One perfect day
The cork of the champagne bottle hit the overhead light with a dull thud accompanied by her laughter, clear and bright as heavens bells. "I'm sorry, Rachel, I nearly broke the lamp, seems I can't even open a bottle of champagne, clumsy old me." She stopped his embarrassed ranting with a long and deep kiss, making him feel like the luckiest man on earth because among all the guests he was the only one she was touching like this, the only one she wanted. The one she had only moments ago agreed to marry.
They were not only celebrating him passing his bar exam, they were also celebrating their engagement. Finally with his education finished and a job in his pocket he had the financial means to support a family. Finally her father had agreed to give Nick his daughter's hand. Never mind that the two men would never be best friend, maybe never even get along long enough to not ruin every family dinner, Nick finally got to put a ring on her finger and have a family of his own.
The smile that lit up her face every time she showed off her engagement ring was worth every pound out of his savings that he'd spent on it. He would have stolen the stars from the heavens had she asked it of him just to see her smile like that. That night she was his sun and his moon eclipsing the world around them. She was what he needed to live; she was his air and his food and his goddess.
They had many happy days after this night, years full of them, but in Nick's memory this night when she'd agreed to be his would always be the most perfect night of his life.
He often visited her grave and just sat there leaning against the tree he planted upon it thinking of the time they had together, trying not to think of her death. Never minding that the bark and the grass left stains on his suit he spent hours just talking to her, telling her of his life, his plans, telling her again and again how sorry he was. Every time he came here he apologized for not giving her a real funeral, for hiding her body in the woods like that, but he couldn't risk anybody finding out how she'd died, Mr. Yorke had made that very clear. He was to pretend she'd just vanished, walked out on him with a lover and never even left him a message. He apologized for ruining her reputation, for shaming her family, for every tear his lie brought to her mother's eyes.
After Hal vanished he spent hours babbling to Rachel about it, about how everybody he cared about, everybody he depended on, just left him. He cried and he raved and he threw stones around until he finally collapsed and just lay there, letting his tears soak into the ground that covered the woman he loved. He imagined those tears finding their way to her and touching her face which was still perfect and beautiful, not destroyed by decay, and those tears would caress it like his hand once did. He didn't leave her side for two days. But after that time the hunger got to strong driving him back to civilization and a community in uproar at the sudden disappearance of its feared leader Mr. Yorke.
Nick got many suspicious looks on his return. Did he have something to do with Mr. Yorke's sudden absence? Where had he been for two days?
He told them lies about how he had been out searching for his maker, travelling the countryside looking for any sign of him. Nick had become very, very good at telling lies since Mr. Yorke employed him. Sometimes even he couldn't tell what was the truth and what wasn't, it all became one and the same in his mind. After Rachel's death he had clung closer to Hal then ever before, the only constant left in his life, the only guiding star he could look to for advice. And it had been wonderful for a few years, he had slowly but steadily build a reputation for himself, the clever solicitor who could bail out anyone, who could cover up any vampire crime no matter how sordid. And every one of his victories earned him a smile and a pat on the back from his maker. He did not excel at his work for his own sake but just for those moments when he felt that he'd made Hal proud of him. He would have done anything for Hal, committed any crime, told any lie, but in the end Hal still left him, just vanished one night never to be seen again.
Nick had often wondered over those long decades alone what had happened to his maker. What could have killed Hal Yorke? It must have been something quite strong, like that werewolf that had somehow got loose from his cell only days before Hal went missing. They never found the werewolf either.
Now, over fifty years later, he was back at Rachel's grave again, telling her about his plans to expose werewolves, painting it in vivid colours for his solemn audience, pacing and gesturing like a man high on caffeine. He described it to her in minute detail and when he came to the end of his rant and collapsed against the tree again he realized that he didn't come here only to see Rachel, this had also become the place where he remembered her murderer. While he had thought he was telling it all to his late wife he had really been showing off for his maker. At some time the two most important people in his life had become one and the same. His dual deity which he prayed to in this shrine in the woods like some demented druid. Disgusted with himself for this weakness he stood up to go, to leave this place once and for all, because a history maker needed no gods, no fallen stars to guide him. He was strong enough on his own and he didn't need their approval.
He said his farewells to the people who had shaped him into the man he now was and as he turned around to walk away he decided it was time to stop living in the past, he would create a new perfect day for himself, the day the world finally realized that he was capable of great things. Full moon was only a little over a week away and then he'd finally be important.