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The Queen (BtVS - Chapter twenty-eight)

Glare
Here's another chapter thanks to slaymesoftly
Hope you like it!









28. Orpheus





The unbearable buzz of television in the kitchen was breaking into the silence of the meditation room. Willow snorted trying to find a comfortable position. She took a mystical sandbox and put it in front of her.

“Kennedy, I’m imploring you,” she cried out rotating her shoulders. “Lower the volume!”

In response the slayer opened the door and rushed to hold her girlfriend in an awkward embrace.

“Ken-doll, please!”

“Did you decide to let me go to bed alone?” the slayer asked playfully. “C’mon, just finish this thing you’re doing and get to bed.”

“You’re bossy!”

“And you’re a goddess.”

“Well, only technically,” the witch replied. “You know what happened to Annie. I just want to make sure that she’s okay.”

“And are you doing a spell for it?” Kennedy asked looking at letters painted in the box. “Orpheus? Is this the name of the spell?”

“Yes,” Willow explained. “I need the help of Orpheus to see beyond the appearances. He was a musician, you know? And he was admitted into the afterlife even though he wasn’t dead.”

“I’ll never understand mythological symbolism.”

“Oh, you don’t need to. You already have the power.”

“But having the power plus the knowledge would be better!”

“That’s why I exist,” Willow smiled.

She quickly wiped off the sand erasing the name of the musician and blew out the candles. She stood up and followed Kennedy into their bedroom.

Their apartment wasn’t huge but it was richly furnished with all kinds of historical and magical objects. The library was especially equipped with ancient and precious books, plants and drawings and whatever Willow needed for her research.

“We need to buy a bigger apartment,” Kennedy said pulling off the covers.

Her girlfriend frowned. “We have everything we need.”






Willow woke up in the middle of the night, wide-eyed and breathless. Kennedy was sleeping peacefully beside her and the shadow of a man was standing in front of their bed.

“Show yourself,” she commanded clenching her fists. “Show yourself!”

The white light of Orpheus shone inside the room.

“You’re not real,” Willow muttered standing up. “You’re just a projection of … the Mercurial.” She sighed touching the shadow’s arms and hands. The right one was scarred. “You’re the projection of the Mercurial I called with my spell.”

Willow lit up the face of his enemy with her power. He was very pale and attractive even if not beautiful in the canonical sense. His hair was red and curly and his eyes azure with pupils unnaturally dilated by magic. He was wearing a purple tunic opened on his naked chest. He had another scar beside his heart and a similar cut in the abdomen. Two tattoos marked his skin; one below the throat and the other on his groin.

“Mercury and Venus,” Willow murmured. “Did he accomplish the Magnus Opus?” she asked herself surprised.

The projection cocked his head. Willow bent down and saw another long cut on the Mercurial’s femur and the alchemical symbol of the Scythe tattooed on the left ankle. On his foot a perfectly symmetrical five-pointed star.

“You aren’t a vampire … you’re –”

Suddenly the projection grabbed Willow’s wrist.

“You’re not allowed to know,” he said. “Not yet.”

Willow spun around and saw the projection naked and wrapped in a thick purple smoke lying next to Kennedy.

“Leave her alone!” she cried in fright.

“You’re not allowed to know. Not yet,” he repeated with an inhuman voice.

Willow leaned forward and felt an electrical shiver through her veins …






“Wake up!”

Klaus frowned and pressed his nose against a silky pillow.

“Wake up, brother.”

The vampire opened his eyes and smiled joyfully. The Mercurial was sitting next to him, staring at him with a patient and serious expression.

“You’re back!” the vampire said wrapping his twin brother in a warm embrace. “You’re back and you’re young,” he said brushing the pale skin with his lips.

The Mercurial nodded moving away from his brother.

“Don’t hide yourself, please!”

“I don’t have time for that, Klaus,” he said. “Tonight something serious happened … but why are you sleeping already? Why are you not hunting?”

“This morning we left early to get the secret nest in New York, as you asked us to do. We hid the magical remains and the Slayer will never find them,”

“You’ve done well.”

“We came back to Los Angeles after the sunset. I was so tired … the harsh light of the day is so tiring! It makes me feel all nauseous and it stuns me. I hate it.”

“You aren’t used to it anymore.”

Klaus bit his lips holding a painful sob. The Mercurial touched his face lightly. “I can ease your suffering. Our Savior will ease your suffering.”

“But we won’t be together as before,” the vampire cried. “One soul in two bodies …”

“We’ve never been like that.”

“Don’t!” Klaus shook his head.

“We’ll be together forever, my brother.”

“I need you!” the vampire gasped staring at his brother’s pale neck. “I need you,” he repeated showing off his fangs and yellow eyes. His chest felt like he was breathing and his blood was warming; it was pure desire. “Albert, please … let me do it …”

“Control yourself, Klaus. You know I won’t,” the Mercurial snapped holding his brother’s hands still.

“You don’t love me then!”

“Control yourself,” he ordered again.

Klaus swallowed back his tears.

“Don’t cry now,” the Mercurial whispered. “You know that I love you more than anything in this world, but I’m not a vampire and I don’t want to become one. If I were to get possessed by a demon I would lose the purity of my spirit and the rationality that allows me to control the oldest and most powerful energy in the universe. I would cease to exist – a beast would take my place.”

“A beast …”

“Don’t think about it. Come here.”

Klaus let himself be dragged into a comforting hug. He buried his face in his brother’s chest and felt a delicate kiss on his temple.

“I love you too,” he muttered. “And I’m not an animal, right?”

“No,” the Mercurial smiled. “You’re pure instinct Klaus. This is your nature.”

The vampire shook his head again and pressed his forehead against his twin’s looking into his clear blue eyes – the only physical trait they shared. “But you …” He began searching for a sign of indisputable truth. “You won’t give yourself to me …” he paused, nervous. “I can’t help myself. I love you so much and I’m dying to have you just for me, in me, in my blood … but tell me what happened to you.”

The Mercurial hardened his expression.

“The witch called a projection of me.”

“How dare she!”

“You know what she’s capable of and you know what she’ll become.”

“Oh yes,” Klaus smiled. “Yes.”

“The trouble is that now she’ll be able to see you too and Kostas and his childe. We need to be careful.”

“Do we need to stop?”

“No!” the Mercurial replied. “Never! The mission is what matters.

Klaus nodded and closed his eyes. He felt his brother’s cold lips on his forehead and his goodbye.

“I will see you again, my brother. I won’t leave you alone,”

“I’ll wait for you, Albert.”