Tuesday, May 30, 2006Choices 21: Claudia's memory
I sat back to watch my most beloved sensei. He looked so enchanting and Surreal, absorbed into the swirl of the music. I crept up and hugged him around the neck. The playing stopped. Lestat peeled my fingers away. “Cherie, don’t. I feel very hot when you do that.”
“Why? Don’t you like my hugs?” I tried to sound unaffected, but my heart was stung.
Lestat continued playing for a while, a faster and more intensive piece than the romantic one. Right thumb was covered by a silver thing. “What is that for? You have many in the drawer. ”
He responded, getting up, “It is to scrape the skin from my victims… sometimes I bite but the blood sprays out, so if I scratch first, I can just sip. More for a Little Drink.” The concept of the lesson for the stronger of his kind, where they did not need so much nourishment to survive. He has taught this to most of his pupils , highly encouraging them to try it. Officially there are six fledges, half of whom perished or left him. I wondered if there were unofficial numbers not listed in the Chronicles. Lestat must have heard, but he ignored me.
I flopped down beside Louis, who shifted further without looking up from the pages. I leaned over.
“Hmm? I cannot believe composers had such dramatic lives. Chopin became asexual after he was engrossed with composition! Are you like that, cher-honey?” Louis murmured. Green eyes flecked with gold, I think he looks like an anime guy, those with large emotional pupils. Of course he deleted that, but I re- included them when I logged in in the daytime.
Tension arose with the musician’s frank comment:
“Bianca, please do not hug me around the neck in future. It reminds me too much of my fledgling.” Lestat sounded monotonous when he stated this. In a flat voice. “I know you are affectionate. Still, that makes me lose concentration. I would prefer if you just let me know.”
Before I even thought of an answer, a placating one, Louis inserted quietly, “These are two Different people. No offence. Do you not dare mention her name?”
“What? I am not! Claudia, the wicked child, the schemer…” String of French words, did not sound polite. Pointe’s face was coldly furious. The subject of their daughter always provokes him to the maximum extent. “I do not fear mentioning her. Why should I? It was Your fault, if not she wouldn’t have to die! The petite princesse perished in the rays of the sun! Why did you bring her to France?”
Louis rose now to his full height, slightly taller than the blonde. He spoke cuttingly, “Lestat, it was you who went to Armand for help, for justice. Theatredesvampires arrested us on that fateful night. We would have been very happy, when we were in Paris. Without your meddling.”
I was saddened. Old wounds reopening at this point. Inside my teacher’s head were numerous insults, retorts—he never been able to triumph over Armand’s hold over his cher, Claudia being his Child too, don’t be selfish Louis. Damn you! A violent tendency to hit him.
Louis’s was blocked up completely, I encountered a steel barricade. Stay out.
Lestat dashed to him and grabbed Louis by the collar. The other just stared at him icily. “How Dare you! Make yourself the goody goody, huh? I could never win you, could I? And now you speak of this, this—you never truly forgave me! Claudia was as much my child as yours, but she didn’t choose me. I was shutout of the Pair you made.
“Why why? I Gave her life, out of my blood, though it exhausted me…. And that is a pathetic excuse for liking and attracting and Tempting Amadeo. DON’T DENY THIS LOUIS!! YOU LOVE HIM! YOU’D GO BACK TO HIM IF HE SO MUCH AS ASKED YOU,” Lestat yelled towards the last part. Tears stained his cheeks, red sticky and hot. He breathed hard, his shoulders and chest heaving. After released his fledgling, he sobbed, smudging his cheeks with his hands.
I did not know what to do. The dark-haired vampire straightened his collar and spoke mentally, Bianca. I am so sorry you had to watch us fight. The truth is, we have been fighting for some time already. It’s because of Claudia. Claudia’s memories. A quick flash of scenes where the golden little girl, cheeky smile, endless long doll-like curls, white dress. We both blame ourselves too much for what happened, what could have been prevented. I’ll go off now. He is so mad.
Lestat went to get a box of tissues, sniffling and hiccupping. His hands were sticky with the red fluid which smeared on the table, the white clothing. Plus he shook so much, his vision affected. I helped him to open it and took out a handful. I waited, watched him do some cleanup, blow his nose.
Sensei, how… I’m not sure how to phrase it. How are you feeling now?
My sincerest apologies---- I lost it. Spoiling the nice evening like that. My fault. Brat Prince, solemn and broken, fell into his armchair and rubbed his nose bridge. Can—can we talk? I’ll go wash my face first, looks terrible. When he came back, the remnants of clear water over his cheeks and his forehead, Lestat had the most contrite expression. Sweetie, please don’t be alarmed. I should not have shouted, I promised you right? I—I wanted it to be perfect. I guess that is the problem with yearning for perfection, it never lasts. Louis, he infuriates me! Why can’t he just stop cutting my heart? I have to be the Bad Guy when he is around. I blame myself too, when she died. I still have terrible flashbacks, sometimes when I am in a floating dream world, I meet Claudia. I am haunted by her face, her laughter. Her yellow dress. I was holding it after she perished. He let his hand fall to his lap, a sign of defeat, of weariness.
Lestat closed his bright pupils, inhaling and exhaling. I listened as he confided in me some more—I also don’t like it when Paris comes up. Paris equals to, to my archrival. And now he sees him again, here! I regret telling him, should’ve known that Armand would seek justice. He was always the Child of action, the vigilante. But to a Child! My child… my heart is broken, repeatedly.
I offered to tell Louis this. As conciliatory. Lestatie, I should not have hugged you in that manner. I didn’t realize…. His arm came about me and he kissed my cheek.
“It is alright. Non, he will think you are taking my side. You’ve done enough listening to my ramblings. We should not make you in a difficult position, cherie. Does my voice sound husky? I think my tear ducts will rip when I keep at this. Haha.” Lestat smiled tiredly. He asked me if I felt hungry. Louis was just coming down the stairs, as we headed for the kitchen. The Master stopped, a tender expression on his white face. “Hey.”
“Um. I—I think you ought to take it easier later,” Louis interrupted. I summarized what Prince had conveyed. Louis nodded and said we’ll talk later. Go eat first. I let the blond open up a packet of Oreos, then busy himself making Iced tea. The ice cubes clinked into the glass. All seemed like a normal night over. I opened the two sides, licking the cream like Oreo fans do.
Lestat sat down. We resumed a normal chat. He was happy I was wearing a skirt, pink fluffy one tonight. “I seldom see you so feminine, angele. Your hair is such a nice purple.”
“Thanks. My friend got this for me. It’s crumpled, I cannot wear a skirt without making a mess of it. ‘stat, teach me telekinesis.” The vampire conceded. He asked me to push the saucer across the table. I concentrated, staring at the item.
Nothing. I pouted.
“Okay, it means that you haven’t mustered the full concept of it yet. Gather up your energy, then release it to the dish. Say push to yourself. Does it work, Bianca?”
I managed to inch it some way to the edge. Lestat clapped, and moved it closer to me. I tried several times, each time making it slide across at a faster pace. Later I had to pull it. Summon it to come to me. That was hard. My headache came in surges and I gasped. Lestat was anxious.
“Good. You have to rest now. It is very tiring. Well, telepathy you already know. Moving things is not necessary, unless you’re bedridden. Or you want to make flames. It is adequate.” I was rewarded by the sense of pride he was experiencing. It had taken away his bad mood. My headache subsided after ten minutes. I opened my eyes.
Lestat clinked the spoon on the saucer, staring into space. His blankness a huge intensity, like he was gonna catch the air behind me into flame. “I’m ok now. How did you learn all these? Lestat, you’re a genius.”
He laughed bitterly. “No one. I learnt all by myself. Marius just gave me a few tips, then he sent me away. I had to learn everything from scratch. … what is that saying? We were young orphans together, learning how to walk….. I don’t know why I had to take it the hard way. I want the nice smooth path too, darling. Do you understand me so far?” He waved this away and switched. “Mustn’t go into that dark area again. You accept me. I ought to be thankful for that.”
“Yea,” I replied, draining the tea. Lestat, forever an outcast among his own people. I felt for him. It was almost like he would not amount to anything. Louis had hurt him so much, acutely. He manipulated him emotionally, just by being silent and unrelenting. It was so cruel. How could a fellow person of the same race profoundly hit below the belt?
Pointe, not as gentle as he seems…..
I had to do something. When I got upstairs, the other preter had gone into his coffin. It was some time before we had a private conversation. Most of it was pretend-to-be-normal in front of guests. But no passion or aficionado between them.
Louis was unwilling to acknowledge any of it as his fault. I was frustrated.
“What happened to your sense of justice, of balance? You went too far! Do you not realize? Sensei- chan is abnormally subdued. He’s so sad. How can you mistreat him like that?” I almost shouted at him.
Louis went to the balcony and pushed back his silky hair. His answer was placid. “He provoked me. All assumptions. Of course I know he loved her. But I have forgotten Armand. Let him think what he wants then. So be it if I still miss the leader of the Children of Les Innocents.”
I had to take another approach. What was wrong, how could he behave so acidly to his Maker? “Do you forgive him, or not? Please answer me.”
I sensed his inner turmoil. He couldn’t lie to me, “I do.” Pause “I wanted him to see.”
“See what? Lestat is not stupid.”
“I didn’t expect him to blowup. I just pointed out that he should not associate everybody hugging him from behind as something personal. That is wrong. You wanted to be sweet and nice. He rejected you.” Louis gazed into my eyes directly when he finished saying this.
I was touched but, “Louis, I know you are sticking up for me. But at this old age, he has suffered immensely. I don’t mind whatever he says. It was frightening that he reacted so strongly. And he’s still very frail.” Louis put his arms around me in a gesture that was foreign--- he seldom, if ever, hugged anybody.
You’re an angel. I didn’t want you hurt. I must not fail again. I failed her. We both did---------- Louis told me gently. I knew what he meant. That night, Louis did not say yes, he was wrong for angering the one who’d given him life. But he conveyed that he missed their daughter. If only I could be a good substitute.
Lestat was always glad to see me, especially now when Louis ignored him. We still kept up the research about the sickness and the cure, not leave Puppy alone in the event he might pass out; but no true connection was made. Pointe did not tell him where he went. Lestat was deeply hurt by this gesture. “Maybe he left a note. Let’s take a look. Hmmm.”
“So positive, Child? Come, teach me something. I want to do art. Teach me teach me.” We sat down comfortably on the couch. He cleared the table. I spread out a red paper and snipped a few times. Open: Chinese calligraphy of Happiness and Prosperity. I was doing these for art and the next one was origami, the folding of paper cranes, flowers, anything.
“The Japanese are really artistic. I was so taken by this Japanese painting!”
He showed me the picture, a simple round pond with dragonflies, koi fishes. “Haven’t thought where to put it up. Maybe some of the English ones should take turns being up.” Then he changed the CD with his mind, an invisible hand putting the discs in place and replaced the non-playng one in its case.
For a while Lestat snipped coloured paper. We made quite a mess on the table. Repeated patterns. “We could use these to print on the walls. Or the tiles. Cool!”
“My goodness! I can’t. It looks so ugly,”Lestat said with a horrified expression. It killed me. I held my stomach. “What is it, petite fleur?”
“Have more confidence, man. You’re progressing at an accelerated speed. Lestat, could I say something? Ok. Are you feeling better? It’s good to express yourself. You seldom open up, I notice.”
