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After We've Fallen

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"I fucking hate it when they stare at me," muttered Trevor.

Sypha rolled her eyes, flicking a strand of strawberry blonde out of her eyes with a slender finger. "We'll be gone by tomorrow morning, what does it matter?" She sipped from her glass, eyes sweeping around the room. Trevor was right; nearly half the room was staring blatantly at him—or, rather, at the Belmont crest on his chest, gleaming proudly in the dim light from the lamps in the tavern.

They'd had no choice but to stop there, in the small dingy town at the small dingy inn, in the small dingy room. Sypha had absolutely no clue how she, Trevor and Alucard would all fit in one room. It made her stomach flutter, and she vehemently pushed the thoughts away. There were far more pressing matters at hand.

"I don't care how long we're here for, I want them to stop staring," he retorted, lifting his tankard to his lips and taking a long, (purposefully) noisy drink before setting it down. He grimaced, swallowing. "This tastes like shit."

"Well, deal with it," said Sypha, sitting back and folding her arms. "Tomorrow you'll be complaining about it anyway." She adopted an overtly dramatic tone, deepening her voice to imitate Trevor's. "'I'd do anything for a drink, and I'd even kill for the beer in that dingy inn, and I'm so thirsty, and I think I'm sobering up, it's a national emergency—'"

"I do not sound like that." But he had the tiniest of grins on his face, one that he hid in his tankard as he took another drink.

"Yes, you do." Sypha jumped—It was Alucard, speaking for the first time since they'd stopped at the inn. He raised his eyebrows at Trevor, golden eyes glittering. He turned to Sypha, and flung her a half-smile that made her heart do a little tap-dance in her chest.

"Aaand they're ganging up on me again," Trevor drawled, crossing his arms. "When's it time for your annual 'Trevor is a lunatic' meeting again?"

"It's biannual," Alucard said without inflection. "And no, it's not that time of the year quite yet."

"Oh, just go die in a hole somewhere," sighed Trevor after a while, clearly unable to think of a smarter reply. "Do us all a favor."

Sypha sighed, shaking her head. "Boys," she said. "Behave."

"I, for one," said Trevor, kicking his chair back and standing, "am going to take a bath. You two can do whatever the hell you want." His nimble fingers reached for the keys in Sypha's lap, brushing her thighs through her robe as he did. She smothered her yelp with a hasty cough as he held them up, shaking them. They jingled merrily as he set off towards the stairs with his easy, loping grace, glaring at anyone who looked at him longer than they were supposed to. He leaped up the steps, vanishing within seconds.

Alucard sighed. "There's one in Wallachia who, no matter what befalls the land, will never change, and that is Trevor."

"Or," said Sypha, "he does change; it's just that he can't admit it, or he doesn't want to."

Alucard laughed softly. "It is most likely the latter," he said. "But then again, who can blame him? If I could hide the horrors of my past with sophomoric sarcasm and terrible jokes, then I would, too."

Sensing a slight shift in the atmosphere of the conversation, Sypha attempted to lighten the mood a bit. "Don't forget drinking, too. And being as unpleasant as possible to everyone he meets."

He sent her a sidelong glance. "Now that I could never do."

She laughed, feeling her shoulders relax. She didn't quite know what to do whenever the topics of their pasts came up; Trevor and Alucard had had such terrifying childhoods full of blood and sadness, and Sypha couldn't help but feel a smidge awkward when she looked back; she had had a family, or at least had grown up with people who cared for her. They hadn't had homes—neither had she, but she'd had everything but a roof over her head, and that was her way of life. They'd been torn from their homes, ripped away from everything they'd loved and forced to grow up too quickly. What was she supposed to say to that?

"Sypha," said Alucard's soft voice, penetrating the haze of thoughts in her mind. "Sypha, have you been listening to anything I've been saying for the last five minutes?"

She snapped out of her daze. "What? Oh—yes! Yes, I..." She sighed, rubbing her eyes. "No, actually. Sorry, Alucard. I'm a bit tired, that's all."

He smiled at her, that silken smile that never failed to make her shiver. His hair, bright as spun starlight and—so she imagined—just as soft, whispered around his shoulders. He had broad shoulders, she thought idly, but was still more slender than Trevor. She couldn't quite decide which appealed to her more.

"Then perhaps it's time we retire for the night," he said, standing. While with Trevor it had been all arrogance, making sure the eye was trained on him, Alucard was softer, more lithe, graceful. And yet, both commanded the gaze.

She stood as well, nearly stumbling on her robes. So much for that. She righted herself quickly, and Alucard either hadn't noticed, or he was too polite to mention it. Whatever the case, she was grateful.

