Title: Aphelion

Rating: T

Genre: Drama/Romance

Disclaimer: Tanz Der Vampire and its characters belong to Roman Polanski, Jim Steinman and Michael Kunze. This fanfic is written purely for entertainment and I gain no financial profit by writing this.

Summary: How do you live forever when your very existence is the anthithesis of what you used to be? How do you go on when all you have known and loved is gone? How do the first hundred years pass by? And, finally, how does the story end? This is the last part of Alfred's journey of self-discovery and his impossible love that began with "A Deal with the Devil" and continued with "Strangelove" and "They Call It the Queen of the Night".

A/N: It seems that I'm unable not to return to this storyline; as much as I have a thing for unresolved endings, I also still feel Alfred's story isn't quite complete. Few more things must be said before I can leave this for good. However, this will be the final part of the series.

As in "To Become a Child of Night", this story consists of parts of various lengths – most of them being short, so I feel reluctant to really call them "chapters" – that take place at various times. Mostly, they are from Alfred's point of view, with some Herbert thrown in every now and then. My intention is to explore his coming into terms with losing his humanity, and perhaps illuminate what takes place after "They Call It the Queen of the Night".

Constructive comments are always appreciated. I hope you have enjoyed sharing this journey with Alfred as much as I have, and now let us plunge down once more with a feeling!


Slowly and rather painfully, Alfred became aware that he was awake again. It was dark around him, but it took a long moment for him to grasp that; it wasn't like he couldn't see. The space was small, like a closet or something... and he was curled up on the floor, covered in blood.

Blood. It was the thing that seemed most familiar. It was something he could work with; he knew where he stood with blood.

Disoriented and confused, he had hard time remembering anything. What had happened before he had fallen asleep, how had he gotten there... where he even was. It was like everything before this moment was shrouded in darkness. A groan escaped his throat as he sat up and pressed the palms of his hands against his eyes, hoping that would help with the spinning in his head.

Slowly, the world began making sense again. But then, as soon as that happened, and his thoughts became clearer... there was a face – a pale, familiar face. Gaunt but strangely beautiful, and with the most vivid blue eyes he had ever seen. It was a face that meant so many things, so many dear and painful things that it hurt to remember all that suddenly, and he cried out. He could see it as clearly as if that face had been on the front of him this very moment.

Johannes.

And from that face and name, everything unfolded. The deal he had made with the devil, the strange love he had thought they had shared, leaving the castle... his last agonized moments alive, and becoming a monster. Herbert had turned him. All the blood, all the death in his hands, and the deep endless dark...

Alfred remembered and remembering was the most terrifying thing he had ever felt: there was a body in the hall. It was the body of a girl he had slaughtered in cold blood, just to sustain himself. Then he had crawled into this dark space to rest for the day, so that he could rise again with the night. Rise, and rise again until the very end of days, for there would never be peace.

He was sobbing, the pain ripping at his insides as he remembered all he had loved and lost, and everything he had destroyed ever since. And he felt cold. His heart stood still, his skin had no warmth, and there was the hunger, the kind he knew he'd never be able to fully satisfy. This was his aphelion.

He was dead. And he'd live forever.