Pairing: CrissColfer (vampire!Darren/fae!Chris)
Rating/Warnings: eventual R / blood, sexual encounters, supernatural elements
Length: part three ~ 2,200 (total ~13,800)
A/N: This wouldn’t be if it weren’t for Katie and Susan indulging my sordid fantasies. Special thanks to Katie for encouraging me throughout this and for reading every little word of it as it happened. And as always, a thousand kisses to Tessa for fixing my many mistakes.
Summary: Chris has spent his long life trapped inside the marble-walled city, held captive by satin-edged restrictions and expectations, until the day he stumbles across a wild and untamed man who teaches him how to listen to the call of his blood.
If you are not long, I will wait for you all my life. - Oscar Wilde
Chris doesn’t see Darren for three days.
He hides in the city, tucked away in the palace where he’s supposed to be anyway. It’s not like he’s perpetually confined to a boring, chafing courtly life of state affairs and long dinner parties. Of marble floors and silk sheets and nothing at all that could be considered even remotely dangerous or exciting.
He’s allowed out, of course he is; his movements aren’t restricted, despite his status. But he’s supposed to take his attendants with him when he leaves the stale safety of the palace grounds and ventures beyond the city walls. The fact that he’d ditched them twice in the same week means they’re watching him a little more closely these days.
Chris finds himself hating it all. Every moment he’s under a high, arched roof, clad in tight, restrictive clothing is a moment too long. He suddenly aches to be outside, under the sky with his skin bared to the sun, his feet in the dirt, and a vampire’s strong hands on his naked hips.
Chris has spent his whole life in the city - performing his duties, learning his manners, becoming the man he was born to be. He’s done it all perfectly for so long. And now, now it’s not enough. It was never enough, not really, but the heavy desire for more is so clearly defined in a way it never was before. He knows what he wants. And what he wants is Darren. But Darren isn’t for him. Chris is meant for another of his kind - another tall, pale man, with royal blood and ancient magic in his veins. It’s not supposed to be a vampire. But it is.
He wasn’t supposed to be in the woods that day, the first time he laid eyes on Darren, wild and naked. He was supposed to be at the palace dealing with one boring affair or the other. Something had happened between a mage and a pixie that needed the attention of the Council. But he’d slipped past the watchful eyes of his attendants and into the cool dark of the forest that spread out vast and ancient from the borders of the city. He was always so much more comfortable out in nature, where the air tasted like life and the water sluiced cool and refreshing over his body. When he was little, he used to pretend that he was a nymph, sleek and wild. He’d hide from his parents in the tended gardens of the palace for hours, darting between the tall rose bushes, getting dirt on his clothes, and leaves in his hair, staying out until his fair skin freckled. Chris is convinced that the circumstances of his birth are all wrong. He belongs outside; he belongs with Darren.
Grant, Riker, and Curt, his attendants, corner him on the second day after his encounter with Darren. He’d successfully avoided them by staying in his quarters with his books and his own writing. The distraction helped keep him from dwelling too long on the faded heat of Darren’s hands and tongue; the lingering electricity of his savage magic.
Chris sees them approaching from the other end of the grand hallway, all three beautiful in their own way, and he sighs deeply. He wants to turn on his heel and disappear again.
“Don’t run, Christopher,” Grant says, laughter on the edges of his voice. Grant always had a way of knowing exactly what Chris was thinking.
“Grant. Gentlemen.” Chris nods curtly at them, which is ridiculous, because they’re his best friends.
“You’ve been hiding from us,” Grant folds his arms across his chest. He’s even taller than Chris.
“I’ve been busy.”
“Busy avoiding us,” Riker says. He’s the youngest of them, but bright, effervescent. So filled with joy it’s impossible to stay angry around him. His magic reaches out and lifts others’ moods.
“What’s going on, Chris?” Curt asks. He’s always been the one to dig at a perceived problem. “Where were you the other day? We know you went out into the forest, and when you came back you were…off. You felt off. What happened?”
