Monday, April 30, 2012

Like a Genii In a Bottle...... a vampirina's prison

I felt completely alone. The master was gone. The dominee was ashes. And do you know what they did with those ashes? They carefully swept them up, baked them into little hard cakes and fed them to the dogs. Certain factions felt it made them better trackers. But what it truly did was imbue them with a very potent touch of life-eater magic. Witness the birth of the real Children of The Night. Our eternal enemy, The Brotherhood of Saint Shamus of Castle Mara uses dogs like that to this day. You hear them howl. You hear them cry. The packs are in the city. They're back. They're here....... 'Baker man, baker man, bake 'em in a pan. Pour in the ashes and shape it with your hand. One for the monk. And one for the hound who runs through the streets and tears through the town'....... Ever hear that? Ever hear the old children's rhyme? Not that they knew where it came from.... But we do.... Life-eaters, I mean. And now, I suppose, you do to.

Someone seated by the quarter scale Rodin casting, The Kiss, I believe it was, wanted to know if it was safe to walk home when this...event... was all over. Marianne said she did not know. Roland, who was back from his own little promenade, just chuckled. Most of the mortals present thought cab rides would be prudent.

And then she told them more. Marianne said - One night I heard footsteps out in the passage way. But it wasn't feeding time. I couldn't hear the pathetic crying. They seemed to be running. And there seemed to be a lot of them. Finally a pounding on the door. Why they did that, I don't know. It's not as if I could open it. Perhaps it was meant to scare me?.... And it did. I curled up into a ball and lay on the greasy, leaden floor. Someone searched for the right key. I could hear it. It was almost like chimes. Then they thrust it into the ancient lock, jiggled it around and cursed, since it would not open, but finally it did, shrieking like a banshee all the way. No one said a word. A few acolytes held small, sputtering candles, throwing weak, orange shadows onto the frightening scene. Two men, I suppose they were religious officiates of some type, held out the leaden coat of mail. I put it  on and followed them down the near endless passageway toward a small door opening onto the large  courtyard. The chalk-white moon, shining through the fine, filaments of a vampire-proof sky-cloth made me blink. 

But there was no stake. There was no wood. And aside from my retinue, the cold, black space was empty. At first, I could not see it, for it matched the dull, lead panels all around us. Does lead attract lightning? I wonder. Then, after perhaps seven score heartbeats, it shimmered into existence and caught my eye... a small chest, wrought of that same, loathsome metal. They removed the coat of mail and made me get inside, forcing me to hug my knees and bow my head, before slamming the lid and locking it tight. I could hear a blacksmith come out and reinforce the exterior with thick, iron bands. After that, he sealed it shut with molten metal. I could smell it. I could feel the heat. I couldn't move. I couldn't escape, breathing in the same air over and over and over..... But that was just a habit. The oxygen, or lack of it, meant nothing to me.

Then they hoisted my tiny prison up onto some sort of horse drawn conveyance, cracked a whip and sped off threw the gate..... Finally, after a time, I began to hear the sound of crashing waves .......

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~< M >~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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vampire wonderland: Philadelphia After Dark the book of Sarah

vampire wonderland: Philadelphia After Dark the book of Sarah: First of all, we must agree that what comes next is fiction. I'm Thomas. We met last night. I'm a life eater, or what you would call a vampi...

Sunday, April 29, 2012

KETCHUP ON SOME GOOD STUFF - 2 interesting posts..... ALBION, our elferino prince, speaks...and take a look at O.G. Tomes latest book trailer too

Click on the two posts down there, right below this. The first one provides some much needed ELF/CHERUB insights, especially if you're a new comer. The second  (a book trailer video)takes you into a whole new, different and wonderful part of the forest. Then, if you want to free fall through the VAMPIRE WONDERLAND, just Google that title and add 'by Billy Kravitz'......... Literally hundreds of episodes to chose from. Oh, and one more thing..........PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT......and kindly hit the SHARE button, so that others might slip into this place.....THANK YOU..........

vampire wonderland: The Book of Sarah

vampire wonderland: The Book of Sarah: I wanted to speak with you sooner. But I am a well behaved young man, so I stayed back and patiently waited my turn. I am Albion, the leader...

O. G. Tomes: The Test of Faith

O. G. Tomes: The Test of Faith

Hot Pitch Makes Burning So Much More Humane

Roland went outside for a walk. He hates to hear this part of the story. It's like what he went through and after hundreds of years he still has dreams.............  The mortals grew silent. Everything slowed down. We can sense heartbeats. If you're a regular visitor, you probably know that. We tell time by them. Thirty thousand heartbeats is a deep winter's sleep. Twelve hundred heartbeats the average tryst. Look, just grow up. I may have the body of a fourteen year old, but I've absorbed a lot. And some of it quite painful. 

I never did see the master again. Perhaps I felt him passing in through the ether once or twice. Not 'him.' Not his physical presence, but his soul, his thoughts, his dreams. That's how he touched me. Don't ask me how long I was in that tiny cell. It could have been a week. It could have been a year. I do know they had a way to make us fall asleep. And I don't know how they did it. Edith, the Piney 'pow-wow' woman claims to know a type of mesmerism. She says that might have been it. But I did not 'see' them. In fact, there was little contact at all. I'd pass out and wake up to find an hysterical naked mortal locked in with me. They's scratch. They'd claw. The stench from their human waste sickened me. But I did it. I took them. I drank. Now I know that I told you elferinos and elferinas rarely kill mortals. We take small neat tastes and go on our way. But this was different. Maybe it was that place. Maybe it was the magic. Who knows? But I killed people...... What?...... Does that excite you? I can tell that it does. I can feel your heartbeats. So don't be bashful. 

And then, when it was over, I'd feel the cold, blue flames as the bodies disappeared. Did I burn? No, I did not. Yet the sensation was not pleasant, nor in any way benign. A cold beyond cold, dead as the dark side of the moon...... Of course I know that phrase is inaccurate. But please allow me my illusions. After a time, the floor was thick with grease.

