The wind over Durem had an unusually ominous blow to it on the clear October night

The wind over Durem had an unusually ominous blow to it on the clear October night. Below the streetlights and under roofs the Gaians slept without a second thought as to who (or what) was roaming their streets at night. Little did they know that two opposing masked forces- "Alucard" and "The Gemini"- had their meetings here, which would inevitably shake Gaia and reawaken the powers of "The Masque".

"You're looking pleasant tonight," Alucard hissed, a sneer present in his voice. The Gemini scoffed at him, turning his head away. "Bah!"

"Cheerful as always, Wesley." That made The Gemini flinch, he hated that Alucard, his enemy, was one of the few people who understood his identity. "As are you, vampire."

The two stood atop lampposts, no more than fifteen feet apart, at the moment staring each other down. Though they both knew this intimidation technique usually worked The Gemini faltered his eyes away, after his Common Sense hit him, screaming about a vampire's hypnotic eyes. As he looked away, Alucard threw his head back and laughed. "Oh, Wesley, you senile old man," he howled, "Sometimes you're just so pathetic!"

"Stop that!" The Gemini snapped back, "You know only pure and half-vampires are immune to The Eye of Nosferatu! And I'm neither." Alucard crooked a finger at him, "Come here and I'll make you a pretty little vampire."

"I'd sooner die than become a slave to your will, Alucard!" The Gemini shouted softly, drawing his rapier, Aimer le Sacrifice (Love Sacrifice).

"Have it your way, Wesley!" Alucard called, his nails extending into vicious talons. "Enough chit-chat, let's fight!"

And at once the charged at each other, rapier versus talons, Man versus Vampire, in a dazzling array of metal and claw and blood, erupting onto the streets of Durem.

Gino sat up in his bed, grasping his sheets, which were covered in a cold sweat. A moment later, his door burst in and Johny and Edmund rushed in. Johny looked around in a sort of hard panic, then, after closely examining the room, relaxed slightly, but glared at Gino. "Why were you screaming? We thought you were attacked by something! But there's nothing here!" Normally his father's emphasis on the word thing would have seemed racially biased to Gino, but now he was too fixed on Edmund, who stood half-exposed behind his father, arms behind his back, mouth twisted in the usual scowl. "Y-you!" Gino called, crawling from his bed and grabbing Edmund by the collar of his robe, "You're the one from my dream, T-The Gemini!"

Edmund raised a brow at the boy, "I have no idea what you mean, Gino. Stop talking nonsense and go to bed like a good child." However, Gino persisted to shake the older man, "No, I won't! You know who you are, what you are! Your blood is on the streets of Durem! You tried to kill some 'Alucard' fellow with your Rapier! You have a Dual Gemini Mask hidden somewhere in yours and Father's room I know it!"

"Gino!" The young Gambino immediately stopped shaking him when the older man's voice stiffened. "I will not baby you! You may be the son of my oldest friend and lover, but I will use force on you." As if to give a demonstration, Edmund ripped Gino's hands from his own robe and pinned them against the wall. "It is four o' clock in the morning, Gino! If you can't tell the difference between your silly dreams and reality, perhaps your father and I should consider sending you to a psychiatric facility! Do you understand?" Gino gave a weak nod, and Edmund let his wrists go, flinging Gino towards the bed. Gino stumbled backwards and his head banged against one of the bed's baseboards. He rubbed his head and watched his two fathers leave, shutting the door quietly behind them

After they left, he shook his head, sighing, "He's right, there must be something wrong with me. But, what?" He sat up and leaned back against his bed, closing his eyes and attempting to collect his thoughts. It occurred to him that maybe the union between his half-brother, Damian Von Helson, and Gino's own former lover, Sasha, might have triggered his insanity.

Sasha and Ian's wedding day, which had been in late August, had occurred after they announced they were expecting. A tiny wedding with white roses and Sasha's gown was white, white, pure, like she was, and her stomach was swollen with his baby instead of Gino's. It should have been Gino's baby, but, no, that littleā€¦That little whore!

Gino slapped himself across the face. For God's sake, he loved her.

After a few hours of attempted sleep, it was six in the morning, and Gino couldn't take it anymore. He slipped into his casual (though many would refer to it as formal wear on just about anyone else) apparel, and stopped at his mirror to fulfill his strange urge to tie his hair back into a ponytail.

He crept out of his room and down the hall. He stopped right beside his fathers' room, and peeked inside the open door. He sighed in relief at the sight and Johny and Edmund fast asleep, embracing each other tightly. Gino couldn't help but envy them a little. He wondered what it was like to be embraced, seeing as how he lacked such simple things from his mother and his father.

He raced down the long stairway, out the door into the early-morning mist and towards the shore of Isle de Gambino. He knew how early it was, but he had to find out what was wrong with him.


The first rays of Gaia's own star, Pontus, were rising in the west when Gino stepped onto the porch of the home shared by Ian and Sasha. And soon, their little brat Gino shivered. He knocked on the door hard, repeatedly until a groggy Ian opened the door. "Gino..?" he groaned, his hair a nest and his eyes barely open, "What do you want?"

"I need to see her," Gino said, not emotion, but rather pure need arising in his voice.

"She's sleeping, Gino, come back later." Ian tried to close the door, but Gino caught it, and flung the door open so hard it broke off. The door clattered to the ground and Gino and Ian gapped at it in shock. "I-I'm sorry! I-I didn't mean to!" Gino stuttered. Ian sighed, glanced from Gino to the door and back again, then said, "Come in, just be quiet damn it!"

"But the door-!"

"I'll fix that later."

Reluctantly, Gino stepped inside and followed Ian to the bedroom, where Sasha lie, still asleep.

Now seven months along, her stomach was beautifully swollen and she had a kind of glow about her. Gino sat down on the bed next to her, gently and happily stroking her cheek, which was softer than ever. He didn't care that the broken door was the first sign of his reawakened powers or newly awakened madness.