Disclaimer: Hellsing belongs to Kouta Hirano and The Red Shoes to Hans Christian Andersen.

Author's Notes: This is a gift requested by arabel ('Something dark between Integral and Alucard dressed in his Rio Suit) and edited by Puck 3/4. Set AU after Wizardry II, chapter 58 of volume 7. To understand this ficlet, you have to read hca(dot)gilead(dot)org.il/redshoe(dot)html this first. The narrative isn't written in conventional style but I attempted to mimic the best I could to Andersen's storytelling (not quite but close).


The Bloody Red Shoes

Once upon a time there was a beautiful and brave lady-knight. But in the midst of the Third World War, because her weapons were lost in a car crash, she was forced to yield only a single sabre against her enemies. It was a magnificent sword but slightly useless against those who possessed automatic firearms. But it was meant to be deadly accurate for it was made to be used by a noble one like Integral Hellsing, that was the name of our lady-knight.

Integral received soon a living weapon. From the sky, one of her vampires, Seras Victoria arrived. Her once yellow uniform and bright blue eyes were now of a pretty shade of red. And together, Integral and her red-cloaked vampire fought the invaders. The holy men and women that had escorted Integral thought that a member of the undead was an unsuitable ally for a vampire hunter. But she had no other; therefore the lady-knight turned a deaf ear and battled along side Seras.

Integral had been an orphan for many years; a kind old man had adopted her soon after her father's death. This man was Walter, her butler and steward, the one who had taken care of her since she was a child. She had left him to his luck upon his own suggestion not so long ago in order that she alone could paint her foes of a scarlet hue. The kind old man was before them now, no smiling face, no lines of age and all dressed in black.

"Walter!" Seras Victoria exclaimed with enthusiasm. And in front of Integral's eyes, her vampire subordinate was shredded by monowires.

"The hideous vampire is gone," Walter stated in a cold hissing voice. Integral was too shocked to respond. Had he disliked Seras' crimson attire so much? Had not he recognised her soldier on time? She grit her teeth, holding Seras' head tightly against herself before a blow on the back of her head made her passed out.

When she awoke, Integral noticed her clothes were gone. She remained alone in the frosty white cell, flying over the ruins of her city. Visited only by the Major a couple of times. He only appraised her from afar commenting she was beyond pretty. How beautiful she looked in his grasp. The lady-knight glared at him but said nothing. She was above speaking with the King of Pigs. There was a small window in her narrow room, she beheld the battle below. All was red – the buildings, the streets and the river. She wanted the red colour for herself.

Days passed, Integral lost the count of them as she did with her sneezes and convulsive cough. Trembling she remained when Walter visited her. His face was grief stricken and old again, his monowires dripped blood on the alabaster floor. "The Captain was killed," he commented with a mournful tone, passing her a white coat to cover her form. "I'm deeply sorry, Sir."

Integral stared at Walter and saw the face of a man resigned to his doom – one she could not save. "I want to be down there. I wish to bathe in their blood and paint everything red," she stated, mind already delirious when cold arms engulfed her to a dark abyss. The lady-knight turned her back to the kind old man that had raised her as a daughter and took the hand of her remaining vampire – dressed in white suit, sunglasses and a red cape. Red like Seras' uniform and eyes used to be eyes, as the shade of the floor beneath her bare feet.

"Shall we dance then, Integra?" Alucard asked, distancing himself and offering her blade. He bowed, "Could I have this piece, Master?"

Integral took the sword from his hand, placing her left digits on his shoulder to balance herself. "We shall," she replied, recalling giving orders. Alucard laughed, more maniacal than ever, grasping her right wrist tightly and pressing her waist against his body to begin their waltz.

The lady-knight led her demon as they danced on the killing field – her sabre sliced everyone on her right side that got close as his many arms popped out from his body taking care of anyone who would dare to interrupt. Integral's legs were barely able to keep the track of his fast motions as they travelled through all the London ground. And she forgot to pray to God for the lady-knight could not recall her devotion. Integral only yearned to destroy and smite, to have the heathens and Catholic pigs out of her lands.

The lady-knight's thoughts were completely engrossed in red.

The brimstone and fire on the air captured her attention. The Zeppelin and helicopters precipitated to the ground. Integral remembered Walter's face and imagined a graveyard made of steel, broken flags and bones. When the Bling crashed, she knew he was dead and gone. She tried to pause, feeling the grief on her heart but Alucard did not allow her.

"Dance you ordered, and dance you shall," he reminded her in a frenzied tone. So they did. They continued their sinister piece over corpses and living beings alike. Over enemies and innocents. Night and day they produced a red-stained rain.

The vampire had brought the lady-knight through glass and heated grounds, her feet were bleeding and torn - soaked there shone brightly her bloody red 'shoes.' Her articulations almost had not strength to remain standing; her brain had difficulties to process thoughts let alone orders. The seal was slipping, her control was waning as her life was fading. Integral felt panic for the first time and remorse for her careless actions; in her weak struggle her spectacles fell off and shattered beneath her - the shards bite deep her skin.

Over the edge of insanity, Alucard obliged to dance where Iscariot had settled - a half demolished Church. Integral's sight was blurry but she could distinguished the voices. "Come out, Paladin!" the lady-knight called her would be executioner.

"Oh yes, Judas Priest. Let's find out if you're able to dance as well as us," Alucard grinned, possessively licking part of the blood splattered on Integral's cheek.

"I'm God's messenger, I shall cut the heads of the sinners," Anderson pointed out, the gleam on his blades damaged Integral's eyes – for she had only known darkness.

"Don't kill me yet, Anderson. I have to speak to God of my sins and those of my ancestors," Integral quickly added. "Chop his arms to stop this madness." She tried to remain strong and firm too proud to plea. The details of the battle were lost to her feverish mind - grunts, flashes, screams, laugh… and then brief freedom when Alucard's arms fell limp on her own.

The lady-knight collapsed on the ground, shivering violently and exhausted. She had suffered enough for her insane red cloaked vampire, Integral would go to the Church were she could find peace. The bells tolled, indicating which way to crawl. She advanced fast as she managed, passing through cadavers of the murdered Iscariots, not pausing to assist the wounded ones.

"Oh God help me!" Integral exclaimed with fervent faith, stopping at the feet where stood the statue of the Angel of God and felt warm, calmed her inside, the pain going away – her body turning numb. Smiling, the lady-knight tried to reach his offered hand, enjoying the scent of roses of the branch he was holding.

"It's the right thing to do, Integra, come," the Angel of God replied in a warm tone.

Mercy for the sinner that let rage and revenge take her mind off duty. The Lord had forgiven her, Integral thought relieved, brushing the fingertips of the Angel with her digits. So cold and so white. The lady-knight closed her eyes, sensing her soul starting to fly away to God's arms. She snapped when two sharp thorns prickled her hand, staring at the statue once more. There was red over white…

Red… as blood.