They walked towards the stairs together, and for some reason Sypha felt almost nervous. You've never shared a room with them before, said a voice in her mind. They're both men, and they're both men you like. There'll only be one bed, and one bathroom, and—

Shut up, she told it.

Alucard pushed the door open, allowing her to go in before he stepped in himself, shutting the door behind him. She heard a loud click as it locked, and she jumped at the sound. There was a carelessly discarded tunic on the floor at her feet, creased and stiff. She could hear water running in the bathroom and Trevor's slightly off-tune humming, and she could see tendrils of steam curling from under the door.

She tried as hard as she could not to think about the fact that there was one closed door between her and Alucard, and Trevor Belmont naked and dripping wet. She'd never seen much of his body before, not the way she had Alucard, but she'd always admired the shape of his shoulders; how broad they were and the way the fabric of his shirt seemed to stretch across them, and the chiseled narrowing of his body to his hips.

She heard a particularly out-of-tune whistle echo in the bathroom and was brought out of her reverie, blushing. No, she was not going to think about Trevor, or his shoulders, or the fact that he was naked in the bath, or that—

"Sypha." Alucard's voice was soft, and she turned to face him, her heartbeat taking flight like a frightened bird, climbing higher and higher. There was a small smile on his face. "I hope this arrangement doesn't cause you any discomfort?"

"What arrangement?" To her relief her voice was calm, neutral. He raised a winged eyebrow, his voice soft and teasing. "Sypha," he said again, and her name in his mouth like that sent heat darting through her body like bolts of lightning. "There's one bed," he said.

She tilted her chin up. "I'm aware."

His smile widened. "And that is fine with you?"

She sniffed. "It's big enough for three—that, or one of us can take the couch, or the floor. Maybe even both, since, well, if you're not comfortable with it or Trevor isn't, because it's only a night and I don't really mind exactly, I—"

There was a black and gold flash and then suddenly he was standing in front of her, tall and imposing and so beautiful that she could barely breathe. He placed a single slender finger on her lips, stopping her nervous tirade. His eyes were such a dark gold, she thought. Had they always been so dark?

"I don't mind at all," he said softly, and his voice was almost a purr. His finger swept along her lower lip, his eyes tracking the movement. Her breath was coming in harsh, quick puffs, her heart pounding and her skin crawling. Distantly, she noticed that the water in the bathroom had stopped running. Alucard lowered his head towards hers, and he was so close she could feel every one of his breaths on her lips.

"Sypha," he breathed, and her fingers reached up, looping around his wrist, her eyes closing as she tilted her face up, her lips parting in anticipation. Her eyes fell shut just as his lips brushed across hers, soft and urgent and exploratory.

It blossomed out of control almost immediately, his other hand pressing to the small of her back and pulling her closer as her fingers reached up, tangling in his hair. It was even softer than she'd imagined, like corn silk against her skin. She gripped a fistful and tugged slightly, and his lips slid against hers as he groaned softly.

His hand slid down, fumbling desperately at the clasp of her robe. It was the first ungraceful thing she'd ever seen him do, and for some reason that pleased her inordinately—she smirked against his lips, her own hands pushing his long coat from his shoulders, kicking it away when it hit the floor. The thin white button-down shirt he wore underneath did little to hide his lithe, muscled form, and she pulled him closer, heat flaring in her stomach when she felt him press against her in all the right places.

Somewhere far away, she heard a click, but it was so far away she could barely hear it; Alucard's long fingers were in her hair, winding the short curls around them, and it felt as if every hair was a live wire connected to one of her nerve endings.

"Honestly, would it kill these people to have more hot water, there was barely any—what the fuck are you doing?"

Sypha pulled away from Alucard, gasping, turning to see the bathroom door flung wide open, and an openmouthed Trevor Belmont standing in the doorway, half-dressed and water from all the steam gleaming on his bare shoulders. He dropped the towel he was holding, gaping at them rather unabashedly, his eyes wide.

"Trevor!" Sypha yanked herself away from Alucard, who slowly let her go, his eyes trained on Trevor, unreadable. "I—we were—"

"Save it." He cocked an eyebrow, crossing his arms. The movement made his biceps stand out in stark relief, the scars peppering his skin glinting in the firelight. There were scars all over his body, testaments of countless battles. "There's no point."

He leaned back against the doorway, smirking, lifting a hand to brush his now-damp and messy, inky hair out of his glittering blue eyes. "By all means, carry on. I'm sure you wouldn't mind having an audience."

Sypha opened her mouth to retort angrily when Alucard spoke, his voice smooth and matter-of-fact, cutting across her. "Or," he said, "you could join us."

