Walking Away

Walking Away
by Addie Fielding
April 2001

Introduction & Disclaimer

This is cross-over between Storm Constantine’s Wraeththu and Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles.

Warning: NC-17 adult situation – m/m.

Spoilers: None for the Vampire Chronicles, as this is set in the future. For Cal, this is set in the period he was wandering after the “death” of Pell, his lover.

Sequels: And The Tale Is Told

All items contained on these pages are non-profit amateur fiction. The Enchantments of Flesh and Spirit, The Bewitchments of Love and Hate, The Fulfilments of Fate and Desire and all characters named in those books are the copyright of Storm Constantine and her publishers. All characters named in the Vampire Chronicles, are copyright of Anne Rice and her publishers. No infringement on the copyrights are intended. These stories are for personal enjoyment only and should be reproduced, electronically or otherwise, only for this purpose and never for profit of any sort.

To contact the author, email addief@usermail.com.

Walking Away

– 1 –

The night was cold, wet and blustery. I was tired beyond belief, bedraggled beyond recognition and starving. My horse had fallen by the wayside about ten miles back, my feet were now sore and the straps on my pack were rubbing my shoulders. In other words, I felt like shit. As I trudged over a small rise I saw shelter up ahead in the form of an old farm house. I couldn’t see any movement and as there were no lights in the windows, or at least the gaps where glass would have once been, I presumed it was deserted.

With relief and a little caution I crept inside, pulling the rotten door off its hinges accidentally. Dropping my bag onto the floor I collapsed on top of it. After shutting my eyes for about ten minutes, I began to feel stiff. The cold was taking hold and if I didn’t light a fire soon I would die. Scrabbling around on the floor, using only the intermittent light from the moon, I found some kindling, which was probably some broken furniture, and lit a fire in the grate. No need for matches of course, my ability to set fire to the wood, by the power of my mind had always been helpful. I also tried to warm up the room using a similar mind control, but with the door gone, the cold wind overpowered me.

I huddled in the front of the fire’s meagre warmth, wrapping a blanket around my shoulders. After a while I stopped shivering and sat down on the floor with my knees up. Now if I could just find something to eat. I grabbed my bag and fossicked about in it, sure there was a dry biscuit still lingering underneath my clothes. It was stale and nearly broke my teeth – but it staved off starvation.

As I munched quietly, I became aware of a slight movement, just a flickering shadow, caused by the firelight, perhaps. I readied myself just in case it was more than that. I held my breath, tensed my muscles and listened for any sound. Nothing! I let out a long sigh and went back to tackling my biscuit. I wish I hadn’t. I felt strong arms around my chest and cold hands over my mouth, cutting off my scream. With every ounce of strength, and my strength is considerable, I fought off my attacker. I used every trick in the book – clawing, kicking and biting and eventually my attacker let go of me.

This gave me a second to stand up and face him.

“Shit you’re strong,” my attacker snarled at me, then he stood up straight with his hands on his hips. “I could still overpower you in a second, you realise, but…”

“But what?” I snarled back. “I don’t think it would do me any good.”

“Oh, and why’s that?” I stared at him. He was stunningly handsome, with hair the same colour as mine, but a little shorter, and his eyes – my God, they were iridescent, giving out a light of their own in the semi darkness. In fact, I wondered at first, how I could see him so clearly, then I noticed that his skin was so white it was luminescent. “Shit! What are you?”

“One question at a time, if you wouldn’t mind,” he answered, with a strong clear voice.

I backed away from him, sensing a power beyond my understanding. He remained motionless and I could hear him sniggering in my head. “Well, which question do you want me to answer?”

“Well, perhaps the second one.” I said lamely, as I looked about trying to find a way to escape from him.

“My name’s Lestat.” He said softly, then he squatted down on his haunches by the fire, rubbing his pale hands together.

“Cal.” I replied, still staying as far away from him as possible. “But you didn’t really answer my question.”

“I don’t think you really want to know the answer.” He said, turning to look at me as I huddled like a frightened human.

“Well maybe you could answer the first question then.” My voice was shaking. Shit Cal, I thought, pull yourself together. If this freak wanted to kill you, he would have done it by now.

“Exactly!” He said out loud, commenting on my thoughts. “Come over by the fire, you look like you are freezing.”

He moved to one side to give me room and I sidled a little towards him, still extremely wary.

“Why wouldn’t it do you any good to overpower me, Lestat?” I asked him the question again.

“Persistent little bugger, aren’t you?” He picked a piece of wood off the floor and flicked it into the fire. We both watched it begin to burn.

“Well I have been called that by quite a few people, in fact I can actually be quite annoying.”

He laughed softly. “You are one of those hybrids aren’t you?”

“Freaks, you mean.” I snapped.

“No more of a freak than I am, Cal, I can assure you of that.”

I believed him. He had bowed his head now and his golden hair was covering the sides of his face. It seemed that he only required the same as I had a half an hour before. Shelter from the freezing rain and a little warmth. “You’re not human, are you?” I finally found the nerve to ask him.

“It seems we both share that fate, Cal. Have you seen any around, by the way?”

“Not for a couple of days. There’s a settlement about two days ride South from here, where there were a few. A couple of them vanished mysteriously while I was there.”

“That was my doing.” He whispered nonchalantly.

“You! Are you saying you killed them?”

“That’s what you do, isn’t it Cal? Kill all the humans.”

“Only if they attack me first, Lestat. Is that why you killed them?”

“No!”

“And you call me annoying. God, so far you haven’t given me a straight answer.” I snapped at him.

“I drank their blood.” He said softly, still not looking up.

“Shit!”

Slowly he turned to look at me and I grimaced at what I saw. He was showing me his fangs.

“Shit!” I said again and began to back away from him again.

“It’s all right Cal. It’s human blood I need. Well I should rephrase that. It’s human blood I want. I can live without it, but it’s boring.”

“Why don’t you want my blood?” I asked him, mentally kicking myself for the stupidity of the question the second it left my lips.

“Well up until now, Cal, I have had no need to taste it. Are you offering me yours?”

I stood up quickly and made a move towards the door, but he grabbed my leg so fast that I toppled to the ground. He had his boot on my back and was staring down at me. “Skittish, aren’t you?”

“Are you a fucking vampire, or something?” I tried to push him off, but he held me fast.

“Oui, I’m a fucking vampire, Cal. Now you know.”

– 2 –

Lestat let me stand up after I had promised him I wouldn’t try to run away again. He kept reminding me of how cold and wet it was outside. I still wasn’t sure what was worse, the foul weather or the thought of being cooped up for the night with a blood-sucking demon.

I rubbed my arms vigorously, then found a lump of wood to sit on, as far away from him as I could. He kept glancing at me, then looking back to the fire. “It really is much warmer over here.”

“Hmmmm!” I replied sullenly. “I’m fine here, thanks.”

“What brings you out alone, travelling in weather like this, Cal? I thought you all hung around in tribes.”

“I don’t have a tribe any more. But if we’re asking questions, I thought you hung around in covens or something.”

“Touche!”

“Well?”

“I’m estranged from my fellow vampires, if you must know. In fact, most of the time we prefer our own company. I haven’t actually seen any of them for a few years now. I do sometimes wonder though, how they are faring in this changing world.”

“Are there many vampires around, Lestat? I mean you’re the first one I have come in contact with.”

“Oh, we are around, Cal. I’ve seen a few, but they are laying low. From what I’ve heard you Wraeththu don’t taste too good.”

