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TVC II Supplemental Chapter 2.5: Marie

Mello

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Alastor's cave seemed alive in the sunset. Long golden beams of flowing sunlight seemed hostile as they scorched across the floor of the cave. In the darker, deeper recesses where Alastor lived, a spider skittered across a vast stalactite, weaving a web between this pillar and its neighbour. Already its job was becoming difficult due to the copious amounts of water that constantly dripped from the ceiling. The water droplets hung seemingly suspended in mid air on the web like a glassy necklace, and the spider struggled to surmount the challenge of scaling the jewels of water in his way.

Below the spider was Alastor's great organ, hewn partly out of the mountain itself, and partly out of very specific minerals he requested. There were pipes of crystal, wood, steel, even hollow glass. A kind of musk hung over it now, the dust had settled, yet still the blower continued its purpose, silently providing the air to anyone who wanted to operate the instrument. It's humming provided a slight vibration to the whole cavern, a background noise. Like the deep rumbling of far off thunder. Powerful, but comforting. A sort of inner blue light emnated from the centre of the organ, blades of blue stabbing out in between the pipes, providing a much more cooler source of light than the hot orange sunlight. The heavy moisture in the air was tangible, and it almost seemed like there was a silent, calm war going on between the sources of light. Water droplets plopped into pools and echoed for seconds, before being swallowed up by the ever present hum of the organ.

Beside the organ was a small opening in the wall, leading to a tiny hollow where there was a large polished black marble plinth, in the shape of a great serpent, coiled and sleeping. In the centre of the snakes form were crimson cushions. Alastor's bed. It was raised off the ground slightly, to keep the water that covered most of the floor of the cave off it.

Today however was an unusual day, the cushions that lay in the snake were, for the first time ever, warm. A living girl lay on them. Marie.

There was a slight whine in the air, like charge collecting. Then a blue flash at the entrance to the bedroom. Ripples ran into the bottom of the plinth before Alastor came speeding in, almost silent save for the splashed in the water. His face was etched with the pain of both extreme exertion and worry. The speedy journey had taken its toll on him. He looked into the bed and breathed a sigh of relief, all worry dropping away. She was not yet awake. Now his face was just a mask of contented tiredness, and a blank white mask.

Climbing painfully onto the raised serpents head, Alastor sat down and waited. For this girl, there was all the time in the world. All the time...
 

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RE: TVC II Supplemental: Chapter 2.5: Marie

The world swam into view as Marie awoke, she smiled at the sensation of the luxurious pillows beneath her.
Suddenly she shivered feeling cold air washing over her and awakening fully she realized this was definitely not Drakenhof.

The girl attempted to sit up but stopped as pain lanced down the side of her neck, lifting her hand she felt two barely healed puncture wounds.

The memory of her last wakeful moments rushed back to her, the fear and horror...and then the pleasure as Alastor had attacked her.

She felt weak, confused and so it was only now she noticed the very vampire who had assaulted her sat at the edge of the bed.

Composing herself the young woman sat up slowly, ignoring the weariness and dizziness that threatened to overcome her as she did so.

She forced herself to sit upright and look back at Alastor, externally she had stilled her expression to be devoid of emotion.
However inside her emotions raged, she felt lost in these new surroundings, scared of the recent events that had occurred but these battled against her religious devotion to vampirekind, to avoid a reaction that would insult Alastor.

"Hello my Lord." she said respectfully but slightly coldly her voice crackling slightly.
 

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RE: TVC II Supplemental: Chapter 2.5: Marie

Marie's quiet voice echoed softly, even in this small cave, and faded into nothing. A drop or two plunked lightly in a pool nearby.

Alastor opened his eyes and looked at Marie, there was only one emotion on his face, disappointment. He looked almost livid with it.

"And tell me.." he hissed violently, yet in his usual manner, disturbingly quietly.

"Tell me why I am your lord." He spat the final word with hatred. Why couldn't she see the truth? Why couldn't anyone? Alastor concentrated on the hatred, he couldn't allow himself to be doubtful now.
 

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RE: TVC II Supplemental: Chapter 2.5: Marie

Marie flinched away from Alastor's fury, she found that trying to meet the vampire's angry gaze was impossible so instead looked down,

"All the Immortals are Lords above mankind, whether Gods or Demons." she whispered "Whether they use their power to lead humanity to greatness or..."

