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Home / Fan Fiction / V(cough) C(cough) fic / To Ride the Dark Wave

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."

To Ride the Dark Wave, a 'tweener spec, Year 1
by the Brat Queen

Immortality Awards:
Second Place: Best Louis '95-'96
Nominated for Best Angst '95-'96

Reader's Choice:
Winner: Best Vanilla '95-'96


He doesn't know how it begins. There is no warning, no foreshadowing, no sign.

He can go for weeks without it. And when that happens he is delirious with joy. He cannot get enough of each activity, of each pleasurable event and he takes them in as a starving man would food and every night of those weeks it is Yes I will go out. Yes I will go to the concert, the play, the movie, the cafe, the bedroom. He would go anywhere as long as the happiness is there.

But this never lasts.

For it lurks behind every moment of happiness and whenever it chooses, it takes the happiness away.

He calls it the dark wave.

It starts slowly. He wakes up one night and he can feel the first stage of it inside of him. It comes in stages, you see, and the first stage is Fear.

Fear is always small, when it begins. It is a tiny pinprick deep inside of him, a small dot. But as soon as he recognizes it for what it is, it begins to grow. Sometimes he imagines it is a cancerous cell that rages out of control and takes over his body. The effect is the same, in his eyes.

He is awake now and the Fear is climbing up his spine. The room around him is dark and this fuels the Fear. He climbs out of bed, taking care not to disturb the one who lay curled against him, and retreats to his bathroom. He locks the door behind him and switches on the lights. It helps, but only for a moment.

He tries to focus on the things around him, to anchor his mind on reality. His hands grip the countertop and his feet are cold on the bare floor. The cool air of the room swirls around him and raises the hair on his skin.

And the Fear keeps coming.

He's breathing in short gasps now. His chest is tight and his hands are clammy. He looks around him, wildly, trying to find anything to distract him, to make the Fear go away but there is nothing. The Fear is all around him. He cannot hide from it.

It doesn't take long for the Fear to take over. It's inside of him now, controlling him. It makes his heat beat quicker, his blood turn to ice. He looks up and sees himself in the mirror and the Fear forces him to look at what it wants him to see.

*Look at your scars,* it says in his mind. *You're covered with them. Every inch of your body is deformed by these hideous red lines. They'll never go away. You will look like this forever.*

And he sees them. They seem to pulse in his reflection as though they were alive.

*Like you were covered in maggots and worms. You're dead, Louis. Dead!*

He begins to sob, fighting back tears. The Fear pounces.

*The monster in the mirror. Kill it! Smash the mirror! Imagine all that broken glass flying against your body, into your eyes, blinding you. Even better, take the broken glass and get rid of the scars. Cut them off your body. Take them off in huge rips of skin. You can do it. I bet it wouldn't even hurt. Not one little bit.*

His body is trembling. He sinks to the floor, hiding from his reflection. He doesn't know how long he stays like that, his back to the wall, his knees against his chest, his arms wrapped around them, the cold from the floor seeping into his naked flesh. All he knows is that he wants the Fear to stop.

And it will stop. The Fear is only one part of the dark wave and the dark wave moves on, taking the Fear away as slowly as it gave it to him.

He gets up as soon as the Fear is far enough away to allow him to move again. He must contort himself to move from the floor to the doorway without seeing his reflection. The Fear isn't that far gone.

He returns to the bedroom to find the lights on and the man who he likes to call his lover awake. His lover knows nothing of the Fear. His lover knows only of the night before and of the pleasure that should still be there.

He is kissed, embraced and then let go so that he might dress. The affection should mean something to him, he knows that, but once the dark wave comes such things have no effect on him. His responses become robotic. His lover notices this but continues onward, hoping for the best.

"Come along, Louis," the voice is teasing. "We don't want to be late."

"Where are we going, Lestat?"

"It's a surprise. I'll tell you when we're there."

