tagGay MaleCharcoal Ch. 03

Charcoal Ch. 03

byLillywriting©

This section is a bit longer, I couldn't find a better place to stop! I will continue the other stories, I just had more written on this one, but I will be working on them too. I hadn't thought I would add to Grey, but I think I might. I have to say again: thank you so, so much for all the encouragements!

*

Soul blinked in surprise and pulled back. He couldn't think, just hours ago he had hated Scott, or though he had, now he was kissing him. Before he could think more Scott had slid his hands deep into Soul's hair and kissed him again. It was a soft kiss, gentle brushes of lips. Scott heart threatened to choke him with desperation. As much as he wanted to feel Soul completely, he didn't want to scare him more. So after a moment with more restraint than he thought he had, Scott pulled away from Soul's smooth, startlingly cool and sweet lips.

Soul's eyes were unfocused. He blinked slowly twice before speaking.

"Why can't I just be?" He bit his lip again and Scott bit back a moan, his whole body ached with wanting, but he knew if he pushed too hard, Soul would disappear, and that would be more than he could bear.

"What did you feel when you were drawing?" Soul looked up in surprise. What did he feel? Nothing. He answered such.

"I told you before, I just draw what wants to be let out." Scott shook his head, there had to be something. He looked at the picture and found an impossibly detailed picture of himself, it would have been remarkable if that was the only significance in it, but there was more, if he looked closely, reflected in his charcoal twins eyes there was a figure alone, surrounded by trees, the figure looked like Soul.

"What were you thinking?" Soul shrugged and answered, "nothing. I've told you." Scott looked back at the picture, there had to be more than that. But maybe, even Soul didn't know what was going on. He had been so disconnected form his talent for so long, thinking it only an art- useless for anything other than simple entertainment.

"Do you feel anything about this picture after you have drawn it?" Scott held up the picture. For a long moment Soul didn't look when he did his eyes had lost their dreamy, open look.

"Nothing. The only image I feel anything for is the forest. And that, only that it isn't quite right, I always want to make it better." Scott frowned. He was stumped. Soul was going to be a challenge on so many levels.

"And that, can you draw it for me now?" An odd expression passed behind Soul's eyes, too fast to recognize.

"I don't want you to look at it. Ever." After he spoke Soul was startled. He hadn't meant to say that. He meant to make some excuse about he couldn't just draw it whenever. He felt relief at having someone he could really talk to about how he drew, however he felt about Scott. But he had never said something so different from what he intended. He opened his mouth to apologize but couldn't get the words out. He rephrased in his head.

"I didn't mean to say that." Scott could see the confusion in his eyes. "I meant to say I can't draw it for anyone and you aren't one of the people that I can draw it for." Soul covered his mouth and looked at Scott with wide eyes.

"Maybe you can write what you want to say?" As frightening as it was, Scott felt they were finally getting somewhere. The block in Soul's speech told him there was more significance in the picture than he had originally thought.

Soul picked up the pencil and tried to write, but it was as if he was writing with his non-dominant hand. He couldn't make himself form real letters. Never before had he had such a problem. He looked up with true panic in his eyes.

"Scott, I can't- I can't show you something your eyes aren't meant to see." Soul bit his lip hard enough to draw blood and tried to hold back tears. Never had he felt so out of control. Scott brushed the ruby of blood from Soul's lip and smiled.

"This means we are getting somewhere. There is obviously something special in that picture, we just have to figure it out." He tucked a piece of Soul's hair from his face, and looked into luminous green eyes. "There has to be a version somewhere I can look at." Soul's stomach turned as he though of Scott looking at the picture. He felt like the few sips of chai he had were going to make a violent reappearance.

"I don't think that is a good idea." Soul spoke the words he meant to and allowed himself a small smile. "I don't think that you are meant to see it, at least not yet." As long as he didn't suggest anything that would lead Scott to the picture he felt better, "I'm-" He couldn't finish his apology, a tickle in the back of his mind telling him that he shouldn't give Scott anything. Not an apology, not anything that could give Scott the upper hand.

"You are sorry?" Scott asked, trying to read the expression in Soul's eyes. Soul couldn't even make himself nod. Scott somehow understood.

