Knights of the Full Moon | By: Dallas Releford | | Category: Short Story - Horror Bookmark and Share

Knights of the Full Moon

KNIGHTS OF THE FULL MOON By: Dallas G. Releford They say that if you don’t open doors, you may miss some golden opportunities. Sometimes, opening doors under certain circumstances can lead to a lot of trouble. That analogy depends on which side of the door you happen to be on, of course. In the case of Jay Miracle, his problem was that he was on the inside of his apartment. His adversary, his girlfriend was on the outside wanting to get in. He ignored her knocking for several minutes until she started ringing the doorbell. Jay found out that by opening that door on a beautiful summer day, he let more trouble into his life than he was prepared to deal with. Jay Miracle opened the door to his apartment on 21st street and was surprised to see his girlfriend Julie Bradford looking at him like he was some worthless, maggot infested piece of meat. He knew he was in trouble just as soon as he saw her. “Why haven’t you called me or tried to get in contact with me?” She asked attempting to look into his apartment as if she expected some luscious, gorgeous blond to stick her head around the door at any moment. “I thought something was wrong with you, so I came over to see if you were still living or if you had moved out of town, or something.” Jay looked at the beautiful dark haired girl with radiant blue eyes and wondered what kind of explanation he could give her that would satisfy her curiosity. “I’ve just been real busy,” he said, thinking that the simplest explanation was probably the best. Seriously believing that he wasn’t exactly telling her a lie, he attempted to keep a straight face. “Why don’t you come in and we can talk? I’ll get you something to drink,” he suggested, hoping to eliminate her angry look or at least, turn it into something more pleasant. “Okay, fine,” she agreed, “but you better have a better reason for not calling me than that.” He knew he was in trouble the minute he had opened the door. Unfortunately, he didn’t have any other option except to invite her into his apartment. He would just have to hope for the best and pray he could convince her he had just been busy. “I’ve been studying in my spare time,” he told her pointing to the papers, stacks of books and the computer on the desk. “What have you been studying? Are you going back to college or something?” She asked moving his dirty clothes over to the side so she could sit down on the couch. “Well, no,” he said, “not exactly. I’m studying to become a member of this exclusive organization.” “What kind of an organization?” She asked, seeming disinterested. “Well, it’s an influential organization, an organization that can help me to go places. They have been around for centuries and I can’t tell you much more about them. They are so secretive, sort of like the Masons,” he explained. “And, joining this secret organization of which you know nothing is more important than spending some time with me? I just can’t understand your way of thinking, Jay.” “Well, not exactly. I didn’t say that the organization was more important than you, Julie. I mean, it is important to me. You are important, too,” Jay said knowing that he had a lot of explaining to do. “You know that you’re the most important thing in my life.” “That’s what you say,” she accused him, “but your actions say otherwise. Like you haven’t even called me for more than two weeks. How long does it take to pick up the telephone and at least say hello?” “I’m sorry Julie,” he apologized, “but I’ll call you more often in the future. I can promise you that and you can believe it. You’ll see, I’ll do better. I’ve just been so engrossed in my studies and everything else just got put on the back burner.” Jay shuffled papers on his desk nervously and finally wandered over to the couch and sat down beside her. Her eyes, cold and accusing, never left him. He felt like a virus under a microscope. “You just quit your job at the university, too, didn’t you, Jay? Now, how are you going to make a living? How would you expect to make a living for us if we ever get married? Actually, that possibility looks more and more remote by the moment. What does that do for our future plans?” She managed to ask him more questions than he could possibly answer. Her inquisitiveness awakened many thoughts that he had considered before and that had disturbed him quite a bit. He wondered what she meant by their plans for the future since they hadn’t discussed marriage in the past. They most certainly hadn’t discussed having kids, so he was in the dark about some of the questions she asked. Confused, he figured that she was either crazy, fantasizing or had taken it for granted that he really did want to marry her. “Well, sweeping floors and emptying trashcans was getting a little boring, so I thought I’d live off my savings for awhile and look for another job. My main goal right now is to study hard and get into this club. I can tell you, Julie that this club can really open up some doors for me.” “Yeah, and they probably lead into the poorhouse. And, what about your schooling at the university? How are you going to pay for that?” She asked him, sarcastically. “Oh, all that’s paid up for the rest of