Thirty Years Later
Author's Note: I dunno yet if this is going to be a one-shot or not. Maybe if I get enough reviews asking for it to go on, I'll consider it.
Integra Hellsing held a finger to her lips, motioning silently for the squad of soldiers to enter the room. She adjusted her eye patch and licked her lips, following on her tiptoes. Once they were in the room with the door firmly shut, she allowed herself to whisper to the men inside.
"Today, we are going to learn about disarming vampires in the daylight. First, why do we want to know this valuable information?" she asked quietly. A broad-shouldered, brown haired young man in the front raised his hand hesitantly. Integra signaled for him to speak.
"Because the target is sleeping in the daytime?" the soldier offered. Integra nodded.
"Very good, Steward. That's a more obvious answer- does anyone else have something to add?" A tan-skinned man in the back raised his hand and coughed quietly before speaking.
"If the vampire wakes, it's already weakened by the sun so we, as humans, have the natural advantage." Integra shook her head, motioning to the large coffin in the corner.
"Not exactly, King. Although weaker, chipped FREAKS and fledgling vampires are irritated by exposure to the sun, a true Nosferatu can easily stand in the sun for long periods of time without feeling the effects. You can't expect to lead a vampire to a window and have them writhing in agony. However, the sun-warmed air befuddles their senses and they're sloth-like until their bodies can adjust, which takes anywhere from thirty seconds to five minutes." She stopped beside the coffin, leaning against one of the posts that ran from floor to ceiling. She'd had the modified "Casket-contraption" installed after they had to rebuild part of the manor from the Millennium attacks. The men arranged themselves around the apparatus, staring in curiosity at the cross emblazoned lid. Integra motioned to the cross and began her lecture anew.
"Today, we're going to look for the signs of a sleeping vampire. If your target is asleep, knowing what to look for can make your job that much easier. Instead of waking and fighting the vampire, you can simply snipe the target and make cleanup a breeze," she explained, making a point-and-shoot gesture with her fingers. Integra turned slightly and rested her hand on the lid of the coffin beside her. "This is, of course, a coffin-the quote/unquote stereotypical vampire bed. However, in the field a vampire will hole up wherever it feels safe for the daylight hours, usually somewhere underground or heavily protected. Hellsing has seen vampires in bank vaults, meat lockers, root cellars, subway tunnels, bomb shelters, and much more. You learned on your first week to expect the unexpected: we don't tell you that just to emphasize overly used clichés." The men nodded studiously, the only sounds being the shuffling of their feet as they fidgeted. They eyed their elderly teacher with a mix of patience and respect, knowing that a lesson from their boss was always an important one and not a time to be inattentive. Integra nodded and pressed a button on the wall, backing away as the lid raised and the bed beneath slowly came into view. She held her finger to her lips again, a reminder to be absolutely quiet. The men obeyed, turning still as statues. The machine creaked and came to a stop with a slight shudder. The men cringed as they looked at the figure on the bed. Integra bit back a laugh at the soldiers' reactions.
"As you can see, our resident vampire Miss Victoria is unconsciously exhibiting the fact that vampires can sleep with their eyes open without any problems," she said almost silently as her whispers dropped another octave. "Can anyone tell me how one can tell that she's asleep?" When no one answered, she gestured to the comatose blonde. "Look first at the chest. Conscious Nosferatu always breathe. They must push air past their vocal chords to speak; and although it's not necessary for their wellbeing, it is still a habit for them left over from their human life. However, vampire sleep is very different from human sleep. If I were to hook up electrodes to Miss Victoria, she'd be showing that she was dead. Her brain would have no function, she wouldn't be breathing; her bodily functions will be shown as absent on any monitor. Notice how she resembles a freshly-dead corpse. Her eyes are glazed and she is in a vegetated state." The soldiers nodded and took mental notes.
