Disclaimer: Characters belong to their respectful owners
Fandom: The Originals
Pairings: very, very slight Trilijah – Elijah Mikaelson x Tristan de Martel and Tristora – Tristan de Martel x Aurora de Martel
Characters: The Count de Martel, Tristan de Martel, Aurora de Martel, Lucien Castle
Summary: Fan-invented flashbacks
Elijah and Niklaus. The Count recognized the names. Those were names of the evils that had brought doom to his family. Those were names he should curse on his road to hell.
“Remember this well from today to the end of time: You are Elijah Mikaelson, son of Mikael and Esther, brother of Finn, Niklaus, Kol, Rebekah and the late Henrik. You are not human, cut from your mortal coil by your deceased mother’s meddling with the black arts, and neither are your siblings. You are fiend, and you are hunted. Hunted by your equally fiendish father, who is in possession of the object capable of ending your existence, aside from the sun and the flame. Hide you will, cleverly, vigilantly, or he will find you and destroy you all. When you can no longer hide, flee! As you run with your siblings, never separately, you will protect them with everything you possess, even if that might cost you your life. Lie, cheat and kill should the situation requires to survive. Show not mercy for mortals, for you are beast and you have none. Finally, wherever you go, you will remember to always leave a trail for your father to chase after.”
His children had gone mad.
The Count du Guise’s children had left as early as dawn the day before, after expressing their gratefulness to the Count de Martel’s generous hospitality during their lengthy stay. They seemed to have been in quite a rush to set off, if the ubiquitous strained look on their countenances and the impatient fiddling of the younger ones’ fingers while their elder siblings spoke to the Count had been anything to go by. Dubious signs had been all over the place to read, yet the Count de Martel couldn’t have cared less about their poorly concealed anxiety. Frankly speaking, the siblings had worn out their welcome for a while, their time here a tad too long as compared to their father’s proposal, and their departure rejoiced the Count. Ill luck appeared to have followed their steps to this land, where many a peasant had asudden contracted a mysterious, unheard disease and perished one after another during the course of their stay. With them gone, this land would return to how it had been, peaceful, prosperous and unfettered by malaise.
… So the Count had thought.
Soon after the siblings had bid their adieus, bad omens began.
It was his daughter, Aurora, who claimed to be ill and holed up in her chamber all day long until the sun retired. She skipped her music and poetry classes and only sneaked out for a piece of bread or some wine from the kitchen and then locked herself in again, feigning deaf to every of her handmaiden’s plea for a good doctor’s visit. Whispers amongst the servants implied that Aurora had grown fond of a Count du Guise’s son, perhaps the fierce Niklaus or the eloquent Elijah, and his straightforward rejection, coupled with his homecoming had spun her into an unfathomable depth of despair, resulting in her adopted eccentric lifestyle.
The Count wasn’t particularly surprised or worried by his daughter’s queer behaviors; acting over-dramatic was never beyond her area of expertise. Aurora had been a difficult one from the moment of her birth until she reached maiden hood, and her ludicrous antics could be stomached and forgiven by none but her brother. If he was completely honest with himself, the Count de Martel had scarce love for his daughter. He had anticipated a second son but The Lord had seen fit to give, or punish him with, a first daughter, whose disappointed arrival propelled his beloved wife towards untimely demise. Though his resentment towards her had faded over the long years, he couldn’t find himself providing Aurora the same warmth and affection he gave his son, even if she was showing more and more of his wife’s endearing traits as she matured into full bloom. A gorgeous rose Aurora was, her value to the Count and the de Martels amounted to finding herself a lord husband whose status and wealth would then enhance her older brother’s. As long as her beauty was untarnished, who would not turn a blind eye to her hysterical bouts?
It was not Aurora, with her difficult handling, that upset the Count; it was Tristan, his bright, loyal son whom he had every pride to declare his rightful heir. Out of his two children, Tristan was the one whose virtues shone with enough light to make up for his sister’s grievous flaws and filled the Count with joys. Then all of sudden, his impeccable manners had taken a wild swing – as far from the expected behaviors of a model son that he was as possible, which for the last few days had caused tremendous distress in the aristocrat’s heart. Same as his sister, Tristan had been isolating himself from the rest of the castle by the barred door of his room for no comprehensible reasons. A few servants spoke to one another in hushed tone that perhaps the young Lord had fallen to the du Guise belle and had his heart broken by her hasty leave, but even they thought it preposterous considering how little contact they had had, barely registering each other’s presence out of necessary. If it wasn’t the Lady Rebekah’s charms then what could it have been the cause? Not only had Tristan forsaken his strategy and politics study – something nonexistent before, he had turned down every invitation by fellow noble sons to socialize, even his usual favorite hunting sessions with his lord father. He only set his foot out of his self-imposed confinement when the sun burnt out his last ray and usually at the odd hours in the night. Corpses of peasants turned up in accordance to Tristan’s nocturnal and inexplicable activities, corpses drained of their blood with a dreadful expression etched on their pallid faces. The Count ordered them cremated to ash, every single one, lest poison seeds be spread amongst the peasants, take roots and breed unrest into their feeble hearts.