Brat-prince smiled and said in a whisper, “Thank you. I’m fine now. I was very pained, but I guess I cannot force others to be worried or feel the way I do. Bianca, you’re so strong. Hungry? There’s a pizza in the oven. Cheese-flavoured. I’ll go take it out.” I took his arm.
“Later.” My little brother had a similar abandoned look once, when he hurt his head. I could barely comfort him and this was a deep deep emotional scar. Scar over scars. I debated if I should hug him hard and tell him he need not be alone. My mother could heal you. She passed me the genes of Compassion. “Um, what would you like for your birthday, ‘stat? We keep forgetting. 7th Nov right?”
The vampire sat down once more, one arm around me, his free hand gathering up the discarded rubbish. “Yep. Some fun. A cake… anything. Anything’s ok with me. It feels the same every time. You do not need to remember. I forget your birthday too.” I leaned into his embrace. He sighed deeply. My lovely dove, strong bird of prey who sees everything and into the heart…. Fiery Warmth into my everlasting winter. What about your present? I Will remember this time, I promise. Anything you ask.
I laughed. “Sheez, isn’t this getting too mushy? Let me distance myself. No offence.” He let me go and I pondered what present I wanted. “Big dangly earrings, like the large rings… but not that design. I want something special. You go scout for it k?”
“No problem.” Brat prince scribbled it on a book and underlined it. I saw the cross on his neck, like an amulet against suffering. It is not death he fears, but suffering. He appreciates it, coz he normally hates wearing jewellery. Utada’s It’s automatic in the background. We sat like this, peaceful, serene, a rare moment for the usually excitable amorous vampire.
Louis walked in, threw the keys and they caught on the hook. It was 12.30am. “Where have you been?”Lestat snapped. “Didn’t you have any idea of the time?” He got up in a blur and strode towards a shocked speechless Louis. “Where were you? Why didn’t you wake me? At least wait! ” Lestat usually woke up by five but this time, he was bound to sleep in till six.
“Calm yourself. Went to buy groceries. I left a note. Didn’t you guys see?”
That failed to appease him. The bushfire temper. I hugged myself. Ruined, again. Lestat’s fangs were out and he was livid, the veins all out on his neck. No don’t bite him! But he was deaf and slammed his fledgling into the wall. Louis winced and held his fisted hands, like holding a child back from hitting a lego building. Lestat! Stop! The note’s here! It had flown to the floor.
“Bianca. Who is right? You tell me! I am frantic, worried sick. And this boy runs off. Can’t even tell me personally where he goes! DO NOT go out.”
I shook my head and began to shiver. Louis stepped out of the manhole and grasped him by the shoulders.
“What? Am I your servant, to order around? Lestat, be reasonable. You know it is bad to be raging. Sit down.”
The tone softened somewhat: “I thought something had happened. I could not lose you, darling.…. If it were not for Bianca, I would feel isolated again, without someone.” Vanish. Stricken.
Louis sighed, rubbed his face. Sorry to scare you. I bought things. The note should’ve stayed there. Bread, foodstuffs, a big bottle of Coke, fruit juice. The servants lavished on! Lucky people! But luckier still, you do not face the wrath of a preternatural master. Did he hurt you?--- he ventured.
No. we were doing patterns. He was so different. He’s a nice person. I don’t understand why he’s still mad. I thought he was ok. I hope he is not suffering too much now.
The next room was empty. Not in the bedroom either. The things were still messy. I was worried, so we shouted for him, straining to hear sounds. Finally Lestat revealed that he was in the corner room. He sat in the armchair, clutching his stomach. “I almost died! I bet you don’t care.”
This was aimed at Louis. The other did not react and touched his shoulder. Lestat curled up tighter. He concealed all the throbbing from me. “Something’s wrong with…. Me. Why… so much pain all the time? Even when I am calm.” Louis and I looked at each other. The secret almost in the open. It had been two months. But if we chose to say now----
“Don’t fight anymore! Please! I freak when you do.” Both of them stared at me bewildered. I unsheathed my claws, gripping Lestat’s hand. Blood. I had cut him. My hand with its talons. “At this age! How could you? Why yell at Louis when he’s innocent? I’m sick of this!” I slammed the door as hard as it could go and ran towards my room. I was having a temper tantrum and it was downright stupid. I felt bitter though, and guilty. So guilty to have lied.
I didn’t deserve to warm up his heart. “Hey don’t be mad. I’m not angry anymore. Right Louis cher? Can we come in?” he spoke gently. The normal adult tone. when he saved me. I said all right.
Oh no. “Your stomach. It’s bloody.” Lestat waved this away, saying he’d cut himself and some of it was splashed. Louis pulled up a chair. The blond sat gratefully, general debility all over.
“We were totally fucking asses. Sorry. Now is there something you’re keeping from me? I can’t tell from Pointe-sweetheart but he looks guilty all the time. Since we’re all calm, let’s talk. Is it my sickness?” Lestat said briskly.
I leaned back on my pillows. Like I am the sick one. “You cannot afford to be so angry, ‘stat. It is different now.” While we talked, Louis made him change out of his soiled shirt and put on a fresh blue Tshirt.
Lestat was not surprised realizing that he was not cured, but a long long way to that goal. We were so naughty to keep a secret this huge from him, seeing it was concerning himself. “I’m glad it’s out. We didn’t want you upset, so we kept it underwraps. The doctors said it was important that you’re in a normal state. And we have done a lot of research,” Louis said. The papers, photocopied and a book.
“This Chirac… blooms only every 100 years? So what year is this? The 60th? Hey don’t look so depressed. It’s not your sickness, cherie.” Lioncourt browsed the reports. “This info is quite useful. I wanna read it. Only for Daylight people.”
“But it can cure anything! It is very powerful. Don’t give up hope.” My sensei chuckled, nodding. Did he have a temperature? How can Lestat stand being ill all the time?
On October 30:
Quinn604: heys, gal. still awake. It’s 11.
B. elfinprincess: yea. Not having school tmr. Lestat miss u.
Quinn604: smiley. Yes, tell him I miss him too, want to visit.
Bianca: when, when? Come soon! Haven’t seen u personal b4.
Quinn604: I’m dark haired, curly, six foot four, violet eyes, porcelain skin. Dun worry, u can see me when I come. Soon, soon promise. How’s my Boss?
Bianca: not gd, he’s sleeping now. he can’t drink much. Lack of energy.
Quinn604: omg. I wanna come tmr night then. That’s terrible. Does he know secret yet?
Bianca: pout face. Yea, last nite had big- big fight. He knew from our look. What time coming? Diff must note.
Quinn604: hmm. Dun worry, will settle myself. Me expert.
Bianca: uh huh! Heheh. Lestat’s very positive tho. He doesn’t panic when he’s serious? I wonder…
Quinn604: I think he does not wanna fright u. he’s veteran, battled plenty of demons. Read his chronicles?
Bianca: yep yep. Huge fan! He’s so exciting. Oh yes, yr book Rocks baby!! Luv all yr stories. How long u took to write?
Quinn604: 1 year. Had to rearrange events in order. So honored to have brat prince endorse. He came for booksigning too!
Bianca: I am awed! Want to publish my own novel too. Will u read pls? all these what I recorded abt us!
Quinn promised to read them all and give me an honest review. He was so sweet! I loved him already, and he was Coming faster than we expected! Louis gestured that it was cool, and we’d have someone else to consult when he arrived. He had been standing behind me, watching the whole chat. Photo of him, Lestat and Mona together at an island resort. (It was a place where the preternaturals gathered annually over with Marius and location was top secret.) Quinn Blackwood as described. I smoothed the glass over the portrait and smiled. Yea! I’m going to see him in the flesh!
Saturday, May 06, 2006ch 20: why Lestat won't touch the techie toys!
Quinn is my online friend, younger than my two friends. He's curly-haired, 6 foot 4 So tall!! But I will only see him later on. I only saw him on photos in the house.
Okay, I promised I would tell you why Brat Prince thrashed the keyboard right? He wanted to learn how to go on the Internet and I took up the challenge of trying to educate him. He was so naïve--- whenever something popped out, he wanted to click on it. “No no no, don’t!”
“Why not? It says ‘click here to get a free trip to the US’. I could win that!” my friend said, in a disappointed tone. I explained that it might give some virus to the system. I was using as simple terms as I could, but still the anti- virus and firewall programs could not be further simplified. His mind was all---- Omg, you need a wall made of fire? But the PC will explode isn’t it? I understand the anti is to stop the sickness. But if the computer is sick, can’t we give it medicine?
I laughed. Then I became serious again.
“It would spoil the PC system if you pour Any liquid! Ok, Princie, just know that it will cure the system of any illness. As for all these flashy- flashy ads, they want you to click on it. So they are attractive. Anything flashy that says CLICK me, don’t.
“And the wall is not made of fire. It is just a term.”
Lestat looked annoyed at this troublesome tip, he Has to click on nice things. It is not right not to. So I told him the repair people would take care of any problems. I left him alone for a second to relieve myself. Louis’s voice floated down the hallway as he murmured something. I caught his thoughts: wait for her. Oh no!
I gaped at his handiwork, Lestat lifting up the keyboard and whacking it against the wall. “Stupid stupid fucking why isn’t it working? Ack. The screen turned black!” Brat pressed the main button repeatedly, then the CPU. “Um, is it okay?”
Louis made him put down the keyboard. The mouse was dangling by its tail. I saved it and took over, anxious. “Shit, I hope you didn’t damage this baby. It cost 4000 over bucks man!” Brat prince looked real sorry and sat down, sending me bundles of sunflowers as images. Yay. It was alright. Thank goodness!
“It logged off. So now it is all right again. Relax, ‘stat. it will comply but not rough handling ok? Be kind to the terminal. Ok let’s go to safe webpages now. What do you want to search for?”
I showed him how to make a search for subject on Yahoo and Google. He got that right. Then the complicating part came ------- email and messenger. If anyone wants to talk to Quinn, do it by MSN, because he’s usually online. In fact the modern vampire had lost his phone, hehe, such an intelligent person losing his phone! Since he moved, Quinn felt he did not need a phone, since he will sleep in the day.
I logged on and let the senior guy virtually talk to Quinn. “It is ok. But I don’t understand all these little short forms. What is he trying to say?” Netspeak. “Ah, spell in full please. I cannot comprehend.”
One finger typing, imagine how slow that is. We were very patient on both ends. He was exhausted beyond physical measure and context when we ended the session. I smiled, really bouncing to show him more next time. He gave me the same unenthusiastic response I had for piano. I hugged him.
“I will die using the computer. It is enough to use Microsoft word. I will print it, or fax it to people,” he sighed, rubbing his nose bridge. He also rubbed his neck. “The aching is so painful too. Cherie, don’t do it too often.”
I was definitely going to continue being online, “Hey that is so ancient. Mail takes Weeks! You can send instant message to the other person in minutes! Once he is online, he can read it immediately. C’mon, don’t give up.”
Lestat put on a brave face, then stuck out his tongue and waved both hands. “Oh no no. I will take More time figuring this out. It is okay, I can send by registered. Not as fast, but it still reaches. I don’t want to bother you any further Bianca.”
It was not bothering me. I honestly liked the hang of teaching. He looked at me in awe, icon of patience. He listened to my opinion on the conveniences of instant messaging, concluding, “You can help me if you like. We are learning from each other. All right, I will try to use these programs. But I warn you, I am a Child of the previous millennia and this is alien to me.”
