October 3rd, 2006
A noise of pain escaped Trent's mouth as Frank touched the wound.
"Will you stay still," Frank hissed, getting up. "What the fuck were you doing, anyway?"
"Having a little fun with our favorite vampire and his buddies," Trent said quietly, trying not to wake up anyone. They were in the house that the members of My Chemical Romance were staying in.
It was a week after the fairly disastrous meeting with Krishna. They had moved closer to the center of town, on a block filled almost entirely with rebels. They were as safe as they were going to get.
Four rebels had been killed in the last seven days. But the rebels had scored a huge victory two nights before: the Sangre branch had discovered where Sutara was and ambushed the hideout, killing her and three of her guards.
"What happened?" Frank glanced at him, handing him a shirt. It was the only thing on hand to stem the bleeding.
Trent held it away from the blood. "It's brand-new."
"It's a shirt," Frank said patiently, pressing it to the long cut. "You didn't answer."
"Krishna was out hunting," Trent said simply. "I was being an idiot and walking around alone. I was trying to find Gabrielle."
"Did you find her?"
Trent grimaced, not because of his arm. "Yeah. I found her." After a moment, he elaborated. "Some of her."
Trent nodded. "It wasn't pretty. I had to tell Nathaniel-her sihdhae-and tell him what had happened."
"Sihdhae," Trent said. "Mate. Husband. Whatever."
Trent glanced out the window. "I don't know if Krishna's still looking for me. I'd better leave. Jeff's probably-"
He got up and Frank caught his wrist. "No. Don't."
Trent cocked an eyebrow. "Why?"
"That'll be the first place they'll look, if they are looking for you."
"This'll be the second."
"But this will buy you some time if we hear them. If they go for an all-out-"
"They won't," Trent said quietly. "Krishna's not a warfare fighter. He's the type who'd rather pull the wings and legs off of a fly than swat it. He's too smart to do that. He hasn't got Sutara to back him, now, though, but he's still a wily bastard."
"You should still stay here." Frank stood up and released his wrist.
A silence fell. After a few moments of it, Frank said, so quietly that Trent almost didn't hear him-
"I never apologized for that night."
Trent closed his eyes. "Frank... I should be the one saying sorry. I shouldn't have done it. I don't know why I did."
"Don't apologize." Frank swallowed and glanced up at him, catching his gaze and holding it.
Trent's face was so close, Frank could have counted his eyelashes...
One movement. One simple, unexpected movement, and Frank's lips were on Trent's.
Now nothing was holding Trent back. He knew he was a dead man. He might as well enjoy himself while he could.
And that was probably the reason that, ten minutes later, he was in Frank's room.
He woke up to bright sunlight and someone's arm draped over his waist. It took him a moment to remember what had happened a few hours before.
He blinked, turning his head slightly. Frank was still sleeping.
Where the hell were his clothes? Boxers... found. He reached over the side and pulled those on.
He sat up, searching for his shirt, not finding it. Damnit. At least he didn't have to look for his pants; they were at the end of the bed.... maybe, no, shit, those were Frank's.
"Morning." Frank's voice was slightly hoarse, but a sleepy smile was on his face. "Why didn't you wake me up?"
"I just woke up a minute ago," Trent said. "Where's my shirt?"
Frank yawned. "Hold on... uhm..." He closed his eyes. "I don't know. It might be... over there?" He jerked his head towards the far left corner and, sure enough, there was the slightly bloodstained Ramones tee-shirt Trent had been wearing the night before.
"Okay, thanks." Trent pulled the jeans on and swung his legs over the side of the bed.
"You can leave the shirt off," Frank murmured sleepily.
"Trent! Frank!" Someone was yelling their names. Frank shot up, scrambling for his clothes.
"Damn," Trent said, pulling the shirt over his head, "that was fast."
"I've had practice and that's Mikey-he never sounds like that unless something's actually wrong-"
There was a crashing sound, like glass being broken.
"Can't that little shit leave me alone for two fucking hours?" Trent said angrily, slipping his feet into his shoes and tearing out the door, Frank right behind him.
Trent barreled into the kitchen, where six of his rebels and both bands were gathered.
"Trent!" A woman with long, burgundy hair jumped up. "It's Krishna-he's got almost all of his troops outside-"
"We only held them off," Mikey said, looking more than a little shaken. "I think I-killed one of them."
Damn it, Trent thought, looking around at all of them. None of them were killers.
"You're going to have to get used to it," he said, not unkindly. "I think this is a kill-or-be-killed situation."
Chris paled. "Trent, you have to be careful," he said weakly. "If Krishna's really out-"
A tall, solemn-faced black man spoke up. "Trent's smarter than that. He knows what he's doing." His eyes flashed. "Plus, I want to pay Krishna back."
"Don't let what happened to Gabrielle affect you," Trent said quietly. Frank suddenly realized who the black vampire was-Nathaniel. Gabrielle-the dead rebel-this was her sihdhae.
He wondered how many rebels would be left like Nathaniel after this.
Frank glanced around the room. Every one of them had some sort of weapon; Ray, Gerard, Jeff, Trent, himself, and Nathaniel had the only six guns. Ray and Jeff were holding Browning 9 millimeter Hi-Powers while Gerard, Frank and Nathaniel had Walther P99s. Trent had the only machine pistol, a Glock 18C.
