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Title: "Memoirs of the Vampire King: an excerpt from Chapter Four."
Author: [ profile] remy_ice_angel
'Verse: Legacy of Kain
Characters: Kain
Rating: PG13 for subject matter
Warnings: Coorhagen. Post plague. Enough said. Also some snippets from Blood Omen's in-game dialogue.
Disclaimer: LoK and all its characters are the property of Crystal Dynamics. This is a non-profit fanfiction.
Summary: Kain returns to Coorhagen after becoming a vampire, not to reunite with his family, as he intended...but to bury them. Kain's POV. ...I may or may not have started something that promises to spiral out of control plotbunny-wise.
Table/Prompt: Unthemed 4/10. Home

Coorhagen - my home - the finest city in all of Nosgoth, rich in vanity and conceit.  I had no delusions as to the welcome I would receive.

Until I stumbled upon the wretch in the road.

Years ago, word reached us of a strange pestilence that had laid siege to a few remote villages far east.  But the rumors failed to prepare us for the horror that was the Plague. It must have breached Coorhagen since I had been laid to rest in my ancestral mausoleum. The corpse that lay in the middle of the road ahead of me was proof enough.

Worms and maggots fed upon his festering skin, the scent of tainted blood seeped through the wounds upon which they feasted.  Pity...such a waste; good blood gone bad. I dared not drink it though I was already hungry again. The mere smell of him churned my stomach. Strange that he had died so far from the city gates... Perhaps he had foolishly died trying to flee his inevitable death, but at least now he served a purpose: as a grim warning to those who thought to enter Coorhagen looking for respite.

Quite frankly I did not care about the corpse in the road. It was that pride, that arrogance again. I was newly made, and still human enough in mind to show for it. A panic was setting in now as I charged into that foul-smelling city, the stench of decay far more overpowering than even Steinchencröe on a bad day. My mind only focused on finding my beloved Elena, and little Brigitte. I suspect some part of me, blind by panic and still so very human, expected them to still somehow be safe and healthy.

As I entered, it felt as if someone had replaced the beloved city that had been my birthplace with a mockery of itself... My memory returned to the glass of Nupraptor's retreat, twisting the view of what should have been beautiful and making it ugly to fuel the viewer's own deranged self-pity. Had that hellish effect settled over my own eyes? Death and disease stalked these streets.  Bodies lay, most in the
very spots in which fate had taken them. 

A perfect homecoming.

Piles of unburied corpses blocked my path, forcing me to take detours through brigands and sorcerers and other fools that sought to plunder the dead at their own peril. I charged through them, draining who I could and moving on without ceremony. I had to use the secret entrance to my own estate, coming up through the basement shouting Elena's name. Brigitte's. The two of them, over and over again, a desperate prayer as I searched. the end I should have merely avoided Coorhagen altogether. For what I found in the upstairs bedroom clouded my heart and mind with despair and grief.

Brigitte had clearly fallen to the plague first, given the state of her poor little body. My sweet girl, no more than five years old. I could still see strands of her beautiful dark hair--dark like my own had been in life--falling in her endearing curls around her near-skeletal face. My daring, bright girl, who never wanted the beautiful dolls I brought home for her but always wanted a suit of armor and a sword to match my own.

Elena... all she had wanted was that child. And she stayed by Brigitte even after her death. And thus the plague passed on to her. She was still beautiful, even in death. Of course, it helped that her corpse had only recently cooled.

I could not bury all of Coorhagen, but I at least owed it to the two who made being human far more tolerable than I should have been allowed. I took their bodies and with the Sanctuary spell at my disposal, laid them to rest next to my mother and father. The same parents whose memorial duty had been mine the night I was murdered.

It was that point in time that I first began to withdraw from all I had been, withdraw from any safe contact in its entirety, even from other vampires.

In the end, it brought far more pain than any assassin's sword ever could.

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