Rating: R for content
Summary: Sometimes you have to choose what is more important; life or love.
Author's notes: For Patt and Mary, because they asked for more. <g> Thanks to Mary and Sherri for beta'ing this story.
Love is something eternal...
Jim exhaled contentedly as he sat leaning against a tree trunk. It was a beautiful night, hardly the kind of weather you would expect to see in Cascade. For once there was a warm, soft breeze flowing, the sky was clear and you could actually see the stars shining up above. Hard to believe it was near the end of October.
He had left home early, on the way to a stakeout, but as he was driving by the park he had been unable to resist the temptation to stop and relax for a while. He still had half an hour before he had to join Rafe, and the warehouse they were supposed to watch was two minutes away from there. Too bad Blair had classes in the morning, or he would have been the one with him. It would have made time go by faster.
He closed his eyes, his thoughts turning to his lover. They had been sharing their lives for years, being partners, friends, Sentinel and Guide. It had been surprisingly painless to finally admit to the attraction between them, to take that final step. And in bed, like in everything else, they fit together perfectly, meeting each other's hopes and needs effortlessly. But although the words want, desire, and passion had been often spoken, the 'L' word had never been mentioned by either of them.
Until that night. After months of beating around the bush, Jim had finally said the words. As he was making love with Blair, impaling his lover's body on his shaft, thrusting into the pliant body beneath him, he had surrendered and said them. And what an amazing sight, to see a writhing, moaning Blair smile up at him and say the words back. I. Love. You.
A lifetime wasn't enough for them, for what he felt for Blair. He wanted eternity, centuries and centuries together, to love the other man, to show him everything he wanted to see, to give him everything he craved.
"I can give you what you wish," a voice said softly from behind him.
Startled, Jim rose from the ground, his hand already going for his gun. He frowned at the man staring innocently at him. He hadn't heard him approach, his senses hadn't picked up any motion, any sound, nothing. It was unnerving.
"Who are you?" he growled annoyed as he took in the sight before him.
The stranger was tall and slim, but well built. He possessed a long mane of blond hair that reached his shoulders, and his blue eyes seemed to pierce Jim to his very soul. But the startling thing about the man was his paleness; there was an eerie quality to the man's skin tone, or lack of. He reminded Jim of a wax figure.
"My name is Lestat," the man replied, a French accent lighting his tone. "And I can grant you what you wish."
Jim narrowed his eyes dangerously, his gun still aimed at the other man. "And what is it that I wish?"
"Eternity. Isn't that what you where thinking about, mon cher?"
"And how would you give me eternity?" Jim asked sarcastically, not understanding how the man could have known that. Maybe he had been thinking out loud.
Lestat smiled slightly, then his lips parted and his tongue swiped wantonly over his upper lip. And his fangs.
Jim gasped. For a moment he entertained the thought the fangs were fake, but his Sentinel vision couldn't lie. Neither could his hearing. He could pick up no heartbeat from the other man. For all intents and purposes, he was staring at a dead man.
"It's not possible," he whispered. "Vampires don't exist."
Lestat's smile widened. "And why not? There are many things humans believe to be legend, old wives tales, but who still roam the earth. Sentinels, for instance," he finished with a wicked glint in his eyes.
"How do you --?" Jim began.
"Know about you?" Lestat interjected. "I can read your thoughts. I've been following you and your lover for a while. You are perfection together, you belong to the night. Think about it, Watchman; to live forever, no sickness, no death. To have the exquisite Blair by your side forever."
"No," Jim replied softly. "No." More firmly. "It's wrong. I would never kill to survive."
"You wouldn't have to. There are... other means to acquire blood nowadays, people who can help you. For a price, of course. You would never have to kill, cher."
Jim frowned. "My answer is still no. Maybe we won't have forever, but the time we have, we will spend it together. Without having to turn into monsters."
Lestat shrugged. "There are many kinds of monsters. Most of them worse than vampires. I believe you have met many in your lifetime," he sighed dramatically. "Very well, Watchman. I'll be close until the All Hallows Eve. If you change your mind, think of my name and I will be there."
And suddenly, as mysteriously as he had appeared, Lestat was gone.
Jim took a deep breath and walked over to the truck, barely on time to meet with Rafe. As he drove mindlessly through the deserted streets of Cascade, he couldn't help wondering if he had made the right choice, or if he had let his fears and beliefs cloud up his judgment.
Three days later he was still wondering the same. He hadn't told Blair about Lestat or his offer, he had been too afraid Blair might disagree with his choice.
He was on his way to join Rafe on yet another boring night on stakeout, driving through the warehouse district, when he suddenly heard gunshots. Parking quickly, he rushed out of the truck, gun ready, running towards the sound.
He never stood a chance.
As he walked silently through the empty streets, two men jumped out of the shadows, their weapons trained on him. His senses sent the warning to his mind, but his body was too slow to react. Hot pain filled his chest as two bullets hit him, and he closed his eyes, falling helplessly to the ground, gun slipping from numb fingers.
He heard the two men running away, felt the cold concrete beneath him, knew with frightening clarity he was dying. And suddenly his mind was filled with Blair -- laughing, lecturing him, smiling up at him with those blue, blue eyes. Crying when Maya left; high on adrenaline when they solved a case; distraught after being rescued from Lash. Worried, happy, sad, content, bouncing excitedly... And finally, body arching from the bed, head tipped back submissively as they made love.
