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Adrian’s black depression dragged at him like a cold undertow, to the point where he was beginning to loathe his own self-pity. He brooded for days in his bedchamber, silent, dressed entirely in black silks, not sleeping, lighting only a single candle at night for company in his self-induced exile. He was sitting at the table, one arm folded beneath his chin on the surface, toying idly with the petals of the wilting white roses that sat in a crystal vase, watching the moonlight creep across the wood when the shadow fell over him. He lifted a high arched eyebrow at his intruder and looked up into cruel red eyes, the familiarity of them bringing a half smile to his lips.


Ivan Cornelius Urbane was tall, dignified, and whipcord thin. His suit was exquisitely tailored, dove gray in a Victorian style that suggested the muscular build beneath and flared to showcase his perfect, surgeon’s hands and immaculately polished boots. He carried a black ebony cane with a silver cobra’s head that Adrian knew to hold a long, slim steel sword, an old wooden chess set under his arm. He had a thin, almost leonine face, with large, half-lidded, cruel red eyes, a long, straight nose upon which sat a delicate pair of wire rimmed glasses, and thin lips that rarely smiled, all framed by long, straight steel gray hair streaked in silver white that fell to the middle of his lean back. His top hat was a shade darker than his suit, and dangling from the brim his only outward suggestion of the insanity that raged in his mind; silver bells on strings. Quietly, he sat opposite Adrian, removed his hat with an understated jingle of the silver bells, and set up the chessboard on the table white side toward Adrian, steepled his perfect fingers on the table and perched his goateed chin upon them, regarding his opponent with vaguely bored impatience. His voice was soft, crisply British, and deep as he spoke into the silence, “Your move.”

Adrian bit back a retort that would have been perceived as unseemly, and undignified to the British Doctor, sighed slightly, and moved his pawn. “So,” he said without looking up from the board, “What brings you here? Did they pay you to come here? Am I to be analyzed, then?”

Ivan stared at him implacably, unmoving. “I came for a game of chess,” he said quietly.

Adrian bit his lip, snarling subtly. They played on in silence for a time, the pieces barely making any sound with their felted bases, the two old friends drawing the game out for a while, as both were brilliant at the game and could have ended it quickly. Finally, Ivan sighed deeply and said, “Allright, Adrian, what is on your mind?”

“I’m bloody lonely, Ivan,” he retorted hotly, his nerves raw, “I’m 500 years old and damn near everybody I have ever loved is either dead or infatuated with somebody else so deeply they can’t see past their own misery!”

“What, like you?”

Adrian recoiled, stung by the truth, “Shut up, Ivan.”

Ivan grinned subtly, the smile never making it to his eyes, and returned to his game. He played on in silence for a time, then said, “You need a hobby.”

“A hobby? What do you mean?”

“Something other than chasing women and masturbation I would think, Your Grace. Get your head out of the rut it’s in.”

“Is this your professional opinion, Doctor?” he snorted, “And what do you suggest I do?”

The doctor lifted his head, baring all of his long, straight white teeth and elongated canines in a vicious grin, his eyes gleaming with insane amusement, though he did not laugh. “You could knit.”

Adrian was so struck by how funny that was coming out of his reticent companion he just stared for a long moment in disbelief before he started laughing. Ivan’s grin dropped as fast as it had appeared, looking annoyed that Adrian found him so amusing, and moved another chess piece. “Well, okay, my friend. What do you do to ease your loneliness?”

Ivan looked irritated at being questioned, sighed deeply and replied, “Not that you need to know, but I talk to my collection.”

“You mean the preserved, severed heads you have in your office?”

Ivan sniffed, “It’s no worse than some other people’s hobbies, I would think. They had it coming, the perverts. Move, will you?”

Adrian placed a chess piece, grinning, “You need to lighten up, Ivan.”

Ivan’s thin eyebrows raised, “Oh? You seek to analyze me, then?”

“Not for a moment. I just find you more interesting than my own problems at the moment. I would love to know what makes you tick.”

Ivan played in silence for a long moment, then replied, “I have very little interest in a great many things. Check.”

Adrian swore softly, and moved his Queen out of check, “I was not asking what you were not interested in, I wanted to know what you are.”

Ivan narrowed his eyes and moved again, “Checkmate. You should give up while you can.”

Adrian knocked over his piece in submission, noting the distinct pleasure that flickered briefly on his opponent’s face. “Another game?”

