This is a one-shot ficlet. Pre-BtVS/Pre-League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. This is a meeting of Darla and Dorian Grey in the very early days, in London. This occurs before Darla meets Liam (Angelus) in Galway. I couldn’t resist, this one has screamed out for me to write for ages.
DISCLAIMER I don't own Dorian, he belongs to the mind of Oscar Wilde or whoever owns him now. As this is set using LXG, I disown anything to do with the movie as well. I do not own Darla or Mina. thanks.
This story just HAD to be told.
Parties at Lord Henry’s houses were rare. Avoided, at many costs, by Lord Henry himself. In his old age, he was turning into a bit of a misanthropist. When he decided to hold a party, though, everyone of nobility in London was invited.
The ballroom was full. Hundreds of people were dancing in the grand room, classical music making the mood light. Young girls were giggling, young men blushing, as the guests were coupling.
One girl in particular was quite boisterous. She laughed, taking the hand of the young man addressing her. “Oh, Mister Lewis,” she cried. “You needn’t be so shy. Please do call me Elizabeth.”
“Come, now. You wouldn’t want to appear a trollop, would you know, Miss Montague?” the voice which interrupted her was sickly sweet, as would a servant asking the young girl if she wanted a pink or blue ribbon to wear. Young Elizabeth froze at the words. Her back shot up ramrod straight, and her face burned with embarrassment. Several people around her had stopped talking, and were sneaking looks at her. She began to hear whispers.
Ever so slowly, Elizabeth turned around. She knew her face was becoming brighter red. The other woman continued with a smooth smile, in a face that looked nothing other than kind and warm. “Such behaviour is most unbecoming a young girl like yourself.”
Elizabeth swallowed. Now, there was a distinct lull in conversation. A quick glance told Elizabeth that more people had stopped to watch the encounter. “I…ah…” She glanced around at the people surrounding her. How humiliating! Being chastised for improper behaviour at a party, with all London’s high society watching! Her reputation would be soiled. How terrible for this woman to say something as awful.
She heard a grunt to her left, and out of the corner of her eye she could see the pale blue suit that she had chosen with the maids earlier, for her father to wear to the party. Oh, no. Her father...
She steeled herself, drawing up as much dignity as she could. “Thank you, Lady Aurelius, for correcting me,” she said in a polite voice. “I hope you are well. If you will be so kind as to excuse me, I fear I feel rather faint. I do hope to see you again soon,” she said stiffly, before nodding to the people around her and exiting quickly, burning with shame.
The woman stayed behind, smiling innocently to all the people around her. They acknowledged her with nods, some women pausing to murmur compliments about how she looked, before drifting away to dance once more.
She titter inwardly. A trollop? She was not one in a position to throw stones. Darla sipped a glass of wine delicately, pausing to smooth a fold in the extravagant ball gown she was wearing. This dress was really a thing of beauty, made in France. Carefully crafted from the finest silks, it was a pale blue, with gold thread embroidered all through it and small diamonds and sapphires forming intricate patterns all down the laced bodice and around the hems. Expensive, as well. The dress was absolutely stunning. It made her look and feel like a princess.
The dress had belonged to a princess in France. That, of course, was before Darla had drained her. The Princess lived on in an afterlife were her pale face and unblemished features would remained untarnished by time. No wrinkles would mar her face, and the sun would not spoil her skin. The sun eventually killed her instead, but not before Darla had inherited all her clothing and belongings and escaped the country back to England.
Here, people were more aware of the dangers of the night. The Watchers’ Council resided here, but that seemed to only encourage all things dark. They seemed to take the existence of the Council as a personal insult, as did they the Slayer. Vampires from all over made it a point to, at some point, try to travel to London.
Darla was musing about which of the fine young lads she could see tonight that she might take. After that encounter, the strawberry-blonde vampiress felt a little peckish. She looked around. Foppish boys with pale hair, sickly men with sour dispositions. Darla sighed. None took her fancy tonight.
She was just about to exit when she felt a warm hand take her elbow firmly. “Not leaving already, are we, Lady Aurelius?”
Darla turned with a smile. The man was not young; maybe twenty, twenty-one. He had dark hair that fell just at his shoulders. She looked up and almost gasped. The breath would normally be unnecessary unto her dead lungs, but his appearance seemed to warrant it. His eyes were…soulful.
