My first instinct was that it was Tawny. It couldn’t be, the figure was too tall to be Tawny. My second instinct was that it was Fang. Once again it couldn’t be, the figure was too short. Who was taller than Tawny and shorter than Fang? It couldn’t have been Lilith or Morrigan since where one went the other followed. That only left Aya. Why would Aya be in my room? Hadn’t he said himself that he didn’t care about me anymore? If he was ignoring me then I would ignore him. That’s fair, isn’t it?
“Are you upset?” he asked solemnly.
I ignored him, focusing on the music and trying to remember the name of the song.
“Hallie, please speak to me”.
Ignoring him was harder than I thought. Something about his voice seemed homely, welcoming. I just had to ignore him for a little longer and he’d go away. At least, that’s what I hoped.
“You’ve got every right to be upset. But please don’t ignore me. You can do anything you want to me but don’t ignore me. You can get Morrigan to tear me up in to little pieces. You can get Fang to beat me up until my bones are broken and I’m barely conscious. Just please don’t ignore me”.
Every fibre of my being was screaming at me to acknowledge him. It wasn’t right to ignore someone, no matter what they’ve done. Whereas before, my mantra of ‘he ignored me first’ had worked, it now seemed like a feeble attempt at justifying what I was doing. It wasn’t specifically him that I couldn’t ignore, it was the ignoring that was giving me problems. Even if I tried my hardest I wouldn’t be able to ignore the boogeyman, I’d have to stop and have a chat with him.
“Listen, Hallie, this is going to sound insane but just hear me out. The reason I’ve been ignoring you, the reason I’ve been avoiding you is because I’m not allowed to like you. I can’t get attached to you in any way possible. Whenever I get attached to humans they… well, lets just say they don’t get their happily ever after” Aya had sat up now.
I wasn’t ignoring him now. Aya the Bloodthirsty, as he’d been nicknamed, was pouring his heart out to a human. I listened to him recount the times he’d gotten close to a human and they’d been taken away from him, normally by his own bloodlust. There was something he wasn’t telling me. Over the last month all the other vampires said he’d fed less than normal but looked better than ever. Apparently he had to feed more than normal due to severe pain if he went without blood for a longer than he could endure, normally three or four days. His recounts took up three or four songs and by the time he finished talking he was almost in tears.
‘You’re the only thing I know,
Like the back of my hand,
And I can’t,
Without you, but I have to’
The beautiful vocals of Miss Swift seemed to be adding insult to injury. Was that the undertone I’d been sensing? Aya seemed almost embarrassed by the lyrics.
“How ironic” he chuckled.
“Yeah” my voice was quiet and slow.
“I just… If I get too close to you it’ll just upset Fang and Morrigan which’ll upset Lilith and Tawny which will ultimately end up in me upsetting you”.
“We can still be friends, right?”
“Of course. Is there anything I can do to apologise?”
“You can be nice to Nate”.
The look on his face was one of pure disgust.
“That waste of space? I’m sorry, Hallie, but there is absolutely no way I can be nice to him”.
“Why not? Why do you constantly beat him down and treat him like scum?”
“Because he is scum! A rogue vampire is scum enough but one who works with Union vampires yet is too pansy to join is even worse” he said bitterly.
“Did The Union teach you that? Just like they teach that it’s wrong to befriend humans”.
“You know, sometimes I really hate you. All of a sudden you think you know everything! And you seem to think that gives you the right to define what a vampire’s morals should be! You’re nothing special, Hallie. You might be some legendary half-blood but it could easily have happened to someone else. And where would you be then? Still the same lonely little girl who wouldn’t be missed. I doubt anyone would even notice if you were gone” Aya shouted and stormed out of the room, slamming the door behind him.
That’s the thing about Aya. He may act like a complete idiot at times but he understands people. Really understands people. He knows just where to poke to win an argument or a fist fight and he’s great at bringing up things from the past that just make you want to stop and cry. It’s almost like he’s a probe that has the ability to shroud every good memory you’ve ever had and brings all the trauma you’ve been through back to the surface. Since being with the vampires, I’d realised what it was that I feared. I’d always thought before that I had nothing to be afraid of since most people are afraid of death and nothing had really scared me. Since joining the others I had been somebody and I’d been appreciated, acknowledged. The one thing that scared me was being alone again. Being sucked back into the void of loneliness. Well, if Aya wanted to distance himself from me then he’d just done a pretty good job. All hail the King of Jerks.