The first thing he registers is the warmth of a smile.
“Hello Sleepy Ash of Sloth.” The person says gently, smiling wider when Sloth looks up, ruby eyes blinking slowly. “…Sleepy Ash…of Sloth…” Sloth repeats slowly, the words slurred as he figures out how his tongue works.
The person nods, “That’s right, it’s your name. I’m your Creator.”
His name. It sounds simple, which is good because he’s finding it hard to focus on anything through the heavy haze blanketing his mind. There is a hand on his head now, warm and heavy and it feels nice. It makes him feel sleepy (oh, that’s in his name isn’t it?).
Creator chuckles quietly, “You’ll feel better when you wake up next time.”
When he wakes up, he sees the same warm smile on Creator’s face.
As time goes on, Sloth learns and enjoys the time he spends with Creator. Creator is smart and teaches him a lot of things; he particularly liked learning about the concept of naps and dreams.
It’s during the moment between wakefulness and sleep that Creator whispers about a new playmate, a brother for Sleepy Ash.
Sloth is watching a pair of birds from the window of his room when Creator calls him. Yawning, he walks into the same room that he himself first woke up in; he hasn’t been back in this room for a few years.
A small figure is sitting on the same bed, Creator smiled when he noticed Sloth’s presence. “Meet your brother Pride.” Sloth looks into a pair of slow blinking ruby eyes; he recognizes the glazed look as Pride tries to focus on him. He notes that Pride is smaller than he is, was Sloth that small when he first woke up? He doesn’t really remember those first hazy weeks.
Pride keeps staring at him, what was he supposed to say? “Hi,” He eventually settles on, deciding to sit on the bed (he found it was easier to focus when things are closer, he hopes it’s the same for Pride) “I’m Sleepy Ash.”
The smaller vampire says nothing for a moment but his lips tilt into a small fanged smile, Sloth finds himself smiling back, a warm bubbly feeling spiking in his chest. Creator is silent next to them nodding approvingly.
Once Old Child is strong enough to leave their home Creator allows him to take his brother outside. Pride drinks up everything Sloth and Creator teach him, Creator tells them about different games they can play now.
The games are fun and Sloth enthusiastically plays for a bit but he prefers to nap quietly under a nice tree over trying to loudly climb said tree like Pride does.
Envy is created not long after Pride and both Sloth and Pride are present when Doubt-Doubt is born. Sloth barely catches a glimpse of his new brother’s face before he clumsily covers his head with a blanket. Creator tells them that Envy is just a bit shy and gives Pride a look when it looks like he wants to pounce on Envy.
Creator leaves the three of them alone to get aquatinted. Envy doesn’t fall asleep right away and all three end up cuddled together on the bed with Doubt-Doubt between them. Pride eagerly tells Envy stories about games and the trees and rivers in the area, Sloth is content to just listen, sometimes interrupting when he feels Envy shrinking away from all the enthusiasm.
Eventually they manage to coax Envy to drop the blanket from his head and Sloth quietly introduces them to their brother. He’s slightly surprised when Doubt-Doubt mumbles a small ‘I’m sleepy’ and yawns before carefully cuddling into Sloth’s side. Pride quietly pulls the blankets around all of them.
Envy is not as energetic as Pride; he prefers to play lower energy games with Sloth. He overall liked to spend his time looking through tomes filled with words or watching the nest of birds perched high on the same tree that Sloth likes napping under. Every once in a while, both Pride and Envy pour over a book and converse while Sloth sleepily registers their voices.
Envy likes stories. Many times he ropes Creator into telling them more, especially on slow sunny days. Pride invents his own tales but they are sometimes a ploy to make his brother do something ridiculous, like somehow getting his head stuck in a hollow of a tree. Even though Sloth warns him not to believe everything their brother tells him Envy still falls for it every time.
The days are long and peaceful and Creator sometimes quietly joins them. Creator tells them they are old enough to know about the human settlement just over the mountain.
Wrath’s awakening goes much the same way as the last two, though this time Sloth is the only one present. Both Pride and Envy are tied up with their new Eves to come home. Creator thinks that it’s better that way, Wrath is a bit temperamental and it’ll be better if Sloth is the first brother to greet her.
Once the first few weeks pass, Wrath’s temper calms and Sloth finds that his sister is kinder than he initially thought. One day Creator sits with them under the tree and teaches both of them how to weave flower crowns.
The exercise is time consuming and makes his fingers sore but he’ll admit that it was nice to watch The Mother weave the flowers into intricate designs. Both Creator and Sloth accept her crowns and most days she can be found by the river at night, weaving whatever little plant she found.