Oh, let me go back to another thing. The emissaries of the shah lost interest, hearing of an even more exotic prize. They said it was a 'serpentina,' a creature half snake and half woman, arranged like a mermaid, only much more sinister. Although I could tell you stories about mermaids and their equally aquatic husbands that would shock you too.

Did they try to sell me to some other wealthy magnate?... No..... A higher level of Inquisitional Officiants entered the picture, charged with strict scriptural interpretation. Thou shalt  not suffer a witch to live..... And to those benighted souls we were the same. 

I was told they burned the master. It seems he welcomed it. Sometimes ancient ones are like that. The physical world bores them. Their very bodies bore them. And they hunger for release. They hunger for something else. He prayed near the end, repeating one couplet over and over and over. He said - Look for me in the knowing eyes of a child. I have been among the dead too long............... They promised him I would not burn. Maybe that convinced him too? So he put his faith in some sort of second chance reincarnation and walked to the stake dressed in a long, coarse tunic, with long sleeves and a form fitting hood. It had holes for the mouth and eyes. He ascended the ladder and climbed over the high cone of twigs, known as 'Mount Moriah,' for Abraham climbed that mountain to sacrifice Isaac, and he cooperated when they bound him to the rough, dry wood. A functionary came forth, bearing a small cauldron filled with viscous oil. He passed it off to others, who struggled up an even loftier ladder and dowsed  it over my master's head. I think they did that four or five times. And he never stopped chanting that 'knowing eyes of a child' thing. 

The courtyard was packed. Every religious in attendance compelled to bear witness. They stood there in ranks, like chess men upon a black, metallic plain. No prayers were said. They were merely exterminating a monster. And so they lit him up....... There was no cry. At first he trembled, more rapid than any mortal could ever do. And then the flames engulfed him, searing every part of his being. Five heartbeats later they heard the laughter...the vampire laughter. Huge black mastiffs sniffing up and down the ranks began to howl. They told me it went on for a very long time. And the next day half of those who'd been there were still completely deaf.

But they kept their promise and me they did not burn.........


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Friday, April 27, 2012


They did not even keep us together. Everything was so planned, so organized. This was how they did it and they'd been doing it like this for years. The heavy, windowless vehicle came to a stop in the middle of a courtyard. Every surface was covered with dark, almost black lead panels bolted into place by thick, brutal nails, seemingly left over from countless Roman crucifixions. Do you know what it looked like?..... Like a seventeenth century attempt to mimic the early industrial age. The walls were covered. I know there were doors hidden among the cold, hard panels. But I could not tell where they were. Nor could I fly up over the ramparts and escape, for the heavens were blocked by a fine, gauzy, membrane....a chiffon made from thin filaments of  that vampiric krypton known as lead. 

The master just threw back his head and laughed. Not the laugh he used around humans, but his real laugh.... his life-eater laugh. And the hundreds of  black robed functionaries arrayed before us shuddered at the strength of it. But they held their ground and not a torch was dropped. Then a leader came forth, a thin man, dressed like the others, save for the addition of a blood red collar rising up above the neckline of his simple garment. He stopped roughly three of four cubits from the back end of the conveyance, much closer than humans normally come to a full grown, powerful, male vamperino. No one said a word. The leader looked up and studied his newest acquisitions. Then he snapped his fingers. Men appeared bearing heavy robes fashioned from small, carefully made lead mail. A garment for knights in hell. He said - Put these on............... So as we would have no doubt about our fate should we fail to obey, two score warrior  giants came up behind him, each holding bucket-like cauldrons of steaming pitch. And the torch bearers moved in too....... I started to cry....... The dominee said one word - Don't!....... I stopped.......... The leader said - Help them with the net!........ Others approached pushing a small, wheeled stairway. You have the like today to help old dogs climb on beds, except most opt for the tan, upholstered variety, whereas ours was more funereal. After a few moments, we managed to climb down and they respectfully removed the heavy net, rolled it up and carried it away.  I was trembling. The master put his arm around me. The leader sneered and whispered - Move away from the girl......... My creator hesitated, but a practiced gob of hot, black pitch arced through the air and kissed his ear, persuading him of his error. He stepped away. We put on the leaden robes and waited. Resistance was futile.

Then, as if on cue, an aisle opened before us. The leader gestured. And we slowly walked toward what proved to be a door, as it slid open affording entrance to a narrow, lead paneled corridor. Were it not for the torch bearers behind us, even we would have been blind. 

They put each of us into a cell. In truth the dimensions were more like cabinets than cells. And the hard accommodations were not in the least bit adjacent. I'd say they were fifty of your American yards apart. That's how big the place was. So we waited, encased in that most noxious metal and sealed off from the sky.

But I could hear them whispering. Or perhaps it was a form of telepathy. Sensory deprivation sharpens such abilities. They dickered about my fate. A certain emissary sent from the court of the Persian king, the shah in Isfahan, offered a ransom more precious than rubies for the deliverance of a fresh, young, elfin vampirina. Apparently he had a spot for me in his menagerie. Those of  you familiar with our tale may recall the imprisonment of the one known as 'Papa.' I suppose it would have been like that. Yet negotiations proved unsuccessful and I was dealt with another way.........

That's where the whales came in..........

<O><O><O><O><O>< M ><O><O><O><O><O>

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Like Fisherman of The More Than Dead

They caught us in leaden nets. That's how they did it. We stopped to rest in a pleasant wood. Vampires have no quarrel with animals. Do not believe the things you read in books. Their blood is not human blood. Their blood does not sustain us. So the rabbits are safe, as are the feral cats and squirrels and badgers. Some adventurous types have sampled wild boar blood and yes, it is true: the flavor is almost equal to the human elixir. But 'almost' doesn't count. We're not playing horseshoes.  Although, I HAVE heard of vampirine explorers abroad in foreign lands who've tasted the blood of troglodytes 'pan,' the demi- human creature known to you as bonobos or chimpanzees. And they report a buzz quite akin to the genuine distillation. Yet the match is not exact. I know Tomas, also known as Jonathon, tells tales of an accidentally produced ape-vampire. But you'll have to ask Doctor Franklin about that. Has anyone here been down to The Anti-Enchantment Bureau?......One man, a quiet type, in a Harris Tweed jacket raised his hand. Marianne smiled and said - I am impressed........... A few of the other humans responded with quizzical looks, but most of them had no idea what she was talking about. And the impatient Mafia nephew interrupted once again and said - Look, don't go off on another tangent. Tell us about the 'leaden' nets..... So she did.