the year, tuition and everything,” he informed her proudly. “Well, Jay,” Julie said, getting up from the couch and walking over to him, “If you can’t keep a job and you don’t care enough about me to call me, then I can’t see any point in continuing this relationship.” With her hands on her hips, she stared down at him like an old owl glaring at a worm just before the owl pounced on the worm. “Julie, don’t do this to me,” Jay pleaded with her. “Things are going fine because once I’m in this organization, I’ll be able to get a better job and when I graduate from college, things will get even better because I’ll have lots of contacts to help me get work.” “Forget it,” she screamed at him and knocked over a stack of books on her way out the door. “Don’t worry about calling me, anymore,” she said and slammed the door shut behind her. Jay just stood beside the couch, silent and stunned. He finally shook his head and returned to his studies. Nothing must stand between him and his admittance into the Knights of the Moon, he thought to himself. Over the next three weeks, Jay worked feverishly and finally finished the batch of tests that he had been sent in the mail. As he walked down to the corner to mail the letter his mind regressed backward in time to the day he first learned about the exclusive club. Julie’s memories haunted him night and day. Jay tried to put her out of his mind for a while knowing that what he was doing was for her good as well as his own. The only important thing now was the club. If he could get access to their great knowledge, he wouldn’t have any problem getting Julie. That first day he’d found out about the club had been the most important day in his life. The scene flashed through his mind as he stepped off the sidewalk to avoid being hit by a teen on a bike. He cursed him as he zoomed by and the kid gave Jay the finger. He wondered what the world would be like when the kid grew up. What if some crazy moron with the same attitude and upbringing became the President of the United States? Nukes would fly and people would die, that’s what would happen, he told himself. Not a pretty future, he thought as he stepped back onto the sidewalk. Not a pretty picture at all. Jim Clanton, one of his classmates had told him about the club one day after social studies class. Jim had been a member for nearly a year and he said that he had already made some important contacts. He had warned Jay that the club was very secretive and that once you took the oath, you were a member for the rest of your life. Clanton had warned him that you were a lifetime member no matter if you wanted to be or not. Jim Clanton was known throughout the entire school as a prankster, slob and most of the girls thought that he was downright weird. He was almost expelled when one of his teachers caught him torturing mice in the biology class one afternoon. They had been dissecting frogs. Jim had grown bored with that and had proceeded to secure a white mouse to a board with gray masking tape and electrocuting it with a high voltage variable power transformer. Just as the mouse was smoking and you could hear the flesh roasting like bacon in a frying pan (while the students complained about the nauseating smell of the burning fur) the teacher walked in. Mrs. Jenkins had screamed and then yelled at Jim for another ten minutes before finally sending him home until further notice. That earned him the nickname, “Smokey” and earned him a reputation for being the weirdest person in the school. After that, he was accused of punching tiny holes in the tops of people’s soft drink cans, putting needles in their seats and putting acid in gas tanks. Regrettably, he was never caught doing any of those things, however, many fingers pointed at him as the guilty party. As time passed, even stranger stories were told about Jim Clanton. Jim Clanton was one big boy and his size, mentality and arrogant manners gave him first rights to the title of campus bully. To be avoided were his teeth, especially the two the girls called fangs. They had even given him another well-deserved title. They called him “Fangs” when he wasn’t listening. Strangely enough, very few people said anything negative about him when he was around because nobody was brave enough to confront him or his fangs. During a class visit to a nearby farm, someone had dared him to bite off a chicken’s head and he had gladly accepted the challenge. Not only did he surgically remove the head, he also held the chicken’s bleeding neck up above his gaping mouth and drank the blood. Jay had heard that was the reason everyone called him Fangs except he didn’t know for sure. Jay realized that Clanton had a thirst for blood and never gave it a second thought as he was focused on getting into the club that had made Jim a member in good standing. Jay dropped the envelope in the mailbox and sat around the house for the next several days waiting for a response from the club. Many times, he thought about calling Julie and trying to apologize to her except he knew it would be hard to convince her that he really intended to make something out of himself until he had something to show her. She’d known he’d skipped classes, quit his job and was devoting his time to a fool club that wouldn’t mean a thing. He’d show