Somebody's been sleeping...(Attn: Alex)

Alfarinn squeezed the warm body wrapped around his a little tighter and drifted in comfortable bliss for another few minutes before the fact that there was someone in his bed made its way down into his brain. Or maybe the truth was that his brain finally woke up enough to register the fact that there was someone in bed with him.

Someone not Thaddeus.

The fact that it was not his blond was an immediate understanding. Alfarinn was bonded to Thaddeus and just knew with a certainty when Thaddeus was in the same state much less the same piece of, admittedly large, furniture. The scent and height were wrong also.

Getting to that made it easier to know who was next to him, nuzzled tightly against his neck. Alfarinn put together the facts:

The person had access to his apartment. That narrowed down the list considerably.

The person was taller than Cris.

The person was snuggled up to him contentedly which knocked Cris and Artemis off the list. Well perhaps Artemis would still be on the list if he had a ton of alcohol in his system.

The scent was faint and clean, which could be Cris but Cris had already been crossed off the list by several other factors.

That really left only Alex, which given their recent connection, made the most sense. One hand along said person's back confirmed the lack of a ton of hair. Alfarinn smiled and opened his eyes.

"Good evening, Alex.” He hugged his progeny. "This is something of a surprise. A good one.” Alfarinn added the last bit to make it clear that he was not alarmed or angry to find his newly turned child sleeping next to him.

Leaning up a little, he noticed that the bathroom light had been turned on and the door closed. Interesting but understandable. His room was normally a bastion of blackness and he could navigate it, if necessary, without the need of any light at all. Alex was not familiar with his home yet and would need a little light to get around.

"So how was last night?” He didn't need the details of Alex's personal life if his progeny did not wish to share them but he would like to know how the first night of being a vampire had suited his child.

Alex Aristos 10 years ago
Alex was a fairly light sleeper. Light enough that he'd woken up for some unexplainable reason in the middle of the day next to Eiryk and hadn't been able to sleep again. He was thirsty but he didn't want to go anywhere, and he couldn't when the sun was out anyway. Maybe he was just trying to adjust to this new schedule. Something called out to him though, and in his restlessness he'd found himself wandering aimlessly.

Not so aimlessly, he realized, when his journey took him up to the penthouse and he found himself in Alfarinn's home. It smelled good, just as much 'home' as his own did. Before he knew it he'd curled himself around Alfarinn and fallen asleep next to his Creator.

The voice in his ear woke him up. He made a muzzy, sleepy sound and tucked his nose in closer to Alfarinn's neck, protesting just a little when Alfarinn leaned up but happy to have gotten a hug and definitely glad that Alfarinn didn't seem upset with him.

"Last night was good," Alexander said in his polite, somewhat cultured tones. "Little bit unexciting. Eiryk was beat. I washed him and dried him and sent him to bed."

There was a smile in his voice even though he was still nestled into the covers. He was still wrapped around Alfarinn, maybe possibly a little like a Kraken attacking a vessel, but even though he was a little embarrassed by his own presumptuous and forward behavior he wasn't inclined to move unless Alfarinn indicated Alex should do so, which hadn't happened.

He fell silent, wondering how he could explain to Alfarinn why he was here, even though he hadn't asked. Alex figured he should prepare an answer anyway, because it did seem like the most obvious question.
Alfarinn 10 years ago
Alfarinn listened to the answer that Alex gave and chuckled softly. "Well, he really did look like he was going to pass out.” It was amazing that Eiryk had managed to stay awake long enough for a shower. He chalked that up to incredible Norse endurance and a compelling newly revitalized partner.

"I am sure tonight will be better.” He settled back against the pillows and hugged Alex close again.

He considered the night ahead of them and what they should probably get started with. Perhaps before then Alex would like some coffee or something.

"Are you hungry?” Alfarinn tilted his head down and looked at Alex. "We can find someone willing to donate here in the building and I can be there to make sure everything goes well.”

Giving Alex's shoulder a squeeze, he smiled. "If that is all okay with you. Did you and Eiryk make other plans?” It was possible that they had promised to do something tonight to celebrate. If that was the case then feeding lessons and other stuff could wait. Eiryk was certainly capable of making sure that his fiancee fed if Alex would prefer to spend most of his night with his partner.

"I think I might need some coffee first.” Alfarinn stretched hugely, arching his back, pointing his toes, throwing his arms out to the side, all with a huge sigh of content satisfaction that came with a good day's sleep.

It was then that he realized that he should probably get up and find some clothes. It didn't seem to be bothering Alex too much but he did notice that the other man was wearing a pair of pajama bottoms. Of course that could be because walking the halls of Liefde without clothes was frowned upon, not that he knew from experience or anything. Ok, so he did know from experience.

Alfarinn slid out from underneath the covers and headed to his dresser. Finding a pair of comfortable jeans, he turned back to Alex, stepping into the legs one at a time.
"I don't imagine you've had any more strange experiences...You've likely got another ability but it might not manifest immediately.” He buttoned the fly and then stood with his hands on his hips. "I suppose we could always go down a list of likely suspects.”
Alex Aristos 10 years ago
Alex wanted very badly to cling to Alfarinn and try to convince him to stay in bed a little longer. He was still sleepy; not tired sleepy, but lazy sleepy. He rubbed his eyes and stayed where he was, sitting in a pool of blankets in the huge bed that made him actually feel small in spite of his six feet and two inches.

His embarrassment faded a little. He wasn't uncomfortable with Alfarinn naked; Eiryk slept in the buff too. He'd really glommed right onto Alfarinn without asking though, so his discomfort was of his own making.

He watched Alfarinn dress with big, wide eyes and waited for him to stop talking before answering him.

"I'm hungry," he said, a little plaintively, "but can't we eat in?"

He didn't want to drink from a human donor. He so badly wanted to taste Alfarinn's blood again, he twisted his hands in the blankets and rocked back and forth a little. He hadn't yet tried to drink from a human. His first taste of bagged blood had been hideous enough that he didn't want to try it. His friends would offer, he was sure. And Alex had given to them all on numerous occasions, right? What was wrong with wanting vampire blood over human blood?