Chris thinks about lying, telling them some story about being surprised by a pack of werewolves or something, but the werewolves in the area are all registered, and they’d know if there were any outsiders nearby. And beyond that, he knows his friends can sense the subtle change in his magic; a thread of energy that’s not his own. An energy that’s so clearly not like theirs.
“I - I met someone,” Chris hedges, even though that statement alone is grounds for worry on their parts.
“Who?” Riker asks. He sounds excited about the prospect.
“You interacted with a man unsupervised?” There’s shock around Curt’s mouth, disapproval in his voice.
Grant’s eyes are bright and keen on his face and Chris knows that he can tell there’s more. “He isn’t just a man, is he?”
Chris swallows, meeting Grant’s gaze. “He’s a vampire.”
“Gods, Chris!” Curt exclains. Grant presses his lips together like he’s trying not to smile. Riker’s jaw drops; Chris knows the younger boy has never met a vampire before, but he wants to.
“Well then,” Grant says. “What’s his name?”
“Darren.” Chris’ belly squirms happily at the thought of him and he’s glad his friends can’t scent his body chemistry the way other creatures can, the way Darren does.
“You were with a vampire. Alone. Chris. You know that’s not allowed,” Curt chastises, as if Chris doesn’t know it.
“Seems like the list of things I’m not allowed to do far exceeds the few things I am allowed,” Chris snipes. He’s so tired of all of the constraints of his life.
“Why don’t you tell us what happened,” Grant prompts.
“I went out into the forest last week. I was bored, restless. He was there - he was, hunting. We talked.” Chris doesn’t want to tell his friends about the hunger in Darren’s eyes that first meeting, the way he somehow knew not to touch Chris. He doesn’t tell his friends the vampire was naked. “And then, a couple days ago, I was out again, at the spring. He approached me.” Chris doesn’t tell them he was bathing, or that Darren joined him.
“We - we had a moment.” Chris swallows heavily and remembers the way his magic felt pushing up against Darren’s, the way his cock felt against another’s.
Grant’s eyebrow lifts. Riker looks like he can’t wait to hear the rest. Curt is beginning to look furious.
“What kind of moment?” Grant asks.
“We exchanged magic.” Chris says simply. There’s no other way to put it. So many rules have already been broken between him and Darren. Boundaries crossed, laws violated. No point in obfuscating now. There’s a long beat of silence that echoes along the hallway.
“What?” Curt’s voice is low. Chris can feel the dark-haired man’s magic spiking.
“Magic. He - his magic, it reached out to me. And mine answered. It covered me. We, we linked.” Chris closes his eyes briefly. Breathes in. Darren’s wild magic is a low thrum along his own, an easy harmony.
“Shit.” Grant says. He almost sounds impressed. Grant’s never been one to cling to the old ways and social norms.
“Does he know?” Riker asks.
“Of course not. He’s a vampire. They can’t, they’re not magical enough to sense something like that. But I did. I know.” Chris presses his hand to his belly. He can still feel the traces of Darren’s essence inside him, dancing along his nerves, mingling with his own power. They’re not bonded - there’s so much more to it than an exchange - but they’re linked now. It’s not strong, but it’s there. The fact that it happened at all, that a vampire had enough power to exchange with Chris tells him the choice he’s going to make is the right one. If he holds on to it, it’s going to be inside him forever. He smiles a little.
“Oh, you’re fucked,” Grant laughs.
“The Council is going to know, too. They’re going to sense that you’re…” Curt trails off, like he doesn’t want to finish the sentence.
“What? That I’m tainted? Tainted with vampire?” Chris stares into Curt’s eyes until the other man blinks.
“Hey, man.” Curt holds his hands up between them. “I don’t mean to imply that-”
“You don’t like vampires, we get it. But this is Chris we’re talking about, show some respect.” Grant chimes in and Chris is thankful. He’s happy to know that he’s at least got Grant on his side.
