Shall you refuse me?
Show me the face of the radical dream
There’s no time for severance
Make me an offer I cannot refuse
Shall you abuse me?
Show me the grace of a natural king
Lord, I need deliverance
Make me an offer I cannot refuse.
“Make Me An Offer I Cannot Refuse” by Sufjan Stevens
Thunder rolled, and Valkyrie whinnied nervously. Gyro stroked her neck to soothe her.
“I know, bambina,” he murmured. “Storm’s making me nervous too.”
He lifted his hand to the brim of his hat, trying to see through the sheets of rain that were beginning to pour down.
“But we’ve gotta find somewhere to stay,” he said. “Otherwise we’re done for.”
The sky had been deceptively clear when Gyro set off this morning. Nobody that he spoke to in the last town he’d stayed at gave any indication that there was a storm brewing over the moors. Perhaps the weather soured quickly in this part of England… or perhaps nobody said anything because of Gyro’s accent.
No matter how hard he tried to hide it, he simply hadn’t lived in this country for long enough to keep from giving himself away as a foreigner whenever he opened his mouth. And this far away from any major city, outsiders were sooner met with suspicion than sympathy. That was something he’d learned much faster than any dialect.
He didn’t have time to reflect on his alienation right now, however. He had to find shelter. If the storm got any worse, it would be too dangerous for Valkyrie to continue on— if she didn’t buck him off and run away in protest first, that was.
Through the dark and hard rain it was difficult to tell if Gyro was still on any path. He handled Valkyrie cautiously, wary of slipping in the mud or falling into an undetected ditch. He could tell his horse was getting more agitated with each flash of lightning that temporarily turned the darkness to day. He prayed that she wouldn’t bolt and hurt herself. If she were to get injured, then he would really be in trouble.
Suddenly, up ahead, Gyro saw something move: a dark shape in the heather, and not one that could be mistaken for a shifting branch. Some sort of creature, he reckoned. He pulled Valkyrie to a stop, earning him a distressed neigh.
What kind of wild animals live in this country? he wondered. Were they anything like the gray wolves and brown bears of his homeland? Or were there creatures even more dangerous out on the moors, lean and hungry due to the austere conditions?
The dark form moved again. Gyro’s gaze was met with a pair of beastly eyes. They had a canine shape... but with irises so blue and bright that their glow cut through the misty haze.
Gyro’s breath caught. A dog?
Lightning split the sky, followed by a deafening crack of thunder. Valkyrie reared with a loud neigh, and Gyro just barely held onto the slippery reins. When she came down again, hooves squelching in the sodden ground, the dog— or whatever it was— was gone.
“Merda!” Gyro swore. That dog might’ve been his only lead on finding civilization. After all, it had to belong to someone, right? Whatever strange qualities it possessed, Gyro had no choice but to follow it and hope for the best.
He urged his horse forward. Valkyrie resisted at first, but then began to pick her way through the heather. Up ahead, Gyro thought he saw that same black shape moving— although it had a sort of staccato, broken pace that struck him as unnatural. Was it hurt, or perhaps lame? It still managed to move faster than him somehow.
Luckily, his gamble was rewarded before long: twin black spires broke through the fog ahead, and another bolt of lightning revealed the shape of the large building that they were attached to. By that point Gyro had completely lost sight of the dog, but that no longer mattered: he’d found shelter.
“C’mon, Valkyrie!” He patted his horse’s neck encouragingly. “Looks like we’re gonna make it after all!”
Valkyrie seemed to sense that salvation was near, because she picked up the pace. She really was a born sprinter, especially in tense situations. Gyro pulled his hat down firmly on his head and hunkered down to fight their way through the storm.
As they got closer, however, Gyro began to doubt whether the building they had found really was salvation. It was a large, rather stately manor, but it looked forsaken. All of the windows were dark, for one, not even a flicker of fire or lamplight to be seen. There was a gate out front, but it wasn’t locked nor even latched— it swung wide open in the wind, slightly crooked on its hinges. Grass grew up between the flagstones and the walls were heavy with climbing plants.
This place can’t be abandoned, can it? Well, whether anyone lived here or not, he was going to be staying the night. He and his horse couldn’t afford to remain exposed to the elements. Even a derelict shelter was better than none at all.
Gyro dismounted, taking Valkyrie’s reins and walking up to the door of the old manor. Engraved on the keystone over the entrance was a name, almost shrouded by overzealous ivy: JOESTAR.
He was debating whether he should even bother with the heavy iron knocker when suddenly, the door opened. Valkyrie pulled back with a nervous snort. Gyro had to turn to calm her. When he turned back, there was nobody there.
“May I help you?”
Hold on. There was somebody, they just weren’t at Gyro’s eye level. He found himself looking down at a man seated in a wheelchair.
The man wasn’t dressed like a servant, but rather like a gentleman, with a black silk vest over a white shirt. He wore no collar or cuffs, but his shirt was neatly buttoned. His trousers and shoes were similarly neat, nigh immaculate.
All of this registered only in the back of Gyro’s mind. His attention was focused primarily on the man’s face. He had a strong jaw with surprisingly delicate features: full lips, arched brows, and— most striking— deep blue eyes. In Gyro’s eyes, he walked the line between pretty and handsome with as much finesse as a cat on a narrow fence.
The man tilted his head. “I said, may I help you?”
Gyro suddenly realized he was holding his breath. He exhaled forcefully and nodded.
“I’m sorry to bother you at such a late hour,” he said. “Could I speak to the master of the house?”
The man nodded. “You’re looking at him.”
“Oh.” He’s awful young to run this place, isn’t he? Maybe he just had a naturally youthful face. Or maybe some tragedy had forced him to take the helm of the manor early. Gyro had no idea, nor was it any of his business. He cleared his throat and removed his hat.
“My name is Gyro Zeppeli,” he said. “I’m traveling north and got caught off-guard by this storm. My horse and I can’t continue on. We need shelter tonight.”
“And you expect me to do something about it, I suppose?” the man said.
As he spoke, Gyro detected something of a drawl in his voice, a slight anomaly when compared to the dialect of the people in this area. He did a good job covering it but, like Gyro, he couldn’t hide it completely. Another foreigner…?
Focus, Gyro told himself. He could speculate about this fellow’s origin after he secured a place to stay. The haughtiness in the man’s response wasn’t lost on Gyro, but he wasn’t going to take no for an answer. Not in these conditions.
“To put it bluntly, yes,” Gyro said. “If you don’t want to let me in, I’ll just shelter in the stable with my horse. You can try to remove us if you want.”
To his surprise, the man laughed at that.
“You’re honest,” he said. “I like that.”
He arched his brow. Unconsciously, Gyro’s breathing accelerated.
“My name is Jonathan Joestar,” the man said. “Like I said, this is my home. You can stay here through the storm, if so desired.”
Gyro exhaled a sigh of relief. “Thank you, Jonathan.”
“Johnny.” Johnny’s eyes seemed to flash; Gyro naturally attributed it to the lightning behind him. “You may call me Johnny.”
Johnny told Gyro how to get to the stables, where he could finally let Valkyrie rest safely. Gyro was surprised that there didn’t appear to be any stablehands or really any staff whatsoever on the rather-large estate. It didn’t bother him, though— he preferred to handle his own horse’s care whenever possible, anyway.
When Gyro came back to the front door, Johnny was waiting for him. He had a towel in hand and an expectant expression.
“Come in,” he said, beckoning. “Here— dry off before you catch your death.”
“Thank you.” Gyro took the towel and wiped off his face and hands. That done, he took off his hat and hung it up near the door.
“Take off your coat, too,” Johnny said. “Otherwise you’ll just drip all over the place.”
“Oh— right,” Gyro said. His coat only did so much to deflect the torrential rain.
He took off his outer layer— only to observe with chagrin that his jacket was also soaked almost all the way through. Johnny saw him inspecting it and nodded once, as if in resolution.