“I didn’t realise you had such discerning tastes.” I replied. I was beginning to feel a little more comfortable with him. He seemed like me in a way. Lost, lonely, perhaps even a little confused about everything that was happening about him.

“Not discerning, really. It’s just that your blood does funny things to us…well so I’ve heard anyway. I haven’t been up for very long, only a few months actually.”

“Up…what do you mean by, up?”

“I’ve been underground – having a rest so to speak.”

“Buried! Is that what you mean? Can you do that? That’s what I feel like doing sometimes.”

“You like asking lots of questions, don’t you, Cal?” He was smiling at me and I could feel myself becoming remotely attracted to him in a sick sort of way. “Oui, I was buried. It’s quite relaxing. I feel quite refreshed again – almost ready to go back…” he didn’t finish his sentence. He rested his head in his hands. “If it’s still there, that is.”

“Where’s home, Lestat?”

“That’s the trouble, Cal. I don’t know any more. Everything has changed so much. Places and cities that I knew before, no longer exist now. In fact the whole damn country seems to have changed so much I’m beginning to wonder if I came up on another planet.”

“I feel that way sometimes. I used to live in a city called Chicago, but its a ghost town now. All my human family died long ago…my only true friend…my lover, is dead. I think I know how you feel, Lestat.”

“I’m sorry, Cal. Did he die very long ago?”

“Ten years, around about. His name was Pell. He had the most beautiful dark hair and fair skin, and was sweet and innocent. We were chesna.”

“Chesna? Care to explain. I keep hearing all these strange words like Varrs and Gelaming.”

“Chesna means we were a couple. We were in love, or so I thought. The Varrs and Gelaming are the names of tribes. The Gelaming are very power beings – highly evolved Hara, with strong psychic abilities.”

“Ah, I think I might have run into some of these Gelaming a few days ago.” Lestat mused, poking the fire now to get it going again. “I was in a town full of you guys,” he nodded his head in my direction. “So I thought it would be wise to lay low. I found a dilapidated barn to bury myself in for the day.”

Lestat realised I was staring at him, so he explained. “I can’t go out in the sun. Well not for long anyway. I burn easily.” He said with a grin. “Anyway, it was nearly dawn, and I was just covering myself with dirt, when I found my mind being probed by someone very powerful. I’ve come across hara before, Cal, but up until now I’ve been able to block my thoughts. Not from this fellow though. I caught a glimpse of him via his mind. He was all decked out in black, with a strange mask and a hat with feathers in it. Rather a handsome creature, with flowing golden hair. He even spoke my name and said for me to be on my way. It gave me the shivers, and until I dozed off I felt dizzy and very strange.”

“Where was this, Lestat? Was it far from here?” I was shit scared. Those pesky Gelaming, always seemed to be following me, too closely.

‘One town looks the same as another, Cal. I have no idea where it was. I had the feeling though that there were more than just one of them.”

“Shit!”

“Not friends of yours then.”

I shook my head.

– 3 –

For a while we sat in companionable silence, until a strong gust of wind roared through the open doorway, bringing with it muddy sleet. We both stood up and swore at the same time. Then, as of one mind, we grabbed the wooden door off the floor and propped it up against the opening, using a few loose timbers to shore it up. Dusting off my hands I looked at him and smiled. “You know in a funny sort of way, Lestat, we look a little alike.”

“I thought that as soon as I saw you, Cal. Might have been one of the reasons why I didn’t suck you dry straight away.”

“Gee thanks,” I said sarcastically.

“Actually, I wasn’t hungry,” he replied, and sat down on the floor again.

It was still bloody cold, even with the doorway closed there was still a cold draft coming in the hole where the window was. I pulled the blanket over my shoulders again, and moving closer to him asked if he wanted to share it with me.

“Are you sure?”

“Well, Lestat, you might as well be warm.”

He sighed when I wrapped it around his shoulders and we snuggled together. “Did you have anyone special, Lestat?”

“Oui, I did. You know, Cal. This is another very strange coincidence, but when you described Pell, you could have been describing my Louis. He too has black hair, curly and silky, falling to his shoulders, pale skin and the most beautiful green eyes you’ve ever seen.” He sighed again.

“Is he alive, Lestat?”

“I have no idea, Cal, but I hope so. The last time I saw him we had argued, and there was fire in those eyes of his. I loved him so much when he was passionate. So often he showed no emotion at all. I was angry with him, and told him I never wanted to see him again. Merde! I have no fucking idea how long ago it was. I just wish I knew what the year was. All I get from people is some strange prefix and the number 10. Have you any idea of the real date, Cal?”

“Well, I think I’m about 40 years old, Lestat.”

“Merde, you hold your age well.”

“I could say the same for you, Lestat.” He grinned.

“I was born in 2040, so that makes it round about 2080. Does that help?”

“God! I went to ground in 2026. A lot’s happened in 54 years, hasn’t it?”

“How old were you when you went to ground, Lestat?” I was no longer afraid of him, merely intrigued.

He had to think about it for a few seconds, and I thought I saw him actually trying to count on his fingers. Then he blurted out, “Christ! I’m about 300 years old. Don’t feel a day over 200 really.”

It was my turn to laugh. “I’m serious, Cal. I have been hanging around for 300 years. I’ve buried myself three times now. Louis could be anywhere by now. He could be underground as well. I wonder if I’ll ever see him again.”

“Were you chesna, Lestat?.”

“More than that, Cal. I was his maker. It was me who condemned him to darkness. He was my child, my brother, my friend and my lover. I miss him terribly.”

“I miss Pell terribly too. I miss him so much I hate him. No I love him, I need him. I want him back.”

Lestat sensed my sadness and put his hand on my knee. Such a simple gesture but it meant so much. He understood. This demon, with the sparkling eyes understood me perhaps more than anyone else had for a long time. Perhaps it was because he was feeling the same way.

We went quiet again, just looking into the fire and trying to keep warm. Then Lestat turned to me and I shivered a little when I saw the look in his eyes. He brought his hand up to my cheek and caressed it for a few seconds. His hand was so cold, it was like being touched by a block of ice. “I’m sorry Cal, I haven’t fed for a while, I’m afraid I will be too cold for you.”

I’m not sure when we both subconsciously made the decision to move our timid relationship up a notch. Maybe we were both just missing our loved ones so much. Maybe it was because we both felt so much alike. Maybe we just needed to.

“What would happen if you drank some of my blood? Would it warm you up?”

“Are you offering yourself to me, Cal?”

“Share breath with me first, Lestat. Then I will know whether I can trust you not to drain me.”

“Share breath?” Lestat looked a little confused but it only took a few moments for him to understand what I mean by the phrase. “Ahhh!” He whispered into my mouth as I taught him the finer points. Lestat’s breath was a crazy mixture of colours, feelings and sounds. I had never experienced anything quite like it before. I sensed his loss and confusion, but there was also a brightness about him, like sunlight trying to rise out of a dark hole. He did his best to reassure me that he wouldn’t hurt me. With a sense of trepidation, I pulled away from him, bared my neck, shut my eyes and grimaced.

“Oh, don’t be a wimp, Cal. It will hurt a little for a second or two, then you will feel only pleasure.” He was smiling as he bent his head to my throat, and I felt the sharp, intense pain as his fangs sunk into my skin. My whole body convulsed but his hands held me firmly. Then I sunk into oblivion, filled with a tingling pleasure akin to aruna at its purest level. He withdrew from me, and licked at the wound on my neck. I touched it tentatively and it was completely healed. Then I stared at him. His skin had taken on a pink hue and his lips were red. His tongue darted out and it was still covered with my blood.

