His pristine jacket had long ago being lost under the piles of suitcases, plastic wrappers and dried lavender. Not a real loss really, especially after it had been smeared with jelly by the scallywag. One of these days he should require of the Detective to get the dry cleaner’s tab. Long past were the days of his clothes reeking of alcohol and after-hours company. Now he was dropping them off for disinfection, sticky worsted wool vests and colourful, finger-twisted pinpoint oxfords shirts. Scamps could indeed be very expensive.
“Detective” he growled dejectedly “I was not commissioned willingly for this!” his fingers parted slowly the pile and a frown set upon finding his now wrinkled jacket. Using only his index and thumb albeit with great reluctance, he raised the jacket for the Detective to inspect from across the room.
The Detective’s flushed face showed no sympathy to his horrendous finding.
“It just needs an iron Lucifer” she sighed in annoyance.
Lucifer eyes widened comically in horror and then focused sharply on the small figure behind him.
The spawn looked at him unfazed while working through her pile.
“You don’t iron a worsted wool jacket Detective” his voice drawled and his eyes met the child’s to convey the absurd notion her mother had just spurted. “You press it!” he finished still jiggling the jacket between his fingers for emphasis.
At the feeling of a sharp tag from behind, his knees gave out and he fell on his designed pilled area, previously known as the couch. With no room to actually sit, he let himself fall in an undignifying way to the floor.
“I always knew you were evil” he murmured under his breath and for the first time, he found the child staring at him intently. She cocked her head and proceeded to take a seat on his legs.
“I must warn you” he clucked his tongue in distaste “I’m not thrilled that you decided to follow the initiative your sobriquet proposes, I believe you are quite young for a lap-da-“ he had long made peace with the idea that it was up to him to educate the poor kid. In a family of appalling nicknames and fancy dress grannies, he would be her light bringer. Alas, she was quite determined to switch off in darkness his majestic presence whenever possible.
“Lucifer!” Chloe warned him and from what he could hear behind him, she had moved on disarranging yet another pile.
Sighing he decided that it was in his best interest to remain motionless with the child seated on his long legs who which was now looming over his defenceless form.
The spawn slowly touched his hair and ruffled the disoriented black curls of his previously sweated forehead. With each touch, he felt clammier and daringly he once again met her dark eyes. She seemed to hesitate and…-
“You evil, evil, evil little tinker!” he yelped jerking his palms to his left eye. With the sudden movement, the hellishly well-polished wooden floor lost the battle to friction and his back met the floor. “Why would you do that?” he chided whilst persistently rubbing his poke-abused left eye.
The child moved on his stomach rendering him stock-still. If it had not been for the watery eyes, the remorse which marred her face and her frantic patting on his cheek, he would have stormed out of this hell-hole, and he should know, a good few minutes ago.
“Sorry.” she lisped, missing teeth be damned.
“No killing each other under my watch!” the Detective’s voice boomed through the house. She had apparently ventured through the rooms for more piles and had missed her spawn, effectively blinding the devil himself. “Understood?” came a muffled bark behind her now closed door.
“Care to explain?” he asked somewhat too distressfully for his taste. The child lowered herself on his chest which made him flinch and flicker his eyes for the incoming invasion. Instead of poking him again she seemed content to study his features and most significantly his eyes.
“Do you see something there Beatrice?” he cautiously inquired. There were instances where he could not budge the inkling that the child had more perspective than its mother. “Anything interesting around the brim perhaps?” soothingly he supplied. There was no point to resort her to a loony mess, was it now?
Her eyebrows frowned adorably together, meaning quite literally scaring the hell out of him. “Yeah…” she softly quipped. He felt her little frame taking a deep breath and his vest seemed to give in to her weight.
“Are you wearing make-up?” she remarked while with her sticky finger she traced slowly the sensitive flesh underneath his left bottom eyelash.
His expression of incredulousness must have been rather amusing because the small form shook with giggles. Staring at the ceiling, he felt his chest rumbling and the small child quiver intensified through the new set of giggles which were now met by his escaped throaty chuckles.
“Oh little one…” he breathed and tangled his arms around her. "So?” came a smothered little voice warming in the process his shirt.
“Do you inquire the long or the short version?” he thoughtfully asked trying to rearrange his memories. A probable “L’ng” was replied and he nodded.
“Long ago it was decided that I had to leave home..” More like cast out but the beginning was satisfactory so far for him. “Before I had to go, Father felt that he had to show me what divinity was all about.” The aeon’s familiar prickling in his eyes which had nothing to do with tears seemed to intensify as he recalled the events once more.