“You can take that off, as well,” he said.
Gyro could hear his father’s voice in his head: never appear too casual at a stranger’s home, you’ll bring dishonor on the family name. Going against that edict felt wrong to Gyro— especially in another country where he was told manners maketh man.
“…I don’t want to be impolite,” he said.
“I just gave you permission, didn’t I?” Johnny waved his hand dismissively. “My house, my rules. Unless you really want to go on wearing wet wool.”
He has a point, Gyro thought. Besides, Johnny was only wearing a shirt and vest himself. Propriety wasn’t the focus of the night, evidently. He gave Johnny a curt nod and turned back to the coat rack. As he took off his jacket, he could’ve swore he felt Johnny’s eyes on his back— but when he turned around, the other man had turned away.
“Follow me,” he said. “You can warm yourself by the fire.”
Gyro followed Johnny deeper into the manor. The interior of the building had the same neglected aura as the outside, despite the fact that someone clearly lived here. Gyro observed a thick layer of dust on most surfaces. There must’ve been a healthy population of spiders, judging from the number of cobwebs. Johnny didn’t seem to have any cleaners any more than stablehands.
But how could he live alone? Gyro thought, eyeing Johnny’s chair. And in such a large home, no less…? Johnny certainly seemed like the type to take charge of his own affairs, at least based on how he answered the door himself, but surely a place as expansive (and, presumably, expensive ) as this would have some staff…?
Something wasn’t right here. Gyro wasn’t so dense as to not realize that. But he also wasn’t the kind of idiot who wanted to sleep in the freezing rain. Maybe he could figure it out just through context clues…
“You’ll want something to eat, won’t you?” Johnny asked, interrupting his thoughts.
Gyro thought about declining as politely as possible, but at the mere mention of food his stomach defied reason and made itself heard quite clearly. His eye twitched while Johnny snorted, apparently amused.
“I’ll take that as a yes,” he said.
“Apologies,” Gyro muttered, putting a hand over his rebellious stomach. “I’ve been traveling all day.”
He was hoping to reach his destination in time for dinner, but the storm had other plans in store for him. Everything was just getting in his way lately… where was his Lady Luck when he needed her?
“Don’t apologize,” Johnny said in an even tone. “Hunger is hunger, isn’t it? There’s no negotiating with it.”
Gyro half-laughed at that. “That’s… certainly true.”
“You’ve come at a good time, actually,” Johnny said. “I take my meals late.”
Arriving at the end of the hall, Johnny opened a door to reveal a long hall furnished with a table and a large fireplace. The sudden introduction of heat back into Gyro’s bones filled him with relief. He hadn’t realized how cold he was until he felt warmth again.
He immediately gravitated towards the source of the warmth, holding out his rain-numbed hands towards the flames. The fire was a generous one, with plenty of fuel burning in the wide mouth of the fireplace. Gyro’s eyes traced along the mantle, subtly searching for some clues about who Johnny was and what he was doing here, but there was nothing to see. Even the wall over the mantle, where there might usually be a painting or some decoration, was bare. The whole room seemed awfully sparse. In a way, it felt like Gyro had never left the moorland outside.
“The fire will still be warm in a half hour,” Johnny said. “The food, on the other hand, will not.”
“The food?” Gyro looked up in confusion. He had been so single-minded in his focus on the fire that he didn’t even notice that there was already a place set at one end of the table.
Already prepared? Gyro went to the table to look at the meal closer. Meat, bread, soup, wine… pretty good fare, all things considered. Maybe Johnny did have staff, after all.
“Is this…?” Gyro frowned. “I can’t possibly eat a meal intended for you.”
“Who said it was intended for me?” Johnny asked. He took his place at the other end of the table, looking quite unperturbed.
“Well…” Gyro put his hand on the back of the chair that was supposed to be his, but he didn’t feel comfortable sitting down yet. “Who else could it be for…?”
Surely Johnny knows that it’s strange, he thought. He did a really good job of hiding it, though.
“You,” Johnny said simply. “You took quite a while to take care of your horse, you know. I had this prepared for you in that time. It’s not complicated.”
He spoke so matter-of-factly that it was becoming increasingly difficult for Gyro to question him. He slowly took his seat, partially convinced by Johnny’s blasé attitude and partially drawn by the tightness in his stomach.
Maybe I’m reading too much into this, he thought. The sudden storm had frayed his nerves and now he was treating the whole world like it was as cruel as nature. If Johnny didn’t take proper care of his house, what business was it of Gyro’s? None.
Gyro finally picked up his silverware and took a cautious sip of the soup. It was surprisingly quite good… or maybe his hunger was just fooling him into thinking so. He wasn’t about to turn down a warm meal, though, no matter the weird circumstances that led him to it.
“I must say, visitors to the estate are few and far between,” Johnny said. “What brings you to this part of the country?”
“I’m looking for work,” Gyro said.
“Oh?” Johnny folded his hands on the table. “What do you do?”
Gyro took a moment. “I’m a doctor.”
That wasn’t the full truth, of course— Gyro ended lives just as much as he saved them. A doctor by profession, an executioner by confession. When the Neapolitan monarchy fell a year ago, the Zeppelis lost everything: both of their sworn duties along with their home and their safety. Hence their hasty immigration to England.
But he couldn’t just tell that to a stranger. The revolution in his country was still fresh, and the new government had sympathizers and informers throughout the world. After Gyro had separated so many heads from their bodies, there was no telling who might want his head next.
“I see,” Johnny said. “Work shouldn’t be hard to find then, should it? Especially in the cities.”
Well… That would be the logical thing to do, yes, but as political refugees, it wasn’t quite that simple. The Zeppelis didn’t just need to find a new way to sustain themselves, they needed to find a quiet place to do so.
“We’re not exactly city folk,” Gyro said. A bold-faced lie, but a necessary one.
“Hm,” Johnny said. He traced a finger across the table, completely casual. Gyro took a sip of wine to hide his relief—
“And when are you planning on going back to Naples?”
Gyro nearly choked and barely avoided spitting a mouthful of wine everywhere. “Excuse me?”
Johnny cocked his head as if completely innocent. “You’re Neapolitan, aren’t you? Or from the Campania region, at least. I can tell from your accent.”
“My—“ Gyro almost covered his mouth as if he could take back his words, traitorously bent by his native tongue as they were. He’d hardly said a hundred words to Johnny— how could he guess his accent down to the region?!
“And judging from your manners and knowledge of English, you were probably relatively influential in your sphere,” Johnny went on. His voice was casual, but his eyes were relentlessly piercing. “A high-ranking Neapolitan in a foreign country looking for work… You must be trekking around the English countryside waiting for the new king to forgive you.”
Gyro was speechless. How did this foreigner know so much? From Gyro’s accent to his station to his purpose in England…? If he wasn’t so flabbergasted, he might’ve been impressed.
Johnny smirked, resting his chin on his interlaced fingers.
“How’d I do?” he asked.
Gyro didn't answer that. He stood, abruptly. “I should go.”
The blood was rushing in his ears. He didn’t care how dangerous the storm outside was— he’d take it over potentially putting his entire family at risk. Johnny raised his brows like Gyro was overreacting somehow.
“No need to get agitated,” he said. “I won’t tell anyone. After all—”
He gestured around him. “Who could I tell?”
Gyro gripped the edge of the table hard.
“This is a serious matter,” he said through gritted teeth.
Johnny sighed. “Of course, of course. I apologize, I was just playing a game. Like I said, I don’t get very many visitors. Especially not any who are as interesting as you.”
His eyes met Gyro’s. “Please. Sit down.”
Gyro didn’t know what it was, but… he felt compelled to obey Johnny in that moment. Despite the fact that he knew nothing about this man aside from his name, despite the obvious danger this presented to him and his family, despite every other odd thing that was swimming in the back of his mind… he sat down again. He felt like there was a strange electricity building along his spine, taking hold of his nerves. It was as exhilarating as it was frightening.
