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You sit there and you wait for death. For the moment it just seems as though death has been downgraded. These vampires have threatened me so much that I find myself slipping away from the essence of it. What was the point of living just to be alive? I could find myself losing the emotion of want. I couldn't even describe the words for what that emotion was. Maybe I had known it back when I was a human. Maybe Carter had taught it to me a long time ago. Too late now. It's always too late.
I still remember Carter, even as I'm here recanting my story to you. I still remember the way his eyes lit up when he saw me on stage. Back then it seemed like I would live forever with him. It was all that mattered. It didn't matter that we weren't romantic at the moment or he didn't see me the way I saw him. What mattered was the fact that I thought I would live forever.
Too late now, I guess.
At the time, sitting there waiting for my fate once again, I realized that I had given up living forever. Isn't that funny. You have the gift of immortality and yes you feel more mortal then you did when you were human.
"It's Belial's fang."
I didn't know what it meant when the skinny young female vampire came back and announced it to the pope. I didn't know who Belial was. I didn't know what it meant that I had been carrying around Belial's fang this entire time but I knew it saved my life.
It was a gift from Carter. I still remembered even then.
The dark pope stood there and his face got real serious as though he was going into battle. He didn't say much. There was a lot of talking that was going on further down the hall, which caused him to retreat further toward the center of the room.
He took his eyes and stated softly, "What does this mean?"
He looked over at the female vampire, Mali first and then turned to the others when Mali stood there with a blank look. There were only several vampires in the room even slightly interested in the conversation. There was a theme of extravagance in the room and this lack of attention. The dark pope seemed to be somewhat as confused as I was, if that made any sense. I felt like if it were even possible, this ancient man had been transformed into a blundering child with huge eyes looking around the room for answers.
And they all seemed defeated and for the first time in a very long time, I felt empowered. I didn't know why. I didn't know what any of it meant either. However, just the fact that my presence had initiated such a foolish look on the faces of creatures who should have been so knowledgeable tickled my pride.
"Caesarion? What does this mean?" Emporio asked, once again.
Caesarion looked at the floor, as though coming to some sort of acknowledgement of the situation we all found ourselves in, "I don't know. But isn't it better we keep him alive and find out?"
The silence seemed to mean acceptance but it was obvious that everyone wasn't pleased by that. I heard a glass plate drop on the floor and even through the loud chatter of the countless vampires everywhere in the thick hall of immortals, I could feel the presence of Meeka. She got up off of the floor without looking at us. Her face looked completely disgusted in the entire process.
"His friends still die," she stated, standing beside Caesarion and saying it in such a way that it seemed to shake my bones.
She walked away, followed by a train of her hand maidens. Some were vampires and some were human girls with their breasts hanging out and their necks already dripping. She led the train out of the room expressing her clear annoyance with her husband. Emporio was immediately taken over by another man who seemed to have an urgent matter at hand. Caesarion and I were once again pushed to the side.
I stood on the side and was offered a drink by a human woman who walked around completely naked. Her skin was glowing. It almost invited someone to bite her. She had a tray in her hand. She handed me a glass that was full of the thick red blood and walked away.
I drank the blood, steadily, trying to maintain some type of order, but even the thick feeling didn't calm me down enough.
"Don't take it personal with Meeka," Caesarion stated, "Her issue is really with me. She was a former lover of mine but when Emporio decided he wanted her, I had to back off. Vampires are very respectful of their elders, you know? She never forgave me for letting her go. More blood?"
"Yes, more blood."
"You drink slowly Adam, like an
older. The young ones usually are not
so...calm when it comes to blood. You
should maybe drink faster...stop calling so much attention to yourself."
I looked around.
He was right, I did get a little bit of attention. On the other side of the room was a familiar face. The heavy female vampire and her companion were having a conversation. They had been at the same party that Giovanni had attended. I could only imagine what they were gossiping about now.
"I can't help it...I'm nervous. I can't concentrate on drinking blood fast."
"Everything will be alright."
"Arie, Roxanne, Decadence and David are all going to be executed aren't they?"
My heart raced when he said it. If they hadn't killed Edgar for me they wouldn't have been in this situation. This was all my fault and here I was in this room drinking blood for an occasion that I didn't quite understand. I was alive for a reason I didn't understand.
"Can't we stop them?"
