Ad Vitam Aeternam
I know I should be working on one of my other fics, but a plot bunny grabbed this and it bloody well won't let go. This is an answer to Challenge 3371 on TtH. If it matters, this fic is based off of the Manga version of Hellsing, not the Anime. There is also a very slight crossover with Castlevania that will not be apparent until near the end of the story. Standard Disclaimer applies.
Pairings will be B/F, W/X, and D/?. Do not expect anything too graphic; my delicate morals are already freaking out over the femslash.
Ad Vitam Aeternam
She woke up. And that was interesting all by itself because the last thing she remembered was talking to Walter in her office, and her office most emphatically did not
contain blacktop. Sir Integra Fairbrook Windgates Hellsing, head of the Royal Protestant Knights pushed herself up off the asphalt, instinctively straightening her sword as she looked around.
Outwardly she was as composed as ever. Inwardly she was becoming extremely nervous. If someone, or more likely something
, could abduct her right out of her own home, out of the headquarters of the Hellsing Organization with all the security both mortal and magical that that implied . . .
"Master," It took all Integra's control not to jump as the familiar yet somehow subtlety different voice spoke up behind her. Despite the aggravation that would inevitably follow in Alucard's wake Integra was immeasurably comforted by the fact that h-
Integra stared at her servant in open shock as she completed her turn. She knew she was only reinforcing the True Nosferatu's negative behavior, but she simply couldn't help it. After a few moments, she managed to school her expression into something approximating her usual stern air. "Extremely amusing, Alucard." She said with a glare, "Now change back."
The very female Vampire in front of her grinned, her lips drawing back much farther than a human's could have managed. The result was an impressive display of ivory. All of it, even what would have been molars on a mortal, pointy. "Do you disapprove my Master?" the No Life . . . King? Queen? shot back with a leer.
Integra thought some very aggressive thoughts in her servant's direction. Most of them involving her emptying the revolver she carried at her hip into the aforementioned irritating Vampire. Alucard's grin only grew wider and Integra sighed. She could undoubtedly get her way, but it simply wasn't worth the effort she'd have to expend. Not when she still had no way of knowing what had abducted her or where she was. Pretending not to even notice her red-clad vassal's question, Integra reached inside her coat for a cigarillo, "Report, Alucard. Where am I and how did I get here."
For a moment, it looked like the centuries old Vampire would prove balky about his duty, but after a moment his grin disappeared, "I don't know,"
Integra waited for him to expound on that incredible statement, but it quickly became clear that the Nosferatu's concentration was elsewhere. Clearing her throat, the Director of Hellsing inquired somewhat dangerously, "Would you care to elaborate?"
Alucard immediately snapped back from wherever he had been and his ever-present smirk snapped back over his features. "It would be easier for me to show you." Before she could draw back, Alucard placed his right hand on her forehead.
What followed was possibly the most startling thing she'd ever observed. A whole different person's life flashed in front of her mind's eye. Growing up in Los Angeles, her parent's divorce, moving to Sunnydale, something that looked like a caricature of a true vampire, winning a bet with her sister, and then picking out a costume for Halloween complete with a plastic cavalry saber and revolver. Integra jerked away from her servant's grasp recognition flowing through her as she saw the form in front of her that was so strange to a part of her, and yet ultimately familiar.
"What are your orders, my Master?" the grinning vampire asked.
Integra glared at her servant. He could have just told her that magic was involved. For that matter he didn't even need to hear her response. But it was familiar. Part of their routine, and she found that she needed that right at the moment. Damnable Vampire.
Trusting him to know her intentions and to share them, she spoke only three words.
"Search and Destroy,"
As soon as Alucard was far enough away from his Master that he couldn't be seen, a ripple seemed to flow over his very feminine appearance, and where it passed, a much more masculine Alucard appeared. When the process was finished the Mideon smiled up at the sky. "What a wonderful night," the mad grin on his face only got wider as he concentrated on the flows of magic in and around the small town he and his Master had awakened in. He'd done only a cursory survey before checking in on the latest Hellsing to hold his leash. It was enough to be sure that nothing in the immediate area was capable of causing him harm, but he'd need more than that to be rid of the idiot magician who had dared summon his shade across space and time.
