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!