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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."

Sins of the Past Post 3
by the Brat Queen

Acts 6-7

*word*=italics, used for emphasis, thoughts or dreams.
_word_=emphasis in thoughts or dreams.
:word or sentence:=something spoken telepathically.

Time: later that night

Marius watched as Lestat began to stir. The younger vampire slowly opened his eyes, groaned and pressed his face into a pillow.

"How do you feel?" Marius asked.

"How do I look?"

"Like Hell."

"Strange coincidence. That's exactly how I feel." Lestat snapped. He sat up, winced at an apparent rush of pain and lay his head in his hands.

"I'm sorry."

"No you're not. Don't lie to me."

"I didn't mean about that, I meant about Louis."

Lestat let one hand drop into his lap and, with other other, rubbed his temples. "From that can I infer that Louis has not returned home?"

"No," Marius said softly.

"Merde," Lestat whispered and, when that did not offer him any comfort, he tried the same word in all the languages he knew. It didn't help.

"Lestat, we tried everything we could. We even contacted the others in the coven to see if they knew were he was but there was no sign of him. It's as though he disappeared from the face of the earth," Marius said, then he realized the implication of his words. "He's not dead, Lestat. I didn't mean that. If he--if something like that had happened all of us would have felt it no matter how shielded he was. Even that little witch Mona agrees that Louis is alive. We don't know where he is, but he's alive."

"What difference does it make? He might as well be dead for all the good I can do him! Can't you see? It's happening all over again and I can't do a thing to stop it!" Lestat got up from the couch and began to pace.

"What's happening again?"

Lestat stood beside the fireplace. There were logs already inside it and with a thought Lestat set them on fire. He stared at the blaze as it reached up into the chimney. Then, in a voice too soft for mortal ears to hear, he began to speak.

"I see it, Marius, in my nightmares. When I'm deep asleep and I think my dreams are that of perfection it comes to me. The sight of him like that. The sight of him so hurt and so lost and all I can see are his eyes, his beautiful green eyes which never changed even though the rest of him was beyond recognition. I see him, Marius, and he's hurt and he's dying and I'm running to save him, running to give him my blood and make it better but I never make it in time and I reach him just as the light passes out of him, out of his beautiful, never-changing, green eyes. And he's gone. And I can never, ever get him back."

"But it didn't happen that way, Lestat. You did make it in time, he drank your blood and he's stronger than ever now."

"Someone still took him dammit!" Lestat shouted. He grabbed a vase off of the mantel and threw it against the wall. "Someone snuck in when I wasn't around and snatched him away from me and I couldn't stop it! I can never stop it! First Armand, then Memnoch now this. When is it my turn, Marius? When do I get to take him away from everyone else and have him all to myself?"

"You'll get him back. He'll come back to us and wonder why we worried so, like you always do after something like this happens. Then you'll write a book about it and life will go back to normal."

"Do you think so?" Lestat asked. He sat on the arm of a chair beside the fireplace. "Do you think it was like that for him when I was away? When I was underground, when I was with Akasha and with James? Was he like I am now?"

"You know he was, Lestat. He was in utter misery not knowing where you where or how you were or even if you wanted to come back at all."

"If I wanted to come back? How could he doubt that? Of course I wanted to come back. I always do, don't I?"

"That's not the point, Lestat. And I think the day you finally figure that out is the day that you stop wondering the same thing about Louis."

"What are you getting at?"

"Think about it for a bit, you'll get the answer. Not now, though. Now we are needed back with the others," Marius said, walking towards the door. "Are you coming or not?"

"I'm coming," Lestat said. "But, before we go, might I have one more word with you?"

Marius was about to answer when Lestat slammed him into a wall. He then grabbed Marius by the throat and held him so that their faces were inches apart.

"If you *ever* try that little trick with the blood on me again," Lestat snarled, his eyes blazing. "I'll tell Pandora that you and Armand are having an affair. Is this understood?'

"Yes," Marius choked out.

"Good," Lestat said. He removed his hand and Marius fell to the floor. "I'm glad we cleared that up. Now we can get back to finding out who has Louis so I can make sure that my intentions are clear to them as well. Are you coming or not?"

Time: sometime the next day


The smell of it hit Louis' nostrils and it was gushing into his mouth before he became consciously aware of having reached for the source and brought it to his lips. The hunger filled his every thought and he reached again and again for a new source as each font at his mouth dried up.


