Title: KeyFic Prologue
Series: Key Games
Characters/Pairings: Kevin, Tinge
Summary: The man who has taken Tinge's key is very different than the last...
Notes: Prologue for a Key Game story that will never be finished. (The short version is this was finished just in time for the game to basically implode... I can't find any other notes, including anything about Tinge's creator. Sorry!) (2007)

Reddish hair - almost as though it had once been a black before being faded out by the sun. And the casual clothing of one with enough money that he didn't need to dress like a wealthy man.

Tinge set down the book he'd been flipping through. Someone new with his key didn't promise an end to boredom, after all. Perhaps, though, he hoped.

"I heard you like books," the man said with a much-too-genuine smile as he lifted up the white-plastic store bag that dangled from his left hand. "I just didn't know what, so I brought a little of everything."

Attempting to lure the man's eyes to his already-stuffed bookcases of ancient tomes bound in thin, gilded leather, Tinge somehow doubted anything that could come in a white-plastic store bag could be of any value.

"Quiet," the man continued as he walked over to set the bag within a few feet of Tinge on his bed before retreating to the couch. "I don't know if you want to look at them now or not."

Still silent, Tinge shifted enough to hook one of the bag's handles with one finger. Pulling it near, it rustled loudly and Tinge frowned.

"Is this place really everywhere?" the man asked as he looked around. "How do I know I'm going back to my right world?"

Tinge smirked.

"You doubt the nature of magic?" he asked softly as he fished the first book from the bag.

"How about luck?" the man questioned in response. "Luck - I can do luck."

Frowning, Tinge turned his focus back to the thin paperback he held. So fragile.

"It's very popular," the man said. "Can't be any worse than some of those big black books."

The man, Tinge decided, did have a point. Whomever he was. Obviously he'd never been schooled on the fine art of introduction. Not that Tinge had bothered, either. But if the man knew about books, a full introduction was likely not necessary.

"Your name," Tinge said firmly as he reached for another book. Books were a thousand times better than the stupid gifts sometimes brought. Flowers simply died. Chocolates were handed off to creatures who could eat them without feeling ill. But books... books killed time during his immortality of captivity.

The man froze.

"Oh, not again," he stammered. "Kevin. Kevin Barriman. Sorry about that. And you're Tinge with the pretty angel key. 'Dark Angel', they said."

He shrugged.

"Looks like a plain ol' angel to me, though."

Looking at the next book, Tinge raised an eyebrow. Vampires. Silly, earthen vampires that existed only in stories. How... amusing.

"When you're done, would you come over here?" Kevin asked a moment later. "You're hiding in shadows over there."

"I will come," Tinge answered. Another book. Art? Tinge flipped through the pages quickly. A story told in pictures, like for children. How strange...

Glancing at the cover, Tinge almost wanted to smile. The author was none other than the man who had come to visit. How pompous.

Casting the books aside, Tinge slid from the bed and stretched. Not expecting visitors, he hadn't yet dressed for the day and was wearing only silken nightclothes that were perhaps too loose on his small frame.

Kevin smiled.

"I guess you've figured out that I'm an artist of sorts," he said, shrugging. "I'm many things. Sort of accidentally, actually."

Tinge took a step forward, not letting his blue eyes waver in focus. The man had come for something, yet obviously wasn't quite sure how to approach the issue. Probably married... gay... Pathetic as humans could be.

"Come sit," Kevin said quickly as he patted the space beside him. "Maybe I can draw you sometime. I actually... never thought about drawing as a career and really it isn't. But... Well, I don't even know how to explain."

"Shh," Tinge brought a single finger to his lips, trying to make Kevin stop rambling. Had to be kinky - wouldn't have picked him if not. Pain. Well-deserved pain.

"I thought you didn't speak," Kevin said. "But if you're willing, I can stop babbling about myself."

Tinge frowned. No one came to him to talk, after all.

"Why?" Tinge asked as he slid his hand down Kevin's chest to pause just above his belt.

"Sometimes it's nice to do something different," Kevin admitted as he reached to remove Tinge's hand. He kept a light grip on it, however. "You seem like the type to agree."

Tinge was silent. Either he had a complete idiot. Or a genius.

At that moment, something in Kevin's pocket beeped. He frowned, reaching to take a piece of black plastic technology out.

"Seems I have to go back," he said quickly. He let go of Tinge's hand. "I'm sorry."

Tinge opened his mouth but didn't have the words to utter protest.

"Read," Kevin suggested as he stood up. "I'll be back."

And with that, Tinge slumped back, completely confused as he watched Kevin leave. In his vast lifetime, he thought he'd figured everything out.

But indeed, he hadn't.




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