Tuesday, October 15, 2013


He was back in the city walking up and down the nighttime streets like a lucid wanderer...seeing... thinking... and feeling. No one knew he was here. Things went on as usual at the town house. Edith bustled about preparing sleeping chambers and fluffing pillows. Sarah wasn't home yet. She was still abroad in the world. But Tomas, also known as Jonathon was.

Now he'd thought a lot during his time away. And he kept coming back to the same thing. The world wasn't ready. Doctor Franklin knew it. The man who gave mankind electricity still thought of us as greasy, swarming cattle. So he retreated to his complex under the old Philadelphia Navy Yard and conjured new toys. Well, Tomas was beyond that. No toys. No gadgets. No gimmicks. Just him, a fit, young 'eighteen' year with thousand year old eyes. 

And he perfected 'the' look. His black, leather bootkins were still there, topped by trim, black jeans. The shirts were simple too... short sleeve t-shirts for summer... long sleeve t-shirts for the cold. Same shade as the jeans. Maybe a black leather jacket for those nights when someone without one would look strange. Did he steal Blackie's act? Come on, you think Blackie was the first? What was Zorro? He was the first 'black knight.' And Tomas, also known as Jonathon was also Spanish too. 

He killed somebody right away. He did it the first night back. Two guys were beating a kid on a dark, little alley off South Street. They were guys from the neighborhood and they hated Center City kids... too artsy... too rich... too (aw, look. what can I say? do you think they need a reason?). So he stepped out of the shadows. One of the guys says - Get lost ass-hole.... But Tomas doesn't move. The second guy smashes his fist right through the kid's nose. He moans and crashes to the concrete. Scraped his face... his chin. Then they turn on Tomas, but he just looks at them with that look he has. You know some of the other night-folk call it his 'Crow' look. You know that movie? I forget who was in it... Bruce Lee, or his son, or somebody. But the eyes... it's all in the eyes. 

First bastid says - What the hell's wrong with you, you creep. Other one sucker punches our slim, trim vampirino right on his ear. Would a busted the eardrum of a normal human. But Tomas don't move. He just stands there and turns and looks.  First bastid kneels down and goes through the kid's pockets. He don't see what's gone on... Takes a wallet... snaps his watch off. Other one makes like he wants to smash him again, but BAM, that fast... Tomas ain't there. Guy goes - Jesus Christ!... looks up and sees him crouched part way up an old brick wall. First bastid looks up too, catches on and goes - Fuck this shit... pockets the wallet and warily backs off. But Tomas does that thing vampires do and whips himself down off the wall in a flash. Then he runs toward the first bastid who throws up his arms and goes - No!... Half a heartbeat later Tomas flickers into a nebulous state and sublimates right through the first son of a bitch, who stands there for a moment, sways a bit and then slides apart into countless shreds that rains down on the ground like gruel. The other one emits a pathetic, nervous laugh, pees hisself  and plops down into the gutter. A nano-second later Tomas instantaneously solidifies, hikes up his jeans, throws the Center City kid over his shoulder and races into the shadows.

I suppose he revived the kid with tiny droplets of his blood, not enough to bring him over... not enough to make a vampire (not nearly enough for that), but just enough to make him whole. And then he was gone.

Now one a the low life guys lived. And the Center City kid lived too, so the story got out. Yeah, I know, some people in town know all about the vampires and everything that happened. But that don't mean they all do. To most Philly people this is a whole new thing.

And so far it ain't got a name...


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