I strode through the streets of the burgeoning city, past the refuse and the rabble. The air was fresh, the stench of the days waste blown off by the cool evening breeze. The night was filled with sound, the clack of hooves as horses drew coaches along the water front, the sound of children running off to mischief, and beneath it all, the quiet moan of the beggars in their alleys, like a soft hum behind the city.
I was contemplating immortality. It is amazing how often immortals contemplate their own quixotic existence. I remember musing that if I lasted long enough, I would be the proof for or against all of those apocalyptic notions that people had entertained over the years. Of course if the apocalypse came, would it take me with it? Or instead, would I be left on earth alone, my only companion, for an eternity. A fate worse than hell.
Musing on immortality made me hungry, as it often does. For some reason thoughts on my own perpetual existence made me long to bring a mortal to their inevitable end.
It was then that I saw her. Young, petite, really quite pretty actually. Long blond hair fell down below her shoulders where it fanned out in a golden halo around her head.
But I wasn’t interested in her appearance. Its the whispers I heard floating from her mind like silver tendrils that caught my attention. It turns out that she was a widower, the wife of a wealthy man, who had passed mysteriously.
Deeper, darker whispers told the tale of the foul deed. Murder… a bit of poison lacing a glass of wine, poured by her own hand. A clever poison, designed to make his death look natural. A clever plan, from a twisted child.
I stalked her for a while, watching her move. I love to gaze upon my victims. Its like reading a book where you already know the ending, but you still have yet to discover the beginning and the middle.
She walked alone, which was unusual for a woman of her standing to do at night in this great city. Crime was everywhere, fueled by the intense poverty that the populace at large wallowed in. I used this very fact as my pretense to approach.
“Hello my dear… You really should not be walking unescorted at this hour.”
A shy smile, a few pleasantries, and then her arm looped in mind. I knew she was falling under my spell. I didn’t even have to listen to the whispers of her consciousness.
“I live just down Kings Crossing, in a townhouse near the palace.” She grinned playfully, “I know a shortcut, if you aren’t too timid.”
I looked at her with a measured gaze my own dark eyes meeting her innocent blue orbs. ” Lead on my dear.”
As we walked I took my measure of her. I could smell her now, not just the fragrance she used to mask her body, nor the scents emanating from the pores of her skin. No, this close I could smell her blood, that warm wet river rushing through her body. I could hear her heart. Its steady beat hypnotized me, until I was walking in a daze, my lustful hunger my only focus.
As we entered the alley I became quite aroused, the dark shadows inviting me in, promising the privacy necessary to do my dark deed.
I take it as a point of honor that I have, for the most part, learned to control my beastly nature. Otherwise I would have taken her there, on the street. I could make it look like an embrace, and then escape quickly enough, and without a trace. She would seem to faint and then….
But… when temptation sits so close, and the hunger grows too great, I do occasionally lose my head.
That is why I did not notice the silver nets falling on me from all sides. I barely noticed the pinch of darts, injecting me with zinc arnon. It was almost a full second, an eternity to my kind, before I was able to break my gaze from this golden angel enough to notice the ambush that was falling upon me.
Suddenly there were men dressed in black everywhere, falling from the sky by ropes. They carried crossbows and even from a distance I could smell the alchemical mix that tipped those darts. In fact I could feel it even then, within my own body, starting to work its poisonous devices on my insides.
I only had a moment. The nets that had fallen on me were good, but I knew the trick. I couldn’t break the silver but i could stretch it, pulling the cords that wove it together apart, I was able to just barely slip through the resulting hole. A preternaturally swift sweep of my hands wiped clear the two darts that had embedded in my leg..
Still the poison was doing its work, and I was starting to feel groggy. I looked up at the blond girl, who suddenly seemed less innocent, and was able to hear the thoughts clearly streaming from her mind “Vile creature… Simpering fool…”
She pulled a small blade from somewhere and I could see the red glint of vampiric blood staining the sharp edge of the knife. I hesitated a moment… who were these people?
Then suddenly the men were upon me and she was moving at a speed that seemed far too quick for any normal human woman. I fell back, avoiding her thrust, then leaped into the air. It was a good jump, bringing me level with the second story of the walls forming the alley, and giving me enough height to grasp the ledge of someones window.
Above me I could see the form of men, robed in black, lining the roof tops, charging my position. The air was filled with the buzz of cruel darts, fired at me from every direction.
Seeing no other alternative I swung myself up, and then smashed through the shutters that held the window closed fast. There was a scream as a woman fell back at my entrance, but I ignored her, hurrying through the house, searching desperately for some way to escape. I made my way through her kitchen ignoring the woman, and passing on into the front.
As I made my way to the door I heard a man scream and felt a board of wood slam into me from behind. I was un-phased but still, disappointed in myself. Ambushed twice in the same night. It was pathetic.
I didn’t bother with the man, I just simply opened the door, and disappeared down the hall. Briefly I contemplated the main entrance, but dismissed the thought figuring it would already be blocked.
These people were organized, they would know to cover my exits.
Instead I broke through a doorway down the hall. This time I entered the home of an elderly couple. the man didn’t even bother waking up from his chair by the fire, but the woman did have time to scream before I swept out through to her kitchen which was a mirror of the previous one.
I carefully, quickly, unfastened the shutters, and then made my escape out into the night. Luckily this window faced out on an open square, so I was able to quickly disappear amongst the crowds that passed below. I did not hesitate to immediately put some distance between myself and that ill fated place.
It wasn’t until several days later that I was able to get any information about who that blond demon and her brood had been.