A/N: Oh man, oh man, don't ask what led to this pairing, okay? I know, if I got anymore cracked out there would be a danger of head explody. I just suddenly decided that I wanted this and bam! Here it is. Love it, hate it, whatever, just review it.
Rating: I'm going out on a limb here by saying T. Swearing probably, some dirty thoughts, homosexual romance, and to top it all off, maybe even a racy scene! I know, gasp, I'm bad.
Character(s): Farrell, Barry the Bellboy, mentions of Isabel Beaumont, Stan Davis, Joseph Velasquez, Sookie Stackhouse, and Rachel.
Summary: Set sometime after the events in Rhodes. The Dallas coven realizes just how valuable an asset Barry Horowitz is after he saves their lives (no joke intended). A quick guess says that the Fellowship of the Sun might just have an idea who the baby mind-reader is, and another guess: they're probably not happy that he put a damper on their attempt at wiping out the vampires. It's the least that Joseph can do when he decides to protect the coven's new toy. Unfortunately, this lands poor Barry the Bellboy with a charming, chatty, and not so surprisingly gay body guard. What's a boy to do?
It had been a long trip already, and one that was full of very drawn-out, awkward tension, and we were only fifteen minutes into it. Neither of us really knew how to take the other. There was the hovering suspicion that both of our lives (or undead existence in his case) were at risk. There was the substantial amount of weakness in the coven, the possibility that the vampire serving as the stand-in King of Texas was probably about to be toppled over pretty violently, and the fact that I was currently the only human that had any idea just how difficult the situation was. Vampires don't like anyone to know their business and I was just about neck deep in. There was the fact that the vampire acting as my chauffeur and bodyguard was probably feeling just a little bit insulted at being lent out as a human's private protector. Then to top it all off, the man just didn't possess the trademark vampire silence and stoicism.
Of all of the undead out there, why was it that I ended up stuck with the one that seemed to find it absolutely necessary to hold up a constant stream of chatter? Well, that would be because life just sucks for me.
I realize some of you may have missed the story so far, so let's recap. My name is Barry; I'm pretty much a totally normal nineteen year old boy. I guess I've gotten mixed up pretty deeply in some seriously dark stuff, but overall I'm a pretty good kid. Never been into any serious trouble, no drinking and driving, nothing like that. Never gotten a girl knocked up; then again…I'd never really had a girlfriend, so I'd never had to worry about that. Yup, pretty much your average loser, that would be me.
Basically this Texas native had been dragged into the vampire world completely by accident because I'd turned out to be useful to them. How could a human boy as normal as I am be useful to a super strong, impossibly fast, politically untouchable, immortal bunch of undead guys? Oh yeah, guess I forgot to mention, I'm kind of telepathic. For those of you that missed freaks of nature day in biology, that means that I can read people's minds. Not everyone's, some people are really hard to get a grip on, and super natural things are pretty much impossible, plus I'm not very good yet, but I can read minds.
I'll bet you're thinking: Wow, that's super cool. Either that or: Man, I wonder if he knows that I cheat on my taxes, screw around on my wife, have really weird thoughts about my neighbor's little blonde eight year old? The answer to those questions is yeah, I do. The ability has its perks, I guess, I always know when some human is just about to take a shot at me, or if someone is about to rip me off, stuff like that. It also has its disadvantages, I mean; I wouldn't be getting shot at if I wasn't telepathic anyway. I've had a whole life time to weigh the pros and cons of being able to do what I do, and let me tell you it's mostly bad. I'd give just about anything to be able to get rid of it.
So a few days ago, I was dragged out of normal life and to a big deal vamp convention in another state (I'd never actually been out of Texas before that! That's pathetic, huh?). You can imagine that a big event such as a lot of really important vampire people getting together would generate a lot of attention, right? Vampire conventions don't happen every day (mostly because they always happen at night, ha-ha) and sure enough the Fellowship of the Sun showed up and tried to blow us all to kingdom come. If you don't know, the Fellowship of the Sun is a cult-like church that hates nothing more than vampires. They're pretty much determined to destroy them, and if they take out a few of the humans that work for them, well the ends will justify the means.
Sookie Stackhouse, who is the only other telepathic person in the whole world it seems like, and I had managed to put a serious damper on the plans of the church, and consequently weren't very well liked at the moment and probably in serious danger. Think of it as an occupational hazard, right?
