Trust (Part 42)

Candle, Meditation, Hand, Keep, Heat, Confidence, Rest

Fern didn’t remember how she got back up all those stairs and into the bed that had been given to her. Dimly, she was aware of Raphael stating how tried she must be and how she should rest. Putting her head on the pillow, her heavy eyes shut and she listened to the blood pumping through her.

The sweet taste of it still clung to her lips. She sucked absent-mindedly, feeling like a contented baby. Red colours spiralled before her and she thought she could fall forever downwards through them. Something at the back of her mind was tugging at her. A small voice telling her to stay awake and through everything, she thought she heard other voices.

The sleep was too heavy to fight off and she let go, disappearing into a maze of red. She was traveling, flying freely it felt like, over brown and green land. She passed dots of places and long snake roads. Then there was nothing but yellow and blue underneath her, the colours washed together like accidently mixed clothes. She thought she recognized the place spreading out below her. She drifted downwards and landed on a pier with the sea roaring around it.

Fern looked around and tried to remember where this memory had come from. The pier was empty, just a stretch of old wooden boards trying to survive the waves. She could see the beach, running like a ribbon on either side and above that a low rocky wall. Beyond that there seemed to be nothing.

She walked back along the pier, noticing how empty everything seemed and that the only sound was the ocean. The water was sloshing against the pier legs and rasping over the beach so loudly, that she convinced herself it was blocking all other sounds out. Fern got to the end and stopped at the wooden steps lending down and away.

She looked over the railing to her left and saw a shape coming out of the sand. She paused and watched the black figure coming towards her. Strangely, she knew there was no reason to be scared. She knew that person. Stepping off the pier, she went to meet him on the beach, feeling pulled like a kite on a string.

Fern came to a stop and took Dacian in. He looked just like the last time she’d seen him; tall, dark haired, worry etched onto his face. She ran to him and threw her arms around him. He held her as she broke down into tears. She felt him touch her cheeks and kiss her head. He smelt like the sea and the beach or maybe that just was the salty air?

I should tell him, Fern thought, but no words would come out of her mouth. She was left looking into his confused face and feeling the lingering touch of his fingers. Then the beach was tumbling away, a sandstorm whipping up around them and blowing them apart. Fern felt herself flung into the air, colours crazily flashing by.

Her eyes snapped open and her new room came sharply into focus. Sitting up slowly, she put a hand to the side of her head and looked around. She was alone, but in the distance where whispering voices and the sounds of the storm outside. Fern pulled the blanket away and slipped out of the bed. She crossed the bare floor and went to the door. Turning the handle, it opened.

She peered out then sidestepped to Ollie’s door and knocked gently on it. She listened to a soft growling sound and a book being set aside, before footsteps sounded. The door opened slightly then wider and Ollie stared at her.

‘I just had this weird dream,’ Fern whispered.

Ollie poked his head out and looked down the hallway to the stairs. He grabbed her hand and tugged her inside. Shutting the door again, he led her to his bed and they both sat down.

‘Keep your voice down,’ Ollie uttered, ‘everyone has good hearing here.’

Fern nodded.

‘I told you not to drink the blood. Having dreams and seeing things is a side effect of it.’

‘I couldn’t help it,’ Fern hissed back.

‘There’s something in it which is addictive. You mustn’t have any more or else…’

‘They’ll take over my mind?’

‘Or worse.’

Fern frowned and looked at him. They were still holding hands.

‘When I first arrived there was another new vampire here. I thought…well, I don’t know, that he was crazy and his lust of blood was just part of that. He was wild, like some kind of caged beast,’ Ollie explained, ‘a few months later, he just vanished. I asked and asked, but no one would tell me anything.’

‘What do you think happened?’ Fern questioned.

‘They killed him. They couldn’t tame the vampire within him and the controlling blood was making him worse.’

‘We won’t end up like that,’ Fern put in.

‘Who knows what we’ll end up like! We have to get out of here. It’s just bad to the core,’ Ollie snapped, ‘on the surface they try to play happy families, but underneath they fight for control and to impress the Princess. They’re all corrupt and this whole idea of being perfect vampires is just implausible.’

‘How do we get out then?’ Fern asked gently.

‘We’ll have to plan it just right, but leave that to me. Hush.’

Ollie squeezed her hand and they both listened to footsteps and voices going past the attic stairs. A door opened and closed, cutting off a rushed giggle.

‘Go back to your room,’ Ollie breathed into her ear, ‘we’ll take again soon enough.’

Trust (Part 41)

Candle, Meditation, Hand, Keep, Heat, Confidence, Rest

Fern stared into the large crystal goblet that Raphael had just handed her. The dark ruby liquid was speckled with tiny flicks of dark green. She sniffed gently and smelt warm blood mingled something herby. She weighted the goblet in her hand, noticing how heavy and thick it was. Feeling Raphael’s sharp eyes resting on her, she raised the drink and wet her lips with it.

‘You should find it very refreshing,’ Raphael purred.

Fern lowered the goblet and pressed her lips together. On the tip of her tongue she could taste the blood and something grew inside of her, beckoning for more. She looked at Raphael, who’s lips were twisted up in the corners in a strange smile as if he was hiding a secret. He was holding a small golden goblet loosely and seemed transfixed on watching her.

Then Fern’s eyes glanced at Ollie. He was standing still, a matching crystal goblet clutched in his hand, staring at her. His face was calm, but underneath, Fern could tell he was pleading with her. Finally, he glanced down and took a sip of the liquid. He swallowed and looked around the library.

‘What do you think?’ Raphael asked.

‘It’s nice,’ Fern replied carefully.

‘Beside we should sit down? Most of the others should be returning shortly and I’d like you to meet them.’

Fern glanced at the arrangement of furniture then walked over to a large deep sofa close by. She peached on the edge and took another pretend sip of her drink. Her lips and tongue tingled at the touch of silky warmth whilst her stomach let out a little growl. She avoided looking down into the swirling liquid and willed herself to be strong.

Perhaps, Ollie is wrong? the vampire voice whispered in the back of her mind.

She peeked at him as he came over and joined her, sitting on the opposite side of the sofa and leaving an empty space between them. He stole a look at her, before turning his head away and allowing his hair to fall over his face. He balanced his goblet on the arm of the sofa and fell silent.

Why would he lie to me though? Fern questioned, we’ve only just met, what’s he got to gain or lose?

Who knows. Drink the blood, the voice hissed back at her.

The sound of Raphael sitting down in an old Victorian broad leather arm chair opposite them drew her attention. Fern looked at him and watched him take a few sips from the golden goblet. She could smell it was different to what she and Ollie had in their glasses.

‘Why are you not drinking the same as us?’ she asked.

Raphael smiled over at her, ‘because every vampire has their favourite blood. You shall see in time.’

‘What’s in this?’

‘Hasn’t she got such an inquisitive mind?’ Raphael cried, looking at Ollie, who gave him a hard stare back. ‘It’s nothing to worry about. Just some dried herbs and honey. It makes the blood richer and helps to relax you.’

‘I thought we couldn’t…we can only have blood…’ Fern trailed off.

‘There are ways to do things and we are lucky to have a scientist in the family. He has perfected throughout the years combinations of ingredients that have been found to benefit us greatly. You shall get to meet him later, no doubt.’

‘Sounds interesting,’ Fern responded and took a sip of the blood.

Raphael nodded then turned to Ollie, ‘what are you brooding about?’

Ollie shook his head and took a drink, remaining silent.

‘You are no longer the baby now. You should be grateful,’ Raphael continued.

Fern looked up at Ollie shyly, biting back the words that were dancing on her tongue. She wrapped her fingers around her goblet and felt the tension rising in the room.

‘I am grateful,’ Ollie snapped as he stood up swiftly, ‘I don’t have time for this.’

He swept in-between them, crossing the library in a few steps and flinging open the door. Fern listened to his footfalls outside in the corridor then as they raced up two flights of stairs. A female voice seemed to call out his name in the distance before being sharply cut off by the slamming of a door.

‘And here’s me thinking you would get on…’ Raphael uttered.

‘Beside, he just needs sometime? It must be difficult having someone new show up,’ Fern spoke into her goblet.

Her eyes had fallen on the ruby blood and she couldn’t seem to focus on anything else. The scent was so over powering and she felt…so hungry.

