Chapter 85 - M.


 

I’ve been to a dozen different libraries, thousands of times. The money for textbooks wasn’t always freely available. Most colleges keep a few prior editions of the textbooks behind the counter. There’s always a way if you’re desperate. Still, I’m shocked that Destiny is leading me through the central library as if I’ve never been here before.

Every now and then, we take a turn. We should be moving in a circle but it seems like our path is forever changing. She promised there were magical spaces hidden in plain view, that my mind just wasn’t able to see them. I’m starting to think she may be right, especially now that we stand in front of a pair of ornate double doors. Intricate symbols are etched into each door, none repeat and it doesn’t seem to have any real method to the designs. Still, it feels as if something powerful awaits.

We head through the doors, and there seems to be an equally large library here. Mostly elves, a few humans, some Goblins, Dwarves and even a few Orcs. There was indeed a magical library hidden away. Destiny makes her way to the front counter to get whatever we came here looking for.

I take the moment to explore and observe. None of the books seem to be in any real order. The Dewey Decimals System has no place here. Instead people seem to approach small orbs that give them information before they scurry off to their book. There’re no computers, or microfiche readers. Instead there are massive tomes placed on some of the tables, I’m not sure how a single person would move them alone. Each one appears to be handwritten and older than anything I’ve ever written up close. I’m not a master of languages, but I recognize some Latin in one, some Spanish in another and maybe even hieroglyphics in a third.

 “I got what we need,” Destiny comes back with a book bearing a large decorative “L” on the front.

“What’s that?”

“I told you, they like their little kingdoms. They keep written histories of the founding of their houses and all that. This book, has information about the Lewis, Dynasty,” she uses air quotes over dynasty. “Everything how the very first was turned, each subsequent leader. Traditions, allies, enemies and everything else.”

“That sounds as if it is more historical than anything we can actually use.”

“You would think, but like I keep telling you, they hold onto the past way too much.”

The first head, Letcher Lewis was a merchant who arrived in the American South from England. He was quickly married and set up shop. Soon he owned several slaves, and was deemed a success. Crazy how owning slaves meant you were successful back then. Soon a group of locals extorted him for funds and when he refused he was beaten, and bitten. They were vampires, who thought they had killed him, but he lived. He became stronger in secret, eventually killing them. Then he moved on to found his own town. It makes for a great story, except the whole slave owner thing.

Another interesting story, John Humphry Noyes was one of theirs. He led sex a cult, they didn’t call it that, but that’s what it was. His cult allowed Charles J. Guiteau into his cult. But the man was so insufferable they tried to get him to leave for years. They also wouldn’t turn Charles into a vampire. Charles later went on to murder President James A. Garfield. For some reason, all of their stories seem to start happy and end in something bad. Not that sex cult is good, but they weren’t hurting anyone.

“I got it,” Destiny smiles.

“What did you get?”

“An artifact within reach. The Chalice of Metamorphosis is the sacred artifact for their local chapter. If we take it while Chloe is in town, she’ll come to us.”

“What does it do?”

“Legend says if one of them drinks from the chalice it will allow them to use magic.”

“Can’t you use magic?”

“Different kind of vampire. I told you this, you weren’t paying attention,” she pulls out a polaroid camera.

“So do they do rituals with this thing or what?”

“Probably mostly for show. Things lose powers over the years, especially if corrupted by evil.”

“Are you serious,” I can’t help but laugh as she takes a picture of the page.

“What? It’s for research in case I need to reference it later,” she shakes the photo.

“But that camera, is so old.”

 “You’re being really judgmental.”

“Me?”

“Yeah,” she gets up and closes the book.

The journey out of the library is a lot smoother, we exit the doors and appear right inside the real library. Is it the real library? They’re both real. The library that I know, doesn’t have as many twists and turns on the way out. I wonder if I could get back there without Destiny. I’m curious if there were things in there that I might find useful. Maybe I’m part of some long history of wizards.

“Hey Destiny,” I stop call her back after we part ways.

“Are you sure this is a good idea?”

“What?”

“Making an enemy, or a bigger enemy of them? You’ve made them sound powerful.”

“I’m not worried, you shouldn’t be either.”

“I don’t want you to get hurt.”

“They haven’t been able to kill me so far, and I won’t let them kill you.”

