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After eternity, you are still here

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 Living through centuries can be a curse as much as it can be a blessing. You get see to your closest ones die, wars that takes so many lives. But you also get to experience the world change - you were there to when the first telephone was invented, when the landing on the moon happened. 

 For Joshua living for so long became a painful, exhausting and draining all the energy he had experience. At first, when he was still young, he tended to feel the need to explore, to see. Now, as an older version of himself, metaphorically since he can't physically get old, he is tired of the world that is surrounding him. He knows that he doesn't fit in, that his mind is still stuck somewhere in Victorian era, but only with modern improvements. Everything is happening too quickly for his liking and, as much as he wants to, he can't catch up. Something hurts him, but he is not exactly sure what it is. Maybe it's the fact that he wants to get used to the XXI century, or maybe because he doesn't want to keep on living that kind of life. Life of a lonely and more than thousands years old vampire, with no purpose in life. 

 He always gets like this, all sentimental, when he is sitting on a bench in park while watching the sun slowly setting down. Even though it's autumn and most people would find being outside in the cold weather rather unpleasant, he enjoys himself. For Joshua, sitting under leafless trees while the rest of the world is slowly drowning in darkness reminds him of his previous home. It was long ago, before he moved to Seoul and after he left USA, he managed to live in England where during XIX century all vampires from all around the world would gather to live a peaceful life. He still remembers that famous English weather and the sadness in the air. Many people couldn't understand his love for autumn and winter, the love for depressing feeling that surrounds both seasons. It perfectly describes his mood over those hundreds of years. He smiles to himself, because he did it again. He let himself drown in memories of what happened in the past, so long ago that no one will remember about it in some time. But Joshua knows that he needs to come back to those moments in his life, to not let it be forgotten because if he doesn't remember, then no one will. 

 He sat like that, the sun already set and everything was already drown in darkness, until something, or maybe someone, caught his eyes. A bunch of blonde locks suddenly appeared in front of him and blocked his view just like that, even though there wass a lot of free space. Before Joshua could snap at the person, ask them to move out of that spot, they turned around and he felt like catching breath. The person, the guy, looked like he is unreal. Long, blonde hair that were tied in loosen ponytail, big brown eyes that made Joshua lost himself in them, sun kissed skin perfectly complementing the red and plump lips. How someone so perfect can walk among all those people unnoticed? Joshua was so focused on that man that he didn't notice that he is still looking at him, making him slightly confused and flustered because of all the attention he was getting. 

 "Forgive my staring, it's not a very polite of me to do so." the man's face was something between confusion and incomprehension, like he didn't understand what Joshua just said to him few seconds ago "What I wanted to say, you are really beautiful" 

 "Oh...oh" the long haired blushed hard and looked away with soft smile painted on his lips, something that Joshua already had saved in his head "Thank you... stranger?" 

 "Where are my manners, I'm Joshua" he stood up to face the blonde haired, but then he realised that maybe he is slightly taller than him as his eyes lined up with the other's forehead "You?" 

 "Right, shit, I'm Jeonghan" Jeonghan, what a perfect name that rolled even more perfectly off Joshua's tongue, as he whispered it quietly to himself to make sure he remembered it right "Why did you have to repeat my name like we were in some romance movie?" 

 "Did I say it out loud? Forgive me then" Joshua bowed politely with small smile on his face, he really had to make a fool of himself in front of that beautiful man 

 "Yeah, it wasn't entirely quiet" the man, Jeonghan, said while stifling a giggle, apparently Joshua's mistake greatly humoured him, which was a satisfying thing "Cupcake, sit!" 

 Joshua heard a sniffling next to his leg, and when he looked down his eyes caught a little dog that was really interested in him. And who he was to not pat the small, fluffy ball of fur that was wiggling her tail so fact that it was scarily close to falling out. 

 "Hello there, little creature" the dog was more than excited to see Joshua paying attention to her, so in her ecstasy, she climbed on his lap and started licking his face with that small tongue of her "Excuse me Miss, but I don't enjoy this much of physical contact on the first meeting" 

 "God, I'm so sorry! She is still little and gets really affectionate when someone notices her" Jeonghan quickly took the dog into his arms, earning an angry bark from her, what really humoured Joshua "I haven't gotten to raise her properly yet, she has been with me since last Monday" 

 "Nothing happened, I have a weak spot for dogs" gently Joshua bopped the small nose and looked up at Jeonghan who was blushing hard, something that Joshua found even more adorable than the puppy "Would you mind if I finished your walk with you?" 