I nodded and sat on his lap, put my hand on his knee. Lestat was so comforting and gentle with me. The merciful one, Quinn said. He often reached out to assist other younger vampires who did not know the art. Using his Gift and sharing his knowledge generously. Quinn was so relieved that Lestat had not killed him for invading his flat. The spectacular and electrifying moment when the young preternatural met his idol! My sensei is ichiban! I translated that and he laughed- I will get swollen headed.Oh please!
It was the least we could do to make the stricken preternatural comfortable and not provoke him. Everyone was willing to help. I was told to stay outside, but I overheard what he was saying to Omaga-- about how he fainted on the street one night and how nervous he was because he never knew when there were other fainting spells. It was embarrassing, humiliating to be like that. That was the furthest I got, before my teacher cleared his throat and glared at me. I looked remorseful and tiptoed away.
I told you I want to be alone. Why are you so naughty? It hurts me to be mad.
But you like company.
I was having a private conversation. Now you’ve heard extra stuff…I don’t want you to become old before your time. Bianca, I often feel sick and dizzy. It’s such a pain----he admitted meekly—-- I hate this.
I will support you. We love you Sweet prince. All of us. Are you still angry?
I peeked from outside and waved. He sat up and smiled. I lent him my Xmen and super heroes comics because we could not find the old editions of his favourite comics. The vintage shops did not sell any editions either. It was not the same, but the patient was happy with them.
I combed his hair and agreed with each little comment he made. Sometimes Lestat wanted to play a game. Monopoly, cards, those that did not make him too excited. Louis, David, Marius and other unnamed vamps visited. When they came, Lioncourt was all adult-mode and sent me out. I wished he let me stay because I wanted to get an update.
The censored version: “I am going to be better! Be happy for me Krys. We caught up on our lives… here it is so mundane. There are Paris performances and operas in town.” It was inaccurate. Lestat spoke in a lively voice, yet could not find the energy to sit up too long. Lying down flat made him cough, so much that his throat was rubbed raw. It was not so bad because he was drinking liquids. If it were us, throat inflammation would be more serious. Nevertheless, Brat Prince was ordered by my mom to take all her best medicinal soups. She had flown back to come visit too.
“Do not pretend to us. You break my heart, darling. We know how you feel,” Louis told him angrily.
The weakened vampire blinked at him, his smile gone. “Why are you… yelling? My head hurts. Please be gentle to me.”
Lestat coughed and had to sit up, his body shook from the force of the spasm. He managed a faint smile when I came in with a get- well card. My class was worried for him too and other than the individual little ones, this one was signed by all my friends. My friend still has all of them stacked in a folder!
“Merci. You guys are touching. I want to dedicate songs. May I?” Lestat whined feebly. He was reverting to his teenage boyhood. Marius explained to us that sometimes their kind do it, especially when they are in dire straits. It meant they would go into Deep Sleep.
“No. you are supposed to sleep early.” Pointe commanded. Lestat’s lips trembled. I took the patient’s hand and leaned against his chest, consoling him.
“We will k? Don’t bother him.” Louis left in a huff. I demanded why he must be so harsh to his maker but he refused to reply.
All the songs Brat wanted were sentimental and super-old.
I am so sorry. Am I boring you? I should make an effort to be normal. Lestat Sent me abruptly stopping the CD. He looked like his normal self that night, steely blue eyes and imposing presence.
Hey you’re my friend. You are afraid you appear weak? I do not mind. When I was sick, you came to cheer me up everyday. You sang to me and entertained me. I got better. What else? I mentioned all the good deeds he had done, definite karma! If you do good karma, it will be paid back.
He sounded shaky, holding back tears-------- I know. I don’t like my weakness. Not underground. Want to stay here. But my body cannot take any more of this. Thank you.
I pressed his shoulder gently, overcome by great pity for my friend----- You mustn’t cry anymore. You’ll overstrain yourself. I’ll play a game with you. What game do you want?
We chose Risk, where you toss the dice and your soldiers fight. Lestat forced himself to concentrate on it. It worked. His depression faded off as he concentrated on the game and not letting down his guard. I let him win. I win too many times already.
Two weeks later, Brat Prince was much better. Marius had cautioned us not to be too overjoyed because serious illnesses and their symptoms were not evident immediately. Lestat was much subdued, though he had stopped coughing. Marcus and me did not let him lapse into depression-- we asked him questions about his people and got him to teach us music. My brother has a better affinity with piano, a natural with it. He can close his eyes and feel the rhythm under his fingers. Lestat was really pleased with us. “It’s so cool! Magnificent. No one I’ve met has such talent and potential. Ah, you also can do carvings? Those little animal statuettes are so sweet.”
Marcus and he were engrossed in that topic. Sometimes my sensei enquired politely about his soccer interests, though he did not like watching it.
“How did you do that, Bianca?” the blond cried out like a small kid when I produced a gold chain with a crucifix. It was a very special one, made of precious stones, a ruby in its centre. Louis closed the empty box.
“Hey do you want the box? It comes together.”
“Okay. Cherie, how? Could you show me? I always like magic shows, but I don’t know how to do them.” The crucifix was fitting like a glove on his hand, gold flashed on his throat. Merged into his golden hair. Lestat watched me intently.
I laughed. “Hey nothing great. My cousin taught me. You want to find out? I can demo.” But my trick was only limited to making objects appear again, not cards. When I got Louis to pick a card, I couldn’t find the card back. We looked all over. Prince laughed so much that he got stitches.
Later when we cuddled in his bed, and I was helping to fold up his shirts, he told me how much he loved our company. You do not have to reveal your friend’s trade- secret, I was just curious. Remember, anytime I get too demanding, just press stop.
Where do I find the stop button? I teased, placing the green pajamas on the stack. He slipped the first stack into the drawer. It flopped all over the floor in a bunch.
Darn it. Show me an image or something. I got an idea, wanna learn how to improve on your telepathy? You’ve asked me millions of times, but I keep forgetting.
I did. But I hesitated, Lestat just recovered. What if he overstrained? The youngest marquis made an impatient noise and shut the drawer. For a while, I received nothing. We were busy sorting the laundry into their slots. Yellow, blue, green. Suits, nightshirts, pants to be hung up. I wanted a particular order.
He asked me where Quinn was staying at the moment. “He didn’t come. I got his phone call but you told me he doesn’t have a phone,” Lestat spoke, a slight inflection. I should not underestimate him, even when he is not well, I have learnt. The things he comes up with are observant.
“It is true. He doesn’t have one. Right now, coz you don’t use the internet, Quinn has to find phone booths to call. Maybe this one should be dried more. Dryer section.”
He frowned. “What for? Don’t bother, I’ll wear it and it gets crumpled anyway. Cherie, tell him not to waste time. I want to see him face to face, up close…. What? Repeat that image again? Ack, so many many clothes.”
I giggled. The image of both of them romping bare on some grass, Eden, Garden of temptation. Frolicking.
“Young people these days… sigh. When Will we ever finish sorting? I want to lie down now. Help me. I miss my little brother. Haven’t seen him, I know he looks the same as always. Help me to ask, can you?” Lestat flopped down and his arm brushed down my back. He played with my hair.
“Be patient. Almost done, sensei. Oyasumi. I’ll go tell him now.”
He stopped me, pouting. “No no, not now. Stay here with me. Don’t let the comp rule your lives. It is so… dumb. It is not sincere. Do you meet strangers online? Don’t all right? I am so afraid reading the news. Old man preys on several girls. Ugh.”
Surely I was not that gullible. I explained that we’re precocious children. My friend’s younger siblings are All net-savvy and can rattle off all the rules about net safety. Lestat closed his eyes and his hand dropped to the mattress. I waited for a bit before I finished the last pile and ran to Louis’s room. Online!
We played Ayumi Hamasaki’s Voyage. I loved the song, the tinkling and the beauty, the enchantment….. you do not have to see the MTV but you can already picture what’s happening. I had sung aloud without realizing, until the vampire called my name. I came to, feeling shy.
He invited me to sit down. “You have quite a voice there. Do you sing onstage?”
“Hehhe, no I couldn’t. It’d freak me out.” I sang the anti-climax, where the background music became louder. Lestat nodded and picked it up. Hey lemme tell you the story. I placed the scenes into his mind and did some subtitles. This woman’s lover is a samurai. She’s going to be sacrificed to the gods. It is a tradition. She’s dressed in a pink flowery kimono. It is really sad. The funny thing is, it flashes back to the present. A lady in the present, lonely, by the lake. When the samurai took on all the guards, she should have known she wouldn’t be saved.
He was taken down by arrows. Awww, but they get reunited right? yay. It is a nice story. Thank you for taking the time to show me. Telepathy is really fun eh? When you were young, how did you learn to communicate?
It is inborn. You? Were you scared by the sounds of others? When Jean Grey first set out, she was scared, thought it was ghosts. He was silent, full. I hoped I had not intruded on his private thoughts. I hurriedly told him it was alright not to answer me.
No I am not angry. Am I that petty? Yea,…. I was very frightened. Same. Next he burst into French, changing the music. This is a folksong that was originally Italian. The terms like fortissimo and piano, which is soft, are derived from Italy.
Cool. You are so smart. I listened to his singing, which is all of a natural skill. He said he felt less stressed when he listened to his music, but that would be spoilt when people yelled. It was not so much because he grew up in a hollering environment. It was silent, on the contrary. Lestat had this dreamy composer-look, untouched, untainted face of a white prince Charming. Plus he wore mostly white, except for the inside tunic which was deep violet. No matter how badly mismatched his apparel is, Lioncourt de marquis can still hold off a Bad boy image. My favourite photo of him is in his new frock coat. He had jumped onstage at midnight with Armand begging him not to make a scene in public.
I was so drunk that night, guys. Don’t blame me, Lestat inserted, then went back to singing. I hummed along. Louis was reading about the composers, just for fun. Music is a healing therapy.
* I like Ayumi’s Voyage. Listen to it. Then you will understand why it is so alluring to classical people!
Friday, May 05, 2006My poor friend in more pain than we imagined!
Louis opened the door. For a moment we just stared at each other awkwardly. Then he smiled shyly. Music wafted on invisible air to my ears, a new song. The pianist was practicing. I asked if he was better.
“Where were you? Lestat says he has been alone these nights. Did we not agree to accompany him?” I demanded. Louis did not respond.
“I did. I came home earlier yesterday. At ten.” He said coolly. I was stung. In that Who are you to criticize me tone.
“Hey I was busy.” I sulked.
The other scowled and sounded grumpy, “I was as well. I was doing research about cures, medicine--------- he broke off when the piano stopped. Lestat turned to face us, hair caught up low by a black satin ribbon. He was quizzical. Louis disappeared. I was torn between rushing after him and demanding a full explanation and apologizing for my rudeness.
Lestat was excited. He was so light today and practically danced when I said I would bring my favourite Japanese cd. “Then you shall have more fun. You’ll see… playing Utada’s first love. Is that right? It is a great score.”
He whipped the cover over the piano. I felt the dizziness as if it were mine when my teacher walked unsteadily to the nearest couch and fell into it. He was gasping for breath. His fangs showed as he fought not to scream. Mask of agony. I sat on the floor.
Lestat. Hang in there. Louis will be here shortly. I touched his trembling damp arm. He was wet with perspiration.
