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Private Things Unsettled

Discussion in 'Ark City' started by Raphael Santiago, Sep 25, 2018.

  1. Raphael Santiago

    Raphael Santiago The Mortal Instruments
    the strongest card in the deck is the ace

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    @Isabelle Lightwood | October 5th ; Early Evening | Apartment
    Relevent Threads: txt conversation

    [​IMG]
    The teenage girl sitting right across from Raphael in the train, was trying very hard to subtly watch his cat sit at the window and stare outside, paws stemmed against the glass and tail whipping from side to side in eager attention. The vampire let her, reading one of the books he'd snatched from Maurice's bookcase and pretending he wouldn't notice her staring. He could understand it, to a certain degree - Cerberus was without a leash attached to the collar he wore, and yet he stayed at Raphael's side like a well-trained dog, for as long as they were outside. Maybe he knew, that he was way safer in the vampire's company, or maybe it was the natural affinity the former clan leader seemed to have to felines - whatever it was, the vampire barely had to worry about his furred companion, or even fear him running away.

    "Next stop: Ark City - Main Station."
    Raphael's eyes skipped to the loudspeakers. Without a hurry, he packed the book away into the shoulder bag he had also gotten from the flirtatious elf who seemed to know him - a print across the lid read thousandtimesago in a jazzy script. He hadn't asked, but Maurice had shot him a meaningful look when he'd handed the bag to him - surely it had something to do with that last time Raphael'd been here, but if so, he couldn't remember. "Cerberus." It was but a whisper, but the cat turned his head towards his current owner, meowing quietly. Raphael offered the opened bag and clicked his tongue against the tip of his teeth, until the cat gave in and hopped into his makeshift travel vehicle, so the vampire could close the lid above him. He gave the teenager a friendly nod, before shouldering the bag and walking towards the doors.

    For once, he was glad to have lived in a busy city for almost all his life - he easily found his way around the subway stations and towards the address Isabelle had mentioned. Simple loft apartments; he guessed, if not an institute to live in, this was the next best thing to inhabit. He rang at number 34, and waited for the shadowhunter to open the door.
    This definitely wasn't what he had imagined happening so soon after same shadowhunter had sent him out of the city, but in this strange new world, he would take anything familiar he could get his hands on; even if this particular piece of memory quite stung.
     
    #1 Raphael Santiago, Sep 25, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2018
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  2. Isabelle Lightwood

    Isabelle Lightwood The Mortal Instruments
    I'm pure at heart. It repels the dirt.

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    When Raphael at first vanished, Izzy knew something was wrong. Indigo hadn't been their normal fire lizard self and in order to help keep the fire lizard at ease, she made sure that all the family knew and could care for him as much as possible. To know they were still loved and cared for even if Raphael was gone. Helping watch over Indigo had helped keep her distracted, the hole in her heart pulsing each time she thought about the vampire.

    Now he was back, or at least a version of him, and she had to admit it was some kind of sick irony. She'd vanished once and then come back and now it was the vampires turn. The worry and not knowing exactly what had happened, had he felt it too all those months ago?

    She'd finished drying Shiloh - who had been a constant companion since finding her - with a towel after giving the pup a bath when the doorbell rang. Standing, she headed over as Shiloh trotted beside her, eager to greet whoever was at the door. "Raphael, come on in. Shiloh, be gentle." Izzy moved out of the doorway after opening it up, letting the vampire inside while Shiloh went to sniff at his leg, her tail wagging.

    Of course she had to hold back the need to hug him, not knowing how he would react but even so she couldn't stop as she reached to gently touch his shoulder. By the angel she had missed him so much.

     
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  3. Raphael Santiago

    Raphael Santiago The Mortal Instruments
    the strongest card in the deck is the ace

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    [​IMG]
    The door opened and Raphael saw that familiar face light up in recognition and joy - latter of which he didn't entirely understand, but this world was apparently very strange, what with the different timelines and versions of people you thought you knew, and memories that were spotty at best or entirely off at worst. So, maybe it made sense that the woman who had fought to keep her tears in when she sent him away from New York, was now smiling and clearly holding back from a hug. The vampire didn't flinch away at the touch, for a moment holding Isabelle's gaze warmly, before the regret came back, flickering through his dark eyes. Gently, he closed the door behind him, the click echoing overly loud in his ears; the silence was as much a metaphor for their relationship - at least from Raphael's point of view - as it was awkward. Cold. Not intentionally so, but still inevitable. He wasn't exactly blaming the shadowhunter for anything that had happened; it was his own stinging guilt that made this whole thing so awful.

