The Vampyre – Short Story.

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This was written for my AS English Literature coursework with a few small changes. It’s not brilliant, but I enjoyed writing it. Its influences are Bram Stoker’s Dracula and Anne Rice’s Interview With A Vampire. Any comments or feedback would be much appreciated. Rhys.

The Vampyre

Cursed

He stepped out from behind the thick, heavy velvet curtain just avoiding the dim pool of light that shone from a small, shabby desk lamp in the corner of the room. The only sound made was a soft swaying motion of the curtain, it was almost as if he glided hovered just inches above the ground, to where he stood now. It was one of two things I saw, the first being the soft swaying motion that instantly spurred questions in my mind. The movement was too sudden to be the wind, but then, it was too quick to be human. There was also no sound of passing traffic or the sound of infrequent gusts of wind. If the shadow hadn’t caught the corner of my eye, which was the second thing I saw, I wouldn’t have noticed the black silhouette that stood against the bright orange street lights from outside.

I tried to talk, to ask who it was, but my throat swelled and my mouth swam as spit poured in. I hadn’t expected anyone to be here. All I’d wanted was to be alone. I don’t know why a name would ease the heavy pounding in my ears, but it was the only thing that seemed obvious to ask. My shirt clung to my chest, as if seeking refuge against my damp skin as the shadow disappeared. I frantically searched the room, every corner of the thick, deep darkness my eyes could pierce. But before I could do or say anything the silhouette reappeared just inches from my body. There was a sweet smell, difficult to describe.

“And you are?” he asked softly, almost whispering.
The smell, which I couldn’t name, suffocated me.
“Marc..Marcus Mallory” I muttered, shaking uncontrollably.
“Well Mr Mallory, what brings you here, to me?” he asked a slight hint of sarcasm on the pronunciation of Mallory. His voice was crisp and clear.

I thought twice before pouring my history into this stranger’s hands, allowing him to commit what I couldn’t bring myself to do. It took a split second for me to consider my options; to evaluate the possibilities of what I was doing would be right, before I did what I told myself I would never do.

“My wife and daughter died in a road accident six years ago, only me and my son were left, until last year, when my son passed away”, I had to stop before I started shaking.

“Death won’t relieve your grief, Mr Mallory, especially if you come to me searching for death. In the many hundreds of years, people like you have come looking for death by people like me. The consequences and the solution haven’t always been what they’ve had in mind”, he said as if in routine.

He walked, unhurried, to the table where the old lamp stood. I saw him step into the circle of light, and then he disappeared. The thoughts that raced through my mind and the racing heartbeat in my ears drowned his question.

“Mr Mallory, could you please pay attention?” his tone calm and collected.

My eyes focused, the thoughts died and I just watched. Watched as he sat on the leather armchair and began to flick the cap of a lighter which glimmered in the lamplight. My thoughts wandered. Maybe it was paranoia, but I was sure he was telling me something. He was, perfect; the shape of his face, his jaw line, lips, hair perfectly in place, his eyes everything – about him was flawless.

“You’re very slow, Mr Mallory. Most would have understood the message by now and would be more than aware of what I am. Or do you need some assistance?” his tone mocking me.
“Ifif you wouldn’t mind, Mr” I muttered pulling at my fingers, which made an audible click throughout the room.
“Mr Deverish, Thomas Deverish” he said boldly.

It took me a matter of seconds, maybe a little over half a minute to work it out. But I questioned it all, down to every last piece of information. How is this possible? I remembered teaching my English class about the phenomenon of vampires in literature so the portrayals of vampires were clear in my mind.

“But, you justyou just don’t exist. Vampires are a thing of literature, culture and beliefs”.

How could anyone come to a conclusion like that? Vampires are non-existent. Only a psychopath could come to a conclusion such as Vampires.