Johnny’s gaze softened and the feeling went away. Gyro exhaled, laying his palms flat on the table. Johnny gave him a small smile, one that Gyro supposed was meant to be comforting.
“I’m a foreigner too, you know,” he said. “I was born and raised in America. Although it was business, not politics, that brought my family here.”
“Oh,” Gyro said. He had to admit, that did make him relax a little. “So that’s your accent? American?”
“You could tell,” Johnny said, sounding almost delighted. “Yes, that’s right. I haven’t been back there in quite some time, but I guess there are some things that never change.”
He laughed then, and Gyro found himself smiling just listening to him. Johnny had an endearing laugh, sort of breathy and low.
“I guess not,” Gyro said, rubbing the back of his neck. “I have the same problem, evidently— but I will say, I’m impressed that you managed to pin down precisely where I’m from.”
“Believe it or not, I have family in that part of Italy,” Johnny said. “Just some distant cousins, but I’m familiar with the dialect. I’ve visited Naples more than a few times.”
“Is that so?” Gyro leaned forward a bit, interested. He had to admit, he’d been feeling a bit homesick for his city lately. England was a fine country in its own right, but it wasn’t home (and truthfully Gyro doubted it ever would be). Johnny was the first person outside of his family that he’d met in a long while that not only knew what that feeling was like, but knew the place that Gyro ached for so deeply in his bones. “And your verdict is…?”
“I don’t think you need me to tell you what a beautiful city it is.”
Gyro laughed heartily. “Nyohoho, good answer!”
Johnny smiled coyly. “If I gave any lesser praise, I’m sure you’d accuse me of lying.”
“That I would,” Gyro said with a nod.
They talked about Naples for a little while: Johnny recounted the sights he’d seen and the things he’d experienced while Gyro eagerly provided his own commentary and made recommendations just in case Johnny ever decided to go back. Johnny graciously let him chatter on about his beloved homeland in between sips of wine.
Before Gyro knew it, the bottle of vintage near him was empty. He’d long stopped being able to tell if the warmth in his face was from the alcohol or from talking to Johnny for so long. All he knew was that he felt far more relaxed than he had earlier that night.
“You never answered my earlier question,” Johnny said, resting his chin on the heel of his hand pensively. “Are you planning on going back?”
“Of course,” Gyro declared. “We might have to wait a few years, but— the Zeppeli roots have grown in Neapolitan soil for two hundred and eighty years. There’s no pulling us up for long, mark my words.”
“You’re not concerned about the government exiling you permanently?” Johnny asked.
Gyro waved a hand dismissively. “The government can do what they like… it’s the people who really matter. And the people of Naples love us. We’ve been caring for their health for three hundred years!”
Johnny smirked. “I thought it was two hundred and eighty.”
“Nyoho, you know what I meant,” Gyro said, grinning right back.
“I’m sure it’ll work out,” Johnny said, leaning back in his chair. “If not, all you have to do is find some rich English heiress to marry. That’ll take care of your money problems.”
Gyro blinked, a bit thrown-off by the subject change. “Marriage…?”
“Sure,” Johnny said with a flippant air. “You’re young and handsome, with a mysterious foreign air to boot. You’ve got deb’s delight written all over you— I’m sure they’d be tripping over themselves if you presented yourself in ‘good society.’”
He gave Gyro a hooded glance and Gyro felt something in the air shift. He was sure he wasn’t imagining it. All this chitchat and compliments… Johnny was flirting with him. Well, that was his right, and Gyro certainly wasn’t going to say no. Especially not with this much alcohol in his system.
“You’re sure, huh?” he asked, leaning forward. He was putting his elbows on the table, but manners be damned— he wanted a closer look at Johnny’s face. “Do you think you could point me in the direction of a rich, pretty thing who might fit the bill?”
Johnny tilted his head ever so slightly, his eyes glittering like jewels. It was like he knew just how to turn his face so that the firelight danced in his gaze.
“Perhaps,” he said, his drawl coming through stronger than ever. “But I might just be loath to turn you over to them.”
“Mm… then I suppose I’ll have to settle for something less formal than marriage,” Gyro said in a low voice.
Even with the length of the table separating them, Gyro felt how thick the air had become between them. It was not unlike the way the atmosphere had felt earlier that day, right before the storm broke. They were both just waiting for that first bolt of lightning—
Then, Johnny pushed his chair back. All of a sudden, Gyro lost sight of his face.
“I think you’ve had enough to drink,” he said. “It’s getting late.”
His voice wasn’t so playful anymore, just— neutral, as if nothing had happened. Gyro pulled back in confusion.
“Hold on,” he said. “I—“
“I’ll show you where you can stay,” Johnny said, not letting Gyro get a word in. “I’m sure you have a long day ahead of you tomorrow.”
Gyro was so stunned, he couldn’t do anything but wordlessly follow Johnny as he led him out of the dining room and through the manor’s halls once more. He wanted to reach out and touch Johnny, almost to ensure that he wasn’t just dreaming all this, but decided against it.
They arrived back in the entry hall, where there was a large staircase leading up to the second floor. There, Johnny stopped his chair and pointed.
“There should be an open guest room to your left and down the hall three or four doors,” he said. “It might be a bit musty, but it’s clean.”
Gyro put his foot on the first step, then stopped. He turned around and looked at Johnny— really looked at him, searching those blue eyes for some hint of… something. He wasn’t sure what. Something more , something that would indicate this wasn’t all in his head.
“Johnny… thank you for letting me stay here,” he said. “I appreciate it more than I can express.”
Johnny held his gaze for a moment straight-faced. Then, he gave Gyro the tiniest smile.
“You’re welcome,” he said. “Goodnight, Gyro.”
Gyro made himself turn around and march up the steps. Johnny didn’t come with him— he couldn’t, not in his chair— but he stayed at the bottom of the staircase the whole time, as if he wanted to make sure Gyro got to the top safely.
Once at the landing, Gyro cast one last look back down at Johnny. Although he was now further away than ever, his eyes still burned like they had up close.
Despite Gyro’s exhaustion, sleep didn’t come easy. The storm raged on outside, for one, unpredictable bursts of thunder and lightning making it difficult to do anything but doze. For another, his mind was on Johnny.
Did I go too far? he wondered. He thought they had an understanding of sorts— I won’t tell if you don’t and all that. Gyro had experienced something similar with other men in the past. But just when it was getting good, Johnny pulled back and Gyro didn’t know why.
Maybe flirting is all he does with men, he thought. Gyro’s proposition, however vague and coded it was, must’ve crossed a line.
That… might be for the best. After all, they were still essentially strangers— even if Gyro felt, inexplicably, like he’d known Johnny for longer than just one evening. And Gyro would be leaving at first light, probably never to return.
But he’d be lying if he said he wasn’t disappointed.
Despite the roiling storm and his restless thoughts, Gyro eventually drifted into a light sleep. He wasn’t so deeply asleep, however, that he didn’t hear his door creak open. A shadow crawled into the room as a shape slowly appeared in the doorway, illuminated by a shaft of moonlight.
Gyro lifted his head groggily. “Johnny…?”
Sure enough, there was the master of the house himself, standing in the doorway— wait, standing? Johnny was in a wheelchair, wasn’t he?
His confusion was wiped away, however, when he saw the flaming light of Johnny’s eyes. They were so bright it struck Gyro as almost impossible. And they burned with an unmistakable desire.
“Gyro,” Johnny said softly, and the sound echoed in Gyro’s ears. “I had to tell you…”
Gyro blinked and suddenly Johnny was right at the edge of his bed, even though he didn’t see him move a muscle. The buttons on his crisp white shirt were undone, revealing a tempting sliver of his chest. Gyro’s breath started to come in fast as Johnny crawled onto the bed.
