The Destruction of Mandi Linset

The Destruction of Mandi Linset

A Legacy of Shadows Short Story

by Jessica Fae

This is the story of the best day of my life. Of course, you’re probably curious as to who I am and why you care.  Well, my name is Mandi, but my daddy calls me princess. I’m sure most fathers probably do that; call their little girls princess. I mean, don’t all little girls dream of being a princess? I know I did. As to why you care about my story? Well, let’s just say that there’s a lot more to the world than you think.  Things that stay hidden in the shadows.  This world is a dangerous place. If you aren’t prepared, it’ll eat you alive.  Quite literally.

To understand how we got to where we start, you need to know just a little bit about me.  I hate doing these whole bio things, I always just skipped them or put down something innocuous when I had to do them in school, so I’m going to keep this short.  I was a typical girl, with a typical life.  Born and raised in the city of Aengove, the birthplace of magic! Psh.  Magic is just an overpriced joke mostly, nothing but tiny tricks and batteries that self-charge. My parents were quite wealthy, and while we weren’t the whole richie-rich types, we had more than enough money. My parents were members of society.  You know, the types who have reputations that they care about, but you never really know why or who it is that is watching them to say they’ve screwed up? All I can tell you is that it was a pain.  It meant I had to be the perfect little girl.  They wanted straight A’s, captain of the cheerleading squad, prom queen, and all those other things that make a high school girl the envy of the school. And that was me, up until my sophomore year.

That was when I met, “the dreamiest guy ever!” Gag, right? I used to talk like that.  How embarrassing. Anyway, Jordan, was the perfect boyfriend. Captain of the basketball team, president of the student council, and working toward a career as one of the business elite.  My parents loved him just as much as I did.  He said all the right things and had me convinced that we were going to be married and live in a big house. His parents were far richer than mine, there was no reason not to believe him. So when he wanted to “go all the way”, well, why would I say no? Of course, nine months later my whole life was pretty much ruined. My parents didn’t care how much I wanted to keep my daughter, they were not going to have the scandal of their fifteen-year-old daughter being a mother herself. Hell, they cared so much about their image that the second they found out I was shipped off to live with relatives in the country, so no one would know about the baby. That was such a wake-up call for me.  I mean, not in the way my parents would have liked, but in the sense that I realized the horrible hypocrisy of the whole society thing. I rebelled against that pretty hard. The important thing? I learned to live for me and not my parents.

So now that I wasn’t a total loser, life actually started looking up.  My parents hated it, but I finally had real friends.  Sure, only a few, but they were real, not those fake sycophants that just want to be near the popular girl. My absolute BFF, Jenny, was the best friend a girl could ever ask for.  She covered for me on the last Friday of the month, when after school I would sneak out to the nice little suburb where the family whom I was forced to give my daughter to lived.  I never talked to them, or her, that wasn’t allowed.  The adoption rules were very specific.  I would sit across the street in a little park and pretend to feed the birds while I watched her play in the yard.  I know, corny and not at all cool, but hey, when you have to give a child up against your will, then you can give me shit about it.

So fast forward a few years.  I was 19, taking a year off before college which you know pissed my parents off to no end.  We had a pretty typical fight over my clothes, which still doesn’t make sense to me because I’m an adult, what right do they have to say my skirt is too short? Or that I can’t dye my hair whatever color I want? They were still yelling at me as I slammed the front door behind me on my way out.  We lived in this really nice condo in the center of the city, which was great for them, but I hated it. It cost way too much money for what was a glorified apartment building, and have you ever had to walk up 23 flights of stairs because the elevators were out? Yeah, not fun! The upside, though, was that unlike most buildings in the city, this one had an underground garage, and it wasn’t long before I was squealing out of it in my cute little convertible.  I sent the expected call from the parents to voice mail and turned the music up as I headed out to the suburbs.

