Up in Blood-Red Hands
by La Cidiana
Summary: Blood is thicker than water.... or so says the man who drinks it. (Twisted, one-sided VincentxCid. Very dark.)
Rated: R for language and dark, twisted themes. No sex stuff, so don't worry. :P
A/N: Hey, my first REAL shounen-ai/yaoi thing! Whopee, I guess... Anyway, I made up the plot for this on a whim in math, and it kinda evolved over time into a reeeely screwed-up, sadistic fic.... I musta been bored, eh? Anyway, enjoy... Although Vincent fans be forewarned: He isn't exactly the little innocent guy that you thought he was in this one...
This was a bit hard to pull off (if I even DID manage to do that... tell me what you think in your review, of course....) but it was strangely enjoyable to do. Yeah, I'm evil. ^^; Guess I just like to stress out my characters, huh? Oh, right, and this fic does NOT contain any kind of sex, all right? I'm not into that stuff... o_o
This can stand as a single fic by itself... but I do have an idea for a sequel-type thing to it that I probably won't ever get around to. XD And if you haven't guessed already, this is a blatantly generic Vincent-the-Vampire fic that I have very fangirlishly indulged myself in despite my own belief that Vincent, is not, in fact, some kind of character you would find in Anne Rice's novels.
God, it was cold.
A shiver crawled up Cid's spine and deposited itself at the back of his mind, which then relayed the chill to the rest of the strained nerves in his body. His eyes narrowed as he tried to grit his teeth against their chattering, but to no avail; the loud clicking sound echoed eerily through his skull, and when it did end, it was only because he noticed that his hands were numb and clammy and he had begun to wipe them on his pants as a sort of distraction.
And it was still cold.
He had heard somewhere that when it your body began to overheat, you perspired as a way to cool yourself down, but after hours of feeling freezing cold sweat crawl down his visage and collect in the five-day old stubble that covered the lower half of his face, he had ascertained that whoever had said that was full of bullshit.
Because he wasn't hot.
He was cold.
Fuck it, he was goddamn COLD.
After going through this chain of thoughts for a few more minutes of agony, he finally decided to disregard any shred of pride that he still had left. After a few long breaths to steady his shaking legs, he placed his bare hands at the sides of the long, wooden object that he had been sitting on and slowly slid off, gingerly easing the soles of his equally bare feet onto the cold, hard dirt.
Not that it mattered, really; his feet were already half-numb anyway, and they were fully frozen by the time he slowly turned around and contemplated with his arms akimbo whether he should freeze to death or do something which nearly gave him as many goosebumps as the cold itself. So many goosebumps, in fact, that his hands soon moved from his hips to each others' arms, where they rubbed the skin profusely against the shivers that racked his body.
Stupid fucking Shera. Making him take off his fucking boots and socks and gloves and scarf and jacket before going to bed. Stupid fucking wife.
Hey, that'd make a good bumper sticker. Cid gave a lopsided smile at the dark humor that he found his mind conjuring up in this time of peril. "I'd have worn a jacket to bed if I'd known I'd wake up dead."
Heh. It even rhymed.
Cid found himself breathing hard against the nausea that he suddenly felt in his gut, scrunching up his blue eyes as he outstretched his arms towards the wooden object and leaned forward into it, letting it support his weight. His body shuddered and his dark world began to twist around him.
It couldn't be... real, could it...?
Cid slowly began to control the panic that had unleashed itself on his system, and tried to breathe softly, more regularly, even as the sweat pouring from the pores of his hands began to make them slide against the top of the box. He then forced himself to stand up, shifting his weight back into his legs as his chest heaved in exertion.
He stared at the box for a few moments, blankly, as if the panic had drained all of his emotion. He closed his eyes, turning his head away slightly from the object with a strange sort of shame.
Why the fuck not?
You have a chance.
The fuck I do. He's coming back tonight.
It'll be the last time.
He could've been lying.
Dammit, how?! I'm already halfway--scratch that--three fourths of the way there!
Three fourths. Not all.
How the hell would you know? I'm already showing most of the symptoms, dammit!
Stop whining and sit yer ass in this damn freezer. Better than in there.
Cid reopened his eyes, looking down at the wooden box. He was so tired... But that was what he wanted him to do... And Cid didn't want to do anything for him.
But then again...
Cid placed his shaking hands on the bottom of the lid and slowly began to ease it upwards. His rough breathing quickened as he hesitated.
....It was so cold...
He thrust his hands upward and the lid squealed on its hinges before coming to a halt at the other side of the coffin. Cid's eyes narrowed as he viewed its contents: a skeleton with a few rotting shreds of skin and clothing here and there.