‘Perhaps,’ Raphael whispered, ‘drink up.’

Fern nodded and brought the goblet to her lips. Opening her mouth she drank deeply.

To Be Continued…

Trust (Part 38)

Candle, Meditation, Hand, Keep, Heat, Confidence, Rest

Fern ran her hands down the dark red velvet dress and decided she really didn’t like it. The heavy material dropped straight from her shoulders to the floor, giving no hint at the shape of her body underneath. She pulled back the sleeves, which sloped into an open triangle shape, covering her hands. They fell back straight away.

Glancing down, she had to pick the dress up to see the floor and the tips of the flat red shoes. They felt too small and were already pinching her toes. She took them off, balancing on one leg then the other. Dropping them to the bare white wood floor, she looked around for anything else she could wear.

The tiny room held a single bed fitted against the far wall with a black curtained window overlooking it. A large wardrobe was within an arm’s reach to her right. The door was behind her, closed and locked. Above her, hung a single candle bulb in a white shade, casting a dim light on the room. Fern made out a running network of old beams and slate tiles in the ceiling.

She went to the window and peered around the curtains. A single panel of glass, flashed the reflection of herself and the room, before showing her the empty land outside. She pressed her hand to the glass, feeling the damp coldness under her fingers.

Is my mind really mine again or is Raphael still controlling me? She thought.

Letting her hand slip from the glass and the thick curtain fall back, she went to the wardrobe and stared inside. A number of different coloured dresses, tops, skirts, pants hung together. On the top shelf the tips of many shoes poked out and in the two fitted draws in the bottom lay underwear, nightwear and a few other items. Reaching inside, she shuffled through the clothes then looked down at the dress. She had no memory of putting it on.

Taking it off and letting it fall to the floor. Fern choose some black cotton trousers and a blue silk blouse. She put them on, finding that they fitted better than the dress and that she looked more like she was going for an interview then to a vintage tea party. Searching through the shoes, she found some black ankle boots which were one size too big for her.

Shoving the dress and shoes back in, she grabbed another pair of socks then paused. Her ears twitched at the creaking of the attic stairs. Quietly, she got up, swung the wardrobe doors shut and went to the bed. Sitting just on the edge, she put the socks and boots on. The footsteps carried on, but stopped before they reached her door.

She listened as the room next to her’s was opened and someone walked in. A bed, probably just like the one she was sat on, she thought, let out a loud groan as someone lay on it. Voices drifted and she snatched a few meaningless words out before they faded again.

Fern breathed deeply and got up. She went to the door and tried turning the round handle. She tugged, but it didn’t open. She tried the other way, but felt the same resistance.

She wandered around the room, it only taking a few steps before she was back by the bed again. She picked up her wet clothes, folded them then stood on the bed. Looking up at the rafters above, she wondered if she could hide her clothes up there.

Why would I even need to do that? She thought, looking down at the clothes.

Getting off the bed, she took them and her shoes over to the wardrobe. Opening the bottom drawer, she put her stuff inside and looked at the other items. There were two black swimming costumes and a white bikini. Followed by; a neon green scarf, a long pair of black silk gloves, two pairs of winter woollen gloves, tights and stockings still in the packets. Fern pulled a suspend belt out then shoved it back in.

Closing the drawer then the doors, she stood up again and looked at the empty wall space on either side of the wardrobe. To the left of her, were the window was, the wall didn’t look as if it perfectly fitted and there was a slight gap between where the two walls meet. She went over and inspected the walls. She ran her fingers along the white cracked paint.

There was a soft knocking on the wall.

Fern froze.

‘Who’s there?’ a male voice whispered though the crack.

‘Who are you?’ Fern hissed back.

‘I’m Ollie. Hey, are you the newbie Raphael rescued?’

‘He didn’t rescue me,’ Fern scoffed, ‘he kidnapped me.’

She heard a soft sighing.

‘Did they take you too?’

‘They found me,’ Ollie said back, ‘Ike and Zara. They said my maker had left me for dead in a hotel room. But I know that’s not what happened. They killed her. I remember. Though, they keep trying to erase it from my mind.’

Fern pressed her hand to the wall, feeling flecks of paint under her nails.

‘You still there?’ Ollie asked.

‘Yes.’

‘What’s your name?’

‘Fern,’ she uttered.

‘You can’t let them into your head or they’ll take you over. Just pretend their mind control is working and do what they want you to do. It’s the best way to survive,’ Ollie explained.

‘And don’t trust any of them,’ Fern said under her breath.

The sound of footsteps on the stairs turned her head again.

‘We’ll try and talk more later. Remember what I said,’ Ollie’s disembodied voice came through the wall.

‘I will,’ Fern answered back.

She stepped away and into the centre of the room. A few moments later, she heard the lock opening in her door. Taking a deep breath and making her head blank, she watched the door slow open and Raphael appear in the frame.

To Be Continued….

Trust (Part 35)

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Fern wasn’t sure how much time she had left, but as she jogged away her mind began picking holes in the plan. The second Brook knew she was gone, he’d start tracking her and being in the middle of countryside, there was nowhere to hide. Her thoughts fell to another question, why was she running away?

I’m not, she stated to herself, I just want a bit of freedom. I’ve been stuck with Brook for days now and I just want some time alone.

She reflected and a part of her didn’t buy that line of thought. Shaking her head, she stopped thinking and just enjoyed the fresh air hitting her face. She ran on, not mapping the area in her head and not knowing where she was going. Empty fields stretched around her, lone trees stood stark against the night time sky and sometimes the glint of a light flashed by.

Fern’s feet hit a road, but she didn’t stop, she carried on heading away from Brook’s house. Her shoes slapped loudly on the tarmac and the rustle of her clothes sounded like bugs against her ears. The wind snatched her breath and pushed against her chest, but it also seemed to be screaming her name.

She risked stopping and turned to look behind. The twisting road and surrounding fields were empty and yet, she could hear Brook’s voice. Her heart and breathing pounded and she had to quieten them both in order to hear.

‘Fern!’ his distant voice shouted.

She ignored it and got back to running.

Where are you going? Brook’s voice broke into her thoughts.

Nowhere, she answered back before she could stop herself.

It’s not safe for you out there. You’re going to get lost again, Brook pointed out.

I’ll be fine.

Another voice inside of her head piped up that maybe she wouldn’t be. Fern ran on, expecting Brook’s voice to call out to her again. She spotted something in the distance and ran to it. A for sale sign stuck out onto the road. She paused and read that a farmhouse was for sale.

She wondered how far away she was and called out Brook’s name in her mind. When she didn’t get a reply she called it aloud, but only the wind answered her.

‘I should go back,’ she muttered.

Looking around, she saw nothing that marked the way, just the road leading backwards. Fern waited a few minutes, calling Brook every now and then. Surely, he was following her by now? Smiling, she pictured him appearing around the bend in the road and jogging up to her. He would tell her off and they’d head home.

Too much time was passing and she began to get edgy. Pulling a face, she started walking down the road, hoping to meet him. She trailed her fingers over the rough evergreen leaves of a hedge row and sniffed at the country air. A sense of liberation wrapped around her and the vampire voice questioned why she was going back so soon, wasn’t the night still new? And wasn’t she getting hungry again?

‘Perhaps, I am…but I should find Brook first,’ she muttered aloud.

Why? We can handle it now.

Fern paused at the voice and looked around, even though she knew it was inside of her head.

‘Because it’s the right thing to do…I’ve already killed two people and this time there’s no Dacian around to save me….Dacian,’ she whispered.

Hugging herself as she thought about him and wondered what he was up to right now. It’s not fair I had to leave without saying goodbye! Would the blood link let him track me this far?

She tore a leave off a bush and crushed it between her fingers.

But there could be others, the vampire voice whispered.

‘Others? All the way out here? Away from the towns and cities?’

Sure, why not? Maybe we could find someone else to talk to? Isn’t Brook boring you? And he didn’t give us what we wanted last night, the voice sounded sulky.

Fern shook head and carried on walking back. She heard the soft growls and more words coming from the voice that had taken up residence in her head as well as her own, but she fought it away. She turned her thoughts to Dacian, now that he had popped back into her mind and focused on them as she walked.