her, though. The club would open doors to great opportunities that would make him rich for the rest of his life. Then Julie would come crawling to him. He’d have riches and Julie. He saw Jim Clanton a couple of times and each time Jim acted stranger than he had ever acted before. Jay had walked down to the drugstore for a bottle of Pepto-Bismol and some other items when he ran into him. “Hi Jay,” Jim said and Jay realized for the first time just how dirty and slouchy he really looked. Jim wore a long, dirty, white Polo shirt with what looked like ketchup stains on it, baggy overall pants and Nike tennis shoes that looked like they had seen more than one mud hole. “What’s up my man? Have you heard anything yet?” He asked smiling and showing the two fangs that had gained him some notoriety on the campus and in the town. Jay could smell his body odor in the air-conditioned store and wondered when he had last bathed. “Nothing yet,” Jay replied, “but I was hoping you might be able to tell me something.” “Oh no,” Jim said, “even if they did tell me anything, I wouldn’t be allowed to tell you. That’s a secret between you and them, Jay. They are very secretive about those things and if you break the rules, you’re in big trouble.” “Sure,” Jay said wondering what kind of club would have someone like Jim Clanton as a distinguished member. “But I just thought that you might have some good news for me. I’m going to have to get a job pretty soon. I was hoping to get into the club and get settled before too much longer. Of course, I just sent the tests back recently and I thought you might have heard some talk about my application. After all, I do have some pretty good qualifications.” “It takes some time, my man,” he said, and as he was walking away, “takes some time.” Jay paid for the items, walked out of the store and headed up the street toward home. He saw Jim standing on the corner of Fourth and Broadway picking his nose and watching a beautiful redhead cross the street. He didn’t think Jim was going to be much help. Still, he had hope that he would get into the club based on his own abilities. Maybe all the kids were right when they said that Jim Clanton was a moron. Perhaps he was just elevating his status in the club to make himself look important. The weeks passed slowly and Jay stayed around his apartment watching game shows, talk shows and soap operas as his bank account dwindled. Finally, the realization came to him that he would have to go back to school and get a job. He’d skipped about as many classes as he had attended and he was failing in all of them. After several days, he finally found a full-time job at one of the restaurants. It was on a Tuesday after working all day that he came home and found the letter in the mailbox. He hurriedly opened the letter and read it. The letter simply said that the club had accepted him and that he should report on the fifteenth at precisely two-thirty in the afternoon for orientation. His heart jumped into his mouth and his blood rushed wildly through his veins when he realized that he had finally made it. He didn’t know if he was going to laugh or if he was going to cry. Slumping on the couch with his head in his hands, he did a little of each. Once you’re in, you’re in for life, Jim Clanton had said. Before the next week had ended, Jay would wish many times over that he had heeded those words and that he had given the warning more consideration. Jay caught the bus to Sycamore Street on the south side of town and walked four blocks west to Towne Street. According to the person he had talked to on the telephone, a Mr. Jackal, the building was located at 1313 Towne Street. Appalled, Jay thought that surely there must have been a serious mistake because that part of the city was nothing more than a slum area. Homeless people, drug dealers and vicious criminals hung out there. It was not a nice place to visit and working there seemed out of the question even if it was only for a club. When he arrived at 1313 Towne Street, he discovered that it was an old brick warehouse with broken windows on the side of it. Someone had replaced the front windows and had done a little repair work. As Mr. Jackal had instructed, Jay knocked at the door several times before finally hearing someone turn the deadbolt and open the door. The most gruesome human he had ever seen stood before him. He had large bushy eyebrows, cold blue eyes and a large, long nose that protruded out from his high cheekbones like a branch reaching out from the trunk of a maple tree. His thin lips almost covered his teeth and when he smiled, Jay could see long sharp fangs that a person would never even guess were there until he smiled. Jay figured that the man didn’t smile too often, especially in public. “Mr. Miracle, I believe,” the man said, still smiling. “Please come on in and we’ll get you started with the orientation. I’m Mr. Jackal by the way.” “Sure,” Jay said. “Sure is hot, isn’t it?” He was trying to be friendly except the man turned around and walked away without saying a word. Jay locked the door and followed him. Jay noticed that the interior of the building had recently been refurbished and looked more like living quarters than an office. He had expected an eloquent office with a beautiful secretary cleaning