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The Talk - (Das Geschenk (The Gift) Series III)

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Picking up his glass and taking another swig, Bill had to wonder when the alcohol would start working. He had noticed that if he had fed recently alcohol had less of an effect than normal. They'd only been home a couple of hours and he had been intending to have his regular dose of blood the following morning, but his mother had had other ideas. She had taken one look at him, declared he was looking pale and tired and produced a mug of warm blood and made him drink it. Tom had found it hilarious and Bill wondered if any other vampires had to fend off their parents mothering them.

All this added up to the fact that the vodka he was drinking with Tom and Andreas wasn't affecting him in the same way it would have. He had been hoping for some Dutch courage, but he wasn't having much luck, although Tom and Andreas seemed to be very happy already. Before either of the others could be too much drunker than him, he decided to broach the subject Tom and he had decided was long overdue.

"Andi," he said as Andreas and Tom giggled over something that probably wasn't funny if you hadn't had one too many, "we have something we need to tell you."

Andreas looked up, sobering a little, and Bill thought that maybe his friend wasn't as drunk as he had appeared.

"Yeah," Tom said with a laugh, "Bill's gay."

Bill clipped Tom round the back of the head, clearly his twin was as drunk as he suspected.

"Be serious," he said, "I'm not gay and you know it, I'm bi."

Possibly the alcohol was working a little better than he had thought as he realised what he had just said. Maybe the vodka had not been a good idea, since Andreas was looking at him as if he'd grown another head.

"But that's not what we wanted to talk to you about," he tried to drag the conversation back the way it was supposed to go.

Andreas was still staring at him and he started to become a little worried.

"You're bi?" his friend asked slowly.

Bill just nodded, since he didn't know what to say. Becoming a vampire had seemed so much more important that that little snippet that he really hadn't thought how it would affect Andreas.

"How long have you known?"

"Um, a while," Bill admitted, suddenly feeling like he had betrayed his friend.

"And you didn't tell me?" Andreas sounded incredulous.

"Andi," Tom said, clearly sobering up and trying to intervene.

"Do you realise how many boys I could have set you up with by now?" Andreas cut Tom straight off and it took Bill a second to realise what his best friend had just said.

He sat there with his mouth open for a bit and Tom laughed into his vodka.

"I know most of the fangirls are crazy," Andreas chatted on, "but some of the fanboys are actually really cool and half of them would give their left bollock for a date with you."

Bill didn't know whether to be offended or flattered.

"Yeah right," Tom commented, "and Bill is so known for how often he dates."

"Miracles do happen," Andreas replied and Bill was beginning to favour offended.

"Anyway," Tom continued, seemingly oblivious to the explosion about to happen, "he's getting plenty from Gustav."

Andreas looked stunned again.

"No way," was his best friend's comment as he considered strangling his twin; it wasn't like it would be permanent.

"Oh way," Tom replied, "definitely way..."

"My sex life is not what we're here to discus," Bill just about managed to keep from shouting at the top of his voice, but only just.

Ordinarily he would have joined in and taken the piss out of Tom in reprisal, but they had a very specific reason for this discussion and him shagging Gustav wasn't it.

"Prude," Tom muttered.

[Tom,] he sent silently and managed to capture the whole of his twin's attention, [focus.]

[Sorry,] Tom apologised, looking him straight in the eye, [I was just trying to lighten the mood. I'm nervous.]

That clinched it; Tom was definitely not anywhere near as drunk as he was pretending.

"Now you're doing the twin thing which is so unfair," Andreas said and Bill realised they were being stared at.

"Yeah, and what's really unfair," Tom said, dropping the drunk act, "is we're better at it now; we really can speak to each other without anyone hearing."

Andreas didn't look as if he knew whether to believe them or not.

"Fuck," was the eventual response, "you're serious."

"Completely," Tom said for both of them.

Bill just sat there as their friend looked between them.

"How? When? Is this what you wanted to tell me?" Andreas' questions all came out at the same time.

Taking another shot of vodka, Bill slammed his glass down and then nodded.

"Partly," he admitted.

"It's why we're telepathic that is the kicker," Tom backed him up.

"There's more?" Andreas looked about ready to cave under all the information.

The way Andreas appeared likely to crack was giving Bill second thoughts.

"Maybe we should leave this for another day," he suggested, worried by his friend's reaction.

"No, oh no," Andreas said very pointedly, "you cannot leave me hanging like that."

Bill bit his lip and looked over at Tom; this wasn't going so well.

"Okay," Tom said, not appearing anywhere near as worried, but Bill knew his twin was never the less, "but don't freak, okay?"

Andreas just looked dubious.

"That new look Bill's been trying out occasionally," Tom said in a calm and passive tone, "not done with makeup."

From the expression on Andreas' face it was clear their friend was not following.

