Okay, this is it! I'm proud to bring you…drumroll please…The Turning Scene! I have some other stuff in there too, but this is about their pent up feelings and how things have progressed till now. I recommend re-watching the episode (if you can) to see how well this really does fit! I will get started on the sequel, but don't expect anything too soon!

Oh and it took a while to decided on the quote for this chapter so I decided to add the runner up here too!

"Meeting you was fate, becoming your friend was a choice, but falling in love with you I had no control over."

Enjoy!!


Love Always Preserves-Epilogue

"Friendship often ends in love; but love in friendship - never."
-Charles Caleb Colton

"No. Think custom. Mick," Mick walked into Josef's blown out office as his decorators were walking out. "Just leave the plans I'll get back to you. Boy, no matter how much money you throw into this, remodeling is a bitch." Josef looked away from his desk and up to Mick. "Are you…are you tan?"

"Am I? Hum, I had lunch at the beach with Beth. Sshha, not something you'll be doing anytime soon." Mick said, the smile never leaving his face.

Josef felt a pang of envy. No matter how much he liked Beth, and he did, she was talented, driven, beautiful, witty and caring, but it didn't make him any less jealous of her as his replacement in Mick's life. He'd hadn't seen Mick this happy in decades and it tore him up inside.

"Hum, And how'd that go? You seal the deal yet?" Josef went with sarcasm to hide his true feelings.

"It's not that simple."

"Well, sure it is. Boy likes girl, girl likes boys." Boy likes boy, Josef added mentally. "Didn't your dad explain all this?"

"Okay, and when I turn back?"

"Vampires and human's can have sex Mick." Not that I'm encouraging this… "This isn't about physiology."

"And it isn't about sex."

"Of course it's about sex, everything's about sex." Except love, love is about more than sex, love is about caring…

"I'm fifty-eight years older than her. Okay, I sleep in a freezer, I drink blood I buy from the morgue and I have this tendency to bite down when I-"

"Some women like that." I like that. You should know that from personal…Shit I sound pathetic today, pull yourself together… "You keep coming up with all these excuses," Hopefully because you still feel for me. "You're not afraid Beth's going to get hurt, you're afraid you're going to get hurt."

"Phahh…I…I am in love with her." Josef's heart broke. The words he waited fifty year to hear had finally come out of Mick's mouth, but it wasn't about him.

"Yeah, you are…So go do something about it before it is too late." Josef said, trying not to show Mick his sadness. His…friend needed his encouragement and support and as much as it killed him inside, seeing Mick this happy was worth every loss, it kind of made him sad that he'd never met the mortal Mick.

Mick smiled at him and left the office. Leaving Josef to trash the place in frustration, lucky for him the place was already a disaster zone so no one would know the difference.


Mick walked out of Josef's office, slightly elated, but severely depressed. He'd been holding off his relationship with Beth because of his feelings for Josef. He wanted Josef to make some proclamation of love, some gesture that told Mick he still thought about him, but no. Instead he had pushed him away telling him to 'seal the deal' with Beth.

Mick couldn't help the tear that escaped, but he shook it off. He'd come here to get an answer and he'd gotten it. Josef wasn't interested. Beth was. And Josef was encouraging it…that was it. There was nothing between then anymore, and maybe there never was…after learning about Sarah, Mick had had felt liberated from the guilt of having another, mortal, woman in his life, but depressed that he might have just been a fling.


Hours later, after Maureen's death…

"Oh, look. It's my two favorite humans." Josef smirked as Mick and Beth entered his torn apart office a few hours later.

"Did you know that my editor was investigating your involvement in a bogus charity scam?" Beth started out. Josef smiled, that's what he loved about her, all business.

"Nice to see you, Beth. Me? I'm doing great, thanks. Except for all the drywall dust, it gets everywhere." Josef couldn't help playing around, having eternity to think up come backs made him pretty quick on his toes and never pressed for time.

"Beth's editor, Maureen Williams, was killed a few hours ago." Mick said, trying to bring the conversation back to the point.

"I'm sorry. Am I a suspect? Cool, it's like roll playing without the leather." Beth looked between Mick and Josef at Josef's comment. A certain un-said meaning passed between them with a quick glance, but Beth was too nervous to ask. Mick and Josef had been together for years before she was even born, she really didn't want to know what had passed between them.

