I walked through the house quickly to assess what needed to be done before dawn broke the horizon. There were only three hours of night left for me to complete all of the things that lay ahead of me which needed to be done. The carnage was confined to three places in the house. I figured there would be just enough time to complete everything before dawn broke the far horizon.
The first thing I had to do was the easiest on my list. I left the house and went around back to the seldom used garage. I climbed into my vintage pick up and headed toward the nearest village as fast as the truck would carry me. I could run faster than the truck could move, but I couldn’t carry everything I needed to get without the truck. The drive into the village seemed to take a long time, and my patience ran thin as I thought about the creeping minutes ticking away. I had so little time left and the drive seemed to take most of that time away from me.
I finally arrived in the sleeping village twenty-three minutes later. I drove to the only funeral home the village had. I broke the lock with a slight flick of my wrist and checked to see that they had what I needed. I spent the next ten minutes loading a number of coffins into the tail end of my truck. I went back into the funeral home after loading the last coffin they had into the truck, and I left ten thousand dollars in cash on the counter in the front of the room. I knew that the people who owned this little funeral parlor were poor and the money would be a welcome blessing to them. They would not report the robbery. No one would ever know that four coffins had been stolen in the middle of the night.
I was overwhelmed with the grief that washed over me on the way back to my house. I mourned the deaths of all who had died tonight. I mourned the death of Kramer and his nephews. They had saved Aodac when he had needed saving and in turn they had saved me by saving him. They had given up their lives to help Aodac when he had desperately needed help. I owed them a debt that could never be repaid. I had not meant for them to be killed here. I would have given anything to have saved their lives the way they had saved Aodac’s life. I cried a river of tears that they were gone. The worst part of it was that they were gone because of me. They were a heavy regret in my heart that would follow me to my last breath.
I mourned Aodac. I mourned his death. I mourned the reality that he was gone and I would never be held by him again. I mourned the loss of his love which was buried deep in my heart. I surrounded myself in that love now to give me the strength to do what I needed to do. I held onto Aodac’s memory and kept his face in my eyes.
I thought of Cahol and mourned his death once more. I had missed Cahol for years. I had missed his smile… his touch… his gentle yet passionate embrace…his love. I had been able to survive his death only by holding onto the hatred that had encompassed me for the one that had killed him. I had thought that I had hated the right person and punished the right person. I had thought that I had built my life after Cahol’s death on the solid rock of hatred and then love. I was only half right. I spent far too long hating the wrong man. I had condemned the wrong man to suffer a fate far worse than death for a betrayal that was not his own.
I berated myself for my own blindness as to who and what Adam had really been. I berated myself over my own stupidity in believing that Adam had ever cared about me, Cahol, and Aodac. I tortured myself with the memories of what I had done to Aodac in revenge for Cahol’s death.
The past haunted me as I drove toward my future. The shadows of my past flew by me likes ghosts in the night that had come to steal my soul. I felt a little piece of me die with each passing shadow and I knew that it wouldn’t be long before I would join those shadows forever. I knew that it wouldn’t be long before I became nothing more than a memory to those who are already dead.
I arrived home with a heavy heart. I felt sure that I would crumble to dust from the blanket of grief that enveloped me in a harsh truth. The weight of the grief on my heart was the burden that I now bore.
I carried the coffins into the house and drove the truck back into the garage. I picked up a shovel and walked into the back yard. I began to dig at a furious pace. I tried to keep my mind blank as I dug through the ground. I tried to keep myself from thinking about what I was really doing and why. It took me the better part of half an hour to dig four graves large enough to accommodate the coffins that I now had in the front entry way. I returned to the garage and put the shovel back where I had gotten it. The time had come to face the dead.
I was in no rush as I walked around to the front of the house. I took the time to collect my thoughts and organize the tasks ahead of me in a sequential order. I walked into the house and saw Kramer’s eviscerated body on the stairs leading to the second floor. I saw the footprints that dotted the stairs heading up that were made when I dragged Alan to his prison.