Ivan set up the board again, this time turning it so Adrian was şişli bayan escort playing black, and he had the first move. Adrian plucked a flower from the vase beside him, one of the blooms that was still clinging tenaciously to its beauty, and tucked it into Ivan’s hair playfully. Ivan batted his hand away in aggravation and glowered at him.

Adrian grinned, “When’s the last time you got laid, anyway?”

Ivan’s carefully calculated move was thrown as he knocked the pawn over instead of moving it and he turned a mildly shocked expression to his coolly grinning opponent. “Laid? What? Had sex?”

Adrian chuckled, “You know what I mean.”

Ivan’s cold demeanor now had a small chink in it, through which gleamed just a hint of melancholy in his claret eyes. “Not since the night I was sired.”

Adrian was taken somewhat aback at how candidly he spoke, his tone shifting some, “Has it been so long?”

“Yes,” he whispered, making a single bold move on the chessboard.

Adrian moved absently, focused instead on his friend’s eyes, on his beauty that caught on his soul like a silver fishhook. He whispered softly, “What would you do if I were to kiss you right now?”

Ivan made a second bold move, “Checkmate,” stood swiftly, drawing his sword and had Adrian on sword point in less than the blink of a mortal’s eye. The blade tip pressed against Adrian’s lower lip, puncturing it slightly, a bead of blood welling up around the razor sharp point. The Italian duke sat very still, his startlement evident in his eyes, and maybe a touch of fear as he gazed up at his old friend. “Go ahead and try it, Your Grace,” Ivan hissed softly, deadly as the cobra on the sword’s hilt.

Adrian averted his eyes, then watched carefully as Ivan brought the sword back to his lips, his long tongue snaking out to taste the blood on the tip. The younger vampire’s head tipped back, his eyes closed in ecstasy at the taste and potency of the blood and Adrian knew he had him hooked. Ivan sheathed his sword with a superior grin, picked up his hat and bowed slightly to Adrian in his typically well-bred manner as though he were about to leave.

“You don’t have to go,” Adrian said quickly, suppressing the desperation in his voice, he was not ready to be alone yet.

“There is nothing holding me here,” Ivan replied coolly, settling his hat on his head with a quiet jingle.

“Oh, but I think you do,” Adrian said, slowly rising from his chair, his eyes locked on Ivan’s in a deadly dance, unconsciously sensual. “You tasted something back there that you liked, I know you did. The look is unmistakable.”

“You indulge yourself too much, Adrian. You would do things now you will only regret later.”

“There are many different kinds of regrets, friend, including those you feel when you haven’t done something you could have…would it be so bad, really?”

Emotions chased themselves across Ivan’s lean features, breaking his demeanor again just so slightly; intrigue, sorrow, aggravation, loneliness, and finally resignation as he shrugged and walked back toward the table. He removed his hat and coat, something Adrian had never seen him do in all the years he had known him, sitting expectantly on the chair again with an unreadable expression on his handsome, stoic face as if to say, “Your Move.”

Adrian considered his position carefully, gauging his friend’s reactions to determine his next move very cautiously. He strode over beside him and reached out a long-fingered hand to stroke his streaked gray hair, only to have Ivan flinch away from him, and he retreated again. Now Ivan’s expression did not so much forbid, but warn subtly, a tentative hand rested on the duke’s lean hip, and Adrian changed his tactics. With a supreme amount of self-discipline, Adrian knelt on the floor before Ivan’s feet, suppressing his noble dignity to look up into his eyes. Ivan spread his knees a little, to encourage Adrian to come closer, and was rewarded as the duke crept up to kneel belly to belly with him. The Doctor watched him for a long moment before he bit his tongue, extending it beyond his thin lips to offer Adrian the blood that welled there. The duke knelt up, stretching up to take the proffered taste with reverence due the gift offered, laying a soft hand on the Doctor’s thin knee to steady himself as he kissed him. The thin body trembled slightly as Adrian stroked his hair again, and he pulled back, noting the pleading look in the younger vampire’s eye as he broke the kiss before it was slightly suppressed.

“What is it?” Adrian whispered.

“It… has been a very long time since anybody has touched me this way,” he replied quietly.

“Do you want me to stop?”


Adrian put his arms around Ivan’s lean body, holding him as he kissed him again, and the young man fairly melted into his arms, tilting his head back to accept the passionate kiss. The buttons on Ivan’s fine shirt plinked on the hardwood floor as Adrian popped them off one at a time, revealing a lean, bare chest he lavished with kisses and soft strokes. The Doctor’s nimble şişli escort fingers dropped down to the waistline of his trousers, unbuttoning them to further bare himself to his lover’s gentle ministrations, and Adrian reveled in the expression of ecstasy on Ivan’s face as he treated his straining erection with a slow lick with his warm, wet tongue. Ivan’s hands in Adrian’s hair and on his shoulders and neck were encouraging, as pleading as the soft cries that rang in his ears as he took Ivan’s cock deep into his mouth, running his tongue along the sensitive underside.

