The Bianchi Family Manor (10) – Rosas Spinis.
Josephine looked over when she heard the doctor picking up his mess. Walking over, she crouched down and began to help, a look of distraction covering her face. She said nothing as she helped, her mind lost in thoughts of the ballet and the tragedies that seemed to be sweeping through the manor. As she thought of them, she began wishing that she had listened to her father and just stayed. Jo would have lost out on the audition, but at least she would be safe.
Straightening up, she smoothed her dress down and looked up in time to see Johnathon stand before her. She was still silent as she listened, her eyes searching his as he spoke. He then asked her to take it away. Looking at the ground, Jo didn’t bother questioning his decision. It was his to make, and whenever she offered to heal people, she knew they often did not make the decision lightly. Flicking her soft blue eyes up to her father’s old friend, there was a foreign feeling tugging at her heart. It only intensified as he lifted her hand and placed it on his chest, but she brushed it off. He needed her help.
Sighing, Jo averted her eyes from his gaze to stare around his office distractedly again. Whenever she wiped painful memories and emotions away, it always took a toll on her. A piece of her soul and even years off her life were taken every time she did so. She knew she would do it for Johnathon though. There was no hesitance in that respect. Slowly returning her gaze to the doctor’s, she nodded and drew him in for an embrace. As her arms wrapped around him tightly, her cheek rested against his chest and her eyes closed.
A glow began to surround them, a quiet hum emanated from her that was audible to the ear. Jo began to sigh as she felt her healing aura caress over Johnathon, her fingers caressing up and down his back as she waited for the inevitable. She used her mind to probe around Johnathon’s, seeking only the memories and pain affiliated with Saffron. As she found what she was looking for, an excruciating pain set her nerves aflame. All the grief, pain, and guilt flooded over Josephine like molten lava, her jaw clenching as she fought the urge to cry out. As her aura began to purge the feelings, her body shook in the doctor’s arms. Still, she said nothing as she felt a piece of her soul and life being ripped from her body, though it was evident that she was experiencing life-altering pain as she fell against Johnathon’s chest.
When it was over, she let out a gasp. Her aura began to fade and she was trembling in his arms. A slight sheen of sweat coated her face as she twisted out of the embrace. Her shoulders shook as she wrapped her arms around herself. She didn’t turn to look at Johnathon but whispered hoarsely “It is done.”
It was at this unfortunate moment that Lydia returned to the office, concern soon etching on her face as she saw Josephine. Pulling the young woman into her arms, no words were exchanged as the shifter silently acknowledged what the half-angel did. Looking at Johnathon over Jo’s shoulder, she smiled gently to the doctor. All would soon be well in the Bianchi Manor. Pulling away from Jo, she looked down at her with a tender smile “Come, Ms. Bianchi has something she would like to show you.” Jo nodded as her body looked pale, the very image of death before she smiled at Lydia. Lydia’s warm nature brought a faint rosy color back to her cheeks, a sign of life once more. Nodding weakly, she then let Lydia lead her out of the office without a look back.
To each of us, we reach a point where we cannot fight the darkness alone. Johnathon had hit the rock bottom, and could no longer see the light, which for an angel himself, was a tragedy. He had suffered all the emotions that went with the grieving process, but it seemed to build into such a state, that it had affected his ability to function; to think coherently. When he asked Josephine to help him, he was in dire need. He simply couldn’t go on like that anymore, not with the waves of responsibility that he knew he had to take care of. Even the most powerful of angels has a weakness. Josephine, acted in the way that would have made her mother proud. Johnathon knew the sacrifice she was making in taking the pain away, but she was the only light he could find at that moment in time.
The embrace, which had wrapped both in the angelic aura, seeped inside of his being, and found its way into his heart and mind. In effect, cleansing him of the dark tides, and erasing the damage that had been done through his sorrow. As Josephine gasped from the pain, Johnathon tilted his head back, and opened his mouth. A fine mist of blackness started to emerge, like small black dots, that danced around his head. Like death itself was being weeded out of his body. Poor Josephine suffered for Johnathon’s ailment. He looked down at her, her quivering form, the line of sweat beads on her forehead. Johnathon held her in his arms for a moment, and kissed the top of her head gently, whispering. “Thank you, Jo.” He was indeed thankful. Free at last from his torment. It was like someone had thrown open a window in his mind, and the light flooded in. Joyous, and he found himself smiling once again. As Lydia entered and offered to take Josephine from the office to show her something important, Johnathon released the girl slowly and then leaned back against his desk. He appeared to be a few years younger, and even some of his grey hair had receded.
Life in the Bianchi household, was about to return to normal.