her nails. What he saw was nothing like that. It was nothing like that at all. Mr. Jackal walked across the room, opened another door and held it open for Jay to enter. “We can start in here,” he said. Jay felt uneasy because the room on the other side of the door was dark and Mr. Jackal wasn’t smiling anymore. Cold chills sent his body temperature plummeting and he felt sick to his stomach. Something was awry. Just as soon as he entered the room, the door closed behind him. Strong arms grabbed him holding him securely so he couldn’t move. Jay guessed that the orientation must be some kind of club initiation and didn’t put up much of a struggle. He figured if he cooperated, the initiation would be over sooner and he could get on to other business. “Welcome to the Knights of the Moon,” an eerie voice said that sent chills down his spine. “Please be patient and you’ll soon be one of us.” Jay felt the big arms as they slid around his waist and was repulsed by the warm moist mouth that was placed on his neck. His first thought was that he had somehow been mistakenly inducted into the Gay Knights of the Full Moon. Was Jim Clanton playing another of his mischievous tricks on him or was Jim himself gay? It almost made sense until he suddenly felt the slight pressure of the sharp teeth on his neck. When the pressure increased and razor-sharp fangs finally penetrated his soft skin, he knew that something was dreadfully wrong. The last thing he remembered was the feeling that all his strength was draining from his body. He felt an undeniable relief come over him as he became dizzy and the rest of the world twirled around him. He was alone and all was blackness. When he awakened, the first thing he saw were three people standing over him. He was on his back on a couch. Jay was aware that one of the three people was a woman. He remembered that Jimmy had told him another lie because he had said that it was an exclusive male club and females weren’t permitted. Even with his blurry vision and his throbbing head Jay could see that she was young, beautiful and petite. Her blue eyes followed his every move as if she thought he was a delicious steak or something. The sense that she was evil was instilled in him and his first thought was to run. However, when he tried to move, he found that he was much too weak to do anything. “Now take it easy Mr. Miracle,” one of the men told him. “You’ve been initiated and you’re one of us now, just like you wanted. You need to eat something and get your strength back. Rose will fix you whatever you want. All you have to do is to tell her what you would like to eat. Oh, I’m sorry about that. How rude of me not to introduce myself. My name is Josh Casper and I’m the President of the Knights of the Moon and I’d like to be the first to welcome you to our little club.” Jay wanted to speak except when he tried to talk his lips only trembled. The butterflies in his stomach fluttered around so much they gave him nausea. He finally managed to mumble a word or two thanking the man. He didn’t know why he was thanking someone that had sucked most of his blood from his body and had left him too weak to even speak. Jay thought that it had something to do with being on his good side. Casper looked at him as Jay tried to get up again. “Please, just rest,” Casper said, “and you’ll have your strength back in no time. This lovely lady is Rose Carson and the other gentleman is Matt Cooper. Mr. Cooper is the Social Director for our organization and Miss Carson is our Orientation and HR Director. She will be directing you through your first few weeks with us. It’s her job to train you and to teach you about what we expect from you. Now Mr. Miracle, you just sleep for a few hours. Miss Carson will bring you some food.” Jay only heard about half of what Casper had said and then he was sound asleep. He dreamed horrible dreams about bats and huge mosquitoes that kept sucking his blood until he could barely breathe. When he awakened, he was colder than he had ever been in his entire life. The loss of blood not only had left him weak, it had also left him shivering. A warm hand touched his forehead and a warm mouth kissed his cheek. “Are you cold, Jay?” A sexy female voice asked. “Yes,” he managed to say. “I’m very cold and hungry.” Rose pulled several blankets off a nearby chair and spread them over him. The blankets were woolen, thick and heavy. In a few minutes, he was getting warmer. “There, that should help. I brought you some nice, hot chicken soup. I’ll fix you something more solid later. Right now, let’s see if you can eat some of this.” Jay didn’t have any trouble eating the soup except he kept thinking about the blood they had sucked from him and wondered how he was going to get himself out of the mess. He was just happy that she hadn’t brought him tomato soup. He couldn’t have eaten it no matter what they did to him. He slowly finished the soup looking at Rose with a great deal of apprehension as she fed him a spoonful at a time. Was she the one that had fed from him or was it one of the others? He wondered if it really mattered. He would have preferred her instead of the men any day of the week. He seemed to be getting stronger and managed to sit up with her help. Rose tucked the big fluffy pillows behind him