He dropped the last one in disgust as he finally realized what he had been drinking. He wanted to spit out the last drop in some sort of symbolic gesture but the hunger would not let him. He closed his eyes, swallowed hard, and felt the pain of the desire fade away.

As it faded away, Louis became more and more aware of himself as though the hunger had taken up his entire being and was only now giving it back bit by bit. And, with each bit, Louis could feel his hair loose about his shoulders, the dirt on his face and the stone floor beneath him that was so cold that not even the blood of the rats could make him feel warm again.

Louis pushed himself off of this floor and stood in an attempt to get his bearings. His green eyes eagerly took in everything around him and told him that which, deep down, he had already known. He was in a prison.

But this was no usual prision. Though he was in a usual cell. The floor, ceiling and walls were made of stone and before him stood the door of steel bars meant to shut all prisioners in. Beyond that, however, was not the sight one expected to see. There were no other cells or barren hallways. Rather, a labratory stood beyond the bars. A labratory filled with computers and papers and test tubes and all manner of scientific equipment. Louis could even see the cages from which the rats he had just killed undoubtedly came.

Louis paused a moment and tried to make sense of it all. Why was he here? For what purpose had his captor stalked him, waited until he was in a daze from the blood of his latest victim, then grabbed him and brought him here? No Memnoch this. This was a jailor who intended to use Louis for a reason.

Whatever that reason might be, Louis was not going to wait to find out. He had had his fill of being the captured victim thank you. Juliano had done that job quite nicely and Louis had the memories of the painful burns to his body to prove it. He did not intend to stay for an encore.

He took hold of the bars of the cell door and, with a pull that would have been strong enough to rip apart the stone walls around him, tore the door off its hinges.

At least, that is what was supposed to have happened.

Louis stared in suprise at the door which did not budge an inch from his attempt to dislodge it. Impossible. The bars were steel, yes, but even before Louis had been given his second, stronger infusion of Lestat's blood a door such as this should not have been an obstacle. By all rights the door should have been in a mangled heap on the opposite side of the cell, not standing in its original position.

Louis grabbed onto the bars and once again tried to free himself. No luck. The door remained.

"This cannot be," he said. He walked along the length of the bars, examining them to see why they stayed in his way. He could find no blocks, no magnets, nothing except steel bars and the door that would not open.

Fine, the door had a strong lock then. That was easily fixed. Louis closed his eyes and pictured the lock in his mind. :Turn, open: he commanded it.

But there was no click. No sound of the bolt returning into its home. No feeling in Louis' mind of having controlled the mechanism. He tried again and again there was nothing.

Louis felt his heart begin to beat faster. What was wrong? Why did nothing work? He should be free by now!

"Calm yourself, Louis, think rationally," he said. "You're a prisoner so someone is holding you captive. Find them!"

He scanned the area around him for signs of life. First the lab, then whatever lay beyond it. He came up with nothing. He sighed in relief, knowing that, at the very least, he would have some time alone to sort out his problem.

He turned his attention back to the door. If his strength was not enough and his mind was not clear enough perhaps he could pick the lock? It seemed a simple enough lock and Lestat had taught him how to unlock doors such as this in case Louis ever had a need. Well he certainly had a need now!

"Lestat, remind me not to scold you so often," Louis said as he peered into the keyhole. Yes, it was a simple lock. Louis could probably use his belt buckle to unlock it and set himself free.

He was about to undo his belt when he heard something that made him freeze. Voices. Human voices where before he had felt no humans! Desperately he scanned the area that the voices were coming from but he felt nothing, not even the indications that show the presence of a person who is shielding themself.

Louis could no longer read human minds!

The shock of this threatened to take over Louis' mind but the sound of the voices was getting louder. The speakers would be upon him soon. On an impulse, Louis lay back down in the position he had been in when he awakened. He shut his eyes and cleared his mind of any thoughts that would betray his conscious state.

He heard the lab door open and the voices came in with it.

"You see, Trevor? I told you that everything would be fine. He's in the cage, safe and sound."

"He could have been hurt, Aiken! And that idiot spirit hardly let him finish the girl! How am I to be expected to do my work if my instructions aren't followed out?"

Louis suppressed his surprise at the sound of the other man's name. Aiken. Could it be Aiken Drumm, one of the 'little people' Ash had told him about? He had to find out. He opened his eyes enough so that he could see, his long lashes giving the appearance that he was still asleep. The man Louis saw could only be Aiken Drumm. Who else would fit the description of the gnarled little body that Ash had described?