"Aren't they your descendents?" I asked grabbing him by his arm, "Shouldn't you care more? Don't you care at all?"
Caesarion shook my hold off of him. He didn't seem to quite like the idea of me touching him at all. It was also clear that he was somewhat embarrassed by me. I could see it in his eyes as he looked around making sure no one was in our conversation before he answered.
"I tried. You wouldn't understand. You were asleep. Everything was going fine until Arie opened his big mouth. He stated that he killed the Furious Edgar. He betrayed his brood. The Furious ones are the oldest of the vampires. We are the source of the very fragile vampire existence. You don't just kill one and get away with it."
"Well it's not too late now."
"No...it was too late a month ago, while you were asleep. They have until Wednesday. That is two days. On Wednesday, Emporio will bring in his wolves."
"Oh God...please Caesarion..."
"You should go back to your room. This place is no place for you. These people are the elite of vampire society and you haven't yet earned your place here. Go to your room, stop your complaining and be thankful that it is them being executed and not you."
I sat in the room crying. It was hard to explain. Take your parent for example. How would you feel if they raised you and protected you, only to be starved out because you've eaten too much on your plate? To a point they had protected me. That was the truth in this matter whether they really didn't want to as in the case of David or whether they reneged and later tried to kill me as in the case of Decadence.
"Can we make you feel any better?"
My voice boomed louder. I could feel my fangs getting longer harder as though to scare the boys in my room away. I was just left with them all day. They didn't even budge. They weren't afraid. What was I thinking? They were under an influence. They were nothing more than walking buffets for the vampires to feast on.
"We can make you feel better," another one stated.
I ignored them and dug my head into the pillow crying again. I didn't want anyone to die, but that wasn't the reason I was crying. I was crying particularly for Arie. I had a feeling he was thinking about me at this moment. I had a feeling he was wondering about me just as much as I was wondering about him.
What if I never saw him again?
The thought rose into my head like rat poison sucking the life out of someone. I was an idiot. My eyes blurred up with all these fantasies of being with someone that I couldn't be.
Wasn't that always the case in my life?
I was falling for him...falling for Arie.
I had fallen asleep. I hadn't even noticed I had fallen asleep. The voice was so soft, so familiar as I woke up.
I couldn't really wrap my head around the thought of who the voice was when the figure lurked over my bed. The dark figure looked so familiar. It was a soft similar figure that I had seen before. It was welcoming.
The figure came into light.
It was Giovanni. He looked the same. He still had on his sinister smile that said that he was not to be trusted even a bit. He was dressed in all black though. My curtains were open and a soft wind wrapped around the room as he presented himself. On the floor, all the boys were dead, obviously all bitten and killed by Giovanni. At a moment, I thought it was kind of sad, but then I remembered these boys were already nothing more than the walking dead. They were all just waiting to die, so I didn't feel too bad after a second thought.
"Am I dreaming?"
I got up off the bed. I didn't know what came over me, but I hugged Giovanni. And it felt good. He seemed surprised at first and didn't hug me back, but as I held onto him, he finally embraced back. I had so much emotion in seeing him again.
"Giovanni, they are going to kill them? It is going to happen on Wednesday."
I expected some slight surprise or anxiousness, but instead he just nodded with a more serious face than I expected him to show. Giovanni wasn't the serious one in Decadence's brood...except now.
"I know," he told me, his eyes hardly revealing any sort of information.
I was confused. The questions flowed into my head immediately.
"How did you find me?"
Giovanni shook his head, "Long story. There are spies here. I'm sure you heard about how I left the brood once before to join an organization. They were called the Sacrilegious. Well, the Sacrilegious isn't dead. They have spies in the church. I found you here."
"Who are they?"
"I can't tell you the members. We are secret society."
"What is the point of it?"
He looked me in my eyes, "We are trying to bring back the true essence of the vampire. No more running, hiding from the humans."
"Do you understand what that would mean, Giovanni?"
"More than you think. The sacrilege mission is finally becoming something more than children's night tale. We are stronger, wiser and more capable then the humans. Why should we hide from them. We are HIGHER on the food chain. We should be the masters. Instead we listen to this illegitimate church and hide in warehouses."
"You can't beat them. They are powerful."