We spent the day curled up in old, abandoned bear dens. Had they been occupied, we might have done the same. Ursus and life-eater have no animosity. We often hide with them. And yes, although our kind cannot 'live' off their blood, we occasionally take a small dram or two, more as an affectionate kiss than anything else. But these were cold and empty. 

As it happened, agents of The Inquisition filtered through these woods, obviously aware of the vampirine predilection for bear dens, leaving much gold and silver with the poor folk here abouts, thus recruiting their own army of 'familiars.'  Each of these 'catcher' bands was furnished with a large, heavy, leaden net, wove from the finest ore, mined deep within the alpine bastions of the High Armenia. We're they heavy? Of course they were. But remember, we're speaking of six, strapping, Low Country yeoman here. So all things are relative. ..... And they hid in the trees, waiting for us to come out. How did they know we were in there? To this very night I am not sure. But I think there was a collaborator in their midst. Some poor, misguided, life-eater, encased in a thick, head to toe, black leather suit, with small, darkened glass portals over the eye slits. Did this monstrous costume require air holes? No, it did not. We draw no sustenance from oxygen. Vampires respire from habit and not out of need. So he wandered about til he sensed us, then raised his hand (encased in a protective, black gauntlet) and pointed..... That night, when the sun went down, they were ready. I suppose they had some ungent,  given  them by their knowledgeable masters, and made to mask the human smell. Inqusitional alchemists knew many things. Such magic would have been easy for them. We whispered together as we walked out. The dominee loved a clear, night sky. He told me stories of the stars. I still remember the names. Not human names. Not the Greek, or Arabic, or Latin designations you know. His stars had old Vahmpeerigo names. And I'd like to keep them to myself, if you don't mind. 

But then we heard a whistle. The net came down and we were caught. I fought to get out. He did too. We ripped into the sharp, braided filaments. Our flesh was torn to shreds. But the legends are true. The net held fast and there was no escape. And after a time. I don't know, perhaps ten thousand heartbeats, we sat down on the ground and wept.

I obviously survived, though the journey was not easy. The dominee, tragically, did not.

They threatened to leave us there til morning. They threatened us with the sun. And remember when I told you how fundamentally human we are? Well, this proved it. For we cooperated and let them herd us into the 'Black Maria' (stout, windowless,square, iron-bound, black coach) and drive away...... The net still wound about us..... to live another day.....

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Thursday, April 26, 2012


SCHMOOZINGWITHALIENS: THE UNIVERSALITY OF COSMIC LIFE...or...GUESS WHO'S...: Captain Cook is about to visit. Columbus or the Vikings, or Saint Brendan. or maybe the Ancient Israelites are coming. Better get this place...

Grilled Humans and Coffee Cake

You must remember. My ears always had to be hidden. The elfin look... the points, you know - Marianne added. Fortunately the mores of the time dictated modesty. Some wore fine, little hoods tied under the chin. Matrons topped them with can I describe it?..... truncated witches hats. You know. They did not end in a point, but were arbitrarily beheaded  half way up.  You see them in Northern Renaissance paintings, or Baroque, or whatever the period was. Oh, and I had ice skates too. But that's when I was till human...... I don't know why I said that. I hate when vampires speak of themselves as 'not human.'  We are altered, but we are still fundamentally the same. Is my body still not essentially a human body? I am 'changed,' but, even though we use the word, not 'transformed.'

A man sitting under the Joan Miro said - What happened when you left Antwerp? Did you fly? Did you sublimate, like when he rescued you from that dungeon? 

No, nothing like that. We should have, but we just walked. I do not know. Perhaps he thought I could not do it? Maybe he doubted his own talents? It's dangerous. You have to understand that. It doesn't always work. I once saw a vamperino from Charleston get stuck half way through a thick, stone garden wall.....

Ewww, what happened? - said the Jolly Rancher addict.

Marianne studied the graceless woman with cold dispatch and said - Half of him fell on the asters and half crashed into the rose bushes. And those attending The Assembly (society dance) got quite a shock when the legs and 'tushie' , I think you say, jumped up and tried to run away. But the cold, blue flame put a stop to that. We heard the top half scream, with the head and all, from the other side....So now you know another way to finish us...dismember the body. Yet if the two halves were adjacent to each other.... he might have been able to grab hold of his hips and 'gum' them up into the mid section. He might have survived. Decapitated vampires have been known to vault from the block and fight the executioner for his fresh, new trophy. A severed head...a vampire head, can be stuck back on. One or two nights in a dark root cellar, holding it in place is all it takes.

Do vampires go to hell?- asked a voice from the rear....... I don't know - said the 'young' Elferina. I've never been there....... Do you know if they're gonna serve any cake? - whined a disappointed sugar addict...... Roland, her vampirino soul mate, sitting in a wing chair, piped up and said - You want me to run out to Wawa (a Philadelphia convenience store) and get some?....... Marianne didn't answer, but the sugar addict smiled and nodded vigorously. Roland was about to go, but the tasteful chatelaine, whose house this was, cleared her throat and said - Please, we've already taken enough chances with food in here. Please, no more crumbs, no more stains..... The sugar addict was crest fallen, till her mate leaned over and whispered - Wait til later. We'll get pancakes.

Have you ever seen a naked person seared on a red-hot griddle? - added Marianne....... Some just stared. A few silently shook their heads. And the sugar addict looked like she didn't want pancakes anymore....... Certain body parts tend to stick....the male genitalia..... the female nipples. Sometimes they come  right off............ Did they do that to your master, or the dominee, or whatever you call him? -  inquired a curious soul......... No - said the vampirina. But I 'did' see them do it to someone like you...........Oh, God. What did  you do? - asked the look-alike...... I laughed - said Marianne. I simply broke down and laughed...... 