A good five minutes later, she came to a stop and looked around, in the distance she could make out the shape of a barn across a field to her left. Ahead the road carried on cutting its’ way through fields which was all she could see to her right. She listened and heard the calling of an owl and the movement of sheep.

Brook? she shouted in her head.

No reply.

‘I couldn’t have taken a wrong turn…could I?’ Fern whispered.

She sniffed the air and thought she smelt a hint of the ocean. She set off again only for the sounds of running footsteps coming towards her to halt her legs. Her heart leapt and she smiled, it had to be Brook. A dark shadow took form in front of her and she waited. The footsteps slowed and a caped figure walked down the road towards her.

Fern frowned, Brook didn’t have a cape? Did he? And he’d never seemed that tall before….too late she realised it wasn’t him. Fern darted off the road and used the shadows surrounding the hedge row to mask herself.

‘I won’t hurt you,’ a soft male voice with a twinge of an Italian accent spoke, ‘we heard you calling out last night.’

Fern clamped her mouth shut and tried not to let the words dancing on her tongue and in her head out. She focused on staying hidden and wrapped more shadows around herself.

‘We had debating coming to save you, but it seems there was no need,’ the voice added.

Fern looked up and saw him standing before her, watching her. She gasped and couldn’t help but take in his tanned skin and dark brown eyes. His black hair was short and thick, styled to give the impression of being longer. He was clean shaven and his sculpted face was just a little too handsome. He looked to be in his mid-twenties, but it was clearer he was alot older then that.

‘There’s no point hiding. I can see you. What’s your name?’

Fern dropped the shadows, but stayed where she was. Her eyes fell to look at the cape wrapped around him; the wind was moving the edges that hung just above the floor.

‘Don’t be shy,’ he said gently.

She looked up at him and opened her mouth, ‘fur,’ tumbled out.

‘Fur?’ he repeated, his face breaking into a laugh and soft breathy chuckle following.

‘What’s your name and what are doing here?’ Fern snapped.

‘I’m Raphael and my brood doesn’t live far from here.’

‘Brood?’

‘A family of vampires. We try to live together,’ Raphael laughed.

Fern bit her lip and stayed quiet.

‘Am I the first vampire beside your maker who you’ve met, Fur?’

‘No,’ she growled, ‘and it’s Fern.’

He grinned and offered his right hand. She looked at his open palm and saw a brown beaded bracelet with a small metal charm dangling from his wrist.

‘I won’t hurt you. I promise,’ Raphael purred.

Fern took his hand and felt it oddly warm around her’s. She let him pull her out of the small ditch and back onto the road. She looked around expecting at any second to see Brook rushing over to them.

‘I don’t think he’s coming,’ Raphael’s voice brushed her ear.

‘What? who?’

‘Whoever you’re looking for. Your maker, maybe?’

Fern looked at him and slid her hand out of his.

‘You’ve not been around long have you?’ Raphael asked.

‘We only got here last night,’ Fern shot back.

‘That’s not what I meant…’

‘Look, I’ve to go. It was nice meeting you.’

‘Are you going to go back and let him lock you up again?’

‘That wasn’t what it seemed and anyway it’s none of your business!’ Fern shouted and tried to shove past him.

Raphael grabbed her and spun them both around. He held her arm tightly, his cape flying out to show off the pure white shirt, black trousers and posh leather shoes he wore. Fern paused, her eyes caught on his bare throat and chest nicely framed by the line of open buttons. She swallowed and looked up at him again.

‘Are you sure you don’t want to come with me?’ Raphael asked sweetly, ‘we’d take care of you, teach you how to be a real vampire. Wouldn’t you like that?’

‘I’m fine, honest,’ Fern stated and tried to get her arm back.

‘No, I really don’t think you are,’ Raphael spoke smoothly, with a flash of his fangs.

Fern stopped her struggle and looked at the white sharp points poking out from behind his wide smile. Her eyes flickered up to his and she felt a wave of tiredness. Her eyelids fluttered closed before she could stop them and she felt her body sinking down.

 

To Be Continued…

Trust (Part 30)

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Fern held Brook’s hand and watched towns, cities and landscapes sliding passed the taxi’s window. The clocked ticked over on the dashboard and the Satnav as they drove on. The radio news came on and they heard the same reports. Fern shut her eyes a few times, lulled by the swaying car and white noise of the engine. Her thoughts patterned into questions about Brook, Dacian, vampires in general and the future. Yet, she didn’t voice any of them.

Brook was quiet too. He dozed and looked out of the window as well, his thoughts all to himself. Sometimes, his expression would change to a frown or a sad look or a small grin. Finally, he put his head back and shut his eyes, allowing the silence to grow further.

Fern watched the taxi driver for a while. The man had been mute and totally focused on the road. His taxi radio sometimes crackled and called him in, but he didn’t pick it up. Fern wondered what he’d say when he returned, maybe that his radio had broken? And where had he been? She imaged his boss and wife asking.

‘I got a big job,’ Fern thought he’d reply, ‘this couple wanted me to clean out this flat with ‘em then drive them to their new place.’ Fern wondered if they’d asked how much he’d gotten paid. God how much is this going to cost me? Fern suddenly thought. I only thought about getting my stuff and going back to Brook’s. Not that he’d then decided to go straight to his actually house. He has an actually house?

Fern shook her head and realised that once again, she hardly knew anything about Brook. She cast her mind back, thinking of the first time she’d seen him swimming across the lake in the Lake District. She hadn’t thought much about the time in-between that and waking in the crypt. She wasn’t even sure how many days had passed either. Giving it some more thought, she let her mind return to the snatches of memory.

She had gone back to the lake the next night and waited for him to reappear again. A part of her had tried to convince her that it had been a dream or Brook was a human and not a vampire as she really wanted to believe. She had sat by the night time water and looked out, listening to owls and traffic going by. She had been on the edge of giving up, she recalled, when he appeared from far to her right.

What had they talked about?

Fern sighed in the back of the taxi, hating herself for not remembering. It couldn’t have been much of a talk though. She looked at Brook, he seemed to be sleeping. She knew he wasn’t though, but wasn’t sure she could disturb him about this yet now. She shut her eyes and put her head onto his shoulder.

What you thinking about? Brook’s voice glided into her clouded thoughts.

You, Fern replied back.

Oh?

When we first meet. I was trying to remember the days in-between. What we talked about and did. I can hardly remember leaving the Lake District, but I know I did come home and we met the next night in the park. Do you remember?

‘Yes,’ Brook breathed, his lips brushing her hair.

‘Why can’t I remember?’ Fern asked, slightly moving her head to look at him.

‘The transformation affects things like that. It’s defensive, I think, a way to separate your human life from the new vampire one.’

Fern frowned, ‘but I remember things before we met….’

‘Maybe, you were just going through a lot? What did you want to know anyway?’ Brook questioned.

‘To know more about you,’ Fern answered and eased herself up, ‘your human life, how you become a vampire…Jay?’

Brook took a sharp intake of breath and turned his head away.

‘You were together once, weren’t you?’ Fern asked gently, ‘what happened?’

‘I don’t want to talk about it,’ Brook muttered.

Fern dropped her shoulders and clutched his arm, ‘you never do,’ she sighed.

‘And his name was Jamie by the way,’ Brook growled, ‘he hated being called Jay.’

‘You were at school together?’ Fern uttered trying to make it seem like a suggestion rather than the question it actually was.

‘No. I was a vampire when we met. He was at high school. Final year.’

A small smile flickered on to Fern’s face, but she hid it in Brook’s shoulder. Her heart and head thudded and she tried to remain calm. Brook could easy go silent on her again and she was eager to get as much out of this as possible.

‘Where did you met?’ she mused, ‘the beach? in town? At the apartment?’

‘The arcade…not the one we went to. A different one, further along the beach.’

Fern slotted her fingers together and paused over her next question.

‘He’s dead by the way,’ Brook said suddenly, ‘so don’t worry about meeting him.’

Fern shot off his shoulder and looked hard at him. Her lips formed around words that she couldn’t voice. Brook didn’t look at her, but dug in his pockets for his cigs and lighter. He pulled out a new box and unwrapped it. Ripping open the top, he pulled out a cigarette and lit it. Fern glanced at the taxi driver and met his eyes in the rear view mirror. There were clear signs on the windows saying not to smoke. The driver dropped his eyes back to the road then switched across the lanes to come off. The car began to slow as it approached a roundabout. The driver doubly checked both sides, pulled out and joined a slipway to a dual carriageway.