I approach Kramer’s body with my head bowed in shame and grief. I knelt at his side and stared at the look of horror etched into his stony face. I stared into his eyes which were lifeless and held none of the terror that the face gave testimony to. I closed Kramer’s eyes and picked up his body. I carried him to the first coffin and laid him within. I placed his hands over his chest and whispered a prayer over his body. I wondered if God would hear my pleas for those that are gone.
I went to the large receiving parlor off of the main entry way next. I looked around the room and focused my gaze on the bodies of Kevin and Blair. I lumbered over to Blair first. I knelt at his side and begged forgiveness of his body. I picked him up and carried him out into the entry way and placed him as gently as I could into the second coffin. I placed his hands on his chest just as I did with his uncle and prayed over his lifeless body. I prayed for his soul in the hope that it will not be discarded and left to wander forever.
I returned to the receiving room and shuffled over to Kevin. I knelt next to him and caressed his sweet face one last time. I placed a gentle kiss on his forehead and picked him up. I carried him out into the entry way and eased his body into the third coffin. I placed his hands on his chest just as I had done twice before and I prayed for him. I prayed for his spirit. I prayed that he finds peace in death and that his spirit would move beyond the realm of earth. I prayed that Kevin finds the Gates of Heaven and be surrounded in the Joy of the Lord.
I lingered over Kevin’s body. I did not want to face the last of the dead. I did not want to face the skeleton that remained of my second love. I pushed myself away from Kevin’s coffin and I walked through the receiving parlor and into the small entertaining parlor that adjoined it. I walked toward Aodac. It felt like I was walking toward a lethal injection. I felt as if I would die when I faced Aodac’s remains.
I knelt as his side and cried over his brunt bones. I held the bones that were his hand and pressed by cheek against them. I placed a gentle kiss against the hollow that would have been his cheek. I pulled away from him and saw Adam’s journal out of the corner of my eye. I reached over to pick it up. I placed the journal in Aodac’s skeletal hands. I ensured that no one would ever find Adam’s journal. No one would ever know what truly happened. No one would ever know what had led to the course of events that were played out in this house. I set about rolling Aodac’s skeleton up into the rug that he had died on. It would have been difficult at best to carry his skeleton to the coffin in tact; it would have been impossible to wash away the blood that had saturated the carpet.
I carried Aodac’s remains out into the entry way and placed him in the last coffin. I prayed over him as I had prayed for the others. I prayed that Aodac had been reunited with Cahol and that Aodac had told Cahol the truth behind the lies that had made up our lives. I prayed that Aodac and Cahol had found forgiveness in each other. I prayed that they were brothers once more. I prayed that they would welcome me with open arms when they saw me again.
I carried the coffins to the backyard one at a time. I placed Kramer into his grave first and brushed his coffin over with the mountain of dirt that lay next to it. I placed Blair and Kevin into their graves and covered their coffins. I buried Aodac’s coffin last. I knew that the truth was buried with him and our secrets would dwell with him in his grave for all eternity.
I return to the house and began the arduous task of cleaning away every last trace of blood. I began in the front entry way and the stair case. This was the easiest place to clean due to the lack of carpets and furniture that were within range of the blood. A simple mixture of bleach and water cleaned away all traces and ensured that any trace of blood would be either too contaminated to be tested or too degraded to be testable.
I moved into the main receiving room off of the entry way next. The blood was more difficult to clean here because it had saturated itself into one of the chairs that was near Kevin’s body. I didn’t bother to try and get the stain out of the chair. I picked it up and carried it down into my lair that lay hidden far below the house. I did the same with the carpet that had been in the room. I cleaned the rest of the blood up with the same mixture of bleach and water. There was nothing left to find.
I went into the small entertaining parlor last. I cleaned the blood that marked the spot of Aodac’s demise and ensured that our secrets were dead and buried forever. There would be nothing to find. There would be no questions asked. There would be no investigations into what happened here. We simply decided to leave in the middle of the night and never return. The path before me was clear and I embraced it with arms wide open.