to help support his back. Jay relaxed a little figuring that he was going to be there for awhile, like it or not. “Feel better now?” Rose asked putting the empty bowl on the coffee table. “Yes,” Jay said. He didn’t really feel much better because he felt more like a prisoner or maybe a helpless fly caught in a spider’s web. “What kind of a place is this anyway? What happened to me?” He asked looking Rose straight in her eyes and hoped that he would get a straight answer. “Well Jay, you’re now a member of the number one Vampire organization in the world. Don’t worry though, you passed the first test,” Rose told him. “What do you mean by that?” “You gave blood and you lived. Now you’re immortal and you will live forever, just like us,” Rose said proudly. “What if I don’t want to live forever? What if I don’t want to be a member anymore?” Jay asked getting more disturbed by the moment. “You’re part of the family now, Jay,” she explained. “Even though you can’t quit you can lead almost a normal life. You just can’t let your friends and family know about us, of course.” “Great,” Jay complained knowing that he had made a very bad mistake except he didn’t realize that it was too late to change anything. “Am I going to be a vampire too?” “Yes, of course,” Rose said, “but your first obligation is to the organization.” “What do you mean by that?” He asked getting hungry again. “Well, ours is a huge organization, and as such we require fresh resources. Your job and your duty will be to bring in new members. That’s the way we operate. Of course, you’ll need to supply yourself with someone to satisfy your thirst every now and then. Once you are finished with them you must bring them into the organization also. It will go on for as long as there are new bodies coming into the world and that will be almost forever.” “So, I really am going to be a vampire,” Jay said disappointed. He felt just a little proud because he was part of a unique group except that wasn’t much of an honor when he thought about what he’d have to do to earn it. “Oh well, maybe it won’t be so bad after all. I’m getting thirsty now and your neck looks so inviting.” Rosie hesitated for a moment and at first, Jay thought she was actually considering it except that thought came to an abrupt end when she shook her head and said, “No Jay … never. You must never touch me.” “And why not?” Jay asked confused thinking that she was rejecting him because he wasn’t good enough for her. “Because I belong to the master and you must go out and find someone else. The master has several beautiful women under his control both here and out in the world. You must never take them for your own. To do so would mean a terrible and horrible fate for you. I wouldn’t want to see that happen to someone as kind and nice as you are, Jay.” “But, how will I know who belongs to the master?” Jay asked. “Oh, you will know by the bite marks on the left side of their necks. Only the master is allowed to feed from the left side of the neck Jay.” “How would he know?” Jay asked. “He will know,” Rosie whispered. “He knows everything.” “But he can’t know if I don’t do it where he can see me,” Jay insisted, probing for more answers. “He will know,” she warned, “because he is the master of all evil and he knows everything. You must find someone that doesn’t belong to the master and you must be careful in your selection process. That is extremely important to your survival in this organization. Now, what do you want to eat?” Disappointed, Jay thought about several human food options, among them was a nice BLT, scrambled eggs and bacon or maybe even a nice salad. “Well, how about a good old BLT?” He asked looking at her with a hungry look in his eyes. “Sure,” she said, “coming right up.” She rushed away to prepare it for him She was somewhat relieved to be out of range of his gazing eyes. Something about this one is trouble, she thought as she prepared the bacon, lettuce and tomato sandwich. Jay watched her as she glided across the living room swinging her shapely hips and wondered why he couldn’t start his own organization of beautiful women. If given the chance, he knew he would do just that. A few days later, Jay was back at work and attending his classes with a renewed energy he had never known before. Everything that had happened to him seemed like a mad dream except each time he looked at the wound on his neck in the mirror, he knew that it was real. He worked hard and he studied harder attempting to get things off his mind. Things went well until that first night of the full moon when he began to experience strange emotions as Rosie had told him he would. “You’ll have more cravings than a pregnant woman,” she had said. “Your appetite for sex will increase, your longing for companionship will be unmanageable, your thirst for warm human blood will be relentless and your desire to be in the cool glow of the full moon will almost drive you crazy.” She had told him those emotions would become dominant in him forcing him to do things he wouldn’t have any control over. Nonetheless, Jay hadn’t believed her, until now. Jay was beginning to understand what she had meant. Some of the things about being a vampire weren’t too clear to him and he had asked her about them. Of great concern to him was the question