‘What happened?’ Fern asked at last.

‘I tried to turn him and something went wrong. Maybe he wasn’t strong enough, maybe I didn’t give him enough blood. Whatever. He didn’t make it and I buried him,’ Brook explained as he waved the cig around.

Fern wiped ash off her jeans and moved further away from him. He took a drag, held the smoke in then let it out in a long exhale. Brook licked his lips, glanced out of the window then back to her. His express was a mask. Fern could barely see through it, but there was a hint of sadness and regret in his violet eyes.

‘He was your first?’ she said gently.

‘Second,’ he corrected, ‘the first was a homeless man that I did for practise.’

‘Practise?’

‘Yeah, well no one taught me how to do it and I wasn’t sure…So I fed off this ancient guy living under a bridge and then give him my blood,’ Brook shrugged and put the cig to his lips, ‘I killed him. Didn’t know you weren’t actually meant to be dead.’

Fern settled back into the seat and swept her hair back, ‘what would you have done if it’d worked?’

‘Probably killed him….What? I had no use for him. And I’m a dick, remember?’ Brook chuckled.

Fern rolled her eyes and fingered her seatbelt.

‘Jamie forced my hand,’ Brook picked up a few seconds late after he’d blown out some more smoke, ‘he was so desperate and I couldn’t say no. His parents found out we were in a relationship and having sex. They weren’t happy and banned us from seeing each other. He wanted to run away. Start over and stay in love forever…’

‘And what did you want, Brook?’

‘I don’t know,’ he breathed, ‘a best friend, a lover. Someone to explore the world with. It felt right at the time.’

‘Do you still miss him?’ Fern asked softly.

Brook took a deep breath, but didn’t answer. He finished off the cig and opened the window to flick the butt out.

Fern took his silence to mean yes.

 

Trust will return in December.

Trust (part 28)

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Fern waited for him to come back then they left. Brook had changed into clean jeans and a old rock band t-shirt. Fern stared at the long blocky name as they got the elevator down. She couldn’t recall ever hearing of them and decided they must be foreign or else hadn’t been around for very long. She lent against the cold metal walls and played with the strap of her handbag. Inside she could feel her phone weighing heavily with the questioning texts and calls. No one would mind if she replied, would they?

‘It’s better to stay dead now,’ Brook spoke, breaking her thoughts.

‘Huh?’ she asked looking up.

‘You were thinking about your phone. Don’t reply. In fact get rid of it. Leave it at your bedsit. You really don’t need one,’ Brook stated.

Fern nodded, but wasn’t sure she could go through with it.

The elevated jumped to a stop and pinged as the doors opened. They got out, Brook leading the way to the doors. He opened one and let Fern walk through before closing it. The rain was still holding off and the smell of freshly cut grass mingled with an ocean breeze.

‘Which direction?’ Brook asked.

Fern thought, then replied, ‘do you remember where you picked me up from the night you turned me?’

‘Just about…’

‘Let’s a get a taxi actually,’ she cut in suddenly, ‘I’ve got my purse and there’s more money at my flat. Do you know the nearest place to get one from?’ The village?’

‘No. They don’t have one there, but I think the next one does,’ Brook responded.

‘Well, let’s get walking.’

She took Brook’s hand they walked through the woodland, the village then into the next one. They stayed silent throughout and listened to the sounds of the late evening. To anyone who saw them, they looked like a young couple out for a walk. The second village was larger and unlike the first one, which Fern had gotten so use to, there were actually people driving or walking about. Brook took them straight to the taxi rank, shoving down Fern’s idea of finding some to fed off first.

Not here, he hissed inside her mind.

He opened the door to a little shack which advertised itself as a taxi station and went up to the desk. He ordered a taxi and received instructs from the operator to grab a seat. He sat down on a hard bench, which was really just a ledge and Fern joined him. They looked out of the window and watched the first drops of rain arriving.

A white car pulled up outside five minutes later and a horn beeped. They got up, walked out and into the back of the taxi. A very fat, middle-aged, going bald man turned to them and asked where they wanted to go.

Brook shot Fern a look and as she clicked on her seat belt, she gave him the address of her bedsit.

The taxi driver scratched his head, ‘that’s an hour and half way,’ he muttered.

‘I’ll pay you want ever it is and give you a nice tip,’ Fern said sweetly.

The driver tutted and began flipping through a small notebook.

‘We could just…get out,’ Brook growled.

Fern pulled a face and ignoring him, leaned over to the driver, ‘we’ll need you to bring us back too…’

‘Look, love, I don’t think I can.’

Fern cleaned her throat and stared deep into the taxi driver’s brown eyes as he turned around to face them.

‘You so can,’ she said softly, ‘you love long drives and don’t worry we won’t talk. You can listen to whatever music you want-’

Fern, Brook breathed into her mind, don’t break eye contact. Keep your mind clear and focus into his. Send your voice into his mind at the same time. Listen to what he wants to hear, answer the questions. Stay determined.

Fern squeezed his hand to show she understood then got back to it.

‘You really want to do this. You’ll earn lots of money…enough too…’ Fern trailed as she saw an image pop into her head, ‘buy your son that Christmas present he wants,’ she finished on shaky note.

‘I don’t know…’ the taxi driver uttered.

Fern breathed out heavily and slummed back against the seat. She pressed her hand to her growing headache. Images swirled before her of the taxi driver and his family.

‘Listen to me,’ Brook jumped in, ‘you really want to do this. You aren’t going to get anyone else in this car tonight. How can you go home empty handed again? What’s your wife going to say? How many times has she threated divorce now?’

The man’s mouth dropped open but he didn’t stay anything. His eyes were locked on Brook’s now and Brook continued down that route with more harsh words.

Fern felt her head exploding and rubbed her cheek and side of her forehead against the head rest of the car. Lights were popping before her eyes and Brook’s voice sounded so faint. She clutched his hand and tried to force the sick feeling in her stomach away.

The car started up moments later and Fern felt Brook turn her head towards him. She struggled to find the words to ask what had happened. Brook pressed his wrist to her lips and Fern felt a surge of hunger. She could hear blood pulsing, she licked her lips and tasted the salt of Brook’s skin.

Her fangs unsheathed and she sank them into his wrist. Blood touched her tongue and she fastened herself on to him and began sucking. Her headache cleared and she felt the car moving under her. Brook put his head to her’s and began murmuring soothing words into her hair.

What happened? Fern questioned in her now clear mind.

I’m not sure, you tried too hard? Sometimes, it can rebound on you, Brook answered, are you feeling better?

Yes, Fern answered and swallowed.

Brook eased his arm away and licked at the bite mark.

Fern sat up and looked at the taxi driver. His hands were relaxed on the leather wheel and his eyes were fixed on the road. Quiet music was coming from the radio, Fern could hear the beats of a ballad. She looked at the window but didn’t recognise the house lined street they were currently driving down.

‘Come here,’ Brook whispered.

Fern smiled and turned back to him. Brook slipped a finger under her chin and pulled her face close to his. He kissed her softly on the lips. His hand went to the back of her head, bring her further into him. Fern shifted across the seat and wrapped her arms around his shoulders. She kissed him back, partly opening her mouth. Brook’s other hand pressed against her cheek and he ran the tip of his tongue over her bottom lip.

They kissed again and this time, Fern opened her mouth fully and let Brook slide his tongue in. She nestled against him and fell into the soft, yet swift movements of his tongue exploring her’s. She felt Brook moving his hands down her back and trying to bring her into his lap. There wasn’t enough room in the back of the taxi for that, so Fern got as close as possible.

Without giving it much thought, she swept her left hand down his chest and to the top of his jeans. Easily, she pressed her fingers against the zipper and felt a budge. Smiling against, Brook’s lips, she let out a moan and moved as best she could, to be on top of him. Brook complied with this move and slide down the inside of the car door.

Fern moaned again and began rubbing his manhood. Brook’s hips rose and he spread his legs. Ending the kiss, Fern knelt and undid his jeans. A soft moan escaped Brook’s lips which grew louder as Fern slipped her hand inside. With her breathing quickening, she massaged him and teased him. Brook put an arm over his eyes, blocking out the harsh streetlamps flashing by above them.