Thank you. will… be fine… even his strong voice sounded like he had been drained. Oh. Don’t look at me… go outside. Now. He had his eyes closed.
I stood up. Louis returned with a glass of semi-transparent liquid. Lestat gulped it down and leaned back. His labored breathing softened. They murmured in their native language. I went outside for a while. It smelled like the Strong Panadol.
Since when did my teacher take that kind? Before he was hospitalized, he only needed the commercial kind of aspirin, paracetamol. The poison’s returned! Please, no! I felt terrible. Louis shut the door again and looked at me helplessly.
The sick guy was protesting, But we don’t feed in the house. It’ll be all smelly. And besides Hawk lives here too. She’ll be grossed out, he had complained finicky and fussy.
I reassured him that I did not mind. He wanted to stand up and try to walk but I refused him and was busgirl for a while. I took the phone, his black book and whatever he needed.
Back to the present. We talked in Louis's room, closed door. “I was not angry with you anymore. I accept your apologies. Um I didn’t reply your Sendings?” The younger vampire was puzzled. I faithfully listed all the times I had contacted him. It’s very easy to remember Sendings, like internet login and out, it is recorded in our minds.
“Maybe you didn’t hear me. Anyway, what did you find?”
Louis had been busy. Other than talking to his seniors, he also read up and went on the Internet, libraries and bookstores. The bookstores on herbs were far out of town. I marveled at this, as he does not dare to go to new places without his Maker. However it was a secret from Lestat. “I was lost. But luckily met some kind souls willing to help me out. These are the only news. The Chirac is so rare.”
I said Mom had related the same thing. “Can you tell me something? Why is he taking stronger panadol now? The commercial ones?”
Louis blinked very rapidly, then the light went out. He was crying. I Changed and stroked his soft hair. Bianca. He… did not tell me. I was too busy. And you know his stubbornness. He----- called you? It has been two months already. I only found out when he fainted from its effects in the bathroom. He would not wake up. He did not, until the next night. And then he threw up several times. I forced him to tell me. We fought.
I said, why? Why do you lie to me? I love you. And Lestat was mad. I guess he was also angry at himself, at his agony and weakness. He refused to let me into his heart. It is So frustrating I cannot Read his mind. I cannot until he talks. See? It is so late. The symptoms have worsened.
I was saddened. How long would he continue to put on a show? Acting takes plenty of effort. It is what is known as the needless energy expended. We could not leave him alone anymore! I stood on the ledge. Brat Prince was still awake, his room has the balcony and light was spilling out. I Hid my worries and shut the window. I hugged Pointe and told him we would find a way. We lowered our voices.
“Louis, I can talk to Omaga again. Lestat will listen to him. He has the same authority as Marius. He can help check out the alternatives. Don’t be negative ok? Your bf will be fine.”
“Thanks. Hey, you wanna sleep now? Let me wash my face first. I’ll tuck you in.” When he returned I asked what they were talking about in french.
“Oh. Lestat told me specifically not to reveal all the stuff I just blurted out. You are too young to handle this.” Louis smiled tenderly. “But you can. Okay. I will contact Mrs Smollen. She knows many people all over the world. And Quinn knows some people. Hey you can get online and talk to him right?”
Yep. It was settled. We could use messenger to talk. As long as Lioncourt was in the dark about it. Quinn and me often chatted online but so far he was too busy with college work to meet us. His studies had been interrupted by his Maker’s conversion, plus his bro’s problem and the exorcism. Then Mona’s problems. So many headaches.
There are 2 computers in Rue Royale, one is an old MS DOS one in the storeroom. When we got the new one I shifted it to Louis’s room. A Pentium IV. Of course my brother had to convince them of its improved speed and stuff, though they didn’t care about it. But there is no printer. Working on it.
BIANCA elfin princess: I don’t want to be one of you.
QUINN 604: Better not. It sucks, the gift. I call it curse. How is Lestat? He is my idol. It’s really worrying he won’t rest .will try to talk to my friends. They can help.
BIANCA:Yea. We told him to lie down early these nights. Sometimes he will be watching tv instead of sleeping. He’s afraid to be alone.
QUINN: Bianca. How long u met each other?
BIANCA: oh for 2 and ½ yrs already. I noe he’s phobic. Ack. Louis will talk to u.
-Hey Quinn. How r u? it’s weird this netspeak.
QUINN: he sleep now? like 2 early. Thx, fine. U take care ok? Anyway, talk to him. He’s always appreciative of pple. Talk x 200.
BIANCA : lol! Lol! When u come, need u to tutor me maths.
QUINN: What topic?
BIANCA: Differentiation. U know this? Ok if not.
QUINN: I do. Sure.
BIANCA: YAAAAY! Uh-oh, Lestat is yelling at me. Gtg. Bb.
“Bianca! Get off the computer this instant. Come in here! Why are you always logging in?” the spoilt puppy hollered. He squashed me when I sat by his bedside. As usual he was in pajamas and looked very small and tired in his large bed. But he did not want to sleep in the coffin in front of me. He will not unless I go to sleep.
“ Sorry. I’m chatting with Quinn. You know right? I like talking to him.”
“ Better than my company? Anyway don’t sleep too late. Will he teach you maths? You want to pass.” Lestat smiled, covering my small hand with his long fingers.
“ Hopey so. I desperately Need to pass! Can’t you sleep? Don’t take too much painkiller. Here, some oil. Smell it. It helps disperse headaches. Try.” He did and balked at the smell.
“ Yuck.” I asked him if he hurt. My mom sent me some natural herbs to reduce nausea. Sometimes I put them in drinks and gave to him. Lestat was touched by our concern. Thank Artemis he didn’t cry though. “ No no. I am better now. Is Louis online? What? He is. Since when.”
I laughed. “ Yea. You ought to, some time.”
“ I prefer face to face, typing is so tiring. Not to mention radiation. What is our mouth for?”
Stat is my sensei, becos he's my piano teacher now.
A behind-the-scenes of we three just going nuts! I got all this down in my journal while we were talking, so I cannot guarantee its accuracy. I might have misunderstood some parts, because there was plenty of banter, joking and witty humour. Way too much. The guys were in a hyper mood. The normally serious Louis was also bantering. Our Lestat was dressed in his best new aquamarine suit with lace. Mr Counselor (Louis de Pointe) had chosen one of Lestat’s clothes, a gold rimmed dark blue suit. His own are all worn and tattered.
Brat (Lestat) jumped in as suddenly as a firebolt. “Louis how much do you like me? Rate from 1 to 10, 10 being the most passion!”
“6? Why not 8? I’m a lovable boy.” Brat asked incredulously. He pouted like a sulking feline who has lost his match. We cracked up.
“You’re funny, witty, crazy and seductive. Actually not bad. Okay, seven.”
I thought for awhile. Lestat pleaded with me C’mon, don’t be mean. I would give you full marks! Don’t be calculative k? Plllllleeeeeease.
Don’t give me a migraine will ya? I replied. Ok full. I was rewarded with a hyper bouncing of the sofa.
Louis gave a very petulant expression. I shrugged.
They also wanted to know more about my abilities. I can talk freely about my kind. “Hey, your summoning of the bats and the lightning was nothing short of fascinating. I’m impressed.”
“Thank you sensei,” I bowed 15 degrees. That night I was wearing my white and pink flowers’ kimono. It was a present from my Japanese distant cousin Sumiko. The vampires did not want me to be sexually stimulating, so skirts usually had to be long. A kimono is just right------- it covers all parts of the female body, long sleeved and to the floor.
“Your welcome. How do I say that in Japanese?” I told them to say hai because you acknowledge the other person rather than say welcome. Lestat bowed too.
“You have to keep bowing,”I demoed “If the other person does. It is polite. Remember, no hugging or intimacy allowed guys.”
“Why not? How about handshake?”
“Iiee, no. Louis, They feel shy. And do not stare, eye contact. Westerners, like us, believe in eye contact right? but Japanese are very very timid and passive. They will retreat further if you look them in the face.”
Louis smiled. “All right, geisha. Thank you. What is it, darling?” His boyfriend bounced harder, his curla messing up naturally and he giggled. “Now now don’t be a spoilt-baby- puppy. Stop that.You are messing up your new clothes.”
Lestat stopped, reached over and squeezed Louis in a sidelong hug.
“Okey. Tell us more about Shapers. It is a kind of art I understand. What else to it? Are all animals Shapers?”
We are different animals. Wolf, hyena, big cat, bird…. Anything, as long as you are not a bat, scorpion, insect. If your parents were Felines, you can only Change into a feline. It is also encouraged among us to interbreed, mate with other Races. For example, I am a hawk, if I want my kids to have another choice other than Avian, my husband should ideally be a hoofed animal. Then my kids can be hoofed animals and Avians too.
Louis asked me, “What if you cannot? Does anyone get leftout in the gene pool?”
“No that seldom happens. All of our kind have at least some power, minimal or strong. The Council usually elect the strongest Blood. Omaga’s family still holds the leadership position because the Great Ones had purely Owl genes. Yes, Prince?”
Lestat combed back some of his hair from his face and looked neat again. “Bianca, what of the mixed races? Since they are encouraged to carry on the, how do I put this, practice, can’t they be leaders as well?”
“Yes they can. It depends on democratic voting. Very similar to human governments.”
I related the Gifts of our people. Avians are the most powerful, we can summon other lower animals to our aid, control the weather and prophesize. Healing too, but that is only for a fraction of us who are lucky to have the genes. Cats or dogs have roughly the same abilities to jump and run with great speed, stamina and have super strength. However I don’t know if this can match a vampire’s, or a creature of the darkness. We are the Life as opposed to the dead.
“Can you do it for long periods of time, Krys? Is it tiring?” He came over to sit with me and made me feel shy when he trained his bright pupils on me. He closed them. I felt very Asian shy. Heheh.
:”Not too long. It is exhausting to hold to our animal shape for a day. But with improvement, you can actually become the beast for years. Our gurus have managed to achieve that. They stay in isolation and study more of our mysterious planet.”
There was a phase where we needed isolation from all other people. That was going to hurt my friends, and I didn't think I could help them to understand this overtime.
They were puzzled as to why I blocked up my mind with a reinforced steel wall.
After that, Louis announced that he had prepared a full meal for us. “Yay!”I exclaimed. “But… um pardon me. You didn’t have to, Louis.”
“I wanted to.” I sniffed. He was worried that he had said something wrong. Lestat took out the box of tissue. I felt touched that Louis went to such lengths. Quiet but definitely not restrained in his action. Then I recoiled: these are not humans. Monsters.
You have to be wary of us. It is only natural. For we are undead, Lestat said softly into my head. I happily ate the meal, macaroni with the sweet sauce, mixed vegetables and salmon. I like to fish for it during my practical. It is the best fish I’ve ever had! The introvert was very silent. We both talked to fill up his space.
What is wrong?
It is alright. But his voice was contrary to his words. It trembled like a loose rock on the edge of a cliff. Are you full?
“Yes,”I responded still not convinced. Lestat watched him, sending question marks telepathically into my mind, because he could not Read his junior. Louis is totally impassive, whether angry, sad or hurt. I shook my head. “Louis. I… I didn’t mean to hurt you. You’re not a monster.”
The shoulders seemed to lift up as he sucked in a breath. “No. It’s not what you called me. Or us. It does not make a difference. Could you leave me now? In peace? I have to wash up,” he told me abruptly, running the water. The clinking of porcelain and utensils ironically made it a homely atmosphere.