The sun was shining and I could already feel the stress my parents caused floating away as the wind blew through my hair.  It felt great, until I started getting close to my daughter’s neighborhood.  In the distance I saw a huge plume of black smoke rising up into the sky, and as I turned into the neighborhood a firetruck screamed by, sirens blaring.  It nearly deafened me, but that was nothing compared to the sinking feeling that settled into my stomach as I turned onto their street.  There were people standing around everywhere and police and firemen had set up a roadblock just a few houses away from them.  I could tell there was a fire up ahead, and it had to be pretty bad.  You could smell the smoke, sweet and ashy all the same time.  I pulled into a driveway, I didn’t really care whose it was, and jumped out of the car and started heading toward their house when a police officer grabbed me and pulled me back behind their little barricade things.

“I’m sorry ma’am, but we need you to stay on this side of the barriers,” he said as he did an outstanding impression of a brick wall.

“My daughter!” I yelled pointing past him.  Didn’t he know I needed to get through to see what was going on.  “She’s… She lives here, I need to make sure she’s okay.”  I tried again to push past him, and again that damned brick wall impression.

He asked me the address and when I told him his face fell.  I didn’t have to hear his words to know that my worst fears were true.  It was her house that was burning, and it was bad.  I fell to my knees, tears starting at the corners of my eyes, unable to really speak or hear.

“… sorry ma’am… No one survived… Unsure what caused…”  his words were feint, only barely filtering through the ringing that had started in my ears.

I couldn’t feel a thing, it was all just numb. And I was completely surprised when I realized that a woman was talking to me. “Wh… what?” I blinked at her through very bleary eyes.  I could barely focus on her face, I remember she was older, and seemed nice.  I think I might have seen her around the park or something, because she was familiar.  I was sitting in my car, but not sure how I got there. Trying to figure that out stole all my concentration, because there wasn’t much there to begin with, making me only vaguely aware that she was talking.

“Thank you,” I said.  That’s usually appropriate right? She seemed confused, but I wasn’t sure about what, as I started the car and backed out of the drive.  I drove in silence all the way back to the city, not even the radio on. I wasn’t sure when the rain started, but the car was already soaked by the time I noticed and hit the button to put the top up.

“Shit,” I murmured as I pulled over to the side of the road and started fumbling through my glove box. It only took a few minutes to find the fake ID that I kept in there thanks to Aengove being the only country in the world with an age limit for drinking and getting into night clubs. I desperately needed to go drinking, and I needed a change of clothes thanks to the rain.  Going home was out of the question, because I was in no state to deal with my parents yelling at me again, so I headed straight to Jenny’s place.  We wore the same size, so I could grab her and a change of clothes.  Then I could go to work on seriously drowning the pain that was starting to replace the confusion as the reality of what had happened sank in.

Jenny lived in a much more questionable neighborhood than I did, but at least she had a house.  I didn’t bother with the front door, just went around back to the door that lead straight into her room.  Her parents were the best, they never bothered her.  She’d had her own door and came and went as she pleased since junior year. She was very sympathetic to my problem, as always, and after I had cried on her for a good fifteen minutes, ruining the shirt she had on, she told me she had this stupid charity event she had to work. Normally, Friday was her off day, the day we partied, but every now and then her bosses would make her come in and work some huge event.  Something about the clients always asking for her because she was, “The best server this side of the straight.” Or something, whatever. So, unfortunately, I was going out alone tonight, but she did let me raid her closet and makeup, so at least I wouldn’t look like a hot mess.

I checked my phone, which I had actually forgotten existed for a while, on the way to the club.  Five missed calls from the parents.  Right, like I was going to call them back.  It took about twenty minutes to get to the club that we always went to, it was the best one in the whole city.  “The Down Below,” was probably the most exclusive nightclub in town, and somehow we always managed to get in.  Of course, we usually got there a lot earlier than I was going to, so we were not so far back in the line.  I parked in the lot a block away and let my mind drift as I walked over.  I was still on the main street, though much further back than usual, when I finally got in line.  The sun was just setting, so it wouldn’t take much longer for it to be around the block.  I fell back against the wall and started acting like I was playing a game on my phone while I waited.  The rain was still going pretty strong, but the club had a little awning type thing set up along the side of the building so we didn’t get wet.  Wet girls didn’t look as good or spend as much on drinks.