For a moment he just stared off into the distance, with a glazed look in his eyes. I was worried at what my blood might have done to him and I touched his hand. He jumped, but his hand was quite warm. “Well, are you feeling sick or anything? Was it caustic to you?”

He groaned out loud and it was my turn to jump, but he just smiled at me. “God Cal! That was outstanding. So much stronger than human blood, but I can see why any fledglings might find it a little overwhelming. I can still feel its power, right down in my toes. Oooohhhh!! I am going to try some more of that next time I meet one of you guys.”

“Well there are a lot of us around now.” I was eyeing him suspiciously, worried that if he enjoyed my blood so much he might want some more.

“It’s all right, Cal. I keep my promises. I won’t take any more. But you were delicious.”

“So glad you thought so,” I replied sarcastically.

He laughed at me then bent his head to my face. I started to push him away but realised very quickly that he just wanted to share breath again. This time his mouth was warm and I daringly ran my hands up underneath his jumper. I could feel little goose bumps rising up on his skin. Ah! The old charm was working. He allowed me to remove his jumper, then he slipped out of his jeans and stood upright in front of the fire. Its gentle warm glow reflected on his skin, which seemed to be sparkling. I stood up and turned to face him as he removed my jacket and shirt, and very slowly undid my belt.

“I haven’t done this for a while, Cal.”

“Well you are certainly not out of practice, Lestat.” His hands pushed my pants down over my hips and squeezed my buttocks. Oh my, what had I gotten myself into? This was turning out to be quite an adventure and I was a little afraid. His organ was hard already. I had almost forgotten what a human penis looked like, then noticed he was staring at my ouana-lim with wide eyes.

“What the hell?”

“Oh this thing,” I said to him, touching myself lightly. “Don’t worry Lestat, I’ll get rid of that for you.”

“Just exactly how will you do that?”

“You’ll see,” I whispered into his ear with ease as we were almost exactly the same height. I grabbed the blanket, and laid on the ground on top of it. Within seconds he was lying next to me his hands caressing my hard, battle weary body. Mine were doing the same, as we moaned into each other’s mouths. His hair was falling over his face as I closed my eyes and told him to take me. He hesitated, glanced down between my legs and swore. “Merde! It’s gone. How fucking convenient.”

He didn’t hesitate when he entered me, with his rock hard penis. I knew he was holding back, being gentle with me and for that I was eternally grateful. Aruna with him, was wild. His strength was greater than mine, but our passions were equal. At the moment of orgasm I heard him cry out a name. Louis! I didn’t mind for word that escaped my lips was…Pell!

– 4 –

I lay on my back by the fire, my clothes roughly yanked on to stop me from shivering. I could see the first rays of the sun streaming through the window and turned to shake Lestat. He had been snoring loudly for the last hour or so, his naked back against the dying embers of the fire. His steely grey eyes gleamed at me and his handsome face lit up in a wide grin.

“Are you feeling OK Cal?” He brought his hand up to caress my face. “Thanks for last night, I think I needed some warmth and pleasure.”

“The pleasure was all mine, Lestat, but don’t you have to do something about that?” I said to him, pointing at the dawn.

He sat up and looked about, then rose up languidly and stretched like a big cat. I swear he even let out a low purring sound. He glanced down at me. “Well I’m off to dig a hole, will you still be around tonight?”

“I haven’t really decided yet. Do you want me to be?”

“Perhaps we could travel together for a while, Cal. You could fill me in a bit more on what’s happening in the world. But only if you feel like it.”

“I’ll think about it.” I answered him with a smile. I wasn’t sure how I felt about the situation. A night of mutual gratification was one thing, but did I want to travel with him? I watched him go out into the little yard at the back of the cottage and dig himself a grave. It was swift and efficient and he gave me a salute as he went down into the ground and covered himself up. I wondered how on earth he could breath under the ground, or maybe he didn’t need to breath. He was an enigma. I had always imagined vampires to be ugly, dark creatures, with black evil souls. Lestat seemed almost opposite, with human feelings and desires.

I stood by the open window for several minutes, pondering my situation. If I thought I was confused and lonely, how must he be feeling? Almost everything he had ever known had been destroyed. The world was a crazy place and sometimes I didn’t feel like I fitted in, any more than a vampire did . I shuddered thinking about him in the ground, then turned to pack up my bag. My stomach growled loudly from hunger and I knew that even if I came back to seek him out again, I would need to find food first.

I scanned the path on either side of the cottage, and when I was sure there was no one about, I headed off. The day was almost as bad as the previous night had been, cold and wet and I shivered consistently in my inadequate clothing. My feet were still sore and I began to limp quite badly. Suddenly the aroma of food cooking, invaded my nostrils and my stomach growled again. “Down boy.” I whispered to myself and continued limping until I could see where the cooking smells were coming from.

Two hara were hunched around a camp-fire, cooking some small animal. I didn’t care what it was, it smelled so good I was salivating. As I approached, one of the hars jumped up and drew a crude knife, holding it up towards me. “I mean you no harm, tiahaar, I was just wondering if I could share some of your food.”

“Where did you come from? Are you alone?” He growled at me. I nodded but noticed he was still staring around frantically.

“What are you afraid of? I’m weak, I have no weapons…the worst I could do would be to knock you down as I fell over from starvation.”

He relaxed a little at my joke, but continued to look about. He friend had stood up now and was doing the same, swearing and cursing under his breath. I held out my hands, trying to show them I was telling the truth, but all I could do was stare at the food cooking over the fire. After a few minutes one of them said to me. “All right, it all seems clear. We don’t have much to share, but you can join us.”

I sighed with relief and flopped to the ground, leaning back against my pack. I shut my eyes and let the smell of the cooking meat waft over me. I opened my eyes to see my new friends staring at me. “Well, do you want to eat or not? You seem very tired.”

I realised I must have fallen asleep on my pack and made a face at them. “Sorry, I had a bit of a hard night last night.”

“Here.” One of them thrust a leg of meat towards my face. I chewed into it with relish. It tasted delicious, even though it was tough and slightly undercooked. They also had a pot of some strange concoction of roots and vegetables, which they spooned out into a metal dish, and passed to me also. By the time I had gorged myself, tiredness overcame me again and I curled up under my blanket on the hard ground and snoozed.

I could feel the warmth of the fire at my back and as I drifted off to sleep I thought of my strange, but erotic night with Lestat and wondered if I would ever see him again. I hoped so. My dreams were of food and fires, nothing more than simple comforts, until I began to feel very uncomfortable. I had an irritating pain in my back and wrists. Forcing myself to open my eyes, I soon understood the reason for this. My arms were tied behind my back and I had been propped up against a tree, it’s rough bark digging into my back.

“What the hell…” I squawked, and was greeted with a punch to my face.

I reeled at the pain, and shut my eyes for a few seconds, until it subsided. At first I thought my new friends had tied me up to rob me of all my worldly possession, which consisted of an old back pack and blanket, a battered saucepan, a few cooking utensils and some very smelly dirty old clothes. But then out of the corner of my eye I spied them in a similar state, tied to each other.

I looked about, shaking my head a little to clear my vision and saw two warriors standing a little way away from me. I couldn’t work out what tribe they were from, they seemed a mixture of Varr and Uigenna. Either way, I didn’t recognise either of them and certainly didn’t like the look of them. I did consider mentioning my past association with both of the aforementioned tribes, but thought better of it. They were most probably deserters from some army, or merely mercenaries. They were rummaging through my pack and cursing. They had probably come across my smelly socks in the bottom.