Dawn crested the horizon. I was forced to wait out the day to complete the circle. I climbed the stairs slowly and entered my room. I said one last good bye to the place. I could feel Aodac’s aura shimmering within our sanctuary, and I wrapped myself within its protective cocoon. I let Aodac’s love flow through me and caress me one last time.
I did not stay in the room long. I returned to Alan’s prison and entered to hear his shrieks of agony. I watched as he pulled against the chains that bound him to the bed and listened as he hurled curses at me and then pleaded with me to end the pain.
Alan proved himself to be just as much of a coward as his grandfather was in the face of reality. Alan professed to want immortality, yet he screamed for death as immortality embraced him and created him anew.
“Alan… Alan… Alan… how does it feel?” I asked him with heavy sarcasm in my voice.
“How does what feel, bitch?” Alan screamed at me with hatred burning in his voice and eyes.
“How does it feel to know that the captor is now the captive?” I asked him with mock concern in my voice.
“You will never hold me captive!” Alan screamed at me.
“You already are my prisoner.” I said in a quiet voice.
“I’ll kill you for this, you whore!” Alan spat at me with contempt.
“Oh, Alan… such promises… Tell me how it feels to know that you fucked up? How does it feel to know that you can never fix the mess you made of things?” I said with ill contempt in my voice as I looked at him with a hatred that burned a hole right through him.
Alan screamed a slew of obscenities at me. He insulted me; he taunted me with the secrets of my past that were laid bare for him through Adam’s words.
Nothing Alan said could faze me now. I was beyond Alan’s taunting. I was beyond the slew of hatred he spat at me.
“I will see you dead, bitch!” Alan screamed at me. “I will watch you die the same way your precious Cahol and Aodac died! I will drive a stake right through your black heart, whore!” Alan shrieked at me through the pain that still held him in death’s grip.
Alan tried to scare me with his words, but I could never fear him. How could I fear this little boy who thought he understood what I am and desired to be what was beyond his comprehension. Alan was a coward who thought he held a winning hand… nothing more. Alan should have looked at his cards a little better before he tried to bluff me and win. He lost. I ruled him now. I would be the end of his eternity.
The day passed slowly as I listened to Alan’s screaming. It seemed as if time had stopped just to torture me and prolong the agony within. Night came at a crawl. It seemed as if the sun would never sink below the horizon and give me my final night.
Alan’s screaming became tedious to listen to. I begged the sun to sink so that I could leave the room without fear of being caressed by the sun through the windows.
Night did come eventually. Alan still had three hours before my blood succeeded in killing his mortal body and turning him into a vampire. I left the room and searched the house for anything that I might have missed the night before in my haste to complete my tasks. I spent the night searching through the house and removing any trace of those that had lived within its walls for the brief time we had been here.
I returned to Alan when I had completed my search of the house, and I had corrected any oversights that I may have made the night before. Alan was still screaming when I opened the door to his prison.
“I think I will enjoy torturing you for eternity.” I said to Alan in a calm voice that almost rang with the pleasure his pain brought me.
“GO TO HELL!” Alan screamed at me.
“I plan to, Alan. However, I will not go to hell before you do. I think I would like to watch the sun burn off your arms. You would be completely helpless.” I said in a snide sneer.
“Never!” Alan screamed at me in denial.
“Well then, what about your legs? Could the sun burn them off instead?” I asked in a mild tone as I shrugged my shoulders. “It makes no difference to me, Alan… arms… legs… it’s all the same.” I continued with my verbal torment.
“Never!” Alan screamed at me again.
“Oh, Alan… do be reasonable here… You know that you are beaten. You know that I have to torture you somehow. The least you could do is admit your defeat; be a man about it and accept your fate. Come now, what parts of you are expendable? What can you afford to lose to the winner? What are you willing to lose to the winner?” I mocked him some more.
