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Home / Fan Fiction / V(cough) C(cough) fic / VC Sins of the Past Aftermath

DISCLAIMER: The following stories are all non-profit, amateur efforts not intended to infringe on the rights of Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, David Geffen, Warner Brothers, Geffen Pictures, Knopf, Randomhouse, the city of New Orleans, the U.S. Consititution, any copyright holders that I might not have thought of or even a certain author who shall remain nameless but who has a set of initials which are, coincidentally enough, just one letter off from spelling "B.S."

Aftermath - an After Spec
by the Brat Queen


I was lying in the grass, my eyes closed, by body composed like that of a man in his coffin, when I heard his voice.

"Anyone we know?" Lestat asked.

I opened my eyes to look at him. He was standing by my feet, regarding me with good humor and also reading what was behind me.

I turned to read as well. We were in one of the numerous small cemeteries in New Orleans and I was lying in front of one of the gravestones. I hadn't checked the name of the owner of the stone until just now.

"No," I said finally. "It's just a comfortable place to rest."

"Ah," Lestat said, as though resting in front of a stranger's gravestone were the most natural thing in the world. Of course, for Lestat, it very well could be. "May I join you?"

"Please."

He stretched out on the plot beside me, twisting his head to read the marker. "It would appear that I'm your wife."

"Good to know I finally made an honest man out of you."

He laughed, then examined the stone more closely. "Mon Dieu, Louis! Have some willpower!"

"What?" I tried to see what had made him say this.

"*Fifteen* children!" Lestat shook his head. "Did you ever let me get out of the bedroom at all?"

"I'm sorry, Lestat, but you know how irresistible you are," I said.

He turned away from the stone to lie back against the earth. "I suppose it's my own fault. You saw these child-bearing hips of mine and went wild."

I laughed for the first time that evening. "Too true," I said. "So, what brings you out here? I thought you would be knee-deep into the move by now." The home that was Lestat's gift to me was finally finished and we were now able to move out of Rue Royale, a process which was taking longer than we had anticipated.

"The packers thought it would be best if they were totally immersed in the job," Lestat said. "It seemed only reasonable that I would get out of their way and let them do it."

"You were driving them crazy again, weren't you?"

"I was *not*!"

"Of course you weren't," I said. "So what was it this time? More of you worrying over every little detail or were you playing with the packing material again?"

"I swear that stuff's addictive," Lestat said. He mimed breaking the bubbles on the plastic sheets used to protect fragile items. "I can't believe how hard it is to stop."

"I can't believe you've never encountered it before," I said. "After all the times you've moved from place to place, I'd think you'd be an expert in it by now."

"I never took much with me before," Lestat said. "Or if I did, I'd leave the whole thing up to the workers so that I'd never have to deal with the mundane details." He caught me looking at him. "What?"

"Communist Russia would have *adored* you."

"Oh. The 'Lestat you're an elitist snob' speech."

"Yes."

"Got it," he said. "I'll make sure to recite it to myself later on tonight."

"I can't ask for more," I said.

"Because with me you know that you probably won't get it," Lestat grinned.

"I don't know, I think I'm starting to make you behave," I said.

Lestat simply looked at me.

"I didn't say it was a *major* change, just that I was starting to have an impact."

"You're having an impact alright," Lestat said. "But I wouldn't call it one that leads me toward good behavior."

"You may want to stop that train of thought right there," I said. "I consider cemeteries sacred ground."

"Louis!" Lestat groaned. "This is insane!"

"I'm sorry, but that's what I feel."

"But you're not even religious anymore," Lestat said.

"It's a matter of respect," I said. "I told you this before. I won't make love in a Church anymore than I would in a Temple or a Mosque."

"Or a cemetery," Lestat finished.

"Yes."

Lestat frowned. "This I don't get. Cemeteries aren't *that* sacred, all things considered. Besides, we're vampires. What better place to make love than around graves?"

"I admit that this one is due more to my own background," I said. "Put simply, the crosses kill the mood for me."

Lestat shrugged. "You're talking to a man who lost his virginity a good twenty to thirty times--"

"Not that you're prone to exaggeration."

"--in the (my village had a high population) back of a Church so the idea of crosses as mood killers doesn't really work for me." Lestat was thoughtful for a moment. "I suppose I should say it doesn't work *on* me. I can see how it could bother you."

"Thank you," I said.

Lestat propped his head up on his hands, using them as a pillow. "So, what brings you out here then, if not the desire to be blasphemous?"

Lestat wasn't looking at me so he didn't see me swallow nervously.

"I wanted a quiet place to think," I said.

"What about?"

I lay back on the ground to make sure that Lestat couldn't see me. "All sorts of things," I said. The speech I had been preparing for this moment flew out of my head as the reality of the situation, and of what Lestat's reaction might be to what I had to say, began to make me feel ill with fear--a feeling I hadn't experienced in quite some time, a feeling I had never wanted to experience again.

