I don't claim any rights to Vampire the Masquerade:Bloodlines, nor any associated content. Vampire the Masquerade:Bloodlines and any associated content is not mine. Surprise, surprise.

This story is kind of fluffy and philosophical and probably too mushy! But it is what it is, I had fun, hope you like it.

NOTE: Swara are were-cheetahs and have the abilitiy to "step sideways", or travel into the spiritual realm which is commonly called the Umbra. My OC doesn't die, rather she is able to travel the spiritual realm.

She was fine boned and tenebrous. At times a sort of fervent, neurotic grace overtook her movements. Her neck was swan like, jaw slender, nose Nubian. Her skin was so dark that it bent the night around it, with her gleaming and all fine, white teeth and eyes dark almonds.

"Why don't you just come with me?"


"Just come with me. I'll guard you from the sun, we can love the night together. Somehow, we could make it."

A chortling laugh escaped him. Endearing in her childishness to the extent that it was disarming, he found this quality interesting and uncomfortable all at once.

"As tempting as it sounds I...that is...I.."

Crossing her arms now, she squared up to him, pantomiming his masculine stance.

"Fumbling your words, are you?"

"Perhaps you will find it in your heart to forgive me one day. I am a wild thing too, you know?"

He patted his chest lightly. The gesture was comically dramatic and faint-hearted, but the girl had to give him points for trying. He seemed to be aware of her amusement at this and smirked awkwardly, chin lifted in an attempt to maintain his regality.

"How is that?"

Giving a show of hands, eyes lidded, he pursed his violet lips. She knew he was playing with her now.

"I only seek to survive."

"Off the sweat and blood of others?"

"One day you will forgive me. How can you not? The nature of reality will show it to you in time. People are all the same, in the end. They all want the same thing."

"I wish you would just come with me."

"And live in the bush?"

"Not just in the bush...I have a human dwelling that I keep."

His pale face and teeth were illuminated by the silver moon.

"Why? You're just as bad as any mortal man. Just want me for yourself, for my appearances!"

She nudged dirt around with her bare foot.

"No no...I like most what I see underneath it all. You are soft inside, vampire. I can see it because I am soft too." She brought her hands to her chest earnestly.

Silence now, save for the ever-present chorus of insects. Continuing, her words careful and weighted, musical voice now low for emphasis.

"We cheetah people, we are the silver folk. We are delicate but strong in her likeness."

"Soft is not a word to describe me. Whatever softness you perceive in me is merely your own juvenile projection. Perhaps it is true then, that your people have no manners or grace. They must confuse gentility with romantic sentimentality and mush. That is very common of you."

She hissed, an inhuman noise that visibly startled him.

"Then go home, white man. Go home to your wealth and leave us to die in peace. But I have seen you."

"Yes, indeed. You are surely better for it."

She placed her hand on his. He patted her gingerly, then drew away.

"You can be a very bad man. I should hate you, white devil, for your kind injures my people, my land. But I'll miss you only, if you truly are leaving."

"I'll miss our little chit chats too, my dear. But I suppose this "white devil" must be off."

"If you'd not been a vampire, would things be different? Would you see me differently?"

She sounded like a child again, no longer speaking at length. Her eyes were wide and gentle, unafraid. Her temper was fierce but short lived, and he batted it away as if pestered by mosquitos. It was so rare, he would think. He supposed the reason he continued to speak with an otherwise infernal beast and mortal enemy of his kind was because she was, perhaps, the only person that he felt he could truly relax around, in which he did not have to deflect any barbs of scrutiny. She was a non threat, he could let down all of himself if he wanted to, he could release, unravel himself if he dared, and come out unscathed. But the joy of sex, particular to living things, was his no longer, and the burdens that all men carry, mortal or not, could not be unraveled in the fertile, pulsing bay of woman. He would have to remain content just being near, in her soothing, if not fey, presence.

Only the blood, not even a kiss, now. But not her blood, for it would surely make me ill to death.

"Perhaps. But I would probably be with my lady back home."

Looking upward at something, anything, she grinned widely.

"Oh, you are married. I knew it. Well, it's best I back off of you then. As a woman I cannot do her wrong, European though she may be."

"There is no danger of that now. Her life ended even before mine."

"Did she give you any children?"

He shook his head. His expression was oddly pleasant, but his posture was stiff. It was difficult for her to read his emotions, as he did not give off any telling scent that a mortal man would when he was afraid, or joyful, or angry. Not even his pale, chimeric eyes, a little too bright to be human, conveyed anything but the faintest, ever present contempt. When she looked into his eyes, it reminded her of the time she dove into a river and hit her head on the rocks. The water was clean and good, but it was running fast and she hadn't realized it had been so shallow, and it almost killed her-once by knocking her out and a second time by pulling her downstream. By the time her brother rescued her she was caught in deep, muddy waters where crocodiles gathered.

It was an art form he had developed, to be a shadow, a statue, a viper. You could never know. And yet, the chorus in her heart swept over his when they shared a word, a glance, and it resonated with a string, a note, that was pure and true. The chorus was never wrong, her song did not lie.

"My husband is also gone. He died in the mines."

"May he rest in peace."

"You still won't give me your name, vampire?"

