Before the change, his life had been on the right track in the eyes of society. He held a respectable job, a home, family and friends that he looked upon fondly. In one swift moment, this was taken from him and he was left adrift, thrust into a world he once believed was nothing more than exaggeration and twisted fiction. He could remember the bloodcurdling screams of a woman as he went to help, the fear in her eyes that at the time, felt so real. She changed in an instant and he was paralyzed by fear and pain as she sunk her fangs into his flesh, over and over again, desperate and hungry. He could do little to defend himself, he could recall struggling and then... the events were hazy from then on; covered in blood he stumbled home and could say nothing other than mumbles in the affirmative and short nods.
Everything seemed fine. He was overtired perhaps, and simply imagined what had happened. He was obviously attacked by a wild animal, wolf, dog or juvenile bear, that was logical. He could not and would not dare say, that the gaze that haunted him was unmistakably human, nor would he divulge the disgusting taste of blood that stuck to his tongue and wouldn’t leave. Sickness gradually took him. He ignored the concerned looks of others and brushed off their words with a shrug and smile. “I’m fine.” He insisted. “I’ve seen the doctor. Simply a minor illness. Not contagious, nothing to worry about.” Yet his lethargy persisted, his head pounded and every inch of him prickled. His skin grew paler and he became bothered by the sun, it seemed to burn his eyes and skin yet there was no apparent damage.
A hunger grew inside of him, that no food could satiate. Everything he tried left him dissatisfied, he either vomited up meals or spat them back out before he could chew them. He comforted his friends, told them not to worry, that it was going to be okay. He had seen this before, in the occasional neighbour, but it had never been close to home. At times, people became ill and their health declined due to some infection. Sometimes they got better, others they didn’t, but he was determined to survive. He kept telling himself it was nothing. That he would wake up, any day now, and be his old self again. That never happened, if anything his appetite only increased, yet he could find nothing to stop the ache, until that night.
Unleashed and desperate, he slaughtered indiscriminately. Blinded by blood-lust and supernatural rage. When the want came, rising up out of the black, he was swept away in a flood and could do nothing but drown. The agony was all-consuming and all he could think about was making it stop. When it was over, he stood in the wake of the devastation he’d caused, blood everywhere. It coated his skin and theirs, he could taste it on his tongue, feel it trickle down his throat – satisfied yet he felt sick. Gabriel fell to his knees and stared at his hands, eyes wide with shock and disbelief. It was impossible, impossible – and yet, reality.
The truth? He was a monster.
His life was over, everything he knew, everything he loved was now well out of his reach. He couldn’t go home like this, he had no choice but to abandon everything and find a way to end his life. There was no way he could continue to roam as a bloodthirsty abomination. On his knees, tears of blood trickled down his face as he screamed into the night, leaning over he knotted his fingers in his hair, in complete and utter despair. A gentile voice came drifting through the night, it soothed and brought with it a light. Dim yet enough to illuminate a path to salvation. There was no fixing what had happened, but the witch that came to him, may as well have been an angel. She offered her hand and he took it.
There was no other option. In the days and weeks that followed he grew bitter, struggling to comprehend what he’d become and her intentions in keeping him. He owed her, there was no doubt about that and yet he couldn’t help but feel resentful about their bond. It would have been better if she ended him, but he never said this aloud, it was kept firmly locked away like most of his thoughts, until his mood shifted and he spat venom without understanding the true gravity of his words. He always apologized after and yet his regret lingered. There was no denying he could not survive without her, but he suspected she knew this. Angela was a witch after all, well versed in these kinds of things and he, a fledgling vampire without a master, abandoned and rotten.
