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Thread Contributor: Sebastian BloodStranger Danger!!! D:
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#1
- Soul Food. Grim Reality. There were plenty of unusual locations in the city it seemed. Sebastian found himself standing outside of the café and picking up the presence of several odds things. Undead was one of them. Which, in the past, he had only sensed whenever he bled someone dry and turned them into one of his mindless ghouls. He there were people as well. Sebastian felt a tinge of energy inside the café – moving around from spot to spot. He hummed lightly before he pushed himself into the establishment. It was late in the evening. His gaze flicked across the space. There were certain things around that he was certain that were specters. Souls that had not moved onto the other plain.

Soul Food sounded more appropriate by the moment, he would think to himself before he moved toward a booth an had a seat. The café itself didn’t look terribly odd. It only seemed slightly odd to him because it was like he was going back in time almost by sixty years on Earth. The style was more similar to the sixties than what he knew as modern day diners. He slipped his jacket off and settled it besides him. He unbuttoned the cuffs of his white shirt and rolled them up to his elbows as he made himself comfortable.

Now he just needed to figure out who had gotten his interest in the first place. His eyes slowly scanned the small establishment until they settled on a redhead who was keeping herself busy. Ah, was it her? One of the diner’s workers.

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#2
Actually Belle was owner, cook, and chief bottle washer as the saying went. IE she was a one woman army, endlessly cheerful and full of boundless energy it seemed as she bounced from table to table more often than not stopping for a few words with both dead and living. For those with eyes to see her food was imbued with hints of that same vibrant life, she didn’t see the ghosts, specters, sprits, and revenants that came through her doors as anything other than poor lost souls looking for a touch of home, humanity, family. And that was after all what food had always been to her; food was love. A reminder that someone cared enough to sustain you, thought of you even when you were sure the world had forgotten your name.

Belle was not so innocent or unread to not suspect that at least some of her customers had done evil deeds in life or after death, but here in her shop they found peace, and as long as they came…


This early most of her customers that stayed to sit and eat va grabbing a pastry and continuing their day(it was somehow reassuring that even in a place as fantastical as this people still had regular work days to get to) were well...of the not quite living variety.


Which meant the meals they requested took a little more time and a little more effort on her part. And just a little bit of blood.

Belle had gotten enough practice that the tiny trickle of...magic? That followed the two drops of blood she watched fall into the coffee pot was hardly a thing. It took more concentration rather than effort.

A soft satisfied smile curled her lips when a shade who was more mist than man took a sip, his very presence chilling the stools to his left and right. That small sip was the catalyst, details returned to his form.

Belle’s eyes prickled at the tangible good her efforts had produced. He had a long way to go but...he was remembering himself.


Her immediate task seen to Belle snagged a pad bouncing over to the new comer “Morning!” She greeted him cheerfully even though the sun had not quite risen over this part of the bazaar. “Anythin’ ya cravin’? Got some turnovers right out of the oven.” She offered.

The menu was mostly dinner fare with a slant towards her signature baked goods, the blackboard behind the counter showed which were edible for the undead. She kept the two menus separate. After all it wasn't nice to be givin' blood magic to folk that didnt want or need it.

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#3
The woman that was attending to the diner was a ball of energy as she cheerfully tended to one patron to the next. Sebastian never was so cheerful in his life – not to that extend. He had moments of joyful epiphanies like when he realized he no longer was attached by the strings of a higher demon god. He could play the part of a cheerful fellow when it was necessary but his general state of happiness was general amusement. She was a ball of light and sun from the way her presence felt to him even before she approached his table. She made her way over to him and questioned his cravings. His lips curled up into an easy smile at the question. His gaze flicked to the menu that was marked for the living and the undead.

”Quite a happy establishment you have.” He complimented. His chin rested upon the palm of his hand as he eyed the redhead. She definitely had that magical signature about her that he was feeling. ”I see you have other oddities for meal offerings. You serve the undead?” This was actually an interesting concept to Sebastian. He didn’t realize that there was an actual market in food services for the undead.