Adrian’s breath left his body in a rough cry as Ivan launched himself into him to knock him sprawling on the rug, his eyes alight with a new lust. He crawled over his downed prey to taste of his flesh himself with a tentative nip to his thigh through the silk pants Adrian wore, which he impatiently tore away with his nails as though they were tissue. Ivan explored his lover’s body with deep interest, noting the sounds that rose from Adrian’s throat as he touched here, nipped there, licked there just so. Adrian strained and panted under the clinically precise application of Ivan’s hands and teeth and tongue until he could barely stand it; what Ivan lacked in experience he made up for in enthusiasm and patience, and Adrian was sure the sensations would drive him as mad as the one who tortured him even now. He was all but undone as Ivan looked up into his eyes and took his cock into his mouth much the way he had done to him, his steel gray hair falling into his face. His lean arms wrapped around Adrian’s hips, gripping his flesh to steady him as he drew an experimental fang across the sensitive skin of Adrian’s cock and his back arched beneath him.

“You like pain?” Adrian panted, “I’ll show you a little pain, my friend.”

The older vampire pulled himself up, grabbing the younger man’s shoulders and throwing him roughly to the bed nearby. With a growl deep in his chest he seized the young doctor’s lean body in his hands and flipped him stomach down on the comforter, holding him there with a clawed hand gripping his hip as he reopened the nick in his lip with his fang and drew blood again. He spit the blood into his hand, lubricated his erection with it, and slid into his lover’s body in a single, long, torturous stroke. He could feel Ivan’s body tense around him, a strangled scream tearing from his throat as the pain ripped through him, every muscle seizing in a convulsive shudder as he fought to accommodate the invasion of Adrian’s thrust. Adrian curled his body and laid over Ivan’s, gripping a handful of his hair and hissing in his ear, “Is this what you want?”

Ivan snapped at him, and he drew back with a chuckle, steadying his captive body beneath him and began to force himself in deeper. Every time Adrian’s lean hips ground against Ivan’s, the younger vampire groaned with rapture and agony, and he bucked against him. His whimpers of pleasure riled the predatory sadist in Adrian, and he pushed harder into his slim body, one hand gripping his hair, the other hand’s claws dug into his hip until blood flowed in rivulets down his trembling thigh. Without losing rhythm, Adrian lifted a bloodstained finger and savored the scarlet drops, hot and coppery and fiery in their potency, and the bloodlust heightened the sensation to pure perfection. The orgasm ripped through Adrian’s body like a wind-whipped wildfire, his claws gripping his victim’s flesh and hair as he spent himself inside the lean, trembling frame under him. Beneath his howl of ecstasy, Ivan’s protracted groan signaled his own release, a delicate shudder passing over his tortured body, and he collapsed to the bed bonelessly. Adrian curled beside him, stroking back his hair to reveal a sweet, contented smile on his beautiful face as he slept. Ivan’s slender body fit comfortably curled against Adrian’s fencer’s build, and the old vampire stroked him tenderly until sleep claimed them both.

Morning would prove to be interesting.

Adrian awoke slowly, smiling as he found his young lover’s body still curled against his, and he kissed his forehead sleepily in greeting. Ivan’s drowsy eyes fluttered open to regard him for a moment, then his whole form tensed in sudden revulsion and he flew back against the headboard, grabbing the sheets to cover his naked body, blushing furiously. Adrian cocked his head, confused, reaching for his lover only to have him stutter and inch away from his hand.

“Ivan? What on earth is the matter with you?” he said, stung.

“Oh dear,” Ivan whispered, blushing again, covering his mouth shyly with his graceful hands, “Do I know you? What are we doing in bed together? Did something happen last night?”

Adrian raised an eyebrow in disbelief, “Do you mean to tell me you have no idea how you got here? You’ve been with me all night!”

“Yes, I suppose I have… who are you?”

The duke decided to play along with his game for now; enchanted by this new persona his friend was exhibiting. Was his madness so all-encompassing that he had no memory of his night’s activities during the day? A mecidiyeköy escort whole separate personality for the daylight hours? It was not so far-fetched, he supposed, and humored him, holding out his hand amiably, “Duke Adrian Sforza of Milan, at your service.”

