Title: The Hunger
Rating: T (Frequent strong language)
Summary: Mitchell's hunger grows stronger and after a crappy day at work he decides to take a bus. What will happen? He hasn't had much luck with public transport- as we well know. Review if you wish!
Disclaimer: I am not affiliated with the BBC or the creators of Being Human, I am not (and I repeat not) benefiting from this financially nor do I claim to own any of the aforementioned characters: Mitchell, George, Annie….I just reaaaaaally love Being Human!
Mitchell glared out of the hospital window out at the world beyond, where puddles had linked together to make lakes and dripping water had collided with the splashes of gutters to turn into streams and rivers. The rain had beat at the pavements and buildings relentlessly for hours, the day had dawned with dazzling sunshine- by afternoon the sun was a mere glimmering of a memory.
Mitchell hated rain, the designated smoking area was outside and he hadn't had a smoke since the morning. It wasn't that he was addicted- vampires don't have to contend with such trifling- but more that it was a routine of his. He woke up, had something to eat- toast, cereal a coffee perhaps- had a smoke and then walked to the hospital for his shift. He was stuck with the afternoon shift and, having slept in, he had missed the meagre portion of good weather and as such had missed the chance to maintain his routine. It irked him. He worried that diverging from the routine would lead to trouble…
Recently the Hunger had awoken, rearing its ugly head like a drugged beast- confused and unable to direct its thoughts to any particular thing; a flutter of humanity disturbed It- he liked to think of the mortals around him as being evil little children with pointy sticks poking a caged lion. The visual made him smile at least, though was not exactly a fair representation of humanity.
Sarah waved her hand in front of his face, "Hellooooo," she sung, catching Mitchell's eye finally, "I said Mr Robinson needs someone to take him to the X-ray room." Mitchell nodded.
"Yeah, sure, sorry- zoned out there." Sarah rolled her eyes and pulled her hair back up into its usual messy pony tail. Mitchell couldn't help but look, just glance at her neck. The Hunger reared and bit him in the arse. He flinched, dragging his gaze away before his eyes stung with the animalistic blackness and his instincts took over. He thought back to the image of the children poking the lion with pointy sticks- this time much harder- and the lion roaring menacingly. It wasn't their fault they were all so tempting….
"Well, go on," She snapped, frowning and simultaneously motioning towards a middle aged man in a wheel chair, leg raised on a stirrup, and moving back behind her desk where the phone rang urgently. Mitchell glanced at the clock, his shift was almost over, he could grab something from the Blood Bank and get home where he could shut himself away before he put anyone in danger.
"Why dun't ya jus' ask her oot?" Asked Mr Robinson in an thick Yorkshire accent, as Mitchell wheeled him towards the lift, avoiding an oncoming trolley dexterously.
"What?" Mitchell chuckled.
"Ah saws ye, eying 'er oop. Grow a pair 'n' ask 'er oot, man." He chided gruffly, Mitchell chuckled half-heartedly, changing the subject as they entered the lift. Mr Robinson seemed to be one of those middle-aged men who wanted to simply complain at everything and everyone, Mitchell saw a lot of them in the hospital, though most of the time they were concerned parents or kin, complaining about the hospital conditions and the like. He supposed his day hadn't been that great and being berated by a grumpy old fart wouldn't change that.
"Rain's not letting up, is it?" Mr Robinson took this as his cue to plough into a lengthy grumble about how the weather was washing out his cabbages and that "Global Warming was all a bunch of piss". Mitchell tuned out after a few moments, steering the wheelchair through the corridor, whiffs of blood and vomit reached his nostrils, the former making him salivate.
It was days like these, when The Hunger was at its strongest, that he just couldn't think straight, the human façade was on autopilot, the monster lurking within was scheming and thrashing away. He dropped Mr Robinson at the X-ray room and wended his way through the long, grey corridors and down towards the locker room. As he reached the ground floor and made his way past the emergency ward, the thick, cloying scent of that gorgeous nectar hit him hard. Nurses and doctors ran towards the Emergency Room and shouts could be heard. His knuckles became white with the effort to keep walking.
Locker room. Home. George. Annie. Fajitas….. But there was something so much better than fajitas just a few feet from him… He could almost taste it.
He kept his eyes down as her felt the animalistic instincts fighting to rule him. His step quickened, Sarah shouted something after him, but he kept walking and slammed the door to the Locker Room open, glaring eyes pierced him as he pushed past another orderly to gain access to his locker. He flung open his locker angrily, quickly stripping the scrubs off and putting them away.