I’m not sure how long I had been waiting, but it was well past sunset, when he walked up.  Standing there in front of me in the rain, not at all concerned it was ruining what appeared to be a very expensive suit.  I saw him walk up, I was an expert at watching what was going on around me without looking up from my phone.  It was a skill that a pretty girl like me in a rough part of town needed to stay alive, honestly.  He was tall, probably six foot five or so, which made the butler looking guy standing next to him trying to hold an umbrella over his head look funny.  He’d looked even funnier trying to keep up with the man’s determined stride as he walked down the sidewalk to where he stopped in front of me.  He was just sort of staring at me, his eyes taking me in without any attempt at subtlety.

I glanced up at him, my finger poised over my phone, “Uhm. You know, pictures last longer.”  He was older, probably late thirties, his hair hadn’t started to go gray yet, and he probably would have been quite distinguished if it wasn’t for the fact he was pretty well soaking wet.

He didn’t smile, or really react in anyway other than to speak.  Well, if you could have called it that.  He simply said, “Come with me.” Then he turned and started walking back the way he came, toward the entrance to the club.

“Who the hell do you think you are?” I scoffed.  “I’m not gonna just do what some weirdo says.”  The problem was I was already following him.  I didn’t even realize I had started walking, but there I was, following after him like some puppy, his little butler guy next to me holding the umbrella over my head.  Well, at least I was still dry.  I knew I should stop, but I just couldn’t seem to decide to do so.  Instead, I punched in 9 1 1 on my phone and had it ready just in case.

He walked straight to the club entrance and past the bouncer who didn’t make any attempt to stop him, or me.  The butler guy stopped at the door, which made me feel a little bit more comfortable, it was so weird having him follow me like that.  I tried a few times to get the man’s attention but he didn’t seem to notice.  It might have been the volume of the music, which was always extra loud.  It was a dance club that catered to the goth scene primarily, so it wasn’t surprising.  I wasn’t into the scene too much, but the music was good and the drinks were the best in town. And let’s face it, what girl doesn’t love to put on a slinky black dress every now and then?

We went straight past the bar and toward a stairwell near the back of the club that lead up onto a balcony.  I’d never been up there before, that was the VIP area.  The people you usually see up there are the super-rich and super-gorgeous.  The really muscular guy standing at the bottom of the stairs didn’t even acknowledge us as we walked by.  This kind of pissed me off, because he was always waving me off when I would just walk by to go to the fucking bathroom, but now that this weirdo is here he is all like, “Sure you can go up!”

My mystery man made his way to a table near the rail and sat down.  I noticed that he was dry, there must be some sort of magic device in the club, probably on the stairs.  Magic, despite its limitations, was always light years ahead of science in the creature comforts department. The history books talk about when it was vastly more common than science, but no one believes that.  Alas, magic, like all the best things in life, was only for the rich.  We didn’t even make enough to afford more than the cell phone my parents gave me because they refused to let me have the excuse that my battery died or that my phone was broken.

I crossed my arms and struck my best pissed off bitch pose, “I asked you a question, or ten. I want answers.”

“Sit down,” he said with a slight smile, motioning to a chair next to him.

“You can’t just order me around like you own me!” I said, even as I pulled the chair out and sat down.  My ire died immediately as I realized what I had done, just in time for a waitress to set drinks in front of both of us.  “What the hell?”

He picked up his drink and leaned on the table, a bit close for my comfort, “My name is Christian.  Christian D’Ywyll.”

Despite the volume of the music I could hear him perfectly clearly, more magic. “What the hell is going on here?” I pushed my drink away, there was no way I was going to drink that. Not with how everything was going.

“Drink,” he said, indicating the glass.  “It’ll relax you, which is something it looks like you really need right now.”  His eyes twinkled.  They looked young, well, not old.  Not like old people eyes, you know? But at the same time they showed a lot of experience.

“If you think I’m going to drink something that a strange man I’ve never met gave me, you’re completely crazy.”  It was delicious.  I’m not sure how he knew what my favorite drink was, and it was clearly made with top shelf booze.  Not the usual crap drinks I can afford.  Why the hell was I drinking it!?