"Fucker's taking up my space..." he muttered to no one in particular as he bent over and dragged the remains out by what had once been its shoulders. He tossed it unceremoniously to the floor, wiping his hands off on each other as the old bones clattered eerily against the ground.
Cid yawned slightly as he turned towards the coffin and cricked his neck. Finally... the cold was beginning to ease away, like a bleeding finger being placed under running tap water. Of course, you lost more blood that way, but at least you couldn't feel a damn thing.
He frowned as his eye caught something lying on the plush interior of the coffin. He blinked, reaching in and grasping it in his hand before standing up and peering at it. It was the lower jaw of whoever had been put to rest, complete with half a set of teeth.
No fangs, though.
Cid ran his tongue over his upper teeth, pausing as he felt the two canines that jutted out a bit farther than the rest.
Hah...He smiled faintly as he lifted a leg over the edge of the coffin and tossed the jaw carelessly over his shoulder. And he says I have a chance... Not that I had a life in the first place, but...
Cid suddenly froze, his eyes widening as they shot down towards the casket under him.
His stomach lurched again, and the cold came back with a vengeance, winding him and knocking him to the ground where he had thrown the desecrated remains of the body. He vaguely felt the brittle bones crack beneath him just before he hit the ground, and gave out a choked mix between a grunt and snarl as he involuntarily curled up in defense of the frigid air that suddenly surrounded him. He laid there like that for a moment, the pain of his fall temporarily numbed by his body's freezing temperature
"Christ..." he finally whispered, wincing as the word caused his head to swim and his tongue to burn. He shook his head, rolling over onto his back and biting his lower lip as his eyes wandered towards the ceiling of the crypt. ".....I..... dammit.... I'm farther gone than I thought....."
He bit down so hard that one of the... sharper teeth punctured his lip, and his face contorted into a grimace that was suddenly replaced with a mask of utter fear as he realized that barely any god damn blood was leaking out.
He laid in silence for a minute, maybe more, the graveness of his predicament suddenly dawning on him.
Finally, he rolled over onto his side and stared dully at the coffin he had only earlier been ready to jump into.
"I'm fucked," he stated simply.
Then he laid like that, ominous thoughts swimming through his head like ravens in a clouded, midnight sky. His eyes eventually narrowed themselves in exhaustion as each breath of cold air he took seemed more and more surreal, as if in a dream...
Yeah, maybe it was a dream after all. Maybe three days of suppressed terror and gradually increasing feelings of shame and self-loathing had never truly happened. Maybe he could shut his eyes and open them again, and suddenly he would find himself in his nice warm bed over in his nice warm house, with Shera's nice warm body to keep him company....
Cid closed his eyes, letting himself drift into a half-dead sleep. Shera must be worrying now... Yeah, she'd always been worrying about him, even before they'd settled their differences. Cid had just been too blind to see it, blinded by his shattered dreams and lost fantasies... And now he was blinded here as well by the darkness in some damn crypt at the bottom of some damn mansion in the middle of some damn town where the only inhabitants were a bunch of illusions and a prettyboy vampire.
Footsteps, faint and light, from the Outside.
A faint Scent.... a Scent of one strong who was compelled by the Thirst...
And a distinctive aching... now a stinging sensation.... at two small points... at the side... of his.... neck....
Cid's eyes snapped open.
He was here.
The door of the crypt suddenly slammed open with the force of a hurricaine's winds as faint light flooded the small, grotesque room. Cid skittered backwards on the dirty floor, shading his eyes against the small bit of a white aura that found its way into the crypt... it was so bright...
Then, just as suddenly as the entrance had ocurred, it ended, and for a moment, Cid felt nothing but fear.
He was here.
Tall and silent, a black silhouette against the seemingly blinding light that tormented Cid's soul so, save for a golden claw which reflected light back at the pilot and burned his irises further.... And those eyes... those horrible, crimson-red eyes....
Cid found himself baring his teeth at the figure, shakily raising himself to his feet with his fists clenched at his sides, an intimidating growl forming in his parched throat. He wouldn't let this go on... He wouldn't let that... that damn thing strip him of the only thing he had left to hang on to...
Silence. The creature's eyes stayed fixed on Cid for a moment, as if estimating his victim's power, and then unlatched themselves from his visage, the scarlet orbs moving around the room slowly and deliberately, as a surveyor might size up the demolition site of a century-old church.
Cid made the first move. He wished he could have said that he was brave, that he was sure he would fight for his freedom down to the very last hour of his human life, but instead, he swallowed down his fear, yelling with stuttered words despite the valiant ideas expressed with them.
"Vi....Vincent!" Cid barked, attracting the attention of Vincent's eyes. He paused a moment to catch his exerted breath and continued. "J...Jesus...! ....Why.... why the hell are you doing this, trying to turn me into some... some kind of..... I..... Dammit, I.... you.... we... I thought we were..... comrades.... or.... or some shit like that.....!!!!"
