I suppose it was bound to become a chore. Was it not a bother to go out and hunt as an old man, even if as a young one all you could think of was to the best horse, your hounds, and how you would finally find the white buck?
Still, I was hungry, and so I followed the two girls from their evening entertainment. They walked together, believing themselves safe in each other’s company, only ten minutes from the apartment.
One pulled out a cellular telephone and began to read it as she walked, managing to avoid stepping from the curb with the help of her friend. They giggled and chattered about whatever was being read, but I ignored them.
As they were passing an alley (I thought it would be a lovely place for my meal), someone else stepped from the shadows. I stopped and waited, watching.
“Hey, sorry, but can I borrow your phone? Mine ran out of batteries, I can’t call a cab or my parents.”
And without any sense of self-preservation they moved to the young man. I believe the second young lady thought something was off, she seemed to hesitate, but social norms precluded her from acting because, after all- it would be rude to just assume.
He used a knife with some efficiency, slashing the throat of the first woman before grabbing the second. A hand to her mouth muffled her scream and a warning made her stop struggling. It seemed the one he held was the main target, the second just a mistake to be cleaned up.
“Perhaps I may be of assistance?”
I stepped out into one of the dim street-lamps, raising a hand. He held the girl closer to his chest and pressed the knife even harder into her throat. A trickle of blood made it’s way down her collar.
“Oh, please, don’t spill her blood all over the ground. It would be a waste.” I bent over to pick up the fallen girl, already dead, most of her blood painting the sidewalk. Her phone was thrown as she fell and was by the trashcans.
A pity. Brushing off her wound I sniffed and tasted- no, no good. Too much was gone, what was left was bitter with a spike of fear and pain.
“I hope you have more finesse with that one,” I said, dropping the first girl. “You could have at least left me one.”
He had paled while watching me, but had not said or done anything else. When I turned to him he tried to gather up his courage.
“So you’re a wei– vampire?” I had heard the insult before he swallowed it. For not finishing the word I let him keep his tongue.
“Yes, I am. Now, let go of that poor girl, she’s frightened to death. Look, she’s soiled herself already. Surely that is not what you’re hoping to happen.”
He glanced to the girl, who had curled up as much as she could, trying to twist away from him and as far into herself as possible. She had indeed wet herself, and now shook in silent sobs while trying to keep breathing against his gloved hand.
“I wanted to just… I love her,” he said, “you know? I’ve seen her every day for three years at the cafe and she’s moving to a different town, another college somewhere, and I just.. hey, Sarah, I’m sorry, I mean, I don’t want to scare you.”
“Good man,” I complimented as she seemed to relax ever so slightly. The knowledge that this wasn’t a random murderer was often helpful to victims, even if it did not usually help their survival in any way.
“May I help? Perhaps I could solve all of your problems.”
“How do I know you won’t take her instead? Or kill us both?”
I held my hands out in a gesture of peace. “I give you my word.”
“Your word?” He scoffed at the term and my patience grew thinner.
“Yes,” I said. “My word. I promise she will stay with you.”
He nodded, begrudgingly, and I wanted to tell him to speak up when he was spoken to by his betters.
Ah yes, this is how one found themselves reinvigorated. A child, a pupil. In teaching one could relive the mayhem of youth.
“Good. Now, first, let us get her comfortable.” I held out my hand and he let go of the girl–Sarah. She jumped away from him, tripping over her friend’s body, before she let out a shriek and collided into me.
I wrapped my arms around her, hugging her rather than restraining her. “Sarah,” I said into her ear, “my dear Sarah, shh. It is alright. Would you like to change out of your clothes? They can’t be comfortable.”
She was shaking, but did whimper something of a ‘yes’ so I took that as consent.
“Turn around,” I ordered the man. He stood there a moment, bloody knife still in his hand, unsure if I was going to take her away. I held back a sigh- of course children were often stupid and had to have everything explained to them.
“You are not her husband, or betrothed. You will not see her naked. Now turn around.”
“Neither are you!”
Rebellion. Oh, fun.
“I am over two hundred years old, you are both infants in comparison. Are you suggesting a father helping to change his daughter is doing so with lustful thoughts?”
“N-no.” He turned around without another word, finally accepting my tale and authority. Whether it was my tone, or the fangs that I had allowed to flash in annoyance I was not sure.
“Now, Sarah,” I said. “You and your friend are about the same size, yes? Have you ever borrowed each other’s clothes?”
“Yes. Emmy and I have similar styles, I’m actually wearing one of her favorite…” she stopped talking to look at the body of her friend and her shuddering body became one frozen in fear.
“Shh, don’t mind her. It was just her time to go.” I stroked her hair as I spoke and whatever mystical properties kept me alive and in need of blood also began to calm her. It did not matter how absurd my statement was, if I was saying it it was alright.
