I'm back! Just for a short while, and I really need to brush up on my writing skills. This is good practice. The plot to this story can be explained in a few sentences, but I was focusing more on the writing of it. Perhaps that will compensate for a sucky plot. Enjoy!
Summary: Integra must go on a date with one of the sons of the Council of Twelve, but not if Alucard has anything to say about it.
All characters © Hirano Kouta
Update: OVA IV will be out in English on September 16th, and OVA V should be out in a few months too!
The Vampire King
"Mein Sohn, was birgst du so bang dein Gesicht?"
"Siehst, Vater, du den Erlkönig nicht?"
He supposed he could always blame the moon if he got caught.
It excites the blood of vampires, he would say in a sonorous bass, complete with a protesting timbre.
He thought that she was as likely to accept that excuse as he was to become mortal.
No, Integra wouldn't fancy him too much if she discovered that he was following her, none too much at all. That was fine, though. He didn't mind.
His irises glowed a feral vermillion from the shadows of the night.
Integra Hellsing was beginning to regret her decision more and more by the second. She never should have allowed herself to be coerced into such foolishness. "Romantic," Walter had called it. In addition he had told her that it was about time already; she was almost seventeen and needed a change of pace. Agreeing to this madness was his idea, not hers.
The dignified Hellsing heir glanced to her right at the gangly, pimply, bespectacled boy at her side, almost a head shorter than she was, loping next to her in the dark amidst an awkward silence. Integra sighed quietly. Just because he was the son of one of the Convention of Twelve's nobles did not mean she had to go on a…
It didn't take as long as he'd thought to catch up to them. She hadn't even noticed his presence because tonight he was the shadowman, the ultimate denizen of darkness. He felt vaguely like that little fatuous therianthrope who worked for Millenium: everywhere yet nowhere simultaneously.
And what was his rationale for stalking his young master like one of his many prey? Those of lesser intelligence may have thrown up nonsensical words, such as "jealousy," "overprotective," or "possessive." Or even "love." Yet it was none of those, or so he told himself. He told himself that it was for self-indulgence, for thrill.
Although some buried human instinct inside the deepest crevice of his still heart, an impulse centuries forgotten, told him otherwise.
"So…Robert," Integra began, mentally scrambling mid-sentence to grasp the boy's name. Her voice sounded too loud in the thick nocturnal ambience of London's Hyde Park, too disturbing.
"Tell me about yourself," she stated simply, feeling beyond uncomfortable, hoping that he would do most of the talking. Integra was not disappointed—this boy could talk. The young heir pinched the bridge of her nose beneath her rounded spectacles and only half-listened as Robert prattled on and on about his life.
Not that she was one to talk, but her date had the social skills of a tree squirrel.
He sensed his master's disquietude in her aura as the other boyhuman spoke without reprieve. Soon, it would be time to make his move. He carefully removed his wide-brimmed fedora and orange nightshades, storing them in his Victorian trench coat for later use. The urge to crack his knuckles was hard to resist.
Time to do what he did best.
Integra pinched the nails of her index finger and thumb into her skin hard enough to bring blood. There, that should temporarily waken her up. For a while. The noble's son had finally gotten to the double-digits, which had taken surprisingly long giving that his life had seemed incredibly blasé. Well, compared to Lady Integra's at least.
Sweeping her heavy blonde tresses over her shoulder, Integra stared up at the moon, a glowing white plate in the sky. A milk moon. A small smile twitched at the corners of Integra's mouth, threatening to turn them up. Her servant would certainly enjoy a night like this…and her current predicament was almost enough to make her miss him. Almost.
It was only when Integra began to think of the vampire, her vampire, that she realized the night had gotten colder. The air was chillier than when she had commenced this hellish date, and she pulled her cardigan tighter around her lean frame. She prayed that Robert had not noticed this action and would not attempt to warm her up. No worries, though. The son of the noble was still blathering on, garrulous, oblivious to her actions and obvious lack of interest.
"So, after I won that award, father took me—"Robert broke off. Integra's head snapped up at the sudden, deafening silence.
"Did you hear that?" he asked her, cocking his acne-studded head warily.
"I did not hear anything," Integra responded, also tilting her head toward the silence. "What was it you heard?"
Her date frowned. "It sounded like a large snap."
"Probably just a wood animal," Integra responded casually, although the gears in her mind had begun to crank. Robert seemed to accept that and folded his arms across his chest.
"A bit nippy out, isn't it? Are you cold, love?"
"No," Integra lied, wanting nothing more than this night to be over. Her date lapsed back into his life story after a slight caesura, noise in the woods forgotten.
Yes, it had definitely gotten colder outside. This could be attributed to the time of day, but after living for five years with a member of the undead, Integra knew better than that.
His master had begun to suspect his presence, he was sure of that. Just how perspicacious she was, he no longer knew. Would she play along with his rescuing ruse? Or perhaps she too needed a reminder that there were worse creatures than bears in these woods tonight.