His smile dripped with utter confidence.  “You don’t know me, but I hope you’ll listen to my offer with an open mind.  You see, I’ve been looking for someone. Someone special, and I think you have the qualities I’m interested in.”

Now I was even more worried. “Qualities?”  I raised an eyebrow, “You think I’m a hooker?”

“No!” his eyes wide and he pulled back.  “Gods no! No, nothing like that.  This isn’t about sex. No.”  He shook his head, “I want to offer you the chance of a lifetime. What if I told you that I could make you rich beyond your wildest dreams, and take away all the pain in your life?”

“I’d want to know what the catch is,” I snorted.  “Nothing like that comes even remotely cheap much less free.”  I shook my head as I stood up.  “You’re crazy.”

He nodded and folded his hands together in front of him, “You’re right, it’s not cheap.  You have to give up your current life completely.  No contact with anyone you know, no going back to this life at all. Ever.”

I laughed.  Loudly, and had to hold onto the chair for support, “What? You’re crazy! What the hell? You want me to give up my whole life to be your what? Your little sex slave?”

“I told you it wasn’t about sex,” he said.  He reached into his jacket and pulled out a card.  “Trust me, it’s an honest offer.  You’ll have the best life you could possibly imagine. No pain. No anguish. Never worrying about anything.  Buying anything you want.”

I wasn’t sure why I took the card, “And what do you get out of this if it isn’t about sex? Seriously? Why would you offer me this?”

“Trust that I do,” he said.  “I told you, I need someone with specific qualities, and I think you have them.”

I glanced at his card before sticking it in my purse, “A lawyer. Great.  Tell you what, I’ll call you if I need legal advice, meanwhile, you keep looking.”  I didn’t even look back as I left.  Thankfully, I was able to do so.  I spent the walk to my car contemplating the question of why.  So many questions that started with that.  Why had he picked me? Why did I do anything he said? Why did I take his card?  Magic wasn’t powerful enough to affect people’s will, so what was it? I didn’t have any good answers, and that bothered me more than a little.

The rain had stopped, so I was still blissfully dry when I got to my car.  Well, when I got to the spot I had parked my car.  What I found was an empty space.  “What the hell?”  I took out my phone and double checked my find my car app and it sure enough said this was the right spot.  But here I was, and there was no car.  “SON OF A BITCH!”  Stolen! Someone had stolen my damned car.  Could this day get any worse? Fuck. I was starting to think that perv’s offer might be worth it at this rate.

I had to wait a good fifteen minutes for the police to show up and take a report, and then they didn’t sound too confident I’d get it back.  They said that next time I should spring for a GPS locator to be installed.  Like I didn’t know that would have let me find the car? The police are worthless anyway, the only reason I called them was so my insurance would buy me a new car. After they had left, you’re never going to guess who showed up? That’s right. My very own stalker weirdo, Christian. Turns out his car was parked in the space next to mine, well, my empty space.

He offered to give me a ride home, and once again asked me to consider the offer he made in the bar.  I refused both, there’s no way I was getting in a car with him.  Honestly, though, I’m surprised I was able to say no after what happened earlier.

“I’m just going to call my friend, she’ll come get me,” I smiled at him.

“Just remember my offer, it’s always open.” He nodded and left without a fuss. I expected him to put up more of a fight.

“Hey, wait a second,” I found myself stopping him.  “So I have a question.  Clearly you can get what you want, I mean, I don’t know what fucking magic tricks you were using back there, but I didn’t want to follow you into that club. Why don’t you just use it on me to make me accept this stupid offer of yours?”  I gave my best impression of someone who is asking, but doesn’t really care.

As he opened the door to get into his car he stopped and looked at me over the top of it, which was easy for someone his height, “Because, you have to accept it willingly, of your own free will.”  He shrugged, “Consider the idea that I might not be an asshole perv like you first thought.”  He winked at me and settled into the car with a smug smile.

I watched the car, a black muscle car, how fitting, pull away, biting my bottom lip.  I needed a ride, and hoped that Jenny was done with her stupid work event by now.  I called and was in luck, she was in her car.