Vincent stood like the statue of a Greek god from days long past, motionless and emotionless against the faint light emanating from whatever laid behind the door. Those eyes studied Cid's face for a moment with an intent, almost curious gaze and then were raised towards the ceiling as he shook his head just slightly, creating a ripple that travelled from his dark bangs to the farthest limits of his raven-black hair.
Cid never saw it coming.
There was a slight rustle, a short click, and then a loud crack as he felt himself grabbed by the collar of his white undershirt and slammed up against the cold wall of the cold, cold room. However, the frigid air that surrounded him and the frosty ice that was at his back paled into the uncertain realms of nonexistence when compared to the frigid aura that accompanied the sensation of Vincent's thin knuckles being pressed into his neck.
Cid's lungs heaved as he gasped for air and grasped Vincent's only flesh wrist with both of his bare hands, desperately attempting with the might he retained to pry the man's pale, dead fingers from his own pale, half-dead neck.
The... the bite marks burned harder.
"So," Vincent finally spoke, his toneless words ringing eerily in the small crypt as he narrowed his eyes at Cid's pitiful attempt to break free; the pilot jerked convulsively, writhing and kicking his bare feet against the wall behind him as Vincent's vice-like grip kept him securely off the ground and out of air. "You have already received your gift--" he quickly ran his eyes over the length of Cid's body "--hm--for the most part, I see... and yet...." he looked to the tormented man's face, "you don't... seem to appreciate it, it seems. Why?"
He loosened his grip slighty, enough to allow the captive man a gasp of sweet air and a few words of desperation.
"God----god DAMN it, Vincent!!!" He yelled in his coarse voice, struggling to escape the taller man's grasp. "What kind of gift is.... is makin' a man want to sleep in a damn coffin and drink.... drink.... bl----AAAAGGGHHHH!!!!!!"
The bite marks seared through his neck, the pain they inflicted upon him increasing with each word of defiance that came forth from his thin lips. It was an intense, supernatural sort of pain that wildly contradicted the numb, cold feeling in the rest of his body, and the combination of the two was enough to make even Cid shut his eyes, gritting those damn fangs against his teeth in an effort to stop tears from crawling down his face. No way he'd look like a coward in front of him. No fucking way in hell.
"I am truly sorry that you must suffer such pain for such great power..." Cid could hear Vincent's quiet, almost hypnotic voice amid the inexorable pounding of paper-thin blood in his temples. "However, it is necessary part of the process, according to Hojo's notes..."
Cid would have probably called Vincent one hell of a crazy bastard for following Hojo's notes right about then, but between the vampire's inhuman grip, the pain of the bitemarks, and the suppressed panic that racked his traumatized system, he couldn't quite find the opportunity...
Pain was all he knew.
After an immeasurable stretch of time, the burning slowly began to dullen into an ache. Cid slowly, blearily lifted the lids of his leadened eyes, blinking past the black and white spots that pervaded his vision. He could feel the cold, brick wall of the crypt pushing against his back, and he vaguely noticed that he was on the ground again. Vincent was standing over him, his tattered cape being rustled around him with the force of some invisible wind.
"Do you remember..." Vincent's voice was distant, an echo thrown down from the peak of some mountaintop far away. "How I once... asked you how you managed to be so..." He paused. "....Fearless...?"
Cid was silent, looking down towards the ground as he brought a hand to his throat, rubbing it gingerly.
"....You said you weren't fearless," Vincent continued, turning his head to the side thoughtfully. "You said you've been so scared sometimes that you've almost pissed yourself... You said there were many things that frightened you."
Cid closed his eyes, bringing a knee up and resting an elbow on it as he put a hand to his forehead.
"...You do realize why this must be done?" Vincent turned his gaze upon Cid, his eyes full of some distant, unexpected pain.
Cid lowered his hand, opening his eyes halfway as he leaned his back against the wall, raising his face towards the ceiling of the crypt in exhaustion as he gathered up what little strength that was still left in his body to say in a hoarse, barely-audible whisper:
"How the hell... how would I...?" He closed his eyes, shaking his head. "I.... I don't want this... d-dammit..."
Vincent paused, an expression of sadness and regret upon his countenance. He looked away. "Long ago... a very.... long time ago... I loved someone... dearly. However, she loved another, and I allowed the other to have her, for I cared about her happiness above all else." His eyes turned dark. "But then, before I could stop him, he hurt her... He hurt her and she was gone before I could take back my ignorance..."