Fern slide her hand out and tugged down his jeans. Brook gave her a hand and repositioned himself. Fern give the taxi driver a quick glance. The man was still totally focused on the road, though he had turned the radio up at some point and now another power ballad singer was coming louder through the speakers. Turning back, Fern put her hands and head down between Brook’s legs. She heard him moan and felt him shiver. He put a hand to her head, mussing her hair then pressing down. Fern moved fluidly, trying to only concentrate on what she was doing.

She felt Brook moving under her as if he was trying to get more comfortable. There was no extra room for him to do that though. Fern put one of her hands to his hips to still him. He quietened down at her touch. She carried on for a few moments then Fern swept that hand upwards and under his t-shirt. She rubbed his chest and felt his rapid breathing. She stole a glance at him, but couldn’t see his thrown back head from her position.

Brook pulled her hand out and began kissing her fingers. He popped one into his mouth and began sucking on it. Fern’s concentration broke and she came up, gasping for air and moaning. Brook shifted up, came to her and kissed her deeply.

Fern then felt his hand fondling her boobs. She breathed into him and he broke the kiss. She licked her lips, feeling them wet and sticky. Brook tried to nuzzle into her neck, but couldn’t reach. Fern moved and they got back into the same positon before.

The car engine roared under them and Fern looked up and out the window. They were on a dual carriageway or motorway, she couldn’t really be sure as there were no streetlamps. Brook pulled her head down and kissed her, making her forget all about it. She felt his hand heading down to her jeans and she moved her hips up to help him.

Brook tried and failed to undo her jeans’ button and zip one handed. Giggling, Fern planted her knees either side of him and sat back. With both hands, Brook undid her jeans and they both pulled them down. Fern settled on top of him again and rubbed her hips against his. She moaned in his ear and Brook began kissing her neck.

‘I really want to…’ Fern gasped into his ear.

‘How badly?’ Brook growled back.

‘So, badly,’ she panted.

Brook squeezed her bottom and tugged down her panties.

‘Do you think he’ll notice?’ Fern whispered.

‘No and even if he does, I’m going to wipe his mind later.’

Fern nodded and helped Brook take her panties and jeans off. She then helped him remove his and climbed back on top. They kissed a few more times before Brook slide inside of her and Fern cried loudly in a mix of pleasure and pain. He shoved his tongue down her throat, silencing her whilst he dug his fingers into the back of her head. Fern broke away, desperately breathing. She rocked her hips against his, reminding herself not to suddenly sit up as the car roof was only inches above her.

Brook grabbed her hips and thrust upwards. Fern moaned loudly and shut her eyes tightly.

‘I can’t, I can’t,’ she breathed.

‘You can,’ Brook uttered back, putting more pressure inside of her.

Fern shook her head and made a loud oh noise. She felt a small spasm building between her legs the urge growing stronger. Brook began a fast pounding rhythm as streetlights appeared against the windows and shone inside the car in bright flashes. Fern blinked, dazed for a few moments. Brook slid his hands upwards and grabbed her boobs. Fern felt him pinching her and other spasm building.

She cried out wildly as the pleasure peaked. She squeezed down top of Brook, jamming his thighs with her knees. Fern went to throw her head back but Brook’s hand snagged into her hair and yanked her down into his chest. She cried in pain then became still on top of him as Brook shook underneath her.

Fern listened to his jagged breathing quietening and becoming as steady has her own. Brook’s fingers tangled loose of her hair before playing with the strands. Fern snuggled into his chest and felt herself dozing. Brook’s lips brushed her forehead and he tried to ease upwards. He wiggled underneath her and with a loud sigh, Fern sit up and shuffled back to the other seat.

Book swung his legs down and began searching for his clothes. He give Fern her’s then began putting on his things. Fern swept her hair back and cracked open the window. Cool night time air whistled in. She got dressed with a struggle before pressing her head to the cold glass. She felt Brook seeking out her hand and give it to him.

The outlines of trees and fields swept passed, they details blotted out by the motorway lamps. Fern watched them go by anyway, her mind empty of thoughts as pleasure still soared between her legs. Brook rested his cheek on her shoulder and curled their hands together.

She put her head on top of his and shut her eyes as the taxi indicted to change lanes and zoom further up the motorway.

To Be Continued…

Trust (Part 27)

Fern awoke in an empty cold bed. She rubbed her eyes and face, rolled over and for a few moments drifted back into sleep. The sound of a lawn mower roaring jerked her awake and she sat up quickly. Flinging the duvet away, she went to the window, but couldn’t see anything outside, other than a darkening grey sky. She went to the bedroom door and out into the living room, her thoughts still cloudy with sleep, but wondering where the sound was coming from.

She crossed the living room and opened the doors to the balcony. Looking out over the railing, she could see a large motored lawn mower driven by Brook who was cutting the grass in straight lines. She lent on the damp railing and watched him for a few minutes. The sky and air both seemed to threat more rain, but at least the wind had died down. She took in a few deep breath, smelling and tasting sea salt, car pollution and dead fish.

Fern went back inside, showered and got dressed. She searched through her bag for her phone and finding it, saw that she’d a few text messages and missed calls. She sat on the bed and scrolled through, but didn’t reply to any of them. Most were from her landlord, which worried her because they asked where had she gone and if she was coming back and did she know her rent was due now? The others were from the hospital, reminding her about appointments and a meeting with a nurse she had missed. Lastly, there were two texts and a miss call from the only friend she had stayed in contact with.

Fern sniffed, feeling a roller coaster of emotions breaking loose. She rested the phone in her lap and opened the text messages. The first was dated the night Brook give her the blood and the second was dated two days ago as was the phone call. Fern’s fingers pressed against the touch screen and the keyboard come up, tempting her further to reply back. She bit her lip and wondered what she’d even say.

From behind her came the sounds of the lawn mower. She got up and went back to the window. Brook was now cutting the large lawn that had once been marked for a swimming pool and tennis count. Dropping the curtains back, she put her phone on the bedside table and walked into the living room.

She picked up the photo of Brook and Jay from the bookshelf and looked at it. Brook hadn’t changed. His fiery red hair was shoulder length, his eyes violet, his plum lips frozen in a smile that raised his pointy cheek bones and chin. Jay had light brown hair to his cheeks, dark hazel eyes and a cheeky boy grinning face. He looked younger, but only by a couple of years. How long had Brook been a vampire when this photo was taken? If any? So, how old in human years then? And where is Jay now? She questioned.

Setting the photo back down, she went through the apartment quickly and quietly looking for clues. At first, she really didn’t know what she was searching for and just blamed it on the fact that she wanted something to do to take her mind off her phone. In the bottom draw of Brook’s bedside table, she found some photos and a red plastic wrist band. Though the writing was faded, she made out Brook’s and Jay’s names with love hearts either side.

The photos were of them and mostly taken outside the apartment or at the beach. She skimmed through but stopped at the last set. They were kissing. Faces close together and lips meeting. She went to the next and both boys had taken their tops off and were kissing deeper with their arms wrapped around each other. The third was a wide shot of them on the bed together, just in their underwear, holding and kissing each other.

Fern glanced at the bed and tried to decide if it was that same one. She couldn’t be sure but it was most likely. She looked at the photo again and another thought came into her head, who had taken these photos? The camera could be on a stand and timed, sure, but… She looked at the next one, with that thought tailing off. The photo showed Brook completely naked leaning against the wall in black and white. Fern looked closely; there was no mistaking his muscle body and distant looking face.

‘Somebody must have taken this one,’ she muttered.

The next one showed Jay posing in the same way then the six after showed the boys in different love making stages. Fern licked her lips and tried not to nibble them as the innocent photos of teenage boys turned into soft porn. When she reached the last one, she collected them all together and put them back in the draw again. Getting up, the images sticking with her, she looked at the window and saw Brook still on the lawn mower. The noise of the engine blocked all other sounds out as he drove under the window.

Thinking she had only a few minutes left, she went through the rest of the bedroom, but came up with nothing else. Going out, she studied the other two doors along the wall, either of which she had not opened nor seen Brook open. She went to the first door, turned the handle and pushed. The door swung open on silent hinges and she let her eyes adjust to the darkness. It was a bedroom very similar to their own, but less lived in.

