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So more of the lads in LA, thank you Edi for the beta and thank you to those who continue to give their support.



“What have you done to it?”

“He began to harm himself, we had to sedate him. He won’t eat, even going as far as to refuse fresh human blood.”

“It will not drink human blood.”

“Well yes, we noticed that after he liberally decorated us when we attempted to feed him.”

Connor couldn’t help the sneer as he looked at the group gathered around the bed, where they had manacled and drugged his demon.

“How long until it recovers from its stupor?”

The English man removed his glasses and frowned at them as he replied, “Well, from what we have seen so far I would say another two, two and a half hours.”

Nodding, Connor walked past them to the door, pausing as he saw the jumble of new blocks and children’s toys that had obviously been thrown against the walls. He couldn’t help the scornful laughter. “Have it ready to leave then.”

His father spoke for the first time since he had come to fetch him. “No, he is not going anywhere, Connor. Either you stay here and help if you can, or you go your own way. Spike stays here; I’m not having you left in the gutters of LA dragging a deranged vampire behind you. It’s too dangerous, and he is needed here.”

Back stiff from the challenge in his father's words, Connor stilled in the doorway. Schooling himself to calm, he kept his face averted and nodded once. “I am the only one who can help, it will not speak to anyone else, and you cannot understand the seeing without me. I will stay, but on my own terms, not yours. Do not think you can play father to me, demon.” Looking over his shoulder, Connor took the curt nod as acceptance and left.


“Connor, we may not have a lot of money but we do have enough for fast food. There is no need to trawl through dumpsters.”

Sitting cross-legged in front of the dopey, miserable creature that had been placed on the mattress in the corner of the room, Connor scowled and looked over his shoulder at his audience.

“This food is good; we lived on worse. I don’t need you to help care for my demon.”

His father sighed and moved closer. “Well, that’s fine, but recycled junk food isn’t of any nutritional value to ‘your demon’. He’s starving, by the look of him he has been for some time. He needs blood.”

Gritting his teeth, Connor reached into the large duffle bag at his side and brought out a container of pig's blood. “I know what it needs, but unlike you I also know what it takes to make it feed when these odd humours overtake it.”

Lifting his hands in acquiescence, his father returned to stand with the others at the doorway. Returning his attention to the creature in front of him, Connor set out his picnic and began to eat.

“I came across an odd beast the other day. It had spines and strange markings on its chest, I found it peculiar to fight.” Ignoring the thin fingers that held the hem of his trousers as the other hand daintily picked at the food spread between them, he continued his monologue. “Drink the swine blood, demon, before you eat any more of this. I wondered what such a beast would be called. It did not seem to speak any language I know. Demon, you need to drink the blood, when you finish it I have more of these chicken things you like … and a token from the strange beast I defeated.”

Watching as it drank the first container and accepted the second without complaint, Connor couldn’t help the small, victorious smile at the surprised whispers from the doorway.

The smile stretched to a grin at the respectful inquiry from the watcher.

“Connor, can you tell me what exactly this spark is?”
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needfire

February 2011

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