Well, of course I choose the realm of the Vampire Chronicles, and I included Armand and Marius.
Because I love them best.
Title: The Vampire Drake
Author e-mail: email@example.com
Spoilers: None really. It's the Anne Ricean Vampire Chronicles universe.
Summary: Tim Drake awakens in a new world, surrounded by a benevolent group of vampires known as The Coven of the Articulate.
Pairings: Armand/Tim, Marius/Armand (implied)
Comments: Thanks to flounderphil for all his wonderful help and inspiration.
I love feeback, even if it's negative.
“Tim. Timothy, wake up.” A gentle voice coaxed the boy out of his heavily lidded sleep.
“Huh?” Tim mumbled, before sitting up straight and rubbing a stray lock of raven black hair out of his face. He opened his eyes to see the smiling countenance of Louis de Point du Lac almost a little too close for comfort. The vampire’s deep emerald eyes prying into Tim’s own.
“It’s an hour past sundown, you’re going to sleep right through the night.” Louis lightly teased.
“And why would that be such a bad thing?” Tim joked back as he rolled out of his warm bed and walked past Louis towards the bathroom.
“You look pale,” Louis commented worriedly, “Perhaps it is time for you to feed again?”
Tim groaned, “Last time was such a disaster, I wouldn’t want to embarrass myself once again so soon.”
The last time Tim had been out to feed was with Lestat a few nights before. He was so nervous to be hunting and feeding along side the famous and beautiful vampire that he blundered severely in almost every aspect of the hunt. By the end of the night Tim’s shirt was matted with blood from careless procedure, several women who had seen Tim bite the neck of his victim required much calming and persuasion, and Tim had almost left a victim’s dead body out in the open without having covered his bite marks. Lestat was so angry he wouldn’t even speak. However, after the initial anger subsided, thoughts of the night’s events led right into amusement. Lestat howled like a hyena and made sure to tell every other vampire he knew all the details of Tim‘s childish blunders. Tim, being a perfectionist, was mortified. He had been trying so hard to win the other’s approval, and now he would have to fight even harder to overcome the reputation of his first impression.
“Don’t worry, tonight Armand has volunteered to watch over you, he’ll probably be a bit nicer than Lestat.” Louis tried to reassure Tim.
“Armand has volunteered?! People are lining up to help me? This isn’t right, I shouldn’t need any help, a good vampire doesn’t need to be babied. God, this is awful, I won’t be able to look any of them straight in the eye.” Tim cried.
“Oh, I wouldn’t say that. All of the others are very fond of you.”
“It’s because they pity me.”
“In ways, yes, your story is a tragic one, and we’re not cruel creatures, most of us anyway. The vampire who claimed you and blooded you was in the wrong, but that is not your fault, and we do not see it as such.”
Tim realized he was whining and gave a short laugh, “I’m sorry I’ve been complaining so much. Thank you for waking me Louis, I’ll be down shortly.”
Tim smiled meekly at the handsome, dark-haired vampire before he shut and locked the bathroom door. Tim leaned against the door frame and glanced at the bathroom’s clean, bright floors and surrounding walls. They were beautiful, just like the rest of Marius’s house. Smooth white marble floors and gleaming cherry wood paneling shone with the bright warm light of the room’s sun lamps. It was cozy and comforting, and this relaxed Tim. He was so cold all the time now that he was a vampire, and it was a chill that was ever-present and hard to mask, no matter how many layers he wore or how many hot water bottles he piled on top of himself. Armand told him that he would get used to it in time, and if anything it got worse as one aged. Great, thought Tim, but at least Armand was honest.