"And the rest of it, well, no, we didn't really have any plans. Eiryk is still asleep. He was really tired. I haven't noticed anything strange happening, aside from now I can talk to people in their heads. But I haven't really tried. Is it worth it?"

He watched Alfarinn, unable to keep his eyes from drifting down the long line of that smooth pale neck even though he did his level best to keep them trained on Alfarinn's face. He pursed his lips, trying to hide his fangs, but they poked him anyway and he tasted his own blood. It only made him hungrier. He continued to twist at Alfarinn's sheets.
Alfarinn 10 years ago
Alfarinn looked at Alex for a long moment, taking in the emotions that were involved with the request to eat in. He smiled. "Of course, I can call down and see if someone will come up here." He reply was light, purposefully misreading Alex's request for his blood.

"I am going to make some coffee first though since it doesn't appear that you are about to starve." He reached in another drawer and pulled out a soft grey t-shirt. Slipping it on over his head and then tugging it down, he turned back to Alex. His child did look quite hungry actually. Perhaps he would call and then make the coffee. His sheets were becoming long ropes in Alex's hands.

"Drinking human blood tastes much better than the bag. It is warm and much more alive." He smiled reassuringly. "Getting used to drinking from a vampire is a bad idea at any age and certainly for someone a night old."

He sat down next to Alex and wrapped an arm around him.
"I know some ancients who swear that is all they can drink but they are old enough to make that difficult sustenance decision. It is dangerous and impractical. The food supply is much more limited, especially if you are only taking from willing donors, and another vampire must also feed so they must feed twice as often to feed two people which is..." Alfarinn tried to find a nice way to say that it was lazy and irresponsible, a practice he equated with having someone catch, fix and chew your food for you. It was for the sick and weak and not for a healthy young vampire. He knew there were couples who had that sort of arrangement but he never condoned such a thing as a day to day practice. Drinking blood from Thaddeus was a treat that he would never tire of but he didn't use his partner as a food source. The occasional taste of his lover's blood during sex was different. In his first years as a vampire he had hunted for himself and his sister. It had been terrible endless work trying to feed two new vampires in a land with not many people and long stretches between villages. He had gone hungry many a night after feeding Megan. "...a lot work."

Looking at Alex, he asked the question he had wanted to know since before Alex had ceased to be human.
"Did you drink vampire blood when you were sick?" It would explain a few different things.

((OOC: He apologizes if his views on vampire feeding habits offends anyone but he does feel rather strongly about hunting for oneself. Perhaps it is a Norse thing.))
Alex Aristos 10 years ago
"Okay," Alex said softly, a little disappointed that Alfarinn wasn't offering himself up again. Apparently the puppy-dog eyes didn't work on him. He bit back a frown, keeping his expression neutral. He nodded when Alfarinn explained about human blood, unable to repress a shudder at the memory of the bagged blood he'd tried.

He knew human blood was supposed to taste good, but his first non-vampire-blood experience had been enough to turn him off to anything but. He understood Alfarinn's point though, nodding again and wringing his hands together contritely. When Alfarinn sat next to him he leaned in to his Creator, partly for comfort and partly because Alfarinn's neck was so close Alex could practically taste it...

The next question took him by surprise and he felt his face flush.
"Yes," he said after a hesitation. "When I was doing pretty badly... Eiryk gave me a little. It was only a couple of times."

He looked up at Alfarinn with his oddly-colored eyes.
"I know it was a bad thing," he said, "but I don't know if I would have made it through without it. It's not Eiryk's fault. He just wanted to help."

Alex rested his head on Alfarinn's shoulder and sighed. So, he had an addiction problem. Was that it? After everything he'd done in his life to stay healthy, to avoid drugs or alcohol, he was going to be an undead addict? He didn't like that, but the yearning for the flavor of strong, rich blood didn't diminish. It crawled beneath his skin, through his veins, ate at him harder and harder the more he thought about it. He didn't want that.

"So... maybe calling someone up would be a good idea," he murmured.
Alfarinn 10 years ago
Alfarinn suppressed a wave of annoyance at the blood donation. He supposed he could understand what Eiryk was thinking but that didn't make it less irresponsible. "I see."

With a sigh, he hugged Alex a little tighter.
"Well, what's done is done." Keeping an arm around his child, he reached for his phone on the nightstand. He sent a quick couple of text messages. "The thing we have to do now is see how it has affected you." Was there any lingering affects. He hoped not but turning seemed to be more magic than science. They still had not been able to predict what the results would be, abilities, weaknesses, small side effects like Alex's eyes... none of it seemed to form a stable pattern. He did know that what was going on at the time of turning often tended to effect the outcome. Hopefully the vampire blood had been out of Alex's system when he was made.

Of course that didn't mean, even if it was, that Alex's addiction went away with the change.

Looking at his phone, he smiled.
"Ken is coming up and will give you some blood."

Standing up, he reached a hand down to Alex. "And his partner, Will, has volunteered to feed me." He chose the two of them because they would be willing, would enjoy being bitten together and because they were men. Alfarinn hoped to make Alex's first feeding as comfortable and 'appetizing' as possible.

Heading to the kitchen, he started some coffee and set out some mugs.
"Ken is a familiar and has been for a long time." Alfarinn explained to Alex as he waited for the coffee to brew. "His vampire agreed to share him for the night. I figure his blood is as close to vampire as a human can get." Perhaps they could work it like methadone and ween Alex off vampire blood with someone a little less potent. Long time familiars tended to take on some of the traits of their vampires and that difference was in their blood. If it worked then they might have to slowly get him used to regular humans but at least there was hope.