"What new look?" obviously Andreas' mind refused to put fangs and reality together.

"The vampire," Bill said quietly.

Stunned wasn't really an adequate description of how Andreas looked at that moment.

"Don't be silly," was the shocked response.

Bill looked at Tom again; he didn't want to show his vampire, because he remembered his mother's reaction and Andreas looked about ready to end up in a similar state.

"Not a joke, not a game, just the truth," Tom said firmly.

"No," Andreas said looking between then, "you're a..." Bill nodded, "and then you're as well," Andreas looked at Tom, "because no way Bill and not you and ..."

Their friend seemed to run out of words.

"Andi," Bill said, needing to fill the silence that ensued, "nothing you think you know about vampires is right. We've been trying to figure out how to tell you since it happened, but there was never the right time and so we decided we had to sit you down and explain now. Mum and Gordon know and Georg and Gustav, but that's it, and we wanted you to know because you're our best friend."

He shut up when he realised he was babbling.

"So you're not immortal?" Andreas asked, clearly very much on edge.

"Um, well actually we are," Bill had to admit, "but we won't stop aging until we're a little older."

"And you don't drink blood?" Andreas asked another question.

"No we do that too," Tom said, catching on; "what Bill means is we don't go around killing virgins in the night and bringing them back from the dead. Creating another vampire is something you have to mean to do and most of the legends are so much crap. Someone turned Bill and then he turned me because, as you said, no way I was letting Bill be a vampire without me."

"Holy fuck," was Andreas' opinion on the matter.

They sat there with Andreas looking between them for some time and Bill really didn't know how to go on.

"Do you bite people?" Andreas was clearly a little nervous, but far too good a friend to think the worst of them.

"The easiest place to get blood is a bag and then use a microwave," Tom said with a grin, "but Bill's been known to munch on Gustav from time to time. You can always tell by how big Gustav's smile is when they've been at it."

Bill felt his face heating up.

"Tom!" he said, really not wanting the subject back on his sex life.

"Gustav likes being bitten?" Andreas asked, somewhat shocked.

"Oh hell yeah," Tom said with a laugh, warming up to the topic as Bill tried to disappear, "it's like sex, only better."

"It's not like ..." Bill tried to say something.

"Sorry, Little Brother," Tom said, cutting him off, "I remember you biting me very clearly and I'd swap sex for that any day of the week. It was the most mind blowing thing ever. I've also felt what it's like when you bite Gustav and ..."

"We were different," Bill tried to protest, but then couldn't work out why he was arguing.

He was so embarrassed that he really didn't know what he was saying. It was usually quite difficult to get him flustered, but once he was there he tended to fall apart totally. Thinking about biting Tom and sex in the same thought was really doing bizarre things to his head.

"You could always bite me and I'll tell you," Andreas joked, but rather than making everyone laugh it kind of brought about a very awkward silence.

In the end Bill decided that wigging out was the best way forward and calmly banged his head on the table.

"Shoot me now," he whined in the most desperate tone he could manage, "it'll be easier."

"Silver bullets?" Andreas asked.

"Won't work," Tom said helpfully, "what you'd need is a really big sword or an axe, but a million fangirls would hunt you down if you separated that pretty head from his body."

"I hate you," Bill said, face still firmly on the table, "now pour me another drink."

====

Since they hadn't shared a room for a very long time until just recently, but did share the same best friend, there had always been arguments as to whose room Andreas would stay in for a sleep over. This had led to their mother coming up with a compromise, when Andreas stayed over they all slept in the living room on the sofa and the floor. Even though arguments were no longer a problem, they still kept up with the tradition.

Bill was feeling much calmer and quite a lot drunker as he stretched out on the floor in a sleeping bag after a long evening of talking. They had done their very best to answer any questions Andreas had, and in the end they had both shown their friend what a vampire looked like up close. By the time they had decided they needed to sleep, Andreas really seemed to have warmed to the idea.

Andreas had the sofa because he was the guest and he and Tom had the floor with him the furthest from the sofa. He and Tom were back to back in sleeping bags and he would have drifted off to sleep by now, but he could hear Andreas tossing and turning and he was just a little worried.

"Tom," he eventually heard Andreas whisper.

Tom mumbled something back.

"Is Bill asleep?"

That wasn't quite the question he had expected, but he had been lying still for some time.

[Do you want to be awake or asleep?] Tom asked him silently.

[Asleep,] Bill decided quickly, [he obviously needs to talk to you about something.]

"Yeah, he's asleep," Tom whispered back. "What do you want?"

There was a moment's silence.

"Is it really better than sex, the bite I mean?" Andreas finally asked.

Bill almost laughed; Andreas sounded so curious.

"Yeah," Tom replied, with a very quiet chuckle, "it is, sort of, but you could have asked that when Bill was awake."