The first thing he noticed was the nearly overpowering dark energy that laced the ley lines of the small city. Of course, its very power made it relatively easy to trace to its source. "A dimensional tear. Intriguing," perhaps that was the reason so many creatures of Power had been summoned by the spell? It seemed possible at least. A mortal with enough power to manipulate the soul of a true No Life King was only born once every dozen generations if that frequently, and to find one playing a simple prank on Samhain? Unlikely. Most of that type tended toward world saving or destroying not petty parlor tricks.
The second field of energy was harder to find, existing, as it was, beneath the overpowering curtain of the breeched dimensional walls. Alucard, however, was a Mideon with more than four hundred years of study and experience with the Arcane. It took him less than a minute to track down the far weaker source of power. The mad Nosferatu's grin widened even further as he twisted his body into the shadows around him.
After an amount of time passed that was so small that the process was functionally instantaneous, Alucard stepped out of the shadows in front of the costume shop that had sold the body he was possessing her outfit along with the 13mm Anti-Freak pistol, Jackal, and the .454 Casull, Joshua. Alucard contemplated terrorizing the imbecilic mage for a time before killing him, but quickly shoved that idea away. Every moment that he and his Master were present in this little town was a moment that her true body back in England was vulnerable to attack. No matter how much it bruised his sense of style, he didn't have the luxury of time to enjoy himself here. Best to just torture the counterspell out of him and let Integra send us home.
It would have been far easier to simply suck the idiot wizling's blood, but anything worth doing was worth doing the fun way. A bit of torture, at least, would be enjoyable. Alucard stepped forward, mad grin firmly in place. He ignored the door entirely simply phasing through it as though it
was merely mist and he was solid. The inside of the shop was exactly as his host body's memories pictured it save for the absence of a few additional costumes. Alucard continued through the store, not bothering to walk around displays, and the shadows he walked through seemed to swirl and gather in his wake.
He'd made it halfway across the room when the mage finally sensed something. It was obvious that the fool hadn't seen through his restraints, of course. The idiot was, after all, walking toward him instead of running the other way. Alucard decided to remedy the situation.
"Authorization: Release of Control Arts to Level Three . . . Level Two. Situation A recognized. The Cromwell Approval is in effect. Authorization shall persist until the enemy is silent." The almost silent invocation had the desired result. The poor dim-witted mage immediately started for the back door. His speed, however, was no match for a Shadow Walking Mideon and he ran headlong into Alucard's newly reformed body and bounced.
Walter ducked under a blow from the furry . . . thing that was currently attempting to make him a part of the pavement before delivering a truly ungentlemanly kick to the creature's sensitive parts. The beast collapsed, apparently its physiology similar enough to a human's to react similarly to a kick in the bollocks. Pulling out the monocle that his strangely younger body no longer required, he turned to the girl in the cat costume that he'd come out of the house he and Miss Victoria had made use of to rescue, only to receive another shock in the seemingly endless list of the night's surprises.
"Jeez, Xander, when did you go all Karate Kid?" the brunette asked.
It took the Hellsing family's butler several seconds to translate the girl's abominable slang into the Queen's English. When he did, he found that he had something else to be confused about. "I beg your pardon, Ma'am, but my name is Walter not Sander," the fuzzy beast chose that moment to make a grab for the young woman's ankle. Walter introduced its nose to his foot and shot the inappropriately dressed girl a look. Now that he'd saved her, what the devil was he supposed to do with her? He couldn't simply leave her to wander this monster-infested town by herself. That left bringing her into the house with Seras. That was definitely not a wonderful idea, all things considered, "And I suggest that we take this inside. The natives appear to be somewhat restless." The no-longer-so-old Englishman led the young American into the small home that he had . . . appropriated mere minutes earlier for. As they walked in the door he noticed her shiver and removed his outer coat and tucked it around the girl's shoulders. That was approximately the moment that Miss Victoria entered the room.
The girl's eyes went wide and she made an almost silent "Eep!" sound as she stared at the twisting, writhing shadows surrounding the form of Seras Victoria. To her credit, though, she neither ran screaming nor passed out. That was somewhat better that Walter had been envisioning.