Alex was far too young to be on a vampire only diet. That kind of problem only got worse with age and it was a habit that would likely get Alex killed. Right now there was plenty of people willing to donate but they had no idea what the future might hold. Centuries ago he would not have expected to be here at the top of a city in a building filled with humans working with vampires. He hoped that trend continued and became something more but it could go the other way. If in a few more centuries they became known to humans and were hunted instead of embraced then having a restrictive diet would be very bad. He had to think of Alex's far future because that was a way of thinking that took time to develop.

"On the subject of abilities" He shrugged. "it could be helpful. An ability manifesting at the wrong time could be embarrassing, perhaps even dangerous, depending on what it is." Alfarinn looked at the ceiling thoughtfully. "We could start with mine but clearly abilities don't always go straight from one person to another." He wasn't a sender and Alex was. "My other abilities are bonding...Let's not try that. It is difficult to test but if you don't manifest anything else then I would suggest you try bonding to Eiryk or someone you are close to and don't mind sharing your thoughts and feelings with for eternity." He smiled and then moved on. "Empathy would probably be pretty obvious by now. If you have subterfuge then I suppose we could test that...haven't felt the urge to talk to birds or anything have you?"

((OOC: This headache has been going on for two days now. I am going to take something and try to get some more sleep. ))
Alex Aristos 10 years ago
Alex winced a little at Alfarinn's sigh. His Creator was disappointed. Damn it. He always managed to disappoint someone. And of course, what respectable Elder would actually want a messed-up addict for a kid? Alex really knew how to make his way through the world sometimes, didn't he.

"Sorry," he whispered as Alfarinn picked up his phone to text someone. Now he just felt like a miserable fuck-up, although he recognized that Alfarinn's one-armed hug was meant to take any sting out of his words. He couldn't know that Alex had been a disappointment to his family from the day his six-year-old self put on his grandmother's frilly apron and announced his determination to make a souffle. He'd been underperforming ever since, this was kind of par for the course for him.

He tried to shake that mood off, chalk it up to newbie insecurity or something. He nodded when Alfarinn said someone named Ken was coming up to donate blood. For a second he thought it was Kem, and his heart pounded at the anticipation of old blood, and then the actual name sank in and he felt guilty at his response to the idea of vampire blood even after having mentally castigated himself for being a worthless addict. Jesus, was there no end to his fucked-up?

He took Alfarinn's hand, slid out of the bed, and self-consciously tugged his pajama bottoms up from where they rode low on his hips. He followed Alfarinn to the kitchen and leaned on the nearest counter. The discussion about abilities helped take his mind off the vampire blood thing for a bit. He thought about what Alfarinn had asked him, a little smile tipping his lips up.

"No. I haven't felt the urge to talk to birds lately. I haven't felt anything unusual really. I mean, the whole vampire thing aside. Shoot. Would I even know unusual anymore?"

He looked at Alfarinn with eyes that he was very well aware were also unusual. Damn it. The last thing he wanted was to stand out at all. In any way. All his life all he'd tried to do was blend in with a crowd. Maybe he could get contacts or something.

((ooc: Yes, he is probably blending right now! But Alfarinn's so much older and also knows he's there. Your call if Alfarinn realizes Alex is doing it or not.))
Alfarinn 10 years ago
Alfarinn smiled at Alex and shrugged. "No birds...hmm. Well that just about ends my gifts.” He turned to the coffee mugs and then opened the cabinet he had pulled them out of once more. Something different...something...ah, that one would do.

He put one mug back and replaced it with a different one. This one was given to him by a friend at a Christmas party a few years ago. It looked like a frothy beer mug on the outside. Touching it, he could still see images of the party. It had been his drinking glass that night and had contained various alcohols before it ever actually was used for coffee. Alfarinn smiled at seeing days gone by Cris lurking in a corner looking ready to bolt back to work. Artemis filling people's glasses with something 'new' he had made. His sister with a crowd full of people around her while she laughed and talked...

He put the mug back down on the table.

"Perhaps you have psychometry.” Alfarinn said quietly.

The coffee was nearly ready. He turned back to Alex intent on answering the rest of his statement. Alex was gone. Alfarinn focused, narrowing his eyes. He knew Alex was standing right in front of him and when he concentrated Alex reappeared. Well, that answered that.

[Our boy is a blender too.] He sent to Cris. [I guess he is going to need you for lessons in both abilities.] Alfarinn didn't blend, not in life or unlife.

"Come here.” He reached for Alex and pulled him close. "Everything is going to be okay.” Alfarinn wrapped his arms around his child and held him. "Perhaps normal has become something else but you will find a new normal and you have family to be there for you as you do.”

Leaning back he smiled. "This is perhaps the bumpiest part of the road for you. It will smooth out and things will become easier. Then this whole vampire thing will be old news.” Alfarinn squeezed Alex a little tighter. "Then there will be some other drama.” He chuckled a little and sighed. "but we will get through that together too.”
Alex Aristos 10 years ago
"What's psychometry?" Alex asked. "How do I know if I have that?"

Alfarinn turned to him an narrowed his eyes, and Alex thought maybe he'd asked a bad question or something. But then Alfarinn just pulled him close into a hug. Talking about abilities had distracted him from his internal melodrama, but being held like this brought it all rushing back and he felt his breath hitch in his chest. He pressed the palms of his hands against Alfarinn's chest, not to push him away, just to feel him there. He curled his fingers gently into the grey tee Alfarinn wore. And he felt his eyes prickle with tears.

It was the reassurance that everything was going to be okay that did it, the mention of family, that hit a nerve that was all pain and pleasure and disbelief and hope at once. Alex squeezed his eyes shut, trying to keep the wetness inside, but the two little tears trickled out anyway. He ducked his head so Alfarinn couldn't see them.

"I tried to tell them when I was sick," he choked out suddenly, something he hadn't even told Eiryk or Cris or Rowan. Not even Aishe, his frequent confidante. "My parents. I called them and left a message. I emailed them. Told them I had cancer and was going to get treatment."

He dragged in a breath he was aware he didn't need, but it was natural to do so. "They didn't call me back. Or write. Or even send a fucking card."