She looked up for a moment "to steal the life force of mortals."

She shivered forcing the thoughts of how Alastor had fed on her out of her mind.

Looking away Marie added softly "Good or Evil they remain above us."
 

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RE: TVC II Supplemental: Chapter 2.5: Marie

Looking down at Marie's complete dedicated fear, Alastor's anger fled into shame and pity. This was the only life she'd ever led, how was she to know? He smiled softly and descended onto the cushions with her, turning her cheek with one effortless cold finger to meet him in the eye.

"Tell me Marie, do you believe in fate? In gods? My opinion of the world is very much more.. questioning than yours. I believe that nothing here is determined, except when the dark gods are playing their hand. I believe that I merely happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, to recieve this.. This horrible curse of mine. Does that give me authority to be holy? Because I am stronger and faster than you? Because I've been bitten I deserve to do what I like with human beings?

And your 'angels and daemons'. Tell me, what do you think I am? Angel?"


He guestured to the intact half of his face, then his voice lowered, becoming somewhat darker.

"Or daemon..."

Then he smiled cryptically, guesturing to his whole face, slowly, trying to convey his message.

"Or, or perhaps I, like everyone else, am just some mixture of the two?."
 

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RE: TVC II Supplemental: Chapter 2.5: Marie

Marie laughed somewhat nervously.
"But of course I do." she said to Alastor sound somewhat surprised by the question.

"The Gods obviously control our fate. What you are...I would not attempt to define my Lord for you are beyond the understanding of my kind."

She looked away again
"You...you are not of the higher order like my Masters and I do not think you are of the lower Divinity such as the Regent's Immortal Guard."

"You...drank...fed from me, a devout, and so I'm forced to believe you are of the Dark Order such as the Strigoi, the demonic reflections of the True Gods. However I do not sense true evil in you or why would you allow me to live...perhaps you are something in-between."

She shrugged slightly, her fear faded away as she accepted there was little point in being afraid.

"Whether Angel or Demon you have power beyond my ability to truly comprehend and that gives you the Divine Authority to do with me as you wish. I as a mere human can not stop you."

Marie smiled suddenly and looked into the eyes of Alastor.
"So where are we?"
 

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RE: TVC II Supplemental: Chapter 2.5: Marie

Alastor half smiled as customary. Small progress, but progress nonetheless. He stared back, almost longingly into her eyes. They belonged to the Carstein's right now, he would change that, he vowed it.

Alastor's eyebrows raised slightly in surprise. Then he smiled genuinly,

"This is where I live. Would you like to have a look around? 10 years of solitude and immortality have given this place quite the character." he chuckled, and raised his arm for her to lean on as she stood up. As she was getting up she stumbled slightly, but Alastor was quick, perhaps a little unnaturally so, to catch her. Picking her up he tenderly took her out of the bed and set her feet down on the floor.

"You think you can stand?" Alastor only then became painfully aware of his cold skin on hers, he kept on forgetting he was dead, he had never felt more alive.
 

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RE: TVC II Supplemental: Chapter 2.5: Marie

Marie hesitated although not for the same reason as a nonbeliever would.

A normal human would be afraid of going near the creature that had literally attacked them not long ago.

But Marie was more worried that she would fall over if she stood, in truth she felt little to no fear for Alastor. He was part of the divine and was no more to fear that drought or floods, dangerous but unavoidable if fate willed it.

Slowly the girl got to her feet and took a careful hold of Alastor's proffered arm.

"Still a little weak." she told him with her usual shy smile.

"I would love to see your home." she added happily.
 

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RE: TVC II Supplemental: Chapter 2.5: Marie

Alastor smiled paternally, and helped support Marie as they walked forwards slowly, wading through the soothing cool water, their ripples spread ahead of them like a royal escort.

Navigating the twisting tunel circuit that even he barely knew, Alastor blinked slightly as they emerged into the cave proper. The golden shafts of sun had lost and now the triumphant pale blue of his masterpiece permeated. Alastor himself seemed calmly radiant too, and the footsteps he left in the water seemed diffuse with the pale glow.

Alastor smiled proudly, for the first time in his life.

"This," he sighed happily, "Is my organ."

The massive creation was dwarfed in size only by the cave it was in. Arching bridges of stone connected the furthermost reaches of the construct to the wall of the cavern, and stalagtites grew through parts of it like a knife. The cave and the organ seemed mutually exclusive, yet at one with another. Alastor now looked at it in a different light with Marie here, like a father marrying off his son.
 

