m sure we’ve one that will prove a better fit for you.” 

“It’s no trouble, my lord,” said the boy quickly. 

“Oh no, I insist…” said Kylo darkly, “I’ll have others brought for you to try.  Take it off.” 

“…in the entranceway?” asked the boy, nearly dropping his falsetto. 

“Yes.  Right here, right now,” said Kylo.  He put a hand on the boy’s waist and held a hand in front of him, “The shawl first.  Hand it over.” 

The boy faltered before letting the shawl slip off his shoulders.  As it lowered, Kylo saw why he had been clutching it so tightly, and it had nothing to do with the cold of the castle.  His shoulders were not particularly broad, in fact they were quite narrow, with a gentle slope as opposed to the squared muscles Kylo had been expecting to find.  He might have still been passable if not for the bodice of the dress, which was clearly made for a person with more of a bust than the boy had.  It was loose enough that Kylo could peer down and see white, marble skin.  He was pretty.  He would have been prettier if he wasn’t plotting to murder him. 

He placed the shawl in Kylo’s hand.  Kylo tossed it behind him carelessly, “There’s a good girl.” 

He settled his hands on either side of the boy’s neck, squeezing the muscle there lightly, feeling the tension running through him.  The boy kept his hands at his sides, his fingers rhythmically pressing into the palms of his hands, anxious, but still waiting.  Kylo ran his fingers through the brown curls.  It was real hair, though Kylo doubted that it was the boy’s own.  He kept standing still, obviously waiting for something. 

Kylo reached down and cupped where a pair of breasts might have been.  The boy’s breath hitched and he tried to back away, only to press his back against Kylo’s chest.  He squeezed lightly before teasing, “Gracious…you’re awfully slender.  What subtle breasts you have.” 

It was impressive that in spite of everything, the boy remained still.  He was frightened, but his fear was not paralyzing him.  He was waiting for the right time to act, and continued to wait in spite of being groped and fondled.  Kylo tried to force his hand, make him so uncomfortable, put him so on edge that he would reach for his weapon.  He reached down the bodice and cupped an imaginary breast, gently petting his nipple with his fingertips when he found it.  Kylo knew his hands were cold, they were always cold, and that only seemed to add to the little assassin’s excitement.  The boy stifled a small, timid noise when the sensitive tip of his nipple was rolled lightly by icy fingers, but held himself fast.  Kylo kissed his neck, “The corset next, dearest.  Take it off.” 

He flinched when his neck was kissed, and why shouldn’t he?  Kylo thought for certain that having a vampire’s lips pressed so close to the large veins in his neck would force him into action.  Instead he slowly began to unlace the corset before undoing the latches in the front, letting the whole thing fall to the floor with a clatter. 

“You’re a very good girl…” marvelled Kylo.  He slipped the bodice down past the boy’s ‘bust,’ showing off his slim chest and rosy nipples and listening to the fabric crinkle softly as it bunched near his waist.  He blew gently on the boy’s neck and ear, “Now be an obedient little gem and remove the rest.” 

“May I have the shawl to cover myself?” asked the boy. 

“No, no…I want to have a look at you,” chided Kylo, cupping and squeezing the boy’s bare ‘breasts’ and toying with his nipples, trying to add incentive for him to act, “I want to see the lovely girl who’s been sent to warm my bed.” 

He seemed more hesitant now.  Clearly Kylo had forced his hand, he had likely been hoping for his target to show his back before attempting to shoot.  He had infiltrated the castle through deception, dressed as a woman, clearly he had no interest in shooting his target honourably, face to face.  Kylo wondered what he would do.  Would he still attempt to shoot?  Would he plead for his life now that his plan had gone so wrong? 

“My…the buttons are on the back…I can’t reach…” said the boy, his voice faltering even more with Kylo touching him. 

“Shall I undress you then, my sweet?” offered Kylo.  This was it then.  As soon as he took hold of the dress the boy would make his move.  He would probably have a pistol of some sort.  He would likely pull away, put some distance between them and fire his shots.  It was a good plan.  If Kylo had not spotted his hand, he just might have passed as female.  The boy had put together a clever disguise and if not for that small detail, Kylo never would not have asked him to strip or groped him.  Kylo braced himself, preparing to move quickly. 