“I want you,” Johnny whispered. “Don’t you want me, too?”
It was like his voice was inside Gyro’s head. It struck him down to his very core, drawing an involuntary noise from his throat. He didn’t think for a second about the way Johnny provided no explanation. All he needed to hear were those words— I want you— and he was instantly on board.
“Yes,” Gyro breathed.
With Johnny on his hands and knees in front of him, on top of him, how else was he supposed to answer? Johnny was beautiful, more beautiful than a human should be. With his milky skin and his plush lips and those eyes— eyes the color of lightning— he was unreal.
“Gyro,” Johnny said again as he leaned in.
Their lips brushed, then connected more strongly. Gyro wanted to put his hands on Johnny’s body, but all of a sudden he couldn’t move his arms. It was like Johnny’s kiss paralyzed him.
That didn’t stop Johnny from putting his hands all over Gyro, though. He practically tore open Gyro’s undershirt as he ground down on Gyro’s lap, giving him amazing, infuriating friction.
“Mm…” Johnny hummed against his lips in pleasure, trailing his fingers down Gyro’s bare chest. “You’re so delicious…”
“So are you,” Gyro breathed. “Fuck, Johnny…”
Johnny laughed, sounding delighted. He pulled back to roll his hips down harder, rubbing against Gyro’s growing erection mercilessly. Those fiery eyes never left Gyro’s, so full of lust that it was overflowing and pouring into Gyro.
“You wanna fuck me, Gyro?” he asked. “Is that right?”
Gyro shut his eyes and moaned at the coarse question. “Yes… yes, please…”
Johnny laughed again, sounding like a recording of himself.
“Too bad,” he said.
Gyro opened his eyes, confused at Johnny’s response. Except it wasn’t Johnny on top of him anymore— at least, not the Johnny that Gyro knew. The shadows lurking in the room had embraced him before Gyro could, turning his skin to diseased, necrotic flesh. The scent of brimstone hung in the air. The fires in his eyes burned hotter than ever, but they were now hellfire. When Johnny grinned, his mouth was full of pointed teeth.
“You’re the one who’s fucked, Julius,” he said in a mocking voice.
Wh— no! No! Gyro wanted to scream, but suddenly his throat was closed. He still couldn’t move, couldn’t do anything but watch with his heart throbbing painfully as Johnny unsheathed claws the size of kitchen knives. He was still paralyzed when Johnny sunk his claws into Gyro’s chest, tearing him to ribbons and cackling all the while.
“Nn-ah!” Gyro jolted awake just as a clap of thunder rattled the windows. He sat up in bed, his hand flying to his heart. It was still thudding along safely in his chest, not shredded by demonic talons.
It… it was just a nightmare… Gyro made himself take deep breaths. Fuck… It wasn’t real.
It had felt real, though. He was soaked in sweat, trembling ever so slightly… and when he looked down, still unconvinced that his body was truly intact, he saw that he was actually half-hard.
What the fuck?! The realization only made Gyro feel more weirded out and sort of ashamed. Sure, it had started off as a wet dream, but— Jesus Christ, after that ending he shouldn’t still be like this!
Gyro looked out the window, hoping to distract himself long enough to make that go away. The storm carried on outside, hurling hard rain against the windowpanes. Gyro had no idea how long he’d been asleep, but it evidently wasn’t long enough for the tempest to pass. Oddly enough, the sight of lightning gave Gyro some mild comfort. It hadn’t been storming in his dream.
Feeling a bit calmer, Gyro got out of bed and went to the window to give a proper look outside. The cool glass felt good against his palm as he touched it, soothing to his fevered skin. From here he could see the courtyard where he’d come in, from the rattling gate to the overgrown lawn. Further off, the moors were dark, shrouded in fog and crosshatched with rain.
Gyro wondered how far he was from society, from another living, sentient creature. Was he the only human being for miles? If something happened to him out here, who would ever find out…?
Wait, he thought. Johnny. He wasn’t the only human around. Johnny was here, and probably some of his staff too (although Gyro had yet to see anyone). There was nothing to be afraid of. So then why was all his hair standing on end…?
Thunder cracked, rattling the windowpane. Gyro recoiled so fast that he almost fell on his ass. Then, he shook his head violently as he turned from the window. He was acting like a frightened child. He had half a mind to slap himself.
“Get yourself together, Gyro,” he scolded himself. He was an educated man, a man of logic and science. He was only freaked out because he let himself be. If his father could see him, he’d surely scold him for not approaching this rationally.
With that said, Gyro decided not to go back to sleep quite yet. He still had that nervous energy in his body that needed to be worked off. Surely Johnny wouldn’t mind if he took a stroll around the manor… Unsupervised, sure, but Gyro was careful.
Looking in the bedside table, he found a few long-stemmed candles and matches to light them with. He wasn’t able to find a candlestick holder, but decided that was a good thing— he’d only wander around until the hot wax became unbearable. He struck the match and lit the candle.
Gyro slipped out of his temporary room to a deserted hallway. Again, he was struck with the sense that this place was terribly empty. Not just of people, but of... everything. Most of the nice estates he’d been to were filled to the brim with decorations: hand-carved furniture, painted vases, paintings of landscapes and still life arrangements— all the trappings of a “cultured” household.
Of course, his own home had been a notable exception. His father held decoration in the same regard as sentimentality. Gyro wondered if Johnny came from a family with a similar philosophy. Perhaps that was the reason for the sparsity of the Joestar manor.
He’s more like me than he has any right to be, Gyro thought. Who would’ve thought that he’d find someone with any similarities to him out in the backcountry of a foreign land? Let alone an attractive young man like Johnny.
Gyro shook his head as he came to the end of the hall, emerging at the top of the stairs. He needed to put that out of his mind— the “attractive” comment, specifically. His brain had already run wild with those thoughts, much to his chagrin.
He made his way down the stairs, alone with only his candle to serve for light. He’d already been in the wing with the dining hall, so he headed in the opposite direction. The deeper he went into the house, the further off the storm sounded.
Gyro found most of the manor in the same condition: nigh-abandoned, covered in dust and apparently left to rot. The only sign of activity were the wheel-tracks in the moth-eaten carpet— evidence of Johnny’s passage through these halls. Johnny must’ve had quite the pacing habit, judging from just how worn the trails were.
He eventually found himself in another large room. Even as he swung his candle around, it was too dark for Gyro to tell what the room’s purpose was. Shortly after he entered, a flash of lightning that lit up a row of tall windows gave him his answer. For a moment, Gyro was treated to the sight of what must’ve once been a stately library. Then, the book-lined walls disappeared back into darkness.
Huh… Gyro stuck close to the wall as he walked, letting his fingers run along the spines of the books. The feeling of leather binding and textured letters reminded him of home. Books were the one thing that his father kept in their house.
When he drew his hand back he expected to find dust on his fingertips, but to his surprise they were clean. Was this the one place in the house that was actually cared for? Did Johnny ever read these volumes? There were so many of them, it would take a lifetime.
He made his way to the end of the wall, then turned and kept following the perimeter. Although he couldn’t see very well with his small candle, there was something meditative in the rhythm of his footsteps echoing through the dark.
Gyro’s fingers passed from wood shelves to marble. He’d stumbled across a cold fireplace. He expected to simply pass by it— but then, he felt cloth.
He stopped and drew back his hand. A pass of his candle showed him a large square shape, leaning up against the fireplace and covered with a drop sheet of some kind. A painting…?
Come to think of it, there was a blank space over the fireplace in the great hall that would’ve been perfect for a canvas this size. Did this painting, whatever it was of, used to hang there? What was it of, and why had someone— Johnny, perhaps?— removed it and left it here covered up?
Gyro held his breath and listened for a moment. No footsteps or wheels rolling or any sign of anyone else. He wasn’t raised to go through people’s stuff, but… it wouldn’t hurt if he just took a quick look.