"You're name came up in connection with a story that Maureen was working on." Mick said, trying to cover the embarrassed flush that had come to his cheeks.

"Was her body found in LA Berea tar pits?" Josef asked, knowing full well he'd killed a man, but interested in seeing Beth's reaction.

"No." Beth said, not phased by Josef's admission of murder.

"That was the only person I killed this week."

"Josef, this is serious." Mick said, trying to get Josef to take them seriously and stop playing around with Beth. It was making him nervous that Josef and Beth were this friendly; he'd rather hoped he'd refuse to talk to her so Mick would know that he still had feelings for him, but this playful banter made Mick all that much more nervous.

"No, this is stupid. Yes, Maureen called me and I tell you what I told her. I'm on the board of dozens of charities, I can't keep track of it, my PR man sets it all up. I had no idea this charity was bogus until she told me."

"Okay, we'll talk to your PR man."

"Remember the tar pits?" The group shared a nervous look and Josef was proud to hear Beth's heart accelerate, even if she didn't show it she still had an inner fear of him and his kind.

"Look, here's my schedule. I was supposed to meet Maureen again this Tuesday and give her an exclusive on a charity that Konstan Enterprises is setting up to help the victims of the scam. I even got Opera as the honorary chairman, now why would I go through all that trouble if I could just kill her?"

Josef looked into Mick's eyes making the younger man nervous. Beth could see some deeper feelings, something akin to what he saw in Josef's eyes at Sarah's bedside, but if anything this look was more meaningful and it made her all that more sure she didn't want to know what secrets laid in Mick and Josef's past. "I know it's tempting to always blame the vampire, but I think this time you're going to have to look for your killer someplace else."

Mick walked out before Beth could apologize. She gave Josef one last glance, but he was too busy watching Mick's retreat that he didn't even notice her apologetic look. She followed Mick out and left her doubts about Josef's alibi behind.


The next day…

Mick was ransacking his bookcase, trying to find every weapon he could to get Beth back. Without Josef, she was all he had left now. He pulled a reverse double blade dagger and turned to find Josef standing in his living room.

"What are you doing?"

"Don't do that?"

"What? Use my crafty vampire abilities to sneak up on you?"

"Why are you here?"

"Giermo called me said you were about to something extremely stupid. I said, wait that be the Mick I know."

"You should come, you love a challenge."

"No see I'm a lover, not a fighter. No, besides, I just get dead trying to protect you, the human liability." Don't be stupid, Mick, Josef pleaded silently, I'd never let anything happen to you…or Beth. I'll find her, but you have to stay here.

"I can take care of myself," Mick said, exasperated, but before he finish the statement, Josef had vamped out, and not the aroused way Mick was used to seeing him, but the angry, vengeful way. Before Mick could react Josef had hit het stakes from his hands and kicked him in to the wall leaping the distance in the blink of an eye to keep him pinned there.

"Is this how you're gonna face them?! Is this how you want it to end?!" Josef screamed as he held onto Mick's collar. It had been more than a decade since he'd had Mick pinned against a wall and as mad as he was at Mick for being so stupid he couldn't help the slight arousal he felt at having Mick's body pressed to his. But he was surprised when Mick turned his head to expose his jugular like old times and he was even more surprised when he felt Mick's arousal, even with his increased heart rate.

"Get off me! Get off me!" Mick pleaded, he could feel Josef against him and his body was betraying him. Josef continued to stare at Mick's neck, mesmerized by the blood pounding just under the skin. Mick had tasted amazing as a vampire, Josef couldn't imagine what he would taste like as a human, probably happiness and sunny days mixed with masculinity.

Josef slowly released Mick, keeping close to him and never breaking eye contact with his pulse. He was so close, all it would take was a slight movement and his fangs would be sunk in his neck and he could show Mick all that he'd been feeling.

Mick pushed around Josef to give himself space to calm down. Josef tried to regain control of his features, but his arousal was hindering his ability to shift his appearance.

"I hope I made my point." Josef said softly, praying that Mick understood how much his life would be unbearable if he got himself killed.

Mick took a deep breath, and ran his hand through his hair. A thousand emotions running through him; joy for knowing Josef still had feelings for him, fear for Beth and his life, and sadness for not being able to be with Josef like he'd wanted for so long because of Beth. "Yeah, you did."