Trevor's smirk widened as Sypha's mouth fell open. "Oh, as much as I'd love that," he drawled, his already impossibly deep voice dropping even further, "the lady might be too prim and proper for it. Moreover"—he flashed a careless, easy smile—"you can't handle me."

Sypha folded her arms, narrowing her eyes. "Is that a challenge, Belmont?"

His eyes sparked into a hectic blue. "Maybe."

She glared at him. "Come here, then."

He grinned at her, unhitching himself from the wall. He prowled towards her, his gait cautious and confident, like a predator stalking its prey. He was tall—not as tall as Alucard, granted, but he was broader, more muscular, his skin more tanned. More human, she thought.

He was close enough to touch now. His scent hit her like a drug—on the road there was so much dirt and blood covering all of them that she hadn't noticed until now that he could even smell like anything else. But oh, he could—leather and metal and something else, something musky and rich and so undeniably male that it made her head spin.

His hands settled on her narrow hips, pulling her flush with him, exhaling carefully as their bodies fit together like puzzle pieces, like lock and key. She was very aware of Alucard's eyes on them as one of his hands slid up her body, cupping her jaw as he lowered his head, lips brushing her cheek. She shivered, swallowing as his mouth moved down, following the line of her jaw. He laid a delicate, burning path of kisses along her neck and a soft sound escaped her—half a gasp and half a moan.

She felt him smile against her skin, and then he was mouthing her pulse, swallowing her racing heartbeat. Her hands reached for him blindly, settling onto his shoulders, her nails digging into his skin. He sucked her skin into his mouth, a delicious sting pricking from the place where his teeth met her skin. A harsh exhale escaped her mouth.

His lips trailed upward again, nipping at her jaw lightly before he pressed a soft kiss to the corner of her mouth. He moved closer, his arm wrapping around her waist as he tilted her head, fitting her lips to his.

It was slow and languorous, heady and languid, deliberate and hot. His mouth moved against hers thoroughly, and his lips were soft on hers. He shifted closer, tilting his head and carefully parting her lips with his own. His tongue brushed against hers softly, then more firmly, and she shuddered at the contact. Her mind was flooded with the sensual taste of him—wind and wilderness and alcohol.

Evenly, he deepened the kiss, his tongue stroking into her mouth, tasting and exploring and taking. She let him, reeling beneath it all, lost in a haze of pleasure and nearness and Trevor.

He pulled away slowly, and she let out a fluttering sigh, her whole body buzzing pleasantly. "How was that for a kiss?" he murmured, and she could only make a soft sound of assent in reply, pulling a quiet laugh from his lips, which were slightly swollen from her own.

"Just to make it clear," Trevor said, raising a brow at Alucard, who was gazing at them, his face entirely blank save for a faint glimmer in his eye, "I'm not going to kiss you—"

Before he could say another word, however, Alucard disappeared in a flash of red. He appeared half a second later right in front of Trevor, who had time only to look surprised before Alucard's fingers hooked into the waistband of Trevor's pants, pulling him close as his mouth slanted across Trevor's own.

Sypha put a hand over her mouth to stifle a laugh as Trevor's arm flailed, and he gave a muffled exclamation of protest against Alucard's mouth. When he held fast, she saw Trevor's brows furrow, and then he retaliated suddenly with a growl, kissing Alucard back so hard it nearly snapped his head back. His fingers fisted in his thin shirt, so hard it tore, the fabric coming away in his hand.

He pulled the torn remains of the shirt off Alucard's body, baring his skin to the air. There were scars on his, too, but fewer. His beauty was spare; his hips were narrower, his skin paler. He looked cold and untouchable and inhumanly beautiful, like a statue made of ice.

Alucard pulled away, breathless. Trevor was breathing hard. "Convinced now, you bastard?"

Alucard's sculpted lips pulled up at the corner. He was still panting, out of breath. "Not entirely."

"While this is all most entertaining," interrupted Sypha, raising her eyebrows. "If the whole night is going to pass with only this, I fear I may fall asleep before anything of import happens."

Both men turned towards her, surprised. She held their gazes, lifting her eyebrows higher. She lifted her hands to the clasp that held her robe closed, her fingers pulling it apart quickly. The robe slithered to the floor, pooling like water at her feet. Underneath she wore only a thin silk shift, one that barely hid her form, and black sleeves that stretched from her elbows till her wrists.

She stepped out of the robes, kicking them away as she walked slowly towards them, turning her face upwards as she moved closer. There were two bright spots of color high on Trevor's cheeks, but Alucard was still impassive, his lips slightly parted to show the tips of his fangs underneath. She saw the vulnerable line of his throat move as he swallowed.