The double bed was made, but hadn’t been used in ages, Fern could tell. She stepped in and after a quick look around, began opening the wardrobe and drawers. Everywhere was empty, but it all the surfaces had been cleaned recently. She could smell the faint whiff of disinfected and lemons. Checking everything was back in its place, she left and tried the next one room.

Putting a hand on the door knob and turning it, she felt a slight residence. She pushed against the door and wondered if there was something stuck behind it. She made a gap big enough to fit through then stepped sides into the room. Pausing, she listened to the sound of the lawn mow fading and stopping.

A spike of panic speared her and she hurriedly looked around the room. It was a mess and she could hardly see the carpet. There were piles of clothes and shoes just abandoned and dump everywhere. The double bed was a mass of pillows, sheets and blankets as if someone had slept there recently. The wardrobe was wide open with more things tumbling out of it’s doors. The chest of drawers and bedside tables were open too, there contents pulled out or shoved back in. There was a bookcase and CD rack next to the window and they had been ransacked too. Looking at the floor she saw, books, CDs, DVDs two electric guitars, a boxed keyboard, rolled up posters, notebooks, photo albums and loose photos.

Typical teenage boy’s room? She thought, or is this Brook’s room and he’s just super messy?

In the background she heard the elevator clinking down. Stealing another few seconds, she grabbed the closest notebook and flipped through it. It was a soft, blue cover high school notebook and inside was a scrawling black handwriting.

‘Shakespeare’s The Tempest,’ she whispered, ‘possible exam questions; describe the relationship between individuals or a set of characters. How is magic used throughout the play? Why is the play known as a comedy-romance?’

Fern turned the pages and looked at some of the notes towards the back. In the corner of one of the pages she noticed a date;

‘Tuesday the sixth of May two thousand and three,’ she breathed, ‘Literature of WW1 GSCE Revision Notes,’ she read the title then closed the book.

Putting it back down, she hurried out of the room and closed the door behind her. Rushing to the TV she turned it on and sat down on the sofa. Just before the sound came on the TV, she heard the elevated doors slide up and footsteps in the corridor. Grabbing the control, she put the news on then tried to make it look like she’d been there all along.

The door open and Brook came in bring a wonderful scent of freshly cut grass, damp earth and the beach mixed together. He closed the door and Fern looked at him, keeping her face blank.

‘I had jobs to do before we leave,’ Brook said, ‘you okay?’

‘Sure. I heard and saw you outside, so I thought I’d watch some TV and wait for you.’

Brook nodded, ‘I’ll change then we can go. Do you still want to go to your place?’

‘Yes. I checked my phone and my landlord has sent me a few texts. So, I need to go.’

Brook ran his fingers through his hair and give a small shrug, ‘fine,’ he added then walked into the bedroom.

To Be Continued…

Trust (Part 26)

 

Brook got off the wall and called the elevator. The doors opened and he stepped in. Fern stealing a last glance at the shadowy shape of Dacian, turned and joined Brook inside the lift. Brook pushed the button and the doors shut. Fern hugged herself, feeling upset and no closer to the answers she had been seeking. Brook stayed silent, watching the numbers on the display flashing upwards.

They got out on the sixth floor and went to the apartment door. Brook let them in just using his hand and mind.

‘You need to teach me that,’ Fern remembered.

‘Sure,’ Brook answered, ‘there’s a bit more to it then the shadow cover though.’

‘It’s fine. I need to learn,’ Fern stated and walked inside.

The apartment was dark, but Fern quickly found her way to the bathroom and shut the door behind her. She heard Brook mutter her name, then saw a flash of light coming on from under the door as he turned on the main lights. Fern clicked on the bathroom one, then shrugging off the backpack, stripped from all her wet clothes.

She turned on the shower as she heard the TV coming on. She paused and tried to figure what the action movie was that Brook had stopped to watch. Shaking her head and feeling wet hair clinging to the back of her neck, she got in the shower. The hot water felt great and she sighed deeply before plunging her head underneath the full flow of water. She washed and double washed her hair, lingering in the shower as long as possible.

When she stepped out into clouds of steam, she grabbed a towel and dried herself off. Leaving her things behind her she walked out and over to Brook. He was sprawled across the sofa, just in his boxers. She was about to throw her arms around him and give him a hug, when she noticed the small, thick black outlined tattoo on the back of his neck. It was an opened mouth skull with a vampire bat escaping from the teeth. Puzzling over it, she hugged him and rested her shin on top of his head whilst her arms locked around his throat.

‘I emptied all the clothes on to the bed,’ Brook spoke.

‘Thanks. I’ll sort through them. What’s with the tattoo? I never noticed it before,’ Fern asked.

‘Not much. I got it before I was turned. I designed it myself.’

‘You never told me about that…how you become a vampire, the one who made you…how old you are?’

Brook gave a little snort, ‘it’s not interesting.’

‘So, tell me.’

‘I’m going to shower first. Maybe, before we go to bed.’

Brook moved and Fern had to let him go. She dug her hands into the back of sofa and thought about pressing him. He had gotten up though and was crossing the room. She went to get dressed instead and found that he really had just emptied the bag on the bed. Turning on the light, she had a quick sort through and found that none of the clothes were nightwear. There were two plain black t-shirts she could use, but there were no shorts or pants.

Fern picked out a nightie and bottoms from the wash basket and put them on. Really, I need to get back to my place and pack up all my stuff….Do I really want to move in here though? She thought. Sorting out the other clothes; she found two pairs of jeans, three jog pants, a packet of underwear, a handful of different t-shirts and a very worn blue woollen jumper. Okay, I so need my own stuff… Sighing, Fern folded the clothes and put them on top for the wash basket. She then got into bed and listened to Brook turn off the shower.

Settling back, she ran through a number of ways to bring up the suggestion of going to her flat. Thinking of that led to more thoughts about her other possessions and money. She had her purse and phone, but hadn’t touched them since Brook had taken her into the tomb. Her thoughts jumped on to that and a wave of blurry images came to her. She could see the damp stone walls and smell the mould. What I had I been doing before that? She thought, how did I spend my last day as a human? God, it was less than a week ago and I can’t remember!

‘You asleep?’ Brook’s voice cut into her thoughts.

Fern’s eyes snapped open and she jumped slightly, ‘I’m awake.’

‘You’re not tried?’

‘Not really,’ Fern said thoughtfully.

Book lay down next to her and they stared at each other.

‘You’re going to let me see Dacian again, right?’ she asked after a few seconds.

Brook gave a half shrugged and looked up at the ceiling.

‘He said he didn’t know when his blood would leave me…do you know?’

‘No. Do you feel drawn to him?’

Fern tried to hard the small smile on her face, ‘I guess…’

Brook went silent then after a few moments said, ‘any of the clothes good?’

Fern cast a look at the pile on the basket, ‘not really…Don’t you think it’s wrong?’

‘What?’

‘That we just took that stuff….I mean we didn’t really needed it.’

‘You learn to take and give,’ Brook said sleepy.

‘Give what?’ Fern tutted.

‘Donations. Money, food and stuff.’

‘And when have you ever done that?’

Brook sighed, his eyes fixed the ceiling, ‘not to them,’ he said very softly, ‘there was another shelter that helped me when I was first given the blood.’

Fern pressed her lips together quickly and wait for him to carry on. However, Brook seemed lost in thought. Fern moved closer on the bed to him and put her head onto the edge of his shoulder. Her hair brushed his neck and cheek; bring him back from a turmoil of memories.

He put his cheek to her hair and breathed deeply. Fern smelt smoke and blood on his breath.

‘Want to talk about it?’ Fern whispered.

‘Not right now. I guess one day…none of it really matters. It’s the past. I can’t go back…’ Brook uttered, ‘would you go back to yours? The cancer?’

‘No, of course not. I’d be dead all ready if it wasn’t for you and this…’ Fern stated and moved her head so she could see him better.

Brook glanced at her and kissed her nose awkwardly.

‘Though it’s not been easy or what I hoped…You know tomorrow we should go to my place,’ she added.

‘Why?’ Brook asked.

‘For my stuff. My life isn’t just in my handbag you know. I’ve got clothes and things…things I want. And rent…’ Fern trailed off into a hum as she tried to calculate when her rent was next due.