"Yes, however, there is someone who has something to say. No one in the Sacrilege has come close to hearing what he has to say. That is the reason why we must know. Emporio is going into too much of an extreme to protect this man..."
"His name is Belial."
That name again. It was ringing in my ears. There seemed to be a connection to him and all these people but I couldn't figure out what it was.
"Who is Belial?"
"I don't have time to explain Adam, it's almost daybreak. I have to get to the point. I hope you understand completely."
"No, I don't but go ahead..."
"You aren't to go to the execution. You understand. I've come to warn you. We have gathered several people. Emporio has the key to Belial's imprisonment in his right pocket. We are going for it and it may be get messy Adam. You have to promise me that you'll stay away."
"What about Arie..."
"I'll fix things," Giovanni stated.
"They'll kill you. Have you been close to Emporio? He has such a strength in his silence. They'll kill you."
He didn't seem to be denying it. He didn't see to be denying much of anything. He was just standing there. His eyes completely still. I could see that he was afraid, but didn't expect Giovanni to admit it of course. He wouldn't admit it. He wasn't the type to.
He put his hands on his bald head, stretching his arms. He smiled, his sneaky smile that lit beams of gray and blacks everywhere across the room. He still had that confident presence about him, even in his uncertainty.
"Don't go ok," he stated, "Promise me."
"Good... I have to go."
Wednesday had come before I even noticed. I had spent every second thinking about Arie. It must have been the vampire blood. I blamed everything on this cursed blood. The passion I was feeling was unbearable. I could at any time run to him. I could at anytime get him and save him. What if I could?
Ceasarion brought musicians to my room. . He must have been pleased that all the boys were dead. He must have assumed I was the one who had taken their lives. It was early Wednesday night. They had awoken me to their music. Caesarion himself was on the side of the room, watching their music as though he had meant to leave the room, but had been hypnotized by the music. They were gypsies. I could tell by their music, not by their look or anything else. I was of course a musician. And that was when I saw it in their hands. The violin sitting there in the midst of it all.
The woman played it, but not how it should have been played.
I took the violin from her immediately.
And as soon as I picked it up...I could feel the music bringing back those memories and then there was silence. Of course, I was still playing. Of course my hands were still on the instrument, but my mind had blocked it all out. Now only memories of the things that I've lost. All the pain came back to me. The gypsies had stopped singing and I hadn't even realized it until later. I was alone now with my violin. The chords strumming some strange lullaby. The song was sad, carrying all my pain. I had lost life...the entire essence of it.
Could you imagine how sad and depressing this music could be? Yet could you really imagine how beautiful it could be?
Then an image of Arie broke it all up.
I dropped the stick onto the floor.
"Please continue," Caesarion stated, "It was beautiful."
"May I see Arie?"
"You are becoming annoying. You understand? You will see him...only it will be for his execution. It begins soon. Why don't you accompany me down?"
I looked at him. The thought of seeing Arie one more time came into my head, but then I'd have to betray Giovanni's trust. He had told me not to be there. He didn't tell me why however and this was a theme I was noticing about vampires. Their secretive natures were leading me to places where I didn't understand anything...
"I insist," Caesarion stated, stretching out his arm.
"I don't want to see them die."
"Oh, it'll be ok. A little blood will be good for you. I'll take you under my wing. That is an offer I don't give to just anyone. I suggest you take it."
"Can't I take it from inside my room?"
Caesarion laughed uneasily. It was the same uneasy laugh that he had given Decadence. His eyes looked at me the same way they had looked at her. He had that calm, yet deceiving stableness to him. He cracked as smile. He was charming. I could tell his linage had to be great when he was human. Being the son of Cleopatra and Caesar, you would assume he was well spoken.
"Do you think I'll take no for an answer? Don't make me upset. Come on, let's not be enemies. Let's be friends."
He wasn't going to take no for an answer. I looked at the door. He had walked in it without locking it. Just as I turned back to him, I felt the hard smack across my face. It sent me across the room, landing hard on my back, scraping my elbow against the hardness of the marble floors near the door.
"Don't even think about it," he added.
He grabbed me by my hand. At that moment, I realized the true strength of Caesarion. It was overwhelming. It was as though a skyscraper had grabbed me. There was no point of struggling. As I hit him, I realized I was doing more damage to myself.