But what had the other one said? The spirit hardly let him finish the girl? Had he been trapped by Lasher?

Louis quickly shut his eyes and stopped this train of thought as he saw Aiken approach the cell.

"What are you complaining about, Trevor? He drank enough for us to get him. And he certainly wolfed down the rats you left. He's as helpless as a newborn babe," Aiken chuckled and Louis could feel his wrinkled hand patting his cheek.

"Don't touch him! I mean, leave us alone. Now that he's here I need to start checking him or we may as well forget the whole thing."

"Fine, get back to your little pets," Aiken said. "Remember though, *he's* going to want to see him so he'd better be in good condition."

Louis heard Aiken get up and leave the lab, closing the lab door behind him.

"*He* will get him in better condition than I got him from you barbarians, I assure you," Trevor said. "Things will be a lot better, you'll see. Ah, but Aiken's gone now, he could not stay. He left without even saying good-bye. It's so hard to say good-bye."

There was the sound of footsteps and a shadow fell across Louis' face. Trevor was now where Aiken had just been.

"You can open your eyes now, Louis. We're alone."

The voice which had before been cold and angry was now kind and almost dreamlike. Unsure what to make of this, Louis opened his eyes, sat up, and faced Trevor.

He was a mortal, no doubt of that in Louis' mind, the scent was unmistakeable. In his thirties perhaps. He had a lean, rakish figure and, though he was squatting next to the cell, he appeared to be quite short. Shorter than Louis at any rate. His hair was the dark, uniform black of one who had mistakenly used a cheap dye and Louis could see a light brown color at the roots. Dark brown eyes watched Louis from a face that was at some angles equine and at others handsome. An earring shaped like a human fingerbone dangled from one ear and it swayed back and forth as though keeping time with Trevor's heartbeat.

"How did you know I was awake?" Louis finally asked.

"I knew, I felt it," Trevor said. "I felt it as soon as I came in. Not that I blame you, Aiken's a beast. I can't believe how he treated you! Knocking you out like that and dragging you here as though you were an animal. Reptile. You don't mind, do you, that I read your mind like that? It's just that when I heard what had happened with Aiken I got so worried and I had to check to see if you were alright. I need to know that you're ok. It comes down to this."

"I'm fine," Louis said. "I don't even remember Aiken bringing me here. The last thing I remember is drinking from that girl. It's all a blank after that."

"Beast! Blame Aiken for that. Him and that idiot spirit. I'm sorry, Louis. When I told him to bring you here as soon as possible, I didn't think that they would be so cruel. Aiken, you're too cruel."

"You asked to bring me here, monsieur? I thought it was someone else."

"Well, *he* would have brought you here eventually. He wanted to talk to you before it all came out. But I told him to bring you here now, everything was ready for you so why not bring you now? And call me Trevor. Louis, you can call me anything you want."

"He who, Trevor? And what's ready for me?"

"You mean you don't know?" Trevor looked crestfallen. "Don't you feel anything different? Changes?"

"What sort of changes?" Louis asked, not sure he wanted to know the answer.

"What sort of changes? *The* changes, Louis! The changes you want! My gift to you, Louis. Wonderful you."

"That I want? I don't undertand you, Trevor. How do you know what I want?"

"How do I--" Trevor got up and began to walk back and forth in front of the bars. Louis stood as well but Trevor paid no attention to this and continued speaking. "How can you ask me that, Louis? Of course I know you! I've known you my whole life! As soon as I read your book, Louis, I knew you. I knew you were real. My friends, they laughed at me, told me I was crazy, but I knew. I knew that you were out there, somewhere, waiting for me. Somewhere out there. I looked for you. I looked in New Orleans and San Francisco but I couldn't find you. I understood, though. You were hiding from all those that would hurt you. I had to prove to you that I wouldn't hurt you. Once I proved that, then we'll be together.

"I joined the Talamasca. They knew. They put me on your case. I created most of the file that exists on you, Louis. That's when I found you. You were in San Francisco, sitting in a bar all by yourself and I saw you and you saw me and we both knew. I followed you for years, watching you, making sure that no one would hurt you. Every breath you take every move you make I was watching you, Louis."

"I don't remember this, Trevor," Louis said softly, not wanting to believe it. "I never saw you."

"That's because the Talamasca took me off the case! They put that bitch Jesse on it. Said I was getting too close. That I was too involved. And what does she do? Go to your house and rip it apart! Rifles through your things like some sort of parasite and even touches Claudia's doll! She disturbed Claudia, Louis, how dare she? You're going to get what you deserve. She didn't understand, Louis, she never understood. She didn't know."