 "N-no, I don't think so... Cupcake seems to like your company" 

 "Oh, only Cupcake? I guess it has to be enough, but I would prefer her owner to enjoy my company as well" many would describe Joshua as a flirtatious type of person, he never missed an opportunity to charm other's with his personality, besides he also found making Jeonghan blush rather entertaining 

 "I didn't mean it like that! I-I enjoy your company as well! A-and I would love you to go with us... I-if you still want of course! God, I'm mumbling" 

 "I would love to" 

 

 It was a stupid thing to do and Joshua was very aware that he was walking a risky path, but Jeonghan was too tempting, too addictive to not accompany him. Even though the man wasn't aware of that, his every move was driving Joshua to madness. No matter if it was something so simple as praising the dog up till swinging his hips as he was walking, few steps in front of him. He was making Joshua feel the hunger he felt only once in his life, with only one man that managed to steal his not beating heart, centuries ago. But it was so long ago that he forgot that kind of feeling. He did this to both not hurt himself after the loss he had to witness, and to never let it happen again. Yet this time, it was too strong to fight, too intense. It was right down to earth. Who was this beautiful man with long hair that managed to wake the desire all over again in the cold, dead body? 

 When Jeonghan asked if he wanted to come over to his flat, Joshua instantly agreed. It was a mistake, for both of them, as Joshua always avoided visiting others at their homes. He can still feel too reckless, too powerful to control himself. It was something he was always afraid of. But this time, with the invitation... he couldn't decline, even if the hunger was too much to bear, he just hoped that he would get to restrain himself from doing something regrettable to Jeonghan. 

 


 

 

 Jeonghan's home was too much, all the scents hit Joshua as soon as he stepped in to the flat, making his head spin. Too many of his senses were stimulated, making him feel sick. It was all like Joshua was a new vampire, too sensitive to the world around him. He looked at Jeonghan with hungry eyes, not seeing him as human anymore. God, he was turning Joshua into someone he was not, someone he wasn't in a long time, but the way he looked at him, the way he just was. It opened the wound that Joshua made sure to close. Apparently he was wrong. In a swift he had Jeonghan pinned to the wall, their faces just inches from each other, but the long haired wasn't surprised nor scandalised. Jeonghan was the last thing Joshua managed to whisper before their lips touched. One would describe the kiss as something well needed for both of them as it was sensual, slow and filled with love. Everything was so familiar, bringing back the memories of all the kisses Joshua had shared with his beloved when he was still with him. The lips felt almost the same, the response was almost identical. Who was this man who was so new, but also so familiar?

 "Jeonghan"

 "Joshua"

 Jeonghan whispered when their lips parted, both of them seeking for air, and Joshua melted at the way his name also rolled perfectly off his tongue. They were made for each other, the fate that Joshua cursed so long ago was still with him. Something in this cruel world was still on his side, wanting his happiness. Someone, or something, was watching over him. Meeting Jeonghan wasn't spontaneous, it was planned.

 "I can't lose you again" he whispered, letting his forehead rest on the bony shoulder and breath ghost on the long neck, making Jeonghan shiver "I can't watch you die when I know that I can't join you" 

 

 The image was stil vivid in Joshua's head, the image of his beloved, of Jeonghan, on his deathbed looking at him with those tired, sick eyes. It'll be fine Joshua he kept reassuring his lover, but it was never true. It wasn't fine. For centuries Joshua was feeling guilty for making Jeonghan go through all this pain, for letting him suffer. He could turn him, make him immortal and immune to every sickness. But that would make him selfish, an ignorant that didn't care for his beloved, who begged him not to do so. Living without the love of his life was hard, if not the hardest task Joshua had to bear, but being with the man that would hate you forever was even worse. Jeonghan would never say that he hates Joshua, he would stay silent and drown in the misery of turned man, but they had talked too many times about that for Joshua to understand. They had argued over that too many times. If there was something Jeonghan couldn't bear it was seeing his loved ones die, and him being the one still standing, the one to witness that. He couldn't live knowing that all the people he had met would eventually die and leave him all alone. You will never fill the emptiness they'll cause Joshua, he still remembers those words as they were said just yesterday, and how badly they hurt him. Years passed by and Joshua still couldn't understand what Jeonghan meant, because every friend he managed to make, both immortal and mortal, had no power to fill the emptiness Jeonghan's death caused. 