    He cast a curious glance towards Shiloh, offering a hand for the dog to sniff as well, and it took him by some surprise, when she almost immediately pressed her head against his palm to be pet. His fingertips ran through her fur, while a small smile curled around his lips, before he moved towards the living room. Carefully, he sat the shoulder bag down onto the couch and opened its lid. Again, Raphael clicked his tongue against his teeth, summoning a furry head and seconds later the whole cat from the depths of his bag, who then cautiously sniffed the air and climbed onto the pillow right next to his transport vehicle, where he then sat down gracefully, wrapping his fluffy tail around his front paws.

    This small moment of peace, the tiny bit of calm before the storm - whichever kind of storm it'd be, it was hard to say at that point - passed, when Raphael turned to face the shadowhunter again, and sat down next to Cerberus.

    Where to start? No, really, where to start? The former clan leader had no idea on how to start this conversation, hell he didn't even know, what he needed to fill the other in on and what not, nor was he sure if it was needed at all. He'd come here to see Isabelle again, thinking he could go from there, without a great plan and all that, but now that he was facing her, the words escaped him. If this version really didn't know what had happened in her future, then maybe it was better to leave it at that? To not break it again. But of course she had a right to know, too, even if she hadn't witnessed it firsthand. Otherwise, Raphael wouldn't stop thinking about one question: Would she still want to see me, if she knew? and he couldn't live with that. Maybe, it was partly a need to make things right and stop lying, and partly a feeling of she deserves the truth, no matter if you like it or not.

    "I..am aware of the strange mechanisms of this box - mostly," he started, licking his lips in nervousness, "Which means, you are from a different...timeline, right? Or from the same one, but earlier?" His forehead was pulled into a frown, even when he tried countering it with an apologetic smile.
     
    #3 Raphael Santiago, Sep 30, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2018
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  4. Isabelle Lightwood

    Isabelle Lightwood The Mortal Instruments
    I'm pure at heart. It repels the dirt.

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    This box was strange and often at times it hurt. Like right now, how Raphael looked at her, the gap between them felt strange, lacking the warmth they had before. What had happened back home to have such a thing happen? Hadn't they done well, gotten beyond all those hard feelings and pain and addiction? Her thoughts were muddled, messy even as she watched Shiloh wag her tail, eagerly accepting the attention and then looking towards Cerberus when he emerged.

    Shiloh was quiet as she watched the cat with interest, hoping Cerberus would at least pay her attention but when it seemed like nothing was going to happen, she sat down next to Raphael on the ground.

    "So I don't need to explain all of this? Good because it's quite a mess." Izzy smiled, pouring herself some tea. "I'm thinking same timeline but earlier. Which it does feel strange to be behind again." She briefly wondered what her future held and then decided she would rather not know too much. "The last thing that happened to me back home was the first meeting between Shadowhunters and Downworlders." And how she had told her mom about her addiction and how that relationship was on the mend.

    "Does that ring a bell?"

     
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  5. Raphael Santiago

    Raphael Santiago The Mortal Instruments
    the strongest card in the deck is the ace

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    [​IMG]
    The Downworlder Cabinet Meeting. Raphael remembered every single one of them, especially the first - what a mess it had been, truly. Though he had to give Alec credit for even attempting at all. Not many shadowhunters had ever really tried to bring the Shadowworld and the Downworld together, and those who had, hadn't exactly succeeded. Except for the Accords, Raphael hadn't seen any true progress in the last 60 years, and sometimes he was very close to losing faith in the shadowhunters for good. Now, Valentine was dead, killed by Clary Fray, who had never really been a friend to the vampire, and while he was grateful for that, of course, as most were, it was merely the beginning in a long process of punishing those responsible for the crimes of the Circle. They'd have to see what the future held, he guessed, and he hoped it wouldn't be disappointing. (Although, of course, he wouldn't see any of that progress happening here - it was still something to get used to.)