I pulled Lestat out and told him I was sorry. The brat prince gazed softly at me and shook his head. I don’t mind. You just… felt wary that’s all. But Louis is softer than I. Come, I’ll send you home now. Firmly he steered me to the door.
Sensibly princie talked, Shh. He is hurt by what you said. Okay? And he may blowup if you try to make it up now. We walked to the open space in front of the house. His soft hair blew back, his shirt ruffled. He meticulously folded out his collar, then shook out his ruffs. I wondered why.
Usually the vain preter was not meticulous to this extent. He was nervous?
Lestat, I wish I could take it back. It’s my human part, it keeps its fear of you. I am scared it’s too late------- I confided, beginning to cry. Sorrow, regret.
Lestat laid a gentle hand on my head and stroked. It oddly calmed me.
I should not have Made him. It was my selfish desire. Lioncourt spoke when we stopped at the river. I wanted someone to share the pain with me. Ours is a cool Gift, but a despondent person will worsen with time. Louis is a person…. who’s constantly worrying he will hurt somebody. Nicolas was a victim of the Gift. Before his destruction I wouldn’t have believed anybody will actually suffer from it.
Do you, Lestat chan? Do you still feel the huge weight press upon you as millennia after millennia move on? I had not considered this aspect of it before.
He rubbed his nose. Took my hand. “Be careful. Can you see the roots sticking out?” I concentrated hard on not tripping. I did not. I gasped when the vampire grabbed me by the waist and lifted me over the canal.
We were at my house now. Lestat urged me to go. “Go on. I’ll leave now.”
“Sit down for a while. My mom insists.” I tugged his hand. He considered this then followed me in.
“Lestat! Hello.” Mom asked if she could make him a drink. She took his hands and scrutinized him up close. He was shy for he seemed at a loss for words. “Please come and settle down. We finished supper. Let’s talk about
the new opera….”
Lestat smiled stiffly. It was natural to other people who looked on, but I understood. I went to make a glass of juice. Pretend to drink it k? I communicated.
Okay. Thank you. I came to accompany them and my boyfriend sipped half heartedly at the juice. Later he might pour it into the grass. Usually even when we go out, the preters will discard some of the drinks at the restaurants.
“Madame, did you pretend to be my mother? When I was ill?” Lestat posed into the conversation. I felt sad. Mom and I had Concealed this spell and we even gave him some Forgetmenot!
She nodded. “I had to. You------- were in great need. We are friends, almost neighbours. And I haven’t thanked you yet for taking care of my only daughter. I often neglect her in my hectic life.”
Lestat laughed and they spoke in french for a while. I laid my hand on his lap, cocked my head. What are you talking about?
Trivials my love. Alright, I wanna go now. I don’t want to leave Louis cher by himself. Goodbye.
Mom came back in November, a month before my birthday. She would be home for about 3 weeks, then depart for Switzerland to continue expanding their business. My parents sell exotic plants and recommend herbal remedies. As you can tell, she is an expert on diagnosis, practical healing with white magic and when you are ill she knows the right herbs to make you well. Tonight I was not going over because no one would be in. Lestat had an appointment with a friend. I had not heard from Pointe for a long while. He simply seemed to have vanished from Laconia. I Sent him a greeting.
Please don’t hold it against me. I still want to be friends.
Mom posed me a question as she was cooking some basil and tomato soup for dinner. “Is he truly recovered, Monsieur de Lioncourt? I sense he will feel more stressed and agonies in the future.”
“You mean he’s still going to be sick? But the hospital discharged him and said there shouldn’t be a problem,” I replied, wringing my hands. Oh no, if she could feel Lestat’s waning aura, it was most likely true. I totally forgot about what the doctor told us. I related it to her.
Mom sighed, stirring the soup and then ladled it on a bowl for me to taste. I deemed it edible. She put the flame on simmer.
“Mom, is it hard to obtain the Chirac?” I took out the bowls, plates and tools to set up. “Why do you sigh?”
“Honey. The doctors wouldn’t recommend it for a vampire. Because the Dark Gift normally heals them. The problem I felt in his waning aura was it does not seem to pulse with the usual energy. Hmm, but Lestat hadn’t Drunk yet right? That could be a cause too. Chirac does not cure the Dark folk. I-------I am sorry Krystal. I know you love him. He won’t die.”
I smiled and hugged my mother. Yes I ought to be contented by that. Protection against death. Strong, immune to the Sun and the flames had not killed him. Legend. Nothing will happen. He is my teacher, my confidante and we communicate so well. Nothing should go wrong.
I had a nightmare about a rose being consumed by blue flames. I could not speak and just watched it disappear. Damnit! No one understood its meaning.
The night after, Lestat called me. “Hello! Ma cherie. Are you busy now?”
“Hi. What’s up? Yea I need to do my final draft for English,” I answered, reading through my sources. Paraphrasing. It is hard work! Don’t want to plagiarise.
“Am I bothering you? I feel uncomfortable. My stomach is hurting and I feel nauseous.”
I stopped. Poor poor guy. “Maybe you overstretched yourself. Was it late when you came home last dawn? Wait, Lestat. Um, since when did you feel like this?”
He coughed. “Um, tonight when I awoke. Yes, I came home at three. Couldn’t detach myself…. all these social obligations. He’s an acquaintance. I didn’t know I would feel exhausted. I was all right yesterday. Ow….” The phone rustled. I waited, my heart in my mouth.
“Hello? Hello, Lestat. Any painkillers? Is Louis with you?” I freaked. Finally he came back, panting. It quieted after five minutes.
“No. Louis… is not in. Hasn’t for nights. I’m sorry to bother you, Bianca.”
I smiled, sent him a joyful gold color. He laughed. “Stop it. I am your student and a student cares for her teacher. Now lie down. Are you? I’ll come see you tomorrow night ok?”
“I am in bed now. This cordless is cool, good thing we bought it. Then I can chitchat when I’m not in the living room. You are a wonderful avian. My beloved cherished student. Go do your homework now. I just wanted to hear you. I always bother people when I don’t feel well. Heheh.”
I stopped him from being the 17th C polite and restrained, so unnatural. How? I persuaded him to stay online with me and we talked. Lestat added more information about Mojo and how I ought to visit his home in New Orleans, where his doggie and tenant lady resided. Ahhh! My English homework was in trouble then. But for a friend I would do anything. I got a B for it though.
Thursday, May 04, 2006Blood transfusion--- vulnerable for the master
-Princie and Brat prince are my nicknames for Lestat
-Pointe is Louis, shy, dark haired and our advisor
“I can instruct you on the proper etiquette. We are usually from the 17th century or before that, so good manners are very important. Curtsey when you greet my people.”
I demonstrated. Lestat winced, saying I needed more practice with a skirt. He has yet to decide the chapters, so mostly he encouraged me to do active participation, which is to read up on gothic stuff and ask questions. I enjoyed these active discussions. Lestat talked to me as an equal which was cool. He never belittled me and always listened sincerely to my opinions. Of course there was no perfection----- Princie was unhappy and furious at some of the misconceptions mortals had, like they prey upon the old and helpless.
“We don’t do that. At least I teach my fledglings and youngsters not to. Those could be the rogue vampires. If the old is wicked like that case study we read about, yea. She deserves to die.” But most of the time lessons were enjoyable to a great extent. His emotionality spiced up the time we were together.
Louis seldom put in any comments, unless he was cranky.
A month after, Lestat treated me to chocolate-chip triple deluxe ice cream as a reward. He is usually generous with treats. I don’t get that from my parents much. Pampered. “The fruit of my labours. More ?” I filled up the glass again and licked my spoon.
“You will make her fat,” Pointe said grumpily. Deprived of attention from the French vamp and was girlfriendless that night. Louis had only fed a little before this stupid car gave an alarm and he had to flee. The spotlights swept outwards seeking the target. Luckily, his skill had improved such that the weak vampire managed to elude the pursuers. He glared.
“No. it’s only a rare treat. If you don’t want my attention, I will give all my love and lavish upon Little Hawk. At least it’s reciprocated,” his master purred. He switched the radio channel to a very emotional violin piece. Louis muttered to himself------- sentimentalities, you don’t care. I’m already feeling like shit and you put this on. Lestat toggled several channels until he settled on a country song and hummed loudly.
“Krystal, have you eaten dinner?” Louis asked, choosing to blank out on the out of tune voice. I giggled. Just because he cannot sing, he’s jealous of Lestat’s caroling. “I am not. Listen, he sounds weird.”
“Uh huh. I did plenty of vigorous activity in the day, so this will replace all my lost muscles. Thank you for your concern,” I replied. “So Louis, cheer up already. Why don’t you go later? When the police are sleeping? Midnight.”
The raven-haired guy moaned, rubbing his eyes. He shut the book. “Cher what’s up? Feeling drained? How about drinking from me?” the blond guy suggested. I was worried. I hadn’t seen him drained dry but reading the descriptions, it sounded worse than transfusion. Lestat would collapse on the floor seeing the place in a spectrum of colours when he was dizzy from transfusion. I didn’t want that.
Pointe was quick to decline, “No thanks. I prefer human blood." He asked me to stay further away, or I was giving temptation.
What if you don’t manage to find any? Better accept my offer. I am clean now. Drug free. I’ve had to be fastidious.” Lestat stood, blew the dust off the tv top and winked at me.
“Like an ad,” was my response. “Maybe it’s better not. Louis can take care of himself. I don’t want you flatout and exhausted.” The musician was touched by my concern. Lately he has gotten better at repressing his extreme emotions, so he was not weepy.
They left me alone. I heard the younger guy assuring him he was fine, then the sound of ecstatic moaning. It was rude to watch, so I pretended to be deaf. When it was quiet, I snuck a peek.
“Lestat .” He was flat on the bed, some blood on Louis’s collar, both their lips were reddened, cheeks flushed from the recent activity.The younger vamp pushed himself off and glanced at me. He tried to conceal me from his view while he adjusted the covers.
“Is he okay? He looks exhausted.” I sat by the bed.
“Yea he will in fifteen minutes.”Louis assured me. Lestat slowly flickered open his ethereal pupils, right one was smaller and more violet than the left. I used a cloth to press his bleeding wrist. His breathing was laboured. He could not speak. After a while, we helped him to a sitting position.
“How are you feeling now?”
He closed his eyes again and his boyfriend pushed a pillow behind his head. “Why did you come in, girl? Don’t … want you.. seeing me…. Like that. Awful. I’m exhausted.” he said feebly. I told him not to be ridiculous, as if I were a 6 year old. I rubbed his wounded wrist.
“So dirty. Just bite like that. The saliva, eugh,” I remarked. Lestat laughed and patted my cheek.
“Sweetie, don’t worry. It’s the weakness that a vampire goes into when he’s exchanged blood with another. Are you worried? I will be better in 10 more minutes.”
Louis kissed him. I watched as the weakness went away, like how a cloud looms over the horizon and soon my teacher looked more alert and normal. His labored breathing was now a minimum. “If you’re worried, don’t come in until I call you ok? Thanks.”
I watched him drink the honey flavoured tea. My mom insisted I know the recipe in case I felt terrible after mensus.
Next moment, Lestat rushed off to quench his huge well of thirst. A vampire pays a high price for donation of blood; although they heal quickly, a good supply of nourishment would help greatly. It is not necessary to Drink, so if humans are not available, a tired preter would recover by sleeping the whole 24 hours. “But if you’re strong, not 24 hours right?”