"Your eyes tell everything." Scott leaned forward for another kiss as Soul's stomach dropped. He closed his eyes as soon as the meaning reached his mind, and was once again startled by the feel of lips against his own.

Soul had never imagined kissing someone could be so perfect. He had always imagined it as rather gross, swapping spit and all, but this was so soothing, and so rousing. The feeling of Scott's hands in his hair send goosebumps down his spine, the heat of Scott's lips against his own made his dropping stomach twist into knots. Overcome by the intensity Soul couldn't sit still. His own hands were reaching for Scott. He pushed himself out of the chair and wrapped himself around Scott; suddenly he couldn't be close enough. His breath was stolen and he couldn't care less. The only thing that mattered was getting closer to Scott. One of Soul's hands slipped to the bottom of Scott's shirt, he needed to feel more skin.

Scott responded to Soul's intensity. He had meant the kiss to be sweet and reassuring but it was anything but. They were caught in a fever of sensation, both their thoughts focused on the texture of the others skin. Just as Scott pulled back just enough to pull Soul's sweatshirt over his head the door opened.

"I've found something!" Professor White was faced with two livid, tousled students. Soul was straddling Scott on the desk, pieces of paper, pencils, and art covered the floor. The professor didn't mind the mess but the looks on the boys' faces were close to terrifying.

A low growl began in Scott's chest, feeling the vibration through his own body Soul's hands clenched on Scott's shoulders and his head fell back, his eyes closing. As the sound faded Soul leaned down to rip the buttons off Scott's shirt. Scott rolled and they both ended up on the floor. Soul scrabbled at Scott's buttons, but the fall had cleared the intensity from Scott's mind, just enough for him to remember the professor, still standing stricken in the doorway.

"How dare you." Scott's voice was dark and low, completely different form the pleasant tone of his everyday life, the professor gulped, regretting, with all his being, interrupting. Before he could blink Scott's hands were around his neck, the nails that had so recently been running through Soul's hair now drew blood in the smooth weathered skin at the base of the professors skull.

**

The professor slowly walked from the room closing the door behind him. Soul sat up on Scott's lap, looking down at him. The spell was broken.

"What just happened?" He asked. Slowly, careful not to rub against Scott too firmly, Soul climbed off the desk and began picking up the pencils. When he finished and moved on to papers his flush had faded. Scott seemed recovered too and went to answer the door.

"What happened?" Soul repeated when the door opened. The professor looked at him warily, Scott sat in the chair and pulled Soul onto his lap.

"I was in the library, and found a book of paintings that reminded me of Soul's." He ignored Soul's question. He also remained in the doorway and his eyes flicked from one boy to the other. Scott rubbed Soul's back.

"Why was I so angry? I don't get angry." Soul blinked his luminous eyes slowly. He, in turn, ignored the professor. His pupils were still dilated, making the green seem greener.

Scott leaned forward and kissed Soul's neck, now that Soul was open to his touch, Scott couldn't pull himself away.

"From what I have learned, most people with the Talent have some sense that makes it easier. Usually it is the same sense that their talent manifests through. Though some people are exceptions." The professor took another step into the room, his usual confidant demeanor returning. Soul blinked again.

"I don't get it."

"What he means," Scott began, "is the Talent can take different forms- some people speak prophecy, some write it, some see it... I've never heard of someone who drew it. But that may be changing." The professor nodded. Soul was still confused.

"That doesn't explain how angry I was. I've been frustrated before, who hasn't. I have been irritated. But I could have sworn I saw red. As cliché as that sounds." Scott hummed into Soul's neck. This crossed the line and Soul stood and began pacing the small room. "Why does nothing make sense? I hate him." Soul glanced at Scott, "or hated him. I have no idea how I feel. I kissed him- or he kissed me and it was amazing. But I don't know him. I never thought- I hated him."

"Whatever grants Talent-"

"It was because your power comes from touch, and well we were touching." Scott interrupted. "The closer, the more intimate touch the more power goes with the vision, or whatever. It's why families try to pair their children with someone of their own power level, or higher. Someone that will compliment his or her power."

