Author's Note: This will make next to no sense if you don't read the first part, which can be found under my stories titled "Revival". This will most likely be a three part tale. Again, I'm stuck on series three, I've ignored the wolf shape bullet, Herrick's return, Annie/Mitchell romance, and Richard Hargreave didn't meet his messy end after all (Because he was kind of fun in a kinked up way, wasn't he?). Elise is an OC. I'm still a bit rocky with this Doc Manager business, so if anything looks funky, sorry in advance.
Your usual Disclaimer: I don't own Being Human or anything to do with it.
PS: Reviews have been known to speed updates along. :)
CHAPTER 1 – The Thunderin' Sky
What good am I if I know and don't do
if I see and don't say
if I look right through you
if I turn a deaf ear to the thunderin' sky
what good am I?
- Bob Dylan, The Thunderin' Sky
George Sands peered out from behind sun-faded curtains to stare out at a small dooryard. A chill mist had crept in from the seafront and had persisted throughout the afternoon, obscuring most of the hilly street and surrounding houses. The street lamps tried their best, but were unable to break through to give any relief. Even the wheeling gulls had abandoned their scavenging to stalk the rooftops and wait for the fog to lift.
Despite the weather, Mitchell had been sitting on the front stoop of their rundown B&B steadily chain smoking for the past hour or more. He was hunched over his tucked up knees, wet hair obscuring his face and dangling maddeningly in his eyes. How can he stand it like that? George wondered in spite of the seriousness of his current train of thought. Mitchell seemed to be oblivious to the cold and the uncomfortably damp cement that he was sitting on. George didn't think that he had moved at all since he had last checked on him fourteen minutes ago, unless you counted his lighting another cigarette.
George pursed his lips in concern. Something had been steadily eating away at his friend ever since they had left Bristol. At first George had let it pass, conveniently allowing himself to rationalize it away as Mitchell's grief over their loss of Annie, but deep down he had known that there was more to it than that. After Annie's rescue from purgatory, Mitchell's spirits had improved briefly, and there had been a complete hiatus in his misery shortly after Elise's arrival. But now, after almost two weeks with no word or sign from Elise, Mitchell had drifted back into his brooding silence. Knowing his vampire friend as he did, George saw that whatever was going on in his mind was something ugly and sinister; Something that didn't bear looking at too closely without altering their tightly woven surrogate family circle.
A part of George wished that Mitchell would just open up and confide in him. His other half, however, the complacent, selfish and weak half, wanted him to keep it locked away where it couldn't upset the balance of this life that they had just begun to rebuild. There was not much chance that Mitchell would raise the subject on his own; George had already shut him down once, and Mitchell, usually reticent to share his feelings even with proper encouragement, would never chance a second rejection.
George reflected guiltily on that moment. He had wanted things to remain as they were. It was incredibly selfish of him, he knew. Here he was, with Nina and a baby on the way. Their lives were already about to change, and for him, it was all going to be for the better. The price of keeping his happy bubble from bursting was sacrificing his best friend's peace of mind. He should have allowed Mitchell to unburden whatever it was that ate at his conscience, but he hadn't been able to get around his own cowardice.
Mitchell finally stood stiffly and ground out his last cigarette out with the toe of one worn boot. He turned to go back into the house and George let the dusty curtains fall shut and quickly decamped to the kitchen. The duel banging of the front doors was followed by Mitchell's heavy tread as he slowly climbed the stairs. If he left his room at all anymore it was only for work, smoke breaks, and aimless long walks that took him God only knew where. George sighed and resolved to make things right. This had to come to a head, and soon. He could no longer stand by and watch as his friend unravelled before him.
Upstairs, Mitchell let himself fall wearily onto his bed. He stared at the discolored ceiling with lazy, unfocused eyes, then ground at them angrily with the heels of his hands. He couldn't recall when he had last slept. Despite all of the natural health benefits he experienced as a vampire his skin was waxy and pale, and his eyes were underscored by dark, inky crescents. Exhausted as he was, he refused to close his eyes; He preferred his unappealing view of the stains and fissures that covered the ceiling to the visions that would inevitably be waiting behind his closed lids.
He let his thoughts wander and naturally they settled on Elise. He wondered what she was doing right now. There wasn't much chance of her ever returning, he supposed. He held on to no misguided hopes on that score. He could have gone to find her if she were still where George had transformed that night, but he didn't want to force his presence on her if it was unwanted. He could only assume that she had seen the light and was purposely keeping away from him. He snorted in self-disgust; she had probably sensed how completely unbalanced he was.
He allowed his eyes to drift shut to call up the image of her face. If he concentrated hard enough he thought he might be able to hear her laugh, at once ferocious and bell-like. The features that he had memorized were beginning to become indistinct in his mind; Lush, tumbling curls; The flashing green, penetrating eyes of a hunter; Lips parted slightly, tasting the air; a wild thing, scenting her prey. Mitchell's head drooped slowly onto his shoulder, his breath coming slow and unneeded in his accidental sleep.