Slowly he began unfastening buttons, revealing more of the delicate line of the boy’s spine.  He was a very pretty thing, as pretty as most of the girls sent as offerings.  If the boy did not manage to kill him, he might serve as a suitable replacement.  Kylo wondered how he would try to get away.  An elbow to the stomach?  Trying to head-butt him?  Stomping on his foot?  A shoulder check? 

None of them, it seemed.  With a whirl of satin skirts he turned and kicked out, a blow that would send an average man sprawling to the floor.  Kylo moved back and saw him retrieve his weapon, strapped to his knee it seemed.  With a fluid movement he pulled back on the hammer and a deafening crack ricocheted off the stone walls and the smell of gunpowder overpowered everything else.  Knowing it was coming, Kylo managed to move in time, surging forward as the boy pulled back on the hammer again.   

Kylo placed his hand over the gun, turning it away so the second shot fired uselessly into an old set of armour that stood sentry in the halls.  He tried to keep his other arm around the boy’s waist, but he fought.  Hard.  Uselessly, he pummeled his fists against Kylo’s face and chest, blows that were as harmless as little black flies, but just as annoying.  He could hold the boy as long as he needed, but had no desire to, not with the hellish sounds he was making.  Kylo managed to pull the gun from his fingers before calling the Wraiths, his silent servants who obeyed his every will and thought. 

They took the boy for him, reaching their limbs out from the shadows and taking hold of his wrists and ankles, wrenching the former above his head as he yowled angrily to be released.  He was certainly a sight, the dress hanging awkwardly from the ruffled sleeves at his biceps, red-faced with rage and a mess of brown curls tossing wildly as he thrashed. 

“Oh dear, you’re a boy?” exclaimed Kylo with mock surprise, “I had no idea.” 

“Monster!” spat the boy. 

“Now, now, there’s no need for name-calling,” said Kylo, moving closer and examining the gun.  He held it up for the boy to look at before pinching the mouth of the barrel closed.  The boy quieted at that, and stilled as Kylo began curling the barrel and ripped the chamber from its place.  Kylo let it drop to the marble tiled floors with a lifeless thud before cooing, “There.  One less thing to damage those dainty fingers with.  And you are a dainty thing, aren’t you?” 

Kylo settled his hands back on the boy’s waist and this time he struggled, jerking against the hands that held him and tried to pull away.  Kylo rested one hand at his back and used the other to grip the boy’s jaw, turning his face up to look at him.  The boy glared back.  He had light coloured eyes, though the glow of the fire made it difficult to tell what their exact shade was.  He sent out his thoughts for the wraiths to light the chandelier as he stared down the little would-be murderer, “We’ve had centuries of peace between us and here you are trying to ruin it.  What on earth possessed you to do something so stupid?” 

The boy said nothing and tried to wrench his head free.  Kylo looked him over, “This wasn’t spontaneous…”  He snatched the wig from the boy’s head before examining it in the orange candlelight, “You were planning this.” 

After his inspection Kylo tossed it by the discarded shawl.  The light from the chandelier slowly built as more candles were light, doing away with much of the shadows.  The revealed an austere hall with suits of armour, faithful souvenirs from ages gone by and portraits of old friends who were now dead and gone.  Kylo inspected them for damage.  It seemed the stupid boy had only managed to hit a suit of armour, which could be easily repaired if he felt the need for it. 

As for the insolent boy, Kylo turned and was once more surprised by him.  He was far prettier without the wig.  He had a deceptively delicate appearance, with high cheekbones, lovely pink lips and handsome red hair that fell to his shoulders.  Briefly distracted from the fact that the boy had just tried to assassinate him, Kylo cupped his chin again, “I didn’t know they had redheads.  If I’d known I’d have put in a request.  What a pretty thing you turned out to be.”

“Piss off,” snarled the boy. 

“Such a fiery temper.  Is it your hair that gives you that temperament?” asked Kylo teasingly. 

The boy said nothing and continued to glare.  Kylo sighed and looked at him more sternly, “Who are you anyways?  A brother?  A lover?  You’re too young to be a father.” 

The boy looked up at him and growled, “I’m the coach driver.” 

Kylo paused for a moment, slightly taken aback by that.  The coach driver?  It took a few seconds for the words to register themselves.  Not some relation, not a jealous lover, but a foolhardy coach driver?  Kylo turned slightly so the boy would not see him snickering at that.  He stifled himself as best he could as he composed himself.  Of all the possibilities, this one was the most unusual.  Once he felt he was sufficiently calm, Kylo turned back, crossing his arms slightly, “And why on earth would the coach driver put himself in danger for some girl he had no formal attachment to?” 