He hummed lightly for a moment, ”My tastes are a bit odd so I’m not quite certain that I’ve come to the right place.” In truth he wasn’t hungry but he was interested. He couldn’t actually consume much normal food since his becoming an immortal. His metabolism was extremely slow so he could only eat sparingly. ”Ah, my name is Sebastian.” He acted as though he had been forgetful in introducing himself. ”You wouldn’t happen to serve something with…blood?”

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#4
“Ah try darlin’.” Belle winked cheerfully, her welcoming smile wholehearted and earnestly felt; there was nothing fake, contrived or phony about her, her heart was on her sleeve and the only lies she told were little white ones to soothe a awkward moment. That however did not mean she was completely innocent, she just refused to let the darker experiences of life effect who she was.

“Ah do-” She cocked her head at him, she didn’t think she had any real magic but she’d started gettin’ feelings about when there was someone that had crossed around her, she didn’t think this handsome man was one of those special customers-

Blood? White teeth drew her lower lip to nibble on thoughtfully, “Well Sebastian. Na really hun, ah use a little in mah cookin’ for the dead. But nothin’ that would be fillin if ya need it purely.” her foot tapped out a rhythm as she thought. “Ya might try one of the fantasy bars? Ah can’t say for sure but might find somethin meant for vampires?” She hadn’t met one yet (unless he was) but seemed like a logical progression that there might be such a thing and that they would also be catered to.

She wasn’t disturbed or disgusted, he came to a place that served dead an’ wasn’t out and about stalkin’ some poor thing for an unwilling donation so he was already in her good books for mannerly behavior.

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#5
She used some blood for her cooking? How very strange. Then again, she mentioned it was for the dead. His gaze flicked over toward the rest of the diner at the patrons she currently served. She didn’t have anything that was purely blood. His gaze flicked back toward the redhead once more and his own lips drew into another easy smile. He shook his head, ”No, not a vampire.” He chuckled lightly before he looked at her in wonder. ”Where do you get the blood for your dishes? One of those fantasy bars?” He hadn’t come across one of those bars before. He was mostly interested in fresh blood anyways.

There was a taste difference sure, but there was also the fact that the knowledge of an individual carried through only when the blood was fresh from their system. It was an invigorating experience. Like a high from a drug. There were very few things that Sebastian got to experience that was new or entertaining. The thoughts, feelings, and histories of other people were his source of entertainment to indulge in.

He gestured toward her coffee pot, ”You placed some in some coffee before, yes? I’ll take one of those. I do not need it purely or more than a drop.” He didn’t really need a menu because he wasn’t there to really eat anything. ”Hmm, do you work alone here? Seems quite a bit to juggle an entire establishment; especially if it gets busy.” Then again, he supposed it might be possible that it never gets overly busy.

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#6
Belle cocked her head, what an odd- oh! He was looking for a supply! “Mah own, just a few drops in large batches, im sorry darlin’.” She explained apologetically, poor love! He must need a steady supply and it wasn’t anything wrong with askin’ a diner cook for what he needed to live. Belle’s little frown and apologetic posture oozed empathy. “Ah can ask around though. How long can ya wait?” she hoped at least a few hours, Belle was fairly sure she could find SOMETHING by the end of the day at least this WAS Hub after all!

And if it was to be VERY urgent...well Belle figured she could spare a pint or so, just another kind of blood donation wasn’t it? Nothin’ to be squeamish on. Sides if she did get faint Doc McCoy or Mz Fizzle would fix her up right fast. Heck she was sure one of the housewarming gifts had a little healing magic if she needed!

Oh he only needed a touch? Belle’s smile brightened “O’course hun!” She switched out the coffee pots, having grabbed the living person one intintally. “Why didn’t ya say so? Ah also have a bit in my muffins today. Apple cinnamon. A bit of warmth of home.” She explained with a bright smile pouring him a cup of the fresh coffee.

