Wednesday, July 30, 2008Chap 65: A glimpse into the fair aristocrat’s mind
“Yo! Haven’t talked for a long time!”
“Yes, hi again Derek. Why the call?” he replied, breaking into a smile. It felt so good to hear a familiar voice. The past month had been nothing but a devastating loneliness. Not now, he wouldn’t think of it now…
“Want to join us? You can play the piano well right? We wanna jam.”
“Okay. What can I play? Let me warn you, I’m not proficient in organ and flutes. But I can tackle the others.”
Derek suggested electric guitar, drums and cymbals. Such a nice boy to invite him. Lestat didn’t know if he could go. Not as much shyness as scheduling. He took out his book to check.
“Friday 17th. We’re all Night people, don’t need shades or gloves. Hope you’ll come,” Derek added exuberantly. “We can catch up.”
“Oh, sorry, not Friday. I’m meeting my niece and nephew. How about day after? Haha.
They’re not related in that sense.”
“You’re the trickster. Remember Roses of a Memory. Gotta go now. Bye! ”
Lestat de Lioncourt, hair combed neatly, dressed to kill in a modern frock coat. It was a new design that resembled his time’s longish ruffs and lace. Opened the first drawer with his mind. Chock full of envelopes, stationery and fragrant stickers. The smiling faces of cartoons.
Not long now. Tomorrow Bianca and Ivan would come back to him. Their mom had returned after so long and they wanted a reunion. At the same time paying a visit to their granny in the country.
Lestat refrained from full- out weeping.
I could have gone too. But I chose not to, stop being sentimental. At first it had been fine. Originally the plan was to avoid being alone indoors by staying out later than 12. But the pains had chosen to strike the moment they left. If only knocking himself out could prolong the waking, that brought back agony in red meshes and lacerations. Rising at dusk, the darkness still consumed him entirely. It was cold fire, constricting his breathing and chest. Louis was still asleep.
He crawled slowly to the drawer, getting on his knees. For a fraction of a second, agony stopped so Lestat yanked it open. The medicines’ empty wrappers, syringes, needles. No more. Only the strongest dosage knocked him out. Lestat stifled a scream as dark pain cut into his chest once more. He collapsed on the floor, digging into the carpet. Sweat wet his face and back. Harsh breathing.
After that his judgment would be clouded. Thank goodness documents were black and white and he had kept a whole string of records. Memory failed at times. Good news was: stocks had risen. His wealth was safe to spend once more!
Lestat sat down again. Oh, this time I’m not hurting. I’ll be all right! I want it like that tomorrow. He cast out his telepathy for the rest of his children. David in town, hunting for ghosts. Daniel listening to new age music, as loud as the rock music he liked. ‘Yo Lestat! Didn’t see ya for sometime. Let’s meet!’
‘hey, Danny. Yeah, okay. Later.’Picked up Louis with amadeo. He suppressed his jealousy. Whenever he saw Louis smile and laugh he would seethe.
The guy needs a break from my intensity. Relax.
Bianca had always stood up for Armand. Not fair. At least he was safe. Armand provoked him and always argued, but no one could deny his loyalty and protectiveness of the weaker ones. Why didn’t he go and be independent? Stupid ass.
Presently, he had 10 diaries. The eleventh one was plain. Let’s make something else. Minutes later, it took on a semblance of a scorpion, embossed gold whiptail. Shaded a few markings to highlight the tail and legs. Extremely protective of their young. Kind of arrogant and self-centred when scorpions plan their goals.
It was true. He could be mean. Subjected others through a stringent criteria, yup. He always wanted to be in charge or it was no-go. David pointed that out in front of M and the rest! Thanks a lot. Check my mail, did they email me? The kids wanted him to email and chat on messenger. Mona’s latest: why u not online? That jargon was so complicated to him. But that could be managed.
Hi guys, I’m alright. Quite busy with my stuff and feeding. Sorry didn’t come online.
One message from Ivan: hello stat, do u miss us? Don’t be lonely. Friday we’ll be back. Mum’s happy how well taken care of we are. Sorry didn’t update. Went shopping. Say do u like maroon? Its supposed to be the same as violet. Got presents for u all. Sis says hi too. Take care.
Hi! Happy to see your letter. Can’t wait for u to come back. What kind of surprise? I love surprises! Glad u are enjoying yourselves. But I miss u lots. Can we watch a movie together? Reply me soon. Hey am I that arrogant, like a typical scorpio? Surely my good qualities surpass that.
Click send. The other emails redundant. He absently brushed on his chain. It glinted attractively. A charm with a bird engraving. Now he also wore charms in addition to crucifixes. The salesgirl had said- I know that you’re christian. But it’s a sunstone. You need it more. (noticing his pallor) Lestat almost told her he wasn’t human that’s why.
She refused payment.
The last rays of the sun retreated to a moonless black sky. The blond felt shivering again. Being dignified, he definitely didn’t want people to notice he still had a weak disposition. Picked up the phone. It was the most comforting instrument ever invented, connected humans by voice alone. It’s the only invention he liked using regularly.