Kylo studied him and wondered.  He supposed that after years of bringing innocent girls into the clutches of a vampire it might drive a coachman mad.  However, this one was young.  It must have been his first run, second at most, on this particular errand.  Kylo tried to think if he had ever seen an apprentice riding in the shotgun position.  It was difficult to recall, he did not always go out to meet the offerings, and hardly ever paid the coach driver any mind. 

He recalled one occasion though.  He had not been outside.  He had been lingering in the doorway as an old coach driver helped a weeping girl step out of the carriage.  Kylo remembered it because the smell was off.  He could smell two adults and…something else.  When he had looked up he saw a small child holding a blunderbuss that was almost as big as he was.  Kylo had not paid him much mind outside of the novelty of his youth, but did recall bright orange hair…

“Oh, I remember you…” said Kylo with a smile, moving in to stroke the boy’s cheek, “How long ago was that?  Ten?  Fifteen years?”

“Thirteen,” spat the coach driver. 

So that was it then.  The poor, naïve thing probably paid the run no mind at the time, probably proud to have a grown man’s task, and such an important one.  Then as he grew he must have come to realize what a horrible thing he had participated in and spent years of his life plotting revenge.  Kylo shook his head slightly at that.  Surely the boy understood how the Seigniorial system worked.  A lord would protect and provide for his territory in exchange for a tax.  He must have known that even if he somehow managed to kill Kylo, another vampire would take over the territory and take his place.  Killing him would not be the end of this, and Hux surely would have been found out for his treason. 

“Thirteen years.  You’ve grown so much in such a short time…” said Kylo, trailing his hand from his face, down his neck to settle across his chest where the dress hung and exposed him, “And grown so pretty, I might add.  Now, what am I to do with you…” 

Kylo continued more seriously as the coach driver glared up at him, “I suppose what I ought to do is march you straight back, reclaim the blood tax you were meant to deliver and place you in the stocks.  Perhaps for a week or so before having you executed for treason.  But…you’re so lovely, and you smell so sweet, I’m willing to offer you a bargain.” 

Kylo reached up and tucked the wild locks of red hair behind his ears, “Take the girl’s place.  Remain here with me and you won’t be punished for treason.” 

“For all the good that does” said the coach driver sharply, “Either way, I’m going to die.” 

“You aren’t wrong…” said Kylo softly, marveling at the soft skin and hair under his fingertips.  And the warmth.  Being what he was, he no longer had the ability to generate his own body heat.  Humans could though, and felt wonderful when they were pressed against him.  He spoke to the boy firmly, but not unkindly, “But if you were to agree, you would live a little longer perhaps, and your final days could be lived out in peace and luxury, rather than a prison or the stocks.” 

The boy continued to glare and Kylo sighed, “You failed, but if you agree you can at least live and die knowing you spared that girl and her family.  If you refuse I’ll have to take her back.  Wouldn’t that just break her heart?  Thinking she had escaped only to be sent back?  Would you want to do that to her?” 

He was silent and more contemplative at that.  Kylo looked him over, wondering at how redundant his thoughts had become.  Perhaps it was because it had been so long since he’d had a young man sent to him.  He’d become so accustomed to being sent a woman that he had nearly forgotten how good men were.  They were typically warmer, for one thing, and the lines of their muscles, even sinewy ones like this boy’s, were lovely to look at.  He had nothing against women, Kylo quite enjoyed them and found them very comely, but he had not had a man for so long that he wondered how he had possibly forgot how much he enjoyed his own sex. 

“Well?” asked Kylo, running his fingers through the lovely red hair. 

The boy looked away, averting his eyes, “…I’ll stay.” 

“That’s a good boy,” said Kylo.  He patted his smooth, marble cheek trying to show that good behaviour would win him gentle treatment, “But that was a very naughty trick you tried to play.  What are we to do about that?” 

The boy stayed silent with regards to that.  Kylo watched him carefully.  He seemed much more docile now, and without his gun any resistance he offered would be useless.  He did not keep anything in the castle that might be used to kill or stun him.  Wooden stakes, garlic and holy water were all far from the premises.  There were weapons that Kylo supposed he might be beheaded with, but they were locked away, with the key around Kylo’s neck for safe keeping, and the boy could not possibly have any knowledge of those.  If he resisted, it would be no trouble at all to subdue him. 