“Yeah, but they haven’t been actively hunting you in the past.”

“Have some faith in me. My name is Destiny. Everyone knows you can’t run from your destiny.”

She gives me a quick kiss and heads off in the opposite direction. She doesn’t even glance back at me. Instead she pulls the picture from her purse and takes another look before tucking it away again. Part of me misses playing board games and sneaker shopping with her. It all seems so long ago now. Maybe I can get us back there somehow.

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Chapter 84 - M.


 

“Chloe Lewis, is she here or not,” Destiny asks as she holds the bartender’s hand in a death grip.

“I don’t know,” he swears.

“I swear I’ll crush your hand until it’s a pile of dusty meatloaf,” she threatens him.

“Hey, I really don’t think he knows,” I interrupt the interrogation.

“But he knows someone who knows,” Destiny squeezes harder.

“I don’t know I really don’t,” the bartender reaches out with his free hand.

“Don’t touch me,” she swats him away.

“Please, just let him go, he doesn’t know anything,” I try to gently guide Destiny away.

“You’re lucky I like him,” she lets him crumble to the floor in pain.

“Please forget this,” I leave two hundred dollars, all my cash on the counter and rush out.

I’ve seen Destiny be rough and violent, I won’t lie. That’s part of the reason I like her, I’m just a real werido I guess. But she’s been on a warpath these last few days. I’ve seen her kill before, and she was calmer then. I don’t know what’s gotten into her, but it scares me. She’s really becoming the big bad monster that people tell their kids about.

“Well, I guess he can’t give us a hand with that one,” I get into the waiting car.

“No but if you hadn’t have interrupted me, I’m sure he would have pointed us to someone who could.

I don’t say anything on the ride back to her apartment. Something has her motivated and pissed off. The fact that she’s never acted like this, just sticks in my head, repeating over and over again. I’ll find myself saying it and repeating the phrase again in ten minutes. I’ve followed along with her on missing persons jobs, and even helped with one or two. This is different, she’s facing it with the intensity that seems to be reserved for violent bounties, yet I can’t find anything about Chloe Lewis.

As we sit at the table eating Taco Bell, I’m almost afraid to ask her. I thought we were taking our relationship in a new direction. I thought we were taking things further. She still won’t call me her boyfriend, but she kisses me now. Eating in silence, just isn’t like us, and the whole thing is making my heart ache, or it can be the fake meat.

“Who is Chloe Lewis, and why is this job so important,” I just come out and ask the question.

“This isn’t a job, it’s personal.”

“Then what’s going on,” I ask but she remains silent. “You can tell me anything. You told me you were a vampire, and took me to vampire parties. I’m in pretty deep with your life.”

“But you aren’t ready for that side of my life. That side of my life will get you killed. I shouldn’t have even brought you with me tonight.”

“You’ve been training me to fight, I’ll be okay.”

“You need to train harder.”

“Or I’ll die,” I ask sarcastically.

“Exactly that.”

“Then tell me why.”

“Because you can’t deal with the vampire side of things. The real side, the real problems.”

“Well I’m already there, so talk,” I try to sound tough even if I know she could probably rip me in half if she wanted.

“Chloe Lewis is a vampire, not like me. She’s a Primeval, do you remember the difference?”

“You’ve been drilling it into my head.”

“Good, well she was a friend and brought me into her house. Adzi don’t really have houses, but Primeval vamps love having their own little kingdoms to rule. The arrogant fuckers need to hold on to the past. Build little empires to rule over. They need to be kings. Same deal with the Red Demon Gang, just more modern. The houses feud, the gangs fight for control. It’s all a game to them.”

“Like A Song of Ice and Fire,” I try to show I understand.

“What is that?”

“A book series, started in the 90s, there’s only like four books so far, but there’s going to be a few more.”

“What,” she genuinely seems confused, but calmer.

“You really need to take an interest in my hobbies too. You have all these books, but no fantasy novels. Pan-Africanism won’t keep you warm at night Destiny. But I will,” I raise an eyebrow.

“I was starting to think you weren’t a super nerd, but here you go.”

“I try. So how does the story end?”