“You won’t find anything.” I growled at them. One of them looked up, his piercing black eyes boring into me, a sneer on his face. He had a scar that went from his chin right up to the side of his right eye. I shuddered. He came over to me and kicked my leg. “What are you doing wandering around here? Are the three of you together?”

“Nope, I don’t know those two.” I nodded in their direction. “I’m just a traveller.”

“Well its a dangerous place to be travelling. Very dangerous. In fact I don’t think we can let you travel any more.” As he sneered at me, the scar changed shape and wrinkled up the whole side of his face. It was nasty. He caught me staring at it and ran his finger down its length.

“Like it? One of Terzian’s mob gave this to me. I cut his guts out and ate them for dinner.”

“Tasty, were they?” I replied, with my usual witty repartee and was answered with another hard punch to the side of my face. By the time I came to again, it was late afternoon. I was still tied up. My head hurt like hell and I needed to pee. I lifted my head and saw that my two friends were dead, lying in pools of their own blood. Shit, I thought. I’m next. Scar-face looked up at me and grinned. “So you’ve finally come to have you? About fucking time. My knife finger is getting itching and we have to find shelter for the night.”

I watched him come towards me, menacingly twirling the knife around in his dirty fingers. I tried to stand up and face him bravely, but tumbled over flat on my face. I hadn’t realised they had tied my legs together as well. I groaned, my mouth full of dirt then turned my face to see his boots coming towards me. I wasn’t going to die without a fight, and struggled to stand up again. By the time I had managed this feat scar-face was lying on the ground and I could hear a skirmish behind my back.

“Just as well I came looking for you, Cal.” Lestat had just finished off the other mercenary and was standing there smiling at me.

– 5 –

“Do you always find yourself in situations like that?” Lestat questioned me, with an amused look on his face. He was flushed, so I presumed he had taken a sup from one of the hara at his feet.

“I would have managed.” I snapped back.

“Yeah, sure you would,” his grin widened as he came to untie my hands and feet. “Well, you owe me one, Cal.”

I rubbed my wrists, tried to brush some of the dirt off my face then tripped over again. “Shit, I thought you had untied my feet.”

“I’m not your bloody nursemaid. Now let’s get out of here. I saw some of those Gelaming creatures back near the old house when I got up tonight. They’re looking for you.”

I grimaced, stood up slowly, feeling slightly dizzy as I did, then grabbed my bag and followed Lestat through the trees. He was going so damn fast that within a couple of seconds I couldn’t see him anywhere. He was beginning to make me angry. I wasn’t sure if he was being purposely annoying, or if he was just an arsehole.

“I heard that.” He was right in front of me, so close that I could feel his breath on my face.

I swore out loud and dropped my bag on his foot. “Well that makes two of us, Cal. Are you being purposely clumsy?”

“Where did you come from?” I snarled at him, when I had finally regained my composure.

“Now you see me, now you don’t.” He chanted and disappeared again.

So this was how it was going to be. He was a bloody comedian. Sheesh, of all the people to run into… I was still mumbling under my breath when he came up behind me.

“Sorry, Cal. I think that har back there was full on some sort of potent grog. It affects me for a short while. Thank God I don’t get hangovers.”

“Bloody hell, you’re not only a blood-sucking vampire, your drunk as well.”

“That’s not a very nice way to talk to your saviour, Cal. Now about that favour you owe me.”

“What could I do to help you? You’re stronger than me, can read minds better than I can.”

“Ah, that I can, Cal. But there is one vampire who’s mind I cannot read.”

“Really, the amazing Lestat, comedian, illusionist, strong-man, can’t read someone’s mind?”

“Sarcastic little shit, aren’t you?” His mood had changed suddenly and now he seemed morose and sullen. “My fledgling, Louis. I can’t read his mind. Never have been able to. It’s been the bane of my life. Always misunderstanding each other…always arguing. We can never really tell each other how much we care. I want you to find him for me.”

“What? You want me to find your fledgling? How the hell do you think I will be able to do that?”

“Well my burial place was some 20 miles South of here, not far from New Orleans, where Louis and I lived most of our time together. I was hoping that he might still be in the area somewhere.”

“What if he hasn’t survived, Lestat? Or what if he’s buried himself like you did?”

“Louis is a survivor.” He answered me, wistfully. Then he turned away quickly and I swear I could see his eyes glistening with tears. So he really loved this, Louis. I felt a lump rising in my throat as I thought of my own loved one, and I touched him gently on the arm.

“I’ll help if I can, Lestat.”

“Merci.”

Lestat seemed serious and I scanned his mind. His thoughts were on his loved one Louis. He was giving me a description of him. I could see him, standing in a garden, with his black curly hair falling softly over his shoulders, his green eyes reflecting the water in the little pool where he was throwing small pebbles. As he looked up, I sighed, just at the same time as Lestat did. Louis was certainly worth searching for.

As luck would have it, we found some fine horses a little way up the road. We assumed they had belonged to the beasts who had tried to murder me. They had packs of supplies on their backs, food, weapons and clothes. I found a warm jacket in one of them and put it on. We mounted the horses and rode off to the south. I wasn’t sure whether I could help Lestat find Louis, but I would certainly give it a try.

– 6 –

We rode together at night, and during the day I slept near to where Lestat buried himself. I wasn’t much of a guardian though, as I was nearly always exhausted and had to sleep as well. Lestat kept me busy all night, either talking, helping me to hunt small animals for food, or enjoying each others needy bodies. Our aruna was ferocious, our loneliness and despair feeding our desires for closeness.

Louis was never far from his thoughts and as he continually told me of their adventures, I began to feel envious. Pell and I had been together for such a short time, and to have him so viciously taken, pained me constantly. Lestat seemed aware of my melancholy and tried to cheer me up, even though he was in the same state – we certainly made a good pair.

We would meander from being morose to acting silly. Chasing each other on our horses one minute, then in tears the next. It was tiring, but I was beginning to enjoy his company.

One evening we came across a small group of hara, who had taken over a run down old school building. There were still swings and slides in the yard, and the rooms retained evidence of human children, with broken blackboards, small chairs and tables with even a few faded paintings on the walls.

The hara were all inside when we arrived and we slinked in the shadows around the windows, peering in at them. Several of them were paired off, and all we could see were bundles under blankets. We shied away and hid behind what was once a toilet block, trying to keep warm under our one blanket. Lestat confessed that he felt like sustenance. He seemed almost embarrassed to confess this to me as he was always reassuring me that he didn’t need to feed very often. (For that I was grateful.)

I could feel him next to me, his body hard and cold and he was shivering slightly. I knew how blood affected him. It made him warm and he was certainly more pleasant to snuggle up to on a cold night with it coursing through his veins. I suggested he wait for one of them to come outside for a call of nature, and he agreed with me. By the time I heard footsteps shuffling on the concrete floor of the toilet block, I was half asleep. I felt Lestat’s body leaving mine and opened my eyes just enough to see him waiting in prey for the hapless har.

With a great effort, I sat up and pulling the blanket around my shoulders I watched him in the moonlight. His eyes had taken on a predatory glow, and he was licking his lips. He was a fine specimen as he stealthily came up behind the har. I was mesmerised. I had wondered if he would kill swiftly and tear out the throat of his victim, but his kill surprised me in its seductiveness.