Yet somehow she could see through his pain, chose to coexist with him, braved the danger he posed – he couldn’t help but open up to her as time wore on. He had refused blood at first, utterly defiant and unaccepting of his situation, right up until his body screamed and he could feel the madness creeping in. It started as whispering that ended in a crescendo of shrieking. Gabriel on the floor, curled in on himself, claws digging into his own flesh and darkness curling away from his form, fangs extended as every inch of him wailed for blood. She had not given hers at first and he did not want it, truthfully, he didn’t want any at all but he had no choice. It was that or death and while, part of him absolutely craved for it, it was her kindness that kept him going. It started with her wrist.
He was of course, hesitant. He didn’t want to hurt her, just as he hadn’t wanted to hurt those people in his first blood-lust induced rage. He was careful, his every movement measured, fangs extended touch delicate, but something broke when he sliced skin. A rawness burst forth, an untameable hunger and it blinded him to the pain he was causing, all that mattered was that he got what he craved. It was a strange feeling, like being drunk and just as familiar. It filled him with a warm rush and he was desperate for it. It was almost as if he could feel what it was like to be human again, to be alive. He always had to force himself to stop and pull back, to push her away. That step was important.
He prayed the signal always went off, because if it didn’t, it would have been easy to kill her. Angela allowing him to drink from her that first time was a step toward full trust, but it also instilled him with a sense of accomplishment. He could begin to have faith in himself again too. Eventually, he’d worked his way to her neck, the blood seemed sweeter there. With it came a deepening of their bond, and a weakening of his resolve to launch brutal revenge against those who’d ruined his life – but only a little.
He sits and watches her from a chair most nights, noting things, here and there. She has very distinct movements and he wonders if he ever would have noticed this before he became a vampire.
She straddles his lap with an odd grace and he shifts to accommodate her form. He wonders if she knows how much she means to him, if she’s aware that she’s saved his life and continues to do so. He takes in her scent, its intoxicating with his enhanced senses. His mind screams meal, while his heart shrieks something else and he sits in the middle of a storm of her creation. He suffers in the eye gladly. She’s not dressed modestly by normal standards but, he doesn’t care. Nothing about them is average anymore. He can’t help but think of it as provocative in some manner and it does drive him crazy. Not that he would ever admit that. Theirs is a relationship full of mystery and supposition. That is mostly his fault, closed off and brooding as he is but she’s slowly dragging the light back into his life. She is sweet and he cannot help but mirror her sweetness.
She’s never denied him a meal but he wonders if she ever would, she has that power but then, if he escaped and went on a rampage through the down due to hunger, would that be her fault? Would she take responsibility for the blood on her hands? Would he?
There’s something undeniably intimate about this song and dance, he can feel her fluttering, swirling beneath him like a bird ready to take flight yet entirely enraptured by its predator. He’s acutely aware of every inch of her, his senses in overdrive – something that he’s still not used to. He can identify multiple points from which to draw her blood, even though she presents her neck. He can feel the beat of her heart, the pulsing blood and he breathes in deep as he pulls her forward, a little desperate, on the edge of madness and pain. Its always like this, he always waits a little too long before meals because, inevitably, that voice inside sings out monster. She is too good for him, he doesn’t deserve her, her kindness, trust, none of it and the thought almost makes him stand and push her away before he slumps a little, emotions surging.
He briefly shuts his eyes, scrunching, his breath hitching before he lets it free and it floats across her neck that she’s so pleasantly laid out for him like a feast, her fingers curled in his hair. He won’t do it unless she gives him permission. She could deny him for hours like this, he wonders if she knows that. Then again, here they are, locked in this game of trust that could mean death if either of them made a mistake.
He refuses to make mistakes.
“Is that all I am to you?” He asks, poking fun but also a little serious. “Just something that you keep on a leash of blood to be of use at a later date?” He pauses, driven to near madness by their proximity and his growing hunger. “A minion.” He adds with a hint of distaste, drawing his hands further down her form and squeezing gently. He knows how adept she is at playing games, he’s watched her do it with clients – but he is not one of them. He parts his lips, bares his fangs and releases a forceful breath, one full of a thousand emotions, frustration and adoration the most prominent.