Author Topic: Reconnection  (Read 13584 times)

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Offline Existentially Odd

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #45 on: December 10, 2020, 06:41:47 PM »
Kerr looked at Ben's profile, his heart swelling with love. He'd delved into very deep philosophical territories on this matter in their past and bad decisions (Hawaii) had come about when he'd believed his own hype and doubted himself. At that moment, it was the perfect thing for Ben to say to him. Even if he felt he should be replaced at times, the fact that Ben assured him he couldn't be mattered.

It would matter to him for as long as his life extended because he would always love Ben; he was pretty sure he could hate him and still have love for him somewhere in his body. Kerr reached across and took Ben's hand in his own, holding it reverently, gently, feeling somewhat unworthy. "I don't know who would be more relieved to hear that; me or Vincent," he joked, thinking fondly of the older vampire that Ben had trained with while he'd been 'dead'.

Offline Trillian

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #46 on: December 10, 2020, 07:24:40 PM »
Vincent? Ben would've blushed at the name had he fed on the sheep. As it was, his eyes darted to Kerr and then faced the front again. He thought Owen would be more relieved to hear it than either of the older vampires. Vincent hadn't been the one that would've replaced Kerr, though. It would've been Charon... until the ancient tired of their little roleplay and stopped the pretence.

"He was sired by a lover," Ben said, having listened to Vincent's story with rapt attention. "And he sired his lover. While he understands torment, he is still gentle and caring. Forgiving. Nurturing. If he'd been my sire I would've walked all over him and he would've let me. He's not the kind of sire I need. I think I would've got on better with his sire. She sounded... wilder."

The picture Vincent had described of her had certainly painted her that way. Ben would never know if Vincent's idea of her was close to who she'd been. He had a suspicion that Kerr might describe him the same way.
INFUSCO : Ben : Hugh : Lan Bao : Mick : Todd : Vincent : Win :
HALFLIGHT : Graille Min Sayer :

Offline Existentially Odd

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #47 on: December 10, 2020, 07:55:43 PM »
Kerr mused on the cyclic nature of vampires siring their lovers. As a man sired for practical and/or devious purposes, he could attest that, no matter what, a bond would form between sires and fledges. Love was not necessarily the right reason to do it (nor was murder or revenge) but it was purer. Intent mattered. Caring mattered.

He chuckled, amused by the notion of Ben pairing himself with a 'wild' sire versus one he would walk all over. There were times he'd felt walked on by Ben so there was a sensation of sympathy towards Vincent but Kerr believed his superior would have rallied. Ben was a force to be reckoned with but his heart made him vulnerable and reachable. He was not a monster (anymore).

"Perish the thought," he teased, grinning at Ben in amusement. Sobering, his smile turned fond as he gazed at Ben. "Your gift, though, is that - as much as it pains me to admit because it means I'm not unique - you're highly adaptable. Sinfully clever. Wickedly astute. You'd adjust to any situation, any sire, and get out of them exactly what you need. You're an intoxicating mixture of innocent and experienced and no-one can resist you.

"While you feel I can't be replaced - and I definitely don't want to be - I feel you'd adapt out of necessity. It saddens me but also makes me very bloody proud to know that you're built to last and be self-sufficient. That's what they say is the secret horror of parenthood and I think it's the same for vampirism; your whole purpose is to train your offspring to not need you and success means making yourself obsolete. I treasure being needed by you."

He gave Ben's hand a squeeze and smiled adoringly at him, the impact of where they were walking sending pulses of insecurity and fear through him despite his best efforts to quell them. Talking with Ben, feeling love for him, being distracted by him... that was what was keeping him calm right now.

Offline Trillian

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #48 on: December 10, 2020, 08:02:14 PM »
Ben beamed his pride until Kerr started speaking about 'secret horrors'. Ben gagged theatrically.

"Stop calling me your offspring and comparing siring to parenthood," he instructed. "I know there are some similarities but the differences are massive. You transformed me from an adult human into a young vampire, you didn't give birth to me."
INFUSCO : Ben : Hugh : Lan Bao : Mick : Todd : Vincent : Win :
HALFLIGHT : Graille Min Sayer :

Offline Existentially Odd

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #49 on: December 10, 2020, 08:08:58 PM »
Kerr snorted laughter despite his feelings to the contrary, just because Ben was so adamant about the matter. And because the image of him giving birth to Ben was hilarious.

"I suppose so," he conceded, still smirking. "Plus, incest isn't my thing. I really don't want to think of you like that when I'm fucking you. That's so wrong," he laughed again, squeezing his eyes shut and pulling a face of disgust that soon became a grin once more.