“Well o’course it does, but ah just opened a few months ago, and while its good business don’t wanna get too greedy and hire some poor girl only to have to let her go if things turn.” Belle shook her head. “That would be an awful thing to do to someone.”

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#7
The woman used her own blood for the food. Was someone really that giving? Sebastian’s face didn’t shift with his feelings but he found the idea that someone was that good natured without being manipulated to be such an odd occurrence. In fact, it was simply hard to believe that it was true. Surely she didn’t bleed herself daily for the people that came to her diner. His gaze drifted across her form and he felt a tinge of skepticism but a touch of temptation. What if she really is that innocent? The thought alone was enough to provoke such a delightful amusement in his thoughts as he considered what might possibly be necessary for someone such as that to be convinced to be not so innocent?

He pointed out that he didn’t require more than a drop of blood. It truly was all he would really need to get to know this woman a bit more intimately. To see if she was as innocent as she seemed to act. He offered up the suggestion of coffee and blood and she was delighted to be able to serve him something. She happily poured him a cup of coffee before she mentioned her muffins have some of her blood in them as well. He hummed in amusement, ”Sure, I’ll take a bite of your muffin.” He commented. That comment along was another bit of amusement for the immortal.

She opened up the shop a few months ago so the business was good. She was afraid to higher more help because she didn’t want to just let the poor girl go. ”Perhaps hiring someone who doesn’t need any currency but only interested in your coffee.” He lifted the mug up and offered a teasing look before he sipped the supplied coffee. He hummed lightly as he drank it, ”After all, it’s quite good.”

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#8
Belle was NOT an innocent so the quelling old fashioned look she gave him at his innuendo held that layer of repressive old school southern librarian marm that she’d mastered as a teenager. Once she was sure he’d gotten the message (no matter how darn handsome he was! Belle was not a easy girl after all!) she bounced off returning with the aforementioned muffin with hardly any dimming of her smile.

Cocking her head at his offer, her forehead wrinkling slightly in thought Belle wondered to herself as to the why and wherefore of his offer. “Now ah’m sure you are jokin’?” she didn’t want to sound repressive if he really did need work and or couldn’t pay for the meal. But he seemed well dressed enough, but maybe he was one of those that got trapped here with no way home. “You got somewhere to stay honey?”

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#9
Sebastian continued to smile up at the redhead following his comment about her muffin. While she gave him a look that signaled that she had caught onto the joke, he didn’t let it scare him off from sporting the smile. She bounced off a moment later with as much energy as any when she appeared to retrieve the aforementioned muffin that he had claimed he would eat. When she returned with her muffin they started a conversation regarding her work and the business activity.

He mentioned the idea that someone could work with her if they required nothing more than just her coffee. She didn’t look like she was taking his suggestion seriously. ”Oh, I’m quite certain that it’s plausible.” Sebastian responded casually before he took another sip of his coffee. When she asked him if he had a place to stay, the immortal actually was surprised by the question. Technically he had a place in the Grim Reality but that was a shop, not a living space. His head tilted to the side slightly in wonderment, ”I do not. But, surely you are not offering a perfect stranger a place to stay? Given the environment, I would assume that would be dangerous.”

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#10
It took his shocked, incredulous response to her half offer to bring into stark relief just how Hub had changed her; before she’d been perfectly aware of the dangers strange men and even more so attractive men held. And yet now, even after seeing such horror as Martin she’d still seen more wonder, come into her own as a woman of means and gone out to explore the worlds all on her very own.

The smart thing would be to demure state that no, she didn’t have room here but she could find a place easily enough that he could lay his head till he found his feet.

What would Captain America do? her gaze drifted to the lovingly polished metallic shield mounted on her wall, here and there a few flecks of faded paint could still be faintly seen. She knew two Steve Rogers, had felt the ghost of another. All had told her to keep the shield, that she was as good a guardian of that legacy.

Oddly in her world Captain America, the Avengers they were comic books. Yet she’d met the men behind those legends, learned that so many myths and stories were in fact history in other universes brought across the divide by enterprising men to be sold as fiction.

