Abaisse badly needs some silly right now. Enjoy, and expect more!
Marius had his hands folded in his lap, looking down at the floor like a chastised child. Despite the fact that he was completely capable of breaking Courfeyrac’s neck and making his escape, he couldn’t bring himself to do that to his best friend. His only friend.
“So, how did it happen?” Courfeyrac asked, drumming his fingers on the arm of his chair.
“It’s a simple enough process,” Marius said, “You drink the blood of the undead, you become the undead.”
“Is the process reversible?”
“Not to my knowledge.”
“And what does this…state of being entail?”
“It entails drinking a fair bit of blood every day—you can skip days but I don’t recommend it—being thin and pale all the time and staying out of sunlight.”
“Aha!” Courfeyrac exclaimed, “I’ve seen you out during the day! Not often, I admit, but I have seen it.”
“But not in the sun. I can go out on cloudy days, or if it rains, if I wrap up well and don’t go far.” Courfeyrac ‘hmmd’ thoughtfully.
“And who made you?”
“Yes,” Marius shuffled in his seat uncomfortably, “Do you remember when I said I went to visit my father and got there just after he died? That wasn’t quite true. When I got there, he was almost dead—decided to starve himself to death—but he made me drink the last of his blood before he went. Turned me into this.”
“And who turned him?”
“The Emperor.” Courfeyrac nearly fell off his chair.
“Napoleon Bonaparte turned your father into a vampire---Napoleon Bonaparte was a vampire!” Courfeyrac shook his head, “Wait until Enjolras hears this. He’s always suspected there was something not quite human about that man.”
“He was greater than human.” Marius replied, “He turned my father to save his life. I don’t know who turned him. But anyway, when my grandfather found out I was a ‘blood drinker’ he kicked me out.”
“So how do you survive?”
“Do you kill?”
“No.” Marius said, “Killing isn’t strictly necessary. If you’re willing to be a little hungry all the time you can get by without it. Besides, I can’t bring myself to do it. The one time I ever tried I got scared and my selected victim wound up laughing at me and running off.”
“Well I couldn’t kill anyone either. Not innocent people, anyway.” Courfeyrac said to himself “And god knows I’m used to being a bit hungry. What about other people? Does anyone notice?”
“Touche.” Courfeyrac said. “Everyone just thinks you’re strange. Are you immortal?”
“Baring accidents, as far as I know.”
“What about crosses? Are you weak to them?”
“They make me a bit…uncomfortable, but it’s no different that having a fear of heights.”
“Ah. Well, that’s fine, I don’t go to church anyway. Garlic?”
“Wouldn’t know. Never liked it.”
“Do you need and invitation to enter a building?”
“No, but it’s the polite thing to do.”
“Do you have the uncontrollable desire to count things?”
“Vampires. In the myths I heard, if you strew straw in front of your door the vampire won’t be able to enter because he has the uncontrollable urge to count every one.” Marius stared at him.
“Oh, good.” Courfeyrac clapped his hands together decisively, “Right, that’s settled then. Change me.”
Marius nearly choked on his tongue again.
“Do what to you?”
“Change me. Make me a vampire.” Marius said nothing, just stared at Courfeyrac with a stupid look on his face. What Marius is best at, Courfeyrac thought.
“Listen, do you have any idea how popular novels about vampires are? No matter how horrid and evil the authors make them, the girls just eat them up; they’re all dying—oh, sorry—to be romanced by a pale, thin, aristocrat who just might be able to kill them. That’s basically me!”
“You aren’t exactly thin, Courfeyrac.” Marius mumbled.
“But I could be! Imagine how I’d look, so dark and mysterious! I might even start using my particle again. Monsieur de Courfeyrac, the vampire, sounds so much more elegant than plain Courfeyrac, don’t you think?” Marius continued to stare at him.
“Are you mad?”
“Perhaps a little. No, Marius, I’m serious. Change me. It’ll be wonderful! And it would be wonderful for the revolution; imagine, having a soldier who can’t die. It’d be splendid! Come now, Marius, be a good friend, make me into a vampire.” Marius got up.
“Never,” he said, more intensely than Courfeyrac had ever heard him speak, “I wouldn’t wish this curse on anyone. Do you know what it’s like, never seeing the sun again, forced to kill to survived, or spend your time starving? Unable to connect with anyone because of your dark, dreadful secret? Feeling damned inside because there is perhaps no salvation for a killer. No, Courfeyrac, be glad you are alive. The girls love you as it is. I am not turning you into a vampire.”
Marius strode off towards his room. Instead of laying down on the mattress Courfeyrac had provided for him he turned his wardrobe on its side and lay down in it, falling asleep just as the sun rose.
When Marius awoke the next evening he heard shuffling around. Courfeyrac was still home. That was odd. He must be waiting for Marius to wake up so he could beg him to change him again.
Marius rubbed the sleep out of his eyes and went into the front room, prepared to tell Courfeyrac once and for all that the subject was closed, but what he found astonished him.
Courfeyrac was dressed entirely in black with a red waistcoat. His boots were polished to a shine, his hair pulled back in a ribbon—and was he wearing a ring? He looked paler than ever before, the few imperfections in his face smoothed out. And most troublingly, he smelt differently. He lacked that distinct smell that all humans had.
“Ah, good evening Marius—or good morning, as it were. Did you sleep well?” Courfeyrac said, adjusting his hair.
“Courfeyrac—have you done something?”
“No. Well, a bit. You wouldn’t turn me into a vampire, so I took matters into my own hands.” Marius’ mouth dropped open.
“You what!” Courfeyrac laughed.
“While you were asleep I went over to Joly’s house and borrowed one of his lancets. I drained a bit of blood from your neck and—here I am! I hope you don’t mind. If you do you shouldn’t have told me how it was done. Funny, I always thought it was more complicated that that.” Marius was too shocked to speak. Courfeyrac adjusted his hat in the mirror. “Well, I’m off, then. The dark prince of the night has many a pure innocent maiden to seduce. Don’t wait up.”
He tipped his hat to Marius and was off, whistling a tune as he went.
Rivers belong where they can ramble...