He steadied his candle as he stooped to grasp the bottom edge of the cloth. Without giving himself any more time to doubt, he lifted the cover, then stood back to gaze at the painting.
It was a portrait in a rather ornate frame. Gyro held the candle as close as he dared to the delicately applied oils to get a better look at the painting’s subjects. It appeared to be a family of four: a father, mother, and two children. They were posed stiffly, their faces severe and devoid of amusement. The father looked especially harsh.
But the member of the family that interested Gyro the most was who must’ve been the youngest, a blonde-haired boy whose expression was somewhere between hurt and accusatory, as if the viewer had done something terrible to him. His hard stare was so well-rendered that for a moment, Gyro felt watched. He had blue eyes.
Is this… Johnny’s family? Those eyes were unmistakable. The painter had done an exceptional job, transcribing that piercing gaze from real life into brushstrokes. Just to be sure, Gyro crouched to take a look at the small gold plaque on the bottom of the frame.
George, Anne, Nicholas, and Jonathan Joestar, the inscription read. 1800.
Jonathan… as in “Johnny," right? So this was him. He and the rest of his family— but where were they all now? This was clearly a dated portrait, since Johnny was a young child, not to mention that the date given was—
Gyro stopped. He squinted at the plaque again, rereading it. George, Anne, Nicholas, and Jonathan Joestar. 1800. Eighteen hundred. The portrait was painted— or at least sat for— in 1800.
Thunder rumbled in the distance. Gyro’s stomach sank slowly at first, then dropped all at once, plummeting like a lead weight. The year was, now, 1895.
If this was truly Johnny in the painting… that would make him at least a hundred years old. But he didn’t look a day over nineteen.
Gyro dropped the cloth back over the portrait, as if that would make its contents disappear. He took one step back, then two. The rain seemed to hammer louder than ever on the windows, threatening to break them in.
If it had been just this, perhaps Gyro would have been able to write it off. He was a man of reason, after all. It was easy enough to believe that the boy depicted here in the year 1800 was just a relative of Johnny’s to whom he bore a very strong resemblance. He could’ve perhaps convinced himself that it was Johnny’s grandfather or great-uncle or something along those lines.
But it wasn’t just this. It was the blue-eyed dog that prowled the grounds, and the empty manor, and the ominous dream in addition to this. Gyro was a man of reason first and foremost, but… deep down, he was also a man of strong superstition. He was a man who believed in gut instinct, even if there was no telling rationally why such instincts arose.
Right now, that instinct was telling him to run.
Heart pounding, Gyro took a few more steps back— then, he broke into a sprint. He burst out of the library, looking around and seeing nothing familiar.
Fuck… which way did I come from? He couldn’t remember exactly. It was so dark and he hadn’t been paying attention and his head was spinning now, throwing him off all the more.
What is Johnny? The question kept clambering to the front of his mind, as if answering that would answer how the fuck he was supposed to escape here. A nocturnal creature, eternally young, with some sort of… seductive power. That was the only way he knew how to rationalize it. The way Johnny had made Gyro feel, the dream he made him have— it wasn’t natural. It was some sort of trick, or a charm, or something. That was the only way a— a monster could make Gyro’s blood so hot.
Gyro went down the hall as quickly yet quietly as possible. For all he knew, Johnny was looking for him. It was imperative that Gyro not let himself be found.
Just grab your things, get Valkyrie, and get the hell out, Gyro told himself. Oh God, Valkyrie— he prayed that Johnny hadn’t done anything to his beloved horse. He thought of that blue-eyed dog and a shudder ran down his spine as he added shapeshifting to the list of Johnny’s potential abilities.
Outside, Gyro could’ve sworn that the storm got more aggressive. Hours later it had yet to work its way through; was that another sign of his doom that he’d ignored? Was all of this just a terrible fate that he couldn’t avoid?
A sudden clap of thunder out of nowhere sent him reeling. Christ, it was like the house itself had been struck by lightning! Gyro fumbled the candle and it dropped to the floor. It went out as soon as it hit the carpet. Darkness reigned.
“Merda, ” Gyro swore. Okay, forget his things upstairs— he just needed to find the exit. One of these doors, one of them, had to lead outside.
He felt his way to the wall and tried to hurry as quickly as possible down the hall. The main entrance— he just had to find the main entrance. Through one of these doors. He was sure. He had to be sure.
Lightning struck outside, dazzling Gyro without warning. He didn’t even know he was near a window. He thought of Johnny’s electric eyes and immediately grabbed onto the first sign of escape he could: a doorknob behind him.
Unthinking, he turned the knob and threw the door open, crashing into the room and praying for safety as he slammed the door behind him. He pressed his forehead to the wood and crossed himself.
“Pater noster qui es in caelis," he whispered, squeezing his eyes shut, “sanctificetur nomen tuum, adveniat regnum tuum, fiat voluntas tua—“
“Why are you so afraid?”
Gyro’s entire body tensed painfully. A lamp flickered on, hesitantly, as if it hadn’t been used in a while. Gyro could see his own nails digging into the wood of the door in front of him. He didn’t dare look anywhere else. He couldn’t remember the rest of the prayer.
He spun around, putting his back to the door. The light showed now what room he had stumbled into: a study, by the looks of it, with a large wooden desk at the far end. Behind that desk sat the last person— or thing— that Gyro wanted to see.
Looking at him now, Gyro was sure there was no denying that he was the boy in the portrait. The boy from 1800, come this far without aging a day.
He may be the same person, Gyro thought, but he can’t be human anymore.
“What are you?” he blurted out.
Johnny’s brows twitched, but the rest of his face remained still and calm.
“That’s a loaded question,” he said. “You saw something you shouldn’t have, didn’t you?”
“You were a child in 1800,” Gyro said. “It’s almost been a hundred years and you— you haven’t aged.”
Johnny was quiet for a moment. Then, he sighed. To Gyro’s surprise, he rolled his eyes, as if this was more annoying to him than anything else.
“I knew I should’ve just burned that damn painting,” he said. “I hate it. My father made us all sit for hours in the most uncomfortable clothing possible. It was torture… but it’s the last image I have of us all together.”
“Cut the bullshit!” Gyro snapped. “What. Are. You?”
Johnny shook his head, unamused. “What do you think I am?”
“A monster,” Gyro said. “A— an incubus— or something of the sort.”
Johnny’s brows shot up. “Incubus? That’s specific.”
The corner of his mouth twitched upward, suggesting a smirk. Gyro’s face flushed.
“I said something of the sort,” he bit out.
“I know what you meant,” Johnny said, his tone clearly conveying exactly what he thought Gyro meant. “Close, but no. I’ll give you another guess.”
Johnny did something then that Gyro wasn’t expecting: he smiled. But it wasn’t a real smile, not quite. It was a wide, open-mouthed grin, more like he was baring his teeth than smiling— more of a threat than an expression of joy.
What Johnny was showing him was perfectly clear. His canine teeth were as sharp as daggers. Gyro felt his knees weaken. There was some part of him that had been holding onto a rational explanation, but with that physical proof, all logic slipped through his fingers and shattered into a million pieces.
“Vampiro,” he said hoarsely.
Johnny closed his mouth and nodded, almost solemnly.
“Now that you know the truth,” he said, “you ought to calm down.”
Gyro gripped the doorknob harder than ever. “Why the hell would I calm down?”
“Because if I was going to kill you, don’t you think I would’ve done so already?”
“I—“ Gyro stopped, then shook his head. He didn’t even know why he was still here. Johnny had admitted that he was a blood-drinking monster, so why the fuck wasn’t Gyro running for his goddamn life? He needed to turn around and open the door—
“Contrary to what you may believe, murder is not how I operate,” Johnny said, interrupting Gyro’s train of thought and plan to escape. “It never has been. And I’ve made it this far— almost a hundred years, entirely on my own. Why would I change my ways now?”