When you gonna tell us about your capture? - said a bored Mafia nephew with too much to spend.

Don't rush me - said the miraculous, 'young' lady. And she gave him a look that said she meant business......

But in truth she was ready to tell all.......

<><><><><><><><>< M ><><><><><><><><>

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Tuesday, April 24, 2012


This is what the woman with the Jolly Rancher said . She said - You were telling us that vampires have to be practical...... Marianne chuckled for a moment, locked her fingers in a prayerful position and continued. ............ I suppose most of you see me and think - What does such a creature need with practicality? This one who can fly. This one who never, or almost never, dies. This one who has met the grandchildren of Monctezuma..... But the truth is we do die. Tell me: how many billion year old vampires have you seen? And  do you think trading bon mots with a pretender to the Aztec Throne pays for 'familiars?' Oh, they may be loyal, but they still need snug, little condominiums, after all. What are they supposed to do, sleep on steam vents? Though I must say I've spent many a rich and enjoyable night trading universal truths over steam vents. The homeless see so much. 

And then she added - We had to get out of Antwerp. I could not smell it, but my master could. Agents of The Inquisition moved all about us, slithering into and out of shadows with a practiced grace known only to the best vampirinos. Although these monsters were quite mortal. You see, Antwerp was in Flanders, a region tinged by the Spanish court. While other cities (mostly to the north) had drawn  together into The Kingdom of the Netherlands. The Dutch. You know them. I'm sure you do. They were here before William Penn. I saw them during my time with the Leni-Lenapi. Does not the second river of this venerable city bear a fine Dutch name? Schuylkill, am I right? I love the boat houses...the rowing teams...the regattas... the rich, young, fine, red blood. No sprite of  The Athenian Wood ever spent such magic nights as I, along the banks of that special place. Imagine a forest of cherry trees, known only to the young........ Excuse me....(she looked up) But, Roland, you know........ And the other elferino in the room quietly said that he did...

Would you tell us of those nights spent in boat houses? - asked a powdered old lady with twinkling eyes.......... Marianne gestured theatrically and said - Madam, please! I am discreet.......... No, no - said an earnest young academic. Please, tell us more about Antwerp...and The Inquisition. ....... So she did.....

Vampires are hard to catch. True, they were busy enough grabbing heretical Jews and Protestants. But an auto-da-fe with a life-eater (she clapped her hands), that was a true achievement. You won't read about them in history books. The Ecclesiastical authorities would never allow it. Let me tell you that. But such things did take place. And the spectacle was very much appreciated. They set up fine galleries for the notables. Common folk squeezed into the huge town square, as the victim, bound to a thick, oak stake, was borne  screaming toward his 'death.'  How did they do it? How did they capture such miraculous beings? Well, vampires cannot sublimate through lead. So they wove the ropes out of  fine, leaden wires and wrapped them 'round the poor soul head to toe...even 'round the skull... Before I go on, know this, solar immolation is fast. Death comes in seconds. But a real fire, a true fire takes longer, for vampires continue until the brain is gone......Imagine that......

And they did.....


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Monday, April 23, 2012


Lets not quibble - that's what the master said to me. He never addressed me as a child, but as an adult. We were wandering through a great house built during the last century. Antwerp was rich then and flush with Hapsburg silver fresh from the mines of Mexico..... I saw the grandchildren of Monctezuma once. I know that is not part of this tale, but I did. They were traveling through the Spanish Empire, the European portion, I mean, and we encountered them at a grand reception given by a rich, Flemish merchant. Oh, I suppose he had some sort of lesser patent of nobility. Such things were easy to acquire back then. The age of baronets, you know. And the Low Countries were no different.  But I was dressed just like a Castilian infanta. Look to the Spanish Masters. Those big skirts. You know. The vampires had made some rich kills, so we styled ourselves  as foreign aristocrats. Polish aristocrats, I believe we were. Not that we knew the language. French was good enough. All the best people spoke it. One of our number did have some knowledge of Krakow ( quite a beautiful, old, university city. you should see it sometime.) and that was more than adequate. 

The woman, one of the Aztec royals, I mean, sat sipping a frothy, chocolate concoction from a fine porcelain demitasse. She regaled her circle with tales of the lost family palace ( a place she had never seen). Each side measured more than six hundred feet. A stone lined canal brought lacquered gondolas right into the throne room, where her esteemed grandfather, last of The Great Speakers (their term for emperor) held court. How do I remember this? Well, I've heard many stories... lovely stories, Still hers were among the best. Lost worlds entrique me. Perhaps because I've seen so many come and go? I was still mortal then. She thought I was beautiful. See this fine, golden serpent I wear around my wrist? She gave it to me. Slipped it right off and gave it to me. It's a miracle I still have it....considering.

But what was I talking about, before I digressed? Don't you think some of the best anecdotes spill forth during digressions? I do........ A woman seated south of the grand piano (and discreetly sucking on an orange Jolly Rancher) raised her hand and said - 

Sunday, April 22, 2012


Please excuse any errors. I am channeling this too fast. It is I, Marianne. The old gentleman is all right. I gave him a few more drops. He's resting quietly. I think he just ate a piece of babka. The housekeeper has him out in the kitchen, or the 'morning room', or whatever they call it. I am 'of' this place and have been for the last few hundred years, but it is remarkable how little I know of the day to day life here.

The humans occupying the plush seats of this salon relish dramatic interludes like that. A sick old man just about to die? What could be better? Makes the price of admission so much more tolerable. They did pay ten thousand dollars 'a head' (I love that term) for the experience. So let's give them a show. Perhaps Roland will levitate over their heads again? We were going to release a 'cherub' or two, but it's not fair to them. Old as they are, they think and feel like babies.

Now, let me return to the narrow lanes of Old Antwerp. We left the cooperage and fled through the first weak light of dawn finding refuge in a root cellar. Odd, how many vampires pass daylight in  root cellars. If the haus fraus only knew. 'Cabbage heads,' that's what more fortunate life-eaters call them. They who have more secure, permanent abodes, I mean. And that was our routine for a few weeks. The dominee did allow me to witness a kill. I saw how he did it. Each of us goes through his own particular dance, rather like a courtship, with the 'final kiss' the marriage.  He downed the blood in rapid gulps. Some close their eyes. He did not, staring up at me through it all. And I could not turn away. The woman, Isabella, I believe she was called, swooned in his arms. And her little 'moorish' (the preferred term) slave boy kept fanning her through the whole ordeal. He giggled. It was all just a big puppet show to him.

