Alucard twists the splintered peg of his own bedpost deeper into his father’s heart.
Your greatest gift to me... and I’m killing him.
Gift? When had he ever been a gift? He was a monster, worse than a monster, a cursed and warped reflection of his beast of a father. Alucard, Alucard, Alucard- backwards, like a child’s sick rhyme. Alucard, they called him, a twisted specter of the man casting a shadow over his life.
He pushes deeper, and feels his fathers’ blood ooze over his fingers.
In the end it’s them who end it for him, as the ravaging affects of staking take hold of Dracula’s undead form and he can do nothing but creak and tower and lean into with empty muscles at the son he almost murdered. Trevor slices through his neck, clean and sharp. Sypha begs him to stand aside so she can burn what's left, and if it had been anyone else, he wouldn’t have done it, but for her he walks back and watches as the body turns to ash.
They make him do things like this, these two. He doesn’t know how, or why. But they do.
Alucard the murderer. Alucard the father-killer.
Trevor says that he’s a hero, that he saved the world from genocide, in that brusque way that he does when he’s trying not to feel too much. Sypha chimes in with much of the same, but she speaks of grief that makes him feel like she might be more familiar with it.
He loves them, Alucard thinks, as he looks at the wedding band glinting alone on the floor. He loves Trevor and he loves Sypha and it’s such an awful thought to be having, because he’s a dirty stinking putrid bastardous father-killer with no room in his heart to love anyone in any way, let alone two people at once.
He doesn’t cry when they walk out. He manages to not cry when Sypha stands between him and Trevor and takes their hands. He wishes that Trevor would look at him the same way she does, the hint of a promise of something more. He wants them both so much it digs a pit in his stomach. He wants them to both leave and let him forget as the years go by and they grow old and fade and fall like autumn leaves and he can never think about loving this hard again.
Trevor has always been harder to judge than Sypha, who is used to people and used to communicating. He hides his feelings behind barbs and insults. Alucard wishes his heart fluttered more, when he offers him the house and the land underneath. Tepes and Belmont, together as one. Like marriage. Like love.
He is Adrian, the dirty father killer, and he loves too much.
She approaches him, before their eventual and inevitable departure. Sypha is different, different from anyone else he’s ever known; she’s spice and song and soft edges with a stiff core, and she doesn’t really understand why Trevor’s offer meant so much, because her people do not understand the value others place on one place. She puts her hand on his arm, asks him to be well.
I will not be well without you, he wants to say, because he can’t imagine that spicy-soft-song gone from his life anymore. But he doesn’t say it.
It’s good, for a little while, when they leave. They look at each other in a way that he knows, and he hopes that they do get the time to figure it out. But he needs the time to be alone while they take their own precious hours.
Quietly, and without mentioning it, Adrian resigns himself to the possibility that they will not come back. That they will not feel the hole in their relationship the same way he feels a hole in his life that is empty without their presence.
Adrian resigns himself and retreats, and works. And he cries, for the first time, properly cries not an hour after they’ve left.
Days are made up of little moments. Little moments are made up of tinier ones. Adrian takes these moments and walks through them and pieces something together out of them, shard by shard, second by second. And around him the castle creaks and pieces itself together too, and they both ignore the empty part for pieces that belong to two others.
It’s raining when they come back, the wagon’s tarp soaked through, their horses downtrodden and smeared with mud. It takes him off-guard, when he sees the lone wagon moving through the shadows from a tower, and knows immediately who is coming. It wasn’t like he had imagined them coming back to sunshine and birdsong- but he had imagined them coming back.
So many times. So many times.
He waits at the door like an eager child. He waits and tries to keep himself from bouncing on his heels and tries to keep something from stirring up in his heart, dislodging dust and cobwebs and the aching hole of loneliness.
The door opens for them, of course it does. Sypha’s bright hair is covered underneath her customary blue hood, all soaked through as one, her hands buried in her sleeves. Trevor has that awful fur cape- although it looks more like a drowned rat on his shoulders now- draped over her somewhat, and all of it has done fuck-all against the downpour.
They look up together and see him, and Adrian notices- not for the first time, but for some reason, it hits hard now- that they have the same shade of blue eyes.
“Alucard,” Sypha breathes first, because she puts words first and her actions second, but very close. Trevor’s hand falls from its tight and comfortable grip on her shoulder. He sees the closeness in them.
Was there space for him?
“Sypha, Belmont,” he says as he strides forwards, pretending that he’s not jumping out of his own skin, pretending that he doesn’t want to pull them flush against his body and press his lips to theirs and see how wet and slick their skin is below- “Always good to see old friends so thoroughly drenched before entering my home, not that I thought you wanted to come back.”
“Oh, you bastard,” Trevor mumbles. “Of course we did.”
“You couldn’t have kept us away,” Sypha chirps, low flame sparking to life above her fingers. She looks up at Adrian, and it catches in her blue eyes. “Nothing could’ve stopped us.”
He kisses Trevor first, because the man does not have a gift with words, so he cups his face in his hands and presses his lips to his and he’s rain-cold and slick with water and he tastes like the ghost of ale and it’s the best damn thing that Adrian has ever felt. There is barely a hesitation before he’s kissing back. When they break, and he turns, Sypha is already at his side, and this time she takes hold of his collar and pulls him down and even the wet can’t hide the taste of spice on her lips.
Oh, he could scream. He wants to. They left him all alone in this stupid, shitty, haunted castle. They gallivanted away and he didn’t get to see them discover each other with his own eyes. He had to clean so much in this castle all by himself.
But Adrian has spent enough time picking up little shards of his heart and sticking them back together in the dark to know that it was what he needed.
They’re here now. And they can finish the rest of the job of healing, glued together by gold at the seams.
He’s not sure when he starts crying. They’re both pressed against him, warm with a cold shell, getting his clothes soaked. Sypha mumbles nothings as she presses kisses to what parts of him she can reach, Trevor is a taller weight at his jawline and his hands grip into his shirt so hard it almost tears.
“Why did it take you so long,” he murmurs, twines their fingers in his, leans forward into their hands and lips and curves. “I missed you.”
“We did too,” Sypha says into his skin. “So much.” Trevor just hums, deep and rumbling and safe, safe, safe .
Pieces slot into each other. Pieces he did not carry. Moments become larger and larger and turn into days.
He is Adrian, the father-killer, and he loves.