Wednesday, June 6, 2012


Conrad, for that was his name, stared into the cracked, blemished mirror and studied his teeth. The room was small and hot. No windows. Just a sink. Just a toilet. That's all he had. It was originally a powder room for seamstresses. They made Halloween costumes. Belfry-Bat, Cowgirl Sal, Soldier-Man-Tim. You could still see silver glitter pressed into the floor boards.

He carefully maneuvered his tongue along each tooth, but the 'eye' teeth were special. Large and sharp. If they were only a little longer. 

What power she  had. What magic. He remembered the eyes. He remembered the laugh. He remembered the pain. He remembered it all. Vampires could do that. At least the strong ones could.

A fat, little, shinny, brown spider raced along the dirty, green wall. He brushed it into the sink and gave it the water cure. Spin, spin, spin, spin, spin, down the drain. So much for a life. 

Then he went out into the shadowy expanse of the former workroom. Moon light washed in through  tall, filmy, bare loft windows, bathing the naked floor in sepulchral tones.

The dogs were locked away in a small, ruined office far below. The 'monk' needed quiet. He had to think. Oh, he liked the magic of 'The Brotherhood.' He'd been to Saint Shamus, itself. They even let him hold the relics. And even now, he could taste the waxy bones upon his fingers.

But this was different. This was real. Faith is one thing. Certainty is something else. And he knelt on the gray, little mattress and prayed. Oh, what he would  do with such power. He'd slice through 'evil,' a holy soldier in God's own army. Please, let it be like that. Please, let it be like that.  He trembled in anticipation.

And then the vampire spoke. A voice came forth from the shadows...... Have you decided? - it asked...... The monk-not-quite-a-monk nodded....... There was a soft, dry chuckle. The vampire said - Then say it. You have to say it.......... The monk sniffed for a moment, then whispered - Let me be but a link in a chain. May no man know its source.

The vampire stepped out into a moon beam, got down beside him, took hold of his hand and said - May you never know pain. May you never know fear. May you hide from death, now and for forever.....

All was silent.... and perhaps two heartbeats later, it began.....


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