Alex cleared his throat. No more tears came out, which was good. He had control of his voice. Also good. He wasn't surprised by his family. And enough time had passed that he wasn't even that upset or angry. But he'd thought maybe a life-threatening illness would have earned him a 'hi, how are you.' Evidently not. His family had never been his family. They just couldn't get over the gay.

He hadn't told Eiryk because Eiryk already wanted to go visit them with sharp weaponry. He wasn't sure why he told Alfarinn, because it was irrelevant. Except he supposed it explained why Alfarinn's words about family affected him so strongly. He had always wanted a family. Evenhet was it. Now he was really with them, like eternally, and he was fighting yet another fuckup with the vampire blood thing.

He looked up at Alfarinn.
"I can handle drama," he said with more strength than he thought he had had at the moment. "I promise. I'm trying, I'll be good. I won't embarrass you."

His face was sincere. He was a disappointment to his biological family in every way. Now, he supposed, he had a new biological family. He'd learn the rules here too. When he was a kid, it was always 'don't play with that, it's too girly' or 'play this sport, wear these clothes, read this book that other (normal) boys like.' He was a source of deep shame and embarrassment to his family when he didn't conform. He would make very sure Alfarinn didn't have a reason to feel that way, not on his account. Not after he'd kept his promise to Alex and turned him rather than sitting back and letting him die.
Alfarinn 10 years ago
"I am pretty sure you don't have it.” Alfarinn smiled. "I believe you have blending and Cris said he would help you with that. He's a master at it.” [Creepy Lurker]

[Ostentatious Show Boat.] Was the calm reply.

Alex's emotions washed over him, inescapable with his arms wrapped around the man. He could tell that the pain was an old one where his family was concerned. The emotions were deep and layered like peeling paint on an old house. It took time for the anger and sadness to become a bitter emptiness, for the first shocking pains to become a dull persistant ache.

He held Alex tighter.
"They don't deserve you.” Alfarinn kissed the side of his child's head. Feeling sad disappointment at parents that would treat their own child so badly. "They might have given you a place to stay but they obviously weren't family.” He had seen those ties change over many centuries. They didn't seem to mean as much any more. There was a time when whole areas went to war over a slight to one member of a family. These days parents hardly knew their children; they didn't raise them and likely had no idea who they really were.

"I remember mine from long ago.” He smiled thinking about his parents and then the rest of his kin. "but Anantya and then Evenhet has been family for far longer. When I say family, these people are who I mean. You are who I mean.” Alfarinn hugged Alex a little tighter. "I haven't made a child in centuries. You are now the closest family I have.” Now that Megan had left him. "I will do my best to be there for you. I respect you now. Adore you. I know that will become so much more in time.”

Alex's determination and hope was a welcome change from the darker feelings but his words still made Alfarinn a little sad. He leaned back and slid his hands up to grasp Alex's upper arms. "You are not an embarrassment. I can't imagine you being bad.” Alfarinn smiled. "Leave that to me. Its my job. Soon you'll be rolling your eyes at your dear old dad much like Cris does. I have no doubt.”

Alfarinn wrapped his arms around Alex once again. "This problem with the blood is not your fault. I am not upset with you.” He murmured softly. "We know about it and we will deal with it together, okay?”
Alex Aristos 10 years ago
"Blending? Really?" Alex knew what that was. He'd had plenty of question-answer sessions with Rowan around, and Rowan was always happy to tell Alex about vampire things. Alex recognized now that Eiryk must have asked him to do so when they'd first met, but that had long-since grown into an easy openness between them that made Alex more comfortable about asking Rowan things like that.

What he didn't get was how Alfarinn could guess Alex possessed that ability. But his question had been laden with curiosity so he hoped Alfarinn would explain his thinking.

The emotional issues he laid out on the table overwhelmed him for the time being, though. Alfarinn's response was to comfort him, to draw him tighter, kiss his head, hug him - things Alex craved. Support was a new thing to him, something he hadn't ever had until moving to Nachton and meeting Eiryk.

Alex felt himself on the verge of tears again when Alfarinn told him he wasn't an embarrassment, that he adored him, respected him. And surely he meant it, too. Alfarinn shared the same preferences as Alex and Alex had never seen him try to hide who or what he was. Alfarinn really could understand him, the way Eiryk did. Even Rowan and Cris, who Alex knew weren't gay but had found something so good with each other anyway, were supportive too. Even Aishe and Kem.

"Everything good I have in my life, I have because of the people I've met here," Alex said into Alfarinn's shirt with a soft smile. "I won't be rolling my eyes at you. I'll be here for you too, always. I have you for family now."

When Alfarinn added that the blood thing wasn't Alex's fault Alex nodded, squeezing his eyes shut again and trying not to think about the taste. The feel. So good. He shivered with desire.

"It's no one's fault. Not even Eiryk's. He just wanted to help and he didn't know how. I'll beat it. I can get past it."

He nodded again, acknowledging Alfarinn's promise to help him and to do it together. "Thank you," he said fervently, the words meaning much more than just thanks for the support on that topic. He was thanking Alfarinn for everything else. For existing at all. For being willing to take on the challenge and the responsibility of Alex when they hardly even knew each other.

He sniffed. He wasn't crying again; he'd successfully held back any remaining tears. Alex had far too much pride to break down. If he did, he'd do it in private, but he didn't feel like that. He was just dealing with strong emotions, was all. He realized, however, that hunger was back with a vengeance and he was standing very close to the person whose blood he most wanted to taste. Eiryk's was appealing too, but he vividly, recently, remembered Alfarinn's blood. Cool. Rich. Familiar. Flowing through him, making him feel icy-cool and fire-hot at the same time. Damn, he wanted it. He shivered again.