Offline Trillian

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #50 on: December 10, 2020, 08:15:47 PM »
Ben's lips twisted as he considered a comeback that was fairly disgusting. Pushing it aside his mind grasped onto a different side of familial bloodlines.

"My human family isn't connected to me anymore. I don't have the same blood as them. I'm not even the same species as them."

He thought about his brother who'd come sniffing for money and had been happy to lay guilt-trips on him in order to get what he wanted. The memory tainted Kerr's earlier comment of being adaptable. Mick hadn't been particularly smart or diplomatic about his money-grubbing, but he probably hadn't realised he'd needed to be.
INFUSCO : Ben : Hugh : Lan Bao : Mick : Todd : Vincent : Win :
HALFLIGHT : Graille Min Sayer :

Offline Existentially Odd

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #51 on: December 10, 2020, 08:18:45 PM »
"Mmm," Kerr mused, wondering at Ben's viewpoint. "So you've cut all ties with them, in your mind? What about Arles?" he queried, thinking his co-sire was the same species as Ben and even shared his blood but he'd been absent so long. Did Ben consider him family?

Offline Trillian

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #52 on: December 10, 2020, 08:25:04 PM »
"I don't remember him," he said, but there was a faraway look in Ben's eye. "By what I've seen in the movie-memories, it looked like I tried to be with him but I wanted you. He moved away not long after that."

Ben had considered seeking out the other sire connection after Kerr had 'died' but it had felt like a would be a betrayal. Maybe in time, if Kerr had remained dead, he might've followed that blood bond.
INFUSCO : Ben : Hugh : Lan Bao : Mick : Todd : Vincent : Win :
HALFLIGHT : Graille Min Sayer :

Offline Existentially Odd

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #53 on: December 10, 2020, 08:34:51 PM »
Kerr huffed a sigh that advertised his complete frustration with his former choices.

"I wanted you too but I was confused and Sawyl was fucking me up. I thought I was doing 'the right thing'," he said mockingly, using the hand not holding onto Ben's to add air quotes for emphasis. "I'm glad Arles is gone and I hope he never comes back. I regret everything about that time but... hindsight and all that," he huffed again, waving the topic away. It didn't help ease his frayed nerves to think about things that made him uncomfortable at the best of times.

"Did you ever consider visiting your parents again? To show them how successful you are? I did wonder, with all the election advertising, whether we'd hear from them out of the blue. I mean, it's absolutely their loss and it's good that their opinion doesn't matter to you any more but I would think it'd be sweet to..." Kerr broke off talking abruptly, the relish in his tone gone when he cleared his throat subtly and spoke next. "I think where we're going is putting me in a vindictive mood. Sorry," he apologised awkwardly.

Offline Trillian

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #54 on: December 10, 2020, 08:49:15 PM »
Ben was surprised about the heated retort on Arles. The white-blond vampire had been introverted and kind, never saying a bad word about Kerr. He'd been a rather... blank... kind of fellow. It wasn't fair to judge him on the movie-memories alone. Ben couldn't glean any emotion out of them anyway. Even so, there seemed to be a polite nothingness between them. Only watching the sex stuff had there been any gamut of emotion.

Kerr rattled Ben by speaking about his parents. Really, he should be over it, but it still cut him deeply. Thirty, he was a thirty year old man now, in spite of his appearance. Apparently thirty-year-olds still had baggage about their parents. He hadn't realised the potency of their memory until Kerr ambushed him with it.

"Are we almost at the manor?" he asked. What would 400 years of separation do to his memory of his parents? Would it still hurt, even a little? Or would it just become like one of his movie-memories - something that had happened but he no longer had any emotional attachment to it?
INFUSCO : Ben : Hugh : Lan Bao : Mick : Todd : Vincent : Win :
HALFLIGHT : Graille Min Sayer :

Offline Existentially Odd

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #55 on: December 10, 2020, 09:23:31 PM »
Kerr sighed again. "Yeah," he relented, the word as drawn out as the breath that left him. They'd been walking slowly initially, back when they'd left the Galvin property but the pace had changed after their sheep discussion. The tension between them had hastened their pace and even without the conscious use of celerity, a vampire's agitated walking rate was much faster than a human's. It hadn't felt exceptionally fast but, looking around now, Kerr realised they were very close indeed.

"It's just up here, after the turn," he explained, pointing to a road branching off to the left of the one they were travelling down. It was where the farmland surrendered to what little woodland there was. Some things never changed.