"I didn't want to embarrass him anymore," Andreas replied and Bill smiled into the dark as his friend's motives. "What's it really feel like?"

Tom was silent for a bit.

[How would you describe it?] Tom asked him.

[I have only been bitten during sex,] Bill pointed out, [I'm not sure my description counts.]

"Hmm," Tom didn't reply to him directly, but it was an agreeing sound, "it's kind of like your mind floats without a care while your whole body fills with pleasure. For me and Bill it was like becoming as close as we're supposed to be, not separated by anything anymore."

"Sounds like bliss," Andreas replied after a moment and Bill could not help noticing the underlying longing in the phrase.

[He wants to be bitten,] Bill said in shock.

[Yeah,] Tom replied, [I think you're right. This is a bit of a turn around. What should I do?]

[I can "wake up" if you need me to,] Bill offered, trying to think it through.

[That'll just put it off,] Tom pointed out and Bill had to agree. [We decided that we were going to sort everything out tonight, just leaving it would be stupid.]

[You know Andi's been obsessed with vampires as long as I have,] Bill pointed out; [are you sure you want to deal with this on your own?]

[Yeah,] Tom replied, [for now at least.]

['k,] Bill said and remained still.

"Is there something you want to ask me?" Tom said quietly.

There was embarrassed shuffling from the sofa; Bill wasn't sure how shuffling could sound embarrassed, but this definitely did.

"Um ... that is ... um ... no," Andreas said in a muffled tone.

Bill heard Tom sit up, but did not dare turn over to watch.

"I know I made all those sexual references about it before," Tom said quietly, "but it's not sex. Being curious about it doesn't make you anything you don't want to be."

Sometimes Tom had a way of looking right at the heart of a situation and knowing exactly what to say; Bill had always admired that in his older brother. He heard more rustling and he was positive Andreas was sitting up as well by now, and he was dying to turn over and look, but he didn't dare.

"Tom," Andreas said after what seemed to be a really long time, "will you bite me?"

Tom let out a very low laugh.

"Yeah," Bill heard his twin say, "I will, if it's what you really want, but if you want me to do it now we're going to have to wake Bill first. With our connection he's going to know the moment I do it."

More awkward shuffling.

"Is it really okay?" Andreas asked in a very small voice.

"Andi," Tom said in a very resolute tone, "this is me, if it wasn't okay I'd have told you to take a hike. If you are really that curious I'll help you out."

"And Bill won't mind?"

"He already fed this evening; Mum made him, it was hilarious," Tom replied, clearly still amused; "he'll be fine with it."

"Your mum gives you blood?" Andreas sounded shocked.

"That's what's in the box at the back of the fridge," Tom told their friend.

"And she actually made Bill drink it?"

Tom laughed quietly again.

"Yeah," Bill listened as Tom explained, "Mum took one look at him and sat him down as soon as he came through the door. He's been working too hard," Bill recognised the dig for what it was, Tom had been on at him for a couple of weeks about slowing down a little, "and so Mum took matters into her own hands."

"Bet he loved that," Andreas replied, amused now as well.

"Oh, of course," Tom said cheerfully, "you know how Bill is about being told what to do, but every now and then he can stand some mothering."

Andreas laughed, but Bill knew Tom was perfectly serious and he made a mental note to pay attention to what Tom was telling him in future. He took Andreas’ slightly louder laugh as his cue to "wake up".

"Wh't 'r you two up to?" he asked, rolling over and pretending to have just been disturbed.

"Talking about your little run in with Mum," Tom said as if it was all still some big joke.

Bill groaned and rolled back into his original position.

"When you're not making fun of me wake me up," he said in a petulant tone.

"Ooh, is Billi having a moment?" Tom asked and Bill dived into his sleeping bag as his twin turned on the light.

He just growled in response, as if he was pissed off with being woken up and being picked on.

"Anyway, you can't go back to sleep," Tom said.

"Watch me," was his response, even though he had no intention of following through.

He felt himself bodily being picked up while he was still in the sleeping bag and Tom unceremoniously dumped him on the end of the sofa where Andreas was no longer lying. One of the advantages of vampire strength was that Tom achieved the whole thing with no damage to either of them.

"What the fuck?" Bill thought he was doing a really good acting job as he pushed down his sleeping back and glared at Tom.

Tom just looked at him as if they were having a silent conversation.

"Oh," Bill said out loud and looked at Andreas, "well why didn't you just say so?"

"That is so weird," Andreas said, looking at both of them and Bill felt a little bad for deceiving his friend at all, but it seemed to be turning out for the best, "and you two were weird to begin with."

"Oh thanks," Tom said with a laugh; "you're whose friend again?"

"You know what I mean," Andreas said, swiping at Tom with a stray hand.