about vampires and sunlight. He had always heard or had read that vampires were creatures of the night and that the sunlight would kill them. Rosie had fully dispelled that theory entirely. She explained that only vampires of old were subjected to that and Jay’s generation of vampires were immune because of the bloodline. The more people that were “serviced” by a vampire, the less the later ones would be effected by sunlight. Jay had nodded his head trying to understand and Rosie had sensed his confusion. “Well Jay, look at it this way,” she had explained, “if you’re “serviced” by someone who was bitten by the original vampire then your powers will be just a little weaker than the person that bit you and sucked your blood. After several hundred of these instances that we refer to as a “blood chain”, you are no longer affected by the sunlight. It’s just as simple as that.” Jay had given that some considerable thought. He had forgotten to ask her about the stake. He just hoped that he would never have one driven into his heart. As his emotions became uncontrollable and somewhat unstable, Jay thought a lot about Julie and how she had walked out on him. He had good intentions about calling her and trying to get their relationship straightened out. Before he had drummed up enough courage to pick up the telephone and call her, sinister thoughts were already entering his mind. After all, hadn’t she walked out on him when he needed her the most? And, had she given him the benefit of the doubt? Jay wondered what it would really be like to have a beautiful woman to do his bidding and to be his for eternity. He really loved Julie and had done all the things he had done hoping he could make enough money so that they could have a good future together. Everything had become all messed up and she had walked out on him leaving him with a broken heart and an empty space that was hard to fill. Jay walked over to the phone in his empty apartment and picked it up. After speed dialing her number, he listened anxiously as it rang and waited for her to answer. “Hello,” a female voice said and Jay thought the voice was apprehensive as if she knew he was on the other end. His first urge was to hang up the telephone and forget the entire thing. Compelling images of her beautiful eyes, her pretty face and her gorgeous body inundated his mind with so many thoughts of pleasure that he just couldn’t make himself let go of the phone. He knew it was because the telephone line was the only connection there was between them at the moment. “Hello, uh, Julie,” he stuttered and felt embarrassed at his weakness. “It’s me, Jay. Please don’t hang up the phone. I just want to talk to you for a few minutes.” “What do you want?” She asked, coldly. Jay never felt more hurt in his entire life than he did at that exact moment. He was really looking for someone to make him feel better, to comfort him and to tell him that everything was going to be all right. Instead, she made him feel much worse. There wasn’t a note of compassion in her voice and that disturbed him. “I just want to talk to you, Julie. I just wanted to tell you that you were right and I was wrong, that’s all. I apologize for that. I did get into the organization. I’m working every day and I’m back attending my classes again. I just would like the opportunity to make it all up to you because I wasn’t fair to you in the way I dealt with the situation.” Jay didn’t want to give her time to think about hanging up so he got his point across without giving her time to think about it. “And, besides all that, I’ve really missed you. I want you back with me.” “Well, I’m happy for you that you worked everything out. However, I don’t think things will work out between us,” she said as Jay felt his heart sink. “Well, why don’t we give it a try?” Jay pleaded hoping that there might be some slight chance she would be willing to work things out. “Because it won’t work,” Julie insisted, “and I’m not in need of you anymore Jay. You had your chance and you blew it. It’s just as simple as that.” Jay wasn’t willing to give up and he hoped that his persistence would pay off before she became too irritated with him and hung up the phone. Once she did that, he was afraid that she might never even talk to him again. “Aw, come on Julie,” he pleaded, “at least have dinner with me and we can take in a move, just like old times.” “No Jay,” she declared and he heard the click as she hung up the telephone. His heart sunk so low he felt it quivering in his stomach as he put the receiver down. “Well, Jay,” he whispered to himself sullenly staring into empty space, “you’ve lost the best thing you ever had and the best thing in your life. Good show and great going, you moron.” His arms hung limp by his sides as he dragged his feet across the carpet to the couch where he fell on his back. He lay there for almost an hour staring at the ceiling wondering what to do next. When he awakened, it was dark outside. A full moon cast its bluish light through the large picture window and on his sensitive body. His urges and desires had returned once again and they were even more powerful and demanding than they had been before. Jay could feel another urge that burned like a hot stove in the lower part of his abdomen and between his legs. He