I said - What are you laughing at, you little imp? Ain't you ever seen a lady die?.......... He said - Look! Look how one a her boobies fall out!..... And he fanned faster and laughed even more....... I said - Stop laughing. What are they gonna do with you after she gone?......... He thought for a moment and sat down, almost crushing the equally curious persian cat. Then he began to cry. I moved in to 'comfort' him, discreetly helping myself  to a few trickles of rich, warm blood. He never knew. I told you I rarely kill, so he was quite safe.

Then, when it was over and the deceitful courtesan was dead, we tarried a moment, watching the cold, blue fire turn the empty corpse to ash. That's how it is after a vampire kill. There are no bodies to hide. We are not ghouls, after all. Do I understand the artifice of it? No, I don't. But I'm happy just the same. And when they find the greasy sludge that's left, another legend of spontaneous human combustion will spin out upon the world.

I took some of her pearls. I did do that. The dominee pocketed a handful of jewels. He knew their berth. He'd been there before. Even the slave boy benefited from her hasty departure, festooning his person with rings and baubles.

After, we three slipped out into the night, searching for an open coffee house. There to sit and savor the aroma. Low Country coffee was so good back then. I'm not sure Starbucks even knows the like.  The slave boy, or former slave boy, had three cups, as we huddled in the high backed, dark, wood booth considering our next move.

The first thing we did was ditch that ridiculous, opera-house, turban. He (the little boy, I mean) didn't need it anymore. And the scullery maid was so grateful. She wore it to swab the cups. A clean rag would have served her (and the oblivious patrons) so much better. 

A strong, quiet sea captain (perhaps he was, in fact, a pirate, but let's not be too picky), himself one quarter African, enthroned in a nearby booth, promised to take the boy and raise him as his own. So we said adieu to the little soon-to-be brigand and disappeared down an unnamed, garbage strewn cart-way.

I couldn't feel it. But the dominee could. Agents of  The Inquisition were hard on our heels. And the scent of fire pursued us.......


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We interrupt this story. Marianne cannot continue, at least not tonight. The old gentleman, the one she 'kissed' went into convulsions, apparently not caused by the 'kiss,' but brought on by something else. Roland, quite adept at telepathy, tastes a presence in the ether. It's strong. It's negative. And it's here in Philadelphia. An old adversary seems  to be back. The Brotherhood of Saint Shamus of Castle Mara has dispatched a monk...maybe two monks. The organization, completely unsanctioned by any mainstream church or denomination, sees itself as  an earthly manifestation of God's judgement. In some ways they're oddly similar to many vampires. But whereas the life-eaters cull the wicked, the 'Brotherhood' destroys 'enemies.'  And it does not take much to earn that label. 

Don't look for cassocks or robes. They do not wear them, preferring the simple, modest garb of working people. They're often accompanied by large dogs, former strays attracted by liberal handouts laced with human blood. It gives the canines a taste for what's to come. And while they obediently walk on lead by day, at night the packs run free, silently streaking through the knives aimed at human hearts. 

But the monks are always near, commanding them with quick, sharp snaps, or low, echoing whistles. See how they go to ground, disappearing behind dumpsters, hiding in shadows, padding down alleys. As near to invisible as corporal beings can be. Some say the larynx is removed. Some say they're bewitched.

The police know they're there. They have to. You know how gardeners like praying mantises, don't you? .... Well, then you understand. And you want to know something else?.... They know about 'our side' too. Nothing is ever said. The two never come together, but it's all just a case of 'my enemy's enemy is my friend.'

Keep your eyes open when you walk around late at night. Be quiet. And don't wear perfume or cologne. Look, I don't know what you're into, or what groups you belong to, but why make it easy for them? Better yet, take a cab..... And stay out of shadows.....

When you go out on the streets at're in for a big surprise.....

I'll tell you more. But they're closing in on two pathetic hookers on Seventeenth Street. Let me  go see if I can help.

Sometimes even disembodied spirits, like me, can do an awful lot.....


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Saturday, April 21, 2012


An hour or so before dawn the barrel maker's boy rapped on the trap door..... What? - said the dominee...... You see, vampires are not always poetic...... Can I open the door?- whispered the apprentice..... Yes. Come on. What is it? - said the blood drinker....... It will be light soon. The master will be here. What are you gonna do, kill him? - whispered the boy....... Why? Would you like that? - said the dominee......... The boy quickly nodded and smiled. My creator mussed his hair (already quite disheveled to begin with) and chuckled....... There are cutthroats aplenty for jobs like that. Speak to one of them. I, of course, am sworn to a slightly different guild.

Yet we could not simply run up the ladder-like steps and depart. I just shed my skin last night. And while the new, soft, perfect replacement was very much to my liking, I was naked and decidedly unprepared for  the pre-dawn streets of Antwerp. But the dominee, being a quick thinker, had matters well in hand...... Shuck down, boy. Peel off them clothes. - said the vampire...... What!?Why? - said the boy. You ain't gonna try no funny business, are you?...............My master said - Consider the situation. You've given shelter to vampires, tasted of our blood, slept eight feet above sharp-fanged denizens of the night, gleefully accepted money that I got from God knows where and you ask me if I'm  about to try 'something funny'!? She needs the clothes, boy. Peel down!......... The skinny, ginger haired barrel boy obliged. And sixty heartbeats later (or maybe seventyfive) I was arrayed in the clean, but simple garb of a fourteen year old boy. You know, at our age, boys and girls are much the same size. The 'interior' garments (what you would call underwear) were a wee bit roomy through the crotch, but beggars can't be choosers. And at least he had no lice. Not that I, as a blood drinker, had to worry about such stow-aways, but still........