He dresses quickly, not caring much about what he puts on, then follows his lover outside. They get into his lover's car and drive off. He sits in the car quietly. The Fear is completely gone now. Now he is in the second stage.

Helplessness.

The car is frightfully modern. A Porsche with leather seats, a CD player, a cellular phone and thousands of other things that he can't even identify. It makes him uncomfortable. These are things he should know, everyone around him seems to know them. He begins to wish that it could be like it was in the old days with fine horse-drawn carriages but stops himself before this thought goes too far. He can fight off the Helplessness, for now.

The drive is long, even at the high speed at which the car travels. Finally they arrive. They cannot park on the crowded streets and must leave the car in a lot blocks away from their destination. They walk the final distance and a light rain begins to fall. He finds it in himself to speak.

"So where are you taking me?"

"To a club, it's not far."

"What kind of a club?"

"A blues club. You liked jazz so much I thought you might like the blues."

He finds this hysterical. He starts to laugh and can't stop. They have reached the club and everyone is looking at him strangely, including his lover. He is reminded of how inappropriate his behavior is and his laughter dies. Silent once again, he follows his lover inside.

They are given a table near the back, with a clear view of the stage. The club is dark and filled with smoke. A waitress brings them beer and they sit back to listen to the band.

The music is too loud. It becomes a constant noise in his ears. He can't understand the words or the rhythm. The smell of smoke and alcohol makes him ill. He wants to leave but everyone around him seems to be enjoying themselves. He notices that it is a rather upscale club. The customers are dressed almost formally. His own suit is so old that it is no longer the color it was when he bought it. He feels out of place. He is certain that everyone is looking at him.

He's beginning to get a headache from the noise. A group at a nearby table laughs and it is like a rifle shot through his mind. He wants to go home. Not the flat on Rue Royale, but his old home, his plantation. He doesn't know what to do in the modern world. He's not sure if he can make it as a vampire any more. He doesn't know if he can adapt. The world moves on by him and he doesn't think he can keep up.

And he can't. Not in the dark wave.

Finally, the music ends. He gets up from the table and leaves. He doesn't ask if his lover wants to stay, he simply goes.

The Helplessness is gone. He can feel that as he stands outside of the club in the rain that is no longer light. Stage two is over, he is now in stage three.

Hate.

And oh how he hates. He hates the Fear, the Helplessness, the club, the music, the rain, the mortals, the car that is parked too far away. He is seething with it and the Hate wants *out*.

For the Hate is not like the other parts of the dark wave. The Hate demands a victim and it will control him until it gets one. The Hate will not die until someone else suffers as much as he is suffering and there is only one person that the Hate can make suffer this much:

The lover who unwittingly chose the wrong time to flirt with the waitress before joining him outside.

They begin the walk back and he can only watch as the Hate takes control of him and everything he says.

"Take your time, Lestat. After all, I've nothing better to do than wait in the rain while you have a little bit of fun."

"What are you talking about, Louis?"

"I'm talking about that whore back at the club. You couldn't take your eyes off her, could you? I'm not surprised. She's just how you like them. All tits and no brain."

"Louis!"

"Don't lie to me. You wanted her, you know you did. You wanted to make her beg for it. I'll bet you were thinking about getting your fangs in her neck all night. Hell, you'd probably try and get your cock in her too, if it worked!"

"Louis, I don't think--"

"No, you don't. Which is why you're stupid enough to even dream for a moment that I won't notice you pretending that you like being with me when you actually want to go after those mortals who are drunk enough to think that you're interesting."

Silence. He was almost there.

"So you won't even try and defend yourself? I knew it. Why don't you just go back to the club then? Go screw around with your flavor of the night and you can forget about me and my ugly face."

Oh no. Bad move. He'd exposed a weak spot. If he didn't go for the kill now, it could all backfire on him.

"Of course, I don't know why you'd bother. It's not like it's going to turn out well. You'll do something to ruin it, you always do. You're such a fuck-up. It's no wonder that even your own father never wanted to be around you!"