“The environment?” She glanced around her cheerfully peaceful cafe, surely there were times when some fool would make a ruckus in the bazaar but on the whole- “It’s safe enough.” She wasn’t a fool, she’d spent well to armor the entrance against all manner of weapon, and she’d become no bad hand at the shield-

Belle nodded firmly “If you need a place ah can give ya a place to lay your head at least for a few days till ya get the lay of the land.”

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#11
She truly was that kind it would seem because despite the possible trouble it may cause her in the future, she really was offering him a place to put his head down. That had taken an interesting turn. He considered her offer and her for the time being. He had not even influenced her at the moment and already she seemed to do something that he might have desired.

Maybe it would be more entertaining to see if he could take her without a mental shove. To see if he could pull her to him through words and temptation alone. Like a spider he could set up his web for this unsuspecting butterfly to be entsngled in them until. And like a spider he could envelope her whole form in the web until he's left with nothing more than to bite her.

Biting her was a very tempting thing to do. He would do more than bite her neck. He would enjoy sinking his teeth into various places upon her flesh. Sebastian glanced down at the coffee she had served him before his gaze lifted back up toward the woman in front of him, "Then I insist I lend a hand around here. A means to repay such kindness. It is the respectable thing to do."

It was also more of an excuse to be further involved with her life. If he was to lay his head down upon her lodgings, then the only place she could escape him would be her work. This would ensure their presences spent a lot more time together. Sebastian stood up from his booth and grabbed the woman's hand. His head bowed as he lifted her hand to his lips and pressed a kiss to her knuckles. "You have my gratitude. While I am no cook, I can certainly clean dishes or bring orders to individuals." This would be quite fun indeed.

Along came a spider

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#12
When you thought about it this was a terrible risk, she knew nothing about him; except that he needed blood to survive and he’d come here instead of trying to hurt someone, and for Belle that was a telling indicator of his character. So yes she would put her faith in that ideal and keep her door locked. She wasn’t completely nieve.

Belle laughed at his offer a light blush staining her cheeks prettily at his gallantry- “Well now sweetie how about ah wait till we get you some clothing’ that isn’t gonna be ruined by a bit of clumsy pie holding.” Her bright blue eyes danced with humor.

“You come here by a portal? A spell?-“ her open grin invited his confidence, “got a way home or stranded here for a mite? If ya are ah know a few folk that could help ya get back.” She offered taking a seat across from him.

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#13
Her laugh was easy to produce it would seem and her face was easy to color. He was aware that his customs and mannerisms were a bit old fashioned; however, he also knew that many people found them endearing at times. Or strange. Either way they were remembered. He glanced down at his clothing when she brought up the prospect of his clothing being ruined by holding some pie. He would not expect he would drop a pie, in all honesty. He was fairly certain that if he got pie on himself it would be the fault of another individual. Most, if not all, of his clothing was similar to what he was wearing currently.

When she offered to introduce him to people that might be able to help him get back to where he came from, he looked thoughtful for a moment. He weighed the benefits of going back to a world he was known versus as world that had no idea who he was. This place was filled with unique individuals while the world he came from had only a fair share of them. He shook his head lightly after a moment, “That will not be necessary. There is nothing left for me to go back to.” He would let her decide on what that actually meant. Either way, the world he was in now had a lot more fruitfulness to obtain than the world he had been in previously.

“As for work, I will clean your dishes for now and avoid your pies. I would not know where else to go anyways.” That was a lie. He could return to Grim Reality for the time being or he could find whatever else the bazaar had to offer. This was far more entertaining at the moment.

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#14
Belle was an old fashioned girl, and his manners echoed back to her childhood deportment lessons. She should have been lightly flirting with him, that would have been what she’d normally do...and yet..Belle found him delicious to look at but…

Was it possible she felt it was cheating? Queth was- well Belle told her that She wasn’t sure she could be attracted to women romantically, and yet that date…

“Oh hun I’m so sorry.” She patted his hand softly, eyes dark with compassion. He wasn’t the only refugee from a lost world she’d met. Heck Belle was sponsoring a whole little clan of the survivors from that dead New York.