He needed to get out of there, no time for the Blood Bank, it was too risky- he was too hungry and the smell was so pungent and alluring…
He stormed through the reception and was welcomed into the sheets of rain plummeting to the ground. He'd been outside for only several moments and already he was soaked through. "Bugger. Shit." He cursed under his breath storming towards the bus stop where other orderlies and nurses, having finished their shifts, waited tiredly.
Mitchell stood on the edge of the huddle of Hospital staff, not allowing himself to get stuck in the centre of the throng. The feel of their pulses seemed to move the air about him, but he felt a slight calm come over him, maybe it had something to do with the freezing rain pouring over the sides of the bus stop hut, but he started to feel more in control.
His ragged breath came out in fleeting clouds, mingling with the other misty clouds about him. He dug his gloved hand in his pocket to pull out his wallet and counted the change, the cool metals almost warm against his frozen fingers, as he spotted the bus slide into view. He waited in line as each person stumble onto the bus.
A pocket of heat hit him in the face as he stood under the heater in the door and with it the smell of humanity: sweat, perfumes and colognes, all tangled together in a quilt of aromas enough to excite the beast in him again. He dropped the change onto the orange tray, muttering his destination; the ticket machine whirred and the bus driver handed him a ticket grumpily, apparently picking up on Mitchell's agitation.
Mitchell found a seat on the left just up the steps and he dropped into the chair, immediately locking his eyes on the driver's booth ahead of him. He felt his teeth gritting subconsciously and his hands, balled into fists, were shaking with effort. He exhaled, picturing anything but gore, thought about anything other than the taste and smell of it…
The bus was busy, the crush of body heat about him made him fidget and when an old lady sat next to him, apologising dutifully, he thought he'd faint from the effort not to tear her head off. He didn't usually go for the innocent old biddies… he certainly was no OAPaedo after all, that and they tasted like mothballs…
This thought made him chuckle, and broke the clawing sensation of ravenous hunger. Ridiculous- Mitchell, The Biddy Eating Beast- he could hear Herrick now, goading him for not only breaking his fast but for crinkle old biddy with nothing but a couple of knitting needles to defend herself… Though knitting needles were quite pointy…
He exhaled steadily and found that with each person who got off the bus his hunger dwindled into a gloom at the back of his head. Relief swept through him.
In fact, after a while he started to enjoy the bus ride. In all truth he hadn't taken a bus for quite some time and he forgot how interesting it was to see an amalgamation of humanity stuck within one compartment: from the old biddies to the rough looking chav lads who actually still lived with their mothers. To his left a woman spoke loudly on the phone in some European language- he wanted to say Portuguese?- and in front of him a girl bopped her head and rotated her shoulders to her ipod.
He peered through the window at the outside world, just catching the form of a cocky looking lad and his girlfriend waiting at the bus stop. The girl clicked onto the bus, artificially black hair plastered to her cheeks, her face slipped from its place as water began to erode it away. She bought her ticket and sat down at the front of the bus. The lad however, was not as efficient in this transaction.
He paused at the bus driver's window, Mitchell narrowed his eyes as the gangly tracksuit-clad goblin leant in and mumbled something to the driver. Everything about his body language radiated the need to fight or create some kind of fuss, though Mitchell guessed he wouldn't start anything too big- CCTV bubbles sat on the roof looking down on them all.
"Two quid? That's a fucking rip off!" He hollered, stepping back, squaring up. The bus driver's hand became visible as he pointed his finger at the lad and called "Oi! I won't have offensive language on this bus, mate, if you use it again I'll kick you off."
"Rick, just give him the money and sit down- alright?" Called his girlfriend. Rick scoffed, spat out the door and turned back around, chucking a couple of quid in the tray.
"Your fucking company is ripping us off, y'know?"
"Oi! I gave you a warning! I won't have offensive language directed at me!" Rick stepped back, smirking smugly.
"Yeah, yeah, old guy, I were just saying how your company is, like, ripping us off. Init." Mitchell bit back a laugh, Rick glared at him, "You startin' mate?" Mitchell let the smile fall off his face, bringing back the indifferent gaze of an observer. Mitchell shook his head.
"No, sorry, mate."
"I ain't your mate!" Rick sneered, grabbing the ticket from the machine and trudging up the aisle to sit in the seats left of Mitchell, forgetting his girlfriend for now, having sniffed out a possible fight. The rest of the people in the bus made a point of looking out the windows and picking chewing gum off the frame. Mitchell should have known a kid like that would be trouble.