"Sex creates the most powerful magic." The professor murmured. "I was told that so many times. It was why your father was so possessive of your mother, one of the reasons she wanted you away from that world. It is unnatural for parents to imagine their children's intimate relationships but your mother was different. She thought ahead, probably because of her recent troubles, and didn't want you to have to be with someone you didn't love." Scott twisted his hands together.

"My parents didn't care about that. They were only happy that your parents were willing. Well your father- I don't want you to hate me." Soul stared, his gaze flicking between the two men.

"Well my mom failed then. Here I am, away from that but still with you." Now that he wasn't touching Scott the pull he felt toward him was fading.

When he saw the look on Soul's face Scott's heart fell. He had been making so much progress. They could have really discovered something if Professor White hadn't walked in just then.

"I need to think." Soul was so overwhelmed. Why did all this have to happen today? "The world isn't ending today so I can have some time to think, yes?" The professor almost said something; he really wanted to mention the urgency of discovering the meaning behind Soul's drawings. He really wanted to mention the similar drawing he had found in the basement of the library. But he knew, tonight they wouldn't be getting anywhere. But he didn't know that Soul would take the next six weeks to 'think'.

**

Soul went to classes, even professor White's, but he didn't interact with anyone. He ate alone in the room, choosing to eat in the library when Jon was there. He did all his homework to perfection. He was a better student than he had ever been before. He tried not to draw, but when the urge hit him he couldn't stop it. It was like having a muse on his shoulder. When it was time to create, there was no stopping it. But each picture he drew during his urges, he burned.

Soul retreated into his shell. He didn't speak to anyone. He floated through the halls like pollen, everywhere, but silent.

Scott was devastated. He ignored his new friends and considered telling his family he had found Soul. He sent flowers, he tried to talk to Soul, he left emails and notes. All were ignored. When he couldn't stand it anymore Scott broke into Professor White's grading cabinet and found Soul's summer portfolio.

Scot flipped through the first paintings, noting the composition and the craftsmanship of each one, until he reached the last one. It was different from the others, it was not a forest, it was a meadow, filled with poppies. It was a near exact copy of the mural on Scott's bedroom wall, an exact copy of the first day he had drawn flowers in Professor White's class. Only in Scott's drawing Soul was laying among the flowers, the red of poppy petals staining his lips. The only color he had used.

Scott stole the picture, or borrowed as he told himself and quickly scrawled a note on the back.

**

Hate me if you want, the note began, but we really need to talk, rose garden at 3. --S

Soul frowned at the painting. If Scott had seen this, he must have seen the other paintings. He was right, they did need to talk. Soul sent an email agreeing to meet and considered running away, or calling his mom. The latter option won.

Once on the phone Soul couldn't bring himself to reveal that he knew the whole story to his mom. Something was holding him back, but as she gushed about her little baby finally calling Soul could only think about kissing Scott and the possible betrayal he was committing by meeting him.

**

The rose garden was another beautiful part of campus, Soul got there at 2 just so he could have time to sit by himself and enjoy the flowers that bloomed year round. For the past 6 weeks he had done nothing relaxing. He felt it was time to give himself a little time.

Soul was lying on his back, dozing off when Scott entered the labyrinth of roses.

Soul looked beautiful in the sun. Almost like some sort of fallen angel, or fairy. Scott smiled at the thought of Soul frolicking through forests. He could imagine it all to easily. Even asleep Soul's tension showed. Scott was comforted by the thought that Soul was as disturbed in the weeks apart as he had been.

Souls green eyes opened slowly when he realized the feeling of being watched wasn't entirely in his dream.

"What did you want to talk about?" he asked sitting up slowly. He hadn't been sleeping well and his body was reluctant to free him from his dreams.

Scott was temporarily distracted by Soul's tousled hair and sleepy blinking. He could imagine watching Soul wake up every morning. He wished that he did.

"Well?" Soul prompted. Scott shook of his daydreams and began to speak.

"I found your summer portfolio in Professor White's office." Soul felt like throwing up. The blood drained out of his face and pooled in his stomach. He felt lightheaded with panic.

"You did?" He whispered holding his stomach and trying to keep down what little he had eaten.

"Yes, I was especially stricken by the one with the poppies." Soul straightened and calmed. He had forgotten about that picture, and it was one that didn't bother him.

