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Title: smiling in the streetlight
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aidan stark - February 14, 2012 02:50 AM (GMT)
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He's never had a problem with heat. It's to be expected, considering his occupation, but even then Aidan prefers the hot to the cold. Cold is too much like dead. Cold is the way the moon makes him feel, the way it makes something rise up in him, snarling and snapping but he never thinks about it. It leaves him cold and he doesn't stand it. He prefers being hot. It's life. It's blood pumping through your veins, the sweat on your back, the blood rushing to your cheeks. It's essential. He needs to know he's still alive these days because inside, he feels himself growing more and more frigid, but on the outside, he begs to be burned.

<p>So that's what finds him at the firehouse after a job, scalding off the soot and letting the steam envelop him as his hands brace themselves on the slick walls. He gasps at the feel of the water, making him shudder, making him try to resist, but he forces himself anyways, lets it warm every part of him even after it felt like he was emerging from the depths of hell itself. He's never had a preference for cold showers, even before. Before, the word brings a flash of cold to him and makes his head tilt back so he can feel the hot water on his face again.

<p>He showers longer than usual because he can, because it's near the middle of the night and he's buzzing with energy now. He knows it isn't the moon (pushes the thought down, erases it like an errant mark made while scribbling furiously, something that didn't mean anything, something that just appeared before it's gone) but he doesn't think he'll sleep anyways. Aidan wanders about the firehouse for a while before pulling a thin white t-shirt over his head and putting his shoes back on and heads out for a walk.

<p>It's quiet at night. It's quiet during the day, too, but the night it's more solitary than subdued and Aidan likes it. It's a sultry summer night and he can feel sweat begin to bead as he strolls the streets, body still overheated from the last fire and the shower. Aidan doesn't mind it. He knows he can't go back to his place or the firehouse or anyone else's, where everything's too distant and polite and composed. He has no issue with walking by himself, no one but the crickets and the far-off sound of the Winchester to keep him company.

<p>But of course, he never is alone. He spots someone else across the street, and he isn't sure whether or not they're in trouble or if they are trouble or if they're just like him, taking a walk out in the middle of the night. Aidan says nothing, but he watches carefully enough, waiting to see if the other person will notice him. Waiting to see if he won't be as alone as he had originally anticipated.

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rowan winters - February 15, 2012 02:09 AM (GMT)
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<img src="http://i791.photobucket.com/albums/yy191/Indehbunny/adumb.png" style="border-bottom:1px dotted #000;border-top:1px dotted #000;"><div style="font-family: Wire One;font-size:45px;color:#242321;letter-spacing:2px;text-align:center;line-height:90%;">OUR BODIES GET BIGGER</div><div style="width:250px;font-family: Tahoma;font-size:11px;color:#8E7E64;text-align: center;line-height:60%;font-variant:small-caps;letter-spacing:1px;">› but our hearts get torn up ‹</div><p>
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Stepping out the door of the sheriff's office immediately loosens the vice grip on his chest. Still there, he notes, but less pronounced. Luck's gone home hours ago, so he's the one to lock the door for the night. He gives his wrist a flex, feeling the light snaps of all the l little tiny bones in his hand; he's been dealing with paperwork all day. All night. And still, even as he leaves it in the dust, the pile is as ominous as ever, and will be ever the pleasant surprise tomorrow morning. No matter how long he stays in developing arthritis, he can hardly keep up with the missing persons reports. He rubs his eyes with his knuckles, but he can't smudge away the faces stamped behind his eyelids.<p>

His path toward home walks him by the cemetery, his gaze snapping away from it instantly, an automated response, a defence mechanism used to push away unwanted memories. The feeling begins to claw up his chest, and he neatly deposits it in a tiny box. Because it's the healthy, normal thing to do. The rising buildings of the town shield him from the sight anyway, wiping his mind clean of the thought as he listens in to the sounds of the night. Almost quiet. There's a faint chirping in the backbeats of The Winchester's hum, the bar not too far off. He idly entertains the idea of stopping in, but oh-too-swiftly, there's responsibility shouting through the back of his mind. He's got to work tomorrow. So he hooks his thumbs in his pockets and keeps walking.<p>

It's hot outside, mostly due to the humid haze that insistently hangs over Texas. Sometimes even the nights aren't remotely cool. The air just feels still, like one might run their hand through it and feel the consistency of water. Still, he likes nights in the desert. In the city, the brightness of billboards and streetlights outshine the stars, but here the sky is a dense blue blanket smattered with constellations. The stars make the streetlights look dim and old. <p>

Anyway, in Rowan's case, it's an impossibility to be sweaty, despite the humidity and all logical reason. The ridiculous reality of the situation is that his body temperature fluctuates with how he happens to be feeling at the time. Mostly, it remains a certain level of cool, like he's some sort of lizard. Hence, he doesn't have much to complain about in the way of the weather. Not entirely the case for the rest of the police station, who mostly recline in their chairs and bitch over the random disappearances and the amount of paperwork and the weather. <p>

He hadn't really been looking where he was going, so when he notices the shadow stretching alongside his own, he halts. The deputy raises his eyes, taking a moment before recognition flashes across his features. After all, it's part of his job to know everyone. Not that it's a difficult feat, considering how small Redgrove is. "Humid one today, isn't it?" He smiles, glancing over his shoulder. "Heading to the Winchester Mr. Stark?"