“There’s more.” Chris says, because there’s no point in keeping anything else secret. The exchange of magic isn’t controllable; Darren won’t be held accountable for that, even if it happened with someone as important and untouchable as Chris.
“He kissed me. We kissed.” Chris shudders to remember it, the heady taste of Darren’s tongue. The softness of his lips and the way he cradled Chris’ face in both hands with a gentleness that belied the eagerness of his kiss and the power in his body. Chris remembers the way those hands pulled him close and angled him just right, just the way Darren wanted him. The bright burst of pain when Darren’s fang nicked his lower lip. And then the panic as he pulled away before Darren could take any of his blood inside himself. The kiss is bad enough. The sheer impropriety of it, not to mention the illegality. The exchange of spit, of bodily essence with someone like Chris, someone he’s not bonded to. It’s enough to get Darren banished if anyone brings charges against him.
“Fuck.” Curt breathes out.
“He bite you?” Riker asks, disbelief clear in his tone. He sounds shocked, but not upset.
“Not exactly. He…accidentally cut my lip.” Chris touches his tongue to the healed wound. He doesn’t think he’ll ever forget where Darren first marked him.
“Gods, Chris. Did he-” Curt trails off.
“No,” Chris shakes his head. “He didn’t take any.” If Darren had, if he’d taken any of Chris’ blood, and not just his saliva, then this conversation would be so very different. Chris sort of wishes it was.
Grant’s eyes narrow. “But you would let him, wouldn’t you.” It’s not a question.
“I want him to,” Chris agrees. There. It’s done. It’s said. Silence follows.
“Chris, you can’t possibly want that.” Curt says, scandalized. “You know you’re meant for more than someone like him.”
“Hey,” Riker says, shrugging. “The man wants a vamp. Let him have a vamp.” Chris laughs, high and relieved. He kind of wants to hug Riker.
“It’s not that easy,” Curt protests. “The Council will never allow you to bond with a vampire. You’re too important. You know that. I mean, you’ve already rejected two potential suitors-”
“Three,” Chris interrupts.
“Three men of proper birth and standing. You can’t possibly think that the Council, that your father, will let you sign your life and magic over to a vampire.”
“And if I do it without their consent?” Chris lifts his chin defiantly. He doesn’t need to hear this from Curt; he already knows. He already knows how deep this problem is. He doesn’t care. His magic decided; his heart is following.
“They could banish you both.” Riker offers softly.
Chris blinks slowly. The thought of banishment, of being exiled out of the city and the country, isn’t frightening the way it would have been before he met Darren. It’s been less than a week, but his soul knows, his magic knows. That’s all that matters to him.
“So, let me just sum this mess up,” Grant says. He makes a placating gesture with his hands between Curt and Chris. “Darren, this vampire, was with you unsupervised. Twice. He kissed you. I’m assuming he touched you elsewhere. And he cut you.”
“I was also naked,” Chris adds, because he can. The three other men groan simultaneously. Riker drags his hand through his hair and Curt briefly turns away.
Grant nods. He once again looks like he’s trying not to grin. “And you were naked. Right. What are you going to do? What do you want to do?”
Chris feels some of the tension leave his body. “I want him.” He knows Darren wants him too.
“That’s about how long I’ll live.” Chris doesn’t need to say that Darren will live just as long.
“You want to bond with him.”
Chris takes a deep breath. He closes his eyes, reaching down within himself to where Darren’s magic is coiling around his own. It feels comfortable, familiar. Like a part of him he never knew was missing has begun to click into place. He wishes it were already inexorably linked with his.
Curt swears softly and Riker rocks excitedly on his toes. Grant just smiles wider and shakes his head.
“Well, then we’re just going to have to come up with a plan then, aren’t we?”
Chris grins. He’s always been a fan of Grant’s plans.