The two of them fell into their thoughts then, though Kerr's grip on Ben's hand got subconsciously tighter as they reached the turnoff and followed along it for another couple of hundred metres. The driveway to the manor was a dirt road - as was the case to most properties in the area - and it wended its way through a great deal of shielding wilderness. It wasn't thick enough to be called a forest, for trees had been cleared to allow for grass to carpet both sides of the driveway, but it was rugged enough to constitute an excellent screen for the manor nestled within.

"This is it," Kerr mumbled when they came upon the driveway on their right. He looked both ways - even though no vehicles had passed them in this sleepy farm province the whole time - and led Ben across the road. A few metres in, there was a locked gate that they had no trouble scaling (Ben made it look somewhat absurd in his fashionable outfit) and then there was just the crunch of their booted feet as they followed an approach that Kerr remembered as being barely-there rutted cart tracks and hip-high weeds once upon a time. The way it looked now was definitely better maintained than it had been even those few years ago that he and Ben had visited and he began to get an even thicker feeling of trepidation in his gut.

After another five minutes of fast walking, Kerr's instinct was proved true when they topped the final rise of the driveway and were able to gaze upon the cluster of buildings that constituted the manor. It had been restored. The realisation brought him to a momentary halt and Ben with him. "Fuck," he said quietly, his gaze roving over the expansive complex. He shouldn't have been surprised but he was. The last time they'd been here had been over a decade ago and he'd found it highly satisfying to find the place crumbling into ruin. It had seemed a fitting end for a building filled with such horrific memories.

Now it looked even better than it had four hundred years ago. Someone had invested a lot of time and money repairing every shattered wall, every jagged step and every exposed room so that now it was an architectural delight nestled amongst beautifully manicured lawns and secluding wilderness. A delightful escape and sanctuary for an anonymous owner. The only positive he could find in that moment was that there were no lights on in any of the rooms, it was swathed in darkness. It was early enough in the evening that, if people were inside, they'd still be up and lights would be on so maybe they were out or the manor was only visited intermittently. A weekend escape type thing. Kerr had no idea what day of the week it was but he could hope it was a weekday.

"There might be people inside," he mused out loud, looking for signs of life. There was no car parked in the turning circle in front of the place but that didn't mean anything. There was a four-door garage off to the side that probably housed any visiting vehicles. "And, if not, it could be alarmed. This might not be such a good idea after all." There was a feeling of relief in saying so. Oh well, they came for a visit but the manor wasn't the broken-down house of horror that he remembered and he definitely couldn't defeat any alarm system he came up against with his flawless celerity and telekinetic abilities. Nope. They tried but failed. Time to go home. What a pity.

Offline Trillian

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #56 on: December 11, 2020, 10:01:59 AM »
There was stillness for a moment as Ben listened to everything around them. Like Kerr, he'd noticed the maintenance on the grounds and had also scanned for clues whether the new occupants were home or not. Unlike Kerr he was willing to break in if they had the opportunity. He couldn't hear any movement inside, or see it in the darkened rooms within, which had some expensive-looking old-fashioned furniture that suited the house.

"You're right that nobody's home. I think a place like this would be alarmed, yeah. We should disable the phone line to the house before we cut the power just in case it's one of those alarms that call the police. I'm sure we'd be gone before they get here but I'd rather not be rushed."

Ben started moving forward to look for the phone line, knowing that it usually came out of the house near the garage and into the ground. He also figured the power box would be somewhere on the side of the house. He would try the left-hand outer wall first.
INFUSCO : Ben : Hugh : Lan Bao : Mick : Todd : Vincent : Win :
HALFLIGHT : Graille Min Sayer :

Offline Existentially Odd

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #57 on: December 11, 2020, 10:19:41 PM »
Kerr could only blink dazedly as Ben followed up his initial assessment with valuable information that Kerr would never have thought of. It all made perfect sense once Ben said it, of course, but even then, Kerr had no clue how to go about locating everything. "Good idea," he murmured as Ben set off to look for the phone line and power box. Clearly, they were going to stick around and deal with any issues that arose; Kerr forced himself to get comfortable with that fact as he followed after Ben. They were going in, not leaving. Okay.

He did his best to concentrate on what his lover was doing but he did a poor job of it. He was distracted by the exaggerated presence of the manor, finding himself standing stock still and gazing up at its corner towers like they held sacred messages to whisper to him (if only he could listen hard enough) more than once. Either Ben's voice hissing his name or an animal snapping a twig or rustling in nearby shrubbery would snap him out of it and then he'd hasten to where Ben was with renewed intent to focus.

It never lasted long. The memories of the house were more potent now that it had been restored. The new fittings and furnishings aside, the resurrected walls brought with them renewed feelings of oppression and fear.