The vampire behind the steering wheel was staring at me, had been for who knows how long. It no longer bothered me that he didn't look at the road, I'd gotten used to reckless driving techniques at this point. It startled me a little to be closely observed by the guy though. I mean, he didn't look dangerous, but appearances are usually pretty deceiving. Remember how I said I was just a normal guy and then suddenly you realized that I know all of your deepest, darkest secrets and I wasn't so normal? Well, it's just like that. This was a guy that you wouldn't really take seriously. Not toweringly tall, thin and wiry, an unending stream of babbling, and a cowboy ensemble that would have made Clint Eastwood flinch: Farrell was probably the friendliest vampire that I'd ever come across, but I still didn't like him watching me. "Your mind is somewhere else," he began, carefully. He sounded almost pouting, like the underlying word was: You didn't hear a word I just said! So I tried to give him an apologetic smile, but it only came out as a grimace.
"Yeah, I guess I'm just not really into this whole thing, you know? Sometimes I'd just really like to go back to-" I cut myself off quickly, but not before he got a decent idea of just what I was about to say.
"You were much less unhappy before Rhodes. What happened to make you hate working for us so much?"
I tried not to get too comfortable, but frankly the silence was enough to make every muscle in my body relax. Not literal silence, but the kind as in I couldn't hear his brain churning out things that should have been private, it was really nice. You have no idea how hard it is to hear what people think all of the time, so vampires are just great to be around. The lack of guard on my part allowed my mouth to speak before I could really think about my words, "I saw enough dead bodies at the Pyramid of Gizeh to last me for the rest of forever. I saw..." I shook my head slowly, "It's not you guys personally, I just don't think that any amount of money is quite worth everything that this job comes with. I don't handle death very well."
Farrell didn't say anything for a long moment, which was quite a change from his usual behavior. I was pretty sure that everything that I'd just said was going to be relayed to Joseph Velasquez, the current acting leader in the Dallas area, before I could blink, and I wasn't really sure that he was going to be happy about it. Still, it had already been said so there was nothing that I could really do to change it. He shrugged finally, a gesture that was out of place on something so still and so white. "For what it's worth, I'm sorry. This isn't going to get any easier from here on out." He seemed to consider turning on the radio, but changed his mind at the last minute, instead adjusting the temperature in the sleek, black sedan. "You know what? I don't mind being stuck with you so much. There are a lot worse things out there." He tipped me a quick wink and my stomach was sent into automatic knots of tension.
What did that mean, exactly? The next few days (months, weeks, years? How long was I going to be stuck with him anyway?) were going to be really rough. I almost wished that I could hear his thoughts, at least then I'd have had some idea what the guy was thinking. Despite the pure bliss of it, it's a little unnerving to suddenly not be sure what someone is thinking when they look at you. I know that I just contradicted everything that I've said so far, but bear with me here, folks.
The car turned in a way that could almost be called imperceptive into a driveway in the middle of no where. The road before had been rough asphalt in desperate need of repaving, but even that was a couple of steps up from the drive. Not even gravel, it was just a bunch of hard packed dirt that looked like it had probably been worn in by cars driving along the same route again and again over the years. Like it hadn't been professionally pinpointed as a driveway, it had just happened by chance to become one. If I'd thought that Dallas was bad, this place was really the sticks, no exaggeration necessary.
Both sides of the dirt path were lined with extremely thick, extremely dark forest. I felt like we'd been cramped up in the car together for hours (and it may actually have been that long since I hadn't glanced at my watch in quite a while), but even with that I wasn't exactly looking forward to pitching out of relatively warm, kind of safety into the unknown. When the sedan finally lurched to a stop we were behind a house that looked like it hadn't been touched in fifty years. Old, and wooden (yes, houses were once upon a time made out of real wood and not synthetic stuff) with white paint that was curled and chipped to reveal the gray board underneath; the place seemed ancient to me.
"Where are we?" If my voice only shook a little I was glad, because a little trembling didn't reveal half of my nervousness. Farrell rolled his shoulder upward, not bothering to even twitch his head toward it, kind of disconcerting. "I guess you're not going to tell me, huh?" No disguising my disappointment there. I didn't sound even a tad bit thrilled.
He turned and looked upward, maybe it was just because he loved to talk that he finally saw fit to reward me with some sort of response, "You're home, Barry. The only home you and I are going to know until Joseph and Stan get things sorted out back in the city." Somewhere in the back of my mind a fan kicked on warning me that I was on the verge of overheating, then Farrell added with a very thinly disguised amusement, "And before you ask, I don't know how long that will be exactly. As long as it takes." Stuck in the middle of nowhere with Mr. Talkative the Vampire for god only knows how long, could it get any worse?