"I drew that one because of a dream. I just included it on a whim. I think it actually put me over the submission limit." Soul's voice was scratchy, half from sleep and half from swallowed bile; the taste in his mouth was awful.

"I really love this garden, but can we get some coffee and talk for real?" Scott read Soul's mind. He nodded. They walked back to the café where it had all started and settled into some chairs. Soul perched on the edge of his, uncomfortably reminded of what had nearly happened the last time a discussion began in this room, and this time the professor wasn't there to moderate.

"Relax, I'm not going to do anything to you." Soul sat straighter. There was no way he was letting Scott lead him into a false sense of security. He didn't want his life to be turned over again. He still hadn't recovered from the first mess.

"We need to talk because the picture you drew, the one of the poppies is exactly what was painted on my room when I was born. Also, my mother knows there is something going on. She has called me every week since- since we last spoke. I don't know how she knows but she does, she wants to visit." Soul stood and walked around his chair and gripped the back.

"But wont she- doesn't she want..."

"She would want both of us to quit school, she would want you to come to our house and really train, she would want you to tell her where your mother is. Your father has never stopped searching for her. You would never be free again." Soul's nails dug into the soft fabric of the chair. Scott sat unbearably still, he knew he risked a lot telling Soul the truth, but knew if he lied, and the truth came out, and it eventually would- there would be no bringing Soul back, even if he lived in the same house.

"She will probably know you are here when she comes, if you are here. I tried to hide it, but she created the bond- she probably know that-"

"She knows that we kissed?" Soul gripped the chair harder and his knees felt weak. "Would she know if we, you know, did more?" Scott nodded and Soul's cheeks flushed a dark red. He giggled. It was too much. "Good god, I don't even know the lady and she's peeking through keyholes. How can you stand knowing she knows?" Scott shrugged.

"I've known she would know my whole life. The only way to sever her connection with it is to finish it." Soul stopped laughing. Hell no. He got up to pace.

"But then she would know, because she didn't know-" It was getting more confusing and creepier. Again Scott nodded.

"Its not too weird if you grow up with it." It was Soul's turn to shake his head.

"There is no way that is not weird. If she will know what we do, she knows I'm here and everything else somehow- what are we supposed to do?" Soul came back around his chair and perched on the edge.

"Well, I don't know really. The only way to keep you mom out of it is to go to her first, my mom. Then she won't be able to force you to rat out your mom. I know it seems like the worst idea, but as a guest, it will be easier to leave."

"I wouldn't be a guest otherwise?" How sinister was this organization? This family?

"You would be in name..." Scott trailed off. "Would you be willing to do it, come to my house with me? You would be expected to practice your gift. The bond would be stronger in that environment, closer to where it was created. I wouldn't- push you, but it would be expected..." Soul nodded. As distant as he was from his mother, he couldn't make her go back somewhere she had worked so hard to avoid. He was lost here, and had no other ideas. If something big was coming, and in the movie that his life was becoming, there had to be something coming after so much nothing.

"I'll do it."

**

"Oh it is so wonderful to meet you!" Scott's mother was perfectly made up, her face unlined and perfectly, gently tanned. Her eyes were the color of honey, nearly the same color as her neatly bobbed and pinned hair.

"And you too ma'am." The house was huge, much bigger than Soul had expected, many times the size of the home he had grown up in.

"Oh, sweetie, you are as good as family! Don't call me ma'am that is far too old sounding. You can call me mom, or Sylvia!" She spoke in a blatantly false happy tone. Her eyes were sharp in their sockets and her skin didn't quite feel real.

"Ok." Soul stepped back from the terrifying woman and looked around the foyer. It showed evidence of hired help, from the spotless corners and polished marble floors. The single room was far too big for a single family to clean, and from what Soul had seen Sylvia was not one who does any manual labor.

"You boys must be so tired!" Sylvia said into the silence that followed. "I'll show you to the room. You must excuse me, you will have to carry your own bags, all the others are in temple, there seems to be something brewing." She skipped up the stairs, her wickedly thin stilettos clicking on the polished hardwood of the stairs. "You boys will be staying in the scarlet room. I'm afraid Scott's room is not quite big enough for two." She winked in what Soul assumed was supposed to be conspiratorial way, but didn't quite work as not all of her face could move.

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