“You should not be doing the running’s off like that!” The brunette said to you in a harsh whisper, though you could tell he meant well by it. You just scoffed as he continued to pull you along at a hurried pace
“Oh come on! The door was unlocked! You can’t blame me for taking the opportunity while it was there!” you said in defense. Hey who could blame you? You hear the brunette sigh heavily at your statement and them muter something you couldn’t understand.
“Please. You must be more careful. Mr. Ivan can be very dangerous at times. You do not want to be angering him.” he said as he came to a halt at an all to familiar looking door. You sighed and rolled your eyes as he opened the door to your prison, er, room.
“It is for your own safety.” he said as he gently led you back inside your room.
“And why should you care about my safety?” you said as you stood up as tall as you could, getting as close to his face as you could with your hands on your hips. He looked at you in surprise for a moment, blinking a bit before speaking.
“-And where were you for my dad’s safety? HM?!” you said, interrupting the young man in front of you. He sighed and looked the other way for a moment.
“I did what I could.” he muttered. You scoffed and backed up a bit from him, crossing your arms across your chest.
“Sure you did.” you said sarcastically. The young man looked at you with mixed emotions.
“I-It's true! You have no idea how scary Mr. Ivan can be!” He said, whispering the last part to you. You raised an eyebrow at him.
“Is that suppose to be that tall orangutan’s name?” you said, mocking the owner of the house. The brunettes eyes widened to a great size as he quickly clamped a hand over your mouth while you protested and started saying muffled words through his hand.
“Please! Do not be saying those things about Mr. Ivan!” he said in a worried tone, getting closer to you for emphasis.
“Don’t ever say those things around him.”
“Why not?!” you said, pulling his hand from your mouth. The young man in front of you furrowed his brows in worry.
‘Why does he look so worried?’ you wondered.
“I sincerely hope that you never have to find out why.” was all he said before heading back towards the door.
“Hey! Wait!” you said, grabbing onto his sleeve to stop him. He stopped and quickly looked back over to you.
“What’s your name anyways?” you asked, wanting to know what to address this man as. He gave you a small smile before speaking.
T-Toris…m-my name is Toris.” he said. You opened your mouth to say something but were interrupted by a loud voice bellowing throughout the house.
You recognized that voice. It was that big jerk, or as you learned, Ivan. At hearing his name Toris’ eyes widened in fear. You even saw him shake a little more.
“Hey? Are you alright?” you asked, looking at him in worry. He looked away from you, his shoulder length hair covering his face.
“I-I have to go now.” he said before quickly opening the door and closing it behind him. Toris made it a point to remember to lock the door. He didn’t want another episode of playing catch. As soon as he locked the door he slowly brought the keys to his chest and closed his eyes.
‘God in heaven help me.’ he thought in despair before he quickly made his way to where Ivan was waiting for him.
You sighed and flopped back onto the bed. You were very disappointed that your escape plan didn’t work. You were so close! Well probably not, after all you had absolutely no idea which way to go and the rest was just guess work. Well, you can’t blame a girl for trying. You really didn’t want to be here. The house was large, cold and felt miserable. You were starting to become suspicious of those three guys you had met, besides Ivan. Your suspicions of him were confirmed in the first few minutes of contact with him. Your suspicions were…uneasy in feeling. You had a suspicion that this Ivan person was doing something to those three to make them terrified of him. After all, they all seemed like scaredy cats around him. Even his own sister seemed nervous about you insulting him and such.
The thought of Ivan doing something harmful to those three made you angry, but you couldn’t really prove anything. And the last thing you wanted to do was jump to conclusions. A sigh escaped your lips as you covered your eyes with your hands, groaning a bit.
“I wish I had my stuff from the hotel.” you whined. You jumped suddenly when you felt something pounce onto your stomach. You yelped a bit in surprise as you uncovered your eyes to find a light brown, sort haired cat sitting on top of your stomach, looking at you with big eyes. You furrowed your brows a bit and stared at the feline for a moment.
“A Cat?” you said to no one in particular. The cat meowed in a deep voice as if to answer your question. You chuckled a bit, even its meow sounded Russian to you.
