[identity profile] illyriaone.livejournal.com posting in [community profile] wl_fanfiction
Title: Affliction, Part 7/13
Author: illyriaone (Thesseli)
Pairing: Colin/Ryan
Rating: R
Summary: I once swore I would never write a vampire story...
Disclaimer: This is a work of fiction.
Type of Feedback Desired: Any.

“What are we going to do about Colin?”

Drew peered up wearily at Brad Sherwood. Brad had been pacing back and forth in Drew’s office like a caged tiger. “Brad, we’ve been over this,” he said, trying to sound as reasonable as possible. “We’re not going to do anything.”

Brad shook his head, coming to lean on Drew’s desk and loom over the seated man behind it. “I don’t see how you can be so blasé about this. Don’t you know what Colin *is* now? Don’t you think it might be just a little bit dangerous to have him—”

“To have him *what*, Brad,” Drew spat, his patience nearing its end. “To have him around here anymore? To have him work on the show? To have him, and everyone else like him, running around loose? Maybe we should just lock them all up. Is that what you want?”

“Drew, I’m sorry, but I can’t help what I feel. Don’t you remember what happened up in Boston a few months ago, when a bunch of them broke into that lab and *demanded* all the information they had on the disease? It’s a miracle that no-one was killed – and as it was, some of the people from the lab still ended up in intensive care.”

Drew couldn’t believe that Brad was comparing Colin to the thugs involved in that incident. “You’re forgetting the leader of that little group happened to be a former gang member. He was a violent man even before he got the disease. Do you really think Colin’s going to be like that?”

Brad exhaled sharply. “I don’t know, Drew. I really don’t know. What about that girl in Indiana, who beat her ex-boyfriend nearly to death before she bit him? She wasn’t a gang member.”

Drew regarded him evenly. “The word was that before she got the disease, he used to beat *her*.”

Brad resumed his pacing, but at a slower rate. “We don’t know much about this thing, Drew. We don’t know if the disease is limited to certain areas, or if it’s going to keep spreading, or even *how* it’s spread.”

“We know that it's confined to humans, and it only affects people over the age of 27,” Drew replied. “So it’s not like we’re completely in the dark.”

Brad looked at him incredulously. “My God, Drew, what if *everyone* ends up with it? What if this becomes an epidemic that we can’t stop?”

Drew didn’t say anything. He didn’t have an answer for that one. “Casual contact doesn’t spread it. Sexual contact doesn’t spread it. Are you afraid of working with Colin? Because we can get someone else to take your spot next month, if you’d rather not be on.”

Brad stopped dead. “Are you saying you’re kicking me off the show?”

“No, Brad, but if you’re not comfortable working with Colin, I don’t know what else to say. Do you *want* to keep doing the show?”

Brad looked down at his hands, then back at Drew. “Yes, I want to stay on.”

Drew stood up then, walking around the desk to stand beside Brad. “Look, Brad, I know exactly how you feel. Hell, everything that you brought up has been through my mind, and Dan’s mind, and everyone’s mind since we found out about Colin. But I’ve been talking to Ryan, and he says it’s not going to be a problem. Colin’s back at his place, and he seems to be doing a little better -- Ryan said he was so depressed when he first came back that he didn’t know what to do to bring him out of it. Depressed, Brad. Not violent, or irrational, or out of control. *Depressed*. He hates what’s happened to him, but Ryan says he’s been dealing with it a little easier since he came back to L.A. Ryan’s been helping him get through it, and I think he’s doing better.”

When Brad spoke again, there was a hint of concern in his voice for his old friend. “So Colin’s feeling better now?”

“Yes, he is. I don’t know what Ryan’s been doing to cheer him up, but evidently it’s been a big help.”

Brad raised an eyebrow curiously as the wheels turned in his mind…

How in the world do you cheer up a vampire?

January 2016

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