‘Guess your place isn’t as good as this one?’ Brook questioned.

‘It’s a one bed flat, almost a bedsit, but I’ve my own bathroom and a tiny kitchen. We should go though. I want my things and if we don’t go tomorrow the landlord might just throw it all out.’

‘Okay. I’m thinking of moving anyway. Been thinking about it over the last few days, really…’

‘Because of Dacian?’ Fern shot back, a hint of irritation in her voice.

‘He’s a part of it, more so then before now, thanks to you. But no, this place is shutting down for winter and there’s going to be less people now. It makes sense to go to my actual house. And now I know you’re going to live and we seem to be getting along okay, I thought we’d go there,’ Brook explained.

Fern rose off his shoulder and sat up in the bed. Her thoughts a hot, fast rush of words she couldn’t put together correctly to voice. She grabbed the duvet and clutched it tightly as a wave of anger rolled within her.

Brook followed her up and pressed a hand to her back. He began making large circles across her skin, sensing the mix of emotions coming off her. He didn’t speak and he was unable to get into her mind as her thoughts were too uncontrollable. He waited and listened to the sounds of birds singing the coming dawn song and car engine in the distance.

‘You lied to me. Again,’ Fern finally spoke.

‘No. I didn’t tell you the full truth. There’s a difference,’ Brook answered back.

‘I asked you,’ Fern said as she turned to look at him with a hand pressed to her forehead, ‘if you had a house and I thought this was it. You made me believe this was it.’

Brook pulled a face, ‘I’m the caretaker. That’s how I make most of my money. I get to live here or in the other apartments to do that job.’

‘Why didn’t you tell me?’

‘You didn’t need to know…like everything else. Why should I lay my life out for you?’ Brook demanded, anger sparking in his voice, ‘did I make you tell me everything before I shared my blood with you?’

Fern shook her head then as she thought about it, asked, ‘I don’t really remember…did you?’

‘No. It wasn’t important and it’s still not. And it’s the same for me. There’s stuff, Fern, that you really don’t want to know about me…A lot of shit stuff and yeah, it no longer matters now, but it made me and you don’t need to hear it,’ Brook stated.

He dropped his hand and flung back onto the bed. He spread his arms out, then rolled over and pulled the duvet over his head. He breathed heavily then arranged the pillows and settled for sleep in the nest he had made.

Fern watched this then lay down next to him, quietly. She watched the hump that was Brook raising up and down for a few moments. Her mind was reeling off questions and conjuring up images. The desperation to ask him refused to build and sighing deeply, she rolled over and kept everything to herself.

 

To Be Continued….

Trust (Part 19)

The wind swept through the trees, dragging salt and sand from the sea with it. Fern watched the tree tops whipping around. She could hear heavy breathing and two hearts racing, though it took her a few moments to realise that it was her breaths echoing in her ears. She put her hands to the railing and curled her fingers around the cold metal. Desperately, she wanted to look at Brook, but she couldn’t bring herself to face him.

Without a word, she felt him turn and go inside. She looked over her shoulder and watched him pacing the living room. He ran his hands through his hair and around his face a few times. His hands balled into fists then released again and slapped his sides. His breathing was ragged, loud and almost coming out in gasps. He spun at the hallway wall and walked back towards her.

Fern noticed there was mud on his boots and jeans, whilst there were traces of blood on his hoodie. As he got closer, she carefully sniffed and smelt blood, soil and some unknown sweet scent lingering around him. It reminded her of spice apple pie.

And me, what do I smell of? She thought. She put her nose to her shoulder and took a deep breath. The woods, the sea, the fisherman, Dacian…. She turned and looked back out across the woodland and the distance tops of the village houses. What have I done?

‘Brook…’ she spun around.

‘No!’ he roared, ‘don’t you dare! I can’t even think straight now!’

Fern ran inside, nearly trapping over the door frame and threw herself at him. Brook didn’t catch her and she dropped to the floor at his feet.

‘I’m sorry! I’m sorry!’

Brook shoved her away with both hands and stepped backwards.

Fern, kneeling, pressed her head to the carpet and broke down. Huge sobs racked through her and she started struggling to breath. Pain soared in her chest and she had to pull up to gulp down big takes of air.  She wiped her wet face and tried to gain control. Through her tear coated eyes, she looked up at Brook.

He was pressed against the wall, head thrown back and left hand to his forehead. His eyes were shut and he too seemed to be battling to stay in control of his emotions. His fingers grabbed the fringe of his red hair and tugged at it. A growl escaped him. He pulled harder at his hair then opened his eyes, fixing them on Fern.

‘I got lost,’ she breathed and swallowed.

Brook looked at her, unimpressed and waited.

‘Dacian found me,’ Fern continued, ‘he brought me home. I didn’t know what else to do…’

Another growl escaped from Brook’s tightly pressed together lips.

‘Where did you go? I waited for you….but I got so hungry and scared. I thought you had left me and I… Just didn’t know what to do!’

‘You should have stayed put,’ Brook hissed.

Fern shook her head, ‘I couldn’t. I fed. He helped me…’

‘Oh? And he just happened to be hanging around…This Daican?’ Brook sneered.

Fern balled her hands into her lap and settled back on her heels. She took another deep breath and felt herself calming enough to go on, ‘he’s from the arcade. He spoke to me when I went to the bathroom. I didn’t think anything of it at the time. I’m sorry.’

Brook shook his head, ‘I knew it…Fuck! If it wasn’t for worrying about you!’

‘I’m sorry,’ she mumbled.

Brook took a few steps towards her, hands tightening into fists as he did so. Fern’s eyes dropped to watch then rose to his face again. She felt a fresh wave of tears pricking her eyes, but tried to hold them back.

‘Do you like him?’ Brook snarled.

Fern pressed her lips together and moved her head quickly, ‘no. Of course not.’

‘You swapped blood.’

‘I was injured…’

‘Liar!’

‘Tried, I meant. Sorry, I was weak and I could resist him!’ Fern shouted and slapped her hands on her knees.

‘I don’t believe you,’ Brook argued back.

‘What else do you want me to say?’ she cried as the tears dripped on to her cheeks.

‘You can’t,’ Brook spoke in a low voice, ‘your actions have been too loud.’

Fern bite her lip and made to get to her feet. Brook fast moved over to her and pressed his hand to her shoulder. Fern cried out at the sudden heavy weight and nearly toppled over. She saved herself by putting her hands onto the carpet. With quickened breathing, she looked up at Brook.

‘I regret making you. You are completely unworthy,’ he said coldly.

Fern chocked, ‘no! Take it back. It’s not true. I made the mistake!’

‘No. It’s all my fault.’

Fern felt Brook move his hand up to her neck. She brought her arms up in defence, but it was too late, his fingers were already pressing against her throat. She felt him squeeze down and pressure building in her windpipe. She wrapped her hands around his lower arm and tried to pull him away.

‘Brook! Please, let go! I’m sorry!’ she screamed then kept on repeating those words.

Brook turned his head away, fixing his eyes across the kitchen and onto the fridge. His fingers pressed down tighter.

Fern gasped then couldn’t take another breath. Darkness and bright pins of light danced before her. She tried to think, but nothing other than her sudden inability to breath came to her. I’m so going to die!  

Everything seemed to slow down almost to a stop. Fern heard her heartbeat dropping down, her mind went completely black. Dead. Dead. Dead. Dead. The word stretched out as if a singer was saying it and holding the note of an impossible length of time. Dead. Dead. Dead…..dying, dying, dying. Breathe? Dying, dying, dying. Breathe, breathe.

Fern felt herself floating, swimming on a black river. She wanted to open her eyes and see if she was still alive, but she could not feel or sense any part of her. Death? She wondered before losing everything as she drowned in the black waters.

Trust (Part 18)

Fern sat on the edge of the sofa and watched Dacian looking around. The idea that she should offer him a drink or something to eat popped into her head. She stood up, words already in her mouth, but caught herself just in time. Instead, she tried to look casual as Dacian studied the photos.

‘I really shouldn’t be here,’ he breathed.

‘Why not?’ Fern cut in.

He turned to her, surprised she had heard him, ‘because we should respect other vampires’ territories.’

‘But I invited you in.’