"I'm really hungry," he whispered, very softly. His hands shook where they fisted into Alfarinn's shirt. His tone was apologetic, as if Alfarinn could read his thoughts and know what Alex had been daydreaming of, so close, just under that cool, pale skin.
Alfarinn 10 years ago
"Life is good.” Alfarinn agreed. He laughed when Alex said that he wouldn't be rolling his eyes at him. "Don't speak too soon. You might have to come bail me out of jail every few decades or so. I hear that gets old.”

Alex said that the blood problem wasn't anyone's fault. He wasn't sure that he agreed but there wasn't anything to be done about the past. Eiryk's heart had been in the right place and much could be forgiven because of that. He couldn't say that he would have done anything differently had it been his beloved that had been ill.

"Of course you can.” He had no doubt that Alex would find a way past this obstacle. There was a strong sense of will that was obvious in his child. He had seen it from the very first conversation, quiet though Alex seemed to be. There had always been a determination and he felt that now, stronger than almost any other emotion.

He released Alex and nodded his understanding. Of course Alex was hungry.
"I am sure they will be here shortly.” Alfarinn turned and poured some coffee into a mug. He took a grateful sip and then set the mug back on the counter. Gesturing to the pot, he asked. "How do you take yours?”

Pouring more coffee into one of the mugs, he told Alex about blending. "You were doing it earlier. If I weren't so old and didn't know to look for you then you would have disappeared.” He raised an eyebrow at his companion. "I can only guess what you were thinking about at the time.”

Smiling inwardly at Cris's mental conversation, he relayed some of the information. "Cris says that if you will report to him later in the evening then he will teach you more about this new party trick.” Alfarinn smiled again. "useful skill, to be learned, used for the good of the clan and taken absolutely and completely seriously.”

"You know I am not buying that for one second, Staubbach.” Alfarinn said out loud as he sent the same back to his bonded friend.

"He says that if you do well then perhaps you can join him on a raid of various places in The Towers...strictly as a training exercise, you understand.” He gave Alex his most serious Cris face and then rolled his eyes.

The doorbell rang. Alfarinn smiled at Alex.
"Sugar is there on the counter. Cream is in the door of the fridge.” He pointed toward the entrance. "I will be right back.”
Alex Aristos 10 years ago
Alex shook his head insistently at Alfarinn. "Will bail you out. Anytime."

He was pretty sure saving Alex's life got Alfarinn, at the very least, a permanent get out of jail free card. Among other things.

The vote of confidence was nice, and when Alfarinn released him Alex found his pride again. It was bruised but not broken. He knew he was going to have to start relying on his friends for help now and then, but he didn't want to. He should have told them about his parents, so that he hadn't been carrying that little tidbit of delightful information around with him, festering, for weeks. They couldn't have done anything about it but telling them might have been nice. Getting it off his chest would have been good.

"Oh," he said, having almost forgotten about the coffee. It smelled good. "Cream and sugar please."

Alex found himself laughing softly at the 'dialogue' between Cris and Alfarinn. He wasn't sure he believed what Cris said, either, and he had to nod along with Alfarinn.
"Tell him I'd be happy to, um, train, with him. For the good of the Clan. And mankind."

Then he stopped and shook his head.
"Uhh. I can do it myself, can't I."

He reached out, trying to 'find' Cris with his mind. [Training sounds good. Do you really think you can tell me how to do this? Alfarinn said I disappeared. I don't know how many times in my life I've wished I could do that.]

The doorbell rang and Alex pretty much forgot about the coffee again, his eyeballs seeing red as he realized once again that he was hungry. Ravenous. It seemed to be getting worse by the minute. Thank goodness he knew from his friends that it was worse now that it would be later. Kem said he drank every two or three weeks and was content with that. Aishe had told Alex that she could go for a day without drinking here and there and suspected she might be able to manage two in dire circumstances, and she was only a few years old herself. So relief from the gnawing hunger would happen eventually.

He prepared his coffee while Alfarinn was gone, methodically, a little slowly, but when he'd finished stirring it he just stood there with his hands on the mug. It seemed silly to drink coffee right before he drank from someone else. How would it work? Was it professional and businesslike? Would he be offered a wrist? A neck? Would there be small talk? Would they snuggle on the sofa?

Every time Alex had given blood for one of his friends, with the exception of Eiryk, it had been in needful circumstances and Alex had made the offer. It had always been pleasant; he remembered that on every occasion. So this man who was coming to give him what he needed, a man who belonged to someone else who was kind enough to share, Alex wanted him to have a good memory of it too. He felt nervous; this was the first time he'd be doing this to someone he could really, really hurt. This guy, Ken, was brave. Feeding Evenhet's newest baby vampire had to be daunting. There had to be a lot of trust there. Alex wiped shaky palms on his legs to try to calm himself. Alfarinn wouldn't let anything bad happen.
Alfarinn 10 years ago
Alfarinn let Alex send his reply to Cris and get the indicated cream and sugar while he answered the door. He ushered both men into the apartment and closed the door. After hugs and greetings he lead them to the kitchen, mentioning that coffee had been made.

"Oh, no, that would keep me up -all- night.” Will said with a wave of his hand.

Ken leered at him playfully and answered. "I don't see anything wrong with that. He'll take two cups.”

Will continued to shake his head no but he did laugh. They came into the kitchen after him with Will complaining that unlike some people he didn't work on a night based schedule. He still had a day job that was actually worked during the day.

"Ken, this Alex. Alex this is Ken” Alfarinn introduced the man to his child. He gestured to a very fit man who appeared to be in his mid forties. Ken's hair was nearly all grey with some darker color still lingering. He was tan, muscled, just slightly shorter than Alex with sharp blue eyes that didn't seem to miss anything. Ken smiled and held out his hand. "Good to meet you. I heard about your yoga classes. Will and I have been thinking of attending but we haven't yet made our schedule work together.”

Will was shorter than Ken and, despite having the corporate job that he had been lamenting, his sandy brown hair and tan skin declared that he spent much time out in the sun. Alfarinn knew for a fact that the two had met while surfing. They got away often on trips to this beach or that beach in order to enjoy their mutual hobby.
"This is Will, Forsaker of Caffeine.”