knew he was going to need to satisfy all those wants before he would find peace. He knew right away just how he was going to satisfy those needs. Almost an hour later, he held a dozen long-stemmed red roses in his left hand and tucked under his left arm was a large box of chocolates. The candy was Julie’s favorite and she had never been able to resist them before. He hoped she would not be able to resist them now. As he turned the corner and headed up Vine Street, he could see the concrete steps that led up to her apartment on the first floor. He had only been there on one previous occasion. However, he remembered that she lived in apartment 107 near the front entrance. As he neared the apartment, he was surprised to see a tall man wearing a dark wide-brimmed hat and a black trench coat, descend the steps. The man turned his head toward him as he continued on up the street. The only reason Jay paid him the slightest attention was that it was eighty degrees outside and the man was dressed like it was winter. Jay walked up the steps, opened the front door and walked down the hallway where he stopped in front of apartment 107. Would she open the door for him or would she tell him to go away? That was the main question that bothered him as he stood in front of the door that barred him from the woman he loved. Jay gave these questions serious consideration as he stood there debating if he should ring the doorbell or just scamper down the hallway and out the front door like a scared rabbit. Pushing the doorbell, he listened for her footsteps and waited. He glanced at his watch. It was nine o’clock. What if she was in the tub or worse yet, sleeping? He waited a little longer and then rang the doorbell again. This time he heard a noise and someone turned the deadbolt that divided their worlds. She stood with one hand on the door and the other on the inside doorframe staring at him. Her eyes didn’t even blink and it seemed to Jay that she was frozen in time like a picture in a frame. “What do you want, Jay?” She asked pulling the door toward her just a little more as if she thought that he might force his way into the apartment. “I just wanted to see you again,” he said, “and I brought you some flowers and some of your favorite candy.” “I don’t want that,” she said and started to close the door in his face. “No, please Julie,” Jay pleaded and the tone of his voice seemed to connect with some part of her mind or maybe her heart. “Please let me come in. I just want to talk and give you the flowers and candy, for old time’s sake,” he insisted. “Okay,” she said, reluctantly. “But only for a few minutes. I’m getting ready to go to bed.” Jay followed her into the living room after she had locked the door. He handed her the flowers and she took them from him without looking at him or even thanking him. As she searched in the nearby kitchen for a vase to put them in, she said, “Jay, I don’t know why you waste your money on things like this.” “It’s my money and I think you’re worth it,” he replied, putting the candy on the counter. “Yes, maybe so,” Julie finally agreed locating a clear glass vase. “But you need to save your money. You’ll need it someday.” She filled the vase, put it on the counter and carefully arranged the flowers in the vase. “Oh, Julie,” he said with tears in his eyes. “Julie, I don’t want to see us like this. I miss you so much.” Julie just stared at him and for a brief moment, he thought that she was going to tell him to leave. “Jay, I miss you too. We can never see each other again. You can never have the relationship with me you want so much. There’s someone else and I can’t get rid of him.” Jay’s heart sank again as he wondered just how much more bad news he could take before he split open like a ripe watermelon. “What do you mean? We can leave here and he’ll never find us,” Jay told her. “There’s always a way Julie.” “Not this time,” Julie said. “No matter where we go, he would find us because he is a very powerful man. He is an evil man, Jay. Your best bet is to get out of here and never try to see me again.” “NO, I’ll never leave you,” Jay promised. “No matter what happens. I want us to be together forever.” “That’s impossible now,” Julie said and walked around the counter and stood in front of him. “I’ll love you forever, Jay,” she said, “but we can never be together.” Jay put his arms around her slim waist as he had done many times before and knew that it might be for the last time. “No Jay,” she insisted putting both her hands on his chest, attempting to push him away. Jay only tightened his hold on her. “Jay, please go away … just go … while you still can. You don’t know what kind of trouble you’re setting us up for.” Before she could resist further, his lips were on hers. He could feel the soft, warm flesh on his and he could feel her giving in except she was still trying to push him away. After a few seconds, her resistance gave way to passionate kisses of her own and his mouth slowly ventured around to her neck. Her arms clutched his body tightly as his mouth sucked gently on her neck and his tongue licked her ear lobes. He felt her body tremble endlessly as his sharp fangs sunk into her soft flesh. As he drank her warm blood and felt fulfilled by the warm, nourishing fluid, he could feel her