Tim shrugged off his blue cotton shirt, striped pants, and underwear and slid into the wondrously tall glass shower. He turned the taps to as hot of a temperature as he could stand without scalding his skin, and soaked happily for a few minutes. Tim’s life had been a blur the past few weeks, and it was hard to believe his time as a human had come to such an abrupt and disruptive end. A few weeks ago, Tim had lived a pretty normal teenage life, a few good friends, a couple of random and short-lived girlfriends, good grades, and shaky relationships with his parents. He wasn’t extremely sheltered, and lived in a dangerous town, Gotham City, with a bad crime rep, but very little sorrow had affected his life personally until now.
It all happened the night after the homecoming football game. Tim didn’t really care much for the sport or for school spirit, but a pretty girl, Debbie Hurston, had asked him to accompany her to the yearly event. Gotham High won the game, and Tim cheered right along with the rest of his schoolmates, but something wasn’t quite right. He could feel someone watching him, but in the packed stadium he couldn’t quite make out who, or what, made him feel so uneasy. However, he was sharing his popcorn with a popular girl who had just kissed his cheek after the winning touchdown, and he didn’t want anything to ruin his almost perfect night. Later, as they were waiting for their burgers at a local fast food restaurant, Tim got an urgent call on his cell phone. He briskly walked outside into the cool, black night to get better reception.
“Tim, are you alright son?” His father asked breathlessly.
“Dad? What’s wrong?” Tim could hear the fear in his father’s voice.
“Where are you?”
“At Betty’s Burgers, where are you?”
“Are you alone?”
“No, I’m with Debbie and some of the guys, everything’s alright. I’m fine. Where are-”
Just then something blunt came out of nowhere and struck Tim hard in the back of the head. The ground rushed up to meet his face, but just before impact he was lifted, and that’s when everything went black.
Hours later he found himself in some sort of underground chamber. There was only the glow of a single stump of candle to light the huge stone room. Tim sat up quickly, and that was a mistake, the world began to spin and his stomach lurched with the urge to vomit.
“Oh God, where am I?” he questioned aloud, curling into a more comfortable position on the damp floor.
“Hello, Timothy.” A velvety voice spoke out of the darkness.
“Who, who are you?” He knew he sounded scared and uncertain, hell he was scared and uncertain.
“A friend, a follower. I’m your guardian angel.” The voice sneered.
“My what? Where the hell am I, and what have you done with my family?!” Tim was pissed off now, the nights previous events had just rushed back into his memory, and he could still hear his father’s voice, so afraid. Tim jumped to his feet, his arms outstretched in the darkness.
“Your family is fine now, I just stopped by your house to pick up a few of your things, leave a goodbye note in your handwriting, the usual. You won’t be seeing them again for a long time. Unfortunately, they came home from their dinner early, and I had to subdue your mother in a most ungentlemanly way.”
“What have you done to her?! I swear to God if you’ve-”
“Easy now young Drake, no one has been seriously harmed. She cooperated quite easily under my charms and allowed me to slip away unseen. Your father must have discovered her and your note sometime soon after, luckily I reached you before he could.”
There was something wrong with the man who stood before Tim, he felt different, everything about his presence felt different, but Tim couldn‘t quite place why. In the candle light he could make out a figure. The man was about 6’5”, 215 pounds or so, much of his body muscular. Tim was small and light for his fifteen years, and had a black belt in Karate, but he doubted he would stand a chance against his mysterious kidnapper.
“What do you want with me?” Tim liked to get right to the point of the matter.
The man laughed, “What do I want with you?” He mocked.
“Oh no, I’ve plenty of money.”
“I doubt you have anything of use to me stored in that little brain.”
“My…,” Tim cringed and begged it wouldn’t be true, “..body?”
“Yes,” The man laughed again, “but not in such cruel, sexual ways as you might imagine.”
“You have a task of some sort for me to perform?”
“No, I actually have several tasks. I tire of your guesses, I suppose I’ll tell you right out. I want you to become my assistant, my apprentice.”
The man stepped closer so that Tim could make out his face. He had extremely pale skin and bright gold eyes that glowed like tiny suns set into his broad features. As the man opened his mouth to speak, Tim could see a pair of small, gleaming, eye teeth, sharp as a wolves might have been. This was no ordinary human!
