I wrote this for Shannon, for our recent nose-dive into the Kuroshitsuji/Black Butler fandom! We're both obsessed with Sebastain. This fic accompanies her masquerade self-portrait. Enjoy! Merry Christmas, Shannon!
"I absolutely despise parties," you mutter bitterly, walking away from your introduction with Lord Phantomhive.
"I know!" Melissa irritably quips back at you. "Why don't you say it another sixteen more times while you're here!" You roll your eyes at her sarcasm and spot a nondescript, out-of-the-way, discreet corner of the ballroom. You make your way over, trying to hide your face and mask as best you can against her overly loud, cheery "Hel-LO! HOW ARE YOU?!"'s across the room.
"I hate people. I hate the idle chatter and the silly questions. 'When are you going to get married, Lady Shannon?' 'Ah! Lady Shannon! Do you think your father would be interested in this business proposal?' How am I to know either of those?!"
Melissa sighed, "I love talking to people! That's the point! It's just a normal topic of conversation-"
"Honestly, how could you enjoy parties? All you do is plaster on fake smiles and do silly things like dance."
She stares at you incredulously, like you just said the most blasphemous thing she's ever heard. "What's wrong with dancing?" She stares back out into the crowd to wave some more. Does she even KNOW all these people?
"I can't dance," you huff under your breath, more to yourself than her. You search for another excuse tactic. "We don't even KNOW Ciel Phantomhive!!" you continue. "Why the hell do we need to go to his party?" You know perfectly well why, but you are wishing to stump her, hoping that when Father said 'ball' all other details blew completely past her on a fast breeze.
"'Ciel Phantomhive is an excellent business associate,'" she says without looking at you, in a terrible impression of your father's deep, thick, intimidating tones. "'It is in our best interests to begin marketing to the Phantomhive toy company, and. . . blah. . . I, uh, I forget the rest," she trails off lamely. "Oh my GOSH LOOK at the FOOD LOOK at this MANOR LOOK AT THESE DECORATIONS!!!!!" she screams out in one sentence. You quickly feel your cheeks heating with embarrassment and look around for the quickest way to desert her.
As your gaze scans the crowd you again spot Ciel Phantomhive, sitting poshly and bored at the other end of the ballroom. He's resting his chin on his fist with his eyes to his lap, but oddly enough his butler, standing tall and handsomely beside him, is staring right at you.
Pristine, perfectly tailored, absolutely immaculate black suit; white gloves; silver buttons trailing down the outside of the ruffled white shirt, folded effortlessly down his chest and tucked into the suit jacket skillfully. Even the tie-knot was perfectly flat and unblemished. He smiles, like honey oozing, sickly-sweet, and his black, unevenly cropped hair billowed elegantly forward as he cocked his head to the side knowingly, lifting a delicate black eyebrow upon meeting your gaze. His eyes are deep red, like blood or wine, and you imagine the color dripping thickly into a fine, tall glass. They meet with your hazel, and you are enchanted, captured in his silky stare.
Suddenly, they got a playful glint to them, those burgundy eyes. He leans down and whispers in Lord Phantomhive's ear. The earl's eye snaps up and meets yours, then he scowls and looks away from you. How rude! They were obviously talking about you! You quickly look for Melissa, usually right there on your right. As loud as she is, she uses it often to her advantage to embarrass people she calls out. But you realize she's left you for the dance floor. You look again to Ciel and his butler, hoping your hard stare is enough to challenge them, but he's still stooped over his master.
You see Ciel's lips curl into a devilish grin, and he turns back to his butler, whispering in his ear. Those red eyes pop back to yours and he straightens up, not responding to Ciel. The young lord casually tosses his head back and you clearly read his lips: "That's an order."
The butler nods and bows to his master, hand over his heart. He turns towards you and strides across the dance floor, challenging your harsh stare the whole time. Yet he still manages to effortlessly dodge all the gyrating, twirling couples without looking. He reaches you and you finally have to look away. His eyes are too overpowering.
He bows to you and offers his hand to you slowly. Your own hand is drawn to it, and it drag your gloved palm into his. Kissing your knuckle, he straightens up, almost a whole meter taller than you, and smiles, closing his eyes almost affectionately.
"My lady," he purrs. Even his voice is as smooth and creamy as melted chocolate. He is absolutely stunning, you must admit grudgingly. "This standing about ill-befits a woman of your stature and beauty. Would you find it in your heart to dance with a lowly butler?"
You immediately open your mouth to refuse, but ironically enough, your favorite music sounds from the quartet. You blink surprisedly in the direction of the music. Waltzes were out-dated, almost antiquated! No one waltzed anymore! In fact, that was part of the reason why you despised parties!
Before you know it, your hand is being pulled towards the dance floor. He smoothly spins you into a proper hold, gently placing his hand on your waist.
". . . I can't dance. . . " you say weakly, cheeks heating from self-consciousness. Where's Melissa?
He quickly spins you again and tips you back like you weigh nothing. Incredible! "If I couldn't even lead a lady in a proper dance, then, well. . ." He lifts you back to your feet and gently coerces you into the first few steps. You awkwardly titter along before his hold strengthens and practically pulls you along. You awkwardly follow his lead. ". . . what sort of butler would I be?" Something flashes in his eyes, you swear you saw them change color for a flash of a second, and he cracks another dazzling smile. Then the two of you are off again, gently twirling with the music.
ONE, two, three, ONE, two, three, ONE, two, three. . . He heavily accents the first step of each measure, but you can't keep up with the beat. He leans down to your ear and whispers "Let me." His arm wraps around your thin, compressed waist, and you let go and let him lift you SLIGHTLY off your toes. Amazingly, his hold still feels light as a feather. You smile confidently up, delighted that you've (second-handedly) mastered it, and you realize he's been staring intently at you the whole time. You continue without even thinking about it anymore, and the two of you just gaze completely at each other. You feel like he's looking deep within you, like he understands something about you no one else does. Not even Melissa. You can't even tell what that something is. You just feel comfortable there. His presence seems to wrap completely around you until the two of you are the only ones twirling in time to the music. A sixteenth note run flies up from the violin and he lifts you up into the air, dropping you comfortably back down, actually on your feet, and you make the next step without missing a beat.
He smiles, delighted by your slight chuckle of amazement. Keeping in sync with him, you lift your arm up for him, and he draws you into a solo twirl, flawlessly catching your hand again to keep the two of you moving together. You feel weightless, the whole thing feels like a dream, but every time you blink he's still there, and you're still spinning. The dance room is a blur, the music fills your heart and you lose yourself in it.
You seem to snap back from the perfect world you were in when he slows down in time with the ending music. The quartet plays the last note and the two of you pull away to bow and courtsy respectfully. He drops lower to a knee and takes your hand for the second time, kissing it.
"Thank you, Lady Shannon," he barely whispers, like grass blowing in the wind.
"Your name, sir?" you ask dizzily.
"Thank you, Sebastian. Are. . . " you begin, embarrassed for even thinking it.
"Yes?" he questions, cocking his head to the side and smiling pleasantly.
"There's no way you're simply a butler," you say softly.
"You see. . . my lady," he murmurs seductively, leaning in to you as if to share a secret. "I'm simply one hell of a butler."
He pulls away. You blink, feeling like you've just woken from a dream, and when you look again, Sebastian's gone. You look around frantically until you spot him next to a wildly smirking Ciel, like he never left his side.
How. . .
He smiles at you sweetly, knowingly, and places a long, delicate, gloved finger to his lips in a gesture of silence.
You smirk back at him, chuckling defeatedly.
. . . Maybe parties aren't SO bad. . .