Chapter 3: Pulling out the Wings of a Butterfly
Frankie sat on the steps leading up to the second floor. Thinking and waiting. Edward would be home any time now. All he had to do was wait, wait and think back wondering if there was anything more he could have done. Anything more he could have said. He could remember the words spoken better than anything else…
Edward screamed in agony and fought against it. But Frankie was too strong and as more and more of his precious blood drained away he grew weaker and weaker. He could feel himself sinking down into death, into darkness, into nothing. And he thought this is what it must feel like to die. This was it. It was over. His humanity, his life was over.
Please just let me go, Frankie. This is too much. I'm dying and the pain is…depleting.
He didn't only feel himself sinking emotionally, it was physically too. Although he really couldn't keep track of much anymore. His sight was gone, his hearing and his sense of smell too. Everything went numb and the pain started to fade away into the background as he sank farther into the abyss and into the recesses of his mind. And the only thing he felt was Frankie holding him up and lowering him down to the ground. His teeth were still in his neck, he was still drinking his blood as if he was just some form of prey some form of meat. He had held one of the last fragments of humanity in him and now it was extinguished.
You just devoured my soul.
He faded and he drowned and he wanted more than anything to breach the surface and breathe. Cause right now he couldn't breathe at all. And there was nothing left to breathe for anyway. His eyes were closed and he was gone. The last thing he felt was someone stroking his hair and he could almost hear the words of apology. He could almost hear the words of loss.
I love you brother. I only wish you knew how much.
Frankie looked up as the door clicked open and his brother shuffled inside, looking like hell and barely able to keep himself on his feet. Frankie walked over but Edward put his hands up in warning.
"Don't touch me."
"Just leave me alone."
He threw his coat on the back of a chair, rolled up his sleeves, and collapsed on the couch.
"You should eat something" Frankie tried.
He wouldn't quit that easily. Especially when it came to his brother.
"Don't need to anymore remember?"
Edward laid back and shut his eyes, rubbing a hand tiredly over his face.
"That's not what I meant. And have you even been getting any sleep?"
Frankie sighed, "I just want you to be okay big brother."
"No, you're not. Look at yourself."
Ed opened his eyes and looked up at the figure standing directly above him.
"What about me?"
"You're killing yourself, Ed. You need to drink."
"Please. For me.
"No. I can't."
"Just because you turned me into this doesn't mean I'm gonna play by the rules."
"You'd really let yourself die?"
"Better than living like this."
"Fine", Frankie stormed out of the room and was seconds away from escaping through that door when…
He stopped in his tracks and looked behind him. His brother was off the couch and struggling to stand, pleading him with his eyes, and ready to chase after him if need be. Frankie suddenly felt guilty and walked closer, wrapping his arms around the only thing he cared about anymore, the only thing he ever cared about. Even when he left home Edward was never far from his thoughts. They were brothers and they looked after each other. Cause they loved each other.
"I won't stand by and watch you kill yourself."
"I know. Just don't leave."
"I'm right here with you bro. Right here every step of the way."
"Don't leave me, Frankie. I can't do this alone."
"You'll never be alone."
Edward came to feeling like he had been run over by a train, like he had been drowned and dumped on the side of the road and left there in agony for days. His eyes were glued shut and strangely that's what pissed him off the most. He couldn't look at this pitch black anymore. He was alive now, at least that's what he thought, and he should be able to see light, anything at all. But he couldn't see and he fought against it with every bit of strength that he had lost coming back to him. He groaned and it took a few minutes for him to move. But he didn't waste any amount of time when he gained control of his limbs. He flew up from his laying position. But he instantly regretted it. Gasping for breath and falling immediately back down was not on his list of accomplishments for today. And the pain was back with a new ferocity.
Was that…Was that Frankie?
He opened his mouth but words wouldn't come out, just like his eyes still wouldn't open.
"Don't try to talk. It takes a little while to recover."
Little while? How long had he even been out?
Goddammit Frankie, talk. Talk!
"I was worried. You were out for five hours. That must be a new record. Although, he mumbled, they say people who hold on to humanity stronger than most have it harder."
Stronger than most? What, so people just let go of being normal and human that easily? Apparently.
What have you done to me, Frankie? What am I now?