“You will never beat me! I will still kill you the way I killed your precious Aodac!” Alan spat at me as he screamed from the agony that still gripped his body like a vise.
“Dearest Alan, you will be one of us within the hour. Do you really believe that you will free yourself from your prison so that you can kill me?” I asked him with a ring of mock curiosity in my voice.
“I will kill you! I won’t have to try!” Alan screamed.
“Then cling to that illusion as you draw your final breaths!” I spat at Alan in disgust. “Just ask yourself one question.” I said quietly.
“What’s that?” Alan asked skeptically.
“What’s to stop me from killing you once the blood has succeeded in turning you and you fall dead at my feet? It will be at least two hours before you awake as a vampire… what is to stop me from killing you as you lay in deadly slumber?” I taunted.
“You won’t kill me! You’re too stupid to kill me!” Alan howled.
“I will not argue with an idiot, Alan. Believe what you choose.” I said as I rose from my chair in the far corner.
“Where are you going?” Alan cried as I moved toward the door.
“Don’t worry, Alan. I will be back before you die.” I said in a mild tone.
I left the house and walked to the four graves in the back yard. I kneeled at the foot of Aodac’s grave and reflected on the course of events that had brought us to ruin. I allowed the anguish within to wash over me just as I allowed the flowing tears to cleanse me. I said my final good byes to Aodac with a silent prayer that he would be waiting for me.
I returned to Alan just as he was on the verge of his final death. I watched him with impassive eyes as he drew his last raspy breaths as a human. I watched as he passed into the realm of unconsciousness and fell silent. That was the time I had been waiting for. I had been waiting for the few hours that he would be unconscious; they would be my last few hours of peace.
I used the time to reflect on the day that had passed. Aodac had been gone less than twenty-four hours. The pain of his death was a torture that I could hardly endure. I thought of the suffering that I had condemned Aodac to in my quest to drown my own grief at the loss of Cahol. I reflected on the forgiveness that we had found in each other and the love that we had given each other before he was killed.
I thought of Cahol and the words he had spoken to me that foretold of our demise. I thought of the love I had been blessed to find in my creator and Master. I reflected upon the events that had stolen him from me and started me at the beginning of this long journey I had walked without him. I prayed that he would be there with open arms to welcome me home.
It seemed like no time had passed when Alan awoke from his deadly slumber. He looked at me with a hatred that consumed his entire being.
“How does immortality feel, Alan?” I asked in a smug tone.
“What the hell is this?” Alan demanded.
“You are seeing the room you have been in all day through the eyes of a vampire. The room looks quite different when you can see every grain in every surface that surrounds you, doesn’t it?” I asked evenly.
“This is the same room?” Alan asked me in a mystified voice.
“Yes, Alan. This is the same room.” I said quietly.
“My God!” Alan exclaimed. “I didn’t think it would be like this…” He said to himself.
“I buried the bodies you left in your path of destruction.” I said in a somber voice. “I buried Adam’s journal with Aodac. It will never be found.” I continued in that same somber voice.
“Why did you do that?” Alan shrieked at me.
“You will have no need of it now that you are a vampire. Neither of us will.” I said quietly.
“How could you be so stupid? Grandfather Adam left that journal to me so that I would know his story! It’s mine!” He wailed.
“You have no more need of Adam’s story, Alan. You have your own story to write now.” I explained.
Alan hurled a slew of curses at me that I do not care to repeat. I lapsed into silence and spoke no more to him. I fell back into my melancholy reminisces. I thought about the night that Cahol had succumbed to my seduction and made me a vampire. I had never felt so complete until that moment. I thought about the taste of Cahol when I had drunk from his vein. My throat burned from thirst at the memory.
I thought about the time I had recently spent locked away with Aodac as we had solidified our eternal lives into one. I thought about the taste of Aodac as I had drunk from his vein and he had drunk from mine. The burning in my throat ached. The thirst was a painful torture. I would never drink from Cahol or Aodac again.