“Not as long as I had expected it to take you after your first attempt, but you got there in the end. I’ve always wondered why we were made into fiction” he pondered, staring into the flame that proceeded from the lighter in his hand. “Do you know what happens when a Vampire bites a human, Mallory?” he asked.
“Not exactly.” was the feeble answer I forced.
“Well, I’ll tell you, Marcus. As the venom seeps through your veins, the physicality’s of your body… alter. The pain, let me tell you, is excruciating, almost unbearable come to think of it. Three days of agonising torture, for this, an eternity of nothingness” the pain on his face almost forced me to look away. Loss, torment, deceit and unhappiness, scrolled across his face.
“I, like many others before me, sought a better life. Being a vampire seemed to answer my needs eternal life with the one I loved. Beauty, immortality, freedom. After time the one I loved, who I refused to change into what I am died, leaving me with nothing” he looked tormented by his story.
“Maybe you could look for someone else you can share your life with?” I asked “Maybe, with some help you will find someone to share a long life with?” it was obvious what I wanted. Even after him doing the same, pouring his history into my hands, I still wanted what he had.
“I cannot tell you how much more pain you will suffer, Mr Mallory, during the transformation and afterwards” his words piercing the long silence.
“Mr Deverish, I’m offering myself to help you, to help us both regain what we have lost”

Tears traced tracks in my dusty, dirty face as I recalled what happened. I could taste the bitter taste of tears in my mouth as they poured down my cheeks, causing my face to feel matted and dry. The chair was empty by the time I looked back up, he was stood at the window, hands behind his back. Again, he appeared in front of me, this time I wasn’t shocked or startled by his proximity. Before I had time to breathe I was launched up into the air and slammed down against the oak table in the far left hand corner, sending a wave of pain down my back winding me.

“Hold tight” he whispered, “this will be the most painful thing you will ever feel”.

I felt his lips against my neck, perfectly forming around the crevices that formed my neck. He bit down hard on the flesh; I felt the skin snap and blood rush out from underneath, a slight tingling feeling beginning in my neck and then rushing, frantically through my body. Within a matter of minutes my body writhed in agony. The pain was, as he had said, unbearable. It was as if my whole body was torched, flames licking at my skin, threatening to burn it away. I felt the blood rush from my veins, rushing to the gaping holes he’d formed in my neck. I tried to press my fingers to the holes. Tried and failed as my arms were pinned down under his enormous weight. The sound of my frantically beating heart was drowned by his laughter as he drew away from my neck, baring his teeth that glimmered in the harsh yellow light. The sound of his metallic laughter burned my ears. It was if I was under some sort of drug. I tried to scream, to push him off my chest as he pinned himself down on top of me. Whether it was because of my weakness as he drained my body of blood, or his infallible strength, but my efforts were shattered.

Lust

I found it difficult to stop. The taste of blood was something I craved more than anything in this life. It was the one thing I tried to wipe out from this hellish existence. The colour began to drain from his face, I realised that I was slowly, but surely killing him, which was far from my intentions. I forced myself to remember who I was, to remember that I didn’t kill. I pulled away, flinging myself against the wall causing the walls and window panes to shake violently. Cowering in the corner, afraid of what I’d done, gave me time to think about what I had agreed to do. After time, I realised that he was moving, I hadn’t killed him, which was a feeling I’ll never forget. His back arched and his fingers clung around the wood, nails digging into the varnished and ornately carved table. Frequent, skull cracking smashes broke the silence as he slammed his head against the wood, which I took to be a form of numbing the pain, to stop the urge to scream.

My brain was overridden by my true instincts, battling with what I knew was right. I wanted to drain his body of its blood before he was completely transformed, but then I wanted help to regain what I had lost. This was something I could do with his help, and only with help. Was it wrong of me to use this man’s naivety for my own gains?

There came a time, on the third day, where I enjoyed the sound of his agony. I enjoyed watching him writhe in pain. On the fourth day, I was unsure if it was the fourth day, there was something missing. Something I couldn’t quite touch upon. It took me some time to realise it, the transformation had finished, Marcus Mallory no longer existed. He raised his head, letting out a slight groan, pulled his legs around letting them hang loosely off the table edge.

“Is it done? Am I like you now?” he asked, seemingly afraid of what the answer may be. His voice was crisp and undeniably clear.

I moved, quickly, into a pouncing position. He faltered, moving quickly, and launching himself towards me. Before I knew it he was on top of me, threatening my strength and speed. Quickly, but surely I grabbed his arms launched my body across the room, slamming him back down on the oak table. Pinning him there while he squirmed and lashed out, trying to break free.

“You won’t attack me” I said, trying to calm him down.

Eventually he stopped, he lay there, limp and afraid. Never before had I seen a newly born vampire stop so quickly. Instinct was always, or in most cases, stronger than will.

“I’m sorry. I don’t know what came over me. I thought you were going to attack me, so… I defended myself”, was the answer he gave. The typical answer of a newborn, I thought.

