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I mean, not about the hats. There are some seriously mad hats there. - Diary of a Necromancer
Excuse me, I'm making perfect sense, you're just not keeping up
I mean, not about the hats. There are some seriously mad hats there.
(Since Muse has already been chasing this one round until the individual words have stopped making sense, it may be just as well to boot it out of the nest at an obscure hour like this and walk away, whistling...)


The basement is less dank than I'd have supposed, so close to the river, but I fancy I can still sense the ceaseless rush of water beyond the wall. David is folding a load of washing mounded on a table-tennis table, one hand a gruesome mess of bruises and half-healed scabs. "Bloody hell," I mumble.

David looks to his hand, then back up at me. "Yeah." He doesn't stop in his chore, tugging a sock from the mass in a crackle of static to thump it down alongside a match. "Real laugh explaining over at A-and-E."

I can imagine, with those vividly wrong punctures set in an all-too-human arc of teeth. "They must have given you a time of it."

"Worst thing you can get bit by, people." His grin is trying for wry and coming down somewhere to the left of fuck off. "And that's only for what you'd expect to worry about."

And what he must have thought, considering Sandra. "I should be more worried where you've been," I say.

The harsh set of David's shoulders finally eases, and he nods. "Reckon it couldn't be that simple or there'd be more of you."

The thought brings back a memory of Cecily, somewhere in the middle of an argument about cigars, of how she'd abruptly slumped to the table in a drift of pale hair and said, presently, it's not as if we've anyone else to talk to. And left again, shortly thereafter, because she couldn't bear the sight of me either. "Just as well," I say. "We don't do well round each other."

"Don't imagine you would. Apex predators, and all."

I frown, considering the question on the merits; "Actually it's more that we're tossers," I say.

David barks a surprised laugh. "You're the one said it, mate. Even if you did tell the guy who stabbed you in the chest to go home to his Mum."

(He's grinning, pinker glints in the red. "Told you you'd fight, conchie. Everyone does." I lick my own blood from my lips, and feel the first stirrings of a hunger that will never, ever ease --)

I pick up one of the stacks of folded towels and start up the stairs with it. Sandra is putting away the washing-up, now. She glances up from the silver and raises her eyebrows at my bringing up her washing, seeming about to remark on how at least I can be a considerate houseguest and not just a hazard to have to clean around, before her gaze falls upon her fiancé behind me. David's spotted the look too; "Alright, love. Not leaving you for Team Trevor."

I clamp my mouth shut on an undignified gargle. "That has to be the one that Jason calls the look," Sandra comments.

(I can hear him thumping about upstairs, still setting the guestroom to rights. He'd shooed me away when I'd proved myself a bit too unsteady yet to help strip the bloodied sheets from the bed.) "I'm sorry to have been all this bother to you," I say.

Sandra waves me off, no big deal, but David's more direct: "Hardly going to join the angry mob with the pitchforks at this point," he says, with a look to her that speaks volumes about the choices he's made. "In it with you horrible scary monsters."

An amused snort from Sandra here. "I think he's probably less of a threat to society than my eighth-grade gym teacher. -- No, seriously, Trevor? You're totally crap at this, you barely even broke the skin with the rest of your teeth."

That would be beside the point, really. "Well, wasn't at my best at the time, was I. Bit surprised you managed to get me loose even so, I'd have thought I'd have been more motivated about it, under the circumstances."

Sandra shrugs. "Just pinched your nose shut until you let go to breathe," she says, always too practical by half. "Button-Down was a biter, we learned that one early."

She's noticed, then. How the worst that's said of it isn't even true.

Death won't have us.


4 responses | moved to respond?
morgynleri_fic From: morgynleri_fic Date: August 16th, 2011 05:39 pm (UTC) (permalink this entry)
*glees, and hopes for more soon(ish)*
robling_t From: robling_t Date: August 17th, 2011 05:35 am (UTC) (permalink this entry)
I'm not sure just why this one bogged down as badly as it did -- possibly because I realized as I was wrestling with the one immediately before it that we actually needed to see the Normal Straight-Man's reaction to having an injured vampire as an unexpected houseguest so I was having to stop and think that through in midstream... Hopefully I can get a bit better caught up to something resembling more regular posts with that bit sorted, though.
ashnistrike From: ashnistrike Date: August 18th, 2011 04:54 pm (UTC) (permalink this entry)
I am v. curious as to the details of vampirism in this world...

(Also, hello! Not dead! Just buried under boxes.)

robling_t From: robling_t Date: August 19th, 2011 01:54 am (UTC) (permalink this entry)
Not sure exactly what's ever going to come up textually, so speaking behind-the-scenes, the deal is, I decided early on that all of the extrahuman phenomena of this setting should be derived from some recognizable variation of an infection-slash-possession model; hence while the specific route may range from the werewolf's bite to the vampire's bloody kiss to the donning of a skin to, um, you really don't want to know how wendigo go about it, it's all something that happens to an ordinary, living human. (Some varieties can also pass it along to offspring, obviously.) The side-effect of that is, no creatures that would be defined as actual spirits, no never-human monsters, and especially no undead: no ghosts, no zombies, no walking-corpse vampires, no idea What Comes Next any more than anybody else. (Muse just said that Jason thinks zombie movies are hilariously stupid and he watches them anyway out of Hipster Irony.) Some critters have fairly ordinary life-cycles, some have various types of functional immortality with particular caveats -- Trevor would eventually die if he didn't feed, which I suppose suggests a direct relationship there, and he's sturdy enough to take a stake to the heart because if you look at some of the older legends that's actually just how you slow a vampire down long enough to set it on fire or something... :)

(And Not-Dead is good. Will be amused to see how long it takes you to get unpacked, particularly some of those boxes of dishes... :) )
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