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With Your Hands Clasped in Prayer

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There isn't anything remotely feminine about the hunter, Alucard knows, but when she exits the stall in her new dress and he finally looks up from his book to catch a glimpse of her, his eyes almost leap from their sockets. While standing beside a woman as small as Sypha, Trevor still looks much the burly bear as when Alucard first met her, muscles visible and twitching angrily at being confined to something as frilly as a dress, but he'd never seen her fresh from a bathing and with her unkempt hair tended to.

"Well, what the hell are you gawping at?" she grunts finally with her lips cocking to one side in a perturbed manner.

Sypha peers around her with a grin and asks, "What do you think, Alucard?"

"It's a far cry from the uncouth man I thought to have first met when you stumbled into my tomb," Alucard teases, laughing after Trevor growls in warning a little, and then he adds, "and an absolute miracle that you've worked also, Sypha; you finally look the part of a noble lady of your standing, Trevor."

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The scar across his chest burns and aches suddenly, he feels the talons raking across him again, sees the dark shadows across his father's face as he glowers down at him, lost forever within his own grief and never to return. That beloved face slowly warps into black, sinewy ash before fading away but the body remains, hands reaching towards him, pleading and accusing all at once, and Alucard's breath hitches, a cry catches in his throat, and he jolts awake with a spasm.

"It's all right," Trevor whispers to him, her arms around him as he shifts in the bed and pants, eyes darting around the room, "there's nothing there, Alucard."

His shivers cease after a few minutes of having the mortal woman run her fingers through his long hair, humming some obscure tune as she does so, and as off-key as her humming is, it's still a gentle reminder that he isn't as alone as his demons have him believe. Instead of sobbing uncontrollably as he often did when he was alone at night in the castle, he borrows some of that strength lent to him and finds refuge in Trevor's warm embrace, laying his head against her chest once more as he tries to drift off to sleep.

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There's beauty in the rhythmic swings and steps Trevor takes as she performs a chaotic dance around her enemies, blood circles about her in graceful arcs as she strikes the demon again, and Alucard can't take his eyes off of her. At no other time can he recall her shining so, as brilliant as any warrior, as she carries her family craft clumsily across the railing of the library bridge just above, dodging another fireball thrown her way. Just after Sypha completes the spell necessary for trapping the castle, Trevor emerges from her battle victorious, steeped in the gore of her adversary as she brushes her bangs back with a huff and absently streaks blood across her forehead.

She catches sight of his wandering, wide-eyed gaze and just beams back at him, impressed with herself as well.

Alucard stops himself and looks away momentarily, busying himself with the runes beneath his fingertips as he tries to ignore the blood creeping into his cheeks when he realizes what a disarming smile the Belmont has.

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Trevor shivers in his arms as golden hair falls over the left side of her body, tickling her exposed neck and shoulder, and Alucard's breath ghosts over her skin in rapid huffs, indicative of his own excitement, and Trevor does her best not to squirm as he grasps the back of her head to lean in closer. A yelp escapes her when Alucard runs his tongue along the curve of her neck, though, and it takes everything inside of her not to jerk away in embarrassment.

"I need a suitable point of entry that won't sever or cut off a major vein," Alucard explains in a little whisper against the shell of her ear, "so forgive my uncouth behavior and try to relax; I'd hate to cause you any pain or discomfort because you keep shaking so."

Fangs pierce Trevor's skin once Alucard finds his desired spot on her neck, and it's a pinprick of pain at first, with Trevor grunting at the hot flash that follows the initial contact, but the fingers running through her hair and sliding down her back are more than enough to lull her into a sense of security as she slump against Alucard's rigid form. Euphoria quickly follows after and Trevor becomes all too aware of the erotic noises at her neck, little groans and bizarre sucking accented by the occasional wet pop of Alucard's lips as he changes angles a bit, and the heat gathering between her legs becomes increasingly difficult to ignore as well; she does miss the smirk Alucard places against her neck as he pulls away, though.

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Wind howls and whips the snow from the ground into gusts of sheer white, forcing Trevor and her companions from the open road to seek shelter at some dilapidated farmhouse they happen upon. Once they confirm that the residents of this hovel are absent or have fled from the Night Horde, Trevor begins setting up a meager camp within the barn, and to her surprise, Alucard offers his assistance before Sypha even has a chance to admonish her for trying to start a fire so clumsily, and after night finally falls, Sypha is huddled close to the fire, swaddled comfortably in her own robes to stave off the cold.

Trevor, on the other hand, can hear her half-blooded compatriot shivering amid the pile of hay he's attempted to bury himself in for warmth, and the pathetic expression on his pale face tugs on her heartstrings more than she cares to admit. Grunting, she stands and crosses the barn until she reaches Alucard across the way, gesturing to the fire with her enormous cloak open and her face perturbed as she mutters, "Are you trying to freeze your arse off or did you happen to forget that you're half-human?"

Warily, Alucard clambers to his feet with bits of straw and sticks poking out of his massive mane of hair, prompting a chuckle from Trevor as she reaches over to pluck a piece from the top of his head, and to his own surprise, he doesn't immediately retract from her touch or even feel defensive; in fact, he smiles a little back at her and follows her back to the fire, pulling the other end of Trevor's cloak around his shoulders as she draws him to her side...and he picks another piece of straw from his hair and tucks it behind her ear with a chuckle of his own.