He just wanted to jump right in? Alright. “Well at least take your jacket off.” She bustled to her feet leading him into the industrial kitchen, a breakfast nook beside a glass door leading to a tiny private walled in patch of green with a small leafy tree and Hollywood swing gave it an air of homeliness. The air was hot and roldolant with the scents of cinnamon, fried things, fresh fruits and green tomatoes, underneath that was the faint under current of soap, and clean.

Her kitchen was not spotless but it was damn close.

“Help yourself to anything to eat or drink.” She ordered pulling the thick rubber apron she used for dish washing down from its peg. “Ah open at 8pm till ten am, close for two hours to rest and reset for lunch and dinner prep. Open again at noon and close at 2 to sleep.” Belle laughed hearing herself how hectic the time was. “Ya don’t have ta keep those hours. That’s just when the cafe is open.”

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#15
It was better for him to simply just stick to the new world he was in rather than find a way back. There was a lot more interesting things in the hub. He had been around long enough in his old world to have gotten the chance to see most of everything. This was a new fresh start. Besides, with his arrival at the Hub he didn’t feel those familiar strings pulling him along by a demongod. If he went back, maybe those strings would be reattached and that was something he wasn’t willing to risk.

“Do not worry. I am quite fine.” He assured her when she reached out to pat his hand. His lips pressed into an easy smile, “This new place has proved to have such beautiful and compassionate people. How could I feel remorse over the loss?” A clear flirtation and tease.

He followed her toward the kitchen when it was established that he would simply jump into things. When she requested to take his jacket off, he slid it off broad shoulders before he unbuttoned his cuffs. He rolled his sleeves up neatly to just below his elbows to further protect them from the waters when he would start to clean the dishes.

“Of if I did that, you may not have anything to serve your patrons. It all smells quite delicious back here.” Sebastian joked. He certainly wouldn’t be eating anything while he was back there. Not when he couldn’t process to much of it. As she explained the hours of operation she had, he nodded his head. He would do this as long as it amused him but as soon as it ceased to he would cut the hours down.

“Between all the running around, having to do the dishes, cooking…” Sebastian shook his head lightly before he grinned at her once more, ”You’re an impressive woman to have been able to keep up with all of that all on your own. Now, I do have one question before I start…” Sebastian gestured toward her, ”If I have a question in the future, do I call out ‘pretty lady’ or do I get to know your name?” When he had introduced himself, he had expected she would have introduced herself. But she had not done so. He could call her a manner of complimentary names. ”Not that I’ll run short of fun such names, but it’ll probably be easier.” He was teasing again.

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#16
Well that was a stoic way of lookin’ at things; Belles hand tightened once over his, wordlessly communicating that if he needed, when he needed to talk she would be there to listen. That one quick touch was over quickly enough for him not to feel uncomfortable, she wouldn’t force a man to talk about his past or lose with out a dang good reason.

Belle took his coat, folding it over her arm, the fabric still body warm and faintly scented of man; she wouldn’t lie and say the domestic image didn’t ghost perilously close to her fantaisies, and if her mind drifted for half an breath into a soft edged daydream well..she’d always been a dreamer.

“Oh!” Belle chuckled laying the garment safely out of the way of anything that could tip, fall or accidently stain it. “Ah’m not gonna-” she flushed bustling to the oven where her next batch of turnovers where just ready to come out. “Right now Ah have the time, will, and strength to do this.” the wave of heat from the over blew the flyaway tendrils of hair at the nape of her neck “I don’t expect to do this for the rest of my days. But…” she grinned turning in place to lay the tray down on the counter, towel wrapped around her hand protectively. “Right now it’s fun, an’ ah get to meet so many people, an’ be…” soft blue eyes flashed up to his, “Helpful. Ah’ lil touch of home, care and love. So many folk never have that...how could ah not try and give what Ah have, ta fill that gap in a man's soul when it just costs a little hard work?”