“Bitch, you’re never going to believe what happened to me!” I started off, tears erupting from my eyes again.  So much for makeup. “My fucking car got stolen!”

“What?!” she gasped.  “Shit hang on, let me get hands free.”  There was a short pause filled only by my sobs, then she was back. “There, can you hear me?”

“Yeah, they stole it.  What the fuck? Why is this shit happening to me today?”  I was rambling, and probably not very intelligible to the average person, but Jenny was fluent in blubbering Mandi.  She’s who I called every time I needed someone. “First the fire, then the perv at the club, now this!”

“What perv?” she asked.  I could hear the wrinkles on her forehead clearly in her voice.

I started to tell her about Christian when it happened.  I heard a screeching sound come through the phone and then a loud crash.  Jenny was screaming, but it stopped suddenly, like something cut her off.  Then the phone was just dead.

“Jenny?” Nothing.  “Jenny are you okay?”  Nothing.  “Fuck Jenny talk to me! SHIT!” Tears were pouring out of me like faucets and I screamed at the top of my lungs as I flung my phone at the wall of the parking deck, where it bounced harmlessly off and skidded up under a nearby car.

I collapsed right there and cried into my hands for some time.  I’m not sure how long, but finally the tears stopped.  Not because the pain was gone, but because there simply wasn’t any water left in me to make them with. Perhaps this lawyer was meant to show up and keep me from having to deal with this? No, who am I kidding.  No one just hands a person everything they want.  No, he is lying about something, and my bet is on the whole this isn’t about sex thing.

I crawled over and fished my phone out from under the car where it had ended up, and wiped the water off.  At least, I hoped it was water. Ew.  I called a cab, and sat there, not really feeling much of anything at this point, waiting.  Time had no real meaning.  I stared. The cab appeared.  I climbed in.  Okay, I was helped up and put in by the driver.  I gave him the hospital I was sure that an ambulance would have taken Jenny based upon where she would have been driving.  She was on her way home, so I was pretty sure it was going to be Aengove Memorial.

The cab ride was blissfully silent, despite how often I saw the driver’s lips moving in the mirror.  The city was pretty much dead by this point, it had to be past two am when we stopped outside the emergency room entrance.

“Miss!” Sound came rushing in as I realized the driver was yelling at me. “The fair is twenty-two fifty.”

Absently, I fished out my emergency cash and handed it all to him, climbing out of the car and heading for the door.  I think he was yelling at me again as the glass doors slid shut behind me. I followed the signs to the information desk and asked about Jenny.  They told me no one patients had been brought in recently, but I insisted.  They were very apologetic, but still I didn’t care. I knew Jenny was hurt, and I knew she had to be in this hospital. I was just about to go off on her when I overheard two cops that came walking up behind her.

“Yeah, hit and run,” the first officer shook his head. “Late model black sports car. Witnesses didn’t catch any plates.”

“Poor girl, she died instantly.”  The second officer replied.  “At least she didn’t suffer.”

I practically crawled over the desk, “What!? A hit and run? You said a girl! Was it Jenny?”

“Ma’am,” one of the officers began as moved to keep me back from the desk. “Please, back away from the desk and calm down.  What was your friend’s name again?”

“Jenny!” I did back up from the counter but didn’t calm down.  “Jenny Metzer! She was, on the phone with me. There was a crash!”

I saw his eyes get heavy and he reached out to me with that comforting hand. You know, the one parents use when they are about to tell their little kid the family dog died? “I’m so sorry for your loss, ma’am.”

Gods! Jenny! Dead?  I ran out of the hospital, crying even though I didn’t have tears left.  The cop was yelling after me, but I didn’t hear the words, just the pounding of my heart in my ears.  How could so much happen in one day? To lose two important people within hours of each other. What in the Nine Hells did I do to deserve punishment like this?

