Tuesday, November 5, 2013


After the old reprobate came down from his apparatus, he put on one of his usual outfits, namely a deep green, Philadelphia Eagles sweat suit and some sort of sneakers. I suppose he wore some sort of socks too, but knowing Doctor Franklin, I cannot vouch for underwear.  Then he and his guests went into The Quarters, a special residence, updated over the centuries, where the venerable scientist holds court. It's an expansive, commodious space, decorated like a Pennsylvania country house, circa seventeen eighty or so... rich, but not showy. Indeed, old money Philadelphians still ape that style.  And although underground, every room had windows featuring computer generated views appropriate for to the time ( late colonial-federalist). Fine, black phaetons passed down the lane drawn by matched pairs of superior horseflesh. Gleeful lads splashed in a pond across the way. Pheasants strolled about the carefully rolled lawn. Tomas was used to all this, but the young filmmakers were not and downed their vintage madeira  rather quickly. 

The doctor explained quantum harmonics to them, a science based on his work , beginning with the first armonica all those years ago. Back then it was a musical device... crystalline discs all in a row, suspended on a long, thin, copper rod and tuned like a harp. Each one freely rotated, kept moist by a shallow pan of water running the length of the contraption and suspended down below. But over the years the thing made more than music. Complex chords and combinations there of effected things. Dried houseplants revived. Dead flies gathering dust on a sill absorbed vapors from the ether and lived again. Upon further investigation, the scientist-statesman formulated a table... a chart, detailing each discreet harmonic and it's properties, rather like Mendeleev's Periodic Table of the Elements. Certain formula were beneficial to humans, preserving them indefinitely via a break down of any oxidizing elements and other such destructive substances. Now the tones were all on computer, but two or three actual armonicas of various sizes were still kept simply because the doctor liked them. Others bathed in the sound web too, though few achieved the near immortality of it's inventor. Three hundred and ten years he was, or there abouts. Though upon close inspection not more than perhaps eighty... Some said seventy six. He and the vampire had been fast friends since well before The Revolution. They studied all manner of unusual beings in the compound, night-folk being but one variety. Mer-folk, yetis and a Jersey Devil or two also called the Bureau home. Though none were prisoners and permitted to leave should they so desire. Indeed, the salt water filled mer-folk tubes and channels were quite beautiful. 

But Tomas' actions concerning the young filmmakers were fast and instinctive. He wanted to save them. Now they're here and they have questions....

The vampire explained ...  Spies are everywhere- he said.... do you think the mafia peters out and ends? No, it does not. No self-serving organization truly does. The snoops and sneak thieves on the perimeter mesh with others of their kind on the opposite shore. In that way secrets become absorbed and known to all manner of adversary. Believe me. The mafia already knows of your film..... The second youth piped up and said - It wasn't a film. It was live feed. We streamed it..... Doesn't matter - sighed the vampire. They know and they will kill you..... Yeah, but they saw what you did to him too. They saw you kill that hit man. They know. They know your a vampire - said the first..... Tomas just sized him up and said - Well, maybe I'll kill you..... The youths pushed back in their chairs..... But Doctor Franklin laughed and Tomas smiled. Though the man on the hundred dollar bill did say they'd stay there til things blew over. Tomas wanted it that way. Vampires dote on certain individuals. To some they're saints. To others monsters. The boys, although they might not realize it now, were in the first group. And they jumped at the chance to don plastic ponchos so they could witness Tomas dispatch a particularly vile sort of evil doer... a serial killer fond of ice picks up the nose. Thrust hard and fast enough and the thin, fine, ivory-like bone at the base of the brain cracks. Ancient Egyptians used a similar method to rid the body of this rapidly decaying tissue. But their 'victims' were dead, whereas this noxious practitioner operated on the living, although they would not be that way for long. Ride the subways he did... late at night.... Often he and his prey were alone, rocking back and forth through the tunnels underground. Do you know how the lights in the cars blink out every once in a while? Well, the killer likes that, quickly switching seats, til perched right by the side of the soon to go bye-bye. Sometimes they'd scream, but so did the wheels upon the cold, steel track, so that didn't matter. He'd grab them in the dark, twist the head, the better to aim his tool and thrust home. Legs would twitch... eyes roll back... mouths spew foam... not too much, but enough... and it would be done. Shhh, here comes the stop. The killer departs, silently blending with the night, while his gruesome companion rides on, til discovered by some unfortunate soul. The mole-folk found him. The killer,I mean... and brought him here. Tomas does not usually dine this often. Vampires are like snakes in that regard. But tonight he's executioner and eager to make the sacrifice. 

They'll do it in one of the deep, cement chambers, like surgical theaters in a very strange hospital. And the boys have the option of watching 'from the bench.' 

One seems eager, the other not so much... Tomorrow we'll see how it goes. While up above and quite close by an early rush hour starts in the pre-dawn darkness. Cars speed through the sharp, cold night, streaming toward the city on 'I-95.'... A mundane world for mundane people.

But you, my friends, who visit here know better...


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