"Louis?" Lestat was looking at me curiously, wondering why I had been so silent.

I tried to find something, anything, to help me explain what had brought me out here. I opened my mouth to try to tell him, but instead found myself saying "Have you ever thought about the moon, Lestat?"

"I'm not sure I understand the question," he said.

I wasn't sure I understood it either. Even as I continued to speak, the words seemed to be coming out of a part of me I wasn't aware of, a part I didn't even know I had. Or had tried to forget I had.

"Have you ever thought about going to the moon?" I asked. "Thought about what that might be like?"

"Sure," Lestat said. "I can't imagine anyone who doesn't wonder what it would be like to travel to the moon. People have been wondering that since the time of the Twins."

"What must it be like," I said slowly, "for those who *have* done it? For those astronauts who were the very first humans to go up there and actually touch the surface of something which was not our world?

"There is nothing that can compare to that. Not in our past, not in our future. Men such as Columbus and Perry only moved along the Earth, ultimately doing nothing which was terribly different from what anyone else does when they go to the store. And should the time come when humans can travel out to the other planets, they will ultimately do nothing which will be different from what Armstrong did.

"But the tragedy, the *crime* is--" I felt a rush of heat to my face. I quickly sat up and put my hands to my cheeks. They came away wet. I was crying.

"Louis...?" Lestat was truly concerned now.

I tried to continue. "The crime is that they did something which no one else will ever know of and they felt things which no one else will ever feel--" A sob broke through. "--and there is no way of ever finding out what that is! Their memories, their emotions will remained locked inside of them forever. There are no actions which can help others understand, no words which will make others feel what they felt. They are the only ones who are ever going to know!"

Lestat pulled me into his arms, cradling me as I wept. "Louis, Louis, what's wrong? What happened?"

"I had a nightmare," I whispered. I heard Lestat swear. "Nothing like the ones I had before. This one was mostly made up of feelings, not memories. It wasn't anything specific."

"But?" Lestat said, knowing me well enough to know that there was more.

"But I think it's only going to get worse," I said. I closed my eyes. "Two years is a long time. Long enough for things to build up past the point of--" I wanted to say control, but the memory of the vision I had had of myself back in Nicolas^Rs, once Juliano's, Temple stopped me. "Past the breaking point."

It was a lame substitute and I knew it. But I didn't know what to do.

"Oh God, Lestat," I said. "There are so many things I can't tell you."

Lestat was quiet for a moment, trying to absorb this. "Because I wouldn't understand?"

"That's only part of it," I said. I thought of everything he didn't know. Of the tortures Juliano had given me. Of the tortures I'd given myself. Of the love I had only pretended to give Lestat instead of the love I truly felt for him. Of how easily I had believed anything Nicolas told me if it meant I wouldn't feel the pain anymore. It would kill Lestat to hear these things. I knew that it would, because it was killing me to know them.

"Will you ever tell me?" Lestat asked softly.

"I want to," I said. "I don't want to have secrets from you. But I can't tell you these things yet."

"Why?"

I thought about this, trying to find an answer that was worthy of him. "Because I don't really understand them myself. I think I have been keeping too much a secret from myself for be to be able to think about trying to tell someone else, no matter who that someone else is."

Only someone as close to Lestat as I could see the hurt in Lestat's eyes. "You don't need me then?" Lestat asked. "You don't want to talk with me?"

"No, I do want to talk with you," I said. "And I do need you."

"For what?" Lestat's voice was slightly bitter. I didn't blame him.

I struggled to make myself speak the truth. "I need you to help me remember. The temptation to forget is too strong and, if left on my own, I know that I will give in to it. I need you to remind me of why remembering is so important."

"How can I do that?"

"You're doing it now," I said. I kissed him on the cheek. "*You* are why remembering is so important. You're important to me. I love you. And I think you deserve a lover who is honest. And I can be honest. It's just going to take me a little while." I smiled, shakily. "Do you mind the wait?"

"Not as long as I can wait with you," he said.

"I was hoping you would." My smile was stronger now, though I still felt the pain and fear from my nightmare. I let it go at that, though, not wanting to make Lestat feel worse by letting him know that I was still unhappy.

At my suggestion, we went home. To our new home that is. I was beginning to prefer it. I liked the new start it represented even though it was filled with things I had loved from my past.

I had assumed that Lestat had only understood part of our conversation in the cemetery. Not that I thought he was incapable of *being* understanding, only that I thought I had held too much back from him. Something which I thought he was aware of, but had decided to put up with out of his love for me.

It wasn't until the next night that I found out how understanding Lestat can really be.

I was unpacking books in my new study when I saw it; a small gift-wrapped box on my desk. I opened it to find a leather-bound book inside. I flipped the pages and saw that they were blank. It was a journal. I had not touched one of them in over three years.

The note on the front page was in familiar handwriting.

"To help you talk with the one person who knows what it's like to go to the moon. L."

With tears in my eyes, I turned to the next page and began to write.

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