The skinny, shivering red head said - What'll I tell the master? He'll call the beadle, he will. I know it...... Well, then this is a time for decisions. Do you WANT  to make barrels for the rest of your life? - said my maker...... The boy shook his head...... And are you aware just how much two gold florins will buy? - he added........ The boy looked down at the huge coins barely contained in his hot, little hand....... Go, boy. Run! Live the life of a country squire. You can do that now. Here's three more (the naked youth almost fainted). Sail to New Amsterdam. Become a patroon. Hob-nob with savages. Dance with painted ladies. Go, go, go! The world awaits!...... Two heartbeats later, the 'casually' attired youth pushed open the door and bashfully scrambled out into the chill, low country darkness. And his fortunate descendants own five percent of Lower Manhattan today.

Half an hourglass later I made my  first kill, a fat and juicy, sneering cut-purse... My God, the blood tasted good!

I still prefer meat eaters. Vegetarian serum holds no  great charm for me. And although such as I am, an elferina - vampirina, kills are rare, I never-the-less savor a 'full meal' every now and then.......

With that confession,  some in the audience pushed back in their seats. 

Even the spaniels looked scared.

Wait til I tell them 'bout the cold, iron box.....

<~<~<~<~<~<~<~<~< M >~>~>~>~>~>~>~>~>

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Thursday, April 19, 2012


There was a door fronting the alley. The dominee sublimated his hand through the stout oak boards and fiddled with the heavy, iron bolt. Four heartbeats later we entered into a workshop of sorts...a cooperage... a place where they made barrels. Moonlight streamed in through  high clerestory windows, painting each surface with a silvery-gray sheen. My senses had already begun to change. I could smell the wood. I  could smell the resin. A scared, apprentice, sleeping under one of the large chipped tables gasped. The dominee chuckled . His image appeared to flicker for an instant and then he was down on the floor, right by the trembling young boy.......... Please, don't kill me. Please, don't kill me - whispered the youth.......... The ersatz churchman reached into a vest pocket and pulled out a golden coin. It glittered in the watery light........ Shhhhh - said the dominee. Not tonight, my tender acolyte. Not tonight. Here, take this. I suppose there is a cellar here abouts?.........The boy quickly nodded - There, under the other table. See the ring? Lift it up..............His vampire interrogator simply gestured and the wide, planked portal instantly flew up, banging down onto the ancient, wooden surface......... The apprentice giggled nervously. He wanted to run. The dominee could tell. But quick, young rabbits draw wolves. And the municipal night-watch was something they could do without. So he hugged the boy close and just barely kicked open the skin of his ear. Then he licked off a drop, tasted it, bit into his own finger tip and gave it back, right into the boy's open mouth. The young man shuddered for a heartbeat. Then he belched. The dominee smiled, turned to Marianne and said - That, my dear, is how you make 'familiars.' (semi-bewitched helpers) ..... Am I right, boy?....... The newly minted, wide eyed, henchman nodded........ Now, allow us our privacy. Guard well the doors and warn us lest the beadles (municipal guards) come...... Then he sweetened the deal with another gold piece , grabbed Marianne and hurried down the ladder-like stairs, as the trapdoor obediently slammed shut behind them. The enchanted boy crawled over to the front window, ever so slightly pushed back the canvas drapery and gazed out onto the dark, rough, cobbled street... a human cat.... and just as silent.

They found a hidden corner down below and settled in for the strange ordeal yet to come....... Marianne said - My skin. It itches. It crawls!..... She manically scratched at her forearms. But the vampire mentor simply brushed her hands away and embraced her, as he breathed into her ear - Fear not. It is but the Metamorphosis. It is but 'the change'..... The door has closed. You can't go back....... Welcome to the darkness.........

And then her skin began to peel and crack, starting at her hairline and running down her body. He ripped off her ragged garment and tore the fetid membrane away. Then he cleaned her like a mother cat and held her till she slept...........

The words came out of the old gents mouth. Marianne had not said a thing. The people attending this miraculous exhibition just stared , as Roland passed 'round some wine........

<~<~<~<~<~<~<~<~< M >~>~>~>~>~>~>~>~>

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Wednesday, April 18, 2012


And then it happened. I saw a glow, a nebulous light upon the rough, stone wall. The rats saw it too. I could hear their frightened cries, as they scurried through the cracks. 

A face appeared. Was it just an illusion? A play of light and shadow upon the uneven surface of the wall? But it seemed to move beyond the wall, into the very space of my prison. I backed into a far corner. What manner of necromancy was this? Now remember. I was all alone, a vulnerable waif in the presence of my enemies...... and I was terrified. A cool, blue, luminence flickered over the form of a being, as it emerged from the dead, hard rocks. And ten heartbeats later, the master stood before me. I screamed. He crushed my against his chest  to stifle the noise. A guard banged on the door --- Rats got your tongue?.....he said. 

But this was no spirit. My master was here. He had not been killed. He had not been captured. The dominee was 'alive.' He whispered in my ear -- Quiet. Quiet. I've come to set you free........... I looked into his glittering eyes and said --- How? ....... For there were secrets known to vampires I had never learned.

He said - All in good time. Do you trust me, child?....... I nodded. Then he wrapped me in his arms and kissed my head. I felt the heat pass through me. No, it was more than heat. It was an energy. We rose up from the flagstones till our feet dangled just off the surface. Two souls suspended in a gossamer cloud. His strength flowed through me. The very matter of our bodies was transformed. And we passed back through the thick, stone wall. I felt the pressure. I felt the friction, as each molecule of the igneous rock pulled against the particles of my being. And then it was over. The air was clean. I was free. Well, in a manner of speaking. His teeth dug deep into my neck, drawing forth the blood. I swooned. He bore me into a nearby alley, there to finish the deed......... I give to you . And you give to me. True love. True love..... That's a very old song... but somehow very apt.

And ten score heartbeats hence it was over. My life was done. The journey just beginning....

The Elferina - Vampirina was born. And how do you know my tale is true? ( she flashed them a sly, little smile, showing her teeth)....Ask him (gesturing toward the dapper, old gent she'd kissed before). He knows........... The old gent nodded and wept.