"....Yeah.... I know that," Cid said quietly. Vincent had pretty much muttered it out in detail after visiting that cave beneath the waterfall... "But... but what the hell does that have to do with... with... turning me into a..." Cid trailed off as a sharp intake of air punctured his lungs. He turned his head away with obvious shame, the fangs painfully sharp in his mouth.
Vincent turned his gaze back on Cid. He slowly began to walk towards him. "I let Lucrecia leave my care and be smothered by the insatiable arms of Death... and when I tried to avenge her sweet soul, Death claimed me as well, forcing me to live with it as punishment for my sins..."
He kneeled down, bringing his crimson eyes level with Cid's blue ones. "However, what I did not realize was that living in death... can be a gift." He smiled softly, a strangely naive, eerily childish expression for someone so cold as him.
"What's your point, Gothman?" Cid whispered, contempt lacing his quiet words like bitter poison as he returned Vincent's stare.
"I let Death take Lucrecia before I could introduce her to it..." Vincent said simply. "I am not going to let the same thing happen to you."
Cid couldn't help give a small dry, sarcastic smile. "Comparin' me to your old girlfriend, huh? What, you attracted to me or some shit like that?"
The side of Vincent's mouth tugged upwards with that same innocence of a child, of one who is so desperate for affection that they simply don't know better than to demand it with all of their power.
"Actually, Cid... Yes, I am."
Cid's smile suddenly dropped off the face of the planet as he blinked dumbly at Vincent.
"You seem surprised..." Vincent said calmly, leaning forward uncomfortably close to Cid. "After all, you were the only one who took me in and treated me with kindness..."
He slowly brought his only hand towards Cid's cheek and rested it there. The pilot winced as he saw the hand come towards him and then outright cringed as he felt the icy fingers upon his frozen face. He wanted more than anything to yell at Vincent, to tell him to get his goddamn hands off of him, to lash out and kick the bastard where it hurt, then to dash out the door, leap up the stairs, just get OUT of that fucking hellhole of a house, then to run like hell all the way home where Shera wouldn't be in her normal state of tolerance towards his misdeeds long enough to give him a nice hard slap across the face and yell at him for giving her the scare of her life--"A whole week without ANY sort of warning?! Who the hell do you think you are, Cid?!?"
But even with all of his praying to feel Shera's wrath rather than Vincent's desperate affection, he couldn't bring himself to move an inch. Something about the vampire's touch... It made the bitemarks burn once more, draining his strength and rendering all of his efforts utterly useless.
Cid shut his eyes tightly, twitching involuntarily as Vincent began to stroke his rough face with the back of his hand.
"I won't let you pass through death," he said softly, soothingly, as if speaking to his favorite pet. "I'll save you, Cid..."
The victim of Vincent's skewed logic gathered just enough energy to quickly turn his head to the side, shaking off Vincent's unwelcomed touch. However, the red-caped man calmly brought his hand to Cid's chin, gripping it firmly and jerking it back in his direction, causing Cid's eyes to snap open.
Vincent studied Cid's face intently, his intense eyes boring into those of the other's. Cid glared back with the same amount of intensity, and soon, he found himself growling low and long through clenched teeth. It took him nearly a minute of watching Vincent's slowly growing smile to catch himself and stop, sweat oozing down from his pores.
"Cid..." Vincent arched an eyebrow. "You are terrified."
Cid looked away. "...You're insane," was all that managed to mutter.
God, he could use that slap right about now...
Vincent's smile widened. "Not insane, Cid. Just..." he glanced thoughtfully about the room that would have been pitch-black to a normal man's eyes and then back towards his victim. "....fearless." He narrowed his cat-like eyes. "I no longer fear Death, Cid... and I believe it to be a gift, and most definitely worth having the Thirst for."
His hand slowly crawled down from Cid's neck, running its fingers along the pale contours of his skin until they reached the bitemarks, whose pain seemed soothed, even diminished by their chilling touch.
Cid knew what was coming next.
Oh, God, he knew what was coming...
He began to hyperventilate, shaking as Vincent brought his head closer to the half-dead man's neck and rested it on his shoulder, stroking the marks gently with his index and middle finger. "Living in death... The ironic key to immortality, Cid." He whispered affectionately. "Do you not want it with all of your dwindling soul...?"
Cid could only shudder as he laid paralyzed and vulnerable, at the mercy of a man with no heart and no future.
"I don't... want to... DIE...." he managed to choke out, knowing it was hopeless even as he spoke.
Vincent shook his head softly.
"Don't worry..." he leaned it towards the other's neck, pulling down the collar of his red cape with his golden claw and revealing a pair of white fangs upturned in that childish grin. "That's what I said too."
His eyes lit up with flames, and with the fury of a demon, he sank his fangs into Cid's pale flesh.
It burned like hell.