"And you? You understand me?"

"Of course I do, Louis. I brought you here, didn't I? Look, I even got your things for you," Trevor went over to one of the closets in the lab and pulled out a cardboard box. He dragged it over to the cell and showed Louis the decaying contents inside. "See? Here's your coat and your shirt and your hankerchief and your diary and your copy of Oliver Twist and--"

"Where did you get these, Trevor?"

"From the flat, Louis. I saved them before Jesse could get them. I knew you'd want them."

Louis stared in horror at what he saw. The objects were his, yes, but he had not laid a hand on them for centuries. Some of them were so old that they existed only as a dark, mold-ridden lump inside of the box. The remains of Louis' past life.

"Is-is this your gift to me?" he asked.

"No! This is for later, when we'll be together. You already have my gift to you."

"I do?"

"Yes! The girl and the rats, they had my gift to you in their blood, Louis. My lifelong impossible dream."

"What?" Louis wanted to say more but a sudden, sharp pain stopped him. He fell to his knees, clutching his chest in agony. A wave of nausea overcame him and, before he could stop himself, he began to retch violently. A black, foul-smelling bile dripped from his mouth until finally he vomited and a pool of it spread out around him. Sickened by the sight of this, he crawled to the other side of the cell, gasping for air.

"What-what have you done to me!"

"Given you what you want, Louis. Made you what you want to be. It's not perfect yet, I know. But if you keep drinking the blood I give you then I can do for you what no one else on God's green earth can do."

Louis' heart was pounding. "It was you. You took away my powers. You're the reason why I can't read minds or bend bars anymore. Why, Trevor? Why did you do this to me? I never wanted this!"

"That's all you see, Louis?" Trevor whispered. "Don't you see the big picture? Once I improve the formula, make it better, make it so you don't get sick anymore, make it stronger, don't you see what will happen? You'll want it, Louis. Of course you want it! Why would I give you something you don't want? I will love you more than life."

"This is your love? Making me sick, putting me in a cage? I have love, Trevor, I don't need this kind."

"Don't say that!" Trevor screamed. "Don't even think it! Don't even think of him, Louis! He doesn't love you! He made you what you are! He took you when you were most vulnerable and forced his blood on you and made you his slave. Thinks he knows what he wants. I love you, Louis. I'm going to set you free. Give you back what he took away from you. Then he'll kill the fiend that did this to you and we can be together."

"What do you mean 'give back what he took away'?"

"The light, Louis," Trevor knelt in front of the cell. "Don't you see? Once I figure out how to make the formula stronger I can give you the sunlight again. I want to see the sunlight in your hair."

"That's not possible, Trevor. I'm a vampire, I'll die in the sun."

"Not if I can help you," Trevor said. "That's how he helped us, Louis. He found the files. He saw the way. He knew I could fix it, make it better, make it for you. Only you."

For a moment, Louis believed this. He believed that this mortal could answer his prayers and take away the hunger that had haunted him for so many years. He allowed himself, just for a moment, to think that the pain would end.

But he knew it wasn't so.

He knew that this was only a fantasy, a hope that even he had abandoned long ago. It was never meant to be.

The formula, ultimately, did nothing.

Louis knew this and he saw it clearly because he was no longer powerless as he once was. The formula had been expelled from his body and with it had gone the effects that it had had. He was himself again.

"I'm sorry, Trevor," he whispered. "But I cannot stand this any longer."

Louis fixed his eyes upon Trevor's and with a thought made Trevor sink in a heap to the floor. He was not dead, Louis did not have it in him to kill Trevor, but he was unconscious and would be for quite some time.

The cell door was Louis' next target and it gave easily at his touch. A wave of exhaustion flowed through Louis and he realized that, wherever he was, it was nearly dawn. He needed to sleep. Quickly scanning the area around him, he found the perfect spot. With hardly any time left, he ran from the lab, through the corridor outside, down a staircase and secreted himself inside of a dusty cabinet that had apparently not been touched in years.

Darkness came to him then. A darkness that would not let him reflect upon what he had seen outside the lab. He felt himself pulled down into the blackness that swelled in his mind, down deep along a path into himself until he was at the very core of his being. Louis was asleep then, safe in his own soul, naturally shielded from his enemies and dreaming all too real vampire dreams.

:Lestat, I am safe....:

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