The Nod
Forever Knight story
by Cousin Mary
© July 2005
Disclaimers:  Don’t own, not even a little.

Notes:  Trying something a bit different.  Little stream of consciousness, little poetic.  Feedback would be loved and nurtured and surrounded by pretty flowers.

Permission to archive:  Anita, Mel, Bright Knight and any DP.  Others let me know.

        It hit her like a ton of bricks.  Finding out Nick was a vampire had been almost a physical blow.  And it happened at the Raven, in front of everyone.  So many vampires had seen it.  Some had laughed, actually laughed out loud.  Others, like the bartender, like Urs, had looked like they felt sorry for her.

        It hadn’t been that dramatic, what had made her finally step back and see.  Nick had hauled her into the Raven to talk to someone about their case, nothing too unusual, they’d been there before.  Now, looking back, she knew she should have realized before that Nick at least knew about them …

        Them.  He was one of them.

        When she knew, it was just a second from when she had absolutely no clue.  Then, like a light switch flipping on, all was illuminated.

        Nick looked at Vachon and nodded.

        Just nodded, a vague little mean-nothing greeting.

        And then she knew.  Nick was a vampire.

        She’d been following him to the back, walking across the club, past the bar to the back.  You had to walk the entire length of the bar to get to the back office.

        They’d been halfway down when it happened.

        The nod.

        The house lights could have turned on, the music off, the fire sprinklers poured down -- nothing could have stopped her as cold as that.

        Cold.  That’s how it felt, like getting a block of ice shoved at her, catching her in the gut and taking her down.

        Nick kept walking; he didn’t even notice she wasn’t following anymore.  She just stood there, staring at his back as he disappeared into the office.

        Deep breath.

        Vachon had walked away, hadn’t seen.

        The others, they must have been watching her, waiting for this to happen.

        It’d been inevitable she’d find out eventually.

        Absently, numbly, she wondered if there had been, like, an office pool.  She stood there, breathing in and out.  Her head felt light; the music seemed muted.

        She could feel their eyes on her, some smiling.  Most smiling, actually, either mocking or sympathetic.  So many.

        One of the waitresses led her to a bar stool and the bartender put a shot glass in front of her.  She watched him fill it with something and she downed it without question.

        Urs was rubbing her back, slow circles.  No one had said anything, but what was there to say?

        The bartender -- his name tag read "Miklos" -- made some motion, maybe asking her if she wanted another drink.  She shook her head; it wouldn’t help.  She shouldn’t have drunk the first one.

        Nick had been gone a while, though she supposed it’d barely been five minutes.  He might be in there an hour, a lifetime.  Time had stopped anyway.

        The waitress -- she didn’t have a name tag but she had an upturned nose and long blonde hair with bangs -- was recognizable.  Tracy’d seen her before.  She’d led her to the stool, sat beside her and offered her a cigarette.

        Urs sat on the other side; Miklos stood before her.  Her little circle of sympathy in a sea of sneers.

        Eventually, the extra eyes left her.  The mumbling, the whispers that hadn’t really registered until they stopped, faded away.

        Miklos went to answer an order.  The waitress moved away.

        Urs sat with her until Nick came back.

        No one ever said anything.

Endnote.   What do you think?

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