Unable to stop himself, Gyro gave Johnny a scathing look.
“I don’t believe you,” he said. “Vampires are killers by nature—“
“The same could be said of humans, couldn’t it?” Johnny shot back. “I should know, I used to be one.”
“You— you consume blood!”
“Only when needed,” Johnny said. “And I don’t need to kill to get it.”
“Don’t need to…?” Gyro shook his head in disbelief. “How else could you get it?”
“Simple,” Johnny said. “I trade for it.”
He rolled his chair away from the desk slightly. Looking at him closer now, Gyro could see that the first two buttons of his shirt were undone. His pale neck was like a marble column. He wet his lips before he spoke.
“A little bit of blood,” he said, “for a little bit of me.”
The way he said that made something twist deep in Gyro’s gut. His hands started to tremble again. He had tunnel vision, unable to look at anything except Johnny, his brilliant blue eyes and the enticing sliver of his flesh.
“Why,” he croaked, “are you telling me this?”
“Because,” Johnny said, “I know you’re interested.”
Gyro inhaled sharply. Johnny sat back in his chair, smirking a bit. His fingers trailed along the line of buttons on his shirt, teasing like they might undo another.
“All of my so-called ‘victims’ have come willingly— if you’ll excuse the pun,” he said. “I’m making the same offer to you, Gyro.”
“The same…” Gyro echoed thoughtlessly.
“Yes,” Johnny said, entirely too calmly for the subject matter. “If you let me drink from you, you can have me however you like.”
Gyro opened his mouth, but no sound came out. He felt even weaker than before. His blood, once ice, had now turned to blazing magma in his veins. The gravitational pull that Johnny had on him was nearly ripping him away from the door where he clung on for dear life. Why did this man have this effect on him?
“What…” Gyro had to swallow and try again. “What have you done to me?”
Johnny laughed, more than a little mockingly.
“I haven’t done anything,” he said. “I don’t need to. The desire that you feel for me right now is all your own.”
How could Johnny say that so casually? Of course he had done something to Gyro. Perhaps nothing supernatural, but something. Something in the way he looked and spoke and moved… it had turned Gyro into the bravest fool he’d ever been. His grip was slipping on the doorknob, his body gravitating ever so gradually in Johnny’s direction.
Johnny lowered his head a little, gazing up at Gyro through thick lashes. When he spoke, his voice was a steady purr.
“And why shouldn’t you feel it?” he asked. “There’s nobody else in your life who makes you feel this way. You’re in this strange land, surrounded by strange people who simply cannot understand you… Just because you’re a foreigner doesn’t mean you ought to be lonely.”
“I… I’m not lonely.” A weak defense, even to Gyro’s own ears. He let go of the doorknob.
“You tell yourself that,” Johnny said, “but only because it’s how you’ve lived for so long. I can see it in your eyes, Gyro.”
Johnny tilted his head back, exposing his throat. His eyes were half-lidded. Gyro inched closer, like he needed to get a better look.
“I know it,” Johnny said. “That desire— that longing to know someone, anyone, who even comes close to understanding you.”
“Johnny…” Gyro croaked.
He had drifted halfway across the room now, almost without noticing. Although he couldn’t stop himself, he couldn’t deny that he was in control— or a part of him, at least. Johnny wasn’t controlling his will. Rather, the part of him that felt Johnny’s words like preemptive touches, caressing him, comprehending him… that was the part of him that reigned.
He couldn’t stop himself. But the closer he got, the more Gyro realized that he didn’t want to stop himself. He wanted to take Johnny up on his offer. He wanted it more than anything in the world, more than anything he could remember ever wanting before.
“What are we if not strangers?” Johnny asked, voice low and soft. “To everyone in the world— to the world itself, maybe. But, Gyro… we don’t have to be strangers to one another.”
Gyro stopped right in front of the desk. His fingers brushed the dark wood. Johnny rolled his chair right up to the edge of it, leaning forward as far as he could.
“Let me taste your blood,” he said, “and I’ll let you taste something even better.”
Gyro didn’t answer that proposition with words. Instead, he let himself crash down upon the desk, reaching across to press his lips to Johnny’s. That was his answer— one that Johnny accepted with a pleased hum.
It had been a while since Gyro kissed anyone. He forgot how good it could feel, another person’s warm mouth on his. He expected Johnny to be cold, dead, but he wasn’t. His lips were alive, and they made Gyro feel alive too.
Johnny cradled Gyro’s face, his fingers sliding up his jaw and into his hair. The tickle against his scalp made Gyro’s heart skip a beat. He tilted his head, wanting to press even more into Johnny.
Johnny pulled back just a centimeter, a smile on his lips. “Come on, now. Can’t do what we want with this desk in the way.”
Gyro couldn’t speak, so he nodded. His lips tingled. He hastily went around to the other side of the desk where Johnny was sitting in his wheelchair. There he hesitated, not knowing if he should bend down or kneel or what he should do to be at Johnny’s eye level. Johnny patted the surface of the desk.
“Put me up here,” he said.
Gyro obeyed, lifting Johnny out of his chair and onto the desk. He pushed the chair aside thoughtlessly so he could stand right between Johnny’s parted thighs. Johnny looped his arms around Gyro’s neck with a sigh.
“That’s better,” he said, pulling Gyro back in for another kiss.
Gyro still had nothing to say in return. He was still stunned that he was even doing this. He half-expected to reawaken again, even more sweaty and disoriented than before. Surely there was no such thing as vampires, and especially not vampires who traded sex for blood. And there was no way that Gyro was actually accepting such a deal.
But Johnny’s mouth made him think otherwise, especially when he parted his lips. Gyro couldn’t help but run his tongue along Johnny’s teeth, testing their sharpness. The smooth enamel plunged into points that Gyro didn’t doubt could do serious damage. They made his heart race in a way that he couldn’t fully attribute to either arousal or fear.
Johnny’s hands wandered over Gyro’s body in the same curious way that Gyro tasted his teeth. Gyro wondered if Johnny was trying to feel out his humanity as much as Gyro was trying to wrap his head around Johnny’s vampirism. Johnny said he used to be human— Gyro wondered if he ever wanted to remind himself of what it was like.
Gyro thought that Johnny would bite him right away, but that honestly seemed to be the last thing on the vampire’s mind. Although this was ostensibly just another transaction for him, he seemed determined to enjoy himself, judging by how eagerly he pressed up against Gyro.
It was actually Gyro who made the first bite, tugging lightly on Johnny’s bottom lip with his teeth. Johnny exhaled noisily, his fingertips sinking into Gyro’s flesh. He practically attacked Gyro with kisses after that, so fervent that some of them even missed the mark of his mouth and smeared lipstick on his cheeks and chin.
Does he want this even more than I do? Gyro had to ask himself. It seemed unreasonable given the circumstances… but then Gyro thought back to what he said. I know it… that longing to know someone. It was possible that Johnny knew that from his own experience.
Maybe, Gyro thought, Johnny wants more from me than just my blood.
Whether that was true or not, Gyro had no time to speculate. He moved to kiss Johnny’s jaw and neck, wondering if the vampire could still bruise. He supposed he’d just have to test it out. Johnny put his hand on the back of Gyro’s head to hold him in place as he licked and sucked at the soft skin.
“You’re gorgeous,” Gyro murmured, letting his voice ripple into Johnny. “Bellissimo.”
He nipped at Johnny’s ear. Johnny laughed breathlessly, tilting his head to allow Gyro to do what he pleased.
“You ain’t even seen it all yet,” he said.
Gyro barely had time to register that before Johnny leaned back and stripped his shirt off over his head in a swift movement. He then grabbed Gyro by his collar and pulled him back in for another searing kiss. His tongue slid against Gyro’s while his hands busied themselves with Gyro’s belt. Gyro groaned and got to work on removing Johnny’s pants as well, yanking harshly to get them down around his thighs. The whole time, Johnny kissed him like his life depended on it.
