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ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
A Brave New World
Krista leaned her head against the smooth, cool glass of the hotel window, gazing idly out at the active streets below and the multi-coloured twinkling of the lights of city surrounding her. Sighing softly, she watched as yuppie couple after yuppie couple exited the safe, pretentious boutiques of Yorkville in search of food and other entertainment as she tried to figure out why she found herself back in Toronto after her last disastrous foray into the city.
She supposed it could have just been common sense that sent her scampering North of the border since she had no real place in the States anymore after parting ways with Blade and getting herself shunned by the other Houses after helping the Day-walker bring Marcus down permanently. The other Houses had branded her a traitor to vampire kind even though she had done them all an admitted service by destroying the smug, hypocritical bastard, but she couldn't really work up a sense of injustice about having them turn their back on her. She didn't want them anyway, and would have still run even if they had been waiting for her with open arms.
Her moral superiority was cold comfort however all alone, out in the world.
Turning away from the window reluctantly, Krista ran an agitated hand through her hair and then made her way over to the bag she had dumped by the side of her bed upon entering her room at the Four Seasons and took out her laptop. It was only around 7pm, the night was still young and she was hungry.
Before she had taken off, Blade had given her a stash of serum to take with her, but the serum wouldn't last forever, in fact it probably wouldn't even last for a couple months and so Krista had slowly been trying to wean herself off of it. One dose of serum every couple of days to take the edge off, and then animal blood on the others to keep her stomach full enough that she didn't start looking at passersby like value meals. It was strictly subsistence living, but it was something she was going to have to get used to, and fresh blood was much easier to swallow, which is why Krista started looking for butcher shops as soon as her computer booted up.
An hour and a half later
Krista closed the door to her room carefully, and moved with a similar determination over to the nearest hard surface resting the bag she was carrying down softly, before balling her hands into fists forcefully enough to make her nails dig into her palms.
Before making her way to the butcher's she had concocted a half dozen plausible excuses about why she was there and what she needed the blood for, but upon entering the shop and getting a good look at the man behind the counter she knew that she need not have bothered. Accustomed to looking for them after over a year and a half as hominus nocturna she had easily spotted the vampire glyph on the inside of his left wrist. He was a familiar. She was relieved to not have to explain herself but then as he reached out to push the door to the back room open and she got a better look at the glyph her relief turned into anxiety when she saw that the glyph on his arm was Chthon.
Chthon had been crippled but not destroyed by the deaths of the their elders, and with Marcus dead was basically in shambles. She'd heard rumbles though that the House was trying to get itself on its feet again, that some had stepped into the power vacuum left by Marcus, someone with funds and influence who was moving things forward, but it was really a moot point for her. It made no difference to her however whether Chthon was being resurrected or not because if any remnants of the House existed in the city then she was a marked woman. The other Houses had a policy to follow but made no effort to actively hunt her, Chthon however had a price on her head and hatred in their hearts and if it got out that she was in the city, every member of the House would be out searching for her.
Krista moved over to the desk where her laptop was, yanking the plug out of the socket and picking the machine up jamming it back into the bag she had taken it out of. She had only checked in a couple hours before and hadn't really unpacked anything which would allow her to make a quick escape. She was running out of places on the continent to run and had a fleeting thought about crossing the pond to Europe and learning to appreciate tea when a shiver ran through her and she straightened up, her muscles tensing as her fangs distended.
She was no longer alone.
She didn't think they'd be that fast.
Making a quick movement, Krista plucked the knife she carried in her boot out and swung around branding it in the direction of her intruder. A stabbing wouldn't kill a vampire, but a good one would sure as hell slow them down a little bit. However, as Krista got a look at the other occupant of the room, she wasn't sure whether to laugh, or continue with her 'stab and run' plan.
"Hello, Krista," Chase drawled, an amused smile touching her lips as she gazed at the woman across from her.
"Chase," Krista breathed out softly, lowering the knife a little but not completely. She knew she could take Chase in a fight which relieved her somewhat, but Chase also knew she could take her in a fight and after their last interaction with each other Krista doubted that Chase would just show up without some kind of contingency plan.
"Undead and kicking," Chase confirmed moving further into the room, her stride languid. "Disappointed Humpty-Dumpty was put back together again?"