Belle shook her head “Sorry ah got silly there.” And here she was babbling to a near stranger and he never asked for her reasons and- “Oh no!” belle paled, her good southern upbringing horrified in her lapse of manners. “Belle, Belle Scarlet Street!” hastily unwrapping her hand for him to shake, “Where Are my manners today!” maybe she would close a little earlier than normal if there was no one new that needed a meal...she was more tired than she had thought.

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#17
There was a subtle hum that came from his lips when her hand tightened over his – a sound to indicate the touch was not unwanted if it had been heard. It had been removed shortly after and when the jacket was handed over to her, she seemed all the more pleased to take it. His eyes watched her closely as she took care to fold it in such a way that it would wrinkle it. His lips twisted into a ghost of a smile before he complimented her work so far.

The flush on her cheeks from the compliment was not unnoticed even as she moved toward the oven. She claimed to have the time, will, and strength for the time being to make the most of what she was doing. She enjoyed helping for now but didn’t expect to be doing this for the rest of her life. As she grinned toward him, he felt it appropriate to offer her a smile in return. She claimed that she couldn’t help but try and fill the gap in a man’s soul. He hummed amused at the idea. ”Not silly – it sounds rather… romantic to be put in such a way.” He pointed out.

She seemed embarrassed all over again when he questioned her what her name was. She never gave a proper introduction and she held her hand out toward him as she gave him her name. His hand grasped hers once more, and just like before he lifted her hand up to press a kiss against the top of her hand, ”Enchanté, belle mademoiselle Belle.” Sebastian responded – purposely using her name as the perfect adjective to define her in that moment. His lips lifted up from her hand but he would keep a grasp on it with his own – just to prolong the physical connection between them until she felt the desire to pull away from it.

”A lady has never been named more appropriate than you, Belle.” He suggested with a charming smile. His gaze lingered on her eyes before flicking around the kitchen, ”Now, how would like me to begin work? I am to earn my keep within your home, Miss Belle.”

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#18
Embarrassment darkened her cheeks, her southern breed manners cringing at her thoughtlessness, what would her momma think! Now, Belle was a gently raised girl, she was also a woman who’d known her share of rogues and had known the look in a man’s eye since she’d been a teenager, she was also NOT ignorant.

If he had not drunk her blood Sebatian would have likely been surprised to learn that Belle’s pallet was more extensive than most gave her credit for; sure she was comfortable with the cooking she grew up with, and prepared that high fat, high sugar diet for her friends and family because quite simply: food was love. And you gave the best you had to those you loved the most, and in Belle’s case that was the foods she’d grown up cooking with her momma. Did she experiment into other varieties? Of course she did, she enjoyed cooking and Christian was the most common respiant of those experiments, she also delighted in TRYING new things. Belle was endlessly curious about...everything, and honestly believed that giving something a try never hurt anyone.

Belle’s curiosity meant that she had a decent advantage in conversations like these, where she SHOULD have been out of her depth, lacking in the shared linguistic cues and short cuts that came from growing up on Queths world. Except Belle read. She read every thing she’d gotten her hands on since she’d learned how to string a sentence together; from fantasy to high military fiction, to nonfiction physics journals, puzzling through the terms and using her time as a librarian and archivist to satisfy the deep hunger for knowledge that the circumstances of her birth had denied her in a formal setting.

What this meant was that Belle? Belle could actually hold her own on almost any topic at least peripherally, and delve deeply into some very obscure ones.

She didn’t mind that when people saw her; especially now that they first saw a woman who’s skills seemed centered into the domestic path, something of a clothes horse who adapted a 60’s look that only seemed to cement the impression that she was aping that lifestyle completely.

What most didn’t see where the wall to wall bookshelves, the paperbacks, hardbacks, science journals pilled next to her bed where she could fall asleep to visions of electrons or equally elves dancing to lull her imagination.