“Hi there.” you said, checking the cat’s underside for a moment.
“Big fella.” you said after confirming his gender. He meowed again and…wait…
‘Is this cat smiling at me?!’ you wondered as you saw what looked like a smile on the cat’s face. This cat had an uncanny resemblance to that Ivan guy. It even had a large nose like him too! Ha! Now you weren’t sure if you wanted to pet him or not. The cat made up is own decision for you and licked your nose before purring and jumping off your stomach, standing by your head. You smiled at the cat and began to scratch him behind his ears. This made him purr even more and close his eyes in happiness. You chuckled a bit at the cat’s behavior.
“You're pretty cute you know that?” you said. You never pegged Ivan as the type for owning a pet. Especially not a cat.
‘Must be his sister's cat or something.’ you thought as you watched the cat roll onto his back, looking adorable. You couldn’t help the smile from forming onto your face. He reminded you a little of your cat, tinkerbell.
“I have a kitty back home.” you said. This seemed to perk the cat’s attention as he rolled back onto his stomach and stood up tall on all four legs, tilting his head to the side as if to say:
“She’s a manecoon.” you said. Now this cat was smiling even more and purring louder.
‘Must be a ladies man, er, cat.’ you concluded. You shook your head and sighed. The cat rubbed his big head against your arm as if to comfort you.
“I miss her.” you said sadly. The cat meowed deeply as if to say he understood.
“Guh!” you said as you sat up, desperately wanting to be back home with your dad.
‘I hope your alright dad. I hope your alright.’
Toris walked into the kitchen slowly, wincing with every step he took. Stinging pain was throbbing across his back. But he was somewhat use to this, it's not like it was new or anything. He grunted a bit as he leaned on one of the counters, squinting his eyes tightly as the stinging pain increased a bit from the pressure.
‘Guess I’ll have to sleep on my stomach again.’ he thought as he could feel something dripping down his back. He knew what that something was but he wouldn’t let himself think about it too much. It would only remind him of how miserable he was here. He lifted his head a bit when he heard someone coming into the kitchen.
It was Eduard.
Eduard looked at Toris sadly as he saw the state he was in.
“What did he use this time?” Eduard asked as he approached Toris. Toris sighed and looked away for a moment.
“A broken bottle.” he said with a flinch as Eduard grabbed a towel.
“He seems to be favoring that lately.” he said as he ran the cloth under warm water.
“Turn around.” he said. Toris did as he was told and tuned around, facing the counter with his back to Eduard. Toris flinched a bit when he felt his shirt being lifted up, revealing Ivan’s handy work. He heard Eduard sighed sadly before he felt the warm compress gently placed on his back. Toris took in a sharp breath of air as he clenched his fists from the pain.
“Someday. Things will be different.” Eduard said as he continued to dress Toris’ wounds. Toris opened his eyes a bit and stared at the sink.
“Someday.” he said, clenching his fists even tighter. “We’ll be back home again.”
Neither of them said another word as Eduard finished assisting Toris, wrapping gauze around his torso and back.
“Well, I need to get started on dinner.” Eduard said as Toris slowly rolled his shirt back down, nodding in response.
“You make sure that girl stays out of trouble.” Eduard said as he bent down to retrieve a big soup pot.
“It's bad enough what he does to us. But to-”
“-I know. Don’t worry. I’ll keep an eye on her.” Toris said, interrupting Eduard. Eduard placed the pot under the sink and began to run water into it as he looked over to Toris.
“Maybe things will be different with her around.” he said. Toris sighed and looked down at his hand.
“Oh I don’t think so!”
“I don’t believe that for a second!”
“Are you sure?”
“I don’t know…that seems a little far fetched to me.
You had been having a nice conversation with the cat for about two minutes now. You use to do this with Tinkerbell all the time. Does that make you crazy? Oh well, its not like you were hearing voices or anything. And so the battle of the cats began! You were sure you would win this battle. He had to give up sometime!
“Fine you win!” you said, throwing your arms up in the air in defeat. The cat seemed to smile again and hop onto your lap, curling up and making himself quite comfortable on your legs.