Then, there was one servant who claimed to have seen the Count’s son and the supposedly dead Lucien together, wearing faces of beasts and cloaks of blood.
The Count had the servant’s tongue torn from his head before he got a chance to utter his blasphemous discovery to another soul.
Even with such extremities done, rumors still traveled, strongly and swiftly like wild fire, that the Count’s children were possessed by evils.
The Count had each of them who dared to voice such nonsense whipped publicly to set examples to the rest, and if such was not enough to mute them, he would make sure those were their very last words. His brutal methods yielded instant fruit: the rumors were brought down from a raging fire to shimmering.
Once the outside battle calmed down, the one inside began. The rumors’ insidious essence had slipped through the hair-like cracks on his awareness and nestled in his mind. He fought them back with his love for his son and occasional sympathy for his daughter, trying to bar his judgment against the assaults of doubts and suspicions, and as the same time he started a silent surveillance on his children.
It didn’t take long for the Count’s worst fears to be confirmed: his children had gone mad.
The statement was swirling in his head like a twister gathering his shock and appall to grow giant, as he watched them, his children, from a darkened corner. It was akin to the perpetual threat those priests preached about so often in their repetitive sermon, of demons lurking where God’s light did not reach, gnawing on innocent souls with their venomous fangs. Although Tristan and Aurora were hardly the vicious monsters in the priests’ warnings, nor the young peasant lying pliant in their grip an innocent soul, the scene laid bare to his witness did strike startling likeliness. Their mouths latching onto human flesh, Aurora’s at the neck and Tristan’s at the wrist, they suckled like two needy babes at their mother’s teats, but instead of the sweet milk, it was life flowing down their throats.
If his children were not monsters, and the Count betted his life on the truth that they were not, then their unspeakable acts must have been puppeteered by the real evil, which was also present in this hellish scene, indulging his odious appetite to the feast of young blood provided by another victim.
Lucien. The Count ground his teeth together. The mention of that name left a stale copper taste in his mouth. Lusting after Aurora’s beauty, the lowly servant had been caught sneaking to her chamber and thus disciplined by Tristan. When he dared to attack the siblings, he had been executed on the spot by a guard. It was either spears could not slay the fiend for good or he had somehow found a God-forbidden method to cheat death and come back a vengeful wraith of a single-minded goal: to punish the direct culprits of his demise by contracting them with his demonic malady.
The Count held his breath, swallowing his urge to vomit brought forth by the slurping sound and fetid smell of blood outside body. It didn’t take them too long to finish their ‘meal’, all too voracious eaters. They looked dazed as though wandering in dream, the blotches on their clothes unnoticed. Having come to their senses a while later, the three escaped through the window, leaving in their murderous wake two bloodless bodies whose faces were eternally distorted and a lord hunching in the blind corner, throwing up bile with scorching tears in his eyes.
The fastest rider galloped from the castle the same night in the Count’s order to invite the holy priests at every cost.
The Count de Martel saw his children huddling together with the fiend Lucien in a shady spot, seemingly asleep, once the guards tore down the locked door of Tristan’s room. The vast place looked dim with all the thick curtains blocking the sun and the air gave off an overwhelming smell of stagnation. The Count strode in, his booted footsteps thudding with the heaviness that was weighing down his heart and soul. Silently following him were a small group of priests all wearing ornate robes and darkly solemn expressions. They were clutching the holy books tomes in their wrinkly hands like soldiers holding onto their weapons on their marching to war.
This was a war as well, of the holy and the unholy, the good and the evil. This room would soon be converted into a battlefield.
Lucien’s eyes snapped open, roused from his dream by the noise, and faster than he could alarm Tristan and Aurora, the Count had gestured the guards. It took four muscular men to bring the fiend to his knees and keep his head to the ground, and the same number to restraint Tristan and Aurora each. Since when and where that frail daughter of his had gained such manly strength, the Count wondered to himself as he watched the four of them struggling greatly to hold her with grim eyes. Did it come as a reward to the repulsive gluttony he had seen the other night?
The priests never waited for his cue to step up, forming a tight circle around the fiend. Their unified chanting, imbued by The Lord’s holy blessing were unraveled by the fiend’s growls, which was rapidly injecting horror into the guards’ hearts. Fear perspired through their pores in the form of bean-sized sweats clinging to their furrowed eyebrows and the tips of their noses. The whites of their eyes were covered by a thin red veil due to the strain they subconsciously put on them. They would have directed their eyes elsewhere had the combined force of horror and curiosity not already dictated they had to watch until this surreal nightmare was over.
Ignoring the shouts and vulgar curses from Tristan and Aurora to release Lucien, the priests carried on with their exorcism. Holy verses chanted, holy water sprayed and all holy symbols raised to invoke the power of God − they carried out their task with the swift efficiency of not only normal clergies but experienced soldiers, trained all their lives to combat evils wearing human guise. The Count watched them with a sense of awe, his temples and the palms of his hands, hidden in his long sleeves, dampened with cold sweats.