The har finished his business then turned to see Lestat, standing magnificently in the dark, his skin shimmering, his pink tongue running across his lips. I was quivering slightly with anticipation watching this death dance…as Lestat scooped the har into his arms and held him almost reverently for a few seconds. The har stared into Lestat’s eyes and I watched Lestat bring his head down to his throat. I heard the har’s sharp intake of breath, then watched as his tense body began to go limp. A gentle sucking noise interspersed with a few sensual moans, were coming from Lestat as he rocked in a motion like that of aruna.

This was one of the most arousing things I had ever witnessed. My own body was reacting to this spectacle, as Lestat continued to swoon against his victim. Then I heard a soft thud as the har was dropped to the ground. Lestat leant against the wall and breathed deeply for a few minutes, with his eyes closed and his arms about his own body. Then he opened his eyes and looked over at me.

“Well, what do you know, Cal. I found images of one of our kind in his mind as he succumbed to me.”

“Any one you know?”

“I do believe so, Cal. From the description of this other vampire, it could be an acquaintance of mine, Santino. Unfortunately he is a rather elusive creature, but he was here only a day or two ago.”

“That’s good news, Lestat. Can you find him with your telepathic abilities?”

“If he wants to be found. That’s what I mean by elusive.”

Just as we were discussing this other vampire, we heard more footsteps. We both peered around the corner and saw several hara coming in our direction, and from the looks of them they were expecting trouble; with weapons at the ready and serious faces.

“I think it’s time we went for a ride, don’t you, Cal?” Lestat said with a grin on his face.

I didn’t need any encouraging, and within seconds we were on our horses, riding off into the night. “So, do you want me to try and find this, Santino, for you?”

He smiled across at me, his blonde mane flowing behind him. “Let’s find a quiet spot to stop for the night, Cal. Then we can concentrate on sending out some feelers.”

When we finally felt safe from pursuing hara, we slowed the horses to a walk, and eventually found a small cave where we could light a fire and settle down. Lestat brushed passed me with his hand as we unsaddled the horses. He was warm and I shivered. Sensing how I was feeling he pulled me into to him to share breath. He was full of sunshine and rosy hues of pink and gold…and I sensed in him a desperate need. Before we even had a chance to tether the horses properly, we were rolling on the soft earth, biting and clawing, snarling in each others ears and tearing at each others clothes.

As I lay bruised and sore afterwards, I wondered if I could survive travelling with him for much longer. We were using our pent up emotions against each other in a desperate attempt to keep them at bay. We never had time to try and find Santino afterwards, for the sun was beginning to rise. I hid myself behind some bushes the next day as he slumbered in the ground, and pondered our next move. I was exhausted, tired beyond belief, but couldn’t sleep. Consequently, the next night, I was like a zombie and Lestat was bursting out of his skin. Hara blood, certainly kept him going for quite a few days, and of course his sleep always seemed to be restful. It was the sleep of the dead, after all.

Unfortunately, the next evening saw the weather closing in on us again, with a heavy mist that lingered low to the ground making vision poor. Well my vision anyway, Lestat didn’t seem to have too much trouble seeing where he was going and galloped on ahead. After a while I could no longer hear his horse, nor see any further than a few feet in front of me. I pulled out the knife I had found in the packs and held it at the ready.

I slowed my horse down, squinting my eyes, trying to see into the grey murky clouds that surrounded me. After a while I became aware of someone or something lurking behind me. I dismounted and took cover behind a large boulder. “Lestat, is that you?”

Before I was able to let out another sound I felt strong arms around my waist, cold lips against my throat, and the knife being ripped from my hand. At first I thought it was Lestat playing another trick on me, but this wasn’t Lestat, for I could see jet black hair falling about my face. “Stop, please…” I begged, but the soft lips became fangs that sunk into me with a stinging pain. My vision blurred, I felt my body, almost of its own volition trying to struggle feebly against my attacker, then blackness began to enfold me.

Almost as soon as a feeling of bliss began to take hold of me, I found myself dumped unceremoniously on the ground. For a few seconds I was dazed, then shook my head and looked up into a pair of inky black eyes, surrounded by a face with a curious expression on it.

“You know Lestat?”

I wasn’t sure if it was a question or an accusation.

– 7 –

The creature lifted me up to face him, his strong hands clutching my shoulders, a curious expression still on his face as he scanned my mind. I tried to block his probing but he was extremely powerful; as strong as the Gelaming adept’s. “Where is he?”

“Fucked if I know.” I was angry with this vampire for attacking me, and angry with Lestat for abandoning me.

“He’s close by isn’t he?”

“We were travelling together, then he disappeared into the fog. Are you Santino?”

He looked a little taken aback, so I explained quickly that Lestat had discovered he was in the area. “Were you looking for me?”

“I’m not sure if Lestat was looking for you, but he is searching for Louis.”

“Ah! I should have known. His green-eyed fledgling.”

“Are you going to let me go now?” I said to him firmly, as his hands were beginning to hurt where they were digging in.

“Why should I let you go, I haven’t finished my supper.”

I groaned, then screamed out loud. “Lestat, where are you?”

Lestat appeared at Santino’s side the second I shouted his name. He smiled at me, then nodded politely to Santino. “Cal, do you have to make so much noise? You never know who might be wandering around these parts.”

I snarled at him.

Santino nodded back to Lestat, then let go of his grip on me. I staggered backwards, and just managed to stand upright. Lestat reached out, took my arm gently and let me lean on him for a few seconds. Santino must have taken more blood from me than I had first realised. “Santino, he’s my friend, why did you try to kill him?”

Santino’s expression changed then, as realisation dawned on him. “You set this up, didn’t you Lestat? You put your friend at risk just to flush me out?”

“I knew you had to be around somewhere, Santino. The har I killed just a little while ago had seen you last night, but you were blocking all your thoughts. Any how, would you have let me seek you out?”

“No.” He replied gruffly.

“Well, it worked then didn’t it?” Lestat was grinning again, but I was furious with him for putting me in such a dangerous position. I pushed away. “You idiot. Santino could have killed me…”

“Cal, Cal, calm down. I was watching the whole time. I knew that as soon as he saw me in your mind he would stop drinking.”

“Oh, thanks very much. What if he saw you too late?” I was about to turn around, jump on my horse and ride off, but Lestat grabbed my arm.

“I knew I was in your thoughts, Cal. There was no real danger. Now lets find a sheltered spot where we can get comfortable and talk.”

I was still angry with Lestat and very wary of Santino, but shelter and a place to lie down for a while to regain my strength sounded very appealing. Lestat lifted me up onto my horse then led us through the fog. I couldn’t see anything and it took all my will power to stay upright. Several times I swayed and nearly fell off, just managing to grab hold of the saddle in time. Santino seemed to blend into the darkness around us, and he was so quiet that I thought he had disappeared, but when Lestat finally halted my horse and helped me down, he appeared at out side.

As we walked a few metres, I saw a timber barn, that seemed to be mostly in tact. We entered through a small doorway and found a cosy corner to sit down. I laid down with a bundle of musty hay for a pillow. Lestat and Santino were talking very softly to each other, and I couldn’t quite make out what they were saying. I was very drowsy, but fought to stay awake. I almost trusted Lestat not to attack me again, but I wasn’t too sure of Santino. His eyes still held a predatory gleam, and every now and then he licked his lips. After a while, Lestat seemed aware of my discomfort and came over to reassure me that I would be safe.

“Does Santino know where your friend is?”