No one said a world. The salon was quiet. And only the clocks ticked on.......

<~<~<~<~<~<~<~<~< M >~>~>~>~>~>~>~>~>

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Tuesday, April 17, 2012


Every person here has something to say. They're creative, most in literature, commentary or the performing arts, some in the business sphere too. Here are their names, TWITTER SITES and BLOGS. If you have any questions, or would like to share some personal insights, please leave a COMMENT. Thank you. ----- Billy

writes THE HYBRID SERIES of paranormal, psycho-sexual thrillers available on
And selling rather briskly, I might add...... in addition to the compelling SPIRIT saga highlighting the intriguing world of the Spiritualist Movement. (moving quite well too!)

countless BOOKS and stories told with a Southern 'CHARM' and enchanted voice, such as THE SANCTUARY SAGA, NO HARM TO CHARM, TEST OF FAITH and CHARMS OF THE SISTERHOOD..Truly an established franchise.

noted actress and author of the autobiographical
romance detailing her special time with JFKjr, COME TO THE EDGE... It's all true. She lived it.

make sure  to visit the blog for info on published stories, anthologies and more. Unique take on contemporary fantasy. Very active in East Coast literary circles. Magic doesn't solve everything... New hit story A ROCK IS A ROCK IS A ROCK...OR IS IT? featured in the acclaimed TALES OF FORTANNIS anthology.... an LARP companion.

Rumor has it his creation, the all knowing, hyper observant vampire, Alexios, will soon make a foray onto the pages of a major glossy, helming an advice/social critique column a la Carrie Bradshaw's famous offerings in SATC. Visit the blog for a taste of what's to  come.

Creator of the well recieved - THE NEW ADVENTURES OF BABY JESUS series, an irreverent, though well meaning 'take' on ....well, actually, just about everything... SNL with a heart.

Leader of an extremely popular L.A. literary/media salon featuring stars (for real) and 'about to be's' in a series of pivotal events providing insights and info... Look for her book DON'T JUMP real soon.

the cultivated, intelligent, VOICE OF MADRID...a decidedly European take on business, society and contemporary life. Ask a few questions. You'll learn a lot.

Like Vegas? She KNOWS Vegas. She REALLY knows Vegas. In fact, some call her THE VOICE OF VEGAS too. What do you want to know? Follow. She'll answer...

Celebrity kingpin of what's become the hottest, wittiest, talk-humor-political commentary site on the web.. If you're not following this one...why? Look for countless other sites, such as Huffington Post, blogs and more.

more blurbs on such people/sites as the inimitable 
.@curriegraham - (talented, well liked TV/film personality)
.@BobBalaban - (truly memorable character portrayals) 
.@MrCraigBierko - (acclaimed actor)
.@WendyLiebman- (creator of contemporary comedy)
.@Pretty_Veggie (creator of contemporary cuisine)
.@ChristineVarchon- (WOW! what a filmography!)
.@Roger Grubbs - (movie in the works too!)
.@timkatent-(jazz/music notable)
    Mister .@david_steinberg - (comedy voice of a
    plus many, many more.............................

Are you one of the 'more'?....... Well, leave a COMMENT. Who knows.

For as Doctor Frank-en-furter says ~~Don't just dream it. Be it. ......... (sounds facile, but it's true)

And another thing...Check out these people and sites. We know what we're talking about... Just gotta say--- with the warm weather months upon us, .@dhagburg is an expert 'bout the REAL Jersey Shore. 

<~<~<~<~<~<~< BILLY >~>~>~>~>~>~>

Monday, April 16, 2012


Get me a chair. I want to sit down - said the willowy elferina. Someone grabbed a petit point Queen Anne chair from a corner near the Baldwin concert grand and silently placed it near her. She sat down. Her hands were shaking. She asked for a drink. Elferina-Vampirinas can imbibe certain liquids. They do drink blood, after all. Oh, not milk. Not juice. Not broth. Not anything we'd recognize as food. But various forms of distilled or fermented beverages fill the need quite well. Roland was used to this. He passed her a fine, old, sterling flask. Some attribute it to Paul Revere, but I cannot vouch for that. I believe it held some sort of vodka...perhaps a flavored Grey Goose. I know she liked the bottles. So she screwed off the lid and drank. Some present were startled to see a young  girl, or what looked like a young girl, drink like that. But please understand that is not what she is. Marianne sees the world through knowing eyes. Oh, she still has a natural, child-like innocence at times...but only at times.

Then she resealed the flash, closed her eyes and continued....... To this very night, I know not how long I stayed in that hole. They fed me gruel in a dirty bucket.....Just enough to keep me alive. Mustn't deprive the fires. A priest came in from time to time. He asked me to recant. He asked me to take vows. But I was unschooled in such matters and knew not what to say. So they labeled me a succubus , or a witchling, or some other troublesome demon. 

There were other martyrs in that place. I did not know it then, but I found out later.....after my.... nocturnal debut. 'Jugged Hares' they called them...entombed in small niches, resembling nothing so much as standing coffins. Food (such as it was) and water ran in through a narrow opening about two or three feet over the victims head. A similar opening in the floor caught the slops. There was no way out. They were bricked in. Well, actually they used rough, gray stones, but you get the picture. Victims stood, or leaned against the walls till the skin on their feet fell away. Legs swelled like balloons. Can you imagine, feverishly trying to scrap dung and piss down that little hole with torn, red, blood-soaked feet? Thank God that was not me. 

Though I was tortured. To what end, I cannot say. There was nothing I could tell them. I suppose they did it for fun. Two men would come for me. Each time I expected the flames. But that was yet to be. They ripped off my tunic and washed me in a cold, bronze tub. An old woman, a matron of sorts, kept watch. She'd chuckle and say - Careful, careful, don't rub the naughty bits...... And the men would just laugh. Why was I bathed? Well, mustn't spread contagion to my innocent tormentors. Mustn't do that........ Let's see. What games did they like best. Hot pinchers was a favorite. But being young and tender, I passed out much too quickly.