Mick turned to look at Josef, his eyes hiding none of his emotions. Josef had folded his hands to hide his own arousal, but Mick's stare was not making matters easier. "What?" Josef asked, pissed that Mick could still cause this kind of effect in and yet still be able to deny his own feelings.

"You were right. I can't save Beth as a human. But I can save her as a vampire. You have to turn me back." Mick knew that he had to save Beth. He'd been saving her for the last twenty years and he wasn't going to give up on her tonight, no matter what Josef thought.

"Whoa, hold on…hold on this is not-" Josef couldn't believe Mick's request. Mick knew as well as he did what would happen if Josef turned him. There would be an even deeper connection between the two then there was now. They'd be bound to each other for het rest of eternity.

"You have to turn me back, right now."

"Mick, you're human again. After all you went through to get the cure, you're going to give it up this easy?" Josef wanted Mick to be a vampire, he wanted him to live forever, but he didn't want to take Mick's happiness and he certainly didn't want to be the one to do it.

"You think this is easy for me? This is not easy, okay? I don't have a choice." Mick's eyes were full of tears and Josef was choked up too. He couldn't believe it was coming down to this.

"What you're asking me to do-" He didn't want to be Mick's second Coraline

"Will you listen to me! Alright…he has Beth. He has my Beth. So please, please brother."

Josef knew he couldn't argue with that. He had promised long ago that he'd do anything for Mick's happiness. "Mick, forgive me."

Mick exposed his neck and Josef plunged his fangs in. Mick was amazed at the pain he felt, having never received a bite knowingly as a human he was shocked at the initial pain, but it quickly melted as Josef tenderized the bite.

Josef tried to ignore the marvelous taste of Mick's blood and concentrate of the task at hand, but he couldn't help his reaction to Mick. He felt Mick cry out in pain and he quickly numbed the bite. He heard Mick moan before he fell unconscious into his arms.

Josef tenderly laid Mick back on the table, trying to avoid thinking about other such occasions when he had held Mick in his arms. He tore open his shirt and bit into his own arm, feeding Mick his blood as fast as possible.

Josef never prayed as much as he did in those few seconds. He hadn't tried turning anyone since Sarah and if Mick never woke up he was going to take the nearest silver dagger and run it through his heart, just to ease the pain.

But Mick did wake up and he latched onto Josef's arm like a healthy, hungry, fledgling. Mick was forceful and Josef grimaced with the pain, but he was so happy to have his friend back that he didn't bother to stop him.

Mick finally released his arm and Josef watched it heal as Mick rose from the table. Josef smiled with pride as his friend roared to life. Mick turned to Josef and hopped of the table ready to hit the ground running, but Josef stopped him.

"Whoa, before you go anywhere you need something more to drink."

Mick looked at Josef questionable, but headed to his fridge to get a drink.

"Not that," Josef stopped him.

"You said I needed a drink. What did you mean? Alcohol?"

"No..what do you remember about your fledgling days?"

"Not much…"

Josef shook his head; he knew this had been a bad idea. He grabbed the blood from Mick and tore open six units in fast succession, to avoid tasting the awful stuff. He hoped his new influence on Mick might get his to go back on tap.

Once he was finished, Josef offered Mick his arm. Mick backed away. "Whoa, what are you doing?"

"Feeding you. Baby vampires need their sire's blood."

"But I'm not a baby vampire, you re-turned me-"

"Mick, you'll always be a baby to me and yes, I did re-turn you, but that doesn't mean you don't need my blood, with any luck you'll be off it in a few days anyways, but for now just drink."

Mick swallowed, knowing Josef was right, but he was nervous at making that much personal contact with Josef. Mick grabbed Josef's arm and sunk his fangs in. He numbed the bite and realized he went overboard when he heard Josef moan. Mick pulled back suddenly and the two looked away from each other.

"You haven't lost your touch," Josef quipped as he wiped his wrist clean. "But you need some help on your exit strategy."

Mick blushed, but smiled. He looked and Josef and they shared a long meaningful stare before Josef sighed. "Okay, let's go save the damsel in distress."

"What?" Mick was confused. "Why are you coming? You said you were a lover not a fighter."

"I am, but as a sire it is my duty to protect my fledgling from whatever damage might happen to him." He smiled at Mick and grabbed his coat. Mick smiled back and together they headed out the door.

This was going to make everything more difficult…


Sequel now up!!! 'When Onw Door Closes...' you can find the link on my profile page.