Monday, April 20, 2009

Blood is Thicker than Water: Interim Moments

I wasn't sure how long I had flown in the swamp when I finally regained myself. My encounter with Mr. Hyland and the old woman had chilled me to the bone. Obviously I couldn't trust myself around living human beings. What Shalimar had said to me was true. I really was an outcast to my own kind. Nevertheless, my course of action was clear. I had to warn my niece and my friends of Shalimar's plans. I didn't want Abby to end up as a human sacrifice at a ceremony. And, even though officially I was one of the other team now, I didn't want New Orleans to become undead territory. Heaven knew where the epidemic would spread from there.

Flying was easy once I had discovered accidentally how to do it. Winging my way to New Orleans was fast. Finding my way out of the swamp meant merely attuning myself to my prey. The blood of the people cried to me, and the beating of hearts pounded in my ears. How I long for the taste of blood, I who had never tasted it before! But I kept my purpose firmly in mind, and I headed for the place I thought Abby most likely to be, at Miss May Pettijohn's school.


The vampires whom Shalimar sent to look for Simpson and Doyle after dark were handpicked by Shalimar herself. They were to make sure that the detective and his apprentice were gone, or they were to destroy them. Shalimar hoped that the latter was the case; she had told them she wanted the detective's death to be a bloody one if possible. Shalimar knew Simpson better than Simpson thought she did. The detective had never been know to give in easily, in spite of his professed weaknesses and fears. But search as the vampires could, they could not find their quarry, and they began to believe their queen's enemies were gone.

Cheated of their night's hunt, they swooped toward Congo Square in the hopes of finding equally delectable prey. They didn't see the dazzling light until it filled every crevice of their bodies, filling in the inky abyss of their souls. The pain was unbearable, yet the ecstasy was paradise as they felt themselves enveloped in the harsh white light. The heavens swallowed their essence and left behind the shells of what they had been. The corpses crumbled into ash, which rained on the streets below, tiny flakes dotting the streets.

Benjamin watched his handiwork from the alley where he stood and turned back toward Simpson's apartment, filling the night with the swelling tapping of his footsteps on the pavement.

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