Did you know it is possible to tickle someone to death? Especially if the 'tickle master' is well versed in the art. First they laid me on a table and anointed my skin with oil. Then came the 'touching'...... a brushing.....a caress, followed by pleasure. That part was sublime. But all good things must pass. Soon I laughed and shrieked like a mad woman...for I could hardly breath. Coughing comes next. Then choking. They'd stop for a while. But then they'd start again. 

Perfumed grandees, the sons of magnates and what not, slithered down to watch the proceedings and bet on my demise. But I did not die, although I heaved up buckets full of blood. And they'd toss semi-precious stones to my tormentors, as 'thank  yous' for such entertaining delights. 

The worst part came later. They'd wrap me in a dirty tunic  and throw me in the cell. The rats can smell the blood. The rats can smell the sweat. But movement seemed to keep them away. So I'd run from wall to wall, scrapping against the stones...till I could run no more.....

Death would have been like paradise.....

<~<~<~<~<~<~<~<~< M >~>~>~>~>~>~>~>~>

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vampire wonderland: ANOTHER WORTHY DISCOVERY YOU MAY ENJOY~~~~~~~~

vampire wonderland: ANOTHER WORTHY DISCOVERY YOU MAY ENJOY~~~~~~~~: Explore the narrative universe of  ANDREW HARDING .    Each evocative book a stepping stone on a path to the TRUTH . Welcome to a world of P...

Sunday, April 15, 2012

vampire wonderland: The Book of Sarah~~~A BLAST FROM THE PAST

vampire wonderland: The Book of Sarah: We settled in. Sarah kept vampire's hours. She had a room, a very nice room with a view of the Rittenhouse Square Park and everything. But s...


Fans of the Live-Action-Role-Playing game THE ALLIANCE will want to look for the new book TALES OF FORTANNIS~~~~~ A Bard's Eye View featuring the story A Rock is a Rock is a Rock... Or is it? by fantasy's own Judy Ross. Follow her on TWITTER at @jthomasross and visit her site at

<~<~<~<~<~ .@jthomasross ~>~>~>~>~>


Explore the narrative universe of  ANDREW HARDING.  Each evocative book a stepping stone on a path to the TRUTH. Welcome to a world of PASSION and POWER, hiding in plain sight among the byways of contemporary BRITAIN. Experience the PRIVATE MOMENTS of privileged beings KISSED by a VAMPIRE, yet left among the living. THE HYBRID SAGA..............Get it now on  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ follow at @AndrewHarding4 on TWITTER and visit the blog at

falling in love again.
never wanted to.
what am I to do?
can't help it..... 

<~<~<~<~ ANDREW HARDING BOOKS ~>~>~>~>

O. G. Tomes: Okay, so I couldn't settle on just here a...

O. G. Tomes: Okay, so I couldn't settle on just here a...: EXCERPTS from "See the Light" Book 3 of  "The Sanctuary Saga" Rain & Patrick: The music playing on the old jukebox in the the Tribute B...


O. G. Tomes: AVAILABLE NOW!: "No Harm to Charm", the new edited and revised edition, along with "The Charms of the Sisterhood" series are currently available at amazon.c...

Saturday, April 14, 2012


The housekeeper is all right. We laid her out on the little sofa in the morning room  and ladled some Jack Daniels (spiked with a few drops of Roland's blood) down her throat. That did the trick...healed her up real quick. You regulars know that. You know what Life-Eater blood can do. So did the Nazis. That's how Hitler survived the Stauffenburg Affair. But that is another story. Five minutes later I was back in the salon. A few people had stepped out for cigarettes, so we thought it was only right to wait for their return. We sang show tunes til they came back. Everybody knows a little 'GYPSY.'  'Once I was a schlepper. Now, I'm Miss Mazepper'..... old, rich , humans love that stuff..... Oh! That gives me an idea. you know who I look like?.....Eponine, or whatever her name was. You know. The poetic looking one from 'Les Miserables?'  I have hair like that too. And being Walloon, which is a witches nipple away from being French, possess a certain way with hats. The pointed ears contribute a gamin quality as well, don't you know. 

Now, back to my 'transformation.'

The power of suggestion works on vampires too. My protectors feared Jews' Blood, especially shed from saintly rabbis. They believed it came down in an unbroken line from Biblical times and so was closest to what might rest in The Holy Grail. When sprinkled with the easy-to-come-by commodity (the crime of Jew-Killing being a gray area at best), said vampires collapsed onto the ground and proceeded to thrash around, clawing at their cheeks and shrieking fitting verses from Dante........ That (the blood, I mean) coupled with a few slashes from the 'murdered bride' swords, rendered them helpless as little girls. Vicious men-at-arms walked among them, pinching vampirina tender spots and kicking the vampirinos most cruely.

I raced from victim to victim, trying to revive them...trying to make them feel their own strength, but it was no use. They cried and convulsed and pushed me away. As dawn was approaching, they also feared the sun. Perhaps you cannot imagine what that's immolation, I mean. Or maybe you can. Ever see the shadows left behind in Hiroshima?.....Four thousand degrees Fahrenheit... twice as hot as lava. Each molecule of matter torn away from all the rest. Is it instantaneous?...... No, it is not..... Every neuron that can possibly feel pain, feels pain and to a degree unmatched in all creation. So you can well understand how easy it was to herd them into the leaden carriages. What did they do with them after that? They tortured them. What did you expect? This is The Inquisition we're talking about. My God..... True, certain comely specimens were sold to nearby princelings, where they were used for life-extending cocktails.... curiosities held in menageries, the same as talking parrots, or  nimble little pygmies. And in return for a 'life' of pleasure, some were quite content. Vampires have a 'physical' side too. It's not just about the blood.

I, on the other hand. was fated to be killed..... a mortal child.....a baptized mortal child, sullied by my companions and so destined for the flames. They locked me in a cold, stone room and left me there for days.........Just darkness..... Just silence..... Just sorrow......Small bundles of fetid life scurried 'round in the blackness, but I was blind to them, though I sometimes felt their touch...

My only chance was the 'dominee'..... for that one still roamed free...

<~<~<~<~<~<~<~<~< M >~>~>~>~>~>~>~>~>

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