As he thought this, the wraiths released the boy, their inhumanly long arms retracting back into the shadows.  His arms dropped and the coach driver hugged them to his chest.  The touch of a wraith was said to be an unpleasant one, though Kylo had no opinion on the subject.  For humans though, he was told, the touch of a wraith sapped away warmth and caused their skin to crawl.  Not to mention how having his arms roughly seized and held above his head must have been unpleasant, if not painful.  He took a few steps back, which was to be expected under the circumstances and kept his eyes averted in shame.  That too was expected.  The poor boy’s plan of thirteen years had gone up in smoke before his very eyes. 

“You did try to kill me,” Kylo reminded him, kicking at the metal husk that used to be a pistol and letting it clatter across the floor.  He looked at the boy, “How are you going to make it up to me?” 

The boy remained silent so Kylo closed in again, lifting his pretty chin.  He looked over his plush, pink lips and could not resist a smirk as he trailed a finger over them, admiring the soft texture, “If you can’t think of anything…I can suggest a few ways…” 

In a flash, his finger was between the boy’s teeth.  Kylo wrenched his hand back as the coach driver growled, “Just because I’m going to let you eat me doesn’t mean I’m going to stand here and be molested.” 

Kylo observed the broken skin and torn muscles.  The boy had sharp teeth, for a human.  They began to close up within a few moments, but it still stung.  Kylo turned to the boy and regarded him angrily, allowing his voice to become low and quiet, “You seem to have no understanding of how this works, boy.” 

He seemed much more frightened by that and backed away as much as he could as Kylo stalked forward, “You agreed to volunteer as an offering.  As blood tax.  That means here, you are not a guest, and certainly not my equal.  I won’t tolerate being attacked.  Not here.” 

Backing against the wall, the boy noticed it was a dead end and dashed to one of the suits of armour, trying to pull a fake sword from the scabbard.  Kylo continued his approach, now even more annoyed.  The boy was still trying to kill him.  He growled, “I’m willing to be patient with you, but it seems you won’t learn without discipline.” 

“Stay where you are!” snapped the boy, who had managed to wrench a spur off one of the boots and held the sharp, pointed star out as if it had some possibility of saving him. 

“This is my home.  You don’t decide where I can and cannot go,” seethed Kylo.  He reached forward, earning a cut across his hand from the spur for his trouble.  The boy was screaming now, a wild, feral sound while he bit and kicked and lashed out with his arms, trying to resist Kylo hoisting him over his shoulder.  He held the boy’s legs fast, letting him shout and pound his fists uselessly against Kylo’s back.  The vampire growled, “You on the other hand have not earned the privilege of moving about freely.  I’m not going to keep you if you’re going to bite.” 

He continued to shout, demanding to be put down as he jabbed the spur into Kylo’s back, slashing where he could.  It was enough of a pinch to startle Kylo into dropping him.  He fell to the floor with a sickening slapping sound as his flesh collided with marble.  Kylo was on him in an instant, pulling the spur away and tossing it aside.  He growled down at the insolent human, “You’re trying my patience boy.  Do you want to be sent back?  This deal depends heavily on your cooperation.” 

He continued to snarl and Kylo doubted very much that he was paying attention anymore.  He was a cornered animal.  All he seemed capable of focusing on was finding a means of escape, and would continue to do so until he either achieved his goal or calmed himself.  He was not going to learn or listen like this.  Kylo scowled.  There was nothing for it but to let the boy spend the night shouting until he had tired himself out.  Most of the offerings he received required a night or two of weeping, but this was the first who would require space because he was so violent. 

Kylo picked him up again, by the back of his neck this time, pulling him along as he was doubled over, struggling to keep up.  Kylo pulled him down the hall, trying to recall the nearest room that locked from the outside.  There was a closet for coats, but the door was too flimsy, the boy could easily break it down.  He recalled a pantry near the kitchen and dragged the coach driver in that direction.  He struggled, trying to dig his heels in or grabbing at door frames and furniture.  Against another human he might have gained some leverage, but he was no match for Kylo’s strength. 

He opened the pantry door and hurled the boy inside, “You can stay here tonight.  You’ll be allowed to out when you learn to behave.”   