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Trevor's eyes brim with tears and her vision hazes for a moment that almost costs her the battle, and she barely has time to dodge the dhampir as he lunges at her in his wolf form, fangs bared and jaws spread wide. She snaps the Morningstar Whip back and catches him by the leg, her advantage being that his mind is clouded by the blood-lust, his judgment somewhat impaired as he warred with both sides of himself, and just as she jerks him across the foyer of the castle, his form returns to that of a man's.

"Please," he begs her, blood streaming from his golden eyes as he shuffles against the wall, "I don't want to hurt you, so do what you must!"

With a great cry, Trevor gives the whip one last jerk before having Alucard jolt forward and her short sword is at the ready, beheading him with one clean swipe as blood arcs around her. She staggers to her knees just as Alucard's head rolls to the ground beside her, and she retrieves her sword to stare back at her reflection one last time as she prods her bosom with its sharp end.

"I'm sorry."

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Trevor sits up in bed with a groan with her blue eyes lazily roaming over her surroundings as her vision starts to focus, but when she tries swinging her feet over the side of the bed, her back twinges with an inexplicable soreness and she jolts with a yelp louder than she intends, flopping back onto the mattress as a result. There are bite marks littering her arms and legs, she observes upon sitting upright again, and the bastard who did the deed last night is nowhere to be found.

"Ah, you're finally awake," Alucard greets her as he enters the room with a tray of food and a glass of water, walking over and sitting on the bed beside her with a grim smile. "I was a little rough with you last night and for that, I apologize; please allow me to make amends."

Begging or pleading forgiveness isn't something Trevor ever thought she'd see her snooty Prince of Darkness doing, but there he is at her bedside, asking for pardon from the slobbery, sorry state he left her in last evening, and it's not as if she has the heart to refuse him, either.

Grinning at him, she winces and lifts her foot onto his thigh, wiggling her toes a little and suggesting, "Well, you could start by rubbing my feet; they're sore as all hell."

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Alucard makes one mistake and it almost costs him the battle, misjudging a boulder's ability to help him bounce back into the fray as he teleports across the field to catch a Gaibon in the back with his blade at the ready. The boulder shatters beneath his weight, previously damaged from who knew what, and he crashes to the snowy ground with a gasp and wide eyes as he spots the Slogra coming at him with an aerial attack, it spear aimed straight downward at him.

"I don't think so, bastard!" hollers Trevor as she catches the beast by its ankle with her whip and jerks it backwards, jumping onto its back as it lands and slashing its throat from one cheekbone to the other, spilling its black blood all over fresh-fallen snow as she lands with a victorious whoop.

Brushing snow from his trousers, Alucard summons his sword from across the thicket and plunges it into the Gaibon as it clumsily lunges towards him. He hears Trevor laughing behind him and regards her with an indignant snort, "You just got lucky, Belmont."

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"It's not the Church we fight against or Dracula and his hellions," Trevor mutters into the fire, lifting her eyes so that they meet Alucard's amidst the roaring blaze between them, "and God knows we don't fight for ourselves."

Alucard stokes the blaze with a twig, curious as to where he musing may take them this evening. "What, then, do we fight for? Humanity?"

Shaking her head, Trevor pulls the Morningstar Whip from her belt and holds it in her hands to feel the weight of it, the heft of the burden thrust upon her and her ancestors generations prior, and she replies after a thoughtful moment, "Ignorance and hatred, fear of the unknown...we tread where men and women deem grounds downright damnable, but with the proper knowledge, we can show them how to defeat the evils presented even in their everyday lives, just as your mother did."

"You're referring to your lessons to the mob in Gresit, are you?" Alucard asks, smiling a little while he lets his eyes wander over Trevor, her countenance lit up beautifully by the crackle and spark of the flames, and for a brief instance, he sees the face of his mother before him. "In that respect, I agree with you; we are carrying on my mother's work in a way, and I am glad to have such allies as you and Sypha at my side to honor her memory so."

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The setting sun is red with blood as Trevor's face slams against the cobblestone path, her tooth coming loose and her resolve burning all the brighter as she finally lets loose a roar and throws the older boy off of her, staggering to her feet and grasping a fistful of his collar to land a solid blow to his face and send him flying as well.

"Witch!" screams one of the other children as he picks up a stone to hurl it at her. "Your family consorts with the Devil!"

Stones pelt Trevor as she tries to fight back, but she ends up curled into a ball at the base of another building, hands over her head to protect herself as she shrieks for them to stop, praying to God above for some kind of strength or reprieve, and that's when she hears a woman's voice raise above the angry children's, "Stop this at once!"

A pretty lady with long blonde hair pulls two of the children back while a boy at her side, almost identical to her in appearance, seemingly teleports across the pathway to appear in front of Trevor, catching a stone thrown in her direction with ease and glowering back at the other children; once they are properly scolded by the boy's mother, the long-haired lad turns and kneels beside Trevor to offer his hand to her, smiling as his golden eyes glint in the light of the fading sun as he says gently, "Don't be afraid."