That did it. He saw the light in the grey eyes die away with his last words. The Hate had found its mark.

But the Hate never left without taking one last victim and he was it. It left him in a rush to face the horror of what he had done, the pain he had caused. And with that came the next stage.

Despair.

He ran. He couldn't look at his lover any more. He ran and ran, not caring about where he went or how he got there. The rain poured down his body, soaking him to the skin and washing away the tears that fell down his face just as hard and fast as the raindrops.

He ran, but could not get away. Despair was the last part of the dark wave and it would not be ignored. It came crashing down upon him and he was lost in the blackness within it.

He was digging, when he woke up again. He didn't remember seeking shelter but he'd taken it in the ground by a pair of large rocks in a park. Taller than he was, the rocks had formed a tent of sorts to hide the spot in the ground where he'd buried himself.

The rain had continued throughout the day. He knew that, because he was digging through mud. And, as he came up from the earth, it clung to him.

Two dead bodies lay beside his makeshift shelter. The rocks had hidden them from mortal eyes as well. He didn't remember killing them, but he knew that he did.

This was not the first time this had happened. He knew what to do.

He pulled the bodies into the hole his own body had created then covered them as best he could. He wondered what their families would go through. How long would it take to find out what had happened? Would the bodies ever be found? Burying them, he knew, would make it harder for them to be discovered but he thought it too disrespectful to leave them lying in the open.

"I'm sorry," he told them. He wished them well, where ever they were.

Once he was finished, he got up and began the long walk home. He was powerful enough now that he could make the trip quickly but he did not want to do that. He needed this time to himself for this, he knew, was a rare moment of clarity. One that always came at this time, just before he made himself forget what had happened and fooled himself into thinking that it would never happen again.

The dark wave was over and, as he looked at his clothing-torn and mud covered reflection in the puddles, it had smashed onto shore, dragging him with it. And that was all that the dark wave did, it took him up and took him where it wanted to go. He never rode the dark wave. No, to ride the dark wave would have been a luxury. Then he could control it or guide it to where it could be most harmless. But he did not do that. The dark wave came and went and crushed him in the process. And he could do nothing about it.

He reached home. He looked up at it from the street for a moment before beginning to climb up the side to his bedroom. Not for the first time, he was glad that he now shared the room with his lover. That way he could return and not have to see the other one in the house. David-who-knows. David who asked questions and tried to get the answers. David who tried to remind him of the other darkness. The darkness that had a name and who had done things to him that were so terrible that he gladly faced the dark wave time and again because it meant that he didn't have to remember the darkness that lived beyond it.

His lover was there when he crawled through the window. He felt a bit of guilt that his lover always waited for him, no matter what he did. He wanted to say something, but he couldn't and instead stood there, mutely as the mud dripped off his body and onto the floor. His lover took all of this in, then smiled, kindly.

"You're a mess, my love. We're going to have to do something about that."

He allowed himself to be led into the bathroom. His lover stripped him, filled the tub with steaming warm water, washed him, dried him and then carried him back into the bedroom to comb out his hair then curl up under a blanket with him.

He wanted to find the heartbeat. That was important to him, that he lay with the beat of his lover's heart against his ear. It reminded him of how strong and steady his lover was. He could depend on his lover.

He found the heartbeat at last and nestled against his lover with his head pillowed on his lover's well-muscled chest. Only then did he find the courage to speak, though he could not yet look into his lover's eyes.

"I love you."

He felt a soft kiss on the top of his head then heard the words that were so important for him to hear.

"I know."

Finally he could relax. He hadn't ruined it after all. His lover was still there and trusted him, despite the dark wave.

They would make love soon, he knew that. He knew that the happiness was coming back and he knew that he would take it in as greedily as he had done before.

Just as he knew that the dark wave would come again.

But he would not know when and he would not know how.

And the next time would be worse.

It always was.

And so this tale has no happy ending, for there is no such ending to be had.

Not while he cannot ride the dark wave.

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