"They spoil every romance by trying to make it last forever." - Oscar Wilde
Have you ever seen snow, after it’s all piled up on a hill or wall or maybe even the branch of a tree? Have you ever seen how suddenly, without warning, the snow falls, crashing to the ground? That’s the only way Cutler’s inner turmoil could be described. The way he had built his life, how long it had taken him to build it, all came falling, crashing down in that moment. It felt like everything he knew and ever would know was no more, that everything he did and everything he would do was nothing. He hadn’t realised his legs had given way until he felt Hal’s Goons holding him in place so he couldn’t take his eyes of Rachel’s mangled body. He could barely hear Hal’s words, it was like there was water roaring in his ears.
“I don’t want you to thank me.”
This couldn’t be happening. Not his Rachel. No. They’d been childhood sweethearts, Cutler had never been with anyone else, never loved anyone else, never shared a bed with anyone else. Tubes ran out of her throat into large bottles in to which her blood dripped, her night dress was stained and torn as if she’d put up a helpless struggle before she’d died.
“We should leave.” Hal said, amusement dripping from his voice. “Let Cutler grieve.”
His Goons mumbled their agreements, each snickering.
The door closed with a quiet click, followed by a slightly louder one to indicate the door had been lock. Cutler was on his hands and knees, gagging. His eyes watered as he threw up blood and bile. Her blood. Rachel’s blood. He crawled over to her body, or more accurately, he dragged his body over to her and collapse at her side. “Rachel…” Cutler groaned, his voice hoarse and shakey, tears pouring down his face. He was gagging again, but he had nothing to throw up. He dragged himself up by the table on which Rachel lay to look down at her horrifically maimed body. Her face, while undamaged, was the worst to look at. Her eyes had lost their sparkle and held no emotion and her mouth was open, frozen in the shape of her final words or final scream. Cutler rested his forehead on hers and whispered sweet nothings. “I love you, I always loved you. You were my everything, my whole world. I never loved anyone else, I never will. I’m so sorry, I’m so sorry you suffered because of me. Oh god, this is all my fault. Jesus, I’m so sorry Rachel.”
“Nick…” Her voice rang clear around the room, sounding brave and strong. Cutler spun round so fast it took a second for his vision to steady, but there she was. As clear as day. She seemed so solid, so real. But she wasn’t. “Oh Nick, what did you get yourself into?”
“Am… Am I going insane?” Cutler whispered, reaching out a hand to touch her, but it just slipped through. Rachel shook her head sadly.
“Apparently, all the monsters you were told about when you when you were younger are real.” She smiled sadly. Rachel was always the strong one. Always the brave one in tough situations, while Cutler was always the blubbering mess.
(“Rachel, what am I supposed to do?!” Cutler all but screamed, angry tears filling his eyes.
“Nick, calm down, breath. We’ll get through this.” Rachel said, her voice calm and steady. “If it comes to it, we can always borrow some money from my parents.”
“No! No!” Tears fell down his cheeks. “I can’t deal with their accusing stares!” His breath was heavy and laboured.
“We’ll be fine. We always are.” Rachel smiled and grabbed his hands.)
“I have unfinished business. That’s what they told me. The men with the sticks and ropes.” Rachel explained to Cutler once he’d calmed down. He looked up at her, still leaning on the table that held her body.
“Well, what is it?” Cutler mumbled, looking down, his voice still slightly shakey and his eyes still slightly leaky. His shirt was covered in Rachel’s blood, regurgitated blood and bile. He knew it was bad because he could even smell himself and he stank. Rachel stopped pacing left and right and sat down next to him, heaving a sigh, letting her composure slip slightly when she spoke.
“I thought it was telling you, I forgive you. Which I do. I know this wasn’t your fault. Mr Yorke explained everything before he killed me…”I’m afraid you can no longer have your husband, or more so, your husband can no longer have you. Very sorry.” She said, in a scarily accurate impression of Hal. “But why haven’t I passed over yet?” She sat, thinking for a moment. “I think… I think I need a proper burial.” Her voice shook ever so slightly towards the end. They sat there quietly for a few minutes, Cutler’s ragged breaths and Rachel’s steady, controlled breaths where the only sounds, until Cutler was hit with a sickening realisation.
“I have to go back to Hal.” He whispered, his eyes bright with tears. Rachel’s head snapped over to him.
“What?” Her voice rose slightly and her breathing got shorter and quicker. “Y-you can’t! That’s not—it can’t—you won’t—He killed me Cutler! He didn’t just bump into me in the street and not apologise! He killed me!” Tears filled her eyes and threatened to fall over the edge, but she was desperately blinking them back.
“He’ll kill me… I don’t have a choice…” he whispered.
“No! No, I didn’t have a choice! I was killed!” She grew more hysterical by the second. Cutler flinched at each word.
“Rachel, I have to!” He pleaded, his eye’s spilling over slightly.
“Don’t! Don’t you dare cry! No! You Can’t!” She screamed. Tears fell down his cheeks and his hands shook as he moved, trying to grab her hands. Cutler had only seen Rachel lose control once before.