“My nature is one you may find somewhat, unfamiliar, perhaps unbelievable.” The man chuckled, amused with the conversation.
“Shit!” screeched Tim, backing away fast, “You’re one of those things, those, those night creatures!”
“You could say that. Do you know anything else?”
“You drink…the blood of humans, right? But wait,” Tim snapped back to reality and logic, “ You’re just a myth, Dracula and all that nonsense. Did you have your teeth surgically sharpened? You could just be some nut who wishes he was a..a..”
“A vampire, is that the word you‘re looking for? You are correct. But no, all such accessories of my person came with the accursed blood. But I am getting ahead of myself, this is not the time for such talk, the sun will rise soon and I will fall into a deep, coma-like sleep. You are to stay in this…cell, until nightfall, when I come to fetch you. There is no way out, so it would be a waste to look. And don’t bother yelling yourself hoarse, no one can hear you down here, we are deep within the earth. I have left you some food under one of the loose stones. Have fun finding that stone, and stay out of trouble young Drake. I’m in charge of you now, and I wouldn’t want my precious little apprentice killing himself off before he is due. Nighty night.”
And with that the mysterious vampire disappeared into the shadows. Tim listened hard for the sound of a closing door, but none came.
Tim awoke from his reverie from a loud knock outside the bathroom.
KNOCK! KNOCK! KNOCK!
“Hurry up in there!”
“Just a minute!” Tim yelled back, and just for god measure, “Sorry!”
The hot water had ran out long ago and he still had shampoo in his hair that he needed to wash out. If he had still been mortal, such a chilly task might have been murder. But, as a vampire, his senses to temperature were greatly dulled, and it was only mildly discomforting. After the he scrubbed the Lilac-scented stuff out of his hair, he turned off the shining silver shower head and inched out of the shower. Tim grabbed a great, fluffy, red towel and curled into it, letting it absorb the water as it ran off his supernatural skin. It reminded him of these really cool water-resistant pants his mom had bought for him once. He would spill things onto them on purpose just to watch the liquid run off, like magic.
‘How stupid I was, no, how naïve,’ thought Tim.
Thinking about the past few weeks made him greatly depressed. But, he couldn’t let this show too much in front of the others (not like they couldn’t just read his mind or anything, all but Louis were powerful enough). Hell, he probably just broadcasted his thoughts to the whole freakin’ coven. Tim wanted so badly to become in control of his powers. It was so frustrating to know that his thoughts could be so easily read. That’s probably how Malleus was able to toy with him. All of the horrible mind games.
“I wish I could erase my past from my mind.” Tim stated aloud, with a sigh.
*No, you don’t.* said a voice inside of his head.
“Woah!” Tim knew they could read minds, but he hadn’t been spoken to mentally outside of the immediate presence of a vampire, “Armand, is that you?”
*Yes, I’m waiting for you.*
“I’m so sorry, I’ve been completely distracted tonight. I’ll be right down, I promise.”
The connection closed, and he could feel a small break, a click, somewhere in the back of his mind. Weird, Tim thought.
Quickly, he dried his hair, then walked into the massive, adjoining closet. It was full of clothes in his size, taste, and style, but Tim had not picked out a single one of them. He guessed maybe Marius did it for him, or Louis. They had been helping him out the most. Marius tutored him, so to speak, in the ways, histories, and customs of the vampires. He even started to read some of Lestat’s published books, though Marius roughly claimed them to be “biased, unreliable, and over exaggerated”. Louis, with his kind and human heart, patiently helped him with every task and errand. But, Louis exclaimed, Tim was doing very well for a young fledgling. He picked up concepts easily and didn’t lose heart over his current circumstances, he just persevered.