She smiled widely. The eyes were the window to the soul, and what a soul it was. Not…not complete. Darla paused to look deeply into them. His eyes were so dark and sparkled of so much emotion and insight and mystery and intrigue and yet…
None. There was nothing soulful, and yet he wasn’t an empty shell like a vampire.
She felt blood coursing through his veins and smiled. “And what else would you have me do, my Lord?” she said, curtseying delicately.
The man chuckled, and brought her hand to his red lips. “I would sooner lose sight of an angel than let a beauty such as yourself leave on a night like this. Come, my dear: the balcony.”
“Oh, dear,” Darla said playfully. “Eloping with a handsome man to such a private setting? Not chaperoned? I don’t even know your name.”
He smiled. “Yet surely you must have heard of me.”
“Ah, the man thinks his reputation preceeds him – or wishes it so?”
Again, he chuckled. This woman had wit, and audacity. He admired that. “My name is Dorian Grey, my Lady.”
Darla smiled like a cat. She had heard of him, though it was not a name spoken much of in decent society. Indeed, the Master had told her of him. Sold his soul to the devil, though humans knew none of it. They spoke nonsense about him being the spawn of Satan - it was untrue. A client, perhaps…
“Well, my Lord Grey,” Darla purred, noticing that a lot of people had made some respectful distance between her companion and themselves, “I believe I have heard of you.”
There was a pause. Dorian looked Darla in the eye. He had heard of her, too.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
They were alone. The elegant balcony overlooked a magnificent lake, which twinkled under the reflected stars. The moon was glowing full in the sky – a Harvest moon. Dorian took Darla’s small, pale hand in his own.
“Well now, Lady Aurelius – is there something on your mind, perhaps?”
Darla closed her eyes and breathed in his scent. “Yes, my Lord,” she answered petulantly. “How is it you retain your looks, are immortal, have sold your soul to Satan and are a murderer, and yet - ” she turned to face him, looking up into his eyes.
“You still live?”
If he faltered a moment from her boldness, he did not show it. He smiled, picking a rose from a vase. He walked slowly around her in a circle, letting the blood-red petals trail across her peaches-and-cream skin. “An excellent question, my darling Darla,” he said in a deep, smooth voice, that sounded so melodious to her that it was like silk. He leaned in and spoke, his warm breath tickling her pulse-point
“Another question, though. Why do you live when you are several hundred years old yourself? And why do you drink blood, and fear sunlight?”
Darla rolled her head on her shoulders, enjoying the feel of the rose petals tingle on her skin. “Ah. My Lord has heard of me also.” She answered teasingly. “But how did you learn of me?”
Dorian grinned wolfishly, licking her pulse-point briefly. “A friend,” he said cryptically. “She seemed to hold you in the highest regard.”
“And your –lady- friend has a name, perhaps?” Darla asked. Who was it?
Dorian smiled, coming back around to face her again. “Mina Harker.”
Darla grinned in rapture. “You know Mina?” she asked with delight.
“Yes, I do. She told me such wonderful stories of your exploits together, I simply had to meet you.”
“Well now, my Lord Dorian, you have still not answered my question.” Darla narrowed her eyes. “I believe you are trying to distract me.”
Dorian tilted his head to the side calculatingly. “I shall tell you if you admit to me what I already know.”
Darla smiled again. She couldn’t argue with that. “I am a vampiress. Your turn, Dorian.”
The man lowered his eyes, hiding them beneath thick lashes. If Darla needed any air, her breath would have caught. He was simply stunning. The most marvelous man she had ever seen – or any vampire. Immortal, as well – she was delighted to find that he would stay looking as handsome as he would now for eternity.
He leaned in, his hand cupping her soft cheek. With his thumb, he brushed her pink lips gently. His other hand rested at the small of her back. Darla felt a shiver travel up her spine.
He put his lips again on her neck, and spoke. She felt a thrill as she was pulled up against his perfect body.
“Want. Desire. Witchcraft.”
He kissed her neck, and lifted his head to capture her rosebud-like lips with his own.
She responded only too eagerly.
Please R&R. if you like your BtVS stories dark, you might like my other fic, Princess of Sin. It’s a continuing story. Thanks!