(“He’s dead, Cutler! Dead!” She screamed at him. “What do you want me to say?! I can’t carry a child! They die! They always die!” she sobbed, cradling the stillborn in her arms, while she lay on the hospital bed.
“Rachel, it wasn’t your fault, He just wasn’t strong enough for the world.” Cutler soothed her as he stroked her hair. He had to be the
strong one this time,
“No! I’m useless! I’m so useless!” She sobbed.)
Cutler had eventually calmed Rachel down, telling her he’d convince Hal to let her have a proper funeral. And there he stood, in front of Hal, twisting his hands and fingers together and tapping his foot nervously. Hal sat, staring past him, looking thoroughly bored. Cutler felt like a naughty child who’s head teacher had reprimanded him too many times to care anymore.
“And why, pray tell, should I give a shit about the corpse?” Hal asked finally, making Cutler flinch. He wanted to make a cutting remark, but the words wouldn’t leave his throat.
“Hal, please! I’ll never ask anything of you again. Just, please. Please! Do this one thing for me! Please, Hal!” Cutler made the mistake of appealing to the humanity in Hal, even though he knew full well, Hal had no humanity left. He walked from behind the desk and shoved Cutler against a wall, pressing their bodies together.
“Are you begging?” Hal whispered in his ear. He took in a deep breath through his nose. “I can smell it on you. The Humanity and The Mercy. You reek of it.” Hal hissed, his warm breath ghosting over Cutler's ear.
“Please Hal?” Cutler whimpered, sounding pathetic even to his own ears. Hal stared at him with a look of shame and disgust. Then, he pressed his lips to Cutler’s, wrapping his arms around his waist, pulling him in even closer. Cutler’s arms lay limply at his sides. He didn’t know what to do with them. He kissed Hal back, but all he could think of was whether Rachel would get her funeral. Hal moved his hands lower on to Cutler’s arse, but again, Cutler didn’t really respond. Not until Hal began to grind into him, causing him to squeak. He could feel Hal’s smirk on his lips as he grinded harder and faster. Just as Cutler began to respond, Hal pulled away.
“Do you still want a proper burial for the corpse?” Hal asked him, smirking, feeling he’d already won, but Cutler dared to nod slightly and breathe out a “Yes.” In reply. Hal sneered at him, his mouth curling unpleasantly. “Pathetic.” He growled lowly. “Fine! I’ll have Dennis sort it.” Hal said louder, as he walked back to his desk and sat down gracefully. Cutler stared at him, unable to believe he’d won. “Well? Go on. Leave. Before I change my mind.” Cutler practically ran from the room.
(“Do you dance?” Cutler asked Rachel on their fourth date, offering her his hand.
“Better then you cook.” She answered, taking his hand and smirking, having experienced the “First-Date-Fiasco” when Cutler tried make her a meal and set the curtains on fire.
“Cheek!” Cutler replied, twirling her. Then, they had kissed, softly, slowly, in the middle of the dance floor, pressing their bodies as close together as they could.
“You kiss better than you cook.” Rachel told him as they pulled away, grinning.)
Cutler stood at the back of the church. He knew Hal had made Dennis arrange it like, to try and stop Cutler going, and while it pained Cutler being in the Church, to pay his final respects to his beautiful Rachel made it all worthwhile. Nothing would stop him. Many mourners came and apologised for his loss. They told him how unfair they thought it was that someone so young had gotten a brain tumour (The cover story.) Cutler nodded and thanked them kindly.
“There are so many people here.” Rachel whispered in his ear, midway through the sermon. Cutler nodded sadly.
“You were loved Rachel. By so many.” Cutler’s voice shook. Rachel grabbed his hand. She was solid. She felt real. She felt there. Cutler gaped at her.
“I think we were right…” She whispered, nodding at the beautiful, strong and sturdy looking door that had appeared to the right of them. Rachel took in a breath. And Cutler blinked. Before he’d be changed into a vampire, he’d seen a door too. Only briefly, but he had seen it. “I love you, Nick. I have done my whole life. Ever since we were kids.”
“I love you too. My whole life. Ever since we were kids.” Cutler said back, shakily. She smiled and pressed her lips to his. Walking over to her door, she opened it. “I’ll be waiting for you.” She looked back, smiling sadly and blew a kiss. Rachel stepped through the door without looking back. It closed and disappeared behind her.
(“Where have you been all my life?” Cutler asked Rachel as she laid a plate of food in front of him, on their sixth date.
“I was next door! Waiting for you to pick up on my hints!” She laughed.
“What if I hadn’t picked up on them? Ay?”
“Then I would have stood outside your window and quoted Romeo and Juliet!” They both laughed. Cutler made his way over to her and pulled her off her chair, pressing them together.
“I love you, Rachel.” He told her for the first time, staring into her eyes. “I have done my whole life. Ever since we were kids.”
“I love you too. My whole life. Ever since we were kids.)