I ran for a long time, before I was too tired to do so anymore and had to walk.  I made it back home, expecting to find the elevators out again, because that would be the perfect end to the perfect day, right? Well, they were working, but there were police cars out front of the building with their lights on.  Now, what are the odds that they are here because of something to do with me? Based on my day, I’m going to say pretty damned good.  I watched the numbers on the elevator tick up as it carried me slowly up to my fate.  3. 4. 5. Each one causing my stomach to get heavier with fear.  It was irrational, I know, but you’d feel the same way in my position. 11. 12. 14. Why did they always skip thirteen? No thirteenth floor. 21. 22. 23. DING!

The doors slid open and my heart fell all the way back to the lobby.  My apartment, clearly visible from the elevator, had the door laying off its hinges and yellow police tape across the door. My feet felt like lead as I forced myself down the hall.  An officer stopped me at the door, asking me if I lived there. I didn’t look at him as I nodded, instead trying to see inside the apartment.  The only thing I saw was the corner of a black bag laying on the floor amidst the ruins of all of my mom’s nice decorations. Thankfully, the police officer caught me when my legs gave out.

I don’t remember much of what happened at the apartment, they ushered me out pretty quickly.  I was taken to the police station to answer questions and give the positive identification on the bodies.  Yeah, that’s right, two.  Both. Mom and dad were gone. I do remember the interrogation room though.  It wasn’t like in the movies.  It was cozy, not cold.  They had water, and doughnuts on the table, and brought me a soda when I asked for one.  They didn’t grill me with question after question, just quietly told me that there had been a home invasion and both of my parents had been murdered.  They said it looked like dad had tried to protect mom, which of course he would do.  He was a good man, despite how badly I hated him most days.

“Is there anyone we can call?” the detective asked.

“What?” I asked confused.  “What do you mean call?”

He squeezed my hand gently, “To pick you up.  You shouldn’t be alone if you can help it.”

“Oh, no.”  I shook my head.  I didn’t have anyone.  There was nothing left.  I found myself thinking that it was ironic, because Christian’s offer wasn’t so difficult to accept now.  I had already lost everything he asked me to give up.  That’s probably what made me do what came next.

“Wait, yes, actually.  My lawyer,” I said wiping at my tears and then fishing out the card he had given me.  I gave it to the detective.  “Here’s his number.”

The detective raised an eyebrow at me, and gave a whistle, “This is your attorney?”  He didn’t ask any further questions when I nodded, just left to go call him.

While I was waiting, I saw that he left the case file for my parents on the table and I started to leaf through it.  They had a witness who described a brutal scene straight out of a horror movie.  “… after he finished raping her, he took out a knife and used it to scoop her eyes right out of her head! He put them in a little wooden box with a carving of a star in a circle on top, and some weird letters.”

Gods! What the hell was going on! No, I couldn’t take anymore. This had to end.  I closed the file and pushed it away.  I was going to take his offer, nothing could be worse than this. Even if it meant being turned into his sex slave.  I had nothing left, and surrender just seemed so perfect.

It didn’t take long for someone to show up, that butler looking guy with the umbrella, and put me in a limo.  It was the most luxurious thing I’d ever seen.  Perhaps this was the right decision after all? Maybe he did have the money to back up what he was offering. The ride was shorter than I had expected, and when the driver opened my door I found I was in a private parking area right next to an elevator.  When I got into the elevator I found it had only one button, so I pressed that and up we went.  This one moved much faster than the one in our, my building. It opened into a short hallway where there were a couple of other elevators and one set of doors.

“Well, let’s see what’s behind door number one,” I mumbled to no one in particular.  It turned out the door lead into a waiting room where a receptionist smiled up at me.  “Mr. D’Ywyll will be with you in a moment miss.”

I nodded and sat down on a chair to wait.  A few minutes passed by and a man came out of the only other door in the room.  He looked like he belonged in a street gang.  Clearly he had been in prison for a long time based on the tattoos that covered his body.  The flames on his left temple were clearly prison ink and not professionally done.  I mean, I know a thing about tattoos and you don’t get something like that anywhere but prison.  He gave me a rather lecherous wink as he passed by and I nearly vomited right there.

“You can go in now,” the receptionist said with her sickeningly sweet voice.