He crashed to the floor before scrambling to his feet.  Kylo slammed the door before he could charge and turned the latch to lock him in.  There was a loud bang and a snarl as the coach driver rammed into it.  He howled before trying a second and third time to batter the door open.  There was some crashing inside, but Kylo cared little.  The food that was inside was there to be fed to the offering to keep it alive for as long as Kylo was amused by it.  If the boy damaged anything he was the only one who was going to suffer for it.  Kylo crossed his arms and leaned back, waiting, wondering just how long the boy would keep going before he wore himself out. 

There was more snarling before the crashing stopped and the door was battered a few more times, now with something that sounded like a wooden pole.  He must have broken something to turn into a makeshift battering ram.  Kylo sighed and waited.  The blows became weaker, and now instead of snarling he only heard grunts and heavy breathing.  Kylo took a watch from his pocket and tried to guess how long he had been working at the door.  If he had to make a guess, perhaps twenty minutes or half an hour.  Kylo timed ten more minutes before the dull thudding finally stopped and the boy slumped up against the door. 

Kylo was about to leave, satisfied that the boy was finally starting to learn his lesson.  That was when he heard scratching and light, pained hissing.  Kylo approached the door, silently as he had before and listened for where the sound was coming from.  Stopping and listening carefully he heard nails grazing against wood as the coach driver tried to slip his fingers between the door and the wooden panels of the wall.  Kylo observed the latch that kept the door closed.  It was large and heavy.  Unless the boy had a thin, metal hook that was long enough to keep a decent grip on, he was not going to open the door.  Still, he tried.  Kylo timed him as he kept hissing in pain, attempting to wedge his fingers through a space that was much too small for them to pass through.  He kept at it a long time, almost twenty minutes.  The poor thing struggled for almost an hour in total before everything went silent. 

Then Kylo heard it; soft weeping coming from inside.  Normally the girls who were offered struggled lightly, often begging and pleading as fear overcame them.  Then when that subsided they would break down, crying pitifully for home and their families.  They really did remind Kylo of puppies who had been torn from their mothers and were spending their first night in a new home.  Usually after a few minutes, heartsick and broken, Kylo was able to touch them, petting their hair and calming them down.  Sometimes they could even be coaxed into leaning on his shoulder to sob.  It was the first time he had been forced to listen to one of them weep after being thrown inside a pantry. 

Kylo considered opening the door and paused.  The boy might appreciate the comfort now that all of the violence was out of his system, or the action would stoke his anger into a full on fury again and he would try to make another ill-advised assault.  Either way, it was disheartening to hear him crying softly on the opposite side of the door and not being able to even attempt giving him comfort.  Kylo was not so detached from his offerings that he neglected them or could not understand their sufferings.  The same way he supposed humans cared for chickens or sheep.  He did care for them, and did not want them to suffer before they served their purpose.  He even tried to keep them longer if he grew attached to them. 

He wanted to whisper soft things, but held back.  He did not want to whip the boy into a frenzy again.  The best thing to do was leave him to cry until morning so he would have all the time he needed to make himself calm and rational.  Kylo recalled the silky texture of his hair and the warmth of his skin as he rubbed his fingers together.  He was a lovely creature, despite his temper, and it genuinely upset him to hear the boy crying on the other side of the door.  He wanted to hold him and shush him until he quieted himself and the tears stopped. 

It would not help though, Kylo was convinced of it.  He waited until he could not stand listening to the wretched crying anymore.  He would come for the boy in the morning when he was calm and try to speak with him then.  Perhaps after a night’s reflection he would be more inclined to civility.  Still, Kylo felt awful leaving him alone in the dark to cry.  Humans hated being alone in the dark for prolonged periods of time. 

He moved away from the door and down the hall.  He paused, glancing at the shadows and instructing the wraiths, “Leave a blanket for him.”  He considered allowing him a pillow as well, but after all that fussing, a blanket was more than charitable.  He had food a-plenty if he needed it and he would have a blanket.  That was more than enough for a naughty pet who had broken the rules.  Kylo had to be firm with him, make sure he knew his place, and then he could allow himself to show the boy kindness.  Once he had learned the rules of this place and his position was made perfectly clear to him, he would settle down.  If he could learn to be obedient and tame he could prove to be a lovely companion. 

He hoped he could be tamed.  This would be his first man in quite some time, and Kylo was already enamoured with his appearance.  He just needed his roughness stripped away and smoothed over, then all would be well again.