"Psh, I will need it tomorrow morning. Going to have a cup for me then?” Will crossed his arms and looked up at him with a raised eyebrow.

"I might.” Alfarinn smiled. "I am sure I will still be up.”

"You don't have to...” He cut Will off with a hand over his mouth and a shake of his head.

"He'd bite me if I did that.” Ken laughed and then turned to Alex. "I am guessing you are pretty hungry. Alfarinn also says that you haven't really done this before...aside from him.” The familiar gently removed Alex's coffee cup and then took Alex's hand. He guided them both over to the sofa and then sat down. Alfarinn and Will followed, taking the chairs. Normally he would give them their privacy but not the first time Alex bit someone.

"Its awkward at first.” Ken smiled. "but I hear you get used to it. I'm used to it. So you don't have sneak up on me or buy me dinner first.”

Will raised his hand like a kid in class, waving it a little. "You can buy me dinner.” He looked from Alex, to Ken and then to Alfarinn. "Whoever, I'm not picky.”

"He is picky about the food though so don't let the enthusiasm fool you. He's not a cheap date.”

"I hear Alex cooks.” Alfarinn supplied with as much innocence as he could muster. Evenhet's newest vampire might find it nice to have appreciative human friends to cook for. People who actually need food to live made the effort much more worthwhile. Plus it might be a good trade for the occasional blood donation. Ken couldn't regularly donate but Will could.

((OOC: Cris would answer Alex with [Good. I know I can teach you how to blend. I am amazing, doubt not my powers of instruction, mere-newly-immortal.] After a pause he would answer more seriously [I think we all have wanted such a thing, those of us that have blending.]
Alex Aristos 10 years ago
[Just say when. I'll be there for my lesson, O blending guru], Alex responded to Cris. He was happy to share both of his abilities with Cris; Alex felt very comfortable with him. He knew if Cris said he could teach him, he could. He hadn't felt any different when he was blending, but Alfarinn said he'd done it so he must have done.

The kitchen suddenly seemed full of smiling people as Alfarinn ushered in Ken and his partner, Will. Alex smiled at them, the expression a little wan. He was nervous and hungry and a little off-kilter and on his best day, meeting new people was a challenge for him. He shook Ken's hand and then took Will's, smiling a little bit more easily when they immediately mentioned his classes.

"Is there a better time that you can both make? I can only get to my studio later at night now obviously, but I can meet with you both here in the gym. I'd be happy to."

Alex didn't need a scheduled class to instruct yoga; he could teach it any time anywhere as long as whoever was there actually wanted to learn. Interested students were the best ones. Judging by the smiles on Will's and Ken's faces they weren't just being polite; they might actually take him up on the offer. And maybe Alex would know two people outside his tight circle of friends he hadn't known before - that was practically unheard of, for him.

It was Ken who took him by the hand and led him to the living room, sitting next to him on the couch. Alex imagined his heart speeding up, realizing it really hadn't. Or maybe it had, but it was still way slower than it used to be. He licked his lips nervously, nodding, looking down, when Ken said he'd heard it could be awkward.

"I've been bitten before, plenty," Alex said. "Just... being on the other end of it... I don't want to hurt anyone."

Ken had Will here, at least. That sort of helped - Alex would have felt even more nervous trying to make sure Ken enjoyed the experience - thoroughly. Perhaps with Will here he could just focus on drinking responsibly and let Will take care of Ken afterward.

The mood was still light; Alex didn't think anyone else was really nervous except for him. If Ken was, he was hiding it well. And if Will minded what they were doing, it didn't show a single bit. Alex managed to nod when Alfarinn mentioned his hobby.
"I do cook. And since I was pretty much my own audience I wouldn't mind being able to cook for someone still. Otherwise I'm going to end up wasting a lot of food."

There was a soft laugh in response, and Alex felt Ken squeeze his hand. "You're staring at my neck," the man said, not unkindly. "Go ahead. It's all right, you're not going to hurt me."

He tilted his head away, blue eyes watching Alex with confidence. If he was acting, he deserved an award.

Alex tore his eyes away, reassuring himself that Alfarinn was close by to stop him doing anything bad. Then he slid a little closer to Ken on the couch and tried to remember how he'd been bitten. He was pretty sure he'd donated to most of his friends over the last couple of years. He tried to treat Ken the way they had always treated him, with care and respect.

It helped that he was a little wary of drinking human blood. He knew it was going to be better than the bag, but the bag was his one and only non-vampire drink so far and it had been horrible. He was going to have to get used to it in case of emergencies. He didn't know anyone who actually liked it, so at least he wasn't too off track there.

Slowly Alexander leaned in to where Ken sat. He paused with his mouth over Ken's neck, still a little uncertain. It was Ken himself who actually slid his hand around behind Alex's neck and tugged him down. "It's all right," the man repeated. "If you're that worried about hurting me, I know you won't."

Alex could feel the blood coursing through Ken's veins now. He could practically smell it. His teeth ached; his own veins burned a little bit. He made a soft needy noise and parted his lips, pressing his fangs against Ken's neck. A little harder and they simply slid in, just like that, and warm blood flowed into his mouth. He squeezed his eyes shut, waiting a moment before swallowing, as if uncertain he actually wanted to.

But eventually his mouth was full and he had to, and it was... not bad. Not at all what he'd feared. Not as fulfilling, not as rich, not as -everything- as Alfarinn's blood, or Eiryk's, but the gnawing sensation he felt in his veins died down immediately even as he took another drink, and another.

Alex tightened his hold on Ken just a little bit, but the moment he felt the urge to drink deeper he pulled away. It hadn't been enough, not really, four swallows. But he was terrified of losing control. Alex was very much against substance abuse, and the blood thing had him spooked. Was it always going to call to him like that?

He gently licked the blood away from Ken's neck and realized Ken was still looking at him, not overwhelmed with lust. "That's it?"