 

 "Then turn me, mark me, make me stay with you Joshua" Jeonghan tore him from his memories, just like he could read them, looking at him with challenging eyes "Don't let me go" 

 "Don't say things you don't mean, Jeonghan" 

 He couldn't let Jeonghan decide in a rush, not over something so important, so permanent as becoming an immortal creature. Back then, still stupidly and deeply in love, Joshua would not think twice before biting Jeonghan with all the strength he had, and make him stay with him until the end of the world. But it wasn't the same Jeonghan. It was someone entirely new, even if he was so Jeonghan. It wasn't the same Joshua either.

 But if he really was someone new, would he still knew the trick that only Joshua knew about? The only thing that would make Joshua lose his coolness entirely and turn him into someone that the real one couldn't control? Because the only person that knew about it was Jeonghan, as Joshua trusted him to never use it against him, no matter what. Yet, the long haired quickly ran to the kitchen, using the internal battle Joshua was fighting with as his advantage, and grabbed a knife, sharp enough to cut a paper without tearing it, and placed near his neck. 

 "You promised Jeonghan" 

 It was all too late, with one firm move Jeonghan cut his skin open, deeply enough to let the blood drain. Blood, human blood, was the thing that could turn Joshua into a monster, into someone, something, he couldn't stop. He wanted to, he tried his best to not let his body throw itself on Jeonghan and sunk hi teeth deeply in his neck, deeply enough to make his wish come true. But the smell was slowly filling the whole room, unable for Jeonghan to sense, but enough for Joshua to arouse every part of his body. The hunger was painful, it hurt every inch of him, every sense it could. Joshua was unconsciously stepping closer to Jeonghan, slowly losing the control over himself and letting the monster inside him awake. Suddenly he threw himself onto Jeonghan, sinking in his teeth deeply, making him cry in pain. He was heartless while doing it all, putting his needs atop Jeonghan's comfort and health. This whole thing could have been better, more special and human. Tears started escaping Joshua's eyes like rivers as he was still drinking blood from the other, his fangs deep in his neck until he managed to regain control over his body and come back to his true self and catch Jeonghan's unconscious body in his arms, utterly drained and cold as he were dead.

 


 

 Hours passed and it was already night, the whole city lightened up with the streets lamps, but Joshua was still sitting next to Jeonghan, like was unable to move. Cupcake was next to him the whole time, accompanying as much as she could and trying her best to cheer the man. And Joshua appreciated the little's effort, but nothing would stop the awful guilt and thoughts that attacked him at that point. As he watched Jeonghan's lifeless body lying on the bed, without any movement, he felt more and more disgusted with himself. He was a monster, an abomination that hurt the person he loved the most in the world. He swore to himself, to everything in this cruel world, that he would never turn anyone ever again, that he would never sink his teeth in any human being, no matter what. During all those years he was doing amazingly fine, he managed to restrain himself even though he had many opportunities to be the beast others expected him to be. Why it had to be Jeonghan who made him break the vows he swore to follow? Why, of all people on the Earth, the second person he had to turn was his lover? None of them was ready, or at least Joshua wasn't. It took all the dignity he had left from him, all the humanity he could swear was still in him. Did Jeonghan see him only as something that would make him immortal? What if Joshua was only a tool for him, a tool that he would use and throw away as soon as he would stop being needed? Tears started filling Joshua's eyes making his vision go entirely blurry. He had no intentions in wiping them off, he simply let them fall down his cheeks. 

 "Why you had to do this so sudden, Jeonghan? Was I only a tool for you? A tool that would do as you please before you throw away?" 

 Was Joshua mad at Jeonghan? Yes, he was. But did he hate him? No, he would never. That's why he made sure that he had some blood supplies for Jeonghan when he would wake up, starving to death. Joshua wasn't cruel, he went through it all entirely alone, and he wouldn't want his lover to feel something similar to that. Although, right now, all he could do was wait for him to wake up. 

 

 Silence, the tiring quietness that filled the bedroom they were staying in, was becoming too much to bear. Even the noises that could be heard from Seoul's busy streets started to fade out, until Joshua's brain managed to mute them down entirely. The worst part of changing is the fact, that it can last days, even weeks. How much it would take in Jeonghan's case? No one could tell, even Joshua. If he were lucky enough then only few hours, but was Jeonghan's body ready to go through it all so quickly? 

