[ Master Post ]
Title: A Bowl of Eyeballs
Characters: Lucian ♂, Gabriel ♅, Nico ♂
Rating: (L1 N0 S0 V0 D1)
Warnings: Blasphemy? Also, a non-gruesome bowl of eyeballs.
Notes: So, I’m … thing. And I asked for some prompts on Tumblr. And golly-gosh-damn thanks, Mayhem. *mutters* I get "misused symbology". Somehow this lead me straight into Saint Lucy, and … shit happened. I’m not sorry. This is also totally unedited.
[ Master Post ]
"Tell the one about how Maryam liked your looks, Gabi." Lucian sprawled in one of his leather armchairs, pipe in one hand as he lit a match with the other. "I don’t think he’s heard it, yet. You didn’t tell me until after he was dead."
Nico looked between the two angels, moving only his eyes. Something in Lucian’s voice sounded like they were about to go at each other, again. Nico wondered if this was just what it meant to have siblings, never having had his own.
Gabriel’s head turned slowly, eyes lighting reprovingly on Lucian, before it cocked its head and lifted an eyebrow. "Tell him about the bowl of eyeballs."
Lucian guffawed, smoke swirling about him, as he leaned forward, coughing and laughing. "You win. Eyeballs." The snickering continued. "I’ll tell the story about the eyeballs."
Blotting his eyes with the back of his wrist, Lucian re-settled himself, taking a few quick puffs to keep his pipe going. "Santa Lucia di Siracusa, patron saint of the blind, among other things. Third-century martyr."
He paused, a smile pulling precipitously at the corners of his mouth, as he eyed Gabriel, entertainedly resigned. "She neither had her eyes cut out, nor did she cut them out, but it was said to be so, later, so there would be an excuse for the linguistic butchery that got her cast as the patron of the blind. Not that she minds the job, you understand, but the desecration of her image — well, Hannah tells it better than I do, doesn’t she, Gabi?"
"You keep talking, and all I hear is procrastination, Light-bringer."
"You are telling the one about Maryam, next." Lucian punctuated the sentence with a jab of his pipe in Gabriel’s direction. "So, it is written that one of the symbols of Saint Lucy is eyes on a plate. After the fashion of the head of John the Baptist, you understand.
"Now, this is before a certain Johannes Guternberg’s mechanical monstrosity took the book-making world by storm. Actually, it was a slow start, but that’s neither here nor there. Books were written and copied by hand, and all it took was one lazy scribe."
Here, Gabriel began to giggle, quietly, one hand rising to cover its mouth. The glasses in Lucian’s kitchen cabinets vibrated audibly, ringing in tone with the sound of Gabriel’s voice.
"You really have to get a handle on that. Can you not break my crystal? I like this set," Lucian protested, before returning to the story at hand. "There is a book which lists the saints and angels, and what symbols, scents, etcetera one should use to get our attention. It’s one book of many. But, what makes this particular book — this particular copy of this particular book — important is that it has a scribal error."
The windows hummed as Gabriel failed to snicker quite noiselessly.
"And so it was, on one fine evening in the latter half of the eighteenth century, that I found myself summoned to a gathering of idiots, who had managed all the correct signs and sigils and that Syrian wine I always liked, and they topped it off with a bowl of eyeballs. A bowl of eyeballs, Nico." Lucian sucked at his pipe and pressed his fingertips against his forehead. "I despair of your brethren, some decades."
"You’re right next to her in the book, aren’t you, Luci?" Nico laughed, finally picking up the drink he’d forgotten on a side table. "Eyeballs? Nobody thought eyeballs might be stupid?"
"You should see some of the things in that list, kiddo. Stupid isn’t the thing that’ll give it away." Lucian snorted, and the smoke around him billowed.
"What did they expect you to do with the eyeballs?" Nico asked, trying not to pay mind to the way his bones hummed with Gabriel’s laughter.
"I have no idea. I don’t think they had any idea. I also don’t think they were expecting me to be quite so…"
"Not a goat," Gabriel suggested.
"That, too." Lucian agreed.
"Well, what did you do with the eyeballs?" Nico persisted.
"Threw them at people’s heads when they said stupid things. I also drank all the wine they meant to offer, some wine they hadn’t meant to offer, a bit of terrible gin, and relieved them of their treacle tart." Lucian used the bottom of a burnt match to stir his pipe a bit, as he chuckled. "They didn’t believe a word of what I said, aside from the sarcastically-delivered, obviously untrue parts. Damn shame. Could’ve saved a lot of trouble."
"No-one ever listens to you, Morning-star. That’s always been your problem."
"Nico listens to me!" Lucian protested, sitting up, so his boots clacked against the wood floor. "You listen to me!"
"Then again, Dad never listened to any of us." Gabriel leaned back wrapping its foot around the leg of the table for balance, as it stretched for the cabinet against the wall, and the bottle of Tequila Rose, therein.
"Dad listens to Nico," Lucian pointed out, eyebrows twitching suggestively.
"And Nico listens to us," Gabriel followed, closing its eyes and gradually unmaking and remaking its arm, to close the gap.
"Gabi, it’s probably easier if you just get up," Nico observed, pointedly.
"No, it isn’t." Lucian trailed his fingers through the increasingly thick cloud of smoke that hung around him. "It’s Gabi. Gabi’s obstinate. Isn’t that right, Gabriel?"
"I’ll show you obstinate, Light-bringer."
"You already have. Why aren’t you telling Nico about Maryam?"
"I require the Tequila Rose, before I begin. Also, the grapes I know you have in the bowl on top of the refrigerator."
"Must I resort to bribery?"
"It’s not bribery, if I demanded it."
Lucian huffed. "Nico, go get your brother the grapes."