"Man," Ray said, staring at the Glock, "where the fuck did you get these?"
Trent flashed a grin. "Friends in low places."
"How many guns does Krishna's side have?" Frank asked, running a finger down the lockback Ray had tossed at him. There was another in his belt-a simple but very effective slipjoint.
Trent took a little while to respond. "Krishna doesn't like guns. He thinks it takes away any need for skill or courage." He shrugged. "I think he's being a dumbass, but, whatever."
Ray tossed the gun in the air and caught it.
"Watch out, fucker!" Gerard said loudly, stepping away.
"Don't worry, the safety's on," Ray said, checking it. He raised his eyebrows. "Okay, now it's on."
Trent rolled his eyes. "Might wanna keep that off."
Ray nodded and clicked it off.
"Okay, everybody, listen up," Trent said loudly. "Krishna hasn't done anything yet, so we'll have the element of the first attack on our side. If we're lucky, we'll catch them unaware. If we're not, we'll have to fight like a bastard to get to the core leeches." He paused. "They outnumber us two to one, and I want you to take out as many as you can. But don't put yourself in any danger that absolutely doesn't need to happen," he continued, his gaze resting on Ray and Nathaniel for a little longer than it probably needed to, "because I don't want to lose many of you. I don't want to lose any, but that's an unrealistic idea. I want you all to be careful. Especially you five," he said, staring at the members of My Chemical Romance. "You guys are tough, but you're human. The rest of us are faster and we can heal a lot faster than you can, so this goes for you especially: do not take any unnecessary risks. Now... get out back."
Everyone filed out the door. Frank was halfway out when Trent caught his wrist. Before Frank knew it, his back was to the counter and Trent's mouth was on his, forcing his tongue past Frank's lips.
Trent broke away after a moment.
"Wow," Frank said, looking a little stunned. "I mean... wow."
"Now you probably understand why I want to keep you around. Be careful, for Christ's sake."
Frank grinned a little. "I will."
Trent pulled away reluctantly. "Come on then."
Frank followed him out, walking out the back door until they reached the others.
"Ray, Nathaniel, Bob and Gerard-you guys are the heads of a few rebels each," Trent murmured. They all had to move in closer to hear him. "Gerard, take Jake, Alexa and Chris over to the east side of the house. Nathaniel, you've got Lane, Jeff and Brian over to the north-but stay clear of the leeches. Bryar, take Connor, Travis and Liza and keep back here. Ray... take the west side by storm. I'm giving you my four best fighters-Gaia, Criss, Brendan and Joel. Try not to lose them.
"As for the rest of you, you'll be under my command. Listen to your leaders: If they say fight, you will fight. If they say hide, you will hide. If they say run, you will run."
Ray's eyes blazed for a moment. "Will that be necessary?"
"It depends," Trent said. "If they outnumber us by fifty, then yes, it may be necessary. Now go-and go for the core. Don't bother with the guards. Go for Krishna and his men." The rest of them stayed in the courtyard.
Ray, Nathaniel, and Gerard all left with their respective divisions. Frank had been watching it all impassively; he didn't let his surprise show on his face. He never would have guessed that Trent would've been a tactical genius, but that was the way it seemed at the moment.
He pulled Trent aside. "They're all going to die," he whispered, as though it was a known and accepted fact.
"Then I'll die with them," Trent responded simply. He turned back to the main group just as a gunshot rang out.
"Fuck!" A pretty blonde vampiress fell to her knees just as the bullet grazed her shoulder.
Travis-one of the few vampires Frank knew by name-knelt beside her as a bullet shrieked by over his head.
"Everybody down," Trent hissed and everyone dropped to the grass. "Raven, are you okay?"
"I'm fine," Raven said and gritted her teeth.
"Pity." A calm voice rang through the courtyard.
Frank spun around and a hand dropped to the gun in his jacket pocket.
The vampire a little ways behind him rolled his eyes. "Please," he said. "try to maintain a little subtlety."
The gun was in Frank's hand before whoever the vampire was knew what he was doing.
"Frank," Trent hissed. "Don't do something stupid."
"That's right, Frankie," the vampire in front of him said mockingly. "Listen to Jared. Don't do anything you'll regret." The pistol was staring Frank in the face suddenly. "I'm better, smarter, tougher than you are, little human. Don't test me."
"Yeah? Let's see who's faster, you or me." Frank's words were spoken coolly but the sharp blast of the pistol was anything but.
There was a spray of blood. The vampire in front of him was gagging suddenly, trying to breathe through a ruined throat, his eyes growing rounder and rounder in a cruel mockery of surprise. It was the only life in him.
"Holy shit," Connor said, getting up carefully and glancing around. Frank was still standing there, his back to all of them.
"Yeah," Cecilia said after a moment. "That was amazing."
Liza seemed to be the only one that noticed something was wrong. "Frank?" She reached up to wipe a drop of blood off her porcelain-pale cheek.
She and Trent were the ones that saw him sway.
Trent was up and at Frank's side in a heartbeat.
Liza caught him as he fell.
And that was when they saw the hole in his chest.