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"An Organ..." she breathed, merely repeating the word, too amazed by such a sight to voice anything else.

Musical instruments where not a completely uncommon site in Drakenhof, various members of the Noble Divinity passed their immortal years by delving into music.

But this...this construct seemed to grand, too fantastical to be real.

Marie stepped away from Alastor, her weakness forgotten, as she stared up at the vampire's creation.

"It's beautiful." she whispered.
 

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Alastor's eyes brimmed with tears, it almost felt like he was... he was wanted. But no, it was the organ making her amazed, it would never be him.

"Do you have any favourite songs you'd like me to play?"

Alastor would know any popular tunes, he spent most of his childhood collecting them all in his memory after all.
 

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Marie looked immediately embarrassed by Alastor's question her awe giving away as her shoulders slumped and she stared at the ground.

"Eternal Lord...I was never schooled in music...I know not the names or tunes of any true songs except those sung by the common folk in taverns and they have never been much to my liking." she said quietly.

She remembered the beautiful music played by the Gods of the von Carstein family but she did not know the names of the awe inspiring pieces she had heard echoing throughout the halls of Drakenhof.
 

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Alastor sighed almost patronisingly.

"I shouldn't need to say this again but I am in no way superior to you. Sure I may be physically more capable but that gives me no ownership over you."

Alastor steadiest himself at being any more energetic, he knew she was a frail person.

"well, perhaps if you do not know any songs I could play you one of my own?" Alastor asked hopefully.
 

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Marie looked up at Alastor, despite his words she felt he was often condescending and superior.

That was fine though, he was a God after all, whether or not he wished it so but she decided to put aside theological debate for now.

Instead she smiled, his hopeful tone pleasing her somehow...making her feel significant.

"I would like that a great deal." she said laying a hand gently on his arm "Please play for me."
 

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Alastor looked down at Marie, trying to contain his excitement. Mortals could be so innocent sometimes. Except she was practically the same age as him.. what did he know about innocence?

Alastor rushed to a giant disorderly pile of parchment and started rifling through it. What to choose what to choose.. one of his own works? Fold music? Eastern? His eyes lighted on a particular piece. Perfect.

Throwing out a particular manuscript, bound in wolfskin he had made himself, back in his human days. This was one of his oldest pieces. Alastor idly waved his hand and the organ blower started up with a great sigh and the shifting of dust. An ambient blue light started illuminating the cavern slowly.

Alastor paced up the steps to the four manuals, gazing at the multitude of stops on either side of him, thinking hard. Slowly he began choosing the individual stops one at a time, like a general his bodyguards.

And with a crash of dissonance the piece began, it could only be described as horror. There were cascades of clashes and although the notes were beautiful they strained to work to create chords. Out of this apocalypse came the introductory melody, in the form of a thundering pedal melody, while the manuals notes danced around it. Suddenly the volume began to decrease and the tone became more sweet, and before long a heart aching tune sobbed out from melancholy harmonies. Alastor cried with sorrow and jot as he played, sorrow for the piece, and joy for the woman he played it for.

As Alastor switched from the great to the choir as the piece calmed down, pushing more and more stops in until he played on a single flute 8', recapitulating the final melody with a twist on the harmony as a piece de resistance. The song spoke of anger and sorrow. Alastor leant over the keyboard, panting, he hope she had liked it.
 

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Marie sat silently, her hands clasped over her heart, as she watched and listened to the young God's music.

To begin with the music was both terrible and wonderful to behold and she couldn't help but stare in wonder.

The change in music washed over her and brought the musician's emotions with her. It got to the point where Marie was no longer sure what she was feeling. She knew that she was smiling but she could also feel her eyes stinging as she wept silently.

He truly is Divine. she thought to herself.

As Alastor finished Marie stared up at him, smiling through her tears with her hands clenched tightly and her fists pressed against her chest.

"Wondrous." she breathed.
 

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Alastor's dark gaze turned from the organ, the remnants of tears still visible.

"I know what you'd say. You'd say music of the gods. What if I told you I wrote that music when I was still human?"

There seemed to be a scowl on Alastor's face, like he was trying to beat the religion out of her.
 

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Marie smiled at Alastor, she understood these tests of her faith and reacted with grace despite her still somewhat emotional state.