“Well, she brought me into her father’s empire. I would have done anything for her, including crime. Her father’s house had built a reputation on crime for hundreds of years. Evolving to corporate espionage, but they still needed a few folks to get dirty. Break in to buildings and steal files, arson. That’s what I was willing to do for her,” Destiny pauses. “In the end, she let me take the fall for a job that went bad. I got kicked out, and every now and then, a few show up trying to kill me. That’s what you saw in the alley that night.”

“The guys in suits?”

“Yeah, if we cross paths, they’re supposed to kill me. I’ve been hard to kill.”

“Why kill you?”

“To arrest me from Chloe’s history. The black stain on the pure white goddess.”

“You sound more like lovers than friends.”

“You’re one to judge.”

“I mean, you know I kissed Kesean in front of the school,” I shrug. “We’re just a bunch of bisexuals that don’t have sex,” I laugh, easing the situation.

“You remember his name?”

“He was my first kiss,” I laugh.

“Whatever, kissing a dude doesn’t make you bisexual,” she finally laughs.

“Okay, so you are? Do I need to be worried about your ex?”

“She’s supposed to be in town for business, that’s why I’ve been trying to find her.”

“I got this, I’ll hit her with the boom, pow, surprise.”

“Go home,” she finally starts to return to herself.

“Do I get a kiss? Maybe some sex? We’re sharing now,” I make my way towards the door.

“You can have a kiss if you act right,” she comes to walk me out.

“So no sex?”

“Nope, just go home,” she gives me a quick peck on the cheek.

“Guess I’ll go home and jerk off,” I walk out the door.

“I will disembowel you,” she jokingly threatens me.

“Been doing it since I was seventeen.”

“Late start,” she jokes.

“And an early finish too,” I call back down the hallway.

I’m glad Destiny is feeling better, but I can’t shake the feeling that this isn’t over. Nobody just has hitmen coming after them and takes it lightly. She was joking as I left, but I know she’s probably going to do something crazy. I want to hold her, tell her I love her, and want to spend the rest of my life with her, however long it may be. I think our time together might be growing short if she goes out and does something reckless.

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Chapter 83 - M.


 
[Present Day] 

I bite through the wires to the security alarm; teeth are just fine when you don’t have a pair of wire cutters with you. Somehow, I don’t think my past knowledge has carried over because that camera is still functioning and scanning the back lot. The next best thing, I’ll just cut power to the entire building. I rip out the wires and claw at the covering. It’ll look as if some animal did it when they come to get the power back on, but it’ll take them a few hours to get here. That’s all the time I need.

I don’t think I was ever good at breaking and entering, but new security features make it hard. I’m weak, and I struggle to get the door open enough for me to get inside. A nasty cut forms on my arm squeezing through, it’s been so long since I’ve been hurt, but I’m building a nice list. I’ve got cuts, bruises and a slight gaping hole in my chest. I try to bend the door back into shape as best as I can but it doesn’t budge. Seems like I’m running on empty at the moment.

Blood banks are all the same, business up front, big coolers in the back holding all the blood. Old blood is closer to the front because it has a short shelf life. The same flat paint and chairs as every waiting room, could have watched some local TV if I hadn’t cut the power. Lesson learned for the next time I suppose. I drag one of the chairs over to the counter and use it to step up. I don’t have the energy or mobility to make it over by myself.  

In the back, I run across offices and donation stations before I run across the actual blood. I had a list of blood banks in the city, but this was closest and I couldn’t spare the energy to walk to any of the further centers. Finally, I reach the cooler room. I was expecting a room with a few fridges and shelves but this is an entire walk-in freezer set to keep blood cooled. I just turn the handle as if there was no lock and it pops open when the lock breaks under pressure. I’m relieved because I couldn’t have gotten through this big door. That means I’d have to drink more rat blood to get by for a little while. Doable, but no ideal.

I take a look and find the oldest bags of blood first. This isn’t a blood bank set up to service the undead nightmares roaming the city, but one to help people. I grab a few and head over to their staff room. After searching for a while, I find a large bowl and fill it with water before microwaving for a few minutes. I let the blood packs warm up in the water as I head back for more, three won’t even be enough to heal this wound. I can drink blood cold without vomiting like a lot of vampires would, but I still prefer it to be warm.  

I remove my shirt and slice open a blood pack. The cold soothes the burning sensation that had become a constant since I left the fire. The chest wound begins to heal, but slowly. Back in the break room I begin to sip the warm blood. I can actually feel it circulating through my body, that’s a new feeling. A little more of the cold blood on my arm and it heals, but the chest wound is still moving slow. It’s healing nice with no scars, so that’s an added bonus.