"The glazed eyes, the lack of movement in the chest area-these are the two biggest signs to look for. If the lids are closed, look for movement behind them. Vampires lack the ability for REM sleep; however, they still have the ability to dream." The men's eyes widened in surprise and Integra nodded sagely. "Our scientists still can't figure that one out. Now, another thing: don't wake a vampire up. They rely on pure instinct for the first fifty-nine seconds of wakefulness; what we would call being "half-asleep". Now, naturally a vampire usually is roused by the setting sun, about 6:48 p.m. they can be woken during their sleep, but it's not a good idea to do so. Watch." Integra turned and laid one hand on Seras' shoulder. The blonde's eyes snapped alive and her hand caught the woman's arm as she bared her fangs in a hiss. Integra calmly pulled a gun from her jacket and shot the vampire point-blank in the shoulder as Seras lunged for her throat. The vampire's head ricocheted back, the wound already closing around her exposed bones as realization crept into her gaze. She shook her head and blinked sleepily at the elderly woman.
"Sir, ow!" she whined and rotated the shoulder, looking down at it drowsily. She stared at the impromptu party in her room before rubbing her eyes with her blood-shadows. "What's going on?"
"I'm teaching the new recruits about vampire sleeping-patterns. You're our little model for today," the woman replied with a smile, pocketing the still-smoking gun. Seras returned the grin, her fangs catching the light and making the soldiers shiver collectively. No matter how nice the undead Captain was to them, they never forgot the dangerous situation they'd signed up for. Their veteran brothers had told them to relax; the Draculina had a hold on her blood-lust and had never attacked a fellow soldier, either willingly or not. Still, the new men held an overprotective amount of self-preservation in their blood and their untrained minds still hadn't been able to separate undead, moral-lacking FREAKS from their cheerful, motherly superior.
Seras felt their unease and sighed mentally; it wasn't as if she wasn't used to the fear that punctuated all the new arrivals. She knew that as time passed, they'd slowly forget about her being a nightwalker, shoving the information to the backs of their minds in an attempt to preserve their sanity until something drastic happened. Soon enough, they'd be the ones telling the wet-behind-the-ears rookies that she wasn't something to be feared, but instead trusted. Personally, she was happy that anyone besides Integra even bothered to talk to her at all. In the past thirty years, what was left of the Wild Geese that'd stayed behind after Millennium had either been killed on missions or simply grown old and retired, leaving the eternally-young Seras alone with new humans to train in the fine art of government-sanctioned killing. Thankfully, the new generation was a bit more open-minded than their counterparts, and it had taken only a few weeks of persuasion to accept the vampire into their social groups.
"It's still a bit early for me, Sir." Seras conceded with a yawn, laying back on her motorized bed and tucking a hand under her pillow. "I'll join you a little later, if the lesson's over?" Integra nodded and pressed the button on the wall once more, letting her vampire sink back into the gloom. She turned back to the men with a nod and they sidled out of the room in a line, buzzing with barely-suppressed adrenaline as they whispered among themselves about the vampire they'd left behind. Integra parted ways with them in the foyer with orders to go outside and train before nightfall. She turned to go to her office when she caught site of herself in the large mirror situated decoratively on the wall. She walked over and peered at herself.
"Oh my…." Integra murmured as she touched her temples, pulling them up and letting go as she turned her head from side to side. She made a face at the mirror before her eyes became wistful. "Hnn." She tucked her hair behind her ears and smiled, noting that she looked a bit younger when she did so. "Perhaps I should smile more often? It's not like I have to prove myself to the Round Table anymore. I'm one of the oldest now-they have to prove themselves to me," she told her reflection. She tilted her head, fingering the eye patch thoughtfully when two figures appeared behind her. She turned towards the young men, forgetting that she was still practicing her smile. Gregory Penwood returned her smile awkwardly, while the little Irons boy-what was his name again? - only stared. The young Sir Penwood cleared his throat shyly.