“Ivan Cornelius Urbane… Dr. Urbane, actually, but you can call me Ivan,” he replied, shaking Adrian’s hand professionally. “Um, tell me, Your Grace, do you have any idea of where my clothes are?”

Adrian glanced over at his fine gray suit crumpled on the floor, but Ivan showed no recognition of them, regarding him with unsettling timidity. With a shrug, Adrian removed his black silk robe and covered Ivan’s thin shoulders with it, leaving him shirtless in his somewhat torn silk pants. “This will have to do until we can find something that will please you… just what would please you?”

“Thank you,” he said, blushing again and pulling the warm silk closer, “That suit there simply is not mine. I prefer shades of brown to that gray, you know?”

“Is there anything else I can get for you?” Adrian asked, amused.

“If you have any tea, that would be lovely…”

Adrian blinked, staring at the nebbish little man in his bed, then fetched him some tea. All day long, the duke doted on his little friend, caring for him, talking to him, trying to fill him in on just what had happened the night before without scaring him off. Just for an experiment that afternoon, he leaned over and kissed him on the lips, much to Ivan’s sputtering surprise.

“I’m sorry,” Adrian chuckled, “I did not mean to scare you.”

“You most certainly are not sorry!” Ivan snorted indignantly, blushing again to the roots of his gray hair, and covering his lips with his perfect hands to hide what might have been a tiny smile. “Neither should you be,” he added softly, “I’m afraid things may have been misleading for you. Last night, it seems, that would have been perfectly appropriate; we were lovers, I assume. I just wish I knew what was going through my mind at the time… did I love you?”

Adrian sighed, a hint of the lonely desperation creeping back into his eyes after a day of forgetting the pain. “I don’t know, Ivan. I was hoping you would tell me. The side of you that knows will never tell, and the side of you that would tell does not know. How do you feel about me right now?”

Ivan lowered his eyes to the carpet, avoiding Adrian’s gaze, “Honestly, Adrian, I am confused. I don’t hate you, if that’s what you are afraid of. You seem a nice enough fellow…”

Adrian sighed again, poured another cup of tea and went back to the window to look out at the flowering bushes outside and not at Ivan’s beautiful body wrapped in midnight silk at his table. “Yes,” he said absently, “a very nice fellow…”

The sun set in a glory of red and purple the color of old wounds, and Adrian tore himself away from the glass to return to his guest, not noticing the subtle change in his posture as he idly stroked an errant strand of his steel colored hair until it was too late. In a sudden flurry of fluid motion, Ivan leaped to his feet, drawing his sword from it’s sheath, thrust the three feet of steel through Adrian’s chest just below his right shoulder and pinned him brutally to the bed. The hilt slammed into place against the bones, and he screamed in agony, writhing beneath Ivan’s lithe body as he snarled in Adrian’s face, his eyes glowing.

“You are damn lucky you kept your filthy hands off me all day, or this would be ten times worse, my friend,” Ivan hissed.

Adrian was panting, startled and wounded, his eyes wild, words barely forming on his bloodied lips, “Wh…wha… wha…what did I do?”

Ivan left him pinned and fetched his medical kit from his coat without a word, opening it on the bed beside him to reveal all manner of torturous devices; needles of every conceivable gage, ties, tubes, scalpels, sutures and the like. He straddled Adrian’s knees, settling down to pin his legs to the bed, and calmly began to draw out the needles and apply them to Adrian’s skin. The duke howled in pain as the needles pierced the flesh of his genitals, struggling to escape the cruelly pinning sword sunk into his shoulder, his blood soaking the sheets, but Ivan remained calm and cool, clinically exploring new levels of pain on his friend’s flesh. Something about his exposure, his helplessness, the cold cruelty of Ivan’s scarlet eyes sparked the lust in Adrian again, and he whimpered in agony and submission.

“Please, Ivan,” he sobbed, “please…”

Ivan seemed to flinch inwardly, something in Adrian’s frantic tone awakening a deep, hidden emotion in his psyche, and he drew the sword out slowly, savoring the sound of the steel through flesh. He bent down like a dark bird, licking at the blood seeping from the wound hungrily, kissing the tortured flesh with a tenderness he was not sure he had ever felt before. He removed the needles with painstaking slowness, watching the blood well where the steel had pierced it, kissing the beads reverently. When it seemed his appetites were satisfied, he licked his lips, cleaned himself off, gathered his supplies, dressed and prepared to leave. Adrian was too exhausted to beg him not to go, though it was evident in his eyes as Ivan bent to kiss him on the lips. Then, he was gone as suddenly as he had come.

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