"Augh!" Robert exclaimed impulsively, an inarticulate little sound escaping from his mouth. He had just seen something cross his path a few yards ahead.
"Did you see that?" he asked Integra breathily, blinking. Of course she had, it was hard to miss, even in the dark with her myopia.
"It looked like a black dog, or a wolf, maybe," Robert said shakily, running a gangly hand through his hair in a nervous gesture. "But it was huge."
"Too bad we're not in Dartmoor," Integra joked, which was a rare event in and of itself. Her date shot her a puzzled glance. Obviously he was not a fan of Sherlock Holmes.
She sighed. "I'm sorry Robert, I seem to have missed it. Perhaps it was a fox. Let me know when you see it again."
No doubt about it now. A creature that big did not exist in Hyde Park, or anywhere else in the world for that matter. It had to be him.
"I-Integra," her date stammered anxiously after a while, "This may sound a tad strange, love, but I hear voices. They are saying my name." Large droplets of perspiration stood out on his gleaming forehead.
Again, Integra feigned ignorance. "Robert, I hear nothing," she told him calmly. "Perhaps you are still spooked from that animal back there and your mind is playing tricks on you."
He looked at his date's composed, hardened features, her pale hair that reflected the moonlight in an almost angelic way, and decided that he had to be the man here. It was simple chivalry. Protect the fair maiden and show no fear.
So Robert hushed up and continued their nighttime stroll with his Goddess.
You had to feel sorry for him. Alucard wasn't finished yet.
The young Hellsing heir asked the boy questions as if nothing was out of the ordinary, walking at a comfortable pace. Slowly Robert was beginning to regain a little of his confidence, almost falling back into his usual talkative demeanor. Quasi-loquacious, one might say.
After a few moments, he noticed that his fair maiden looked somewhat different than she had before. It took the noble's son a moment to place: Integra's hair was not shining in the divine way that he had silently complimented earlier. Why was there no reflection present of the moon's light on her silky blonde locks?
Robert looked to the sky and realized with a sudden clarity that there was no moon. No moon at all.
He governed with his senses now, immersing himself in a dark lust that generally accompanied his schadenfreude. Only this time there would be no blood shed, just a little spooking.
Tonight he was not merely a vampire, a No Life King, oh no. Tonight, Alucard was the Erl King, crown and robe of crimson, his prey the unfortunate boychild of the nobleman.
"Releasing control art restriction levels three, two, and one. Situation A—the Cromwell Approval is now in effect. Hold release until target is silenced," he murmured. Technically the target would be silenced, just not permanently. He really shouldn't use his powers for such trivial and inconsequential matters, he told himself, but this was just too much fun.
As usual, he felt the heat of power overtake him. The exhilarating thrill of his familiars, the sparkle of ancient sorcery as it rushed through his veins: he loved it.
The boy saw his shadowmorphs blotting out the moon, as well as the millions of eyeballs that went whizzing past him. He didn't start to scream until he heard a guttural snarl, layered with bass tones no human throat could manufacture.
Seventeen-year old Integra stood back and watched this spectacle placidly. This was nothing she hadn't seen before. She watched as arthropods and other squirming things fell from the sky, writhing on the ground before her hysterical date. It did not take much time before the ill-fated Robert ran yelping back the way they had come.
The silence in his wake was deafening.
"Good evening, Alucard," Integra greeted the vampire with no surprise whatsoever.
"Good evening, My Master," replied the figure, now clad in his usual burgundy attire. "What a nice night tonight, isn't it?" He looked up at the moon, glowing once more in the clear night sky and grinned.
Integra gave a nod of agreement. "I thought that boy would never leave." Alucard suppressed a chuckle at the thought of his master calling a male her age "boy."
The vampire gestured with one white-gloved hand for her to follow as he began to stride down the pathway. "You should thank me for saving you, Master. Had I not interfered you would have had to spend the whole night with him."
"In good humor tonight, Alucard?" Integra inquired. She saw a flash of white canines as her servant smiled a lopsided leer.
"Alucard, stop for a moment," Integra told him indifferently, and he obeyed with a slightly quizzical glint in his ember-red irises.
With a speed uncanny for a teenage girl to possess, Integra plunged a hand into the vampire's coat and extracted his silver Casull. It gleamed almost blindingly in the moonlight. Without a word or a second to spare, she released the safety and shot Alucard point blank in the face, having to hold the gun with two hands due to its heaviness.
"May I ask what that was for, My Master?" Alucard asked once his head had rearranged itself. "I thought you wanted to thank me," he added hesitantly. His pride had taken a serious blow from that.
"That was for not arriving sooner, vampire," she answered with eyes of blue flint. "Now, let's return home so I can give Walter a piece of my mind."
And Alucard said nothing as he followed her back to the estate. Out of his many adversaries, none sent a chill through his bones more than his master in a cross mood.
"Mein Vater, mein Vater, jetzt faßt er mich an!
Erlkönig hat mir ein Leids getan!"