"Um, it's time for the weekly fencing lesson, Sir Integra," he reminded, shuffling uneasily as she looked him over. He withered under her stare, glancing away submissively before nudging Sir Irons. The Irons boy winced and nodded, and the young men practically sprinted towards the training room. The Irons boy returned quickly, blushing and going in the opposite direction as he muttered something about Sir Walsh. Integra shook her head. These little children-they have no knowledge of what it means to be a Knight. It's all fencing and formal attire to them. Well, that and having to deal with kooky old Lady Hellsing, she thought with a grin before heading to her room for her gear. On the way, a soldier stopped her, saluting.
"There are ambassadors from the Vatican, waiting for you in the guest-lobby. What shall I do with them?" Integra frowned and rolled her eyes; honestly, she'd forgotten that the stupid blokes were arriving from Italy today. She gave a half-shrug.
"These young men have come for their fencing lesson and I'm not turning them away without homework for the week. Iscariot can wait. Attend to them the best you can, but if they want to come back tomorrow, good riddance."
She was surprised that Sir Penwood was keeping up with her volleys today. Usually he panted and sweated like the slightly-chubby man he was, but this time he actually managed to get a few close calls in. however, he was still nothing compared to her skill. She made the closing thrust and heard Seras call out her hit triumphantly. The Draculina had arrived in the middle of the lesson and Integra knew that she enjoyed watching the swordfights. She was about to congratulate Penwood for his improvement when slow applause grabbed her attention. Turning, she saw the telltale cassocks of Section XIII. She growled under her breath, feeling Seras tense up behind her as they stared down the agents. Damn that Makube. He just has to have his slimy nose poked where it shouldn't be.
"You were supposed to wait in the reception room," she accused. Makube grinned and shrugged, giving her a mocking air of friendliness.
"But waiting just doesn't suit us. Besides, no one even brought us our tea! We grew tired of it, frankly." More like you wanted to see my secret stash of WMAs, or something. Integra narrowed her eyes (eye, she reminded herself bitterly) and pursed her lips at the intruders.
"I can't have you just wandering around here. Go back," she ordered coldly. She caught Seras nodding in her peripheral vision and smugly turned back to her pupils as the Catholics walked away, trusting the Draculina to inform her of any misconduct on their part. She addressed Sir Penwood, her voice almost affectionate as she noted his obvious improvement. He accepted her thanks with the same uncomfortable gawkiness that he always showed around her, turning her praise into a question about his grandfather and his fencing skill. Integra knew that the man barely remembered his grandfather, and she felt at a loss for words for only a moment before catching Seras' eye, who groaned quietly she guessed what was about to come.
"Your grandfather…" she began softly, before she felt a familiar mischievous streak burst through her veins, giving her energy. She immediately lashed into the young man with a cockamamie story about how his grandfather sliced through Nazi ranks before becoming a suicide bomber and taking down airships galore with the impact of his explosion. True to his nature, Penwood was the only one of the men who caught her teasing tone, judging by the look of awe on their faces. He asked uncertainly if the story was true. She lied through her teeth, grimly informing him that his grandfather was the reason she only had one eye, and in lieu of damages for pain and suffering she'd take another new helicopter. She heard Seras' indignant snort in the background: the two of them knew that the old woman had been planning to ask for a new helicopter anyway, since a misguided Harkonnen shot of Seras' had hit one of them last week. It wasn't as if they really needed a new one, but still- there was one missing and Integra wasn't giving the Vatican a chance to point fingers and scream "Look everyone! The Protestants are bankrupt!" as they were apt to do. Penwood agreed with tears in his eyes as he left with the other Knights.
She heard Seras admonishing her for her cruelty towards the young man and her lips drew in a thin line as she recalled her aging face in the mirror. It wasn't just that, though-stairs were becoming harder and harder to climb, her phlebitis kept acting up, she was much more forgetful concerning deadlines (and unwanted guests)…all symptoms pointed to the same, unavoidable thing looming on the horizon. When she died, she knew that Parliament and the King would swipe up her Organization like ducks with stale bread. Sometimes, late at night, she worried about what would happen to the Round Table-would they be able to uphold Hellsing's honor? And what of Seras? It would be a lonely eternity for her if she were a slave to masters that she couldn't befriend. She briskly informed Seras of the real reason for her icy nature. She wanted those boys to be strong men when the time came. She was sure that when the day came, they'd rise to the task; still, she couldn't help but want to give them all a wake-up-slap and show them the cruelty of the world sometimes.