The fog that’s been covering my mind starts to dissipate a little, but everything isn’t clear yet. All my knowledge of computers comes back. People, Mom, Dad, and a few faces I can’t seem to recall the names of. Did I have siblings? They might be siblings. Two faces stand out more than the others. A man with a green streak in his hair, but I can’t make out much else. The other is a woman, a beautiful woman, almost as if I’d been searching for her this whole time.  

I drink a little more blood, and more information comes back to me, I could have totally broken that alarm system earlier, or just taken the damn security tape. Elias, that’s my little brother, he was a stoner, a painter, and a womanizer. Charlene was my big sister, she owned a hair salon, and was looking to start another. D’Andre, little brother, just finished college and was going to be a high school teacher, while trying to become a famous photographer. The younger girls were twins, my sisters, but I can’t remember their names. They came along after I was already an adult. The only solution to that is a fifth pack of blood, but I’m pushing my limit. I need more, but I can’t overindulge or I’ll end up vomiting it all back. I need to give it time to circulate.

“Destiny,” I impulsively scream out, cutting off my other thoughts.

It was Destiny, the woman is Destiny. The love of my life, how could I have ever forgotten her? Where are the rings? The rings, I pat down my pockets furiously before retrieving two rings, one silver and sporting a sapphire, the other gold with an emerald. Our rings, I can’t believe I forgot Destiny, these rings. I can never do that again. I’d do anything for her. I wipe a tear from my eye, remembering just how much I really loved her. Without Destiny, my life would be completely different, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.

“Destiny,” I say her name again, just because I like the way it feels in my mouth, “Destiny,” I repeat it, trying to summon up more visions and memories of her. Unfortunately, it seems this is as far as my memories go for the moment.

Chapter 82 - M.


 

“You brought me to a park,” Destiny asks slightly confused.

“Yeah.”

“I didn’t take you for the park type.”

“We’re here for a special reason,” I smile at her.

“You think I’m going to marry you, and I haven’t even slept with you,” she teases me.

“Yet.”

“Yet what?”

“You haven’t slept with me or married me yet,” I smile even harder.

“Ouch,” I swerve the car as she punches me.

“Don’t act like this when you meet my family.”

“Your family,” she asks worried.

“Yeah, family cookout. The twins are having a birthday party.”

“What? I didn’t bring a gift,” now she sounds worried for a different reason.

“I brought gifts, and put both our names on them.”

As we make our way through the park to my families chosen lot, she expresses all her fears. Meeting the family doesn’t always work out for her. We’re not officially dating so it makes no sense for her to meet my family. I’ve really never seen her this flustered before. She can just vampire speed away, she’s done it before. Is she so nervous she just doesn’t know how to get away or does she really want to meet my family? Admittedly, I should have probably run this by her before just doing it.

“Hey, hold up,” I hear Elias call out.

“Hey,” I greet him with a quick hug as always.

“Destiny, how are you,” Elias attempts to get on her good side.

“I’m fine,” she’s back to normal.

“You know, we’re going to have to get along if we’re sharing custody of my big brother,” Elias gets a laugh out of Destiny finally.

Ivory and Sage, the twins rush over in their matching pigtails and birthday hats to greet Elias and I. The hugs are quick and after some quick dancing they rush off with their gifts, placing them with the others. Soon the gifts are forgotten as they rush off to the bounce house with the other kids.

“Boy, why do you keep bringing different girls to family functions. I got six kids to remember and you bring a different girl every time. I can’t remember them all,” my Dad lays into Elias.

“She’s not with me,” Elias gives his trademark smile.

“Then who is she with,” Dad asks confused.

“Me,” I raise my hand. “Dad, this is Destiny; Destiny this is my father” I make the introduction.

“You really here with him,” my dad asks her.

“Yes sir,” she’s suddenly become proper.

“That’s crazy because I just knew he liked dick,” My dad gives her a big hug.

“Dad, you don’t need to do all that,” I try to change the subject.

“No, I do. I need to check out her neck. You were always doing theater instead of football. You quit the basketball team to play dragon dungeon and watch Japanamations. You didn’t give me much hope,” he continues. “You can call me Brad.”

