Title: There Is None
Pairings: Gabriel/Carl implied
Notes: Van Helsing/Narnia- The Silver Chair cross-over.
You needn't have read The Silver Chair to get this one. I only wrote of the encounter between Gabriel Van Helsing and the Witch who uses her enchantments to erase her victims' memories.
"Why do you hasten?" The Witch cooed, her voice working to soothe the hunter's agitation. She thrummed her mandolin, its quiet steady rhythm attempting to drown out all thoughts of urgency in Gabriel's soul. "Why do wish to leave my realm?"
Gabriel stood still, his fists clenched as he strove to reason with her. "I don't know what you're trying to do to me. But I must go."
"Back to the Vatican. I- I have things to do." Gabriel felt unsure why he was still standing there, trying to reason with her. Though he had complete possession of his faculties, a cloud had begun to settle upon him. It dulled his mind even as he fought to stay in focus.
In focus of what?
The Witch tilted her head like a child hearing of something for the first time. "Vatican? What is this Vatican that you speak of? Is it a-"
"It is a place," he growled. "A place where I go to… to atone for my sins." When normally, the mention of lost memories conjured echoes of screams and the sounds of clashes in ancient battlefields- none of these came to him. Only hollowness answered back. And this he now welcomed.
The Witch smiled sweetly. "Your sins? Dearest, there is no Vatican. No place where you must atone for your sins, for you have none."
"Y-You lie. I-I… am guilty," Gabriel weakly retorted.
"Oh, but you cannot be guilty of anything. I see your thoughts, I look into your soul. You puzzle me, dear one. Your guilt which you so desperately hold on to, has no name. You know it not. Perhaps it is not there. And if you are not guilty, then you do not need a second chance," the Witch laughed harshly. She hummed softly as she continued playing her mandolin. The fire in the hearth began to burn low, but the sweet and heady odours wafting from it seemed to only thicken.
Thoughts of unfamiliar places began to course through his mind. Each scene emerging from the fog, then drifting away. Places of stone, bustling activity, prayers…
… and Carl.
"I-I cannot stay. I must go back. For Carl," Gabriel rallied. Brief glimpses of a beautiful face, smiling and looking up at him. A flash of slender hands clothed in fingerless gloves, running through his hair and touching his face.
Gabriel. A voice, quick to reprimand in great worry over acts of restlessness, thrilled to utter complex explanations, was the same voice gently whispering his name when all was quiet and when no eyes, save theirs, beheld each other with much endearment.
"He waits for me. Carl- I have to go back."
His heart thumped with weak hope and yet his voice was filled with the bewilderment of a losing battle. He stared dumbly at the Witch who only appeared to look past his eyes as she continued thrumming her mandolin.
She smiled again, but now there was unmistakable malice upon her lips. Her voice, now sweeter than ever, desperately enveloped Gabriel's senses.
"Ah, this Carl that you speak of, that you think of with much tenderness. How can he be real? Surely there is none like him who can exist in this dreary, hopeless world." She then fixed her eyes on him and concluded triumphantly.
"There is no Carl. He is only a dream. A good dream from which you will awake and pine for. But fret not. Like all dreams- he too will fade away and leave you in peace."
"… only a dream," Gabriel repeated without emotion. Though his soul was now bereft of its burdens, this new emptiness pained him. Something dear had been taken from him with quiet violence.
And now it was gone.