"And besides that, I'm feeling tired," she admitted. Seras denied it steadfastly; Integra knew that the woman didn't want to think that one day, Integra would bid goodbye to the world. She couldn't fathom what it was like to be Seras-watching her friends get old and die, leaving her behind as an eternal young woman with the mind of one much older and wiser. She knew it was hard for the Draculina; it would be more bearable for her if that abominable Alucard had stayed around so that there'd be another unchanging constant in Victoria's world.
But he hadn't, and every day Integra hurt slightly for it. Alucard had always been her protector and she his master. But now, she was only Seras' master in name, and Seras protected her to the best of her abilities, but there wasn't the same smugness that came with Alucard. Seras could be defeated, if there was someone powerful enough. Alucard had always seemed to be omnipotent in the way that he wasn't one to be bested easily. But she'd waited her entire life, and he'd not shown up despite Seras' surefire declarations that he would come back to them someday.
"And when I saw those newer wrinkles, it reminded me a bit of Walter," Integra admitted to her friend. Seras immediately went into cheerful mode.
"Eh? Don't get so depressed! Don't talk about dying! You know, I could always just drink your blood," the vampire teased, and her voice dropped and turned into a deep purr. "Look at me, I'm mimicking Master and-" Seras was cut off as Integra swung her leg up and karate-kicked her in the cheek, irritated beyond reason at the vampire's blatant mockery. "Hey! You didn't have to kick me!" Seras whined and Integra yelled at her, only half listening to what she was saying.
"You didn't have to make such foolish jokes, idiot! And besides, where is that fool Alucard anyway?! It's been thirty years-he's probably not even coming back!" Integra snapped, and Seras popped her collar open to show the puncture marks-one of the many signs that spoke her true nature.
"I know he's gonna come back. I know because of my blood," she stated confidently, her eyes shining in reverence for her absent sire. "Don't you worry about it, Sir. He'll be back one day." Yeah, after I'm nothing more than dust in the ground, he'll be back, she thought irritably as she slowly trudged to the reception room to work on her newest headache.
Integra awoke to the realization that something just wasn't right-someone was in her room. She fingered the pistol she kept under her pillow, her body still in an imitation of sleep. She heard boots clomping on the tile floor, and someone leaned over her. The minute she felt hot breath and heard the growl, she knew who it was but her reflexes kicked in and she emptied her cartridge into the offending body. She heard Seras kick down the door and yell for her, flipping on the light and she looked at the wall to see a red-clad man lying against it. She ran behind Seras for cover as a familiar laugh echoed in the room and the figure raised his head to look at them both with mirth.
"What a rough greeting!" Alucard said sarcastically. "And you're still as loud as ever." Seras bounded forward happily, calling her true master's name as Integra went to sit wearily on the bed.
"It's been a long absence, Alucard. Where have you been?" she inquired softly, staring at her kneecaps. She listened patiently to her servant's explanation of how he'd destroyed all the souls in his body, needing only one now to survive. She looked up and appraised the vampire, noting the absent look in his eyes and realizing that he must have been hungry. She offered her blood. "I'm an old woman now; it'll probably taste bad," she admitted, but at his acceptance she bit her finger and let the resulting crimson fluid drip into his mouth and on his inhumanly long tongue. After feeding him, she wiped the residue on her white nightshirt and looked around, noting that Seras had vacated the room at some point, either to stop her blood-lust or to give the pair their privacy. For the first time, Integra really considered what assumptions that Seras may have about the nature of her and Alucard's relationship.