“Hmm, nope. I would need just 1 night. Then, Back to normal by afternoon.” The night after, Princie insisted I not go into their shared room for “exchanging/Renewal”. Then I would not freak out. What a beautiful name for bloodletting. It is stylish that the room is much more ambient than his own bedroom. The bedsheets are dark colored, the curtains heavier. “That’s in case neither of us can recover, we can sleep in.”
Bloodletting was mutual and should be regular, according to Marius. It was healthier for a weaker Immortal to accept such nourishment from his or her Maker. But I didn’t agree with that, I couldn’t stand to see Lestat helpless and like a frail kitten. He laughed.
“You wanna stand guard over me? Thank you. How much per hour?” he teased, flopping a hat over me as if I were security.
“No money needed. Ice cream,” I replied in humour. I was serious though in my thoughts that that’s his Achilles’heel.
NB: Do you think musicians are good at math and vice versa as well? It seems those adept at additional calculus are superb in music lessons. Lestat is quite skilful in mathematics given that he is an excellent artiste!
Krystal loaths maths too.
“Why do you want to do this?” I asked, looking at the number of mistakes I had made. It wasn’t that I paid little attention, he Is a real attention grabber. I just could not concentrate feeling so tired. Projects too many to keep track and my flunking maths tests. At this rate I was going to get an F. my dad would kill me! If I retook it, I had to pay more.
Lestat stopped marking. “Hmm?” He circled question 20 and wrote a comment.
“Help me to appreciate music? Why is this wrong? Isn’t that the eighth and sixteenth? Um, I thought there was a nineteenth note. Or symbol….I’m not so sure….”
My teacher pressed a gifted hand to his temple, in frustration or exhaustion I didn’t know. I sat down and flashed him my forgetful- student- routine apology grin. Lestat smiled weakly and said, “It’s ok. Life is different from the past. Your stress is too overwhelming to understand. But still, did you get the concepts right? Or you totally couldn’t grasp them?”
In truth most of the concepts were rendered forgotten, but to be tactful, ‘everything was cool and I could understand.’ It was a while before he finally answered my first burning query. “I just want to, as a friend.” Lestat formed a shape with his hands, a symbol of artistic fervor. “I believe strongly, that everybody has talent. It needs awakening and once you have awakened the musical genes, voila. You can sing out your joy! The day you discover that is the fruit of my labour. Right now, it is torture?”
I closed my eyes, letting the words sink in fully into my consciousness. Umm, no. I like the way you convey your love for music. For piano, specifically. It is hard to have someone like you. Lestat, I will try much harder. It is just, I have so many things to do. We have Too many stuff going on. I am sorry.
Hey why are you feeling that way? We are friends, close friends okay? Do not take it to heart. He stopped-------- Sometimes, sometimes I feel so angry when I cannot penetrate your business and I just want you to pay sole attention to me. I hate to admit it. Yet it is true. But of course your Day life is the main part. I am only a tiny portion of it... He replied in a pained manner.
I touched his hair. His shoulders shook. He pushed away when I extended to a hug. No. If you touch me, I won’t stop crying. Darn this emotional shit.
Lestat made the lights off and sniffed. I felt uncomfortably guilty. He’s so Emo. sometimes! Sigh. He told me not to take it to heart, but he starts crying instead?
“Armand is stable,unlike you. Now what's up? Have some dignity, teacher’s status,” I said huffily.
“Really? Then no breaks for you. Bianca.”
“You really like my ex? That’s… that is so---------“he trailed off, could not find some bombastic word to place in.
“So cruel?” I suggested. The Frenchman said aha and drummed his fingers. I posed, my nose in the air, raising my crest. I can do that, there are some muscles to make my headfeathers “Heheh, I am queen ruthless. Shapers are beasts, we aren’t supposed to express ourselves so openly like that! Self-restraint.” I quoted, smugly.
The lights came on, blinding me! Lestat laughed his wicked laugh, totally sexy to fangirls. They actually roll up their eyes and drop in a dead faint. My witness.
“I am not restrained in Any way. We’re not able to repress ourselves. Do you understand what I’ve done with you so far? Is it too difficult?” he said.
“No. It’s cool. I want to drink now. Let’s see. Got any milk? Coke!”
He looked sad. “Music is so unbearable? Cherie. Don’t have coke at night, it’s bad for your stomach. You had gastric. Louis will nag me if you are in pain again. Please spare a thought for others besides yourself.”
“I don’t have it now. I’m cravvvving caffeine.” I skipped to the fridge, which is always packed to the brim of snacks, ready to eat and ready to cook. I pestered Lestat to buy coke on offer last Sat, since Mr counselor was out on a poetry appreciation event. Louis had made many girlfriends and went out all over the island. Lestat wished he could tag along and hit on them, but his fledge made it clear it was no way. So he suggested more personal dyad- time, which means two people only. I didn’t mind, but if only he were not uptight about piano lessons.
He muttered to himself and pressed the door shut with his telekinesis. I couldn’t open it. “You just got better. Have some milo. I’ll make for you, lots of sugar,” he coddled, leaning against the door. I did not have a hope of moving him so I walked away.
“Don’t want,” I said, applying my fingers to the keys and playing by ear. My friend was whistling to the CD playing softly, spoon clink, mug on the tabletop. A chocolatey smell filled my taste buds. I sensed him before he came real close and turned. He was pleased.
“Ah. Here you go. Your reaction’s faster now cherie. So I should become a cat, or a beast to sneak up on you.” The light accentuated his unique features, not quite human. He had a tan from being in the sun at dawn two days ago. Pinkish healthy lips, alert large eyes lazily half closed, a perfect nose. Already handsome during his mortality, vampirism had enhanced this by a million times! Lestat tossed his golden mane. I snapped out of my dreaminess and glared. The heat of the beverage brought me back to reality.
The vampire grinned. “I can still enchant you. That can’t be avoided.”
How conceited, I trilled. I closed my eyes and let the music, the rhythm flow like he had described to me many times over. Fingers do the walking….. Twang. Wrong tune. Oh darn. Lestat motioned, let me demonstrate. I sat aside and observed his deft fingers. It’s the only thing he can do without crushing.
“Why was I wrong?” I listened to his corrections and re did the score again. I had put my thumb in the way so it slipped and hit the A key.
I have trouble doing F sharps and the flats. And semi tones are a whole lot of problem. I remembered something. I jumped up, pressing his shoulder. “Hey Brattie, I’ve got a surprise for you. Come on up.”
He sulked. “We just got started. Wait. Finish the drink.” I took it from the glass table and wolfed it down. In my room, I took out a paper wrapping in a soft shape. Lestat was half frowning as he opened it and let out a hyper yell.
“Wow! Sorry, I forgot my voice. Where did you get this?” He felt the seams in suppressed excitement, a vintage frock coat. On tour, David and him had run into some enemies and his coat was ripped. It was only slightly torn, but you know, he doesn’t settle for second- rate stuff. I didn’t get a peek at that because Puppyboy had already gotten rid of it.
This one has gold buttons and there’s a snake insignia on the breast pocket. It has silver trimming on the ruffs and the edges. My friend immediately removed his shirt and put it on. It fit him to a T! Mom’s estimation of size and height are phenomenal.
“Yay! How did you----- oh yea, I remember. I told you about my torn frock the other time. Merci. Is it costly?”
“Nope I have a discount. My uncle’s shop. He sells these kinds of clothes. Since you like, I’ll bring you there next time k? I got Louis one too. Secret.”
Lestat laughed, agreed to this. Trooping to his bedroom which was two doors down, he threw open his wardrobe and hurled out his blue jacket. “Why? Nothing’s wrong with this.” I picked it. “Lemme keep it. As a souvenir.”
“Okay then. Looks so worn. I have too many clothes.” He stuck his head in and murmured some stuff that I couldn’t hear. Such a rich boy and does not like old things. Typical of the youngest kid. “Only.”
“You’re the youngest.” I corrected immediately. No response for a while as more white, beige, several shades blue coats and pants sailed overhead and fell all in one pile.
Only child. ------ he emphasized--------- My brothers are gone, I’m all alone. Let’s not sound depressed, Bianca. You don’t have to buy me things. I know the presents are a kind of thank you. Right? I didn’t answer. He shut the door, pressed it by force until it complied and came to lie down. “You do not have to. I am doing it from the significance of my heart.” I touched the place where his heart used to beat. I did not agree with this, freeloading has always been a staunch principle of our kind. We don’t freeload off anybody. Lestat did not hear this and looked through me. Half propped against the wall, one leg up and in the frock coat, my friend could eternally emblem himself in a mortal’s memory. Now, immortals have excellent memory, so I say mortal’s.
“Bianca, my physical appearance is the only quality that gives me my confidence. I’m very insecure. We did that personality quiz yesterday. It is true. Hmm, I think I should start to do tests more often.” He blinked and a strand fell over his nose. I nodded. “Yep. I admire that you can calmly think things through. When there’s a problem, I always rush into it. How do you do that?”
Now he shifted to be more comfortable. Vampires are normally very still and can remain in one position for ages, but not Lestat de Lioncourt. He is a really active person. I wonder if he likes sports. “Do you? Then you can burn up your excess energy,” I sidetracked.
“No. I like to drama. No no that’s not right, I like drama, plays better. Maybe… swimming. Honey, back to the question.” Casually he gestured for me to carry on.
“Oh okay. I am calm but not in emergencies. No way anyone can be calm in an emergency! Like when you lay bleeding.”
It is alright. I don’t expect you to be calm when blood is over you. I was freaking out when I first began. So much of it, and ironically I need it to live. You have such strength for a young adult. You talked to me to keep me conscious. You saved me. Remember the feel of your hands on me…. Ummmm.
Oi, what do you mean?----- I made my voice go up a fraction and scowled.
Musical laughter. Oh. It is true. I love the feel of your satin skin.
Lioncourt!! Arrgh I have had enough of you. Lestat blocked as I whacked him with my pillow. He held it firmly. I took my stuffed animals and hit him. I could not stop laughing. My prince made various clownish sad and hurt faces. You can tell------- when he’s really mad, or hurt deeply it’s different.
“Can we please go to the lesson at hand now? You still need to do semitones. When you apply, you can understand better.”
“Sleeepy.” He rolled off the bed and lay on his coffin. This one is new, polished till it’s almost golden. He changes coffins once every 6 months and always from a different supplier so they don’t send an MIB to check out the phenomenal number of deaths.
“Think I’ll sleep early tonight. Louis has been neglecting our relationship dyad. Nothing to do. Wanna come inside?”
I shuddered. The box. It looked cool, but I did not think there was much circulation of air. “No. I’m claustrophobic.”
The preter looked up at the fluorescent light. It blinked off. Hurt his eyes when he directly glances at light. “Most avians are claustro?”
“Yep. Maybe you could train me to be less?” I was hopeful. Couldn’t afford to break into panic if I was stuck in a small area.
“I need more info then. Are you also scared of the dark? It is dark inside my coffin. Come on in.” I gingerly lay down beside him in birdshape. Relax. It’s not small. Very spacious. And you can breathe. Remember this experience and you will gradually lose your phobia.
I gulped in air. You need oxygen right? hmm, there seems to be air. A bit musty though.
True. I was not suffocating. He talked to me softly and kept up the stroking.
