A/N: Hello, all. Sorry I've been a bit dead to this site for a while, I just haven't had any inspiration. Until last night when I was re-watching Being Human 1955. Because if vampires are soulless creatures, doesn't that mean they won't pass over? The thought deeply upset my idyllic little situation of Annie and Mitchell reuniting in Purgatory, that's for sure.
Anyway, out of that thought, came this. Because I'm sure Annie would have given trying to connect with Hal another go after the three of them went back to the B&B, and seeing how on edge Hal was in that episode, I'm fairly sure his honest/awkward reaction wouldn't have helped much.
Enough ranting; enjoy.
Tapping quietly on his closed door, Annie sighed heavily at the hollow feeling night-time brought to the house. In the darkened air of the hallway, Annie could almost see so vividly every single time her friends walked up or down its horribly-carpeted floor. Now ethereal memories, even more ghostly than herself.
Annie felt a familiar lump rising to meet her mouth, as the vampire's muffled voice spoke from inside, "Come in."
Swapping the mug of tea to her left hand, Annie entered the room with a diffident smile. Hal was sitting on his bed, each muscle under his suit tensed into a stoic position against the virtually untouched bedsheets. He gave her a futive glance, before turning his attention back to turning a single domino making its way around his fingers.
"I brought you some tea - again." Annie said softly, placing the mug on the bedside table, whilst trying to ignore the pang that accompanied being in George and Nina's old room. Trying to put some cheer into her voice, she added, "My mum always used to say that there's nothing like a good cuppa at the end of a hard day. And if you need anything else, I'd be happy to-"
"Annie, it's ok." Hal said, half a smile tugging at the corner of his mouth. "You don't have to talk to me if you don't want to. I'd have understood anyway, and now with what happened earlier I certainly wouldn't blame you."
Annie shook her head, and moved closer to the bed. "I've already forgotten about it."
"I know you haven't, I can see it in your eyes. Even ghosts aren't immune to pain, Annie."
"Don't I know it," she agreed quietly, with an uncertain chuckle. "It hasn't even been a week, and it feels like... well, it feels like a hundred years."
"... since what happened to...?" Hal trailed off, licking his lips in a sudden overwhelming sense of guilt. Guilt about almost killing earlier; guilt about the trouble having him in the house will surely bring; guilt over accidentally prying into something that he knew to be a personal subject. More cautiously, he said clearer, "Since what happened to your friends?"
Annie ran her hands over the smooth golden bedpost, "Since what happened to George."
"And that would be... Eve's father?"
Tryign hard to swallow the growing catch in her throat, Annie nodded. "He died saving her."
Once again, the pang of guilt hit Hal's chest. Only three hours ago had he been ready to rip the baby to shreds. And he would have, too, if it weren't for Tom. "What about Eve's mother? Where is she?"
"They're both dead. Nina was beaten by some vampires not two weeks after having Eve." explained Annie tonelessly. She took a shuddering breath and smiled again, not ready to let the vampire see her vulnerable side. Not yet. "But still, I'll meet them in Purgatory, won't I? I suppose it's only a matter of time."
Hal took a halting sip from the mug and sighed, leaning his head against the propped-up pillow. Annie stood mutely for a moment, before Hal looked at her and with a voice dripping in an almost childlike sincerity, said, "I'm sorry for the way I acted earlier."
"No, don't be. I understand. What with losing Leo and Pearl. But I'm sure they'll be waiting for you when - and if - you... you know."
"They won't be." Hal placed the domino on the bedside table. "I'm already dead. A vampire is essentially somebody who cheated their way out of death, and in return sacrificed their soul. There wouldn't be anything left of me to pass over."
"You mean - vampires don't go to Purgatory?" Annie could feel her ghostly blood running cold in her veins, and her heart dropping like a weight against her ribs.
The slight shake of Hal's head made Annie's emotions brew. She sat down on the end of the bed, and wrapped her cardigan tighter around her arms, whilst noticing Hal's body stiffen even more.
"Are you alright?" asked Hal.
"Yeah, fine," she said, choking on the effort of holding in tears. "It's just- the vampire that lived here before was staked. He asked George to kill him for humanity's sake, and I watched him turn to dust before my eyes."
Shifting himself so he faced her directly, Hal hastily said, "It does depend, though. There are rare circumstances in which the smallest bit of a vampire's humanity stays intact..." he broke off, a crease appearing in between his eyebrows, visably regretting his earlier statement. He opened his mouth to once again form the words "I'm sorry", when Eve's crying echoed from upstairs.
Annie cleared her throat, jumping from the bed as if snapping back from a daydream. "I'll be with Eve if you want more tea. It was nice talking to you, Hal."
She gave him a small smile, before rentaghosting out of the room.
Hal stared at the spot where the ghost had just been, his mouth still poised on the "I", remorse joining guilt as it started knawing at his heart. He wished Leo was here. Without his friend, Hal felt the unfamiliar sensation of lonliness for the first time in fifty-five years. He picked up the domino, and tapped each of his fingers against it in a repetitive beat. Leo had always been there to right Hal's mistakes. What would Hal do with him no longer around?
Poor Annie, poor Hal, poor Tom, poor Eve... I think I felt sorry for everyone in this episode. Except "that bloke in the pawn shop", of course.
Disclaimer: I do not own Being Human.