However, there was one I could drink from. His blood may not quench the thirst that burned in my throat, but his blood would satisfy the need for blood that all vampires had. I rose from my chair and approached Alan with predatory grace.
“What are you doing?” He barked at me in fear.
“It’s time to feed.” I said quietly with a look of wild hunger in my eyes.
“What do you mean?” Alan begged in fear.
“It’s time to feed.” I repeated myself as I reached the bed Alan sat on.
He shied away from me with a look of fear on his face. He knew how defenseless he was chained to that bed. I straddled his hips. I entwined my fingers through his hair and he shook his head violently as I tried to pull his head to one side. I won the fight with him and his head bent to the right. I bit his neck and drank my fill of his vampire blood. Alan’s blood tasted like it was tainted. How could he have transformed my sweet vampire blood into something that was tainted and dirty? Still, his blood satisfied the thirst that burned in my throat. I pulled away from him and withdrew to my chair in disgust. I fell back into silence as Alan ranted in his own delusions.
The hours passed slowly for me this way as I waited for the time just before dawn when the world is shrouded in shadow and fog. My mind dwelt on all of the love that I had felt and been denied in my life. Each memory opened up a new bleeding soul wound that could never heal. I died a little more inside with each passing memory. The pain tore me up inside and killed me a little more with each passing hour. There are no words to express the avalanche of grief and longing that weighted down my soul from the memories of my two greatest loves.
The darkness outside lightened in a miniscule way. The change in the darkness would not have been noticed by any other creature. The time was finally upon me to complete the circle and finish this horrible game. I rose from my chair one last time and approached Alan with a stake in my hand.
“What are you doing?” Alan screamed at me in fear.
“Everything has a price, Alan. It is time for you to pay the price of the immortality you craved so much that you killed to get it.” I said in a whispered caress.
“What price?” Alan begged as his eyes grew wide with fear.
“It’s time for you to pay for your crimes.” I whispered in his ear.
“No!” Alan screamed as he saw the stake in my hand.
“Do you know what this is?” I asked him as I held the stake up for him to see clearly.
“Death.” Alan said in shock.
“Yes…” I said quietly. “This is the same death that you gave Aodac.” I said quietly.
“No…” Alan wailed in a pitiful sob.
“Yes.” I said in a soothing croon. “I give you the same stake that you used to kill him.”
I drove the stake into Alan’s throat. I knew that the stake would not kill him that way. The stake would merely paralyze him and make him easy to control. I had a very special death planned for this boy.
I dragged Alan out to the bluffs behind my house. I set him on the ground and retrieved the ax that lay against a tree twenty feet away. I chopped off Alan’s arms and placed them in a three foot diameter around his body. I chopped off his legs and scattered them the same way. Alan’s eyes were wide in fear as he saw the ax coming down toward his neck. He still lived, but he could not fight. I chopped off his head and placed it three feet way from his naked torso. His body lay scattered around his center, and he could do nothing to save himself…
I patiently wait for the break of dawn. I will watch Alan burn in the first rays of the sun, and I will burn myself at the same time. There is no way to avoid my death. I welcome it. Fate had given me a cruel life and the time has come to give it back. I welcome the death that will release me from the chains of my immortal life without the love that had brought me to this life.
I have destroyed the threat of Adam’s legacy. The circle is complete and it is time to be reunited with Cahol and Aodac. We will be a family again. I will be whole again. It is true what they say… love conquers all.
Love has conquered me.
Love has led me to my death.
There is no greater conquer than that.
I wait. Time is short. The sun will rise soon, though there is still a faint glimpse of the evening sky still visible. That night that is not night wraps me within its cocoon and conceals me.
I stand alone on the cliff side that is dark, and I am surrounded in that blackness. The night that is not night has even gotten blacker, yet here I stand awaiting the dawn. I look out upon the waters that I can not see. I hear the surf and the waves pounding on rocks hundreds of feet below me, and I wonder if I fell would I ever hit what’s there or am I only imagining that it is there?
