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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Chevalier is pissed

            Chevalier awoke on a low couch inside what looked like a corporate lounge with a panoramic window that overlooked the lights of the city. He sat bolt upright, and fought to steady the surge of madness that tore through his psyche, a hideous reminder of the toll that traveling across the ocean had taken on him.

            He could smell blood in the room, and when he turned his brilliant silver eyes towards the interior, he saw a small foldable table with a silver cloche sitting on it. He staggered over to it and lifted it off and practically took a step backwards in horror.

            A 0.7-liter bag of O type blood lay on the warm plate underneath, the plastic around it stinking of chemicals. He recoiled and let the cloche drop to the floor with a thud as he sank back onto the couch, his limbs so weak that holding himself up took too much effort. With something like an exhausted sob he lay back down and covered his face in his hands.

            The doorknob rattled as someone began to open it, and with super-human speed the vampire sat upright and composed himself just in time to see a well-dressed man wander inside. The man was slight and almost feminine in how sleek his form was in his perfectly tailored Italian suit, and his dark skin and black hair contrasted beautifully with his piercing blue eyes.

He smiled warmly at Chevalier as he entered and he gestured to the blood, “I’m sorry, was the repast not to your liking?”

The French vampire narrowed his eyes and he struggled to stand, “It is not acceptable. I am weak from the trip, and I need real blood.”

“What is this then, a table lamp?” the man asked as he smoothly crossed the room and picked up the blood, “It’s even a good year.”

“What year is it from?” Chevalier asked, his horror growing exponentially.

“Don’t be stupid, transfusion blood generally only lasts forty two days. That was what we typically refer to as a ‘joke.’” The American vampire put the blood down and extended a hand, “I am Achan, Timaeus’ second in command.”

Chevalier looked at it with a sniff and folded his own arms, “I will be needing something more than recycled blood to fully recover.”

“Yes, well until we can make arrangements, this will have to do.”

“Where is Timaeus?” Chevalier gasped, most of his strength already fading, “I demand to see him.”

“He is gone for now,” Achan picked an invisible fleck of dust from his sleeve, “I am in charge until he returns, but he sends his regrets that he could not be here in person.”

Chevalier just stared at him for a second before he bared his teeth; “I have endured no end of insults since coming here. I have flown in the cargo hold beneath the feet of humans,” he said the last word much like someone would say ‘feces,’ or ‘vomit,’ “And when I arrived I was met by two of the living who weren’t even marked as your servants and when I finally give in to the fatigue from my ordeal, I wake up here with only Timaeus’ servant and a bag of dead blood! Je ne vais pas tolĂ©rer cette!”

“Sorry, I don’t speak French.” Achan smiled broadly, “And I understand your discomfort, even if I do not sympathize with you. The French Court’s presence here is neither welcomed nor needed, and frankly I find your being here to be plain annoying.”

Chevalier hissed, “It was not my choice! And I demand at least a little respect for my crossing.”

“We all did it,” Achan said with a cruel grin, “Every vampire here crossed at one time or another. Thankfully, the majority of us fully recovered.”

“The majority?”

“The rest were exiled across one of our largest rivers. They live in the wilderness on the other side of the Mississippi along with the humans. Don’t trouble yourself with that, that isn’t why you are here.”

“No.” Chevalier drew himself up to his full height and whispered, “Please, bring me something I can eat.”

Achan smirked enigmatically and nodded, “Certainly. I’ll be back with something for you to chew on.”


            St. Louis No. 1 was blanketed by shadows by the time Timaeus arrived. His head pounded as he leaned against one of the towering gravestones that the New Orleans cemetery was famous for, the proximity of the site to the surging Mississippi River making his whole body ache and itch.

            He had been picked up at the airport by Ixchel, the second in command of the Ge-Rouge vampires, who had expressed her annoyance that he had not immediately made his way to New Orleans following her visit. She had then promptly left him in front of the crumbling apartment complex across the street from the city’s fabled gravesite and had sped off into the darkness with his luggage still in the back seat.

            He had been waiting for the arrival of the prestigious man whom he had flown in to see for a good two hours when he finally noticed the sound of something metal sliding along the gravel and cement walkways. It moved closer to him and Timeaus turned just in time to see a tall man walking between the graves with two shovels, one slung over his shoulder and a second one dragging along behind him.

            The man stopped a few paces in front of Timaeus and cocked his head to the side, staring at him from under the brim of his large, battered hat with eyes so brown that they almost seemed bright red.

            “Well, hello there.” Ol’ Papa, the formidable and widely feared leader of the Ge-Rouge vampires grinned at him, “Welcome to New Orleans.”

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