"Well, that's a fine greeting. What an ungrateful fledgling. One shout of Master and she's ran to her room. Little idiot." Integra frowned down at Alucard, who was glaring at the door strangely. He looked almost…sad? No, that wasn't the word-let down. There it was. She sniffed and walked back to her bed, covering up with the sheet to protect her weary bones from the night chill.
"What did you expect? You disappear for thirty years; did you think she'd start sobbing and fling herself on you like a child? Seras has grown since you've last saw her, you know. She's become a fine Nosferatu, but she's kept her morality," Integra acknowledged. "She's a far cry from whatever you are, that's for sure. But to her credit, she was the only one who stayed unwaveringly faithful to the thought that you'd come back someday. Even I began to doubt you, Alucard." She watched as Alucard stood and came to stand by the bed, his gaze never wavering from the doorway. Integra lay back against her pillows and closed her eyes. "All your belongings are still where you left them, Alucard. Now if you'll excuse me, I'm an old woman and it's past my bedtime so I'm going back to sleep. I'll see you tomorrow." She heard nothing, and opened her eye questioningly to see that he'd already phased through the floor. She smiled and relaxed against her pillow, wondering if things were going to become interesting soon.
Alucard walked slowly down the unchanged halls of the basement, letting his senses branch out from instinct. He felt the thousands of heartbeats of the soldiers in the barracks. He heard Integra's slow, deep breathing-a sign that she'd fallen straight back to sleep. He heard Seras shuffling around in her chambers down the hall, and he headed in her direction. He didn't bother with the door, instead simply walking through it and standing silently to gaze at the familiar, yet different room.
Seras had collected things to make her room more personal over the years, and he contemplated the unfamiliar pictures on the wall. One entire wall was filled with pictures of Seras and various people over the years. He recognized some of them as Wild Geese, but others he could only guess were soldiers that had come during his absence. A large poster over her dresser proclaimed that he should "Keep Calm and Stay Weird". A tiny cartoon pug shouted "Happy Birthday!" on a multicolored greeting-card, which sat upright on a nightstand next to several books and a fashion magazine. His fledgling was brushing her hair out in the vanity mirror, already dressed in her normal blue pajamas with her tiny feet bare on the cold stones. Her back was turned to him, but he knew that she wasn't ignorant of his presence. She finally pointed the hairbrush towards the table in the center of the room.
"You can have a seat, you know." He sat obediently and watched her movements as she completed her nightly routine before turning to face him. During his fight with Walter, he'd not had the chance to truly take in her appearance as a true nightwalker but now his eyes roved her body, taking in her increased power and the shadows curling up her makeshift appendage lazily. Her eyes were the same crimson color as his, and she gazed at him thoughtfully before offering a slight smile. "I always knew that you'd come back someday, my Master." He grunted and swung his feet up on the table, leaning back with his hands hanging limply at the sides. Seras sat quietly across from him, crossing her arms and leaning forward onto the table.
"You drank the blood," he started.
"Now you are one of us."
"You can choose your own path."
"You wander the night, powerful and singular-"
"Once in a while."
"Eternal and complete…"
"It's more of an indulgence, really." He glared at her, and she gave him a mocking grin in return, resting her cheek on one hand.
"All that's left is for you to drink my blood. You're already a true Queen; it's the only stipulation of ridding me as your Master. Drink my blood, if you so choose."
"Yes…you would say that," Seras murmured, fingering her one glove with her shadows. She glanced up at him through her lashes, the calm smile fading from her countenance. "Fucking bastard." Alucard blinked in surprise before her shadows shot across the table and punched him in the jaw. He grunted slightly, feeling the chair slip and tilt backwards. He stood as it clattered to the floor, rubbing his cracked jaw in annoyance. She bared her fangs and growled at him, and he returned the growl tenfold.
"I just knew it-Pip was wrong! Even from the first week, you've wanted to get rid of me! It's always "Drink the blood Seras!" "Why didn't you just drink the blood you idiot?" "Such a weak thing-can't even drink!" she snarled furiously, shadows whipping around her small form. "If it wasn't for Integra, I'd never of stayed around! I didn't want you back anyway, Master!"
