By: Mags Author's Note: Revised! Cause Soledad was right. Daedalus is an asshole in the second bit. The poor guy has enough trouble as it is (would YOU want to be Julian's butler?), so I'm giving him a break. Disclaimer: Yes, yes. Not mine. Don't sue me. I could have much more destructive habits. Rating: Still PG-13. Because I'm lazy. Slash (suprising, non?) Daedalus was already seated when Cameron entered the Haven. He was hunched in one corner of the top balcony, and it took the Brujah a little while to spot him. The lights from the dance floor glimmered across the little of his face that was visible. He gave no sign of seeing Cameron. For a moment, he debated whether or not to join the Nosferatu. His earlier doubts came rushing back to him. It was still a bad idea. Then Cameron shrugged. Maybe it was a mistake, but it wasn't a fatal one. At least not tonight. His earlier resolve crumbled, and he started to make his way over the Daedalus. Even from a distance, the other vampire was obviously lost in thought. His lips twitched up in a slight grin. Maybe he'd catch the Nosferatu by surprise. It would be a first. Daedalus didn't look up as Cameron slid into the seat across from him. His stony gaze was fixed firmly on the dance floor. Cameron stared at him closely, but got no acknowledgement. He took a deep breath, and tried to firm in his mind what he was going to say. "Now who's the antisocial one?" Daedalus stirred, but didn't look away from the dancers. "A desire for quiet is not antisocial." Weariness tinged his voice. Cameron's eyes narrowed. Everything had seemed- well, not fine- but acceptable this morning. So, why then, he grumbled to himself, the mood swing? "Perfect place to get away from people. A night club." "Nonsense. To be alone in a night club is to be twice as lonely." Daedalus smiled, slightly, but kept his eyes on the crowd. "What? Up here?" Cameron snorted. "You've got more company than on the dance floor. The things growing in the puddles alone…" The Nosferatu turned to face them. "Yes. But they are good company. Quiet." His voice was deadpan. Cameron gave him an odd look, then looked down at the floor, where his foot was lying in a puddle of said goo. He wiped it surreptiously on the floor, grimacing as his boot stuck. "Should I be jealous?" He wiggled, trying to yank his foot off the floor. "Do the amoebas make you feel inferior?" Daedalus raised an eyebrow at the Brujah's struggles. "What are you doing?" "Dancing with myself." He gave a decisive pull, and the boot disconnected with a thock. He turned to face Daedalus. The Nosferatu wasn't smiling, but he was periouslously close. Pale skin crinkled around his eyes. "I see. The last time Cash did that, Julian had to pick him up at the police station for indecency." Cameron gaped at him. "Wha…" An image of Cash "dancing" with himself formed in his mind. Realization washed over him. "I don't like myself THAT much." He paused caught between a shiver and a laugh. "I bet Julie- woogums just loved having to deal with the vice squad." Daedalus turned away to stare back out over the dance floor. Cameron watched him carefully, afriad he had made a faux pas. "Julie woogums", bah. He snorted to himself. That's one of the nicer names I use. He looked at the Nosferatu's slumped shoulders. The gaiety of the moment seemed to have been lost. A little chill crawled up his spine. He leaned in, to get closer to Daedalus. "Are we having Julian problems?" The Nosferatu sighed. "Problem is not the word." Cameron's throat tightened. He didn't know, but he was pretty sure that if it came to him and the Prince, he wasn't going to be the one chosen. "What happened?" "Word got back to him. He has an extensive network." Daedalus rested his chin on his hand and leaned on the table. "I had expected discovery. But. I thought there would be more time… to prepare…" He stared off into space. Cameron searched for a reply. He didn't like Julian, and he wasn't particularily upset that he and Daedalus had had a falling out. But, Daedalus looked miserable…. "I'm sorry." The Nosferatu stirred and looked at him. "No. You aren't. But I appreciate the sentiment." He smirked bitterly. Cameron crossed his arms. He'd tried to be polite. "Get this straight. I can't change how I feel. Even for you. Daedalus's eyes widened, the most facial expression Cameron had seen him use this evening. "I… would not expect you to." He regained his composure. "I apologize. This… situation… is not your fault." "What situation?" Cameron was burning with curiosity, but he managed to keep his tone artlessly indifferent. "I said some regrettable things." He looked over at the Brujah. Cameron raised an eyebrow and waited for him to continue. He paused for a moment, as if deciding how much to say. Finally, he shrugged. "I