“Yeah.. and she was being a bitch earlier.”
I laughed. The tension gone she looked down at her pants and wrinkled her nose. Undoing a button she slipped her pants from her, then her underwear, and stood half naked while unsure of how to get the clothes she needed from the a still-warm corpse.
I did it for her, in a flash having taken off the bloody jeans that, while not much better, were still preferable to piss.
She put on the clothes and thanked me.
“We have been here long enough,” I announced, after the boy– he introduced himself finally as Jeffrey– had turned around. “Now, Jeffrey, where would you going to take Miss Sarah?”
“To my house. My basement.. I made a room for us down there, got contractors for a kitchen and.. thought I’d keep her there, keep her with me.”
“Yes, keep her with you, wishing to save her. Wouldn’t you like that, Sarah? To belong?”
“I would, yeah. It would be nice. That’s why I was leaving anyway, I didn’t belong here..”
“Of course you did! You belong with me!”
She shrunk away from him at the outburst, but after looking at me for confirmation, she gave a shrug. “I could try being with you.”
I moved over to Jeffrey, Sarah holding my hand as we went deeper into the alley and behind the homes.
“You, Sarah, shall be with Jeffrey. And you, Jeffrey–” I turned his head so he looked me in the eyes. “You shall belong to me. You will do as I say, act appropriately for your station, and never tell a soul of anything that has happened or will happen.”
I smiled, my fangs peeking out again. We had gone a few blocks, far away enough not to be the first seen, but close enough to hear police sirens. There were none.
“If we may stop a moment before we continue to your abode, Jeffrey,” I said. “I am still quite hungry.”
I pulled Sarah closer and she stepped into my embrace without question. Jeffrey opened his mouth to complain, but I held up a finger and shushed him. “I shall not harm her.”
He swallowed hard but stayed silent.
I ran my hand through Sarah’s hair again. It was short, a bit spiky. She reminded me of a woman I had known in my youth.
Even without asking she tilted her head to the side, forehead resting on my shoulder, exposing her throat. I bent down and bit.
The first mouthful was honey. She made a small squeaking noise at the initial puncture but stayed still and allowed me to drink my fill. I needn’t much and took less than humans asked for in donations to aid others. I pulled away and licked my lips before pulling out a handkerchief so she could press it to her wound.
“You are most welcome.”
She smiled up at me and I made a swift decision at her adoring look. I bit my own finger and placed it between her lips. She made the same squeaking noise as before and my heart warmed.
“Hey!” Jeffrey seemed to have finally lost his patience. “Why are you doing that? Won’t that–”
With my free hand I grabbed his collar and lifted him into the air.
“Why yes,” I agreed, looking back to the girl that I was nursing with my blood. “That would make her my daughter. I believe I prefer her to you.”
“You said she’d be mine! You gave your word!”
“I said that she would be with you. I never specified the arrangement.”
I turned to Sarah, who was taking in the world around her as her body changed and became something immortal. It was early, the change would take place over the next few days in great intensity, but already her senses would be sharpening. She would also be hungry.
“You said you’d help. How is this helping?!”
I chose to ignore the accusation as he twisted in my grip. It was no use.
“Sire?” Sarah was looking to me, taking me in, the knowledge of our kind filling her brain and instilling lessons into her flesh like instinct.
“Sebastian,” I corrected. I would not be that strict with my dear daughter. “Though you may call me whatever pleases you. If I object I shall say so.”
“He wanted to take me, to keep me and hurt me. Please don’t let that happen.”
“Of course not, dear. He is your pet, you may punish him as you see fit. Are you hungry?”
At her nod I threw Jeffrey down. She silenced him as he had her, a hand to his mouth, though she crushed his jaw with the grip. I did not correct her.
It’s been a while since I’ve written a Scene and posted it here. I’ve been busy with Delphinium and marketing, but I thought I owed y’all something.
I actually wrote this around Halloween for a reply in reddit’s Writing Prompts subreddit, so it doesn’t really fit the season, though you can imagine snowfall if that helps 😉
I didn’t add a realm to this Scene because it doesn’t really fit that well in the Noctuina we know (I don’t think I’ve ever posted something in first person either). It’s more Urban Fantasy than I’m used to as well. But lately I’ve also been thinking about the timeline of my world and how, while slow, technology does advance in some realms. Maybe it’ll get to a point where it’s more like our time and I can write versions of Urban Fantasy in Noctuina? And how will the people who grew up, who lived, through the medieval eras deal with modern life?
I have two mostly-finished Scenes in my folder that, for some reason, don’t feel right, so they haven’t been posted. I’m sorry about that. I’ll give them a look over and try and find what I have to add in for them to click. I think one needs a change in setting, and the other maybe some more backstory.