bmblbee (bmblbee) wrote in bloodclaim,

The Crossing

Title: The Crossing
Author: BmblBee
Paring: S/X
Rating: NC17
Disclaimer: The Bee owns none of the characters or products named and
makes no money off anything. Sad state of affairs.
Warnings: Bad language, strong sexual content between M/M.
Second warning: Although I did do a lot of research, this story is not intended to
be an exact historical account so please don't scream and pounce on a detail or
two that may not be entirely accurate.

Credit: The snipits at the tops of the pages are from a web site entitled "Titanic,
A Time Line of Events" Earl Chapman on the Titanic Discussion List originally
published this chronology of events. Chapman modified it slightly in 1997. The
1997 version formed the basis of this timeline.

Summary: AU. It is the spring of 1912 and Xander Harris, who has been living
with relatives in Ireland, is heading home. As a gift of love, he was booked
passage on the maiden voyage of the Titanic with the promise that it will be the
adventure of a lifetime.

Author's note: This story is NOT a retelling of any of the Titanic movies.
It is the tale of one man and one vampire forgotten by history and the destiny they
both find on this doomed crossing.

As always, thanks to Petxnd for the wonderful banners and the valued friendship.

Thursday, April 11th, 1912

Titanic arrives at Queenstown, Ireland. It is her last stop before heading across the
Atlantic. It is from this port that the last known photograph of the Titanic is taken.
At 1:30 PM the starboard anchor was raised for the last time and the Titanic departed
on her first transatlantic crossing, bound for New York.

It was mind boggling and the most visually stunning thing Xander had ever seen.
Even his most exaggerated mental images of it paled in the face of reality.

It was massive as it consumed the entire skyline. It was beyond a ship. It was a huge,
steel, floating walled city crawling with activity. Thousands of people were milling and
moving around on the decks while others were hanging over the side rails waving farewell
to envious family and friends left behind on Irish soil.

Although Xander had no one who had come to bid him bon voyage, he too hung over
the railing, caught up in the thrill of the day, he arched his arms high over his head,
shouting his good byes to anyone on shore who glanced his way.

Xander knew the ticket in his pocket clearly identified his cabin number, but he was
in no hurry to go below and locate it. Instead, Xander stood on the main deck with
his suitcase at his feet and he reveled in the hustle and bustle of the mobs.

He was surprised by the intermingling of all classes of passenger, everything from
the fur and diamond drenched women of high society to the tattered wool coated
men of the lower working class. He suspected that once underway, that friendly
companionability would end, but for now, this was all about sharing the pleasure
of travel. It was about the Titanic.

In direct contrast, the far end of the ship was strictly business. It was an organized
disorganization of hundreds of muscular men toting and transporting crates, steamer
trunks and cargo into the huge open hulls of the ship's lower levels.

He had arrived early in the afternoon and now the day was late. The hours had
passed by in the blink of an eye and Xander nearly jumped out of his shoes when
the boat's huge furnace towers blasted out a warning that the time for departure
was near. The sound roared in his ears and he felt the vibration of it through the
wood planking of the deck as it ran up his legs. It was is if the ship were alive.
A humongus, fire breathing dragon of ancient myth and legend.

For a brief moment, Xander was frightened. A small voice told him to run, jump
ship and flee back into the safety of the arms of Paddy and Emma, but he quickly
regained his composure. He was not a boy any longer. He was a young man and
it was time to begin life as a man.

The ship's horn blasted a second time and he watched as lovers kissed and families
embraced one last time before those who were not to go cried, clung and gradually
walked back down the long gang plank.

Those left on deck were the privileged. The lucky. And he was one of them. He
could feel in his bones the very importance of this event and he knew without a
doubt that he would remember today for the rest of his life.

Clinging to the chest high railing, Xander hung over and watched as the ship's plank
was slowly removed. The umbilical cord that connected it to the safety of the shore
was severed and a thrill ran up his spine when the huge vessel jolted with the first
movement as the Titanic began it's long reversal away from the dock.

The shouts of the passengers to the ground below reached a frantic crescendo
before gradually falling to near silence as the distance between ship and land stretched
to a nonreachable distance. And for a moment, time, space and the passengers
seemed to stop and fall silent. Then, just as suddenly as it began, the pause ended
and a new, renewed level of excitement and activity kicked in.

From seemingly nowhere, the decks suddenly swarmed with the crew and deckhands
who weeded through the masses and tersely checked tickets directing the passengers
to the areas of the ship that best suited their station in life.

The cast system was alive and well on the Titanic after all.

As second class, Xander was treated as less than the rich and privileged, but from
what he had observed, much better than the emigrants and working poor who were
rapidly being hustled out of sight and down to the lowest level where they would
sleep in cots, several dozen to a dorm room. Xander was again overwhelmingly
grateful for Paddy's generosity.

The rest of the day was spent locating his cabin and settling in before dressing for
dinner. It had been a long and emotional day and eating had not been on his mind
or schedule but as Xander finished straightening his tie and suit coat, his stomach
rumbled loudly and he realized just how hungry he really was.

With a quick efficiency, he unpacked his sparse belongings into the wall cabinet.
Although he didn't own much, he was no stranger to hand washing a few things
out in the sink to stay fresh. No, he had all he needed and wasn't one for dreaming
and wishing.

A small folder placed at the bottom of his neatly made bunk bed explained the rules
and regulations of travel on the Titanic. It pointed out the importance of all the
passengers adhering to the schedules and areas that were assigned to them without
deviation. It stated that with such a huge number of people and activities going on
at all times, the crew had to be firm in their insistence of compliance.

It went on to describe what activities and decks could be used by First class, Second
class, and according to Xander's interpretation, fuck Third. It explained times for
meals and before he could finish reading, he heard two dings of a bell indicating his
hallway was being called to dinner. Tossing the paper on his bunk, Xander bolted
from the room and rushed for the dining hall.

"Bonjour. Commen t'appelles-tu?"

Xander's head snapped to the left and he was surprised to see a pretty young blond
woman sitting beside him. He had been so focused on finding the table and seat
assigned to him that he hadn't paid any attention to who was also seated there.

"Huh? Como who?"

"Ah, oui, an Americana. You speak no French?"

Xander blushed and fumbled with the smooth linen napkin that rested next to his
blue and white trimmed plate. He regretted his lack of refinement and education.

"No. No French. You speak English?"

The girl smiled.

"Petite. A bit. I have no see you before. You get on today? My name is Yvette."

Xander's eyes picked up the movement of the waiters who were moving about
the room delivering plates of food, pitchers of water and baskets of bread and
his mouth watered.

"Hi. I'm Xander. Yeah. I've been living with relatives in Ireland but now I'm
going back to the States."

Yvette leaned fractionally closer and batted her eyes demurely.

"I am travel with my Mother and sister. We shop in New York for a wedding
dress for Monique. It is romantic, no?"

Xander turned his head to fully look at the lovely young woman beside him. His
eyes blatantly roamed down her face to stare at the proud, perky breasts that
stuck straight out and he wondered if maybe he really could change. Perhaps
it would just take the right woman. Maybe Yvette......

Nope. He was still Xander and right now all he wanted was a full stomach
and a good night's sleep.

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