“Can I call you Brad,” Elias tries to make the save.

“You came out of my dick, she didn’t,” he tells Elias.

“If you ever want a real man, and not one of my sons, call me,” Dad continues.

“Go away and stop being a perverted old man,” I step between Destiny and my dad.

“Let’s go meet my mom,” I take Destiny’s hand an rush off.

The meeting with mom goes a lot better, she’s just happy I found someone. Destiny is more surprised that my mom is rocking a green afro than anything else. But the two get along well and quickly bond over a love of old movies.

“You should come to movie night sometime,” mom offers.

“I would love to Mrs. Aurora,” Destiny seems a lot more relieved chatting with mom.

“You kids get down from there,” Mom yells as she rushes off to pull some kids from a tree.

“How did she end up with your dad, and have six kids,” Destiny asks.

“I wish I could tell you, he’s got three sons and we’re all failures.”

“Why is that?”

“Elias dropped out of college to be an artist, following his passion. He doesn’t make a ton of money, but he’s happy. D’Andre isn’t here tonight, he’s off in Indiana attending college, dad dislikes him because he’s on year six of college and still doesn’t really know what he wants to do. As for me, I actually am pretty good at basketball, really good. But I quit, because it stopped being fun and got too competitive. He also thinks I’m gay.”

“Well dad is just a fucking homophobic asshole and bisexuals exist, but it isn’t like it would make a difference to him,” my big sister Charlene interrupts.

“This is Charlene, my foul mouthed big sister. Dad loves her,” I make the introduction.

“No, dad loves my pocketbook. If he loved me he’d let me cut his hair at my salon instead of half assed shaving it bald,” Charlene jokes.

“Your dad doesn’t sound very nice,” Destiny seems confused.

“He always kept a roof over our heads, and didn’t hit us. I guess that’s something,” I explain.

“He fell short in the love category, pretty sure he never wanted kids, but never wanted to wrap it up either. Hopefully he’s shooting blanks at his age. I remember he was not happy about the twins,” Charlene counters.

“You talking about dad? He sucks. He can’t be happy for anyone else,” Elias joins the conversation. “Did you know he used to be painter himself? Well nobody liked his work, he ended up just painting houses. That’s why he hates me.”

“I’m sorry,” Destiny says looking down.

“For what,” I ask.

“I just thought, I thought you had,” Destiny pauses.

“She thought you came from some well adjusted family, and didn’t expect to see fuck ups like us,” Charlene picks up.

“We’re not that bad,” Elias says.

“I think we’re pretty good. Outside of dad anyway,” I shrug.

“Okay, well we’re still fucked up,” Charlene makes us all laugh.

As the party wraps up I promise to give Elias a ride home, he did indeed ride to the party with another woman. I really hope he’s getting regular STD tests. Charlene and Destiny exchange numbers and plan a shopping trip. I’m really glad she gets along with most of my family. We joke about it most of the car ride.

“So why does everyone in your family think you’re gay, or bisexual,” Destiny asks a few blocks from her apartment.

“I’d rather not talk about it.”

“He kissed a dude,” Elias chimes in from the back seat.

“Shutup,” I yell him.

“Oh,” Destiny says looking out the window.

“It was for a play, and the other dude, way over committed. Dude put his tongue in the mouth and everything. Didn’t complain tho. I know he’s a virgin, but pretty sure everyone else thinks he lost his virginity to a dude a long time ago,” Elias tells the story bluntly.

“I hate you,” I try to stare a hole into his skull through the rearview mirror.

“At least you’re kissing Destiny now,” Elias jokes as we pull up.

“It’s dark, do you mind walking me to my apartment,” she asks.

“Sure,” even though I know she doesn’t need my protection.

She holds my hand into the building lobby and even into the elevator. My hands used to get so sweaty when I’d be around her. They still get sweaty, and my temperature rises whenever she touches me, but not enough for her to complain anymore. Now there’s a sense of warmness and comfort when I’m around her. I’m still attracted, but I’m way past lust now. She lets my hand go to open her apartment door and walks in.

“See you later,” I start to walk away.

“Wait,” she calls me back.

