| Christmas in Toronto
||[Dec. 25th, 2006|08:42 pm]
"It's disturbing," LaCroix observes.|
Fleur, who looked almost as worried as she should have looked pleased to see her brother and their master sitting in the same room without attempting to kill one another... elbows him in the shoulder.
How many times have I asked you not to say as such, Lucius? she asks through their blood bond in something akin to a hiss.
You'll excuse me if I can't help but noticing. He's almost catatonic. He probably can't hear me anyway.
"I can hear you just fine, LaCroix," he answers in reply to a question he wasn't supposed to have heard, "Just because I've... decided to be polite doesn't mean I've gone deaf."
"And how was I to know, my dear boy," LaCroix replies, his tone dripping amusement and sarcasm, "as you've been so very... lacking in holiday spirit tonight? Or any sort of spirit at all for days?"
Nick looks up, his eyes their normal blue, but there is something in them, a hollowness that leaves the ancient Roman general without words. Of any vampire he's ever known, his difficult son has always been the most alive, the one closest to humanity in a way he can seldom fathom. Fleur, to some extent, held such life, such light, and it was to these qualities he had originally found himself attracted to. He'd come to delight in her capacity for peace, however, as the years passed. A capacity her brother shared, but seldom indulged in. Or could, perhaps.
"Perhaps if you'd--"
Fleur cuts that line of reasoning off with a glare fit to cut his head in two and Lacroix raises his hand in surrender. He would not anger the both of them, not on this day that they both held so dear even as their mortal faith had long sinced passed.
"Brother," she starts with a warm, inviting smile. "Perhaps you'd like to join us tonight for the festivities. The children at the shelter will be putting on a play, and--"
"If it's all the same to you," Nick answers, his voice incredibly tired. He's never sounded as old as he is; despite so many things, he's always had a sense of youth to him. The 800 years of life he's live have never weighed on him. Until, it seems, now.
"If it's all the same to you," he starts again, "I would... prefer to stay home, if it's not too much trouble to have me. I'll... take a chair in the library."
Fleur nods, bowing her head. While she had adjusted quite happily to the changes in the status of women over the years, the subservience she felt towards her brother was something that had remained throughout the centuries. It was a frequent sticking point between Fleur and her lover, that she would bow to Nicholas but not to him. It was, in fact, one of the reasons why Nick tended to keep scarce. His relationship with his sister was, at all times, a strong and complicating one.
"Oh come, Nicholas, do pull yourself from whatever... emotional quagmire you've managed to step in this time. I thought you were done with this nonsense?"
Nick is silent for a moment before looking to Fleur.
"I'll be in the library."
And with that, he stands, pushing his chair in and leaving his glass. It had been barely touched, a travesty as the wine was the finest to come out of their holdings in France this year and the blood had come from one of the most brilliant playwrights to be published of late.
As he leaves, Fleur turns to LaCroix. She says nothing, but he knows what she means.
"I can't do anything to help him, my dear flower," the general admits, "He's never allowed me much of a hand in his affairs. We've managed to survive as master and child mostly through avoiding one another."
"I am quite aware."
Fleur nods and leans against him, her eyes closing as she wraps her arms around his shoulders. He turns, however, as he feels the first drops of blood.
"Don't let him get you upset, my dear," and he halts before he continues, as the rest of his words would have done little to comfort her and much to send her into a great fit of temper. "He's not a complete fool."
She nudges him.
"Do remember how badly he treated me when I turned his little toy."
She breathes in and out, needlessly but obviously it brings her some calm.
"He did apologize."
"Months after," LaCroix points out. "And because he wanted to see you."
Fleur shrugs. Somewhat sheepishly.
There's a long silence as Fleur attempts to find peace and Lacroix... well, Lucius does what he can to try and figure out a way to get his idiot 'son' to feel better so that his immortal beloved will stop worrying herself nearly sick over him.
Sadly, nearly two thousand years of life prove completely unhelpful for the moment.
And he runs a hand through her beautiful golden hair.
And he has no answer for her.