I realised after a few days that he had the potential to be a great vampire; strength, speed, cunning, persuasive and flawlessly perfect. I’d never anticipated this, in the three days of torment it had never occurred to me that he could, if he wanted to, kill me. In all of my four hundred years of existence I’d never seen a vampire with as much skill as Marcus. His instincts and cunningness were lethal, to any human or vampire. Something had to be done, I couldn’t allow him to break my formality, I couldn’t risk it. If he attacked a human I’d have to kill him, I’d no other option. He couldn’t control his thirst for blood; he would often tell me how much he craved its taste.

“The warmth, moisture, stickiness of it is just so appealing” he exclaimed one day, pacing back and forth our shabby apartment.

He was yet to become accustomed to staying indoors for long periods of time. It was difficult for us to move around, to get from one place to the next without receiving gawking faces as we walked hurriedly down the streets of London. Not to mention Marcus’ inability to act human. We had spent many a day in the shabby, dark and damp room trying to bring back his human traits. We attempted one day to slow down his movements. We tried getting out of a chair, slowly, but he couldn’t keep his vampire traits at bay. His leg would swing from its resting point on his knee so quickly; it wouldn’t be seen to any human eye. We then attempted blinking and breathing. Not once since Mallory had been transformed had he blinked or drawn breath. As it wasn’t needed, he didn’t see the need to worry about it. He wouldn’t accept that it was paramount to act as human as possible if we were to move from London.

Reborn

We stepped out from the old apartment. It was just past two o’clock in the afternoon. There was a steady flow of people hurriedly walking down the street towards the nearby train station, which unbeknown to me, was where we too were heading.

“We’re travelling by train?” I asked “Haven’t you got some sort of car, something? We’re not human anymore, I’m not human anymore, I would’ve thought something would be available for the un-dead.” I was stunned by how normal this sounded.
“Realism is something you still haven’t grasped, is it Marcus?” he asked, with a hint of frustration in his voice.

He didn’t even turn to look at me; he just carried on walking, at an annoyingly slow pace. I could hear everything clearer now, the sound of the wind causing the leaves on the tree to grasp onto the branches, the sound of puddles being disturbed, water jumping onto the pavements, avoiding the cars. Everything was a lot clearer through these new eyes too; the sky was bluer than I remembered, or maybe that was due to the fact I had been cooped up in an old apartment for weeks learning Deverish’s tricks. The glare of the sun on the cars was beautiful, with these new eyes I could see everything in a so much more detail. It was as if only now I was seeing in colour, seeing things for what they really were. I stood, enthralled by the glittering of the sun on the puddles of water that basked in the gutters, the shapes the patterns on my coat buttons, something I’d never noticed since now. The breeze on my face and arms was one of the most satisfying feelings I’d had since being a vampire. It wrapped around my arms, morphing to the size and shape of my body. I could see it, almost taste it as it blew through my hair. I took a deep breath to take in the sweet smells around me, I stopped. The smell was breathtaking, overpowering, almost unbearable to resist. I could smell the sweet aura of human blood, mixed with some other sweet smell. Deverish must have sensed I’d stopped; he turned around, grabbed at my wrist and dragged me through the now, overcrowded street. He took me through a side street and forced me up against a wall.

“Don’t even think about it” he growled, obviously panic stricken by the thought of me attacking any human in broad daylight.
“It didn’t even cross my mind” I lied, trying to mask the urge to run after the scent, masking the urge to taste the warm, mouth watering, blood.

We got on the next train to Edinburgh. I didn’t ask why – I didn’t dare ask why. The frustration, as his emotions did, radiated from his skin. It was obvious he wanted time to think. The smell on the train was almost as unbearable as the scent of blood, but completely opposite. It was a mixture of sweat, damp, old shoes, vomit and whatever that forced your shoes to cling to the floor of the train, I decided to put my nose under my duffle coat and pretend to sleep. I had a lifetime to take in the shapes, patterns and colours of the new world around me.

It was night by the time we reached Waverley Train Station, one of Edinburgh’s two main train stations, Deverish explained as we walked through the sodden rain. The wind was harsh, gripping at our hoods as we walked down Prince’s Street and down towards Prince’s Gardens. Rain battered against our faces but still we carried on walking nothing was going to stop us getting what we wanted. And so we set off on our journey to regain what we both had lost. We had forever, time wasn’t an issue and we had forever to get what we wanted.

End

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