He was bathed in a weak green light. All around him it pulsed sickly until it became a sound, a discordant, flickering rhythm that thrummed in the deepest recesses of his mind. A pounding, like digging, like a pickax loosening the soil.
Like it was searching for something long buried.
Up ahead in the light a figure darted, lithe and quick; Elise. She bounded ahead of him in the darkness towards the source of the scant light and his heart rose into his throat in alarm. Whatever waited there was nothing that he wanted Elise to see. He tried to call out to warn her off, but his cries were choked by a cloying, metallic taste; Blood, from the metaphoric heart in his throat, he supposed.
He started after her, the footfalls of his boots reverberating alarmingly off close and narrow walls. They seemed to be running in some sort of a tunnel. Her hair flared out behind her as she ran and he was reminded of someone...
Mitchell frowned in his sleep and cut off the small tug at his memory. He wasn't interested in following that particular breadcrumb trail, he only wanted to see Elise again. Back in his dream, he focused on running, pumping his legs faster and closing the distance between them. Elise was running full-out now, and he could hear her ragged breathing and the crashing of air in her lungs as he closed in. He realized suddenly how good it felt to run. It was surprisingly liberating to chase and to... hunt. His instinct cried out for it, for the satisfaction of a pleasure long denied.
He reached a hand out ahead and his fingertips brushed the ends of her flying hair. As he fingered the loose strands sudden warning bells went off, clanging and gonging in his head. He cried out, his voice no longer sealed off with the thick taste of blood. Elise whirled around, coming to an abrupt halt to confront him in the near-claustrophobic confines of the tunnel. The walls loomed closer and the alarms that rang in his ears grew louder. He saw with rising horror the face that she had turned to him. The siren in his head changed its pitch, becoming more shrill and insistent. It was screaming with human voices, he belatedly realized.
Light flared blindingly around them, somehow both green and red now. For a blissful moment it eclipsed the horrible face that tore tauntingly at his memory. Elise laughed, an eerie, animal and phantasmal sound. It was joined by a growing cacophony of human wails, and as the sickly light dimmed Mitchell saw that it was not from Elise's mouth that the horrible laugh had issued, but from Daisy's.
A new voice was screaming now; It was his own.
Mitchell turned to flee but immediately lost his footing on something viscous and slick. He fell heavily, face first, his forehead glancing painfully off the ground. His vision swam and he lay stunned until he became aware that his cheek was pressed into something warm and wet. Something, Oh God, something sticky, metallic and alluringly sweet. Licking his lips, he raised his head and found himself greeted by a pale visage leering toothlessly mere inches from his face. The creature's flesh was caught up in slow decay, and rivulets of blood streamed from its eyes as it chittered and wailed accusingly.
Mitchell flinched and rolled away from the rotting specter only to be met with another grotesque form clacking it's empty jaws at him. Now he saw that there were many other faces there on the ground with him, crowding closer and closer, and that this was where the screams in his ears had been coming from. Blood poured from their open mouths and pooled around him, gleaming red then green in the maddening subterranean light.
Daisy/Elise advanced on him, scattering bleeding heads in her wake. Her elongated fingers ended in poisonous, glistening talons and her face morphed rapidly back and forth between his worst horror and an unattainable dream. Leaning down, she ripped at his hair and lifted his head up off of the ground to force him to confront the crawling nightmares that gathered around them. With her free hand she thrust one of the gushing faces up to his mouth, holding it against him with a malicious grin as he struggled to push it away. He recoiled, disgusted, and tried to pull away but found that he was frozen in place. Not with fear, or rage, but with a sickening desire that he could feel straight down to his bones. Horrified, he felt his eyes shift black before the rise of his ever-present thirst. The sweet, metallic tang in the air was too much for him to resist any longer, he had to-
"DRINK!" The Daisy/Elise creature triumphantly howled. "Drink, and watch your soul wither!"
Mitchell bolted awake, jamming his fist to his mouth to hold back the scream that had ripped itself free. He was shaking and drenched in a cold sweat, sobbing as he gasped for air in short, staccato breaths. He sat frozen for some time, locked in the remnants of his nightmare and awash with terror. Slowly, the adrenaline that coursed through him began to subside. The tunnel walls of his vision were replaced by the familiar blue walls of his room, and the light that fell across his bed was not green, but silver; nothing more sinister than the cool, diffuse glow of an overcast Wales sky.
He focused on quieting his sobs and trying to enforce a sense of calm that he knew he couldn't reasonably expect to feel. Finally he gave up and threw himself back on the bed. He groped around the twisted covers until he located a damp pillow and held it tight against his face to stifle any lingering sound that might unwillingly escape.
George hesitated outside Mitchell's door, his face a mask of indecision. His hand hovered frozen and raised as if about to knock. He listened to the muffled cries of his friend until Mitchell managed to pull himself together and the sounds trailed off into a choked silence. After a moment of deceptive calm, George slowly lowered his arm and turned away. Tomorrow, for better or worse, this would come to an end.