body weakening. He suddenly realized he didn’t want to kill her, the love he felt for her was too strong. He only wanted to possess her forever and enjoy eternity with her. She had passed out, either from the loss of blood or the shock. He carried her limp body to the couch and put a warm blanket over her. It was nearly an hour before she finally awakened. “Jay, what are you still doing here?” Those were the first words from the sweet lips that he so dearly loved and he couldn’t grasp the full meaning of what she was talking about. After all, wasn’t she supposed to belong to him now? Hadn’t he fed on her blood leaving whatever it was in her system that made her his slave for eternity? “What are you talking about? I mean, we’re one and the same now Julie. We’ll be together for eternity. Isn’t that what you wanted?” “Oh yes, Jay. That is all I’ve ever wanted. I didn’t want it to be like this,” she said. “I still don’t understand,” Jay replied. “What difference does it make as long as we’re together?” “Jay look at the left side of my neck and then maybe you’ll understand what I’m talking about. You’ll see what I’ve been trying to tell you.” As his body trembled with fear, Jay pulled the collar of her pink blouse back as his eyes widened in horror and his breathing almost stopped. He sat staring at two red puncture marks on her beautiful white neck. The master has many beautiful women. Just be sure that you never touch one that belongs to him. Rosie had warned him. Unaware that many women he knew might belong to the master, he hadn’t checked to see. Julie was the last woman on earth he would have suspected of belonging to the master. “I belong to the master, Jay. I have for a long time. I gave him my soul to get you back. He never kept his promise and I can’t even think about what will happen now.” She looked at Jay as if pleading for help. Jay didn’t know how he could help her or himself. “What? Who is the master? Is he one of those vampires that belong to the club? Everyone keeps talking about him, however, I don’t really know who he is. You wait until I’m finished with him. Nobody does that to my woman and gets away with it. You just wait and see Julie, I’ll show him.” Furious that his plan to save Julie had failed, he was willing to do anything to kill the person that had taken her away from him. Wasn’t he a vampire now? Didn’t he have immortality? Wasn’t he as strong as anyone else? “No Jay,” Julie said, “you still don’t understand. The master is King of all Masters, ruler of all rulers and the Supreme Evil Being himself. His name is Lived Natas. Jay, he is the King over that club and many more like it. Lived spelled backwards is, DEVIL and Natas spelled backwards is, SATAN. He is the DEVIL, Jay. Now, do you understand what you’ve done?” It took awhile for the words and all that had happened to finally sink in. Jay finally realized just how much trouble he was really in. He felt like a lead pencil that had been sharpened right down to the eraser. “It doesn’t matter,” he bragged attempting to show Julie that he was able to protect her even against the devil. He would protect her from any creature and the devil wasn’t any exception. “Just you wait and see,” he said, “I’ll show them because I’ll find a way to destroy all of them.” There was a sudden knock at the door. Julie screamed as all four burners on the gas range lit up with a loud, “poof” just like miniature blue volcanoes. The temperature in the room was so hot that the wax candles on the coffee table began to melt. The picture tube inside the ancient television set exploded sending shards of glass everywhere. Julie grabbed Jay around his waist and they both stood frozen, their attention drawn to the door that had by now burst into red, yellow and orange flames. A tall, dark figure, nothing more than a shadow in human form, stepped right through the burning door casting aside pieces of the wooden structure as he did so. “I believe you wanted to see me,” the voice said. However, it seemed to come from everywhere and yet, from nowhere. “No, I don’t believe so,” Jay stammered holding Julie closer. “You lie again and you broke my number one rule by taking my woman away from me. You know what that means, don’t you, Jay? Well, let’s see, let me set you straight on a few things. I know that you were promised eternal life when you followed the whims of the vampires and you shall have it. You shall live forever, and forever you will wish that you were dead. You shall both have your wish to be together and you will never be apart.” Just as soon as the voice ended, the entire apartment caught on fire and exploded. The last thing they knew was the terrible heat. They were finally together. On the world to which they were sent to live for eternity, the temperature of the constantly erupting volcanoes was never less than three hundred degrees and nothing lived there that wasn’t spiritual. On a high hill just above those smoking, smoldering lakes of hot lava were two crosses made of some indestructible material. Two nude forms, one male and one female, screamed constantly and begged for mercy knowing there weren’t any ears that could hear them and end their misery and suffering. The devil always gets his revenge. The End
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