in which kia is met and amil is met again

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quinn bikes to adrammelech's place early the next morning, before the sun's properly up. their bike is spray painted light blue and perpetually threatening to fall apart. it's wrapped in campaign stickers- a heirloom from its previous owner. it gets quinn where they need to go.

the demon lives in a mansion on the edge of town, huge and glittering. quinn purses their lips. there are a few cars in the driveway, but they're not sure if adrammelech has company, or if he just has more than one car. demons aren't usually as materialistic as plain old rich people, but they're not exactly sociable, either. quinn locks their bike to the fence and buzzes herself through the gate. the driveway is paved with clay bricks and edged with a kind of bush that quinn's pretty sure doesn't grow in this area of the u.s.

they don't get to the front door before they're stopped by allu, wearing a butler's uniform. his skin is about the same shade as quinn's, maybe a bit darker. it's probably just to blend in or something: maybe an effort to make quinn feel more comfortable around him. they've never asked. his eyes are just the wrong side of the boundry between red and brown. "hey quinn" he says. he has a perfect midwest accent. he handles all of quinn's deals and they split the profits 60/40. quinn gets 60% but they feel like they're getting the short end of the stick- it's not like allu could do this without them.

"that is, indeed, me." quinn tries for a winning smile. allu doesn't even blink.

a beat. quinn sighs. "so how's this deal going to work?" hanging around sam always makes them forget that most demons are just boring. allu hasn't said an interesting thing to them in the year and a half they've been working together. well, boring or assholes.

allu hands them a tuxedo and a serving tray with a domed top. "nothing too complicated today. you'll walk in- adrammelech had a social commitment he couldn't get out of, but it shouldn't be a problem. you humans are remarkably unobservant."

quinn makes a vague noise of protestation.

"present the tray, he'll put a manilla envelope on it, and take the package over to masih ad-dajjal above the record store." the record store is where sam works- it's a hub for all the demons who haven't bothered to integrate into the new world. it's weird that adrammelech can't make it over there, though. quinn's never heard of a demon who couldn't.

allu frowns at quinn's quizzical expression. "it's not your job to inquire, ephemeral." he sneers. from what quinn can gather, ephemeral is some kind of derogatory term for all the poor mortals. quinn's had slurs shouted at them since they were in grade school, though. this guy isn't going to wound their psyche.

quinn grins at him. "i love that you have nicknames for me, man. it really makes this job feel so worthwhile."

"we both have reasons for doing this, and getting along is not one of them." allu responds. he nods at the tux. "i believe you have something to be doing." he snaps his fingers and poofs away.

"i hate it when you do that." quinn says at the empty driveway. they look around for the servants entry.

kia wakes up the next morning tangled around nadia. this is always how kia wakes up at nadia's house, and it's always a distressing way to wake up. nadia is the best person have in your arms when you wake up- her hair is short enough that it doesn't somehow find its way into your mouth, which is always gross, and she fits perfectly under kia's chin. everything about her is wonderful, which is why this is so bad. kia does her best to gently shove nadia away while making the action seem like just morning stretching. she manages it well enough, in her opinion, and nadia doesn't even wake up. kia slips out of the twin bed and puts nadia's laptop back on her desk.

morning at nadia's house are the best mornings for kia. nadia never wakes up before her because nadia's never had to wake up early in her life, so kia spends the morning wandering around nadia's house. she usually ends up helping nadia's mom cook breakfast. nadia doesn't know that kia and her mom are friends, which nadia's mom finds hilarious. kia's elected to never tell her why nadia doesn't think they'd like each other.

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