Now I will close the lid. Okay?
No. leave it open. Why don’t you leave it open?----- I said incredulously. You can fight off people who invade right? Gabrielle discovered for herself. You could do it too.
The stroking stopped. He tried to sound cheerful. Yeah, I could. But if servants should troop by? Door’s Locked, but they may disregard my orders and sneak a peek at their master.
Do they know you’re a night walker?
Lestat’s voice was tight when he replied, I hope not. But mortals are inquisitive by nature, whatever is unknown they want to uncover it. Probe it till it comes to the surface. And I told you this before, don’t try to damage my rest area or your life will be in peril.
I wondered why he sounded angry. Had I offended him? Was it because I talked about Gabrielle? Lestat was silent now. I did not mean to. He had been willing to share bits of stuff about her. Then didn’t Lestat like to discuss her as equal to him?
I am. I don’t like to discuss about her as a vampire. Her human self was for me, but we separated. I wanted to stay with her, but she didn’t. I am her only offspring left. She had her own hidden agenda. She did not care.
I was full of indignance for his mother and flew out. "How can you insult your mother like that? She gave birth to you. She has her own feelings and her life!!"
"Left me alone to suffer. Don’t you see from my view? You haven’t met her." he responded in agitation now and sat up. Like a live corpse.
"Bianca, I created a wall between us, a barrier. She was my first fledge. We couldn’t read each others’ thoughts. It puzzled me. It infuriated! My own mother and the flow of telepathy had ceased so completely I tried so hard. But Gabrielle became colder and colder, distant from I. I who yearn for warmth. I cannot call her mother, though it is the fact!"
I thought about this. "But you were under the same roof for a bit. And you still don’t understand her? Okay, I do not mean to be rude...."
"Why do you wanna know? It is fine not to talk about her." The way he said ‘her’ was petulant, sharp and thick all at once. He began to pace up and down, so much like a mad conductor, hair wildly flying. The window was open. The light played on his almost human features. in strong telepathy, he went on------Cherie, it is very upsetting for me. You may ask me all the probing questions, but not Gabrielle, nor Marius’s secrets. Torrential rush to blockade these images.
I nodded. "Sorry, Lestat. Now you cannot sleep early." I watched him relax, the tension leaving him. I repeated this a couple of times, to sound sincere. However it didn’t mean I would stop questioning why. Secrets are enticing sweets to mortals, and also for shapers! Lestat smiled and told me it was all right.
“I love this frock coat and I’ll wear it out next time. Come here, let me kiss you goodnight.” I remained in birdform. “I don’t want to breathe in feathery dust. Be good.”
I yielded and his cold lips brushed my forehead and my cheeks. I hugged my friend, eyes wide to take in the darkened room. An insect scuttering to a rathole. I had eaten a few. The servants were so pleased they need not hire a pest control. “Shall we continue semitones if I can’t sleep early? I’ll make it easy for you.”
Oh no, I didn't want to touch another music note!!
Lestat released me. I curled up in my bed. I heard his footsteps, non existent for humans, but audible for me. He halted outside my room and I felt his ethereal pupils scrutinize me. Not in bloodlonging, but love for a little sister. Louis always jumped in to criticize when he labeled me daughter. It is a vast difference----- daughter means I’m already a convert to vampirism. If only Gabrielle and he could be reunited and she’d stay with him forever. I remained still and prayed for this. I could try my new transmission skill to seek her out. It is extremely hard to focus unless you are a very strong telepath like Charles Xavier.
Psst, what are you doing? Don’t wanna sleep? Keep me company----- Lestat whined. He was not outside my room. Sorting through the piles of CDs and disliking each one downstairs. There are countless rooms, guest lounges, bedrooms of which three are occupied, one storeroom, servant rooms. My teacher brought me en tour several times.
I ignored him and reached out to the wilderness beyond. My head hurt.
If you hear me Gabrielle, Lestat needs you very much. He wishes you’ll be his mother through and through. You do not need to answer me. Just show yourself to him. Did you know that my friend was critically poisoned? He cried out for you when he was feverish. My mother had to pretend to be you.
Do consider that he is your only son. I think it is a pity that you’re not living together. Lestat is soft and dependent. He needs care. Something like this. I went to sleep immediately. Of course I tried my best to shield this sensitive message from my teacher. I do not know if he actually heard me. He didn’t mention this at all.
It had taken quite a lot of reserves on my part, because I cannot manage a Full Sending now.
Lestat was usually happy from then on. Why? I remembered almost all the stuff he had taught. Not the music, the vampire theory lessons which were new. There isn’t such a module outside. Flattered, Brattie was thrilled to pass on his knowledge. It benefited me to be more aware of preternaturals. Actually they are more common than mortals know. It could enhance the relations between our two races.
Previously I had only a few piano lessons before Lestat went to hospital. It had been on and off, because I was not keen and didn’t stay serious. Tonight, I had to do some exercises on the book and forgot most of the basics. My teacher had left the notion of the invalid.
“Bianca, let’s have a formal lesson schedule. Twice a week. When you feel you can learn. I understand you’ll be tired after school sometimes,” he said brightly. I scratched my head, question 11 and 15 blank. I showed them to him.
He did not yell at me. That was the key thing in our bargain, I was not going to be hit or scolded. “You have returned everything to me, huh? That’s the F, remember, in treble and bass clefs, the notes are counted differently.”
“Oh. Lestat, why must we be formal? We’re best buds. Don’t need.” I wrote down and counted line- space- line- space.
“Non, it is better to have a regular schedule or this happens, you forget. Let’s start at 7 pm and 1 hour first? Later it will go to two or three.” Penciled on the paper. Louis’s idea-------- he treated me as an equal, so whatever pre agreements or suggestions should be first discussed on the paper. ‘Talking is pointless.’ This wasn’t like the spoilt rich kid at all. I stared at him.
“Well? Bianca, if not I will start with 2 hours straight.” I moaned., ok, I said I would choose the first option. “Good. Yes, breaks. What? Half an hour? By that time you’ll be too lazy. 15 minutes.”
“Nooo,”I covered my face. Lestat sighed-------- you make me so sad. Please try. I want to teach you stuff. It won’t be like what you have been through. I’m not strict. Give it a shot ok? I don’t want to think about being sick and helpless.
I realized that Lestat needed something to occupy him. He smiled pleadingly. “Fine fine. But we could do something else, not piano. I want electric guitar. It’s cooler.” I was cranky and turned my back to him.
“Cherie, I don’t know how to play electric guitar.”
“That’s not true. You were a mega rockstar. I remember,” I answered.
My teacher was quiet, “My band members were adept at it. I just pretended to. I sang, that’s all. My forte is in the classical piano and a bit of violin.” I analysed his tone, all somber and patient, very unlike his usual hyper mode. Before he was poisoned and outside, he was noisier. This side of Lestat was practically unknown to me. I still don’t know what to make of this. I suppose Scorpio’s nature is very mysterious. “Piano is more aristocratic, sweetie. You have status. Even if you’re poor, you are recognized for this talent. I can make it interesting for you. No tests as promised, you don’t want stress. All right. how about this, I’ll try to pick up electric and when we’re finished, we’ll move to that.”
I turned to face him and looked at my new nail extensions, white tipped with black and green stripes. “Um, okaaay. I don’t care about the status. I just want fun. We have fun without any activity.” Louis admonished my bluntness. The blond guy was quiet for a long time.
“Bianca, I make you bored? It seems that is the case, none of my friends like music. This isn’t to make you guilty, it’s something I noticed…. Except for Nicky. Nobody has the passion or the thrill in music and drama. I feel quite alone.” Louis clasped him by the shoulders and stroked the bouncy curls.
“Krystal, don’t be cruel.”
“It is alright. I’m fine,” Lestat spoke up briskly. Do the right thing. I kissed his cheek and moved to his nose and forehead.
I consent to your romantic gesture. Don’t be depressed, it’s bad for your health. Do not expect me to ace in stuff.------- I told him.
Friday night, six thirty. I called Lestat, “Hi! What’s up? I’ve got no homework, yay!!!”
“Cool. I’m happy for you, darling. Are you ready? Shall I come fetch you? I’m deciding what to wear, should I wear modern?”
I said modern was better, how about the soft green Polo I chose.
“Hmm. All right. Louis is faster than me tonight. So shall we come to your place?”
I smiled, he’s always so considerate, not wanting me to run around unescorted. I hollered to mom I was going out and then we said goodbye. I flung on my crisp white tshirt, my tailored birthday red pants. The pants have studs along the pocket rims which make it have a vintage look. I pulled my hair into a ponytail and sat down to wait.
Lestat was super childlike and kept exclaiming at the patterns appearing. He had missed out on outdoorsy stuff in the hospital. “Wow, ice-cream? You want any? My treat.” Lestat said, watching the cart guy. Louis shook his head and told him that he would pay. “How could I do that?”
“You always pay. Save some money, we’ll go shopping next week. At this rate we’re living off you, highness.”
The marquis grumbled that he was no pauper, Magnus’s jewelleries were still ‘pawnable’. I was curious, “A whole roomful of them? So you’re still rich?”
“Uh huh.” I burst out giggling at his indignant expression. “Hey. What’s so funny? Lemme pay. Pllleeeease. I don’t mind.”
I frowned and hooked his arm. “I mind. Please don’t. Let Louis do this k? You make us feel bad. Now, let’s sit down and I want to see the light reflect your blondie hair.” Louis came back after some time with a high cone. Yay! But I couldn’t finish licking the frost biting my tongue. The vampires helped. Isn’t it sweet, not blood but cream? I don’t know if there’s side effects from eating cream. Louis gets sick everytime he eats beef at the restaurants his fans book. He hates the beefy smell. Um cream should be ok right? Don’t kill me if you throw up. Anyway, nothing like that happened and we thoroughly spent the time!! Lestat was miffed we hadn’t let him treat us, his reasoning was he is one of the richest brat boys among the preters and he loses face if he doesn’t pay. So I would be hurting his feelings if I did not accept the golden Sagittarius earrings. I had spotted it still on display but cost was higher. Lestat read my intentions and came out with them.
I liked the lessons my teacher prepared. Often he began with playing a short piece or a recording. I would guess which era it was from, and what composer. If I got it right, I got ice cream. But it wasn’t a fiery heart of love for the piano. My favourite activities are wakeboarding and taking to the air. I’m not much of a sitdownstudy type, which is why I plan to defer college. I may want to become a PE instructor. Or I could coach other Flyers to improve their skills! I kept these potential hurting stuff to myself, so Lestat was wondering why my mind was obstructive most of the time.
Another mistake was payment. He was affronted when I produced a cheque. Dad’s idea. “It is all right. You are totally qualified to teach me. Please, Lestat.”
“No, I won’t accept this. Take it back. Teaching is my hobby, and I am surviving on my own. No known vampire lives by payment from mortals. I have a huge inheritance.” Lestat said. His tone was no-persuasion.
It’s all right. Don’t insist. He will be angry. I took Louis’s cue. My teacher was moody that Friday night. He’s been having a migraine. Construction noise just this afternoon.
I Sent a soothing seawater image, clownfish, angelfish. This picture helps with migraines. Lestat nodded his thanks.
I did not mean that he was poor by paying him. I just wanted to contribute because of the expenses he incurred, now that I stayed over most of the time when my folks were away. Babysitting by my friends counted as service, my own room, food, medicine. Louis accepted my cheques. I forgot their way of thinking is way broader.