If I get in a fight with that kid I won't just be off the wagon I'll be pushing it off a cliff, Mitchell thought worriedly, knowing that if he got into a fight his main instinct would be to go for the throat. He should have just swallowed the inhuman intrigue, instead of practically mocking those about him. Rick eyed him sceptically, the old woman got off the bus within the next couple of stops and Mitchell felt her heave a sigh of relief at moving from her prone position as a barrier between them.
The girl stopped bopping in front of him and put her ipod in her satchel, she instead began humming to herself, toying with her hair. The smell of extracts of patchouli and some sweet spice lingered in the air and Mitchell's eyes traced the line of her bare neck, her hair now being pulled around the other side of her neck, where she was braiding bits absent-mindedly. Mitchell felt the hunger build, glared at her neck, at the twitch of a pulse beneath her skin, the slight outline of veins and arteries, the curve of her collarbone and the little birth mark at the back of her neck. If there was a neck in the world made for biting it was this one. His teeth gritted together, his knuckles turned white with effort.
Someone slapped his arm, "Oi, perve, what the hell you doing?" Sneered the cocky git next to him, who had moved from resting his back against the window, one leg across the seats, the other spread in such a way that could have suggested he thought he had the balls of a bull, into a perch on the end of the seats, leaning in, legs still wide. Mitchell regarded him coolly, his eyes cold. "What?"
"You perving on her?" The girl in front bristled, Mitchell suspected she was fighting the urge to turn around and confront him.
"N-no, you've got the wrong idea--"
"What the hell, you sick bastard!" Mitchell raised his hands defensively.
"Hey, I wasn't doing anything, you've been keyed up for a fight since you got on this bus."
"Whatever, you fucking paedo!" Mitchell felt his anger flare, he locked gazes with the kid across from him, turning slightly. He needed to get this testosterone-fuelled monkey off his back quickly before he really did snap- and if he snapped he doubted he would stop at just ripping through his throat or the Bopping Girl's.
Time for a big bluff. "Look, mate, I've had a shit day and I could do with a bit of a punch-up, hell, nothing would give me more pleasure than to muck up your ugly mug; so if you really want a go then come on then- I'm the next stop." Rick sneered, but his gaze faltered, perhaps he sensed the animalistic tones in his voice, or perhaps Rick had finally realised that fighting a relatively built-looking, fit, young guy would be very different from mugging old ladies.
"Whatever, dickhead." Rick got up from his seat and swung down towards his girlfriend like a scolded ape and plonked down next to her, "Hey, babes, you look lonely." Mitchell's shoulders drooped and he relaxed into the seat slightly. He felt the occupants of the bus cheering him and applauding, a young woman sitting in the disabled access seating at the front of the bus just facing him tried to hide a slight smile, her cheeks blushing at him. Mitchell felt his old charm slip back into place and he winked mischievously, not able to turn down a chance to chat up someone. He buzzed the bell and strode off the bus, ears attuned for the sound of angry footfalls, but they never came. He was surprised to realise that he was actually a little disappointed, but he knew that was only the Hunger talking, baser, animal instincts wanted to show that he was the alpha, that he would rip that kid's throat out. Mitchell got to thinking that maybe the heat and spice in the fajitas would lull the Hunger into a quiet corner somewhere- George's cooking seemed to do that a lot, almost to an extent that Mitchell entertained the idea of George slipping him a little something-something.
Mitchell headed up the road, tugging his collar back up around his neck, the rain soaking him through as he paused at the door, numb fingers fumbling for his keys, swearing bitterly under his breath as the rain poured down his collar and dripped down his back. The door swung open and Annie beckoned him inside. "Hey, the fajitas are getting cold!" Her smile wavered at seeing Mitchell's unimpressed face.
"Tea?" She offered. Mitchell's lips twitched a smile as he entered the little slice of heaven he called home and slouched into his chair ready to tuck into fajitas. He was safer here, no more tormenting, nagging Hunger and no more testosterone monkeys biting at his ankles.
A/N: So, what did you think? This is my first Being Human fic, so be gentle with me! I'd love to hear from you guys and gals-- too unMitchell? Not enough humour? Not enough character? Too much character? Too much Evil Mitchell? Humour being kinda juvenile? Bring it on!
Love you all extensively!
The One, The Only---- Poisonous One.