I took a deep breath and walked into the office.  It was not at all what I expected.  No stuffy lawyer crap everywhere.  There were weapons displayed like works of art.  Like the kind you find in museums.  There was a desk and a couple of comfy chairs sitting in front of it, but he was not sitting at it.  No, he was in a corner of the room where he had a little work out area set up, doing some kind of martial arts practice.  Or something like that.  He wasn’t wearing a shirt and it struck me that he looked more like a warrior out of some fantasy movie more than a lawyer.  His muscles where cut every bit as much as a bodybuilder, but he didn’t have that overly bulky look.  No he was ripped in that totally hot guy way.  The kind of guy you want to show up on a white horse and rescue you.  Fitting.  That’s exactly why I was here.

“Hey…” I started, idly fidgeting with a piece of paper on his desk and chewing on my lower lip.  “So, is that offer still good?”

He stopped what he was doing and casually started to walk over, frowning when he saw my face, “Of course.  You look troubled.  What happened?”

I shook my head, “Oh, you know, the usual.  My best friend died in a hit and run.” I half chuckled, still not looking up at him.  “Then my parents…” That’s when I saw it.  There on his desk was a small wooden box, a pentagram carved into the top.  You know, that occult symbol that was a star inside a circle, just like in the police report? Yeah, and there were some words written on it in a language I didn’t speak.

“Your parents what?” he asked, pulling a shirt on that he had taken from a hook on the wall.

I didn’t answer.  I was transfixed by the box.  My hand shook like crazy as I carefully opened it.  Swallowing as I did, uncertain what I was going to find, hoping it wasn’t what my mind was conjuring up. I feel back when I saw what was waiting there inside; pure nightmares.  On a plush cushion of velvet sat a pair or human eyeballs. They were fresh, still wet and sticky, and they were green.  Green like mom’s.  “No…” my voice was shaky.

He made a clicking sound with his mouth as I backed unsteadily away from his desk. “You weren’t supposed to open that.  It’s private.” He closed the box with a gentle reverence that seemed so out of sorts with the monster that had brutally raped my mother.

My eyes met his and I saw approval.  He actually looked proud of me.  What the hell kind of monster was he?  “You…” I shook my head.  “All of it.  Black sports car.  The flame tattoo. You, you were behind all of it!”

He smiled, “You are strong. Stronger than you know.”  He started to walk toward me. “Most people would have broken, useless after all you’ve been through today.  But not you. No.  I knew I was right about you.  I knew you would prove strong enough for my needs.”

“What!?” I screamed.  “Fuck your needs! I’m not taking your damned offer now!”  I turned and bolted for the door. Locked.  “SHIT!” I screamed as I beat on the door.

“There’s no need for that,” he said.  “It’s over.  Your pain is finally going to come to an end.”  I have no idea how he got to me so quickly, it’s like he was just there.  His hand buried into my hair and ripped my head back, and he snarled in my ear.  “I’m going to make it all better. You’re going to love what I have in store for you.”

When he smiled, a slight laugh escaping his lips, I saw his teeth.  I had to be dreaming this but I swear they grew.  Lengthening into fangs. I struggled against his grip but it was like steel.  “What are you?”

His answer came as he savagely sank those pointed teeth into my neck.  A scream started but didn’t really go anywhere.  It wasn’t what I expected, the sensation.  I thought it would hurt, having your life’s blood drained from your body against your will.  It didn’t though.  It felt like, getting a shot.  At first anyway.  A slight pinch, and then bliss.  The joy spread out from the bite like water rushing over me.  I had never felt anything so wonderful in my life. Still, I fought. Despite how good this felt, he was a monster.  “Yo.. you said… it had, to be… willing…” I managed to croak out the words as barely a whisper.

He stopped, lifting up from my neck, which made me moan because I wanted that blissful feeling to come back.  “I lied,” he whispered in my ear.  As I started to cry, realizing the futility of it all he started to comfort me. “Shhhh,” he said softly.  “It’ll all be over soon. No more pain, ever.  It’ll be okay princess.”  Then his teeth were back in my neck and the world faded into bliss.