He began to drag me roughly down the steps. I felt onto my elbow to see how it was swollen. It looked different from the human body as in it was a more purplish color than anything. He continued to be rough in a very elegant way as we marched down many of the steps that lead to the main part of the huge palace. The place was incredible.
Victorian art was everywhere.
How did they manage to disguise this place? The mansion had a beautiful view of downtown Boston from the windows. I could see the water reflect off the beautiful lake as the skyscrapers shot out with fluorescent yellows. The boats were lined up in the creek. Vampires were right in the middle of humanity. This mansion was packed with vampires as well. They walked past us, all very busy doing nothing. All of them seemed to have so much lack of focus and enjoyed doing so as well. Some were posted even on the stairwells as we passed. It seemed like they didn't plan from moving away from those staircases for hours either.
Vampires had a lifetime to waste.
Then we came to the room again. The same room again. I looked down to see that a cage had been set up in the middle of the room. I looked over to the left to see a group of vampires, seeming antsy for some sort of entertainment. To my right was Meeka and her companions. They all seemed drunk off their own beauty and elegance.
Then I saw him...Emporio, master of all this. He was sitting on a Baroque style chair and had his head raised to pronounce this sense of entitlement. And he was old. I could feel the age drip from him and seep into the marble floors.
"Bring them in," he announced, his voice full of authority.
I tried to break away from Caesarion again when I saw Arie and the others being marched in. I couldn't of course, but I realized something difference. I realized I had moved him. I didn't understand it and by the face on Caesarion, I could tell he hadn't either.
"How did you..."
I ignored him, "ARIE!"
He could barely open his eyes to recognize me. They had beaten him and I knew vampires healed quickly so it was clear they had beaten him very recently. They had beaten the others as well, but none as bad as Arie. Every part of his face that could be swollen was. His nose seemed broken, dissected right down the middle.
As he walked, he left footprints of blood behind him. The anger filled up in my heart for these vampires when I saw this. I couldn't believe it. I understood they had laws. That was all good and well. It was the fact that they had done this to something so beautiful as Arie. He should have been above laws.
I would have forgave them if they did it to all the others, even the young-seeming Roxanne that I did really care about. But they had done this to Arie...my Arie...and I couldn't forgive it.
I broke away.
It had happened before I knew how it could happen. I had been attached to something that once seemed like a steel building but once I saw Arie, it didn't even matter. I had got to him right after they shut the door and the cage separated us.
The cage separated us. He had heard my voice though. I saw him respond. His head jerked over to me. I tried to break through the cage, but I couldn't. I wanted to save him...but I knew I couldn't.
"Adam, get back," Caesarion instructed clearly.
"No let him have his moment," Emporio returned, "It's not every day your life is changed forever. Let him embrace it."
They wanted entertainment. I could tell by how several people giggled from Emporio's comment. I had a thought of not giving it to them, but truth was I didn't care. Arie was right in front of me and they had stolen his beauty from me. I could hardly recognize his face.
"Arie, do you hear me? Come to my voice."
He did get up and moved towards me. I could see David and Roxanne were against the sides of the fence. They all seemed to be much more able than Arie. They looked up at me but I could see the fact that they had given up in their eyes. There was completely nothing else there. Then there was Decadence. She hadn't looked up at me at all. Her eyes remained floored, almost completely.
"Adam, you're still alive?" he asked, "Oh my god...they said you were dead. They all said you were dead."
He was crying. I could tell from the sparkles underneath his eyelashes. You would think vampires didn't get emotional. We were supposed to be so strong in our silence. No, this wasn't the case. It seemed now my emotion was deeper than it ever was when I was human. I cried as well, only stopping so that I could clear my thoughts and get my words straight.
"Adam, can you see me?" I asked him.
"A little. It hurts when I open my eyes all the way you know. But I can still see you. I'm glad you're alive."
My heart broke to see him in such a condition.
"Arie, you know why they brought you here today?"
"Yeah, that's it Arie. There's nothing I can do. There's nothing I can do at all. I wish...I fucking wish..."
I was crying again. I could feel his fingers grab mine through the bars.
"It's not. You saved me. You cared about me. I felt so happy that there was someone who really cared. I never knew why. I never really thanked you how you should have been thanked. You took me in when I knew nothing. You gave me hope when I had nothing. You heard me crying and you came running. And I got you in all this trouble after you saved me. I can't do the same for you."