“Needless to say everything felt raw for quite some time afterwards.” he could feel the slight trembling setting a rhythmic motion over his body but he simply gathered the child closer to him.
“You were spanked?” his innocent Beatrice questioned and she only momentary lifted her head to affirm that she would not be lied to. “Were you naughty? You can be very naughty mum says!” she gave him a knowing look.
“Is she know?” Lucifer purred. “Well, I can certainly be naugh-... Oomf!“ the child’s right leg had kicked his calf, effectively cutting off his reverie. He grumbled and looked down at her fingers which were now playing with his left cufflink.
“Let’s see… Spanked? Not really touched actually.” and it was true, he was never touched. His father’s divinity had done wonders, as well as his soul-wrecking descent. “Naughty? Perhaps… I asked the wrong questions…” he pondered this for a while. It was always the part which baffled him the most. “Perhaps… I was always a bit too much of a rebel.” he reluctantly admitted.
“Anyway. I was punished and then… and then I was given an infinite time-out” he muttered like a petulant child. “Time-outs are not that bad” the all-knowing spawn reasoned.
“Well, that one was” he bitterly laughed. “What hurt most after Father’s discipline was my eyes and my new domain was not helpful.” The heat mixed with Father’s old broken toys, which most had long turned to dust, were an ongoing torture for his then blood-weeping eyes.
“It took me a while but soon I realised that coal mud, a rather available thing down there, would soothe me from the heat and the dust particles.” Upon his discovery his relief was immense. He could remember his wings twitching in joy, a feeling he had never thought it would be possible again back then. The blurriness and his moodiness had equally subsided since then, much to the relief of the creatures and souls which co-habituated with him in that dreadful place at the time.
“Coal mud?” Beatrice challenged him raising once again an eyebrow for effect. “Hush child! We will get to the fashionable eyeliner soon!” he recounted impatient to finish with this story.
“Coal mud seemed to do the trick until I had some very interesting… roommates” he lamely finished. How could you explain the influence of about thirty-one dynasties in hell? You very well couldn’t and certainly as the Detective would warn him, he also shouldn’t.
“There was a chap who had the prudence to be brought with several interesting knick-knacks and a nice container of kohl.” Seti and his dear son had supplied him with enough eye relief for centuries and thankfully the practice of ceremonial burials which allowed certain items to reach him would continue for several thousands of years until his little, clone Father-brother decided to make an appearance.
“Alas it didn’t last for as long as I would have wished to but since calling for a long awaited vacation, I once again had access to this dashing little habit of mine.” He concluded hastily due to the returning of the dull ache behind his corneas. Absently he reached his discarded jacket and retrieved slowly the two small objects which were always carefully tucked in his inner pocket.
Rubbing the child’s back he placed the small vial in the palm which previously was worrying his cufflink.
“Care to help?” he jested in an attempt to lighten the mood. She held the tiny vial with apparent hesitation and bit her lower lip, as well as she could with one of her bottom teeth still missing.
The cap gave out easily under the manipulation of her small fingers and she set the now open vial over his previously poked eye. With a wavering determination, she squirted some liquid and felt Lucifer go rigid underneath her. She drew back only for him to still her. “And the other Beatrice.” he commanded.
Applying the liquid to the right eye didn’t have the same effect on him, she noted with relief and she resettled over his chest gazing upwards as he rolled and batted his eyes. When he seemed satisfied that the eye-drops had covered as much of the eyes as they could, he reached for the small box over his shoulder.
“Found it!” the Detective squealed and her quick stepping vibrated on his still flat on the floor body.
“Oh joy…” surly words were delivered to his chest. The contrast between the forlorn expression Beatrice was now carrying and her mother’s relieved vibrant hums of joy could not be easily disregarded.
“What are you two doing to the floor?” Chloe took her daughter’s and Lucifer's serene forms laying on the floor. Trixie’s curls were covering Lucifer’s face and he seemed to soothingly whisper in her ear. Whatever it was there were a lot of no and then a definite yes.
“Detective I believe that grandmother Adelaide will have to go without the scratchy scarf.” Lucifer’s voice carried in an authoritative tone. If only he wasn’t smothered by a seven-year-old.
“We discussed this, with both of you of all things! Grandma wants you to wear the scarf. We searched for two hours and by God…” she steamed over both of them only to have Lucifer's abruptly rising body with her daughter securely in hand.