“Hmph…know-it-all.” you said as you looked down at the cat in your lap. He just purred in triumph. You were both interrupted by a knock at the door. You and the cat in your lap both looked up to the door.
“Come in.” you said, not really sure what else to say. The door slowly opened to reveal Toris, though he looked like he wasn’t feeling so good. You furrowed your brows a bit.
“Hey? Are you okay?” you asked as he lifted his head a bit to see Ivan’s cat on your lap. His eyes widened in surprise for a moment. The cat eyed him before jumping off your lap and waltzing past Toris and out the door. Toris’ eyes followed the cat before landing back onto you.
“What?” you asked in confusion.
“That cat doesn’t let anyone but Mr. Ivan and his sister pet him.” he said. You shrugged your shoulders a bit.
“I guess he just likes me.” you said. “What’s his name anyways?”
“Vanya.” Toris said, taking a step into the room. You cocked an eyebrow at him. He looked at you sheepishly.
“His sister named him. Vanya is a nickname for Ivan. But don’t ever call him that. You are to only call him Mr. Braginski. Or Ivan if he allows you to.” Toris said, shifting nervously on his feet. You blinked at him a few times.
“O...kaaaaay. Did you need something?” you asked, wondering why he was here. Toris lifted his head up quickly.
“Ah! Yes. I’m sorry. M-Mr. Ivan is wanting to see you now.” he said, flinching a bit as he said Ivan’s name. You cocked an eyebrow at him.
“Why?” you asked skeptically. Seriously, why does he want to see you?
“I-I did not ask for what reason he wanted to see you. But you will be joining him for dinner in five minutes.” he said. You gave him a look as if to say:
“Are you serious?”
“I’m not really in the mood to see him right now.” you said, lying back onto the bed. You heard Toris approach the bed and look at you skeptically.
“But you have to go. Ivan is requesting it.” he said. You rolled your eyes.
“What? So I have to come to his every beck-and-call?” you said, obviously not amused by the way this guy expects things to just happen.
“P-Please. Just come.” Toris said, practically pleading with you. For some reason you felt like if you didn’t then something bad would happen to him, or the other two. You slowly sat up and looked at him.
“Fine. I’ll go. But I wont like it!” you said, pointing at Toris. He gave you a small smile and sighed a bit.
“That is perfectly alright.” he said, motioning for you to follow him.
“Come…he is not liking the tardiness.” Toris said in an uneasy voice. You sighed heavily and lazily got up off the bed, following Toris out of your room. He closed the door behind you and looked at you.
“Follow me. Quickly.” Toris said, leading the way down the grand hallways. They seemed to impress you even more this time, now that you weren’t running and hiding from anyone. You remembered what your father had said before. The walls were lined with paintings! And they were all beautifully done too. You wondered who painted all of these…
“Now remember.” Toris began to say, catching your attention for a moment.
“Do not speak to him unless he speaks to you first. Do not say anything to upset him. Do not ask about his family or his childhood. Sit up straight in your chair and under no circumstances are you to ever leave the table without his permission first.”
You nodded as you were tuning in and out of what he was saying.
“Did you get all of that?” he asked, looking over his shoulder to see you looking around the hallway.
“Yeah yeah. Don’t ask about stuff.” you said, giving a lazy summery of what he had said.
“No! That is not what I said!” he said as he stopped in front of you.
“Please, you must be paying the attentions to what I am telling you! It's important!” he said, looking at you seriously. You looked at him and sighed. He nodded at you and began to lead the way again.
“Now, remember. Do not speak unless he speaks to you first…” And so Toris began to give you another summery of the do’s and don’ts with Ivan. And once again you weren’t really paying much attention. It wasn’t until Toris stopped at a set of large double doors that you were paying attention
“…ever leave the table without his permission first. Alright, that’s everything.” Toris said as he turned to you.
“Remember everything I told you.” he said. You gave him a quick nod as your eyes scanned all the way up to the tippy top of the door. It was huge. Intimidating even.
Kind of like Ivan.