When they finally got inside, the plush interior was overlaid with the spartan features of centuries-past in Kerr's eyes. He could remember walking upon these cold stone floors, hearing the thud of his own heartbeat echoing in his ears and off these brick walls. Well... not these exactly... telling himself that didn't make much difference, though. It wasn't different enough to bring any sense of comfort. These walls were just the same level of impartial and unbreakable as they had been when he'd been brought here as a mortal. They might as well have been the very ones to witness his death and rebirth.

"It happened here," Kerr said quietly, standing in the entryway with Ben by his side. "Sawyl had brought me here, for help, he said. But once I got inside he attacked me. I fell... " Kerr trailed off, staring down at the opulent floor runner that currently led away from the front door but seeing only the stones beneath. Had they been just stones or had there been a rug? He couldn't remember. It had all happened in a flash and afterwards... he didn't get out of the cellar often enough to recall.

He wished he could be calmer. He wished four hundred years was long enough to forget but it wasn't. He reached for Ben's hand and, in doing so, shared the memories replaying relentlessly in his head. It had been dark inside that night. Two vampires hadn't needed torches. The only light came from the open doorway at his back and Sawyl was a tiny missile shooting out of the darkness to his right, latching onto that side of his neck in starved fervour. The pain in his neck flared, the dimly-lit space around him spun and his heart threatened to choke him as he toppled.

As he fell, he saw the demon's face, looming in from the sitting room to the left, watching with glinting eyes. Angus was a hideous creature, as ugly as Wyl was beautiful. He had a pointed face, bat-like ears, beady black eyes and hairs sprouting all over the place - particularly from those huge ears. His lips were practically non-existent so his sharp, pointed teeth were clearly visible as he leered at Sawyl's actions with delight.

Kerr's memory went black because the dizzying vision of the older vampire and the shock of being attacked by a child that had twice his strength had overcome him and he'd passed out. When he awoke, he was latched onto Sawyl's wrist, drinking his blood like a crazed animal. Angus was staring at him, his elongated, gnarled fingers templed beneath his pointed chin as if he were observing a bug dying. The scene went black again, as Kerr had lost consciousness temporarily - though he must have kept drinking, somehow - and when next he awoke he was in agony as his body died during the transformation.

Once he watched it through three times, Kerr stopped the memory replay and forced himself to stay in the present, holding tightly onto Ben's hand and looking around himself unseeingly. "I still don't like being here," he announced needlessly, his rigid posture and clenched jaw telling that story on his behalf already. "All I really remember is the horror I felt at the brutality of being attacked, of having so much forced onto me against my will. This is where my nightmare began, though most of it happened in the cellar, after."

Kerr looked down, hoping Ben would tell him he'd heard and seen enough, that they could go, chalking this up to another one of Kerr's distant memories. He stared hard at the ground, willing his weakness to be over, already.

Offline Trillian

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #58 on: December 12, 2020, 07:44:53 AM »
Love. Compassion. Guilt. They were all swirling inside of him at the pain he could see on Kerr's face and hear in his voice as he retold the story. Why had they thought coming here was a good idea? What point had they agreed on to take this risk of summoning a hurt long repressed?

"It's awful," Ben agreed, thinking of the religious bent of fear that Kerr's mind would have taken. Biblical demons to torment him and steal his soul. Would knowing the truth have made it any less horrifying? He suspected not. Crazed vampires with unknown motives were the same. "And you were with them for a long time. It would be like..."

He shrugged. There was no comparison, even though Themba had surfaced briefly in his mind. The ancient power and masochism were similar but that was all. Ben had never been confused and helpless; he'd had a form of control in his understanding of the situation and the ability to negotiate it.

"Do you want to go back home?" he asked softly.
INFUSCO : Ben : Hugh : Lan Bao : Mick : Todd : Vincent : Win :
HALFLIGHT : Graille Min Sayer :

Offline Existentially Odd

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Re: Reconnection
« Reply #59 on: December 12, 2020, 07:26:17 PM »
Kerr turned to look at Ben, a frown dominating his features. "No, I... shouldn't it be easier by now? I mean... I've had four hundred years to adjust, it's... time, right?"

Troubled, he turned to look around himself, finally seeing what was there, in the present. It wasn't as intimidating when he wasn't remembering but it was difficult to maintain his focus. It hadn't been so bad when they'd been here last; he'd been enraptured by his new love for Ben, his infatuation buoying him through the experience of returning to this place. It had been near to ruin, too, the facade of it crumbling reassuringly.

He inhaled and held the oxygen inside lungs for a few moments, looking around one last time before he turned back to face Ben. "I'll be fine," he smiled, releasing his breath with the words. "Do you want to know anything in particular? Maybe... head towards the cellar?" he queried casually, steeling himself at the thought.