“We had a deal!” he gloated dangerously. “You don’t mention Him today and I go through the piles. You.broke.the.deal.” Lucifer confronted her with a dangerous charm which let her know that she had already lost. For Lucifer whenever a deal was broken she had to pay up. Dearly.
“No scarf and no Grandma-Douche for the spawn if she does not wishes.” he set the parameters in order to collect fully. He saw her licking her lips and her eyes glimmered in a promise of a painful retribution perhaps even within the day.
“No scarf, but the weekend with Dan’s mother stays.” she bargained the best she could under the circumstances. Something was making her waiver and with a smirk, he took a step forward. “Friday evening to Saturday night.” he leant to whisper in her ear and felt the spawn’s hand patting encouragingly his shoulder blade. For her, he would withstand.
“No scarf, Friday to Saturday night and…. I get the glasses” she breathed slowly trying to lift the haze that the sight of a Lucifer with crazy curly hair and glasses had brought her down with. He cocked his head in a manner which reminded her a lot of what a bewildered Trixie would do.
“You have a deal.” he drawled still perplexed with her demand. He took off his glasses and entrusted them in her hands. It was a sense of relief for her to have the offending object away from him but at the sight of him blinking and grimacing as he tried to adjust his eyes, she knew the battle and perhaps even the war had been lost.
“Just don’t make it a habit when I’m around.” she made the absurd request while giving him back the spectacles and she turned to tuck the scarf back to the moth-repelling plastic. “Trixie, if you could move the light bags back to the rooms.” she pleaded and turned to finish the knot of the scarf’s bag only to have it snatched away, thankfully when the knot was already secured in place.
“You will certainly not see that scarf for many-many years.” Lucifer mused and huffed as he lifted one of the heaviest bags of winter clothes. The Detective simply stared at him and fidgeted over two cups she had just placed on the counter. “The story… how bad was it?” she whispered willing herself to not be heard but at the same time demanding answers.
“Bad enough.” he tersely replied and took off to her room. When he came back he found a cup of badly fused tea. Not wanting to lament over the proper use of tea he simply took a sip to appease her. “It wasn’t only the scars then. It was also the eyes.” she mostly whispered to herself as she had still to notice he was back.
“Only the eyes actually.” he lightly confirmed and sipped once more mechanically from his cup. The face of disgust and the shudder he didn’t manage to subtle earned him a shift in the mood of the room as the Detective snickered over his reaction. “You win.” she admitted “Wear the glasses and keep those dramatic black eyes of yours over the assigned cases” meaning not fixed on her. Now that would be meddlesome and the possibilities quite intriguing he thought as he considered the advantage the glasses apparently were giving him.
“Well Detective you wound me…” his voice lowered an octave and got instinctively back to his cocky flirtatious self. “Unfortunately not black but dark chestnut is more-“ he corrected her while widening his eyes for her to see before putting the glasses low on his nose. She seemed to be drowned for the first time in his presence and then she had to ruin everything… Just like his entire wardrobe so far.
“It’s rubbish.” the scamp very seriously told them from underneath the counter. “Well aren’t you a curtain-twitcher…” he muttered in disdain. “What is rubbish Beatrice? The scarf? It certainly was…” he offered his opinion while the Detective threw daggers at him. A deal was a deal.
“No, his eyes are rubbish!” she exclaimed in annoyance. The Detective appeared to have the same difficulty to understand. “Like the rubbish bag?” she asked the child and turned to him. “I told you they are near black in colour.” she triumphantly agreed with the spawn and dragged an oversized bag with coats back to her room while under her breath he could distinguish the words chestnut and my ass.
Lucifer turned to glare at the little human only to find her glaring back. “Black like a rubbish bag… seriously child?” he scolded “Since when?” he sniffed in vexation. Beatrice rolled her eyes in the same way she had caught him doing it countless of times around her and climbed on the stool next to him.
“Not rubbish!” she poked his chest violating him for the second time that day. ”R.U.B.I.S.H.” she spelt out deeming him too stupid to follow. She brought her index finger in front of his nose and warily he put some distance between them fearing a second poking despite wearing his glasses.
“One!” she sassed “Since always.”
“Two!” she raised her middle finger to accompany her index and he was sure that if she was willing his sight would be gone in an instant.
“Rubish as R.E.D. Dummy!” she cheekily explained him.
She used her still raised index to lift his slightly fallen frame, using the nose rest between the lenses, up to his nose and then jumped down to relish over her scarf-free freedom for the weekend. Lucifer could not believe she had just left him there, staring into the empty space with a teacup of undrinkable in quality and preparation tea burning his now clutching fist.