It was the hardest part, keeping them clean. The feathers had a way of holding onto odor, and it forever bothered him, sometimes to distraction. The new ones were free from the wear and tear and smells, but the the plucking had left behind smudges which had to be cleaned away, one shimmering green and purple variegated feather at a time. The sheen under the ever-present candlelight had an almost calming effect as he very gently washed each calamus, having care not to wet the actual vane, then laid them gently back into the small chest where he'd been keeping them while he collected them. It had taken months, but he finally had enough.
The process was tedious, but the concentration soothed his mind, and made him focus enough that Justice stayed quiet. For now.
He watched Del change. Muscled shoulders slipping into her housecoat, dark hair hanging loose down her back. She turned just enough that her bright blue eyes caught his gaze for just a moment. The smile that ghosted her face was s