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aidan stark - February 18, 2012 02:02 AM (GMT)
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He's ready to turn and leave, to return to his self-imposed isolationism for the night, when the man begins to speak, his voice loud and clear to Aidan's ears and familiarity in his tone. Who are you, how do you know my name? is his first thought, but then he looks, tries to see the man. His features grow more and more recognizable by the second. Elizabeth would've known him. Alexa would've told him. He's on his own and he struggles and fights and only claims a faint scrap of memory, just the deputy and it's meager and pathetic. He needs to get out more.

<p>"I like it that way," he replies softly, offering Deputy Winters a half-hearted smile. He shoves his hands into his pockets and shakes his head and speaks up, voice hoarse from disuse and the yelling he had to do back at the job. "Ah, no, not the 'Chester. I'm not much in a mood for a beer. Just out for a walk." He resists the urge to turn and walk then, knowing the man he once was would've been much more polite and amiable. Now, whenever he talks to someone, he thinks the longer they spend with him, the more they can see through him, see the nothingness inside, hollowed out by fire and teeth and howling. He lingers, sweat beading at his brow, and the heat helps him remember who he is. "What about you? They uh, they keep you cooped up in that office till this hour at night?" It's an easy facade, like slipping into a pair of slippers, but he knows he can't get too comfortable. It'll break as soon as he's away from prying eyes.

<p>So he stays, bathed in the artificial yellow of the streetlight, a brittle smile pulled upon his lips and something strong and fast drumming through his heart. He doesn't understand it, at first, the pounding in his chest, until he thinks of the deputy, that friendly smile (his body, cool to the touch against his ferverish skin, writhing against his teeth and his tongue and he grins and he howls as he takes him), and the way he holds himself, trying to avoid contact. If I touched him, would he melt? He wants to know, wants to take him and hold him close and see if they can stand each other against the delicious friction of bare skin against skin--

<p>The beast stirs and its thoughts startle him until the smell invades his nostrils. The smell of rotting flesh, the smell of bloodlust, the smell of death. It reeks through the air, overwhelming to his heightened senses and he sees it then, in the park beside them, rapidly approaching. Something with teeth and a grin, some savage grin and Aidan doesn't think anymore, because survival instinct says that the beast is superior and will keep its host alive.

<p>"Move," he growls at the deputy, muscles taut as the undead charges towards them. He looks, notices that the man isn't running or screaming. "I said move--" The undead tackles him and knocks him on the sidewalk. Pain flashes red through his side and the smell is so awful, the grin bearing down upon him and he tries to claw away, tries to fight any way he can with the new strength, the inhuman power of the bite. And it's futile, the grin closer and closer to his neck and he can feel its breath. Past the pounding in his head and the fear flashing neon in his brain, Aidan thinks he can hear howling.

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<td><div style="width:200px; height:300px; background-image:url(http://i902.photobucket.com/albums/ac226/NillNMikey/AidanStarkPic2.png); background-repeat:no-repeat;"></div></td></tr></table>

<div style="background:#e9e9e9; margin-top:5px; width:480px;">
<div style="font-family: 'Share', cursive; line-height:40px; text-align:center; font-size:20px; text-transform:uppercase; width:480px; color:#999; text-shadow:1px 4px 8px #e9e9e9;">MY OLD FAMILIAR FRIEND COMES, LIES DOWN NEXT TO ME</div></div>

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rowan winters - February 20, 2012 06:16 AM (GMT)
[dohtml]<center><link href='http://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Wire+One' rel='stylesheet' type='text/css'><div style="width:400px;background-color:#F2F2F2;padding:10px;padding-top:5px;border-left:solid 5px #962F28;border-right:solid 5px #C67152;"><div style="font-family: Wire One;font-size:45px;color:#242321;letter-spacing:2px;text-align:center;line-height:100%;">IF CHILDREN DON'T GROW UP</div>
<img src="http://i791.photobucket.com/albums/yy191/Indehbunny/adumb.png" style="border-bottom:1px dotted #000;border-top:1px dotted #000;"><div style="font-family: Wire One;font-size:45px;color:#242321;letter-spacing:2px;text-align:center;line-height:90%;">OUR BODIES GET BIGGER</div><div style="width:250px;font-family: Tahoma;font-size:11px;color:#8E7E64;text-align: center;line-height:60%;font-variant:small-caps;letter-spacing:1px;">› but our hearts get torn up ‹</div><p>
<div style="width:390px;background-color:#E6E6E6;border:dotted 1px #000;font-family: Tahoma;font-size:9.5px;color:#585858;text-align:justify;line-height:90%;padding:5px;">