"Oh my God, Willow, what happened to you?" Walter stared at the cat-costumed young woman for a moment before shaking his head. Why were the interesting ones always insane? As she started to head for the strawberry blond Vampire Walter gently grabbed her upper arm and stopped her from moving. She shot him a glare, but just as she opened her mouth the former Police-Girl preempted her.
"Willow?" she asked, seeming almost confused for a moment before shaking it off along with a section of her right shoulder which immediately shape-shifted into a pair of bats that flew up to the ceiling before abruptly merging into a large crow and sinking back into the shadows surrounding the newborn True Nosferatu. Seras didn't seem to notice the girl's sudden discomfort at all. "Sorry, dear, my name is Seras not Willow," a vague smile appeared on her face as fully half of her body turned to mist with absolutely no warning. She giggled at something none of the others could see before turning back to Walter and saying the thing he'd dreaded hearing all night, "I'm hungry."
Integra Hellsing found herself at loose ends. Still chewing on her unlit cigarillo, she was attempting to use her never-to-be-sufficiently-damned satellite phone to get back in contact with the main headquarters of the Royal Protestant Knights to explain what was happening to Walter who was doubtless frantic with her and Alucard's spirits elsewhere.
Normally the accursed thing was a wonderful way to stay in touch with Headquarters when she was forced to take the field, but this time the damned thing was refusing to give her a connection at all. Muttering to herself, she disengaged the phone's security features.
The connection was instantaneous. Of course, the recorded voice saying the number didn't exist was an annoyance. Integra double-checked the number she'd dialed was that of the Hellsing Organization before dialing again to the same result. Muttering a curse that would have had her servant rolling on the ground in laughter if he'd heard it, Integra contacted the International Operator and had her call transferred to England. After jumping through the thrice-damned computer's dozen and one hoops Integra was finally able to talk to a living human being. After giving the operator the address she wanted to call, however, she got yet another shock.
"I'm sorry, Ma'am, but I don't have a listing for that address. Are you certain you've got it right?
Integra was about to take the stupid bitch's head off when something occurred to her that she found less than entirely pleasant. She made a suitable excuse and hung up, but her mind was following the newest logic chain that she'd uncovered.
One: she should have been able to contact Hellsing Manor and she couldn't. The phone number might
have been changed and she might
have missed the memo. But there was no way that Walter would have also changed the address of the Headquarters building at the same time. She could only come to the conclusion, that, as foolish as it sounded, there was no Hellsing Manor to contact. And if that was true-
Her breath caught in her throat. She'd been making the assumption that her spirit and that of her servant had simply been moved through space and dropped in America. But what if there was no Hellsing Organization, no Royal Protestant Knights?The world would be defenseless against the anti-Christ vampires and their ghouls. Even if all this world has are those pathetic revenants what would happen when it occurred to one of them to try to take over? Normal bullets would be worthless. Even tank rounds and explosives would be less than totally effective, and that's only if the armies of the world could maintain morale long enough to come to grips with the fact that nightmares were real.
It was an impossible leap, but one that Integra instinctively accepted. There might be some other Hunter groups in the world. In fact there probably were, given that humans apparently still ruled, but that didn't absolve her of her own responsibilities. She was bred to be a woman of action. She knew of only one thing she could do to help this world. And she would do it, even as she apologized to the girl who had had the misfortune to dress as her servant.
It was really that simple?
Alucard stared down at the sobbing mage in disgust. He'd expected to need Integra and her greater grasp of the Arcane to break the enchantment and send them home. Instead he found that the . . . the moron
of a spellcaster hadn't even bothered to ward
the focus of the spell. Hadn't laid traps or preset curses or anything
for whatever might take it into its head to undo what he had done. When he'd told Alucard how to break the spell, the Mideon had felt so insulted by the obvious lie that he'd stepped the torture up a half dozen notches out of sheer annoyance. It had taken ten minutes of the same story being screamed at him between gasps for air and the inevitable shrieks of pain before the No Life King had decided to believe the incompetent twit.