Bill pulled his knees onto the sofa and rested his chin on the outside of his sleeping bag, while just looking at the other two. It did make logical sense that Andreas was curious, they had been through so much together over the years and the whole vampire obsession had been Andreas' fault in the first place. He gave a small smile as he realised that it was all working out quite well.

"You're sure about this?" Tom asked from a position next to the sofa.

Andreas looked very nervous, but nodded anyway. When his friend looked at him, Bill just broadened his smile in encouragement.

"Okay, then give me your wrist," Tom said and Bill felt the familiar sensation run up his spine as Tom let the vampire out to play.

Tom really was breathtaking as a vampire; it definitely suited his twin's fine bone structure and Bill felt a mixture of pride and admiration every time he saw Tom, who was both his brother and his creation. A vampire with dreadlocks wasn't exactly the usual image of suave sophistication from the Dracula type legends, but Tom pulled it off really well. If the way Andreas' breathing sped up was anything to go by, Tom was as impressive to normal human eyes as well.

Almost as if he was having second thoughts, Andreas slowly held out his arm.

"If you've changed your mind it's okay," Tom offered their friend one more way out.

Andreas shook his head.

"No," Andreas said, with a stubborn tone that Bill thought his friend might have picked up from him, "I want to know."

Tom took Andreas' wrist and Bill could tell Tom was being incredibly careful. Bill probably would have given his friend more warning, but Tom simply bent his head, opened his mouth and bit. Andreas gave a small gasp, head dropping back against the sofa almost straight away and then Bill felt it.

There was nothing quite like the wonderful shots of exhilaration that came with drinking blood and Bill felt it all coming through Tom. Blood was good from a cup, but even better from a person. He'd only fed from Gustav before or during sex and so the experiences were mixed in his mind and he felt his body stirring in response to the high, but it wasn't actually sexual in and of itself.

Tom opened to him completely, letting him share the experience and he let his eyes fall closed, moaning quietly at the wonderful feelings running through him. He could sense Andreas in the blood link, a warm, giving presence full of love and friendship. He had always known their friendship could endure anything and now he could feel it. Instinctively he joined with Tom and tried to give the same back.

He buried his face in his knees, riding out the intense shots of pleasure and basking in the wonderful feelings. He could hear Andreas making small noises of wonder and enjoyment and he had to let his own vampire rise to the surface as he shared Tom's high. When Tom finally pulled back, he was breathing just as hard as Andreas was and he was very glad he was in a sleeping bag because he was as hard as a rock no matter how platonic the emotions in the experience might have been.

Tom looked at him with gently glowing eyes and they separated mentally, the reluctance to let go as clear in Tom's gaze as Bill could feel in himself. Under Bill's gaze, Tom wiped his mouth with the back of his hand and then they both put their vampire natures away and looked at Andreas. Their friend was sprawled in the corner of the sofa, eyes closed and an expression of amazement and pleasure on his face.

"Andi," Bill said when Andreas didn't move after a moment or two, "are you okay?"

The only response was a kind of contented hum.

[Did we break him?] he asked Tom silently.

"Andi, Bill wants to know if we broke you," Tom responded by asking Andreas directly.

Andreas cracked open one eye at that.

"Not broken," their friend promised and slowly sat up. "Wow, just wow."

For a few moments Andreas seemed fascinated by his own wrist as the marks left by Tom healed and faded at incredible speed and Bill was a little worried that his friend might overreact. There was only so far you could push the human mind, he had found that out with Gackt when he had failed to believe everything he remembered was real, and he just hoped Andreas wouldn't have a similar problem.

"I felt both of you," Andreas said suddenly, head coming up and gaze swinging between each of them.

"And we felt you," Tom said, for once perfectly serious.

"It's called a soul link," Bill offered, putting his chin back on his knees; "it's created through the blood."

"It's amazing," Andreas told them, seemingly somewhat awed by the experience.

They sat there in silence for a while, just looking at each other and then Andreas finally dropped his head, grinning slightly. Bill was sure his friend was blushing as well.

"And that might not have been a sexual experience," Andreas said, looking at them through his fringe, "but I have a hard on like you wouldn't believe, so I'm just going to borrow your bathroom."

They all sniggered like the teenagers they were at that.

"Me next," Bill admitted blushing himself now.

"Me third," Tom finally added with a sheepish grin.

They grinned at each other for a bit and then Andreas hopped over the arm of the sofa and trotted towards the bathroom. Bill looked over at Tom and sobered as he thought about what they had just done.

[That was a good thing,] he decided silently.

[Yeah, it was,] Tom replied and nodded just a little.

Now Bill smiled a full, genuine smile. He was perfectly happy ... even if he did need to urgently attend to the insistent throbbing between his legs.

The End