Johnny didn’t seem to be planning on letting Gyro get even the slightest breath, but when Gyro successfully got Johnny’s pants off of his legs he had to take a step back. He just knew that Johnny was even more beautiful under his clothes— and what he saw didn’t disappoint in the slightest.
Johnny was slender, pale, moonlight collected into pliable flesh. He had visible musculature and yet looked so, so soft. It’d been so long since Gyro was treated to the sight of another body like this that Johnny’s practically begged for his worship. He was so enamored that it almost distracted him from getting undressed himself despite how desperate he felt physically.
God, to sate his itching hunger on a body such as Johnny’s… Gyro was tempted to call himself lucky— until he remembered that Johnny planned to feed his own hunger through him.
But then again, how different were the two desires really? Sex and blood, weren’t those the primeval waters that humanity crawled out of? Gyro was sure there was some stuffy professor who had said something along those lines out there, but he didn’t give a damn about the theory right now. Rather, he wanted nothing more than to throw off the burden of civility, education, and duty, in order to just— feel. For once, he wanted to do nothing but feel.
Johnny said nothing to all Gyro’s staring. He merely quirked a brow, then leaned back as if to allow Gyro to get a better look at him. After a long silence, he lifted one hand and extended it towards Gyro. The invitation was wordless, but clear: if you want to feel, feel me.
Gyro stepped towards the vampire again. He brought his own hand up to meet Johnny’s, but didn’t let their fingers linger together; he ran his touch up Johnny’s arm, as if he could sense the preternatural strength running through his veins. His hand took a detour, slipping from Johnny’s shoulder down his back as he got closer and closer. Focusing on the sensation of skin against skin made him shiver.
Johnny let his arms enfold Gyro, pulling him even closer until they were wrapped up in each other. Gyro felt Johnny’s body brush against his growing erection, still trapped in his pants, and it almost made him yelp. That was what he wanted to feel most of all. Judging by the way Johnny tightened his grip and nuzzled against Gyro’s neck, he knew that full well.
“How do you want me?” Johnny asked, breath hot and teasing against Gyro’s skin. “Tell me: would you like to bend me over this desk? Or shall I take you instead?”
Gyro shuddered as he weighed his options. Too bad he couldn’t ask for both.
Johnny tugged lightly on Gyro’s hair. “I’m waiting.”
“You,” Gyro blurted out. “I want to fuck you.”
Johnny hummed in assent. “Good. That’s what I thought you’d say.”
Gyro was about to ask what he meant by that when Johnny hiked his legs up onto the desk one at a time, spreading them wide. He leaned back with a slight smile. Gyro blinked a few times in confusion— before realizing what Johnny was trying to show him. Then, he inhaled sharply.
“You… you already prepped yourself?” he asked.
Johnny let his head loll against his shoulder. “What does it look like?”
“Well…” Gyro hesitated. Johnny looked perfectly ready: slick and stretched, flushed pink and incredibly inviting. Gyro’s fingers twitched, wanting nothing more than to test for himself, but his incredulity stopped him.
“How did you know?” he asked. “I could’ve said no to your offer, you know.”
Johnny laughed like he’d made a joke. “You could have, sure. But you were eye-fucking me throughout dinner so much that I knew you wouldn’t.”
Gyro swallowed thickly. So that was what Johnny had been doing after dinner, huh? Sneaking away to finger himself while Gyro was none the wiser. Hell, he’d thought Johnny had rejected him. He put a hand on the back of Johnny’s thigh and squeezed.
“It takes two,” he said in a low voice. “Don’t pretend like you weren’t thinking about me while you did it.”
Gyro finally let himself indulge, pressing two fingers to Johnny’s entrance. He was already nice and wet, and took the two digits like they were nothing. Above, Johnny let out a sigh. He let his head roll lazily to his other shoulder.
“Maybe so,” he said. “But you’ll be thinking about me for the rest of your life.”
He pointed to the desk. “Top left drawer. For you, not me.”
Gyro frowned in confusion but did as he was told, opening the drawer that Johnny indicated with his free hand. There was nothing inside except a small bottle, the contents of which were immediately obvious. It was half-empty, too. Gyro’s eye twitched at the sight of it.
“You do this often?” he asked.
“A man has to eat,” Johnny said, sounding awfully casual.
“In this room…?”
“What, don’t you conduct transactions in your office?” Johnny rolled his eyes. “Stop asking questions and get to it already.”
Gyro narrowed his eyes. He put the bottle down on the desk and leaned over Johnny to capture his lips in a kiss. Before Johnny could complain, he crooked his fingers inside him. Johnny gasped, but Gyro silenced him with more kisses. He slipped a third finger in for good measure.
“Fuck,” Johnny hissed, digging his nails into Gyro’s shoulders. "So you do know what you're doing."
Is this really just a transaction to you? Gyro wanted to ask as he purposefully teased Johnny. The thought of all the other people— men, women, who knew— who had fucked Johnny in this room, maybe on this very desk, made Gyro unexpectedly furious. If I’m going to feel something, you’re going to as well.
He only stopped torturing Johnny long enough to hastily unbutton his pants and pull out his cock. He poured some lube onto his palm and slicked himself up. Johnny watched with a look of hunger, if Gyro wasn’t mistaken, although it was hard to say what he was truly hungry for.
Gyro, on the other hand, knew exactly what he wanted. His heart was pounding so loud that he was sure Johnny could hear it as he pulled Johnny’s hips closer and lined himself up. His head spun as he pushed in easily.
“Cazzo,” he whispered. He’d forgotten how fucking good this felt: the heat, the friction, the scent and sight and everything of sex. Was he just imagining it, or did Johnny fit him perfectly? It took all his willpower not to just sheath himself fully in one hit.
That was, until Johnny’s hand shot out to grab him by the back of the neck. Gyro looked up to see his eyes alight with want, electrifying. This time, what he desired was clear.
“Come on, Gyro,” he said huskily. “Don’t hold back.”
Gyro could do that. In fact, there was nothing he would enjoy more. He gripped Johnny’s thighs and thrust in, his hips colliding with Johnny’s with a sudden slap. He groaned loudly as that lovely feeling suddenly enveloped him. God, he was going to come embarrassingly quickly if Johnny kept feeling this good.
Johnny’s gaze, previously razor-sharp, had acquired a bit of a glaze as he looked down to where Gyro was inside him. His kiss-swollen lips parted, revealing his fangs. Those were still as sharp as ever… but they didn’t frighten Gyro anymore. Rather, they were starting to excite him.
Don’t hold back, Johnny had said. Well, Gyro wasn’t sure he could hold back anymore. He pulled out halfway and thrust back in, relishing the feeling more than he thought possible. The only thing better than being deep inside Johnny was feeling his body slide around his cock as he pulled out, only to plunge back in and start all over again.
It was so good that Gyro couldn’t even stay upright. He collapsed against Johnny, pressing chest-to-chest with him as he moved his hips in deep, long strokes. Unlike Johnny, he hadn’t taken any of his clothes off, but Johnny pushed up his shirt so he could feel up his chest and back. If he’d been in his right mind, he’d have thought of Johnny’s sweeping touch as almost encouraging.
“Hah — that’s it,” he breathed into Gyro’s ear. “How’s it feel?”
Gyro could barely answer between pants and groans. “Fucking— great.”
“Glad to hear it,” Johnny said with breathless mirth. His hands groped and squeezed at Gyro’s ass. “Harder, Gyro— I know you wanna fuck me harder.”
“Unh — Johnny…”
Gyro buried his face in Johnny’s shoulder as he did just that: fucked him harder, as hard as he physically could. How Johnny knew that he was still holding something back, Gyro had no idea. But whatever barrier there had been was gone now, broken down by Johnny’s irresistible words. A growl climbed up Gyro’s throat as he snapped his hips ruthlessly against Johnny’s ass, shaking his body with each collision.