 "H-hungry" a small whimper escaped Jeonghan's lips, and if Joshua's hearing wasn't so sensitive he wouldn't be able to hear it 

 Of course he was hungry, he was feeling like he had never eaten anything in his whole life. Thankfully Joshua was there, with satisfying amount of blood packs, enough to feed even the hungriest new born vampire. Carefully he handed one to the blonde haired, watching him sink his teeth through the plastic bag and drink until it would be totally empty. And Joshua was watching him with pitiful eyes, thinking about what he had done. Jeonghan wasn't human at all, he looked like he lost all the dignity he had for a simple bag of blood. 

 "Forgive me" Jeonghan looked up at Joshua surprised, stopping sipping on his drink as he heard the other mumble those words under his nose "Forgive me Jeonghan, I beg you" 

 "The one forgiving should be you... Forgive me for doing it all to you Jo...Shua" Joshua's eyes were still glossy, there were still dried tears on his cheeks, and Jeonghan wasn't stupid, of all the people that had known Joshua he was the only one that knew every weak spot of that man, every of his flaw and fear, and yet he used it against him "You trusted me, to never use anything against you. I promised, but I was too afraid.. that you would never agree on making me stay with you. That I would have to leave you once again. Shua, I don't want to do this ever again!" 

 "I have been as faithful to you as I was the day we vowed to each other Jeonghan. I have loved no other man than you, as I pledged. I have mourned you for centuries after your death. How could you think that I would never listen to your needs and help you, when you would need me?" 

 Jeonghan was crying, bitter tears escaping his eyes as he hugged Joshua close, just like he would be seeking for warmth that he knew was no longer there, that it was never there. He liked to imagine how it would be if Joshua were a human, with beating heart and warm body, with human emotions and ability of growing old. When he was the one with grey hair and Joshua was still young and handsome, he hated him for that. The love that once filled his heart was replaced with jealousy and hatred for the man that loved him not matter how wrinkly his face was or how grey his hair happened to be. That man was still looking at him the same way he looked at him when they first met, when they vowed. And when they met again, after all this years living away from each other, that eyes haven't changed. Joshua was still madly in love with Jeonghan. It made him rethink his decisions, his disgust he felt toward vampires, toward Joshua. And the possibility of turning into one of those immortals creatures. He was a selfish man, but he couldn't risk losing Joshua again. They have an eternity waiting for them, and it's scaring Jeonghan a lot, but he knows that his lover is with him. That he is there to guide him through the scary path and show the world that he was too afraid to see. 

 "I remember what you told me on our wedding night... That no matter what, you will be waiting for me. That no matter what decision I'll make, you will accept it. That no matter what path I'll choose to follow, you will always make sure to keep me safe. Will you do this once again?" 

 "Do you even have to ask, my love? My vows haven't changed since the XIX century and I highly doubt they will ever" 

 "Will we stay with each other until the world end, then?" 

 Joshua was first to lean into the kiss, his lips delicately ghosting over Jeonghan's smiling ones. His lover, his husband, was addicting in every inch of his beautiful self. Everything about him was so perfect, so untouched and yet ready for Joshua to wreck, to turn into total mess just to be carefully pulled back together. Strangely, the way of their kissing has never changed, it is still as sensual, as needy and hot as it used to be before. Joshua always loved regularity, even when it came to love, to kissing or making it. That's why he wasn't surprised when his hands wandered under the thin shirt he was wearing and, as gently as he could, touched every inch of the already cold skin like it was burning him. They felt like young lovers that was yet to see what their love has to offer all over again. 

 Both of them wanted the same, to experience the eternity with the other one close, to discover what their love was still hiding from them, to understand themselves deeply and know each other's fears and flaws. But to understand it all they needed to spend more than a century far from each other firstly, alone with their own struggles and sadness, fighting the demons in their heads. It's going to be a bumpy road, full of surprises, danger and disagreements, and they both are aware of that. Yet the thought of exploring it all those beautiful things their lives have to offer is enough to keep them positive about the future. 

 For Joshua living for so long became a painful, exhausting and draining all the energy he had experience, but when Jeonghan stepped back into his life and lightened it with his presence, it became full of hope and excitement to see new things. He writes a completely new story, totally different from the one he started with.