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Echoes

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Echoes

 

It was dark… or was it? Seras didn’t know.

The night was periodically punctured by the sudden seizures of lightning, only belatedly followed by the sky’s groaning scream. Seras shivered and curled into her side as she laid, hiding under the living room sofa, looking like the very leaves outside, barely clinging on to the last of her consciousness from panic.

A crash from the kitchen made Seras twitch violently, and she whimpered, knowing that this crash wasn’t thunder but something much scarier.

“You shouldn’t have dug deeper old man!” A rough cry, a brute of a man, haiy and large and oddly puglike. She heard more crashes - struggles - and then a gunshot that made Seras’ blood flood with ice. No…..

Her mother seemed to echo her thoughts, “No! Harold! You won’t get away with this!” more crashes followed, and after a period of silence, Seras wondered if her mother managed to kill the intruder. Her hopes were shattered, however, when she began to hear agonized screams from the scene, a sound so loud and horrid that the thunder was practically a pin drop in her storm. Seras began to tremble violently - just what were they doing to her?

“How do you like that bitch? Just take it silently will ya?”

Somehow, the muffled screams were worse than the clear ones.

Just as Seras thought she was going to pass out from her sheer terror, a large, meaty hand grabbed her shoulder and dragged her out from under the couch, pulling her to face a large man, the man that came with the pug-faced intruder. “Lookie what I found…” Suddenly, he grinned, his smile grotesque and perverted, eyes intent on something Seras couldn’t quite comprehend. He opened his mouth wide and his incisors grew - just as he moved to bite her

 

Seras woke with a scream, “Mother!”

Then, she stopped.

Her trembling hands grasped the sides of the coffin, nose suddenly invaded with the scent of bloodless soil, and she began to ground herself, just as she was taught. What did she see? The intricate carvings and symbols on the inside of her coffin’s lid. What did she hear? Thunder and lightning, just as her dream. What did she feel? Damp soil…..

When her breath steadied into an acceptable level, Seras sighed. Another nightmare. And this time, it wasn’t even accurate… and just why did that rapist look oddly like Anderson?

Uncomfortable with her thoughts, Seras moved the lid off of the coffin and slipped out, taking a moment to stretch her tense muscles. Ending with a decisive crack of her neck, Seras began to make her way out of her room to take a walk.

 

Seras Victoria… top of her class.... Good A levels…. Delinquent…. Orphan by the age of 12…. Daughter of Sergeant Harold Victoria and Forensics Scientist Mrs. Fatima Victoria…. And, what’s this? Diagnosed with PTSD in 10th grade?... Now, Miss Seras, regardless of your lineage, we must ask, how can you actually contribute as a Police Girl if you already are handicapped with severe PTSD?

 

Seras growled and clenched her fist as the memory of her first application to the police academy was considered - it took her 2 years for them to let her in after many denials, and Seras reminded herself that she ended up top of her class in the academy as well. She was not stupid, she was not weak and nor was she… broken…. In any way, shape, or form.

 

“Miss Victoria?”

“Yes, Mr. Dornez?”

“Walter will do, Miss Victoria. Now that you are part of the Hellsing Organization, you cannot be known to the world. Sir Integra tasked me with taking care of your will and last goodbyes - do you have family, Miss Victoria?”

“... No. I’m an orphan. Nor do I have friends. There are no assets to divide.”

 

His pitying look that day was laced with an understanding that only came from a fellow orphan. Seras didn’t know whether to be pleased at the understanding or disgusted at Walter’s pity. Exhaling through her teeth, Seras closed her eyes and began to count backwards from 100, only to stop when she brushed against a door. She paused, blinking. Somehow, her feet had carried her to Alucard’s door.

 

“So, police girl.”

“Master, my name is Seras.”

“Regardless, police girl, tell me - just what did you do before this?”

“I was a police girl.”

“Of course, I could’ve never guessed, but beyond that.”

“I drank with the other men, occasionally volunteered at the orphanage.”

“Orphanage?”

“I used to be an orphan.”

“Interesting.”

 

And he hadn’t commented beyond it. There was no pity in his eyes, only boredom, apathy and bitterness - his usual mood. Seras was suddenly rather grateful for her Master’s callousness, and had the immediate urge to storm into Alucard’s room and open his coffin to tell him just what she dreamed of, just so she could see that lack of pity in his eyes. Just so her suffering was acknowledged… but there would be no patronizing pity.

Her breath suddenly quickened as the idea sank into her. It… really was just what she needed. Gathering her courage, Seras knocked on his door to let him know that she was entering, and opened the door.

The faintly lit hallways created a column of sunlight that dissipated into the vantablack of his room. Seras gingerly stepped forward before taking a moment to focus and activate her vampire sight, just as Alucard had taught her to. Even when she could see, the room was rather barren and bleak, but filled with books in a highly disorganized matter.

“Master?” She called, suddenly feeling rather small.

A shift in the background came from her left. Turning to face it, Seras strode towards the noise and saw Alucard’s coffin, an elegant, aged, mahogany and tall thing that looked nothing like the cheap casket Seras had. Biting her lower lip, she waited for her Master to awaken. However, when there was no more movement, she gathered her bravery and opened the lid herself. There, Alucard lay. Seras watched him for a moment, mentally tracing the vast planes and shap mountains on his face, the delicate yet hardy sight of his hands, the linear form of his body.

“Police Girl….” The soft, sleepy groan startled Seras out of her thoughts. “Seras… come inside and close the coffin, it is far too early in the morning.” Silently, Seras obeyed and slipped into the larger coffin and laid beside Alucard, who turned to his side and draped a rather long leg and arm over her small body, using them to pull her close so that he may clutch them. “Bad dreams, Police girl?” He sleepily asked, voice barely more than a growling mumble.

Seras nodded into his chest as she felt herself slowly relax into his embrace. She was suddenly quite glad that it was early in the morning - an Alucard at 6pm would probably never hold her this close. “The… deaths of my parents. I was there.”

Alucard gently hummed, a deep sound that sent shivers down Seras’ body. He didn’t say anything, just for a bit. “I imagine that it was graphic.” Seras nodded again. “Hm. I can’t say they go away completely as you age. I occasionally dream terribly as well.” He murmured neutrally. Seras sighed and shifted her head up, trying to see the expression on Alucard’s face, but was stopped by his hand, which made its way into her hair and urged it down, before continuing to card her short, blonde hair. “Sleep, Seras.”

“What do you dream of, Master?” He stilled.

“My life before Hellsing.” His tone didn’t tell her whether it was a good or a bad thing.

“Oh.”

There was nothing else to say.

There was a certain irony, Seras thought, of two people being so close and yet so far away, mentally. Alucard was a million miles away, or maybe a million years away - Seras didn’t know. But for now, as her breathing steadied and synched with his own, she thought that eventually, he would take her one day, instead of leaving her alone, in this coffin, pressed against the comforting husk of his mind.

“Sleep well, Mina.”