"Not really," Krista replied watching Chase carefully though she relaxed her stance somewhat to give the impression that she didn't have a care in the world. "Actually I'm relieved. I thought I might be in danger, but now that I see it's only you " she finished by shrugging before smirking over at Chase.
"That's hurtful," Chase replied shooting Krista an obviously fake look of sadness before her eyes narrowed. "Here I am just trying to be a friend, willing to overlook you throwing me down fifteen flights of stairs, and you bite my hand. Again. You really are a beast," Chase continued turning away from Krista feigning hurt once more.
Krista's jaw tightened. "What do you want Chase?"
"The same thing I've always wanted," Chase began turning around to face Krista again, moving towards her slowly.
"My jugular in your mouth?" Krista asked as Chase continued to move towards her and then angled off to the side moving around her, circling. It was all so familiar and Krista almost felt nostalgic though she couldn't really call her time at Chthon 'good 'old' anything.
"That's not always a bad thing, dear," Chase replied stepping closer to Krista until she was molded against the brunette's back. "In fact, as long as you're not a meat-girl, it can be an extremely good thing," she went on angling her face towards Krista, breathing in deeply before stepping back. "But I was talking about your friendship and allegiance," Chase continued moving around Krista to stand in front of her once again.
"I'm on a path of self-discovery right now and in desperate need of me time. I'll call you though," Krista responded as Chase settled herself in front of her, feeling an unwanted thrill go through her body when Chase replied with a wolf-like grin before biting down on her bottom lip all the while looking at Krista through her eye lashes.
"Where were you going to run to?" Chase asked stepping back from Krista and looking over at the bag the brunette had just shoved her computer into.
"If I tell you, I'll just have to go someplace else. So, let's just say Hogwarts," Krista replied before shrugging and shooting Chase a mockingly apologetic look.
"Such a vicious tongue," Chase responded slyly, cutting her eyes towards Krista. "I suppose you have to make up for your short-comings somehow," she continued in a condescending voice. "You'll find, I think, after you run to a few more countries, across a couple more continents and oceans, that you'll never find that safe haven you're looking for," she went on watching Krista keenly. "Vampires have Blackberries, Krista. News travels fast these days, and your not wanted anywhere. And, with your high maintenance needs, I think you'll find life on the run difficult. I'm not nearly as picky an eater as you, and my first few months after your last visit to this fine city," Chase went on looking out the window, "was rather unpleasant, even for me."
"And I'm supposed to believe that being around you would be any better for my health?" Krista asked dubiously. She knew she was screwed, she knew she was screwed from the moment she woke up in a morgue and everything that had happened since had just gone on to show her how very screwed she was. She didn't need Chase to tell her that her life sucked. She was living it and it sucked everyday.
"Yes," Chase replied her eyes pinning Krista's, her expression surprisingly serious. "I know that we've had our differences," Chase continued, "but not nearly as much as you think," she went on pulling out the cushioned chair resting in front of the desk, seating herself gracefully. "I had my part to play, just as you did. And while I'll admit I wasn't fond of you at all in the beginning I came to appreciate your skills and competency. I quite like you actually," Chase went on watching Krista as the brunette shifted under her gaze. "And now that you're not with the Day-walker anymore, I could use you."
"Use me?" Krista asked not liking the sound of that at all.
"I know you saw the glyph," Chase responded waving her hand carelessly. "It's why you raced back here. But Chthon need not be your enemy, Krista," Chase continued standing once more, moving towards the brunette again. "Not now that I'm in charge."
"I gave you the opportunity to take my side once," Chase interjected, interrupting Krista's response circling again, like a shark about to capture its prey. "I'm giving you another chance now," Chase said resting her hand on Krista's shoulder lightly, her thumb stroking her back. "It's the last one you'll get from me so, carefully consider your response," Chase finished whispering in Krista's ear before pulling her hand away and stepping back from the brunette, moving towards the window to gaze out as Krista stood rooted where she was.
"Chase," Krista began a second later, her voice kinder than it had been since Chase had shown up in her room, though there was still an edge to it.
"Carefully," Chase said softly, not turning to look at Krista as she spoke to her.
"I appreciate your offer," Krista began a moment later. "Because, despite the last year and a half I believe that you mean it, but I can't be what you want me to be. I won't kill people; I won't feed off of them, not for all the creature comforts in the world."
Chase sighed, her eyes focused outside the window for a moment longer and then turned to face Krista.