“He hasn’t seen him, but that’s not unusual as Louis tends to hide himself very well. But he’s in the general area. Santino has been aware of him floating about the edges of society for quite a while. They avoid each other at all costs. Vampires are solitary creatures, Cal. Most of the time anyway.” He added wistfully.

Lestat has a handsome face, with fine features and vibrant eyes, but when he spoke of his friend, his eyes clouded over and his normally pliant lips, tightened and thinned with pain. I wanted to hold him in my arms and make love to him. He needed to be nurtured, but not by me. I wasn’t the one he wanted. I glanced over to Santino, but his darkly shadowed face showed not a spark of emotion. I wasn’t sure what lay behind this hard exterior of his. Did he feel as deeply as Lestat, or had the years made him cold and impervious to any remnant of feeling?

Lestat turned to Santino then, and with silent eyes implored him to help further. Santino, for all his aloofness, seemed to be in awe of Lestat, and his eyes softened just for a second, before he closed them. Lestat shivered and reached out for my hand. I didn’t intrude into Santino’s thoughts, but was sure he was scanning for any information about Louis. He was so still, that he seemed like a statue. I couldn’t even detect the rise and fall of his chest as he breathed. At least I assumed he was breathing. Lestat, was almost opposite. He seemed jittery and nervous and tapped the fingers of his free hand against his thigh. The hand that was holding mine was becoming sweaty.

I have no idea how long Santino sat in this trance-like state, as I dozed off for a while. When I awoke Santino had gone and Lestat was leaning against the rough timber of the barn wall. “Oh good, Cal, your awake again. Are you feeling better?”

I sat up slowly, holding onto my head, as it felt like it was about to fall off my shoulders, then leant back against the wall next to him. “A little bit. Did Santino find him?”

“Oui!”

– 8 –

Lestat seemed almost reluctant now to seek out his fledgling. I couldn’t completely understand why, and as he had blocked his thoughts I had no way of finding out. From his body language though I got the feeling that he was terrified of confronting him.

I tried to reassure him, but he just turned away from me, bringing his hand up to his cheeks to wipe away a few tears.

“Do you want me to come with you when you find him?”

“Would you?”

“Yes of course I will, but it won’t be that bad, will it? I mean you were very close, weren’t you?”

“Oui, we were close, once. But you don’t understand, Cal, I never really told you the whole story before. I said that we had argued, and that I told Louis I didn’t want to see him any more. But there was more to it than that.”

“I won’t judge you, Lestat. Surely it couldn’t have been that bad.” Who was I to judge, afterall. What he had done couldn’t be any worse than crimes I had committed. I took hold of his hand but he snatched it away as though he had been burnt. I must have appeared crestfallen, because he quickly apologised.

“It’s all right, Lestat. I understand you are feeling distressed at the moment. But please tell me what happened between you and Louis, then maybe I might be able to help.”

“After all these years I cannot remember what the argument was about. I just know that we said some terrible things to each other and I threw him out of our apartment. Physically Cal, I picked him up and tossed him out through the door…which was closed at the time. He fell unconscious to the pavement a few steps down and didn’t move. But it didn’t end there. When I went to pick him up and make sure he was all right, he attacked me, with his fists and feet and fingernails. I was shocked and let him claw into me for a few seconds, then I lost control again. I hit him so hard Cal, that if he had been mortal I would have killed him. Then I just walked away.”

“Do you know if he was all right? Did you contact him again?”

“He survived. I saw his brother David shortly afterwards. Louis was battered and bruised and so angry with me he wouldn’t come to the phone. I never saw him again.”

“Was it very long after that when you went to ground?”

“A couple of years. I travelled overseas for a while, but kept trying to contact him. Every time I did, however, he would hang up the phone. He never said a word to me. Letters I sent to him were returned, emails I sent bounced back. After a while I was so depressed that I buried myself as deeply as I could. I didn’t want to surface again.”

“Why did you resurface, Lestat?”

“I was dug up by a guy who was digging a well. It was quite frightening really, for me and the poor sod who found me.” He gave me a little grin which quickly disappeared. “Can you imagine what I must have looked like? Skin and bones, filthy dirty, sunken eyes, non-existent lips. I shudder when I think of it myself. He screamed and ran away so fast, that he probably never got a proper look. It took me a week or more to regain my strength, only to find myself in a strange land, with nothing left that I remembered.”

For a few moments I just stared at Lestat, wondering how hard it must have been for him, re-appearing like he did. “I’m sorry that you never had a chance to make it up to Louis. But surely after all these years he will at least let you talk to him.”

“Louis can be pretty stubborn, Cal.” He twisted his face into a grimace as he replied. “But maybe, just maybe he will listen to me.”

According to Santino, who seemed to be long gone, Louis was in a small settlement two days ride south of where we were. We headed off as soon as the sun set the next evening, and after the first night I wished that I hadn’t promised I would go with him. Lestat was morose and grumpy and either ignored me completely or jumped down my throat whenever I tried to speak to him. I had had enough, so when we finally settled in after a very long ride, I confronted him.

“Lestat, if you can’t at least be civil to me, I might as well leave you now.”

He turned to me, holding his saddle and from the look on his face I thought he was about to hit me. But his expression softened and he apologised for his behaviour, then dropped the saddle at my feet, took me into his arms and held me tightly. He was trembling, so of course I immediately forgave him. What followed next, helped us both through the rest of the night, until he had to bury himself again. His need was certainly great, and I was only too happy to oblige him.

The next evening he was still quieter than usual, but at least he talked to me as we rode through deep woods and over quickly running streams. If we hadn’t been in such a hurry, we might have actually appreciated the beauty of the country we traversed. After a few more hours hard riding, we came over a rise to a small town. Well it was more of a campsite, with tents, rough huts and camp fires dotted all about. The camp seemed to be populated mostly by humans, but there were a couple of hara about. After a few minutes we discovered that these hara were in charge, and the humans seemed to be comprised of a slave work force.

I scanned their minds, the human’s thoughts seemed more a jumble of incoherent rambling’s, but I managed to glean some interesting information from the hara who were present. I stared at Lestat as he opened his mouth in surprise at what we discovered. “My God, Louis must have changed. Can you read his mind, Cal?”

I certainly could. Louis’ thoughts were now coming through loud and clear. When I told Lestat what hut he was in, I thought he would barge straight over there, but he hesitated. I tried to work out how he was feeling but his face was as smooth as a mask. If it hadn’t been for the slight tremor in the hand that was holding the reins to his horse, I would have thought he was feeling no emotion what-so-ever.

“Do you want me to go?”

“No Cal, he could be dangerous. Louis hasn’t, well he never had a lot of control when I knew him. I’ll go, but you can come if you want.”

Of course I was going with him, nothing would have stopped me from witnessing this reunion. Before we got another twenty feet however, we found ourselves surrounded by humans and hara, and all of them were yelling at us. We tried to ignore them, by pushing our horses through the foray, which only made them shout louder. When a few weapons appeared in the hara’s hands, we stopped.

One of the hara came up to my horse. “You are not welcome here, please leave.”

“We’ve come to see Louis.” I answered, having just suddenly realised that I didn’t know if he had a surname or even if he still called himself by that name.

“Who’s Louis?”

I looked across at Lestat who was staring straight ahead.

“I am.” I heard a loud voice sounding out from the direction of the hut.

A slim, darkhaired vampire appeared in the doorway, and I immediately understood why Lestat needed to see him so desperately.