"Names don't mean anything. Only the people behind the name."

She placed her lips on his. They were chilled and flabby as windswept flesh, not alive. The skin on the back of her neck prickled, but she let her mouth rest where it was. He returned her kiss cautiously, his tongue detailed the velvet inner lining of her lower lip mechanically. He was nervous, she could tell, as their cheekbones came to fit against one another when he inclined his head. Through the love haze she quietly experienced, it was still impossible for her not to note the eerie flavor of what could only be blood lingering in his cold, sterile mouth. But she ignored her instincts, the cat inside her, and relented to the very beautiful, very dead man deepening his kiss, cause her to shake in her skin.

"Oh! What are you doing? You're skin is heating right up!"

"I can push the blood around to be warm."

He held her wrists around his waist and she lay her head against his chest, hair short and dark so that is blended in with his clothing.

"So strange...Your heart does not beat."

"The body isn't everything. You know that, don't you?"

"Indeed. We step sideways into the ethereal realms, the spirit world."

His arms tightened around her now. His lungs filled purposelessly, exhaling shakily, air bubbling past his lips as untransformed as it went in, hands shaky. She could hear rapid blinking, buff colored eyelashes brushing against her grey muslin shirt.

He is afraid. The politician is afraid.

"Perhaps I will see you there then, one night. My time will surely come."

Whispering now, with resolve, he became like stone again in her embrace.

"But I intend for it not to be anytime soon."

Abruptly letting go of him, she stood up straight, backing away. She didn't know what else to do now.

"I will tell your wife hello, vampire."

She pressed her fingers to her lips.

"Until we meet again. Go with your God, if you still believe."

He touched his fingers to his lips in turn, then faded into the night.

For some time, she stood in wait, hoping that he might return as he sometimes did. After several minutes she became despondent, wilting inside. A wanton jealousy overtook her.

This was really good bye, then. I don't think I will see him again.

A stream of warmth traced itself down the rivet made between her muscular yet willowy thighs.

"Damn, already!"

She pull the swaddling out from under her legs and scraped a hole in earth. Dropping the absorbent padding in, she placed the European coin he had given her some time ago on top of it. The moon matched silver white, her blood soaked rag now quicksilver under the rays of Selene. Kneeling, she filled the hole with earth and whispered a prayer over the burial, now smoothed over with a careful hand so that it might never have been dug.

"Go in peace, walk spry, do not forget to look up sometimes..."

Suddenly she was all fur and spots, a nearly alien looking, dog sized cat with a long rudder of a tail and dark trails curving round her muzzle. Her panting was light and quivering in her deep chest, breath not yet perfumed with iron, chin fur clean and damp only with her breath.

But not for long. One must live. One must survive.

Her paws barely touched the ground as she dove into the night. Prey animals clustered fearfully in their dens, in the bush, in trees. But though undeniably hungry, she felt playful, generous. Her heart was sickly and strangely light now, air beneath her fingertips. A hare cowered in the grass as she bypassed it, giggling silently at it's innocent cowardice.

It's just that, you see, I belong to the wind. We all belong to the wind!

The moon was huge, memerizing. Time and space was not linear now. She felt the skin of the umbra push against her hungrily, a patient bubble yearning to pop.

Oh Selene...maybe things aren't as bad as they seem. If it is true, then... If what he said was true, we all just want the same thing. How can it be so bad then, if we all just want the same thing?

The earth gave way beneath unrelenting claws that served as running shoes for her gallant, wiry frame. Pollen was sucked up her nose deliciously, carrying the scent of all living things. Here, on this continent, it all began. Her paws awoke ancient dusts, layers of history, of blood, of evolution. Layers of life in fur, in her lungs, in everything. It was ancient dust, it was singing through her, all the way to the nucleus in every cell, through the lining of her sensitive nostrils.

I don't want to fight. Maybe fighting is the wrong way to go about it all. And yet still, so much suffering. So much death will ensue. It's never enough.

Windchimes chattered softly in her ears, everything took on a deeper glow. She was running very fast now, at her peak, liquid muscles pumping and burning as she summoned the wildest part of herself. It was always a joy for cheetah folk.

Every time you run, you give it all you've got. You put all of yourself into the run, all of your life force goes into it, my mother said. Every time you run, you risk death. And every run is like a little death, when you push yourself to the limit, to go as fast as we do. Just so that we might take a life, that we might eat. As we pour all of our energy into those few moments when we become the fastest creatures to grace this good earth, so does it come back into us. That is all there is, that is all that ever was. It is all in the breath, the blood, the run. It is representantive of the great exchange, it won't end. Don't listen to what they say, dear, it doesn't end. It just changes.

Her clear-sighted amber eyes were witness only to blurred landscape now, her body felt impossibly light. The burning in her muscles faded even as her speed continued to increase. Selene was a bright, shapeless circle.

I will go all the way to the ends of the earth til I root it out, til I understand. Until then, we must always look up sometimes.

There was a great sigh that seemed to come from everywhere at once as she stepped sideways. A puff of earth dust alighted in her departure, and the land was bereft of her furious paws, the animals relieved. The moon stood watch as a man, of frost irises and cheating death and miles away, sipped the blood of the living in weighty, numb silence.