Johnny was never in any pain, though. In fact, when Gyro started really giving it to him, he got even redder than before. He had to put his elbows on the desk to stay steady while Gyro ravaged him. His head tilted back and his mouth fell open.
“Fuck— yes!” he cried out. “Just like that, Gyro, shit…”
Watching Johnny slowly come undone only spurred Gyro on more. He should’ve started to get tired from the exertion, but Johnny’s moans were like consecutive shots of adrenaline. Gyro felt wild, near crazed, and yet so good. It was freeing to be with someone like this— to cast aside all reason and surrender completely to shared lust. Gyro could’ve sworn it was the best he’d ever felt.
Johnny’s arms gave out completely and he fell onto his back with Gyro on top of him. Gyro barely faltered, fucking Johnny as hard and fast as ever. He was going to come. He needed to come. Just a little more and he’d be there—
Johnny wrapped his arms around Gyro and put his lips to Gyro’s ear. His grip was so tight that it almost stopped Gyro from moving.
“Are you close?” he whispered.
Gyro shivered. “Y-Yeah.”
“Good,” Johnny said. He pulled Gyro’s hair off of his shoulder, pulled the collar of his shirt aside, and licked his neck in a way that made Gyro keen with delight.
Gyro’s pace was getting erratic. He was about to confess to Johnny that he was about to come when suddenly, Johnny opened his mouth wide and bit down on his neck.
Gyro felt searing pain, and then an unexpected flood of pleasure. He felt the suction of Johnny drinking his blood, consuming him, taking part in him in a way he never imagined. His vision went white and he swore that he teetered on the edge of unconsciousness. It should have disgusted him, should have scared him out of his mind…
A wordless shout tumbled from his mouth. He drove his hips so hard against Johnny that it made his own skin sting. Johnny didn’t flinch, but instead sucked all the harder on Gyro’s neck, as if he wanted to drink every pleasurable feeling from him. He heard the tearing of fabric, but it was soon drowned out by Johnny moaning against his skin. Gyro felt him tighten and clench as Johnny greedily drank his blood.
It should have disgusted him. Instead, it pushed him over the edge. Gyro came with his cock deep inside Johnny and Johnny’s fangs deep inside him. His eyes rolled back as his senses were completely overwhelmed.
The next thing Gyro knew, he was laying facedown on a hard surface— except, he had something soft and warm pinned underneath him. He tried to collect himself, but his limbs felt heavy and unmanageable.
“Gyro,” a voice said matter-of-factly. “You’re crushing me.”
Gyro lifted his head groggily. He came face to face with Johnny. His face was still flushed, but his expression was neutral. He raised his brows as Gyro blinked at him.
“Wh… what?” Gyro asked. “What happened?”
“You passed out,” Johnny said. “On top of me, I might add.”
Gyro pushed himself up a little more as he found his footing. He put a hand to his neck, but felt no blood like he expected. He just found that his shirt was torn open and hanging in tatters, which was annoying but not deadly.
“You— did you bite me?” he asked.
He tried to stand up, but encountered two problems— one, he got lightheaded as he straightened up, and two, he was still inside Johnny. He stabilized himself with one hand on the desk as he pulled out. Oh, great— he came inside, too. Hopefully Johnny wouldn’t be too mad…
“Yeah,” Johnny said. “That’s why you passed out.”
Gyro rubbed his neck. In that case, Johnny had no right to be mad.
He located Johnny’s wheelchair a few feet away and pulled it over to sit down. He must’ve looked like a mess— his shirt torn, his pants stained with some suspect fluid— but he couldn’t bring himself to care. He was exhausted.
Johnny, meanwhile, sat up on the desk. He looked down at the mess Gyro had made of him with a curled lip, but said nothing. Instead, he reached into the right topmost drawer of the desk and took out a small towel, which he used to begin cleaning himself. Gyro had to snort at that— he was really prepared after all. Way more prepared than Gyro ever could’ve been, at least.
He palpated his neck again. He had no idea that being bitten would have that sort of effect on him. It must’ve, um, worked for Johnny too, judging from the splattering of cum on his stomach that he dutifully wiped away. Who would’ve thought…
“We’re even now,” Johnny said.
Gyro lifted his head, roused from his thoughts. “What’s that?”
“We’re even,” Johnny repeated. He pursed his lips as he cleaned off his thighs. “We both got what we wanted.”
His voice was flat, but his cheeks were red. Was he avoiding Gyro’s gaze, now that all was said and done? Why might that be? Johnny, he— he couldn’t possibly be bashful. Could he?
Did we both get what we wanted, after all? Gyro asked himself. In one way, yes. But in another… there was something he still desperately desired.
Gyro took a deep breath and pushed himself to stand. Johnny kept on looking away from him, apparently focused on his task. He only looked up when Gyro took hold of his wrist to stop his movements.
Their eyes met in charged silence. Johnny’s lips parted slightly, revealing the red tinge that remained on their inner corners.
Gyro didn’t care. He leaned down. Right before their lips connected, Johnny tilted his head just so to make them fit better. He tasted like copper and all delicious, forbidden things.
When Gyro finally pulled back from the kiss, Johnny had taken hold of his wrist in return. He stared up at Gyro. His eyes, once so terrifying, had now become soft.
“Take me to bed,” he said quietly.
No offers, no exchanges, no demands— just a painfully honest request. Gyro nodded. How could he refuse?
Gyro tugged his collar up a little higher. He turned his head this way and that as he looked in the mirror, trying to determine if his neck was sufficiently hidden.
“Stop worrying over it,” a voice behind him said. “Nobody’s gonna notice.”
Gyro pursed his lips. He could see behind him in the mirror— but he couldn’t see who he was talking to like he would’ve expected. There was just an empty wheelchair.
Right. No reflection. He turned around to answer.
“You’ve never met my father,” he said. “He notices everything.”
“By the time you see him again, it’ll be healed,” Johnny said.
He had Gyro’s hat in his lap, plucked from the coat rack that stood nearby. He held it out and Gyro took it. He stared at it for a moment, then put it on.
“You’re right,” he said.
That thought— that his bite marks would fade with time— shouldn’t have bothered him so much. Yet here he was, in a great hall as dark as night in the middle of the day, lamenting the fact that the evidence of his encounter with this unique creature named Johnny would fade before long.
Johnny tilted his head. His eyes were as bright as ever, even in the gloom of the hall devoid of sunlight.
“Next time,” he said, “I’ll leave them somewhere less visible.”
Next time. Despite himself, Gyro smiled. Uncanny, how Johnny knew just what to say. Maybe they really had known each other longer than it seemed… After the hours they spent talking together in bed last night, Gyro sure felt like Johnny knew him better than most.
“You’re planning on finding a vein somewhere besides in my neck?” he asked. “And where might that be?”
“You’re the doctor, you tell me.”
Gyro snorted and shook his head. Johnny smirked and held out his hand, palm up. Gyro took it, ever fascinated by Johnny’s long fingers and sharp nails. He turned it over in his hand and placed a kiss on the back like he might do to a lady.
“Until we meet again, Master Joestar,” he said. He looked up at Johnny and winked.
Johnny rolled his eyes, but smiled. “I eagerly await your next house call, Dr. Zeppeli.”
After their parting, Gyro went to get Valkyrie from the stables. She was in good condition, luckily no worse for wear after the tough storm. He had no doubt they’d make it to their destination today. It was a good thing Gyro was never afraid of detours.
Leading his horse out through the courtyard, Gyro spotted a black form lurking in the shady hedgerows nearby. It watched him with electric blue eyes, blinking calmly when he looked at it.
Gyro tilted his head in acknowledgement to the creature, then mounted his horse. Perhaps it was unconventional, but as he left the forsaken mansion and its host he could only think of one thing: his inevitable return.