Monday, May 16, 2016

Blood Runs Thin (Original Series)

Marcus Johansen was the leader of the House of Roue, the most powerful human alive, but he cowered in the corner of his panic room, staring at the monitors that quietly screeched static at him. The room shook with each pounding explosion, shaking loose dirt and debris from untold nooks and crannies. Panic threatened to overwhelm him as his breathing was rapid and ragged, his heartbeat pounded in his ears. Another pounding came, a monitor shook loose and crashed to the floor. He shrieked, and clutched at himself tighter and tighter, terrified at the things at his doorstep. 

Silence finally fell, even the gentle hum of gunfire was gone, something he only just noticed. Slowly the dignitary stood, his back still pressed to the wall, his eyes locked on the solid steel door. He prayed they had relented or had perished, prayed whatever was out there causing chaos and destroying his home were gone. He felt hope well up in him, maybe he was safe. The whole house shook again, metal from the door groaned and creaked. Terror took the sounds from him before he could make them.

The door deformed, degree by degree, inch by inch, pieces that were welded shut popped open, rivets sprang out. All he could do was watch in abject horror as his last line of security finally screamed a metallic cry and was wrenched from the frame outwards. The human leader felt his bladder let loose its contents as his eyes made out two figures in the dusty hole in the wall; one massive, one much smaller, but seemingly much more lethal. A voice slithered through the wreckage, dark and violent, "Marcus Johansen, Leader of the House of Roue, your presence is requested." 

The human tried to answer, but his voice was still locked from sheer and utter terror. The giant shadow remained in darkness, but the smaller one stepped through the frame, a vision out of a nightmare. Eyes glowing red, skin beyond pale with ribbons of purple and black veins, fingers longer than any humans, clothes tattered from fire and bullets, and awash in blood, it dripped from long fangs and claws. The crimson liquid made small trails in the dust and debris as the vampire walked forward. "Forgive my rudeness. I'm Michael, that's Raecien. And you will be coming with us."

As Michael got closer to Marcus the human could feel his world go dark, his vision narrowed, and finally his breath sigh out as he fainted. For a long time the world was darkness with flashes of the outside world making it's way through the fog. He caught a glimpse of his home, torn asunder, pure, white walls now stained red with blood and viscera, a man begged for his life only to have his skull crushed, his brains adding to the gore, a car, and finally large glass windows. He slept for a time, the horror of the world gone, for now.

Marcus knew he was upside down, knew he was swaying, but he couldn't figure out why. A soft, gentle, almost musical voice cooed to him, "Marcus. It's time to wake up. Oh, Marcus." Finally the human opened his burning eyes and saw the vampire with the purple eyes, his shoulder length black hair, and chiseled, perfect features. "Oh dear God. I'm going to die, aren't I? You're going to kill me!" There were more words, but they all became a mess of blubbering. Michael smiled at him, almost sweetly, "No, Marcus, no. You'll live a long and happy life, as long as you help us." 

The human sobbed, but tried to ask how, the vampire answered the question, "You're going to tell me where to get as much gold as I can. All the gold to fund an army. And if you do that, you'll live." Marcus' blubbering had slowed enough to speak, "You promise me you won't kill me. I'll tell you how and where to get everything you need." Michaels hand rested on his ribs gently and the swaying stopped, "I promise." The leader of the house of Roue extended his hand, it shook as it waited confirmation from his captor. The vampire's hand was like ice, but they shook on the deal.

The giant wolf that was with him at the house appeared and dropped Marcus down gently as he sobbed his thanks. It took hours for all the information to be conveyed, all the layouts of safe houses, all the caches of personal wealth, every ounce of gold accounted for. After the plan was concocted Raecien was silent as he escorted the human to a small room with no windows, the door locked behind their human guest. Mixed feelings ran through him as he thought about his betrayal. He had bought his way to life with the money and lives of others. He dismissed the entire thing and slept.

It felt like days, but he doubted it had been that long, he was fed a few times, so that was no successful measure of time. Then the door opened and Michael entered, "Well, my dear friend. Everything was successful. We have the gold, we will raise an army soon. And I just wanted to thank you, personally, for all you've done. But our friendship is at an end, and I'm afraid you must be added to the list of casualties." Panic flooded through the human, "But...but you said you wouldn't kill me!" The vampire had stood and was nearly at the door before he turned back, "I did. And I'm not."

Raecien replaced the small, thin, vampire. All words had left Marcus and he could only repeat 'Oh, dear God!' Over and over, as he watched the wolf change into something even more frightening than his already gigantic stature. Before long the giant wolf was just that: A giant wolf. It loomed over him, his steps thudded in the quiet room, drowning out the prayers. It roared a triumphant call. The last thing Marcus heard was his skull being crushed between the massive jaws of the beast as his scream echoed.

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