Alex let him go, looked down, and bit his lip, accidentally piercing it with a still-extended fang. He nodded.
"Thank you," he said belatedly. "I'm okay. I didn't... hurt you, did I?"

"Not hardly." Ken looked from Alex to Alfarinn and back, a little puzzled. Alex was starting to feel much more awkward and embarrassed than he had been at the start, kind of like he'd been invited out on a hot date and hadn't even managed to get it up or something.

Alex finally managed to look at Alfarinn, feeling like he was lacking somehow. Hunger still crawled through his veins but he didn't want to bite anyone right now. He had succeeded for his first bite and that was good, right?
Alfarinn 10 years ago
Ken explained that he and Will worked different shifts and that wasn't really time during the week for them to make a class, which was unfortunate because their weekends were usually very busy. He did say that maybe they could work something out in the early evenings a few nights a week, after Will got home and before he went to work. Ken worked at Meridian which made the commute a breeze. They could chose to eat something quick on those nights. They could discuss it later over the coffee that had been brewed.

Alfarinn let Ken handle how he wanted to be bitten and stayed out of it. Too many people would make an awkward situation worse. It was bad enough that there needed to be an audience.

Of course Alex's reluctance suggested that things would likely be okay. He smothered a smile when Ken pointed out that Alex was looking at his neck. Then the familiar helped his child go that final step. It was rather adorable, not that Alex would want to hear such a thing. Baby vampire's first feeding. Maybe he should take a picture.

It said a lot about Alex that despite being hungry he had this much restraint. That had never been Alfarinn's problem. His sister originally couldn't bear the thought of drinking blood from someone. Megan wouldn't feed at all, except from him. Perhaps he should have known something from that. It was okay that he might have died? But, no, originally she had been just as concerned for his health. It was just that he was stronger and she had known that.

Will leaned forward in his seat, watching Alex and Ken eagerly. Alfarinn had no trouble discerning that the sight turned him on. Those feelings were loud and clear. He could feel pleasure from Ken and the beginnings of it from Alex, along with a ton of worry.

Not long after it all started, Alex pulled away. Ken was clearly confused. He would be too if it weren't for the ability to feel the emotions that had made Alex pull back.

"You need to trust yourself more than that.” Alfarinn said, getting up and moving to sit behind Ken. "I'm here and nothing is going to happen. You can't over power me so there is no need to be anxious. Try to stop after you have fed enough, but know that one way or another you won't be hurting anyone.”

Looking at Will, he gestured to the sofa. "If you don't mind?”

"Not at all.” Will smiled and sauntered over to Alex and Ken and squeezed himself in between the both of them. Alfarinn chuckled softly at the obviously more outgoing member of this particular duo.

"Don't worry.” He murmured quietly to Ken. "You can feed me when they are done.” Alfarinn wrapped an arm around the familiar and lifted him up slightly, scooting them both closer to the end of sofa so that Will and Alex had room to maneuver.

"I'm tasty. I promise.” Will smiled at Alex. "I work out, I eat we have already mentioned... I like the outdoors and long walks in the rain.”

"And pina coladas?” Alfarinn asked.

"Oh definitely.” Will smiled. "And hot men offering me alcohol...just sayin.”

Ken rolled his eyes. "He'd flirt with sign post if he thought it was male.”

Will looked completely unashamed and even nodded his head. "Its true. I'm not proud.”

"Anyway,” He turned back to Alex. "Watching you bite Ken was pretty hot and you have such nice eyes... so, hell yes, I'll let you bite me. Drink deep, sweetie, and we'll both have a good time.”
Alex Aristos 10 years ago
Well at least this situation couldn't get any more humiliating. God, Alex hoped this wasn't going to be all over the Towers tomorrow. He doubted it would be but you never knew, really. Did you see the new vampire? Yes, he sucks. At sucking. Har, har. He nodded his head at Alfarinn. "I'm trying. I promise."

Will was apparently next in line, since Alex had tried and failed to properly bite Ken. Alex almost shook his head; he hadn't thought Will was going to be meal number two. He thought he'd just come along with Ken. He didn't shake his head though. He closed his eyes, swallowed, and ran his hands down his thighs smoothly. How did Eiryk feel when he bit someone? Was it like he was cheating on Alex? Alex blocked that thought off. He didn't need any more of a difficult time than he was already having.

Will was incredibly encouraging. Okay, Will was giving him the full-speed ahead like nobody's business.
"Okay," Alex said uncertainly. Then he took another fortifying breath. "I can do this."

Will leaned close, practically wrapping himself up around Alex and Alex did fight anything this time. He pulled Will close, nuzzled into his neck, and bite down firmly. Will's body lurched against him as warm blood flowed, and Alex smoothed his hands down the man's back as he swallowed. When he felt the rising wave of desire he didn't fight it... he fought against it. When he would have pulled away he gave a little growl and bit deeper, much to Will's apparent delight. He remembered how it felt, to be bitten, and he hoped he was giving that to Will.

In the meantime, the gnawing at his veins was going away. He felt satisfied, flushed, and full. It was easier than he thought it would be to slow down. Then to stop, and pull away. He felt breathless, although that wasn't true. His breath was perfectly slow as he rested his lips against Will's neck, sucking the last couple of droplets of blood away.

"Thank you," he murmured. "Are you okay?"

In response, Will grabbed Alex's head, pulled him up, and gave him a huge kiss on the mouth, not a passionate one or anything, just a friendly, carefree, very happy one. Alex felt his face flaming and was happy his skin hadn't turned all vampire-pale or anything.
Alfarinn 10 years ago
Alex did much better the second time. He was doing really well though he obviously felt otherwise. Alfarinn leaned his chin on Ken's shoulder and watched, waiting for any sign of potential trouble. There wasn't any. Alex drank enough and stopped on his own. Will looked thoroughly happy and he could feel Ken's desire rise from watching the scene in front of them.