"Adam...it'll be ok. I'd do it all again."
"Enough," Meeka stated, "Bring in the wolves."
I looked at her hateful face at that moment and the rage built inside of me. It dug into me really. I held onto the cage only to finally feel Caesarion pulling me away. He pulled me into the shadows and this time I felt weak, this time I couldn't break away from him.
He pulled me far enough from the cage that I couldn't do anything to help Arie and then he kept me there...he kept me there to watch Arie die.
"How did you pull away?" he whispered into my ear, "You are just a
child compared to me. How did you pull
away from my grasp? You are very
"Leave me alone."
"Belial said things...about you..."
He nodded but silently whispered something else into my ear, something that was very strange but not entirely unwelcomed, "When I say so, close your eyes."
"Ultraviolet light will shine into the room.
It is fake sunlight but wielded at a certain potency can be very annoying to a vampire.
For a young vampire like yourself it can be
very damaging to your eyes, probably leading to blindness.
It's just long enough for them to get the
keys and save the young ones."
I had been confused until that point. Caesarion was in on it. Caesarion was the spy that Giovanni spoke of. I could feel a sense of relief all of a sudden. The fact that Caesarion wasn't as bad as I thought he was. He did care about them. There was hope. That was all that mattered. Caesarion was older and smarter than Giovanni or the others. He wouldn't join a plan if he thought it didn't have chance of success...or would he?
Arie...hold on. Hold on Arie. I am here for you.
Meeka announced with pride, "Wolves have long been the only creatures able to kill the immortal vampires. They are such calm creatures until threatened. They remind me of Decadence...she was always a good friend of mine."
She nodded to Emporio who announced loudly, "Bring
in the wolves!"
I looked at Caesarion. He was still being patient. I watched these wolves being walked out by humans. The other vampires backed away immediately. It was clear they had some type of fear of these wolves. The wolves were bigger than most. They were dark creatures and seemed to be dripping with murderous intentions.
I watched as the vampires went into the cage first. There were several of them. They studied who to grab first, but took Decadence. I watched in horror as they dragged her out of the cage and tied her onto a post in the middle of the room.
I begged him, my voice hardly whispering as I rushed him, "Caesarion, do it...do it now..."
"Shh...not yet. We must wait for the perfect time..."
His eyes continued to look out onto the scene as all the other vampires were doing now. Some people were enjoying this. Some people laughed at the idea of Decadence there looking so completely lifeless. I watched how she sulked over. All her mystery and enchantment had left her. She was nothing more now than some walking corpse waiting for death.
Decadence in all her perfection. I could almost cry as I watched her there. And then Emporio smiled and when he smiled it seemed like a cue. They released the wolves. There Decadence was and she did one thing that was so strange before they tore her to pieces.
She turned back and said his name, "Arie..."
And I could see Arie's eyes water almost immediately as he looked back at Decadence. His hand reached through the bars. He wasn't reaching the right way. He probably couldn't see her completely well. I didn't watch what happened to Decadence. I could hear the screams and the shouts but they don't have a bigger effect on me then seeing Arie mourn.
He falls to the floor...completely...defeated.
My heart races. I turn to the marble walls. I can't look to see what the wolves have done to Decadence. I can hear from the exhausted crowd of vampires entering the room to see what has happened that it is a big scene. The room is crowded all of a sudden, vampires wall to wall. It seems as though this was the central location for all vampires that existed. They came and gathered around Emporio, praising him for his cruelty.
Then there was Meeka's laughter. I couldn't stand her cold, exaggerated laughter.
"What the...no!" I heard a voice say.
I turned around only to notice that it was coming from David. His eyes moved from the remainders of Decadence back to me. Well, at first I assumed it was me, but it wasn't. David was staring at Caesarion. His mouth was wide open in shock.
"You said...you said you'd save us!" David screamed at the top of his lungs turning to Caesarion, "Don't you remember! You promised you'd take us in and put on a show for the church. Then you'd save us and return us. You gave us your FUCKING word Caesarion! Where is the plan! Where are they!"
"David, shut up!" Caesarion stated.
It was too late though. All the eyes of the vampire church had turned to Caesarion. I watched as Emporio looked at him with questioning eyes as well.