I turn my head slightly, and I look at the body lying on the ground. Disgust flows through my body and consumes my entire being. He thought to blackmail us. He thought he could push his hand in life, and Lo!, look what it got him... dead and cold on the ground.
I turn my head from the site of his body for it is repulsive to me. I look back toward my house. I have had that house for longer than I can remember. This house was once my prison. My glorious and beautiful house… I will miss the place, but I will not change my mind.
I look to the sky and see Orion blazing on the horizon. It is not easy to say good bye to him; he has watched over me and protected me for countless years. It is difficult to say a final good bye to my protector. I don’t know how I manage it, but I do.
I look toward the sea once again and I imagine Egypt. It is hard for me. I miss Egypt in the core of my soul. I close my eyes and I see the Great Pyramids… The Sphinx… The Valley of Kings, where my one true beloved lies buried and forgotten… Thebes and Cairo that were once rich and world renowned are now nothing more than wastelands; their Temples lie in ruins, their palaces are buried beneath the sand and lie forgotten by time, and the people are poor and starving! My beautiful rich Egypt is now desolate and devoid of its ancient beauty.
I imagine my beloved Greece and Rome which are now just like Egypt. I say good bye to them all. I know that I will miss the beauty of this world.
Yes… I am to die, but we will live on.
I look toward my house again and then toward the back yard where I buried my second love in a nameless grave. I dwell on the memory of his murder right before my eyes a day ago. I look back towards the body that lies next to me and I smile in sweet satisfaction.
I was warned that it would end this way for me, but I refused to listen all of those years ago. I was warned of what would happen to me and all of the people whom I love and hold dear in my heart, but I just shut my eyes and my ears to the truth. I would not listen to what I knew in my deepest soul to be the truth of the universe. It was never meant for me, but the temptation was too great and I could not resist it.
Light shines on the horizon, and I welcome it. I am ready for my nightmare to be over, and to be joined once again with those that love me. The light grows, but the sun hasn’t penetrated the horizon yet. I await it with an almost school girl giddy anticipation. I never thought that would be so, but it is.
The weight of my life, the weight of my years is a weightless burden now. It doesn’t matter anymore. The sun pierces the sky and I watch Alan’s body being reduced to ash piece by piece, even as my own starts the journey of death. I feel so calm it is almost surreal. My death reunites me with my beloved Cahol, with my best friend and lover Aodac; my death closes a book that should never have been written.
In the end I lost, because I dared to play a game where the price of admission and the stakes were to high. In the end I lost my lover and Master Cahol… I lost my best friend and lover Aodac… and I lost my sweet innocents that had once been my charm. Then I lost my mind. Now I will lose my life.
I watch Alan burn and I think of the truth of my life as I cling vainly to the last breaths of life inside of me. It was a truth that I didn’t want to know. Aodac feared all of those years ago that I would suffer eternal torment if I became immortal, just as he did. Aodac’s worst fear for me came true in the end. He was right… I never should have been a vampire. That journey has brought me an eternity of torment. I have been tormented over the death of my first and truest love Cahol, and over the suffering and torment that I inflicted on my best friend in the entire world, Aodac. I have been afflicted with torment over them both. None of it ever should have happened. I shouldn’t have let it happen! It’s my fault that both of my loves are dead. It’s my fault that neither live today! However, I know that as I die they have forgiven me for their deaths and I know that I will be granted eternity with them.
I pray that you remember us…
I stop holding out, and I let the wind carry the ashes of my body away. I see a vision of a radiant and blinding light as I die. I see Cahol and Aodac standing there waiting for me. I try to smile at them, but the movement causes the ash of my body to fall and break down. My spirit runs to them and they embrace me in fierce passion. I know that I have returned home. I have found my eternity, and I will never have to leave it. I have found my love, and I will never again have to say good bye. I know that I am truly home, for all of eternity.