– 9 –

If I had thought that Lestat’s face, earlier, had been showing no emotion, then Louis’ face was like granite. His vivid green eyes were so cold and hard that I physically shivered when I looked into them. Out of the corner of my eye I noticed that Lestat shivered as well. Louis was extremely polite to him but very wary of me, as we were invited into his house.

From the outside, this house look crude, with rough wooden walls and an iron roof, but inside it was luxurious. The walls were covered in dark velvet curtains, the floors with thick woollen carpets and the furniture was low and comfortable. I could see Lestat looking about at his surroundings, his facade calm and controlled, but inside he was in turmoil. Louis had managed to block my intrusive thoughts completely, as he bade us to take a seat on one of the couches. I sunk deep into its cushions and tried to relax. Up until now, very few words had been spoken. Louis asked me if I would like something to drink, but when I shook my head, he dismissed the har who had escorted us in.

“So you’ve come up, have you?” Louis said softly to Lestat, his voice steady, but now his eyes showed a flicker of emotion.

“Oui.” Lestat seemed unable to answer in anything other than monosyllables.

For a second I thought I caught a glimpse of a quiver at the corners of Louis’ soft mouth. “Are you going to introduce me, Lestat?”

Lestat seemed confused at first, then looked over towards me. “Oh, of course, how rude of me, Louis. This is Cal, my friend.”

“So you are making friends with hara now, are you?” Louis said, with a touch of sarcasm in his tone.

“You certainly seemed to have made a few yourself, Louis.” Lestast waved his arms in the direction of the doorway.

“They’re not friends, Lestat.”

“Oh and just what is your relationship with them?”

They were raising their voices and I thought to myself that this reunion had not exactly begun as I believed Lestat had hoped it would. In his mind I had seen them embracing warmly, kissing each other’s cheeks, then spending some quiet time together in reminiscences. I delved quickly into Lestat’s mind and it was racing at a million miles per second, in fact I jumped right out again as it was quite painful. I grabbed my head, but he hadn’t even realised I had been in there.

“My relationship with them is purely one of convenience. They guard my day sleep, while I discipline any rogue slaves. Its very simple and works well for both of us.”

“Oh, but of course Louis. You were quite the expert once with slaves, were you not?”

I saw more than just a flicker of emotion cross Louis’ face then, as he tried to remain in control. I could tell he was hurt, and I guessed that this hurt ran very deep.

“And just how do you discipline these slaves?” Lestat looked as if he was about to break down completely. I felt like screaming at the two of them to stop acting like children and to acknowledge how much they had missed each other. It was evident to me, so why were they so blind to it?

“The slaves keep me alive, Lestat. I still prefer the taste of humans, over…” He looked at me as he said this and I cringed. At least he wasn’t going to kill me, at least not for my blood anyway. “…hara.” He finished.

“How long has this little arrangement been going on, Louis?” Lestat was determined, I would give him this much, but also very stupid, I think the time was rapidly approaching when I was going to have to step in and make them both see sense.

“A few years.” Louis was back to being formal again. “What have you been doing with yourself, Lestat?”

::Looking for you, Louis, looking for you:: I shouted into Lestat’s mind. ::Tell him how much you have missed him:: Lestat glared at me and seemed about to storm out of the house when I realised that Louis was staring at me. Oh God! Just because he had blocked me from reading his thoughts, didn’t mean he couldn’t read mine.

Louis turned his gaze from me to Lestat, then something happened that I would never have expected. Louis broke down. Tears sprang to his eyes and he stood up quickly and turned away from us. I could see his whole body shaking. ::Lestat, for God’s sake, go to him::

“Cal, shut up.”

::Lestat, go to him or I will drag you over there myself:: He looked at me, knowing that I could do no such thing, but also realising that it certainly would not stop me from trying.

“Lestat!” I snapped at him out loud and he jumped. I was giving him my fiercest glare and just as I was about to stand up he put out his hand to stop me. ::All right, I’m going::

Louis still had his body turned away from us as Lestat approached him slowly. With hesitant fingers he touched Louis’ hair. He flinched. I wanted to disappear, to sink into the couch so deeply that I became a ball of fluff, but Lestat turned back to me that instant and shook his head. ::Stay, Cal::

Lestat then reached out to Louis again and this time touched his shoulder gently and turned him around to face him. Louis was a complete mess, with blood tinged tears flowing freely down his face. His eyes had softened and in that moment he looked more human than any of the humans who were outside.

“Will you ever forgive me, Louis?”

Lestat touched Louis’ face and a flicker of a sad smile crept across it. By the Aghama, he was the most delectable creature I had ever laid eyes on, except for my Pellaz of course. Louis brought his hands up tentatively and laid them on Lestat’s shoulders. “I forgave you years ago Lestat, but you weren’t around to tell.”

“You did?”

“Oui, I did. I wanted you to suffer for a little while, but I had no idea you would take my punishment this severely. I searched for you, you know.” Louis’ voice was shaking now and he leant forward to kiss Lestat softly on the mouth.

“You did?”

Lestat seemed to be stuck for words. If he repeated himself once more I was going to have to kick him in the shins.

“I had everyone searching for you. David, Armand and even Marius. But eventually they came to the conclusion that you had buried yourself. Of course none of us had any idea where.”

Lestat went to speak, but Louis brought his fingers up to Lestat’s lips to stop him. “I looked for you for years, Lestat. I tried to glean information from everyone I met. But no one had seen you bury yourself. So I have been waiting.”

“You have?” I was about to stand up and thump Lestat on the back, in an effort to get him to say more than two words, when it all gushed out.

“Louis, Louis, Louis. I never meant to hurt you that badly. You know what my temper was like. I was sorry straight afterwards. God, I wept for you. I lost track of how many times I tried to contact you…but in the end…” He couldn’t finish, as his deep wracking sobs made it impossible.

I brought my hand up to my face and noticed my own silent tears. This was too much, I had to leave. Thoughts of Pell flowed into my mind and any second now I was going to be sobbing as well. Lurching towards the door, I felt a hand on my back. “Cal!”

Turning around I saw Lestat and Louis standing with their arms around each other. “Cal, thanks for being my friend.” I nodded, then it was my turn to break down. Seeing those two together made me feel so totally alone and bereft that it was no longer possible for me to stand. My knees buckled and I fell to the floor.

“Oh shit.” Lestat swore as he lifted me up and laid me on the couch. “Cal, I’m sorry, that was cruel of me to expect me to witness that. I know how much you are missing your loved one.”

Lestat’s face was a picture. He was trying so hard to commiserate with me, but the joy and happiness he was feeling at finding his loved one, shone through. “It’s all right, I’m happy for you both.” I managed to mumble. A hot drink was pushed into my hands and I looked up. Louis had called in the har and he was hovering about, trying not to notice all the emotional idiots drowning themselves in tears. He was dismissed quickly and harshly by Louis who knelt down beside the couch. “Make yourself at home, Cal. Lestat and I would like to be alone for a while.” I nodded, then managed a wink in Lestat’s direction. The grin on his face made me feel a little better.

I never saw them again that night, and as I was so exhausted, I slept for nearly 12 hours on the couch. When I awoke I was stiff and sore, with a crick in my neck that made it difficult for me to turn my head. I managed to shuffle over to the door and peered out. It was dusk and my two vampire friends would soon be rising. Then I changed that thought. They would probably wake up and start off right where they finished the night before. I was right. It was two whole nights before I saw them again.