told him… " he shook his head, "quite frankly, I told him he was an idiot. That he mistreats your clan. That his policy towards the Brujah will only earn him hate." The Nosferatu rubbed a temple. Cameron's jaw dropped. He peered at Daedalus for a moment. Then, he threw his head back and laughed. Daedalus sat bolt up. "You find this amusing?" Cameron slapped his knee. "You…mmf…called Julian Luna… an idiot! To his face! It must be a fucking first." Daedalus rolled his eyes. "A record I would prefer not to hold." The laughter subsided. Cameron managed to reschool his features, but his eyes still twinkled. "Damn. I bet he hit the roof." "The desk, actually. And then the wall. And I do believe he will need a new stress ball." The first hints of a smile started to appear at the edge of Daedalus's lips. Cameron grinned back at him. "C'mon now. Don't leave me hangin'. What'd he say?" "You are entirely too eager." The Nosferatu raised an eyebrow at him. "Yeah." Cameron shrugged. Then he leaned back in his chair, arms behind his head. "So, what'd he say?" "He accused me of betrayel, to the city and to our friendship. To the memory of the Archon." Cameron felt his hands tighten as he heard the last bit. "And… do you think he's right?" Daedalus cocked his head. "It does not matter, I think, right now." He shrugged. The Brujah glared at him. He was getting a little tired of the cryptic response. "Humor me." "That discussion, when it comes, I think, will be unpleasant. It would be better to postpone it." "No." Cameron set his mouth. "It would not be better to postpone it." He unfolded himself, and set his elbows on the table. "Because if we don't have it out now, it's gonna be down there, festering. And the slightest little push…" he began to press on one of the discarded glasses on the table next to them. It gave slightly. He pressed harder. The glass groaned and then shattered. Bit of glass scattered around the floor. "…and crash." Daedalus didn't flinch. "Do not push this matter, Cameron." "See! You're gonna go cold on me. Like that. Except, sometime it'll be forever. Because you and I both know, if you've gotta choose…" he trailed off and shook his head ruefully. "And I can take that. But, tell me the truth, dammit!" The Nosferatu stared at him for a moment, cold eyes burning holes in his chest. Cameron managed- just- to stare right back at him. Finally, Daedalus dropped his eyes. He started out softly. "If I have to choose…" He exhaled and looked back up at Cameron. The Brujah held his breath, willing him to say it, just get it over with. C'mon, he screamed internally, just tell me off, and let's be done with this! "…I don't know." Cameron slammed the table with both palms. "That's not good enough." Daedalus's eyes flashed. "You think this is easy?" His voice was low and deadly. "Julian Luna has been my friend for decades. And he is… still Prince of this city. You ask me to give all that up on the basis of a few days!" All of the energy went out of Cameron. So he'd gotten his answer. He slumped down in the chair. Fine, he told himself, you knew that's how it was gonna play out. Have some fucking dignity man. He managed to square his shoulders. "Yeah. I shoulda known I wasn't worth it." He rose to leave. To his surprise, Daedalus snarled. Two hands came up to grab his shoulders. Cameron found himself shoved into his seat. Daedalus gave him a good shake and forced him to meet his eyes. "You little idiot," he hissed. "Is this worth so little to you that you would give up so easily? I TOLD you. I don’t know. I am confused, and I am NOT used to that! It is unpleasant. I would change it if I could! But, I can't. I don't know! I… don't know…." The Nosferatu's eyes swirled back to normal. His voice trailed off, and he realased Cameron. He sat back down and turned his face away. Cameron watched him quietly for a second. Was it his imagination, or was the Nosferatu's jaw tight? Eventually, he reached forward tentatvely, to touch Daedalus's shoulder. "Hey?" He tapped him lightly. Daedalus turned to face him. "Look. Nothing's happening now. You have time. You don't have to choose now." The Nosferatu shook his head slowly and looked down at Cameron's hand. Cameron removed it gently. Daedalus reached out after it. He picked up the Brujah's hand and examined it closely. Then, he looked back up. "Good." He stopped, listening. Cameron's ears cocked, curious about the Nosferatu's distraction. Eventually, he picked up strains of music, from the floor. The band was playing a slow dance tune. He looked back at Daedalus curiously. Daedalus grinned. "I may not be as good a partner as yourself." "But at least you won't get me arrested for public indecency." Cameron pulled him up and into his arms. And for awhile, he forgot his doubts altogether.