“Hi Omaga. Can I speak to you?”
“Sure. Lestat, how’re you feeling now?”
“Fine. Just want to chat. How about you?” the old owl -always willing to aid him had been a mentor and a healer during his great time of need.
“So did you rush around again? You’re immortal, with a human condition now. Please be more careful.”
Seeing through his soul again. Man!
“Only last week. I’m bored now. I had to perform, already promised them. I want to recover soon. So long, these things.”
“Have you told them?”
The truth, nope. Lestat said, slowly, “Not really. The time didn’t come up. Should I?”
“You need to. Fainting on the street, their anguish when they hear the news from outside, mon ami. Bratprince take my advice. They’ll appreciate.”
“I will. Hey did you get my music? How is it?” Impulsively when he had written some music pieces for a band, plus a few solos of his own creation, Lestat had sent the first copy to Omaga. Daniel’s band which had formed half a year back. They had brought the music to life. Also, one of the mortals knew how to make copies.
Lestat said he didn’t want to sell it commercially, just a personal thing. He’d pirated composers all over.
“Wonderful! I will keep and treasure it always. Thank you. Such a talent.”
Bratprince laughed heartily. “It’s a vampire thing. And I love the process, it’s enchanting and heals the soul.It’s eleven thirty. Are you sleepy? I’ll hang up now.”
The friend told him it was alright to stay. “Hmm, some parts were familiar.”
“Yea that’s why when someone offered to bring it for sale, I said no. It’s kind of inspired by them.” The conversation went on.
He couldn’t bring himself to tell them. How to? Ivan would stare at him with that analytical gaze. Liked to follow him everywhere. Now where can I go alone to and be safe?
Library. I can read alone. He smeared lipstick, slipped on gloves, his coat. Today was fine. The library opened till late. Convenient for us to check out books. Saved space and money as well. He carefully checked his phone. No missed calls or messages. Silent mode.
Most looked up and gaped at him. I’m still turning heads at my seniority! Smiled and waved at them all. Minutes later when Lestat had found Mozart and the other on self help, the woman drove them out. Didn’t look once at him.
“Mister, are you loaning them? if not, put them over there. See? Good.”
Outside, Lestat felt his heart jump erratically. Funny, he was seeing double. The chills crept up to his throat. He stumbled and fell down on his back. Could not rise. Oh no. no please don’t hurt me again. Help me. Help me, someone. With his fading consciousness, Lestat cried out both verbally and inside.
A hand on his shoulder, lifted him up. Zero vision.
Daniel frowned. He held his friend up, and if he let go, he went slump. What happened to Lestat? “Hey man. You ok?” the voice hollered louder.
Yet, he was dreamy and disjointed. Daniel called him, jerked him some more. His head lolled back, white face, lips apart.
More curses. Lestat turned over. Soft surface, a blanket. He wanted to sleep more. A tangy scent of juice, pressed to his lips. “Drink!” a familiar voice shouted. He sank back again. The water flowed down his face.
“Leave me. Want to rest,” he murmured, pushing the hand away. Cloth being wrung and applied to his face. Dripped into his mouth. Shit. A youth like- “Danny? Hi.”
He leaned back, smiled. “So, you saved me.”
“Why were you alone? I called but you didn’t recognise me.”
“I am alone. No one home. Sorry.”
“I told you I’m free. What happened? Why did you faint?”
“Don’t need to worry. I’m fine now.” He drank the rest of the blood in a vessel. Strong arms pushed him back as he attempted to walk.
“Idiot. Must you worry everyone? Pretending to be the hero you aren’t! The sun will come. And in your state, so weak, don’t act so strong.” Could tell it was Armand. So nagging.
Lestat sighed. Exhausted, he tried to clear his head. The fogginess returned.
Armand sniffed. He murmured some more. Usually he argued but tonight he was not energetic enough. “I called Louis. He’s on the way. Rest.” Don’t stop me, I want to go home. I must—but his limbs didn’t obey.
Louis came in. Lay beside him and kissed his lips. “You feel so cold, mon frere.” Louis adjusted himself until their mouths met. Blood dripped from his eyes.
“Why do you cry?”
In answer, his child kissed him. Lestat closed his eyes, clasping Louis’ head with one arm. No more alone. Solace and bliss. Is this what I’m supposed to experience? They clung harder. But no clothes slipped off, transcendence of gender. They didn’t have sex, the act of embracing already satisfied the hunger.
Sleeping. Louis whispered roughly, “It’s worsening?”
“No. Only after the kids left did I feel the pain. It was tolerable. I told you before.”
Louis felt guilty. He had not listened. Thought he was rambling. Lestat pulled on his sleeve.
“I planned a program. First thing Friday we’ll shop and watch movies. Look forward to it.”
He looked saddened. “Not yet. I’m not ready. I was gonna tell you a little but I didn’t find the time to.”