I preferred the concerts. I could not help falling asleep at the classical music but if it came to Bond, I perked up. This weekend, Lestat had bought nice seats for us! I showered him with my extremely enthusiastic whooping and hugs. “Thank you! Merci beaucoup!”
“Wow, I’m much rewarded this time. I’ll go shower first. need to smell pleasant,” Lestat grinned and flew upstairs.
Armand is not my character. I don’t really like him, but that does not mean I’m biased against him. I know Lestat and him were lovers, but somehow Lestat can’t forget how he pushed him off the tower in TVL. Vampires are petty creatures.
Lestat was full of excited vigor when he opened the door to me. “Thank you! I love the new layout of my room. It was so thoughtful of you to arrange my books according to the authors, my bed further from the window so I won’t feel the intensity of the sunlight coming in. Sit down, make yourself comfortable.” I plopped down on the corner of the couch. Lestat took the red armchair opposite.
He had left the furniture in the same positions. “Did you like the deep blue curtains and general theme of blue? Your favourite color right?” I asked him. He smiled wider, perfect layout of teeth. “I’ll take that as a yes. I was worried you don’t like the changes.”
“No I’m ok with changes. Just not strangers trooping in my territory.”
“Sorree. Armand is kind. He was your boyfriend?”
Lestat’s violet- green eyes narrowed at this statement. I exclaimed,“Yea right guess!! He was kind of sad you don’t want to make up.”
My friend made a vexed noise and flexed his fingers. “We made up a whole Long ago. It is just that Armand asks too many questions. I didn’t want to talk to him when I was not feeling well, or I’d never hear the end of it, cherie. He made me appear to be the villain didn’t he? He was still seeking salvation even when it came to him. We couldn’t reach a common understanding.”
I smiled. Armand, also known as Amadeo as he persuaded us to call him, mentioned Lestat de Lioncourt as a “much too bright creature who refused assistance and advice even if he was suffering.” I felt that the coven leader had a quiet air of confidence and would not harm a fly. Instantly the blond interrupted. “Bianca, don’t be deceived! He is a botticelli angel, but he’s very vicious. Promise me you won’t be alone with the creature.”
Lestat, I am unharmed. Please do not get overprotective.
Promise me. I don’t want him to touch you. He must not-------- he said vehemently. As if I had not spoken.
Followed by: You don’t understand-------- said in agitation. Amadeo is not innocent. He looks it, because he was Made really young. He can be tactless, ignorant, deceiving to young girls, like you…..
I covered my ears, not wishing to hear. “Don’t. Why are you acting up? I’m not being a chauvinist! Listen. Amadeo’s my friend. I know him through and through.” The preter’s face grimaced as he conveyed his experience, which I felt was unjustified. I told him firmly that I wasn’t going to hear anymore and went off for a snack. Lestat stopped, but in his head was still composing arguments to counter my view. I was in no mood tonight to debate. I suppose that I should not, but still----- I left him and went to find his boyfriend upstairs, no doubt holing up.
“Hey Louis!” I called, flitting for a landing space. He pushed aside the curtains where he had been hiding behind.
“Hello, were you not having a chat down stairs?” at my noncommittal noise at teenage grumbling, Louis pressed a hand to his temple “You fought? Do you want me to be the middleman?”
I chirruped, gripped his shoulder gently. Louis hummed an old song under his breath. I bounced to the rhythm. He stopped humming and stood at the balcony, clouded and tight expression surveying the scenery. “What did you fight about? Surely it won’t deem a perfect reason? Lestat’s always willing to listen to your ideas.”
“He was really anti Armand! Wish I hadn’t breached the topic….. So unbearable, eugh. Passion is wasted on this sort of argument. I liked the guy. He was so sweet and gentlemanly, offering to move his stuff around. I wanted to tell him that, but he started ranting and raving.”
Louis closed his eyes, nodding. “Um hmm. And what else?”
I cocked my head, scratching at my neck part. “Ummmm, nothing else. I don’t want to talk to him anymore, I want your magic.” I Changed, propped my feet on his bed.
“Put down your dirty feet!”
“Why?” I shot him my cutest girly- girl look, but he pointed at my offence. “Okaaaay. C’mon, Louis counselor time.”
He seemed pissed but flattered. Blushed. “Don’t label me that. Come, put what I have advised you into practice. Walk in the other’s shoes.”
I mimed checking off a list. Louis suggested that I do nonaggressive stuff. Seriously he can be a Doctor in counseling and psychotherapy. “We’ve exhausted All the possible recommendations, Krys. Lestat cannot help being biased, as you unhappily told me right? Armand did all those things, Lestat is not lying. He may dramatize, but he doesn’t lie.”
“Oh yea, he did something, became over protective over me. I missed it out.”
Louis wrote it down on the notepad. “Yes your attitude is crucial in this problem solving. It is better to have both offending parties. Why not? Krys he is like this. How can you expect him to change?” he asked patiently.
“I hate chauvinistic males. My bro is, my dad is, why are guys like this? Oops. Not you heheh,”I replied hastily. It came to me---- “Lestat. All these centuries of being with people, and he still does not change?”
Louis tried to recall incidents. I shook my head at the pathetic little five minute scenarios of Claudia and Lestat together. That worked because he bossed her around, no arguing back, no speaking out of turn, no this no that. Louis had been turning over and over the golden locket chain thing with his daughter’s picture on it. I watched in fascination. I got up and came over to have a closer inspection when the mild guy tossed it out of the window. Golden drop!
“Louis! Why?” I yelled, racing to the window. “I wanted it. It’s so pretty.”
He said: I want to forget my pain, my depression. Being with you is a new chapter of my life. I don’t need that. I didn’t know you wanted to keep it.
But you could have given it to me, I whined. I put one leg over the sill but knocked against the invisible barrier. Oh yea, Lestat had erected it so no one would commit suicide.
“If our relationships become such, I won’t compromise!”I decided. “Mr counselor, what do you recommend? ”
Louis searched through all his books desperately. Nope nothing.
“There is no other way. Ok. Forget it. I will read you a story, pick one.” I said I wanted a spontaneous story. Lestat and I wove stories together, sometimes he concocted his own little plays. We bonded very well, and I think I could voice act movie animations next time! Lestat gave me stitches with his humorous playful acting of characters.
Louis worried, “Errr. Problem is, I can’t do spontaneous telling. All of them are in the pages. Choose one.” I closed my eyes and chose one. After that I lay down and slept. I think my teacher came in at eleven. I felt his hand on my forehead and then pull the blankets up. Their soft voices murmuring.
“Goodnight Bianca. Don’t be angry anymore,k? No matter what our opinions are, I still respect you. I always will. Your opinion on my friends is different. I failed to consider that. I think our diversity in thinking is unique. But will it separate us?” Sighing the vampire made to go. I reached out and grabbed on.
“Bianca. You heard what I said?” I kept my eyes shut and remained mute.
“I don’t think so. But stay here with us tonight,” Louis told him. Lestat sniffed. I did not want to let go. When I next stirred, I brushed against a cottony material. It was 2 am. No one was beside me. He had left his shirt there so I wouldn’t be lonely. I called to him mentally.
He replied that he was at a bar right now.
Will you come home? Let’s talk. Can we? I inhaled Brat scent.
Pause. Child, go to sleep. I am really far away. Ok ok, wait a bit.
I listened like crazy through the piercing silence. Until Lestat’s musical and angelic telepathic voice: Hi I’m back. What is it?
Um,… Lestat, I won’t talk about Amadeo anymore, since it’s taboo. Are you mad, is this why you’re away now? I will be careful of him, in your presence and royal escort, then I will go anywhere near, ok? Hey, are you still there?
Laughter, an image of the Ripples Bar in the south. Crawling with people, beauties skimpily dressed and shaking their butts to some hot music. ‘Yea. I’m with my friends. You know, I promised to go out with them. They’re night people! Yoohoo. I’ll come home soon. Give me five minutes.’
Whoa so fast? I giggled. I watched my digital clock face. Lestat called out so he wouldn’t scare me as he opened the door downstairs. He smelled of human perfume and cuddled up to me.
I failed my maths! I’m like clueless with stupid numbers and equations. This term I was at my wits’end, I couldn’t drop it. Noooo. Slog through like an animal and still it comes to this: 45 out of 100! I was already struggling with Japanese. “SHIIIIT!”
This woke the gentle philosopher from his coffin. He stretched himself, after closing the lid carefully. I laid my head down and pouted. He raised his brows at my red marks, flipping through the paper. “Louis, I am so dead! I dunno what to do, I don’t understand any of this, this crap! Arrrgh.” I banged the desk. My pencil case scattered its contents.
He helped me to pick them up. “Krys, I wish we could help.”
“But you aren’t any good with differentiation and algebra are you?” I moaned. “Why why why do mathematicians torture people with stuff like this!” Louis smiled quietly, reading the sums. He thought there were so many steps.
“You need to get an answer proving these formulas work? Tough. Maybe Quinn can help, if he still remembers this.” I brightened a little. I asked him who that was. “Lestat’s Little Brother, the tall dark youth with violets and owner of Blackwood Farm. Hasn’t my maker told you about him?”
I almost drooled at the mental rough picture of his description, but it wasn’t quite enough so I soon snapped out of it. “Can I meet him?” I was dreaming how romantic it would be. Quinn, twentyish, single and polite American. Closer to my type.
Clearing of the throat. Lestat laughed and said he already had a girl. In fact unofficially married. I was disappointed, went back to depression. Lestat worked hard reading my maths textbook, managing to scribble out why I made some of the mistakes. Which I appreciated, because maths isn’t some 17th Century needed subject-------- they concentrated on arts and music. He’s not bad.
“I think I have his email address. But since I don’t correspond with my Bro that manner, I need to do some searching first, cherie. Give me a week.”
Sweet deep snoring. An accented voice called to me, rough shaking. “Get up get up get up.” I pulled the covers over myself but it got worse. Lestat’s white face peered at me. And his starched white shirt from the movie.
“It isI. Where’sLouis?”I was blearily trying to make out the words, slurred together in my mind and different. His accent got thicker because of anxiety. Lestat made an impatient sound.
“Ummm, he… didn’t say.” After I finished my homework, Louis said he needed air and then went off. The golden prince folded his arms, muttering curses. “Sorry.”
“It’s okay. Thank you. Goodnight.” He replaced my covers and with an uncertain feeling, my friend plopped down beside me. I leaned against him. I asked him if he had an alarm clock and set it to 5.30 am. I needed to get up for school. He said not to worry.
The shrill interrupted my floating world of daisies and friends who had crossed to the other side. A note: Hello, Bianca,
Louis is back. I’m so relieved. He went to church, for peace and quiet. I was not noisy. ‘A sad face pic’ You think he’s got things he doesn’t share with us? I’m kind of jealous he tells you. I’m the boyfriend.
Anyway let’s talk tonight. Yes! We’ll go watch the fireworks. If possible do write me your answer, yes or no? Put it on my desk.
I washed my face after stumbling like a wooden block. Then I wrote him an answer: I will! I’ll phone you tonight, Lestatie. I hope I don’t have too much homework. Don’t be too upset. Louis doesn’t confide much in me either…. I promise I will tell you my problems, you won’t miss out on anything in my life. Something you might like to know, Louis threw away Claudia’s locket. ---------Bianca