"Divine Inspiration." she stated as if it was obvious. "Your fate was woven into the fabric of the word long before you came into existence and you were always a Greater Being, it just didn't become obvious until their elevation to Godhood."

She tilted her head still beaming at the vampire "Besides, can you honestly say your supernatural abilities have not improved your ability to preform?"
 

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Something switched in Alastor's eyes, maddening them as he rushed up close, grabbing her one handed by her shoulder, lowering his mouth until inches of her neck.

"You've been a slave all this while in your mind, always serving those idiots simply because they have bred it into you. What if I were to turn you now? Would your life have slavery been simply 'divine contemplation' maybe?".

Snarling, his teeth sank in just a pin pricks worth to prove his point, forgetting the effect it would have on her.
 

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Marie opened her mouth but flinched as Alastor crushed her shoulder with his casual strength and any response was wiped out by the God's bite.

The girl stiffened as a sharp pain ran down her neck but it almost instantly was replaced by the utmost physical bliss.

She gasped from the pleasure as she sunk her nails into the vampire's arms, she attempted to gather herself but she couldn't form a coherent thought and a feeling of lethargy was beginning to sink in.
 

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Carefully making sure not to draw blood Alastor sat the girl down gently and frowned.

He had had to really try hard there.. He thought seeing as he fed hours ago his bloodlust wouldn't be bad but... he had to try. Shaking his head he made a mental note not to try that again, lest he kill her.

"Marie? Listen to me."
 

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She stared up at Alastor with a mixture of confusion and fear. Two bright red pin pricks sitting on her pale neck drew the eye.

She hugged herself as what had just happened dawned on her but she kept eye contact with the vampire.

"Y...yes?" she whispered.
 

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Alastor squatted down so he was the same height as her, wrapping his arms around his knees as he started intensely.

"There are no gods, no demons, we are just vampires. We simply are immortal beings. Consider this from your masters' view. They need blood to survive, that is all. What is the best way to get blood? Why, have the bloodbags known as humans serve themselves up on a plate. They don't need to fight, they aren't on run from the law because they are the law. Marie"

Alastor's eyes narrowed with wistfulness, willing for Marie's brain to finally understand him.

"Look at me. I'm not a god, I'm a bloodsucking monster with too much time on me hands" he said, flailing at the organ.
 

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Marie sighed as he looked at the vampire.

"This is pointless My Lord, you are of the Dark Order amongst the celestial beings, the fact that you would attempt to turn one of the faithful is to be expected." she said with an understanding smile.

The girl shook her head slightly.

"You are amongst the fallen or cursed divine...the Strigoi, Necrarchs, disloyal Blood Dragons and the fallen amongst the von Carstein line, your words do not surprise me."

Before Alastor could speak she raised her hand to forestall any possible interruption.

"However say you are correct, and that your blasphemy was true, why does that make you so angry? Why do you feel the need to change the mind of one insignificant mortal girl? Sylvania has blossomed under the care of the Triumvirate, our people have never been happier, healthier or more prosperous. Our cities have grown and our power expanded. The conquered lands of the foreign powers find themselves under Lords who are incorruptible, who bend their tireless energies and unsleeping minds to protecting their territories."

"And yes, they drink blood...but only of the evil and criminals. You are the first I've met who has broke this rule."

She chuckled "Because to this crime has fallen due to fear of punishment from our Immortal masters, there are no civil wars or arguments of lines of succession because our rulers do not grow old and whilst our people can join the Army most of the fighting is done by the dead and preserving our Soldiers lives."

Marie smiled and grasped the holy medallion hanging from her neck "You see it makes no sense for you to hate this. However it does make sense for a Lesser Dark God to try and steal away the faith of one of the True God's servants."
 

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Alastor's eyes narrowed in pure hate of the Carsteins, then relaxed as he sighed, seemingly giving up and slumping against the slightly luminous damp wall of the organ.

"I do this simply because.." he sighed and shook his head.

"I give up.. I just wanted to free you.. you have no idea how miserable they are making your lives.. I just wanted to help.."

Standing up slowly, his cloak clung to him like maggots to a corpse. He walked over through a puddle to his organ, running his hand over it slowly.

"Get some rest Marie. I'll be gone for some time."

And with that, great arcs of blue started sprouting from the organ, the water, and Alastor blinked out.

*End of chapter*
 
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