‘I don’t think it’s your place,’ Dacian answered back.

‘This is my home now and I want you here,’ Fern countered, ‘I don’t care.’

Dacian pulled a face and acted like he was going to argue further.

‘I really don’t,’ she stressed and sat on the sofa again.

Dacian let his shoulders drop and went over to her. He sat beside her, easing a cushion into place behind his back.

Fern’s eyes darted to him then looked straight out. She leant back, picked up the other cushion and hugged it to her chest. Whilst they had been walking, she had wondered so many things about him and had willed time to allow them to talk. Now, she had been granted it she didn’t actually feel the same urges and guilt played on her in its place.

‘I should go,’ Dacian whispered, ‘it’s not right and I don’t want you to get into trouble.’

‘What will he do?’ she asked in a small voice and looking at him through her hair.

‘I don’t know. He’ll be mad though. Mad you let me into his space, mad I brought you home. Found you. Maybe, he’ll think I want you for my own…’

Fern swallowed a giggle, ‘no, he wouldn’t. He’ll be angry sure, but he wouldn’t think that.’

Dacian shrugged, ‘you can never tell. I knew a vampire once for thirty years and he was nice and calm all the time. He never showed his emotions till one day, he just snapped.’

‘Why?’

‘No one knows. He just went crazy, killed a load of people and burnt down a building. He died in the fire.’

Fern toyed with the edges of the cushion, ‘everyone can be like that. I guess.’

‘Perhaps. But we are unpredictable, Fern. Even more so then humans and animals. We are two forms trapped within one and each form is fighting for control all the time. You might not feel it right now, but soon you’ll have to battle it,’ Dacian stated.

‘How old a vampire are you, Daci?’

A smile crept over his face, ‘want to guess?’

Fern frowned before answering, ‘forty?’

‘Bit more,’ he said eagerly.

‘Fifty?’

‘Tiny bit more.’

‘Fifty-two?’

Fifty-five. As of a month ago,’ Dacian jumped in.

Fern giggled and put her hand over her mouth to hide it. The cushion slipped into her lap.

‘I know, I don’t look a day over twenty. Amazing, huh?’

‘Is that how old you were…?’

‘Twenty-two,’ he corrected, ‘I was working in the theme park that use to be close to here. The sixties had just arrived and I was helping close the place for winter.’

‘That sounds interesting,’ Fern chimed in.

‘Let’s keep it that way,’ Dacian laughed back, ‘what about you? How did you and…Brook meet?’ he asked seriously.

‘It was in the Lake District. He was swimming and I was out for a night time walk.’

‘And you accepted his blood?’

Fern nodded, ‘it’s what I wanted. The only thing I wanted since I found out…’

Dacian raised his eyebrows in question.

Turning her head away, Fern spoke gently to the cushion, ‘I was dying and there was no cure. I didn’t want to go. It was just so unfair! I was young and pretty and could do anything I wanted or having anything. I didn’t understand why it had to be me. I hoped there was an answer somewhere, but I didn’t find one. Well, beside from this dream I had about becoming a vampire.’

‘Go on.’

‘I don’t know what happened,’ Fern picked up, ‘I didn’t even believe in vampires! Something, made me do it through…I spent hours researching how to find or summon one. Then trying it over and over again, even mixing it up when I got bored. I was out almost every night looking and hoping. It consumed me. But of course, by the time Brook found me, I had already given up.’

‘And you did all that because of a dream?’ Dacian asked.

Fern nodded, ‘I can’t even remember the dream now…it feels like someone else had it, not me.’

Sighing, Fern threw her head on to Dacian’s shoulder and looked up at his slightly confused face. Her hands frayed the cushion’s edgings once more and she felt crying. She held it in and waited for him to speak.

He eased his arm up and put it around her shoulders. Drawing her in, he kissed her forehead and mumbled, ‘I wish I’d found you.’

Fern slowly moved her head up, her eyes catching his lips before fixing on his electric blues.

‘There are so few of us left and today’s tech makes it even harder for us,’ Dacian whispered, ‘once we could hear someone calling us out miles away. Now, it takes much longer and even then it can be so pointless.’

‘I understand. Brook told me something like that,’ she responded.

‘It doesn’t matter,’ Dacian said and he kissed her head again.

Smiling, Fern moved and put her head to his chest and her arm around him. She felt Dacian rest his chin on top of her hair and hug her back. For the first time in the last few days, Fern felt happy and calm. He makes me feel so different to Brook! She thought.

Dacian gently tugged her head up and she let him a line their lips. His touch was so soft and yet so protective. Fern licked her lips a little as Dacian brought their heads closer together. Their lips brushed and Fern felt butterflies in her stomach. She pushed her lips harder against his, determined to show she felt the same way. He didn’t pull back. She felt his hand on her cheek, rubbing her skin lightly and tilting her further up.

Dacian ran his tongue over his lips and she quickly opened her mouth for him. He slowly explored her and Fern couldn’t help but think how different he was to Brook. A spike of guilt speared the butterflies and she broke off the kiss.

‘What is it?’ Dacian breathed.

‘Nothing, nothing,’ Fern gushed.

She swept her hair back and moved the cushion out of her lap. She looked back at Dacian and saw the uncertainty on his face. She licked her lips again then lent back into him.

‘I don’t believe you,’ Dacian muttered.

‘But you believe this right?’

She kissed him.

Dacian buried his hand into her hair and drew her closely. He pressed his lips harder against her’s and Fern felt herself getting excited. She put her arms around his shoulders and slipped her fingers into his hair. She tried to pull him down on top of her, but he was far too heavily to move. Dacian broke of the kiss and planted one just on the edge of her mouth.

Fern, with a big smile on her face, lowed herself down on the sofa and Dacian followed her. He settled on top of her then carried on with kissing her cheek. Fern sighed and shut her eyes. She felt the trace of his lips against her skin as he worked his way down to her neck then to the base of it. He nuzzled against her and she felt his hair tickling her cheek. Trying not to laugh, she focused on the spot he was kissing.

Fern felt Dacian grazing his teeth against her and she squirmed. He sucked tenderly at her skin then bite down. She gasped and clutched him tighter at the sharp pain. Dacian placed his palm and fingers across her lower face as if to quieten her. Fern relaxed under him, finding the pain easing as she did so.

Loudly, she could hear Dacian drinking her blood. They heartbeats coming together in one sound and they bodies tingling in anticipation. Dacian licked at her shoulder then moved and licked her nose.

Giggling, Fern opened her eyes and they kissed. She repeated Dacian’s moves on him and kissed her way down to his neck. She heard him growl in her ear, but she didn’t have his patience and quickly sliced her fangs into him. She heard him moan a little as she began drinking. His blood was hot and the right mix of salt and sweet. She swallowed and eagerly took more as Dacian’s hand slide down her body and came in-between her legs.

Fern took another mouthful then she heard something in the background. Opening her eyes, she listened carefully and tried not to let Dacian’s rubbing fingers distracted her. The noise sounded like a door opening.

Dacian shot his head up, breaking Fern off. He was breathing hard and looking wildly at the door. He scrambled off her and the sofa, backing up towards the window. Blood drops appeared on his neck and began staining his t-shirt. He pressed a hand over them and turned to the glass door.

Fern struggled upwards, almost falling on the floor, but catching herself into. She got to her shaky legs and followed Dacian. She could hear the elevator whirling and her heart out racing it. She reached for Dacian, but missed him as he unlocked and opened the door. He turned to her before he stepped through, giving her a worried look.

She wanted to say something, but nothing would form in head or on her tongue. Behind her, the elevator had come to a stop and she could hear Brook running down the corridor. She turned to glance at the door as it blew open. Cold air rushed from two directions at her and she wiped her head back in time to see Dacian climbing over the balcony.

She rushed out, her hand almost grabbing his as he let go of the railing and dropped from the sixth floor. Fern felt a small scream tumble out of her mouth then Brook was pressed against her. She felt his arms tightening around her and pulling her away. He threw her back inside and she landed heavily on the floor.

Fighting for breath and feeling tears spring in her eyes, Fern twisted and looked up. Brook was standing on the railing, leaning over it. She got up and stood in the doorway, wiping the tears away. She stepping out, she went to Brook’s side and saw the shadow of Dacian disappearing into the woodland.

To be continued in October.

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