Genevieve leaned against her easel as she stared at the giant picture of her mother, very impressed with her hard work. Though she acted unaffected by her mother’s death in front of her father, she was indeed deeply disturbed by the thought of being the only female Bianchi in the house. Her brother was a swooning puppy over Sam, her father was forever thrown into work, and she herself was always gone traveling. That would have to change as it seemed she was no lady of the house. Though she could trust the maids to keep her father in check, Genny took it upon herself to get her mother’s things in order. With a dramatic sigh, she tilted her head and tapped her chin with a paintbrush.
She didn’t hear as Lydia ushered Josephine in, Lydia placing a finger to her lips to tell Jo to be reverently silent as the Bianchi daughter painted. Josephine nodded and offered a weak smile in response to Lydia as the shifter soon then disappeared. Turning around to look at the paintings silently, she said nothing as she was lost in her own thoughts. She had realized then and there when she was offering her healing comfort to Johnathon that there were stirrings of feelings she ought not to have. He was older, for one, and was her father’s closest friend. Such a relationship couldn’t be. Jo felt so sure he felt nothing towards her, and to act impulsively would only ruin her.
It was while Jo was lost in complete thought that Genny finally turned around and stared in surprise before smiling. “Oh, hello there Jo. Didn’t realize you would be up so soon.” Tilting her head, she frowned. “You did it again.”
Jo was nearly faint and had to lean against the easel as she whispered “I had to. It was your father. He isn’t as strong as you, Genny. He has to move on quickly.”
The Bianchi daughter frowned more and crossed her arms with the paintbrush still in hand. “Don’t try to pass it off like that. I know you think you love him, and you need to stop.” As Jo looked up to argue, Genny raised her hand. “We have been best friends for years. I can see right through your calligraphy. My father…I don’t think he is capable of loving you. I am sorry.” The conversation was short and succinct, just how Genny liked it. Turning her back on Jo, she continued painting as Jo stared ahead of her. Genny was right, and she was once more lost in her thoughts of Johnathon and her upcoming ballet.
The gaslights were turned down low, the candles had dripped a lot of wax pools upon the floor and the Doctor was now relaxing in his chair. A tray of food had been brought in by Cookie, who was pleased to see the Doctor with an almost youthful glow about him. Course, she thought it was partly her doing, that she had given Mrs Peabody the fright of her life, thrusting her at the Doctor to be K.O’d. The real reason was that Josephine had taken away the pain and grief that he had been feeling. By this time, Reginald came in and could see that he had missed a great deal of the dramatics that had gone on in the office. Sure, he heard Cookie, and then the quiet muffled sounds from Josephine, but had no clue what Jo had done for his best friend. Taking a seat in the corner, opposite Johanthon, he brought his hands together, still grim at the findings they had made at the Cathedral.
“I believe we are dealing with not just demons, Johnathon. I think its a strong possibility that both what Vivian investigated and what we uncovered tonight, are actually separate incidents. To me, its like….the very evil of this city are standing tall in the face of all that is good, and declaring a kind of Holy war.”
In effect, what Reginald was saying, was true. The fact of the matter was, Johnathon’s son and the new found Saint Selene lookalike, Phoebe, were in the midst of some of the most evil of beings that dared to walk the face of the earth, including the Hollow street murderer, and the Vampire. What they didn’t know, was that it was going to be a factional war. Right under their very noses. Pity, the ladies at the Boarding house, held the clues to what was to be this eve. Then again, so did Johnathon. As he toyed with the fork on his plate, out of the corner of his eye, he again saw the invitation that was his for the ball. Furrowing his brow, he reached for it, and turned it over, only to see the seal on the back. When he saw the seal, he went into deep thought, and then looked up at Reginald.
“Reg…take a look at this.”
He tossed the invitation over to the Detective, who caught it on the fly, and then turned it over himself. “What is it?
“An invitation…masked ball. Levi and Phoebe have gone to it. I was…you know, not in the mood for such events, but…take a look at the seal. Tell me what you see?” Reginald took out his spectacles and placed them on, and looked closely at the seal, which was the markings of a wolf. “Reg…read the inscription” Reginald then said outloud “Lupus est homo homini, non homo, non quom qualis sit novit” The Doctor sat back in his chair, and bit the corner of his bottom lip“Which means? Reginald’s jaw dropped and then he stared up at Johnathon in horror. “Wolf is the man for man, not man, when he does not know who is the other.” Johnathon rose and then raced for the hat rack, as Reginald jumped to his feet.“Werewolves? In London?” With no time to lose, the two men made a dash for the front door, and that ball.