Emporio looked over at him, "Explain yourself."
"He's lying. He's making up tales of a dying man..."
"NO! He was going to dress the last remaining men of the Sacrilegious in praying garbs. Make them seem like men. Then he would blind Emporio with UV lights. Then he'd steal Emporio's keys and steal us away in the madness! Only it never happened!"
David was talking too fast for his mind to really catch up with him. What was he getting out of this? Did he think that Emporio would spare him for vindicating another? Maybe he just wanted Caesarion to go down with him. That had to be it.
And if Caesarion went down, then I had no protection from Meeka's claws.
I looked over at David, wanting him to shut up. He had fucked up the plan. He was continuing to fuck up the plans.
A man came forward quickly as though, "Emporio. He's right. There are prayer men waiting just outside these doors. They said they traveled from far away where vampires had no law."
"I can explain," Caesarion stated.
David laughed, "That's what you
get. You wanted to screw us huh?"
Meeka shook her head, "This is HERESY!"
The man who had walked into the room continued it shouting, "HERESY!"
Soon there was chant of it across the room. The dark creatures all seemed so aware of themselves at moments like this. They clashed wine bottles chanting "HERESY" and laughing among themselves at how serious they were taking the situation. The older ones were still silent but had an angry face on. I could tell they were older. The older ones had a scent to them. It was weird that I was already starting to smell the difference between things. The senses of a creature like me were very sensitive. I knew what was going on around me.
"Arrest them...and Caesarion as well..."
I hadn't noticed the voice had come from me. I hadn't noticed why I was screaming but I found myself tripping forward. Everything was falling apart. EVERYTHING WAS FALLING APART! And when things fall apart, you get desperate, you know.
I struggled to find reason for their attention. At that moment I would do anything. I would juggle or do flips into the air just so they could pay attention to me. I just wanted Arie to live a while longer. Maybe it was trying to give Caesarion some room to get out of this mess. But it was too late now...they had discovered him. They had discovered Caesarion.
There was nothing left.
So I said again what I'd promised myself that I'd never said, "You want to know why Caesarion brought me here? You want to know what makes me different. Lilith gave me the gift of vampirism."
The statement the name seemed to have an effect on everyone. Hissing came from everywhere. This engulfing anger.
rose up out of this throne, "YOU DARE SPEAK HER NAME?"
"How could he speak the name of the darkest?" a female vampire had called out from the crowd. She didn't seem to be asking anyone in particular. She just seemed confused.
A slew of questioned remained from that. How could I fly? How could I speak the name of the Lilith? Why did I have the fang of this person named Belial? How come I was being kept alive when all my companions were being killed off? What was so special about me?
The man who had walked into the room to announce the prayer men outside quickly spoke, "SILENCE! What complete absurdity..."
His voice was largely base. I could tell he must have been one of the olders. Several of the other vampires started to ascend towards me but he was the biggest.
nodded in agreement with the vampire's actions, "Leave nothing for him Furious
William was his name. He was a bigger man and I guess he was a member of the Furious Five. I watched Meeka laugh as the vampires all came at me. I could see Arie crying out for me. He was screaming my name. Caesarion let out a quick, "Idiot..." and backed up away from me a little bit. I could see that he had given up hope in this situation as well.
And here I was, preparing myself for my own death.
I knew the drill already. My heart beat heavier and my palms began to sweat. I could feel the heavy weight of the world on my shoulders all of a sudden. I felt like there was release coming soon and part of me feared it. Part of me however welcomed it. Come and release me. Come and take everything from me.
However I found out in this darkness that something else instead came.
And everyone had stopped moving.
The huge front doors that had taken three humans to open earlier swung open without a single touch or force. Everyone had turned to look.
"Something is coming," I heard that vampire William say, struggling to even let the words out.
He was right. Something was coming. I had felt it before. I had felt the presence before. Everyone was completely silent...completely still. It wasn't by choice.
You ever go to sleep and try to wake up very abruptly, but your body hasn't caught up with your mind. For that split second you have lost control completely. That is how this felt. We had COMPLETELY lost all control of our limbs. They didn't move anymore. I couldn't do anything but stare at the door wondering what would come through it. I couldn't even bat my eyelashes. I didn't have to look to see that the same effect had taken over everyone else slowly.
And then she came...
Lilith walked through the door.