Obviously the house har, had been given orders to see to my needs, and begrudgingly had provided me with food and a change of clothes. I never ventured far from the house, however, as it seemed to be a very hostile and unfriendly environment outside. I gathered it was some kind of a mining camp, as I saw bands of human slaves heading off in the morning with shovels and picks.

Lestat and Louis finally appeared on the third night. They were changed creatures, with animated happy faces and flushed skin. What a make-up session they must have had. Lestat chatted on about nothing much for a while, as Louis went about busying himself with some paperwork. Then it was decision time. I knew I would probably have to leave.

“You can stay for as long as you want, Cal.” Lestat said to me. “If you like you can help the hara with the slaves.”

I would like to get to know Louis a little better, I thought as I looked at the magnificent vampire sitting at his desk. I would love to share breath with him and…

Lestat interrupted my thoughts. “It’s not too late you know Cal, to do just that.”

“What?” I stared at him. “What are you trying to say, Lestat?”

He grabbed my arm and dragged me outside, then in a hushed voice said. “Louis is curious about you Cal. He thinks you are delightful, one of the most handsome hars he has ever met. I don’t think it would take much persuading to get him to spend some time with you.”

– 10 –

I was shocked beyond words at what Lestat had just told me, but also a little intrigued. Was Lestat just having me on, or was Louis really interested in me? I was certainly interested in him. Lestat just kept grinning. I wanted to smack him hard, but I knew that I would probably only hurt my hand if I did. He was giggling under his breath as he led me back into the house.

Now normally, the offer, or even the remote suggestion of enjoying aruna with any good looking har, or vampire, for that matter, would have me eager to get on with it. But for some reason I was as nervous as Swift had been at his feybraiha. Lestat was enjoying my discomfort and teasing me mercilessly, with crude little asides and jokes. Several times he had me blushing, then he started to laugh so hard he had to leave the room. Louis kept looking from him to me, then bowing his head. He was blushing as well.

I found myself alone with Louis, whom I knew was a gentleman, polite and slightly aloof when he wanted to be, but underneath that veneer he was almost as overtly sexual as Lestat. He was making eyes at me, performing a blatant seduction. He really was interested in me in *that* way. I thought he had said he didn’t enjoy har blood.

He smiled at me, “I’ve never really tried much of it, Cal.”

“Wh…what!” I stuttered, then realised that he had be infiltrating my thoughts for the past few minutes. God, I thought back, what had I been thinking – that he was incredibly alluring, that I wanted to ravish him on the spot…something like that. I coughed then found myself wringing my hands together. Pull yourself together, Cal. I berated myself. Louis laughed.

Was he laughing at me, or with me? “Relax Cal, I won’t hurt you.”

My mouth was hanging open. “Cal, the flies will get in. Now come here and make love to me.”

I never got the chance to reply to his invitation as his mouth was covering mine in a deep kiss. Sharing breath with him, was, in a way, more intoxicating that doing it with Lestat. He was all the colours of the rainbow, infused with warmth and the heady aroma of spiced honey. I fell into his arms unaware of my body, and after a few moments found myself spread out on the couch, devoid of my clothes and panting heavily. Louis was standing over me, slipping seductively out of his own clothes, in a dance of desire.

Moaning with lust I reached up for him. “I don’t quite know why I am doing this, Cal.” He began…as I pulled him down to me. “It’s just that you seem so different to the other hars I have met…there is something special about you.”

“Maybe you’ve heard of my spectacular abilities at performing aruna, Louis.” I said into his mouth as our lips touched again. “Maybe…” He whispered into my ear. “Then again, maybe one blonde haired vampire has just told me so much about you, Cal.”

“Really, and when did you find the time to talk, Louis?” I purred into the base of his throat.

He laughed softly, as his mouth covered my nipple, then I groaned out loud as his sharp little fangs bit into me. I arched my back as he drank, his mouth sucking almost delicately, his tongue rough like a cat’s. As I slipped into a swoon, I heard another voice saying Louis’ name, then mine. “Lestat.” I managed to slur.

Louis stopped his supping, licked up a small amount of blood on my nipple then slithered his body on top of mine. Strong arms came around behind me, then I felt myself being lifted up, and lowered back down. I was now jammed between the two of them. Lestat’s hands were caressing my chest, while Louis was moving slowly down my torso, licking and sucking at me as he went, until his head was between my thighs. I wasn’t sure how they were going to manage this. If Lestat wanted to penetrate me, my ouana-lim would disappear, but if Louis was sucking on it…my mind was reeling with these thoughts. But they had already worked it out. I felt Louis take me into his mouth, then Lestat impaled me on his organ.

The immediate pain caused me to scream out loud, but it wore off quickly as I was transported back in time to my first fumbling attempts at human sex with Seel. This wasn’t new to me, just long forgotten. We soon found our natural rhythm, as Lestat rocked me up and down and Louis’ mouth, continued to hold me in its strong succulent grip. I had no control, they were both far more powerful than me. I began to scream again, and clutched onto Louis’ head, forcing him to take me harder.

Lestat growled in my ear, then sunk his fangs into my neck. As he drank, I sank further into oblivion, until I found myself waking up alone on the couch, with the two of them standing over me. “I think we were too much for him, Louis.” Lestat had his arm around his fledgling and was caressing Louis’ stomach with his other hand.

“No…never…not too much.”

“But Cal, you passed out.”

“Did I?”

They turned to each other and began to share breath, their arms entwined around each other their hips grinding…I wanted to shout at them to stop…I wanted them to do it to me…I wanted to sleep. With all my will power I kept my eyes open, watching them slither to the floor and savagely attack each other. There was power there, beyond my control and comprehension. I had to leave before I became caught up in something I couldn’t extricate myself from.

Reluctantly I fell to the floor and found my clothes, then struggled into them, as all the time, their wild love-making continued unabated next to me. I began to crawl along the floor, trying to find the door, but in my weakened state I kept falling flat on my face. I groaned, and tried again. By the time I reached the door the room had fallen silent. I turned my head slightly, to see them both sitting cross legged watching me. “Leaving us, Cal?” Lestat questioned.

“Well, I thought I would leave you two alone for a while…I mean…don’t you want some privacy?”

“Don’t you want some more?” Louis asked, with a puppy dog, pleading look on his exquisite face.

I flopped over onto my back, spread out my arms and with a weak cry said…

“Take me I’m all yours.”

Two nights passed before I had the strength to get out of the bed they had dumped me in, after having fainted again. This time I was going to leave. This time they would let me.

Both of them came to say goodbye. I was supplied with fresh clothes, abundant food and Louis slipped an envelope into my pocket, with the proviso that I didn’t look at it until I had left. It contained a wad of money. I understood the reason he gave it to me, and it had nothing to do with aruna, or love-making, or sharing breath. It was a gift, pure and simple, from a new friend.

As I mounted my horse, Lestat came up to me, kissed me on both cheeks, then became serious. “Cal, something tells me you will see your Pell again.”

“If you say so, Lestat.”

The End

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2 Comments

  1. April 10, 2008 at 1:13 pm

    […] This is cross-over between Storm Constantine’s Wraeththu and Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles. It’s also a sequel to a previous cross-over story, “Walking Away.” […]

  2. wdarling said,

    April 10, 2008 at 1:18 pm

    This is the first Wraeththu fiction — of any kind — I ever read. I read this before I had read the books. At the time I was heavily into the Vampire Chronicles fandom and this story was written by a fellow VC fan who had discovered Wraeththu and wanted to share it.


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