"No one asked you to," she said finally meeting Krista's gaze. "Those freaks from Leichen are hardly the first to renounce the drinking of human blood. You're not alone, there are plenty of other misguided loners out there," she went on shaking her head in dismay. "As much fun as it would be to prowl the streets with you by my side and share a meal together under the winking stars, that's not what I asked you and not what I want from you. Keep on drinking that slop if you want to," she said her nose wrinkling in distaste as she waved in the direction of the bag Krista had discarded upon re-entering her hotel room. "It makes no difference to me."
"Then what do you want?" Krista asked her brows knitting in confusion, no longer hostile.
"You," Chase replied simply finally moving away from the window, "by my side," she went on moving towards Krista but not touching her this time. "Rebuilding Chthon isn't going to be easy. Already the other Houses have taken measures to try and keep us out of commission. The less the richer and all that," she growled softly. "You've gone against the other Houses, other vampires, before and that's what I would require of you," she continued stopping just in front of Krista. "As for what I want " she went on, letting her eyes running over Krista's body finish her sentence for her.
Feeling a growl working its way up her throat, Krista took a step back and turned her back to Chase. Her body had responded to Chase's proximity, her voice, and her scent, even all those months ago when she was undercover. When her shot of serum was wearing off she found herself looking around thinking dirty thoughts in general, but with Chase it had always been more powerful. There was something about the blonde that attracted her, powerfully, and that had made her want to push the blonde as far away from her as possible. Unfortunately for her Marcus always seemed to have other ideas, and so had Chase.
"What makes you think I want you?" Krista responded finally turning to face Chase when she was sure that her eyes wouldn't wander like the blonde's just had.
Chase smiled and Krista felt a tightening below her waist.
And then Chase was on her, pushing her back until Krista's back connected with the nearest wall, Chase's thigh forcing its way between Krista's legs, pressing up hard against the warmth at the juncture of her thighs.
"What makes you think I care?" Chase growled as she jammed her thigh against Krista for emphasis, her eyes burning into Krista's unnatural bright and intensely blue.
Krista shuddered slightly and her eyes momentarily fluttered closed.
"That makes me think you want me," Chase responded hoarsely before leaning in licking a path up Krista's neck before nipping at her jaw and taking a step back.
Krista closed her eyes and breathed in deeply. Her head felt heavy and clouded as what little blood she had in her body pooled between her legs, and pulsed.
"We can take it slow," Chase said a moment later, bracing her right hand on the wall beside Krista's head leaning in slightly. "Ease you into your new position," she drawled almost nuzzling Krista's face though their skin didn't actually touch. "I'll be right in front of you, guiding you in," she continued her fangs showing momentarily before continued. "We can, play it by ear," she finished sucking Krista's earlobe into her mouth for a second before pulling away from the brunette once again.
Krista closed her eyes, breathing deeply for a few seconds before looking at Chase once more, her eyes darker and more luminescent than they had been moments before.
"Okay," she said softly.
She didn't want to be alone. She was used to being part of a family, a unit. She'd even shared her mother's womb. She didn't like to be on her own. She was sure that she could do it, but she didn't particularly want to. She didn't know if Chase was telling the truth about the type of arrangement they would have, or if it would work even if she was being truthful. But the offer was there, and she couldn't refuse it outright, not if there was a chance that it could work, and she could have a home while maintaining a personal standard.
"Okay?" Chase repeated sounding almost surprised, her mask of superiority falling momentarily for the first time that night.
"Okay," Krista confirmed watching Chase closely as an emotion that looked suspiciously like relief flashed across her features momentarily.
"Good," Chase said stepping back from Krista, nodding, feeling a familiar thrill run through her system that only Krista in all her idiotic idealism, ridiculous stubbornness, passion and dogged determination seemed to bring out. "Smartest decision you've made since being turned," she taunted trying to get their conversation on more familiar terrain, feeling slightly more in control when Krista merely scowled at her.
Chase turned away from the brunette and moved toward the hotel room. She could feel a smile bubbling up within her, a real smile, so she turned her back to Krista before it could show itself on her lips.
"Get your bags and follow me."
Krista took a deep breath, and then quickly moved to the side gathering her bags.
She didn't know what the rest of the night would hold, or the next day, or the day after that, but for the first time in months she was looking forward to finding out.
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