"Ed? You okay?"
He didn't respond cause he couldn't. But he wouldn't have responded anyway. He wanted Frankie to feel guilty. He had done this to him. He didn't deserve the satisfaction of knowing he was okay.
A glass was placed to his lips and Edward obeyed cause his thirst had to be quenched. Though he didn't find it satisfying. And the thing he knew he would find satisfying scared him more than he could say. He would eventually have to drink it. Blood. The thought of it made him gag. A warm hand was placed to the back of his neck and he was pulled slowly upwards as he drank more and more. It was strange. Vampires were supposed to be ice cold, that's probably why he was shaking so badly. But Frankie actually felt warm, like a human. He even smelled human. The glass was pulled away and instead of being lowered back down, which he really didn't want, his brother wrapped his arms around him and pulled him into a hug. Edward was too weak to hold on but he didn't need to cause Frankie was holding on to him so tightly, as if he would just run away spur of the moment when he couldn't even hold himself up. Part of Ed wanted to push this monster away and fall back down, but there was something so comforting about his brother right now that he didn't want him to let go. He felt human, he smelled like his brother, and he himself felt love emanating from his transformer. He could feel him stroking his hair and crying, and that was what made his eyes fly open.
"I thought I lost you, Ed."
He choked back further tears and pulled Edward away to look at him. His eyes were open now but he was still shivering pretty badly so he reached down to the couch to grab a blanket lying there and wrapped it around him, still holding him.
His voice still sounded pretty weak, but that didn't keep his little brother from smiling so wide like he had when they were kids. Ed was gonna be okay. He was gonna be more than okay now that he wasn't a human. His now yellow eyes looked him straight in his own eyes, and he felt a surge of pride, of love, a surge of confidence. Him and his big brother were now officially united once more. And Frankie loved this feeling. So he didn't, like an idiot, feel the least bit of doubt when he held another glass, a different glass to his lips this time. A glass he had filled with his own blood. All for Edward. Poured from his body with love from him. He just didn't think he would've had such a strong reaction.
Ed wanted it to come out as a scream, an outraged cry. But he was still too weak to live up to that. So it sounded more like a plea. Not the effect he wanted to have on Frankie.
"Ed you have to. It gets harder if you hold off longer."
"I said no."
"Sooner or later…"
"Get out of my goddamn house!"
Edward felt a powerful surge of anger rise up in him. This enabled his voice to sound menacing and threatening, even more so than when he had been human. And he loved that he was able to knock the glass right out of his hands and watch it shatter to the floor. It looked so decadent so good so…No. Absolutely not. He would never give in.
He thought Frankie would get mad, but he didn't. He just let go, so no more comforting arms surrounded him, but he could hold himself up now anyway. He held up his hands and walked back upstairs but Edward didn't feel the slightest bit guilty. Because Frankie had turned him, this was his fault, he had made him into the bloodthirsty monster he now was. He screamed once more before his need for blood caught up with him and knocked him out without another thought flowing through his enraged mind.
"I'm gonna leave. For a little while at least."
Edward looked up from his comfy position on the couch. His brother was standing at the door leading away from his life, bags packed and face surprisingly full of regret and grief. He suddenly didn't want him to go.
"You don't have to do that."
He got up and walked over because that was his brother standing there, that was his brother leaving him here like this. He was broken. Frankie broke him. And Frankie still had yet to fix him.
"I think it's for the best."
"No, Edward shook his head sadly, It's not. I'm getting better. I am."
"It's not about that, Ed. It's about what I did to you. That's on me. I just think you need some time alone."
"You said you wouldn't leave."
"I know. But I'm doing this for you big brother. Because I…"
"Because you love me. I love you too."
Frankie smiled and they hugged. The door opened and Ed could already feel himself breaking again. Could feel his soul shattering into tiny pieces.
"I'm sorry, Edward."
And with that he closed the door and it seemed like he was never there in the first place. He felt like he should open it again and say something. But there was nothing to say. He would be back anyway.
Edward went into the kitchen to get some blood but he ended up throwing it on the nicely polished tile. So he curled back up on the couch and thought painfully again of what he had just lost. His humanity, his innocence, his happiness. And more importantly…
His childlike love for Frankie