She actually wasn’t sure if any of her current friends knew that she’d spent her teenage years as a librarian, corresponding and taking night classes to become a historical restorationist. That for the last few years she’d been helping to catalogue and restore thousands of letters, papers, from across centuries as a archive restorationist.

Which meant she was also well aware of the direct meaning, even if the magic of hub neglected to translate for her.

Now she wasn’t going to object to a little mannerly flirtation, she played that game with Southern passion, but she also played it with rules, and she knew damn well that Yankee men (and even more so men from different universes) needed to be very carefully handled so that she didn’t bring up expectations that she had no intention of fulfilling.

“Just there.” she nodded to the sink, reclaiming her hand. “When we close for lunch set up i’ll show you the spare room.” of course he was still a damned handsome man and she felt the little thrill of gaining that attention.

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DC-New 52

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#19
Sebastian watched as the southern woman was hit with embarrassment once again. The color of her face slowly becoming more frequently red as they continued their conversation. She was not a woman who was innocent enough to not understand when someone was making a flirtatious remark or gesture toward her. When he complimented her in French, he did not believe she wouldn’t understand what he was saying. It wasn’t such an out of the box compliment. He would have been more surprised if someone had not actually said such a thing to her. Still, there was a manner of amusement he got every time she seemed to grow embarrassed.

While he found it hard to believe, the way she responded to his compliments, it was almost like she wasn’t used to them. A look at the woman would make it very hard to believe she was ever short of compliments; especially considering the fact that she went out of her way to help a complete stranger like him. She helped many people and that too was a level of quality others would find attractive. For Sebastian, he was hardly interested in her domestic skills in a kitchen or her baking skills. Sebastian was of the mind that liked power or a unique quality in people.

Power wasn’t always physical or magical abilities. Even for Sebastian those two types weren’t even what made him extremely powerful. There was a reason he took blood from people at times. He took their knowledge and experiences to enhance his own. From the blood he had gotten from her, he had swiftly learned that Belle was not as much of a simple southern girl as she seemed to be from outward appearances.

She pointed toward the sink when he asked where she wished for him to start. There was already a stack of dishes waiting to be cleaned. He moved toward the sink as he slipped on the apron she had handed him earlier. She mentioned she would show him the spare room when the place closes for the lunch setup. ”Very well.” Sebastian nodded his head once as he turned on the sink and started the dishes, ”If you figure something else out that you need me for, I’ll be tucked back here. This shouldn’t take me too long.” He informed her. Of course, that had everything to do with the fact that he had the luxury of superhuman abilities. Dishes could be cleaned rapidly the moment she stepped out of the kitchen and back to her patrons. @kel

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#20
It wasn’t that Belle was unused to compliments, but rather that she was still caught by surprise when she wasn’t intentionally fishing for them. She knew she had a voluptuous prettiness that drew a certain type of man, at the moment she was not feeling at her most attractive, her day was only a few hours from done, her hair was untidy, she hadn’t refreshed her cateye in hours... And as to the other..she honestly did not think that having a caring heart, or seeing a need to fill others with a taste of home and happiness was anything more than what anyone would or should do given the chance.

Also what sort of conceited woman would she be if she ever took compliments and appreciation lightly?

Belle would argue that there was nothing completely unique about her, certainly she was not so modest that she denied her surprising skills, but to call them unique? No she would not go that far.

The next four hours were punctuated by Belle bustling back and forth into the kitchen, creating custom orders, throwing laughing comments to the regulars and not so regulars. If he ever peeked out he would see her dispensing the same soft humor, compassion and southern charm to every person who walked through her doors, at one point right before closing she was swamped by people grabbing take out for lunch since she closed through it most days. She called him out to help her buss and wipe down the tables for quicker turn over, the frantic pace of the last hour was over almost as quickly as it started.

The cafe emptied out and Belle collapsed for just a moment taking a seat, laying down on an empty booth. She hadn’t forgotten Sebastian she just need 30 seconds off her feet…

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