impertinences: (Default)
you're too young & eager to love ([personal profile] impertinences) wrote on April 16th, 2014 at 11:42 pm
One more for today!

Inspired, somewhat, by this photo:

I'm not sure why, really. Mostly because I like the idea of him wearing this when he first meets Lene and her scoffing and saying that he looks like he should be in Cuba. Then he'd be impressed that she even knows what is/was Cuba.

Thanks to Sasha-Muffin-Pants for giving me a prompt to focus on!


“A hungry man can’t see right or wrong. He just sees food.”


You wake in the night with a hunger that is palpable.

You wake in the night with a hunger so bright that it’s colorful – plum, heart red, organ slick, tangerine spheres, copper and salt fountains, an oasis of strawberry victims. Your mouth is dry, and your corpse’s breath sticks in your throat. You curl your hand around the Spartan edge of your bedframe until the wood threatens to splinter. Your mouth is caught in a snarl, like the vicious expression of a starved canine, and you know what your eyes look like: the eyes of wolves, prowling, determined to find a meal.

Here, in the last moments of the deep dark of the compound, in your isolated, medicinal quarters, you force yourself to relax. To uncurl your hand and feel the cotton fibers of the sheets beneath your body. You count to one thousand, a number for every year you’ve walked the earth, and then you count again. You do this seven times before your jaw relaxes, before your fangs retract, before you can see anything other than vermillion.

You consider yourself too old to feel this way. Too old to fall victim to the baser needs of your biology. You’re as tight as an arrow, all your preternatural senses keening, and if you could remember what it felt like to be a boy on the edge of manhood then you would know that this was the same. You can hear the heartbeats of everyone within a ten mile radius; all their heated smells, all their vivid tastes, beasts and humans alike, swell against you until you’re close to gnawing your own wrist. You would laugh if you weren’t exasperated. If you weren’t anxious. If you didn’t know the reason for this sudden awareness, for this yearning, for this budding possibility that stripped you of your resolve.

The possibility of your lack of control angers you because it frightens you.

You think Adira would be disappointed, but the thought makes you smile. Her with the sleight frame but iron will. Her who taught you what the word survival truly meant: self-preservation.

Above all other costs.


Sometimes, when you are alone, she sits with you. She’ll lean against your window frame as you talk, slipping into the old language of the fatherland, her arms folded, wearing those light spring dresses that you remember her wearing in the dead of winter. Dresses that showed off her slender, finely shaped calves. Her tiny ankles covered by leather boots meant for male soldiers. Her skeletal fingers gloveless and, miraculously to those who saw, unaffected by the cold. If you can remember her well enough (and you always can), there will be snow in her auburn hair, her cherry bud mouth the only part of her that is womanly. Even in her dress, she is devoid of feminine curves – as straight as a boy, yet she possessed a ferocity that was tangible, so much that the even the Reichsleiter were unnerved by her.

She rarely wore the proper attire or insignia until you made her, and then you both adopted the all-black uniform of the SS. The Nazi Party’s ideologies were less easy to wear, but Adira’s particular brand of adaptability conformed to any situation. Such is survival, she would murmur, when you’re hiding amongst men.

You still make sense of that lesson now.

The Insurgence knows this.

They know most everything. Some of the information in your record you provided willingly. Other details, the ones more secret and intimate, they found for themselves. Time reveals anything, even in a world that is drastically changing, although you can’t help but think that this new radicalization is just another repetition.

Cycles of ash and rebirth.

Human hatred and fear: the great catalysts.


Calev does not come to you.

You do not invite him like you invite your maker. His is not a conjuring you summon. He is one of those quiet things, one of those details of your long life that you hold, painfully, to yourself. He is etched into your marrow, and there he will remain.

Adira had not approved then and, even after, her opinion did not change much.

You had stood inside the camp barracks, the collars of your coats turned up, with your Kommandant emblem blaring as a warning on your uniform and Adira’s riding crop clutched firmly in her little hand. She lashed out at the occasional passing prisoner, barking a rebuke in her accented German. Even though she was more than a foot smaller than you, she had a reputation for merciless that kept most everyone else at a distance. But the yard was mostly empty given the late hour, the freezing temperatures, and the threat of more snow.

Inside the nearest barrack, crammed somewhere on top of the wooden bunk beds, you could smell him. Smell the death and disease and despair.

“He’s dying,” You told her as if that was explanation enough for your recent infatuation, careful to whisper in Adira’s native tongue.

“Look around. They’re all dying. This place is death, liebling. … It stinks of rot and decay and shit.”

You laughed. It was harsh, like the wind. “Are you not – ”

“Welche schuld! Welche schuld! Wo war diese schuld vor einem monat?” She punctuated her scoffing reproach with her crop, tapping it pointedly against your leg, until you caught it firmly and glared downward. She rarely spoke German with you – the harsh sounding language was maintained for appearances and condemnation only.

Adira sighed, like a disapproving mother, and looked back to the barrack in question. “You will do what you want, in the end, my love. We always do, eventually.”

And you had.

But like an inexperienced child, you waited too long and bore the consequences for decades to come.


Your hunger makes you impatient, turns you on edge, but worst of all it makes you guilty.

You close your eyes and think of gaunt, skeletal faces. Of walking corpses unlike that of which you are. You press your knuckles to your eyes and will away your ghosts, these burdens of your particular, unique past.

Before you were assigned to the compound, when you were only a step below The Insurgence council figures themselves, most of the members still referred to you as Kommandant. The younger members were merely following in the footsteps of the older, hardened recruits; they were too young to know the weight behind the title. But the others understood, and they meant it as a mockery, a jab to your status and character.

You embraced it as you had embraced it originally. Your reputation had always preceded you.

That, too, does not change. You establish a new kind of notoriety – one carried from the mouths of the elite women, the prospectives, or the sometimes-borrowed companions. After two years by his side, Harrow has much to say about you as well: your loyalty is blood-deep, and you have proven it so much that, on good days (or bad ones, really), you sometimes forget what your true mission is. The Insurgence understands; any dedicated soldier risks delving too deeply, which is why they send you your contact. A break from the role you play. She will better you, the coded letter informs you. She will strengthen your determination, offer the chance for companionship, and satisfy your desire for nourishment.

Their euphemism makes you laugh. Donors are hardly so willing, you think.

The seed is planted all the same, and the possibility of all that they suggest fills you with a need you thought you had long discarded.

Logic tells you that she will be a set of eyes and ears – a rat, meant more for reporting than stabilizing.

But your hunger says differently.
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