"Liar," he accused, crossing his arms. "If you never wanted to be around me, you wouldn't have hesitated the first time I commanded you to drink. You were weak then, and you're weak now." Seras sputtered angrily, her fists clenching as she wracked her mind for a comeback. Finding none, she simply pulled her hand up in a rude, defiant gesture.
"Fuck you." She barely got the words out before he grabbed her head and shoved it against the wall across the room, hearing the thick crunch of her skull and the resounding yelp with satisfaction. He smirked, only to have the air whoosh out of his lungs as she brought a knee up into his groin hard. He threw her around as he cringed, and she landed on the table, smashing it on impact and raining chunks of wood onto her face.
"It seems that you've forgotten exactly who I am, little girl. It's time to refresh your memory." He stopped, pulling her up by the collar of her pajamas and bringing her eye-to-eye with himself. He was secretly happy that she'd found her backbone, and was railing against him like a real vampire and not a timid, weak fledgling. However, there was a time and place, and he was still sore from her dismissive treatment of his return. "Now, you will bow your head down and show some respect for your sire." She looked him dead in the eyes.
"I'm giving you all the respect I think you deserve, Vlad," she sneered. That was it. They fell and were rolling on the ground, fighting like cats and dogs as they hissed and spit and scratched each other. Each fought the other for the upper position, ripping apart clothes and pulling hair. He pinned the thrashing woman to the ground, only to have her gnawing on his arm with her blunt back teeth, refusing to use her fangs as she brutally ripped the skin of his wrist to the bone. Then, Seras had him forced against the hard floor, using her thighs like a vice to keep him still as she punched his head with her ghostly arm, the shadows cutting into his skin and making thin rivulets of blood run down his cheeks. They struggled again and Alucard hit the floor after a long moment, shadows holding his neck down as Seras held a large, sharpened chunk of table against his chest as a makeshift stake. The irony of the situation came over him and he leered up at her, knowing that they both knew a stake wouldn't do a damn thing to him; it was only the action that meant anything.
"You haven't got the guts," he declared confidently, not moving once to defend himself. Seras stared into his eyes for a long while, the edge of the stake driving deeply, but not enough to break the skin on his chest. Finally, she curled her lip in disgust and threw the wood aside, pushing herself off of him. He caught a glimpse of her breasts through the tattered pajamas as she turned away from him, wrapping her arms around her legs and burying her face in her knees. He raised himself off the floor, scowling at her unmoving form. Tearing apart enemies, striking fear into his victims, teasing and mocking: these were things he was good at. Comforting distressed females? Not so much.
"It's just that-you left me all by myself. I'd never been so lonely before in all my life. Even at the orphanage, at least I was around my own kind." He heard a hint of tears in her voice. Something in his chest twisted strangely and he glanced down at his heart, wondering if she'd driven a part of the stake too deeply after all. His chest was unmarked, though and he realized that he remembered the emotion from somewhere far, far in the past. He felt…guilty? Disgusting, he thought angrily, but he was more irritated towards himself this time. It'd been so long that he'd forgotten how to process and deal with the emotion, so he simply ignored it and turned his mind on more pressing matters. Looking at Seras' pale neck, which was revealed as her hair flopped across her shoulders unevenly as she sat, he licked his lips.
"I hunger." He informed her, sliding along the ground to grab her shoulders. To his surprise, a pool of shadows opened at his side and a tiny child emerged part-way, her gray eyes soulful and curious. She placed two blood-bags on the floor and returned to the inky darkness, disappearing into the closing void.
"Eat them. I don't want them." He immediately drained the bags, and when he slurped the last bit out he looked over to see Seras had brought her face back up and was watching him wearily. He gulped the last swallow and eyed her.
"Who was the child?" Seras stared at him blankly for a moment before understanding crossed her features.
"Lydia. My souls aren't like yours were. I only have four, but they all keep their personalities." He arched his brows at the number and she nodded, rattling off names as she counted on one hand. "Pip, Elizabeth, Doug, and Lydia; in that order." Alucard huffed and crunched the plastic in his hand.