    "Yes, but that was weeks ago for me," Raphael stated, watching Isabelle pour herself a tea. "There's a lot that happened since then." And he could've told her right then, but he hesitated, looking at her expectantly, as if to ask if she even wanted to know any of it. "A lot that happened between us too."
     
    #5 Raphael Santiago, Oct 21, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2018
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  6. Isabelle Lightwood

    Isabelle Lightwood The Mortal Instruments
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    Now it was back to her being in the past and him being from the future. Pandora sure was strange and annoying in that regard, able to bring people from one time, take them back and then make them reappear. Raphael was the same yet he was also different. She now understood a little more when he had talked to her about the reappearance of Dorian.

    "A lot can happen in a short amount of time." Izzy was neutral right now, finishing up her tea, stirring the teaspoon around the liquid for a few more moments before washing it in the sink. "Tell me what happened, Raphael. It's better to know than to keep on wondering." Picking up her cup with one hand, she padded towards the living room and took a seat.

    Somehow she expected this to be a sit down kind of talk.

     
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  7. Raphael Santiago

    Raphael Santiago The Mortal Instruments
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    [​IMG]
    It's better to know than keep on wondering.
    Raphael could understand that very well, to be honest. Had it been the other way around, he'd surely wanted to know too. Yet, that didn't change anything about the sheer regret he felt, about how sorry he was for what he'd done. Nor about how much he wished he could've just not told her and moved on. Simon's words still echoed through his skull, the anger making them so much sharper. Raphael had a feeling that both of them were right and at the same time not. He hadn't contacted the fledgling again, after he'd left the former clan leader on that meadow just outside the forest - thinking that both Simon and he himself needed space for now, if not for the next weeks or so. Who knew if they were to ever talk again.
    And, that was kind of why he really didn't want to tell Isabelle, scared she might throw him out of her apartment too.

    Why he still pushed himself to talk, he couldn't say for sure, but perhaps because he'd always been a very honest person, up until meeting Heidi and everything connected to her. He wanted to get back to the kind of person he'd been then. The kind of person who never would've done such a thing, no matter how many excuses they'd make up for it.

    Raphael lowered his gaze, jaw clenched and teeth pressing against each other. His shoulders were tense, and it felt like the worst torture to be sitting here and confess to Isabelle, whom he still very much cared for. "You know that Simon is a daylighter. He..accidentally sired someone back home, Heidi McKenzie, and I brought her back from the dead, without telling Simon about it. I.. I wanted to know how he'd become a daylighter, and I thought studying his fledgling would help with that, but, needless to say, she didn't bring me any answers, and she- she planned her revenge, after.. after what I did to test if she was a daylighter too." Burning her with UV-light, in the hopes that she would get immune to it over time. Really, what had he been thinking? That didn't even make scientific sense. Not that the logic had been important for him.

    "I was desperate. Rosa, she.. she wasn't doing well and I wanted to spend more time with her, during the day, like a normal person. I was scared she'd die soon and I wouldn't have been able to use the time we still had to its fullest." Slowly, Raphael shook his head at himself. "But, without answers--"

    For the smallest moment, he looked at Isabelle, remembering how she'd visited him after... "She died two weeks ago," the vampire finally said, his voice strained, and a single tear rolling down his cheek. He didn't wipe it off. He'd never done that with Isabelle. "Heidi tried to kill me afterwards. And you saved me, but... you realized what I'd done; that this had been revenge for something horrible. And when I told you, you sent me away, saying that, if I left New York that night, you wouldn't report my crimes to the Clave. So I took the next plane to Detroit."

    The silence that filled the room after that huge explanation, felt suffocating to the vampire. He held Isabelle's gaze regardless, watching her react to what he'd just said, hoping that she'd at least somewhat understand why he'd tortured Heidi, even if that wasn't an excuse. On the other hand, he prepared himself to see the same disappointment, the same disgust in her eyes all over again, prepared himself to leave before she could send him away. He had to hold himself back from getting up and heading for the door without even waiting for the shadowhunter to react.
     