"Yeah, me neither. 'M heading home, myself." He laughs out a hollow noise, glancing backward toward the station. "Ah, it's self inflicted, mostly. Just… a lot of paperwork to get through, not enough time. And Luck's not a big fan of paperwork." He sighs, smiling faintly. He's not much of a fan of paperwork either to be honest, but God knows it's not getting done without him. Besides, it offers something to distract himself with that isn't entirely unproductive like drinking or sex or something else destructive. He's a little glad he has no time to do any of that because if he did, his life would most probably be a mess. Really, Rowan likes to think he has it all set up perfect, when in reality, 'it' probably has no more stability than a house of cards. The wind blows and that thing is going down like the Titanic. But why acknowledge it?<p>

He watches Aidan's face, curious. Rowan finds it's not too hard to tell a fake smile, because it never reaches the person's eyes. He can recognize the meaning behind the smile because he's seen it on his own face. You can tell how old someone really is through the eyes. The curiosity nags, but his conscious replies not your business, so you might as well stop wondering. Regardless, a dusty memory brushes itself off in the back of his mind. Stark. Aidan. He remembers the name for another reason than just his good memory. He lost his wife, fairly recently too. Fire blazes up behind his eyes. Rowan remembers being at the scene, watching the burning house crumble to its foundations. What had her name been? Anna? Elizabeth? The name is blurry letters on a newspaper heading. His eyes snap up quickly and he forces the thoughts to evaporate. Not your business now pay attention.<p>

As always, Rowan's hands remain at his sides, always busy being in his pockets or hooked in his belt loops because by now, he's used to not touching anybody. He's not really a physical person, which of course is self inflicted. He supposes most people must think him to be shy or strange or a germaphobe. But that's okay, it's probably all better than the truth. And he certainly can't blame them, so he just tries to make up for it with friendliness. Rowan doesn't touch anybody because he's afraid of the unpredictability of the entity stirring within him. He's afraid that if he willed it, the smallest touch could turn someone, anyone, to solid ice. A swift shift in emotion might cause a blizzard or do what it did to everyone he's ever hated. He shuts his eyes for a minute, blocking the thought. When he opens them again, he's struck with a dizzying force. Out of left field. Nothing physical-- just… just… <p>

Fire. It's startling, and he's not entirely sure whether to recoil or move toward it. Either way, he feels like if he gets any closer he's going to get burned. For a moment he's hit with the bizarre need to reach out and touch the other, to see if his skin would scorch his fingertips. He wants to know because he hardly feels anything but cold and he needs to feel something else. Where Aidan radiates fire, Rowan's ice-- cold as death. Awfully symbolic for a firefighter, he finds himself musing. He tries to read Aidan's expression, but it's useless. He becomes confused with his own thought process. But that's okay, because the next bit to occur is even more confusing. Aidan says something, but Rowan's unmoving, no vocalization burning in his throat. He's just watching, a single word passing through his mind. Monster. He doesn't really hear Aidan at all. <p>

"--What?" He's knocked out of the way by the thing that tackles Aidan to the ground. His whole mind shakes for a minute before base instincts kick and scream into his conscience. His mind gives him very simple commands: move, help, you have a gun, use it. Oh, sometimes he's not very bright at all. He pulls the man backward, taking a flailing elbow to the stomach. He gasps sharply, but manages to wrestle the thing away regardless. Thing. Right. Clawing, pouncing, biting. This is an undead. Don't let it bite you don't let it bite him. It claws and slashes and it damn well tries to bite, and he finds himself stumbling backward trying to fend it off. The undead ends up stepping on one of his feet, and Rowan loses his balance, the back of his head hitting the wall behind him with a dull thud. He can feel the familiarity of frost clawing up around his ribcage and shit not right now. Stars dance in his vision but he goes for his gun, a cold voice in his head telling him shoot it in the fucking head. He wants to and for a second he doesn't even care about the consequences or the morality. The gun fires, but the man has wrestled the weapon aside, pointing it away. The bullet cracks in the air and dark, numbing blue seeps into Rowan's hands, spreading frost up his attacker's hands too. In protest, his skull immediately screams bloody murder.


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