Her lips touch mine and I almost feint from excitement but she pulls me closer and wraps her arms around me, as our lips pull she bites my upper lip. I can fill her fangs scrape at the soft flesh but not enough to draw blood or be painful, just enough that’ll I’ll remember it. But I want more. For a moment I compare it to the time Kesean kissed me on stage, the only other time I’ve been kissed, this is different. More lips, no tongue, less forceful but still leading. I go back for another kiss and she obliges. As our lips part my eyes remain closed, but I know her, can see her perfectly in my mind. I place my forehead to hers, and hold her tight, hands just above her waist, not wanting the moment to slip away.

“Now you’ve kissed a woman too. Think about it, let me know who was better. Good night,” she smiles and gently closes the door.

“You were better,” I whisper into the air, not even having to think.

Chapter 81 - M.


 

“Here, just throw it down,” Destiny says.

“But they’re kids, I can’t throw stuff at kids. Especially from up here.”

“I do it every year, don’t be scared.”

“What if I just drop it?”

“Go ahead and do that, but they like being pelted with it,” she laughs.

I empty the bucket and watch as the contents fall from the sky down to the ground. I expect some kind of rage and mayhem. The first few screams come in and I duck down on the balcony. Destiny grabs me and makes me look down. The screams turn into cheers as the kids realize I just dumped a bunch of candy on them, and none of them are hurt. I always thought anything dropped from up high became a deadly weapon. I guess it has to be something heavy.

“Happy Halloween kids,” Destiny yells as they scramble. “See I told you,” she looks at me.

“I didn’t want to kill a kid by accident,” I shrug at her. “Is this what you do on Halloween.”

“Yeah, every year. What you’d thought I’d spend the night running the streets and biting people?”

“No, not exactly.”

“Then what,” she leans in.

“Like some vampire ritual or something,” I laugh.

“Boy, you wish. I give kids candy showers until like 10 while drinking blood wine, then I watch scary movies that are so bad they’re good.”

“Is Pizza in the plans?”

“Humans, you all need food all the time. You should let me turn you into a vampire.”

“You eat food too, like all the time.”

“But part of it is because I want to. Let me turn you,” she leans in.

Destiny lets me see her fangs and leans in close to my neck. She pushed my head back, I want to fight but I don’t. I trust her too much. I can feel her breath on my neck and my knees go week. She’s never touched me like this, nobody has. My pants get tighter and I realize this is turning me on. I don’t know why, pain never excited me before. Maybe it’s just her being so close to me. I don’t want to be a vampire, but I never gave it much thought before. If she wanted to turn me right now I wouldn’t even fight. I just want to be closer to her.

“Look y’all, they’re kissing,” a kid yells from down below.

I grab a handful of candy and throw it down at him. I’m not sure if I’m mad he broke up the moment or I just want to pelt him with candy. Destiny laughs encouraging my bad behavior while the kids push and shove over the candy.

“You were going to let me turn you,” she asks.

“I trust you.”

“Well you shouldn’t. I’m a bad influence. That’s not how Adze change people anyway. But, I thank you for your misplaced trust.”

“Well I thank you for not biting me,” even if I kind of wanted it.

“What’s your favorite horror movie villain?”

“Jimmy Bones,” he isn’t but I know her style.

“Shut up, you’re stupid. Nobody liked that movie,” she fights through laughter.

“I did, you got the old school remixes. Snoop Dogg remixing James Brown? Then the old school drug dealing scenes. Oh, and he turned into that big ass dog. It was great,” it was kind of good.

“You really liked it? It was so bad, but we can watch it if you love it so much.”

“Oh, and who’s your favorite?”

“I like Candyman.”

“Oh you’re talking scary for real.”

“Yeah, and if you don’t want to go home tonight, you’ll watch it with me.”

“Why so you can keep me safe,” I laugh at her.

“Exactly, can’t have you out here all beat up. Looks bad on my end.”

“Sounds good, let’s throw some candy at a few more kids, order a pizza and then you can make sure I don’t get too scared.”

“Sounds good,” she throws a handful of candy into the air and watches it drop.

Chapter 80 - M.



“Why am I doing all the work on this one,” I ask Destiny

“Because I’m trying to get you a license. You’re going to need it sooner or later.”

“For what?”

“To make money, duh,” she rolls her eyes.

“I already have a job and I do stuff on the side. I just built a website for a guy the other day.”