One of the priests yanked the voluminous curtains open, and a pillar of light instantly penetrated the space. Blood-curling cries made the Count’s senile heart skip an agonizing beat. The afternoon sun bathed the fiend and his children in its golden glory, and it burned them like fire. Their skin reddened, blistered and was aflame in the length of a breath. Their bodies convulsed and their excruciating screams horrified the guards into releasing their gauntleted grips on them and taking a distance from the wailing demons, who did not need restraint now as they were rolling on the floor. The priests remained motionless, their stern faces conveying a strict determination to see it through the gruesome end.
Their cries morphed into a dagger carving into his heart. He felt physical pain, not just metaphorical one, and it was tearing him from the inside out. God no! Tears streamed down his face, filling the creases imprinted on his old skin. Their lives would be extinguished in any moment. Not his children! God, please have mercy! His wobbling knees drew strength from his panic and he crossed the room in two strides, and sealed it from the lethal sun beams.
The fire extinguished as quick and mystically as it had been set.
“What in the name of—” Staring at him with wide eyes, the head priest opened his mouth to question the Count. His speech was halted however, his eyes bulging as though they could fall off his sockets.
Neither the other priests nor the guards dared to breathe a syllable.
The Count stared at the priest’s chest, his gaze zooming on the hand that protruded out of the fabric.
The priest’s eyes rolled up in his head, the pupils barely visible, and a second later, his lifeless body collapsed on the floor with a heavy thud.
The bloody hand wasn’t moving. Inside its palm was a fleshy glob still beating.
How marvelous it was for the life of a man to be confined in the size of a palm.
The Count’s eyes scraped the hand to the wrist, up the length of the arm and finally settled on the face.
He knew the face but did not know it at the same time. He knew the chiseled jaw line, the straight bridge of the nose but did not know the gray veins writhing beneath the skin − healed from all the burns and blisters − like abominable insects. He knew those winter-blue eyes but did not know the solid red superseding the white and accentuating the blue in a most freakish sense.
He did not know the monster standing before him.
Like the guards earlier, he was unable to avert his sight, held under a devilish spell that compelled him to look at this monster with his ‘trophy’, while lost to the carnage going around.
Bones snapped, limbs torn and hearts ripped, one by one the guards and the priests fell. Corpses piled up, and the room became a human abattoir. The savage beasts within them awaken by rage, Lucien and Aurora copied Tristan’s method and invented a few of their own to slaughter every man in sight, all the while wearing the same ghastly visage.
On the contrary, the demon in the Count’s son’s remained motionless, seemingly frozen in time. The blank look in his eyes did not give any implication to what he desired with the only human left standing.
“Elijah,” Aurora spoke softly, tugging at Tristan’s arm once the massacre was over. His gaze shifted to her face, the normal, humanly beautiful face that would enchant every young man’s heart but for the dotted crimson, and he himself returned to being the Count’s son.
The heart was discarded without a thread of concern.
Lucien stalked closer. There was blood in his hands and blood in his eyes.
The Count was anticipating his death – what else? – when Tristan, or ‘Elijah’ as Aurora addressed him, spoke, “Let him live, Niklaus.”
Elijah and Niklaus. The Count recognized the names. Those were names of the evils that had brought doom to his family. Those were names he should curse on his road to hell.
Sporting a look of defiance, Lucien eyed Tristan, Aurora and his murder target. He scoffed but did not challenge Tristan.
Faster than the eyes could follow, they vanished – three phantoms dispersed at the blush of dawn.
His knees finally gave out from pressure. Then the Count began to weep like he had never wept before.
His children hadn’t gone mad. They had simply… gone.
“You seem contemplative, brother,” Aurora whispered, draping an arm around Tristan’s shoulders.
He greeted her with a smile, he always did. “I’m reminiscing, sister. Of an ancient memory buried under layers of time. How I have almost forgotten it.”
He glanced at his closed fist resting on the hardwood table before answered, “Do you recall the day Father brought the priests home for his children’s exorcism?”
“Only vaguely, I’m afraid,” Aurora replied. “So many happened in that afternoon while my mind was too hazy. He almost burnt us to death, didn’t he?”
“That was the priests,” Tristan chuckled. “One thing they did right to destroy a vampire. Father saved us in the nick of time before we all were reduced to ash.”
Resting her head on the juncture between Tristan’s shoulder and neck, Aurora pondered a respond. “You were always his favorite child,” said Aurora, pouting. “How could he bear to let you die?”
“The only thought in my head in that instance was how I lusted for his vein, how I wanted to tear his head from his neck and drank my fill. How young and needy we were. I supposed I should have been grateful to Elijah for his instruction to ‘leave a trail’ so that Mikael could follow.”
“Gone soft on him, haven’t you?” Aurora giggled, lightly nibbling the outer shell of his ear.
“Au contraire, sister. My resolution was hardened thanks to that. Tonight, their sire lines will be torn from them, and they will die. Both of them. Alone. Only by that can our vengeance be completed.”
I ended up writing in the Count’s POV~. My attempt for the flashbacks we deserve but haven’t got to see. I’m gonna bitch about that unfair treatment until the Trinity is given justice.