Tim decided to wear a pair of stone-washed blue jeans and a green and blue paisley, collard shirt, along with some simple brown shoes. All of the vampires dressed so marvelously, he tried not to be careless with his choices. They dressed in modern fashion, of course, to blend in, but also with an air of style from their periods. Velvety shirts for Marius. Stylishly decorated jackets for Lestat. He was living with people from so many different eras. It was truly amazing. There was so much history in each and every one of them, so many details he couldn’t wait to uncover.
The boy vampire finished himself with a quick brush of his teeth (though they would always remain remarkably clean) and a tiny dab of cologne. He spared a glance at his double in the mirror. His face was so pale, it made him look even younger, almost sick. But in comparison to some of the other vampires, whose age made them liken to marble gods, he appeared rosy-cheeked and youthful. His raven hair shown with pristine light, always perfectly smooth and shining. His eyes were a glowing and radiant sky blue, with darker blue and purple flecks spread throughout. His appearance seemed almost perfected, the preternatural curse flawlessly maintaining it’s appeal. It was almost scary, his look, but he found himself, how would he say it, beautiful, now? Armand said he was beautiful. The vampires did seem to value their beauty, it was something of modest pride for most, or for Lestat, something of an ego trip.
Tim rushed out of the bathroom, through his room, down the hall, past about seven other random rooms of elegance, and down three flights of stairs before he reached the main floor. Then he traipsed through two parlors and a kitchen until he finally arrived at a fire-side living room facing towards the front of the house. It was both cozy and grandiose, with regal leather sofas and chairs, matched along side glistening hardwood floors and huge expanses of lush, rich, red carpets. A roaring fire was always alight below the mantle, so the room was flushed with a warm haze.
As he dashed into the room, Tim almost tripped on one of the red carpet’s edges, and stumbled ungracefully right into Marius’s arms.
“Slow down, young one. The night has only just begun, no need to rush.” The elder chuckled at the boy’s youthful exuberance. It was nice to have such energy in his house once again. Tim blushed slightly as Marius helped him to his feet.
“No,” A sly voice startled Tim, “The night began about four hours ago. I know, I’ve been staring at the clock in wait.” Armand was perched on top of an overstuffed chair close to the fire, a slight smirk plastered on his innocent, youthful face.
“You have not, you’ve been busy pestering me. Now leave the boy alone, his misplaced guilt pours off of him, yet you jest all the more.” Marius chided Armand.
“He knows I’m only kidding.” Armand shrugged Marius off and turned his full attention to the fledgling, “You ready for the night, Tim?”
“Maybe.” Tim laughed nervously.
“Of course you are. Lets go, I’m positively starved.” Armand slid his arm around the back of Tim’s shoulders and gently guided them both towards the enormous oak front doors.
“You two be careful.” Marius cautioned.
“Yeah, yeah, yeah.” Armand carelessly retorted.
“Armand.” The tone was sharp, “ Let me speak to you for a moment, please.”
Armand was visibly blanched, “Yes, Master.” He walked quickly to meet Marius and glanced up at him with a mixture of fear and defiance. Marius roughly grabbed his former apprentice’s upper right arm and reeled him in closer.
“You will behave yourself with him or pay the consequences, you understand? This is no joke, his tutelage. Tim has been through much pain and confusion. It was a mistake letting Lestat take charge the other night. Another episode like that and the boy might completely shield himself from us.”
“But Master, I’m not going to-”
“And a little respect wouldn’t go unnoticed as well,” Marius cut him off. “You are his most probable role model. Set a good example, alright?” With his last words the older man squeezed his child’s arm just enough to hurt.
“Yes Master, of course.” Armand bowed his head slightly, admitting defeat and apologizing.
“Good. Off you go now.” Marius pushed Armand towards Tim, who was busy trying to make himself invisible due to the short confrontation he had just witnessed.
“So,” Armand decided to break the silence that had descended over them, as they strolled the partly-lit streets of New Orleans. The night air was slightly chilled and a cool, cleansing breeze swirled around the two. “What sort of problems did you have the other night, I only heard brief…ah…words from Lestat?”