Toris nodded and opened one of the doors for you, motioning with his head for you to enter first. You internally groaned but complied and entered the dinning room.
Oh what a sight it was.
Beautiful red wooden walls with delicate carvings all in them, columns made of the same material reaching all the way up to the ceiling.
Oh the ceiling.
It was as tall as the ballrooms ceiling. And It had mural paintings all over it with what looked like golden arched gracefully stretching across them. And the golden curtains draped down the ceiling high windows seemed to just top everything off.
It was more grand looking than the one in the entryway. It was almost too big, adorned with crystals that gleamed and glistened in the lighting. They almost looked like stars.
You couldn't help but marvel at the sheer beauty of this room. It was gorgeous! No, that wasn't even the right word to describe it!
“I see my dining room impresses you little one.”
Aaaaaaaand Ivan’s voice seemed to ruin the moment and send it crashing to the ground. You blinked a few times and removed your (e/c) eyes from the ceiling to look at the tall figure sitting at the far end on the long table. Which was also made of mahogany. As soon as your eyes met his violet ones you made a little scowl face and crossed your arms.
“It's alright…I guess.” you said, pouting a bit that he had caught you gawking. He chuckled a bit and motioned for you to sit down with his large hand. Toris led you to the chair Ivan had selected for you…which was practically right next to his, give or take a few feet…great.
The only good thing about this was after you had managed to pass the large and beautiful bouquet of sunflowers gracing the middle of the table you saw that Ivan’s sister was going to be sitting right across from you. Well at least that was good news! She gave you a kind smile as soon as you came into view. You smiled big at her as you pulled your chair out, only to have your smile fall when you looked over to Ivan.
It wasn’t quite a scowl or a frown, it was somewhere in between. You sat down and scooted your chair in, resisting the urge to scoot it away from Ivan. Though if you didn’t have Toris’ nagging voice in your head telling you not to you so would have. You placed your hands in your lap, unsure of what to do with them. You quickly glanced over at Ivan from the corner of your eye. He was wearing, from what you could see, a tan dress shirt and gold cufflinks, though he still wore that scarf around his neck…that seemed to throw off the ensemble a bit and…oh no…he was staring at you!
You quickly averted your eyes and stared at his sister, giving her a big smile as if to say:
“Your brother is creeping me out so I’m going to look at you now~!” …kind of smile. Yaketerena seemed to notice the tension in the air and decided to break the ice. She cleared her throat a bit before speaking.
“So Ivan. H-How are you this evening?” she said, giving you the courtesy of speaking in English so you would at least be able to understand the conversation and possibly feel less uncomfortable. Ivan peeled his eyes off of you and looked over to his older sister, giving her a kind smile.
“I am good sestra. And you?” he asked.
“Ah…I am fine.” she said, furrowing her brows as she thought of what else she could say. Nothing really came to mind though. Ivan’s hands gripped onto the arms of the large dinning chair he was currently sitting in as he looked back over to you to find you staring off into space.
“I thought you American’s talked all the time. Why are you so quiet?” he said, mocking you in a way. You slowly looked over at him with an un-amused look on your face.
“IS THIS BETTER?” you said in a loud voice. Hey at least you weren’t quiet anymore. He seemed to glare at you even though he was still smiling. You just cocked an eyebrow at him.
“What? You told me not to be so quiet.” you said.
“I had asked why you were so quiet. I did not tell you to be raising your voice.” Ivan said in a calm voice.
“Well you should have been more specific.” you said, giving him a devious smile. Ivan smiled back at you but it was more menacing than anything, especially as he started to lean closer to you.
“Ah. Ivan!” Yaketerena said, stopping Ivan’s little stare down as he turned to face his sister.
“Da?” he said, trying to not sound annoyed.
“Ah…have you heard from Natalya lately?” she asked. Ivan slowly sat back in his chair and looked at his sister for a moment before speaking, his smile fading just a bit.
“Why do you ask?” he said, switching over to Russian just in case personal matters were discussed.
“Uh…I was just wondering…that’s all.” Yaketerena said, fiddling with her hands a bit. You sighed quietly.
‘Could this night get anymore awkward?’