One day Pride comes home suddenly. He is quite and won’t tell any of them what happened; Creator says that it was most likely that his Eve died. Humans have short life spans compared to vampires and it was only a matter of time before Doubt-Doubt would return too.
Wrath is kind and she easily pulls Pride with her too the tree with Sloth, she teaches him to weave flowers. In return, Pride weaves her iliac locks into simple designs, his Eve had been a woman and he’d learned to do certain things out of necessity. No one could expertly fix hair better than him.
Like Creator predicted, Envy returns soon after Pride. And just like with Pride she welcomes Envy with kindness. Wrath and Envy got along well and he is the one that introduces her to humans when she is old enough to leave.
This time, all four of them leave.
Creator sends them off with well wishes and a smile.
Greed is loud and eager to move from the moment Sloth lays eyes on him. Creator laughed at Lawless’s clumsy attempts to both talk (no more than garbled words) and reach for the lit candle at his bedside (Wrath simply pulled the candle out of his reach).
It was endearing really, and like before, Creator’s face lit with familiar warmth as he regarded the newest Servamp.
His new brother is adventurous; Greed is instantly exploring their home when he grows strong enough to venture out. The young vampire reminds Sloth of the numerous human children he had seen over the centuries; exhausting to be around, loud, and somehow still charming. Wrath endures it all with a patient smile, no trace of her now infamous rage despite Lawless’s lack of tact.
Greed likes to keep busy, he cannot be still and some days Sloth wonders where he gets the energy from. Greed quickly grew bored of their games. There is a brief scare when Lawless is nowhere to be found. Sloth and Wrath spend a majority of the night searching; it is nearly daybreak when Pride drops by. In his hands is a small, squealing black and white hedgehog. Greed had nearly reached the human settlement when Pride passed by him.
Creator decides that the best way to prevent a repeat is introducing the arts to Lawless. Poetry, theater, music and everything in between is given and Greed takes to it as if he was destined for it. Many nights are spent listening to Greed’s reenactments, always managing to draw his siblings into his play (Envy had been physically dragged) while still maintaining all attention upon himself.
Sloth thinks Creator enjoys this the most, and Greed knows it.
When Sloth decides to finally move on, Lawless stays. He doesn’t doubt that The One and Only will stay for a long time.
Sloth is honestly surprised by Gluttony’s emergence. So much time had passed since Greed’s birth that he didn’t think Creator could make more vampires. But nevertheless, he’s still there when World End awakens.
Like his siblings before, he awakens to Creator gently coaxing him awake with a gentle hand and soothing smile. Red, hazy eyes lock onto Sleepy Ash and like before he sits close for easier inspection, he stays close to his new brother until he is ready to venture outside.
And just like before, Creator joins them and they spend their days teaching and playing. Envy joins them during Gluttony’s early weeks and Sloth is grateful for it. Their new brother is eager and energetic as Lawless had been and Doubt-Doubt provides a firmer hand in containing the young vampire. Especially when Sleepy Ash grows weary of the physical (well-intentioned) ‘affection’ Gluttony gives him.
Gluttony is ravenous. He is always hungry, and Sloth imagines that the familiar burning in his throat for the sweet metallic taste is stronger in World End than any of his elder siblings. It’s a desire any of them can sympathize with, and easily fixable if they simply let their brother loose near humans with the knowledge of how to pick a suitable Eve.
However Creator has fervently warned them what a dangerous route that could be; giving into the desire for blood without control. It leads to unnecessary death and Creator has no desire to lead unsuspecting humans to their home. They’d be forced to leave and none of the vampires want to leave their home of several centuries.
Since Gluttony is too young to venture towards the humans, Creator introduces him to human food. Until Gluttony learns to control his thirst, it’ll have to do, Creator is sure that Gluttony will learn control.
Sleepy Ash and Doubt-Doubt eventually leave with World End in tow.
Creator waves them off with a proud smile.
Lust is the last.
All of Love awakens to his siblings all around him. Glazed ruby orbs take in the various faces while Creator carefully spoke to him, a soft hand on his back. Creator smiles and like before, backs away from Lust to allow the siblings to meet. Sloth sits infront of his youngest sibling and patiently allows All of Love to slowly inspect him (the young vampire’s nose had twitched when he sniffed the air around his oldest sibling, the action was somehow attractive).
Sloth was slightly surprised at the slow serene smile on the vampire’s face. Especially since both Greed and Gluttony were attempting to talk at the same time, both ignoring Pride’s scolding to keep their voices down. Wrath took over Creator’s spot next to the bed and resumed the gentle back rubbing while Lust moved on to inspect Envy.