“Oh man,” Tim sighed, “I just got really nervous, I guess. I forgot everything I was taught, by Marius, Louis, and even the little I learned from Malleus.”
“It happens to even the best of us. When I was a young, impetuous fledging, Marius was in nightly fits over my carelessness. But it was a simpler time, no police, investigative reporting, what have you.” Armand gestured animatedly, speaking like an equal to Tim. It relaxed him, for hundreds of years Armand had been living the life of an eternally young teenager, a role Tim was beginning to accept and assume.
“Yeah, I wouldn’t want to ever cause any serious trouble, that’s my greatest fear.” Tim admitted, “That my parents would be informed of my transformation somehow, through the media or something. And I would never want to slip up so bad as to cause Marius or anybody else to have to move away, for fear or threat, you know what I mean?”
“I don’t really believe that you could ever mess up that much, but don’t worry, that’s why I’m here.” Armand flashed a charming smile Tim’s way. The elder vampire was dressed in a black, silk shirt that rippled in the wind and some gray slacks that accented his slender form. His resplendent, auburn curls were fashioned into a shorter cut than usual.
“Thanks.” Tim smiled back, “I really appreciate it. I didn’t know there were nice people of our kind in the world. After the ordeal…I…” Tim cut off, his words stuck in his throat. Memories flashed like lightening through the synapses of his brain. Murder. Screams. Pain. Fear. Sacrifice. A light. A hope. A face. A saint.
“What happened?” Armand stopped their pace, and pulled Tim closer into him, “You can talk to me, you know? You should talk to someone, get it all out. It’s alright, we all have our skeletons.”
“Sorry.” Tim sniffed, “Before Marius telepathically heard my cries for help, I thought I would be his forever. It was an unbearable notion. The most depressing thing in the world. Malleus, he’s not like you guys. He was a malicious killer. He laughed in his victims faces as their lives were snuffed out. He drug out their deaths, playing games with it all. He would sometimes have me join in. Lure the kind, trusting people to their demise. An innocent kid, helpless on the street. People are genuinely nice, well, most people, you know? And they would come over to help, and that’s when he’d lunge at them. Sometimes he’d tear out their throats, carelessly spilling their blood all over the back alleyways, taking so little to drink, and that was merciful. One time he killed three little children, one by one, right in front of their petrified mother. It was the only time I really tried to intervene. Malleus had such strength, he was like an indestructible machine, or so I thought. He threw my body 15 feet into the air, and I came crashing down onto the side of a dumpster, my body was bent, broken, but I was at an angle where I could see the rest of his sick game. And I can tell you, there is nothing like a mother’s love for her children. Nothing.”
Tim stopped. The memories pressed on the backs of his eyelids, overwhelming and overflowing. It was too late to suppress them further. He pressed his hands to his eyes, his fingertips boring into the bridge of his nose.
Armand hugged Tim closer and stroked his upper arms soothingly.
“You don’t have to be afraid anymore.”
Armand turned Tim around to face him. He reached up and lightly grasped the boy’s wrists and pulled them carefully away from his face. Tim glanced up into Armand’s pleading eyes. Stark blue met rich, velvety brown, and he saw only kindness.
“Oh God.” A great guttural cry erupted from Tim’s coral lips. His frame shuddered with wracking sobs as he collapsed into Armand’s chest. Armand bent to kiss Tim’s forehead.
The two stood there for a moment as Armand breathed a sympathetic sigh into Tim’s crown of shining, black hair.
Tim silently composed himself, then straightened up, “Thank you.” He whispered.
Armand nodded, took a step back, and continued their casual stroll through the silent, nighttime streets, his hand softly placed on the small of Tim’s back, cautiously guiding him forward.
I would be willing to write more, just tell me what you think!
Thanks for reading!
x-posted in timfinity, bat_brats