It made Alucard's job far easier than it would have been otherwise, but it was an insult to his sense of professionalism if nothing else. The True Nosferatu lifted Joshua to obliterate the green-glowing bust of Janus when his Master's urgent summons slammed into his mind. He almost shot the bust anyway. It seemed, after all, like the best way to get his master out of any conceivable danger, but then the tone of Integra's mental voice registered. Not fear, or even the more common Anger filled her thoughts. Only sorrow and a deadly focus and purpose. His master had a plan. Annoyance vanished from the Mideon's features and his manic grin returned in full force. Integra's plans were always so entertaining.
He turned his smile back to the fool below him and the idiot's pale skin turned almost gray at the display of pointy teeth. "Please, don't kill me! I told you what you wanted!"
Alucard's grin disappeared. He'd been prepared to let a man live, but Ethan's begging had just taken him out of that category. A man might have been broken by the torture or he might have given in to the inevitable when he realized how much more powerful his enemy was. Ethan, though was obviously a coward, and real men were not cowards. That made the filth cowering in front of him a dog. A lousy cur begging for scraps.
"I won't kill you," Alucard said and the cowering mutt in front of him relaxed until he spoke again. "I'll leave that up to her," he said with a grin, pointing to Seras Victoria as the former Police-Girl entered the back room of the shop.
Ignoring the now screaming filth in front of him he turned his attention to the advancing Seras, "Make sure to tear off his head after you're done. It would be inconvenient for him to become even a ghoul,"
"Yes, my Master," the younger Mideon acknowledged as she hauled the uselessly resisting piece of trash upright.
Alucard turned back to Walter as the much younger Englishman walked into the room, followed closely by a brunette in a cat costume that turned white as a ghost when she saw what Seras was doing. She didnâ€™t faint or scream though. He could see why Walter had bothered to protect the girl. She had spirit. "Ah, Angel of Death, I must go and fetch Integra," he said as he faded from view, "Be certain that the bust there remains unharmed. I believe my master has plans for it"
Integra took one last look at her PDA before adding a final symbol to the outermost magic circle around the bust of Janus and powering down the device, glad, once more that Walter had taken the time to upload the database he'd assembled from the Hellsing's collection of Magical tomes onto the handy gadget. She took one more moment to make absolutely certain that nothing unforgivably stupid had been done to any part of the carefully written circles before turning to the other participants standing at the other four points of the five-pointed star.
The girl, Cordelia, stood at North. She would be the anchor for the spell. Her presence, in her right mind, as a true resident of this particular dimension would be required for the successful completion of the slightly modified ritual Integra was invoking. Opposing her were the two Mideons Alucard to the left at Southeast and Seras to the right at Southwest they were both Undead and the spell required them as a counter balance to the three living beings on the other side. Finally she looked over at Walter standing at the Western point of the star between Cordelia and Seras before she grasped her magical link to her servant and began to draw in the twisted power of the town's ley-lines.
It took only a few moments to accumulate the power required for the spell. Integra was not a true master of the arts, she and her family had always been only gifted journeymen. It was the link they'd forged to Alucard that made their magic truly powerful. It also conferred other advantages, one of which Integra took advantage of. Since she didn't speak ancient Egyptian and her Romanian was somewhat rusty she let the symbols she had drawn channel the spell, the words another caster would use unnecessary with the magic being filtered through the Mideon before being used. Integra met Alucard's eyes as the ritual hit its climax and the Vampire raised his 13mm hand cannon and put a single bullet into the glowing focus.
Cliffhanger!! Am I evil or not? I'll try to get updates out at least once a month. However, my muse is a psychotic edited for content with an attention span shorter than a kid with ADD hyped up on sugar, so I can't make promises. I'll try to run the next chapter up through the whole Ford mess.
For those of you that don't speak Latin:
In nomine Dei . . .: In the name of God . . .
Ad Vitam Aeternam: "to Life Everlasting" or "To Eternal Life" the exact translation is unclear.
So whadda ya think? Questions? Comments? Hit that review button and tell me what you think!
P.S. Arena Season 4 is out!! Now I have to get my personal rating back up to 2k all over again. /cry
TtH Note: Italics now fixed. The Third crossover will only appear at when i get to the end of BTVS season seven.