Originally he had figured that Ken would make Alex less nervous; he was less pushy, less chatty and plenty experienced in the ways of donating blood to a vampire. Of course had Alex pulled away after only a small taste of Will then Alfarinn was pretty sure the man would have hauled Alex back down and demanded a do over. This way Alex got to experience several people at the same time and taste human blood of two different donors. It was definitely not the same as the bagged variety.

He smiled at Will's enthusiastic answer to Alex's question.
"I think that means he's fine.”

"I am better than fine.” Will retorted raising both eyebrows and making a face. "Now go on” He made an imperious rolling gesture with one hand at Alfarinn. "so I can take my boyfriend downstairs and screw him thoroughly before sending him to work.”

"Be nice.” Ken warned without much heat. "I am pretty sure he's my boss's boss's boss.”

"Something like that.” Alfarinn smiled. He wrapped his other arm around Ken's waist, hugging the man close to his chest. Leaning down, he brushed his lips lightly along the skin of the familiar's neck and felt Ken shiver in anticipation. Slowly he sank his teeth in and then drew hard from the wound. Ken gasped, his body tensing with pleasure, straining to arch beneath his lips but Alfarinn held him tight. After the first deep draw, he made several more somewhat less forceful pulls and then let the blood flow. He sucked the little wounds once more, gently, before running his tongue over the wounds and then leaning back.

"Thank you.” He murmured softly.

"I wish I could say any time.” Ken replied, smiling crookedly. Alfarinn let him loose and Ken pulled away, standing up and reaching a hand down to Will.

"It was nice meeting you, Alex. You did wonderfully. Not so many new vampires understand how to pace themselves or make the experience as pleasant as possible.” Ken looked down at his boyfriend. "but you did that. I always figured new vampires had as much stamina as teenaged boys.”

Alfarinn coughed and refrained from defending Alex's stamina or his own. He certainly appeared young enough to qualify for the last part of that statement and he knew that plenty of vampires made at an older age have always wondered if younger vampires eternally kept certain traits of their youthful appearance, good and bad.

"Do you have empathy, if you don't mind my asking?” Ken looked intrigued and obviously thought he was on to something. "If you do then you are really well adjusted. Edgar says he was a basket case for weeks at least.”

"Empathy is one of those that can be incredibly difficult." Alfarinn agreed. "Also it is helpful with taking blood but also dangerous."

Ken frowned thoughtfully, clearly agreeing with the first part but not seeing the second.

"When you feel your desire and the desire of the person you are biting, it is very hard to stop. Even vampires who come into empathy later in life find feeding difficult again until they can master the emotional imput."

The familiar looked back at Alex curiously, no doubt even more curious about the answer to his question.
Alex Aristos 10 years ago
Alex was quiet in the wake of his first official drink as a vampire. He was a vampire. He was still kind of shell-shocked at the thought. Who would ever have thought? Hell, in his life before moving to Nachton, who would have given a shit?

He realized he was still gripping Will and with a soft, sheepish apology he apologized and pried his fingers loose. Will's expression softened a little bit. He squeezed Alex's upper arm and continued with the banter that seemed so natural. Alex, for his part, watched Alfarinn bite Ken, admiring the expression on Ken's face, the way Alfarinn seemed so easily in control. Maybe Alex would get that way too. He'd never been good at being confident and sure. He had time to work on that now though. Lots of time.

Ken and Will stood up, getting ready to go. Alex smiled shyly and said,
"It was nice to meet you too. Let me know if you want to do some yoga. Private session is fine. And thank you both."

When Ken praised him Alex's face turned red again beneath his olive complexion. When it was clearly his turn to speak, Alex shook his head.
"No. I'm not an empath. I'm about as sensitive as a cement block. I can talk at people in their heads apparently. And we're kind of still working on the rest."

It seemed to him like blending was maybe the kind of thing you didn't want a lot of people to know about. Alex didn't want people to think he was untrustworthy or sneaky or something.

Once Ken and Will were gone Alex slumped back on Alfarinn's couch, his hands dangling between his legs. He thought about getting up for his coffee and then decided it could wait.

"That wasn't as bad as I thought i would be," he confessed.

Still... not vampire blood. But Alex knew then he had to fight the craving for blood from his own kind. He had to. If for no other reason than reluctance to be a slave to his own crazy urges.
Alfarinn 10 years ago
Alfarinn noted with amusement that Alex didn't mention the blending. Of course Alex hadn't see it work for himself so maybe he wasn't sure he really possessed it.

Ken looked at Alex and shook his head. "I doubt that is the case. You don't seem oblivious to me. It was why I asked. I thought perhaps you were an empath and had some easier insight into what we were feeling.” He looked at Will and smiled. "Not that some of it wasn't clear, but I have seen with my own eyes that a hungry vampire can be pretty single minded.”

Chuckling, Alfarinn stood up and turned to Alex.
"So what he is trying to say, if I understand it, is that you weren't completely self motivated in your hunger. You didn't hurt either of them when you bit them and you didn't take too much either. You were also concerned about whether or not they enjoyed the experience.” He knew that last part because he could feel Alex's concern first hand.

"Yes, I would say that was what I was trying to say without saying that some vampires are complete jerks and thank you for not being one of those.”

This time Alfarinn did laugh. It was rare that Ken was so blunt but he was glad that the straight forwardness was a compliment. He got up and let them both out and then came back and sat down next to Alex.

His child's statement had him chuckling again. Shaking his head, Alfarinn wrapped an arm around Alex's shoulders.
"Well I am glad you can stomach it. Our dietary variety is somewhat limited.”

He gestured with his free hand toward the door, indicating the two men who had just departed. "Edgar picked Ken as a familiar because he is very good at his job and because he has come to trust him. They are very good friends but that's all. Which is fine but being bitten, especially when you find the person biting you attractive, leaves a lot of pent up...needs.”

Alfarinn sighed softly, he had a lot of pent up needs himself so he could understand. "Will has been very helpful in taking care of those.”

"So what are your plans for the rest of your night?”