“You’ll get bored of it. You’ve got a taste of the life now.”

She was right, I did have a taste of the life now. I haven’t tangled with a vampire, werewolf, orc or even and elf. But I’ve seen them all, and even talked to a few of them. I’d also seen her track down criminals and apprehend them. I’ve got a nice little magic pocket, which is great. I’m never without my computer, or wallet, or anything really. I don’t know I’m going to jump inter her field of work. She says people specialize in different things. I haven’t asked but I figured hers would be missing people and fugitives, since that’s all I’ve seen her do. I haven’t even seen her fight since that first night I met her. 

Today she’s got me doing all the work. We’re looking for a guy named Mike Stein. He’s a thief, plain and simple. He’s also just a normal human. I didn’t know she even took this kind of job. I expected some big werewolf on the run for murder, but it was an accident. I let my mind drift off to other options, like a vampire who’s looking for a cure. Would I rather be a vampire or werewolf? Focus, the task at hand.

I get lucky when looking at his record. Arrests for theft date all the way back to the time he was thirteen years old. A few resisting arrest charges with nothing attached. I can’t blame him for that. Not sure how police get away with charging people for resisting arrest while not arresting them for anything else. Either way, I manage to get an address from him from an old arrest about six months ago. 

“Got an address,” I let Destiny know.

“Great,” she starts the car and hits the gas.

“You don’t even know where we’re going.”

“Then tell me,” she laughs.

“I’m driving next time.”

After we turn around it doesn’t take is long to get to the house. I’m a little let down when I see it. I thought we would be done with this job, wrap it up quick and go get lunch somewhere. I guess that would be too easy. Nothing ever seems easy anymore. We snoop around the outside of the house, and all signs point to it really being abandoned. The boards covering the doors, and windows are pretty secure and they’ve been there for a while, much longer than when his recent arrest was. That means the police officers didn’t do their due diligence.

“So, we didn’t get him here. What else did the bio say,” Destiny senses my frustration.

I rethink the data I had read, “he likes to get lunch at the same bar every day.”

“Great so let’s go get lunch, and get fucked up,” she heads back to the car.

“You don’t even drink heavily, and drinking on the job is bad.”

“Drinking on your job is bad, drinking on my job is a plus.”

The Nimble Hatchet, is the strangest bar I’ve ever heard of in my life. A big neon hatchet hangs over the door, and flickers back and forth giving the illusion that it’s being swung down on the door. The outside says biker bar, but inside it looks more like a sports bar. Destiny orders some hot wings while we sit and look around, waiting for Mike to show up. I’m surprised she asked for ranch with the wings instead of blue cheese. I was pretty sure I was I was in love with her before, but now I’m sure I love her.

When Mike doesn’t show up right away we spend some time playing pool. I’m usually pretty goo at pool. I didn’t expect her to be way better. Is being a vampire cheating? She’s got better vision, and speed. I’m pretty sure she can move faster than I can see if she wanted. I was cocky and didn’t mind taking a bet. By the time it was finished I owed her $112. I guess she was right, I’d need the money if I kept hanging around with her.

Mike finally makes his way in, and he might as well have been an orc. Mike has the body of someone who learned to workout in jail and never stopped. His upper body is large and muscular but his legs seem pretty similar to mine. I wait until after he’s eaten to alert Destiny but I’m sure she already knows.

“Alright, go get what we came for.”

“What did we come for,” I hadn’t bothered to ask.

“The Pink Panther keychain.”

“Wait are you serious? We could just buy one,” I’m shocked the job could be so simple. 

“Yep, it’s a good luck charm.”

I make my way over to Mike and just ask “Hey, can I have that keychain?”

“Are you serious?”

“Yeah, I know someone who wants it back.”

“Fuck off weirdo,” Mike gives me an answer I probably deserve.

“I can’t leave, until I get that keychain.”

“How about I give you something else,” Mike asks in a calmer demeanor.

“Sorry, it has to be the keychain.”

“How about you take this, and reconsider?”

My eyes flash and blur as I realize Mike had just punched me in the head. Usually I would run away, avoid the fight. That’s what I had done my entire life. But I can handle this now. I’ve been training, I’ve done some pushups, and I’m ready. I thank him for the punch with one of my own. He only smiles and I know I’m in trouble. I just close my eyes and tuck my head as he tosses me across a table.