She knew what she was walking towards. She knew that there was nothing she wanted more than she wanted this—to throw herself off the ledge, the precipice and fall with both of them. She couldn't deny she wanted them, both of them—Trevor ever since Gresit, when he'd taken charge of the fight; the sharp, authoritative call of his voice and the stubborn set of his jaw. That willingness to survive and live to brag about it, she'd thought then. He was incandescent, she'd thought, burning brightly as a star that spun through the eternal blackness, scattering light wherever he went. And she still thought it.

And Alucard, it was hard to say when—perhaps the first time she'd seen him fight, the long graceful sweeps of his body and the way his usually sleepy golden eyes had lit with a fire that seemed to fill his whole body, each of his movements trailing sparks. She had thought, beautiful—he's beautiful.

And she still thought it.

There was another flash of red, and suddenly she felt Alucard's presence behind her, his shadow spilling across the floor in front of her. Trevor's fingers laced with hers, his other hand trailing slowly up her arm to the edge of her sleeve. He slowly pulled it off her arm, flinging it away once he'd removed it. He did the same with the other sleeve, drawing it off just as she felt Alucard's fingers brush along the laces of her shift, giving them a few quick, efficient tugs. They unraveled slowly, and his fingers brushed along her shoulders, sliding the straps of the shift off them.

She bit her lip hard to keep from making any sort of noise as Trevor dropped the last sleeve, leaving her arms bare. His thumbs traced across the indents the fabric had left in her skin, soothing the faint bite. She marveled at the touch; she'd never imagined that the same hands that could wield the Morning Star with such deadly precision and mercilessness could be so soft and careful with her.

"Sypha," he sighed, his fingers brushing along her racing pulse, lifting her hand to his lips and pressing a featherlight kiss to the inside of her wrist. She exhaled at the contact, heat blossoming in her stomach, spreading upwards. His fingers looped around her wrist, dropping another light, almost adoring kiss to the skin just below her elbow.

Alucard pulled the shift down further, sliding it from her arms, baring her shoulders to the cool air. His lips traced the line of her throat downwards, his fangs dragging lightly over her skin, lightly enough to coax a shiver from her. With each kiss he placed on her bare skin he pulled the shift down further and further, a maddening counterpoint to Trevor's own kisses, which trailed slowly up her arm.

She closed her eyes, tipping her head back and allowing herself to drown in it, the feeling of both of them, both of their lips and breath and hands on her. It felt incredibly good, like fire and ice at once on her skin—Alucard's touch was cool, smooth; Trevor's was burning, heavy. The stark contrast was surprisingly pleasing, and she found herself savoring it, sighing.

Alucard's fingers slipped over the silk of the shift, gripping the hem, fingers knotting in the silk. His knuckles brushed the skin of her thighs and she couldn't hold back the shiver that spilled through her body. His skin was soft against hers as he pulled the shift slowly over the gentle swell of her breasts. She gasped at the feeling, which was entirely new, almost alien.

Trevor's lips had reached her shoulder, his fingers lightly brushing up her throat, thumbs skating across the upward sweep of her skin. The light but rough stubble on his cheeks scratched lightly on her neck and her lashes fluttered, her head tipping back at the feeling.

The shadows on the floor in front of her feet shifted as Alucard sank into a crouch, kneeling behind her as he tugged the shift down lower and lower. With each inch he pulled downward, it exposed more of her back to his lips, which he trailed a slow path down with each pull. The edges of his fang teeth nicked her skin lightly and the faint prick of pain mixed deliciously with the heady pleasure of his kisses.

Trevor drew away suddenly and abruptly, and the sudden absence of his heat made her open her eyes, confused. His own, dark blue and glittering, alighted on hers with what could only be described as something consuming, possessive; there was only a slim ring of blue around his pupils, which were blown wide with desire.

He placed a single finger on the hollow of her throat, and it rested there, light and teasing. Then it slid slowly, tantalizingly, down her body, following the line of her throat, down the valley between her breasts, trailing down her stomach, till it stopped just below her navel, and it felt as if it left sparks trailing in its wake.

He exhaled, his eyes closing as he leaned towards her again, his other hand inching up her body, outlining the softness of her skin. "God, Sypha," he said, his voice rough and low and half-wild. His chest rose and fell erratically.

She bit her lip, feeling her cheeks burn. There was a hitch in his breath, and an almost drunken flush on his cheekbones. She'd never seen him like this, not even when he was fighting. That she of all people, could break him like this made a sort of dark satisfaction shoot through her.

Alucard gave a final yank on her shift and it fell in elegant black folds at her feet, like a pool of dark water. She inhaled sharply, very aware that she was completely bare now, standing before Trevor and Alucard like an offering. She knew that if she allowed what was happening to continue, then it would not stop. That there would be no going back after it. That if it happened, then nothing would ever be the same between them.

She didn't care.