“Did you see him?” Walter shouted as he ran into the ranch house, brandishing his gun and slamming the door shut behind him.
“Did I see whom?” Alex replied nonchalantly looking up from the novel he was reading. Alex reminded Walter of a large cat (or rat) lounging in an overstuffed chair by the fireplace.
“The uh, um...” All of a sudden Walter slumped against the door, the wind apparently taken out of his sails. “I’m not sure exactly.”
“Then tell me what you think you saw.”
“I just pulled up.”
“How was the party?”
“Very nice; a great success. The kids enjoyed it. You were missed,” Walter said with a warm smile.
“Halloween parties are not my forte.”
“And yet you rigged up the old library as the best haunted house the folks around here have ever seen.”
“What can I say, I have a way with scary things.” Alex smirked.
“The town elders wondered if you’d consider doing something like it for each major holiday. The librarian noted a marked increase of lending.”
“Sure, now, back to what you think you saw.”
“Maybe it’s just my imagination running on overtime. Alex, I swore I saw Count Dracula himself walk up the driveway and enter this house!”
“Walter, first of all, Count Dracula wouldn’t be caught dead walking up our driveway. Excuse the pun. Our driveway is nearly a half mile long. And secondly, according to lore, Dracula would have to be invited in. I have not give my permission to the Count to enter this house.”
“Thank you for clearing that up for me,” Walter snarked as he holstered his weapon then stomped into the kitchen.
Alex heard the banging of pots and pans and then eventually the comforting aroma of rich cocoa filled the air.
“I’m sorry,” Alex murmured as he entered the kitchen and wrapped his arms around Walter’s waist as he stood at the stove stirring the cocoa.
“I could have sworn I saw a figure in black walk up the drive and enter the house.”
“I don’t discount what you saw, Walter. We’ve both seen and lived through enough weird shit for me to believe just about anything.” Alex felt Walter nod. “Why don’t you take a nice hot shower. I’ll finish the cocoa then bring it up to our room.”
“That’s the best thing I’ve heard all day,” Walter conceded as he turned in Alex’s arms, kissing the man’s lips then relinquishing the pot of cocoa. Alex took up the spoon as Walter walked upstairs.
“Are we alone?” a tall lanky fellow dressed in black asked with a heavy accent as he stepped out of the shadows and into the kitchen.
“Yes. He’s in the shower,” Alex confirmed. The pipes groaned as the hot water made its way up to the bathroom.
“Do you often lie to your lover?” the man asked with a smug thin smile.
“I didn’t lie. He wondered if Count Dracula entered the house. And since you have never gone by that moniker, Vlad...”
“Fine. What about our deal?” came a cold growl with exposed long canines.
“Don’t get your boxers in a twist, it’s all been arranged,” Alex stated with confidence. He rolled his eyes at the posturing. “Want some?” Alex held up the pot. Vlad shook his head then walked towards the door. Alex took out an antique silver chocolate service from a high cupboard. Vlad nodded his approval at the quality.
“If this works, more of my children will find their way to you seeking asylum. You won’t be able to fib your way out of it for long.”
“I won’t have to fib, as you put it. I’ll tell Walter myself over some hot cocoa. Now get out of here and stay away from the house. You’re getting sloppy in your old age. Walter may be retired but he’s no fool. His instincts are still sharp.”
“As are yours, cousin.”
“Cousin, ten, twenty times removed?”
“You must admit, Alexi, that with only a drop of my blood in you, it has helped you weather the long storm and bolstered your immunity against the Black Oil.”
“That and other things. I’m lucky no one has ever tried to analyze my blood. They’d have been in for quite a shock.”
“True but you are not immortal.”
“And you can be killed given the right circumstances.”
“Also true. Know this, Alexi, while my children still roam this world, you and whomever you care for will have my protection. After that?” Vlad shrugged his shoulders then disappeared into the night.
“Working on it,” Alex murmured as the pipes once again groaned when Walter turned off the shower.
Alex locked up the house, set the alarms then took his tray up to the master bedroom.
“Mmmm,” Walter moaned. “That was delicious,” he crowed.
“The sex or the cocoa?” Alex asked, sweaty from their exertions.
The lovers settled down into their huge bed. A crisp breeze wafting through their room via a window that was open just a little bit. Ghost and goblins be damned.
“Alex, I know what I saw,” Walter said after a while. A hand snaked its way under the thick blanket then laced itself with Walter’s. “You can tell me anything.”
“I know Walter. I sometimes forget how formidable you are. You don’t need coddling or protection.”
“Then tell me.”
Alex spun a truthful tale that was centuries old about an unwritten history and family legends. Hours later both men were exhausted.
“Wow, it’s amazing that you kept this from Mulder all these years. And thank you for trusting me,” Walter said as he snuggled Alex closer, tucking their downy covers securely around them.
“Sleep, Alex,” Walter commanded with a sleepy sigh. He was soon fast asleep.
“Yes, Walter,” Alex whispered back, a satisfied smile on his face as the moon rose full and the children of the night howled in the forest. “I’m working on it.”
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