"Souls can keep their human traits, if you allow them too. I let mine go, simply because the numbers grew too great for them all to be squawking around inside my mind." Seras gave a half-shrug.
"I honestly don't notice it that much. But maybe it's because I let them out a lot, so they stay quiet when they need to be?" She frowned at him and reached over, shoving him back to the floor. He struggled in annoyance but froze when her breath touched his neck.
"I'm going to drink your blood now. Will we be entirely separate?" she asked hesitantly, and he heard the undercurrent of fear in her tone. He shook his head slightly.
"We'll always be connected; it's in our blood. Does that disappoint you?" She chuckled softly, her lips accidently brushing the skin as she jerked and leaned back to look him in the eyes.
"Why do you-" she began, but then stopped and licked her lips absently. She shook her head and sighed. "You're so bewildering. You act disappointed in me, then you want to bite me, then you're angry because I won't drink, and now you sit here and ask me if I'm disappointed because you can't get rid of me forever?" she smacked his shoulder, but there was no force behind it. "Talk about mixed signals."
"You seem to want nothing to do with me, either. You fight me, and when I come back after thirty years you act as if it's just another night." He flexed under her touch, getting comfortable as he realized that he would be here awhile if Seras was going to force him to have an emotion-charged conversation. The lengths I go to for her happiness- the sudden thought made him uneasy. Seras looked confused for a moment before bursting into giggles.
"Master, did I-did I hurt your feelings?" she looked at him before snorting. "Good Lord!" She shook her head again, pulling her hand away to wipe tears from her cheeks. "I was just giving you and Integra time to talk. I didn't think that it'd actually offend you."
"Why?" Alucard inquired, bemused at her sudden giddy mood. Females were so changeable at times. Seras made a face and lay next to him on the floor, not seeming to mind the blood and splinters.
"Because I've got you for eternity. Integra's old, Master. One day she won't be here anymore, but I will. I can spare you for a couple of years, if that will make her happy." Alucard lifted his head to peer down at her.
"You love her." It was a simple statement, but the astonishment behind it was clear. Seras nodded.
"Yes. After Millennium, we became like sisters to each other. I still feel that way, although she looks more like my grandmother now." He hummed, accepting her answer. He, too felt like Integra was a tiny, spoiled sister that he'd had the unfortunate task of watching after as she grew, although she now looked much older than he ever would, even starved for blood. "Police Girl."
"If you want to drink my blood, do it because of reasons for yourself, not because you think that it's what I want. Do this for Integra. Let her leave the world before you become a weakling again." Seras scoffed lightly and raised herself on one elbow.
"I'm not going to become weak again. I'll only be stronger, and now that I know you can't get rid of me, I'm not in such a hurry anymore," she teased. He rolled his eyes and she tittered before pointing across the room. He followed her finger to see a calendar on the wall with a picture of a cow dressed like an ancient human, sporting the humorous name "King Hamurabeef". Seras nodded sagely at the calendar. "Two weeks. I'll drink your blood on the night of the harvest moon. I have to give myself these little goals or else I get bored and fifteen years pass by before I can think about it."
She looked around the ruined room with a wince. "Geez…Winnie is going to have a fit about this come tomorrow." Alucard stood and she followed suit, kicking pieces of table around to make a path to her bed. She lay on the sheets, groaning when he gave her an expectant look. "Pip will tease me mercilessly if he finds out you slept in my coffin." She pointed to the door as she pressed the lever, descending into the lower levels of the coffin-bed. He grinned and phased into his chair, letting his little childe have her privacy for the night. She was right, after all. They had eternity.
Afterword: I got the idea for the sleeping lesson-about the meat lockers and bank vaults and comatose state- from the book The Reformed Vampire Support Group by…Jinks is the last name, but I don't remember the first. Google it! It's a good read, and I encourage everyone to check it out. It sheds a different light on vampire stereotypes.