Sleepy Ash has been there for every one of his sibling’s births. He’s been there when each of them first opened their eyes, was the first one to hear their first coherent words. Sloth has shared countless silent nights with them and Creator.
Now it’s noisy and chaotic and he’s sure that all the movement is confusing Lust rather than helping him. Creator stands back watching, the same soft twinkle on his face that Sleepy Ash remembers from his own hazy awakening.
It’s warm and he’s never felt so content in all his centuries.
All of Love matured surprisingly fast.
It barely feels like it was just yesterday that Lust was taking his first steps outside their home, stumbling over all the outside stimulation.
But now Lust has reached his peak strength, easily able to keep up with his more rambunctious brothers in their play. He’s soaked up every bit of information Creator and Envy have given him, easily adapted to his transformation with Wrath’s kind guidance. Pride tasks himself to teach Lust what being a Servamp means once the younger is ready, the two get along surprisingly well. His siblings have taken charge over their youngest brother and Sloth feels a little sad that there really isn’t anything he could contribute to his new brother’s education like he had done for the rest.
Creator is the one who brings it up on one of the numerous nights that Sloth chooses to lounge under the ancient tree. They don’t speak right away and Sleepy Ash isn’t sure what he should say, if anything at all. Creator appears to be in no rush and the two comfortably sit in silence.
“Your siblings can help Lust because they had someone do the same for them,” Creator suddenly said, sheer pride evident in his voice. “This teaching is your legacy.” Creator doesn’t say anything else and Sloth can’t form any words past the lump in his throat. Creator doesn’t expect him to and instead places a steady hand on his back.
In no time at all Creator watches the Servamps leave.
The 7 vampires spend the next few centuries in and out of their home, only gathering occasionally. Pride points out how Creator is his happiest whenever they come together and they all make a point to gather more often. They do it often enough to call it tradition.
Sloth secretly enjoys the way World End rough houses with him. He enjoys the humorous discussions about the best of Shakespeare’s work between Lawless and Old Child. Watching Lust and Wrath pour their tender care into the various flowers they’ve managed to grow around their home solely for Creator’s pleasure is heartwarming. Envy’s seemingly cranky mumbles about not appreciating all the noise is endearing (Sloth can tell it’s the opposite, Doubt-Doubt just won’t admit it).
Sleepy Ash particularly likes these gatherings after their increasing contact with the Neutral Group.
Creator hears the whispers, the talks of a possible coming death. Creator isn’t naïve enough to believe that the Servamps won’t eventual act.
None of the Servamps are present for the last birth.
Creator waits patiently for blood red eyes to blink awake, making sure a smile is present. When the vampire awakens Creator places a hand on his soft ebony locks (like he did for every one of them) and gently rubs his head.
Creator almost calls the others out of reflex but doesn’t, Tsubaki is a secret, and cannot know his siblings right now at least. Creator almost feels saddened, Sloth had been present for every one of his sibling’s births, and the emergence of a new brother was one of the few times the vampires came together.
But gone were those days. Melancholy would just have to be content without the warmth and camaraderie of his older siblings. Until Tsubaki decides for himself when he wants to fulfill Creator’s only request of him.
“Welcome to eternity, Who is Coming of Melancholy.”
Tsubaki is raised in near isolation and Creator knows that Melancholy cannot remain alone forever. The concept of Subclasses is usually a lesson taught by one of the other Servamps and something that is done long after the vampires leave home.
Creator is guilty though, Tsubaki does not deserve to exist alone.
Melancholy leaves too early, but Creator makes sure that Tsubaki departs with a lasting image of warmth and pride.
Creator can tell that time is up.
The vote is the last time all seven Servamps are together.
It’s chaotic and there is no trace of laughter or familial warmth.
It finally comes down to Sloth and he doesn’t make his decision lightly.
Sleepy Ash was the first, and ironically, is the last one Creator sees when the darkness overtakes.
The Servamps break apart.
Sloth sleeps once it’s over. He dreams of smiles and nights surrounded by six other bodies.
Pride cannot bring himself to go anywhere near their now abandoned land.
Envy drifts alone, he doesn’t seek his siblings and they do not seek him.
Wrath dedicates her time to her Eves once she’s tempered her raging anguish.
Greed is lost in a sea of grief; he’s lost too much too soon. His heart breaks and his mind cracks.
Gluttony loudly states his apathy in the ending; he won’t allow himself to drown in the despair.
Lust grieves and finds solace in giving love to orphans in a similar manner that Creator once did.
Elsewhere Melancholy mourns and cries.
The tree that witnessed everything from the arrival of that person to creations and long nights to the final days begins to wither.
The land around it, once inviting grows cold and desolate, the flowers once lovingly cared for die.
The tree breaks.