“Fuck is wrong with you,” I look up to see Destiny laying into Mike. 

It doesn’t take long before the rest of the bar is involved in the brawl picking sides. I take the opportunity to track down Mike. I snatch the keychain as he’s brawling with someone trying to make his way to Destiny. She was standing on a pool table laughing and fending people off with a pool cue. I’ve never seen her this way. Not exactly blood lust, but she’s having fun with the fight. I could sneak out now, and meet her outside. But my bad side takes hold, so I ball up my fist and go back as far as I can before punching Mike right in the balls and watch him scream in pain. He’s knocked out as someone takes a chair over his back.

“That was crazy,” Destiny says once we’ve finally got back to the car.

“Over a keychain,” is all I can say as I twirl it in my hands.


Chapter 79 - M.


“Why are we here,” I follow Destiny in stretching. 

“We’re going to make you a real bad ass,” she laughs. 

“No seriously, you’ve got me out in the middle of nowhere looking like I’m about to run a triathlon.” 

“Die Hand Die Verletzt,” she says with a smile, popping the car trunk. 

“I’m not sure what that means,” I follow. 

“It’s German and translates to the hand that wounds,” she draws me in closer. 

“Woah,” I get a look in the trunk and see a wide range of weapons. “What is all this.” 

“You’re going to have to learn how to fight eventually. Usually you’d start with some basic sparring. But we’re going to kick your right up to weapons. So, what calls out to you?” 

Long swords, short swords, broad swords, thin swords, maces, axes of all sizes and even a few hand guns. Something small will probably work best for me. I’m not strong enough to swing a big axe in a long battle. Wait, why is she training me to fight? What does she have planned? Maybe a gun would work, versatile and guaranteed killing power, but I’ve never fired a gun before. 

“Don’t think too hard, pick whatever calls to you,” she interrupts my train of thought. 

“I like these,” I lift a pair of large curved knives with blue hued metal and black wooded handles. 

“Hachoir de guerre,” she nods with approval. “We’re getting a lesson in languages today. These are French made, a combination of axe and knife. Meaning if you can master these, you can pretty easily transition to swords or axes.” 

“You really know a ton about different weapons, and languages. How long have you really been alive because 28 doesn’t seem so believable anymore.” 

“28, for real,” she smiles. “But I’ll say this, when you haven’t had to sleep for six or seven years you find yourself with a lot of extra free time. Study languages, history. I know a lot, but I’m not an expert on any of it.” 

“Wait, vampires don’t have to sleep? Turn me right now,” I joke. 

She puts a finger on my neck and gently caresses it, “that could be arranged,” she bares her fangs playfully.  

“I don’t know if I’m creeped out or aroused.” 

“Why not both,” she gently pushes me away. 

“I didn’t even mean to say that out loud.” 

“Yeah, whatever,” she jokes. “Let’s teach you to fight.” 

“What’s the first step.” 

“Take up a position you think you should take.”  

I think for a moment and take up a pose, similar to one of my Elder Scrolls characters who would wield double daggers or axes. Slightly bent knees and blades the same height as my head. Destiny only laughs and corrects my posture. She instructs me to take a few swings. It takes a moment before I get used to the weight in my hands, they don’t look heavy but the handles are weighted. Maybe there’s some kind of heavy metal that keeps the weight low. I wonder what the purpose for that is. 

“Alright, are you going to teach me some cool moves now?” 

“Nope,” she reaches into the backseat of the car and pulls out a book. “Teach yourself.”  

“Wait, I thought you were going to teach me,” I catch the book. 

“I said I was good at a bunch of stuff and mastered none. I don’t know how to use those things. I just remember proper formation from the books,” she laughs as if she’s told the funniest joke ever.  

“Wow, you brought me out here to Karate Kid me, then just make read a book?” 

“Nope, we’re going to run too.” 

“What?”

“You need to get your cardio up, and your strength. But we’ll work on that later.” 

Gym class, the only class I skipped in school. Now I’m out here running after a vampire before the sun is all the way up in the sky. There’s still dew on the ground for heaven’s sake. Is this what love is? Because I wouldn’t do this for anyone else. At least she’s letting me keep up and not leaving me in the dust. Why am I always chasing after this woman? One day I’m going to catch her.