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  8. Isabelle Lightwood

    Isabelle Lightwood The Mortal Instruments
    I'm pure at heart. It repels the dirt.

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    Izzy waited, as much as she wanted to interrupt she refrained from until he had finished. At this point she was furious, not at Raphael but at herself. Her future self. Part of her understood the reaction, after all it wasn't something she should condone or even be okay with. And she wasn't, not really, even finding out now. But his actions were not born out of malice but desperation. Isabelle knew how much he cared for his sister, the only family member he had that was still alive.

    Had it been any other vampire she would have thrown him out of the apartment. This was Raphael, and she understood a lot mor than what most others did. She pushed her cup of tea aside, stood up and knelt down next to him, a hand reaching forth to rest on his knee. "I'm sorry for the loss of Rosa. She was a wonderful woman and I'm glad to have had the honor of meeting her." She needed to get that out of the way as her heart clenched with the pain of grief.

    "I do not agree with what you did. You had no right. Even so, I cannot be too angry. I'm sorry for my future self being such a bitch. Those who are desperate do things they might not otherwise do. I should have been more understanding especially after everything you and I have been through and learned about each other. We're supposed to be friends. I wasn't being a friend to you then." Izzy planned on making it up to him.

    "I have a spare room in this apartment. It's yours if you want it. I should have been there for you. But I'm here now."

     
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  9. Raphael Santiago

    Raphael Santiago The Mortal Instruments
    the strongest card in the deck is the ace

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    [​IMG]
    Isabelle rose from her seat, anger sparking in her eyes, and Raphael was sure, he knew how this would end then. She'd send him away again, one way or another, with yelling or without, disappointed tears running down her cheeks or not. His eyes skipped lower, while he chewed at the inner walls of his cheek. Alright then. He'd come and said what he'd wanted to tell her, so she may make her own decision about how to handle it, and he had to accept any reaction coming from her. He was ready to leave again.

    But suddenly, her hand was upon his knee, and her gentle voice carried condolences to his ears, that had him meet her gaze. And with every further sentence she spoke, every word of forgiveness he couldn't believe he was hearing from her, Raphael frowned more and more. He couldn't understand how she was turning this around and making it her own fault - or, rather, the fault of her future self. How, instead of accusations, of disappointment - though he believed to hear at least that out of her voice, even if it was less than he'd expected - Isabelle was apologizing for not being a good friend to him back home. Even offering him a home here, with her, in an effort of making it up to him.

    Needless to say, the vampire was at a loss, even though his heart longed for someone to finally try and understand his actions for what they were - an act of despair. He might've snapped at Simon for accusing him of not behaving logically, of making Heidi into the vampire she wanted to be so badly, against her sire's will; when it came to forgiving himself though, to hearing others forgive him, Raphael suddenly struggled so very hard with acceptance.
    He'd brought someone back to life, making Simon a sire - Simon, probably the last person who should've sired someone already - and then proceeded to torture that someone, for more or less very selfish gains. And then he'd covered it up - tried to anyway - because he himself couldn't even live with the thought of it.

    Perhaps, that was the reason Raphael shook his head firmly and lowered his gaze onto the piece of sofa between them. "How can you even say that?" he whispered, "I've went out of my way to make her one of us, no matter how much she wanted it in the end, and then I- then I tortured her and kept her in the basement like a rat to be experimented on, how can- how can you--"
     
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  10. Isabelle Lightwood

    Isabelle Lightwood The Mortal Instruments
    I'm pure at heart. It repels the dirt.

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    "I'm not arguing with the fact that what you did was wrong. But you're not the first to bring someone back. As for experimenting and torturing, I will never condone such a thing either. Except again, you're not the only one to do it. Yours was born from desperation and need. Not out of say, wanting to take over. We all do things that we regret."

    Izzy gave him a pointed look. She'd manipulated him and hurt him into biting her during the throes of addiction. The pair weren't the only ones to do such things either. The Institute had tortured Valentine for information and even downworlders had been subjected to experimentation and torture by those who should know better.