And he knew. He knew then he would never be able to give that up, he would never be able to give Blair up. He was too selfish for that, he didn't want to die, he didn't want to leave Blair behind.
'LESTAT!' his mind cried out.
"I'm here, cher," a voice whispered, gentle hands gathering him against a cold body.
He felt the urgent sting of fangs against his neck, moaning at the arousal the vampire kiss wrought from him. He was painfully hard, feeling Lestat drink his life essence, letting the pleasure surge over him. A hand pressed against the bulge in his pants, caressing him, adding to the intense feeling overwhelming him. He arched his back with a painful groan, feeling his orgasm hit just as the lips abandoned his throat.
Lestat was looking down at him, soft lips stained red with blood, a thin droplet peeking out from the one corner of the mouth. "When you wake up, I will tell you all you need to know. Now drink, cher," he ordered, slashing his wrist and bringing it to Jim's lips.
He hesitated, but the thought of Blair made him reach out for the wrist, drinking greedily to quench the need clawing at him. And as he felt death approaching he let go of all his fears and beliefs, morality and human frailty. Only one thing mattered, Blair and his love for the younger man.
And as he rose to a brand new world, and to a brand new life, he knew his lover would be there with him, for him. Forever. Always.
2. Forever Love
Blair walked the moonlit streets mindlessly, oblivious to the children's laughter as they went from house to house 'Trick or treating'. The dark trees looked ghastly in the midnight hour, the sky an endless expanse of black dotted with shining stars and a pale ceramic-like moon.
The cold bit into him, but he didn't really feel it. Fear and pain and loneliness had numbed his whole being days before. The swaying of the trees and the sound of the wind seemed like the calling of a ghost stretching out his arms to him. He didn't care. Nothing else mattered now.
He was alone. His lover was gone. Jim was gone. Five days and no word, no news, nothing. He had simply disappeared on his way to a stakeout. Without a trace. There were no leads, no clues as to his whereabouts. It was as if James Joseph Ellison had never existed, never walked the earth before.
Blair's mind was filled with their last nights together; the intense and sweet lovemaking, the vows exchanged. Forever. Always. All was shattered now. Lost. Nevermore.
He was strolling through a secluded park when he noticed movement in the shadows. His heart suddenly pounding in his chest, he tried to call out. No words came forth; it was as his very soul had fallen captive to a spell, rendering him speechless. Finally, he forced himself to whisper a question.
"Who... Who's there?"
More movement, but no answer. Abruptly, he realized he hadn't seen anyone around in a while; no children, not the usual small groups on their way to private parties, not even cars driving by. Everyone in Cascade seemed to have disappeared behind their locked doors.
And someone out there was watching him.
He tried to gaze into the night but couldn't make out much of anything, except for the shadows. Suddenly, one of the shadows shifted closer.
"Who are you?" Blair asked, his voice uneven.
A man emerged from the darkness, dressed all in black, features looking eerily pale in the moonlight. Blair gasped, not believing his eyes, not believing the vision before him could possibly be real.
"Jim," he breathed softly.
His lover smiled gently. "Blair," he whispered back, extending a hand towards him.
In that moment Blair knew what had happened to his lover and what he was being asked. He would never be turned by force. He was being given a choice; to join Jim and walk the pathway of darkness forever, or turn away and never look back. He looked into the love-filled blue eyes and knew Jim was still the same man he had fallen in love with; nothing would ever change that.
"Yes," he replied softly.
Jim's smile grew wider. He moved closer, until they were a mere hairsbreadth away. He cupped Blair's face with cold, but tender hands. "I love you," he whispered before they shared a final kiss.
Jim unbuttoned his shirt sensually, exposing his shoulder. Strong, but gentle arms came around him, pulling him close, a leg pressing wantonly between his. A hand tangled in his hair, holding him possessively, tipping his head to expose the neck. He arched his back, moaning, letting his head loll to one side as Jim's lips touched his throat.
He closed his eyes, taking a deep breath as his lover nipped playfully at his skin. The teeth sunk in suddenly and there was pain, but it was soon replaced by ecstasy the likes he had never felt before. His whole body tingled; he was on fire, submerged in the pleasure of the vampire's kiss.
He clung weakly to Jim's silk shirt, moaning loudly as his aroused body slid against his lover's. He felt dizzy from the loss of blood and fell back, helpless in Jim's arms, helpless to the powerful body that pressed itself against him with growing urgency.
Jim's tongue worked the wound, teasing the ravaged flesh, and Blair cried out, feeling his seed flowing from his shaft as his blood flowed from his veins. He knew he was dying; life was becoming death and death becoming life.
"Drink, Blair." Jim's voice seemed to come from far away. Dimly, Blair was aware of Jim raising a hand to slash his own throat, and he watched for a long, hazy moment as the red, hot liquid poured down the length of his neck, soaking the shirt.
A careful hand guided his lips to the wound, urging him to drink. And then blood filled his mouth, warming him, and it was pleasure so intense that he couldn't stop whimpering. He clung to Jim, holding him tightly in his arms, and when the blood cycle was complete, and he was finally dying, a voice whispered tenderly in his ear, "Beloved..."
And he knew he would rise soon to a brand new world, to a brand new life. But one thing would remain unchanged, Jim. His lover would be there with him, for him. Forever. Always.