    "Tell me this, Raphael. Did you enjoy it? Or does the thought of it all make you feel sick to your stomach?" She asked, already knowing the answer. "People do things, horrible things, when they're desperate and at that point. I've done it. You've done it. Even the Clave has done it. We just have to learn from it and promise ourselves to do better. To be better."

     
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  11. Raphael Santiago

    Raphael Santiago The Mortal Instruments
    the strongest card in the deck is the ace

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    [​IMG]
    "Just because we all do it, doesn't mean- it doesn't.." Her words were reaching him, slowly but surely. Deep down he knew there was a lot of truth in what she was saying. They all made mistakes, and none of them was innocent, by far not. Was that enough however, to forgive himself, as long as he was promising to get better? To not let it happen again? There was this ugly voice inside his head, whispering that none of this excused what he'd done, that none of this was reason enough, and it never would be. His voice louder than a whisper, but dripping with guilt. "It doesn't mean, I can just forgive myself for it."

    Her question, as easy as she thought it was for him to answer it, only drove the nail further into his inner, mental coffin. Of course he hadn't enjoyed it, not like that; but he'd been okay with Heidi's pain as a mean to an end, as if that was his choice to make. She'd been a casualty in this desperate mission of his - in the end he'd neglected her just as much as her parents had before she'd become a vampire. Somehow he doubted, Simon had gladly taken her in either, after the former clan leader had disappeared from New York. Heidi had suffered from it the most. And for what? Raphael hadn't even gotten the answers he'd desired. Not, that that would've made it somehow okay.

    No, he hadn't enjoyed it, but Heidi had been a "necessary casualty" and he didn't think that made it a lot better. He'd lied to Magnus too. To Magnus of all people.

    Raphael was clenching his fists and pressing his teeth against each other, in the overwhelming anger at himself and the argument that side had, with the voice who wanted to remind everyone that he'd been utterly desperate through it all. "I don't know what to think anymore, Isabelle. If I could turn back time, I would."
     
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  12. Isabelle Lightwood

    Isabelle Lightwood The Mortal Instruments
    I'm pure at heart. It repels the dirt.

    Posts:
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    Nephilim
    Age:
    19
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    Neutral Good
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    "It doesn't make it better or okay. And I'm not saying that." Isabelle slightly shook her head, dark curls bouncing along her shoulders and the whisps tickling the nape of her neck. "It'll be something you have to live with for the rest of your life. But you don't need to forgive in order to do better."

    There wasn't anything she could do in order to make him feel any better and she wouldn't even if she could. She was here for him, of course she was, but that didn't mean she would make everything one hundred percent better for him. He'd done something horrible and he had to suffer the consequences, of which she did not want to add to it by casting him aside.

    In her eyes he needed a friend and that was what she planned on being.

    "That makes all the difference. You might not be able to see it yet, Raphael. And I'm not here to tell you that everything will be sunshine and rainbows. I am however, here as a friend. You may not think you deserve even that but I do. So please, let me be here for you."

     
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  13. Raphael Santiago

    Raphael Santiago The Mortal Instruments
    the strongest card in the deck is the ace

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    [​IMG]
    So please, let me be there for you.

    In these words, so full of offered comfort, even if she wouldn't just pretend his crimes were meaningless and forgivable, Raphael could hear something he hadn't heard in a while - platonic love, friendship despite evident differences. Isabelle wanted him to be here, to stay here, with her. To not work this out entirely by himself, in forced loneliness. He could only guess why she wasn't pushing him away like she would've had every right to, and his best guess was, that she actually meant what she was saying. No hidden tricks and traps, just mere friendship. Maybe the knowledge of how it felt to make grave mistakes and be alone with them.

    Raphael hesitated, before meeting Isabelle's gaze after what felt like aeons. "Alright." He didn't agree entirely with her we all do bad things, and we have to own up to them, that's all that matters in the end - being better than before speech, but he appreciated the chance she was giving him so much. "I owe you for this," Raphael added firmly, not letting any doubt about that come alive. "And I'll pay rent as soon as I can."
     
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